Monday, 26 July 2004

A Thoughtful Times Editorial

Oops, sorry, won't do. We can't just shrug our shoulders over this shooting article/0,,1070-1707225,00.html
Opinion - Tim Hames
July 25, 2005

THE POLICE, according to a Sunday newspaper yesterday, fear a “backlash in the Muslim community” after the fatal shooting of Jean Charles de Menezes, an innocent Brazilian electrician, at Stockwell Tube station on Friday. What the police should fear is a backlash from the entire civilised community. Yet there is no evidence that either the politicians or the public will provide it. The theme has been that this was a tragic “mistake”, but one which was unavoidable, even inevitable, in the current climate...

Sunday, 25 July 2004

From the New York Times 12FRAN.html?ex=1091100459&ei=1&en=545e14f28ecdf4e6

CRITIC'S NOTEBOOK; Shadows Cast By a Loving Father And the Holocaust

By ROBERTA SMITH (NYT) 1437 words
Late Edition - Final , Section E , Page 1 , Column 1

DISPLAYING FIRST 50 OF 1437 WORDS - Many photographs are haunted by the future, by events that unfolded after the shutter clicked. Knowing what came next, or later, or in the end, we read power into them while also feeling powerful ourselves: we in the present know more than the people in the pictures did. Their innocence...

Thursday, 15 July 2004

Words in the silence among the weapons

Richard Butler, over a year ago now, was describing his experience with UNSCOM of attempting to inspect Iraq's putative weapon stashes. Not long afterward I thought that one thing he described might be one for the Dag's Dictionary ( features/dagsdictionary.htm).

Am wondering if now he would change his description of the situation. A riddle wrapped in a mystery wrapped in an enigma may describe Russia -- another few layers of opacity may be around in a civilization whose people have been dancing between the world powers of the time back to thousands of years BCE in Persia & Mesopotamia.
In any case, the same situation does happen at other times (in fact, it may be becoming more common in things like political interviews [EXAMPLES?] ), so finding a more succinct word or phrase would still be useful.

He described a scene where an Iraqi officer was lying to him. He knew the officer was lying. The officer knew that Richard Butler knew the he was lying. Richard knew that the officer knew that Richard knew he was lying. But they both played along with straight faces, asking & answering questions.

(And they said the diagram for Knowledge Nation was complicated? Hah!)

Fending Off a Plagiarist
Friday, July 2, 2004

... While I was resigned to fighting plagiarists in my classroom, I had not expected to have to fight one for credit for my own dissertation. A doctoral student at Northeast Urban University -- I'll call him Mr. X -- presented my dissertation as his own. He received a Ph.D. and took an excellent research job at Prominent African University. Through my subsequent efforts, he lost his degree, his job, and his reputation.

Here's what happened...

Kim Lanegran is an assistant professor of political science.
Copyright © 2004 by The Chronicle of Higher Education

Monday, 12 July 2004

Now it's raining we might need these.

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Sunday, 11 July 2004

The Trials of War (book review of Law and War)

Law and War: An American Story, by Peter Maguire.
New York: Columbia University Press, 2000. xii + 290 pp. Notes, bibliography, index. $30.00 (cloth), ISBN 0-231-12050-8.

Review by Jonathan Lurie, Rutgers University, Newark.
Published by H-Law (July, 2001)


The Trials of War
Law and War is a fascinating, occasionally flawed and frustrating, but ultimately successful work that is well worth reading. Moreover, as we await and anticipate the impending war crimes trial of Slobodan Milosevic, Peter Maguire's work is especially timely. Although much of the book focuses on the Nuremberg trials, Maguire, who has taught on this subject at Columbia University and Bard College and was historical advisor to the documentary "Nuremberg: A Courtroom Drama," quite properly places this topic in a broader context ... (link to more)

The resulting account of "law and war" focuses on four preludes to Nuremberg: our [American] Civil War; the virtual destruction, if not elimination, of Native American society; the Philippine insurrection; and World War I. Maguire contends, I believe correctly, that unless one understands how American policy towards law and war was shaped and reshaped by these four developments, it is impossible to grasp the ultimate significance of the Nuremberg trials AND their implications concerning future American policy, for better or for worse. Those who feel confident about U.S. policy as we head into the latest round of international war crimes trials, aptly described by Yale Law Professor Ruth Wedgwood as "a growth industry," ought to read Maguire's book and carefully ponder his conclusions.[1] Maguire argues that the lessons of Nuremberg "remain unclear" in part because "what that name represents is really a series of contradictory trials that lead to no single, simple conclusion" (p. 5). They represent a telling example of "the storm where war, law and politics swirl and oscillate in a constant state of flux." As with much of our history, the Nuremberg Trials reflected a real "tension between America's much-vaunted ethical and legal principles and its practical policy interests" (pp. 5-6). Moreover, American history demonstrates an inability and/or disinclination to make war with a common set of expectations and procedures.

Thus we fought the Civil War, the Indian Wars, and the Philippine insurrection with very different tactics and perceptions of our opponents. Denouncing some opponents as "savages" or "barbarians," we made war according to different sets of rules, depending on who our adversaries were. Treaties ending hostilities with England were one thing, but solemn promises made to Indians were quite another. Opponents in Cuba were not equated with Phillipino natives clothing their insurrection in the rhetoric of a quest for independence.

Friday, 9 July 2004

The Big Wind

Historical Hurricane Tracks: