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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
SOURCE: Reuters (2-25-09)
Tensions in Tibet are running high ahead of the anniversary of the Dalai Lama's flight into exile on March 10. Many Tibetans have chosen not to celebrate Tibetan New Year, or Losar, today (weds) to silently protest Chinese rule.
China's move to close off Tibet will ensure a news black-out in case of any repeat of the violence that broke out last March. Large squads of riot police have already been spotted by reporters in Tibetan areas of the surrounding provinces.
Name of source: NYT
SOURCE: NYT (2-24-09)
Already scholars point to troubling signs. A December survey of 200 higher education institutions by The Chronicle of Higher Education and Moody’s Investors Services found that 5 percent have imposed a total hiring freeze, and an additional 43 percent have imposed a partial freeze.
In the last three months at least two dozen colleges have canceled or postponed faculty searches in religion and philosophy, according to a job postings page on Wikihost.org. The Modern Language Association’s end-of-the-year job listings in English, literature and foreign languages dropped 21 percent for 2008-09 from the previous year, the biggest decline in 34 years.
“Although people in humanities have always lamented the state of the field, they have never felt quite as much of a panic that their field is becoming irrelevant,” said Andrew Delbanco, the director of American studies at Columbia University.
SOURCE: NYT (2-24-09)
The Senate voted 62 to 34 to begin debating a measure that would also grant an additional House seat to Utah, enlarging the House to 437 seats. In 2007 supporters of the bill fell three votes short of overcoming a Senate filibuster against it.
Sponsors of the voting bill were optimistic they could win Senate approval by the end of the week after consideration of changes proposed by Republican opponents. The Senate would then begin to work out differences with the House in hopes of quickly sending a bill to President Obama, who has indicated he would sign it. A court challenge is considered a certainty.
SOURCE: NYT (2-21-09)
The economic malaise that plagued Japan from the 1990s until the early 2000s brought stunted wages and depressed stock prices, turning free-spending consumers into misers and making them dead weight on Japan’s economy.
Today, years after the recovery, even well-off Japanese households use old bath water to do laundry, a popular way to save on utility bills. Sales of whiskey, the favorite drink among moneyed Tokyoites in the booming ’80s, have fallen to a fifth of their peak. And the nation is losing interest in cars; sales have fallen by half since 1990.
Name of source: The Daily Beast
SOURCE: The Daily Beast (2-25-09)
Name of source: American Presidency Project (UC Santa Barbara)
SOURCE: American Presidency Project (UC Santa Barbara) (2-25-09)
However, Obama has been very active in participating in public events at which he makes “remarks.” Obama recorded more such events in the first five weeks of his presidency than any presidents in our comparison group. He’s also done more events outside Washington, D.C. than the others.
Name of source: WaPo
SOURCE: WaPo (2-25-09)
Not since Franklin Roosevelt delivered his first fireside chat, eight days into his presidency, have Americans been more hungry -- and more desperate -- for economic leadership. And not since FDR has there been an economic agenda as bold or ambitious, or as likely to reshape American capitalism.
Just a month in office, Obama has already pushed through additional fiscal stimulus equal to 5 percent of the country's economic output. His Treasury Department is about to embark on the second phase of a program that will lead to greater government control and ownership of some of the nation's biggest banks. He has assembled a team to pull off what amounts to a bankruptcy reorganization for automakers that will leave taxpayers as one of the industry's biggest creditors. And within months, the president has promised to deliver the blueprint of a new regulatory architecture that will dramatically increase the government's oversight of financial firms.
If all of that weren't enough of a challenge, Obama vowed to move quickly to revamp the health-care system, put the government on a credible path toward a balanced budget, dramatically reduce the country's carbon footprint, rewrite the tax code and reform public schools.
"Action, and action now," is how FDR put it in his time. In Obama's translation, "that day of reckoning has arrived, and the time to take charge of our future is here."
It remains an open question whether by trying to do so much so fast, Obama will be able to create the momentum and sense of urgency necessary to overcome pushback from many Republicans, the inevitable opposition from special interests and the natural tendency of the system to return to the old political equilibrium.
Already there are signs that the demands of the president's ambitious agenda have overwhelmed the economic team that has been assembled at the White House, the Treasury and other federal agencies. And there are some who warn that in asking Congress to consider so many different issues, Obama runs the risk of political gridlock as one initiative is held hostage to another.
