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All articles from December 26, 2006
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      4 COMPANIES GET CMA LICENSES
      Arab News, 26-12-2006
     Arab News JEDDAH, 26 December 2006 — The Capital Market Authority (CMA) yesterday approved the Investment Funds law and licensed four companies to provide stock market services to prospective investors in the market. The law was issued as part of CMA’s efforts to organize the market.

The newly licensed companie >>>


      AGFUND OKS FUND FOR NEW PROJECTS
      Arab News, 26-12-2006
     Arab News RIYADH, 26 December 2006 — AGFUND has approved on Sunday the financing of a number of projects in the developing countries. Fifteen projects were approved at a meeting in Riyadh by its administration committee presided by Yousf Ibn Ibrahim Al–Bassam, vice president and the Kingdom’s representative to AGF >>>


      NAS TO INVEST $800M IN LOW–COST CARRIER
      Arab News, 26-12-2006
     Javid Hassan, Arab News RIYADH, 26 December 2006 — The National Air Services (NAS) is set to invest $800 million over a five–year period in its new low–frills airliner, Ayed Al–Jeaid, chairman of NAS, said at a press conference yesterday.

He said that the budget airliner — the first in the Kin >>>


      SABB HONORED AT KFUPM’S EMPLOYMENT DAY
      Arab News, 26-12-2006
     Arab News RIYADH, 26 December 2006 — SABB received a commemorative plaque from Dr. Khaled S. Al–Sultan, rector of KFUPM. It was in appreciation of the bank’s support to the Saudization program, which has benefited graduates of King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals (KFUPM). The presentation was made on the >>>


      SR1.66BN FOR EXPANSION OF JEDDAH PORT
      Arab News, 26-12-2006
     K.S. Ramkumar, Arab News JEDDAH, 26 December 2006 — An investment of SR1.662 billion ($443 million) has been envisaged to increase the capacity of the Jeddah Islamic Port (JIP) by 45 percent. This follows the signing of a license agreement by Minister of Transport and Chairman of Sea Port Authority (SEAPA) Jabara Al&nda >>>


      STRICTLY BUSINESS: SONY WALKMAN
      Arab News, 26-12-2006
     Shaped like a glow stick and filled with up to 2GB of songs, the new Walkman NW–S200 series launched by Sony Gulf is claimed to be the ideal companion for today’s active lifestyles. Available in NW–S203F (1GB) and NW–S205F (2GB), this attractive–looking and lightweight 26g player is created with >>>


      WHAT ‘CAPACITY BUILDING’ MEANS TO ME
      Arab News, 26-12-2006
     Fatin Yousef Bundagji, Fatinbund@yahoo.com As I come to the end of my first month of column writing, I feel the need to share with you the following: My writing is motivated by my desire to inform and share. To inform you on a wide range of development issues (civic, economic and social) that have had — and continue to >>>


      FOOD: UNDERSTAND THE BASIC PRINCIPLES, OBSERVE THE RULES
      Arab News, 26-12-2006
     Adil Salahi, Arab News Q. Muslims who live abroad have different views on what is permissible to eat and what is forbidden. Some insist on specific conditions with regard to meat; some refuse to eat non–meat products for fear that lard might have been used in frying; some fear that the food might have been contami >>>


      INHERITANCE OF A GRANDCHILD
      Arab News, 26-12-2006
     Adil Salahi, Arab News Q. My wife’s parents died recently. They left behind six daughters and one son, as well as one grandson whose father had died before them. Some of their daughters also have children of their own. Could you please explain how their property is to be divided, and whether any of their grandchildren, >>>


      THE CYCLE OF LIFE AND DEATH
      Arab News, 26-12-2006
     Commentary by Sayyid Qutb In the name of God, the Lord of Grace, the Ever Merciful Extol, then, Gods limitless glory both in your evening hours and in your morning hours.

To Him is due all praise in the heavens and the earth, at twilight and at noon.

He it is who brings forth the living out of that whi >>>


      THE PILGRIMAGE — 5: WHEN HAJ BECOMES DUE
      Arab News, 26-12-2006
     Adil Salahi, Arab News We know that the pilgrimage is a duty of all Muslims, provided that they are able to undertake the journey. An important question, therefore, is to know when the duty becomes due so that we can take the necessary steps to fulfill it.

