Hailed as heroes in Mexico for fighting with and defending the country against American invasion and reviled as traitors in the US for desertion, about 50 Irish immigrants were hung en masse after defeat in the Mexican-American War. A musical collaboration by The Chieftains, Ry Cooder and Latino musicians tell the history of the 'San Patricios'
. (Related NPR story
) For more background on the San Patricios, the fascinating documentary Saol John Riley, part 1
and part 2
follows Kerry singer songwriter Charlie O'Brien as he revisits sites associated with Patricio leader John Riley to discover the revolutionary hero's fate. [more inside]
were dropped during D-Day, later depicted in the film The Longest Day
. But prior to D-Day, both the British and the Germans
had used straw-filled decoys in various locations. Later in the war, the U.S. tested "Oscar"
but found him lacking, adopting instead the PD Dummy
. [more inside]
American-Dutch photographer Peter van Agtmael
and English photographer Olivia Arthur
are the two newest nominees recently welcomed into Magnum Photos
. Agtmael's images of Afghanistan and Iraq are very powerful - he discusses his work in Conscientious
. Arthur's recent work has focused on women's experiences in what she calls the Middle Distance
. [more inside]
40 years ago
tomorrow, more than 500 villagers were raped, tortured, and slaughtered
(disturbing images) by American soldiers in a hamlet nicknamed Pinkville. Four Hours in My Lai
tells the story. Part 1
. [more inside]
Peace on Earth
- 1939 Disney animation directed by Hugh Harman. And Goodwill to Men
, a 1955 remake by Hanna-Barbera.
- in honor of Veteran's Day, it might be fitting to check in on the recovery of J.R. Salzman
, known here on mefi as Logboy
- a little animated clip by Christy Karacas.
Make love not war? The Pentagon confirms that it was researching the possibility of a "gay bomb"
that could "turn enemy soldiers into homosexuals and make them more interested in sex than fighting." BBC discusses this and other unorthodox U.S. weapons proposals
Unusual technical images of equipment used in World War II
- vintage public information illustrations from the pre-computer graphics era.
Five Days in Hell
- what's it like to be an Iraqi hostage? Canadian war journalist Scott Taylor provides a harrowing account of his recent 5-day ordeal as a hostage of notorious Islamic mujahedin groups. Christopher Delisso has an interview
with Taylor, and blogger Zeyad of Healing Iraq
offers informed local commentary on kidnappings in his post, "On clerics, fatwas and terrorism."
Journalism is an increasingly deadly profession.
Statistics vary. The Committee to Protect Journalists reports 36 deaths in 2003
while the International Press Institute documents 64 deaths
. Iraq was the most life-threatening country, but the Philippines and Columbia remain some of of the most dangerous places to be a reporter. Four media deaths at the hands of US military in Iraq continue to spark controversy, and a Global Day of Mourning and Protest
over the U.S. "abject failure" to probe the Palestinian Hotel deaths is scheduled for April 8. This year, Haiti
appears to be another hotspot. The International News Safety Institute offers safety tips
and member advice on how to stay alive