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Table of Contents

Incurable Form of TB is Global Threat

The report says that the impact of the Russian TB resurgence has already been felt well beyond the borders of the Russian Federation. Transnational cases -- TB acquired in one country, but diagnosed in another -- will likely become increasingly common, even if aggressive measures are taken at once. But although this outbreak has occurred in a technologically advanced industrial society, it remains, at this writing, unchecked

Scientists Alarmed by Whale Deaths

by Mark Bourrie Scientists are growing alarmed at the deaths of hundreds of grey whales off the Canadian/US coast in past months -- apparently caused by starvation.

The carcasses of more than 100 of the whales, which can grow to 15 meters and weigh 16 tonnes, have been found on the beaches of Washington state, Alaska and British Columbia. Hundreds more are believed to be drifting at sea

Link Between Cell Phones and Brain Cancer, Researcher Says

by Russell Mokhiber and Robert Weissman Industry-funded researcher find risk of acoustic neuroma, a benign tumor of the auditory nerve that is well in range of the radiation coming from a phone's antennae, was 50 percent higher in people who reported using cell phones for six years or more. Moreover, that relationship between the amount of cell phone use and this tumor appeared to follow a dose-response curve. He found that there appeared to be some correlation between brain tumors occurring on the right side of the head and use of the phone on the right side of the head. And, most troubling, he found that laboratory studies looking at the ability of radiation from a phone's antenna to cause functional genetic damage were definitely positive, and were following a dose-response curve

Officers of Brutal KOPASSUS Trained in U.S.

by Terry J. Allen Norwich also offers relative obscurity. Who would think a general under suspicion of crimes against humanity, the head of a repressive foreign intelligence apparatus, and young men who are part of (or training to enter) an army notorious for its massacres would be strolling around the gentle village of Northfield, Vermont? "If a program this large and involved with Indonesian government institutions had been anywhere else," Nairn says. "It would have gotten more attention from Congress and perhaps would have been shut down"

Faster UN Probe Urged on Discovery of Bodies

by Sonny Inbaraj "There has been a lot of rhetoric at the UN level and if that rhetoric is not translated into action on the ground -- bearing in mind that we're talking about six weeks after the majority of these atrocities were committed, there will be severe implications in the future -- in terms of the ability of the East Timorse being able to tell the outside world of their stories," said Brown.

In the meantime, it has fallen upon the Australian-led International Forces in East Timor (Interfet) to gather and preserve what evidence they find of abuses. But the Australian Defense Force readily admits the task is beyond them

UN Force Finds E Timor Ghost Towns

by Sonny Inbaraj Even the stray dogs seem to have fled the East Timor town of Same. "This seems like a ghost town," said convoy leader Rob Wesley-Smith, an agriculture consultant with the Irish aid group Oikos. "I've gone on other convoys, but this is the worst so far." A question that rankles the mind is: Where is the rest of Same's population?

Australia Knew of Genocide Plans

by Sonny Inbaraj Australia's top diplomats, according to intelligence reports quoted by a magazine article, had direct evidence -- months before an orgy of killing broke out in the troubled territory after the Aug. 30 vote for independence from Jakarta -- that the Indonesian military was running the militias

Gore? Bradley? Coke? Pepsi?

by David Corn Bradley's been telling voters: Come journey with me in this noble cause to improve our nation by cleaning up politics and providing a hand up to those being left behind in these supposedly flush times. He appeals to those yearning for idealism and offers them a method for acting on their high-minded desires. Meanwhile, Gore gets personal and asks -- practically begs -- Democrats for something concrete: their votes. Give that to me, he says, and I'll do right by you, I'll go to the mat for you, I'll stand and fight for you

Turkey Season In New Hampshire

by Judith Gorman New Hampshire voters do not remotely ressemble a cross-section of the American population. A careful examination will reveal them to be anachronisms, throwbacks to the fellows who threw the tea in Boston Harbor. These are people who still believe, all evidence to the contrary, that politics and statesmanship are not mutually exclusive, and that leaders should act, not in the interests of their campaign contributors, but in the interest of the greater good

