ALL EDITIONS SECTION: EDITORIAL; Pg. 024 LENGTH: 370 words HEADLINE: Editorial;
Constitutions are a difficult thing BODY:
The failure of Sunni leaders to support the new draft constitution for Iraq is not the end of the world. But events soon will give these leaders the chance to show whether they're statesmen or wreckers.
The distribution of oil revenues, which seemed the key stumbling block, proved soluble. The fact that the oil-rich Kurd and Shiite areas were willing in the end to share revenues on a per-capita basis with oil-deprived Sunnis ought to prove to Sunnis that the Kurds and Shiites truly wanted a deal.
The deal-breaker seems to have been the last-minute engineering by Shiite leaders of a right for any group of provinces to form itself into an autonomous region along the lines of what the Kurds are promised.
What's not known is how important such a possibility will seem to Sunni voters. Shiites have not said they actually want such a region.
In contrast to the January elections, which the Sunnis boycotted, Sunnis now are being urged to vote in the Oct. 15 referendum on the constitution - to vote it down. If the Kurd and Shiite leaders are smart, they will make every effort to convince the mass of Sunnis to vote ``for.''
Failure to ratify means new elections and another try to write a constitution that all will support. A disappointment, but not a bar to eventual success.
A rejection by two-thirds of the voters in any three provinces means the constitution is defeated - even if it attracts an overall majority. Such a rejection is not guaranteed. The Sunnis, who are probably less than 20 percent of the population, are dominant in only two provinces even though they might be a majority in two more.
Approval would mean amendments can't be attempted for eight years. Statesmen would accept that and work toward that day. Wreckers would sit back and hope the insurgency makes the country ungovernable - or even go over to the insurgents.
If approval comes, Iraq's Sunnis will need their own Patrick Henry, who opposed the American Constitution (the country's second, following the Articles of Confederation). Outside his house his supporters gathered after the Virginia ratification on June 25, 1788, seeking some way to continue. ``As true and faithful republicans,'' Henry told them, ``you had all better go home.'' LOAD-DATE: September 4, 2005
ALL EDITIONS SECTION: NEWS; Pg. 002 LENGTH: 986 words HEADLINE: TROOPS TRYING HARD TO RESTORE LAW, ORDER;
Efforts shift from rescue to recovery BYLINE:By CASEY ROSS BODY:
U.S. military trucks streamed into hurricane-ravaged New Orleans yesterday as outraged refugees questioned why it took four days for an iron-fisted response to lawlessness and disorder threatening to obliterate a city already laid low.
``Other than the helicopters, there didn't seem to be anyone on the ground helping anyone,'' said Stephen DeFerrari, a Dedham native who escaped from his New Orleans home brandishing a shotgun. ``Nights were the worst. There was no electricity, and you could hear gunshots and the sound of breaking glass.''
Federal emergency officials continued to bus thousands of exhausted refugees out of the sunken city yesterday, bypassing packed outposts such as the Houston Astrodome for far-flung destinations including Dallas and San Antonio.
Meanhwhile, President Bush toured destruction along the Gulf Coast from Alabama to Louisiana and promised a $10.5 billion disaster package passed by Congress was only the beginning of relief efforts.
Local officials in the worst-hit areas said immediate help is desperately needed. Firefighters in Gulfport, Miss., struggled to continue rescue operations amid looting and occasional outbreaks of violence between rioters and heartbroken residents.
``We were walking down a street after helping a lady move a pile and we heard four gunshots and saw this guy go running by,'' Battalion Fire Chief Dean Morrow said. ``He was trying to get into a house and the homeowner shot at him.''
Other flattened neighborhoods were marked by tokens of tragic despair.
``We're starting to see suicides,'' Morrow said. ``We had one this morning. A guy went out and hung himself in his front yard. I hate to say it, but I'm sure there's going to be more.''
Ninety minutes away, in frenzied and flooded New Orleans, officials began to openly criticize the federal response to the hurricane. ``They don't have a clue what's going on down here,'' Mayor Ray Nagin told a radio station amid more reports of theft and rape.
Army Lt. General Russel Honore, who is leading the military response, said the National Guard is being deployed as quickly as possible from communities across the nation.
``It's not a matter of us having enough (troops),'' Honore told CNN when asked if the Iraq war was hindering the disaster response. ``It's a matter of time and space. All the National Guard troops have other jobs. They were formed up quickly and they are here.''
Officials with the Federal Emergency Management Agency said efforts to rescue trapped survivors and shuttle supplies to the Louisiana Superdome have been hindered by flooding, roiling violence and blocked roads across the city.
``The roads are underwater. You can't just drive a truck up there,'' said Earl Armstrong, a FEMA official stationed in Baton Rouge.
More than 7,000 hurricane survivors were rescued in Alabama, Mississippi and Louisiana during the first five days of the relief effort - almost two-thirds of them by the U.S. Coast Guard. Many are now staying in shelters spread across the South, from Florida and Arkansas to Texas.
Meanwhile, officials say the first hopeful days of rescue are now giving way to the depressing task of recovery.
