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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: NYT Book Review
SOURCE: NYT Book Review (11-11-07)
Marcus, a highly regarded children’s-book historian, tells the story of the pioneering collaboration between Western Publishing and Simon & Schuster to introduce a series of books priced at 25 cents. The idea behind the venture, as Marcus explains, was that “the populist conviction, far from universally shared by publishers, that the known book-buying market represented only a fraction of the market’s potential” and that less well-off Americans would buy books if they were cheaper.
Name of source: WaPo
SOURCE: WaPo (11-10-07)
The girl presses her fingers against the granite. Her fingers run along the names cut into the black stone.
"That is Nana's brother," a man is explaining to the girl.
"But how did he get inside the wall?" the girl asks.
Her question hangs near the Wall. It is an innocent question, the kind of question the Wall must have heard often since its dedication 25 years ago next week. Simple questions: Why him? Why me? Where is he? People sliding their fingers along its spine, over the etchings of diamonds that signify the dead and crosses that signify the missing. Fingers traveling over the Nicholases, Davids, Floyds, Rogers, Jesses -- more than 58,000 names.
Name of source: NYT
SOURCE: NYT (11-10-07)
The new schedule aims to address the severe overloading of China’s air, rail and road links in the first week of May, when virtually the entire country goes on vacation. But gridlock may remain around the two other major holidays — essentially a week each — at the Chinese New Year and in the first week of October.
Government officials, laborers and executives alike try to visit distant family members or vacation destinations during those holidays, frequently producing transportation nightmares.
The panel’s plans were posted on the Internet for public comment on Friday and in theory could still be changed. But the official Xinhua news agency said the plan was ready to go into place early next year, suggesting that all relevant government agencies had reached a consensus that is unlikely to be altered.
SOURCE: NYT (11-4-07)
The general, dressed in civilian clothes, quoted from Abraham Lincoln and cited the former president’s suspension of some rights during the American Civil War as justification for his own state of emergency.
Speaking in English, General Musharraf began his discussion of Lincoln as follows:
“I would at this time venture to read out an excerpt of President Abraham Lincoln, specially to all my listeners in the United States. As an idealist, Abraham Lincoln had one consuming passion during that time of crisis, and this was to preserve the Union… towards that end, he broke laws, he violated the Constitution, he usurped arbitrary power, he trampled individual liberties. His justification was necessity and explaining his sweeping violation of Constitutional limits he wrote in a letter in 1864, and I quote, ‘My oath to preserve the Constitution imposed on me the duty of preserving by every indispensable means that government, that Nation of which the Constitution was the organic law. Was it possible to lose the Nation and yet preserve the Constitution?’”
The items were included in auctions of more than 800 artifacts from a trove of period photographs, Indian artifacts and historic memorabilia acquired by Mayor Stephen R. Reed of Harrisburg, Pa. His dream was to establish a tribute — the National Museum of the Old West — to his city’s role as a supply point for those bound for the West. But with the city’s budget in the red, the idea was scratched and the collection was put up for sale.
Under consideration for years, the idea of replacing the monument has pitted conservationists, who think the original structure should be restored, against those who say that replacing the tomb is inevitable and will properly memorialize America’s fallen soldiers.
The Senate unanimously approved an amendment to a bill in September that, if signed into law, would officially halt any action by the Army for six months.
George Koval also had a secret. During World War II, he was a top Soviet spy, code named Delmar and trained by Stalin’s ruthless bureau of military intelligence.
Atomic spies are old stuff. But historians say Dr. Koval, who died in his 90s last year in Moscow and whose name is just coming to light publicly, was probably one of the most important spies of the 20th century.
On Nov. 2, the Kremlin startled Western scholars by announcing that President Vladimir V. Putin had posthumously given the highest Russian award to a Soviet agent who penetrated the Manhattan Project to build the atom bomb.
SOURCE: NYT (11-5-07)
The organizing group, Justice for Jews from Arab Countries, says it is referring to the more than 850,000 Jews who left their homes in Arab lands after the declaration of the state of Israel in 1948.
“This did not occur by happenstance, as is sometimes said,” said Stanley A. Urman, executive director of the group, a five-year-old New-York-based organization. “In fact, we have found evidence that there was collusion among the Arab nations to persecute and exploit their Jewish populations.”
To back the claim, the group has reproduced copies of a draft law composed by the Arab League in 1947 that called for measures to be taken against Jews living in Arab countries. The proposals range from imprisonment, confiscation of assets and forced induction into Arab armies to beatings, officially incited acts of violence and pogroms.
SOURCE: NYT (11-4-07)
The flip-flop is not a new ingredient in presidential politics. But it is especially pronounced this year, with every major candidate getting into the act in some way....
Their success often depends on the public mood, the moment in history and whether the charges feed into existing doubts about a candidate.
