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This page features brief excerpts of news stories published by the mainstream media and, less frequently, blogs, alternative media, and even obviously biased sources. The excerpts are taken directly from the websites cited in each source note. Quotation marks are not used.
This page features brief excerpts of news stories published by the mainstream media and, less frequently, blogs, alternative media, and even obviously biased sources. The excerpts are taken directly from the websites cited in each source note. Quotation marks are not used. Because most of our readers read the NYT we usually do not include the paper's stories in HIGHLIGHTS.
Name of source: The Age (Melbourne, Australia)
SOURCE: The Age (Melbourne, Australia) (3-13-07)
On the eve of their talks in Tokyo today, Mr Howard has made it clear he will not tolerate an attempt by Japan to rewrite history. He is expected to raise the issue with Mr Abe this afternoon.
Mr Abe enraged surviving so-called "comfort women" two weeks ago when — after the US Congress called on Japan to accept historical responsibility for the sex slave practice — he suggested there was no evidence to prove that the Japanese Government or army had coerced women to work in brothels...
Mr Abe tried to quell the controversy last Sunday by reiterating his support for the 1993 Kono statement of apology.
Mr Howard yesterday welcomed the reaffirmation of the 1993 statement, but rejected any attempt to parse definitions.
"There can be no quibbling about what happened … Any suggestion there was not coercion is completely repudiated by me and it has been completely repudiated by other Allied countries," he said.
Name of source: San Francisco Chronicle
SOURCE: San Francisco Chronicle (3-12-07)
The Elem Pomos' 50-acre reservation [in Lake County, north of San Francisco] is adjacent to the Sulphur Bank Mine, one of the nation's most polluted sites, and some Pomos believe the tribe's health problems may be related to the federal government's use of the mine's toxic tailings to build reservation roads and house foundation pads 37 years ago.
Last year, after more than a decade of regulatory delays, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency cleaned the contaminated soil and rock from the reservation and stabilized the mine site.
Yet many of the tribe's 300-plus members are dissatisfied with the $20 million cleanup project, saying the EPA's excavations may have damaged archaeological sites in violation of the 1966 National Historic Preservation Act.
The cleanup removed thousands of cubic yards of toxic waste, improved roads and water systems, provided five new homes and significantly reduced pollution from the mine site. But tribe members say the EPA ignored their demands to modify the work plan, exacerbating the archaeological damage.
SOURCE: San Francisco Chronicle (3-11-07)
It's nothing at least $1 million in research and repairs couldn't begin to fix, caretakers said.
Yet, that estimate is "probably a small amount compared to what really needs to be done to adequately handle the site," said Texas Historical Commission Executive Director Larry Oaks on Monday.
"This is one where Texans just flat would not give up," Oaks said.
The Daughters of the Republic of Texas, who have safeguarded the shrine since 1902, are preparing the Alamo's first master plan for upgrades since 1979. Daughters of the Republic officials said they can mitigate the destructive forces of nature and man if they can raise large sums for preservation. They also want to enhance the visitor experience at the hallowed site.
Name of source: Live Science
SOURCE: Live Science (3-12-07)
Living from 4 million to 2 million years ago, early hominins in the genus Australopithecus are considered immediate predecessors of the human genus Homo, and had heights of around 3 feet 9 inches for females and 4 feet 6 inches for males.
Until now, the squat physiques of australopiths and other human predecessors were considered an adaptation for climbing in tree canopies. Like surfing or any other sport that requires balance, having a lower center of mass boosts stability and, in turn, success at the activity.
"The old argument was that [apes] retained short legs to help them climb trees that still were an important part of their habitat," said the study author David Carrier, a biologist at the University of Utah. "My argument is that they retained short legs because short legs helped them fight."
SOURCE: Live Science (3-11-07)
The urge to hug a departed loved one again or prevent atrocities are among the compelling reasons that keep the notion of time travel alive in the minds of many.
While the idea makes for great fiction, some scientists now say traveling to the past is impossible.
There are a handful of scenarios that theorists have suggested for how one might travel to the past, said Brian Greene, author of the bestseller, “The Elegant Universe” and a physicist at Columbia University.“And almost all of them, if you look at them closely, brush up right at the edge of physics as we understand it. Most of us think that almost all of them can be ruled out.”...
Name of source: Courier-Post (Cherry Hill, N.J.)
SOURCE: Courier-Post (Cherry Hill, N.J.) (3-11-07)
Historical interpreter Stacy Roth of Burlington City answered that question in a re-creation of Molly's life based on historical research, story-telling, imagination and what she calls "plausible conjecture."
Roth sorted fact from fiction during "Over Here, Molly Pitcher," a Women's History Month event last week in Westampton at Peachfield Plantation, a colonial farmhouse operated by the New Jersey chapter of the Colonial Dames.
