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Posted by ahaanews on March 7, 2007

Modern Britain is being defiled by a growing brutality

He left Baghdad before the next government discovered that a fortune had been looted from his ministry’s account in what one senior investigator has called “one of the largest thefts in history”. The missing money was part of $8.8 billion of shrink-wrapped American cash that was flown into Iraq after Saddam fell but which is now unaccounted for. The immediate impact was that the Iraqi army was woefully unprepared to tackle an increasingly savage and well armed insurgency, just at the time when the Americans were pressing for the national force to start replacing their own troops.

Internal documents show that the Pentagon “lacks a comprehensive plan to identify and treat tens of thousands of troops who may suffer from traumatic brain injury, the signature wound of the Iraq war.” ABC anchor Bob Woodruff reported recently that the Pentagon is “withholding information about how widespread these debilitating wounds have become.”

You can now offset your own bodily “emissions.” An Australian company is “selling carbon credits for flatulent pets and people.” For just $16, you can make your body carbon neutral for two years, and the company will install “energy-saving fluorescent light bulbs and water-saving shower heads in houses in New South Wales, Australia.”

Internal memorandums circulated by the Bush administration’s Federal Fish and Wildlife Service “appear to require government biologists or other employees traveling in countries around the Arctic not to discuss climate change, polar bears or sea ice if they are not designated to do so.” 182766680hgvsoj_ph.jpg

California’s first planned black community continues to exert a powerful pull, especially among former residents like Mr. Pope, who helped champion the park’s creation in the 1970s. A Piece of History Lands in a Contemporary Fight

Senate leaders said yesterday they will use the upcoming defense spending bill to improve health care for military veterans, including new funding to improve facilities, improve diagnosis and treatment of brain injuries and mental health problems, and ease the transition between the military and veterans’ health care systems.

Meanwhile, the White House is adopting a sharply “defensive stance on the Iraq-war-funding bill,” resisting “giving Democratic staff even technical advice on funding that the new majority wants to add for veterans’ health programs.” President Bush held “a Republicans-only strategy dinner in the White House family quarters last week” on the bill.

“Reporters will be barred” from Guantanamo Bay hearings meant to determine if 14 terrors suspects transferred from secret CIA prisons are “enemy combatants.” “No word of the hearings will be made public until the government releases a transcript of the proceedings, edited to remove material deemed damaging to national security.”

US nuclear weapons are among the most sophisticated scientific devices on the planet. Through the years of the cold war, US designers labored to make warheads that were frighteningly powerful, yet so small that as many as 10 could fit on top of a single missile. Now the nation’s nuclear bureaucracy believes the time has come to start replacing these complex weapons with simpler ones.

The State Department released its annual human rights report Tuesday, which cited Sudan, China, Russian, and Venezuela for abuses. Assistant Secretary of State Barry Lowekron admitted the report comes “at a time when our own record, and actions we have taken to respond to terrorist attacks against us, have been questioned.”

As the U.N. drug agency predicted a “cancer of insurgency” in Afghanistan could “drive the 2007 opium poppy harvest to record levels,” NATO troops “troops launched their largest offensive yet against Taliban militants, focusing on the same southern region where U.S.-led forces carried out an even bigger operation less than a year ago.”

The White House plans to ask Congress for $2 billion more for President Bush’s escalation plan, an “embarrassing” move for the White House and the Pentagon, “which earlier dismissed criticism from lawmakers that the original $5.6 billion estimate for the troop buildup was too low.”

69 percent: Americans who feel “less confident” about a “successful conclusion in Iraq.” Only 20 percent express more confidence. A similar number believe the war in Afghanistan is faring poorly. Sixty-nine percent say the war there isn’t going well, versus 28 percent who think it is.

51 percent: Number of people in the world who believe the United States has a “mainly negative” influence in the world. The United States ranks third, behind Israel and Iran, and is followed by North Korea.

30 percent: President Bush’s job approval in a new Zogby poll, “once again hitting the all-time low-water mark of his presidency.”

188: Death toll in Iraq from “from three consecutive days of attacks on Shiite Muslim pilgrims” who are “streaming to the holy city of Karbala for weekend rites commemorating the death of…one of Shiite Islam’s holiest figures.”

Didn’t do it. Wouldn’t be prudent. Former President George H. W. Bush insists he didn’t pat the behind of “Desperate Housewives” star Teri Hatcher after a lunch last month, despite apparent video evidence. The 82-year-old told Extra, “I have been teased about it relentlessly. (A website) accused me of patting her backside, which I did not do. The camera lies, it’s a fraud.

Al Gore’s wax head goes the way of Jimmy Hoffa. The Washington Post’s Reliable Source reports, “In 2000, designers in the London headquarters of Madame Tussauds started crafting figures of the former veep and his then-opponent George W. Bush, with plans to put the eventual winner on display. ‘We started both heads,’ said N.Y.C. and D.C. branch General Manager Janine DiGioacchino . But production stopped when lawyers started debating hanging chads. Eventually Bush was finished, while Gore was put in cold storage…well, uh, somewhere. ‘We stored Gore’s head in our London studio,’ she said, ‘and now we’re trying to find him.’”

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