32,000 readers per month from around the world* Since 2004
Web www.maravot.com

Maravot News of the World
9:08 AM – San Francisco
Wed, Oct 11, 2006
(last post)

About Maravot News

Contact us

Search Engines

Ask.com Google.com
Mama.com Accoona
AOL Netfind Lycos
Webcrawler Yahoo 
technorati (searches blogs)
Archive: Way Back Machine

Tip: Some search engines like Google give preference to pages containing Google ads, frustrating search results for scholars.

E-tracking Terrorists

Most Wanted Terrorists
Rewards for Justice.net
Terrorism Knowledge Base
lauramansfield.com –daily translations of Arabic blogs
unitedstatesaction.com – links to US emergency preparedness & terrorist watch organizations

Faces of the Fallen – Iraq

US & Coalition
Casualties, War in Iraq

Trends, Iraq Casualties

US Fatalities City Map
Coalition Fatalities by location across time.

Metric Conversion

kilometer: 0.6214 mile
meter: 39.37 inches
centimetre: 0.3937 inch
millimetre: 0.03937 inch
foot: 30.48 cm
Br. stone: 14 pounds
kilogram: 2.2046 pounds
litre: 1.0567 US quarts
hectare: 2.471 acres
– 1 djerib (Turkey)
– 1 jerib (Iran)
– 1 gong qing (China)
0° Celcius: = 32° F

Click on image for org. to impeach Bush & Cheney. Click here for talking points paper pdf. file download.

Chart showing National Debt & Annual Deficits with Presidents. Democrat administrations are blue, Republican in Red. Green reflects projected Bush debt. Click chart for larger image.

2006 update (2.25.06)

Compare the current tables from OMB, "Mid-Session Review," http://www.whitehouse.gov with 2005 tables in this sidebar. The Chart Showing the National Debt above is still valid. The debt projection for 2009 is now $10.3 Trillion. Actual debt for 2005 is $7.990 Trillion. Deficit projected for 2004 was $435 billion; now is $445 billion.

OMB Budget FY2007
Interest on Debt 2006
Federal Debt 2006
Fed. Budget Summary 2006

Interest exceeds Group A outlays. Click here for chart

Gross Domestic Products. Click here for image.

Western News
Worth frequent visits

Village Voice
babble (rabble.ca)

grumpy old man (PG-18)
Democratic Underground
American Politics Journal
American Progress Report

Aral Sea Disaster
Media Matters
Take Back the Media
Greg Palast
information please
Halliburton watch.org
DOD News
The New Yorker magazine
liberation.fr (en français)
lefigaro.fr (en français)
Spiegel Online
La Repubblica.It
expatica.com (Spain)
standartnews.com (Bulgaria)
NIS News (Holland)
Tracking Terrorism.com
Arch. & Prehistory news
New Scientist

First Read (MSNBC)
National Public Radio
cnews.canoe.ca (Canada)
New York Times.com
Washington Post Washington Times
ABC News

Fox News


CBS News
WWLTV – New Orleans
BBC News
Financial Times
Sky News (London)

The Independent
Belfast Telegraph
Radio Free Europe
Radio News America
The Guardian, Nigeria
Business Day (S. Africa)

Detroit Free Press (Freep)
LA Times
San Francisco Chronicle

International Agencies – News

IRIN News, Africa & Asia
Power & Interest News Report
sandesh.org : network to improve women's rights in Islam

Osama bin Laden fatwas.
This monster's own words will
lead to his destruction
Definition of fatwa (fatwah)
Maravot News Comment




August 1996

Maps of interest
Click on maps for larger image
Bulgaria & neighbors
Russia, Belarus & neighbors
Israel-Iraq & neighbors
Iran-Afghanistan-Pak.-India; Gulf of Hormuz oil lane Iran threatens to block
Kazakhstan & neighbors

Historical map of Israel. Figure 2 shows the area allocated to
Israel by the UN in 1948. Compare to Israel' s interactive map below of its controversial security wall

Israel's Security Fence. Click on image for larger view or here for interactive link.

(AP) Click photo for story

Middle East Watch

Middle East Times

bakutoday.net, Azerbaijan

Kurdo's World (Blog)
Iraq the Model (Blog)
Azzaman.com (Iraq)
Iran Focus

Iran Daily


mehrnews.ir (Iran)
Middle East Newsline
Jerusalem Post


Palestine Chronicle
Daily Star (Lebanon)

topix.net (Qatar)
Saudi Post
Yemen Daily
Dar Al Hayat
Khaleej Times,Yemen



Russia & Ukraine Watch

kyivpost.com (Ukraine)

East Asia Watch



Daily Times,com. pk
South Asia Tribune
India Express

Indo-Asian News Service

New Kerala (India)

Hindustan Times

xinhuanet (Chinaview.cn)

Asia Times (Hong Kong)
China Daily

Shenzhen Daily
CRI online (China)
Big News Network
Korea Herald

Kyodo News

Japan Times

Japan Today (Crisscross.com)

Daily Yomiuri (Japan)

The Star (Malaysia

The Jakarta Post

Bangkok Post

The Nation (Bangkok)
Kashmir Times
Press Trust of India

Daily News (Sri Lanka)

LankaPage (Sri Lanka)
inq7.net (Phillipines)


More newspapers

The Romance of Anais, an Arthurian-style tale written 1996 describing how Bush got us in the mess in Iraq with a short commentary on the
Chang-an cheat
Tapestry of One – on the creed of Buddha,
Duty & Profit, Nov. 1994
Against Leviathan, Jan. 1993
Immoral Coercion, Dec. 1994
Philistia Triumph thou
because of me
, Dec. 1993
Quest for Human Dignity, July 1994
What Price Justice? Sept. 1992

I am not responsible for the
content of any links
from this site.

