Morning Report: June 18, 2004

MORNING REPORT - June 18, 2004

Tomorrow is Juneteenth. Commemorating the liberation of enslaved Americans on June 19, 1865, the folk holiday of Juneteenth
is steadily growing in popularity among African Americans and others. An excellent source of first-hand knowledge about the life of slaves is the I Was A Slave series edited by Donna Wyant Howell.
If we are to truly fulfill our mission in Iraq, it is essential that Americans - all Americans - remember, study, and learn from the cruelties that happened in our own land.

Hate crimes bill passes. (LCR) Legislation introduced by Oregon's Republican Senator Gordon Smith, expanding the definition of "hate crimes" to include gender, perceived sexual orientation, and disability of the victim, was passed by the US Senate. According to the Log Cabin Republicans press release, Sen. Smith proposed the legislation as and amendment to the Defense Department Authorization Bill. Smith is quoted as saying: "Hate crimes tear at the very fabric of our Nation. They seek to intimidate entire groups of Americans and as such divide our Nation."

IAEA condemns Iran regime. (CNN) The International Atomic Energy Agency has adopted a resolution condemning the Iran regime for its lack of cooperation with the agency's nuclear inspections, according to the CNN report. The resolution does not, however, call for a report to the UN Security Council.

Sudan conflict spreads death, terror. (BBC) International humanitarian agencies charge the UN with being slow to react in the Sudan crisis, in which Arab militias or Janjaweed - aided, critics say, by the Sudanese government - are committing atrocities against ethnic Africans in the western region of Darfur. Mass rape is a common tactic. The government of neighboring Chad is worried that the Janjaweed are crossing the border into its own territory. Humanitarian organizations are doing what they can; they could use your help.