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Between The Lines
For The Week Ending May 9, 2003


  • Rising Opposition to Occupation of Iraq
    Threatens Bush Agenda for Restructuring
    the Oil-Rich Country

    For story text and audio, Click here!

  • Cuba's Crackdown on Government Opponents
    Triggered by Washington's Funding of Dissident Groups

    For story text and audio, Click here!

  • Labor Movement Speaks Out Against
    Bush Administration's Post-9/11
    Targeting of Immigrants

    For story text and audio, Click here!

  • Underreported News Summary from Around the World
    For full summary and audio, Click here!
LISTEN to this week's half-hour program of Between The Lines by clicking on one of the links below. MP3 files available until May 13, 2003.

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

Rising Opposition to Occupation of Iraq
Threatens Bush Agenda for
Restructuring the Oil-Rich Country

Interview with Mansour Farhang,
Bennington College professor of political science,
conducted by Scott Harris

As the Bush administration works to pacify and restructure post-war Iraq, continuing violence and power struggles between various factions are creating an unstable and dangerous situation. In the latest in a series of confrontations between the U.S. military and Iraqi civilians opposed to American occupation, U.S. troops shot and killed 15 civilians and wounded 75 demonstrators who were protesting the soldier's presence in the town of Fallujah. Despite the U.S. central command's effort to prevent Iraqis from celebrating the 66th birthday of ousted leader Saddam Hussein, a number of commemorations did take place, especially around the former leader's hometown of Tikrit.

Retired Lt. General Jay Garner, the man appointed by the Bush administration to rule post-war Iraq, organized an April 28th closed-door meeting of handpicked Iraqi citizens and exiles to begin the formation of a U.S.-backed "transitional government." But this heavily guarded assembly drew the ire of several thousand Shiite protesters who claimed that the meeting did not represent the interests of the Shiite religion, practiced by 60 percent of Iraq's population. Concerned about the growing political strength of Shiite clerics in Iraq, the White House warned the government of neighboring Iran -- also a majority Shiite nation -- not to interfere in Iraq's internal affairs.

News that the Bush administration was considering the selection of former CIA director James Woolsey as an advisor to any new U.S.-appointed Iraqi minister of information and the inclusion of the former chief executive of Shell Oil Company on an American-created council to oversee Iraq's oil industry - has done little to quell suspicion of America's motives in the country. Between The Lines' Scott Harris spoke with Mansour Farhang, professor of political science at Bennington College in Vermont, a native of Iran, who assesses the religious and political opposition facing the Bush administration as it attempts to install a new government in Baghdad.

Read Mansour Farhang's March 17 Nation Magazine article, "The Triangle of Realpolitik" online at

Related links:

Cuba's Crackdown on Government Opponents
Triggered by Washington's Funding of Dissident Groups

Interview with Philip Agee,
former Central Intelligence Agency officer who resides in Havana, Cuba
conducted by Denise Manzari

The speedy trial and sentencing of dissidents as well as the swift execution of three hijackers in Cuba has been condemned by the U.S. charging Cuban President Fidel Castro with gross human rights violations. However, Cuba's Foreign Minister Felipe Perez-Roque, stated that the Cuban government has not charged these individuals with just criticizing Cuba's leadership but that they had conspired with James Cason, the head of the U.S. Interest Section in Havana in blatant subversion.

Cason has unabashedly been organizing dissidents in high-profile and provocative meetings reportedly even in his own home in gross violation of diplomatic norms. Cuba asserts that these so-called dissidents were receiving money from the U.S. government and had total access to the U.S. Interest Section. Oswaldo Paya, principal architect of the Varela Project and Elizardo Sanchez are two well-known dissidents who were not arrested in Cuba. Some claim it's because they are not known to receive U.S. dollars as the 75 who were recently convicted. Millions of dollars have been funneled by Washington through USAID and other groups to help organize opposition in Cuba. Seven acts of terrorist hijackings have taken place in the past seven months as a result of U.S. law, which provides asylum to all Cubans who can make their way to the U.S.

Philip Agee is a former Central Intelligence Agency officer who served in Latin America during the early 1960s and later resigned. He spoke with Between The Lines' Denise Manzari from Havana, where he now lives, and provides his perspective on the recent events in Cuba.

Related links:

Labor Movement Speaks Out Against
Bush Administration's Post-9/11 Targeting of Immigrants

John Wilhelm, president of the International Union
of Hotel Employees and Restaurant Employees,
speech excerpt produced by Melinda Tuhus

Coinciding with the trend of increasing numbers of immigrants working in America's service industries, a rising proportion of members of the International Union of Hotel Employees and Restaurant Employees are recent arrivals to the United States. At its 1999 annual conference, the AFL-CIO appointed a special committee on immigration chaired by John Wilhelm, the president of the Hotel & Restaurant Employees union. The committee made several proposals that represented a major sea change in long-standing AFL-CIO policy. Among the legislative changes recommended were: amnesty for millions of undocumented workers; replacement of employer sanctions, and restoration of safety net benefits for immigrants abolished by 1996 federal legislation.

