July 02, 2003

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Free Speech Radio News
US showdown over International Criminal Copurt — Sputnik Kilambi
The Pentagon’s latest surveillance program — Renee Gorman
New Jersey dissolves post of Nobel Laureate — Simba Rousseau
Ex-Eli Lily exec named to head AIDS fund — Pamela Barnett

Israeli Troop Withdrawal Begins?  (3:54)
According to the Israeli daily Haaretz, today the Israeli Military withdrew tanks and armored personnel carriers from the streets of Bethlehem and handed over law enforcement duties to the Palestinian Authority.   This comes after a Tuesday evening meeting in Jerusalem between  Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon with Palestinian Prime Minister Mahmoud Abbas during which Abbas called for the release of Palestinian prisoners in Israeli detention.   The Palestinian Prime Minister also asked for a lifting of the military imposed 24 hour curfews on Occupied west bank towns and villages.  FSRN host Deepa Fernandes spoke with George Rishmawi, Coordinator of the Rapprochement Center in Beit Sahour, Bethlehem where he says Palestinians are wary of his Israeli troop withdrawal.

Kraft Cares About Obesity?  (4:01)
The nation’s largest food manufacturer, Kraft foods has promised to take steps to help reduce the obesity epidemic in the United States, modifying it’s marketing practices and making its portions smaller. Meanwhile Kraft’s parent company Altria continues to market the worlds most popular cigarette brands. Josh Chaffin reports.

Where to Build WMD’s at Home…  (4:11)
Federal officials are finding manufacturing sites for Weapons of Mass Destruction – in the American south and southwest. Department of Energy managers are planning to build a new plant for the mass production of plutonium pits, the triggers at the core of nuclear bombs. They’ve been looking at five sites in Texas, Nevada, South Carolina and two in New Mexico, where Joe Gardner Wessely reports on the controversy.

Copyright Laws, MP3 & the Internet  (3:18)
The Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 2000 is giving the record industry and its advocates, namely the Recording Industry Association of America, the ability to search the internet addresses of all those downloading information suspected to be copyrighted music. Last week the RIAA said it would begin searching internet file-sharing networks for music fans with “substantial” MP3 song files. But critics of the RIAA’s down loader crackdown claim the Record Industry and the RIAA are manipulating how copyright laws are interpreted, with potentially damaging effects on consumer rights and artistic creativity. From WBAI, Brendan Sweeney and Jackson Allers report.

Australian Troops to the Solomon’s  (4:19)
Australian Prime Minister John Howard announced that countries National Security Committee has decided to send 1200 troops — 200 of them combat soldiers — and 300 Australian Federal Police officers to the Solomon Islands for at least three months. It will be the largest Australian armed intervention in the South Pacific since World War II. Since 1998, there has often been violent civil conflict in the Solomon Islands, yet this conflict is, in large part, due to a big rise of youth unemployment resulting from cuts in public spending implemented by the government at the behest of the International Monetary Fund in the wake of the 1997-98 Asian “financial” crisis. As Guy Degen reports from Sydney, Australia, while South Pacific neighbors have backed Australian intervention, critics question whether sending troops will actually help the people of the so-called Happy Isles.

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