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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: BBC
SOURCE: BBC (4-9-09)
The deadlock could derail the trials of the surviving Khmer Rouge leaders.
Meanwhile, a French scholar detained for alleged espionage in the 1970s has testified against the chief jailer.
Two judges ruled that there was "a real risk they would suffer a flagrant denial of justice" if returned to Rwanda to face trial. The news came a day after the 15th anniversary of the genocide in which 800,000 people were killed.
The court's decision makes legal history. It is the first time an English court has blocked an extradition request from a foreign government on the grounds that it would violate someone's human rights.
All four are accused of killing, or conspiring with or aiding and abetting others, to kill members of the Tutsi ethnic group "with the intent to destroy in whole, or in part, that group".
The judges found there was evidence that defence witnesses were afraid to give evidence.
The government says those accused of collaborating with the Pakistani army in the killing and rape of thousands of civilians will be put on trial.
The party which fought for independence in 1971, the Awami League, has been returned to power with a majority.
The probe is opposed by one of the main opposition parties, Jamaat-e-Islami.
It leaders are among those accused for alleged war crimes.
Mr Sun, 75, had visited Mr Zhao's grave annually, but this year marks the 20th anniversary of the Tiananmen crackdown.
The Chinese government treats its crushing of pro-democracy protests on Tiananmen Square as taboo.
An official account of her trial in 1536, including graphic claims of incest, features in an online exhibition to mark the 500th anniversary of the Tudor monarch's accession to the throne.
Anne's relationship with Henry set the course of British history, triggering England's split with Rome amid his divorce from his first wife Catherine of Aragon.
The collection also includes a court document relating to that divorce and a letter dealing with his later plans to cut ties with his fourth wife, Anne of Cleves, because of disappointment in the bedroom.
They have been digitised as part of an online exhibition showcasing parchments from Henry's reign which are held by National Archives to mark the anniversary of his accession in 1509.
It was a gift from JJ Brown to his wife, better known as the Unsinkable Molly Brown, after she had survived the Titanic disaster and lived to make enough of a name for herself to inspire a Broadway musical.
The trinket box features in a new exhibition at Belfast's Linenhall Library as the 100th anniversary of the Titanic's launch looms.
Deborah Douglas from the Linenhall said it was the first time that the trinket box had been given on loan for an exhibition.
The exhibition also features an original black and white photograph of the Titanic when it was floated for the first time, in May 1911.
She is pictured minus the trademark funnels which were added after the shipbuilders had ensured she was seaworthy.
The first editions of two books on the Titanic also feature. One was commissioned by the family of shipbuilder Thomas Andrews, who perished.
The other appeared just weeks after the disaster.
Copies of newspapers from Belfast and New York can also be seen.
State television showed Mr Castro talking to members of the delegation, which is in Havana to explore ways of improving US-Cuban relations.
Barack Obama is expected to ease some of the travel and economic restrictions imposed on Cuba nearly 50 years ago.
Barbara Lee, the leader of the seven-strong group of Democrats, said the group did not carry a message from President Barack Obama but had come only to "listen and talk" with the Cubans.
Last week, a bipartisan group of US senators introduced a bill that would allow all US citizens to travel freely to Cuba for the first time since 1962.
Democratic Senator Byron Dorgan said the policy had "failed for 50 years", adding that he believed it would win enough votes in the US Congress to pass.
He told a rally of 20,000 people in the capital, Kigali, UN troops abandoned their posts without firing a shot.
He led commemorations at Nyanza, where more than 5,000 people were slaughtered after peacekeepers pulled out.
President Kagame said: "We are not like those who abandoned people they had come to protect," reported AFP news agency.
"They left them to be murdered. Aren't they guilty? I think it is also cowardice. They left even before any shot was fired.
"We are not cowards. They [the international community] are part of that history and the root causes of the genocide."
He laid a wreath at the hill site in Nyanza and lit a torch in memory of the victims.
Name of source: National Geographic News
SOURCE: National Geographic News (4-6-09)
Roughly 1,300 bones from about 25 dogs were recently discovered in the 10th- to 13th-century town of Kana, which had been accidentally unearthed in 2003 during the construction of residential buildings on the outskirts of Budapest.
Researchers found ten dogs buried in pits and four puppy skeletons in pots buried upside down.
During the Middle Ages it was customary in Hungary to lock sacrificial animals inside new houses or to slaughter the beasts as people moved in.
