The Plug Nickel Times is proud to bring you archived website links to news information that you may not find through your local media. All links are offsite unless otherwise noted- followed links should open in another browser window. Links can become dated or otherwise fail to function, for this reason we quote the actual headline of an article. This may allow you to find an alternate copy of the article through a news index or search engine. Some sites we link to may require a registration process to view an article- this website may be useful to you in those instances. Comments, corrections and submissions are welcome- an email link is at the bottom of the page.

August 16-31, 2004

August 31, 2004

Gunmen Attack Iraqi Politician Ahmad Chalabi

American Lawyer Finds New Evidence of Recent Torture in Iraq
"Akeel and his colleagues are working in concert with the Center for Constitutional Rights to sue the US companies CACI International, Inc. and Titan Corp., which were respectively contracted to provide interrogators and translators to support the American military's efforts to obtain information from "security detainees" -- those thought to be involved in resisting the US occupation of Iraq."

U.S. warplanes fire on Afghan village; 8 reported killed

Israel Destroys Bomber Home After Twin Attacks
"The Israeli army on Wednesday destroyed the West Bank home of one of two Palestinian suicide bombers a day after 16 people were killed in back-to-back bus bombings by the militant Hamas group,"

Oil Security, Qaeda Offshoots Worry U.S. in Africa

Spy Probe Scans Neocon-Israel Ties by Jim Lobe
"The burgeoning scandal over claims that a Pentagon official passed highly classified secrets to a Zionist lobby group appears to be part of a much broader set of FBI and Pentagon investigations of close collaboration between prominent U.S. neoconservatives and Israel dating back some 30 years."

Spy Scandal's Roots are Deep by Juan Cole

FBI seizes computer from AIPAC offices

Kerry Says U.S. Must and Will Win War on Terror
"Seizing upon President Bush's remark that the war on terror™ may never be won, Democratic presidential challenger John Kerry said on Tuesday the United States will prevail by waging a smarter, more effective campaign."

Republicans Again Link Iraq War to War on Terror
Looks like Dick stopped bein' such a bogart...

Report catalogues problems in air marshals service
"Hutchinson disputed the report's finding that there were 753 disciplinary reports in 2002. He said that those reports were logged over a 22-month period, from 2002 to 2004, and that there were 717 cases."

Man Held for Coming Within Feet of Cheney
"The suspect, Thomas Frampton, was charged with assaulting federal officers and impeding the operation of the Secret Service."

Third-grader arrested for disorderly conduct

August 30, 2004

Saboteurs Hit Iraq Internal Oil Pipeline

2 Chechen women suspected in causing plane crashes lived together

U.S. and Russia still top list of weapons dealers

War on terror a losing battle
"US President George W. Bush admitted last night he didn't think the war on terror could be won."

Abuse blame reaches to Fort Huachuca
"An attorney representing one of the military police soldiers accused of abuse at Abu Ghraib interviewed Fast this month and said the general made it clear she was pressured by Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld to produce actionable intelligence from Abu Ghraib."

August 29, 2004

Fundamentalists maintain control of 2 key Iraqi cities
"Both of the cities, Fallujah and Ramadi, and much of surrounding Anbar Province are now controlled by fundamentalist militias, with U.S. troops confined mainly to heavily protected forts on the desert's edge."

Saboteurs Blow Up Oil Pipeline in Iraq

17 killed as blasts rock Afghanistan

Thatcher's 'lack of response' led to arrest

Equatorial Guinea case centres on one "mercenary"

Britain helped to foil Africa 'coup' plot

Magazine: U.S. Soldier Says Torture Encouraged
"A U.S. soldier expected to plead guilty to charges of abusing Iraqi prisoners told a German magazine he deeply regretted his actions but said the abuses were encouraged by military intelligence services."

Bush Says Bible Is His Best Book
"Bush took questions from his audience, including from a young boy who asked him what his favorite book was. To loud applause, the president replied: 'The Bible.'"

August 28, 2004

Militants, U.S. forces battle on

US marines pound Fallujah insurgents, five killed in overnight raids

Georgia needs reserve troops, says leader Saakashvili
"The program would follow Israel's and Switzerland's system, setting up bases where reserve troops, made up of Georgians of a certain age and physical health, could be armed and equipped at need."

