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This page features brief excerpts of news stories published by the mainstream media and, less frequently, blogs, alternative media, and even obviously biased sources. The excerpts are taken directly from the websites cited in each source note. Quotation marks are not used.
This page features brief excerpts of news stories published by the mainstream media and, less frequently, blogs, alternative media, and even obviously biased sources. The excerpts are taken directly from the websites cited in each source note. Quotation marks are not used. Because most of our readers read the NYT we usually do not include the paper's stories in HIGHLIGHTS.
Name of source: NYT
SOURCE: NYT (1-12-11)
But no one had to, according to a Russian-led investigation of the subsequent crash, which killed everyone on board.
Captain Protasiuk had been in an eerily similar position in 2008, according to the report on the inquiry, which was released Wednesday. Still a co-pilot then, he looked on as his captain defied President Lech Kaczynski’s order to make a risky landing in Georgia’s capital, Tbilisi. Mr. Kaczynski was reported by the Polish news media to be furious, remarking that “if someone decides to become a pilot, he cannot be fearful.”...
SOURCE: NYT (1-12-11)
No one disputes that the death of Mr. Morris, a well-liked businessman who served both black and white customers, was connected to the Ku Klux Klan. The case is on a list of unsolved civil rights murders the F.B.I. released in February 2007, the day Mr. Nelson first heard of the story.
But for a lengthy article that appeared Wednesday in The Concordia Sentinel, Mr. Nelson, 55, put together what he believes is a key piece of the puzzle. He names the last living person he says was there that night....
SOURCE: NYT (1-8-11)
Voters are expected to approve independence, and if it does, South Sudan will become a rare exception in Africa — a state that is reorganizing its colonial-era borders. It might even set a precedent for others.
In any case, it has already set off an agonizing debate, a half-century in coming, over the wisdom of trying to hold together the unwieldy colonial borders in the first place.
Even though many of those frontiers carelessly sliced through rivers, lakes, mountains and ethnic groups, few of the leaders who shepherded Africa to independence a half-century ago wanted to tinker, because redrawing the map could be endless and contested. So, on May 25, 1963, when the Organization of African Unity was formed in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, it immediately recognized the colonial-era borders.
In hindsight, it is clear that the old boundaries often hurt prospects for state building. But back then, and even today for many Africans, the alternative of tiny ministates seemed even worse....
Name of source: Salon
SOURCE: Salon (1-12-11)
I called Ronnie Hsia, a history professor at Penn State who has written extensively on blood libel and early modern Europe. He explained that the term generally refers to the medieval "fantasy in Christian belief that Jewish communities needed Christian blood for Passover."
"It was based on an ignorance and fear of Jewish rituals on the part of Christians and also the Christian fixation on blood," he says. Most often, it would be the blood of a child; thus, the idea often surfaced after the murder or abduction of a child....
Name of source: Yahoo News
SOURCE: Yahoo News (1-12-11)
Silvano Vinceti claims he has found the letter "S" in the woman's left eye, the letter "L" in her right eye, and the number "72" under the arched bridge in the backdrop of Leonardo da Vinci's famous painting. According to the researcher, the symbols open up new leads to identifying the model, dating the painting, and attesting to Leonardo's interest in religion and mysticism.
This is just the latest theory about a painting that has never ceased to intrigue scholars, art lovers and casual viewers alike. Others have claimed the painting is really the portrait of a man, or a self-portrait, while speculation over the reason for the model's famously enigmatic smile have ranged from pregnancy to mourning.
Some Leonardo scholars have expressed doubt over the new findings or their significance, with one calling them "unsubstantial."...
SOURCE: Yahoo News (1-11-11)
Vang Pao, who died in California last week at age 81, commanded thousands of Hmong fighters in a covert U.S.-backed war against North Vietnamese and Laotian communists during the 1960s and '70s. His legendary skills at guerrilla warfare led some followers to see him as a minor deity.
Reps. Dennis Cardoza and Jim Costa, both California Democrats, have written to Defense Secretary Robert Gates and Veteran Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki, requesting that Vang Pao be buried alongside American soldiers at Arlington....
