Sunday, August 07, 2005

The Third Estate Sunday Review news review

The Third Estate Sunday Review news review

C.I.: Welcome to The Third Estate Sunday Review news review. We go to Ty with the Democracy Now! Headlines.Ty?

Ty: From Friday's Democracy Now! Headlines, I'd like to note:

London Mayor Calls for Iraq Withdrawal, Galloway Praises Iraq Resistance
As Bush exchanges words with Zawahiri, two of the most vocal critics in Britain of the Iraq occupation are speaking out once again. Rebel Member of Parliament George Galloway has been on a tour of the Middle East where he said the resistance in Iraq was made up of ordinary Iraqis defending their country against "foreign invaders." Galloway said, "It can be said, truly said, that the Iraqi resistance is not just defending Iraq. They are defending all the Arabs and they are defending all the people of the world against American hegemony." Galloway was expelled from the Labour Party over his outspoken remarks about the Iraq war. Meanwhile, London Mayor Ken Livingstone on Thursday called on the British Government to withdraw troops from Iraq to prevent further attacks against Britain. In an op-Ed in The Guardian newspaper, Livingstone wrote "The London bombings demand clear thinking, not rhetoric. People's lives depend on the decisions made. These must be for every community to aid the police; to treat Britain's Muslim community with respect... And for Britain to withdraw from Iraq."

Ty: Issues appear to be addressed more fully by some in London than in our own country. Back to you, C.I.

C.I.: Thank you, Ty. Today, we have news on Sibel Edmonds, the memorials for Hiroshima, the march for the Voting Rights Act, news on Marilyn Monroe, England prepares for the bird flu, a[fictional] report from the BuzzFlash GOP Hypocrite of the Week Awards, and much more. Now we now go to Maria.

Maria: Hola, C.I. Para Democracy Now! in Español:

Chevron pagó a soldados nigerianos acusados de matar aldeanos
El diario The San Francisco Chronicle informa que la empresa petrolera Chevron pagaba más de 100 dólares al día a soldados de Nigeria que vigilaban sus pozos en ese país, incluso después de que fueran acusados de atacar en 1999 las aldeas nigerianas de Opia e Ikenya, matando a cuatro personas e incendiando sus hogares. El hecho salió a la luz este año como parte de una demanda contra Chevron por aquellos ataques. Hay una factura por el pago a 23 soldados que afirman haber respondido a un supuesto ataque violento de habitantes de Opia contra una torre petrolera de Chevron. Pero los pobladores dicen que habían ido al lugar para reunirse con representantes de Chevron, y que cuando regresaban a sus hogares, vieron a los soldados abrir fuego desde un helicóptero. Según los abogados de los aldeanos, esa factura demuestra que Chevron estaba al tanto de los ataques y debe ser considerada responsable de ellos. La operación militar contra Opia e Ikenya se realizó un año después de que Democracy Now! revelara la historia de un ataque similar a pobladores del Delta del Níger en 1998. Chevron admitió ante DN! que había proporcionado helicópteros para aquel ataque, y que el director de seguridad de la empresa iba en un helicóptero junto con los temidos integrantes de la Policía Móvil de Nigeria que atacaron a pobladores desarmados. La compañía fue demandada por ese acto de violencia.

C.I.: Thank you, Maria.

Maria: De nada. Paz.

C.I.: Now we go to Kara reporting at the aftermath of the BuzzFlash Gop Hypocrite of the Week Award. Kara?

Kara: C.I., the only word to describe last night's event is "riot." Police are still questioning witneses and attempting to determine all the details but riot is the word authorities are now using.

C.I.: It's been reported, Kara, that things got so out of hand that Katherine Harris ended up with a black eye.

Kara: Yes, that has been reported. I belive it was by Dexter Filkins in the New York Times. That report is, in fact, false. One of the dangers of reporting from the Green Zone. Katherine Harris did not receive a black eye. What happened is when the winner was announced and her name wasn't called, she burst into tears. Within three minutes, her heavy mascara had run to the point that it appeared she had two black eyes. Dexter Filkins' reporting was based on faulty information.

C.I.: Shocking. Thanks for clarifying that point, Kara, now was anyone hurt?

Kara: A lot of people's pride. Not just Katherine Harris'. Karen Hughes, apparently drunk on wine coolers, wandered around screaming, "Doesn't anyone love me! Doesn't anyone love me!" over and over. She had flown in from Texas to be at the event. She was part of a song and dance organized and choreographed by PBS' Gwen Ifill. She and Donald Rumsfeld did a lively opening number of "It's Only a Summer Scandal." Hughes was apparently convinced that they wouldn't fly her in just to perform a song and, considering her singing and dancing abilities, I'd say that was sound assumption on her part. So she was expecting that she would be the winner of the GOP Hypocrite of the Week, notching up her third win. As you know this a highly competitive award and as a three time winner Hughes would have accomplished something few can ever do. So when the envelope was opened and the winner was someone else, she hit the wine coolers while cursing at John Ashcroft for drinking all the Zimas.