But as Obama sees it, his strategy is not to find a way to maneuver a wildly ambitious economic program through the twists and turns of a hostile and byzantine political system, but to use the urgency of the moment and his considerable political capital to reform that system and transform the way politics is done....
Name of source: Financial Times (UK)
SOURCE: Financial Times (UK) (2-24-09)
The decision means that the auction planned for Wednesday morning at Christie's in Paris can proceed and the two Ching dynasty sculptures - a rabbit and a rat's head - are expected to fetch between €8m and €10m ($12.7m, £8.8m).
The queues were forming outside the auction house last night for what is being described in the French press as "the sale of the century" with some 700 pieces of art, glassware and sculpture in the collection.
But the ruling will be a blow to the latest attempt by Chinese authorities to stop the sale of historical -artefacts to private -collections. Though the action was brought by a French -archeologist Bernard Gomez, also head of the Association for the Protection of Chinese art in Europe, it received the tacit support of authorities.
Name of source: Beaumont Enterprise (Texas)
SOURCE: Beaumont Enterprise (Texas) (2-23-09)
The discovery, thought to be previously uncharted, was made by crews last week scanning the bays around Galveston to chart debris.
While the find came as a kind of fun surprise to the contractors doing the work, State Marine Archeologist Steve Hoyt was pleased - but not terribly surprised.
Hoyt added it's possible the shipwreck had been buried in mud and Ike's surge might have uncovered it. Or, it could just be that it had simply been overlooked until now.
In the past, smaller areas have been surveyed for different projects, such as pipelines, to ensure that the work won't disturb any significant sites, Hoyt said.
When the Texas Historic Commission finds out about a "new" historic ship wreck site, personnel begin to comb through a database of thousands of shipwrecks known to have occurred in the region.
The next step for the Texas Historic Commission is to assess the site.
Name of source: Latin American Herald Tribune
SOURCE: Latin American Herald Tribune (2-25-09)
Considered to be the most important antiquities collection in Mexico in private hands due to the number and age of the pieces, some of them more than 3,000 years old, the items will be catalogued and researched in the archaeological zone of Xochicalco, located in the central state of Morelos.
Among the pieces in the collection are an offering box with an engraving of the emblem of Aztlan, possibly of Tenochtitlan (modern-day Mexico City), and two Toltec monoliths with the Aztec god Quetzalcoatl emerging from the jaws of a serpent, each of which weighs 500 pounds.
Name of source: Yahoo News
SOURCE: Yahoo News (2-24-09)
The statue, about life-size at 149 cm (five feet) tall, was found north of the smallest of Giza's three main pyramids, the tomb of the fourth dynasty Pharaoh Mycerinus, who ruled in the 26th century BC, the ministry said in a statement.
The man was wearing a shoulder-length wig and was seated in a simple chair, his right hand clenched on his knee and holding an object. His left hand was resting on his thigh.
The culture ministry said the statue had a number of cracks in a shoulder, its chest and base, and some facial features had been worn away. The head of the statue was only about 40 cm (16 inches) below ground level.
The statue bore no inscriptions, making it hard to identify, though the style suggested it might date to the early years of the Old Kingdom of ancient Egypt, close to Mycerinus's time.
SOURCE: Yahoo News (2-23-09)
The collection, including a delicate 14th century wedding ring, intricately decorated cups and dazzling jewels, was unearthed in Erfurt, Germany, in 1998, close to the town's 11th century synagogue.
Although historians cannot be sure, they suspect that the treasures were concealed in or around 1349 by Jewish families expecting to return and collect them later.
But whether because they were forced to flee, died in the plague or were among around 1,000 people killed in a pogrom in Erfurt in March that year, the items were left undisturbed for 650 years until excavations for a block of flats revealed them.
Some of the most precious pieces from the collection are on display at London's Wallace Collection alongside items from a second hoard found in France in 1863.
Name of source: Telegraph (UK)
SOURCE: Telegraph (UK) (2-25-09)
The UN-backed Special Court for Sierra Leone, which is pursuing those held most responsible for atrocities during the country's 1991-2002 civil war, faces a budget shortfall of more than $5 million from May, officials said.
