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Showing posts from March 4, 2010

Ethiopian opposition says candidate murdered - Yahoo! News

Ethiopian opposition says candidate murdered - Yahoo! News: "ADDIS ABABA (AFP) – An Ethiopian opposition candidate was 'butchered to death' for his political activities ahead of elections scheduled for May, an opposition official said Wednesday.

'Six men attacked Aregawi Gebrehannes at his bar in Shire (north Ethiopia) at around 3:00 am on Tuesday,' Gebru Asrat of the coalition Forum for Democratic Dialogue in Ethiopia (Medrek, main opposition movement), told AFP.

The candidate, who had claimed repeated harassment this year, was vying for a place in parliament for a constituency in Tigray, a stronghold of the ruling Ethiopian People's Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF) coalition.

'They butchered him to death, his body was found cut into pieces,' added Gebru, who was an ally of Prime Minister Meles Zenawi before falling out with him in 2001.

He claimed the assailants were 'mercenaries' linked to the ruling party.

The group said another candidate …

BBC News - Ethiopia famine aid 'spent on weapons'

BBC News - Ethiopia famine aid 'spent on weapons': "Millions of dollars in Western aid for victims of the Ethiopian famine of 1984-85 was siphoned off by rebels to buy weapons, a BBC investigation finds.

Former rebel leaders told the BBC that they posed as merchants in meetings with charity workers to get aid money.

They used the cash to fund attempts to overthrow the government of the time.

One rebel leader estimated $95m (£63m) - from Western governments and charities including Band Aid - was channelled into the rebel fight."

The Corporate Takeover of U.S. Democracy -- In These Times

The Corporate Takeover of U.S. Democracy -- In These Times: "Jan. 21, 2010, will go down as a dark day in the history of U.S. democracy, and its decline.

On that day the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the government may not ban corporations from political spending on elections—a decision that profoundly affects government policy, both domestic and international.

The decision heralds even further corporate takeover of the U.S. political system."

Senate rejects $250 checks for elderly - Yahoo! News

Senate rejects $250 checks for elderly - Yahoo! News: "WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A measure to give some 57 million elderly people, veterans and persons with disabilities a $250 check was rejected by the Senate on Wednesday, a setback for the powerful seniors' lobby.

President Barack Obama has called for Congress to approve the payments to make up for their benefits not increasing this year, but the Senate defeated it 50 to 47.

The payments would have added $13 billion to a $108 billion job-creation package pending in the Senate."

BBC News - Birth defects 'have risen since US Falluja operation'

BBC News - Birth defects 'have risen since US Falluja operation': "A BBC investigation in Iraq has confirmed a disturbingly high number of birth defects among children in the town of Falluja.

Six years ago, in 2004, there were fierce battles as US forces subdued two uprisings in the town.

Now, one hospital doctor told the BBC that they see two or three cases of birth defects each day.

The US military says it is not aware of any official reports showing an increase in birth defects in the area.

It says it always takes public health concerns about any population now living in a combat theatre 'very seriously'."