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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: Reuters
"Khatoun (the Ladies)" tells the stories of 62 Iraqi actresses who left Iraq in phases, most of them after the U.S. invasion four years ago. "Ambassador in a Cafe" is about Abu Haloub, a leftist Iraqi exile who has for years been going to Rawda cafe in Damascus, and sits at the same table every day.
Kahar says this breed of artists and intellectuals, once highly respected, is becoming extinct in an Arab World which is turning more Islamic...
The U.S. invasion, he said, had ushered in a dominant political class allied to clerics who are wiping out a tradition of art and secular thought that survived even the stifling ideology of the now-deposed Baath Party under Saddam Hussein...
Baghdad is also losing diversity. Minorities, such as Christians, left in droves. Several statues of poets and other secular figures were destroyed, he says.
Violence became a common way to deal with activities deemed un-Islamic by rampaging militias and groups tied to al Qaeda.
But as the genocide's 13th anniversary approaches in his native Rwanda, a bitter row has erupted between Rusesabagina and critics, including President Paul Kagame, who say he is profiting from the victims' misery and rewriting Rwanda's history for his own gain...
The 2004 movie depicting Rusesabagina, a hotel manager who used his connections with the Hutu elite to protect Tutsis fleeing militiamen, echoed Steven Spielberg's "Schindler's List", the story of a businessman saving 1,100 Jews from the Nazis...
[In Rwanda] he has sparked outrage with warnings of another genocide, this time by Tutsis against Hutus, and for claims that war crimes by Tutsis during the 1994 conflict were being overlooked by biased traditional courts.
The local Russian Orthodox diocese says it will build a church in the grounds of Beslan's school No. 1 to commemorate the victims -- half of them children -- killed in a clash between insurgents and Russian troops.
But one of Russia's leading Muslim clerics has accused the Orthodox church of trying to hijack a national tragedy by building a memorial that he said would exclude the more than 20 million Muslims who live in the country.
"It is not acceptable to present this tragedy as the tragedy of followers of only one religion," Sheikh Ravil Gainutdin, chairman of the Council of Russian Muftis, said in a statement.
Because the maritime boundaries off the Shatt al-Arab waterway, drawn up in 1975 but not updated since, are open to a certain degree of interpretation, Britain and Iran could "agree to disagree" over exactly who crossed into whose territory...
"It's certainly not an irresolvable dispute," said Martin Pratt, the director of the International Boundaries Research Unit at Britain's Durham University.
"The fact that the coastline is constantly shifting means more issues would need to be taken into consideration than if the coastlines were more stable and there was agreement on exactly where the baselines along the coast were."
Since its opening to the public last week, the small river has instantly become Athens' version of Rome's Trevi fountain, with visitors dropping thousands of coins to its bottom.
When archaeologists started excavations under the central Monastiraki square to build a subway near the traditional Plaka district in the shadow of the Acropolis, little did they know they were about to redesign the Athens tourist trail.
The small Eridanos river, flowing from the springs of the central Athens Lycabetus Hill, was one of three rivers which meandered through the ancient city.
Since Roman times, during the second century AD, it has been covered with a clay roof and used as a sewer in what is regarded as one of the most complex technical works of the time.
The three suspects, who also include two former Peruvian Army officers accused in the 1985 killing of 69 villagers known as the Accomarca massacre, were arrested during the past week by agents of the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, known as ICE.
They have been charged with violating U.S. immigration laws and face deportation to their respective countries, ICE said in a statement.
The suspects include Ernesto Guillermo Barreiro, a retired Argentine army major, who ICE said is accused by Argentine authorities in the torture and deaths of several people during Argentina's so-called Dirty War period from 1976 to 1983.
Immigration officials said Barreiro, who was arrested for visa fraud in The Plains, Virginia, served as chief interrogator at La Perla, a clandestine detention facility in Argentina.
They accused major European governments including France and Belgium of giving the suspects safe haven.
Speaking ahead of the 13th anniversary of the genocide, when 800,000 minority Tutsis and moderate Hutus were butchered in 100 days of state-sponsored killings, rights group REDRESS and the International Federation for Human Rights said delays in putting suspects on trial were inexcusable.