The Political Circus Comes to Town

by Randolph T. Holhut The New Hampshire Primary is a circus that never really stops. Now that the permanent campaign is a reality, candidates for the 2000 presidential elections have been making regular visits to the Granite State since 1997. For a few days in October, the circus finally came to my neighborhood. Here's a few vignettes from our little slice of the campaign trail, where what wasn't said was more telling than what was said

Disappointment in Union's Quick Endorsement of Gore

by Farhan Haq The U.S. presidential campaign may be more than one year away but organized labor already has thrown its weight behind Vice President Al Gore -- a candidate with strong pro-business and free-trade leanings

Is Warren Beatty the Last Real Democrat?

by Randolph T. Holhut You hear a lot of clucking among the chattering classes about how American politics is being debased by celebrities. Yes, it does seem ridiculous that Warren Beatty is interested in running for president. I ask, compared to what?

Elizabeth Dole, Inc.

by Monte Paulsen Now that Elizabeth is out of politics, IMG will be ready, willing and able to help her cash in on her heightened celebrity status and her campaign-financed mailing lists -- and, of course, to put her back on the speaking circuit. Dole continues to claim her fees go to charity. Much of the proceeds from her speaking engagements in 1998 went into the Elizabeth Dole Charitable Foundation. The foundation is a creation of an Cleveland-based accountancy called Investment Advisors International, itself a subsidiary of IMG. Of the $1,136,000 in speaking fees that Dole received in 1998, only $602,458 went to the foundation

Pentagon Gets Unrequested $17 Billion

by Jim Hightower In the multibillionous-dollar Pentagon budget approved by the congress, $17 billion more was appropriated than was requested. But the bulk of the increase doesn't go to soldiers -- it goes to the contractors who make weapons the Pentagon doesn't even want, and to pamper the brass

Buchanan vs. Trump Reform Party Fight Brewing

by Jack Breibart Buchanan has been grabbing ultra media attention as he flirts with the idea of escaping the Republican race and running as a Reformer while Trump has been urged to run by the Reform Party's highest elected official, Minnesota Governor Jesse Ventura, who is out of favor with the Perot wing of the party

The Peasant Army's Cocktail Party

by David Corn At Tony Morton's steakhouse -- three blocks from the White House -- scores of Patniks assembled to celebrate the publication of his new foreign policy book, the now-infamous tract that argues that Western Europe and the United States should have, more or less, left Hitler alone in the pre-Pearl Harbor years, in the hope he would have turned his war machine against the Bolsheviks in Russia. At the party, there was much guffawing over the hyped-up media outrage provoked by the book

The Peasant Army's Cocktail Party

by David Corn At Tony Morton's steakhouse -- three blocks from the White House -- scores of Patniks assembled to celebrate the publication of his new foreign policy book, the now-infamous tract that argues that Western Europe and the United States should have, more or less, left Hitler alone in the pre-Pearl Harbor years, in the hope he would have turned his war machine against the Bolsheviks in Russia. At the party, there was much guffawing over the hyped-up media outrage provoked by the book

Follow the Money

by Jason Vest What of the leadership of this army? Largely unreported in the wake of this conclave of whooping yahoos was news that the Buchanan campaign has either purged or been deserted by some of its most loyal soldiers, that some in the upper echelons of the campaign have historically used the Buchanan apparatus to do anything but take vows of poverty, and that because of his switch Buchanan's campaign could be on shaky financial ground

Error 404: News Not Found in Your Daily Paper

Kathie Lee Gifford and sweatshops, part III; the losing battle to control global warming; corporate disinformation campaign about safety of biotech foods; 1 out of 6 Americans drinks contaminated water; cash from Abe Hirschfeld

Too Many Boats, Too Few Fish

by Danielle Knight The U.S. government admitted October 7 that there were too many boats chasing too few fish in the oceans of the world and it called for a reduction of subsidies that encouraged overfishing

CIA Stonewalls on Involvement With Pinochet

by David Corn When the U.S. government released the second batch of documents collected under the White House directive, a set of records was missing: those detailing the CIA's underhanded involvement in Chile. The CIA has been making public its reporting on events that occurred in Chile -- such as riots, plots and strikes against Allende -- but not material indicating that the CIA helped stir up these anti-Allende activities. Or that it may have been involved in the murder of an American journalist

