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  • pg 1
									                                CURRENT NEWS

                                 EARLY BIRD
                                       December 20, 2007
               Use of these news articles does not reflect official endorsement.
        Reproduction for private use or gain is subject to original copyright restrictions.
                      Story numbers indicate order of appearance only.

 1.   Key Setbacks Dim Luster Of Democrats' Year
      (Washington Post)....Jonathan Weisman and Paul Kane
      ...Unable to garner enough votes from their own party, House Democratic leaders had to turn to Republicans to win
      passage of a $555 billion domestic spending bill after the Senate appended $70 billion to it for the wars in Iraq and
      Afghanistan. The war funding passed 272 to 142, with Democrats voting 141 to 78 against it.

 2.   House OKs Spending Bill
      (Washington Times)....S.A. Miller
      ...The bill, which funds every Cabinet agency except the Pentagon and provides $70 billion for the wars in Iraq and
      Afghanistan, passed 272-142 and finished Congress' work for the year.

 3.   Congress OKs $70B Budget For War Funds
      (USA Today)....Unattributed
      Congress approved $70 billion Wednesday for military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan after majority Democrats
      failed to advance withdrawals of U.S. troops from the countries.

 4.   Pelosi Says Democrats Will Focus On Iraq Policy, Not On War Funding
      (Washington Examiner)....Susan Ferrechio
      ...Pelosi told a group of reporters that she still aims to end the war, but rather than trying to force Bush to redeploy
      troops by threatening to cut off funds, Democrats will instead focus on passing Iraq war bills that deal with policy.

 5.   Congress Sets Limits On Aid To Pakistan
      (Washington Post)....Glenn Kessler
      Congress yesterday slapped restrictions on military aid to Pakistan and withheld $50 million of the administration's
      $300 million request until Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice can certify that Islamabad is restoring democratic
      rights, including an independent judiciary.

 6.   Senate OK's More Small-Business Aid To Newest Veterans
      (Boston Globe)....Bryan Bender
      The Senate approved legislation yesterday to expand small-business loans and other government benefits for military
      reservists and veterans serving in Iraq and Afghanistan - a victory for two New England lawmakers who pushed for
      the expansion.

 7.   General: Enemy Still Capable Of 'Spectacular Attacks'
      (USA Today)....Patrick Quinn, Associated Press
      The top U.S. commander in northern Iraq warned Wednesday that al-Qaeda in Iraq was still capable of staging
      spectacular attacks despite a 50% drop in bombings and other violence in his region.
                                                                                                                       page 2
 8.    U.S. Releases Iranian Detained In Kurdish City In 2004
       (Los Angeles Times)....Alexandra Zavis
       The American military has released an Iranian detainee, officials from the U.S. and Iran said Wednesday, as the two
       countries prepared for a new round of talks on security in Iraq.

 9.    U.S. Investigating Marine In Iraqi Policeman’s Death
       (New York Times)....Stephen Farrell
       A United States marine is at the center of an American military investigation into the death on Monday of an Iraqi
       policeman from what appears to have been a knife fight between the men at a base jointly staffed by American and
       Iraqi forces in Anbar Province, a military spokesman said.

 10.     Kurds Push For Oil And Power Sharing
       (Washington Times)....Damien McElroy, London Daily Telegraph
       Kurdish leaders in northern Iraq threatened to withdraw support from the Baghdad government if demands for
       federal power sharing and a fair share of the oil wealth are not met.

 11.    Do U.S. Prisons In Iraq Breed Insurgents?
       (Christian Science Monitor)....Gordon Lubold
       Nearly 30,000 detainees crowd two American-run detention facilities, and one US officer wants to set many free.

 12.     Iraqi Refugees Return, And Are Stranded
       (New York Times)....Cara Buckley
       ...The American military has expressed deep concerns about the Iraqi government’s ability to feed and house its
       returnees, or manage people who wish to reclaim their homes. It is widely feared that property disputes or efforts to
       return to newly homogenized neighborhoods could set off fresh waves of sectarian attacks.

 13.    Iraq's Sunnis Celebrate Holiday With A Renewed Vigor
       (Los Angeles Times)....Alexandra Zavis and Said Rifai
       They venture out to mark Eid al-Adha in Baghdad and other cities that are experiencing a relative calm.

 14.    Military Sets Sights On At Least 15,000 MRAPs
       (USA Today)....Tom Vanden Brook
       The Pentagon remains committed to buying at least 15,000 new armored vehicles to withstand roadside bombs and
       may seek more based on requests from commanders in Afghanistan, Pentagon press secretary Geoff Morrell said

 15.    In Wartime Calls Home, The Art Of Being Positive
       (USA Today)....Rick Hampson
       With communicating easier than ever, troops, families walk fine line.