FBI espionage probe goes beyond Israeli allegations, sources say
"An FBI probe into the handling of highly classified material by Pentagon civilians is broader than previously reported, and goes well beyond allegations that a single mid-level analyst gave a top-secret Iran policy document to Israel, three sources familiar with the investigation said Saturday."

Alleged Israeli Spy Named

US probing possible Israeli spy in the Pentagon

Bush to give more power immediately to CIA chief
"The government officials who have been briefed on the document said they understood that it would effectively create as powerful a national intelligence chief as permissible under current law."

Texas lawmaker says he helped Bush get into Guard

August 27, 2004

U.S. Battles Militants in Baghdad Slum
"U.S. soldiers in Humvees drove through the troubled Sadr City slum with loudspeakers, demanding people stay home because coalition forces were 'cleaning the area of armed men,' according to an Associated Press reporter at the scene."

In Najaf, the heavy stench of war

An uneasy peace settles in a ravaged Najaf

Civilians killed in US bombing of Falluja

Saboteurs Hit More Iraq Pipelines, Exports Slip

US-backed Iraqi police take over Chalabi's Baghdad office

Explosives found in Russian crash

Maggie returns to UK as son's saga takes a fresh twist

FBI Probes Pentagon Spy Case
"the FBI believes it has "solid" evidence that the suspected mole supplied Israel with classified materials that include secret White House policy deliberations on Iran."

FBI probes "Israeli spy" at Pentagon
"The officials told Reuters the analyst was connected to Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld's office and allegedly passed the documents to Israel via the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), the powerful pro-Israel lobby in Washington."

Rumsfeld calls war worthwhile
"He warned, however, that the global fight against terrorists will be more on the order of the 40- to 50-year Cold War,"

Cops smell rodent at `rat'-outing Web site
"authorities in Oklahoma are among those questioning the site's accuracy and calling it irresponsible. Oklahoma City police Capt. Jeffrey Becker says the site could jeopardize undercover officers and informants."
Yeah, and narcs and snitches are accurate and responsible...?

August 26, 2004

Iraq's Sadr Orders Fighters to Lay Down Weapons

Clerics forge plan for peace in Najaf

Najaf Peace March Turns Bloody, Dashes Iraqi Hopes

Najaf Police Detain Journalists at Gunpoint
"Police briefly detained dozens of foreign and Iraqi journalists in the southern city of Najaf on Wednesday night after raiding their hotel and firing weapons in the air, witnesses said. The journalists were loaded into vans and then held for a short time at a police station before being released."

Few clues to Russian jet crashes

Russia Air Crash Flight Recorders May Not Help

Putin's hands on the oil pumps
"For a decade Washington has backed the Turkish and Azerbaijan governments to steer the export of Caspian region crude oil away from Russia. Russia's newest riposte has been to ally the Russian and Iranian oil industries, and open up the shortest, cheapest and most lucrative oil route of all, southwards out of the Caspian to Iran."

Israeli army sniffs opportunity to wipe out Palestinians with skunk bomb
"Trials found that only a few drops of the odour can cause an unbearable stench and can also make clothes smell for five years."

The British connection: coup plot thickens
"It has become known as the "Wonga List", an incendiary document said to name the rich and influential public figures alleged to have been bankrolling a suspected coup plan in Equatorial Guinea. The existence of the list has been the subject of fevered speculation in the shadowy international group who allegedly plotted to replace the regime of the West African state and make billions from its oil. As the plan unravelled and the arrests began, with that of Mark Thatcher the most dramatic and highly publicised so far, so did the attempts - by those who had the most to fear from exposure - to get hold of the list."

MPs launch bid to impeach Blair

Australia says to acquire new "most lethal" cruise missiles
"Australia announced plans Thursday to acquire long-range cruise missiles that will give its defence force the 'most lethal capacity' for air combat in the region."

Dictator loses immunity
"Chile's Supreme Court on Thursday upheld the ruling of a lower court lifting the immunity from prosecution of the former dictator Augusto Pinochet,"

Army's report extends list of Abu Ghraib blame

Bush vows to battle ad groups
"President George W. Bush, facing pressure to act against groups attacking Senator John Kerry's war record, will pursue legal action against all "shadowy" outside groups that use unregulated funds to run political advertising,"

Letter from America: Meting out 'pot of gold' in the war on terrorism
"Turner, director of the Butler County Emergency Management Agency, has been around long enough to remember when officials like him presided over minuscule budgets, got accordingly small respect, and planned for Soviet nuclear attack. Sometimes two years passed without purchasing equipment. That has changed."