Classics on-line

On the Crown, by

The Art of War, Sun-tzu

On Liberty, J. S Mill
Works of Josephus

Juvenal, Sixteen Satires

Bible Search
Bible Concordance
Links to Biblical documents
Dante's Purgatory
Joinville & Villechardouin,
Chronicles of the Crusades
Aeneid of Virgil
Plutarch's "Lives"

The Gallic Wars
Lives of the 12 Caesars
Meditations, M. Aurelius
Memorabilia (Xenophon)
The Offices (Cicero)
Leviathan (Hobbes)
The Secret History

links & works

09.24.06 - 10.02.06
09.15.06 - 09.21.06
09.09.06 - 09.14.06
08.29.06 - 09.05.06
08.21.06 - 08.27.06
08.16.06 - 08.20.06
08.0806 - 08.13.06
08.03.06 - 08.07.06
07.25.06 - 08.02.06
07.18.06 - 07.23.06
07.13.06 - 07.17.06
07.07.06 - 07.12.06
06.27.06 - 07.05.06
06.19.06 - 06.24.06
06.12.06 - 06.15.06
05.30.06 - 06.10.06

News Headlines & Trends

10.10.06 For North Korea, worst-case scenario looks good

SEOUL (Reuters – John Herskovitz) October 10 – The crisis on the Korean peninsula is likely to get worse and Pyongyang may want it that way. Impoverished and isolated, North Korea has been promised cash, protection and a chance to come out of its shell if it scraps its nuclear weapons. But for Pyongyang's obsessively secretive government, opening up to the world poses more risks than keeping it at bay with the threat of nuclear catastrophe. "Regime security is located higher than national security," said Kim Sung-han, head of North America studies at the South's Institute of Foreign Affairs and National Security. "By being recognized as a nuclear power, the North Korean regime must be feeling more secure from what it sees as the 'hostile policy' of the United States." Analysts said that, without weapons of mass destruction, the North is just another poor country among Asia's economic giants.

..."We have to assume that they are placing a bet that neither Beijing nor Seoul will forsake them because the alternative is worse – an unstable and an even more erratic North Korea," said Peter Beck, a Korea expert for the International Crisis Group. "I think we are going to see an escalation," said Beck. "The next thing for them to play is the 'war threat' card."
[Full story>>thestar.com.my ; See related stories, koreaherald.co.kr, October 10, "N.K. able to make up to 7 A-bombs."

nytimes.com, October 10, "For US, a strategic jolt after North Korea's test."]

washingtonpost.com, October 10, "Bush's 'Axis of Evil' comes back to haunt United States."

10.10.06 Iran condemns atomic arms after North Korean test

TEHRAN (Reuters) October 10 – Iran, itself accused by the West of seeking to make atomic bombs, said on Tuesday it was against any country possessing such weapons after North Korea announced it had conducted its first underground nuclear test. As world powers condemned North Koreaıs announcement on Monday, Washington called for harsh U.N. sanctions that could further isolate the communist state. "Iran is against the use and production of nuclear weapons. No country is competent to use nuclear weapons," government spokesman Gholamhossein Elham told a weekly news conference, when asked about North Koreaıs nuclear test.

The West accuses Iran of pursuing nuclear weapons under a civilian programme. Iran insists it needs nuclear energy to satisfy its booming electricity demand. ³Iranıs atomic work is transparent. It should not be considered as a thereat,² Elham said, adding that Western and other nuclear powers should start disarming...Iranıs highest authority, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, has issued a religious decree, saying making, stockpiling or using nuclear weapons was against Islamic beliefs, the official IRNA news agency reported in August 2005. The United States, Germany, Britain, France, Russia and China agreed on Friday to discuss possible U.N. sanctions against Teheran for refusing to halt its uranium enrichment programme, which could produce fuel for atomic weapons.
[Full story>>khaleejtimes.com ; See related story, haaretz.com, October 10, "Israel worried North Korea will pass nuclear know-how to Iran."]

10.10.06 German police arrest suspected al-Qaida helper

October 10 – A 36-year-old Iraqi man suspected of transmitting messages from Osama bin Laden worldwide over the Internet has been arrested in Germany. German police have arrested an Iraqi man on suspicion that he distributed video and audio messages from Osama bin Laden and other al-Qaida leaders worldwide via the Internet. The Federal Prosecutor's Office said the 36-year-old man, named only as Ibrahim R., was arrested near the northwestern city of Osnabrück on Tuesday. His apartment was searched.

He is accused of supporting al-Qaida by transmitting numerous messages from bin Laden and his deputy Ayman al-Zawahiri, as well as from al-Qaida's leader in Iraq Abu Musab al-Zarqawi who was killed by a US air strike in June, the Office said in a statement. He will be taken before a federal investigating on judge on Wednesday. The prosecutor's office declined to release further details. Germany has introduced tighter controls on Islamic extremists and Islamist groups after three of the four suicide pilots in the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks on the United States were found to have lived in Hamburg.

10.10.06 The cockpit switch that killed 121 people on a passenger jet

October 10 – The worst air crash in Greek and Cypriot aviation history was caused by a single switch out of place, accident investigators concluded today. A report by Greeceıs National Aviation Safety Board found that the cabin pressure controls on a Helios Airways flight from Cyprus to Prague on August 14 last year were set to manual rather than automatic by ground staff — an error that was not picked up by the pilot or co-pilot in three subsequent checks. The two pilots then failed to correct the switch as warnings sounded and oxygen masks fell into the passenger cabin.