``We're getting to the point at four and five days where we're at the end of finding trapped victims,'' Fire Chief Morrow said. ``They just can't sustain, especially in this heat.''
BOX: KATRINA DEVELOPMENTS:
Major developments in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina:
* To cries of ``Thank you Jesus!'' and catcalls of ``What took you so long?,'' a National Guard convoy packed with food, water and medicine rolled through axle-deep floodwaters into what remained of New Orleans, along with dozens of air-conditioned buses to take refugees out.
* An explosion at a warehouse along the Mississippi River about 15 blocks from the French Quarter sent a pillar of acrid gray smoke over a city the mayor has said could be awash with thousands of corpses. Other large fires erupted downtown.
* At the broken levee along Lake Pontchartrain that swamped nearly 80 percent of New Orleans, helicopters dropped 3,000-pound sandbags into the breach and pilings were being pounded into place to seal off the waters.
* Some of New Orleans' hospitals, facing dwindling supplies of food, water and medicine, resumed evacuations. Rescuers finally made it into Charity Hospital, the city's largest public hospital, where gunfire had earlier thwarted efforts to evacuate more than 250 patients. * * Texas opened two more giant centers for victims of Hurricane Katrina after refugees filled Houston's Astrodome to capacity.
* The official number of deaths in Mississippi rose to 147 - a figure expected to increase drastically in the coming weeks. ``If you see the devastation, you wonder why it didn't kill a million people,'' Gov. Haley Barbour said.
* Scorched by criticism about sluggish federal help, President Bush acknowledged the government's failure to stop lawlessness and help desperate people in New Orleans. ``The results are not acceptable,'' Bush said on a daylong tour of the hurricane-ravaged states.
* In an accelerating drive, more than 50 countries have pledged money or other assistance to help Americans recover from Hurricane Katrina. Cuba and Venezuela have offered to help despite differences with Washington. Oil giant Saudi Arabia and small countries like Sri Lanka and Dominica are among the nations making pledges.
* * Lawmakers demanded investigation into price gouging on gasoline prices after thousands of consumer complaints.
How you can help out:
The Federal Emergency Management Agency lists these organizations you can contact to assist victims of Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans, Bilox, Miss., and other affected areas.
* American Red Cross: 800-HELP-NOW or
800-435-7669* Operation Blessing: 800-436-6348* Catholic Charities, USA: 703-549-1390* America's Second Harvest: 800-344-8070*Salvation Army 800-SAL-ARMY 800-725-2769
- Marie Szaniszlo contributed to this report. GRAPHIC: SOME RELIEF: Terri Dorsey, 10, and Imari Clark, 1, watch as a family member is treated for heat exhaustion at the New Orleans convention center yesterday. AP PHOTO
At left, Army National Guard soldiers distribute food and water at the convention center. GETTY IMAGES
WAITING TO LEAVE: Stranded victims of Hurricane Katrina wait for help from the Army National Guard near the Superdome in New Orleans. Thousands of troops poured into the stricken city to enforce order and distribute aid. GETTY IMAGES
HELP AT LAST: Air Force Lt. Gen. Russell Honore, (above left), barks orders to his troops as a convoy of relief supplies arrives in New Orleans yesterday. AP PHOTO
HELP AT LAST: (At right), a relief worker carries a young patient of Charity Hospital evacuated by airboat. AP PHOTO LOAD-DATE: September 3, 2005
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The Boston Herald September 3, 2005 Saturday
ALL EDITIONS SECTION: NEWS; Pg. 015 LENGTH: 63 words HEADLINE: News in Brief;
Marine vet makes bail in shooting BODY:
LAWRENCE - Iraq veteran Marine Sgt. Daniel Cotnoir, who allegedly fired a shotgun into a noisy late-night crowed in Lawrence last month, injuring two people, was released yesterday on $5,000 cash bail.
The 33-year-old married father of two will not be allowed to live in the apartment over the funeral home he and his father operate.
- Compiled from Herald wire and staff reports. LOAD-DATE: September 3, 2005
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The Boston Herald September 2, 2005 Friday
ALL EDITIONS SECTION: THE EDGE; Pg. e17 LENGTH: 292 words HEADLINE: Movie Review;
`State of Mind' not so foreign BYLINE: By STEPHEN SCHAEFER BODY:
``A State of Mind.''
Not rated. In Korean with subtitles. At Coolidge Corner Theatre.
Two stars (out of four)
North Korea may be the perfect villain for a Bond movie, and its president, Kim Jong-il, the perfect stooge for ``South Park'' satirists Matt Stone and Trey Parker. But as the British documentary ``A State of Mind'' makes clear, for the citizens of North Korea, Jong-il is revered as The General.
Documentary director Daniel Gordon (``The Game of Their Lives'') was given unprecedented access - no strings attached, no interference - to follow a pair of photogenic schoolgirls, Pak Hyon Sun, 13, and Kim Song Yun, 11, who are competing as gymnasts in the nation's Mass Games, an awesome honor since these are given in the presence of Jong-il himself.