Based on recent research by historians and authors, Roth believes Molly was probably Mary Hays McCauley, a Revolutionary War camp follower and heroine who assisted her husband's artillery unit at the Battle of Monmouth in 1778.
Roth sang a Revolutionary War song to her audience of 20.
"Good day, to ya," Roth said, using Hays' Irish brogue.
She involved her audience in a simulated artillery crew and canon firing.
Roth was dressed as Molly in layers of clothing with long skirts, petticoats, an overcoat and hat carrying a water canteen, a pack and a rolled wool blanket over one shoulder.
She dispelled myths Molly's artilleryman husband was killed at Monmouth and she took over his canon position or that the water she carried was in pitchers.
"It was more likely she filled their canteens with water, but how would Molly Canteen sound?" she jokes....
Name of source: Mark Brown in the Chicago Sun-Times
SOURCE: Mark Brown in the Chicago Sun-Times (3-7-07)
As I get older, my time perspective keeps changing. Despite the passage of all those additional years, I now feel closer than ever to the events of World War II -- Hitler's extermination of six million Jews and our dropping of the atomic bomb now looming frighteningly large in life's rear-view mirror.
Even the Civil War stopped seeming so far in the past after I visited Gettysburg a few years back and saw the photos from the 75th anniversary reunion of the famous battle, held in 1938 and attended by 1,918 Civil War veterans, many of whom were pictured participating in a re-enactment of Pickett's Charge.
I guess that's why I'm not so quick to shrug off the discovery that my ancestors owned slaves as something that happened "a long time ago," just because it was more than a century before my birth.
If you missed Sunday's column, I told the story of learning from my mom last week that some of my forebears were slaveowners.
Name of source: Jerusalem Post
SOURCE: Jerusalem Post (3-8-07)
The fortress, built as a palace by Herod the Great, who was King of Judea from 37 to 4 BCE, is situated atop an isolated rock cliff at the western end of the Judean Desert overlooking the Dead Sea, and was the site of the last stand of a group of Jews rebelling against Roman rule nearly 2,000 years ago.
Masada is used as a swearing-in site for some IDF combat units, who pledge that "Masada shall not fall again."
Several hundred meters of the 1,400-meter wall are in need of urgent repair as a result of the freak December 2003 winter storm, Masada Park director Eitan Campbell said.
"There is a growing danger that parts of the wall will collapse if they are not fixed," Campbell told The Jerusalem Post.
Name of source: Guardian Newsblog
SOURCE: Guardian Newsblog (3-12-07)
Such stats makes some giddy with enthusiasm about the brave new digital world. Information will be so much more accessible and we can do away with filing all those dusty bits of paper, the theory goes. But others aren't so sure.
Family historians, for example, are concerned that we're in danger of wiping out our collective memory by over-relying on emails and other transient electronic formats.
And the head of National Archives says we are facing a crisis in record keeping unless we get to grips with the switch from a paper world to a digital one...
Name of source: AP
SOURCE: AP (3-12-07)
In protesting the loan, Sen. Paolo Amato said it exposes a priceless masterpiece to unnecessary risk and belittles its significance by using it in a commercial event.
Inside the museum, the 6 1/2-foot-by-3-foot painting was being bundled in three protective crates filled with shock-absorbers and high-tech sensors to monitor humidity, temperatures and stress levels in preparation for departure Tuesday.
"That a person like (Bush), with the persecution of our migrant brothers in the United States, with the wars he has provoked, is going to walk in our sacred lands, is an offense for the Mayan people and their culture," Juan Tiney, the director of a Mayan nongovernmental organization with close ties to Mayan religious and political leaders, said Thursday.
Bush's seven-day tour of Latin America includes a stopover beginning late Sunday in Guatemala. On Monday morning he is scheduled to visit the archaeological site Iximche on the high western plateau in a region of the Central American country populated mostly by Mayans.
Tiney said the "spirit guides of the Mayan community" decided it would be necessary to cleanse the sacred site of "bad spirits" after Bush's visit so that their ancestors could rest in peace. He also said the rites -- which entail chanting and burning incense, herbs and candles -- would prepare the site for the third summit of Latin American Indians March 26-30.
The $1.3 billion USS New Orleans is a transport ship that can embark a landing force of up to 800 Marines. It is the fourth ship to bear the New Orleans name. The last one was an amphibious assault vessel that served during the Vietnam War and in Operation Desert Storm. It was decommissioned in 1997 and is slated to be sunk for gunnery practice.
It took about five years to build this ship, including a months-long interruption in construction due to Hurricane Katrina. The work was completed Monday.
Officials of the formerly Milosevic-led Socialist Party gathered at his grave in the eastern town of Pozarevac, praising the man who led Serbia through several wars and ended up facing the U.N. war crimes court for the former Yugoslavia in The Hague...
