August 9, 2010 Nº 942 - Vol. 8

"The principle goal of education is to create men who are capable of doing new things, not simply of repeating what other generations have done - men who are creative, inventive and discoverers."

Jean Piaget

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  • Top News

Captured as a teen, youngest Gitmo prisoner prepares to face trial

Kadhr, the youngest detainee in the U.S. facility Guantanamo Bay, is set to go to trial this week, charged with terrorist acts for al Qaeda and the killing of a U.S. Special Forces soldier by throwing a grenade during a 2002 firefight in Afghanistan. A defense lawyer, Lt. Col. Jon Jackson, has been appointed by The Pentagon. The prosecutor said if Khadr is convicted of serious charges, "the government will ask for life" in prison. The panel of 15 members of the U.S. military that will act as a jury will be seated by the end of the day on Tuesday. When the case begins, the Canadian branch of Amnesty International will be inside the courtroom. "Amnesty International has been a strong critic of the Military Commission process, really from day one, and even the various improvements and changes that have been made over the years have not, in our view, turned this into what can be considered a legal process that meets international fair trial standards." It said the Canadian government had been unwilling to speak out against the United States or to insist that Khadr be tried in Canada or regular U.S. courts. If Khadr decides to stay in the prison camp rather than coming to the hilltop courthouse Monday, Jackson said he would defend him vigorously. A trial with an empty defendant's chair, or having a 23-year-old with a Grade 8 education act as his own lawyer, is not ideal for Obama's showcase trial. Before the trial can start this week, the military judge must hear the final pre-trial motions, including one to determine whether statements Khadr gave as a wounded teenager to army interrogators can be used as evidence, or should be dismissed as unreliable products of torture.

BlackBerry security stance sows anxiety

Although it is unclear precisely what these countries like Saudi Arabia, India and Lebanon are asking for, one demand is for the same kind of access to BlackBerry's encrypted services that they think the company already gives authorities in the United States and other industrialized democracies. R.I.M., which is generally known for its secrecy, has declined to provide details on its discussions with governments or to explain how it complies with laws around the world that require communications companies to grant government agencies access to their systems for lawful intercepts. This has kept alive suspicions in some foreign capitals and among computer security experts in the United States that R.I.M. has made concessions to some countries. R.I.M. officials flatly denied last week that the company had cut deals with certain countries to grant authorities special access to the BlackBerry system. They also said R.I.M. would not compromise the security of its system. At the same time, R.I.M. says it complies with regulatory requirements around the world. Speaking privately, several United States law enforcement and security officials would not say whether the government has a way to decrypt BlackBerry messages, explaining that they were reluctant to divulge whether any particular service posed difficulties. But there has been little public sign of law enforcement frustration with BlackBerry encryption. The officials said that law-enforcement agencies in the United States had an advantage over their counterparts overseas because many of the most popular e-mail services — Gmail, Hotmail and Yahoo — are based here, and so are subject to court orders. That means the government can often see messages in unencrypted forms, even if sent from a BlackBerry. In addition, officials said that in emergencies, when lives might be in danger, they sometimes sought the voluntary assistance of companies, including those outside the United States. Security experts say that BlackBerry's system, while secure, is susceptible to eavesdropping. Some even say that its design allows companies, and potentially governments, to monitor messages, though not necessarily with R.I.M.'s cooperation. Most experts say R.I.M.'s service for consumers is not at issue, because the messages are largely unencrypted and easy for governments to intercept.

The Web will kill universities

According to Bill Gates, in the next five years free content and lectures available online will be better than any single university. Gates believes that universities don't need to be "place-based", and a system should be developed to give students credit whether they're learning at MIT or teaching themselves from on the Internet.

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  • MiMIC Journal

Chinese bank Everbright eyes $3.2bn flotation

China Everbright Bank has said it hopes to raise up to 21.7 bin yuan ($3.2bn) in a stock market flotation. The initial public offering (IPO) would be mainland China's second-largest this year. Last month, Agricultural Bank of China raised an estimated $19bn in a dual listing in Shanghai and Hong Kong.