But, said Prof. Bruce Schulman, a historian at Boston University who has studied the question, “One man’s flip-flop can be another man’s ‘admirable flexibility.’ ”
Herbert Hoover attacked Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1932 as a “chameleon in plaid” for a series of policy shifts. But Mr. Roosevelt portrayed his new positions as pragmatic and necessary to fight the Depression. Americans seeking deliverance were willing to buy it, Professor Schulman said.
He added that two of history’s greatest flip-flops belonged to Abraham Lincoln, who reversed his 1860 campaign positions against an invasion of the South, and against meddling with slavery in the states. Of course, many of those who would have punished him in 1864 were, by then, Confederates, who would not be voting in the Union elections.
Name of source: National Security Archive
SOURCE: National Security Archive (11-13-07)
"The Court is demonstrating that it has significant concerns about the loss of e-mail. Our next challenge is to find out what happened to the e-mails that were sent before we filed suit. We do not know whether backups of those records have been saved or recycled," explained the Archive's General Counsel Meredith Fuchs. "Imagine if all Executive Office of the President electronic messages from 2003-2005 are missing. We will never fully understand the Administration's decisions about invading Iraq, recovering from Hurricane Katrina, or the Abu Ghraib scandal."
Name of source: Reuters
SOURCE: Reuters (11-10-07)
The temple, inside a larger ruin, includes a staircase that leads up to an altar used for fire worship at a site scientists have called Ventarron, said Peruvian archaeologist Walter Alva, who led the dig.
It sits in the Lambayeque valley, near the ancient Sipan complex that Alva unearthed in the 1980s. Ventarron was built long before Sipan, about 2,000 years before Christ, he said.
Name of source: Salon
SOURCE: Salon (11-11-07)
Ceremonies across Britain, France and Belgium were held on Armistice Day to commemorate the end of the war on Nov. 11, 1918.
In London, Queen Elizabeth II paid silent tribute at the Cenotaph memorial to those who have died serving Britain since World War I. For the first time, Prince William, wearing his military uniform and carrying a sword, joined senior members of Britain's royal family in laying wreaths at the monument.
In western Belgium, officials expected more than 10,000 visitors to the 150 war cemeteries dotting Flanders Fields.
Name of source: Chicago Tribune
SOURCE: Chicago Tribune (11-12-07)
In time, Hillary Clinton "will deserve a lot of the credit" for the comprehensive health coverage that the former president predicts is on the horizon, he gushes in the audio for an exhibit celebrating "The Work of the First Lady."
But while tourists wandered through the museum one afternoon last week, awed by the bulletproof presidential limousine and the life-size replica of the Oval Office, the tables in the library's reading room sat empty -- unoccupied by the scholars, journalists and opposition researchers who might be expected to pore over the unique historical record of a White House that featured a leading role for a current presidential front-runner.
For good reason. Almost three years after the library's opening and nearly two years after the administration's archives became subject to federal open-records laws, only a small fraction of the archives has been opened to the public.
Name of source: Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
SOURCE: Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (11-10-07)
The ones from Roy E. Kidd to his folks in Emsworth are yellowed from the 90 years that have passed since he wrote them in 1918 as a young infantryman with the American Expeditionary Force in war-ravaged Europe.
As a first-hand account of the horrors of World War I trench warfare, they're too mundane to offer much insight. The sentiment of the day was to avoid nasty descriptions of life at the front.
But to Mr. Kidd's descendants, who didn't know the letters existed until a Clarion County teacher found them at a yard sale two years ago, they provide a personal window to a war almost entirely faded from living memory.
Name of source: http://www.thestar.com
SOURCE: http://www.thestar.com (11-11-07)
At least that's how the hindsight of history remembers it.
The drive for the tiny, already burnt-out Belgian village, which would offer little in the way of a prized capture, had already annihilated entire divisions of exhausted Britons, Australians and New Zealanders. Morale was sinking as troops watched their comrades fall into giant craters in the earth, and drown in the muddy water.
Perhaps this is one reason why so few Canadians know about the battle for Passchendaele, which finished 90 years ago yesterday, and carries such a frustrating dual legacy. Like a serpent's forked tongue, Passchendaele was a victory; the Canadians succeeded where others failed. But, at the same time, it was the Great War's low point for the Allies, clouded in controversy and mired in seemingly useless death.
Name of source: Richard Rubin in the NYT
SOURCE: Richard Rubin in the NYT (11-12-07)
But even more significant than the remarkable details of Mr. Buckles’s life is what he represents: Of the two million soldiers the United States sent to France in World War I, he is the only one left.
This Veterans Day marked the 89th anniversary of the armistice that ended that war. The holiday, first proclaimed as Armistice Day by President Woodrow Wilson in 1919 and renamed in 1954 to honor veterans of all wars, has become, in the minds of many Americans, little more than a point between Halloween and Thanksgiving when banks are closed and mail isn’t delivered. But there’s a good chance that this Veterans Day will prove to be the last with a living American World War I veteran. (Mr. Buckles is one of only three left; the other two were still in basic training in the United States when the war ended.) Ten died in the last year. The youngest of them was 105.
