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Early Warning Pigeons
Topic: Current Events 2:36 pm EST, Mar 18, 2003

] About 50 pigeons will ride with Marine units into Iraq to
] provide early warning of a biological or chemical weapons
] attack

Early Warning Pigeons

BBC NEWS : In quotes: Reaction to Bush ultimatum
Topic: Current Events 2:15 pm EST, Mar 18, 2003

] Reaction has been coming in from around the world
] following US President George W Bush's deadline for
] President Saddam Hussein and his two sons to leave Iraq
] by 0100GMT on Thursday 20 March or face war.

Quotes from a variety of countries: France, Japan, Germany, Denmark, Italy, Mexico, Canada, China, Russia, Philippines, Iran, the Arab League, Asean (Association of Southeast Asian Nations), New Zealand, and the Vatican. All over the scale, from "we're for it" to "we're against it," to "we're staying out of it and minding our own business".

BBC NEWS : In quotes: Reaction to Bush ultimatum

Libraries post Patriot Act warnings
Topic: Society 12:04 pm EST, Mar 18, 2003

] Along with the usual reminders to hold the noise down and
] pay overdue fines, library patrons in Santa Cruz are
] seeing a new type of sign these days: a warning that
] records of the books they borrow may wind up in the hands
] of federal agents.
] The signs, posted in the 10 county branches last week and
] on the library's Web site, also inform the reader that
] the USA Patriot Act "prohibits library workers from
] informing you if federal agents have obtained records
] about you."
] "Questions about this policy," patrons are told, "should
] be directed to Attorney General John Ashcroft, Department
] of Justice, Washington, D.C. 20530."

I think this is an excellent way to get more support for the "Freedom to Read Protection Act" that was introduced last week. Something I'm fully in support of.

More information at this Memestreams Thread, too:

Libraries post Patriot Act warnings

Ha'aretz (Hebrew News): Gazans Mourn American Protester Killed by IDF Bulldozer
Topic: Current Events 7:39 pm EST, Mar 17, 2003

] "We fly a U.S. flag today to show our support to all
] American peace lovers, those like Rachel," said
] Palestinian farmer Hassan Abu Toa'ma, 24.
] It was a rare change of pace for Rafah, where American
] flags have more often been burned than held in reverence
] since the Intifada began in September 2000.

The sheer topsy-turvy mix of nationalities on this story touched me. Palestinians offering sympathy to Americans? A Hebrew news source reporting the Palestinian situation with sympathy? Perhaps this girl's tragic death can bring all sides together, for a brief time at least.

Ha'aretz (Hebrew News): Gazans Mourn American Protester Killed by IDF Bulldozer Iraq creates four military areas
Topic: Current Events 6:50 pm EST, Mar 17, 2003


] The Iraqi President Saddam Hussein issued a decision last
] week for the partitioning of Iraq into four military
] zones in preperation of any war started by the USA. The
] Iraqi President handed over Baghdad's leadership to his
] younger son Qusai while he distributed other area on his
] aides. Iraq creates four military areas

Top Iraqi defector disappears
Topic: Current Events 6:21 pm EST, Mar 17, 2003

] U.S. officials have pointed to Khazraji, widely respected
] among the Iraqi armed forces for his role in the
] Iran-Iraq war, as a candidate for a leadership position
] in an Iraq without Saddam.

The ex-Chief of Staff of the Iraqi Army (1987-1990) goes for a walk near his current home in Denmark, and disappears. Was he kidnapped (or worse) by Iraqi Intelligence? Did he flee the country from fear of a war crimes trial, or did something else happen? Stay tuned...

Top Iraqi defector disappears

Word is made flesh as God reveals himself... as a fish
Topic: Miscellaneous 5:15 pm EST, Mar 17, 2003

] Stand-up comedians have already incorporated the carp
] into their comedy routines at weddings. One gefilte
] company has considered changing its slogan to: 'Our fish
] speaks for itself.'

Word is made flesh as God reveals himself... as a fish

Fox News: Iraq Arming Troops with Chemical Weapons
Topic: Current Events 5:08 pm EST, Mar 17, 2003

] Officials say it's hard to tell how many of these weapons
] are being distributed, but the intelligence reports
] indicate that "some chemical shells" have been provided
] to troops.

Okay, so now, before the shooting starts, can we get any of the U.N. inspectors still in Iraq to go and confirm this? If this news is confirmed, there's a good chance we can trace the weapons back to the hidden cache where they came from, and if we can find that, we may find a whole lot of other stuff as well, and get the abscesses cleaned out.

And, if it *is* confirmed, would it change the mind of any of the doves?

Fox News: Iraq Arming Troops with Chemical Weapons

Okay Saddam, here's the plan...
Topic: Current Events 4:54 pm EST, Mar 17, 2003

A fairly detailed description of strategy that will be unleashed in about 3 days.

Okay Saddam, here's the plan...

Iraqis launch campaign of sabotage and defiance to undermine Saddam
Topic: Current Events 4:43 pm EST, Mar 17, 2003

] The only area where Saddam can rely with confidence on
] the loyalty of his security forces is in the Ba'ath
] party's heartland around Baghdad. In an attempt to
] reassert his authority Saddam last week issued a
] directive ordering Iraqi officials not to give up their
] positions and flee the country.
] To set an example, members of Saddam's security forces
] arrested a civil servant in the al-Hurriyya suburb of
] Baghdad on suspicion of preparing to leave the country.
] The unfortunate official was then tied to a pole in the
] street and passers-by were ordered to watch as his tongue
] was cut out and he was left to bleed to death.

Iraqis launch campaign of sabotage and defiance to undermine Saddam

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