Taylor, a warlord in a civil war in Liberia and later president, is being tried in The Hague due to fears a local trial may threaten regional stability. He denies all 11 counts of crimes against humanity and other charges including rape, enslavement and conscripting child soldiers younger than 15.
Taylor's trial, which began in June 2007, involves the same Special Court judges and prosecutors and he would stay indicted even if freed for lack of funds for his detention. Mr Rapp had said earlier this month a verdict could be expected early next year.
The Freetown session of the court is due to hand down its last verdict on Wednesday, in the trial of the three most senior surviving members of the rebel Revolutionary United Front (RUF).
Officials fear lack of funds will jeopardise the court, the first of its kind, relying on voluntary contributions from donor governments to foot the entire bill for the proceedings, estimated to run to $68.4 million for 2008-2010 alone.
The court is now turning to "a few countries in the Middle East" for funding, as well appealing to US President Barack Obama's new administration for speedy help to raise a further $30m to see it through to the end of 2010, Mr von Hebel said.
Ieng Thirith, 76, who is facing trial for crimes against humanity under the communist regime, at first told the court that defence lawyers would speak on her behalf during her appeal against detention, saying: "I am too weak".
But she later erupted at the prosecution's suggestion that she was aware of atrocities at the notorious Tuol Sleng prison while she served as social affairs minister during the Khmer Rouge's 1975-1979 rule.
Although Ieng Thirith regained enough strength for her vigorous denial, the health of the ageing suspects is an ongoing concern.
Ieng Thirith's husband, the former Khmer Rouge foreign minister Ieng Sary, was admitted to hospital on Monday with a urinary condition.
In documents read to the court, investigating judges argued it was necessary to keep Ieng Thirith in jail to protect her security, preserve public order and ensure she did not flee from trial.
The Prince of Wales, in a moving speech in the presence of all senior members of the Royal Family described the 9ft 6in sculpture in The Mall as a fitting tribute to his "darling" grandmother.
The unveiling by the Queen of the 9ft 6in bronze statue was a poignant reminder of the simple ceremony she performed in tribute to her father in 1955 only three years after his death at the age of 56.
Philip Jackson, the sculptor whose design was chosen by a committee chaired by the Prince of Wales, depicted the Queen Mother at 51 the same age she was when George VI died. He spent hours poring over photographs in the archive at Windsor Castle and met her shortly before her death.
The statue is flanked by two bronze reliefs which show her in the Second World War, when the Royal Family defied Foreign Office advice to remain in London. The centrepiece depicts her holding her hand out to a child as she and the king meet families made homeless by bombing raids.
Reid’s speech entitled “Europe must show leadership and stop waiting on the United States” will make the point that “it is not smart for European politicians to think the American President needs to care about their concerns. And it is also not smart for Gordon Brown to expect Barack Obama to do the things he needs to do at home.”
He will add: “This is not about special relationships. It’s about rolling up our sleeves and working together – all of us.”
Caruth Byrd, 67, claims that he inherited the window in 1986 from his father, Col Harold Byrd, who once owned Texas School Book Depository, the Dallas building from which Oswald shot Kennedy.
Mr Byrd says that his father had the window removed six weeks after the assassination, fearful that it would be stolen. He then had it framed and hung on the wall of his Dallas mansion.
But Aubrey Mayhew, 81, a collector of Kennedy memorabilia, claims that Col Byrd removed the wrong eight-pane window; he claims that Mr Byrd's framed window is from the south-west corner of the room, and not the south-east corner, from which Oswald fired the fatal shots. Mr Mayhew claims that he asked carpenters to remove the correct window in the early 1970s.
Mr Byrd wants Judge Gena Slaughter to declare him the owner of the authentic window, and to order Mr Mayhew to return any window he took from the building.
The dispute has come to a Dallas courtroom two years after both men tried to sell their windows on eBay.
SOURCE: Telegraph (UK) (2-23-09)
The clips show Churchill and Eisenhower visiting the 101st Airborne which was stationed in North Devon. There is also film footage of Russians at Putsborough beach.
The Russians can be seen with the American Army and is believed to be looking at plans for the Omaha landing during the Soviet military mission to observe western training.
The footage, which has been found by Tony Koorlander, a former technical co-ordinator for BBC TV news, has lain undiscovered in the National Archive in Baltimore since the end of the war.