In order for the pilgrimage to become due, a person mus >>>


      THE PROPHET AS A MAN &#8212; 107: USING WEAPONS
      Arab News, 26-12-2006
     Print Article | Comment on Article

The Prophet as a Man 107: Using Weapons Adil Salahi, Arab News

A Hadith reported by Anas ibn Malik mentions that "the Prophet (peace be upon him) used to have a spear or a staff which he might stick in the ground so that he would be facing it when praying." >>>


      VICTIMS OF SMEAR CAMPAIGNS
      Arab News, 26-12-2006
     Adil Salahi, Arab News Q. I am writing on behalf of my friend, a young British Muslim man. Last summer he was shot in his shoulder by British police on suspicion of making a dirty bomb. There were no charges pressed against him. After he held a press conference to declare his innocence the police accused him of various >>>


      ‘I MATTER’: SAUDI GIRL STUDENTS EXPLORE NEW CAREER OPTIONS
      Arab News, 26-12-2006
     Lulwa Shalhoub, Arab News Lama Al–Zoghibi JEDDAH, 26 December 2006 — Architecture student Lama Al–Zoghibi won the «I Matter» prize in the third and final night of the activities that took place at the Equestrian Club here recently.

The event, sponsored by MBC4, provided a forum for the A >>>


      16 INJURED IN MAKKAH FIRE
      Arab News, 26-12-2006
     Syed Faisal Ali, Arab News MAKKAH, 26 December 2006 — At least sixteen people suffered smoke inhalation yesterday when a fire broke out in the Dar Al–Gaza apartments in the Juffali Building located about 200 meters from the Grand Mosque. Officials said that the injured were in stable condition.

«It >>>


      HAJ OPENS UP OPPORTUNITIES FOR ALL AND SUNDRY
      Arab News, 26-12-2006
     Zainy Abbas, Arab News MAKKAH, 26 December 2006 — Haj is giving anyone with a business idea an opportunity to do a little business with the millions of visitors to the holy cities. Renting animals, selling antiques and, very much a booming local industry, taking souvenir photos of visitors in Saudi national dress are th >>>


      IMC MARKS DIABETES DAY
      Arab News, 26-12-2006
     Arab News JEDDAH, 26 December 2006 — International Medical Center (IMC) here launched its first annual diabetes day yesterday, in coordination with the International Diabetes Foundation (IDF), which has made this year’s campaign theme «Diabetes care for all.» «At IMC, we encourage everyone to remember >>>


      NEWBORN DIES DUE TO HOSPITAL INFECTION, PARENTS CLAIM
      Arab News, 26-12-2006
     M. Ghazanfar Ali Khan, Arab News RIYADH, 26 December 2006 — A three–week–old baby died here yesterday after reportedly acquiring an infection while being treated at the state–run Shomaisi Hospital in Riyadh.

The parents of the child were in the process of coming up with the funds for a surgica >>>


      PAY ATTENTION TO SCHOOL, TEACHERS TELL PARENTS
      Arab News, 26-12-2006
     Ali Al–Zahrani, Arab News RIYADH, 26 December 2006 — According to teachers interviewed by Arab News, the students that do best in school are the ones whose parents make frequent visits to the school and ask questions.

«The top students in school are those who have strong connection between school an >>>


      PROBE LAUNCHED INTO SALE OF FAKE SACRIFICE COUPONS
      Arab News, 26-12-2006
     Saeed Al–Abyad, Arab News JEDDAH, 26 December 2006 — Officials in Makkah have stepped up investigations into establishments suspected of involvement in circulating fake coupons of sacrificial animals at a lower price than the rate fixed by the Islamic Development Bank (IDB). The probe was announced by an official >>>


      SHUAIBA–' BROUGHT ON LINE TO MEET POWER DEMAND
      Arab News, 26-12-2006
     Saeed Al–Abyad, Arab News JEDDAH, 26 December 2006 — The ninth electricity production unit in the Shuaiba power generating plant has been brought on line to help meet the demands of Haj. The unit generates approximately 3'3 megawatts and has been connected to the network to enhance the electricity system of Ma >>>


      TABUK MAY GET OWN NEWSPAPER
      Arab News, 26-12-2006
     Arab News TABUK, 26 December 2006 — Tabuk Gov. Prince Fahd ibn Sultan stressed yesterday the need for a newspaper in the region. He was speaking after signing a contract for conducting a feasibility study on launching an Arabic daily newspaper by the Tabuk Press and Publication Establishment.

The contract was s >>>


      THOUSANDS TURNED AWAY FROM CHECKPOINTS
      Arab News, 26-12-2006
     Saeed Al–Abyad, Arab News JEDDAH, 26 December 2006 — Security officials announced yesterday that so far they have turned away approximately ',000 citizens and expatriates from entering Makkah because they did not go through proper channels for performing the pilgrimage.