He died [March 11, 2006] just weeks before an expected end of his trial for alleged war crimes, including genocide...
As Milosevic's unrepentant supporters glorified the ex-president, [current President Boris] Tadic was busy dealing with one of the effects of his rule -- attending U.N.-mediated talks in Vienna, Austria, with the representatives of ethnic Albanian separatists from Kosovo, the southern province whose secession Milosevic tried to prevent with brutal force.
Rome Cardinal Camillo Ruini said Saturday he had been informed that completion of work by the diocese on the cause for beatification and sainthood will be marked with a ceremony in St. John's Lateran Basilica on April 2 in the capital. The date is the second anniversary of John Paul's death...
Now the Vatican must take up its own examination of the same characteristics, a process which can take years.
Shortly after John Paul's death, with faithful clamoring for quick canonization, Pope Benedict XVI, the pontiff's successor, waived the customary five-year waiting period to open the case for possible sainthood.
From 1942 to 1945, the Navy used the building as a lab for designing and building sophisticated code-breaking machines, including the NCR Bombe, credited with helping crack German U-boat codes.
The university, which owns the property, said a study showed the building had lost its historical integrity because it had been extensively remodeled and is not eligible for the National Register of Historic Places.
NEWPORT NEWS, Va. -- Exactly 145 years after the USS Monitor faced the Confederate ship CSS Virginia in the first clash of ironclads, a $30 million center dedicated to the Union vessel opened Friday.
The Monitor Center, a new wing of The Mariners' Museum, houses more than 1,200 artifacts from the Civil War ship and an interactive exhibition on both armored vessels...
The Monitor, a new design, and the Virginia, built atop the burned-out hull of the Union steam frigate Merrimack, fought to a draw on March 9, 1862, near where the museum now stands. The battle made wooden warships obsolete...
Galleries tell how the ironclads were built and feature efforts to recover artifacts from the deteriorating wreckage of the Monitor, which sank, upside down, during a storm 16 miles off North Carolina's coast on Dec. 31, 1862. Sixteen men died...
Outside, visitors can stroll the deck of a 170-foot, full-scale exterior model of the Monitor.
Name of source: Star-Press (Muncie, Ind.)
SOURCE: Star-Press (Muncie, Ind.) (3-12-07)
The site, only 150 feet from Ind. 32 between Muncie and Yorktown, recently came to the attention of the Indiana Department of Transportation, which plans to widen that segment of the highway to four or five lanes.
"It's absolutely critical we keep this one," said Don Cochran, director of archaeological research at Ball State University. "This is one we don't know anything about."
With the exception of Mounds State Park, most of the 300-plus known mounds and enclosures built by the Hopewell-Adena people around 2,000 years ago in East Central Indiana have been completely or partially destroyed by agriculture, development and artifact hunters.
Name of source: Christian Science Monitor
SOURCE: Christian Science Monitor (3-12-07)
On his centenary anniversary Sunday, German Chancellor Angela Merkel praised him as a symbol of "European courage" and for having a vision of a democratic Europe far ahead of its time.
Mr. Von Moltke, descendant of one of Germany's greatest military generals, was executed in 1945 for collaborating against Hitler, partly as the guiding spirit of the Kreisau Circle, a collection of German intellectuals, theologians, and aristocrats committed to ending Hitler's rule and rebuilding Germany.
His commemoration signifies Germany's persistent efforts to face its Nazi past, an effort now praised as a model of reconciliation...
Name of source: UPI
SOURCE: UPI (3-12-07)
Deutsche Welle Online reported Monday that a low-ranking official in the state of Lower Saxony, Isolde Saalmann, had convinced her colleagues from the governing Social Democratic Party to file a request to check whether the German citizenship given to Austrian-born Hitler in 1932 can be rescinded.
Hitler's application to become a German national was granted in Braunschweig, the city where he had lived since 1912 and fought for Germany in World War I, a move that enabled his notorious future career in German politics.
Saalmann told a German newspaper it would be a strong symbolic signal if the state would take posthumous action.
Name of source: Minneapolis Star Tribune
SOURCE: Minneapolis Star Tribune (3-11-07)
There are chipped plates from which refugees ate rice at the Ban Vinai camp in Thailand before immigrating to Minnesota. And there are even napkins and a water bottle retrieved from the 2002 victory party after Mee Moua was elected to the Minnesota Senate, becoming the nation's first Hmong-American legislator.
Welcome to the Hmong Nationality Archives...
Name of source: USA Today
SOURCE: USA Today (3-12-07)
The seemingly benign request, made under a 1966 law designed to let people find out what their government is doing, languished for years.