SOURCE: Telegraph (UK) (2-22-09)
The collection of documents also include a series of long forgotten television and radio interviews with Baroness Thatcher which charts her gradual transformation from suburban housewife to a major player on the world stage as the Iron Lady by the end of the 1970s.
It includes an interview in which as Education Secretary she talks about her make-up routine, why she would never wear jeans, how she loved Morecambe and Wise on television.
Some of the newly released papers, to coincide with BBC2's programme Margaret about her fall from power in 1990, date back to 1957 before she was an MP. It includes one to the head of women's programmes on why the Tory candidate for Finchley should be on television.
Name of source: BBC
SOURCE: BBC (2-24-09)
The technique identified 23 victims, who were buried in Peru's largest mass grave in 1984.
The director of the Peruvian forensic anthropology team, Jose Pablo Baraybar, said they expected to identify several more victims in the next few weeks.
Some 70,000 people died in the conflict between the military and Maoist rebels.
The 23 positively identified human remains are the single largest group of victims identified from the conflict in Peru.
These victims formed part of a larger group of more than 120 men, women and children killed in a single massacre by the Peruvian military.
The exhumation and DNA sampling was partially funded by the US state department.
SOURCE: BBC (2-25-09)
More than 200,000 people - most of them civilians - were killed or disappeared between 1960 and 1996.
The group said that tens of thousands of cases have yet to be heard by the commission established to probe cases.
Amnesty called on the Guatemalan government to approve a law for a National Search Commission for the Disappeared.
SOURCE: BBC (2-25-09)
The row hugely embarrassed the Vatican which had only recently lifted an excommunication order on the bishop.
After his arrival he was taken straight to a waiting car by police officers.
SOURCE: BBC (2-24-09)
It has been designed as a symbolic reminder of the disaster, as well as an educational centre.
It will also serve as an emergency disaster shelter in case the area is ever hit by a tsunami again.
Aceh was home to more than half the 240,000 people who died in the disaster. The outpouring of aid which followed was the largest in history.
Almost all that aid money has now been spent - gone to pay for more than 130,000 houses and thousands of kilometres of road, as well as bridges, schools, and other infrastructure.
But this new museum building, paid for by Aceh's Reconstruction Fund, breaks with the tradition of post-disaster construction.
Name of source: Foxnews
SOURCE: Foxnews (2-24-09)
They both claim ownership of the sixth-floor window from the Texas School Book Depository where Lee Harvey Oswald hid out to shoot President John F. Kennedy in Dallas.
Caruth Byrd, 67, of Van, Texas, sued 81-year-old Aubrey Mayhew, of Nashville, Tenn. over who owns the "real" window after both had been posted for sale on eBay.
Name of source: Independent (UK)
SOURCE: Independent (UK) (2-25-09)
Campaigners had demanded to see the minutes of two meetings, on 13 and 17 March 2003, amid allegations that the Cabinet failed to discuss properly or challenge the decision to invade Iraq. The legality of the war was also discussed at the meetings.
The Information Commissioner, Richard Thomas, had ordered the release of the minutes, arguing that their publication was in the public interest. His decision was supported by an independent tribunal last month.
But for the first time, the Government has decided to make use of "Section 53" of the Freedom of Information (FOI) Act, allowing it to veto the release of the documents. The clause was added to the Act as a way of placating ministers who wanted final control over the release of sensitive documents.
SOURCE: Independent (UK) (2-22-09)
Oswald Mosley, whose British Union of Fascists preached anti-Semitism before the war, was released from internment in 1946. His Blackshirts, dressed like Nazi stormtroopers, were revived. Jewish houses were daubed with the letters PJ – Perish Judah. Jews were beaten and taunted in the streets: “Not enough Jews were burned in Belsen.” Something had to be done.
In April 1946, 43 men and women – war heroes including Gerry Flamberg, who won the Military Medal at Arnhem, and Tommy Gould, a submariner who won the Victoria Cross – formed the 43 Group.
Morris Beckman, another founder member, now 88, explained. “The authorities were doing nothing; we were seeing newsreels of Auschwitz. We decided that as trained troops we would ‘out-fascist the fascists’.”
Last week, around 40 of the surviving street-fighters who fought British fascism to a standstill in a five-year guerrilla war held a last reunion to consider their achievements.