As of yesterday, officials say >>>


      CALL FOR PEACEFUL END TO IRAN N–ROW
      Arab News, 26-12-2006
     Khaled Almaeena Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah is seen off by Sultan Qaboos of Oman as he leaves Muscat at the conclusion of his three–day state visit on Monday. (SPA) MUSCAT, 26 December 2006 — Saudi Arabia and Oman yesterday called for a peaceful resolution of the standoff between Iran and Weste >>>


      INDIAN HAJ MANAGEMENT GETS ISO CERTIFICATE
      Arab News, 26-12-2006
     Syed Faisal Ali, Arab News JEDDAH, 26 December 2006 — The Indian Consulate yesterday became the first Haj Mission in Saudi Arabia to get the ISO certification, and it is also the first Indian mission abroad, which has received this certification.

The EN ISO '001–2000 Certification was presented yester >>>


      PAKISTAN’S NUKES CAN SURVIVE ANY ATTACK: MUSHARRAF
      Arab News, 26-12-2006
     Azhar Masood & Agencies ISLAMABAD, 26 December 2006 — Pakistan has become strong enough to repel any attack on its nuclear installations, President Pervez Musharraf said on the occasion of the birth anniversary of the country’s founder Quaid–e–Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah.

«Pakistan is a nucle >>>


      ‘TIS SEASON FOR NEARLY NUDE CALENDARS
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     MILWAUKEE –– Miss December is wearing nothing but a Santa hat and a smile. Oh, and holding one strategically placed cat. Chandra Gates decided the Humane Society of Jefferson County was a worthy enough cause for her to bare it all _ well, some of it _ for a nude–calendar fundraiser.

"I&ls >>>


      3 PEOPLE FOUND DEAD IN PENNSYLVANIA HOME
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     BUTLER, Pa. –– A man fatally shot his live–in girlfriend and her teenage son before he killed himself on Christmas Day, police said.

Joel E. Bodley, 60, called '11 on Monday afternoon and said there were three dead bodies in his home about 30 miles north of Pittsburgh, Butler police said.< >>>


      BROWN‘S WIDOW FIGHTS FOR ACCESS TO HOME
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     BEECH ISLAND, S.C. –– James Brown‘s widow said Monday she was denied access to the home she shared with the singer and their 5–year–old son, claiming the gate was padlocked at the request of Brown‘s lawyer and accountant.

Tomi Rae Brown, 36, who was one of James Brown‘s >>>


      CALIF. GOV TO HAVE SURGERY ON BROKEN LEG
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     LOS ANGELES –– Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger will need crutches, screws to secure his thigh bone and several weeks of recovery after undergoing surgery on his broken leg, his surgeon said.

The 5'–year–old governor, actor and former bodybuilder was scheduled for surgery Tuesday morning i >>>


      CLEANUP BEGINS AFTER 2 FLORIDA TORNADOES
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. –– At least two Christmas Day tornadoes damaged hundreds of Florida homes, with one flipping airplanes at a flight school and tearing the roofs off three apartment buildings, officials confirmed Tuesday.

"It‘s all gone," said Estelle Hunter, 25, who left her home >>>


      DENVER AIRPORT BUSTLING AFTER BLIZZARD
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     DENVER –– The city‘s airport hummed with activity on Christmas Day as airlines struggled back from a paralyzing blizzard, and mail carriers stayed on the job delivering thousands of storm–delayed packages.

Elsewhere, however, air traffic was light on the holiday as people celebrated toge >>>


      IRAN OIL REVENUE QUICKLY DRYING UP, ANALYSIS SAYS
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     Iran is suffering a staggering decline in revenue from its oil exports, and if the trend continues income could virtually disappear by 2015, according to an analysis published yesterday in a journal of the National Academy of Sciences.

Iran‘s economic woes could make the country unstable and vulnerable, w >>>


      KATRINA EVACUEE WELCOMES WRONG NUMBERS
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     LUMBERTON, Texas –– Wrong–number calls typically elicit a perfunctory, if mildly annoyed, correction to the caller followed quickly by a click.

But for Udonna "Jeannie" Pelham, the interruptions are a welcome reprieve from the loneliness she and her elderly father have felt since Hur >>>


      L.A. MAGNET SCHOOL MEETINGS HAVE A TWIST
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     AM LOS ANGELES –– In the cutthroat competition to get their kids into a public magnet school, some parents are turning to support groups and a stiff drink to help them through the process.

The support groups are for commiserating and to share tips on finishing a deceptively complex one–page ap >>>


      MILITARY DEATHS IN IRAQ EXCEED '/11 TOLL
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     NEW YORK –– Nearly four years after the war in Iraq began, the number of Americans troops killed there now exceeds the grim toll of victims from the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

The U.S. military death toll in Iraq has reached 2,'74, one more than the number of deaths in the Sept. 11, 2001, attac >>>


      OBITUARIES IN THE NEWS
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     7:03 AM –– James Brown ATLANTA (AP) _ James Brown, the dynamic, pompadoured "Godfather of Soul," whose rasping vocals and revolutionary rhythms made him a founder of rap, funk and disco as well, died Monday. He was 73.

