Weekly Review — October 4, 2011, 12:00 am

Weekly Review

[Image: A Christian martyr, 1855]
A Christian martyr.

Two American citizens, Anwar al-Awlaki and Samir Khan, were killed by a CIA drone in Yemen. Awlaki, a cleric whose speeches purportedly inspired young Muslim radicals, had been added to the CIA??s list of terrorist targets in early 2010. According to the U.S. government, Awlaki, who has never been tried or convicted of a crime in the United States, directed several failed terrorist plots. Khan, who edited a jihadi magazine, was never an official U.S. target. “Make no mistake,” said President Barack Obama, “this is further proof that Al Qaeda and its affiliates will find no safe haven anywhere in the world.”The HillNew York Times“They criticized us for ??overreacting?? to the events of 9/11,” said former vice president Dick Cheney. “Now they clearly had moved in the direction of taking robust action. . . . I think the president owes everybody an apology, frankly.”The HillEarlier in the week, Calgarians chanted “Don??t harbor war criminals” outside a hotel where Cheney was scheduled to speak.CTV NewsAntigovernment protests continued in Yemen, and at least eleven protesters were killed in Syria.Washington PostIn Manchester, 20,000 marched in protest of British austerity plans; in Lisbon, tens of thousands rallied against Portuguese austerity measures; in Athens, protesters blocked the entrance to Greece??s finance ministry in an effort to stall talks on civil-service wage cuts; and in New York City, more than 700 protesters were arrested during demonstrations against Wall Street greed.The GuardianReutersReutersWall Street JournalWashington PostA survey found that 85 percent of American adults believe they can make a difference.Christian Science Monitor

Newly released documents revealed that the FBI??s terror watchlist includes people who have been acquitted of terrorist acts, and the bureau arrested Rezwan Ferdaus, a 26-year-old Northeastern University graduate, for plotting to attack the Pentagon and Capitol building with three model planes, one of which he had purchased using money given to him by an undercover agent.Sydney Morning HeraldWashington PostKing Abdullah declared that Saudi women, who require permission from a male guardian in order to travel, work, marry, be admitted to hospitals, or live independently, could be granted the right to vote and run in elections. Saudi officials set a trial date for Najalaa Harriri, who is accused of violating the country??s ban on women driving, and an Italian court overturned the murder convictions of American college student Amanda Knox and her co-defendant, Raffaele Sollecito, and ordered them freed after nearly four years in prison.BusinessweekNew York TimesRaymond Davis, a CIA contractor who shot two men in Lahore, Pakistan, and was released after the U.S. government paid the men??s families more than $2 million, was arrested south of Denver for fighting over a parking space at an Einstein Bagel.MSNBCIn Alabama, an inmate sued a correctional facility for the right to read the book “Slavery by Another Name: The Re-Enslavement of Black Americans from the Civil War to World War II,” which prison officials had deemed a “security threat,” and postal workers were stealing more mail than last year.New York TimesHouston Chronicle

A toilet exploded in a federal building in Washington, injuring at least one employee, and House Republicans introduced legislation to get rid of the dollar bill, while Senate Republicans introduced legislation to save it. “At a time when the government needs to be looking to save every dollar,” said the head of the Dollar Coin Alliance, “we can??t continue to play the same Washington game of serving narrow special interests with half-measure legislation.”Washington PostThe HillCongress voted to continue funding the federal government for the next six weeks.Christian Science MonitorD.C. police issued a press release in response to tweets by the satiric newspaper “The Onion” that claimed members of the 112th Congress had taken a class of schoolchildren hostage. “Conditions at the U.S. Capitol are currently normal,” the release said.New York TimesScientists found that Twitter users expressed the most happiness between 6 a.m. and 9 a.m. on Sundays, but conceded that their analysis software wasn??t sophisticated enough to detect sarcasm.New York TimesFacebook launched a political action committee; a study found that at least 200,000 Britons have been scammed by someone they met through a dating website; and more than half of all U.S. teenagers reported having been bullied online.New York TimesBBCCNNIn England, 46-year-old Mark Bradford tracked down and choked a 13-year-old who had killed him in the video game “Call of Duty: Black Ops.” “I??d been playing the whole day and he was baiting me and baiting me and just would not shut up,” said Bradford. “I??ve seen him since and apologized. We??ve played online too. He??s actually a decent kid.”IGN

