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Between The Lines
For The Week Ending July 18, 2003


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  • U.S. Plan to Privatize
    Iraqi Industry May Signal
    New 'Bomb Before You Buy' Doctrine

    For story text and audio, Click here!

  • Medicare Drug Benefit Legislation
    Not a Cure All for
    Failing Healthcare System

    For story text and audio, Click here!

  • Move to Recall California Gov. Gray Davis
    Ignores GOP Role in Energy Companies'
    Robbing of State's Consumers

    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 July 22, 2003.

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

U.S. Plan to Privatize
Iraqi Industry May Signal
New 'Bomb Before You Buy' Doctrine

Interview with Naomi Klein,
author and columnist,
conducted by Scott Harris

The military occupation of Iraq has not gone according the plan made in Washington long before the war was launched against Saddam Hussein's government. Since President Bush declared major hostilities over in Iraq on May 1, more than 30 U.S. and British troops have been killed in an intensifying series of guerrilla attacks. With an average 13 engagements each day between U.S. soldiers and armed Iraqis hostile to the occupation, American military leaders are still reluctant to characterize the resistance as an organized effort. Instead, Pentagon and Bush administration officials maintain that groups attacking U.S. forces are remnants of Saddam's Baathist party or terrorists sympathetic to al Qaeda.

Fueling hostility toward the U.S. in Iraq are the increasing number of civilians being shot by jittery and exhausted American soldiers, the delay in establishing an Iraqi transition government and the spotty restoration of electrical and water services. Recent statements made by L. Paul Bremer III, President Bush's administrator in Iraq, that the U.S. will work to privatize Baghdad's state-owned industries has further antagonized many Iraqis.

Between The Lines' Scott Harris spoke with author and columnist Naomi Klein, who discusses her view that the Bush administration's economic plan for Iraq is but one element of a broader strategy to expand the power and wealth of U.S. based multinational corporations across the globe.

Naomi Klein is author of "Fences and Windows: Dispatches from the front Lines of the Globalization Debate" published by Flamingo. Visit her website at

Related links

Medicare Drug Benefit Legislation
not a Cure-All
for Failing Healthcare System

Interview with Dr. Quentin Young,
Physicians for a National Health Program,
conducted by Scott Harris

In early 2000, President Clinton proposed the inclusion of prescription drug benefits in the nation's Medicare health program, but with disagreements on how the program should be organized, Congress failed to act. Now more than three years later, legislation which will provide drug subsidies to senior citizens has been passed both by the House and Senate. Although differences in the two chamber's bills still need to be reconciled, the total package of benefits is estimated to cost $400 billion over the next decade. The legislation will offer beneficiaries the option of choosing either private providers or traditional fee for service plans.

The Bush administration maintains that shifting Medicare toward private, for-profit providers will reduce costs through competition. But opponents of the measure say the legislation will impose additional costs on Medicare beneficiaries, leave large gaps in coverage and increase the program's reliance on private insurance to provide medical services. According to a recent study from the Urban Institute, Medicare's government run program has more effectively controlled health care costs than private insurers.

Between The Lines' Scott Harris spoke with Dr. Quentin Young, national coordinator with Physicians for a National Heath Program and a practicing physician for five decades. Dr. Young assesses the Medicare prescription drug plan and explains why he advocates the adoption of a single payer, universal health care system.

Contact Physicians for a National Health Program by calling (312) 782-6006 or visit their website at

Move to Recall California Gov. Gray Davis
Ignores GOP Role in Energy Companies'
Robbing of State's Consumers

Interview with Tyson Slocum,
research director of Public Citizen's
Critical Mass Energy Program,
conducted by Melinda Tuhus

While almost every state in the U.S. is suffering from a major budget crisis, California's budget meltdown dwarfs other states' problems. California is facing a shortfall of up to $35 billion, more than most states' entire budgets. This crisis has prompted a move to recall Gov. Gray Davis, and his opponents are close to having enough signatures verified to accomplish this goal. If Davis is recalled, a special election for governor will be held in which Davis will run again and potentially face Republican Congressman Darrel Issa, who has declared his intention to run. The election itself will cost $30 million, money which is not in the state budget.