Just last month, Aceves, now a full professor at California Western School of Law in San Diego, got another batch of partially blacked-out papers, a staggering 18 years after his first request.
Aceves is among dozens of people whose requests for information have lingered in limbo at various agencies for more than a decade, according to a new audit by the National Security Archive, a public watchdog group. Thousands of requests take years. Many more take months.
The law says they are supposed to be processed within 20 days...
Sidebar: What's behind the closed doors?
Name of source: Guardian
SOURCE: Guardian (3-12-07)
Brouwenstijn's now crumbling wallet is one of hundreds stored in brown envelopes marked "effects" at the Red Cross International Tracing Service (ITS) in Bad Arolsen, central Germany. Other envelopes contain everyday objects such as a bronze powder press, whose pale pink contents briefly cloud the air when opened, a tiny lipstick embossed with the words "kiss proof", and a white rosary.
These trinkets and bits of paper are, in thousands of cases, the only remnants of lives that ended, as Brouwenstijn's did, at the hands of the Nazis, the envelopes protecting their memories.
Before the end of this year, the fragmented stories of 17.5 million individuals held in concentration and slave labour camps during the second world war are due to be revealed to historians and academics for the first time.
Name of source: Washington Post
SOURCE: Washington Post (3-12-07)
Even the queen of the mother country plans to cross the Atlantic to help mark the occasion.
Already, the cost of activities surrounding the bash is upward of $200 million. The trick has been how to celebrate something long buried under a mound of dirt: Jamestown. But major archaeological discoveries in recent years have helped Virginia piece together the outlines of the original settlement and how the colonists managed to survive.
Name of source: Los Angeles Times
SOURCE: Los Angeles Times (3-12-07)
Today, the public is free to roam the island's artillery batteries, prison cells and guardhouses —- virtually every building on the 22-acre island except its most recognizable structure, the towering lighthouse. The oldest on the West Coast, it has been under lock and key since 1854.
But that may change. The National Park Service is considering taking over five landmark Bay Area lighthouses from the U.S. Coast Guard and opening what aficionados call "American castles" to the public.
"Lighthouses punctuate our seascape," said Bob Trapani Jr., executive director of the American Lighthouse Foundation. "They strike a lot of emotional chords in a broad group of people. The sound, the night at light, that twinkle of light; if you grow up with that memory, it doesn't go away. Lighthouses are part of a romantic era, from a simpler time."
Name of source: Times (of London)
SOURCE: Times (of London) (3-12-07)
Far from a peaceful expansion into empty and fertile lands, the transformation from hunter-gatherer to farming society was riven with conflict and change. New techniques have allowed archaeologists to pinpoint ages of Early Neolithic, long-barrow burial mounds more accurately, forcing them to revise virtually every assumption about Britain’s first farmers.
Early Neolithic society, dating about 3,900BC to 3,300BC, was much more diverse than previously realised, with differences between rites and beliefs noticeable in communities only a few miles from each other...
Four of the barrows assessed by the new dating were contemporaneous yet were all shut up in different ways, suggesting much more diverse beliefs during the era of how “ghosts and spirits” should be treated...
The new findings suggest that rather than commemorating long-dead tribal chieftains or heroes, the people were keeping alive memories of their friends and families.
SOURCE: Times (of London) (3-12-07)
The MPs hope such a move will bring redemption for the city of Braunschweig which, they claim, has been wrongly blamed for appointing Hitler as a civil servant on February 26, 1932. The appointment made Hitler, who was born in Austria, a German national, meaning he could run in the presidential election a few weeks later.
The city “keeps getting labelled as the place that helped Hitler get his German citizenship”, said Isolde Saalmann, a local MP. “But the city was Social Democrat at the time.” It was the state of Braunschweig, which was a Nazi stronghold and which was replaced by Lower Saxony after the war, that had turned Hitler into a German, she said. “That should be clarified. This is in no way intended as a way to belittle history by saying ‘see, he wasn’t a German’,” said Ms Saalmann. “That would never be my intention as a Social Democrat.”...
The idea of rescinding Hitler’s citizenship came up during discussions over its 75th anniversary. It was suggested that as Braunschweig, along with other German cities, had withdrawn honorary citizenships from Nazi leaders after the war, maybe Hitler’s nationality could now be taken back as well.
Legal experts doubt whether this would be feasible. The German constitution forbids rescinding citizenship if that would make the person stateless. Hitler’s being dead also poses a potential snag, as an official from Lower Saxony’s Justice Ministry pointed out.
Hitler never took up his duties at Braunschweig and soon took indefinite leave. He had been stateless since 1925 when, at his request, his Austrian citizenship was annulled. It took seven years for him to become officially “Germanified”.