 16.    GI Accuses Military Of Religious Violations
       (Denver Rocky Mountain News)....John Milburn, Associated Press
       A foundation that has sued the military alleging widespread violations of religious freedom said Tuesday that it has
       evidence showing that soldiers are pressured to adopt fundamentalist Christian beliefs.

 17.    President Approves Realignment Of The Army
       (New York Times)....Thom Shanker
       President Bush has approved what officials are describing as the most significant realignment of the Army since
       World War II, signing off on a plan that will keep more troops than previously envisioned in Europe and add large
       numbers of soldiers to bases in Colorado, Georgia and Texas, Army officials said Wednesday.

 18.     Army To Create Six Brigades For Bases In U.S.
       (Philadelphia Inquirer)....Lolita C. Baldor, Associated Press
       ...Cody said the decision to keep two brigades in Germany for several more years was based on requests from
       commanders in Europe to maintain troop levels there, and the need to ensure that troops returning to the United
                                                                                                                           page 3
       States had proper housing and other facilities at their new base.

 19.    Nationline
       (USA Today)....Unattributed
       President Bush visits wounded troops at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington.

 20.    General Orders Review Of Cheating
       (Boston Globe)....Bryan Bender
       The four-star general in charge of Army training has ordered a review to determine how many soldiers may have
       cheated on online tests to obtain promotion points - and to identify the steps the military must take to secure the
       compromised courses, the Army said in a statement yesterday.

 21.    GI's Hopes Appear Dashed
       (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)....Moni Basu
       The good news that a Winder soldier received last month soured this week as the Army decided to press ahead with
       murder charges.

 22.    Inquiry Cites Friendly Fire In Deaths Of Two Soldiers
       (Washington Post)....Associated Press
       Two U.S. soldiers who died in Iraq in February were killed by "friendly fire," according to a military investigation,
       which cited poor training and planning.

 23.    Parents Want Army Officials Held Accountable In Son's Suicide
       (Tampa Tribune)....Kimberly Hefling, Associated Press
       Pfc. Jason Scheuerman nailed a suicide note to his barracks closet in Iraq, stepped inside and shot himself.

 24.    You Know The Drill
       (San Diego Union-Tribune)....Steve Liewer and Rick Rogers
       Abuse of Marine recruits officially banned, but ...

 25.    Indiana Brothers Say It's Their Turn To Serve Country
       (USA Today)....Robert King, The Indianapolis Star
       Stoppenhagen trio to leave behind Mom, Dad for tours of duty in Iraq.

 26.    Dead Soldier Is Identified As N.C. Woman
       (Washington Post)....Tom Jackman
       A soldier who was found dead at Fort Belvoir on Monday was identified yesterday as Carolyn Farrar-Johnson, 58,
       and authorities said she was from North Carolina.

 27.     For Turkey And U.S., A Delicate Issue Of Cooperation In Combating Militant Kurds
       (New York Times)....Helene Cooper
       Turkey provided the United States with ample warning that it was making an incursion into Iraq this week, officials
       from the State and Defense Departments said Wednesday.

 28.     U.S. And Turkey Work To Cut Fallout From Strike
       (Philadelphia Inquirer)....Pauline Jelinek, Associated Press
       U.S. and Turkish military officials worked yesterday to streamline procedures for any future Turkish attacks against
       Kurdish rebels in northern Iraq after top American officials in Baghdad expressed anger at how Sunday's Turkish air
       strikes unfolded.

 29.     Iran Hails Fuel From Russia As Building Ties
       (Baltimore Sun)....Associated Press
       Iran called this week's delivery by Russia of fuel for its first nuclear reactor a step in strengthening ties between the
                                                                                                                         page 4
       two countries and a sign of Moscow's confidence that Iran's nuclear program is peaceful.

 30.    Syria Was Offered Nuclear Technology
       (Boston Globe)....Associated Press
       Syria received a letter purportedly written by the head of the same nuclear black market that supplied Iran and Libya
       with technology but did not respond, the country's president said in comments published yesterday.

 31.     Afghan Death Penalty Raises Concerns
       (Los Angeles Times)....Henry Chu
       Some donor nations are troubled by the revival of executions, especially in a land whose justice system is seen as

 32.     Leak Irks Pentagon
       (Japan Times)....Kyodo
       A senior U.S. Defense Department official expressed dissatisfaction Tuesday over the Self-Defense Forces' improper
       handling of classified information.

 33.    GIs Pitch In To Help Clean Up Oil
       (Pacific Stars and Stripes)....Jimmy Norris
       A group of 8th U.S. Army soldiers traded their uniforms for oil-resistant coveralls and rubber boots Wednesday to
       help clean up the worst oil spill in South Korean history.

 34.    'Bulldozer' Elected In South Korea
       (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)....Unattributed
       A former Hyundai CEO known as "The Bulldozer" for his determination to get things done rolled over all opposition
       and financial fraud allegations to win South Korea's presidency, ending a decade of liberal rule.