Previous evidence of animal sacrifices—seen even under churches, in Budapest and elsewhere in Hungary—had been mostly isolated cases, Daróczi-Szabó noted.
But the new findings, described this month in the Journal of Veterinary Behavior, show that "sacrifices were not a rare phenomenon, as one may have thought from isolated finds," she said. "It was practiced regularly in a Christian village."
The fact that pagan customs such as animal sacrifice persisted for centuries side-by-side with the church is surprising, noted University of Edinburgh archaeozoologist László Bartosiewicz.
Name of source: Global Media (Toronto)
SOURCE: Global Media (Toronto) (4-7-09)
Fifteen hundred pieces of this country's history are sitting in crates in the Afghanistan National Museum. Half of the relics date to the time before Islam arrived in Afghanistan in 642 AD. The rest cover the Muslim period up to and including the 20th century. But they did not come directly from archeological sites in Afghanistan.
They came instead from Heathrow Airport in London, where they were confiscated over a period of six years.
British authorities returned the objects to Kabul in a massive shipment that arrived on February 17.
Most of them were shuffled though foreign countries, especially Pakistan and the United Arab Emirates, before being sent to Great Britain, he said. They are the plunder of looters who had hoped to sell them to private collectors. Almost all have been lifted directly from the ground.
The Afghan pieces seized by the British were carefully photographed and catalogued in London before being put on the Red Cross flights that brought them to Kabul. They are now waiting for one of the experts who packed them to help remove them from their crates. In a few weeks, many of them will be on display in Afghanistan for the first time.
Name of source: Press and Journal (UK)
SOURCE: Press and Journal (UK) (4-8-09)
Archaeologists have uncovered seven skeletons and five additional human skulls in the grounds of historic Marischal College in Aberdeen.
The skeletons, all men, are thought to be Franciscan friars.
The excavations are being carried out by Aberdeen City Council archaeologists in advance of the creation of the council’s new £80.4million headquarters.
One of Aberdeen’s major religious houses, the Franciscan Friary, occupied the site from the late 15th century.
Assistant archeologist Alison Cameron said: “This is quite an unusual find. We have been working at the site for a while now and we knew there was a possibility of finding burials.
“They were all buried with their hands clasped as if in prayer and may have been bound into that posture with cloth, which has since decayed in the soil.
“There is a huge possibility that there are more to be found but there is a lot of area that we won’t be digging so that is a nice possibility for other archaeologists to find.”
Archaeologists have confirmed that the skeletons were all male and at least two of the men were elderly when they died.
One had very worn teeth with many gaps, suggesting a lifetime of chewing and grinding food.
Bones found in the abdomen area of another of the skeletons revealed the man had eaten fish not long before he died. The fish bones will be sent to an expert who will determine the species.
The remains of at least five additional skulls were found, suggesting that at least 12 individuals were buried there.
Walls and cobbled surfaces associated with the friary have also been uncovered, including parts of the early 16th-century friary complex. Elsewhere walls of 17th-19th-century university structures have emerged and been recorded.
Numerous other objects were found, including two complete pottery vessels dating from the 15th or 16th centuries.
The bones have now been lifted and the skeletons will be cleaned and sent to Glasgow University where human bone specialist Paul Duffy will determine the age and stature of the men.
Name of source: New York Times
SOURCE: New York Times (4-7-09)
Apparently, though, he chose the wrong death to commemorate. He came to remember Zhao Ziyang, a former prime minister and Communist Party general secretary who lost his party position and his freedom after sympathizing with student-led, pro-democracy protests in Tiananmen Square in 1989. Mr. Zhao, who died in 2005, is a martyr to some democracy advocates.
As Mr. Sun entered the cemetery in Jinan, a city about 230 miles south of Beijing, he said, four or five men attacked him and beat him severely. He is now in a Jinan hospital with three broken ribs and injuries to his spine, head, back, arms and legs, according to China Human Rights Defenders, a Hong Kong-based group. The group said the attack on Mr. Sun was part of a concerted effort by the Chinese government to head off any efforts to memorialize the deaths of hundreds of Tiananmen Square protesters on June 4, the 20th anniversary of the government’s crackdown.
Mr. Sun said he had previously visited the cemetery on Qingming Day to honor Mr. Zhao’s death without serious incident. But this year, he said, he announced his forthcoming visit on the Internet.