"Thirteen years after the Rwandan genocide, it is unacceptable that perpetrators continue to live freely in Europe," they said.
Suspects were living in Belgium, France, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands and Norway, the groups said.
SOURCE: Reuters (4-2-07)
"Nixon and Kissinger: Partners in Power," is by presidential historian Robert Dallek, who spent four years reviewing the Nixon administration's recently opened archives, including 20,000 pages of Kissinger's telephone transcripts and hundreds of hours of Nixon tapes.
The historian says that when Egypt and Syria attacked Israel on October 6, 1973, the Israelis informed Kissinger at 6 a.m., but 3 1/2 hours would pass before he spoke to Nixon.
Dallek, a biographer of Nixon predecessor Lyndon Johnson. also had access to nearly a million pages of national-security records and unpublished parts of the diaries of Nixon's first chief of staff, H. R. Haldeman.
Dallek says the documents reveal a complex relationship between two men who were both prone to paranoia, insecurity, manipulation, and ruthlessness. They also show Kissinger's increasing power derived from the deepening incapacity of the president due to the Watergate scandal.
SOURCE: Reuters (4-2-07)
Decisive, immediate action can reduce the most acute effects of a pandemic, while allowing the population to build some natural immunity to the virus, the U.S. government study found.
Experts agree that a pandemic of some virus, most likely influenza, is almost 100 percent certain. What is not certain is when it will strike and which virus it will be.
The worst-case scenario is the 1918 flu pandemic, which killed tens of millions of people globally. Researchers are going through records to learn from the actions taken decades ago.
Name of source: Christian Science Monitor
SOURCE: Christian Science Monitor (4-4-07)
"We say, 'Look, a law has been broken, and we're committed,'" says Mr. Ingram, who came out of retirement at the FBI's request. "Then they say, 'Why are you doing this now?' Ingram answers: "Because it was not carried to its final conclusion 40 years ago."
The US government recently announced that it is reexamining nearly 100 such cold cases –- an effort that's being helped by changing attitudes of law enforcement and the public in the South, even among former supremacists...
But circumstances were different during the civil rights era. "In the 1960s...there were Klan members in law enforcement, and it was a direct pipeline back to the very people they were investigating," says former US Attorney Doug Jones, who brought two Ku Klux Klan members to trial in 2002 for a 1963 church bombing that killed four black girls in Birmingham, Ala. "Today, people are coming forward to assist."
Name of source: Guardian
SOURCE: Guardian (4-4-07)
Letters and diaries from Moya Llewelyn Davies, a close friend of Collins, record her memories of the IRA commander. In a series of diary entries and letters to a friend, Mrs Llewelyn Davies - who it has been rumoured also had an affair with Collins - recalls his romantic attachments.
Name of source: Kyodo News
SOURCE: Kyodo News (4-4-07)
This is the first time the agency has taken apart a stone chamber containing national treasures.
It plans to take out 16 pieces of stone from the roughly 1,300-year-old chamber over four months before spending about 10 years to restore the chamber and its wall paintings, officials said...
A special crane developed solely for the Takamatsuzuka work will be used to hoist the stone pieces, whose condition have deteriorated severely since their discovery 35 years ago, the officials said...
The Takamatsuzuka tomb...contained skeletal remains of someone believed to be of high rank, possibly a crown price...
[Japan Times separately reported a new head of the Agency for Cultural Affairs, which"has been under fire in connection with the revelation that murals in the Takamatsuzuka tomb in Asuka, Nara Prefecture, were damaged during preservation work in 2002 and secretly repaired."]
Takamatsuzuka tomb murals (Google Images)
Name of source: Scott McLemee in Inside Higher Education
SOURCE: Scott McLemee in Inside Higher Education (4-4-07)
Available [May 1] as The First English Dictionary, 1604 (distributed by the University of Chicago Press), the work was originally published under the title A Table Alphabeticall. It was compiled in the late 16th century by one Robert Cawdrey. The book did not bring him fame or fortune, but it went through at least two revised editions within a decade. That suggests there must have been a market for Cawdrey’s guide to what the title page called the “hard usuall English wordes” that readers sometimes encountered “in Scripture, Sermons, or elswhere.”...