 35.    Britain Detains 3 Men Freed By U.S.
       (New York Times)....New York Times
       Three former British residents who were held for more than four years in the Guantánamo Bay detention center
       arrived Wednesday at Luton, outside London, aboard a jet chartered by the government and were turned over to the

 36.     Five Convicted In France Of Terrorism Links
       (USA Today)....Unattributed
       A court in Paris convicted five French nationals of criminal association with a terrorist enterprise for using phony
       identity papers and visas to "integrate into terrorist structures" in Afghanistan, prosecutor Sonya Djemni-Wagner

 37.    Putin Criticizes U.S. Dominance
       (Los Angeles Times)....Unattributed
       Russian President Vladimir V. Putin accused the United States of trying to undermine his country to further its
       global dominance and said Washington had ignored Moscow's attempts to build a friendship.

 38.    100 Foreign Spies Exposed This Year
       (Washington Times)....Unattributed
       Russia's spy chief said yesterday that his service has thwarted the work of nearly 100 foreign agents in the past year
       and that former Soviet Baltic nations have increased their espionage activity, Russian news agencies reported

                                                                                                                        page 5
 39.     C.I.A. To Cooperate With House On Tapes
       (New York Times)....Scott Shane
       The Central Intelligence Agency has agreed to make documents related to the destruction of interrogation videotapes
       available to the House Intelligence Committee and to allow the agency’s top lawyer, John A. Rizzo, to testify about
       the matter, Congressional and intelligence officials said Wednesday.

 40.     Got A Query For Al-Qaida? Send It In
       (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)....Unattributed
       Al-Qaida has invited journalists to send questions to its No. 2 figure, Ayman al-Zawahri, in the first such offer by the
       increasingly media-savvy terror network to "interview" one of its leaders since the Sept. 11 attacks.

 41.     Vets' Mental Disability Pay Varies Greatly
       (Miami Herald)....Chris Adams
       Veterans coming home from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan with debilitating mental ailments are discovering that
       their disability payments from the government vary widely depending on where they live, an exclusive McClatchy
       news analysis has found.

 42.    Woman Tells Panel Her Rape In Iraq Not Isolated
       (San Diego Union-Tribune)....Associated Press
       Others working for KBR come forward.

 43.    KBR Hearing Centers On Handling Of Rape Kit
       (Houston Chronicle)....David Ivanovich
       A former KBR worker who says she was gang raped while working in Iraq told a House panel Wednesday that an
       Army doctor who examined her after the alleged assault turned the physical evidence over to KBR security
       personnel. And at some point, some of the medical evidence apparently went missing.

 44.     Let's Seize The Momentum In Iraq
       (Wall Street Journal)....Barry R. McCaffrey
       I recently spent a week touring Iraq, meeting with American servicemen and women and interacting with Iraqis.
       What I saw convinced me that the war has changed in both tone and substance since the president surged 30,000
       troops into the country earlier this year.

 45.     Turkish Leaders And Iraqi Kurds Need To Mend Fences For Stability
       (Philadelphia Inquirer)....Trudy Rubin
       ...So what's going on in Kurdistan, the most peaceful, booming region in Iraq? Is there a danger of a war in the north
       between two U.S. allies? Is America betraying the Kurds? The answer to both questions is no (for now).

 46.    The Walls Around Bush's Iraq Strategy
       (Los Angeles Times)....Rosa Brooks
       Barriers built to reduce violence have turned sectarian segregation into the status quo.

 47.    A Nuclear Site Is Breached
       (Washington Post)....Micah Zenko
       South African attack should sound alarms.

