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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: AP
SOURCE: AP (3-31-07)
The hundreds of worn hats nailed to the wooden rafters actually were a tribute to his customers -— the ranch hands, wealthy oil investors and businessmen who gave him their old hats when they bought new ones. He even had one from Gene Autry, although it was stored in a glass case and on loan from the collector who owned it.
But Fleming, 85, closed the Cow Lot when he retired late last year in this North Texas city near the Oklahoma border. Now the Museum of North Texas History wants to preserve the 511-hat collection and has raised about a third of the $40,000 needed to build the display room.
SOURCE: AP (4-2-07)
The pumice was discharged by a volcanic eruption in the ancient Greek island of Santorini in the 17th century B.C. Traces of this solidified lava foam that floats have been found in Crete and southwestern Turkey, but Egypt's archaeologists believe it also reached this site in the Sinai desert, about 7 kilometers (4 miles) south of the coast.
The Santorini explosion was devastating. It sunk most of the island and killed over 35,000 people of a thriving Minoan community.
The head of Egypt's Supreme Council of Antiquities, Zahi Hawass, hailed the discovery as opening a "new field" of study in Egyptology.
"Geologists will help us study how...natural disasters, such as the Santorini tsunami, affected the Pharaonic period."
Dressed in black and deeply wrinkled, Besovic fled Kosovo in 1999. Fear drove the 77-year-old Serb away, but it also drew her back -- fear that if the mostly ethnic Albanian province gains independence as expected later this year, Serb-haters will unearth her relatives' remains and scatter the bones.
Dozens of Serb families are exhuming their dead, reflecting the deep mistrust and unhealed scars of war that bedevil Western efforts to forge a multiethnic society in Kosovo...
[On Tuesday ] the U.N. Security Council is expected to review a proposal to grant Kosovo internationally supervised independence -- a roadmap bitterly opposed by Serbia, which regards the province as the cradle of its nationhood.
Most of Kosovo's Serbs fled after NATO bombing stopped Slobodan Milosevic's brutal 1998-99 crackdown on separatists. An estimated 10,000 ethnic Albanians were killed, more than 1 million lost their homes, and 2,000 are still missing.
When the war ended, some Albanians sought to avenge their dead by targeting Serbs. About 200,000 Serbs and other minorities fled, and only about 100,000 remain, most in small, isolated enclaves.
Conny's husband Siegfried, 42, blesses the wine and bread while his father Gerhard, a 94-year-old Holocaust survivor, sings from his prayer book at the head of the table.
It's an ordinary Sabbath, but celebrated in Germany's unexpectedly vibrant Jewish community, the fastest growing in the world according to the World Jewish Congress.
This Passover, German Jews like the Jarosches are displaying new self-confidence about their future in the country that perpetrated the Holocaust.
"Twenty years ago, this would have been impossible in Berlin," said Siegfried Jarosch, a real estate agent born and raised in the German capital. "But today we have an amazing Jewish infrastructure with kosher butchers, bakers, Jewish schools and several synagogues."
Parts of the island were opened to the public in 1990, for the first time since the immigration complex was shut down in 1954, but few people have been able to explore the rest of the historic island, including 30 shuttered buildings closest to the neighboring island where the Statue of Liberty stands.
On Monday, the first of those buildings will be reopened, a development that historians say is long overdue.
"Every square inch has significance to American history," said Kenneth T. Jackson, a history professor at Columbia University.
The newly restored structure is the Ferry Building, where many new Americans caught rides off the island to begin their new lives after passing a maze of legal and health inspections.
The previously unknown diary of an Associated Press reporter reveals a new perspective.
A team that has already found aircraft parts and pieces of a woman's shoe on a remote South Pacific atoll hopes to return there this year to search for more evidence, maybe even DNA.
If what's known now had been conveyed to searchers then, might Earhart and her navigator have been found alive? It's one of a thousand questions that keep the case from being declared dead, as Earhart herself was a year and a half after she vanished.