In his introductory essay, John Simpson [editor of the Oxford English Dictionary] points out that the OED now lists 60,000 words that are known to have been in use in English around the year 1600. Cawdrey defines about 2,500 of them. “We should probably assume that he was unable to include as many words as he would have liked,” writes Simpson, “in order to keep his book within bounds. It was, after all, an exploratory venture.”
But that makes the selection all the more interesting. It gives you a notion of what counted as a “hard word” at the time. Most of them are familiar now from ordinary usage, though not always in quite the sense that Cawdrey indicates. He gives the meaning of “decision” as “cutting away,” for example. Tones of the preacher can be heard in his slightly puzzling definition of “curiositie” as “picked diligence, greater carefulnes, then is seemly or necessarie.”
Name of source: UPI
SOURCE: UPI (4-4-07)
Despite many attempts to replicate the Epidaurus theater's design, the Greeks never achieved the same acoustic effect that allowed people in the back rows to hear music and voices with amazing clarity.
Georgia Institute of Technology researchers have...discovered it's not the slope or the wind -- it's the seats.
The rows of limestone seats at Epidaurus form an efficient acoustics filter that hushes low-frequency background noises, such as the murmur of a crowd, and reflects the high-frequency noises of the performers off the seats and back toward the seated audience -- thereby carrying an actor's voice all the way to the back rows of the theater.
The research by acoustician and ultrasonics expert Nico Declercq, a Georgia Tech assistant professor, and engineer Cindy Dekeyser appears in the April issue of the Journal of the Acoustics Society of America.
Name of source: AFP
SOURCE: AFP (4-4-07)
The findings include a space of about eight metres long and six metres wide (26 feet by 20 feet) with a vaulted tomb, a stone coffin and two funeral vases, among other items, the ministry said.
The front of the tomb is "particularly interesting," according to the ministry, with a stone door with two bolts that opens normally.
The vases in the tomb are made of glass and ceramic. There were also gold rings and earrings, copper keys and coins.
At another section of the searched property, archaeologists found what looks to have been a theatre. Further digging will occur to better identify the monument, the ministry said.
SOURCE: AFP (4-2-07)
The "Prince's Collection" exhibition includes paintings by Bruegel, Canaletto and Velasquez, collected over the centuries by the Lobkowicz family and returned to them at the start of the 1990s following confiscation by the former communist regime...
As well as paintings, the collection includes the manuscripts of three symphonies dedicated by composer Ludwig van Beethoven to Joseph Franz Maximilian Lobkowicz (1772-1816), one of the family's biggest art patrons.
A large part of the collection has been transferred from one of the family's stately homes outside Prague to be housed in the Lobkowicz Palace, which forms part of the Prague Castle complex dear to tourists.
Hundreds of stonemasons, painters and carpenters spent the last 14 months spectacularly reviving the palace's splendour and preparing it for its new role after it was previously used as an annex to the National Museum.
Name of source: National Geographic News
SOURCE: National Geographic News (4-4-07)
Philippe Charlier, a forensic scientist at the Raymond Poincaré Hospital in Paris, France, obtained permission last year to study the relics from the church in Normandy where they are housed.
The relics were said to have been retrieved from the French site where Joan was burned at the stake in 1431.
Charlier's team studied the relics —- including a fragment of cloth and a human rib -— under the microscope and subjected them to chemical tests...
Final proof came from carbon-14 analysis, which dated the human remains to between the third and sixth centuries B.C.
Chemical scans of all the relics further suggested Egypt as the place of origin, as the profiles closely matched those of Egyptian mummies rather than burned bones.
Name of source: New York Times
SOURCE: New York Times (4-4-07)
What makes this case unusual, as many readers have since learned, is that “Suite Française” was written from 1940 to 1942 and was only published more than 60 years after Némirovsky, a Ukrainian-born Jewish writer, died in Auschwitz. Her earlier novels were published in the 1930s...
Now, as if consolidating Némirovsky’s literary rebirth, comes “Chaleur du Sang.” Like “Suite Française,” this unpublished wartime novel was buried among a jumble of Némirovsky’s papers rescued by her young daughters, Denise and Élisabeth Epstein, after their father, Michel Epstein, was also deported to Auschwitz. He died there in November 1942, three months after Némirovsky...