 48.    Vetting The Iran NIE
       (Washington Times)....James Lyons
       The recently released National Intelligence Estimate (NIE) on Iran’s nuclear weapon program not only left many
       questions unanswered but left our friends and allies caught offbase and confused. I am sure they wonder how they
       are to support efforts for more stringent sanctions against Iran’s enrichment program.
                                                                                                                                           page 6
Washington Post                      domestic spending bill after the     Bush.                                spent under Republican rule.
December 20, 2007                    Senate appended $70 billion to            Congress also boosted                But the disappointments
Pg. 1                                it for the wars in Iraq and          spending on veterans' needs.         have dominated the news, in
1. Key Setbacks Dim                  Afghanistan. The war funding         Just yesterday, Democrats            large part because Democrats
Luster Of Democrats'                 passed 272 to 142, with              unveiled a proposal to create        failed on some of the issues
                                     Democrats voting 141 to 78           the first nonpartisan ethics         that they had put front and
Year                                 against it.                          review panel in House history        center, and that their key
By Jonathan Weisman and
                                          The Democratic leaders          and passed the most significant      constituents value most.
Paul Kane, Washington Post
                                     again had to appeal to               gun-control legislation since             The military prison at
Staff Writers
                                     Republicans to win passage of        the early 1990s, tightening the      Guantanamo         Bay,     Cuba,
     The first Democratic-led
                                     a measure to stave off the           instant       background-check       remains        open.       Bush's
Congress in a dozen years
                                     growth of the alternative            process.                             warrantless           surveillance
limped out of Washington last
                                     minimum tax, because fiscally             Beyond those, Democrats         program was actually codified
night with a lengthy list of
                                     conservative       "Blue     Dog"    secured the biggest overhaul of      and      expanded       on      the
accomplishments, from the
                                     Democrats were in open revolt        ethics and lobbying rules since      Democrats' watch. Lawmakers
first increase in fuel-efficiency
                                     and refused to go along. The         the Watergate scandal. And           were unable to eliminate the
standards in a generation to the
                                     Blue Dogs insisted that the          they passed a slew of measures       use of harsh interrogation
first minimum-wage hike in a
                                     Senate offset the bill's cost        that have received little notice,    tactics by the CIA.
                                     with      tax     increases    on    such as more money for math               Democratic leaders also
     But Democrats' failure to
                                     hedge-fund and private-equity        and science teachers who earn        could not overcome the
address the central issues that
                                     managers.                            more credentials in their field,     president's vetoes on an
swept them to power left even
                                          Needing two-thirds of the       tax relief for homeowners in         expansion      of     the    State
the most partisan of them
                                     House to pass under fast-track       foreclosure, a doubling of basic     Children's Health Insurance
dissatisfied    and     Congress
                                     rules, the tax measure was           research       funding,       and    Program, despite winning over
mired at a historic low in
                                     approved 352 to 64, with all 64      reclamation projects for the         large numbers of Republicans.
public esteem.
                                     "no" votes coming from               hurricane-devastated         Gulf    Policies that liberals thought
     Handed        control      of
                                     Democrats standing by their          Coast.                               would be swept aside under the
Congress last year after making
                                     pledge not to support any tax             With the exception of the       Democratic majority remain
promises to end the war in
                                     cut or mandatory spending            new energy law, Pelosi               untouched,        including       a
Iraq, restore fiscal discipline in
                                     increase that would expand the       characterized most of the year's     prohibition on U.S. funding for
Washington        and       check
                                     national debt.                       accomplishments as a cleanup         international family-planning
President     Bush's      powers,
                                          The year's finale angered       after years of Republican            organizations       that      offer
Democrats instead closed the
                                     the entire spectrum of the           neglect     or     congressional     abortions.
first session of the 110th
                                     Democratic coalition, from the       gridlock.                                 Efforts to change Bush's
Congress yesterday with House
                                     antiwar left to new Southern              But    the     long-awaited     Iraq policies took on the look
votes that sent Bush $70 billion
                                     conservatives who helped             showdown with Bush on the            of     Pickett's     charge      at
in war funding, with no strings
                                     bring Democrats to power last        federal budget fizzled this          Gettysburg. From the first days
attached, and a $50 billion
                                     year.                                week into an uncomfortable           of the 110th Congress to its last
                                          "This is a blank check,"        draw. The president got his war      hours     this     week,     Bush
measure that shattered their
                                     said Rep. Jim McGovern               funding, while Democrats --          prevailed on every Iraq-related
pledge not to add to the federal
                                     (D-Mass.). "The new money in         using "emergency" funding            fight,      beginning         with
budget deficit.
                                     this bill represents one cave-in     designations -- broke through        February's             nonbinding
     "I'm not going to let a lot
                                     too many. It is an endorsement       his spending limit by $11            resolution opposing the winter
of hard work go unnoticed, but
