Breaking NewsFollow Breaking News updates on RSS and Twitter
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: Daily Mail (UK)
SOURCE: Daily Mail (UK) (6-6-09)
Both men this morning attended a service of remembrance at the Bayeux Cathedral in honour of those who fought and died on June 6 1944, when some 150,000 allied troops landed in occupied France in an offensive which would end World War II in Europe.
They then gathered at the Franco American-led remembrance service set amidst the graves of thousands of dead US servicemen in Colleville-sur-Mer in Normandy, France.
Name of source: Telegraph (UK)
The colour pictures come from the collection of Hugo Jaeger, Hitler's personal photographer, who captured him on camera him from 1936 to the final days of his rule in 1945.
They include a glimpse inside Berghof, his mountaintop estate in Bavaria, and his private apartments in Berlin.
The collection, sold by Jaeger to Life magazine in 1965, was almost seized by American troops in 1945.
Jaeger hid thousands of transparencies in a leather suitcase at the end of the war.
The case was found by six US soldiers as they searched a house near Munich where he was staying but they were more interested in a bottle of cognac he had also slipped inside.
Jaeger later buried the photographs in glass jars before eventually passing them on to the magazine.
The selection includes a 1455 copy of the Gutenberg Bible, the first book printed in Europe using movable metal type, and the first printed edition of Homer's works, from 1488.
Currently only a small selection of the university's 4,650-strong body of pre-1501 works are included in its online catalogue.
However, they will now all be catalogued thanks to a £300,000 donation from the Andrew W Mellon Foundation.
Mrs Temo said she was born on July 4, 1874 – making her at least five years older than any other claimant to the title of world's oldest person.
Despite Mrs Temo's claim to be the world's oldest woman, her age was never formally verified by the Guinness Book of Records.
The officially-recognised world's oldest woman, Portuguese grandmother Maria de Jesus, died in January aged 115.
If her story is true, it meant she lived throughout the entire twentieth century, an incredibly turbulent period in South African politics.
The apparent year of her birth, 1874, saw English, Boer and African armies battle for control of the colony.
She later survived the horrors of apartheid before reaching the age of 109 when Nelson Mandela was elected president in 1994.
The President was greeted by American flags, banners and unofficial posters depicting his beaming face beneath the words 'Ich bin ein Dresdner' – an echo of President John F. Kennedy's famous declaration in West Berlin in 1963 during the Cold War.
"Welcome to Dresden Mr President!" ran the front page headline in one German newspaper, while the popular daily Bild published a full-page photograph of Mr Obama against the US flag.
As hundreds of survivors of the 1944 campaign made their way to France for a series of events on Friday and Saturday, the Normandy Veterans Association (NVA) warned that the anniversary was in danger of ecoming a "jamboree" for politicians on a "jolly".
With the Prince of Wales and Gordon Brown due to join Barack Obama and Nicolas Sarkozy for ceremonies around the allied landing beaches, organisers bringing coach loads of veterans will now face tight security and road closures.
D-Day 65 years on: My return to Normandy
The gathering was larger than it was on the first anniversary of the bloodshed in 1990. An area the size of six football pitches was marked out for the event, but proved to be insufficient, leaving hundreds of people queuing at the entrances of Victoria Park.
Protesters said they had turned out in force to remind the government on mainland China they had not forgotten the moment when the People's Liberation Army opened fire on students in Beijing.
Parents brought young children, who played drums and sang along to protest songs in both Cantonese and Mandarin. Waves of light rippled across the vast crowd as they waved their candles in time to the music.
As hundreds of survivors of the 1944 campaign made their way to France for a series of events on Friday and Saturday, the Normandy Veterans Association (NVA) warned that the anniversary was in danger of ecoming a "jamboree" for politicians on a "jolly".
Peter Hodge, Honorary General Secretary of the NVA, which is holding its last ever official commemorations this year, said that veterans had become a "political football" in recent weeks amid recriminations over the organisation for the anniversary.
About 800 veterans of the Normandy campaign will attend what is expected to be last such gathering ever held on the soil they liberated.
Wuer marked the 20th anniversary of the crackdown in a holding cell in the Chinese territory after immigration officials denied him entry to turn himself in.