Rendered unconscious by the lack of oxygen, the pilots failed to respond to radio calls as the Boeing 737-300 drifted for more than two hours through Greek airspace before running out fuel and crashing into a hillside 45km (28 miles) north of Athens. All 121 people on board, most of them Cypriots, were killed. [

10.10.06 Twelve dead in Philippine bomb blast, dozens injured

COTABATO, Philippines (AP) October 10 – Twelve people have been killed and dozens injured in a bomb blast in the southern Philippines, officials and police said. The bomb exploded in the town of Makilala on the southern island of Mindanao during a celebration to mark the town's 52nd anniversary, said Mayor Honofre Respicio on Tuesday. No one claimed responsibility for the blast. Earlier Tuesday four people were injured when a bomb planted by suspected Muslim extremists exploded in the busy market of Tacurong City, also in Mindanao. [More>>turkishpress.com]

10.10.06 Dozens of bodies found in Baghdad

October 10 – The mutilated bodies of 60 men have been found in Baghdad, and at least 17 other people have been killed across Iraq as the government tried to take control of the violence by putting Shia and Sunni troops at every checkpoint. The bodies were riddled with bullets and their hands and feet were tied in what appeared to be death-squad killings, a police official said. The victims – aged between 20 and 50 years old – showed signs of torture. Their bodies were dumped in several areas around the capital. A bomb outside a bakery in the mainly Sunni neighborhood of Dora killed 10 people and wounded at least four. Police said a large homemade bomb had been placed under the baker's car. [More>>aljazeera.net ; See related story, independent.co.uk, October 10, "Gunmen assasinate Iraqi Vice-President's brother."]

10.10.06 Kurdish women tell of rapes of Saddam's death camps

BAGHDAD (AFP) October 10 – Kurdish women told Tuesday how they had witnessed savage rapes and other horrors in Saddam Hussein's death camps, as the ousted Iraqi leader's genocide trial continued. There were rowdy scenes as Saddam shouted a verse from the Koran to inspire his supporters – "Fight them, and God will make you victorious" – but the judge cleared the dock and the case continued without the defendants.

One woman, speaking from behind a curtain to preserve her anonymity, told of how her family was captured by Iraqi forces in April 1988. Her grandmother died in the prison camp, while she witnessed terrible atrocities. A warder called Jaafar Al Hillawi used to grope prisoners' breasts, and one day caught a beautiful young woman from Koi Sanjaq, she said. "He caught her and told her, 'You are mine.' She spat in his face, she told the court. "He tore her clothes and raped her in front of her parents. Then he shot her. She remained alive for several minutes and then died."

10.09.06 China resolutely opposes DPRK's nuclear test

BEIJING (Xinhua) October 9 – The Chinese government is resolutely opposed to the nuclear test by the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK), Chinese Foreign Ministry said in a statement Monday. According to a report by the official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA), the DPRK has conducted an underground nuclear test on Monday. "The DPRK ignored universal opposition of the international community and flagrantly conducted the nuclear test on Oct. 9. The Chinese government is resolutely opposed to it," the statement said. It said China strongly demands the DPRK live up to its commitment to non-nuclearization on the Korean Peninsula, stop any activity that may worsen the situation and return to the six-party talks. [More>>xinhuanet.com ; See also rian.ru, October 9, "Putin, Bush agree N. Korea test undermines non-proliferation."]

10.09.06 Ethiopia 'helps seize Somali town'

October 9 – Ethiopian forces have reportedly helped Somali soldiers to seize control of a town in southern central Somalia, prompting leaders of the Islamic militia to declare a holy war against Ethiopia. Local Islamist leaders said hundreds of heavily armed government fighters and Ethiopian soldiers entered Buur Hakaba on Monday, pushing out fighters loyal to the Supreme Islamic Council of Somalia (SICS), which controls much of the country including the capital Mogadishu. [More>>aljazeera.net]

10.09.06 Web browsing beats page-turning

October 9 – Europeans now spend more of their week online than they do reading newspapers or magazines, according to a report. A Jupiter Research study of 5,000 people in western Europe found that time spent online has doubled to four hours a week in the past three years. However, the study found that new media was not cannibalizing print and TV. Print consumption had stayed at its 2003 level of three hours per week, while TV usage had risen from 10 hours to 12 hours. "The fact that internet consumption has passed print consumption is an important landmark for the establishment of the internet in the European media mix," said Jupiter Research director Mark Mulligan. [More>>bbc.co.uk]

10.08.06 Azmi: Malaysian firms should be punished if involved

PETALING JAYA, Malaysia, October 8 – Punish them! That is what Natural Resources and Environment Minister Datuk Seri Azmi Khalid has to say to the Indonesian Government about Malaysian companies in Indonesia which may be polluting the air. Malaysia will not protect any Malaysian company in Indonesia which may be contributing to the haze. ³We are not here to protect anyone, and we implore Indonesia to impose the most severe penalties under their law to anyone found guilty,² he said.

Azmi's comments were in reply to reports in the Indonesian media that some of the culprits involved in open burning were Malaysian-owned oil palm companies. "However, even the Indonesian Government has confirmed that the burning is coming from the traditional slash-and-burn activities of smallholders and not plantation companies."

... In Pekan, Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said the haze problem would plague the region for years to come unless Asean countries were willing to pool their resources to combat the menace. ³We have been discussing among the members but we have yet to reach a consensus on the setting up of a haze fund,² said. "Right now, one of the most needed equipment would be water bombers. They are expensive aircraft but would help alleviate or at least reduce the haze problem," he said. Najib, who is also the Defence Minister, said the haze was a complex issue...
[Full story>>thestar.com.my ; See related story, thejakartapost.com, October 8, "Haze clears from Singapore's sky."]

10.08.06 Iran to negotiate deals with US firms if sanctions dropped

TEHRAN (Xinhua) October 8 – Iran will start negotiations with three US airplane engine and spare parts manufacturing companies if US sanctions against Tehran were called off, the Fars News Agency reported on Sunday. Iran needs to sign cooperation agreements with General Electric (GE), Pratt & Whitney and Boeing as soon as US sanctions on Iranare removed, Fars quoted an unidentified "informed source" as saying.