New studies suggest that the two directions of temporal travel are intimately entwined in the human brain. A number of psychologists argue that re-experiencing the past evolved in our ancestors as a way to plan for the future and that the rise of mental time travel was crucial to our species’ success. But some experts on animal behavior do not think we are unique in this respect. They point to several recent experiments suggesting that animals can visit the past and future as well...
In the months that followed, the ultra-Orthodox group with the unorthodox beliefs received threatening phone calls at its synagogue. A protest was held outside its doors. Rocks were thrown at its windows.
Then on Sunday night, on the eve of Passover, that tension seemed to erupt into flames. About 8:15 p.m., the synagogue became engulfed in a blaze that nearly burned it to the ground. The fire raised the possibility that the heated debate over Zionism had escalated to violence, setting off angry exchanges on the streets of this heavily Hasidic community in Rockland County, about an hour’s drive north of Manhattan.
But on Monday afternoon, hours after calling the blaze suspicious, investigators with the Ramapo Police Department reversed themselves and said that although the fire, which began in a washroom on the ground floor, remained under investigation, they had determined that arson was almost certainly not a factor.
Now questions about their authenticity may begin reverberating in the art market too. The man who found the paintings, Alex Matter —- the son of Herbert and Mercedes Matter, close friends of Pollock —- has quietly sold some of them, though he had generally maintained in interviews that he was not interested in profiting from their discovery.
He has never publicly disclosed selling any of the works —- 32 in all, including some ephemera and works on paper. Twenty-five paintings are scheduled to appear on Sept. 1 at an exhibition at the McMullen Museum of Art at Boston College and will be the subject of an exhibition catalog featuring new scholarship by Ellen G. Landau, one of the world’s leading Pollock experts. She has said she believes the works are genuine, though recent scientific tests have begun to suggest that they are not.
It didn’t look like much —- some ancient buried walls of a military fort and a few pieces of volcanic lava. The archaeologist, Dr. Zahi Hawass, often promotes mummies and tombs and pharaonic antiquities that command international attention and high ticket prices. But this bleak landscape, broken only by electric pylons, excited him because it provided physical evidence of stories told in hieroglyphics. It was proof of accounts from antiquity.
That prompted a reporter to ask about the Exodus, and if the new evidence was linked in any way to the story of Passover. The archaeological discoveries roughly coincided with the timing of the Israelites’ biblical flight from Egypt and the 40 years of wandering the desert in search of the Promised Land.
“Really, it’s a myth,” Dr. Hawass said of the story of the Exodus, as he stood at the foot of a wall built during what is called the New Kingdom.
Her grandparents were among thousands of Japanese immigrants in the United States who were wrongfully detained as enemy aliens during World War II. And her father was one of three Japanese-Americans who challenged the government’s racial detention and curfew programs in litigation that reached the Supreme Court in the 1940s.
Now, Ms. Yasui, along with Jay Hirabayashi and Karen Korematsu-Haigh, a son and a daughter of the two other Japanese-American litigants, is urging an appeals court in Manhattan to overturn the sweeping language of the judge’s ruling last year.
The ruling “painfully resurrects the long-discredited legal theory” that was used to put their grandparents behind barbed wire, along with the rest of the West Coast’s Japanese alien population, the three contend in an unusual friends-of-the-court brief to be filed today in the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.
Name of source: Independent
SOURCE: Independent (4-4-07)
The main protagonist was a former left-wing guerrilla turned spy who specialised in mine attacks on warships.
A Spanish film-maker, Jesus Mora, has made a documentary about Operation Algeciras. For many years, no one in authority would admit the plot existed but Mora got the former Spanish prime minister Leopoldo Calvo Sotelo and the chief of the Argentine navy at the time, Admiral Jorge Anaya, to confirm it...
Name of source: AP
SOURCE: AP (4-4-07)
Speaking to Japanese media in Beijing ahead of a three-day visit to Japan next week, Wen Jiabao said that "individual Japanese leaders have visited (the shrine) numerous times and hurt the feelings of the Chinese people," Kyodo News agency reported.