Name of source: AFP
SOURCE: AFP (11-10-07)
The valuable Hebrew Bible Scripture arrived in Cologne after being restored in Jerusalem and was formally presented to the city's Jewish community during a memorial ceremony.
During the night of Nov. 9 to 10, 1938, a German Catholic priest, Gustav Meinertz, risked his life to rescue the heavily damaged Torah from the burning synagogue on Glockengasse street and hide it from the Nazis.
Name of source: Der Spiegel
SOURCE: Der Spiegel (11-7-07)
A unique traveling train-mounted Holocaust exhibition will leave Frankfurt railway station Friday and begin its six-month-long journey through Germany to Auschwitz in Poland. The exhibit commemorates the fate of the estimated 1.5 million children and youth who were rounded up between 1940 and 1944 and transported by the former Reichsbahn to the concentration camps.
The so-called "Train of Commemoration" is made up of a vintage 1921 locomotive and four train cars holding commemorative items, such as maps, chronologies, letters, laws and regulations, and other official documents related to the railway's role in transporting children from across Europe to their deaths. It will stop in over 30 cities as it winds along its 3,000-kilometer (1,864-mile) route through mostly southern German towns.
SOURCE: Der Spiegel (11-5-07)
Nov. 9 is the perfect day to vote on memorials in Germany: It is the most German day of all. No other date is quite so pregnant with history: In 1918, it saw the proclamation of Germany's first democracy; in 1938, it was the date of Kristallnacht, when violence against Jews in Germany escalated; and on Nov. 9, 1989 the Berlin Wall came down.
And so it is only fitting that members of the German parliament, or Bundestag, will reach a decision on the possible raising of a "Monument to Germany's Liberty and Unity" this Friday, Nov. 9. The date may be fitting, but the location chosen for the proposed monument is problematic. It is to be "located in the center of Berlin," according to the motion by the governing Christian Democrats (CDU) and Social Democrats (SPD). The question is whether there is any room left.
Name of source: LAT
SOURCE: LAT (11-8-07)
Inspector General Paul Brachfeld said that his office was investigating allegations that a former employee stole Reagan memorabilia but that the probe had been hampered by the facility's sloppy record-keeping.
Name of source: Lee White at the website of the National Coalition for History (NCH)
The Task Force recommended:
Commemorative plaques and building stone, quarried by slave labor, placed in or near the Capitol Visitors Center (CVC) and/or the U.S. Capitol;
Pamphlet on the history of slave labor in the Capitol, focusing particularly on the kinds of work assigned to slaves;
Exhibition in the U.S. Capitol on the experience of 19th century African Americans both as slave laborers and as Members of Congress;
Educational/informational brochure cards highlighting individual 19th century African Americans in the Capitol;
Online exhibit that creates a virtual version of the Capitol exhibition (above), with the addition of educational materials for students and teachers;
Training of the Capitol Guide Servidce on interpreting the experience of African Americans as slave laborers and Members;
Online publication of the Task Force’s report on the history of slave laborers at the Capitol;
Black Americans in Congress, scheduled to be published by the House of Representatives in 2008, providing extensive material on the experience of African Americans in the Capitol, and be accompanied by a website and educational materials;
Designation of the great hall of the Capitol Visitors Center as Emancipation Hall
The conference report passed the House on November 8 by a vote of 274-141, short of the two-thirds vote needed to override the threatened Presidential veto. To date, none of the 12 federal agency appropriations bills have been enacted into law. Federal programs are operating at FY 2007 levels on a continuing resolution until November 16.
Funding for other programs of interest to the historical and archival community include:
Institute of Museum and Library Services
The conference agreement provides $277.131 million for the Institute of Museum and Library Services. This total includes $258 million for regular programs and administration, an increase of $10.9 million over last year’s level, and $13.2 million less than the amount requested by the administration. While funding for museum programs fell short of the President’s request, conferees identified $19.1 million in earmarks designated for more than ninety projects at museums, historical societies, and libraries. Funding for similar earmarks was removed from final appropriations legislation in 2006 and 2007, but has reached levels as high as $39 million in preceding years.
Education through Cultural and Historical Organizations (Department of Education)
Conferees provided $9,000,000 for Education through Cultural and Historical Organizations (ECHO) a federally funded educational and cultural enrichment initiative, serving hundreds of thousands of children, teachers, and adult continuing learners in Alaska, Hawaii, Massachusetts and Mississippi.
Presidential and Congressional American History and Civics Academies (Department of Education)
The conference report provides $1.98 million for American History and Civics Academies, to support the establishment of Presidential Academies for Teachers of American History and Civics, and Congressional Academies for Students of American History and Civics.
Note: Provided courtesy of the National Humanities Alliance.
“Hillary Clinton claimed in the presidential debate last week that ‘all of the records’ related to her work on health care reform ‘are already available.’ This is untrue. The Health Care Task Force and most other Clinton White House documents remain largely unavailable to the American people. We hope our lawsuits change that,” said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton.
Judicial Watch has another federal FOIA lawsuit pending that is seeking Mrs. Clinton’s White House office records, which include her daily schedules and telephone logs.