The source said that there were 15 out-of-work Airbus engines in Iran and if the engines are repaired, at least six planes could resume their flights. General Electric is the manufacturer of engines for Airbus and similar planes, while Pratt & Whitney is the maker of engines for Boeing 727, 737 and 747 planes, the source said. Iran's state radio reported on Wednesday that the United States would allow Iran to repair its old Airbus airliners in a third country.

10.08.06 Iran police clash with cleric's loyalists

October 8 – Supporters of a senior Shia Muslim cleric who has challenged Iran's clerical rulers have clashed with police in Tehran. Police used teargas to disperse the crowd outside the home of Ayatollah Mohammad Kazemeini Boroujerdi in southern Tehran, newspapers said on Sunday. Etemad-e Melli newspaper said an estimated 200 protesters formed a cordon around the house to call for the release of several of Boroujerdi's followers who they said had been detained. Some newspapers said the crowd feared Boroujerdi himself might be arrested. Seday-e Edalat reported that the crowd lit fires to stop police from approaching the house. [More>>aljazeera.net]

10.08.06 US, Iraqi troops kill 30 in Shia city clashes

DIWANIYA, Iraq (Reuters) October 8 – US and Iraqi troops killed 30 militants early on Sunday in fierce fighting in the flashpoint southern Shia city of Diwaniya, the US military said. The military said an M1A2 Abrams tank was severely damaged in the battle that erupted after militants opened fire with rocket-propelled grenades on US and Iraqi forces on a mission to detain a "high-value" target.

Diwaniyaıs southern districts are a stronghold for the Mehdi Army militia of Shia cleric Moqtada al-Sadr, whose movement is a key player in the Prime Minister Nuri al-Malikiıs government of national unity. A Mehdi Army official, who declined to be named, denied any involvement in the fighting and blamed rogue gunmen. He said Sadr had issued orders to the Mehdi Army "not to attack anybody, including the Americans." Another Mehdi Army official denied reports of the 30 killed and said only three people had been wounded. Hospital sources said four civilians were wounded, three men and a woman. [

10.07.06 Iraq oil city shut down in insurgent hunt

KIRKUK, Iraq (AFP) October 8 – The streets of the northern Iraqi oil city of Kirkuk were deserted yesterday as security forces conducted a house-to-house sweep and arrested at least 150 suspected insurgents. Authorities imposed an indefinite curfew on the city, which fell silent apart from the rumble of armored vehicles and the buzz of helicopters. Iraqi police and troops launched raids across the city, hunting insurgents and unlicensed weapons in a bid to end a wave of assassinations and bombings.

"So far 150 Iraqis have been arrested. They are suspects or wanted persons. The operation also led to the confiscation of 250 weapons and seven suspicious cars," said Major General Shirko Shakr, commander of Kirkuk's police. "The operation is still on."

Kirkuk security officials said the operation involved 14,000 police and soldiers from the 2nd Brigade of the 4th Iraqi Army Division. "These operations are the first of their kind in Kirkuk," said Captain Emad Jassim Khidr. [More>>theaustralian.news.com.au ; See also aljazeera.net, October 7, "Fourteen dead in northern Iraq blast."]

10.07.06 Two journalists, NATO soldier killed in Afghanistan

KABUL, Afghanistan, October 7 – Two German journalists were killed in northern Afghanistan on Saturday, the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) confirmed on Saturday. According to the ISAF spokesman Dominic White, the two – a man and a woman - – had been working "in connection with ISAF" until last Wednesday, when they went travelling on their own. The Pakistani news agency AIP reported that both journalists were found murdered in a tent around 150 kilometres south of the northern provincial capital Baghlan. Meanwhile, a soldier with the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) was killed in an attack in southern Afghanistan on Saturday, NATO said. [More>>khaleejtimes.com]

10.06.06 Tibetan refugees shot dead as Everest climbers watch

October 6 – Within sight of horrified climbers preparing an assault on Everest, Chinese troops stationed on the Tibet-Nepal border have shot dead at least two Tibetan refugees trying to cross the border. The refugees were trying to reach Nangpa La pass last Saturday and the Everest advance base camp was swarmed by Chinese troops after the shootout. Climbers regularly see caravans of traders and refugees crossing out of Tibet, but this is the first witness report by western climbers of the People's Liberation Army shooting refugees.

The killings highlight the yawning gap between China's state propaganda, which cast it as the friend and protector of the Tibetan people and the harsh reality of a brutal military occupation as experienced by three million Tibetans. The shootings also revive concerns about Beijing's human rights record as it prepares to host the Olympic Games in two years. Every year, hundreds of Tibetan refugees escape from Chinese occupation. [More>>independent.co.uk]

10.06.06 In border fence's path, Congressional roadblocks

October 6 – No sooner did Congress authorize construction of a 700-mile fence on the US-Mexico border last week than lawmakers rushed to approve separate legislation that ensures it will never be built, at least not as advertised, according to Republican lawmakers and immigration experts. GOP leaders have singled out the fence as one of the primary accomplishments of the recently completed session. Many lawmakers plan to highlight their $1.2 billion down payment on its construction as they campaign in the weeks before the midterm elections. But shortly before recessing late Friday, the House and Senate gave the Bush administration leeway to distribute the money to a combination of projects – not just the physical barrier along the southern border. The funds may also be spent on roads, technology and "tactical infrastructure" to support the Department of Homeland Security's preferred option of a "virtual fence." [More>>washingtonpost.com ; See also Maravot News 10.05.06, "Mexico warns US of referral to UN over border fencine plan."]