SOURCE: Yahoo News (1-6-11)
The 90-year-old retired from Hearst newspapers in June after a media uproar over controversial comments she made about Israel. That move sent shock waves through the press corps and left White House reporters scrambling to see who'd get Thomas' front-row seat in the briefing room....
Name of source: BBC News
SOURCE: BBC News (1-11-11)
Audrey Lawson-Johnston from Melchbourne in Bedfordshire died in the early hours of Tuesday aged 95.
She was three months old when the liner bound for Liverpool from New York sank off the Irish coast on 7 May.
Mrs Lawson-Johnston's family had been emigrating to England when the boat was hit in an attack that killed hundreds, including her sisters.
One of her daughters, Margie Clarke, from Northampton, said her mother suffered a stroke early in December and had been in hospital ever since.
She said she was due to be moved to a nursing home on Tuesday, the day she died.
"She was so witty, to the end," she said. "That's what we want her funeral to be, full of colour. We want people to laugh....
The Dali museum, which cost $36m (£23m), has been officially declared open in St Petersburg, Florida.
The new building, believed to house the world's most comprehensive collection of his work, was designed to reflect the Spanish artist's surreal style.
Princess Cristina of Spain, one of the dignitaries present, said the museum was "state of the art".
"The city of St Petersburg gains a landmark and outstanding beacon of cultural beauty," she said at Tuesday's event.
The museum's collection, begun by a couple from Ohio in 1942, consists of more than 96 oil paintings and 2,000 other pieces....
SOURCE: BBC News (1-11-11)
Car parks were submerged, boats broke loose and jammed under bridges, and roads collapsed. Debris was strewn along the river courses.
When the devastation was collated, 14 people had lost their lives and the cost of the damage at the time was put at A$200m.
It was the city's worst flooding of the century.
The high water mark that almost drowned the city 37 years ago was recorded at 5.45m (17.9ft).
Queensland's current Premier Anna Bligh says the flood surge coming to Brisbane on Wednesday and Thursday may well be similar.
By late January in 1974, almost every river in Queensland was in flood....
Church services are due to be held around the nation, including at the ruined cathedral in Port-au-Prince.
There will also be a minute's silence at 4.53pm (2153 GMT) - the exact moment when the 7.0 magnitude quake hit.
One year on, some 800,000 people are still living in temporary shelters.
As well as facing the huge task of rebuilding, which has barely begun, Haiti has had to cope with an ongoing cholera outbreak that has so far killed more than 3,500 people, according to government figures.
Political instability has also increased, following November's disputed presidential election....
The Polish crew failed to heed bad weather warnings because they were afraid of displeasing President Lech Kaczynski, Russian investigators said.
The presence of Poland's air force commander in the cockpit drove them to take "unjustified risk", they found.
Poland's prime minister has cut short a holiday in response to the report.
A government spokesman said Donald Tusk, who sharply criticised a draft version of the Russian report last month, was returning to Poland for talks with its lead crash investigator, Jerzy Miller.
In other reaction, Lech Kaczynski's twin brother Jaroslaw condemned the Russian report as a "joke against Poland", saying the Russian investigators had failed to produce evidence.
Russia's handling of the disaster had previously been widely commended....
Name of source: Talking Points Memo
SOURCE: Talking Points Memo (1-12-11)
He describes it as a letter he received from a listener three years ago. It can also be found on a web site, martinlutherking.org, which is run by the white supremacist group Stormfront....
For what it's worth, the Tribune spoke to Clayborne Carson, the founding director of the Martin Luther King, Jr., Research and Education Institute... who said that many of the factual claims in the commentary -- that King had extramarital sexual relationships and plagiarized an academic paper -- are substantiated.
As a historian, all that is irrelevant," Carson said. "King is considered a great person not because he was born a great person but because he was part of a great movement that achieved a major change. To say he was not perfect or had flaws doesn't matter."