"I hope this will never happen again," the agency quoted Wen as saying.
Tokyo-Beijing ties soured under Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's predecessor, Junichiro Koizumi, who repeatedly visited the shrine despite China's protests. Relations have improved since Abe took office last September, and he has not since visited the shrine.
The new totem pole was carved by a father-and-son team from a western red cedar tree given as a gift to the museum from the Tlingit community of Cape Fox, Alaska.
In 2001, the museum returned one of its most treasured items -- a 26-foot totem pole removed from southeast Alaska in 1899 by a scientific expedition -- to the Tlingit people.
The new pole was carved by Nathan Jackson, a master carver and member of the Chilkoot-Tlingit Tribe of Alaska, and his son, Stephen Jackson, a sculptor based in New York City...
Following months of work in the family's workshop in Ketchikan, Alaska, the three have been putting the finishing touches on the totem pole for the last two weeks, working in front of the public in the museum's massive Stanley Field Hall.
Lamar University Professor Jim Westgate and two colleagues announced the discovery of three new genera and four new species of primates based on their examination of material removed from Lake Casa Blanca International State Park near Laredo and the Mexican border.
Westgate said the Laredo area was a coastal lagoon during the stage of geologic history known as the Eocene Epoch, which was when primates were becoming extinct on much of the continent.
"It was kind of the last gasp for the primates in North America," said Westgate, a professor of earth and space sciences.
Frans van Anraat, 64, is petitioning to overturn a 15-year prison sentence handed down in December 2005 for selling tons of chemicals made into mustard and nerve gas that was unleashed on Kurdish villages in northern Iraq in 1987-88 and against Iran during the 1980-88 Iran-Iraq war.
While Van Anraat appealed his conviction of complicity in war crimes, prosecutors appealed his acquittal of complicity in genocide, which carries a maximum 30-year sentence.
"Neither war nor the passage of time changes reality: The Malvinas are Argentine," said Vice President Daniel Scioli, using the islands' Argentine name, as 5,000 people, many of them veterans of the 1982 war with Britain, applauded.
"We call upon the United Kingdom to heed international calls and resume negotiations," Scioli said during the ceremony in Argentina's southernmost city of Ushuaia -- 440 miles southwest of the islands.
SOURCE: AP (3-30-07)
U.S. District Judge Marianne O. Battani ruled Thursday that John Kalymon, of Troy, served as a member of the Nazi-operated Ukrainian Auxiliary Police during World War II in the city of Lviv.
Kalymon's unit rounded up Jews, imprisoned them in a ghetto, oversaw forced labor, killed those attempting to escape, and delivered others to killing sites for mass execution, the judge found.
Name of source: Washington Post
SOURCE: Washington Post (4-4-07)
Attendance has dropped by nearly half over the past decade. The museum has been losing about $400,000 each year for a decade. Employees have been laid off, hours curtailed. A recent report by a panel of outside experts in museum management concluded that the 117-year-old institution was at a "tipping point" that was going to affect "its very existence."
And this is in Richmond, the capital of the Confederacy. Things are so bleak that the museum will likely have to sell its $7 million site to raise cash. It needed a $400,000 emergency grant from the state legislature earlier this month to allow it more time to look for a new home.
It may even have to change its name. That same doleful report said the Museum of the Confederacy, though it has made efforts to distance itself from being an unabashed shrine, still "conjures up in the public mind images of slavery, racism, and intolerance...[It] carries enormous, intransigent, and negative intellectual and emotional baggage."
Name of source: International Herald Tribune
SOURCE: International Herald Tribune (4-3-07)
Across this country of 10 million, a growing number of Belgians are trading in their jeans for suits of armor. They are rubbing stones together to make fire, eating their dinners out of cauldrons, re-enacting heroic battles and participating in mock hangings...
Herman Konings, a Belgian behavioral psychologist who studies national trends, attributes the medieval craze to excessive nostalgia for a more glorious past. The fad has emerged at a time when the country, divided between Dutch-speaking Flanders in the north and French-speaking Wallonia in the south, is experiencing deep anxiety about its identity.