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  • Brief News

Polls open in Rwanda's presidential election

Rwandans are voting to elect their president, with incumbent Paul Kagame expected to win by a landslide. Kagame's supporters say he has brought both stability and steady economic growth since the country's genocide in 1994. His critics accuse him of suppressing opposition and undermining democracy. This is only the second presidential election since 1994, and five million Rwandans are registered to vote.

BP oil spill costs pass $6bn mark

The oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico caused by the Deepwater Horizon rig explosion has so far cost BP a total of $6.1bn ($3.8bn), the company has said. The total includes the cost of the spill response, containment, relief well drilling, and cementing up of the damaged well. The sum also includes grants to the Gulf states hit by the spill. It also includes the $319m paid out in compensation to some of those affected by the spill. BP has yet to be drawn about what will happen to the oilfield after the damaged well is blocked. There is still a huge amount of oil in the reservoir deep under the seabed.

Mexico police detain their own commander at gunpoint

Police officers in Ciudad Juarez in northern Mexico detained their commander at gunpoint, accusing him of corruption and links to drug gangs. More than 200 federal police agents raided the hotel where their commander was staying and accused him of planting drugs on police officers to blackmail them into carrying out extortion. The commander has been suspended, pending an investigation. Ciudad Juarez is the most violent city in Mexico and corruption is rife.

Lehman Bros art under the hammer

Art that once hung on the walls of collapsed investment bank Lehman Brothers is to be sold next month. The sale in London is expected to fetch an estimated $3.2m and $10m in New York. The proceeds will go towards repaying the creditors of the investment bank, which was the biggest bankruptcy in US corporate history when it collapsed in September 2008.

Computer boss quits in sex probe

Mark Hurd resigns as chief executive officer and president of Hewlett-Packard following a sexual harassment probe, the company says. s board found Mr. Hurd didn't violate the company's policy regarding sexual-harassment, they said he submitted inaccurate expense reports that were intended to conceal what the company said was a "close personal relationship" with the then-unidentified woman.

Lawyer in Iran stoning case asks for asylum in Norway

Iranian lawyer Mohammad Mostafaei, who has been defending a woman facing death by stoning in Iran, has sought asylum in Norway. Mostafaei's famous client, Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani, is sentenced to be executed by stoning and still faces execution by hanging after being charged with murder as well as adultery. Her case has sparked international outrage and the sentence has been suspended pending a review. Mostafaei said he had been called in for questioning by the Iranian authorities and then told to return for more questioning. When he failed to do so, he said the authorities jailed his wife Fereshteh and her brother to pressure him to return.

Kagan is sworn in as Supreme Court judge

Elena Kagan has been sworn in as the newest justice in the US Supreme Court. The 50-year-old becomes the youngest serving Supreme Court judge. She will serve alongside President Obama's first appointment, Sonia Sotomayor. She is thought unlikely to alter the balance of the court as she replaces liberal justice John Paul Stevens. Kagan swore to "faithfully and impartially" uphold the law for all Americans. She will formally join the court on 1 October, just before the judges return to the bench for a new session after their summer recess.

Tighter will-writing laws demanded

The private will-writing industry needs tighter regulation across Britain as consumers are losing thousands of pounds to charlatans. Consumers have complained of cheap will offers with escalating hidden costs. Beneficiaries have also had payouts stolen.

Many Boston associates must produce to earn top pay

There is news out of Boston that some leading corporate firms are telling their young lawyers that their billable output and overall performance are increasingly relevant come pay time.

California governor, AG seek immediate resumption of same-sex marriages

California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, Attorney General Jerry Brown and others filed motions Friday in the US District Court for the Northern District of California opposing a request to stay the court's recent decision enjoining the enforcement of Proposition 8, the state's ban on same-sex marriage. The requested stay would disallow gay marriage in California until the decision is appealed to the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and even possibly the US Supreme Court. Schwarzenegger and Brown were originally defendants in the lawsuit against Proposition 8, now leaving defendant-intervenors Project Marriage and other groups to defend the controversial law.

Federal appeals court rules against warrantless GPS tracking

The US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit ruled Friday that prolonged use of global positioning systems (GPS) to monitor suspects' vehicles violates the Fourth Amendment protection against unreasonable searches and seizures. The appellate court found that there exists a reasonable expectation of privacy in the "whole of a person's movements over the course of a month" because the combination of all such movements is not actually or constructively exposed to the public. Although the Supreme Court's ruling in United States v. Knotts allows the use of tracking devices to follow vehicles from one place to another based on a lower expectation of privacy on public roads, the appeals court distinguished the instant case by finding that too much personal information is revealed over longer periods of time.

  • Weekly Magazine Review


What animals think. nside The Minds of Animals. Science is revealing just how smart other species can be —and raising new questions about how we treat them.


Mosques in America: faith and anger. The latest front in America's culture wars: a planned Islamic culture center and mosque in lower Manhattan, a couple of blocks from the site of the World Trade Center.

Business Week

The Wisdom and Folly of the Bush Tax Cuts. Most economists agree there's little choice but to end tax cuts from George W. Bush's era. That means the fiscal war in Washington is only going to get uglier.

The Economist

Leviathan Inc. Governments seem to have forgotten that picking industrial winners nearly always fails.

Le Nouvel Observateur

Les géants de la pensée.

Der Spiegel

Der Sieg über die Gene - Wie wir unser Erbgut überlisten könn.

  • Daily Press Review

Landslides cut off Swat Valley
Al Jazeera, Doha, Qatar

Netanyahu Testifies about Violence on Turkish Ship
Asharq Al-Awsat, Pan-Arab daily, London, England

UAE envoy inspects Yemen hospital progress
Gulf News, Independent daily, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

What Netanyahu will only answer in secret
Haaretz, Liberal daily, Tel Aviv, Israel

MIDEAST: Injured Workers Man Battered Services
IPS Middle East, International cooperative of journalists, Rome, Italy

'US to sell Saudi Arabia jets without long-range weaponry'
JPost, Conservative, Jerusalem, Israel

Mystery of two abandoned babies solved
Khaleej Times, English-language daily, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Internet penetration rate reaches 83% among UAE nationals
Middle East North African Network, Online financial portal, Amman, Jordan

German Authorities Shut '9/11 Plotters' Mosque in Hamburg
Nahamet, Online news portal, Beirut, Lebanon

Panel formed on Lebanon poll law
Saudi Gazette, English-language daily, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

Khamenei adviser meets with Assad, Meshaal in Damascus
The Daily Star, Independent daily, Beirut, Lebanon

Baghdad returns to map of global airlines
Times of Oman, English-language daily, Muscat, Oman

More incentives and privileges are guaranteed for investors by new law on investment
Yemen Observer, Sana'a, Republic of Yemen

The OPEC Fund for International Development Scholarship
Yemen Times, (Independent weekly), Sana'a, Republic of Yemen

Court delays 'damaging children'
BBC News, Centrist newscaster, London, England

Israeli aid convoy raid 'was legal', Online news portal, Cork, Ireland

Israel aid convoy raid 'was legal'
Daily Express, Conservative tabloid, London, England

Hewlett-Packard boss quits suddenly after contractor files charges of sex harassment
Daily Mail, Conservative daily, London, England

HP CEO resigns
DMeurope, Online news portal, Amsterdam, Netherlands

ISRAEL: Netanyahu tells inquiry that Turkey ignored flotilla warnings
France 24, Issy-les-Moulineaux, France

Turkish musician's work continues to resonate with urban generations
Hurriyet Daily News, (Liberal, English-language), Istanbul, Turkey

The Teen Choice Awards 2010 Best Dressed
Look Magazine, London, England

Biker in 30 foot plunge at Lake District beauty spot
News & Star, Independent daily, Carlisle, England

The Week Ahead: August 9-15
Radio Free Europe, Prague, Czech Republic

Weather Getting In The Way?
Sky News, Independent newscaster, Middlesex, England

Parts for Tehran's Nuclear Program: Did Siemens Conduct Dubious Trade?
Spiegel International, Liberal newsmagazine, Hamburg, Germany

Mia Farrow: Naomi knew where diamonds came from
The Guardian, Liberal daily, London, England

Briton set to complete marathon Amazon walk
The Independent, London, England

Harbinger's racing future in the balance
The Irish Times, Centrist daily, Dublin, Ireland

Police to Get New Name in Reform
The Moscow Times, Independent daily, Moscow, Russia

Peter ouch!
The Sun, London, England

Roald Dahl: the plane crash that gave birth to a writer
The Telegraph, London, England