SOURCE: New York Times (4-7-09)
“I used to tell my children the stories, but they only believed a tiny bit, like nothing,” said Ty Leap, 52, who sells noodles and fruit drinks from a roadside stall. “I don’t like it, but what can you do? It really is unbelievable that those things happened.”
As much as 70 percent of Cambodia’s population is under the age of 30, and four out of five members of this young generation know little or nothing about the Khmer Rouge years, according to a survey last fall by the Human Rights Center, University of California, Berkeley.
That ignorance — among both young and old — seems also to embrace the trials of five major Khmer Rouge figures that began last month, a process that is meant, in part, to begin a process of healing and closure.
Because of these cross-currents in recent Cambodian history, the Khmer Rouge period has not been taught in school, causing some teachers who are survivors to feel orphaned by their students.
A new high school textbook has been prepared but will reach only a portion of the country’s students.
Name of source: Telegraph (UK)
SOURCE: Telegraph (UK) (4-8-09)
Eileen Driscoll, 90, was part of a team of Women's Royal Air Force who treated injured servicemen while they were being flown home from the front line.
The group - dubbed The Flying Nightingales - risked their own lives to help evacuate more than 100,000 wounded soldiers from the battlefields of Europe.
Despite their bravery, the nurses were paid the equivalent of less than 3p per day and were not eligible for medals because they held no official rank.
Last year seven of the surviving The Flying Nightingales were presented with achievement awards by the Duchess of Cornwall at a ceremony in London.
But Eileen, from Weston-super-Mare, Somerset, was overlooked by officials - so her daughter Diane Owen stepped in and arranged for her to be honoured.
Now Eileen has finally received her Lifetime Achievement Award by the Ministry of Defence.
SOURCE: Telegraph (UK) (4-7-09)
But when Crown Estate staff tried to clear the site by dousing the woodpile with petrol and setting it alight, they came close to disaster.
Fifteen-foot flames risked spreading to Windsor Great Park's famous oaks in the southern area of the Royal estate, near to Ascot.
Unable to control the blaze themselves, staff were forced to call the fire brigade, which spent close to two hours fighting the fire.
The blaze will have brought back unhappy memories for members of the Royal Household.
In 1992, the Queen's favourite castle was badly damaged by fire after a halogen lamp set fire to a curtain.
SOURCE: Telegraph (UK) (4-6-09)
The baths "suffered some damage," Angelo Bottini said, adding that the results of an initial inspection had "not yet been precisely evaluated".
The red-brick ruins, which cover some 11 hectares (27 acres) at the foot of Rome's Aventine Hill, are the frequent site of opera productions and open-air concerts in the summer.
In the quake's epicentre, the Abruzzo capital L'Aquila, the dome of a church fell in and the city's main San Massimo cathedral was damaged.
SOURCE: Telegraph (UK) (4-7-09)
Researchers armed with digital cameras and 3D laser scanners are for the first time cataloging and translating the intricately carved words that have fascinated centuries of visitors at Spain's most popular tourist attraction.
Many inscriptions consist of aphorisms, terse sayings embodying a general truth, such as "Be sparse in words and you will go in peace" and "Rejoice in good fortune, because Allah helps you."
What the researchers have found so far is that, contrary to popular belief, verses from the Koran and poetry represent only a tiny minority of the messages in classical Arabic that cover the Alhambra, Europe's finest example of Muslim architecture.
Until now there have only been partial studies of what the inscriptions meant, including one ordered by the Catholic monarchs Ferdinand and Isabella who sought to purge Spain of Muslims after the reconquest of Granada in 1492.
The researchers hope to have 65 percent of the inscriptions catalogued and translated into Spanish by the end of the year and the entire project finished in 2011.
The inscriptions will be later translated into English and French.
Name of source: AP
Some 1,000 printed reproductions of a drawing depicting the prophet wearing a bomb-shaped turban are being sold for 1,400 kroner ($250) each, said Lars Hedegaard, chairman of the Danish Free Press Society.
Hedegaard said Danish artist Kurt Westergaard, who drew the cartoon in 2005, had given the society permission to produce the copies and sell them. Each numbered copy has been signed by Westergaard, Hedegaard said.
The matter is now before the Board of Immigration Appeals, in Falls Church, Va., which previously upheld his deportation.
