June 4, 2012 nº 1,185 - Vol. 10

"Obstacles are things a person sees when he takes his eyes off his goal.

E. Joseph Cossman

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  • Top News

Soros says three months to save the euro

George Soros has warned European leaders they have a "three-month window" to save the euro. He said he believed Greece would elect a government willing to abide by loan conditions imposed by the EU in this month's elections. But he said the German economy would begin weakening in the autumn, making it much harder for Chancellor Angela Merkel to provide further support. He said leaders did not understand "the nature of the crisis". He said that while European leaders were focusing on debt levels, the crisis was "more of a banking problem and a problem of competitiveness". For this reason, he said they had "applied the wrong remedy". "You cannot reduce the debt burden by shrinking the economy, only by growing your way out of it," he added.

Nearly 21 million work in forced labor

Upwards of 20.9 million people worldwide work in forced labor, the ILO - International Labour Organization, a UN agency focusing on labor rights, reported Friday. The ILO's estimate of about 21 million people in forced labor is a revision from its 2005 "minimum estimate" that 12.3 million people were victims of forced labor. The ILO describes people in forced labor as being "trapped in jobs into which they were coerced or deceived and which they cannot leave." The ILO's report indicates that women represent 55 percent of forced laborers worldwide and that 90 percent of forced laborers are in the private sector. Forced labor is most prevalent in East Asia, which represents 56 percent of the global population of forced laborers. While East Asia accounts for the largest number of forced laborers, the prevalence rate of forced labor is highest in Africa and southeastern Europe. The ILO estimates that three in every 1,000 people worldwide are in some form of forced labor.

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  • MiMIC Journal

China urged to free Tiananmen activists

The US government urges China to free all those still in prison 23 years after Beijing's 1989 crackdown against protesters in Tiananmen Square.


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  • Brief News

Crucial Law of the Sea treaty ignored

A story about a Senate hearing on sex, alcohol and the Secret Service dominated the front page of the press last week. It is disturbing that a hearing which featured the secretary of state, the defense secretary and the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (when was the last time that group testified together?) was not granted even the slightest mention in the nation's paper of record. The hearing of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee was on the Law of the Sea Convention, a treaty of immense importance to the future of the United States — addressing issues including naval operations, jobs, the melting of the Arctic Ocean and the largest potential US gain of territory since the Louisiana Purchase. What does it say about The Post's journalistic priorities that this story was ignored?

The Queen's diamond jubilee: 'We are all a part of the great flotilla'

It was a brilliant stroke to think of a River Pageant, because it stirs the collective memory. When you bother to ask how the nation came into being, you find that much of the answer is written in water. Water was UK's national, and international, element. The Thames was one of the principal arteries of England, carrying stone, grain and timber in vast quantities. The principal impression of foreigners approaching London by water was of the incredible volume of traffic. But what is even more incredible, in the 21st century, is the lack of traffic. If you fly above the Thames, any other day but yesterday, you will see cars stationary on the M25, and you will probably join a queue stacking over Heathrow to land, while the great, grey ribbon of water flows all but empty. Londoners make so little use of their greatest natural resource. London exists because of the Thames, but Londoners live as if they have barely noticed it. It was good to be reminded yesterday, by a thousand boats, of its origins. This Jubilee is having a similar effect upon Brit's sense of themselves. Most of the time, they ignore the river of their history. Its springs and tributaries are muddied or built over, and even the river itself can sometimes be bypassed, but we would not be here without it. If it were ever to dry up, they would be lost. For such commemoration, monarchy provides the excuse. Sixty years of a single, much-loved monarch does so in a better way than anyone (since there is now no one alive who was around in 1897, Queen Victoria's Diamond Jubilee year) can remember. Actually, the word "excuse" is not right. It is not an accident that children have always learnt history best when they have studied it chronologically through reigns. Nor is it an accident that teachers who want to attack national narrative always want to take kings and queens out of it, and replace it with a series of "themes" designed to show that everyone except the rich has had a miserable time. UK's successful monarchy proves something quite different. With Elizabeth II at the masthead, they cannot all be in the same boat, but we are in the same flotilla.

MEPs back EU financial transaction tax

MEPs have expressed a broad consensus in favor of a European FTT - financial transaction tax. The European Commission has proposed a 0.1% tax on the trade in shares and bonds, and a 0.01% tax on derivatives trading.