10.06.06 Israeli bomblets plague Lebanon

BEIRUT, Lebanon, October 6 – Since the war between Israel and Hezbollah ended in August, nearly three people have been wounded or killed each day by cluster bombs Israel dropped in the waning days of the war, and officials now say it will take more than a year to clear the region of them. United Nations officials estimate that southern Lebanon is littered with one million unexploded bomblets, far outnumbering the 650,000 people living in the region. They are stuck in the branches of olive trees and the broad leaves of banana trees. They are on rooftops, mixed in with rubble and littered across fields, farms, driveways, roads and outside schools. As of Sept. 28, officials here said cluster bombs had severely wounded 109 people — and killed 18 others. [More>>nytimes.com]

10.06.06 Syria: Attack on US embassy was planned in Saudi Arabia

(Reuters) October 6 – Last month's attack on the US embassy in Damascus was planned in Saudi Arabia and the four Syrians who carried it out had no links to al-Qaida, a government investigation said on Thursday. Three of the four assailants, 31-year-old Abdel Raouf Saleh, Bilal Saleh, 25, and Samir Saleh, also 25, were close relatives who followed the teachings of a preacher in Saudi Arabia where they had worked, the Interior Ministry report said. They started preparing for the operation in 2004, according to the report.

"An investigation into the attack has been concluded. The group planned to blow an embassy door, storm the compound and kill whoever was inside. It had no links with extremist organizations outside Syria," the report said. "They attended lessons by a Saudi man of religion. Their extremism deepened due to the political situation shaking the region and US bias toward Israel."

The report said the group "had planned to broadcast a video statement after the operation in the name of Abu Musab Zarqawi Brigade, although they had no link to al-Qaida." It said they were inspired by Zarqawi, the leader of al Qaeda in Iraq who was killed in a US air strike in June. [More>>haaretz.com]

10.06.06 Israel recognition if Mashaal enters Gaza says Israeli-Arab newspaper

TEL AVIV, October 6 – An Israeli-Arab newspaper reports Hamas leadership in the territories and Damascus are willing to end the kidnapped soldier affair, and even recognize Israel, if Israel allows senior group members to enter the Gaza Strip. The Hamas leadership in the territories and in Damascus expressed its willingness to end the affair of kidnapped soldier Corporal Gilad Shalit. Movement officials said that they would agree to release Shalit and even recognize Israel, in exchange for Israel allowing Hamas leaders, including politburo chief Khaled Mashaal, to arrive in Gaza from Damascus. The report has not been confirmed by Israeli sources.

The report is based on knowledgeable Arab Palestinian sources. According to the report, last week Egypt conveyed the offer to the Hamas leadership in Damascus, saying that Israel allegedly agreed to release about 1,000 Palestinian prisoners in exchange for the release of Shalit. It was also reported that the Hamas leadership in Gaza accepted the proposal, but the representatives in Damascus rejected it, saying that it would only be accepted if Israel allows Mashaal and other senior Hamas leaders to arrive in Gaza, before or while Shalit is released. [>thenews.com.pk ; See related story, Jerusalem Post, October 6, "Haniyeh: No recognition of Israel, but 'hudna' possible."]

10.05.06 Mexico warns US of referral to UN over border fencine plan

MEXICO CITY (Xinhua) October 4 – The Mexican government on Wednesday warned that it may refer Washington's plan to build fences on the U.S.- Mexico border to the United Nations. The US plan to build about 1,125 km of new fencing along the US-Mexico border was an "offense," Mexican Foreign Minister Luis Ernesto Derbez told a news briefing here. When asked if the Mexican government would refer the issue to the United Nations, he said it was "examining with the foreign relations legal team what options are open at an international level, and we will take them." He said the fences would hurt the bilateral relations. "Just the idea of a wall, a fence ... is an insult to good neighbors."

The plan has aroused strong opposition from Mexico. The outgoing Mexican President Vicente Fox called the fence plan "shameful," while President-elect Felipe Calderon said the fences were not the solution to illegal immigration. Fox's spokesman Ruben Aguilar on Wednesday said the fences would not be built as the US Congress was unlikely to provide enough funding to finish the project. "There is no money to build it, so it will not be built," he told reporters.

Despite Mexico's efforts to lobby for a veto, US President George W. Bush on Wednesday signed a bill, which had been passed earlier by the US Congress and will pay for the new fences which are aimed at preventing illegal immigration. Under the bill, about 1.2 billion US dollars would be spent during the fiscal year that began on Oct. 1 for southwest border fencing and other barriers. However, no one knows how much the proposed project will cost. A 23-km segment of fencing under construction in San Diego has been priced at 126.5 million dollars. [>xinhuanet.com]

10.05.06 Rice meets Abbas as the road map to peace lies in tatters

October 5 (By Anne Penketh, Diplomatic Editor) – On 24 June 2002, President George Bush strode into the White House Rose Garden and announced to the world his vision of a two-state solution for Israel and the Palestinians. The Bush speech, some 30 drafts in the making, put the onus on the Palestinians to enact democratic reforms - in the vain hope that they would ditch their veteran president, Yasser Arafat. But, nevertheless, it gave rise to the road map for peace, which bound Israel and the Palestinians to a timetable that was meant to lead to a "final and comprehensive settlement" by 2005.

With that deadline long past, the US Secretary of State, Condoleezza Rice, was shuttling between the Palestinian leadership and Israeli government yesterday in an attempt to put the peace process back on the rails. The three-phase road map, guaranteed by the US, Russia, the European Union and the United Nations, grouped together as the Quartet, never even fulfilled the promises in its first phase under which the Palestinians were to rein in the militants, and Israel to freeze settlement building. Israel took it upon itself to execute Palestinian militant leaders, and forged ahead with settlement building on the West Bank.