John Broadley, a lawyer for Demjanjuk, is seeking to stop the deportation due to Demjanjuk's poor health. The motion argues that forcing him to travel to Germany in his condition would be torture.
SOURCE: AP (4-7-09)
The action effectively kills an effort by local Republican Sen. Alex Mooney to prevent Frederick County from building a $527 million incinerator in an industrial park near the Monocacy National Battlefield.
McCain allowed reporters to follow him while he escorted Sen. Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota and Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina through the prison.
Vietnam's communist government has turned the facility into a museum. It was originally used by French colonialists to hold Vietnamese revolutionaries, then used by the North Vietnamese after they took power to house Americans captured during the Vietnam War. The prison was called Hoa Lo but was widely known by the nickname "The Hanoi Hilton" among U.S. soldiers.
SOURCE: AP (4-6-09)
The increased access to the pyramids south of Cairo is part of a new sustainable development campaign that Egypt hopes will attract more visitors but also to avoid some of the problems of the urban sprawl that have plagued the famed pyramids of Giza...
Dahshur's bent pyramid is famous for its irregular profile. The massive tomb's sides rise at a steep angle but then abruptly tapers off at a more shallow approach to the pyramid's apex.
SOURCE: AP (4-7-09)
Fujimori is the first democratically elected former president to be tried for rights violations in his own country. His lawyers have said he would appeal the verdict.
In its first bloody raid, the military death squad Fujimori was convicted of authorizing killed 15 people — including an 8-year-old — with silencer-equipped machine guns during a raid on a barbecue in July 1991 in the Barrios Altos district.
Name of source: http://fredericksburg.com
SOURCE: http://fredericksburg.com (4-3-09)
Members of the Wilderness Battlefield Coalition sent a letter this week to Board of Supervisors Chairman Lee Frame asking for the county to agree to a "comprehensive planning process for the Wilderness Battlefield/Orange County gateway region."
The letter reiterates an offer made earlier this year that supervisors rejected, but this time includes the signatures of landowners Charles "Chip" King, his sister Jan King Evans, and local businessman Ken Dotson, the Kings' local representative.
"There's nothing new in this letter, and it isn't going to change any votes on the Board of Supervisors," Frame said yesterday.
Name of source: http://media.www.navigatornews.org
SOURCE: http://media.www.navigatornews.org (4-1-09)
Last year Lincoln Log cabin operated with four paid interpreters and two paid maintenance workers, volunteers made up the rest of the staff. Their contract was originally set to run from May 1 through Oct. 31. However, the contract for paid workers was terminated as of July 31 of last year.
"Yet the park remained open due to volunteers being willing to put in 13,227 hours of volunteer work," stated Lance Beever, president of Volunteer Pioneers, "that was significantly more than has been required in past years."
The Sargent Farm Foundation is a fund that was started in 1981. The purpose of the foundation was to raise money to relocate and restore the Stephen Sargent Farm to the Lincoln site. Today the fund is referred to as the Lincoln-Sargent Farm Foundation. The money is now used to preserve the entire site as well as provide funds to continue providing the opportunity for education about life during the mid-1800s....
The Lincoln Log Cabin historic site can be contacted by calling (217)345-1845 or online at www.lincolnlogcabin.org.
Name of source: http://www.eveningsun.com
SOURCE: http://www.eveningsun.com (4-7-09)
But next week, the public will have one of the first opportunities to explore the farm - if they're willing to do some cleaning in the process.
Name of source: Foxnews.com
SOURCE: Foxnews.com (4-8-09)
The faculty of the Ivy League university voted at a meeting Tuesday to establish a new academic and administrative holiday in October called "Fall Weekend" that coincides with Columbus Day, but that doesn't bear the name of the explorer.
Hundreds of Brown students had asked the Providence, R.I. school to stop observing Columbus Day, saying Christopher Columbus's violent treatment of Native Americans he encountered was inconsistent with Brown's values.
Name of source: NYT
SOURCE: NYT (4-7-09)
“The title is historic,” he said, receiving a visitor in the castle of Berg, a faux Gothic residence that his great-grandfather built of reinforced concrete before World War I. “But of course we are now a constitutional monarchy.”
Henri’s role here has lately become a matter of debate among the 486,000 citizens of this prosperous sliver of a country. “A large part of the population has an attitude you’d call, in religion, agnostic,” said Frank Engel, 33, secretary general of the Christian Social People’s Party, the largest bloc in Parliament.
