Docudharma Times Monday July 28

The Economic


There Was


Economic Stimulus?

No One

Told Me

Monday’s Headlines:

Tax rebate checks are swallowed by economic malaise

Olympics: Wary China readies for some patriot games

Appeal for calm after ‘tinderbox’ state is hit by tiffin-box bombers

The last untouchable in Europe

Istanbul rocked by bomb attacks

Palestinian hostilities flare in Gaza

At least 26 dead in Baghdad bombings during pilgrimage

Darfur force ‘failing civilians’  

Mubarak here over Bashir warrant

El Salvador’s Monument to Memory and Truth

Iraq clings to a rickety calm between war and peace

As the last troops sent in a U.S. military buildup leave, security has improved, but Iraqis tread carefully. They know no victor has been declared in the battles that will decide the nation’s future.

By Ned Parker, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer

July 28, 2008

BAGHDAD — The departure this month of the last of the 28,500 extra troops sent in a U.S. military buildup leaves Iraq in a rickety calm, an in-between space that is not quite war and not quite peace where ethnic and sectarian tensions bubble beneath the surface.

Politicians and U.S. officials hail the remarkable turnaround from open civil war that left 3,700 Iraqis dead during the worst month in the fall of 2006, compared with June’s toll of 490, according to Pentagon estimates.

Signs abound that normal life is starting to return. Revelers can idle away the hours at several neighborhood joints in Baghdad where the tables are buried in beers and a man can bring a girlfriend dolled up in a nice dress.

Despite the gains, the political horizon is clouded: Shiite Muslim parties are locked in dangerous rivalries across central and southern Iraq. Kurds and Arabs in the north compete for land with no resolution in sight. U.S.-backed Sunni Arab fighters who turned on the group Al Qaeda in Iraq could return to the insurgency if the government does not deliver jobs and a chance to join the political process.

Worried Banks Sharply Reduce Business Loans  


Published: July 28, 2008

Banks struggling to recover from multibillion-dollar losses on real estate are curtailing loans to American businesses, depriving even healthy companies of money for expansion and hiring.

Two vital forms of credit used by companies – commercial and industrial loans from banks, and short-term “commercial paper” not backed by collateral – collectively dropped almost 3 percent over the last year, to $3.27 trillion from $3.36 trillion, according to Federal Reserve data. That is the largest annual decline since the credit tightening that began with the last recession, in 2001.


For Obama, Hurdles in Expanding Black Vote

By Alec MacGillis and Jennifer Agiesta

Washington Post Staff Writers

Monday, July 28, 2008; Page A01

MACON, Ga. — Amanda Bass, a volunteer for Sen. Barack Obama’s presidential campaign, had already tried once to get Wilmer Gray to register to vote. But when she glimpsed him in a black T-shirt and White Sox cap again on a recent weekday at the main bus stop here, she was determined to give it another try.

This time, Gray, 21, agreed — but his bus pulled up before he could fill out the form. Bass jumped onboard and persuaded the driver to wait.

“He was someone I’d worked hard to get,” said Bass, 19. “I couldn’t let him go, not after seeing how far he’d come.”

Tax rebate checks are swallowed by economic malaise

Consumers across the country say they have used their stimulus checks to pay bills and to stay afloat. The money has done little to boost their confidence in the economy.

By Richard Fausset, P.J. Huffstutter and Stephen Braun, Los Angeles Times Staff Writers

July 28, 2008  

ATLANTA — It is better than nothing.

That has been the subdued mantra repeated by working Americans in recent weeks as they spend the Bush administration’s final tax rebate in an economy racked by soaring gasoline costs, housing foreclosures, toppling banks and Wall Street jitters.

From Atlanta’s crowded housing projects to Indiana’s sprawling farm fields to San Gabriel’s bustling Chinatown, they spend because they have to — a dispiriting indication of worry, not of consumer confidence.

Those who don’t sock their Treasury checks away deplete their modest windfalls on bargain-rate clothes, groceries, utility bills, mortgage payments and gas tanks that increasingly seem to verge on empty.


Olympics: Wary China readies for some patriot games

With the streets awash with pride and excitement the communist authorities are trying hard to keep a lid on rising nationalism and a firm grip on potential ‘troublemakers’

Jonathan Watts in Zhengzhou

The Guardian,

Monday July 28 2008

In the concrete and glass shopping centre in the heart of Zhengzhou thousands of spectators, many wearing red-and-white “I love China” T-shirts and waving national flags, roar in approval as they gaze up at images of the Olympic torch on a giant TV screen.

The air is thick with pollution, heat and humidity. The security is so tight people are not allowed within a mile of the real flame. But among the crowd there is unabashed joy and pride that the Olympic symbol is passing through the capital of Henan, the most populous province in China.

Appeal for calm after ‘tinderbox’ state is hit by tiffin-box bombers

By Andrew Buncombe in Delhi

Monday, 28 July 2008

India leaders have appealed for calm after a series of co-ordinated bombings ripped through Ahmedabad, leaving at least 45 people dead and more than 100 wounded.

The 16 blasts on Saturday evening in the tense and troubled city in the state of Gujarat, which were preceded by emails from a group claiming responsibility, came the day after another series of bombs in India’s IT hub, Bangalore.

In the email that was sent to media organisations, a previously little known group that claimed it was behind the bombs suggested the blasts were being carried out in revenge for the killing of hundreds of Muslims by Hindu mobs in 2002.