SOURCE: Times (of London) (3-10-07)
The move to demolish the wall on Ledra Street, which runs through the heart of Nicosia, started under cover of darkness last night, and was not publicised earlier in the day. It followed the Turkish Cypriot dismantling of a disputed elevated walkway in January, which was at the centre of a dispute with the Greek Cypriots over the opening of a new crossing point...
The 13-foot high concrete wall was seen as the strongest symbol of the Mediterranean island's 32-year-old partition into a Green Cypriot south and a Turkish Cypriot north.
The spot is a bizarre time warp of long abandoned, bullet-pocked and crumbling buildings, some of them once elegant stone-built mansions whose only inhabitants today are stray cats and rats...
Communication between Greek and Turkish Cypriots was heavily restricted until 2003, when the Turkish Cypriot authorities unexpectedly opened several checkpoints along the island’s 185km long dividing line.
Ledra Street has been blocked since 1964. The wall was put up after intercommunal violence flared in 1963, just three years after Cyprus secured independence from Britain.
Nicosia demolition is just the beginning
Name of source: International Herald Tribune
SOURCE: International Herald Tribune (3-11-07)
Some experts on the history of British Jews dismissed the article, saying its existence has been well-known and it had never been published because Churchill rejected the views of the ghost-writer who composed it...Accounts of the article were reported Sunday in several British newspapers, triggering a modest debate over the extent to which it broke new ground in explaining Churchill's feelings about Jews...
Geoffrey Alderman, a British historian who is a columnist for The Jewish Chronicle in London, said in an interview Sunday that "we have known about this for some time" because the article appears in a collection of Churchill's writings compiled by Martin Gilbert, Churchill's official biographer, that was published in the 1980s.
Alderman added: "It does not challenge" the prevailing view of Churchill as supportive of the Jews. "I think it's a flash in the pan."
But [historian Richard] Toye said Churchill had sought to publish the article in 1937 in Britain and the United States. Churchill "was apparently happy to put his name to this article in 1937" and was "happy to endorse sentiments contained in articles that were written for him," Toye said.
Gilbert said Churchill had refused to permit the article to be published. He identified the ghost-writer as Adam Marshall Diston, a member of Oswald Mosley's British Union of Fascists. It was not clear why Churchill commissioned him to write an article in his name. Both Toye and Gilbert are planning to publish new books about Churchill in the next few weeks or months.
Name of source: CBC (Canada)
SOURCE: CBC (Canada) (3-11-07)
Nasser Shaer said Saturday that he had not been informed of the ban, which was implemented earlier this week.
"I have decided to correct the illegal measures that were taken regarding disposing the book," Shaer told the Associated Press.
Some 1,500 copies of Speak Bird, Speak Again had already been destroyed, sparking outrage among writers, academics and others who protested the move as a form of censorship...
The 400-page anthology, first published in English in 1989, is narrated by Palestinian women. It was put together by Sharif Kanaana, a novelist and professor at Bir Zeit University in the West Bank and Ibrahim Muhawi, a teacher of Arabic literature.
It wasn't published in Arabic until 2001, and that's when the Palestinian Culture Ministry requested copies to be distributed in schools.
Kanaana said two of the 45 tales contain colloquial Arabic words that refer to body parts.
Name of source: AFP
SOURCE: AFP (3-11-07)
Churchill made the claim in [a never-published] article entitled "How The Jews Can Combat Persecution" written in 1937, three years before he started leading the country.
He outlined a new wave of anti-Semitism sweeping across Europe and the United States, which was followed by the deaths of millions of Jews in the Holocaust under the German Nazi regime.
"It would be easy to ascribe it to the wickedness of the persecutors, but that does not fit all the facts," the article read...
"For it may be that, unwittingly, they are inviting persecution -- that they have been partly responsible for the antagonism from which they suffer."
The article adds: "The central fact which dominates the relations of Jew and non-Jew is that the Jew is 'different'."...
Elsewhere, Churchill praised Jews as "sober, industrious, law-abiding" and urged Britons to stand up for the race against persecution.
"There is no virtue in a tame acquiescence in evil. To protest against cruelty and wrong, and to strive to end them, is the mark of a man," he wrote.
The article was discovered by Cambridge University historian Richard Toye in the university's archive of Churchill's papers.
Name of source: Telegraph
SOURCE: Telegraph (3-10-07)
Every week, hundreds of teenage couples visit the Ponte Milvio and testify to their everlasting love by writing their names on a padlock and clipping it to a chain wrapped around two of the bridge's lampposts. They then throw the keys into the Tiber.
The fad was immortalised last year in I Want You, a romantic novel by Federico Moccia, which has just been turned into a film.
However, the lampposts are now so overburdened that some opposition members of the local council tabled a motion to remove the padlocks and clean up the bridge.