SOURCE: NYT (4-7-09)
Announcing a new marketing campaign under the slogan “Rainbow Pilgrimage,” tourism officials said Tuesday that they would seek to portray a visit to New York “as a ‘rite of passage’ for the gay and lesbian traveler.”
City officials found little remarkable in using an event associated with violence and resistance as the centerpiece of a marketing campaign.
“I don’t think it’s ironic, I think it’s significant,” said Christine C. Quinn, the City Council speaker, who is openly gay, at a news conference announcing the campaign. “You know, 40 years ago a group of people said enough was enough. And they struck back against police officers. They struck back against unfair treatment.”
SOURCE: NYT (4-6-09)
Teenage members of the "Dragon" gang were brought to New York police headquarters in 1957 for questioning.
It was post-World War II New York and the children of Latino immigrants were flooding into neighborhoods that whites and African-Americans had long fought over. In this ethnic Petri dish, teenagers formed ranks, wearing exclusive clothing, marking their area with graffiti and making alliances for protection, camaraderie or just to sip cheap wine, play stickball or meet at dances.
They chose colorful names. Their doings have been recorded in music and books, presented in musicals like “West Side Story” and “The Capeman,” even as the violence they committed has been retold in five decades of city history.
SOURCE: NYT (4-1-09)
Back then there was little money for food, let alone new curtains, but people found ways to cope. Backyard gardens were cultivated not because of a sudden itch to eat locally grown produce, but out of necessity; homeowners did their own repairs and found ingenious ways to make their homes functional and attractive.
Below, some who lived through the Depression share their memories....
Name of source: Civil War News
SOURCE: Civil War News (4-7-09)
In addition to the country’s 10 “most endangered” battlefields, another 15 are cited as “at risk.” They face threats from the usual development, as well as airport expansion, wind energy development, artificial wetland, railroad switching yard and a race track.
The report was released at a March 18 Washington press conference at which actor and history student Richard Dreyfuss and Dr. Libby O’Connell, chief historian at History, formerly The History Channel, spoke.
Name of source: Press Release--Secular Coalition for America
SOURCE: Press Release--Secular Coalition for America (4-8-09)
Although the President has previously described America as a nation of not only Christians but Jews, Muslims and nonbelievers, his April 6 statement goes beyond an inventory of religious sects to a unifying theme of shared American secular values. “The President has got this one exactly right,” declared Ron Millar, acting director of the Secular Coalition for America. “Not only did he reject the Christian nation canard; he said we are above all a nation of citizens with shared values. This has always been our message. We couldn’t be happier.”
“The insistence that the United States is a Christian nation is one of the Religious Right’s most persistent, dishonest and dangerous ploys,” said Millar. “They’ve been trying to rewrite our history through legislation introduced by their collaborators in Congress. The President delivered an important history lesson in Turkey; we hope he’ll do the same thing here at home.”
As the Secular Coalition and its allies have repeatedly pointed out, the word “God” does not appear in our constitution, and volumes of documents demonstrate that the Founders intentionally drew a bright line between religion and government to guarantee freedom of – and from – religion for every American citizen. With a Constitutional-Scholar-in-Chief now occupying the White House, the Secular Coalition hopes America can once again celebrate its proud secular history and put the myth of a Christian nation behind us.
The Secular Coalition for America is a 501(c)4 advocacy organization consisting of nine member groups which serve atheists, agnostics, humanists, freethinkers and other nontheistic Americans. Its purpose is to amplify the diverse and growing voice of the nontheistic community in the United States. The Coalition works to protect the civil rights of nontheists and lobbies the U.S. Congress on issues of concern to its constituents. The group's website is www.secular.org .
Is the United States a Christian Country?
Name of source: The Boston Herald
SOURCE: The Boston Herald (4-6-09)
But now, thanks to the Old North Foundation and the groundbreaking work of a funerary archeologist, those stories are beginning to be resurrected along with a new appreciation of the daily life of young Boston's bustling North End.
Armed with a flashlight, a notebook, and a determination to ignore the shadows and eerie creaking around her, Jane Lyden Rousseau is spending hundreds of hours analyzing the condition and configuration of the crypt. Above ground, she pores over centuries-old ledgers to determine who is buried beneath Boston's oldest standing church, why they were interred there, and what can be learned about early American burial rites.