Battles over voter ID laws intensify

Since 2008, controversial changes to state election laws have spread across the nation to restrict voter registration drives, scale back early voting periods or stop people from registering to vote on Election Day. Opponents say the new laws discriminate against minority voters. "Together speech and voting are constitutional rights of special significance; they are the rights most protective of all others, joined in this respect by the ability to vindicate one's rights in a federal court. ...[W]hen a plaintiff loses an opportunity to register a voter, the opportunity is gone forever ... And allowing responsible organizations to conduct voter-registration drives — thus making it easier for citizens to register and vote — promotes democracy," US District Court Judge Robert L. Hinkle said

Many see politics, not justice, in Mubarak verdict

Crowds erupted with joy and anger Saturday after Egypt's former president was sentenced to life in prison for his role in protesters' deaths. Many Egyptians hoped Hosni Mubarak and his interior minister would face harsher sentences.

New York high court rules custodial parent can be convicted of kidnapping

The New York Court of Appeals on Thursday ruled that a custodial parent can be convicted of kidnapping where the parent's actions are "so obviously and unjustifiably dangerous or harmful to the child as to be inconsistent with the idea of lawful custody." The court made this ruling to affirm the conviction of a father who shared equal custody with the child's mother but, when approached by police officers responding to a domestic violence call, held onto the child and threatened him with a knife when the police came close. The court ruled that this satisfied the element of unlawfully restraining the child "without consent," and that, even as custodial parent, he did not have the right to consent the child to such a dangerous type of restraint. The court made clear that this ruling does not apply when a child is punished inappropriately or even when unlawful child abuse is committed, but only in situations as extreme as this one.

Ireland voters approve EU fiscal treaty

Voters in Ireland have approved the Treaty on Stability, Coordination and Governance aimed at improving fiscal discipline and promoting greater financial information disclosure between EU member states, according to official results Friday. In a national referendum that took place on Thursday and had a turnout of around 50 percent, 60.3 percent voted in favor of the fiscal treaty while 39.7 voted against it. Supporters of the treaty argued that it would ensure the stability of the country's current financial situation, while opponents criticized the treaty because it may result in more public cuts lowering further the quality of citizens' lives. Ireland currently has an unemployment rate of 14.3 percent while the Irish banking debts would cost the nation's taxpayers an estimated €68 billion (USD $85 billion).

Sudan stoning death violates international laws

HRW - Human Rights Watch on Thursday urged the Sudanese government to reform its discriminatory laws and abolish both the death penalty and all corporal punishment after a young Sudanese woman was sentenced to death by stoning for adultery. Intisar Sharif Abdallah, who is believed to be under the age of 18, was sentenced in April under article 146 of Sudan's Criminal Act of 1991. The provision requires that a married person who commits adultery be sentenced to death by stoning, while an unmarried person receives 100 lashes.

Court rules same-sex partner can seek custody of adopted child

The New Mexico Supreme Court on Friday ruled that the same-sex partner of a parent who has adopted a child has a right to seek custody of that child after the partnership has dissolved. The court granted standing to a woman seeking partial custody of a child she had supported for years while in a same-sex relationship with the child's biological mother. The court ruled that, if the facts alleged were true, the plaintiff could establish a natural parent and child relationship under the New Mexico UPA - Uniform Parentage Act, even though she could not establish a biological link and had never sought to legally adopt the child.

Kerviel's refusal to be scapegoat may harm appeal chances

Jerome Kerviel began his fight today against a 2010 conviction for Societe Generale SA 's 4.9 billion- euro ($6.2 billion) trading loss, telling a Paris appeals court that the bank knew about his actions. His lawyers said they'll show judges at the four-week appeal that the bank knew before the 2008 trading loss that he was exceeding his mandate with risky bets and can't claim to be an innocent victim. Kerviel's stance is similar to the defense he used with his previous legal team when the court held him responsible, sentenced him to three years in jail and ordered him to repay the loss. Those arguments aren't likely to impress the appellate judges.

As lockup expires, Groupon's shares plunge

Shares in the online coupon giant tumbled as much as 10 percent on Friday, and by midafternoon remained mired at about $9.65 a share, as a lockup on insider selling expired.

BP to seek sale of Russian venture TNK-BP

The British oil company plans to sell its 50 percent stake in its Russian joint venture, TNK-BP, after being approached by potential buyers of the holding. The announcement on Friday came as a surprise because TNK-BP had been a lucrative investment for BP and the company had repeatedly stated that it was not interested in selling its stake. But continuous disputes with BP's Russian billionaire partners in the joint venture and threats of legal action had cast a shadow over the investment.