Konings argues that little Belgium, better known for its beer than its heroic past, is fed up with being the laughingstock of Europe. This, he says, is prompting Belgians to hark back to a period when Bruges and Antwerp were trading centers that surpassed Paris and London, and Flemish "primitive" painters like Jan Van Eyck were the envy of the world.
"Throughout our history, we have been attacked by everyone, from the Romans to the Vikings to the Dutch," he says, explaining that Belgians are tired of being picked on. "The late Middle Ages was a time when we were mastering the world. So at a time of national doubt, they provide a great escape as well as a sense of security."
Name of source: Telegraph
SOURCE: Telegraph (4-4-07)
Speaking on the 25th anniversary of the [Falklands invasion], he said her resolve had "set the standard" for future British governments and increased international respect for the country...
Last week, Argentina tore up a 1995 agreement to share oil exploration in waters around the islands and on Monday, as his country marked the anniversary of Malvinas Day, when thousands of Argentine troops took the Falklands, its deputy president Daniel Scioli swore that his country would never give up its claim on sovereignty.
SOURCE: Telegraph (4-4-07)
Christchurch Tower, which has views over the City of London and St Paul's Cathedral, has been transformed into an 11-storey home by a former Goldman Sachs investment banker.
Kate Renwick, who has now put the property on the market because she has found another Wren tower in need of restoration, bought the tower soon after her husband died and she gave up her job to care for their two teenage sons.
The building originally had just one room, where the choirboys for the church stored their cassocks. Now the Grade I listed building has three bedrooms, a study, dining room, kitchen and reception.
As well as a spiral staircase, the property has a lift so the owners do not have to walk up the hundreds of stairs every day.
Christchurch was designed by Sir Christopher Wren between 1667-87, with the tower completed in 1704. Most of the rest of the church was destroyed in the Blitz, leaving only the tower standing.
SOURCE: Telegraph (4-3-07)
Viktor Bogomolets was regarded as such a vital intelligence source that his dispatches were handed directly to Stalin himself, the Russian foreign intelligence service, the SVR, revealed yesterday.
More details of Bogomolets's treachery are to be revealed in a new book written by SVR Major-General Lev Sotskov. It will tell for the first time the full story of Operation Tarantella, which fed Soviet misinformation to several western spy agencies for two decades...
Since President Vladimir Putin, himself an ex-KGB spy, came to power, Russia's intelligence services have been keener to revel in past glories, both of the Cold War era and of more recent times...It is generally acknowledged that spying between Russia and the West has returned to Cold War levels.
Name of source: NYT
SOURCE: NYT (4-3-07)
SOURCE: NYT (4-1-07)
“Big” Jim Thompson, the Chicago federal prosecutor, claimed many political scalps in the 1970s, not least that of former Gov. Otto Kerner Jr.
Herbert J. Stern, United States attorney in New Jersey in the early 1970s, edged awfully close to indicting a plurality of the public officials in his state in four years. (The count? Eight mayors, two secretaries of state, two state treasurers, two political bosses, a congressman and 64 public officials.)
In Manhattan, Rudolph W. Giuliani chased down financiers and crushed mafia families. And Robert M. Morgenthau, one of his predecessors in the Southern District, shrugged off a threatening phone call from a Democratic powerbroker and got indictments of top aides to the Democratic House Speaker John W. McCormack in the 1960’s.
Name of source: China View
SOURCE: China View (3-30-07)
Archaeologists with the Hebei provincial cultural relic research institute say that the tomb group, which covers an area of 2,600 square meters, comprises 17 tombs.
Name of source: Slate
SOURCE: Slate (3-30-07)
Name of source: LAT
SOURCE: LAT (3-30-07)
"I sometimes was not fair to you. Forgive me. I devoted little time to you," the Soviet dictator apologizes. "Son, go and fight. This is your duty." He then switches to Georgian, the language of his childhood, and adds with even greater feeling: "If you have to die, do it with dignity. And you must be confident that your father, Stalin, will do everything for our victory."
The poignant scene — for viewers who can stomach it — is part of a controversial 40-episode TV drama, "Stalin Live," now airing on a nationwide network here. The show's structural device is an elderly Stalin, in the last weeks of his life, recalling episodes in his younger days, most presenting him in a favorable light.