Denied permission to enter Macau at the airport on Wednesday, authorities in the special administrative region told reporters they were planning to put him on a flight back to Taiwan at the first opportunity. Wuer has stated that he will resist any attempt to force him to leave, although he is fully aware that he faces prosecution in Beijing for his activities in June 1989.
He remains on the list of 21 student dissidents that Beijing identified as the ringleaders of the Tiananmen protests two decades ago.
Now 41 and living in Taipei, he has been told that China will never grant him amnesty and that he can never go home.
Scientists have analysed the contents of the former wine jug after it was discovered by builders redeveloping a site in Greenwich, south east London.
SOURCE: Telegraph (UK) (6-3-09)
The Mumbai housing authority has urged the Grade II–A heritage structure to be evacuated before the onset of the monsoon next week and has registered the 138-year-old building in the "most dilapidated" category of its pre-monsoon survey of dangerous structures.
Built in 1871, the hotel was once a majestic structure ahead of its time that served as the grandest hotel in Mumbai – then Bombay.
Name of source: The Times (UK)
SOURCE: The Times (UK) (6-5-09)
The anniversary sparked a fresh row between the US and China over the fate of the victims the Chinese authorities would prefer to forget.
The diplomatic spat broke out when Hillary Clinton, the US Secretary of State, urged Beijing to name the victims of the massacre and release all those still imprisoned in connection with the student-led demonstrations. She called for a dialogue with the victims’ families and an end to harassment of those who took part.
China responded angrily, denouncing Mrs Clinton for crude meddling. Qin Gang, a Foreign Ministry spokesman, said: “The US remarks, which disregard the facts, make groundless accusations against the Chinese Government. We express strong dissatisfaction [about] that. We urge the US to put aside its political prejudices and correct its mistakes so as to refrain from undermining bilateral relations.”
Name of source: AP
SOURCE: AP (6-5-09)
The Department of Veterans Affairs says about 2.6 million World War II veterans are still alive, but more than 300,000 are expected to die this year. California has the most with 555,974, Alaska the fewest with 5,903.
While their mobility may be declining, many have fresh memories of the events surrounding the June 6, 1944, invasion of France by American, British and Commonwealth troops — known to history as D-Day. The term was often used by the military to designate the start of invasions during the war. But the massive scale and historic importance of Normandy made D-Day a lasting symbol.
Britons are grumbling that the nation does not get its due — either from its wartime ally, the United States, or from the French whom it helped to liberate.
The French insisted no slight was meant, and said Saturday's ceremony is intended primarily as a U.S.-French event, rather than a full-blown commemoration of the Allied effort like those held on the 50th and 60th anniversaries of D-Day.
But the two-year tug-of-war over the 17 tons of silver coins and other artifacts from what is believed to be the Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes y las Animas is likely far from over.
Odyssey Marine Exploration said it will oppose Wednesday's written recommendation by U.S. Magistrate Judge Mark Pizzo, which will be considered by another federal judge who will issue an order later.
The vote by acclamation Wednesday to revoke a 1962 measure suspending the island from the body not only toppled a Cold War landmark but was the latest sign of the end of Cuba's isolation in a region increasingly governed by leftist leaders.
Even traditional U.S. ally El Salvador this week restored ties with Cuba, meaning that every country in the hemisphere except for the United States has re-established relations. The U.S. embargo of Cuba also remains deeply unpopular in much of Latin America.
SOURCE: AP (6-3-09)
The resolution expresses "profound contrition" for the General Assembly's role in perpetuating slavery and other practices. The House approved it last week.
New Jersey last year became the first northern state to apologize for slavery. Five other states—Alabama, Florida, Maryland, North Carolina and Virginia—have approved similar measures.
Slavery was practiced in Connecticut in the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries before it was abolished in 1848. About 5,100 slaves—or about 3 percent of the population—lived in the Connecticut colony in the mid-1770s.
The unorthodox reading of history appears to be the latest effort by Russian historians to defend the Soviet Union and its leaders, especially their role in what Russians call the Great Patriotic War.
Russia has angrily rejected claims that a Stalin-era famine in Ukraine amounted to genocide, and Russia's Supreme Court recently turned down an appeal to re-open an investigation into the massacre by Soviet secret police of Polish military officers and intellectuals in Russia's Katyn forest during World War II.