                                     of George Bush's policy of           billion, the amount they had         troop buildup and ending with
I'm not going to hand out party
                                     endless war."                        promised      to     add     after   this week's granting of $70
hats, either," said House
                                          Still,    the     Democrats     Republicans       rejected       a   billion in unrestricted war
Democratic Caucus Chairman
                                     delivered much of what they          proposed $22 billion increase        funds. Emanuel tried to call the
Rahm Emanuel (Ill.).
                                     promised last year. Of the six       in domestic spending.                $70 billion funding a partial
     On Iraq, House Speaker
                                     initiatives on the their "Six for         Remarkably,           House     Democratic victory because it
Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said
                                     '06" agenda, congressional           Minority Leader John A.              was the first time the president
yesterday: "Nobody is more
                                     Democrats sent five to the           Boehner (R-Ohio) praised the         did not get everything he
disappointed with the fact that
                                     president and got his signature      final omnibus spending bill in       sought for the war. Bush had
we couldn't change that than I
                                     on four: a minimum-wage              glowing terms, while Senate          requested $200 billion.
am." But Pelosi was not about
                                     increase, implementation of the      Minority       Leader      Mitch          Some senior Democrats
to accept Republican assertions
                                     homeland                  security   McConnell (R-Ky.) called             have grown so distraught that
that her first year as speaker
                                     recommendations of the 9/11          keeping federal spending at          they do not expect any
has been unsuccessful, saying:
                                     Commission, college cost             Bush's preferred level "an           significant change in Iraq
"Almost everything we've done
                                     reduction, and an energy             extraordinary success."              policy unless a Democrat wins
has been historic."
                                     measure         that      requires        "Our work on holding the        the White House in 2008. "It's
     Unable to garner enough
                                     conservation and the expanded        line on spending gave us an          unfortunate that we may have
votes from their own party,
                                     use of renewable sources of          omnibus that is better than I've     to wait till the elections," Sen.
House Democratic leaders had
                                     energy.                              seen in my 17 years here,"           Edward M. Kennedy (Mass.)
to turn to Republicans to win
                                          Federal funding for stem        Boehner      said      yesterday.    said yesterday.
passage of a $555 billion
                                     cell research was vetoed by          Twelve of those years were                This has left many
                                                                                                                                            page 7
Democrats resorting to openly             Despite House Speaker            new bill met Mr. Bush's $933          despite Democrats' attempt to
political arguments, picking up     Nancy Pelosi's vow of "no              billion      cap      for     total   obstruct the project.
a theme that Republicans            blank check" for the Iraq war,         discretionary spending.                    Bipartisan appetite for
hurled       at     them       --   she allowed the vote amid                   The other emergency              earmarks
obstructionism -- during their      intense pressure to finish the         funds cover veterans' health               For all the public tuttutting
many years in the minority.         overdue spending package and           care, border security, drought        about congressional earmarks,
Sen. Charles E. Schumer             wrap up the session before             relief and other domestic             the targeted spending items
(N.Y.) conceded that it is time     Christmas.                             programs.                             seem almost as popular as ever,
for Democrats to forget about             "It's disappointing, but it is        Democrats first proposed         with about 9,000 included in
trumpeting accomplishments          the will of the Congress," Mrs.        spending about $23 billion            the massive appropriations bill
that voters will never give         Pelosi told reporters on Capitol       more than the president               Congress is sending to
them credit for -- and time to      Hill.                                  requested. They later offered to      President Bush.
change the message to a starkly           Democrats couldn't budge         split the difference and spend             They will steer $7.4 billion
political one: If you want          Mr. Bush from his promise to           $11 billion over the limit, then      in taxpayer funds to birds and
change, elect more Democrats.       veto any spending bill that            cut the offer to about $4 billion     bees, locks and dams, parks
      Sen. Richard J. Durbin        broke his budget limit or didn't       before surrendering to Mr.            and ponds, and scores of other
(Ill.), the Senate Democratic       come with $70 billion in               Bush.                                 projects throughout the nation,
whip tasked with trying to find     emergency war funds, a down                 Appropriators met Mr.            including:
60 votes for a filibuster-proof     payment on the $196.4 billion          Bush's budget limit, in part, by           • $825,000 to expand the
majority, acknowledged this         war request for 2008.                  slashing his defense and              neonatal intensive-care unit at
week that Democrats' biggest              Rep. Barbara Lee took to         foreign-aid priorities to pay for     St. Louis Children's Hospital
failure      stemmed       from     the House floor to accuse Mr.          restoring and even boosting           (Sen. Christopher S. Bond,
expecting "more Republicans         Bush of holding domestic               domestic-spending programs            Missouri Republican)
to take an independent stance"      programs hostage for war               that the White House wanted to             • $464,000 for hops
on Iraq. Instead, most of them      money, and fellow California           trim.                                 research (Sens. Maria Cantwell
stood with Bush.                    Democrat Rep. Maxine Waters                 The Democrats' emphasis          and Patty Murray, Washington
      "Many of them will have       urged her colleagues to defeat         on domestic priorities included       Democrats,       and    Oregon's
to carry that with them into the    the bill.                              adding $1 billion to expand           Gordon        H.     Smith,      a
