Democracy Now! April 18, 2003

Program Title:
Democracy Now! April 18, 2003
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Hour 1: An icon of civilian suffering: Dr. April Hurley, recently back from Baghdad, speaks about Ali Ismaeel Abbas, the badly-burned child amputee wounded in a missile strike on his house; Christian missionary groups head to Iraq to combine aid with evangelization: A debate between the Southern Baptist Convention, the Council on American-Islamic Relations and a professor of religious studies. Hour 2: Bechtel Group wins first major Iraq reconstruction contract: This comes 20 years after Donald Rumsfeld met with Saddam Hussein seeking approval of a Bechtel-owned pipeline to run from Iraq to Jordan; The problem of the 20th century is the problem of the color-line : On the 100th anniversary of the publication of The Souls of Black Folk a look at the life of W.E.B. DuBois. We hear from Pulitzer Prize winning historian David Levering Lewis, DuBois s stepson and archival footage of W.E.B. DuBois; Ghetto Life 101: 24-year-old LeAlan Jones speaks about war and the radio documentary he made 10 years ago in Southside Chicago

8:00-8:01 Billboard 8:01-8:06 Headlines 8:06-8:07 One Minute Music Break 8:07-8:20: "Can you help me get my arms back? Do you think the doctors can get me another pair of hands? If I don't get a pair of hands I will commit suicide." These were the words of 12 year-old Ali Ismaeel Abbas who lost his lower arms, was orphaned and received severe burns when a missile hit his home 10 days ago. The wounded Iraqi boy has begun eating food and drinking normally after recovering from initial surgery at a hospital in Kuwait City to place a temporary graft over the deep burns covering his chest, abdomen, and groin. He is expected to undergo further surgery that will involve grafting skin from his own body. The badly burned child amputee has become an icon of civilian suffering in the US-led invasion of Iraq. His pregnant mother, father, brother and 12 other relatives died when a missile obliterated their home. Ali has received worldwide attention in newspapers and on television around the world, sparking a flood of fundraising appeals for war victims in Iraq. * Dr. April Hurley, visited Ali Ismaeel Abbas in hospital in Baghdad 8:20-8:21 One Minute Music Break 8:21-8:58: Christian relief agencies are hot on the heels of the invading US army to enter Iraq and provide humanitarian aid - as well as a touch of the gospel. Some of the agencies planning campaigns in the newly-occupied country want to do more than just save lives they also want to save souls by making religious converts among a population that is 98 percent Muslim. The prospect has alarmed Muslim organizations who see it as exploitive and politically inflammatory. Iraq is expected to face a massive humanitarian crisis, with hunger, homelessness and disease threatening the nation s 24 million people. Several groups are already in the area setting up aid operations in Kuwait, Jordan and the Kurdish-controlled region of northern Iraq. Agencies who have announced their intent to combine aid with evangelization include some whose leaders have proclaimed harshly negative views of Islam. Critics say that if groups go into Iraq to seek converts under the guise of providing aid, they could do enormous political damage by re-enforcing the view that the invasion has political and religious roots. * Mark Kelly, Spokesman for the International Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention * Abdulaziz Sachedina, Professor of Religious Studies at University of Virginia and author of The Islamic Roots of Democratic Pluralism * Ibrahim Hooper, Council on American-Islamic Relations 8:58-8:59 Outro and Credits 9:00-9:01 Billboard 9:01-9:12 Headlines 9:12-9:13 One Minute Music Break 9:13-9:20: The Bush administration has awarded the Bechtel Group the first major contract for Iraq s reconstruction. The contract could be worth up to $680 million dollars over the next year and a half for the rebuilding of Iraq s electrical, water and sewage systems. Bechtel has a long history of doing business in Iraq. In the early 80s, Bechtel negotiated to build an oil pipeline from Iraq to Jordan. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld traveled to Baghdad 1983 for a private meeting with Saddam Hussein. Officially, Rusmfeld was acting as then-President Reagan s peace envoy and was supposed to discus the Iran-Iraq war. But a secret State Department cable obtained by the National Security Archives, reveals Rusmfeld appears to have made little or no mention of the war, and instead discussed the pipeline proposal. The 20-year-old memo was from Rumsfeld to George Schultz who was Secretary of State. Currently, Schultz is on Bechtel s board of directors and chairs the advisory board of the pro-war Committee for the Liberation of Iraq. Bechtel s senior vice-president is Jack Sheehan, who is also a member of the Defence Policy Board. US taxpayers will the initial costs of the contract. Iraqi oil is then supposed to pay for much of the reconstruction. * Jim Vallette, research director for the Sustainable Energy and Economy Network and author of "Crude Vision: How Oil Interests Obscured US Government Focus On Chemical Weapons Use by Saddam Hussein" 9:20-9:21 One-minute music break 9:21-9:40: "Herein lie buried many things which if read with patience may show the strange meaning of being black here at the dawning of Twentieth Century. This meaning is not without interest to you, Gentle Reader; for the problem of the Twentieth Century is the problem of the color-line. That was how writer and civil rights leader W.E.B. DuBois opened his landmark work The Souls of Black Folk. The book, a collection of 14 essays, was published 100 years ago today. The Souls of Black Folk brought international recognition to DuBois who was already well known for becoming the first African-American to receive a doctorate degree from Harvard. Souls was praised for its literary merit and for its social commentary. It won the highest praise from Henry James who wrote that the collection was "the only 'Southern' book of any distinction for many a year. In Souls, DuBois also began an intense debate with Booker T. Washington. Dubois criticized Washington s philosophy of accepting the status quo in racial matters. Since the first edition in 1903, The Souls of Black Folk has gone through several printings totaling over 350,000 copies and has had worldwide circulation. After the publication of Souls, DuBois would go on to help found the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. He edited the NAACP magazine Crisis. All told he went on to write 20 books, two novels, a play and numerous articles and essays. He would become a leading supporter of socialism and pan-Africanism. He would be targeted by the U.S. for his political views. And he would eventually leave the U.S. for Ghana where he died in 1963 on the eve of the march on Washington when the Dr. Rev. Martin Luther King delivered his I Have A Dream Speech. Professors Cornel West and Henry Louis Gates said of DuBois, "in a sense, it would be true to claim that all black intellectuals and all of our civil rights leaders are, in some manner, his heirs. * W.E.B. DuBois, recorded in 1951 in Los Angeles from Pacifica Radio Archives * David Levering Lewis, two-time Pulitzer Prize winning historian for his two biographies on W.E.B. DuBois. In 1994 he published W.E.B. DuBois: Biography of a Race, 1868-1919 and in 2001 he published W.E.B. DuBois: The Fight for Equality in the American Century, 1919-1963. He is a professor in the history department at Rutgers University. Tape: W.E.B. DuBois, speaking in the early 1960s for Folkways Records on governmental charges that he was an agent of the Soviet government. * David DuBois, stepson of W.E.B. DuBois. He is a visiting associate professor at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. He teaches courses on the press and the Third World and the history of the African-American press. 9:40-9:41 One Minute Music Break 9:41-9:54 DuBois cont d 9:54-9:58: Ten years ago LeAlan Jones and Lloyd Newman were given tape recorders and microphones and a little guidance on how to use the equipment. They were two 14 year old boys from Chicago s South Side Housing projects. They captured life in and around the Chicago ghetto. With National Public Radio producer David Isay they put together two radio documentaries. Ghetto Life 101 was about the projects where they lived. Remorse: The 14 Stories of Eric Morse was an examination of the murder of a five-year-old who was dropped from the window of a building near LeAlan and Lloyd's homes. For their work, the boys ended up winning broadcasting's prestigious Peabody Award. Today he joins us in the studio to read his latest work on the war. * LeAlan Jones 9:58-9:59 Outro and Credits Democracy Now! is produced by Kris Abrams, Mike Burke, Sharif Abdel Kouddous, Angie Karran, Ana Nogueira and Elizabeth Press with help from Noah Reibel. Mike Di Filippo is our music maestro and engineer.

Date Recorded on: 
April 18, 2003
Date Broadcast on: 
April 18, 2003
Item duration: 
118 min.
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WBAI; Amy Goodman, host., April 18, 2003
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