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November 2005





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Pakistan Blog



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Paris Riots: Voices from the ghetto

Pakistan: Starting over in a ruined landscape

Pakistan: Notes from the quake zone

It's a wiki, wiki, wiki, wiki world

Peru: Busted



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Paris Riots: Voices from the ghetto

Burned out cars in Paris suburb.

Torched cars litter poor neighborhoods on the outskirts of Paris and have become a signature of more than two weeks of rioting in France. (AP Photo/Jacques Brinon)

Guy Diaz grew up on the wrong side of the Peripherique, the eight-lane ring road that surrounds the City of Lights like a traffic-filled moat. Inside the "Periph," as it's known here, is the Paris of postcards. Outside, "it's another country," Guy, 18, said. "We don't look the same. We have our own language."

I met Guy in Clichy-sous-Bois, a ghetto northeast of central Paris. It was here, just over two weeks ago, that two young boys who thought they were being chased by cops ran into a power station and were electrocuted to death. The incident quickly touched off riots. And as the all-too-literal flashpoint of unrest quickly spread throughout France, journalists from all over the world inundated Clichy-sous-Bois. I was in flight from a small media swarm at a local youth center when I came upon Guy -- head down, hood up, earphones on -- walking alone down a quiet street.

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Pakistan: Starting over in a ruined landscape

Makeshift tent shelters.

Thousands of residents of the town of Balakot, about 60 miles north of Islamabad, are living in tent shelters set up by relief organizations.

It is said in the Qur'an that mountains were created by God to stabilize the earth, acting as pins pressed into the soil, holding the world together.

"And he has set up on the earth mountains standing firm, lest it should shake with you."

I thought of this verse as I drove along the winding mountain passes to Balakot, the ruined city of the north, wondering how the people there would interpret the quake.

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Pakistan: Notes from the quake zone

Back in August, David Montero wrote a vivid dispatch for us from Bangladesh about the plight of garment workers; in particular, what happened following the pancake collapse of a nine-story garment factory outside Dhaka that left 61 dead and wounded more than 100 others.

Some of you wrote to tell us how moved you were by his account of families affected by the collapse and the shoddy unregulated construction exposed by the accident.

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It's a wiki, wiki, wiki, wiki world

Ward Cunningham.

Founder of the first Wiki site, Ward Cunningham.

Frankfurt, Germany, was the setting earlier this summer for Wikimania, the first global gathering of self-styled "wikipedians" -- a group that's well on its way to providing free online encyclopedias in every language on Earth.

"I've seen things like this happen once or twice before," observed Mitch Kapor, software pioneer and head of the Open Source Foundation. "We're at the Big Bang of the next information revolution."

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Peru: Busted

Vladimiro Montesinos

Vladimiro Montesinos appears in a Peruvian courtroom. He faces more than 70 criminal charges against him.

Those of you who have watched our story "The Curse of Inca Gold" or read our online investigation "Montesinos's Web" are well acquainted with Peru's notorious spymaster Vladimiro Montesinos and the infamous "Vladivideos," his secret videotape recordings of his backroom deals. When the Vladivideos became public in 2000, they caused the downfall of Peru's President Fujimori, who fled to Japan, where he remains in exile. Montesinos also fled, but was finally captured in Venezuela and returned to Peru to face more than 70 criminal charges.

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Classic Investigative Journalism

Reporter, Lowell Bergman.

Lowell Bergman reporting for FRONTLINE/World and the New York Times in Lima, Peru.

Our October 25 episode of FRONTLINE/World prompted two long, favorable reviews in the Denver Post and the New York Sun, both of which welcomed our ongoing commitment to investigative reporting.

"The fascinating story that forms the centerpiece of Tuesday night's
Frontline/World -- The Curse of Inca Gold -- would never have surfaced in the course of a beat reporter's daily life," wrote the Sun's critic David Blum. "But for Lowell Bergman, the Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist who has made a career of looking for stories where others don't, this saga of intrigue typifies a kind of journalism that threatens to become extinct.

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