Brown died of heart failure less than two days after he was hospitalize >>>


      OIL PIPELINE RUPTURES OFF TEXAS COAST
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     HOUSTON –– Workers Tuesday were trying to contain an oil spill that dumped 21,000 gallons into the Gulf of Mexico after a pipeline ruptured.

The U.S. Coast Guard said the spill, about 30 miles southeast of Galveston, came from a rupture in a medium crude oil pipeline owned by Houston–based Pla >>>


      PARENTS OF SLAIN GIS TRAVEL TO IRAQ
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     LYERLY, Ga. –– After her son Justin was killed serving in Iraq, a grieving Jan Johnson resolved to see the place where he died and to better understand why it happened.

Johnson and her husband, Joe, who also served in Iraq, were among a group of seven parents who lost children in the war who were pi >>>


      REGIONAL JET MAKES EMERGENCY LANDING
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     NASHVILLE, Tenn. –– Smoke filled the cabin of a regional jet Monday night, forcing an emergency landing 30 minutes after takeoff from Nashville International Airport, airport officials said.

American Eagle Flight 5383, a two–engine, 50–seat jet carrying 13 passengers and crew, was headed >>>


      SCHWARZENEGGER IN HOSPITAL FOR LEG SURGERY
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger will undergo surgery on Tuesday to repair the leg he broke during a skiing accident, his office said.

The 5'–year–old former movie star, who broke his right femur while on holiday with his family in Sun Valley, Idaho, on Saturda >>>


      SCHWARZENEGGER RETURNS FOR SURGERY
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     SAN FRANCISCO –– California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger returned to the state Christmas Day for surgery after breaking his leg in an Idaho skiing accident over the weekend, his spokeswoman said.

Schwarzenegger will undergo non–emergency surgery Tuesday morning to repair his fractured right femu >>>


      SHARPTON LOSES MENTOR IN SOUL MAN BROWN
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     AM NEW YORK –– The Rev. Al Sharpton remembers spotting his mentor, James Brown, for the first time backstage just before an early 1'70s concert.

Brown, in front of a mirror combing his spiked hair, urged the impressionable teenager to aim high. Brown advised Sharpton not to "go for little t >>>


      STD MAY BE TO BLAME FOR LIONS‘ BLINDNESS
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     SIOUX FALLS, S.D. –– Researchers are trying to determine whether a sexually transmitted disease might have caused the blindness found in at least two mountain lions in the Black Hills.

Steve Griffin, a wildlife biologist with the state Game, Fish and Parks Department, said tests on two lions are con >>>


      TEXAS TODDLER STABBED IN TROUBLED HOME
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     DALLAS –– Caseworkers had investigated a family home eight times before a toddler was stabbed to death, allegedly by a '–year–old boy, but conditions were never bad enough to warrant state intervention, officials say.

"It never rose to the level of imminent danger," said Ma >>>


      THE NATION‘S WEATHER
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     7:18 AM –– Two storm systems were expected to pound the East on Monday, bringing moderate to heavy rain through the Mid–Atlantic and Northeast.

Snow was likely from the Tennessee Valley through the Ohio Valley, while lake–effect snow showers were possible near the eastern Great Lakes.
>>>


      TORTOISES WAIT OUT WINTER AT N.M. RANCH
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     TRUTH OR CONSEQUENCES, N.M. –– Mexican gray wolves, black–footed ferrets, and aplomado falcons are among the endangered species who have found homes and a chance for survival on Ted Turner‘s ranches in New Mexico. Now, Turner‘s Armendaris Ranch is doing the same for a group of bolson tortoi >>>


      TRANSFORMER EXPLOSION RATTLES COLORADO
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     DENVER –– An explosion at an electrical transformer rattled the foothills west of Denver early Tuesday near an old uranium mine, authorities said.

Jefferson County sheriff‘s deputies confirmed the explosion was in a transformer on a private road near the inactive mine, spokesman Jim Shires sai >>>


      U.S. HIGHLIGHTS IRAN–MEDDLING CHARGE IN IRAQ
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Bush administration said on Monday the arrest in Iraq of alleged Iranian provocateurs, including two diplomats, underscored U.S. concerns about "meddling" amid rising U.S.–Iranian strains.