In response to the original FOIA request for the health care records filed by Judicial Watch in 2006, the National Archives stated that there were approximately 3,022,030 textual records, 2,884 pages of electronic records, 1,021 photographs, three videotapes and three audiotapes that must be reviewed prior to release.
According to a November 3, 2007, article in Newsweek, 13,400 pages of documents related to the Health Care Taskforce have been released to date. In the article, Clinton campaign spokesperson Jay Carson asserted that half a million health-care related records had already been released. Carson told Newsweek there were no doubt other documents related to health care that have not yet been released, but claimed it was due to the fact that there were not enough Archives staff available at the Clinton Library to process FOIA requests expeditiously. Newsweek quoted Carson, “We don’t control their process. . .We’re not holding anything up.”
The controversy began when Senator Clinton gave a confusing response to a question posed by moderator Tim Russert in a recent Democratic presidential debate. Russert asked if the Senator would agree to expedite the release of her records as First Lady. He cited a letter sent by former President Clinton to the National Archives in 2002, requesting that the agency continue to withhold until 2012, “communications directly between the President and the First Lady, and their families, unless routine in nature.”
Initially Senator Clinton said, “the Archives is moving as fast as the Archives moves.” She went on to say as to lifting any ban on the release of her records, “that’s not my decision to make.” She also made the claim that, “now all of the records, as far as I know about what we did with health care, those are already available.”
Last week former President Clinton gave an impassioned defense of the Senator’s response and called Russert’s use of his 2002 letter to the Archives, “breathtakingly misleading.” He went on to add, “I have already released one million pages of documents, about half of which affect Hillary, the records of the Health Care Taskforce.” A full video of the former President’s response is available here.
The Republican National Committee countered that it was “fiction” that all of Senator Clinton’s records had been released, alleging that, “millions of pages of Hillary’s White House records remain locked down in Little Rock.”
So who is right?
It is true that in 1994 the White House did release approximately half a million documents related to Health Care Taskforce chaired by First Lady Hillary Clinton. However, the truth is that the White House did so only to settle the case Association of American Physicians & Surgeons, Inc. v. Clinton, 997 F.2d 898, 902–03 (D.C.Cir. 1993) that had sought the release of the records.
It is not true that all of the records relating to the Clinton Administration’s Health Care Task Force have already been released. As noted above, the National Archives has admitted that over three million paper documents and e-mails relating to the topic remain under review at the Clinton Library.
And what is the practical impact of the letter that President Clinton sent to the National Archives in 2002, which Tim Russert alleged was delaying the release of records relating to then First Lady Hillary Clinton? According to an article in the New York Sun this week, it may not be that relevant after all.
The Sun interviewed attorney Scott Nelson of the Public Citizen Litigation Group, who represented the American Historical Association in its lawsuit to overturn President Bush’s Executive Order 13233, which ironically broadened the ability of former Presidents to delay the release of their records. A federal district court judge recently invalidated that section of the EO, reinstituting the 30-day review period for former presidents mandated under the Presidential Records Act of 1978.
Nelson told the Sun, “It [the letter] starts off saying, ‘I want to be really open about this stuff,’ but, you know if you compare the categories that he [President Clinton] says would be considered for withholding. . . .they encompass most of what is within the scope of these restrictions.” He went on to say that the former president’s letter would not change “99.4% of what the [advice] restriction category applies to in the first place.”
Name of source: USA Today
SOURCE: USA Today (11-9-07)
"Do they want to bring back Saddam Hussein, these critics?" the elder Bush told USA TODAY in a rare interview. "Do they want to go back to the status quo ante? I don't know what they are talking about here. Do they think life would be better in the Middle East if Saddam were still there?"
Bush, 83, was interviewed in a replica of the White House Situation Room at his remodeled presidential library. The Bush Presidential Library and Museum, on the grounds of Texas A&M, is reopening Saturday after an $8.3 million renovation. The added features include the Situation Room and an interactive computer program that allows visitors to consider options Bush weighed during the Gulf War.
In one key decision, Bush rejected calls to topple Saddam, instead declaring the war over after Iraqi forces withdrew from Kuwait. The program calls the idea of going to Baghdad "very tempting" but says it "would have been a disastrous decision," splintering the international coalition and leaving U.S. and possibly British troops on their own in Iraq.
"It's not second-guessed quite so much today, but it was second-guessed" at the time, Bush said of his judgment that combat should end. "But the coalition was formed with my word to the various international leaders, 'The objective is to kick Saddam Hussein out of Kuwait,' " not some further-reaching goal.
Bush dismissed a question about whether his son should have used similar reasoning before invading Iraq in 2003.
SOURCE: USA Today (11-2-07)
It's been six months since the Creation Museum opened to crowds and protests, and the controversial attraction has proven more popular than even organizers had predicted.
Halfway into its first year, it is on the verge of surpassing its projected year-long attendance goal of 250,000. Officials now expect nearly 400,000 people to pass through the doors by year's end.