election," Durbin said.                   "We are never going to           health care access, $607              Republican, and Ron Wyden, a
                                    end this war until we stop             million for medical research,         Democrat)
                                    feeding this war with taxpayer         $767 million for education                 • $100,000 for the historic
Washington Times                    money," said Mrs. Waters, who          programs such as Head Start,          Mount Hope Cemetery in
December 20, 2007                   with Mrs. Lee co-founded the           $486 million for renewable            Rochester, N.Y. (Rep. Louise
Pg. 1                               Out of Iraq Caucus.                    energy and $1.8 billion in            M. Slaughter, a Democrat)
2. House OKs Spending                     House Minority Whip Roy          Homeland Security grants.                  • $705,000 for brown
Bill                                Blunt, Missouri Republican,                 They cut administration          tree-snake management in
Democrats surrender to Bush         applauded the approval of the          priorities, including increased       Guam (Sens. Daniel K. Akaka
on budget bill                      war funds but lamented the             funding        for      abstinence    and Daniel K. Inouye, Hawaii
By S.A. Miller, Washington          months it took to secure               education, expansion of the           Democrats)
Times                               spending for troops in combat.         Strategic Petroleum Reserve                • $2.2 million for Mormon
     The Democrat-led House               "Perhaps more troubling          and some weapons-program              cricket control, evenly divided
yesterday gave final approval       than the delay, though, is the         requests.                             between       Nevada      (Senate
to a $555 billion bill to fund      fact that so few Democrats in               Republican support for the       Majority Leader Harry Reid, a
the federal government, ending      the House thought it worthy of         bill came despite early               Democrat) and Utah (Sen.
a long budget battle by             their support," he said. "For          criticism that the majority           Robert      F.     Bennett,      a
buckling to President Bush's        this new majority, the story of        rushed to pass a 3,500-page bill      Republican)
demand for war funds and to         this session has been a tale of        that conceals more than 9,000              • $223,000 for beaver
his spending limit.                 false-starts,      missteps    and     pork projects and some abrupt         management in North Carolina
     The bill, which funds          unimaginable overreaches. But          policy shifts, including a            (Sen. Elizabeth Dole, a
every Cabinet agency except         at least on this issue — the           provision that undermines             Republican, and Rep. David E.
the Pentagon and provides $70       most critical one outstanding          current       plans       for     a   Price, a Democrat), and
billion for the wars in Iraq and    — Democrats decided to do              U.S.-Mexico border fence.             $475,000         for       beaver
Afghanistan, passed 272-142         what was right and allow our                The 2006 Secure Fence            management in Mississippi
and finished Congress' work         members to cast the right vote,        Act specifically called for "two      (Sen. Thad Cochran and Rep.
for the year.                       finally, on behalf of our men          layers of reinforced fencing"         Roger         Wicker,        both
     Republican support carried     and women in the field."               and listed five specific sections     Republicans)
the legislation, accounting for           The roughly $555 billion         of border where it should be               • $353,000 to combat
194 "yes" votes along with 78       bill included the war funds and        installed. The spending bill          Asian long-horned beetles
cast by Democrats. Rep. John        $11.2        billion    in   other     nixed the two-tier requirement        (Sen. Richard J. Durbin,
J. "Jimmy" Duncan Jr. of            emergency funds that don't             and the list of locations.            Illinois Democrat)
Tennessee cast the lone             count toward the budget limit.              The White House pledged               •        $779,000         for
Republican vote against the         Coupled with the $459 billion          anyway to pursue the original         wolf-predation management in
measure,        joining      141    Defense         Department      bill   plan to build about 670 miles         Wisconsin, Minnesota and
Democrats.                          signed into law last month, the        of border fence in 2008,              Michigan (Reps. James L.
                                                                                                                                        page 8
Oberstar, Minnesota Democrat,      efforts to begin withdrawing         $473.5 billion spending bill         approved yesterday by the
and David R. Obey, Wisconsin       troops, and she now plans to         Wednesday that will fund the         House and the Senate and sent
Democrat)                          shift the chamber’s focus next       government through fiscal            to President Bush. Though
    • $332,000 for oyster          year to health care, the             2008. The bill includes $70          Musharraf         has       lifted
post-harvest treatment (Rep.       economy and global warming.          billion for operations in Iraq       emergency rule and resigned as
Allen Boyd, Florida Democrat)           Pelosi told a group of          and Afghanistan.                     army       chief,     lawmakers
    • $244,000 for bee             reporters that she still aims to          Pelosi      said      House     intended to signal that they
research in Texas (Rep. Chet       end the war, but rather than         priorities next year will include    want to link aid to Islamabad to
Edwards, a Democrat)               trying to force Bush to              tackling health care issues such     demonstrated progress on
    • $513,000 for blackbird       redeploy troops by threatening       as universal insurance coverage      human rights. Pakistan has
management in four states,         to cut off funds, Democrats          and improved funding for             received about $10 billion in
sponsored     by     numerous      will instead focus on passing        research. She declined to talk       U.S. aid since 2001, though the
lawmakers.                         Iraq war bills that deal with        about specific bills but said the    administration maintains that
    Associated Press               policy.                              House will be “kicking the           about half of that is to
                                        Specifically, Pelosi said,      door open” on health care and        reimburse        Pakistan      for
                                   Democrats will underscore the        “legislation would hopefully         expenses incurred in the fight
USA Today                          lack of diplomatic progress in       spring from that.”                   against terrorist groups.
December 20, 2007                  Iraq despite the well-publicized          Pelosi also suggested there          Bush committed in 2004 to