The report contradicts the legend that the famed black aviators never lost a plane to fire from enemy aircraft. But historian William Holton said the discovery of lost bombers doesn't tarnish the unit's record.
"It's impossible not to lose bombers," said Holton, national historian for Tuskegee Airmen Inc.
The report released Wednesday was based on after-mission reports filed by both the bomber units and Tuskegee fighter groups, as well as missing air crew records and witness testimony, said Daniel Haulman, a historian at the Air Force Historical Research Agency at Maxwell Air Force Base in Montgomery.
The tally includes only cases where planes were shot down by enemy aircraft, Haulman said. No one disputed the airmen lost some planes to anti-aircraft guns and other fire from the ground.
The 25 planes were shot down on five days: June 9, July 12, July 18 and July 20, 1944 and March 24, 1945, the Montgomery Advertiser reported.
Name of source: Woodstock (Ontario) Sentinel
SOURCE: Woodstock (Ontario) Sentinel (4-2-07)
It was a momentous day, for the first time they were all fighting as a unit under their own general and, as many claim, Canada became a nation in the process.
Although Canada had earned many Empire battle honours, from Lundy’s Lane in 1814 to the Boer War in South Africa to repulsing the German gas attacks at Ypres in 1915, Vimy was the first time Canadians had not fought under British army command.
In five days they swept the Germans off the ridge, succeeding with new tactics and training, much to the surprise of the French and British who had earlier failed. The cost, as always during the Great War, was enormous with more than 10,000 casualties, including 3,600 dead.
The twin-towered Vimy Memorial is a Canadian historic site near Arras, completed in 1936. Located on the militarily designated Hill 145, where some of the last and heaviest action occurred, it is engraved with names of 11,285 Canadians “missing, presumed dead” in the Great War.
Name of source: Times (of London)
An exasperated Clement Attlee sought the details on the two men as their disappearance was about to be made public in 1951. With typical understatement, Attlee told his Foreign Secretary: “There is likely to be a lot of public criticism.”
The Prime Minister demanded action as Herbert Morrison, the Foreign Secretary, prepared to make a statement to MPs on the disappearance of Burgess and Maclean, according to secret files released today at the National Archive in Kew, southwest London.
The two Foreign Office diplomats had been recalled to London from the British Embassy in Washington after confidential documents went missing. Tipped off by Kim Philby that the net was closing in on them, the two men took a ferry to St Malo, disappeared and later surfaced in Moscow.
Second World War veterans and local historians in Rome who have sought to identify the officer for more than a decade have named him as Captain John Armstrong. But so little is known about his service record that they are appealing to Times readers to help to track down his surviving relatives. It is thought that he might have been an intelligence officer, liaising with anti-Fascist partisans.
Captain Armstrong was one of fourteen prisoners of the Gestapo who were taken in a lorry by Nazi forces retreating northwards up the Via Cassia as Allied troops liberated the Italian capital on June 4, 1944.
The fleeing Germans swiftly concluded that the prisoners were an encumbrance and unloaded them near the Rome suburb of La Storta. They were herded into a wood, forced to their knees and shot in the back of the neck.
A monument on the Via Cassia records the massacre, trees planted at the site carry plaques bearing their names of the dead and a ceremony is held every year on June 4. One plaque, however, has until now simply read “The Unknown Englishman” (“L’Inglese Sconosciuto”).
The decision by the Supreme Court in Dublin, the highest court in the Irish Republic, to overturn a refusal for an exploration licence from the Arts and Heritage Ministry clears the way for Gregg Bemis to realise a 40-year dream to uncover what made “the Greyhound of the Sea” sink so fast after she was torpedoed by a German U-boat off southwest Ireland in May 1915.
The Lusitania –- which held the speed record for crossing the Atlantic until 1909, when she lost it to her sister ship, the Mauretania –- sank in 18 minutes, taking 1,198 people, including 100 children, with her.
The blast that sank the 790ft (241m) vessel came from a secondary explosion on the starboard side after the torpedo, fired by U-20, hit the Lusitania under the bridge...