Powerful Mexican Family Tries to Censor Latino U.S. Magazine

by Mary Jo McConahay A binational David and Goliath battle is shaping up involving a powerful Mexican family linked by a U.S. agency to drugs and crime and a small, U.S. based Hispanic magazine who suggested they enjoy access to the Clinton White House

Mexican Evangelical Groups Step Up Recruitment

by Diego Cevallos Mexico's Catholic leaders recognize that they are losing members, saying they are working to counter the phenomenon. But they also point out that the evangelical churches have a great deal of money and, at times, a radical message

Colombian Cocaine Market Explodes Despite U.S. Efforts

by Yadira Ferrer Some analysts say that the theory of the "narco-guerrilla," promoted by the head of the United States Office of National Drug Control Policy, Gen. Barry McCaffrey, is diverting attention toward insurgent groups and allowing the real drug traffickers to operate without interference. The experts say that drug kingpins are "having a field day" with the soaring narcotics prices on the world market

Carolinas Encouraged Building in Flooded Areas

Extensive damage to homes and farms during recent hurricanes was caused by earlier government programs which brought homeowners and companies to build in flood plains and other areas prone to natural disaster

Global Warming Could Flood Manhattan, Other Coastal Cities

The consequences of global warming for the United States include the flooding of New York City, Boston and Miami, the World Wide Fund For Nature warns. The Japanese cities Tokyo, Osaka and Nagoya also face the risk of flooding

Toxic Mercury Rains in Midwest

A new report reveals that the rain and snow falling on cities in the American Midwest contains levels of mercury that far exceed what the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) considers safe

Italy's Neofascists Say Mafia is Unreliable in Hope to Evade Trial

by Jorge Pina Italy's political right wing is trying to exploit the exoneration of ex- prime minister Giulio Andreotti, who had been charged with having Mafia ties, by demanding an end to all legal proceedings against their own political representatives.

India Groundwater Contaminated by Arsenic

By Sujoy Dhar Large-scale arsenic contamination of aquifers in the Gangetic plains of the state and in adjoining Bangladesh which has affected some four million people in West Bengal

IMF "Makes Up" Funding Needs, Audit Shows

by Abid Aslam U.S. lawmakers are unable to make sense of funding requests from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) because the institution appears to make them up as it goes along, according to a report to Congress

World Bank Can't Recover $5.5 Billion Stolen in Nigeria

by Remi Oyo Nigerian President's campaign to recover the nation's stolen money, estimated at $5.5 billion, by former government officials, has suffered a setback, after the World Bank chief said they have no power to retrieve the missing wealth

New Questions About Pentagon Link to Gulf War Syndrome

New concerns about pyridostigmine bromide, an investigational drug administered to service members deployed for the Gulf War, are raised in a RAND study released by the Pentagon Oct. 19. Pyridostigmine bromide, or PB, was given the troops because it was the only medication available to protect humans against soman, a deadly nerve agent known to be present in the Gulf Region before and during the war. The Pentagon estimates 250,000 troops received packets of the drug

Best Regards, Ted Kaczynski

by Gary Greenberg What happened when Gary Greenberg, a Connecticut psychotherapist and professor, approached Theodore Kaczynski and proposed to write the Unabomber's biography. Greenberg, who had no previous experience in journalism, recounts his discoveries not only about Kaczynski but about the publishing business, journalistic ethics, celebrity culture and his own ambition

High Hopes for a new Indonesia

A wave of relief swept over Indonesia after Parliament elected Abdurrachman Wahid -- better known as Gus Dur -- as the country's next president and Megawati as vice president. Indonesians have pulled away from the abyss and now hope for a better future

Indonesia Must Face Nation's Gruesome Past

by Andreas Harsono Skeptics question whether Gus Dur and his team can solve those problems when they have interests that partially contradict the stated objectives. How can Gus Dur demilitarize Indonesia when Wiranto is still in power? How could Darusman reopen the Suharto case when Wiranto, who gave his personal guarantee to Suharto, is still sitting in the same cabinet with Darusman and the other good guys?