The generally accepted view is that Poland was a victim rather than the aggressor in the conflict, and that Adolf Hitler's 1939 invasion of Poland marked the start of the war.....
The research paper posted on Russia's Defense Ministry Web site is not an official government statement. But the author is listed as Col. Sergei Kovalyov, director of the scientific-research department of military history, part of the Institute of Military History of the Ministry of Defense.
Name of source: ABC (The Pittsburgh Channel)
SOURCE: ABC (The Pittsburgh Channel) (6-5-09)
Until Friday, the National Park Service had planned to seize the remaining land that's needed for a $58 million, 2,200-acre memorial and national park at the crash site -- an extremely rural area 60 miles southeast of Pittsburgh.
U.S. Sen. Arlen Specter, D-Pa., accompanied Salazar Friday as they met with families of victims of the Sept. 11, 2001, fatal hijacking and landowners in Shanksville.
The meeting also focused on what still needs to be done for the memorial to be completed by 2011, in time for the 10th anniversary of the terrorist attacks.
Name of source: CNN
SOURCE: CNN (6-5-09)
The visit had personal significance for the president, whose great-uncle helped liberate prisoners from the camp during World War II.
Obama told reporters earlier in the day that his great-uncle, Charles Payne, had a "very difficult time re-adjusting to civilian life" after helping his Army division liberate the Ohrdruf forced labor camp, a subdivision of Buchenwald
SOURCE: CNN (6-5-09)
It's a subdued moment for the two men. There are no tears, no pats on the back. The men have endured years of contained emotions from what happened six decades ago when they were prisoners of war and held as slaves inside Germany.
They have come to a hotel in Orlando to be honored by the Army this weekend for the first time.
Fahrer and Lipson were among 350 soldiers held at the slave labor camp called Berga an der Elster, a largely forgotten legacy of the war and a subcamp of Buchenwald where soldiers were beaten, starved and forced to work in tunnels to hide German equipment.
The Berga soldiers are being honored thanks in part to CNN.com users, who demanded the Army recognize the men, all in their 80s, after a series of reports late last year. The Army then conducted a months-long review of Berga at the urgings of Rep. Joe Baca, D-California, and Rep. Spencer Bachus, R-Alabama.
SOURCE: CNN (6-3-09)
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton issued a statement saying the 20th anniversary of the "violent suppression of demonstrations in Tiananmen Square by Chinese authorities" should be a time for reflection on the loss of hundreds of innocent lives and the meaning of events that preceded that fateful day.
Clinton urged Beijing to release prisoners still serving sentences in connection with events surrounding the crackdown, cease harassment of participants in the demonstrations and begin a dialogue with family members of victims.
SOURCE: CNN (6-3-09)
The statue is one of two from California in the National Statuary Hall Collection donated by states to honor significant figures.
Nancy Reagan stood arm-in-arm with House Minority Leader John Boehner of Ohio to pull down the curtain from the statue. She thanked House Speaker Nancy Pelosi of California for making the event possible.
In her remarks, Pelosi noted that the former president's statue contains pieces of the Berlin Wall, "as a symbol of his commitment to national security and to his success." The wall was torn down shortly after Reagan left office.
Name of source: Columbia Journalism Review
SOURCE: Columbia Journalism Review (6-5-09)
Crossed consonants: the accidental substitution of an"r" for an"x" led to the incorrect labelling of Paros and Antiparos as"Paxos" and"Antipaxos" in our map of"Greece's Hidden Corners" (Escape, 10 May), thus relocating the latter from the Ionian to the Aegean sea.
And, furthermore, the capital of Turkey is Ankara, not Istanbul, as we said in"'Free holiday' scams abroad will catch out 400,000 Brits" (Cash, last week).
TS Eliot was born in St Louis, Missouri, so we were not technically correct in"Revealed: the remarkable tale of TS Eliot's late love affair" (Review, last week) when we described him as having"Mississippi roots", suggesting he hailed from the Magnolia State. However, the Mississippi River meets the Missouri River near St Louis.
In 2007, the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette dedicated an editorial to the importance of geography after its" cartographic ignorance" caused an error:
NO WONDER geography needs more emphasis, not less, in Arkansas schools.