Since September 11th, the labor movement has become increasingly vocal in its opposition to the Bush administration's targeting of immigrants in the "war against terrorism."

Wilhelm was the keynote speaker at an April 26th conference on the USA Patriot Act & other threats to civil liberties held at Quinnipiac University in Hamden, Conn. His talk focused on the need for immigrant workers in the U.S. labor force, and the importance of defending immigrants' rights as a bulwark against the further erosion of civil liberties of all Americans.

This segment was recorded and produced by Between the Lines' Melinda Tuhus. For more information, contact HERE at (202) 393-4373 or visit the union's Web site at

This week's summary
of under-reported news

Compiled by Bob Nixon

  • Buenos Aires Police attack workers who took over the abandoned Brukman clothing factory during Argentina's 2001 economic collapse. The garment workers have bcome symbols of resistance in the current economic crisis. ("Argentina factory battle resumes," BBC News, April 22, 2003, Web version)
  • South Africa has expanded the number of rape courts to deal with widespread sexual assault cases, where nearly 70 percent of victims are children. ("South Africa finds 'rape courts' work," Christian Science Monitor, Jan. 29, 2003).
  • Some eco-activists now questioning standards employed by Forest Stewardship Council, which certifies timber companies' protection of biodiversity, native peoples and worker rights. ("Behind the Label," E Magazine, January/February 2003)

DOWNLOAD this week's half-hour program of Between The Lines by clicking on one of the links below. Note: Make sure your browser is set for streaming or download depending on your connection speed.

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

... MORE ...

Greg Palast, BBC journalist, author of NY Times bestseller "The Best Democracy Money Can Buy" spoke at a sold-out event in New Haven, CT April 12! Audio CDs, videotapes and more available at

Last Week's Program

Between The Lines Week Ending 5/02/03

Bush Re-Election Issues

"The Secrets of September 11," by Michael Isikoff and Mark Hosenball, Newsweek Web Exclusive, April 30, 2003

War Profiteering Iraq

"Halliburton's Cash Registers Ring in Iraq," By Lisa Myers and the NBC News Investigative Team, May 3, 2003

"War Profiteering," by The Nation editors, April 24, 2003

"American to oversee Iraqi oil industry," by David Teather, The Guardian, April 26, 2003

"Say it Slowly: It Was About Oil," by Ted Rall,, April 25, 2003

"Halliburton's Axis of Influence" In These Times, March 28, 2003

"Crude History Lesson" In These Times, March 27, 2003

"Analysis: Oil and the Bush Cabinet," by Katty Kay, BBC, January 29, 2001

"The Bush Administration Corporate Connections," Center for Responsive Politics, Washington, D.C.

Postwar Occupation in Iraq

"White House Threatens Belgium over War Crimes Prosecution," by Justin Webb, BBC, April 29, 2003

"A Blinkered Vision for Post-War Iraq,"by Ian Williams, AlterNet, April 29, 2003

"Two More Protesters Killed in Iraqi Town," by Charles J. Hanley, Associated Press, April 30, 2003

"U.S. troops 'kill 13 Iraqi protesters'" by Sarah Left and agencies, The Guardian, April 29, 2003

"U.S. Planners Surprised by Strength of Iraqi Shiites,"by Glenn Kessler and Dana Priest, Washington Post Staff Writers, April 23, 2003

Civil Liberties

"New Patriot Act Creates Uproar, Brings Together Uncommon Allies," by Michelle Mittelstadt, Dallas Morning News, April 15, 2003

Media Coverage on the War

"Revealed: How the Road to War was Paved with Lies," by Raymond Whitaker, The Independent UK, April 27, 2003

"BBC Director General Strikes Out at U.S. Media," by Matt Wells, The Guardian, April 25, 2003

"Turner Calls Rival Media Mogul Murdoch 'Warmonger'" by Duncan Martell, Reuters, April 25, 2003

Between The Lines Special Reports in RealAudio

Disorder, Protests Challenge U.S. Occupation of Iraq, Undermining White House Triumphalism, Roger Normand, executive director of the Center for Economic and Social Rights, Week Ending 4/25/03

U.S. War Violates U.N. Charter, Michael Ratner, Center for Constitutional Rights, March 28, 2003

Campaign to Impeach President Bush Will Require Broad Public Support, law professor Francis Boyle, March 7, 2003

White House Successor to USA Patriot Act Threatens Further Erosion of Civil Liberties, author Nancy Chang, Feb. 28, 2003

Multi-Ethnic Issues Advocacy

Dr. Earl Ofari Hutchinson's Commentaries, The Hutchinson Report
and in Audio (needs RealPlayer)


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