SOURCE: Telegraph (3-11-07)
This year, however, the celebrations are likely to be muted. An art historian in Milan has discovered that Michelangelo Merisi -- the artist's original name -- was not born in Caravaggio. He was born in Milan, on September 29, 1571, and baptised at the church of Santa Maria della Passarella.
The revelation has shocked the town's 15,000 inhabitants. In one main street, a public notice board displays a selection of newspaper articles about the discovery. Two old ladies stood nearby digesting the news.
The mayor, Giuseppe Prevedini, has decided not to give up his town's only claim to fame without a fight. After all, there is the income from the two million tourists who visit every year to consider.
Name of source: NYT
SOURCE: NYT (3-11-07)
It’s old news that divorce is no longer disqualifying for a candidate, hasn’t been since 1980, when the country elected Ronald Reagan, the divorced and remarried family-values candidate. As national divorce rates skyrocketed, divorce lost its wounding political impact. The end.
Or was it?
“I think people no longer have a unitary idea that divorce inevitably disqualifies you, but they still look at the dynamics,” said Stephanie Coontz, of the Council on Contemporary Families, a nonprofit research group. “They are more disapproving of dishonest dynamics, by how someone handled his marriages, divorces, kids.”
And now one of those kids has spoken up — Andrew Giuliani, Rudolph W. Giuliani’s son. In a recent wince-inducing interview with The Times, Andrew, 21, said that he had been estranged from his father since Mr. Giuliani’s bitter divorce from his mother, Donna Hanover, and his subsequent marriage to Judith Nathan. Andrew, and his sister, Caroline, 17, are expected to be absent from their father’s campaign.
A problem? No, said David Garth, a political consultant who advised Mr. Giuliani when he ran for mayor. “The more trouble the country is in, the more you tend to overlook some of the personal things you may have looked at before,” he said.
That is one theory: The voting public, practiced survivors of Bill Clinton’s transgressions and former Senator Gary Hart’s career-wrecking dalliance with a young woman not his wife, is less likely to dismiss a candidate because of personal foibles today, especially if worried about war and security....
SOURCE: NYT (3-11-07)
The Korea of three decades ago was a very different place.
Instead, after two bishops drew a link between the plight of Palestinians in the West Bank and Jews in the Warsaw Ghetto during World War II, it has become a fresh source of recrimination.
Jewish groups in Germany and Israel’s ambassador to Germany condemned their comments, which were reported in newspapers here, saying they were demagogic and “verging on anti-Semitism.”
“If one uses terms like Warsaw Ghetto or racism in connection with Israeli or Palestinian politics, then one has forgotten everything, or learned nothing,” the Israeli ambassador, Shimon Stein, said in a statement this week.
The Warsaw Ghetto, established by the Nazis in 1940, was used as a holding pen for Polish Jews before they were sent to concentration camps. It has come to epitomize the barbarity of the Holocaust.
But for Sikhs, that image of Guru Nanak (1469-1538), their religion’s founder, is anathema to everything they believe about the prophet, a simple man who preached to the poor and certainly, they say, never wore a crown.
So, after months of lobbying by Sikhs, the California Board of Education voted unanimously on Thursday to ask the book’s publisher to remove the portrait from future printings, and to provide a sticker with another image or text to place over the portrait in existing copies.
The Turkish Foreign Ministry reacted swiftly to the decision, saying in a statement that it was saddened by the Swiss court’s ruling to punish the politician, Dogu Perincek, leader of the Turkish Workers’ Party, and to ignore “his freedom of expression.”
Mr. Perincek was ordered to pay a fine of $2,450; an additional penalty of $7,360 was suspended.
He was charged with breaking Swiss law by denying during a visit to Switzerland in 2005 that the World War I era killings of up to 1.5 million Armenians amounted to genocide. He has since repeated his statements, including at his trial this week.
In Turkey it is a crime to use the word genocide to describe the killings.
Name of source: Newsweek
SOURCE: Newsweek (3-12-07)
In 1972, New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art paid a record-smashing $1 million for an ancient Greek vase known as the Euphronios Krater. It was worth every penny. The krater—a 12-gallon pot for mixing wine and water—was one of only two dozen surviving examples by the great painter Euphronios, and it even had his signature. Thomas Hoving, then the Met's director, was so smitten by its classic beauty he called it "positively the finest work of art I've ever seen." (Take that, Michelangelo.) But the 2,500-year-old krater did have one major flaw. It was stolen—dug up by looters from an Etruscan tomb near Rome and smuggled out of Italy just months before it was sold, an inconvenient truth the Met finally copped to last year. When the museum debuts its lavish new Greek and Roman galleries next month, its most notable antiquity will be left in a side gallery. Next year the Met is sending it back to Italy for good.
SOURCE: Newsweek (3-11-07)
[Scroll to Bush in Latin America.]