We ourselves are an embarrassing case in point: We got our past and current African horrors mixed up in Monday's editorial. Robert Mugabe is the dictator who's presided over the ruination of Zimbabwe, formerly Rhodesia, rather than Rwanda, formerly the Belgian trusteeship of Ruanda-Urundi, the scene of a genocide that preceded the one in Darfur, a region of Sudan, formerly the Anglo-Egyptian Sudan.
The error was entirely our own and not that of our geography teacher in grade school or the old Book of Knowledge, the twin and wholly estimable sources of whatever geographical knowledge we still retain. The map of Africa has changed wildly since we had to draw it and memorize all the capitals back in class, which is no excuse for our mistake.
Rather, our cartographic ignorance is one more strong argument for emphasizing geography, along with history, as a separate discipline in elementary school...
This year has already seen a couple notable errors of geography. One favorite is from Slate:
In an April 7"XX Factor" post, E.J. Graff originally wrote that she wanted to run up to Burlington, Vt., to kiss every legislator who voted in favor of gay marriage. Vermont legislators work out of the state capital, Montpelier.
But this one from the Canadian Press is the best of ’09 so far:
The Canadian Press moved a story April 3 that erroneously reported The Wilkins Ice Shelf was originally part of Jamaica. In fact the Ice Shelf, located on the western side of the Antarctic, was originally the size of Jamaica.
Name of source: Crosby [UK] Herald
SOURCE: Crosby [UK] Herald (6-5-09)
The school, which has 819 pupils on its books, has denied it ditched the traditional subjects as a means of improving its GCSE pass rate. The school said a decline in students wishing to study the subjects to examination level was behind the move.
Parents are understood to be concerned with the timing of the announcement – which came after Year 9 pupils had submitted 'options' forms – lessons to continue studying to examination level. Students wishing to study GCSE history have been told they will be unable to do so in school hours.
Headteacher Yvonne Sharples admitted history, taken at GCSE level by only a third of teenagers nationally,"was not everybody's cup of tea".
She said:"We take every opportunity to ensure there is a balance of academic and vocational subjects on offer. Inevitably, not every student will get their first choice. This year one particular subject only had six students wishing to study it. We would be heavily criticised by the local authority for allowing such a small group to be part of our curriculum. However, such is the commitment of the school and the teacher concerned [that] we are prepared to offer these young people the opportunity to study their chosen subject as an extra-curricular option."
A source close to the school told the Crosby Herald the decision to axe subjects could be a way of"massaging" A-C grades. In 2007 only 23% of students achieved five A* to C grades including Maths and English, rising to 43% last year.
The source said:"All the kids got their options sheets and filled in what subjects they wanted to study to GCSE. The forms were returned but now the school has pulled subjects. It's really bad management – you can't just tell the kids that they can't study their chosen subjects. A lot of parents are fuming. They think of history as a traditional subject. There is a national trend of axing harder subjects from the curriculum as a way of massaging a school's GCSE A-C grades."
Under the proposed humanities syllabus, students could study aspects of politics and history, such as student tuition fees reform. Aspects of geography would emerge in issues such as consumer waste and citizenship.
Name of source: San Francisco Chronicle
SOURCE: San Francisco Chronicle (6-2-09)
Take off the Pink Medal of Honor, Team O: You forgot about Roberta Achtenberg. As in the former SF Supe who Bill Clinton nominated to be assistant HUD czarina just days after taking office. That's well within the 100 days.
A White House official called Achtenberg Tuesday morning to profusely apologize. The ground-breaker was cool with it, figuring it slipped their mind.
When confronted with this point, a White House spokesman said Tuesday:
"President Obama remains the first president to have openly LGBT candidates confirmed by the Senate during the first 100 days of an Administration. " True that. Roberta was confirmed after 100 days.
Oh, Roberta is being too nice, so we'll say it: How could Team O forget someone who headed their transition team on HUD and homelessness. D'oh! But Achtenberg prefers to think big picture...and how that big picture has changed for LGBT folks in 16 years:
Name of source: Thinkprogress (liberal website)
SOURCE: Thinkprogress (liberal website) (6-1-09)
Cheney’s admission that 9/11 caused him to reassess the threats to the nation only underscores how, for months, top officials had ignored warnings from the CIA and the NSC staff that urgent action was needed to preempt a major al-Qaeda attack.