C.I.: J-Ass was there?

Kara: Yes, hoping to be part of the ceremonies, J-Ass emerged from his semi-retirement. Attending with "just friends" Ken Starr, J-Ass was accompanied by a posse of twenty cleverly costumed in all white.

C.I.: Well Labor Day's not passed.

Kara: Yes, but white sheets over the heads may have sent a message J-Ass didn't intend. Then again, it may have been just the message he wanted to send. The winner tonight, if we can call it that, was Robert Novak. Though he refused to come on camera with me, he did agree to speak with me prior to the ceremonies on double chocolate brownie, Cherry Garcia background. I can report that Novak seemed giddy and apparently knew he was a shoe-in. He had prepared a lengthy list -- not a thank you list, but an enemies list.

C.I.: That sounds in keeping with Novak. What happened when he delivered the list?Kara: He never did. This is where it got ugly. Former GOP Hypocrite of the Week award winner Bill Keller was supposed to present the award to Novak but at the last minute Karl Rove was brought in as a surprise. When Novak saw Rove walk across the stage, he sunk into his chair and took deep sips on his Sex On the Beach which he had insisted be served in a sippy cup.When Karl Rove, looking dashing in only tuxedo pants and a bow tie, announced Robert Novak's name, Bob Novak exploded. The sippy cup he threw flew into William Pryor's mouth and ended up chipping one of Pryor's teeth. But the rampage didn't end there. Novak began overturning tables and screaming he wasn't putting up with this "bull [bleep]" as Davey Brooks and Tucker Carlson rushed over to restrain him.

C.I.: Were they able to?

Kara: From all reports, they didn't try to. Davey launched into a discussion over what the Bobos would do and Tucker was too busy checking his hair in a serving spoon. So the rampage continued and before the police arrived, William Safire would be down on the floor screaming in pain that Novak had "capped" him, a bruised and battered Ann Coulter would be in a boxing stance screaming, "Bring it back on, Nova-hack! I'm ready for you now!", Armstrong Williams, nursing a broken arm, would be heard to say, "No one pays me enough money for this!" and NPR's Mara Liasson would be giggling as she surveyed the damage. Reports that she was the one who set the drapes on fire while cackling, "Burn, baby, burn" are as yet uncomfirmed.

C.I.: What do the police know?

Kara: Last night, not much. Eye witness Scooter Libby refused to talk and, even though he had a busted lip, he kept insisting he'd speak only to a grand jury. Paul Bremer insisted to the police that he had seen no violence and that, in fact, the ceremonies had moved along peacefully. The investigation was being stone walled and most thought it had reached a dead end. This morning, however, a witness came forward, Linda Tripp. Tripp not only attended the ceremonies, she taped them. Indictments will be forth coming as a result -- although Alberto Gonzales has assured everyone there will be presidential pardons. When Novak's attorney, Ted Olson, asked Tripp why she had come forward she replied that she just missed the limelight and being the butt of jokes.

C.I.: It sounds incredibly violent. What has the reaction been?

Kara: Well CNN has stated that they are putting the ceremonies "on vacation" but no one assumes that they will cancel them because, frankly, CNN's lack of backbone since merging with AOL Time Warner is a widely known fact. However, C-Murder did issue a call for peace and Lil' Kim did hold a press conference to ask, "Who are the real gangsters?"

C.I.: Shocking. Thank you for that report Kara.

[As always, Kara's on the scene reporting from the BuzzFlash GOP Hypocrite of the Week awards is a parody and not fact based -- as far as we know.]

C.I.: Now with sports news, we go to Mike.

Mike: C.I., Women's eNews is reporting "Women Lose Chance to Play at X Games." Kamelia Angelova reports that despite increased participation among women in extreme sports, the X Summer Games only allows female participation in two categories this year: wakeboard and skateboard. As Angelova reports, more categories were actually open to women in the games of 1997 and 1998 when females were allowed to participate in three categories. ABC and ESPN will broadcast the X Summer Games. Back to you, C.I.

C.I: Thank you Mike. Now we go to Jim with the latest on whistle blower Sibel Edmonds.