Name of source: Wall Street Journal
SOURCE: Wall Street Journal (4-8-09)
"Rwanda did not suffer from 'ancient hatreds' between Hutu killers and Tutsi victims," Ambassador Susan Rice said. "It suffered from modern demagogues, from ... those who were willing to kill in the warped name of ethnic difference, from those who saw division and death as a path to power."...
On the National Security Council at the White House at the time of the genocide, Ms. Rice's position was director for International Organizations and Peacekeeping. In 1997, she got a brief on Africa at State as assistant secretary for African Affairs. She said she visited Rwanda in December 1994, six months after the genocide ended.
"I'll never forget the horror of walking through a churchyard and schoolyard where one of the massacres had occurred. ... The decomposing bodies of those who had been so cruelly murdered still lay strewn around what should have been a place of peace," Ms. Rice said.
In 1998, President Bill Clinton traveled to Rwanda and apologized for Washington's failure to act.
Name of source: L.A. Times
SOURCE: L.A. Times (4-7-09)
The museum --- which has returned 39 antiquities to Italy since 2007 -- listed the fragment as "at some risk of forfeiture" and stated its appraised value at the time of donation as $150,000 in a 2005 internal assessment, compiled during an investigation of objects that might have been illegally exported.
But Getty officials didn't decide to repatriate the fragment until about a year ago, when an image of it appeared in a catalog published by the Italian Ministry of Culture, said Karol Wight, the Getty's curator of antiquities.
Name of source: San Francisco Chronicle
SOURCE: San Francisco Chronicle (4-7-09)
Two of the three paintings, visible to guests and millions of tourists at Hearst Castle since 1935, will be returned Friday to the heirs of the rightful owners, both of whom died during the war, one in the death camp at Auschwitz.
The shocking discovery, made after a lawyer for the heirs filed a claim with the California State Parks, is yet another reminder of the scope of Jewish persecution during World War II.
"Never in a million years did I think anything like this would cross my desk," said Brad Torgan, the former general counsel for the state parks who led the investigation. "It is one of the most interesting things I've ever worked on and, given the outcome, one of the most rewarding things I've worked on at state parks."
Two paintings - "Portrait of Alvise Vendramin," attributed to Jacopo Tintoretto, and a painting known as "Portrait of a Bearded Gentleman," credited to Giovanni Cariani - will be returned Friday to Peter Bloch of Boynton Beach, Fla., and Inge Blackshear of Buenos Aires.
Name of source: Click Liverpool
SOURCE: Click Liverpool (4-6-09)
The sandstone slabs - which appear to have visible chisel marks - were unearthed by contractors laying cables on James Street opposite the Victoria Monument.
Liverpool Castle was demolished in the early 18th Century and its site was last subjected to major historical excavation in the 1920s.
Now sandstone slabs have been unearthed at the side of a four-foot deep trench and some by-standers have suggested they could be part of the foundations of the castle.
Liverpool Museum's Field Archeology Section said the 1920s excavation of the area had shown there was no danger of damaging any valuable artefacts.
Name of source: Science Daily
SOURCE: Science Daily (4-6-09)
"The 'foot' structures that we found in the Jordan valley are the first sites that the People of Israel built upon entering Canaan and they testify to the biblical concept of ownership of the land with the foot," said archaeologist Prof. Adam Zertal of the University of Haifa, who headed the excavating team that exposed five compounds in the shape of an enormous "foot" -- likely to have been used at that time to mark ownership of territory.
The finding is believed to represent the first time that enclosed sites identified with the biblical sites termed in Hebrew "gilgal", which were used for assemblies, preparation for battle, and rituals, have been revealed in the Jordan valley. The Hebrew word "gilgal" (a camp or stone-structure), is mentioned thirty-nine times in the Bible. The stone enclosures were located in the Jordan valley and the hill country west of it. To this day, no archaeological site has been proposed to be identified with the gilgal.
Between the years 1990 and 2008, during the Manasseh Hill-Country Survey that covers Samaria and the Jordan Valley, five such enclosures were found and excavated, all designed in the shape of a human foot. The site are believed to date back to the outset of the Iron Age I (the 13th-12th centuries BCE). Based on their size and shape, it is clear that they were used for human assembly and not for animals.
