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Thursday, March 27, 2008

Media Watch World Mar 26: Pakistan No Killing Field, Uri Avnery, Sadr, Coal, Al Jazeera, Peru, and more

Friends, Finns, Citizens, lend me your ear. LINK

March 26 (Bloomberg) -- A partner in Pakistan's new ruling coalition said the safety of its citizens will be a more important consideration than U.S. interests as it decides how to combat Islamic extremists. ``Pakistan cannot be made a killing field for the interests of others,'' former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif told reporters yesterday after meeting with U.S. government officials in Islamabad, the capital. Sharif Says Pakistan to Fight Terrorism on Own Terms By Khalid Qayum and James Rupert

March 26 (Bloomberg) -- Eileen Rose is probably the best singer-songwriter you've never heard of. This is about to change. She's just released an excellent CD and is starting an international tour which, if there is any justice in this world, should give her the success she deserves. You can wait to see if she at last gets a radio hit -- if so, you read it here first. Or check her out anyway: Rose's fourth album is called ``At Our Tables.'' Eileen Rose, Best Songwriter You've Never Heard Of: Interview by Mark Beech

A Cape Dorset artist whose sculptures and images are icons in Canada and one of Quebec's leading documentary filmmakers are among this year's winners of the Governor General's Awards in visual and media arts. Kenojuak Ashevak, who created images such as Enchanted Owl, and Serge Guigère, the filmmaker behind Driven by Dreams (À force des rêves), were announced as winners of the $25,000 award in Montreal on Tuesday.

My friend Afif Safieh, now the chief PLO representative in the US, argues that there are two Americas: the America which exterminated the Native Americans and enslaved the blacks, the America of Hiroshima and McCarthy, and the other America, the America of the Declaration of Independence, of Lincoln, Wilson and Roosevelt. In these terms, George Bush belongs to the first. Obama, his opposite in almost every respect, represents the second. Uri Avnery on Two Americas

The clashes are the first in Sadr City between the Shiite militia and US troops since October 21, when around 50 people were killed during US raids targeting an Iranian-linked insurgent. The fighting, which severely strains a ceasefire declared by Sadr in late August and renewed last month, prompted the cleric to issue a stern warning that he would launch protests and a nationwide strike if attacks against his movement and "poor people" are not halted. Sadrists Battle SIIC, Iraqi Troops in Three Cities

"Clean coal" is a combination of two technologies, one of which is expensive and the other completely unproven. The expensive one is coal gasification, and it is a genuinely cleaner way of burning coal. It involves baking coal to drive off gasses that aren't much dirtier than natural gas, and the gasses then are burned for power production. This technology costs a minimum of 20 percent more than a conventional pulverized coal plant, which is why only two such plants exist in the United States. Our Suicide Mission with Coal By Kelpie Wilson

A chunk of ice the size of the Isle of Man has started to break away from Antarctica in what scientists say is further evidence of a warming climate. Satellite images suggest that part of the ice shelf is disintegrating, and will soon crumble away. The Wilkins Ice Shelf has been stable for most of the last century, but began retreating in the 1990s. Six ice shelves in the same part of the continent have already been lost, says the British Antarctic Survey (BAS). Antarctic shelf 'hangs by thread' By Helen Briggs

In a brief essay on Barack Obama's recent speech on race, New Yorker magazine writer George Packer, a good liberal, makes a point that is roughly similar to the one that Wild Bill Kristol made in his New York Times column on Monday: that we do not need to have "a conversation about race." ...However, there's another, deeper similarity between these pieces by the liberal Packer and the (some dare call him) fascist Kristol. Specially, both share a certain premise -- and it is one that has done us all enormous harm. That premise is some subjects are best not discussed. Topics to Avoid in Polite Liberal Conversation By Mark Crispin Miller.

Last month, Breakthrough, a non-profit that I currently head, released a videogame called ICED -- I Can End Deportation. The name is a play on Immigration Customs and Enforcement (ICE), the largest investigative branch of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). The goal of ICED is to create awareness about the lack of due process and human rights in current detention and deportation policies. ICED has created a huge buzz, especially in the blogosphere, and approximately 70,000 individuals have downloaded the game so far. When Did "Immigrant" Become a Dirty Word? Mallika Dutt

BBC News has a report on Access Denied: The Practice and Policy of Global Internet Filtering, a book that blows away the old cliche about governments being unable to censor the internet. There's a contents list and sample chapters here. bIn the UK, of course, we may be less likely to censor sites than to make it a crime to look at them. New book looks at net censorship around the world.

Steve Clark, a former senior executive at ITN and Sky News and a driving force behind the launch of al-Jazeera English, resigned at the end of last week while David Marash, a former CBS Nightline presenter who was the senior anchor in Washington, has also quit. Insiders say more than 15 staff have quit or resigned in recent months amid complaints of a lack of clarity over its direction, contractual disputes and speculation over a relaunch later this year. Senior al-Jazeera staff quit English service

Archaeologists in Peru have discovered ancient temple ruins that could predate the Inca empire.
The temple on the periphery of the Sacsayhuaman fortress includes 11 rooms thought to have held mummies and idols. The discovery at the famous spot overlooking the Incan capital of Cuzco includes ancient roadway and irrigation systems, said the team of experts. 'Pre-Inca' temple found in Peru

Those of us who may have been thinking of the path of poetry, those who understand that words are thoughts and not only our own thoughts . . . must be conscious of this: that, above everything else, poetry is words; and that words, above everything else, are, in poetry, sounds.
Sounding Romantic: The Sound of Sound - Essay by Susan J. Wolfson, Princeton University [Thanks VN]

Paul Jay and The Real News Team

US MILITARY TOLL IN IRAQ HITS 4000Phyllis Bennis: Cheney visit in Middle East intended to isolate Iran and prepare possible war

IRAQ DEATH TOLL REACHES 4000AP: US military death toll in Iraq hits new milestone as 4 more soldiers killed by roadside bomb


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