Terms: Near East
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- Social Studies > Current Events Archives > Middle East > 2003
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- -04-20-06 East African Disaster Deepens (ABC News)
"Over the last three years, about 3 million people have fled their homes and nearly 200,000 people have died as Sudan's government and pro-government Arab militias have attacked, pillaged and raped the black African population in what many have called genocide." 04-06
- -04-29-06 Worst Draught in 20 Years Hits East Africa (ABC News)
"The Horn of Africa is facing its worst drought in two decades, and nearly 6 million people in Ethiopia, Somalia, Djibouti and Kenya are at risk of dying. In recent days the much-anticipated seasonal rains have arrived in some parts of the region, but it's not nearly enough and in many places the sudden rains have led to flash flooding." 04-06
- 06-30-03 Israelis Withdraw from Gaza (Fox News)
"Road traffic flowed smoothly through the Gaza Strip for the first time in nearly three years Monday, as bulldozers dismantled Israeli checkpoints put up after the current Palestinian uprising began in Sept. 2000." 6-03
- 10-30-03 Israeli Army Chief Criticizes Sharon (Guardian Unlimited - McGreal)
"Israel's army chief has exposed deep divisions between the military and Ariel Sharon by branding the government's hardline treatment of Palestinian civilians counter-productive and saying that the policy intensifies hatred and strengthens the "terror organisations".
"The statements - which a close associate characterised to the Israeli press as warning that the country was 'on the verge of a catastrophe' - will also reinforce a growing perception among the public that Mr Sharon is unable to deliver the peace with security he promised when he came to office nearly three years ago."
"Gen Ya'alon also waded into one of the most contentious issues of the day by saying the army had recommended a less controversial route for the steel and concrete "security fence" through the West Bank."
"He said the military had warned that the fence, which digs deep into Palestinian territory, caging some towns and villages and cutting farmers off from their land, will make the lives of some Palestinians "unbearable" and require too many soldiers to guard it." 10-03
- Editorial: Gaza a First Step (International Herald Tribune - New York Times)
"On Monday morning, Israel finally began to withdraw from the thirsty strip of land where it settled nearly 9,000 Jews in the middle of more than a million Arabs. Gaza has always been the ultimate example of the bankruptcy of Israel's settlement policy, and Prime Minister Ariel Sharon should be congratulated for finally doing what he and his predecessors should have done years ago."
"But Bush must make clear to Sharon that the Gaza withdrawal is a first step. He must not allow Sharon to maneuver him into blessing an indefinite Israeli occupation of the West Bank." 8-05
- -10-08-05 Gaza Poverty (BBC News)
"It is nearly a month now since the last Israeli tanks rolled out of the Gaza Strip. Determined that the homes of Israeli families would not fall into the hands of militant groups like the Hamas organisation, they have left little behind but rubble." 10-05
- -11-02-05 Report: CIA Uses Secret Prisons (CBS News)
"The CIA has been hiding and interrogating some of its most important al Qaeda captives at a Soviet-era compound in Eastern Europe, according to U.S. and foreign officials familiar with the arrangement, the Washington Post reported."
"The secret facility is part of a covert prison system set up by the CIA nearly four years ago that at various times has included sites in eight countries, including Thailand, Afghanistan and several democracies in Eastern Europe, as well as a small center at the Guantanamo Bay prison in Cuba, according to current and former intelligence officials and diplomats from three continents, the paper said Tuesday on its Web site."
"The hidden global internment network is a central element in the CIA's unconventional war on terrorism, the Post said. It depends on the cooperation of foreign intelligence services, and on keeping even basic information about the system secret from the public, foreign officials and nearly all members of Congress charged with overseeing the CIA's covert actions." 11-05
- -11-26-05 Landmark Day for Gaza-Egypt Border (BBC News)
"More than 1,500 Palestinians have crossed freely from Gaza into Egypt via a border point controlled for the first time by Palestinian officials."
"Saturday was the first day Palestinians could use the reopened Rafah crossing - a vital gateway to the outside world for the Gaza Strip's economy."
"Israel held the border station for nearly 40 years but ceded control to Palestinian forces after it withdrew."
"The crossing reopened under the European Union's supervision." 11-05
- -12-11-05 Ice Core Extends Climate Record 650,000 Years (Scientific American)
"Researchers have recovered a nearly two-mile-long cylinder of ice from eastern Antarctica that contains a record of atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide (CO2) and methane--two potent and ubiquitous greenhouse gases--spanning the last two glacial periods. Analysis of this core shows that current atmospheric concentrations of CO2--380 parts per million (ppm)--are 27 percent higher than the highest levels found in the last 650,000 years." 12-05
- -02-04-06 Reality Check on President's Oil Reduction Plan (Christian Science Monitor)
"With Americans concerned about rising gasoline prices and dependence on imported oil, the president wants to cut 75 percent of US oil imports from the region by 2025 - and he provided a new energy plan to help do it."
"A bipartisan proposal in Congress - the 'Vehicle and Fuel Choices for American Security Act' - advocates a 7-million-barrel cut over 20 years, nearly double Bush's proposal and eliminating the need for any Middle Eastern oil." 02-06
- Oldest Homo Sapiens Found (BBC News)
"Three fossilised skulls unearthed in Ethiopia are said by scientists to be among the most important discoveries ever made in the search for the origin of humans."