Since the Lusitania sank, eight miles off the Old Head of Kinsale, rumours and conspiracy theories have abounded about her fate.
Name of source: ZDNet News
SOURCE: ZDNet News (4-2-07)
The search giant came under fire late last week after the Associated Press reported the company had traded imagery documenting the August 2005 storm's devastating effects in its mapping services for higher-resolution images depicting pre-hurricane calm.
Google on Sunday said it had no intention of "rewriting history" but nonetheless was able to "expedite" the processing of 2006 aerial photography data for New Orleans that is of equally high quality. That update went up on Sunday evening, the company said.
Name of source: UPI
SOURCE: UPI (4-2-07)
Jan Gross, an expert on Eastern European politics, believes anti-Semitism developed after World War II due to Polish guilt over ill treatment of Jews.
Gross focuses on the killing of 42 Jews in the Polish town of Kielce in 1946. Using this event and some anecdotes as his evidence, he created a psychosocial theory to develop tendentious stereotypes of Poles.
"Gross' work is a flawed characterization of Polish society," said Thaddeus Radzilowski, president of the Piast Institute and co-chairman of the National Polish-American Jewish-American Council.
"What happened in Kielce, while still shrouded in uncertainty, was a tragedy that weighs heavily on Polish history. However, to use this single event to broadly stereotype Poles is unfair and irresponsible, and it can injure Polish-Jewish relations in America," said Radzilowski.
SOURCE: UPI (4-1-07)
Von Loringhoven, who escaped Hitler's bunker with the dictator's permission one day before Hitler shot himself, died in February, The New York Times reported.
After the war, von Loringhoven spent two and a half years as a British prisoner of war. Later, he reportedly gave eerie accounts of his days in the bunker, where lights flickered with every bomb from above.
Von Loringhoven also advised many filmmakers and journalists with his accounts, the Times reported.
During the war, von Loringhoven's job was to gather military data, compose maps and then present them to Hitler.
Name of source: BBC News
SOURCE: BBC News (4-2-07)
The town council will hold a special meeting shortly to officially remove Hitler from the roll of honour.
Leaders from the world's major industrial nations will meet in one of the town's districts, Heiligendamm, in just over two months' time...
During the Nazi period, more than 4,000 towns and cities awarded Adolf Hitler the title of honorary citizen.
After 1945 most revoked that honour, but not Bad Doberan. It spent more time under communism trying to forget the past than dealing with it.
SOURCE: BBC News (4-1-07)
Foreign Secretary Margaret Beckett released a statement on the eve of the 25th anniversary of the Argentine invasion of the Falkland Islands.
She said families of dead Argentine personnel could hold a commemorative event on the islands later this year.
Over 900 people died during the 74-day war, including 255 British servicemen, 655 Argentines and three islanders...
"The UK remains keen to foster a constructive relationship with Argentina, and to promote practical co-operation both in the South Atlantic and on broader issues of international co-operation," [the statement read.]
Name of source: Turkish Press
SOURCE: Turkish Press (4-1-07)
As both countries prepared to mark the 25th anniversary of the outbreak of war on April 2, 1982, Argentine Foreign Minister Jorge Taiana denounced parades planned by the British.
"What they want to do is not what (Tony Blair) called a commemoration, but a triumphant military parade, a typical gesture of arrogance," he said.
Those accusations capped a week of Argentine salvos over the Falkland Islands, known here by their Spanish name, the Malvinas.
Name of source: Christian Science Monitor
SOURCE: Christian Science Monitor (3-29-07)
For all the possible political motives...the main cause of the showdown could be a centuries-old dispute over the water border between Iran and Iraq.
It began with the 1639 Treaty of Zuhab between the Persian and Ottoman empires, which divided the land without a careful survey.
Disagreements through the 1980s, and some of the fiercest fighting in the eight-year war between the two nations occurred along this border.
The Associated Press quotes Lawrence G. Potter, an associate professor of international affairs at Columbia University, who says that even to this day the exact demarcation has not been established.
"The problem is that nobody knows where the border is," Potter said."The British might have thought they were on their side, the Iranians might have thought they were on their side."