Name of source: Hollywood Reporter
SOURCE: Hollywood Reporter (1-7-11)
our editor recommends
Greg Kinnear, Katie Holmes in History's 'Kennedys'
“Upon completion of the production of The Kennedys, History has decided not to air the 8-part miniseries on the network,” a rep for the network tells The Hollywood Reporter in a statement. “While the film is produced and acted with the highest quality, after viewing the final product in its totality, we have concluded this dramatic interpretation is not a fit for the History brand.”...
Developed by Joel Surnow, the conservative co-creator of 24, along with production companies Asylum Entertainment and Muse Entertainment and writer Stephen Kronish, the project drew fire from the political left and some Kennedy historians. Even before cameras rolled, a front-page New York Times story last February included a sharp attack from former John F. Kennedy adviser Theodore Sorensen, who called an early version of the script “vindictive” and “malicious.”...
Name of source: Bloomberg News
SOURCE: Bloomberg News (1-12-11)
“I have taken the decision that Greece intervene at the International Court of Justice at the Hague on this specific case,” Prime Minister George Papandreou told his ministers in Athens today, according to an e-mailed statement of his comments. “We are faithfully serving the country’s interests as well as paying respect to those who were sacrificed for our nation.”...
Name of source: WaPo
SOURCE: WaPo (1-12-11)
The Simon Wiesenthal Center gave top marks to Germany - the first time any country besides the U.S. has been given an "A" grade for prosecuting suspected Nazi war criminals.
The Associated Press on Wednesday received an advance copy of the center's report, which covers the period between April 2009 and March 2010. The formal release is scheduled for Thursday....
SOURCE: WaPo (1-11-11)
But over the past year, a new majority-Republican school board backed by national tea party conservatives has set the district on a strikingly different course. Pledging to "say no to the social engineers!" it has abolished the policy behind one of the nation's most celebrated integration efforts.
And as the board moves toward a system in which students attend neighborhood schools, some members are embracing the provocative idea that concentrating poor children, who are usually minorities, in a few schools could have merits - logic that critics are blasting as a 21st-century case for segregation.
The situation unfolding here in some ways represents a first foray of tea party conservatives into the business of shaping a public school system, and it has made Wake County the center of a fierce debate over the principle first enshrined in the Supreme Court's 1954 decision in Brown v. Board of Education: that diversity and quality education go hand in hand.
The new school board has won applause from parents who blame the old policy - which sought to avoid high-poverty, racially isolated schools - for an array of problems in the district and who say that promoting diversity is no longer a proper or necessary goal for public schools.
"This is Raleigh in 2010, not Selma, Alabama, in the 1960s - my life is integrated," said John Tedesco, a new board member. "We need new paradigms."...
Name of source: USA Today
SOURCE: USA Today (1-12-11)
Items on display include the kitchen table and pink-framed sunglasses that belonged to Harvey Milk, the first elected openly gay politician in California. The exhibit also features manuscripts and sex toys....
Name of source: NOLA.com
SOURCE: NOLA.com (1-3-11)
They spoke different languages, came from various parts of the United States, Africa and Haiti, and lived miles apart on plantations along the German Coast of Louisiana. Yet after years of planning at clandestine meetings under the constant threat of immediate death, they staged a revolt on Jan. 8, 1811, that historians say is the largest uprising of enslaved people in this country.
"Slavery was very harsh and cruel, but the slaves themselves were not mindless chattel with no aspirations and no basis for humanity,'' said John Hankins, executive director of the New Orleans African American Museum. "This revolt demonstrates that there were people willing to make the ultimate sacrifices to better not just themselves but other people."
A year of events planned
To mark the 200 year anniversary of that revolt, Destrehan Plantation, in conjunction with Tulane University and the African American Museum, located in Treme, is organizing a yearlong look at the uprising that reverberated around the fledgling nation because of the large number of enslaved people involved, its military strategy and oddly enough, because it demonstrated that all was not well among those held in bondage....