Israel's unilateral steps consigned the Quartet to the role of bystander. In three and a half years, the road map has led nowhere. Despite Israel's pullout from Gaza, the territory's 1.4 million Palestinians remain hemmed inside a prison by an Israeli blockade backed by tanks and warplanes. International sanctions have brought hardship to government employees whose wages have been unpaid for months. But the shock waves from the Lebanon war and Iraq have brought a new push for Middle East peace. Tony Blair has pledged to make reviving the peace process a personal priority during his remaining months in office. The Prime Minister has discussed the Middle East conflict, Lebanon and the broader issue of terrorism with the leaders of Pakistan, Turkey and Spain in the past week.

While Ms. Rice was in the region, the International Crisis Group published a statement yesterday signed by 135 former world leaders, including John Major and Jimmy Carter, calling for "fresh thinking and the injection of new political will" to resolve the conflict. "As long as the conflict lasts, it will generate instability and violence in the region and beyond," it said. [More>>independent.co.uk]

10.05.06 Early warning on Foley cited by former aide

WASHINGTON, October 5 – A former Congressional aide said Wednesday that Speaker J. Dennis Hastertıs office knew about reports of ³inappropriate behavior² by Representative Mark Foley far earlier than Mr. Hastertıs office has acknowledged. Mr. Hastertıs chief of staff, Scott Palmer, denied the account of the former aide, Kirk Fordham, who said in an interview that he had informed Mr. Palmer of the concerns about Mr. Foley before 2004. Mr. Hastertıs office had previously said it first learned of concerns about Mr. Foley in the fall of 2005.

Mr. Fordham worked in Mr. Foleyıs office until January 2004, and on Wednesday, he resigned as chief of staff to Representative Thomas M. Reynolds of New York, chairman of the House Republican campaign committee. Mr. Fordham said he had become a political liability in Mr. Reynoldsıs re-election campaign. [More>>ntytimes.com]

10.05.06 US, Iraq deny reports Al Qaeda chief killed

BAGHDAD (AFP) October 5 – Iraqi and US officials denied reports on Thursday that US forces had killed the new chief of the Al Qaeda network in Iraq, Abu Ayyub Al Masri. Asked whether US forces had killed the Al Qaeda chieftain, as had been reported by the Dubai-based Al Arabiya satellite network, US military spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Barry Johnson said: "No." Johnson told AFP that some militants had been killed within the past five days during an operation in Al Anbar province, and that it had initially been suspected that Masri had been among them. But he added that that was no longer believed to be the case. [More>>khaleejtimes.com]

10.05.06 Attacks in Baghdad kill 13 US soldiers in 3 days

BAGHDAD, October 5 – Thirteen U.S. soldiers have been killed in Baghdad since Monday, the American military reported, registering the highest three-day death toll for US forces in the capital since the start of the war. The latest losses – four soldiers who were killed at 9am Wednesday by small-arms fire – are part of a recent spike in violent attacks against US forces that have claimed the lives of at least 24 soldiers and Marines in Iraq since Saturday, the military said. The number of planted bombs is "at an all-time high," said Maj. Gen. William B. Caldwell, a military spokesman, defying American efforts to stanch the vicious sectarian bloodshed in Baghdad that threatens to plunge the country into civil war. [More>>washingtonpost.com]

10.05.06 Russia slams US "unilateral" move on Iran

WARSAW (AFP) October 5 – Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov on Thursday slammed Washington for acting "unilaterally" in the crisis over Iranıs nuclear programme and urged the world powers to continue diplomatic efforts to resolve the standoff with Teheran. "We believe the community of action must be continued but the United States has already taken a unilateral decision affecting all parties, which limits activities in Iran not only of American companies but of all companies," Lavrov said during a visit to Poland. [More>>khaleejtimes.com]

10.05.06 Israeli company discovers oil at drilling site near Dead Sea

October 5 – An Israeli company has discovered a small amount of oil at a drilling site near the Dead Sea, raising hopes that Israel could one day join its regional neighbors as a petroleum producer. Initial tests have found that the site would yield between 100 to 150 barrels daily, said Eli Tannenbaum, geologist for the Ginko oil exploration company.

While this is minuscule by global standards – No. 1 producer Saudi Arabia produces 9 million barrels a day – Tannenbaum said there are signs that larger amounts of crude are nearby...it was unlikely the new Dead Sea location would yield more than a few hundred – possibly a few thousand – barrels a day. Strategically, this is meaningless to Israell – which consumes about 220,000 barrels of oil daily, Mor added. Israel has produced only 20 million barrels of oil in the last half-century – less than what the Saudis produce every three days. [Full story>>haaretz.com]

10.05.06 Indian companies are most corrupt, says report

BERLIN (UPI) October 5 – An industrial ethics group says that the most corrupt companies in the world are those that are based in India. China ranks a close second in the number of companies considered corrupt, followed by Russia and Turkey, Transparency International reported Wednesday in its yearly "Bribe Payers Index." The most corrupt European corporations were in France and Italy. "Bribing companies are actively undermining the best efforts of governments in developing nations to improve governance, and thereby driving the vicious cycle of poverty," said Transparency International Chair Huguette Labelle. [More>>metimes.com]

10.05.06 T. Rex of the oceans found, with teeth like cucumbers

October 5 – Paleaeontologists digging on a desolate Arctic island have uncovered the first complete skeleton of one the great dinosaurs of the deep. The remains of a giant pliosaurus, a short-necked, voracious member of the plesiosaur family, were discovered during an expedition to the Svalbard Islands by researchers from the University of Osloıs Natural History Museum in August. They nicknamed it "The Monster." Announcing their find today — one of 28 marine reptiles dug up in just two weeks this summer — Dr. Jørn Hurum and Hans Arne Nakrem wrote: "Think of an animal as long as a bus with teeth larger then cucumbers. Now think that those teeth are contained in a head that could swallow an adult human whole." [More>>timesonline.co.uk]