Speaking at the National Press Club today, Cheney struck back at Clarke. When asked about Clarke’s argument, Cheney — once again — invoked the “burning ashes” of 9/11 and the victims who leaped to their deaths from the World Trade Center. Then, quite succinctly, Cheney pinned the entire blame for 9/11 on Clarke:
CHENEY: You know, Dick Clarke. Dick Clarke, who was the head of the counterrorism program in the run-up to 9/11. He obviously missed it. The fact is that we did what we felt we had to do, and if I had to do it all over again, I would do exactly the same thing.
When the moderator reminded Cheney that Clarke had repeatedly warned the administration about al Qaeda’s determination to attack the U.S., Cheney snarkily replied, “That’s not my recollection, but I haven’t read his book.”
In fact, it was Cheney who “missed” the warning signs, not Clarke. New York Times reporter Philip Shenon’s book, “The Commission: The Uncensored History of the 9/11 Investigation,” reprinted some of Clarke’s emphatic e-mails warning the Bush administration of the al Qaeda threat throughout 2001:
“Bin Ladin Public Profile May Presage Attack” (May 3)
“Terrorist Groups Said Co-operating on US Hostage Plot” (May 23)
“Bin Ladin’s Networks’ Plans Advancing” (May 26)
“Bin Ladin Attacks May Be Imminent” (June 23)
“Bin Ladin and Associates Making Near-Term Threats” (June 25)
“Bin Ladin Planning High-Profile Attacks” (June 30)
“Planning for Bin Ladin Attacks Continues, Despite Delays” (July 2)
Similarly, Time Magazine reported in 2002 that Clarke had an extensive plan to “roll back” al Qaeda — a plan that languished for months, ignored by senior Bush officials:
Clarke, using a Powerpoint presentation, outlined his thinking to Rice. … In fact, the heading on Slide 14 of the Powerpoint presentation reads, “Response to al Qaeda: Roll back.” … The proposals Clarke developed in the winter of 2000-01 were not given another hearing by top decision makers until late April, and then spent another four months making their laborious way through the bureaucracy before they were readied for approval by President Bush.
Cheney needs to check his “recollections” before blaming former employees for the single most devastating attack in American history.
Name of source: Tom Brokaw reports for NBC News
SOURCE: Tom Brokaw reports for NBC News (6-5-09)
Name of source: BBC
He said the US remained "deeply hated" in the region and "beautiful and sweet" words would not change that.
He told the huge crowd at the mausoleum of his predecessor, Ayatollah Khomenei, that action was needed not words.
He also demanded calmer exchanges between presidential candidates after a fiery televised debate on Wednesday.
SOURCE: BBC (6-3-09)
The researchers show for the first time that he intended to say "a man" and that the "a" may have been lost because he was under pressure.
They say that although the phrase was not strictly correct, it was poetic.
There is also new evidence that his inspirational first words were spoken completely spontaneously - rather than being pre-scripted for him by Nasa or by the White House.
In 2006, an analysis by an Australian entrepreneur added credence to these explanations - as it found there was a gap for the "a". However, subsequent analyses disputed this conclusion.
To settle the argument, Dr Chris Riley, author of the new Haynes book Apollo 11, An Owner's Manual, and forensic linguist John Olsson carried out the most detailed analysis yet of Neil Armstrong's speech patterns.
At least three veterans had been due to travel in a party of about 18 people organised by European Battlefield Tours Limited of Glasgow.
But the firm swapped the bus it was using at the last minute because it feared the driver may have swine flu.
The replacement bus it booked then broke down.
The company said that if it could not get the veterans to Normandy by Saturday for the 65th anniversary celebrations it would try to take them later in the week to other places they had been to, following the invasion.
Ceremonies began with a service at Krakow cathedral attended by PM Donald Tusk and the former leader of the Solidarity union movement, Lech Walesa.
In 1989, Solidarity won an overwhelming victory in the first, partially-free elections in communist Eastern Europe.
The vote paved the way for the gradual end of communist rule in the region.
Name of source: http://www.capitalnews9.com
SOURCE: http://www.capitalnews9.com (5-28-09)
"This is probably one of the hardest things that we had to do, emotionally," said Eastover Resort owner Ticki Winsor.
Eastover Resort in Lenox is the home of the Civil War Museum. But because of the bad economy, Winsor is forced to sell the entire property, including everything in the museum.