Name of source: Guardian (UK)
SOURCE: Guardian (UK) (1-11-11)
one of Haiti’s ‘gingerbread houses’ Endangered … one of Haiti’s ‘gingerbread houses’ Photograph: Randolph Langenbach
This is not the image of Haiti we are used to – not since the earthquake that struck a year ago today. But you don't have to wander far from the Oloffson to find ruins, rubble and tented cities. The presidential palace is still a collapsed heap, untouched since it became the defining image of the disaster. There are 230,000 dead to mourn, up to 300,000 buildings damaged, and 1.5 million people still without homes. But Port-au-Prince is at least back on its feet: the port, airport and phone network are working again, the potholed streets are clogged with traffic and lined with vendors, and talk is no longer of emergency relief but of reconstruction – and the conspicuous lack of it....
SOURCE: Guardian (UK) (1-11-11)
Historians are outraged at government plans to rent out one of France's most important palaces, L'hôtel de la Marine on Place de La Concorde.
A symbol of the nation's bloody history, the palace was the site of the first riots that led to the French revolution in 1789. King Louis XVI and Marie-Antoinette were guillotined outside it....
Name of source: Daily Mail (UK)
SOURCE: Daily Mail (UK) (1-7-11)
Well done, Professor. But maybe you would have got there sooner if you'd been reading more history and less science.
In particular, the history of Henry V and how he became the man to lead the English and the Welsh to an impossible victory over the French at Agincourt.
Honey helped save the life of the 16-year old Prince Hal after he was shot through the face by an arrow in the 1403 battle of Shrewsbury.
Here it is, from Juliet Barker's terrific 2005 book, Agincourt: 'An arrow struck the sixteen-year-old prince full in the face but he refused to withdraw [from the battle], fearing the effect it would have on his men...'...
SOURCE: Daily Mail (UK) (1-6-11)
Sixty five years after the end of World War Two and the Holocaust, a leading rabbi in the state of Brandenburg is urging Jews not to wear yarmulkes (skullcaps), traditional long coats, hats or other 'identifying symbols'.
Brandenburg, the state which surrounds Berlin, is a hotbed of neo-Nazi activity and its new chief rabbi Shaul Nekrich said its streets are no longer safe for Jews....
Name of source: Epoch Times
SOURCE: Epoch Times (1-11-11)
The defense didn't call four witnesses who could have testified to clear Simpson, who was on trial for the murders of his ex-wife and friend, Bailey wrote in the 20,000-word document, according to Salon.
Even though Simpson was found not guilty, he was found guilty during the later civil trial and had to pay damages. In the wake of the trial, the majority of Americans believed that the former NFL Hall-of-Fame running back should have been convicted in the criminal case....
Name of source: Fox News
SOURCE: Fox News (1-11-11)
In the transcript of the 1951 trial in the Soviet Union, read into the record as evidence Tuesday at the Munich state court, a former Red Army soldier who was captured by the Nazis and then served as a guard at Majdanek camp said he confessed to killing Jews only after being beaten.
The soldier told the Soviet court he had been a guard at Majdanek, but had not participated in any killing, according to the transcript.
Defense attorney Ulrich Busch used the confession of alleged torture as an example of why testimonies like that should not be considered as evidence in the current trial....
Name of source: Haaretz
SOURCE: Haaretz (1-3-11)
Last week, the Parks Authority held a conference to present its activity in a number of areas. Among other things, Prof. David Saltz of Ben-Gurion University of the Negev presented results of a years-long project involving the return to nature of rare species of animals that once dwelled in Israel, and then became extinct. These include large wild mammals such as the ox, deer and oryx. The Parks Authority raised them in facilities on the Carmel and in the Arava, and returned them gradually to nature over a long period spanning two decades....
Name of source: Fredericksburg.com
SOURCE: Fredericksburg.com (1-11-11)
Until now, the group--which has deep roots in Fredericksburg--had been called the Civil War Preservation Trust. Its new moniker is shorter and simpler, as is the new logo that the Washington-based nonprofit rolled out yesterday.
The design features the silhouettes of two soldiers, Union and Confederate, each bearing the flag under which he fought, standing guard over the battlegrounds....
SOURCE: Fredericksburg.com (1-7-11)
Historians claim that the Battle of the Wilderness began on May 5, 1864, and ended on May 7, 1864. They're right, with one exception.