For Stalin admirers, of whom there are many in Russia, the series is an entertaining and educational look at the man who turned the Soviet Union into a superpower. To critics, it is a dangerous distortion of history that threatens to misinform a younger generation about a leader responsible for the deaths of millions of people, and reinforce a trend toward greater authoritarianism in politics.
Name of source: DPA (German Press Agency)
SOURCE: DPA (German Press Agency) (4-3-07)
Secretary General of the Egyptian Supreme Council of Antiquities Zahi Hawwas was quoted as saying that an old military fort dating back to the 18th Dynasty (1347-1337 BC) was discovered after 10 years of excavating the area situated on the route linking Egypt to Israel.
Hawwas also said that the fort found was constructed on the ruins of a military base used by the Hyksos who invaded Egypt in the 17th century BC and were later driven out of the country by King Ahmose, the founder of the 18th Dynasty.
Name of source: Moscow Times
SOURCE: Moscow Times (4-4-07)
The directors of the Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum near Oswiecim, Poland, are insisting that those killed at the Nazi death camp be referred to as Polish, not Soviet, citizens in the exhibit, which is dedicated to Soviet liberation of thousands of the camp's prisoners...
The ministry called the museum's decision to keep the exhibit closed "absurd." "We are convinced that the memory of the victims ... should not be held hostage by historical-political speculation," the ministry said in a statement released Tuesday...
Museum officials object to Russia's insistence that prisoners who came from areas of Poland annexed by the Soviet Union be referred to as Soviet citizens, [museum spokesman Jarek] Mensfeld said.
"It should be pointed out that just because parts of Poland were controlled by Soviet forces does not mean those who perished were any less Polish," he said.
Some of the Polish territory seized by Soviet troops in accordance with the 1939 Molotov-Ribbentrop pact went on to become parts of Belarus and western parts of Ukraine.
Auschwitz museum denies martyrology closure (Poland.pl)
Name of source: Inside Higher Ed
SOURCE: Inside Higher Ed (4-3-07)
But the debate over Finkelstein is now hitting his home campus — and in a way sure to create more national controversy. Finkelstein is up for tenure. So far, his department has voted, 9-3, in favor of tenure and a collegewide faculty panel voted 5-0 to back the bid. But Finkelstein’s dean has just weighed in against Finkelstein....
Much of the criticism from the dean focuses on Finkelstein’s book The Holocaust Industry. The book argues that supporters of Israel use the Holocaust unreasonably to justify Israel’s policies. While the book does not deny that the Holocaust took place, it labels leading Holocaust scholars “hoaxters and huxters.” A review of the book in The New York Times called it full of contradictions (at one point he rejects the idea that the United States abandoned Europe’s Jews and then he later praises a book for which that idea was the central thesis) and full of “seething hatred” as he implies that Jews needed the Holocaust to justify Israel. The reviewer, Brown University’s Omer Bartov, a leading scholar of the Holocaust, described the book as “a novel variation on the anti-Semitic forgery, ‘The Protocols of the Elders of Zion.’ “...
Name of source: Daily Star (Dhaka, Bangladesh)
SOURCE: Daily Star (Dhaka, Bangladesh) (4-4-07)
"I also directed my colleagues to identify all types of distortion of history, especially that of liberation war and contribution of liberation war heroes including Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and Ziaur Rahman. I hope we will be able to amend or remove all types of distortion in new textbooks for 2008. From which students will learn real history of the liberation war," Ayub Quadri said at a views exchange meeting with journalists at the secretariat.
He also said the education ministry has identified most distortions of history in the textbooks for classes one to ten.
"The history of the liberation war has been changed over and over again while our children remained in the dark about the true history," said a regretful Quadri.
"It is impossible to correct the information in the existing textbooks immediately, but new textbooks for the future years will be free from all distortions," he added.
Name of source: Xinhua/China View
SOURCE: Xinhua/China View (4-3-07)
The Japanese authorities had become "all the more undisguised in their moves to distort history despite unanimous censure and condemnation by the public at home and abroad" the official KCNA news agency reported, quoting a Foreign Ministry statement.
