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February 17, 1999 - Image 2

Resource type:
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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1999-02-17

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The Washington Post
BERLIN - The German government announced
yesterday that 12 of the country's largest banks and
businesses will contribute money to a new fund
designed to compensate hundreds of thousands of
workers, mainly from Eastern Europe, who were
enslaved by the Nazis during World War II.
The formal pledge to establish the fund, which is
expected to be worth at least $2 billion and possibly
,rmuch more, follows months of intensive talks to head
off a flurry of lawsuits that threatened to inflict serious
economic damage on Germany's largest corporations
and disrupt their expansion plans in the United States.
'Many of the corporations feared that unless some
kind of compensation fund was established, they could
face the kind of international business boycott that
threatened Switzerland's two largest banks last year
until they reached a $1.25 billion settlement signed in

January.
Deutsche Bank chair Rolf Breuer, who has been a
rallying force in setting up the fund, started pushing
the idea when he realized that a proposed $10 billion
purchase of Bankers Trust in the United States could
be derailed unless some kind of deal was achieved.
Breuer called yesterday's commitment a "mile-
stone" in settling the slave labor dispute. But he
warned that "there are still a lot of details to sort out"
notably the total value of the fund and how the contri-
butions will be shared among the donor companies.
In addition to Deutsche Bank, the companies that
plan to take part in the fund include some of the
biggest names in German banking and industry. They
are the automakers Volkswagen, BMW and Daimler-
Chrysler; chemical and pharmaceutical companies
Bayer, Hoechst, and BASF; Dresdner bank; industrial
firms Degussa-Huels, Friedrich Krupp and Siemens;

and the Allianz insurance company.
At a news conference, Chancellor Gerhard
Schroeder acknowledged that the purpose of the
fund was to counter the risk of class-action lawsuits
"and to remove the basis of the campaign being led
against German industry and our country."
He praised the firms that signed up to provide the
financing and said the initiative "shows that
German business can deal responsibly with its his-
tory."
Since taking office in October, Schroeder has
tried to accelerate a resolution of the slave labor
controversy.
While Bonn has paid out more than $60 billion in
reparations since the war to Jews and other victims of
Nazi crimes, it excluded slave workers because they
were technically "employed" by private companies,
such as Siemens or Volkswagen.

AROUND THE NATION
Peace keeping forces out of Bosnia
WASHINGTON -Tacitly acknowledging that the Clinton administration blun-
dered by setting a deadline that it could not keep for getting Secretary of State
Madeleine Albright said yesterday that if U.S. troops are sent to Kosovo, another
Balkan hot spot, the commitment will be open-ended.
"We really learned a lesson, I think, in Bosnia that setting an artificial deadi*
doesn't work," Albright said. Three years after a peace agreement was reached, U; .
troops remain in Bosnia-Herzegovina.
But the administration faces opposition on Capitol Hill to an open-ended com-
mitment of troops. A spokesperson for newly elected House Speaker Dennis
Hastert (R-Ill.) said the House may vote soon on a nonbinding resolution on the
wisdom of sending troops to Kosovo.
Albright insisted yesterday that NATO peacekeepers must be part of any agree-
ment to end the ethnic violence in Kosovo, a separatist province of Serbia that is
predominantly ethnic Albanian. She warned that unless Serbia withdraws its oppo-
sition to the NATO deployment, it will face a bombing campaign by the United
States and its allies.
Albright's remarks escalated a war of nerves with Yugoslav President Slotxxd
Milosevic, spelling out Washington's bottom-line positions for the Kosovo peaE
talks now in their second week at a chateau near Paris.

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Free Lecture Notes on the Internet

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ASL
Continued from Page 1
officials told Friedrichs that Linguistics
was the wrong department to host the
program, later reporting the American
culture department would develop the
program.
ASL, Faller told Friedrichs in 1997,
would be part of a four-term curricu-
lum that could be used to fulfill LSA's
language requirement.
"We were ecstatic, thinking our
work and pressure had finally paid
off," Friedrichs said.
During the next year, Arfa worked
with University officials to integrate
the course into the curriculum, but,
she said, the class did not develop.
"It's been a problem of bureaucracy
more than anything," said Rory
Diamond, an LSA representative in
MSA.
Diamond said he is working with
an MSA committee in an attempt to
push the administration to introduce a
four-semester course.
Last month, Owen informed Arfa,
Friedrichs and others interested in
taking the class that it would not be
part of the American culture depart-
ment.
Instead, Owen said, a pilot course
would be hosted by the linguistics
department this fall.
"It's a good start I guess but ... we
need to have a full program,"
Diamond said.
Linda Eggert, an American culture
department administrative associate,
said resource issues prevented her
department from hosting the new pro-
gram.
"We don't have the faculty to pur-
sue this venture, and it is a new one,"
Eggert said, adding that funding was
BUDGET
Continued from Page 1
Sen. Walter North (R-St. Ignace),
chair of the Senate Appropriations
Subcommittee on Corrections, said he
understands the arguments against
prison spending, but he said unfortu-
nately prisons are in need of the money.
"I think Sen. Schwarz's point is well
taken," North said. But "the cost of
incarceration is not cheap."
Department of Management and
Budget spokesperson Kelly Chesney
said state colleges and universities
comprise only a small portion of total
educational spending.
Of the entire budget, $13 billion
goes toward education, and $1.56 bil-
lion goes toward corrections,"
Chesney said.