"I feel that when you have something of this magnitude, of this interest to others, that it should be seen. So we decided, with great emotion, that we would sell it," said Winsor.
It's all being auctioned off in August. There's already huge interest from people and museums across the country.
Name of source: Max Boot at his Commentary blog
SOURCE: Max Boot at his Commentary blog (6-4-09)
Should Obama have summarized the real — as opposed to the air-brushed — history? Probably not. His point wasn’t to settle historical accounts but to put the best face forward to the Muslim world, and he did that, while still tactfully criticizing Muslim countries and defending the United States.
Name of source: St Louis Post-Dispatch
SOURCE: St Louis Post-Dispatch (5-28-09)
Now these rare documents, unearthed during a 10-year preservation project, will be available to anyone who wants to read about how Missourians attempted to bring law and order after the chaos of war.
"This is a treasure trove of information, most of which has never been seen by historians," said Secretary of State Robin Carnahan, who oversees the state archives. "These cases are attempting to right the wrongs that people saw in those years."
More than 11,200 court cases, from 1866 to 1868, were preserved and archived with the help of a $330,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities.
Name of source: Press Release--http://www.solvethemystery.org/
SOURCE: Press Release--http://www.solvethemystery.org/ (6-4-09)
The Web site, www.SolvetheMystery.org, explains the Lewis family’s more than decade-long quest to gain federal permission for the exhumation as well as a Christian reburial. Since Lewis’ death in 1809, speculation has churned about whether he committed suicide or was killed.
The Web site also gives biographical information about Lewis, provides an overview of the Lewis and Clark Expedition, introduces visitors to the Lewis family, and encourages Americans to join the Solve the Mystery effort by writing letters to the secretary of the U.S. Department of the Interior. The department’s National Park Service controls the land in Tennessee where Lewis is buried.
“The truth-seeking campaign of the Lewis family repeatedly has been stalled by the National Park Service. We are asking the public to help us clear the way for exhumation of Meriwether Lewis’ remains, along with a scientific study of his remains and a Christian reburial,” Lewis descendant Howell Lewis Bowen of Charlottesville, Va., said.
Name of source: New Republic
SOURCE: New Republic (6-17-09)
Since the inauguration, the Washington Post legend has been quietly reporting a new book on the Obama White House. "I'm in the preliminary stages of working on it," Woodward confirmed to me by phone recently. "I'm working on it and making progress."
Officially, the White House says it is not adopting a press strategy to respond to Woodward. Ben LaBolt, an Obama spokesman, wrote in an e-mail that the Craig memo "was not issued in relation to any inquiry related to a specific reporter or author." Still, there is reason to think that Woodward might make the administration particularly anxious. "Every White House is wary of Woodward, " says New York Times White House correspondent Peter Baker, who worked alongside him at the Post. What's more, Obama's White House is known to hate process stories, exactly the sort of exhaustive, in-the-room descriptions of high-level debates at which Woodward excels. And, even worse, Woodward has some extra motivation to fill his next book with big scoops. His fourth and final Bush book, The War Within, sold just 159,000 copies, according to Nielsen BookScan, far below his third Bush installment, State of Denial, which sold more than half a million. "The last time I talked to him about books, earlier this year, he had been lamenting the fact his last Bush book didn't sell as well," one of Woodward's friends told me.
And an especially hungry Bob Woodward is especially bad news if you're one of the people being written about.
Name of source: Wife of James Fallows at his blog at the Atlantic
SOURCE: Wife of James Fallows at his blog at the Atlantic (6-4-09)
I was really shocked to see the square itself open to the public during the day. Or, as I realized later, open to the "public." There were thousands of people on the square, but there was something odd about the scene. I realized by the end of the afternoon that this crowd was deliberate, and the casual afternoon at Tian'anmen was as orchestrated as the Opening Ceremonies of the Olympic games.
Everyone going into the square was funneled through a security tent, just like for the Olympics. A young woman scrounged through my purse, looking closely (in contrast to the subway screeners' half-asleep attitude) at my wallet, my phone, my brush... She asked for my passport, and I showed her the photocopies of the name page and the current visa page.
