"Patriotism is the willingness to kill and be killed for trivial reasons." Bertrand Russell

Saturday, May 21, 2005


Newsweek to remove spines from future publications
Change to spineless format follows latest trend in American journalism
by: Freepressed on: 20th May, 05

Since its founding in 1933, the pages of Newsweek have been held together by a perfect combination of glue and staples. The binding method proved incredibly effective, ensuring that the pages would not be lost or shuffled in the wrong order.

However, all of that will change next week when the popular weekly news magazine becomes a worthless stack of loose papers.

The decision to switch to the spineless format comes amid a general willingness in the media to rollover in the face of criticism from the White House and the radical right wing of the Republican Party.

Newsweek President Harold Shain explained that it wouldn't be much of a change because the magazine never had much of a spine in the first place.

"This will make things a lot easier. It takes too much money and effort to back-up our stories with solid supporting materials."

White House Press Secretary Scott McClellan said President Bush is looking forward to the change.

"We hope that this will make it easier for us to manipulate the news product, allowing us to keep the news we want and throw the rest away."

Global Echo

New reports bolster prisoner abuse claims
Conor O'Clery, North America Editor, in New York

US/IRAQ: The International Committee of the Red Cross gathered "credible" reports that US personnel at the Guantanamo Bay naval base in Cuba abused the Koran, and raised the issue with the Pentagon several times, according to a Red Cross and US government officials in Washington.

This comes as Washington tries to defuse anger in Muslim countries over Newsweek's report that the Muslim holy book was flushed down a toilet at the Guantanamo prison in front of a detainee....

US president George Bush said yesterday of the pictures: "I don't think a photo inspires murderers," and blamed "an ideology that's so barbaric and backwards that it's hard for many in the Western world to comprehend how they think".

The Red Cross claims about the disrespect for the Koran at Guantanamo were relayed to the Pentagon several times in 2002 and early 2003, Red Cross spokesman Simon Schorno said. "The US government took corrective measures and those allegations have not resurfaced," he said....

The New York Times reported that in October 2004, the US Army's Criminal Investigation Command concluded that there was probable cause to charge 27 officers and enlisted personnel with criminal offences - ranging from dereliction of duty to maiming and involuntary manslaughter - in the Dilawar case.

Full Article...

The Irish Times