Mia Farrow disputes Naomi Campbell's account of 'blood diamond affair'
The Telegraph, Conservative daily, London, England

Six of world's best wild-water swims
Times Online, Conservative daily, London, England

Two foreign ministers discuss Peninsula situation
Antara News, News agency, Jakarta, Indonesia

Radical Indonesian cleric arrested for terrorism
China Post, English-language daily, Taipei, Taiwan

10th Seoul International Financial Forum Kicks Off
Chosun Ilbo, Conservative daily, Seoul, South Korea

Floods cut off parts of Pakistan
Dawn, English-language daily, Karachi, Pakistan

Max Petroleum finds new potential at Zhana Makat, Official online newspaper, Kazakhstan

Pak seeks testimony of Indian magistrate in Mumbai case
Hindustan Times, New Delhi, India

IAF flies in WAC chief to oversee Leh relief ops
India Express, News portal, Mumbai, India

MNS to 'clean up' Mumbai
India Times, Conservative daily, New Delhi, India

Shinagawa designated as starting point for Tokyo-Nagoya maglev bullet trains
Japan Times, Independent centrist, Tokyo, Japan

NUJ wants Perak speaker to remove all obstacles against the media
Malaysian Star, Online news portal, Selangor Darul Ehsan, Malaysia

Asian flood wave hits China
New Zealand Herald, Conservative daily, Auckland, New Zealand

Commander surrenders
Pajhwok Afghan News, (Independent news agency), Kabul, Afghanistan

Australian firefighters depart to U.S. for 9/11 tribute event
People's Daily Online, English-language, Beijing, China

Search on for 'lost amphibians' before they go extinct
Sify News, Chennai, India

On trial for Tegan
Sydney Morning Herald, Centrist daily, Sydney, Australia

China mudslides, 127 dead, 2,000 missing
Taiwan News, English-language daily, Taipei, Taiwan

InvesTaiwan Service Center opens for business
Taiwan Today, Government Information Office, Taipei, Taiwan

Now a gold dessert for 15,730 pounds
Thaindian News, Bangkok, Thailand

Rescue work in full swing as death toll reaches 150 in Leh
The Hindu, Left-leaning daily, Chennai, India

Floods in China leave 1,300 missing
Canadian Broadcasting Centre, Toronto, Ontario

Guardian Life celebrates with credit union
Caribbean360, Online news portal, St. Michael, Barbados

Minister extends public consultation on Conservation Law
Cayman Net News, Online news portal, George Town, Cayman Islands

Dominican President could mediate Colombia-Venezuela conflict again
Dominican Today, Independent daily, Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic

PERU: Transparency a Challenge for Mining and Oil
IPS Latin America, International cooperative of journalists, Rome, Italy

JCF cleans house
Jamaica Gleaner, Independent daily, Kingston, Jamaica

Peru International Reserves totaled US$39 billion as of August 3
Living in Peru, News portal, Lima, Peru

Rolling up the rim on the Saudi BlackBerry agreement
The Globe and Mail, Centrist daily, Toronto, Canada

Mortality rate doubles in Moscow's smoke and heat
Toronto Star, Toronto, Ontario

Nagessar promises brighter Chaguanas
Trinidad Guardian, Independent daily, Port-of-Spain, Trinidad

Model 'said Taylor sent diamond'
BBC News, Centrist newscaster, London, England

Muzito Signs $42 million Loan Agreement with India for Kakobola Dam, Independent online news aggregator

Govt Angry With Kufuor's Attacks On Mills' Performance
GhanaWeb, Online news portal, Amsterdam, Netherlands

Wyclef the 'right person'
iafrica, Online news portal, Cape Town, South Africa

Return to the house of horror
Independent Online, News portal, Cape Town, South Africa

Ethiopian Opposition parties must cut across ethnic lines - Amb David Shinn
Jimma Times, Online news portal, Jimma, Ethiopia

Campbell said Taylor gave her 'huge diamond'
Mail & Guardian Online, Liberal, Johannesburg, South Africa

New land policy a well kept secret, Online news portal, Cape Town, South Africa

Ogun PDP Elders Council lauds dissolution of EXCO
Vanguard, Independent daily, Lagos, Nigeria


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