10.04.06 Police arrest woman with high explosives

October 4 – A 55-year old woman was arrested Tuesday with two kilograms of TNT at the Sidoarjo train station in East Java province, police said. They said authorities were trying to determine whether she had links to terrorism in the country... Police were searching for key terrorist fugitive Noordin M. Top, an alleged operative of the al-Qaeda-linked militant group Jamaah Islamiyah. [Full story>>thejakartapost.com]

10.04.06 Suicide bombers brainwashed in Pakistan, says Afghan spy agency

KABUL (AFP) October 4 – Would-be suicide bombers detained in Afghanistan claim they have been brainwashed and equipped by Arab, Chechen and Uzbek militants in Pakistan, the Afghan intelligence service said Wednesday. The claims were from 17 attackers who were arrested in the past month before they had the chance to strike, Sayed Ansari, the spokesman for the Afghan National Directorate of Security told reporters. Pakistan, which like Afghanistan is a key US ally in the ³war on terror², has repeatedly denied the existence of militant training facilities on its soil.

"All of the detained have confessed they received training for suicide attacks, attacks against schools and institutions from Arab, Chechen and Uzbek instructors on the other side of the border (Pakistan)," said Ansari. He said illiterate people, those with a poor religious education or from deprived backgrounds were being ³brainwashed² in Pakistani training camps across the border and sent to Afghanistan. [More>>khaleejtimes.com]

10.04.06 Iraqi minister excapes deadly blasts

October 4 – At least 12 people have been killed in a series of bomb blasts in central Baghdad which interior ministry sources said targeted the Iraqi industry minister's convoy. Police sources said three of the industry minister's bodyguards were killed in the blasts, but Fawzi al-Hariri was not with the convoy at the time. "The minister is at the ministry and perfectly safe," a spokesman for al-Hariri said. Drivers and bodyguards for one of al-Hariri's deputies had been taking the cars for fuel when the attack happened.

A bomb detonated in the Karrada district of the mainly Christian Camp Sara neighborhood as the convoy passed, police said. Subsequent explosions outside a nearby market also caused casualties. At least 75 people have been injured, police said.

10.03.06 Prime conspirator of 7/11 blasts arrested: ATS

MUMBAI (PTI) October 3 – In a major development, Maharashtra's Anti-Terrorist Squad (ATS) arrested Asif Khan Bashir Khan alias Junaid, the suspected prime conspirator of the July 11 train blasts planned by Pakistan's ISI, from Belgaum in neighboring Karnataka. An ATS officer said that Junaid was Œthe prime person in the entire conspiracyı. With his arrest, the number of suspects arrested in connection with the blasts has gone up to 16. Junaid, suspected to be an activist of banned Students Islamic Movement of India (SIMI), has been brought to Mumbai, the official said, without elaborating on his exact role in the terror attacks on Mumbai's lifeline. [More>>expressindia.com]

10.03.06 Ozone hole matches record size

GENEVA (AP) October 3 – The "ozone hole" over Antarctica this year has matched the record size of 29.5 million square kilometers (11.4 million square miles), the UN weather agency said Friday. The area of the so-called hole – a thinning in the ozone layer during the South Pole winter – is the same as in the record year of 2000, according to measurements by NASA, said Geir Braathen, ozone specialist at the Geneva-based World Meteorological Organization. But Braathen said of greater concern is that the amount of ozone gas particles remaining in the hole is even lower than in 2000, a measurement called "the mass deficit." [More>>thestar.com.my]

10.03.06 Baghdad suicide bomber kills two

October 3 – Two people have been killed and 19 wounded when a suicide bomber attacked a Baghdad fish market. The bomber detonated a belt rigged with explosives in the outdoor market in the primarily Sunni area of Sadiya, southwestern Baghdad at 0410 GMT on Tuesday. In a separate attack, two civilians were injured when a roadside bomb singling out a US convoy blew up. One civilian was killed and two more wounded in a rocket attack on a residential neighborhood in northern Baghdad. Another person was killed and nine more injured in Baghdad when a parked car bomb blew up near a Shia mosque in Karrada in the city centre. Meanwhile, authorities in Baquba, 60km northeast of Baghdad, said four gunmen were killed in a morning clash with police. [More.>aljazeera.net]

10.03.06 Asia alert after North Korean threat to test nuclear weapon

October 3 – North Korea will test a nuclear weapon to deter the "US threat of aggression" and maintain peace on the Korean peninsula, the reclusive communist state announced today, causing alarm across Asia. South Korea held an emergency Cabinet meeting and raised its security alert. Japan said a nuclear test would be "unforgivable" and the British Foreign Office said the move would be regarded as a "highly provocative act with serious consequences" for North Korea. [More>>timesonline.co.uk ; See also rian.ru, October 3, "Russia-Moscow urges North Korea to show restraint over nuclear tests."]

10.03.06 Turkish plane seized in hijacking

October 3 – A Turkish airliner flying from Tirana to Istanbul has been hijacked and flown to Brindisi in southern Italy in an apparent protest against the Pope. It sent out an SOS twice in Greek airspace, and both Greece and Italy scrambled fighter jets to escort it before it landed in Brindisi. All of the Turkish Airlines plane's 107 passengers are said to be unhurt. Turkish sources say there are two hijackers and they are protesting about the Pope's planned visit to Turkey. According to Turkey's private television channel NTV, the two hijackers, who oppose Pope Benedict's visit scheduled for November, are ready to surrender. [More>>bbc.co.uk]

10.02.06 Italy police 'break terror cell'

October 2 – Italian police say they have uncovered an Islamist group believed to be providing support for suspected militants in Algeria. A police spokesman said six people had been arrested or were being served with arrest warrants. Most of the arrests were executed around Milan, in northern Italy. One suspect was found in Switzerland. Police say they believe the group was giving financial and logistical support to Islamic terrorist groups.