Japan's renewed total denial of the history of aggression is an open mockery and challenge to its neighbors and the international community demanding justice and truth, it said...
It added that the incumbent Japanese government's falsification of the stark historical facts is designed to repeat the country's crime-woven history at any cost.
Name of source: Jerome S. Handler and Michael L. Tuite, Jr. at their website, Retouching History: The Modern Falsification of a Civil War Photograph
In this paper we discuss a graphic example of Blight’s contention by examining a Civil War-era posed studio photograph of black Union soldiers with a white officer. We maintain that this photograph has been deliberately falsified in recent years by an unknown person/s sympathetic to the Confederacy. This falsified or fabricated photo, purporting to be of the 1st Louisiana Native Guards (Confederate), has been taken to promote Neo-Confederate views, to accuse Union propagandists of duplicity, and to show that black soldiers were involved in the armed defense of the Confederacy. As of the date of this website this photograph is being sold on the web by an on-line retailer, www.rebelstore.com, which promotes itself as “The Internet’s Original Rebel Store,” and advertises this photograph as a legitimate photo of “Members of the first all Black Confederate Unit organized in New Orleans in 1861.”
[UPDATE: The retailer recently pulled the photo.]
Name of source: BBC News
SOURCE: BBC News (4-2-07)
Lady Thatcher stood in silence [and laid a wreath] during the brief ceremony to remember the 255 Britons who died during the 74-day war...
Earlier, Prime Minister Tony Blair met Falklands veterans in Fife.
The 74-day war claimed the lives of 255 Britons, 655 Argentines and three islanders.
Lady Thatcher was prime minister when Argentina invaded the islands on 2 April 1982 and dismissed advice from defence officials who feared the islands, 8,000 miles from Britain, could not be re-taken.
SOURCE: BBC News (4-3-07)
The find could shed light on how our ancestors colonised the East, a movement that is only poorly understood by anthropologists.
Researchers found 34 bone fragments belonging to a single individual at the Tianyuan Cave, near Beijing.
Details of the discovery appear in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences journal.
Radiocarbon dates, obtained directly from the bones, show the person lived between 42,000 and 39,000 years ago.
Name of source: Scott Shane in the NYT
SOURCE: Scott Shane in the NYT (4-1-07)
“Congress becomes the public voice of opposition,” said Robert Dallek, the presidential historian, who has dissected the interaction of Congress with both Lyndon B. Johnson and Richard M. Nixon. “And it’s happening more quickly this time because Iraq stands in the shadow of Vietnam.”
Name of source: Linux.com
SOURCE: Linux.com (3-28-07)
Thanks to a $2 million grant from the Sloan Foundation, "Digitizing American Imprints at the Library of Congress" will begin the task of digitizing these rare materials -- including Civil War and genealogical documents, technical and artistic works concerning photography, scores of books, and the 850 titles written, printed, edited, or published by Benjamin Franklin.
According to Brewster Kahle of the Internet Archive, which developed the digitizing technology, open source software will play an "absolutely critical" role in getting the job done...
Image processing for an average book takes about 10 hours on the cluster [of Linux computers], and while the project still uses proprietary optical character recognition (OCR) software, Kahle says that many open source applications come into play...and the software performs "a lot of image manipulation, cropping, de-skewing, correcting color to normalize it -- [it] does compression, optical character recognition, and packaging into a searchable, downloadable PDF; searchable, downloadable DjVu files; and an on-screen representation we call the Flip Book."...
A good number of the historic materials in question are old, fragile, and in such rough shape that placing them in Scribe's cradle, or even attempting to read them, could irreparably damage them.
[Dr. Jeremy E. A. Adamson, the library's director for collections and services] says that some of the books, for example, have pages "that have become brittle with age"; while Adamson says these materials are in a broad range of conditions that limit their physical handling, he uses the general term "brittle books" to describe it. No list of such brittle materials at the Library of Congress has been made, but Adamson says that "they comprise a percentage of virtually every collection."
Adamson says the project's objectives include the development of a more formal classification and description of these "brittle" materials, and to "establish digitization workflows based on that classification of condition."