Name of source: Wall Street Journal
SOURCE: Wall Street Journal (2-24-09)
One is called Sea Shadow. It's big, black and looks like a cross between a Stealth fighter and a Batmobile. It was made to escape detection on the open sea. The other is known as the Hughes (as in Howard Hughes) Mining Barge. It looks like a floating field house, with an arching roof and a door that is 76 feet wide and 72 feet high. Sea Shadow berths inside the barge, which keeps it safely hidden from spy satellites.
The barge, by the way, is the only fully submersible dry dock ever built, making it very handy -- as it was 35 years ago -- for trying to raise a sunken nuclear-armed Soviet submarine...
But a gift ship from the Navy comes with lots of strings attached to the rigging. A naval museum, the Historic Naval Ships Association warns, is "a bloodthirsty, paperwork ridden, permit-infested, money-sucking hole..." Because the Navy won't pay for anything -- neither rust scraping nor curating -- to keep museums afloat, survival depends on big crowds. That's why many of the 48 ships it has given away over 60 years were vessels known for performing heroically in famous battles.
Name of source: Washington Post
SOURCE: Washington Post (2-24-09)
The auction is a travesty for many Indians, for whom Gandhi is a godlike figure, and some in India's Parliament have called for the government to either stop the auction or put in the highest bid to get back the nation's iconic mementos.
The bidding for Gandhi's distinctive metal-rimmed round spectacles, his leather sandals, a 1910 sterling Zenith pocket watch, and a brass bowl and plate is scheduled for March 5 and 6 in New York.
Name of source: Orange County News
SOURCE: Orange County News (2-19-09)
Walmart representatives announced Monday that based on results of a recent survey, a new Walmart Supercenter will be welcomed by a majority of Orange County residents. Last month’s survey, conducted by an independent market research firm, questioned 300 registered voters in Orange County about shopping preferences and related issues.
Plans to build the 143,000-square-foot supercenter on a 19-acre portion of a larger property-already zoned for commercial use-were announced last year. Since plans for the project were made public, there has been an almost-constant discussion between those who support the project for the economic benefits it could offer Orange, and those who oppose it because of the proximity to important sites in American culture and history.
Walmart contracted with Voter Consumer Research in January to conduct a public opinion survey of registered voters in Orange, and results were significant: 61 percent of local registered voters said they supported a new Walmart at the proposed site on the north side of the Route 3 and Route 20 intersection. And further, Walmart representatives said, according to their results, 74 percent of those surveyed said Orange County lacked shopping options.
Name of source: Science Daily
SOURCE: Science Daily (2-22-09)
Lydia Smith, a first-year psychology major from Granville, Ohio, was transcribing a letter written by Lincoln on Oct. 5, 1863, for a class project when she noticed a smudge that she suspected could be the 16th president’s thumbprint. Lincoln historians have confirmed the print.
The Papers of Abraham Lincoln, a project of the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency and Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum, reviewed and confirmed the print, making it the second rare fingerprint of the 16th president housed at Miami’s libraries.
The collection at Miami includes the first authenticated fingerprint of Lincoln with a signature known to historians since it was first verified in 1957. Lydia Smith's discovery of the second fingerprint has historians taking notice.
The 1863 letter was among hundreds of miscellaneous letters stored in Miami’s Walter Havighurst Special Collections section of King Library and uncovered this fall. With this find, the university now owns four Lincoln letters, all of which are part of a larger collection of Lincoln-related items donated to Miami in 1967 by alumnus William A. Hammond (’14) who had spent 30 years collecting Lincoln-related items.
Name of source: Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs
SOURCE: Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs (2-23-09)
A large building that dates to the time of the First and Second Temples, in which there was an amazing wealth of inscriptions, was discovered in a salvage excavation conducted by Zubair Adawi, on behalf of the Israel Antiquities Authority, in the village of Umm Tuba in southern Jerusalem (between Zur Baher and the Har Homa quarter), prior to construction work by a private contractor.
Considering the limited area of the excavation and the rural nature of the structure that was revealed, the excavators were surprised to discover in it so many royal seal impressions that date to the reign of Hezekiah, King of Judah (end of the eighth century BCE). Four “LMLK” type impressions were discovered on handles of large jars that were used to store wine and oil in royal administrative centers. These were found together with the seal impressions of two high ranking officials named Ahimelekh ben Amadyahu and Yehokhil ben Shahar, who served in the kingdom’s government. The Yehokhil seal was stamped on one of the LMLK impressions before the jar was fired in a kiln and this is a very rare instance in which two such impressions appear together on a single handle.