For the people of Orange County, the Battle of the Wilderness didn't end in May 1864. While Gens. Grant and Lee--and their respective armies--moved on, the people of Orange did not. They, like Americans in battlefield communities across all parts North and South, were left to cope firsthand with the unromantic horrors of war and gruesome vestiges of a battle that modern Civil War prints, books, and films are rarely able to convey....
Name of source: Ynet News
SOURCE: Ynet News (1-10-11)
Name of source: AP
SOURCE: AP (1-8-11)
The event recalled what some consider the first shots of the war - the 1861 firing on the steamship Star of the West that was trying to reach Fort Sumter with supplies and 200 federal troops. Cadets manning a battery on Morris Island hit the ship and forced it to turn back.
Sumter was never resupplied and the Union garrison surrendered after a Confederate bombardment the following April, the episode considered by most the first engagement of the war....
SOURCE: AP (1-11-11)
A vat to press the grapes, fermentation jars and even a cup and drinking bowl dating to about 6,000 years ago were discovered in the cave complex by an international team of researchers.
While older evidence of wine drinking has been found, this is the earliest example of complete wine production, according to Gregory Areshian of the University of California, Los Angeles, co-director of the excavation....
Name of source: CNN.com
SOURCE: CNN.com (1-6-11)
Working for the first time in collaboration with Bhutan's Department of Culture, conservators from The Courtauld Institute of Art in England have spent the last three years documenting some of the reclusive kingdom's most precious wall paintings.
According to Lisa Shekede, leader of the project, the wall paintings date from around the 17th century and are some of the best surviving works in the region.
The team visited over 200 temples -- sometimes trekking for an entire day to reach remote monasteries -- and documented around 50 paintings in detail....
Name of source: The State (SC)
SOURCE: The State (SC) (1-10-11)
Sea Pines resident Sally Peterson was walking on the beach in Sea Pines with her brother, Peter Thomson, and his family, who were visiting for the holidays. Thomson is a Fiji diplomat and the South Pacific island nation’s permanent representative to the United Nations.
During their walk, Thomson discovered what appeared to be the ribs of an old wooden boat protruding from thick mud, like bones in a partially uncovered grave, on a shell beach opposite the 18th tee at Harbour Town Golf Links....
Name of source: Public Opinion Online
SOURCE: Public Opinion Online (1-10-11)
The bill would have added to the park the 151-year-old Gettysburg train station where President Abraham Lincoln arrived to dedicate the national cemetery.
It also would have expanded the park's boundaries to include 45 acres of donated land in Cumberland Township.
The 1,003-page bill included a host of other land-and-recreation measures, such as transferring to the Park Service the Valles Caldera ranch in New Mexico, and establishing a national monument in Waco, Texas, where the fossilized remains of 22 mammoths were unearthed....
Name of source: Scotsman (UK)
SOURCE: Scotsman (UK) (1-9-11)
Critics believe the decision not to arrest the man acknowledged as the supreme logistical mastermind of the Nazi Holocaust of six million Jews was taken to protect both German officials and pro-Nazi clergy in the Vatican who had helped him to escape.
The German national newspaper Bild reported yesterday that journalists had gained access to files held by the government intelligence service the Bundesnachrichtendienst (BND) showing officials knew where Eichmann was hiding under the alias of Ricardo Klement in Argentina as early as 1952....
Name of source: Unreported Heritage News
SOURCE: Unreported Heritage News (12-23-10)
New archaeological discoveries show that Iceland was inhabited around AD 800 – nearly 70 years before the traditional dating of its Viking settlement.
One possibility is that these early inhabitants may have been related to Irish monastic communities found throughout the Scottish islands at that time, and described in Viking-Age and medieval texts.
“Questions surrounding Iceland’s first settlement in the early medieval period have been of longstanding interest for scholars,” said Professor Kristján Ahronson of Prifysgol Bangor University in Wales and Visiting Professor at the University of Toronto. He led the team that made the discoveries....