I moved to the metal-wanding line. But then a very stern, no-nonsense, non-English-speaking guard again demanded my passport (I feigned ignorance and said in English that I already showed my passport). A little scuffle later, he looked at my papers, called his superior over, scoured my purse again, and finally begrudgingly let me through.
Once "inside", it looked really weird. There were collections of people in yellow shirts, pink shirts, purple shirts, turquoise shirts. There were more groups holding like-patterned umbrellas. It seemed like everyone had umbrellas, men and women alike. But the Chinese do like umbrellas on sunny days! There were formations of green uniforms marching around; police trucks driving slowly around the edges, an occasional car blustering through (as usual) the crowd. There were lots of solitary undercover police, just like last night. Many wore black, others in their own street clothes.
Lots of groups were obviously deputized young men who stood around watching, staring, following people like me at least 3 on 1 at any given moment. There were no women in this capacity. There was a clear absence of the usual "oblivious" quality of Chinese crowd movement, where people bump into you, brush against you, or cut in front of you if you happen to be in the path of where they're going. Everyone milling about was acutely aware of everyone else in his space. They seemed to have assigned space. Some deputies also wore group-colored shirts, all wore "badges" with the Chinese flag surrounded in gold, Many looked like the kids who volunteered at the Olympics. Clearly nationalistic. All young. I wondered if they were paid for the day.
I would guess about 85% of people on the square were there officially. You could tell that because the security lines were basically unpopulated, while all the "deputies" just walked around the screeners without being checked. There were very few tourists, foreign or otherwise. There were mostly uniformed and non-uniformed police. Some foreigners were taking pictures, seemingly unmolested. Any footage and photos will be dull-looking; the shots would look "normal". It was just the feeling of intense orchestration and deliberate crowd-building that gave it away. And also a distinct sense of high-tension, which carried around the front of the Forbidden City, but evaporated just around the corners.
The rest of the city was oblivious. Crowds, shopping, shoving, everything perfectly normal, as far as I could see.
Name of source: Columbus Dispatch
SOURCE: Columbus Dispatch (6-2-09)
Other budget casualties could include a state office that for two decades has worked to resolve disputes and avoid costly litigation, and another serving Ohio's fast-growing Latino population.
Since its creation in 1959, the Ohio Historical Marker program has erected nearly 1,300 markers where history happened. Examples include the Ohio Statehouse, the trail of Confederate raider John Hunt Morgan in Ohio, and Ohio State University, in honor of Woody Hayes' winning ways.
Each bronze marker costs about $2,000.
Markers already in place would not be removed, but they would not be maintained or replaced if damaged or stolen. No other sites would get markers.
Name of source: Evening Sun
SOURCE: Evening Sun (5-27-09)
In August 2006, Pratt told USA Today that time and a tight budget were taking a toll on the battlefield's historic structures and monuments.
"You start to look around, and there's work everywhere that needs to be done. We just don't have the money or people to do those things," Pratt said at the time. "It's a red flag that we're getting behind, and it appears to be getting worse."
But since 2006 - the year Pratt recently described as the park's "low" point in terms of funding shortages and backlogged projects - Gettysburg National Military Park's operating budget has increased by $1,651,000.
That includes $935,155 in the 2008 budget specifically for repair and rehabilitation - up from only $35,570 in 2006.
Name of source: NYT
SOURCE: NYT (6-3-09)
The complaint was the latest in a growing rift between the Obama administration and the government of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu over how to move forward to achieve peace in the Middle East. Mr. Obama was in Saudi Arabia on Wednesday and is scheduled to address the Muslim world from Cairo on Thursday.
Name of source: Slate
SOURCE: Slate (6-3-09)
Very little. Neither the 1989 protests nor the ensuing massacre is included in Chinese textbooks, and many students today have never heard of these events. For the most part, the government avoids discussing the issue at all. The government does acknowledge that the People's Liberation Army intervened after seven weeks of demonstrations and that people were killed. But the official line is that, rather than crushing a peaceful protest, the military simply defended itself—and the country—against violent counterrevolutionary elements. ("Counterrevolutionary" is used in China in much the same way as "anti-American" in the United States.)
Name of source: Wired
SOURCE: Wired (6-4-09)
The skull possesses a combination of primitive features previously unseen in a primate, along with a flat, anatomically modern face — the earliest such face in the fossil record. These characteristics qualified it as the founding member of a new genus and species, Anoiapithecus brevirostris.