Jim: C.I., Vanity Fair is reporting, in their September issue, that the firing and silencing of FBI translator Sibel Edmonds results from "state secrets" involving parties close to the Turkish government. Specificially the American-Turkish Council, on whose board former national security advisor Brent Scowcroft serves, and the Assembly of Turkish American Associations. David Rose's "An Inconvenient Patriot" states that on December 2, 2001, Edmonds and her husband David Edmonds were visited at their home by Malek Can Dickerson, then an FBI translator, and Dickerson's husband, former Air Force major Douglas Dickerson. During the visit both the A.T.C. and A.T.A.A. were brought up by the Dickersons with suggestions that both organizations could be helpful to the Edmonds. Wiretaps that Sibel Edmonds had heard, suggested, from Rose's article, "that the Washington office of the A.T.C. was being used as a front for criminal activity." The wiretaps also allegedly revealed suspects stating that "they had a covert relationship with . . . Dennis Hastert, Republican congressman from Illinois and Speaker of the House since 1999." Wiretaps also reportedly reveal a discussion of "a payment to a Pentagon official, who seemed to be involved in weapons-procurement negotiations" and "that Turkish groups had been installing doctoral students at U.S. research institutions in order to acquire information about black-market nuclear weapons." Again, that is from the September issue of Vanity Fair, David Rose's "An Inconvenient Patriot." Rose notes that A.T.C. "denies that the organization has ever been involved in espionage or illegal payments. And a spokesperson for the Assembly of Turkish American Associations said that to suggest the group was involved with espionage or illegal payments is 'ridiculous.'"Back to you, C.I.

C.I.: Thank you, Jim. In entertainment news, we go to Betty.

Betty: is reporting that the LA Times has obtained documentation of taped recordings of Marilyn Monroe's sessions with Dr. Ralph Greenson and one transcription of a psychiatrist session, Monroe reveals a sexual relationship with Joan Crawford. This from Ed Welch's "Marilyn Monroe's Gay Fling."

C.I.: Betty, as a fan of Monroe's, your thoughts?

Betty: Well the rumors of a liason of some sort between Monroe and Crawford early in Monroe's career has been detailed in numerous biographies on Monroe and on Crawford. I can't imagine most people being shocked by the news but I could be wrong.

C.I.: Before we go further, we should note that in previous reports, Monroe has been quoted as claiming that she made up things for her sessions. My own personal opinion is that some sort of relationship or overture occurred but we will note the previous reports because Monroe had told some people that she invented things near the end of her sessions. And we should also note that there have been rumors of other same-sex involvements on the part of Monroe as well as Crawford. Now, there's more news in Welch's article, correct?

Betty: Yes. The man making the transcriptions was "former Los Angeles prosecutor John Miner." He reviewed the tapes as part of the original investigation into Marilyn Monroe's death. Welch reports that Miner believes the tapes suggested foul play and Monroe's death and appeared to support rumors of an affair between Monroe and Robert F. Kennedy. Miner's claims will probably be the topic of many discussions. Back to you, C.I.

C.I.: Thank you, Betty. In health news, we go to Elaine.

Elaine: C.I., The Sunday Times of London is reporting concern and preparation in England for bird flu, also known as avian flu. Jonathon Carr-Brown's "Britain prepares for bird flu death toll of thousands" reports that as the flu crosses to other species, measures are being taken to deal with a potential pandemic. Sir Liam Donaldson tells Carr-Brown that it "is not if the pandemic comes, but when." The excercise, which will take place in September, is an attempt to deal with predicted consequences from a pandemic. From the article:

Estimates of deaths in the first six weeks of the outbreak range from 20,000 up to 710,000, after which the disease would begin to subside. About 20m people could suffer serious breathing problems.The young would be hit hardest because older people have some immunity left from the Hong Kong flu pandemic of 1968. Officials are looking for sites for mass mortuaries. The global death toll could make the pandemic more serious than the 1918 Spanish flu outbreak, the worst infection since mass statistics have been gathered.

Elaine: England was ahead of the United States in addressing the health issue of Mad Cow and it appears that they may be ahead of the United States with regards to bird flu as well. Back to you, C.I.

C.I.: Thank you, Elaine. Now reporting on the drug wars, Dona.

Dona: Via Narco News, Bill Conroy's "New State Department stats contradict media's narco-war hype" reports that the U.S. State Department has been alarming citizens with false statistics on the kidnapping and murdering of United States citizens in Mexico. Conroy concludes that the drug war and the official hype have resulted in something in direct opposite of the stated goals:The narco-traffickers engaged in the turf battle in Nuevo Laredo can gain control of a lucrative monopoly by eliminating their competition; politicians and bureaucratic careerists in the United States can score power points by dishing out "national security" cash to fund the war; and the media can prop up newspaper sales and ratings by exploiting the fear generated by the violence.

C.I.: Thank you, Dona. Now we go to Ava with news of the Saturday march in Atlanta for voting rights.