Name of source: Discovery News
SOURCE: Discovery News (1-6-11)
The evidence comes from seemingly very unfashionable lice, since scientists tracked when head lice evolved into clothing/body lice around 170,000 years ago. So lice have been with us since the world's first clothes were made.
The study, published in this month's Molecular Biology and Evolution journal, explains how DNA sequencing of the parasites was used to calculate when clothing lice first began to genetically diverge from human head lice....
Name of source: National Parks Traveler
SOURCE: National Parks Traveler (1-6-11)
A Great Opportunity
The National Park System's large complement of Civil War-related sites and related human and cultural resources ensure that the National Park Service and its partners will have a prominent role to play in the Civil War sesquicentennial commemoration that gets underway this year and continues through 2015. The National Park Service sees this as a great opportunity to help the current generation of Americans learn about this country's greatest national crisis and explore the Civil War's enduring relevance in the 21st century. Towards this end the agency has planned for improved interpretative programs and special commemorative activities at Civil War-related sites....
Name of source: Physorg.com
SOURCE: Physorg.com (1-11-11)
The fact that the bone was found in human waste provides the earliest proof that humans in the New World used domesticated dogs as food sources.
“This is an important scientific discovery that can tell us not only a lot about the genetic history of dogs but of the interactions between humans and dogs in the past,” said Belknap. “Not only were they most likely companions as they are today, they served as protection, hunting assistants, and also as a food source.”
Belknap’s discovery will first be documented in the American Journal of Physical Anthropology as well as other scientific journals.
At the time Belknap found the bone, he had not set out to discover anything new about ancient animals, but was instead conducting his thesis research on ancient diet and nutrition of humans during the Holocene Era in the Lower Pecos Region of Texas....
Name of source: Latin American Herald Tribune
SOURCE: Latin American Herald Tribune (1-12-11)
Eight decades after being brought to Spain, the skull, which apparently is that of a male around age 30, arrived at the University of Seville thanks to “a chain of lucky chances,” forensic medicine professor Leandro Picabea told Efe.
The report coming from the investigation of the skull will accompany it upon its return to the Peruvian government.
Peru’s deputy consul in Seville, Luis Pablo Salamanca, said that recovering the skull “is important” for his country because “it’s part of (our) culture and history.”
The skull was among the objects that remained in the southern Spanish city after the Expo ended in 1929.
Picabea said that the Peruvian consul at that time turned it over to a doctor who kept it until he died, whereupon his widow passed it to Fernando Fernandez, the former director of the Archaeological Museum of Seville, who then delivered it to Luis Hurtado, the coordinator of the project to recover the item.
Hurtado then sent it to the Anatomy Department at the University of Seville, where Professor Jesus Ambrosiani, in collaboration with Picabea, began a careful anatomical and anthropological study of the skull, which is considered to be representative of the pre-Inca population....
Name of source: Londonderry Sentinel (Ireland)
SOURCE: Londonderry Sentinel (Ireland) (1-12-11)
It is also believed that the car park between the church and the rear of the Apprentice Boys Memorial Hall could be the site of a mass grave or graveyard, possibly containing human remains from those who perished inside Derry's Walls during the 105-day stand off between the Williamite supporters and the opposing Jacobites.
First Derry Minister, Rev Dr David Latimer, has stressed there are no plans to built on top of the car park, thus ensuring that the Siege dead will continue to rest in peace. Indeed, the Minister is keen that the graves are officially recognised
"We originally bought this land because we saw the need for additional car parking space, and I'm glad that we now know that in the past it was a graveyard, and I can tell you that no building is going to take place on it. In fact, I think it would be important to remember the dead buried here....
Name of source: Daily Camera (Colorado)
SOURCE: Daily Camera (Colorado) (1-10-11)
He was 93 and "lived a completely full life," said his son Jim Bower.
"My dad was a hell of a guy," he said. "He was a brave soul, a warrior. He was everybody's friend. He did all kinds of volunteer work. He was an exceptional human being."
Bill Bower was hailed as a hero for his role in the United States' first air attack on Japan following the bombing of Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7, 1941. He volunteered and was chosen for the mission, which was planned and led by Lt. Col. James "Jimmy" Doolittle.