Indonesia's Environment Remains Pawn of Special Interests

by Richel Dursin Indonesians' preoccupation with things political leaves little room for attention to environmental issues, including the perennial forest fires that will recur for years to come, experts here say

Prospects Dim For Bringing Suharto to Justice

by Kafil Yamin Indonesian's former president Suharto looks likely to join the club of the world's rulers who dodge legal measures and public demand for accountability, now that Jakarta has halted a probe into his wealth. preoccupation with things political leaves little room for attention to environmental issues, including the perennial forest fires that will recur for years to come, experts here say

Conservatives Try Stealth Censorship of Internet

by Donna Ladd The would-be Internet police are playing a tricky game these days: The U.S. Supreme Court rebuked the political ploy to "protect" kids from smut, the Communications Decency Act. So now Big Brother is looking for a flunky to assassinate the First Amendment

How I Learned to be a Racist

by Joe Loya Earlier this year, three men chained James Byrd, Jr. to the back of a pickup truck, then dragged him to his death on a back road in Jasper, Texas. Two of the men -- John King, 24, and Russell Brewer, 32 -- were only three weeks out of prison, where they belonged to the white supremacist Confederate Knights of America. They figured the heinousness of their crime would establish the infamy they sought for their prison gang. Don't think that you are not at risk of hate contagion since you will only be in prison for two years. I served only 22 months in prison before I felt compelled to tell my black parole agent that she would have to assign another agent to me since living among blacks in prison turned me into a racist

Report Shows U.S. Bombed Chinese Embassy Deliberately

by Yoichi Shimatsu Now, five months later, two newspapers -- the Observer in London, Politiken in Copenhagen -- jointly reported October 17 that several NATO officials and military officers have admitted that U.S. bombing of the Chinese Embassy in Belgrade was deliberate. The reporters also quoted a NIMA source as saying that the "wrong map" story was "a damned lie"

The Constitution According to Giuliani

by Steve Chapman Giuliani, the mayor of New York, is not entirely ignorant of the United States Constitution. I mean, he went to law school. He passed the bar. He held high positions in the Justice Department. He served as a U.S. Attorney. But just as an artist can be colorblind, Giuliani displays a complete inability to see what is perfectly obvious to everyone else: The First Amendment applies everywhere in the United States -- even in the city over which Giuliani presides

Dear God, Give us a Touchdown

by Molly Ivins I do wonder if praying before a football game isn't sort of insulting to the Lord; somewhere between lese-majeste and blasphemy. God may care about every little sparrow that falls, but I don't see why we should expect him to care about whether the Panthers beat the Tigers or the Ducks beat the Fighting Sand Crabs

The Big Muddy in Colombia

by Molly Ivins Watching the United States slog deeper and deeper into the Big Muddy in Colombia is so painfully familiar, so eerily reminiscent of earlier foreign-policy disasters, that it should be enough to make us all wake up screaming in the middle of the night. But part of the nightmarish quality of repetition is that we're sleepwalking into this one, too -- just the way we did in Vietnam, El Salvador and Nicaragua -- with practically nobody paying attention

It's Bad When They Won't Take Your Money

by Molly Ivins The State Board of Education has gotten itself into such a fubar -- "fouled up beyond all recognition'' (bowdlerized version) -- that it has been rejected as a client by the respected consulting firm of Richards & Tierney Inc. In other words, our board is so bad that people in the money business won't even take our money. How we got into this pickle is a little complicated, but it's part of the ongoing snafu at the Board of Ed

OJ, Diana, Jon Benet and Monica, Monica, Monica

by Molly Ivins The only trouble with media bashing, which we all so enjoy, is that it's gotten to be like complaining about the weather: Everyone gripes about the media, but nobody does anything about them

A Thoroughly Lousy Banking Bill

by Molly Ivins The 1999 Gramm-Leach Act is about to replace the 1933 Glass-Steagall Act, with the result that bankers, brokers and insurance companies can all get into one another's business. It's a done deal except for the final vote on the conference-committee agreement. The inevitable result will be a wave of mergers creating gigantic financial entities

Cut Off at the Budget Impasse Again

by Molly Ivins Here we are, cut off at the Budget Impasse again. The Republicans are vowing not to touch the Social Security surplus, and their alternative is to cut everything else across the board. They think this is smart politics because the Democrats used this ploy for years, charging the R's with "raiding Social Security" to give tax breaks to the rich and other heinous schemes. Now the R's think they can beat the D's at their own game, ha-ha-ha