also a factor.
But Friedrichs said LSA guaran-
teed money for ASL which could be
used for faculty funding.
Friedrichs said Eggert told him the
American culture faculty did not see
ASL playing a role in the future of
their department.
"Certainly a major obstacle has
been finding an academic home for
ASL," Owen said.
The person hired for this fall's pilot
class will likely have an adjunct
appointment in linguistics, Owen
said, adding that it is difficult to
develop a program that has no history
at the University.
"We cannot acquire expertise until
we hire someone knowledgeable in
ASL," Owen said.
Diamond said ASL should be part
of modern languages because "it is a
language."
Arfa, whose hearing impairment
did not prevent her from attending
regular public school in Chicago, is
frustrated because the four-semester
class has not been introduced after
three years of campaigning.
Arfa does not use sign language but
can read lips to communicate.
"There is no place at the University
where students can learn about dis-
abilities," Arfa said.
Owen said he understands why
Arfa and others may be upset with the
delays of ASL's introduction into
LSA's curriculum.
LSA Dean Patricia Gurin "and I,
as well as a number of others, have
been working on this issue and have
kept students informed about our
progress," Owen said.
Owen added that he believes the
pilot ASL class "will turn into some-
thing more permanent."
"You can see that education is see-
ing the lion's share of the budget," she
said.
If the budget recommendation were
to stay as proposed, the University
would receive at most a 3 percent fund-
ing increase from the current fiscal
year.
In December, the University Board
of Regents submitted a request for 5
percent more funding.
Although Engler's proposed bud-
get falls 2 percent short of the
regents' request, Chesney said the
needs of the University were con-'
sidered when drafting the budget
recommendation.
"We looked at the University,"
Chesney said, "and we believe that the
University of Michigan has received a
fair increase. It's above the rate of infla-
tion."
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Army proposes to
recruit dropouts
WASHINGTON - Army Secretary
Louis Caldera argued yesterday that the
Defense Department should allow the
Army to recruit more high school
dropouts with equivalence diplomas to
help make up a projected shortfall of
up to 10,000 soldiers this year.
Caldera's idea, which would require
a change in standards adopted five
years ago, reflects growing alarm with-
in the Army, Navy and Air Force that
they are failing to attract enough
recruits and that the shortage will get
worse if the trend is not reversed.
"Frankly, right now we have rules
that don't make sense," he said. The
rules have "put us in a box that really
hurts. Everyday we turn away people
who want to join."
Like the Air Force and Navy, the
Army is facing the worst peacetime
recruiting shortfall in its history.
Of the major services, only the
Marines have attracted a sufficient
number of recruits in recent years.

"The Army is an institution that
should not write off young people in
America who need a second chanee"
Caldera added at a breakfast with
defense reporters.
Texas men on tria
for dragging death:
JASPER, Texas - Sheriff Wi y
Rowles was the first witness as alldged
white supremacist John William King
went on trial yesterday on murder charges
in the gruesome death of James Byrd Jr.
Byrd, was chained to the back of a pick-
up truck June 7 and dragged for tiee
miles as his body was ripped to pieces
King, an unemployed laborer, is 0
first of three white men charged inthe
crime to stand trial. He could get the
death penalty.
Prosecutor Guy James Gray said that
King's tattoos and writings in his apart-
ment show King was an angry racist
who wanted to form a hate group and
"needed to do something dramatic in
order to gain in their warped world
respect for his newly formed gang."

AROUND THE WORLD

Politicians approve
new plan for Ireland
BELFAST, Northern Ireland -
Northern Ireland's politicians approved
yesterday the blueprint for a new
Protestant-Catholic government, a his-
toric vote that still leaves a formidable
hurdle to making the setup work: the
IRA's refusal to start disarming.
Ten months after striking their his-
toric peace accord, legislators in the
Belfast Assembly voted 77-29 in favor
of plans to create a 12-member admin-
istration for Northern Ireland.
The verdict followed months of
painstaking negotiations and two days
of often bruising debate.
As expected, all 40 Catholics and
eight "neutral" politicians present
voted in favor of the blueprint, which
outlines plans for the transfer of
some powers from the British govern-
ment.
More significantly and against
expectations, Protestant leader David
Trimble, the new government's desig-
nated head, kept the support of exactly

half the Assembly's 58 pro-Britigh,
Protestant members.
Trimble had appeared likely to lose a
majority of the Protestant votes, a w6r-
rying sign for those trying to make@0
deal work. Two members of Trimble's
Ulster Unionist Party had vowed to
defy their leader, but one changed his
mind at the last moment.
Arrest of rebel
prompts protest
ANKARA, Turkey - A Kura
rebel leader was arrested after wagi;.
14-year guerrilla war for autoomy
from Turkey, setting off massive
protests yesterday as enraged Kurds
seized embassies and held hostages
across Europe.
With the capture of Abdullah Ocalan,
Turkish officials claimed a crushing vic-
tory over his rebel movement and hoped
for an end to the long conflict that has
claimed 37,000 lives and strained iela-
tions with neighboring countries.
- Compiledfivm Daily wire reports.

I

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