Govt. to Test New Air Passenger Screening Program
"While the Transportation Security Administration said it had addressed controversial elements of passenger pre-screening, key aspects of the new plan, called Secure Flight, have yet to be worked out."

Thieves in baggage handlers' clothing

Anarchists hot for mayhem - Police on guard vs. violent tactics
"Fifty of the country's leading anarchists are expected to be in the city for the Republican National Convention, and a handful of them are hard-core extremists with histories of violent and disruptive tactics, according to police intelligence sources."
'leading anarchists'... WTF?!

August 24, 2004

US warplanes pound Najaf

Iraq Forces Advance on Najaf Shrine, Battle Rages

Hundreds of Iraqi, US troops braced for Najaf assault

Falluja under sustained US attack

Iraqi cleric slams war coverage

Iraqi Teens Abused at Abu Ghraib, Report Finds

In Iraq, gestating forums for culture mature in cyberspace
"What is the role of culture in rebuilding a country wracked by war? How can artistic and intellectual activity be resurrected, restored and maintained? And what, more basically, is the feasibility of promoting these artistic exchanges online, especially when they are based around the idea of a country where access to information technology and the internet has been historically scattershot?"

Report: Russian Jet Sent Hijack Signal

Russian Plane Crashes, Another Missing
"A Russian passenger plane with more than 40 people on board crashed south of Moscow while another airliner went missing at almost exactly the same time, prompting concerns of a possible terrorist attack. Interfax news agency quoted a government source as saying on Wednesday the missing plane, also carrying more than 40 passengers and crew, had sent a hijack alarm before disappearing from screens over the southern Russian city of Rostov-on-Don late on Tuesday."

Leader warns of war with Russia
"War with Russia is close and the people of Georgia must be prepared for the worst, Georgian President Mikhail Saakashvili has warned."

Iran will not initiate any offensive: defense minister
"Iran's Defense Minister Ali Shamkhani has asserted the Islamic republic would not initiate any attack on another country, again disputing comments to the contrary that were attributed to him by Al-Jazeera television a week ago."

Israelis hold hundreds in sweep
"The Israeli army has rounded up about 300 Palestinian men in a raid on a West Bank refugee camp."

Israel Urged to Change Stand on Geneva Convention
"Hoping to avoid sanctions, Israel's attorney general wants Israel to consider applying to Palestinians the Fourth Geneva Convention safeguarding the treatment of occupied people, a spokesman said Tuesday."

Japan Issues Order to Deport Ex-Chess Champ Fischer
"The ministry rejected Bobby Fischer's demand for protection as a political refugee, saying that charges outstanding against him in the United States are not political in nature,"

U.S. May Help Demobilize 'Terrorist' Army in Colombia
"The Bush administration is considering whether it can provide money to help demobilize Colombia's largest far-right paramilitary army despite its official designation by Washington as a foreign terrorist organization,"
And guess whose money they want to throw at this...

Marines slash final combat training in half
"Under growing pressure to ship Marines to Iraq, the Marine Corps is cutting in half the rigorous field combat training it gives units preparing to deploy, senior officers say."

U.S. Judge Blasts FBI Case Against Albany Muslims
"Two Islamic men accused of supporting terrorism after an FBI sting operation were ordered released from jail on Tuesday by a judge who blasted the government's case by saying there is no evidence they have any links to terrorists."

U.S. Holds Suspected Hamas Figure for Filming Bridge
"Ismael Selim Elbarasse, 57, was arrested on Friday after an off-duty police officer saw a passenger in Elbarasse's car videotaping the bridge as he drove across it,"
"Elbarasse, who was traveling with his wife and children, was on a federal watch list and is listed as an "unindicted co-conspirator" in a terrorism funding ring cited by U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft last week,"
'Wreckers' and saboteurs everywhere!!

Bush Campaign Lawyer Tied to Group's Anti-Kerry Ads
"The sources, who asked not to be identified, said Ben Ginsberg, the Bush campaign's chief outside counsel, has also been giving legal advice to Swift Boat Veterans for Truth, the group that is attacking Kerry. Bush's campaign insists it has no relationship with the group and has denied Kerry's charge that it is a front for the president's re-election team."