The findings, described Monday in theProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, follow in the wake of Ida, a fossil lemur whose made-for-TV hype far outpaced its scientific value. But A. brevirostris, despite its lack of fanfare, may be far more significant.
Name of source: WaPo
SOURCE: WaPo (6-3-09)
Since 1996, the league has compiled a list of sites it considers to be of historic, cultural and architectural significance that are threatened by neglect, demolition or other pressures. Some of the previous listings have received more attention.
For example, Battleground National Cemetery, in the 6000 block of Georgia Avenue NW, listed in 2005, will get some improvements through the recently approved federal stimulus package, officials said.
John D. Bellingham, president of the league's board, said that a yearly reminder of the city's past brings needed publicity. "It's an important part of our history," he said. "You can remodel them, but you can't replicate them."
Name of source: Christopher L. Eisgruber in Forbes
SOURCE: Christopher L. Eisgruber in Forbes (6-3-09)
Two other factors relate to the president's political strength. Professor John Maltese has calculated that when presidents make nominations during their last year in office, or when unelected presidents make nominations after ascending from the vice presidency, confirmation rates again drop below 60%.
All this bodes well for Judge Sotomayor, the nominee of a popular president just beginning his term whose party controls the Senate by a hefty margin. Here is more good news: After studying Supreme Court appointments since 1954, Professors Charles Cameron, Albert Cover and Jeffrey Segal found that "when a strong president nominates a highly qualified, ideological moderate candidate, the nominees passes the Senate in a lopsided, consensual vote."
Name of source: newscientist.com
SOURCE: newscientist.com (6-2-09)
Researchers led by David Lentz, a palaeoethnobotanist at the University of Cincinnati in Ohio, sampled wooden beams and lintels from all six major temples and two palaces within the ancient city of Tikal. The first three temples, built before AD 741, used only large, straight logs of the sapodilla tree - a particularly strong wood that is nevertheless easy to carve with ceremonial inscriptions.
Name of source: http://www.sciencedaily.com
SOURCE: http://www.sciencedaily.com (6-2-09)
In a study appearing in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Salvador Moyà-Solà, director of the Institut Català de Paleontologia (ICP) at the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, and colleagues present evidence for the new genus and species, dubbed Anoiapithecus brevirostris. The scientific name is derived from the region where the fossil was found (l’Anoia) and also from its "modern" facial morphology, characterized by a very short face.
Name of source: History Today
SOURCE: History Today (6-2-09)
Research will be based on the census of slave-owners in the British Empire, which was created by the Slave Compensation Commission in the 1830s in order to effectively manage the distribution of the money paid as compensation to slave-owners following the promulgation of the 1833 Abolition Act. Once the individual slave owners have been successfully identified, researchers will study how slave-related wealth was put to use. The project will aim to gather information about the affiliations, legacies and activities of all British slave-owners and to trace the major companies, art collections and institutions which originated in the aftermath of the abolition of slavery.
This second part of the project will focus on six main interrelated areas in which former British slave-owners may have contributed to the formation of modern Britain. ‘Commercial continuities’ will consider, first of all, the evolution of individual merchant firms and banks which received compensation. Secondly, ‘political affiliations and associational networks’ will explore the political participation of slave-owners in the 1820s and 1830s and trace their descendants’ participation in the politics of Victorian Britain. Thirdly, the project will research the cultural and institutional legacies of British slave-owners, including their role as collectors, philanthropists and founders or participants in new cultural and social institutions. ‘Historical lineages and memories of slavery’ will examine the role of slave-owners and their descendants as writers and historians in the construction of memories of the slavery. Lastly, researchers will study the imperial legacies of slave-owners as investors, administrators and settlers in other colonies outside the British West Indies, as well as their physical legacies in terms of the built environment associated with slave-owners, such as residential and commercial buildings and public monuments.
Name of source: Deutsche Welle
SOURCE: Deutsche Welle (6-3-09)
The two newly-ordained rabbis were trained at a seminary in Berlin, which began courses in 2005. They have positions awaiting them in the cities of Leipzig and Cologne.
A "small miracle"
The president of the Central Council of Jews in Germany, Charlotte Knobloch, called the event a “small miracle” that she would not have “believed possible just a few years ago.”