Name of source: The Virginian-Pilot
SOURCE: The Virginian-Pilot (4-5-09)
"We definitely found a historic site from the Colonial period," said Nick Luccketti, a founding member of the nonprofit First Colony Foundation. "It's a candidate for the first permanent English settlement on Roanoke Island, but I certainly wouldn't want to bet on it at this point."
Luccketti, who i s the principal archaeologist for the James River Institute for Archaeology in Williamsburg, said the bits of bone, fish scales and ceramic, as well as metal buckles and buttons, that were unearthed in a late November excavation appear to date to sometime between 1680 and 1750.
"There's a number of artifacts suggesting that the English were doing something there," he said.
Examination of the pottery pieces reveal that the latest the site was occupied "dates solidly to the first half of the 18th century," Luccketti said, but the earliest date - possibly the late 1600s - still has to be determined.
The excavation was one in a series of digs the foundation, which has a permit with the National Park Service, has conducted since it was established in 2004 to renew long-stalled exploration of Fort Raleigh on Roanoke Island.
Despite the link to national parks and being the purported location of the Lost Colony settlement, no evidence of either has ever been found during at least 33 excavations over decades.
Meanwhile, the foundation also has plans to explore underwater at Broad Creek in Wanchese, where about a half-dozen pieces of copper and European glass beads were found about three years ago.
Name of source: CNN
SOURCE: CNN (4-7-09)
They say he will make the same mistakes that President Lyndon B. Johnson did when he committed massive amounts of federal money to create a slew of anti-poverty programs dubbed "The Great Society."
"The Great Society created a lot of programs and wasted a lot of money," said Kenneth Khachigian, a former Reagan speechwriter and adviser. "The biggest war on poverty was the economic boom started by Reagan."
But others like Joseph Califano Jr., Johnson's senior domestic adviser, say the notion that the Great Society was a failure is one of the "greatest political scams" in American history.
Republican leaders who have labeled Obama's budget proposals socialist are rehashing the rhetoric their predecessors used to attack Great Society programs like Head Start 40 years ago, Califano says.
Name of source: WaPo
SOURCE: WaPo (4-7-09)
It is not Antarctica. It is not a body of land, but a mathematical spot, a maze of shifting ice floes that would swiftly carry any marker away from true north. When explorers reach the Pole, they must rely on navigational instruments and witnesses to prove their location.
One hundred years ago yesterday, Robert Peary and Matthew Henson said they had become the first to reach the North Pole. Yesterday morning at Arlington National Cemetery, more than 20 of the two men's descendants gathered at Peary's and Henson's adjacent graves to honor this achievement. With them were members of the Navy, the Explorers Club and the National Geographic Society, plus an Englishman named Tom Avery -- a young explorer so taken with Peary's story that he re-created the journey himself in 2005. He recently wrote a book about this endeavor.
SOURCE: WaPo (4-7-09)
Health personnel offered supervision and even assistance as suspected al-Qaeda operatives were beaten, deprived of food, exposed to temperature extremes and subjected to waterboarding, the relief agency said in the 2007 report, a copy of which was posted on a magazine Web site yesterday. The report quoted one medical official as telling a detainee: "I look after your body only because we need you for information."
Name of source: Bloomberg
SOURCE: Bloomberg (4-7-09)
Obama’s approval rating climbed to a high of 66 percent in an April 1-5 New York Times/CBS News poll released today. The poll follows recent surveys by the Gallup Poll, Quinnipiac University and the Pew Research Center all showing that about six out of 10 Americans approve of the job the president is doing.
A Gallup Poll taken in March showed Obama, a Democrat, with a 64 percent approval rating. That compares with 56 percent for Republican George H.W. Bush, 52 percent for Democrat Bill Clinton and 53 percent for Republican George W. Bush at similar points in their presidencies. The last Bush left office with an approval rating of 34 percent, according to a Jan. 9-11 Gallup Poll....
Former President Ronald Reagan, a Republican, saw his approval rating climb from 51 percent soon after his inauguration to 60 percent in mid-March of 1981. After a failed attempt on his life on March 30 of that year, Reagan’s approval climbed to 67 percent in early April and stayed at that level until June in the Gallup Poll.
Early popularity also doesn’t guarantee success. The approval ratings for former President Jimmy Carter, a Democrat, in the Gallup Poll started at 66 percent and climbed as high as 75 percent by March 1977. The Iran hostage crisis, gasoline shortages and double-digit inflation helped push Carter’s approval to 34 percent in December 1980, before he left office after having lost his re-election bid to Reagan.