Tense NY Convention Seen for Protesters, Police
"But it is unannounced actions by self-styled anarchists who disrupted the 1999 world trade meeting in Seattle and other events that authorities fear could cause the most problems."
"We're still preparing for terrorists but the feeling is that our main problem will be with anarchists," one law enforcement official said. "Terrorists usually don't attack when we are prepared for them."

Pentagon leadership failures contributed to detainee abuse, panel finds
"'A lot of careers are going to be ruined over this,' panel member Harold Brown, also a former defense secretary, said as the panel revealed that 300 abuse claims are under investigation."

Auditors Urged Army to Act Against Halliburton
"Pentagon auditors 'strongly' urged the Army last week to withhold paying 15 percent of Halliburton's bills in Iraq for over $4 billion of logistical work, said a military document released on Tuesday."

Agencies misuse classification authority, managers say
"Government officials said on Tuesday that federal agencies improperly classify at least half of all documents,"

Senior Defense contracting officer, three others, indicted for corruption
"Thirty-four of 68 counts in the public corruption indictment focused on Marlow, who allegedly had a secret financial interest in Vector Systems Inc., a small firm based in Harrisburg, Pa. Marlow used a government purchase card to award over $11 million in contracts to the company between 1998 and 2002,"

U.S. Denies Entry to European Muslim Scholar
"A prominent European Muslim scholar has been prevented from taking up a post at Notre Dame University in Indiana after U.S. authorities revoked his visa,"

Calif. Approves E-Voting in Counties After Row

Rafting Tournament on Sex Dolls in North Russia

'Hippie Dictionary' Tells It Like It Was, Man

August 23, 2004

Readers may have noticed that we missed a few days over the last week - sorry about that! Output over the next few days should increase as we start raising steam, or find a jump start!

US warplanes resume raids against Sadr fighters around Najaf mosque

Fierce battles for Najaf

Shi'ite Gunmen Take to the Streets in Iraq's Basra

North Korea rejects new talks with US, calls Bush an "imbecile"
"He said that following Bush's comments, North Korea could not attend working-level discussions aimed at paving the way for a new round of ministerial negotiations on the nuclear issue."

U.S. checking possibility of pumping oil from northern Iraq to Haifa, via Jordan
"The United States has asked Israel to check the possibility of pumping oil from Iraq to the oil refineries in Haifa. The request came in a telegram last week from a senior Pentagon official to a top Foreign Ministry official in Jerusalem."

NCS Telephones Cryptome

August 22, 2004

U.S. Plane Attacks Najaf Rebels as Tanks Near Shrine

Talks stall as Najaf under intense shelling

U.S. Signals Flexibility on Israeli Settlement Growth
"While the White House denied any official change in the U.S. stance that all settlement activity should be frozen, an official said efforts were underway "to clarify with the Israelis a common understanding of what 'settlement activity' means." Based on this new understanding, officials said Washington could accede to the new construction if it does not take place outside the boundaries of existing settlements into undeveloped parts of the West Bank."

Bonkers Bolton Threatens Iran
"By making his completely unsubstantiated charges, Bolton is either attempting to provoke Iran - as he did North Korea - into withdrawing from the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty or setting the stage for another unilateral application of the Bush Doctrine to a 'rogue state.'"

Bush campaign won't stop running Olympics ad despite request from U.S. organizing committee
"In 1972, there were 40 democracies in the world. Today, 120," an announcer says. "Freedom is spreading throughout the world like a sunrise. And this Olympics there will be two more free nations. And two fewer terrorist regimes."

Blair refuses to accept US award
"US President George W. Bush has put huge pressure on his closest ally to pick up the Congressional Medal of Honour in person, the Sunday Mirror said, quoting a senior British government source."

Leach says U.S. needs to leave Iraq as soon as possible
"Instead of focusing on his campaign like other stump speakers at the Iowa State Fair this week, U.S. Rep. Jim Leach emphasized the need for the United States to withdraw from Iraq as soon as possible."

FBI Launches 'Preemptive' Investigations
"Sarah Bardwell did not get the names of the four FBI agents and two police officers who questioned her and her roommates late on the afternoon of July 22 on the front porch of their house in Denver. 'We asked them for their names and they said they wouldn't give us their names because we wouldn't give them ours.'"

