Morning Report: June 8, 2005

Ethiopia: Protests over disputed election claim 18 lives. CNN reports: 'The death toll from clashes between protesters and security forces in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa has risen to at least 18 in a third day of unrest following a disputed election. Sources at one hospital told Reuters on Wednesday that 11 people had died from gunshot wounds. Sources at another hospital said they had seven dead bodies with bullet wounds. Ethiopian families at the hospitals said they feared many more had been killed in the violence, Reuters reported. Meanwhile, a human rights group told The Associated Press that at least 20 people has been killed in the worst violence to hit the capital in four years.' (CNN)

Gaza pullout to proceed; conflict continues. Debka is currently reporting: 'Palestinians shell Israeli S. Gaza locations of Gadid, Neve Dekalim and IDF regional command, injuring one Israeli soldier. The barrage Wednesday follows Israeli airborne missile strike against Hamas mortar launchers ready to fire from nearby Khan Younes. The Gaza pull-back will be executed on schedule despite obstacles placed in its path by opponents, Israeli prime minister and defense minister asserted Wednesday. At ministerial panel on disengagement they dismissed as disinformation claims that nothing is ready and rejected calls for postponement. Palestinian fire continued Wednesday against IDF positions guarding Israel-Egyptian border on second day of ceasefire violations.' (Debka)

Wretchard: "Trouble brewing" in Zimbabwe. Wretchard writes at The Belmont Club: 'My own simpleminded take on all this, without the benefit of special knowledge or experience in southern Africa is that the opposition to Mugabe will be nonviolent for now, but is unlikely to remain so for long. The reason: food.' President Bush may be eyeing South Africa's Thabo Mbeki as a strategic partner, the post concludes, but ' things are going to have to get a lot worse before Mbeki and the "International Community" get themselves in gear.' Even so, Wretchard concludes, it's just a matter of time. Read the whole post, and don't forget to bookmark the new homepage. (Belmont Club)