U.S.–led forces detained the Iranians during operations "agains >>>


      VIOLENT STORMS HIT FLORIDA ON CHRISTMAS
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     AM TALLAHASSEE, Fla. –– Powerful storms damaged at least three dozen homes and injured some of their residents as heavy rain, strong wind and possible tornadoes swept across the Southeast on Monday.

In Columbia County, about 60 miles west of Jacksonville, at least two homes were destroyed and 10 oth >>>


      WHERE REAL MONEY MEETS VIRTUAL REALITY, THE JURY IS STILL OUT
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     A01 Veronica Brown is a hot fashion designer, making a living off the virtual lingerie and formalwear she sells inside the online fantasy world Second Life. She expects to have earned about $60,000 this year from people who buy her digital garments to outfit their animated self–images in this fast–growing vi >>>


      A BIPARTISAN FIX FOR RETIREES
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     In the aftermath of their November election victory, Democratic leaders have pledged to work on a bipartisan basis to solve the problems facing our nation. In that spirit, I suggest that Democrats and Republicans can successfully work together to create personal savings accounts for all Americans outside the Social Secu >>>


      A DELUSIONAL SYSTEM OF JUSTICE
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     Since this is my last column of 2006, tradition and custom obligate me to choose a person of the year. This practice was started by the late Henry Luce, who realized that choosing a man of the year would call as much attention to his Time magazine as it would to the person himself. I have somewhat the same object in min >>>


      BAN ON PET PROJECTS WON‘T STOP TRADING
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     WASHINGTON –– Democrats may have declared a one–year moratorium on pet projects treasured by members of Congress, but the move will hardly stop horse trading in Washington or moves by lawmakers to try to steer taxpayer money back home.

Nor will it touch billions of dollars in already budgeted >>>


      BIDEN VOWS TO FIGHT ANY IRAQ TROOP BOOST
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     WASHINGTON –– Sen. Joseph Biden, the incoming chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said he will fight President Bush if the administration decides to send more U.S. troops to Iraq.

Biden, who has his eye on the Democratic presidential nomination, also warned that if congressional Repu >>>


      BUSH, ADVISERS TO DISCUSS IRAQ STRATEGY
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     WASHINGTON –– President Bush is leaving for a weeklong trip to his Texas ranch, where he and his advisers will rethink U.S. involvement in Iraq.

The president also will work on an upcoming speech outlining what he says will be a new way forward in the war.

The White House said the president >>>


      DEMOCRATS PLEDGE TO RESTRAIN SPENDING
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     By Lori MontgomeryWashington Post Staff WriterTuesday, December 26, 2006; A01 Determined to banish their old tax–and–spend image, Democrats want to shrink the federal deficit, preserve tax cuts for the middle class and challenge the president to raise money for the Iraq war when they take control of Congress >>>


      FORGET POLLS, LONG SHOTS SAY IT‘S ABOUT THE MESSAGE
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     2006; A02 For two people from opposing sides of the ideological spectrum, Reps. Dennis J. Kucinich (D–Ohio) and Duncan Hunter (R–Calif.) have quite a bit in common.

Both have announced they are running for president. Both believe that their views on the Iraq war will be crucial to their campaigns. A >>>


      JUSTICE DEPT. DATABASE STIRS PRIVACY FEARS
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     By Dan EggenWashington Post Staff WriterTuesday, December 26, 2006; A07 The Justice Department is building a massive database that allows state and local police officers around the country to search millions of case files from the FBI, Drug Enforcement Administration and other federal law enforcement agencies, according >>>


      NEW ORLEANS‘ TOP ARMY CORPS EXECS RETIRE
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     NEW ORLEANS –– Three top–ranking Army Corps of Engineers officials who led the agency‘s reconstruction work after Hurricane Katrina are stepping down, prompting critics to again question whether the Corps is able to protect the city from future disasters.

The latest retirements include t >>>


      RECOVERING FROM TRAGEDY
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     Today marks two years since the 2004 tsunami unleashed untold suffering and devastation upon Indian Ocean coastal communities. The tragic toll still resonates: more than 200,000 dead; 2 million people displaced; 370,000 homes destroyed or damaged; some 5,000 miles of coastline devastated; and 2,000 miles of roads ruined >>>


      REPORT: IRAN‘S OIL EXPORTS MAY DISAPPEAR
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     WASHINGTON –– Iran is suffering a staggering decline in revenue from its oil exports, and if the trend continues income could virtually disappear by 2015, according to an analysis published Monday in a journal of the National Academy of Sciences.