Pg. 11                             recent success of a U.S military     could be an economic stimulus        a $6 billion, five-year program
3. Congress OKs $70B               surge in stabilizing the country.    package as well as legislation       to provide military and
Budget For War Funds                    “I think you are going to       to address global warming.           economic aid to Pakistan, and
     Congress approved $70         see a good deal of focus be on                                            this is the first time Congress
billion Wednesday for military     why it is that even when you                                              has sought to place restrictions
operations    in    Iraq     and   have some military success to        Washington Post                      on that commitment.
Afghanistan after majority         establish a secure time when         December 20, 2007                         Akram        Shaheedi,      a
Democrats failed to advance        the government can act               Pg. 24                               spokesman for the Pakistani
withdrawals of U.S. troops         politically, they still do not act   5. Congress Sets Limits              Embassy       in     Washington,
from the countries.                in a way to bring reconciliation     On Aid To Pakistan                   criticized the decision, saying
     The House's 272-142 vote      in Iraq,” Pelosi said.               Bill Withholds $50 Million           that "the government of
also approved a $555 billion            Pelosi       said     House     Until U.S. Confirms Islamabad        Pakistan and the people of
bill that combines the war         members were interested in           Is Reinstating Rights                Pakistan were not happy with
money with money for 14            shifting     to     Iraq    policy   By Glenn Kessler, Washington         such conditionality." He said
Cabinet departments. Senate        legislation because it might         Post Staff Writer                    that the country is "continuing
Republicans forced the Iraq        have a better chance of clearing          Congress           yesterday    to follow the democratic path"
money        upon       anti-war   the      Senate,      in    which    slapped restrictions on military     and that "such measures will
Democrats as the price for a       Democrats rule by a one-vote         aid to Pakistan and withheld         not weaken Pakistan's resolve
budget deal.                       margin.                              $50       million      of     the    to fight out forces of
     The spending legislation           “We will always have a          administration's $300 million        extremism and terrorism."
affects almost every part of the   fight about the funding of the       request until Secretary of State          In a unrelated move,
government other than the          war,” Pelosi said, referring to      Condoleezza Rice can certify         lawmakers also cut the
Defense Department's core          the spending bills the House         that Islamabad is restoring          administration's          funding
programs. It would pay for         must vote on. But House              democratic rights, including an      request      for      democracy
food-       and       toy-safety   members, she added, “thought         independent judiciary.               programs in Iran from $75
inspections, NASA, the FBI,        … that it would be important to           The congressional move          million to $60 million,
the Coast Guard, education,        document for the public even         went      further    than     the    diverting $15 million toward
health research and national       further what some of the             administration's own review of       grants        for        software
park operations.                   challenges are that we have          aid to Pakistan after the Nov. 3     programmers who specialize in
                                   there.”                              declaration      of   emergency      creating programs that thwart
                                        Pelosi made her remarks         powers by President Pervez           Internet firewalls erected by
Washington Examiner                as the House concluded a             Musharraf. In a decision that        repressive countries such as
December 20, 2007                  bruising first session under         received little notice, the          Iran and China. The idea,
4. Pelosi Says Democrats           Democratic control. The new          administration decided earlier       which was championed by
Will Focus On Iraq                 majority        touted       many    this month to stop making an         Rep. Frank R. Wolf (R-Va.), is
Policy, Not On War                 accomplishments, such as             annual $200 million cash             intended to assist dissidents
                                   passing a minimum-wage               payment to the Pakistani             without making them the target
Funding                            increase and new fuel economy                                             of arrests and harassment.
                                                                        government, instead converting
By Susan Ferrechio, Chief          standards, but was unable to                                                   "There is a lot of
                                                                        those funds to programs for
Congressional Correspondent        fulfill its campaign pledge to                                            uneasiness about the whole
                                                                        Pakistan      that    will     be
     House Speaker Nancy           wind down the war in Iraq.                                                Iran democracy program," said
                                                                        administered by the U.S.
Pelosi said Wednesday she was           “Nobody          is     more                                         one      congressional       aide,
                                                                        Agency       for    International
surprised       congressional      disappointed in the fact that we                                          speaking on the condition of
Republicans have stood firmly      couldn’t change that than I                                               anonymity. "It is potentially a
                                                                             The congressional aid
by President Bush’s Iraq war       am,” Pelosi said.                                                         way of providing an excuse for
                                                                        restrictions were buried in the
policy, blocking Democratic             The House passed a                                                   cracking down on dissidents."
                                                                        omnibus        spending       bill
                                                                                                                                           page 9
     The      legislation      also    defenders and government             Republican of Maine, first           40 percent of reservists lose
withheld $100 million in aid to        critics, and restoring an            proposed the Military Reservist      income when called up to