Another Hebrew inscription, 600 years later than the seal impressions of the Kingdom of Judah, was discovered on a fragment of a jar neck that dates to the Hasmonean period. An alphabetic sequence was engraved with a thin iron stylus below the vessel’s rim in Hebrew script that is characteristic of the beginning of the Hasmonean period (end of the second century BCE). The letters hay to yod and a small part of the letter kaf were preserved on the shard. Similar inscriptions bearing alphabetic sequences were discovered in the past, usually on ostraca (inscriptions written in ink on pottery shards) or engraved on ossuaries (stone receptacles in which human bones were buried). The alphabetic inscription that was discovered in this instance is unique and the significance of it requires further study: was this a “writing exercise” done by an apprentice scribe or should we ascribe to it some magical importance?
Some three years ago the impressive remains of a monastery from this period were excavated that together with the remains of the current excavation confirm the identification of the place as “Metofa”, which is mentioned in the writings of the church fathers in the Byzantine period. The name of the Arab village, “Umm Tuba” is therefore a derivation of Byzantine “Metofa”, which is Biblical “Netofa” and is mentioned as the place from which two of David’s heroes originated (2 Samuel 23:28-29).
Name of source: The Times of India
SOURCE: The Times of India (2-23-09)
The temple site is a mound in Sanchankot in Unnao. The excavations have been going on since 2004, when UGC cleared the project for funding. ‘‘A lot of things have come to fore since we began, but the temple complex has suddenly given impetus to our research,’’ said Prof Tewari.
Spread across an area of 600 acres, the temple is made of baked bricks. In India, most of the brick temples were built in the Gupta period which existed in the fourth century AD. The temple’s architecture is ‘apsidal’ (semi-circular or u-shaped) in nature.
The LU has many artifacts to conclude that Lord Shiva was worshipped in this temple. Prof Tewari said, ‘‘A terracotta seal bearing the legend of ‘Kaalanjar peeth’ in Brahmi script was found from the site in Dec 2008.’’
Name of source: China Central Television
SOURCE: China Central Television (2-21-09)
A ramp leads to the tomb chambers. Murals decorate both the vault and the brick walls.
Cheng Linquan, director, Institute of archeology, said, The upper part is painted with celestial signs and the lower part is painted with life scenes. We see here is a woman carrying a baby, while leading another child. The lines are simple and earthy, reflecting the art style of that era.
Experts speculate the tomb owner might be from a noble family. But more details need to be further verified. Protection of the tomb is in the process.
Name of source: KCRA (Sacramento)
SOURCE: KCRA (Sacramento) (2-23-09)
History is being rebuilt in Tehama County as monks piece together stones from an 800-year-old building that will eventually become California's oldest standing structure.
Monks from the Abbey of New Clairvaux have been slowly putting together stones from a pre-Gothic meeting house built in Spain during the Middle Ages.
In 1931, millionaire newspaper publisher William Randolph Hearst bought the original building, had it dismantled and shipped to California to be part of Wyntoon, his estate near the McCloud River.
The Great Depression changed that, and for decades, the stones sat moldering in Golden Gate Park.
In the 1990s, San Francisco gave the stones to the monks who started trimming the stones, fixing broken pieces and reinforcing the building with concrete and steel to meet modern earthquake codes.
Some of the stones are now standing once again behind the walls of the Abbey of New Clairvaux, where the monastery monks have been putting them together for the past five years.
The project is being funded entirely through private donations. However, since the recession, those have slowed down considerably. The monks don't know when their building will be complete.
Name of source: CNN
SOURCE: CNN (2-23-09)
The search -- scheduled for later this year -- will focus on a 40 square-mile (104 square-kilometer) area of the Arctic Ocean where researchers believe Amundsen's plane crashed in 1928.
Amundsen, who is a national hero in Norway, led the first successful expedition to the South Pole from 1910 to 1912. He is also credited with being the first person to reach both the North and South Poles.
He went missing in June 1928 at the age of 55 while flying to the North Pole for a rescue operation.
The location of his disappearance "is one of the remaining unsolved mysteries in our time," a press release from the Norwegian Navy said.