Iran‘s economic woes could make the country uns >>>


      REUTERS POLITICS SUMMARY
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     Schwarzenegger in hospital for leg surgery LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger will undergo surgery on Tuesday to repair the leg he broke during a skiing accident, his office said. The 5'–year–old former movie star, who broke his right femur while on holiday with his famil >>>


      SENATE COMMITTEE STAFF DIRECTORS SET SESSION AGENDA
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     There is a whole new lineup of committee staff directors as the Democrats prepare to take control of the Senate next week. They all bring long years of service and expertise to highly demanding jobs, and they will be working for Democratic chairmen who have vowed to provide close scrutiny of the Bush administration and >>>


      THE FREEDOMS MY BROTHER IS DEFENDING
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     Here is what my brother, a member of the Army National Guard, told me as he prepared to serve in Iraq this year: The difference between a democracy and a dictatorship is who controls the armed forces. Civilian command of the Army is a cornerstone of our democratic system.

My brother told me that he takes his oa >>>


      ‘BAREFOOT TEACHERS‘ LEFT BEHIND IN CHINA
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     By Maureen FanWashington Post Foreign ServiceTuesday, December 26, 2006; A16 JINZHOU, China –– For more than 30 years, Sun Jingxia taught math and Chinese to elementary school children in this small northeastern village. She was a poor farmer who had not even completed high school.

But equipped with >>>


      24 DIE IN PHILIPPINES STORE FIRE
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     MANILA, Philippines –– A fire blamed on illegally sold firecrackers swept through a department store in the central Philippines on Christmas Day, killing 24 people who took refuge in a restroom, police said Tuesday.

The blaze spread quickly from firecrackers and pyrotechnics that ignited near the en >>>


      AFTER LONG STRUGGLE, WHOOPING CRANE POPULATION HITS MILESTONE
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     A03 AUSTWELL, Tex. –– One of the most beloved groups of winter Texans is back, in the largest number in a century and with a record 45 youngsters in tow, including an even rarer seven pairs of twins.

They flew 2,400 miles from Canada‘s Northwest Territories and can be seen munching on blue cra >>>


      ASIAN NATIONS MARK TSUNAMI ANNIVERSARY
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     BALI, Indonesia –– Thousands of people fled beaches on Indonesia‘s resort island of Bali in a tsunami drill Tuesday, kicking off remembrances across Asia two years after devastating waves crashed into coastlines and killed 230,000 people.

Elsewhere across the disaster zone, survivors and mourn >>>


      BLAST AT PAKISTANI AIRPORT KILLS ONE, WOUNDS TWO
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     PESHAWAR, Pakistan (Reuters) – A car bomb exploded outside the airport in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar on Tuesday, killing one person and wounding two, police said.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility. Peshawar is near the border with Afghanistan and has seen several, mostly smal >>>


      BLASTS KILL AT LEAST 20 IN BAGHDAD
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     BAGHDAD (Reuters) – Three simultaneous car bombs exploded in a busy intersection in a predominantly Shi‘ite district in southwestern Baghdad on Tuesday, killing at least 14 people and wounding scores, Interior and police sources said.

In a separate attack, a roadside bomb in Baghdad‘s central >>>


      CASTRO DOESN‘T HAVE CANCER, DOC SAYS
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     MADRID, Spain –– The Spanish surgeon treating Fidel Castro on Tuesday said the ailing Cuban leader does not have cancer and is recovering "slowly but progressively" from a serious operation.

Dr. Jose Luis Garcia Sabrido flew to Havana last Thursday to see the Cuban leader and determine how >>>


      CHINA, JAPAN SCHOLARS DISCUSS HISTORY
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     BEIJING –– Chinese and Japanese history scholars met Tuesday for the first in a series of government–mandated study groups aimed at smoothing over differences between the Asian powers on historical issues.

Japan invaded and colonized much of Asia in the past century, and many Chinese harbor bi >>>


      COURT UPHOLDS SADDAM‘S DEATH SENTENCE
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     AM BAGHDAD, Iraq –– An Iraqi appeals court has upheld the death sentence imposed on Saddam Hussein at his first trial, Iraq‘s national security adviser said Tuesday.

"The appeals court approved the verdict to hang Saddam," Mouwafak al–Rubaie told The Associated Press.

>>>


      ETHIOPIA ATTACKS RETREATING SOMALI ISLAMISTS
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     MOGADISHU (Reuters) – Sensing victory against its Somali Islamist foes, Ethiopia attacked retreating fighters from the air on Tuesday and threatened to seize their stronghold Mogadishu after a week of war in the Horn of Africa.