Share
Single Page

More from Genevieve Smith:

From the May 2014 issue

50,000 Life Coaches Can’t Be Wrong

Inside the industry that’s making therapy obsolete

From the June 2012 issue

In recovery

Twelve steps to prosperity

Commentary May 23, 2012, 3:44 pm

The Underearners Test

Get access to 165 years of
Harper’s for only $45.99

United States Canada

CATEGORIES

THE CURRENT ISSUE

September 2015

Tremendous Machine

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

A Goose in a Dress

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

The Genealogy of Orals

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

The Neoliberal Arts

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

view Table Content

FEATURED ON HARPERS.ORG

Article
New Television·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

“In Season 5 of Louie (FX), Louie is a new kind of superhero. Like Wonder Woman, the canonical superhero he most resembles, Louie’s distinctive superpower is love.”
Illustration by Demetrios Psillos
Article
Romancing Kano·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

On a Friday evening in January, a thousand people at the annual California Native Plant Society conference in San Jose settled down to a banquet and a keynote speech delivered by an environmental historian named Jared Farmer. His chosen topic was the eucalyptus tree and its role in California’s ecology and history. The address did not go well. Eucalyptus is not a native plant but a Victorian import from Australia. In the eyes of those gathered at the San Jose DoubleTree, it qualified as “invasive,” “exotic,” “alien” — all dirty words to this crowd, who were therefore convinced that the tree was dangerously combustible, unfriendly to birds, and excessively greedy in competing for water with honest native species.

In his speech, Farmer dutifully highlighted these ugly attributes, but also quoted a few more positive remarks made by others over the years. This was a reckless move. A reference to the tree as “indigenously Californian” elicited an abusive roar, as did an observation that without the aromatic import, the state would be like a “home without its mother.” Thereafter, the mild-mannered speaker was continually interrupted by boos, groans, and exasperated gasps. Only when he mentioned the longhorn beetle, a species imported (illegally) from Australia during the 1990s with the specific aim of killing the eucalyptus, did he earn a resounding cheer.

Article
The Prisoner of Sex·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

“It is disappointing that parts of Purity read as though Franzen urgently wanted to telegraph a message to anyone who would defend his fiction from charges of chauvinism: ‘No, you’ve got me wrong. I really am sexist.’”
Illustration by Shonagh Rae
Article
Gangs of Karachi·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

“In Karachi, sometimes only the thinnest of polite fictions separates the politicians from the men who kill and extort on their behalf.”
Photograph © Asim Rafiqui/NOOR Images
Article
Weed Whackers·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

“Defining 'native' and 'invasive' in an ever-shifting natural world poses some problems. The camel, after all, is native to North America, though it went extinct here 8,000 years ago, while the sacrosanct redwood tree is invasive, having snuck in at some point in the past 65 million years.”
Photograph by Chad Ress

Percentage of Britons who cannot name the city that provides the setting for the musical Chicago:

65

An Australian entrepreneur was selling oysters raised in tanks laced with Viagra.

A tourism company in Australia announced a service that will allow users to take the “world’s biggest selfies,” and a Texas man accidentally killed himself while trying to pose for a selfie with a handgun.

Subscribe to the Weekly Review newsletter. Don’t worry, we won’t sell your email address!

HARPER’S FINEST

Subways Are for Sleeping

By

“Shelby is waiting for something. He himself does not know what it is. When it comes he will either go back into the world from which he came, or sink out of sight in the morass of alcoholism or despair that has engulfed other vagrants.”

Subscribe Today