Math in the Media

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Mathematical Digest

Short Summaries of Articles about Mathematics
in the Popular Press

"Statistical Analysis Provides Key Links in Milosevic Trial," by Richard Stone.Science, 22 March 2002, pages2188-9.

At the war crimes trial of Slobodan Milosevic, the detached testimony ofstatistician Patrick Ball may prove to be just as incriminating as theemotional testimony of eyewitnesses. The prosecution claims that killings byMilosevic's forces of Kosovar Albanians resulted in their mass exodus fromKosovo. Milosevic blames the exodus on NATO bombing and on activities by theKosovo Liberation Army (KLA). Ball recently testified at the trial that peaksin the number of murders by Yugoslav and Serb forces coincide with peaks in theexodus of Kosovar Albanians and that there is no cause and effect between themass exodus and either NATO bombing or activities by the KLA. Stone writes thatit is hoped that statistical tools can be used in other human rights abuseinvestigations.

--- Mike Breen