"Ethiopian forces are on their way to Mogadishu. They are about 70 km (40 >>>


      ETHIOPIA STEPS UP ATTACKS ON SOMALIA
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     By Stephanie McCrummenWashington Post Foreign ServiceTuesday, December 26, 2006; A01 LONDON, Dec. 25 –– Ethiopian warplanes attacked the airport in Somalia‘s capital, Mogadishu, on Monday in another major escalation of fighting between the Ethiopian–backed Somali government and the Islamic Courts >>>


      IN CHILE, PRECIOUS LANDS OFTEN GO FOR A PITTANCE
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     A21 SANTIAGO, Chile –– The mountainous terrain of northern Chile is studded with precious metals, a natural cache that for years has had investors angling for land rights.

So when the world‘s largest gold mining company targeted about 20,000 acres owned by Rodolfo Villar, a mineral speculator, >>>


      INDONESIA FLOODS RECEDE, AT LEAST 100 DEAD
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     JAKARTA (Reuters) – Deadly floodwaters in north–western Indonesia have begun to recede but authorities said on Tuesday at least 100 people had been killed and they were searching remote areas for up to 200 people still missing.

Floods and subsequent landslides have killed at least 100 people in Aceh >>>


      IRAQ COURT SAYS SADDAM SHOULD HANG WITHIN 30 DAYS
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     1:11 PM BAGHDAD (Reuters) – An Iraqi appeals court on Tuesday upheld Saddam Hussein‘s death sentence for crimes against humanity and said he should hang within 30 days.

Human rights activists condemned his trial as seriously flawed and called on the government not to carry out the sentence, which co >>>


      IRAQ FUGITIVE MINISTER ARRIVES IN JORDAN
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     AMMAN, Jordan –– A former Iraqi Cabinet minister who escaped from a Baghdad prison this month has arrived in Jordan on a U.S. plane, Jordan‘s prime minister said Tuesday. Ayham al–Samaraie, a former minister of electricity with dual U.S. and Iraqi citizenship, was serving time for corruption when >>>


      ISLAMIC FIGHTERS RETREAT IN SOMALIA
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     MOGADISHU, Somalia –– Islamic fighters retreated Tuesday as Somali government and Ethiopian troops advanced on three fronts in a decisive turn in the battle for control of this Horn of Africa nation.

Somalia‘s internationally backed government called on the Council of Islamic Courts to surrend >>>


      ISRAEL AGREES TO REMOVE SOME WEST BANK ROADBLOCKS
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     JERUSALEM (Reuters) – Prime Minister Ehud Olmert‘s cabinet on Monday approved the removal of 27 Israeli roadblocks in the occupied West Bank, a move officials said was meant to bolster Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.

Israel has been under U.S. and European pressure to take steps that could help >>>


      ISRAEL PLANS W.BANK HOMES FOR GAZA SETTLERS
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     JERUSALEM (Reuters) – Israel will turn a former army base in the occupied West Bank into a settlement for 30 Jewish settler families evacuated from Gaza last year, a government official said on Tuesday.

A settler official said fewer than 20 families had been waiting to move into Maskiot, in the Jordan Val >>>


      ISRAEL TO LIFT SOME WEST BANK BARRICADES
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     By Mark LavieAssociated PressTuesday, December 26, 2006; A20 JERUSALEM, Dec. 25 –– Israel agreed Monday to remove some of the military roadblocks that have hindered Palestinian travel in the West Bank, one of several gestures aimed at boosting President Mahmoud Abbas in his bitter struggle with Hamas.
>>>


      ISRAELI SPIES DIVIDED OVER SYRIA‘S PEACE OVERTURES
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     JERUSALEM (Reuters) – Israelis are puzzling over the prospect of peace with Syria after their two foreign intelligence agencies gave dramatically different assessments of recent diplomatic overtures from Damascus.

While the Mossad spy service said Syrian President Bashar Assad had no genuine interest in p >>>


      MISSING BUDDHA BOY REAPPEARS IN NEPAL
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     AM KATMANDU, Nepal –– A missing teenage boy who many believe is the reincarnation of Buddha has reappeared in the jungles of southern Nepal months after he went missing, an official said Tuesday.

Ram Bahadur Banjan, 15, was last seen on March 11 in a forest where he had meditated for 10 months, alle >>>


      OLD IRAQ STRATEGY LIVES ON IN WEEKLY PROGRESS REPORTS
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     By Glenn KesslerWashington Post Staff WriterTuesday, December 26, 2006; A1' A year ago, President Bush announced a new plan for Iraq, framed around "eight pillars" of U.S. policy for victory. In the past month, the president and his national security team have been busily working on a new recipe for succes >>>


      PAKISTAN PLANS TO SECURE AFGHAN BORDER
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     1ISLAMABAD, Pakistan –– Pakistan will fence and land mine parts of its border with Afghanistan to prevent cross–border militancy, the Foreign Ministry said Tuesday.