FBI Comes Calling on Activist Software Engineer
"The New York Times reported on August 16 that 'the FBI has been questioning political protesters across the country' about events planned at the conventions. That article said that civil rights advocates believe that 'at least 40 or 50 people, and perhaps more,' have been visited by the FBI."

The 9/11 Cell Phone Calls
"While serious doubts regarding the cell calls were expressed in the immediate aftermath of 9/11, a new landmark in the wireless telecom industry has further contributed to upsetting the Commission's credibility. Within days of the release of the 9/11 Commission Report in July, American Airlines and Qualcomm, proudly announced the development of a new wireless technology --which will at some future date allow airline passengers using their cell phones to contact family and friends from a commercial aircraft."

Terror watch lists are riddled with errors
"As we debate the need to reorganize our intelligence system, we must have an open dialogue about what measures truly make us safer. Blacklisting innocent people from employment does not make us safer. Making lengthy and ambiguous watch lists that employers do not know about but are nevertheless liable to observe only serves to undercut public confidence in the government’s efforts in the war on terrorism. The proliferation of these lists could threaten many basic rights while leaving little recourse for those affected."

Exposed: Scandal of double voters
"Some 46,000 New Yorkers are registered to vote in both the city and Florida, a shocking finding that exposes both states to potential abuses that could alter the outcome of elections, a Daily News investigation shows."

The Call Is Cheap. The Wiretap Is Extra
"wiretapping Internet phones to monitor criminals and terrorists is costly and complex, and potentially a big burden on new businesses trying to sell the phone service."

The Scream stolen from museum
"Edvard Munch's famous paintings The Scream, Madonna and others were stolen from an art museum today while stunned museum-goers watched armed men threatening the staff at gunpoint as they took the art work to a waiting car."

August 19, 2004

U.S. Uses Lethal Aircraft to Try to Break Sadr
"The unmistakable menacing buzz of the AC-130 gunship equipped with everything from rapid fire machineguns to deadlier howitzers was followed by thuds around a holy shrine and ancient cemetery where Sadr's men are holed up."

U.S. Warplanes Bomb Iraq's Falluja Again

US Army Doctors Had Role in Abu Ghraib Abuse -Lancet
"Government documents show that the U.S. military medical system failed to protect detainees' human rights, sometimes collaborated with interrogators or abusive guards, and failed to properly report injuries and deaths caused by beatings,"

Georgia Forces Announce Big Gain Over Separatists

Georgia warns South Ossetia of final chance to strike peace deal

Sharon's Gaza plan threatened by party division

Senators Ask Where $8.8 Bln in Iraq Funds Went
"At least $8.8 billion in Iraqi funds that was given to Iraqi ministries by the former U.S.-led authority there cannot be accounted for, according to a draft U.S. audit set for release soon."

Report urges defense to help with domestic technologies
"The academy specifically highlights the military's strength in command, control, communications, computers, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance, or so-called C4ISR. 'The committee believes that C4ISR is a high-payoff capability that offers great return on investment for the nation,' it said, while acknowledging that other conclusions could be reached with more analysis."

Material witness in a terrorism case says his life is ruined
"These days, people held as material witnesses in terrorism investigations are often not called to testify against others; instead, frequently, they are charged with crimes themselves. They lack constitutional protections like the requirement that criminal suspects in custody be informed of their Miranda rights, beginning with the familiar refrain, 'You have the right to remain silent.' Moreover, they are often held for long periods of time in the same harsh conditions as those suspected of serious crimes."

Battle rages over how to build the new food pyramid
"The battle is on over the future shape of the food pyramid, the widely recognised and misunderstood graphic showing what the US government believes Americans should eat. It may stop being a pyramid altogether. Suggestions on a government website for a new device include wheels, pie charts, clocks, squares, diamonds, even a cornucopia."

Texas Lawmaker Fights Ex-Maid for Her Son
"The infant sees 'us as his protectors and we are. We want him to know his parents but we also want him to be protected,' Janice Heflin said."

Group says Jesus Christ would vote Democrat
Did Jesus ever vote...? Would Jesus vote...? Even after 40 days in the 'wilderness'...?!

