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Tuesday, September 01, 2009

From My Lai to Lockerbie, West faces losing battle over Afghan poll fraud, Sri Lanka Journalist Jailed for 20 Years

This story first appeared on the TomDispatch website.
A week ago, two convicted mass murderers leaped back into public consciousness as news coverage of their stories briefly intersected. One was freed from prison, continuing to proclaim his innocence, and his release was vehemently denounced in the United States as were the well-wishers who welcomed him home. The other expressed his contrition, after almost 35 years living in his country in a state of freedom, and few commented. When Abdel Baset al-Megrahi, the Libyan sentenced in 2001 to 27 years in prison for the 1988 bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland, was released from incarceration by the Scottish government on "compassionate grounds," a furor erupted. On August 22nd, ABC World News with Charles Gibson featured a segment on outrage over the Libyan's release. It was aired shortly before a report on an apology offered by William Calley, who, in 1971 as a young lieutenant, was sentenced to life in prison for the massacre of civilians in the Vietnamese village of My Lai.
From My Lai to Lockerbie By By Nick Turse on terrorism

Officials admit systematic fraud during Afghan presidential elections has tarnished legitimacy of any future government West faces losing battle over Afghan poll fraud

QALANDIA, West Bank, Aug 31 (IPS) - The future of East Jerusalem and of Palestinian access to it has again been brought under the spotlight. MIDEAST: East Jerusalem Shuts Out Thousands of Prayers By Mel Frykberg

Gen. Stanley McChrystal’s report on the war in Afghanistan could form the basis on which President Obama makes a decision about raising troop levels. World" Afghan War Is Serious but Winnable, Top General Says By DEXTER FILKINS

Fathima Rifqa Bary, who goes by Rifqa, is a 17-year-old from Columbus, Ohio who ran away from home - not an uncommon occurrence for 17-year-olds. But the circumstances surrounding her story have opened a host of legal, cultural and theological issues. Her Muslim parents moved the family to the U.S. from Sri Lanka in 2000, seeking medical attention for Rifqa, who had lost her right eye playing with a toy. Rifqa, who the Columbus Dispatch reports was a cheerleader at her high school, joined a Bible study group on Facebook earlier this year and was baptized at a local church. Last month, she hopped on a bus to Orlando to meet with Rev. Blake Lorenz, who she met through a Facebook prayer group for the couple's non-denominational Global Revolution Church. Her parents reported their daughter missing and local news covered her disappearance for a full two weeks before police were able to trace her to Lorenz's Orlando church. Honor killings: Rifqa, the Reverand and apostasy

A Tamil journalist was sentenced to 20 years of hard labor after being convicted of using racially divisive language under the country’s tough anti-terrorism laws. Sri Lanka Journalist Jailed for 20 Years By LYDIA POLGREEN on Civil War and Guerrilla Warfare


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