Name of source: Chronicle of Higher Education (CHE)
SOURCE: Chronicle of Higher Education (CHE) (11-9-07)
A digital chain letter, which first surfaced earlier this year, castigates the institution for allegedly eliminating the Holocaust from its curriculum in deference to a vocal Muslim community that denied the tragedy ever took place. “This is a frightening portent of the fear that is gripping the world and how easily each country is giving into it,” the messages goes on to say, before asking each recipient to “continue the memorial chain” by forwarding the note to 10 more people.
In fact, though, the university has never even considered jettisoning courses in the Holocaust. Kentucky offers an interdisciplinary minor in Judaic studies, and its history department devotes an entire 300-level course to the Holocaust, campus officials said in a written statement today.
Name of source: http://www.bizjournals.com
SOURCE: http://www.bizjournals.com (11-9-07)
The Westinghouse Museum, in Wilmerding, Pa., is now closed and its one employee, an independent consultant, will join the History Center, said Betty Arenth, senior vice president.
Volunteers at the Westinghouse Museum will also be invited to work at the History Center, Arenth said.
No financial terms were disclosed.
In a statement, History Center President and CEO Andy Masich said, "the History Center's Westinghouse collections and the George Westinghouse Museum's collections will merge to create the largest Westinghouse collection in the world."
Name of source: Globe & Mail
SOURCE: Globe & Mail (11-9-07)
Despite efforts to educate young people about Canadian history, the Dominion Institute report found that little has changed since 1997, the last time the survey was conducted - prompting the organization to call on provinces to organize a national citizenship exam that would be a requirement for high-school graduation.
"We've not done as much as we might have hoped in terms of turning around Canadians' generally poor knowledge of their country's history," said Rudyard Griffiths, co-founder of the institute.
"Politicians have to go beyond the obligatory speeches each Canada Day and Remembrance Day and actually put some of the machinery of government behind this problem and treat it just like any other challenge that we face as a country."
Name of source: AP
SOURCE: AP (11-8-07)
Dainton died Oct. 16 at a nursing home in Camborne, England, according to Peter Visick, a distant relative. Her funeral was held Monday at Truro Cathedral, Visick said Thursday.
Elizabeth Gladys "Millvina" Dean of Southampton, England, who was 2 months old at the time of the Titanic sinking, is now the disaster's only remaining survivor, according to the Titanic Historical Society.
The last American survivor, Lillian Gertrud Asplund, died in Massachusetts last year at age 99.
SOURCE: AP (11-8-07)
"What they plan to do with it is, I'm sure, top secret," comments food historian Michael Krondl at the end of "The Taste of Conquest," his book on the history of the spice trade. "Suffice it to say, it should probably be banned from hand luggage everywhere."
Its use in pepper spray has been suggested. So have eye protection and a breath mask for anyone grinding it.
Though Krondl sees the spread of spices in western Europe centuries ago as the origin of 21st-century globalization, he notes that the international market goes further back into ancient history. When Roman Emperor Nero murdered his wife, Poppaea, he used a year's supply of cinnamon to bury her. Joseph's brothers sold him to traders carrying what the King James Bible calls "spicery" from Jordan to Egypt. It doesn't say which spices, but archaeologists have found peppercorns stuffed up the nose of a Pharaoh's mummy.
The book carries its main story back only a thousand years to the Crusaders. Affluent nobles from western Europe got a taste for highly spiced food when they invaded the Middle East. It argues against the idea that spices were wanted in the West to preserve food, because the rich could afford to eat fresh meat and use spices; the poor could not.
SOURCE: AP (11-1-07)
It is the fourth excavation on or near the Washington, D.C., campus in nearly 15 years, since the discovery of disposal pits from the Army's former chemical warfare station. Officials say the artillerary could contain toxic agents such as mustard gas.
The station was used for developing and testing weapons.
Name of source: BBC
SOURCE: BBC (11-9-07)
But look closer, and the true terrible scale of World War I is revealed.
There are rows of boxes, from floor to ceiling, whole shelves with the same surname: Smith, Smith, Smith, Smith. Muller, Muller, Muller, Gautier, Gautier, Gautier, Gautier... and on it goes.
Each box contains thousands of file cards, and each card refers to an individual human being, a soldier missing, imprisoned or killed during the war.
At the start of hostilities in August 1914, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) set up its International Prisoners of War Agency. The aim was to restore contact between all those separated by the conflict.
SOURCE: BBC (11-6-07)
In Belfast's Linenhall Library rare documents and artefacts have gone on display as part of the Hidden Connections exhibition marking the 200th anniversary of the abolition of the African slave trade.
Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness opened the display on Tuesday, describing the trade as a "manifestation of racism and greed".
SOURCE: BBC (11-5-07)
The Memorial Arch, a well-known landmark near Bangor university, features the names of 8,500 men from Gwynedd who died in the Great War.
Built in 1923 the arch needs £155,000 of refurbishments to bring it up to scratch and £47,000 has been donated by the Welsh Assembly Government already.