Deputy logged Perry speeding on his Harley
"Schlueter said he stopped a 'black vehicle following motorcycle,' which turned out to be a Department of Public Safety officer with Perry's security detail. 'Motorcycle rider was governor,' the log states."
What a RUB...!

Bear Passes Out After Only 36 Beers
"The hard-drinking bear, estimated to be about two years old, broke into campers' coolers and, using his claws and teeth to open the cans, swilled down the suds."

August 18, 2004

Explosions in Najaf as fighting continues

Sadr deal may be too late to protect shrine

Iraq Cleric, U.S. Marines in Tense Najaf Standoff
"U.S. marines and a radical Iraqi cleric were locked in a tense standoff on Thursday after the firebrand leader refused to leave a holy shrine in Najaf despite earlier agreeing to disarm his militia and withdraw"

Iraqi cleric is reported to accept conditions
"An Iraqi national conference was told Wednesday that the rebel cleric Moktada al-Sadr had accepted conditions proposed by an Iraqi delegation to end fierce fighting in the holy city of Najaf, including the withdrawal of his militia from one of Shiite Islam's holiest shrines."

U.S. Forces Kill 50 Sadr Militia in Baghdad Suburb

At least nine Iraqis killed in Mosul violence

Iran warns of preemptive strike to prevent attack on nuclear sites
"America is not the only one present in the region. We are also present, from Khost to Kandahar in Afghanistan; we are present in the Gulf and we can be present in Iraq,"

Russian defense minister says US anti-missile system is no threat
"We have our own plans to develop strategic nuclear and space forces. I can assure you that the plans that we have will be rigourously carried out and observed,"

Georgia Says Six Soldiers Killed in Rebel Region

An Interview with Mordechai Vanunu by Amy Goodman

Republican Congressman Says Iraq War Was Mistake
"Breaking ranks with the White House and his Republican leaders in Congress, Rep. Doug Bereuter of Nebraska has said in a letter to constituents the U.S. military action in Iraq was a mistake."

In Reversal, U.S. Court Allows Some Forced DNA Tests
"Compulsory DNA profiling of qualified federal offenders is reasonable under the totality of the circumstances," Judge Diarmuid O'Scannlain, who was appointed by former President Ronald Reagan, wrote for the majority. "Therefore, we today realign ourselves with every other state and federal appellate court to have considered these issues -- squarely holding that the DNA Act satisfies the requirements of the Fourth Amendment."

U.S. seeks cloak for evidence
"Albany -- Prosecutors cite national security in bid to stem flow of 'classified material' in FBI sting case"

Ticket ripped because of sticker
"Bush campaign staffers tore up the 55-year-old social studies teacher's ticket and refused her admission because she sported a small sticker on her blouse that touted the Democratic ticket..."

August 17, 2004

Iraq's Najaf Tense After Cleric Snubs Peace Envoys

Baghdad bomb delays selection of assembly

U.S. forces enter Sadr City to face militia

U.S. Troops Training for Iraq in Israel

Najaf Prompts Talk of Secession Among Iraqi Politicians

US-led coalition denies air strikes against Afghan warlord

Russia cautious on Bush vow to withdraw troops
"Moscow is concerned that as the NATO alliance expands, the United States will station troops in the former Soviet Baltic republics. It further continues to worry over the future presence of Western troops in the energy-rich Central Asian region where Russia once dominated."

Israel Kills 5 in Attempt to Assassinate Hamas Man
"A senior Hamas leader survived an Israeli assassination attempt on Wednesday but at least five other Palestinians were killed in the night-time explosion that tore through his Gaza home."

Sharon backs 1,000 new settler homes in West Bank

Iran's nuclear program must be brought to UN Security Council: senior US official
"We ... believe that the Iranian nuclear weapons program must be taken up by the UN Security Council," Bolton told a forum on US policy toward Iran at the Hudson Institute, a Washington think-tank. "Clearly, the time to report this issue to the Security Council is long overdue," he said. "To fail to do so would risk sending a signal to would-be proliferators that there are not serious consequences for pursuing secret nuclear weapons programs."

Manufacturers face 40 per cent rise in energy bills
"The leading supplier of gas and electricity to top British companies warned on Tuesday of a 30 to 40 per cent surge in energy costs next year, adding to the pressure on company profits as raw material prices soar."