There have been several attempts to find the location of Amundsen's crash, most recently in 2004. But this time Norway's navy will be able to scour the depths of the Arctic Ocean with a submarine, named after a character in Norse mythology.
SOURCE: CNN (12-31-69)
During the war, the Philippines was a U.S. commonwealth. The U.S. military promised full veterans benefits to Filipinos who volunteered to fight. More than 250,000 joined.
Then, in 1946, President Truman signed the Rescission Act, taking that promise away.
Today, only about about 15,000 of those troops are still alive, according to the American Coalition for Filipino Veterans. A provision tucked inside the stimulus bill that President Obama signed calls for releasing $198 million that was appropriated last year for those veterans. Those who have become U.S. citizens get $15,000 each; non-citizens get $9,000.
Some historians say financial concerns were paramount: The cost of funding full veterans benefits to all those Filipinos, particularly in the wake of the costly war, would have been a heavy burden.
The honor comes too late for the many Filipino veterans who passed away waiting for this moment. Families of deceased veterans are not eligible to receive the money.
SOURCE: CNN (2-22-09)
It is now called Baghdad Central Prison, and has water fountains, a freshly planted garden and a gym -- complete with weights and sports teams' jerseys on the walls.
Rooms have been transformed and renovated. CNN was told, but not shown, that a few hundred prisoners are here already, in a revamped part of the facility that can hold up to 3,000 prisoners. The capacity is critical to help deal with overcrowding at Iraq's other facilities and the potential security threat.
The Iraqi government is going to great lengths to try to change the image this facility has. It organized a tour for journalists, very carefully orchestrated by the Ministry of Justice.
Name of source: Deutsche Welle
SOURCE: Deutsche Welle (2-23-09)
It proved so successful that since its inception, the court has seen its case load brought by individuals, organizations and nations grow to some 100,000 cases from 46 countries.
These days, in fact, the court faces a serious backlog. Critics argue that it has become a victim of its own success -- a result of the growing number of states subject to its jurisdiction, a good reputation, expansive interpretations of individual liberties, distrust of domestic judiciaries in some countries and entrenched human rights problems in others.
Name of source: AP
SOURCE: AP (2-23-09)
The ransacking of the museum became a symbol for critics of Washington's post-invasion strategy and its inability to maintain order as Saddam Hussein's police and military unraveled.
But Iraq's prime minister, Nouri al-Maliki, chose to look ahead. He called the reopening another milestone in Baghdad's slow return to stability after years of bloodshed.
"It was a dark age that Iraq passed through," the prime minister said at a dedication ceremony after walking down a red carpet into the museum. "This spot of civilization has had its share of destruction."
The museum — which holds artifacts from the Stone Age through the Babylonian, Assyrian and Islamic periods — will be open to the public starting Tuesday but only for organized tours at first, officials said.
SOURCE: AP (2-22-09)
Sex, lies, but no videotape for Marie Antoinette, the legendary French queen seen by Houston Ballet Artistic Director Stanton Welch as an 18th-century version of modern-day celebrities stalked by paparazzi and splashed across supermarket tabloids.
"I thought it was an interesting parallel," he said of the title character in his new ballet "Marie," which has its world premiere on Thursday in Houston. "She died for the sins of France and all the kings and queens that had gone before her. It wasn't necessarily for her. She was a victim."
While arts companies around the country are cutting productions, laying off staff and even closing, Houston Ballet is readying the three-act story ballet about the life and death of the woman at the center of the French Revolution.
SOURCE: AP (2-22-09)
Afro-Caribbean islanders — most of whose forbears toiled in the sugarcane fields under the yoke of slavery more than 160 years ago — not only resent France's handling of the global economic crisis, they have long resented that slaveholders' descendants control the economy on both islands.
They also suspect that businesses earn too high a profit on goods, most of which are imported.
Name of source: Time Magazine
SOURCE: Time Magazine (2-19-09)
Edan finally brought the tablets from Peru to the Baghdad museum about three weeks ago, adding them to more than 4,000 Iraqi artifacts the museum has recovered since the chaos that followed the fall of Saddam Hussein in 2003. Peru appears to be the farthest that purloined Iraqi treasures have traveled. Most other recovered items have come from neighboring countries. More than 2,500 artifacts have returned to Iraq from Jordan, along with more than 760 from Syria. Many stolen items have made it to further west. Thirteen pieces were found in Italy; and at least another dozen have surfaced in the United States, including a large statue of a Sumerian king..."