Name of source: Reuters
SOURCE: Reuters (3-10-07)
Abe sparked outrage abroad when he said in February there was no evidence that Japan's government or army had forced the mostly Asian women to work in military brothels during World War Two.
Abe has endorsed a 1993 government apology to the "comfort women", as they are euphemistically known in Japan, but has also said Tokyo would not apologize again even if U.S. lawmakers adopted a resolution calling for a new and unambiguous apology.
On Sunday, Abe repeated that the 1993 apology remained in effect. "We have stated our heartfelt apologies to the 'comfort women' at the time who suffered greatly and were injured in their hearts," Abe said in an interview with NHK television. "I want to say that that sentiment has not changed at all."
Name of source: Sunday Times (of London)
SOURCE: Sunday Times (of London) (3-11-07)
With a papal decree said to be imminent, Catholic publishers in Rome are preparing new editions of the Latin missal. They have sent proofs to Vatican authorities for approval, the Rome newspaper La Repubblica reported yesterday.
Vatican sources said Benedict, who is fluent in Latin, is considering publication of a papal “motu proprio” (literally, on his own initiative), which does not require the approval of church bodies. This would enable Benedict to ignore opposition from several cardinals.
The decree would officially declare the Latin, or Tridentine, mass an “extraordinary universal rite”, and the vernacular mass, with which most Catholics are familiar, an “ordinary universal rite”.
Name of source: New York Times
SOURCE: New York Times (3-11-07)
Steinbeck aficionados wishing to examine the manuscript of "The Pearl"...have to travel here -— after making an appointment with a part-time archivist, who is in on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.
The center takes great care to preserve these relics of Steinbeck, a Nobel laureate, yet it has no plans to take the collection a step further, to adapt to a digital age...
These Steinbeck artifacts are not the only important pieces of history that are at risk of disappearing or being ignored in the digital age. As more museums and archives become digital domains, and as electronic resources become the main tool for gathering information, items left behind in nondigital form, scholars and archivists say, are in danger of disappearing from the collective cultural memory, potentially leaving our historical fabric riddled with holes.
"There's an illusion being created that all the world's knowledge is on the Web, but we haven't begun to glimpse what is out there in local archives and libraries," said Edward L. Ayers, a historian and dean of the college and graduate school of arts and sciences at the University of Virginia. "Material that is not digitized risks being neglected as it would not have been in the past, virtually lost to the great majority of potential users."...
Name of source: Observer
SOURCE: Observer (3-11-07)
In the Fifties and Sixties, black men, women and children were often killed with impunity by southern whites who believed they would get away with murder. But they were wrong in the case of Dee and Moore, who were both 19.
Next month, James Seale, 71, will go on trial in Mississippi for their murders. He is unlikely to be the last elderly white man to face such a trial for crimes some might deem old history and others would call horrifically delayed justice. In a dramatic new official move to come to terms with the past, the FBI is re-examining almost 100 unsolved murder cases from the civil rights era. It will look at brutal slayings and lynchings that happened across the American South before 1968, when the region was in turmoil as blacks campaigned for the right to vote...
SOURCE: Observer (3-11-07)
Dr Richard Toye, a Cambridge historian, said he chanced on a typed article, written by Churchill in 1937 but unpublished, among proofs and press cuttings at the Churchill Archives Centre in Cambridge. The university issued a press release trumpeting, 'Uncovered: The "lost" paper Churchill kept from publication,' and promoting a book by Toye which is to be published later this month. [Dr Toye's book, 'Lloyd George & Churchill: Rivals for Greatness' will be published by Macmillan on March 16.]
But when The Observer contacted Sir Martin Gilbert, the eminent historian and Churchill biographer, the implication of anti-Semitism began to unravel. Gilbert, who also has a book out this summer, said the article was not written by Churchill at all, but rather his ghost writer, Adam Marshall Diston. He added that Churchill's instructions for the article were different in both tone and content from what Diston eventually wrote, and pointed out that Diston was a supporter of Oswald Mosley, the notorious fascist and anti-Semite. Churchill had stopped its publication in a newspaper.
Name of source: Boston Globe
SOURCE: Boston Globe (3-8-07)
Knox developed an interest in the science and tactics of artillery that he furthered by reading the books he imported from England and carried in his store.
That knowledge would shortly be turned against his customers in the military surprise that led to the events celebrated on Evacuation Day, March 17.
In the early days of the American Revolution, Knox joined the Colonial artillery and convinced General George Washington that he could haul cannons from recently captured Fort Ticonderoga overland to Boston.
Under cover of darkness on the night of March 4, 1776, the cannons were mounted on Dorchester Heights in South Boston, bringing the British garrison and fleet within range of their fire. Within two weeks, the British evacuation of Boston was underway.