On April 18, 1942, 16 B25B Mitchell medium bombers took off from the decks of the U.S.S. Hornet in the western Pacific Ocean. Because landing planes of that size on the Hornet was impossible, the pilots continued toward China after bombing their targets in Japan.
All but one of the aircraft, which landed in the Soviet Union, crashed in China or were ditched at sea. Of the 80 crew members, 11 were either captured or killed; the rest returned to the United States.
On his return, Bower married Lorraine Amman in 1942.
Bower continued to serve during World War II, assuming command of the 428th Bombardment Squadron and joining Allied invasion forces in Africa. He remained there and in Italy until September 1945. He was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross for his role in the raids.
After the war, he worked as a planner and accident investigator for the U.S. Air Force and served in the Arctic as commander of a U.S. Air Force transport organization. He also served as commander at Dobbins Air Force Base in Marietta, Ga....
Name of source: CNN
SOURCE: CNN (1-12-11)
People who saw him in the hospital afterward said the African-American businessman was so badly burned they didn't recognize him.
"Only the bottom of his feet weren't burned. He was horrible to look at," said the Rev. Robert Lee Jr., now 96.
Morris survived for four days before dying -- long enough to tell the FBI that two men had broken into his store while he slept, smashed windows, doused the place in gasoline and told him: "Get back in there, nigger."
Locals in Ferriday, the small Louisiana town where Morris lived and died, remember him as having both white and black customers, which was rare for black businesses in the segregated South in the days before civil rights. He would come out of his store onto the sidewalk so white women customers wouldn't have to go inside alone.
No one has ever been charged with killing him. But Wednesday, more than 46 years after his death at age 51, a local newspaper has named two men it believes were part of a Ku Klux Klan "wrecking crew" that torched his store and murdered him....
Name of source: Washington Post
SOURCE: Washington Post (1-9-11)
Based on the 1992 book by historian Stephen E. Ambrose, the HBO mini-series came out in 2001 and was produced by Tom Hanks and Steven Spielberg.
The story follows the tragedies and triumphs of the 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 2nd Battalion, E Company.
To Mr. Winters, these citizen-soldiers came to be known as the men of Easy Company -- paratroopers who jumped into combat on June 6, 1944 above Normandy, France.
According to Ambrose's account, Easy Company suffered 150 percent casualties throughout the war.
One of the soldiers who served in Easy Company, David Webster, once wrote that among his colleagues the Purple Heart "was not a decoration but a badge of office."
Mr. Winters, who separated from the Army at the rank of major, and his men fought together through D-Day and the Battle of the Bulge and later occupied Adolf Hitler's mountainside retreat, the Eagle's Nest, near Berchtesgaden.
A charismatic officer who led by example, Mr. Winters received the Distinguished Service Cross, the country's second highest decoration for valor, while conducting combat operations on D-Day.
Mr. Winters led a small group of men on a raid of German cannon emplacements near Utah beach on Normandy's coastline....
Name of source: Telegraph (UK)
SOURCE: Telegraph (UK) (1-11-11)
One of the most intriguing predictions in the usual end-of-year rush was that we could soon be taking holidays thousands of feet in the air. By 2030, claimed a report for Thomson Holidays, giant, eco-powered airships, containing entire resorts, will be floating through the skies. It seems fantastical, but you don't need to look 20 years into the future to see the airship making a comeback. In fact, these long-neglected craft are already undergoing a renaissance that could transform the way we travel.
The concept of lighter-than-air flight is not, of course, a new one. What stalled its development is something known in the business as "the H-Factor" – "H" in this case standing for "Hindenberg". Even though there had been dozens of airship disasters before, the devastating image of a transatlantic Zeppelin engulfed in a fireball at Lakehurst, New Jersey, in May 1936 shattered public confidence and spelt doom for the golden era of the airship. Programmes worldwide were axed and, with war imminent, the funding poured into heavier-than-air craft. The great airships were consigned to the scrapheap: Goering had all the remaining German Zeppelins salvaged for their Duralumin; the scrap from the R-100, the leading British airship, was sold for £600....