One of those named on the monument is Trawsfynydd poet Hedd Wyn.
"There is an incredible feeling when you walk into the monument and are faced with tall, six to seven foot (2m) panels, with all the names of those who died," said Llio Wyn Richards, a fund-raising officer at the University of Bangor, which looks after the arch.
SOURCE: BBC (11-5-07)
But there could have been double that total according to the archaeologist leading the work.
"What is really exciting is realising just how big the village for the Stonehenge builders was," says Professor Mike Parker Pearson of Sheffield University.
Allowing four per house, he estimates there could have been room for more than 2,000 people.
Name of source: LA Daily News
SOURCE: LA Daily News (11-9-07)
The investigation found that the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley suffers from a shoddy accounting system and said officials were able to locate only 20,000 of about 100,000 Reagan items.
"This does not automatically mean the approximately 80,000 remaining items are missing," Paul Brachfeld, inspector general of the National Archives and Record Administration, said in a statement.
"The vast majority may very well be safely located within the library's storage facilities. Some of these items may be missing or stolen, or none of these items may be missing or stolen."
Rep. Elton Gallegly, R-Thousand Oaks, whose home is just a few hundred yards from the library, said he spent the day making calls about the items.
Name of source: Seattle PI
SOURCE: Seattle PI (11-8-07)
World War II was in its final months when Carver headed to France to serve as an infantry platoon leader with the 3rd Division. When the war ended, many of his fellow soldiers headed home, but Carver, then 24, was tapped to stay and assigned guard duty at the prison attached to the Nuremberg Palace of Justice, where the most notorious Nazis were being tried for crimes against humanity.
Decades later, he recalls the chill of seeing the prisoners for the first time, an experience he will share in a talk honoring veterans Thursday at the Museum of History and Industry.
On his first day at Nuremberg in August 1946, one of his fellow guards took him down to the exercise yard where the "Big 21," as they were known, were pacing in a circle. The other guard -- Lt. Jack "Tex" Wheelis from Texas -- waited until one in particular came around.
"Howdy," he said to the man who was Hitler's No. 2 in command.
"This is Hermann Goering."
Name of source: http://www.economist.com
SOURCE: http://www.economist.com (11-8-07)
The decade after the collapse of communism was notable for the absence of any official ideology. Weary of grand designs, the Russian elite preferred pragmatism and enrichment. Asked about his national dream in 2004, President Vladimir Putin said that it was to make Russia competitive. But Russia's new oil-driven strength and its aspirations to be a world player have once more created a demand for something more victorious and uplifting. And as Mr Putin looks for ways to stay in power after his second presidential term expires next March, his ideological comrades are placing him in a gallery of Russia's great leaders, a quasi-tsar.
Name of source: Sydney Morning Herald
SOURCE: Sydney Morning Herald (11-7-07)
Tall and athletic, Aribert Heim was the camp doctor for only two months and the 27-year-old enjoyed his time in the Austrian town.
On one occasion, he picked out a prisoner passing his office. After checking his teeth, Heim persuaded him to take part in a medical experiment with the vague promise of release.
Heim killed the man with an injection of poison to his heart, later severing his head and using the skull as a paperweight....
Now German prosecutors are on Heim's trail again. They believe he is still alive because his wife and children have yet to claim money he left in a Berlin bank account.
Name of source: WSJ
SOURCE: WSJ (11-8-07)
A Kremlin-inspired blockbuster film, titled "1612," now hitting theaters around the country, sets the tone for the campaign. Produced by a personal friend of Mr. Putin, it focuses on a popular uprising in 1612 that drove a Polish-Lithuanian army from Moscow.
The dark period in Russia's history, known as the Time of Troubles, ended when a special national congress chose Mikhail Romanov as czar, ushering in the beginning of what became the Russian Empire.
"I'm convinced -- and I have nothing against democracy -- that Russians have a strong desire for a czar," said the film's director, Vladimir Khotinenko, who is open about the state's role in the film and has urged audiences to draw the appropriate lessons.
Name of source: Editor & Publisher
SOURCE: Editor & Publisher (11-6-07)
The latest USA TODAY/Gallup survey finds Bush with a 31% approval rating -- and for the first time ever in the polling history, 50% say they "strongly disapprove" of a president.
The previous high (or low?) was a 48% strong disapproval rating for Nixon at the worst moments of Watergate in 1974.
Name of source: Telegraph (UK)
SOURCE: Telegraph (UK) (11-7-07)
The British-born conductor Simon Rattle has been at the forefront of the move, leading a concert featuring works banned as "degenerate" by Hitler. The concert, marking the orchestra's 125th anniversary, was applauded this week by a packed house in Berlin, where Sir Simon's predecessor, Wilhelm Furtwängler, led birthday concerts for the German leader 70 years ago.
It ended with an emotional rendition of Stravinsky's Rite of Spring, a piece fiercely condemned by the Nazis.
An accompanying exhibition in the German capital recreates 1938 Nazi propaganda denouncing Stravinsky and others blacklisted for being Jewish or enemies of the regime.