Map: Shatt al-Arab waterway (requires Flash)
Name of source: New York Times
SOURCE: New York Times (4-2-07)
Derrell Teat, determined in her research, once waited outside a restaurant with a test kit hoping to capture a reluctant would-be relative’s DNA on a coffee cup.
If the amateur genealogists of the DNA era bear a certain resemblance to members of a “CSI” team, they make no apologies. Prompted by the advent of inexpensive genetic testing, they are tracing their family trees with a vengeance heretofore unknown...
By next year, close to half a million people will have taken a DNA genealogy test, according to estimates from companies that provide them. The tests detect genetic markers that distinguish the descendants of an individual and reveal if two people share a recent common ancestor.
SOURCE: New York Times (4-1-07)
The Ministry of Education ordered publishers to delete passages stating that the Imperial Army ordered civilians to commit mass suicide during the Battle of Okinawa, as the island was about to fall to American troops in the final months of the war.
The decision was announced as part of the ministry’s annual screening of textbooks used in all public schools. The ministry also ordered changes to other delicate issues to dovetail with government assertions, though the screening is supposed to be free of political interference.
“I believe the screening system has been followed appropriately,” said Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who has long campaigned to soften the treatment in textbooks of Japan’s wartime conduct.
Name of source: Telegraph
SOURCE: Telegraph (4-2-07)
Representing the only "mural" Picasso produced in England, the work was created in November 1950 while the artist visited the home of his friend, Prof John Desmond Bernal of Birkbeck College, one of the greatest British scientists of the last century.
Drawn in crayon on plaster, it depicts a couple with laurel wreaths and wings, rather than anything scientific. [Story includes photo of mural.]
The Wellcome Trust has acquired "Bernal's Picasso" from London's Institute of Contemporary Arts and will put it on display as part of the Wellcome Collection, a £30m venue in London that will explore the connections between medicine, life and art, and is due to open in June...
The cost is small relative to the £500 million that the charity invests each year in science, said Dr Ken Arnold, head of public programmes, adding that the purchase is part of Wellcome's policy of engaging the public by bringing art and science together.
SOURCE: Telegraph (4-1-07)
Scribbled in notebooks, diaries and even on pieces of lavatory paper, they provide a remarkable history of the music played and sung by the victims of the Holocaust.
Scores for thousands of waltzes, tangos, operas and folk songs will soon be made available to the public, thanks to the dedication of Francesco Lotoro, a professional pianist who for 16 years has been scouring Europe's capitals to amass his collection.
Mr Lotoro, 42, stumbled across his first piece of Holocaust music on a trip to Prague in 1991.
"I was interested and decided to bring some back with me," he said."In the end, I had to buy a new suitcase because I found 300 works."
Much of the music is sad and plaintive. The lyrics of one song by Josef Kropinski read:"In Buchenwald, the birch trees rustle sadly, as my heart sways languishing in woe."
Name of source: Reuters
SOURCE: Reuters (4-1-07)
Chavez spent more than a decade conspiring with other leftist officers before leading the putsch in 1992, during which time he helped draft a set of decrees for a revolutionary government.
He has said he burned his copies of the documents just before his arrest for leading the attempt, but copies were published soon after.
The blueprints -- for a militaristic yet utopian government that would upend the South American country's corrupt politics -- now read like a road map for Chavez's drive this year to nationalize industries and put power in the hands of communities.
Name of source: Independent
SOURCE: Independent (4-1-07)
"Google's use of old imagery appears to be doing the victims of Hurricane Katrina a great injustice," wrote Brad Miller, who chairs a US House committee, to Google chief executive Eric Schmidt.
The virtual trip through pre-storm New Orleans is a surreal experience of scrolling across a landscape of packed parking lots and marinas full of boats. The reality is very different: entire neighbourhoods are now slab mosaics where houses once stood and shopping malls, churches and marinas are empty of life, or gone entirely.