The last untouchable in Europe

The only living Cagot traces the roots of her pariah people, who endured centuries of brutal prejudice for reasons no one can even remember

By Sean Thomas

Monday, 28 July 2008

Sitting in her little house near Tarbes, in the French Pyrenees, Marie-Pierre Manet-Beauzac is talking about her ancestry.

For most people this would be agreeable, perhaps even pleasurable. For the 40-something mother-of-three, the story of her bloodline is marked with a unique sadness: because she belongs to an extraordinary tribe of hidden pariahs, repressed in France for a thousand years.

Marie-Pierre is a Cagot.

If the word “Cagot” means nothing to you, that is not surprising.

Istanbul rocked by bomb attacks

Robert Tait in Ankara,

Monday July 28 2008

Turkey’s political landscape was plunged further into turmoil last night when two bomb blasts rocked a packed pedestrian square in Istanbul, killing at least 17 people and injuring more than 150, in what officials called a “terrorist” attack.

In the deadliest bomb attacks in the country for almost five years, the two explosions detonated within minutes of each other and a few metres apart, set off by devices in rubbish bins in a busy shopping street in Gungoren, a working-class neighbourhood in the west of the city.

The prime minister, Tayyip Erdogan, today cancelled his weekly cabinet meeting in Ankara and traveled to Turkey’s largest city to visit the site of the bombs.

Middle East

Palestinian hostilities flare in Gaza

Explosions and a Hamas-led crackdown on the rival Fatah Party has raised tensions to their highest levels since Hamas seized control of the Palestinian territory in 2007.

By Joshua Mitnick and Rafael D. Frankel  | Correspondents

from the July 28, 2008 edition

Tel Aviv and Gaza City – In the worst outbreak of inter-Palestinian strife since Hamas took over the Gaza Strip last year, Hamas gunmen rounded up hundreds of Fatah activists in Gaza and threw up dozens of checkpoints over the weekend.

The militant Islamist group accused militants from the rival Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas’s Fatah Party of a bombing that killed five Islamic activists and a young child last Friday.

The attack and retaliation reopened recent wounds in the bitter rivalry just as the sides were mulling a new round of reconciliation talks.

“There is no room now to speak about national reconciliation,” says Hamas leader Mahmoud Al-Zahar, who accused Abbas of preferring to discuss US peace talks with Israel rather than the internal Palestinian talks. “[Abbas] is still meeting [Israeli Prime Minister Ehud] Olmert and kissing him…. His preference is the Israel-US side not the Palestinian side.”

At least 26 dead in Baghdad bombings during pilgrimage

The Associated Press

Published: July 28, 2008

BAGHDAD: Three suicide bombers and a roadside bomb struck Shiite pilgrims taking part in a massive religious procession in Baghdad on Monday, killing at least 28 people and wounding 92, police said.

The attacks occurred in quick succession as tens of thousands of Shiite worshippers streamed toward a shrine in northern Baghdad for an annual event marking the death of an eighth century saint, which climaxes on Tuesday.

Police said there were indications to suggest the suicide bombers were women. At least two children were among the dead, said police officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak to the media. The attacks took place in the mainly Shiite Karradah district, which is several miles away from the site of the pilgrimage in Kazimiyah, northern Baghdad.


Darfur force ‘failing civilians’

African aid agencies say the African-UN peacekeeping mission in Sudan’s Darfur region is failing to provide adequate protection for civilians.


A report published by a group of mainly African relief and advocacy groups, the Darfur Consortium, said the force was too small and inadequately funded.

It said six months after the mission began, only about a third of the 26,000 personnel promised had been deployed.

The five-year-old Darfur conflict has left some 300,000 people dead.

The African Union-Union Nations Mission in Darfur (Unamid) was set up after the United Nations Security Council promised protection to some four million people caught up in the war between the Sudanese government and rebels.

But Khartoum insisted that Africans should make up the bulk of the soldiers.

Mubarak here over Bashir warrant

Angelo Izama

Kampala July 28, 2008

Daily Momitor

Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak will meet President Yoweri Museveni this week over the indictment by the International Criminal Court of Sudanese President Omar-el-Bashir, according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Mr Mubarak is expected to arrive Wednesday enroute from South Africa sources at the ministry said.

The Egyptian head of state is officially on a tour to boost bilateral relations with Uganda and South Africa. “President Yoweri Museveni and Mr Mubarak will discuss how to deal with the indictment of Sudanese President Omar el Bashir as well as how to advise him [Bashir] on resolving Darfur and moving forward the implementation of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement [between North and South Sudan]” said Mr Okello Oryem, the state minister for international affairs.

Latin America

El Salvador’s Monument to Memory and Truth

Smooth granite carved with nearly 30,000 names honors those slain or disappeared in the 1980s civil war, and the list keeps growing.

By Ken Ellingwood, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer

July 28, 2008

SAN SALVADOR — It looms solemnly over the shady corner of a city park, an incongruous emblem of pain amid a happy clamor of picnicking families and children chasing scuffed soccer balls.

A granite echo of the Vietnam memorial in Washington, the 300-foot-long lead-colored monument serves as a kind of giant gravestone for the civil war that ripped El Salvador apart in the 1980s.


    • RiaD on July 29, 2008 at 04:51

    thanks for the visit.

    sorry i’m not getting here til now.

    it’s been a ver rough day.

    hope yours was better.

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