Name of source: Fox
SOURCE: Fox (11-6-07)
The university, according to a settlement last month of a lawsuit against the National Collegiate Athletic Association, has three years to negotiate an agreement with two North Dakota Sioux tribes — Spirit Lake and Standing Rock — to receive approval for the continued use of the "Sioux" name and logo.
If an agreement is not reached by 2011, the university will be forced to find a new name and logo.
Name of source: Anthony Lewis in the NYT Book Review
SOURCE: Anthony Lewis in the NYT Book Review (11-4-07)
So writes Robert Draper in his unusual biography of George W. Bush. It is unusual because Draper, a national correspondent for GQ magazine, was given extraordinary access to this press-averse president and his aides, including six private meetings with Bush, surely in the belief that he would be a friendly biographer. Draper is friendly, at times admiring. But he also unhesitatingly supplies devastating evidence of the characteristics that have helped to produce the disasters of the Bush presidency.
“Dead Certain,” the title, conveys one of those characteristics. Bush knows he is right. When facts turn out to get in the way, he brushes them off. When “Mission Accomplished” turned sour in Iraq, when various supposed bench marks of success did not stop the bloodshed, the president remained utterly confident of victory. He was sure, Draper writes, that “history would acquit him.”
Name of source: Guardian
SOURCE: Guardian (11-6-07)
Found during an archaeological dig on the rocky coast of north Devon, the discovery of the remains seemed to confirm that a boatload of slaves was shipwrecked off the British coast and the survivors possibly sold on.
Ten years on, a row over the bones has reignited with one historian criticising a former colleague for not publishing the results of tests on the remains and a notable black campaigner claiming that the dearth of information on the bones showed a lack of respect for the black people who died on board the ship.
Name of source: Daily Mail
SOURCE: Daily Mail (11-3-07)
But closer inspection reveals silhouettes of struggling soldiers emerging from its centre.
This striking design has been chosen for a special first-class stamp commemorating the 90th anniversary of the First World War battle of Passchendaele, the Belgian village whose name is synonymous with the carnage and futility of war.
Name of source: Times (UK)
SOURCE: Times (UK) (11-5-07)
Many of the letters date from the war years – a period only touched on in Coward’s autobiography – and reveal details about his spying activities.
The screenwriter for classic films such as In Which We Serve and Brief Encounter – and whose screen performances included the British spy in Carol Reed’s Our Man in Havana in 1959 – regretted bitterly that tuberculosis and a head injury during training had prevented him from serving his country in the First World War, according to the extensive correspondence.
In 1939 he wrote to Winston Churchill: “This time I am determined to play as much of a part as the powers-that-be allow me . . . You may count on my doing whatever I am called upon to do.”
Name of source: Philadelphia Inquirer
SOURCE: Philadelphia Inquirer (11-4-07)
He opened the mysterious package that had been delivered to his Glendora home and came face to face with his life as a young soldier 62 years ago.
There was the Nazi flag that Sasso hauled down after he and other American troops took over Cologne, Germany, in 1945. He and his buddies signed their names to it.
There was the swastika armband he took as a souvenir of Adolf Hitler's collapsing Third Reich - and the letter from a major general congratulating his division of "Timberwolves" on its performance.
And there was the note from his sweetheart of those days. In August, more than six decades after he sent her the memorabilia from overseas for safekeeping, she wrote Sasso again:
It is not my intent for you to revisit WWII, however, it was a pivotal time in your life.
With sincere respect and obligation, I am returning these items to their rightful owner.
God Bless You Timberwolf.
"I was amazed," said Sasso, 85, a patient of Marlton's Samaritan Hospice, which is providing him with in-home care.
Name of source: Amy Goodman at the website of Democracy Now
SOURCE: Amy Goodman at the website of Democracy Now (11-5-07)
AMY GOODMAN: Henri Alleg, I realize it was, what, about a half a century ago that you were held, interrogated and tortured. But I was wondering, since obviously I think most people, most in the civilian population, even soldiers, are not really familiar with what exactly waterboarding is. It has become almost a kind of catchphrase. Can you explain exactly what happened to you?
HENRI ALLEG: Well, I was put on a plank, on a board, fastened to it and taken to a tap. And my face was covered with a rag. Very quickly, the rag was completely full of water. And, of course, you have the impression of being drowned. And --
AMY GOODMAN: The “tap,” meaning you were put under a water faucet?
HENRI ALLEG: A tap, yes, tap water. So, very quickly, the water ran all over my face. I couldn’t, of course, breathe. And after a few minutes, fighting against the impression of getting drowned, you can’t resist. And you feel as if you were drowning yourself. And this is a terrible impression of coming very near death. And so, when the paratroopers, the torturers, see that you’re drowning, they would stop, let you breathe, and try again. So that impression of getting near to death, every time they helped you to come back to life by breathing, it’s a terrible, terrible impression of torture and of death, being near death. So, that was my impression. But it’s difficult to say that this --
AMY GOODMAN: In the context -- explain the context for us, Henri Alleg, as they held you under the faucet and the water filled your lungs, what did the French military -- what were they demanding of you, and how did you stop it? How did it start again?