Ava: C.I., in Atlanta people turned out to show their support for the Voting Rights Act of 1965 which is set to expire in 2007. NPR reports that "more than 10,000 people marched." NPR's coverage, including historical perspetive, can be found here. CNN's coverage included this quote from US Representative John Lewis:

Forty years later, we're still marching for the right to vote. Don't give up, don't give in. Keep the faith, keep your eyes on the prize.

Ava: As reported by the Associated Press, Lewis used the weekly Democratic Party radio address to strongly advocate for the reauthorization of the law. Via CNN, Lewis speech included this statement: "Our democracy depends on protecting the right of every American citizen to vote in every election." The Washington Post reports that among those participating were Jess Jackson, Sr., "Atlanta mayor Andrew Young, Rep. John Lewis (D-Ga.) and the Rev. Joseph Lowery, the former president of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference." Air America Radio broadcaster Randi Rhodes was present and accounted for. Rhodes used her program and website to promote the march. As noted on her website, also participating were Stevie Wonder and Willie Nelson. Rhodes will be addressing the march on her show this Monday. The Associated Press reports that Eleanor Holmes Norton, D.C.'s sole Congressional delegate, is also advocating for the reauthorization of the Voting Rights Act. USA Today reports that longterm activists Dick Gregory and Harry Belafonte participated. Back to you, C.I.

C.I.: Thank you, Ava. In other activism news, we go to Jess.

Jess: Today was the sixtieth anniversary of the dropping of the atomic bomb on Hiroshima and around the world the event was marked by truth telling and rememberances. The Associated Press reports that in Japan "thousands of paper lanterns representing the souls of the dead were floated on a Hiroshima river Saturday near ground zero for the world's first atomic bomb attack 60 years ago." In Crawford Texas, where the Bully Boy was engaging in another vacation, now topping 320 days of total vacation time, "A Japanese survivor and a former US prisoner of war in Japan urged an end to nuclear arms" reports the AFP. Reuters reports that the death toll from the bombings tops 242,437. The Japan Times' Eric Johnston estimates that more than 55,000 people attended the memorial in Hiroshima. In Kula Lumpur, The New Straits Times reports, that over "3,000 people held a march for peace" to mark the anniversary. The BBC reports that in Scotland "Glasgow City Council leader Steven Purcell and Deputy Lord Provost Christine Devine attended a vigil in the city's George Square, along with CND, unions and other campaigners" and "[i]n Edinburgh the launch of the Festival of Spirituality and Peace marked the 60th anniversary of Hiroshima at St John's Church on Princes Street." In London, the BBC estimates, that 55,000 people gathered for the peace vigil. In Oak Ridge, TN, the Associated Press estimates that 1,100 people participated making it "the largest peace protest ever in Oak Ridge." And as reSista (Santa Cruz Indymedia) reports, additional protests will take place on August 9th which will be the sixtieth anniversary of the bombing of Nagasaki.

C.I.: Thank you, Jess. Now for Kat with the music news.

Kat: NME is reporting that Bob Dylan will have a London photo exhibit at the Proud Camden Gallery, September 16 to October 15. Though the exhibit will not feature photography by Dylan, it will feature photography of him and is approved by Dylan. MTV reports that System of the Down is touring with Volta and Kanye West prepares for the release of his latest album entitled Late Registration. Billboard reports that Jimi Hendrix's complete Woodstock performance will be coming out on DVD and that OutKast is planning to release an album this fall and to release a film in January. The BBC reports that Buena Vista Social Club singer Ibrahim Ferrer has passed away at the age of 78. Rolling Stone reports that Martha Reeves, of Motown's Martha & the Vandellas, is on the ballot for Tuesday's upcoming primary election to the City Council. Finally the Free Fiona website, dedicated to forcing Sony to release Fiona Apple's follow up to 1999's When the Pawn . . . currently has 36,111 signatures on their petition. At Sony's official Fiona Apple site, there is still no comment on the unreleased album or on the drive by Apple's fans to force the corporation to release it. As Rolling Stone has noted, the "disc, delivered in the spring of 2003, has been deemed too non-commercial for release."

C.I.: This feature came about when The Third Estate Sunday Review wanted to highlight Kara's reporting, which was fictional -- repeat ficitonal, and to highlight BuzzFlash GOP Hypocrite of the Week Award selections. Instead of doing a blog spotlight, the decision was made to incorporate it into a feature done as an actual newsbroadcast. Utilize links for additional information and thanks to all who participated especially Maria who selected an item from Democracy Now! in Spanish, Dallas who hunted down links, Jess' parents who scanned international coverage to suggest stories and Ruth who e-mailed to note NPR's coverage. In addition, everyone involved has searched out topics and articles as we've attempted to do this feature in real time (exactly fifty-eight minutes according to Dona).