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Sunday, May 27, 2007

The Week in review plus weekend news

Weekend Top Stories:
[ETHIOPIA’S MISSED CHANCES] - [Ethiopia opens embassy in chaotic Somali capital] - [NJ Man Held in Ethiopia Finally Back in U.S.] and more of the weekend's top stories!

The Week in Review



Kinijit International Australia tour

(Memorial Day - Celebrated on the fourth Monday of May, this holiday honors the dead. Although it originated in the aftermath of the Civil War, it has become a day on which the dead of all wars, and the dead generally, are remembered in special programs held in cemeteries, churches, and other public meeting places)

Bush pays tribute to fallen troops: WASHINGTON — President Bush urged Americans to use Memorial Day to rededicate themselves to fighting for freedom across the world and pray for the safety of U.S. troops serving overseas.(More...)

ETHIOPIA’S MISSED CHANCES—1960, 1974, 1991, 2005—AND NOW: I

Donald N. Levine
Speech at Ras Makonnen Hall A.A

It is a great pleasure for me to be back in this special land--ye’egziabher agar aybalem?--and a privilege to be speaking to you in this special Hall. I give thanks to the Department of Sociology and Anthropology for organizing this occasion, and to Dr. Yaqob Arsano, Dean of the College of Social Sciences, for his truly gracious introduction.

The last time I spoke in Ras Makonnen Hall I had the pleasure of being introduced by a grand colleague and a great Ethiopian--Dr. Eshetu Chole. I’d like to dedicate my comments today to the memory of Dr. Eshetu, and to his inspiring model of unflinching engagement with the problem of Ethiopia’s missed opportunities in a spirit that combined unshakeable hope with enormous intellectual integrity.(More...)

Ethiopia opens embassy in chaotic Somali capital

MOGADISHU (Reuters) - Ethiopia opened an embassy in the chaotic Somali capital next to the presidential palace on Sunday, the latest sign of the Horn of Africa military power's close ties with a Somali government it wants to sustain.

Ethiopian Foreign Minister Seyoum Mesfin, a key player in Addis Ababa's efforts to bolster the government of Somali President Abdullahi Yusuf, opened the embassy on the third day of his latest visit to Mogadishu.(More...)

NJ Man Held in Ethiopia Finally Back in U.S.

TRENTON, N.J. (AP) - May 26, 2007 - The family of a New Jersey man who had been held in Ethiopia for alleged ties to Islamic militants is celebrating his return tonight.

And although it's not clear why 24-year-old Amir Mohamed Meshal was finally released, his relatives say they're thrilled to have him back home in Tinton Falls.(More...)

Ethiopia honors victims of Marxist junta during ceremony in Meskel Square

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia: Three decades ago, Ethiopian police brought Ahmed Hussein's younger brother home from jail and asked the family to gather outside.

"They shot him in front of us," Ahmed said Sunday, his eyes welling with tears. "We were not allowed to cry."

Ahmed and thousands of others gathered in the capital, Addis Ababa, on Sunday to remember victims of the Dergue, a brutal Marxist junta that ruled from 1974 to 1991. The service marked the anniversary of the downfall of the junta's leader, Mengistu Haile Mariam — known as "the butcher of Addis Ababa" — who is living in exile in Zimbabwe.(More...)

Zimbabwe holds opposition members

(CNN) -- Police in Zimbabwe rounded up more than 200 members of the political opposition Saturday, according to a spokesman for the southern African nation's main opposition movement.

Nelson Chamisa, spokesman for the Movement for Democratic Change, said the people were gathered in the capital, Harare, to "just discuss political issues." Then, police broke down doors and seized the people, now detained at the Central Police Station.(More...)

Radiation Eating Fungus found in Chernobyl

[Listen to NPR's report]

Researchers at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine (AEC) have found evidence that certain fungi possess another talent beyond their ability to decompose matter: the capacity to use radioactivity as an energy source for making food and spurring their growth.

Detailing the research in Public Library of Science ONE, AEC's Arturo Casadevall said his interest was piqued five years ago when he read about how a robot sent into the still-highly-radioactive Chernobyl reactor had returned with samples of black, melanin-rich fungi that were growing on the ruined reactor's walls.

"I found that very interesting and began discussing with colleagues whether these fungi might be using the radiation emissions as an energy source," explained Casadevall.(More...)