Name of source: Scientific American Science News
SOURCE: Scientific American Science News (3-30-07)
Seems the answer may be simpler than you think—or remember. A new study shows that people with memories of past lives are more likely than others to misremember the source of any given piece of information.
Study author Maarten Peters of Maastricht University in the Netherlands tested patients of "reincarnation therapists," who use hypnosis to help their patients remember "past lives," which the clients believe are at the root of their current problems.
Subjects were given a memory test known as the false fame paradigm, in which they were asked to recite a list of unfamiliar names. The next day, they were shown a list that included those names, new names, and the names of famous people. The results: subjects who claimed to have memories of previous lives were more likely than those without such recollections to misidentify more of the previously recited names as belonging to famous people.
In other words, people who believe they had previous lives are committing a source-monitoring error, or an error in judgment about the original source of a memory. (In this case, they are misremembering the source—themselves—of nonfamous names.) This is important because source-monitoring mistakes are the first in a sequence of events that psychologists believe lead to false memories.
Name of source: AFP
SOURCE: AFP (3-31-07)
Archaeologists are frantically working to unearth the nameless settlement that lies beneath the bustling streets of the Shuafat neighbourhood before they have to bury it again in order to lay tracks for a long-planned light rail line.
The newly discovered settlement dates back to the period of the second Jewish temple...
"No one knew of a city of this importance just a few kilometres north of Jerusalem, and its name remains unknown," said Rachel Bar Nathan, one of the three archaeologists from Israel's National Antiquities Authority working on the site.
Name of source: Press Association
SOURCE: Press Association (4-1-07)
The way the slave trade is taught can lead white children -- as well as black pupils -- to feel alienated, according to the study by the Historical Association.
And a lack of factual knowledge among teachers, particularly in primary schools, is leading to "shallow" lessons on emotive and difficult subjects.
Some teachers have even dropped the Holocaust completely from lessons over fears that Muslim pupils might express anti-Semitic reactions in class.
And one school avoided teaching the Crusades because its "balanced" handling of the topic would directly contradict what was taught in local mosques.
Name of source: Baltimore Sun
SOURCE: Baltimore Sun (3-31-07)
"It's great to be on a sinking boat," joked Capt. Ian Bystrom to bystanders along the city waterfront. "We're just washing her out."
Made of sturdy timber from Maryland's Elk Neck State Forest, the boat will set out May 12 from Jamestown, Va., for a three-month [1,200-mile] voyage around the Chesapeake Bay to commemorate Smith's exploration 400 years ago. It will tie up in Baltimore and Annapolis in mid- and late July before ending its journey Sept. 8 back where it started.
The launch capped years of planning by history buffs and recreation advocates...
In the stern is a plank from Maryland's Wye Oak, recognized as the largest white oak in the country when it fell during a storm in June 2002. The Eastern Shore tree, which grew to nearly 100 feet tall and 32 feet around, was at least 65 years old when Smith began his voyage of discovery...
In addition to bringing attention to the 400th anniversary of the founding of Jamestown, the voyage will highlight the new Chesapeake National Historic Water Trail, the first all-water trail in the National Park system. The law authorizing the trail was approved by Congress and signed by President Bush last year.
Name of source: Washington Post
SOURCE: Washington Post (4-1-07)
On March 15, a controversial law went into effect requiring an estimated 700,000 civil servants, teachers and journalists to sign an oath declaring whether they collaborated with the communist secret police before the fall of the Iron Curtain in 1989. Anyone caught lying, or who refuses to sign, is to be fired.
In January, the new archbishop of Warsaw quit after admitting he had been an informer. Since then, dozens of priests in this devout Catholic nation have likewise been outed as collaborators, shaking public faith in an institution that was long seen as the only reliable refuge from totalitarian rule.
Meanwhile, prosecutors are expected this spring to put on trial an 83-year-old man whose unsmiling visage and dark eyeglasses still symbolize the country's tribulations under communism. Gen. Wojciech Jaruzelski, Poland's former military ruler, faces charges that he illegally declared martial law in 1981 to suppress the Solidarity labor movement that arose in Gdansk's shipyards.