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Between The Lines
For The Week Ending Jan. 10, 2003


LISTEN to this week's half-hour program of Between The Lines by clicking on one of the links below. MP3 files available until Jan. 14, 2003.

This week we present Between The Lines' summary of under-reported news stories and:

Bush Plan for War Against Iraq
Provokes Growing Hostility Toward U.S in Arab World

Interview with Denis Halliday,
former United Nations Under-Secretary,
conducted by Scott Harris

United Nations inspectors are at about the midway point in their work of investigating Iraq's capacity for making weapons of mass destruction. The process continues despite pronouncements from the Bush administration that Saddam Hussein's government is in material breach of the resolution, establishing the return of U.N. teams to Iraq. Meanwhile, the Pentagon continues to move war ships, thousands of troops and military equipment to the Persian Gulf region in their preparation for war.

As part of the U.N. inspection framework, Baghdad has delivered a list of more than 500 scientists who have worked on Iraq's chemical, biological and nuclear weapons projects. But in releasing a 12,000-page Iraqi weapons declaration to non-permanent members of the U.N. Security Council, the Bush administration acted to censor the names of 24 U.S. and dozens of European companies that sold Baghdad materials for its weapons programs over the past several decades. Among the companies purportedly on the list, as revealed by a German newspaper, are: Bechtel, Dupont, Eastman Kodak, Hewlett-Packard, Honeywell and Rockwell.

Denis Halliday, former under-secretary general at the United Nations, just returned from a conference in Cairo, Egypt where he witnessed growing hostility in the Arab world toward America's foreign policy in the Middle East. Between The Lines' Scott Harris spoke with Halliday, who led the oil for food program in Iraq before resigning in protest in 1998, about the anger he observed in Egypt and the backlash he fears may be triggered by an American war against Baghdad.

To get more information on the international campaign to end economic sanctions on Iraq that target civilians, call Voices in the Wilderness at (773) 784-8065 or visit their Web site at

Related links:

Army Major Charges Pentagon with Gross Negligence
in Care of Gulf War Veterans Exposed to Toxic Chemicals and Radiation

Excerpt of talk delivered
by Army Major Doug Rokke in New Haven, Conn.
produced by Melinda Tuhus

Major Doug Rokke is a 30-year Army combat veteran and a health physicist who was in charge of the Pentagon's Depleted Uranium Project in the mid-1990s after the Gulf War. On a recent speaking tour, Rokke quoted from several memos and reports that he says revealed a lack of commitment on the part of the U.S. military to clean up depleted uranium that became airborne from targets, such as tanks destroyed by DU ammunition, after the war ended. He also asserts that the Pentagon lacks a commitment to test and treat U.S. Gulf War veterans who were exposed to depleted uranium, chemical weapons, oil well fires and who experienced negative reactions to anthrax vaccine.

Rokke believes these exposures contributed to, if not caused, illness among hundreds of thousands of Gulf War veterans and the deaths of more than 10,000.

Rokke recently spoke at a Connecticut Peace Coalition event in New Haven, Conn., where he detailed his allegations of U.S. military irresponsibility. We present an excerpt of this talk recorded and produced by Between The Lines' Melinda Tuhus Nov. 10.

For more information, contact the Gulf War Veterans Resource Center at 1-(800) 882-1316 Ext. 162 or visit the Center's Web site at

Related links:

  • "The Saddam in Rumsfeld's Closet" by Jeremy Scahill,, Aug. 2, 2002
  • "U.S. Had Key Role in Iraq Buildup: Trade in Chemical Arms Allowed Despite Their Use on Iranians, Kurds" By Michael Dobbs, Washington Post, Dec. 30, 2002, Page A01 Editor's Note: Article describes how Donald Rumsfeld, now defense secretary, was a special presidential envoy whose December 1983 meeting with Saddam Hussein during 1980-88 Iran-Iraq war helped open door to trade in weapons that is now deplored
  • Editor's Note: Also available on the above Web page until Jan. 13, 2003 -- Photo Gallery: "Was This the Garden of Eden?" Washington Post photographer Michael Robinson-Chavez, Washington Post, Dec. 30, 2002 visits southeastern Iraq where a once paradisiacal landscape has given away to bleak poverty. Note that the photos contain the Tigris and Euphrates rivers, which are referred to in the Bible (Genesis 2:10) in the Garden of Eden, and the land also widely known in ancient times as Mesopotamia, Western civilization's "Cradle of Civilization."

One Year After Argentina's Economic Collapse,
Citizens Building Democratic Community Institutions

Interview with Todd Tucker,
of the Center for Economic Justice,
conducted by Scott Harris

In reaction to a disastrous economic collapse, widespread corruption and unresponsive politicians, hundreds of thousands of Argentinians gathered in the streets to demand the resignation of their government last year. Unrelenting militant protests -- known as "cacerolazo" or "pot and pan-banging protests" -- by virtually all sectors of Argentine society, led to the resignation of five presidents in December 2001.

One year later, as the broken Argentine economy continues to devastate the lives of millions, workers, professionals, and students are building grassroots democratic structures to cope with the crisis such as: local barter markets, direct action cells, and neighborhood assemblies. With Argentina's November and December default on debt payments to the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund, under pressure by the Bush administration, now demands deeper cuts in social programs and increased fees for public services.

On Dec. 20, solidarity actions with the Argentine people were launched in the U.S to commemorate the uprising which many activists hope will contribute to the creation of a more just economic and political system in the South American nation and elsewhere. Between The Lines' Scott Harris spoke with Todd Tucker of the Center for Economic Justice, who discusses Argentina's economic crisis and the grassroots movements organizing to resist U.S.-imposed neoliberal policies.

Contact the Center for Economic Justice by calling (202) 393-6665 or visit the Center's Web Site at

This week's summary
of under-reported news

Compiled by Bob Nixon and Brita Brundage

  • Foreign gun runners buying up arms in U.S. states with weak gun laws, destined for civil conflicts in Latin America and the Middle East. ("The Guns of Opa-Locka," The Nation, Dec. 2, 2002)
  • Health care has become so expensive in recent years that some states are beginning to consider universal health care. ("More States Flirt with Universal Health Care," The Christian Science Monitor, Dec. 16, 2002; National Conference of State Legislators report; "U.S. in Court Filing, Backs Maine's Drug Discount Plan," The New York Times, June 1, 2002; "The Backlash Against Big Pharma," American Health Quality Association Report, May 27, 2002)
  • After power failures at Plum Island Animal Research Center, in the midst of a six-month labor strike, N.Y. Senator Hillary Clinton calls for shutdown of Plum Island Animal Research Center until independent safety audit can be completed. ("Bankrolling a Union-Buster," Mother Jones, Dec. 16, 2002; "Blackout at Plum Island," Dec. 20, 2002.)

Senior news editor: Bob Nixon
Program narration: Denise Manzari
News reader: Sasha Summer Cousineau
Segment producer: Melinda Tuhus
Distribution: Anna Manzo, Harry Minot, Jeff Yates
Web editor/producer: Anna Manzo
Executive producer: Scott Harris

... MORE ...

Last Week's Program

Between The Lines Week Ending 1/3/03

War With Iraq

"Weapon of the Week: The Burrowing Nuke" by George Smith, Village Voice, Dec. 25 - 31, 2002

"The Saddam in Rumsfeld's Closet" by Jeremy Scahill,, Aug. 2, 2002

"U.S. Had Key Role in Iraq Buildup: Trade in Chemical Arms Allowed Despite Their Use on Iranians, Kurds" By Michael Dobbs, Washington Post, Dec. 30, 2002, Page A01

U.S. Facing Bigger Bill For Iraq War: Total Cost Could Run As High as $200 Billion, by Michael Dobbs, Washington Post, Dec. 1, 2002, Page A01

IMF/World Bank and Anti-Iraq War Protest Interviews, Teach-Ins Sept. 27-29,2002 Interviews with Mary Bull, Medea Benjamin, Ralph Nader in D.C. (in MP3 format)

"Stopping Water Privatizers at Home and Abroad," Part 1 Featuring Clemente Martinez and Rudolf Amenga-Etego on campaigns in Nicaragua and Ghana. In RealAudio.

Energy Standoff in Central Asia

"Bush Fuels Oil Conspiracy Theory," by Ted Rall,, Jan. 10, 2002

"Pipeline Politics: Oil, The Taliban and the Political Balance of Central Asia," World Press Review Special Report

"The New Great Game: Oil Politics in Central Asia" by Ted Rall,, October 11, 2001,

Economic Globalization Resources

ZNet's Global Economic Crisis resource site Excellent source for understanding global economics and trade issues in preparation for ongoing demonstrations about economic justice

Multi-Ethnic Public Issues Advocacy

Dr. Earl Ofari Hutchinson's Commentaries, The Hutchinson Report

Between The Lines' 10th Anniversary CD


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