Breathing Easy At The Olympics
If You’re An
Russia widens attacks as world pleads for peace in South Ossetia
· Moscow targets Georgian towns
· UN heads frantic bid to contain war in Caucasus
Peter Beaumont, Matthew Collin in Tbilisi and Helen Womack in Moscow
Sunday August 10 2008
Russian bombers and artillery yesterday widened their attack against Georgian forces with strikes against towns and military bases across the country in a dangerous escalation of the two-day-old war. Moscow appeared determined to dismantle Georgia’s military capability in punishment for its rival’s brutal attempt to regain control of the breakaway enclave of South Ossetia.
Russia’s Prime Minister, Vladimir Putin, last night insisted that its actions were ‘legitimate’ and called on Georgia to end its ‘aggression’ against the separatist province.
As the civilian casualties escalated on both sides, Georgia’s military adventure seemed to be unravelling. President Mikheil Saakashvili demanded a ceasefire from Russia and implored the West to intervene to help him. Georgia’s difficulties deepened further as separatists in a second pro-Russian breakaway Georgian republic – Abkhazia – joined the conflict, attacking Georgian forces in the contested upper Kodori Gorge.
Beijing Curbs Religious Rights
Christian Activists Detail Harassment
By Maureen Fan
Washington Post Foreign Service
Sunday, August 10, 2008; Page A01
BEIJING — China describes itself as a religiously tolerant society, one that allows its citizens to worship freely. This week, per Olympic tradition, it is extending that same freedom to athletes in the form of worship rooms in the Olympic Village, each dedicated for the world’s major religions.
Worshipers also have at their disposal dozens of foreign clerics; 10,000 English-Chinese Bibles emblazoned with the Olympics logo; and an electric organ, for Catholics.
But religious freedom does not extend beyond the heavily secured perimeter fence of the Olympic Green.
Democrats derail effort by Clinton backers to ban caucuses
By Steven Thomma | McClatchy Newspapers
PITTSBURGH – Devoted Hillary Clinton supporters urged the Democratic party Saturday to get rid of caucuses, the town hall meetings in states such as Iowa where Clinton’s presidential campaign stumbled and Barack Obama launched his march to the nomination.
“We need to get rid of caucuses,” said Melissa Whitener, a waitress from Conneaut, Pa., who traveled to lobby the Democratic National Committee as it prepared its party platform.
“Caucuses are inherently unfair,” she said. “I work in a restaurant. I can’t take off a whole shift to go sit in a caucus. We need to all be on the same primary system. Why should 2,000 people in Iowa have the same say as 2 million in Pennsylvania?”