Gordon and his crew get their close-ups - the visits to the park where families go boating, the modern school where Pak Hyon Sun has her English class (``A foreign language is a weapon,'' a sign proclaims) and where a teacher says frankly that she is not a terrific student because she works so hard at her gymnastics. Her father, a scientist, is honest as he considers having three daughters and no sons. Her mother is equally honest as she admits lying to her husband to keep him from being upset with some of the things his teenage daughter does.
In other words, North Koreans here are like everybody else - even if they worship a dictator instead of a spiritual being, even if the United States is fearfully referred to as the ``imperialist aggressor'' that might wage war on them the way it has in Iraq.
``State of Mind,'' which is mostly subtitled in English, demonstrates the bonds we share more than the ideals or values that separate us.
(``A State of Mind'' has no objectionable material.) LOAD-DATE: September 2, 2005
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The Boston Herald September 2, 2005 Friday
ALL EDITIONS SECTION: THE EDGE; Pg. e06 LENGTH: 748 words HEADLINE: MUSIC;
Stones deliver `Bang'-up job BYLINE: By LARRY KATZ BODY:
Perhaps you can picture Mick Jagger, Keith Richards and Charlie Watts getting together to engage in a lively discussion about Einstein, quantum physics and the creation of the cosmos.
If so, then maybe you'll buy the explanation of the title of their new CD, ``A Bigger Bang,'' found in a recent Rolling Stones press release:
``While in the studio recording the album last year, the band came up with the title ``A Bigger Bang'' reflecting their fascination with the scientific theory about the origin of the universe.''
Give me a break. I figure the lads had something else in mind. After the relatively indifferent reception to every album they've made since ``Undercover'' in 1983 - that would include their last studio work, 1997's ``Bridges to Babylon'' - the Stones and surely their record label simply want to entice reluctant buyers looking for ``A Bigger Bang'' for their buck. Implicit in the title is the promise of a bigger and better musical bang than the not-yet-doddering Stones have mustered since the days of vinyl LPs.
Though Mick and Keith deny they have anything left to prove, let's face it: They do. Maybe not to themselves, but to a vast horde of under-40 rock fans and over-40 critics who regard the Stones' post-1972 ``Exile on Main Street'' output as weak gruel, save for the occasional ``Beast of Burden'' or ``Miss You.'' It had to burn socialite Mick to find his band slagged last month on the party page of New York magazine, where Thurston Moore of hipster-adored Sonic Youth ridiculed the Stones.
``Is there a band that should stop?'' Moore asked out loud. ``Yeah, they're called the Rolling Stones. They've been sucking longer than they've been ruling, which is a kind of remarkable achievement.''
And not the kind of remarkable achievement Mick and Keith want to be remembered for. If ``A Bigger Bang,'' which hits stores Tuesday, two weeks after the Rolling Stones' second Fenway Park concert, is not 62-year-old Mick and 61-year-old Keith rallying to create a redeeming late-period work, it certainly sounds like it.
The 16-song, 64-minute ``Bang'' kicks off with the first single, ``Rough Justice.'' Musically it's a standard Stones rocker lacking the kind of indelible hook needed to turn it into a radio hit. But Jagger, who sings every song here with a sense of involvement even his solo CDs have lacked, has such fun with the barnyard lyrics that it's contagious. ``I was your little rooster,'' he snaps, ``but now I'm just one of your cocks.'' You can practically hear him smirking.
He continues to play the wounded lover, and the humility of the role suits Sir Mick. Whether asking to be jilted gently (``Let Me Down Slow'') or losing the love of a lifetime (``It Won't Take Long''), his pleas are bolstered by a trimmed down Stones sound. No horns. No strings. No background choirs. Even keyboards are kept to a minimum. The Stones are a rock band again. The arrangements don't get any more baroque than on the ballad ``Streets of Love,'' which nearly captures the exquisitely tender vibe of ``As Tears Go By'' and ``Play With Fire.''
``A Bigger Bang'' becomes even more stripped as it continues. Guitarist Ronnie Wood doesn't even play on seven tracks and Mick, Keith and Charlie work as a trio (OK, with overdubs) on three of them.
Most surprising, Jagger emerges as an instrumentalist. The Stones' longtime resident harmoni-cat - and he blows standout harp on several tracks here - Jagger also steps up to play guitar, keyboards, vibraphone, percussion and, for the first time, bass. He also makes his debut playing crucial slide guitar on ``Back of My Hand,'' the Stones' best nod to the delta blues in a couple of decades.
Jagger also plunges the Stones into contemporary politics. ``Sweet Neo Con,'' a scarcely disguised savaging of President Bush's oil-stained war in Iraq, quickly angered right-wing commentators. Overlooked so far is ``Dangerous Beauty,'' in which Jagger playfully imagines a Abu Ghraib torturer as a femme fatale ``favorite with the Chiefs of Staff.'' You want relevance, you got it.
Throw in a couple of obligatory soul turns from Keef and you've got everything you could want in a Rolling Stones album at this late stage in their career.
Everything, that is, except what fans and, I bet, even Moore really want: a killer classic to stand alongside the likes of ``Satisfaction'' and ``Jumpin' Jack Flash.'' Too much to hope for? But of course. Which is why ``A Bigger Bang'' will give any reasonable Stones fan satisfaction enough.