Lawmakers worry that homeland security overshadows civil rights
"Several options for expanding security measures were discussed at the hearing. For example, the Homeland Security Department is developing criteria for a national identification card for U.S. citizens to carry,"
Y'know- if the headline said that they 'vowed to protect civil rights' - that'd be nice, tho' there's still be a fair chance they were being disingenuous. When the best the buggers can do is to be 'worried' - it tells you something!

US intelligence overhaul gets cool reception

Temporary reprieve for Halliburton in dispute over payments
"Halliburton, the oilfield services company, was on Tuesday granted a temporary reprieve in a dispute with the Pentagon over payment for its work in Iraq.After being told in the morning that the army would immediately begin withholding 15 per cent of the payment on each bill an amount that could total hundreds of millions of dollars Halliburton was later informed that the army would request more information from the company before enforcing the penalty."

Pentagon withholds 15 percent of Halliburton payments
"The Pentagon will withhold 15 percent of future payments to Halliburton after accusing it of inadequate accounting for contract work in Iraq and Kuwait, the firm said Tuesday."

Mistake jeopardizes FBI sting
"Albany -- Authorities tell magistrate they mistranslated word that named one suspect as a 'commander'"

Soldier Sues U.S. Military Over Extended Service

August 16, 2004

City of defiance

US tanks roll closer to Najaf shrine; two soldiers killed

Media in Najaf under siege

Sadr welcomes Vatican's offer to defuse Najaf crisis
"'If asked, Pope John Paul II would gladly accept a mediation role,' the Vatican secretary of state Cardinal Angelo Sodano told the Italian public radio."

US 'bounty hunter' claims FBI links
"An alleged American bounty-hunter on trial for running a private jail, kidnapping and torturing prisoners in Afghanistan has accused FBI agents of seizing evidence proving his links to US authorities."

Clashes resume in Georgian separatist region: Russian defense ministry
"Clashes resumed late Monday in Georgia's breakaway region of South Ossetia, leaving a three-day-old ceasefire in tatters after two Georgian servicemen were killed and other casualties were reported"

Chavez Wins Referendum, Vows to Deepen Revolution

Signs of strain in global antiterror partnership
"The apprehension of Khan, in this ancient Punjab city not far from the Indian border, was wrapped up with almost no notice; his arrest did not even make the local papers. But before the end of the month, this single act would have enormous global repercussions."

Children of criminals to be 'targeted' and 'tracked' (UK)
"I don't think it is stigmatising those children by targeting them," she said. "You can intervene at an early age and say 'your life can be different and we will help you and your parents make your life different.' Let's put the support in as early as we can."

U.S. to Handle 'No-Fly' Airline Passenger List
"The U.S. government plans to take over screening airline passengers against a "no-fly" list of potential terrorists, a security official said on Monday, a controversial function now performed by the airlines that has resulted in at least one lawsuit."

9/11 commissioners cite continued gaps in transportation security

Halliburton Says Army Suspends Withhold Threat
"Halliburton said on Monday the U.S. Army had decided to give the company more time to resolve a billing dispute before withholding payment of up to 15 percent of the company's bills in Iraq and Kuwait."

Meanwhile: Chasing down flaws in electronic voting
"But there is no denying that Harris, a one-time literary publicist from the Seattle area, is responsible for digging up some of the most disturbing information yet to surface about the accuracy and integrity of electronic voting in the United States."

Kerry's Blue Blood a Winner, Say Royal Researchers
"Because of the fact that every presidential candidate with the most royal genes and chromosomes has always won the November presidential election, the coming election -- based on 42 previous presidents -- will go to John Kerry."

A Vacation for Folks Who've Done Everything Else...
"Thousands of women suffered torture and repression behind the walls of Hoheneck castle, a medieval fort perched on a hill above the town of Stollberg in Saxony, used as a jail for political dissidents from 1950 until 1989. Now German company Artemis GmbH, which purchased the 12.4-acre estate in 2003, is advertising the chance to spend a night like a prisoner, eating sloppy food and being deprived of sleep in a tiny cell for the price of 100 euros ($122)."
'Reality Tourism' - this could get messy!!

At $250, a PC that aims to connect world's poor
"Reddy, a pioneering researcher in artificial intelligence and a professor at Carnegie Mellon University, plans to unveil his project this year. It is called the PCtvt, a $250 personal computer that is wirelessly networked for the four billion people around the world who live on less than $2,000 a year."




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