Thyssen gets interest for Brazil, US plants

ThyssenKrupp has attracted interest from Brazil's Vale and South Korea's Posco for its struggling steel plants in Brazil and the US. Citing company sources, the magazine said Vale, which already owns 27% of the Brazilian plant CSA, would be interested in buying the rest of the joint venture, which has saddled Germany's biggest steelmaker with heavy losses. Vale said it did not want to buy a controlling stake in any steel mill. But it did not rule out the company increasing its stake in CSA, so long as it did not become the majority stakeholder.

  • Weekly Magazine Review

How to die.

Jubilee gal!

Business Week
Back to work

The Economist
Morals and the machine

Der Spiegel
Geheim-Operation Samson. Wie Deutschland die Atommacht Israel aufrüstet

Guerra santa. Carte trafugate. Veleni. Arresti. Nella Santa Sede è in atto un violento scontro con al centro il potente cardinale Bertone. Mentre il papa è sotto assedio e gravato dagli scandali

  • Daily Press Review

All passengers dead in Nigeria plane crash
Al Jazeera, Doha, Qatar

Old Egypt regime candidate attacks Islamist rival
Asharq Al-Awsat, Pan-Arab daily, London, England

Houla killings monstrous, crisis will end - Assad
Egyptian Gazette, English-language, Cairo, Egypt

Israeli airstrike on Gaza Strip, Palestinians report seven wounded
Haaretz, Liberal daily, Tel Aviv, Israel

Syria releases kidnapped Lebanese farmers
JPost, Conservative, Jerusalem, Israel

Pop royalty marks Queen's Jubilee
BBC News, Centrist newscaster, London, England

Baghdad attacks leave at least 14 dead
CNN International, London, England

Assad: Syria crackdown like surgery
Daily Express, Conservative tabloid, London, England

Berlusconi backtracks on call for Italy to say 'ciao' to the Euro and claims it was just a joke
Daily Mail, Conservative daily, London, England

MTV Movie Awards 2012: Kristen Stewart and Charlize Theron battle it out in the style stakes
Daily Mail, Conservative daily, London, England

Republicans fail to dampen Jubilee party spirit
EuroNews, International news, Ecully Cedex, France

FRANCE - JUSTICE: Société Générale rogue trader Kerviel launches appeal
France 24, Issy-les-Moulineaux, France

Nobody has ever been able to prevent abortion
Hurriyet Daily News, (Liberal, English-language), Istanbul, Turkey

Bashar Assad: Syria crackdown is like surgery
Independent The, London, England

BP seeks TNK-BP sale
Moscow News The, Independent, Moscow, Russia

Stephen Lawrence profile: the ambitious teenager with a fun-loving streak
Telegraph The, Conservative daily, London, England

Jools the jubilee veteran swaps the pub for the Palace
Telegraph The, Celebrity news, London, England

Woods ties Nicklaus with PGA victory
Bangkok Post, Independent, Bangkok, Thailand

US official sees chances to restart TIFA talks: gov't
China Post, English-language daily, Taipei, Taiwan

Russia Derails Plans for Korean Satellite Launch
Chosun Ilbo, Conservative daily, Seoul, South Korea

Nigeria mourns after plane crash kills over 150
Hindustan Times, New Delhi, India

Clear morning in Delhi, rain likely
India Times, Conservative daily, New Delhi, India

Sharapova continues French domination
Japan Times, Independent centrist, Tokyo, Japan

Oil plunges to eight-month low: report
New Zealand Herald, Conservative daily, Auckland, New Zealand

British Queen celebrates Diamond Jubilee with 1,000 boat flotilla on Thames river
People's Daily Online, English-language, Beijing, China

Strong earthquake strikes in Pacific south of Panama
Straits Times, Pro-government, Singapore

Exercise: when to stop
Sydney Morning Herald, Centrist daily, Sydney, Australia

IOC to meet Pakistan sports officials
Taiwan News, English-language daily, Taipei, Taiwan

Debt, property risks curb China economic growth
The Economic Times, Business, Mumbai, India

Nigeria crash may have killed many residents on ground
Canadian Broadcasting Centre, Toronto, Ontario

EU leaders to push Putin on Syria at summit
Globe and Mail The, Centrist daily, Toronto, Canada

Australian Stock Market Report - Afternoon 6/4/2012
International Business Times, Business news organization, New York, U.S

Dam Company in Chile Presses Gov't for Supportive Policies
IPS Latin America, International cooperative of journalists, Rome, Italy

Global shares head lower as world slowdown fears grow
Reuters, Business News, New York, U.S

Buddhist vigilantes kill 9 Muslims in Myanmar violence
Reuters, World News, New York, U.S

Eaton Centre shooting: Victim mourned as police launch massive search for gunman
Toronto Star, Toronto, Ontario

Nigeria mourns air crash victims
BBC News, Centrist newscaster, London, England


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