One of the main reasons Davis opponents give for the recall move is his handling of the state's 2000-2001 energy crisis. Lost in the politicking over the recall is the role of Enron and other energy companies in manipulating the energy market to their advantage, leading to great financial hardship for consumers in the state.

Between The Lines' Melinda Tuhus spoke with Tyson Slocum, research director for Public Citizen's Critical Mass Energy program. He talks about Governor Davis' role in the energy crisis, the involvement of his predecessor Pete Wilson in pushing through electricity deregulation and the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission's lack of oversight of the energy supply during the crisis.

Contact Public Citizen by calling (202) 588-1000, or visit their website at

Related links:

This week's summary
of under-reported news

Compiled by Bob Nixon and Brita Brundage

  • Israel has been slow to disclose percentage of its budget devoted to subsidizing and protecting its illegal settlement outposts in the West Bank and Gaza. ("At What Price," by Gershom Gorenberg, Mother Jones, June/August, 2003)
  • South Africa's move toward privatization is driving a wedge between the ruling African National Congress and unions and progressive activists. ("The New Apartheid," New Internationalist, April 2003).
  • Specter of deflation threatens U.S. economy and most could devastate most personal investments, but Bush administration offers only more tax cuts for the wealthy.("Deflation," by William Greider, The Nation, June 30, 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. MP3 files available until July 22.

Note to our broadcast subscribers: We are now offering FTP access for faster, more reliable download of our broadcast quality files. Please call Anna Manzo at (203) 268-8446 ext. 2, to register for FTP logon access or send feedback to us at

Senior news editor: Bob Nixon Newswriter: Brita Brundage
Segment producer: Melinda Tuhus
Program narration: Sasha Summer Cousineau
News reader: Denise Manzari
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 7/11/03

Bush Re-Election Issues

"White House Admits Bush Lied About Iraqi Nukes," "Capitol Hill Blue, July 8, 2003

"Congresswoman says Bush lied; Demands probe," Press release from Rep. Jan Schakowsky, July 8, 2003

"After Tour, Senators Warn U.S. Is Spread Thin in Iraq," The New York Times, July 4, 2003

"Republican Enviros Blast Bush for Withholding Information," Environment News Service, July 2, 2003

"The Selling of the Iraq War: The First Casualty" The New Republic, June 30, 2003

"Distorted Intelligence?" Newsweek, June 23, 2003

"Senators Predict 5-Year Presence in Iraq," Reuters June 23, 2003

"There's a Method to Bush's Madness," Madison Capital Times June 23, 2003

"Dean, Kerry: 'Bush Misled America on War'," Independent Investigation Sought of President Bush, Associated Press, June 18, 2003

"Ex-CIA Director Says Administration Stretched Facts on Iraq," USA TODAY, June 18, 2003

"Impeachable Offense," Seattle Weekly/, June 18, 2003

"Reason to Deceive:WMD Lies Could Be the New Watergate," The Village Voice, June 18, 2003

"Missing Weapons Of Mass Destruction: Is Lying About The Reason For War An Impeachable Offense?" by John W. Dean, FindLaw's Writ, June 6, 2003

American Empire/War Profiteering in Iraq

"Public Citizen Report Exposes Contractor Bechtel as Threat to Iraqi Environment, Human Rights and Basic Services,"

"Imperial America and War," Monthly Review, May 28, 2003

"Another Scandalous No-Bid Contract Makes Us Look Like Fools,", May 26, 2003

"Pentagon Hands Major Iraq Deal to Scandal-Ridden WorldCom," The Star Online, May 22, 2003

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

Postwar Occupation of Iraq

"Shiites Warn the United States Against the Formation of an Illegal Iraqi Government," Le Monde, June 30, 2003

" The War That Never Ends," Time, July 7, 2003

Civil Liberties

"Lawyers Furious as US Builds Death Chambers,", Times UK Online, July 5, 2003

"Fascism Anyone?" 14 Signs of Fascism, Free Inquiry Magazine, Volume 23, No. 2

"Germany In 1933: The Easy Slide Into Fascism," The Crisis Papers, June 9, 2003

Between The Lines Special Reports in RealAudio

"Allegations of War Profiteering Leveled Against Halliburton and Other Companies With Close Ties to White House," Charlie Cray, corporate reform campaigner at Citizen Works, Week Ending 5/23/03

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

Multi-Ethnic Issues Advocacy

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


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