The announcement comes amid growing international criticism of Pakistan over alleged infiltration of Taliban and al–Qaida m >>>


      PAKISTAN TO FENCE, LAY MINES ON AFGHAN BORDER
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     ISLAMABAD (Reuters) – Pakistan plans to build a fence and lay landmines along parts of its border with Afghanistan in an effort to stop militants crossing into Afghanistan to battle NATO forces, a Pakistani official said on Tuesday.

Relations between Pakistan and Afghanistan have deteriorated sharply this >>>


      POPE TALKS OF CONTINUING NEED FOR FAITH IN 21ST–CENTURY WORLD
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     VATICAN CITY, Dec. 25 –– Mankind, which has reached other planets and decoded the genetic instructions for life, should not presume it can live without God, Pope Benedict XVI said in his Christmas message on Monday.

In an age of unbridled consumerism, it is shameful that many remain deaf to the &quo >>>


      QUAKE JOLTS CENTRAL JAPAN
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     TOKYO –– An earthquake with a preliminary magnitude of 4.' jolted central Japan early Tuesday, but there were no immediate reports of injuries or damage, the Meteorological Agency said.

The quake struck at 5:17 a.m. and shook Niigata prefecture (state) and other areas in central Japan. It was ce >>>


      SASHAYING THROUGH A DOOR SWUNG OPEN IN CUBA, JOSE SHINES AS NAYLA
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     26, 2006; A22 HAVANA –– There was a commotion behind the smoked–glass door. Giggles.

Squeals. Salsa music pulsing. No one could hear the squat man outside. He stood there pouting, holding a makeup bag in his left hand, slapping delicately at the door with his open right hand.

"La >>>


      SOUTH KOREA OFFERS PRIZES FOR PROSTITUTE–FREE NEW YEAR
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     SEOUL (Reuters) – The South Korean government is handing out gifts for office workers who promise not to visit brothels this holiday season.

"If you promise yourself to make it a healthy night out at the end of the year, and if you recommend this to others, we are giving lots of prizes," the Min >>>


      TOLL IN NIGERIAN PIPELINE BLAST AT 260
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     PM LAGOS, Nigeria –– A ruptured gasoline pipeline burst into flames Tuesday as scavengers in the impoverished neighborhood collected spilling fuel.

At least 260 people died in the explosion in Nigeria‘s largest city, the Red Cross said.

Scores of bodies could be seen jumbled and fused >>>


      TROOP PUSH IS PERSONAL FOR MCCAIN
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     By Elizabeth WilliamsonWashington Post Staff WriterTuesday, December 26,
2006; A01 As the Iraq Study Group issued its long–awaited report on the war, declaring that the United States should not dispatch more troops, Sen. John McCain reacted with his long–held and contrary view: It will take more boots on >>>


      U.N. CHIEF–TO–BE HOLDS HOPE FOR KOREAN NUCLEAR TALKS
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     SEOUL (Reuters) – Incoming U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki–moon on Tuesday urged patience over talks to end North Korea‘s nuclear weapons program.

The latest round of six–country negotiations ended last week in Beijing but failed to make progress, with Pyongyang and Washington blaming each >>>


      U.S. DEATHS IN IRAQ EXCEED '–11 COUNT
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     BAGHDAD, Iraq –– The U.S. military death toll in Iraq has reached 2,'74, one more than the number of deaths in the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks in the United States, according to an Associated Press count on Tuesday.

The U.S. military announced the deaths of two soldiers in a bomb explosion southwest >>>


      U.S. WANTS MORE ANTI–MISSILE RADAR IN JAPAN: PAPER
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     TOKYO (Reuters) – U.S. officials have proposed putting more anti–missile radar in Japan to help intercept weapons from North Korea headed for U.S. soil, a newspaper reported on Tuesday. Quoting an unnamed U.S. military source, the Asahi Shimbun said the radar would also be intended to better monitor and trac >>>


      UP TO 500 KILLED IN LAGOS FUEL BLAST
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     LAGOS (Reuters) – Up to 500 people were burned alive on Tuesday when fuel from a vandalised pipeline exploded in Nigeria‘s largest city, Lagos, emergency workers said.

Hundreds of residents of the Abule Agba district went to scoop fuel using plastic containers after thieves punctured the pipeline ov >>>


      VIOLENCE MARS SRI LANKA TSUNAMI RECOVERY 2 YEARS ON
      Washington Post, 26-12-2006
     COLOMBO (Reuters) – Church and temple bells will toll across Sri Lanka on Tuesday for the victims of the 2004 tsunami but commemoration ceremonies in rebel–held areas, which were the worst hit, will be deliberately low–key.

While the Sinhalese dominated south has picked up the pieces and moved >>>



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