Italian police spokesman Lt Col Domenico Grimaldi told a news conference that the group was part of a wider network operating across much of Europe, and was connected to al Qaeda. The arrests are part of an ongoing operation that began in 2003. In July, Italian police arrested four men believed to have links to an Algerian group named the Salafist Group for Preaching and Combat (GSPC). In September, the GSPC is reported to have pledged allegiance to Osama Bin Laden. The group was founded in the late 1990s with the aim of establishing an Islamic state in Algeria. [>bbc.co.uk]

10.02.06 Letter gives glimpse of Al-Qaeda's leadership

October 2 (By Karen DeYoung) – Six months before the death of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi in June, a senior al-Qaeda figure warned him in a letter that he risked removal as al-Qaeda's leader in Iraq if he continued to alienate Sunni tribal and religious leaders and rival insurgent groups. The author of the Dec. 11 letter, who said he was writing from al-Qaeda headquarters in the Waziristan region of Pakistan, was a member of Osama bin Laden's high command who signed himself "Atiyah." The military's Combating Terrorism Center at West Point, which last week released a 15-page English translation of the Arabic document made public in Iraq, said his real identity was "unknown."

...The letter, the first document to emerge from what the military described as a "treasure trove" of information uncovered from Iraqi safe houses at the time of Zarqawi's death, provides new details of a debilitated al-Qaeda leadership-in-hiding, locating it in Waziristan. "I am with them," Atiyah writes Zarqawi of the high command, "and they have some comments about some of your circumstances."

Pakistan's president, Gen. Pervez Musharraf, said on a visit to the United States last week that he believes bin Laden and his top lieutenants are on the Afghan side of the border. U.S. military and intelligence officials have long believed that the al-Qaeda leadership is hiding in one of the tribal provinces on the Pakistani side of the border, and Atiyah's letter, if accurate, would confirm their location at the time it was written. [Full story>>washingtonpost.com]

10.02.06 Putin warns Bush over Georgia's destructive policy

MOSCOW (RIA Novosti) October 2 – Russian President Vladimir Putin warned any third country against encouraging Georgia to pursue a destructive policy in a telephone conversation Monday with his American counterpart, the Kremlin press service said. The United States has maintained close ties with Georgia since President Mikheil Saakashvili, a US-educated fluent English speaker, came to power on the back of the 2003 "rose revolution." American military trainers have instructed Georgian troops and Washington said on Sunday that it was ready to provide $10 million to Tbilisi to help its bid to join NATO this year.

"The Russian side highlighted that any actions of third countries that Georgia's leadership could interpret as encouraging its destructive policy were unacceptable and dangerous for peace and stability in the region," the Kremlin news service said after Putin's telephone conversation with George W. Bush. [More>>rian.ru See also bbc.co.uk, October 2, "Georgia releases Russian 'spies'"]

10.02.06 At least 50 bodies found in Baghdad

BAGHDAD (AFP) October 2 – At least 50 corpses were discovered scattered around Baghdad overnight, police have said. The bodies all bore bullet wounds and are most likely the victims of the sectarian dirty war raging in the capital between rival Sunni and Shiite armed groups, a police official said. The daily count of corpses showed a brief lull during a total curfew imposed on Baghdad on Saturday, but since it was lifted early Sunday levels of violence, including bombings, have returned to their previous levels.

On Sunday, police reported a mass kidnapping when armed men, some of them wearing security-style uniforms, stormed a food processing plant and kidnapped 26 people, four of whom subsequently escaped. It is not known if some of those kidnapped were among the corpses found dumped in the streets. [More>>turkishpress.com]

10.02.06 Afghan soldiers killed in Paktia

October 2 – Three Afghan soldiers have been killed and three others injured by a roadside bomb in the eastern province of Paktia. The attack came as Afghan troops patrolled a remote mountain pass on Monday, according to General Murad Ali of the Afghan National Army. In a separate attack, a Nato convoy in the capital, Kabul, was attacked by a bomber. Three soldiers and three civilians were wounded. The bomber ran in front of the military convoy, said Ali Shah Paktiawal, a senior police official. [More>>aljazeera.net]


05.23.06 Architect of New War on the West and Bin Laden via As-Sahab website
02.08.06 Iran misunderstanding – "Holocaust" means "whole burnt offering"
09.11.05 When a nation lacks a competent leader it invites disaster – the legacy of Bush
08.13.05 "Using force the George W. Bush way – Bush's crusade"
07.27.05 New security system for Temple Mount: Why the Dome of the Rock is threatened
03.24.05 Temple Mount controversy
02.19.05 'Dog-Deer' clan seen as common Chinese ancestor – relates to European Paleolithic Lion-Deer
02.15.05 Bush & Rice affects upon Iran's liaisons: it's all about oil and gas
12.23.04 US is losing war of ideas
12.21.04 United States attacking itself from behind
Why the Crusade & Jihad?


*Visitor statistics on maravot.com from 1and1.com. 32, 257 page views in August.

Maravot's Homepage

Launched: 10.25.04 / 11.02.04
Updated: 10.02.06; 10.03.06; 10.04.06; 10.05.06; 10.06.06; 10.07.06; 10.08.06; 10.09.06; 10.10.06


Copyright © 1981-2006 Maravot. All rights reserved
Copyright © 1981-2006 Mel Copeland. All rights reserved
Painting of Apple by Mel Copeland, early 70's
Background: tile from Cicero's villa (Marcus Tullius Cicero 106 B.C. - 43 B.C.)

Free translation by Local Translation