Name of source: LAT
SOURCE: LAT (2-23-09)
Compared with the epic approach of President Franklin D. Roosevelt's New Deal, President Obama's economic recovery strategy could be summed up as: Think small -- in a huge way.
FDR left a legacy of engineering marvels that still adorn the landscape: the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge, the Grand Coulee Dam in Washington state, and New York's LaGuardia Airport and Triborough Bridge among them.
But don't look for similar monuments to emerge from the new stimulus plan, despite its $787-billion price tag. Billions in infrastructure spending is likely to go for less-glamorous but widely distributed projects such as repaving battered streets, repairing rundown schools and replacing aging sewer lines.
"Resurfacing, painting, lighting and maintenance programs are not as flashy as building a new bridge, but as projects they are no less important," said Jeff Solsby of the American Road and Transportation Builders Assn. "They provide important benefits and create jobs to grow the economy."
Name of source: Stone Pages Archaeo News
SOURCE: Stone Pages Archaeo News (2-22-09)
SOURCE: Stone Pages Archaeo News (2-22-09)
Name of source: Newsweek
SOURCE: Newsweek (2-21-09)
But the British press, as is its wont, smells a snub...
Name of source: MSNBC
SOURCE: MSNBC (2-22-09)
On Saturday, the 14 students will meet in Middletown with the family members of former soldier Anthony J. Malone to return to them the helmet he wore in World War II.
Their mission was to find out the history behind the Army helmet Mansfield’s father had given to him 40 years ago.
Inside the helmet was Malone’s name and a serial number.
After almost a month of research online, the students discovered that Malone had been a medic during World War II.
His company, they say, saw more than its fair share of battle, including D-Day. He'd also been awarded a purple heart.
What they also found out was that Malone passed away eight years ago but he is survived by a wife, here in Connecticut and children who live in New Jersey. So, they called some of Malone's family members to tell them of their find and eventually made plans to return it in person.
Name of source: Times (UK)
SOURCE: Times (UK) (2-22-09)
The scenes in bronze relief accompany a 9 and a half foot statue of the Queen Mother, seen here for the first time, resplendent in her Order of the Garter robes and with a faint smile.
The memorial, which has been kept secret, will be unveiled by the Queen on Tuesday. It stands in front of – and below – a statue of King George VI, her late husband, off the Mall in central London, a quarter of a mile from her former home at Clarence House.
Name of source: Times Online
SOURCE: Times Online (2-23-09)
The damaged oil-on-panel portrait was discovered by Nicola Barbatelli, a medieval historian, while he was researching the archive and picture collection of an aristocratic family at Acerenza (population 3,000), an ancient village perched on a rock above the river Bradano near Potenza in the southern Italian region of Basilicata. The family has asked to remain anonymous.
At one time thought to portray Galileo Galilei, the great astronomer, it shows a man in three-quarter profile wearing a hat with a feather in it. Mr Barbatelli, who found the painting by chance while researching the history of the Templar Knights and the First Crusade, told The Times that although Leonardo came from Vinci in Tuscany and worked in Florence and Milan, he was known to have visited Basilicata.
Alessandro Vezzosi, director of the Museo Ideale Leonardo da Vinci at Vinci, where the artist was born in 1452, said initial examination of the painting showed it was a Renaissance era original and not a later copy. He said he was investigating whether the painting was by Cristofano dell’Altissimo, who painted the da Vinci portrait in the Uffizi Gallery in Florence.
The portrait is to go on show at the end of next month as part of an exhibition on Leonardo at a recently opened museum at Vaglio, near Potenza, together with other paintings, drawings and documents loaned from the Museo Ideale.
Name of source: Argus Observer (Oregon)
SOURCE: Argus Observer (Oregon) (2-19-09)
The Civil War cannon replica has been snatched from Payette’s Central Park in downtown, and city officials want it back.
The cannon is a replica of a real Civil War cannon that was moved from the park to the Payette County Historical Society museum nearby about four years ago to protect it from being stolen, Platt said. The original is between 5 and 6 feet in length, and the replica a little smaller.
It’s estimated worth is valued at about $3,000, Platt said, making the crime a felony.