Name of source: AFP
SOURCE: AFP (1-10-11)
Scientists have puzzled over why the Neanderthals disappeared just as modern humans were making huge gains and moving into new parts of Africa and Europe, and some have speculated that a difference in longevity may have been to blame.
If anything, higher fertility rates and lower infant mortality gave modern humans an advantage over the Neanderthals, who died off about 30,000 years ago, said the study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences....
Name of source: UN News Centre
SOURCE: UN News Centre (1-11-11)
Lumbini is a world-renowned Buddhist pilgrimage destination and a UNESCO World Heritage site since 1997.
The project, funded by the Japanese Government and coordinated by the UNESCO office in the Nepalese capital, Kathmandu, aims to identify the presence, or absence, of archaeological deposits, invisible below the surface, so that appropriate placing of pilgrim facilities can be made without damaging valuable archaeological resources....
Name of source: Michigan Tech News
SOURCE: Michigan Tech News (1-10-11)
Patrick Bowen, a senior majoring in materials science and engineering, is refining a new way of dating ceramic artifacts that could one day shave thousands of dollars off the cost of doing archaeological research.
Called rehydroxylation dating, the technique was recently developed by researchers at the University of Manchester and the University of Edinburgh. It takes advantage of ceramics’ predictable tendency to bond chemically with water over time.
Using shards of pottery dating from 1854 to 1888, which Scarlett provided from an archaeological dig in Utah, Bowen tried out the original dating technique at different temperatures and got significantly different “ages” for the shards. He then developed a new equation that addresses those temperature effects, as well as the fact that rehydroxylation is actually a two-step process: First, water vapor physically penetrates the pottery. Then, it bonds chemically to the pottery’s constituent minerals.
Bowen’s equation worked better, but not well enough to generate definitive dates. Humidity fluctuations affected the samples’ weights, skewing the results. Now the research team is using new methods to provide constant humidity and will run additional tests over the next few months on various types of ceramics of different ages....
Name of source: LA Times
SOURCE: LA Times (1-10-11)
Since late October, the fragile bones of dozens of Los Angeles settlers have been discovered under what will be the outdoor space of La Plaza de Cultura y Artes downtown near Olvera Street. According to archaeologists and the chief executive of La Plaza, they appear to be remains from the Campo Santo, or cemetery, connected to the historic Catholic church Our Lady Queen of Angels, commonly called La Placita. The remains are just south of the church.
Pieces of decaying wood coffins as well as religious artifacts such as rosary beads and medals have also been unearthed.
The cemetery, which officially closed in 1844, was the final resting place of a melting pot of early Los Angeles — Native Americans; Spanish, Mexican, European settlers; and their intermarried offspring. But the repercussions of the discovery outside La Placita have been anything but peaceful.
A chorus of archaeologists, Native American community advocates and possible descendants of the people buried in the cemetery have criticized the methods and speed of the excavation, and questioned whether it should be continuing at all. The cultural center, including the outdoor space now under construction, is set to open with a gala on April 9 honoring La Plaza founder and Los Angeles County Supervisor Gloria Molina....
Name of source: Huma Today
SOURCE: Huma Today (1-8-11)
The bone fragments were found Nov. 21, 2009, amid the remains of a cardboard box in the basement of 234 Fandall St. by a real-estate agent showing the house to potential buyers.
The bones are likely those of American Indian inhabitants of the area and could be more than 700 years old, archeologists say in a soon-to-be-released study.
The report, from the state Division of Archeology, indicates that they came from one of two mounds on the property. Initial plans are for the Chitimacha tribe in Charenton, St. Mary Parish, to receive the bones. They will likely be returned to the Gibson mound, said state anthropologist Chip McGimsey, although discussions with the Chitimacha and local Indian groups are still pending.
While the bones were not carbon-dated or other “invasive procedures,” McGimsey estimates they date back to between 800 and 1300 A.D. Pottery shards recovered along with the bones aided scientists in establishing the timeline....