HENRI ALLEG: They just wanted me to, first of all, say what I was doing in the moments I was illegal, because I stopped, of course, going to the newspaper, because it was suppressed. So I had to hide, because I knew that I would be taken and sent to a concentration camp. So they wanted to know who were the people I met during that illegal period, what was the people that I had met and what they were doing. That’s what they wanted from me --
AMY GOODMAN: Did you tell them?
HENRI ALLEG: -- is to denounce my friends, and I refused to open my mouth to say a word about that. I wouldn’t betray my friends. They didn’t know much more about me. And that is what they wanted. And I didn’t want to help them in any way that would be possible.
AMY GOODMAN: When the water came into your lungs, how did you remain conscious? How did you resist it?
HENRI ALLEG: Well, they said to me, “When you want to talk, you just move your fingers.” Move your fingers. Of course, I was strapped to a board. And the first time I -- they started that, I didn’t realize even that I was moving desperately my fingers. So I moved my fingers, and they shouted around me, “So he’s going to talk! He’s going to talk!” So they let me breathe. And as soon as I got a little breath again, I denounced it, and I still refused. So they started again. They said, “He’s making a joke out of us.” So they gave me very heavy blows on my chest and on my belly to make the -- get out the water of my lungs and of my body. And they started again afterwards.
And suddenly, as I have explained it -- I think it was the third time -- I just fainted. And I heard them after a while saying, “Oh, he’s coming back. He’s coming back.” They didn’t want me to die at once, and I knew afterwards, a long time afterwards, that many of the people who went under that waterboarding, as you call it, after having had some moments of fainting, some of them would die, drowned, “asphyxier,” as we say in French. It’s completely -- it’s impossible to breathe, so they die, as if they were drowned, and this kind of “accident,” as they call, was very frequent.
AMY GOODMAN: Did you, Henri Alleg, have the sensation of dying?
HENRI ALLEG: Pardon?
AMY GOODMAN: Did you feel the sensation of dying?
HENRI ALLEG: Yes, and that’s a terrible sensation.
AMY GOODMAN: What did you feel?
HENRI ALLEG: Well, You feel that you're going to die. Of course, you don’t want to die, and in the same time you don’t want to accept the conditions that they make around you to let you live. So, finally, at this third time, before I fainted, I was really decided to die and not to answer at any cost.
But once again, I’m really surprised that this is the big question put before the American opinion now and not another question: Is such a war a war that can be accepted with such -- in such conditions and with such tools? Is it a civilized country that can use such things? And is the fact that this way of fighting -- as some military say, it can’t be otherwise -- is it acceptable? I think it is not acceptable, especially that the way to legalize such a way of fighting, some military say, we cannot do otherwise. It has no meaning at all. The people who lead a fight for freedom and liberty, even if some of them accept the conditions of the people who torture them, they help hundreds and thousands of other people to join the fight, because it appears to them as something that cannot be accepted by any man who thinks that his fight is honorable and justified.
AMY GOODMAN: Finally, Henri Alleg, the Attorney General nominee who will be voted on -- his confirmation will be voted on this week -- has said if waterboarding is torture, then it is illegal. What is your response to that?
HENRI ALLEG: Of course, I think that all tortures are illegal, and it is unacceptable for a civilized country today.
If you permit, I may make a comparison between what the French did in Algeria and what the Americans are doing now in Iraq. There is a difference. The French government and the French military refused, until the end of the war and a long time after, tens of years after, to accept the idea that it was true that the military in Algeria used torture. They always said that it was not true, that it was propaganda, either nationalist or communist propaganda, but that the French, who had had such a long history of fighting for humanity, for the rights of man, and that the French army, who was the army of such a republic, they could not do such a thing. And they refused to accept the idea and the testimonies, that were very, very numerous, of torture in Algeria. Even if the people didn’t believe their denials -- I mean, the government's denials -- they still maintained that position, until some officers had denied another way of answering. They said that, yes, we did it, but we couldn’t do otherwise. But they only did it when there was an amnesty for all that had been done during the war. So, that was the French position until the end, until now. But in the same time, I think that the American officials had another way of looking at the thing. They didn’t say it was not true, even we saw on television and other means --
Name of source: LiveScience
SOURCE: LiveScience (11-3-07)
Fictional wizards and J.K. Rowling aside, researchers Carles Lalueza-Fox of the University of Barcelona, Spain and Holger Rompler of the University of Leipzig in Germany announced last week that Neanderthals, who died out 35,000 years ago, had the same distribution of hair and skin color as modern human European populations. By inference, that means that about 1 percent of Neanderthals must have been redheads, with pale skin and freckles.
The idea of Neanderthals with red hair and freckles is just plain charming. But it's also scary because it underscores the fact that Neanderthals were so much like us, and now they're gone.