"The crania of two adults and a child, all dated to be around 160,000 years old, were pulled out of sediments near a village called Herto in the Afar region in the east of the country."
" 'All the genetics have pointed to a geologically recent origin for humans in Africa - and now we have the fossils,' said Professor Tim White, one of the co-leaders on the research team that found the skulls." The Herto fossils have been classified as Homo sapiens idaltu, now extinct. Homo sapiens sapiens is the only subspecies of Homo sapiens known to have survived as current humans. 03-06
- -01-22-07 Arab Supporters of U.S. War Now Resentful (MSNBC News)
"And nearly four years after the invasion they [Arab supporters] backed, their sense of frustration, resentment and even betrayal speaks volumes about how withered American standing is in the Middle East today and how far the region itself has deteriorated, riven as it is by escalating conflicts, worsening sectarian tension and a simmering struggle with an ascendant Iran."
" 'It's a success story for al-Qaeda, a success story for autocratic Arab regimes that made democracy look ugly in their people's eyes. They can say to their people: "Look at the democracy that the Americans want to bring to you. Democracy is trouble. You may as well forget about what the Americans promise you. They promise you death," ' said Salameh Nematt, a Jordanian analyst and the former Washington bureau chief for the Arabic-language daily newspaper al-Hayat." 01-07
- "The Most Amazing Display of Athletic, Mental Power" (NBC Sports)
Tiger Woods "kept an East Coast television audience and a sellout crowd at Torrey Pines in suspense when his left knee buckled and he nearly dropped to the ground from the sheer pain, limping along with his club as a cane. The drama came on the last six holes, when he turned a five-shot deficit into a one-shot lead."
"First came Woods’ 70-foot eagle putt on the 13th to get back in the game. Then it was a chip that he struck too hard, only to bow his head and laugh when it one-hopped into the hole for birdie on the 17th. Woods ended one of his most exciting rounds in a major with a 30-foot eagle putt on the 18th hole for a 1-under 70 and a one-shot lead over Lee Westwood."
" 'It’s just the most amazing display of athletic, mental power that there is, there ever was,' said Mediate, who had a three-shot lead early on the back nine until a four-hole meltdown." 06-08
- Whales, Blue (A-Z Animals)
"Blue Whales are the largest recorded mammal on earth some reaching nearly 120ft!The blue whale is found in pretty much all oceans but the whales tend to prefer the warmer waters."
"The blue whale has been nearly hunted to extinction by man when eastern Asian whaling came into fashion a few of hundred years ago. There are less than 12,000 blue whales left worldwide." 01-09
- -09-09-09 Study: Majority Killed in Gaza War Were Civilians (Time.com)
"Well over half of nearly 1,400 Palestinians killed in Israel's Gaza war were civilians, including 252 children younger than 16, a leading Israeli human rights groups said Wednesday, challenging Israel's claim that most of the dead were militants."
"The Israeli rights group B'Tselem on Wednesday published figures it said were compiled in months of research, including visits to families of victims. It said 1,387 Gazans were killed, including 773 civilians and 330 combatants. Thirteen Israelis also died, including four civilians." 09-09
- -09-19-09 Russia Won't Deploy Missiles Either (CBS New)
"Russia will scrap a plan to deploy missiles near Poland because the U.S. no longer wants to place a missile-defense system in Eastern Europe, a Russian deputy defense minister said Saturday." 09-09
- -02-27-10 Chilean Earthquake Was One of the Largest Ever (USA Today)
"One of the largest earthquakes ever recorded tore apart houses, bridges and highways in central Chile on Saturday and sent a tsunami racing halfway around the world. Chileans near the epicenter were tossed about as if shaken by a giant, and authorities said at least 214 people were dead. The magnitude-8.8 quake was felt as far away as Sao Paulo in Brazil — 1,800 miles (2,900 kilometers) to the east." 02-10
- -Nazca Tectonic Plate Caused Largest Earthquake Recorded (New York Times)
"The magnitude 8.8 earthquake that struck off the coast of Chile early Saturday morning occurred along the same fault responsible for the biggest quake ever measured, a 1960 tremor that killed nearly 2,000 people in Chile and hundreds more across the Pacific."
"Both earthquakes took place along a fault zone where the Nazca tectonic plate, the section of the earth’s crust that lies under the Eastern Pacific Ocean south of the Equator, is sliding beneath another section, the South American plate. The two are converging at a rate of about three and a half inches a year."
"Earthquake experts said the strains built up by that movement, plus the stresses added along the fault zone by the 1960 quake, led to the rupture on Saturday along what is estimated to be about 400 miles of the zone, at a depth of about 22 miles under the sea floor." 02-10
- -03-19-11 The French Attack Gaddafi's Forces in Libya (Time.com)
"Libya's monthlong revolt became an international conflict on Saturday as five French reconnaissance jets roared over the country, in the first foreign military action ostensibly designed to stop Muammar Gaddafi's army from inflicting more damage on rebel strongholds and Libyan civilians. But the likely consequence of such an action was also emerging, that it would be the beginning of a campaign to drive Gaddafi out of rebel-held eastern Libya — and ultimately to force him from office after nearly 42 years in power." 03-11
- -0001 Sandy Survivors Push for Normalcy (CNN News)
"A little less than 4.9 million customers across the eastern United States were still in the dark early Thursday, down from the nearly 8 million who lost power shortly after the storm hit." 11-12