Health Insurance System is Dying

by Molly Ivins Of the presidential candidates, only Bill Bradley has made a thorough, thoughtful health-care proposal, and he concedes it would still leave about 5 percent uncovered by insurance. Some of his political opponents claim his plan would be vastly more expensive than estimated -- but then, they always claim that about health-care plans. Hard to think of any system vastly more expensive than the one we have

Whiffle-Brains Attack First Amendment

by Molly Ivins Report from the Cultural Diversity front: In Waco, the Vatican City of the Baptists, in a 30-day span we find a gay-pride march, Bishop Desmond Tutu speaking at Baylor University, Edward James Olmos speaking to the Hispanic Chamber and a Klan rally. We live ... in a great nation

College Students Lead Anti-Sweatshop Drive

by Molly Ivins Several human-rights groups have helped with the anti-sweatshop movement, but the bulk of the energy seems to come from the campuses. USAS has become quite sophisticated about how to guarantee independent monitoring and is also working for living wages for foreign workers, based on economic conditions in each country. These laptop activists have already had a major impact on collegiate licensing industry and should in time be able to affect the entire apparel industry

GOP Bests Clinton But Risks Nuclear War

by Molly Ivins For the United States, the end of the Cold War made a test ban treaty even more urgent because the major threat to us no longer comes from the former Soviet Union but rather from the increasingly likely possibility that nuclear arms from Russia will be scattered from hither to yon. As though to underscore this very point, symptoms of anarchy in Russia increased daily during the weeks of Republican maneuvering on the treaty. It is quite clear that Russian organized crime, perhaps the most powerful force in that country, is willing to sell arms stolen from the state to absolutely anyone

Buchanan Was Always a Media Creation

by Norman Solomon Buchanan's brand of populism has never had much difficulty getting access to mass media. But progressive populism -- stressing labor solidarity and human rights for everyone while challenging corporate power -- is a very different story. Mostly excluded from the media frame are populist advocates who explicitly reject scapegoating and directly confront the undemocratic power wielded by large corporations

Media Fuels the Online Trading Mania

by Norman Solomon The mixed messages would be insidious even if most people could get rich. But of course, few will ever become wealthy. And while the hype from online brokers is evoking images of the shrewd "day trader" who can make a killing on Wall Street with mouse in hand, the online frenzy could harm the financial security of millions of Americans. At a time when many economists believe that stocks are greatly overvalued, plenty of individual financial futures could be undercut on short notice. Not bothering to mention the risks, most of the advertisements touting the joys of online trading cannot withstand scrutiny. But they're not supposed to

A Tale of Two Magazines

by Norman Solomon Last year, when Tina Brown left her job as top editor of The New Yorker to begin work on Talk, former Newsweek correspondent Robert Parry was already running I.F. Magazine on a shoestring far smaller than Brown's martini budget

Where's the Serbian Genocide?

by Alexander Cockburn "The UN figures," said Perez Pujol, director of the Instituto Anatomico Forense de Cartagena, "began with 44,000 dead, dropped to 22,000, and now, stand at 11,000." He and his fellows were prepared to perform at least 2,000 autopsies in their zone. To date, they've found 187 corpses. Palafox said he had the impression that the Serbs had given families the option of leaving. If they refused, or came back, they were killed. Like any murder of civilians, these were war crimes, just as any mass grave, whatever the number of bodies, indicates a massacre. But genocide?

Holding the Forests for Presidential Ransom

by Alexander Cockburn So, what is afoot? The long process of review -- probably 18 months -- means that the executor of the plan will be the next president. What better way to congeal support for Al Gore, with leaders of the major green groups presaging a forest holocaust if George W. Bush wins the White House?

Does Art Really Shock Anyone, Anymore?

by Alexander Cockburn At the time it planned the "Sensation" exhibit, the Royal Academy was over $3 million in debt, and desperate to create profitable controversy, intimating that some of the artists displayed might be put up for membership in the academy. The artists dutifully played their role, denouncing the academy as "fat, stuffy, pompous," in the words of Damien Hirst, who specializes in bisected animal carcasses

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