Name of source: Reuters
SOURCE: Reuters (4-7-09)
A three-judge panel convicted him of ordering a military death squad to carry out two massacres that killed 25 people during his 1990-2000 rule, when he was battling guerrillas. Nearly 70,000 people died in two decades of conflict in the Andean country.
Once lauded as a hero, Fujimori, 70, could spend the rest of his life in prison. He can appeal the ruling, but the verdict is likely to have far-reaching political implications for Peru.
Name of source: Times (UK)
SOURCE: Times (UK) (4-6-09)
This also accounts for Italy's relatively high number of active volcanoes - Etna, the largest active volcano in Europe, Vulcano, Stromboli, and Vesuvius, the only active volcano on the mainland of Europe.
1857 Several towns destroyed and 12,000 people killed in the Basilicata region south of Naples by tremors estimated at around 6.9 on the Richter scale - dubbed the Great Neapolitan Earthquake....
Name of source: Azzaman
SOURCE: Azzaman (4-7-09)
"History is often tragic. But if unresolved, it can be a heavy weight. Each country must work through its past," Obama said in an address to the Turkish Parliament, noting that although there are strong views on the issue, Turkey should face its past. He said, however, it was not up to him to resolve the dispute.
Turkey rejects claims of a genocide of 1.5 million Armenians during World War I. The dispute has been one of the key obstacles for the normalization of relations between Turkey and Armenia, which have had no formal ties since 1993. Turkish and Armenian officials are now holding closed-door talks on restoring relations and Obama believes this process could be harmed if the United States intervenes. He is thus expected not to use the word "genocide" in a traditional statement on April 24, the date Armenians mark as the beginning of the genocide campaign.
Name of source: Stephen D. Crocker in the NYT. Mr. Crocker wrote the first RFC.
SOURCE: Stephen D. Crocker in the NYT. Mr. Crocker wrote the first RFC. (4-7-09)
The early R.F.C.’s ranged from grand visions to mundane details, although the latter quickly became the most common. Less important than the content of those first documents was that they were available free of charge and anyone could write one. Instead of authority-based decision-making, we relied on a process we called “rough consensus and running code.” Everyone was welcome to propose ideas, and if enough people liked it and used it, the design became a standard.
After all, everyone understood there was a practical value in choosing to do the same task in the same way. For example, if we wanted to move a file from one machine to another, and if you were to design the process one way, and I was to design it another, then anyone who wanted to talk to both of us would have to employ two distinct ways of doing the same thing. So there was plenty of natural pressure to avoid such hassles. It probably helped that in those days we avoided patents and other restrictions; without any financial incentive to control the protocols, it was much easier to reach agreement.
Name of source: Foxnews
SOURCE: Foxnews (4-6-09)
During a joint news conference alongside Turkish President Abdullah Gul, Obama said he did not want to "focus on my views" or in any way interfere with delicate negotiations between Turks and Armenians on what the president called "a whole host of issues."
Obama sidestepped the issue -- a key tension point between Turks and Armenians and a rallying cry among Armenian-Americans -- saying he was trying to be as "encouraging as possible."
"I want to be as encouraging as possible around those negotiations, which are moving forward and could bear fruit very quickly, very soon," Obama said. "What I want to do is not focus on my views right now but focus on the views of the Turkish and Armenian people. What I told the (Turkish) president is I want to be as constructive as possible in moving these issues forward quickly. My sense is that they are moving quickly. I don't want to, as the president of the United States, want to preempt any possible arrangements, announcements that might be made in the near future."
Name of source: Independent (UK)
SOURCE: Independent (UK) (4-7-09)
The emperor had accepted the petitions of local people who wanted a city to protect them from the depredation of local barons, and was formed by bringing together "99 villages", or so the legend claims. As such it was the first and only planned city of medieval Italy. In the eighteenth century, the town's resistance to French occupation led to the town being sacked – but it rose to prominence again a hundred years later, as Italy's unification made it the regional capital. Just 60 miles north-east of Rome, it nestles between four peaks in the Apennine range, in the Aterno-Pescara valley.
Until yesterday much of the ancient core of this city of some 70,000 people remained intact, despite the earthquakes that have repeatedly left their mark over the centuries. But how much will survive the latest one remains to be seen.