Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Protesters storm Moldovan parliament

Corneliu Rusnac reports for the Associated Press :

CHISINAU, Moldova (AP) — Protesters have stormed the Moldovan parliament and a presidential office and set fire to furniture.

Police fired water cannons on protesters Tuesday but were unable to stop them from breaking into the buildings.

At least 10,000 protesters gathered earlier to protest what they said were fraudulent elections on Sunday.

An Associated Press reporter saw the windows smashed on two floors of the presidential office. Romanian Realitatea TV said six police officers were injured in the clashes.


Violence escalates in Moldovan capital



According to various reports, between 2,500-20,000 people took to the streets of Moldovas capital, Chisinau, to protest the results of Sundays parliamentary elections. Protesters have taken over and are looting the presidential palace and parliament.

Fujimori found guilty of human rights crimes

National Security Archive Update, April 7, 2009

UPDATE: FUJIMORI FOUND GUILTY OF HUMAN RIGHTS CRIMES

http://www.nsarchive.org

Washington, DC, April 7, 2009 - As a special tribunal in Peru pronounced former president Alberto Fujimori guilty of human rights atrocities, the National Security Archive today posted key declassified U.S. documents that were submitted as evidence in the court proceedings. The declassified records contain intelligence gathered by U.S. officials from Peruvian sources on the secret creation of "assassination teams" as part of Fujimori's counterterrorism operations, the role of the Peruvian security forces in human rights atrocities and Fujimori's participation in protecting the military from investigation.


"...
The prosecution of Fujimori comes ten years after the ground-breaking arrest of Gen. Augusto Pinochet, and is part of an accelerated movement in Latin America to hold human rights violators accountable. “The exercise of justice in the Fujimori case,” noted Peter Kornbluh, a senior analyst at the Archive who attended the trial last fall, “sends a signal through Latin America, and onto the United States, that those who authorize human rights abuses in the name of fighting terrorism are not immune from prosecution.”

Fujimori faces up to 30 years in prison..."



Visit the Archive's Web site for more information

Twitter Venn for G20 Leaders

From Neoformix :

By: Jeff Clark    Date: Thu, 02 Apr 2009


I have used Twitter Venn to look at the tweets containing references to the leaders of the US, Canada, and the UK during the G20. This is a snapshot taken around 9:30 EST on April 2nd. I combined the word clouds for several Venn regions into the single image below for ease of comparison. A few obvious observations:

  1. Obama is being referenced more frequently the Brown (the host), and both are referenced much more often than Stephen Harper.
  2. There are a lot of tweets mentioning both Obama and Brown indicating a high interaction between these two leaders.
  3. Very low association between Harper and the other two leaders.
  4. Obama's word cloud references Michelle as the highest term, those for the other leaders contain no obvious reference to their spouse.
  5. Harper's cloud seems to be primarily about him missing the group photo.
Click here ... to see the latest Twitter Venn for the names of these leaders in the context of G20.


For more interesting images: Neoformix
- Discovering and Illustrating Patterns in Data

Seconde Rhétorique

From the Online Encyclopedia :

In late medieval Fr. poetics, a distinction came to be made between the art of persuasion or oratory as applied in prose, rhet., the figures and tropes, and the art of persuasion in verse, versification or prosody; the former came to be called “first rhet.” and the latter “second.” Patterson dates these treatises on the art of verse from 1370 to 1539; they form the middle link between the few Occitan and OF treatises and the Arts poétiques of the Pléiade in the Ren.

How prosody came to be allied with rhet. is one of the chapters of medieval poetics In Med. Lat., prosody was treated primarily as a branch of grammar, being either included in grammars as a chapter called “Prosodia” or else written as a separate manual, e.g. Bede's De arte metrica (both types are collected in Keil). Rhet. took a parallel but distinguishable course except in encyclopedic works like Isidore of Seville's Etymologiae (prosody and rhet. are the subjects of the first two chapters). Alternatively, some theorists viewed prosody as a branch of music; these two traditions devolve from the metrici and rhythmici of the ancients. In the 12th and 13th cs. emerged the treatises known as artes poeticae , such works, following the inspiration of Horace, treated both rhet. and prosody together. These are instanced in John of Garland's Parisiana poetria (much on prosody), Matthew of Vendome's Ars versificatoria (virtually nothing), Geoffrey of Vinsauf's Poetria nova , Alexander of Ville Dei's Doctrinale , and Eberhard the German's Laborintus (collected in Faral). Dante's unfinished essay on poetry, De vulgari eloquentia, which treats chiefly diction and prosody, provides the transition to the vernaculars. By the 15th c., in France, manuals distinguish not between rhet. and prosody but prose and verse, and since prosody treats of precisely those devices that are the differentia of verseform, it became a “second rhet.”; “pleine rhétoriques” treated both. Langlois collects 7 principal texts by Jacques Le Grand, Baudet Herenc, Jean Molinet, and 4 anonymous authors, but the most influential was Deschamps' L' Art de dictier (1392).

'I look after your body only because we need you for information'

From Report Calls CIA Detainee Treatment 'Inhuman' by Joby Warrick and Julie Tate :

Medical officers who oversaw interrogations of terrorism suspects in CIA secret prisons committed gross violations of medical ethics and in some cases essentially participated in torture, the International Committee of the Red Cross concluded in a confidential report that labeled the CIA program "inhuman."

Health personnel offered supervision and even assistance as suspected al-Qaeda operatives were beaten, deprived of food, exposed to temperature extremes and subjected to waterboarding, the relief agency said in the 2007 report, a copy of which was posted on a magazine Web site yesterday. The report quoted one medical official as telling a detainee: "I look after your body only because we need you for information."

New details about alleged CIA interrogation practices were contained in the 43-page volume written by ICRC officials who were given unprecedented access to the CIA's "high-value detainees" in late 2006. While excerpts of the report were leaked previously, the entire document was made public for the first time by author Mark Danner, a journalism professor, on the Web site of the New York Review of Books.

The confidential report sheds additional light on the CIA's handling of the detainees, who were held in secret overseas prisons for up to four years and subjected to what the agency describes as "enhanced interrogation techniques." In addition to widely reported methods such as waterboarding, the report alleges that several of the detainees were forced to stand for days in painful positions with their arms shackled overhead. One prisoner reported being shackled in this manner for "two to three months, seven days of prolonged stress standing followed by two days of being able to sit or lie down."

In addition to the coercive methods -- which the ICRC said "amounted to torture" and a violation of U.S. and international treaty obligations -- the report said detainees were routinely threatened with further violence against themselves and their families. Nine of the 14 prisoners said they were threatened with "electric shocks, infection with HIV, sodomy of the detainee and . . . being brought close to death," it said.

The ICRC report was based on accounts made separately to agency investigators by individual detainees, all of whom had been kept in isolation before the interviews, the document states. CIA officials have confirmed that three of the prisoners were subjected to waterboarding, which simulates drowning.

An ICRC spokesman confirmed the authenticity of the document and said the organization "deplores that what was to be a confidential report has been made public."

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