Knox, the bookseller-turned-artilleryman, will be the focus of this year's Evacuation Day celebrations in Boston, sponsored by a coalition of community groups.
Name of source: Independent
SOURCE: Independent (3-10-07)
A few unemployed southern Irish anglers are taking on a scion of Britain's high nobility in the person of the 12th Duke of Devonshire, Peregrine Andrew Morny Cavendish, friend of the Prince of Wales and inheritor of fabulous wealth. And some prize salmon are at stake.
The resonances echo down the centuries: James I makes an appearance in the legal dispute, as does Magna Carta, Henry VIII and Sir Walter Raleigh. So, in more modern times, do Fred Astaire and Tiger Woods.
The origins of the tussle go back a long, long way. It centres on properties and rights that the Devonshires have held for 400 years or so. Among many other assets the family owns Lismore castle in Waterford and fishing rights on the river Blackwater in Cork...
Name of source: BBC News
SOURCE: BBC News (3-10-07)
Amsterdam city council said the diseased tree behind the building in which the Jewish Frank family took refuge has been attacked by a fungus.
But after protests by environmental groups and the Anne Frank Museum, a cutting of the tree will be replanted.
The chestnut tree is listed as a monument and is at least 150 years old.
Name of source: The Hindu (Chennai, India)
SOURCE: The Hindu (Chennai, India) (3-11-07)
Inaugurating the 67th Session of the Indian History Congress at Farook College here on Saturday, Mr. Achuthanandan said the celebration this year of the 150th anniversary of the revolt of 1857 had a special significance in the prevailing situation in India because it gave the people an occasion to express the country's opposition to neo-imperialism. 'The dissemination of the anti-colonial message of the revolt has contemporary significance,' he said and called upon the historians participating in the conference to 'celebrate the year of the great revolt.'
The Chief Minister said he had noticed that history as a discipline had been in turmoil during the last few years. 'The information that I have gathered is both alarming and encouraging. Alarming because it is reported that there has been an attempt to subvert secular historical writing and supplant it with communal interpretation. Attempts were made to rewrite textbooks on communal lines and to use institutions like the Indian Council for Historical Research for propagating communal interpretation. Manuscripts of well-known historians were suppressed and Hinduised and mythified history was propagated...I highly appreciate the consistent and courageous fight put up by the members of the Indian History Congress against this nefarious move,' Mr. Achuthanandan said.
Earlier, J.V. Naik, Professor of History, took over as General President of the Indian History Congress. Historian Irfan Habib proposed his name for the post. Calicut University Vice-Chancellor Anwar Jahan Zuberi released a souvenir brought out to mark the 67th session of the IHC, which is the fourth to be held in Kerala and the first to be held under the auspices of a college. Hundreds of delegates from all over India and neighbouring countries are attending the three-day conference, which would see around 600 papers on Ancient India, Medieval Indian, Modern India, Countries Other Than India and Archaeology being presented.
Name of source: Ottawa (Ont.) Citizen
SOURCE: Ottawa (Ont.) Citizen (3-10-07)
The decision quickly prompted the Royal Canadian Legion to renew calls for a public boycott of the museum and to ask a Senate committee on veterans affairs to "investigate the matter" -- ensuring a new round of debate in the long-running dispute over the Allies' aerial bombardment of wartime Germany.
A single panel at the heart of the conflict...[reads,] "Mass bomber raids against Germany resulted in vast destruction and heavy loss of life," the disputed panel reads. "The value and morality of the strategic bomber offensive against Germany remains bitterly contested. Bomber Command's aim was to crush civilian morale and force Germany to surrender by destroying its cities and industrial installations. Although Bomber Command and American attacks left 600,000 Germans dead, and more than five million homeless, the raids resulted in only small reductions in German war production until late in the war."
The decision not to alter the panel -- which some Canadian veterans have charged depicts them as "war criminals" -- follows the submission of separate reports on the controversy by four of Canada's leading historians: McGill University's Desmond Morton, Margaret MacMillan of the University of Toronto, the University of Calgary's David Bercuson and Serge Bernier, head of history and heritage at the Department of National Defence.
Name of source: San Bernardino (Calif.) Sun
SOURCE: San Bernardino (Calif.) Sun (3-10-07)
It was unclear if a third jet seized from a Chino museum two days earlier had been moved or stripped.
The former military aircraft were taken from the Yanks Air Museum and the Planes of Fame Museum after a 17-month investigation by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the Defense Criminal Investigation Service and the Naval Criminal Investigation Service...
According to an ICE news release, the government agencies had determined that the three aircraft from the Chino museums, as well as a fourth one in Victorville, could have contained sensitive military equipment that should have been removed before they were transferred to private parties.
In the late 1990s, the aircraft were decommissioned at the Naval Air Station at Point Mugu, then moved to a scrap metal company.