AS ISRAEL INSISTS IT WILL CONTINUE ASSASSINATING PALESTINIANS, A CONVERSATION WITH EDWARD SAID ; CELEBRATED AFRICAN-AMERICAN AUTHOR WILBERT RIDEAU RE-INDICTED ON MURDER CHARGES ; AS NAVY POUNDS VIEQUES WITH LARGEST BOMBING OPERATION IN YEARS, JACKIE JACKSON, DENNIS RIVERA AND ROBERT KENNEDY, JR. SPEAK OUT AFTER SERVING JAIL TIME FOR THEIR PROTESTS.
AS ISRAEL INSISTS IT WILL CONTINUE ASSASSINATING PALESTINIANS, A CONVERSATION WITH EDWARD SAID Palestinian President Yasser Arafat met with Pope John Paul in Rome yesterday. He called for a halt to all violence in the Middle East and the immediate introduction of international observers into the West Bank and Gaza Strip. But as Arafat met with the Pope, Israeli soldiers and killed two Palestinians and wounded seven others, including a 12 and a 16 year old boy. Israel continues to defy calls for it to admit international observers and to defy international condemnation of its recent assassination of 14 Palestinians. Israeli officials insist they will continue with the extra-judicial execution of Palestinians activists. More than 500 Palestinians have been killed since the start of the second Intifadah last fall. Guest: Edward Said, a professor of Literature at Columbia University, an internationally renowned literary and cultural critic and one of the world's leading spokespeople for Palestinian self-determination. His writings have been translated into 26 languages, and include Orientalism, Culture and Imperialism, and his recent Memoirs Out of Place. Story: CELEBRATED AFRICAN-AMERICAN AUTHOR WILBERT RIDEAU RE-INDICTED ON MURDER CHARGES The celebrated African-American author and editor, Wilbert Rideau, was re-indicted several days ago on murder charges. Shackled hand and foot and wearing a bulletproof vest, Rideau was taken from the state penitentiary at Angola and returned to Lake Charles, where he faces his fourth trial in the 1961 murder of a bank teller. His murder conviction was overturned by the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in December because blacks were improperly excluded from the grand jury. But the Calscasieu Parish District Attorney Rick Bryant vowed to try Rideau again rather than let him go free. The award-winning prison journalist has already spent 39 years in prison in Angola. After initially being turned down for a position on the prison publication, The Angolite, which had an all-white staff, Rideau started a publication of his own called The Lifer, and wrote a column for black newspapers. In 1976, he was named editor of The Angolite and used the magazine to examine such topics as inmate suicide, rape, riots, executions and prisoner rights. Under his leadership, the magazine was showered with honors, including the George Polk Award for special interest reporting, the Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award, and the American Bar Association's Silver Gavel Award. Guest: George Kendall, lawyer for Wilbert Rideau. Related link: Wilbert Rideau Story: AS NAVY POUNDS VIEQUES WITH LARGEST BOMBING OPERATION IN YEARS, JACKIE JACKSON, DENNIS RIVERA AND ROBERT KENNEDY, JR. SPEAK OUT AFTER SERVING JAIL TIME FOR THEIR PROTESTS Navy security personnel fired rubber bullets and tear gas at protesters and journalists on Vieques yesterday as the Navy resumed its bombing of the island. More than 23,000 marines, sailors and soldiers engaged in the largest military maneuvers on the island since a civilian was killed by Navy bombing two years ago. At least 12 protestors invaded the Navy range in an attempt to stop the latest round of bombing and shelling. The bombing resumed despite a recent referendum in which the overwhelming majority of the people of Vieques voted to demand that the Navy stop bombing, pack up, and get out. The White House, however, has made clear that the Navy will continue bombing Vieques regardless of the wishes of its residents until May 2003. As protestors tried to stop the most recent bombing, union leader Dennis Rivera and environmental lawyer Robert F. Kennedy Jr. arrived in New York yesterday after serving 30 days in federal prison for trespassing on Vieques during a previous round of bombing. Kennedy was in jail for the birth of his son, whom he named Aidan Caomhan Vieques Kennedy. Tape: Ozzie Davis, activist and actor from the TV's "The Ozzie and Harriet Show". Jackie Jackson, civil rights activist; Rev. Jesse Jackson is her husband. Dennis Rivera, President of SEIU local 1199 in New York City. Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., an environmental lawyer who sued the Navy for environmental destruction in Vieques. Related link: Vieques Libre