Egypt until Rice certifies that        independent judiciary.               and Veteran Small Business           active duty, while the rate is
sufficient actions have been                Congress also appropriated      Reauthorization               and    higher,     55     percent,   for
taken by Egypt to stop                 up to $350 million in economic       Opportunity Act last March,          reservists         who        are
smuggling between the Sinai            aid to Pakistan and up to $5         but the bill had to clear several    self-employed, the March
and Gaza, which Israel says            million for administrative           hurdles before lawmakers             report found. At the same time,
has strengthened the Hamas             expenses needed by USAID to          reached a compromise.                the share of small-business
militant group that controls the       manage the $200 million in                Among other provisions,         loans going to veterans from
narrow coastal strip. The              funds that had previously been       the bill allows the head of the      the largest federal program has
legislation, however, allows           given as a check to the              Small Business Administration        dropped from 11 percent to 9
Bush to waive the restriction          Pakistani Ministry of Finance.       to provide $50,000 loans to          percent since 2001.
on national security grounds.          The agency had estimated it          part-time service members and             The Kerry-Snowe bill
     Regarding           Pakistan,     needed about 31 people to            veterans without collateral. It      creates a federal task force to
lawmakers not only withheld a          make grants and monitor              also authorizes more than $4         coordinate the multiple federal
portion of the money sought by         projects          run          by    million over the next two years      agencies involved in assisting
the administration but also            nongovernmental           groups.    for the agency's Office of           veterans. It also provides relief
strictly limited the use of the        "None       of      the     funds    Veterans                 Business    to small businesses that employ
remaining $250 million to              appropriated by this Act may         Development.                         National Guard or Reserve
"counter-terrorism and law             be made available for cash                "We tried to get this done      troops, which will help them
enforcement activities directed        transfer      assistance       for   several       times,"      Kerry,    safeguard the jobs service
against Al Qaeda and the               Pakistan," the bill says.            chairman of the Committee on         members leave behind for
Taliban and associated terrorist            The shift is the one            Small         Business        and    active duty.
groups." The language is               tangible result of a lengthy         Entrepreneurship,            said         The bill also provides
intended to make if difficult for      administration review of aid to      yesterday before returning to        grants to the SBA's Small
Pakistan to use the money to           Pakistan,       which         was    Boston from Washington. "I           Business Development Centers
acquire F-16 jets or Sidewinder        announced without fanfare            feel good about finally getting      to expand its outreach to
missiles, which are aimed at           during a congressional hearing       it done."                            veterans, many of whom are
neighboring        India,       not    this month.                               Earlier in the day Kerry        unaware of the federal
terrorists.                                 Ending the direct payment       had told colleagues that the         programs or have found it
     "This is going to be a            to Pakistan and directing the        bill, which passed the Senate        difficult to take advantage of
problem,"      said     a     State    $200 million to specific             unanimously by voice vote,           them.
Department official, speaking          projects will "directly benefit      was "one of my highest                    David Marrero, a recent
on the condition of anonymity          the Pakistani people and will        priorities" since becoming           veteran who is now in the Air
because        of      diplomatic      make Pakistan a stronger and         chairman of the small-business       National Guard, told the Globe
sensitivities. "The Pakistanis         more secure ally in the war          panel in January.                    last month that he was
really want the F-16s. It is very      against terrorism," Assistant             A companion version of          struggling to get a federal
symbolic in their eyes."               Secretary of State Richard A.        the     bill,    sponsored     by    business loan to open a retail
     The congressional aide            Boucher told the Senate on           Representative Jason Altmire,        clothing store in Valdosta, Ga.
acknowledged that "we are              Dec. 6. But he argued that           a Democrat of Pennsylvania, is       Kerry, a Vietnam veteran, said
undoubtedly going to have an           Congress should not cut overall      expected to be approved by the       the law will help keep a new
argument          with          the    funding levels for Pakistan.         House of Representatives,            generation of veterans like
administration," saying "my                                                 possibly this week. President        Marrero from falling through
guess is that they will interpret                                           Bush has indicated he will sign      the cracks.
that rather broadly" and argue         Boston Globe                         the measure into law when it              "Passing this legislation is
that F-16s are needed for the          December 20, 2007                    reaches his desk.                    the first step in ensuring that
fight against terrorist groups.        6. Senate OK's More                       The legislation grew out of     the brave men and women who
But he noted that ban also             Small-Business Aid To                a study Kerry's staff completed      put their lives on hold to
extended to the acquisition of         Newest Veterans                      earlier this year that found the     defend our country will not
naval equipment, "and the last         By Bryan Bender, Globe Staff         rate of unemployment among           also have to sacrifice their
time we checked, the Taliban                WASHINGTON - The                veterans to be more than twice       livelihoods," Kerry said in a
did not have a navy."                  Senate approved legislation          the national average.                statement yesterday.
     To release the $50 million,       yesterday        to        expand         Using government data,               Snowe,       the     ranking
the legislation says, Rice must        small-business loans and other       the study found that 11.9            Republican on the small
certify that Pakistan is "making       government        benefits     for   percent of recently discharged       business panel, applauded
concerted efforts" against             military reservists and veterans     military        veterans       are   Kerry in a statement. The
terrorist    havens      and      is   serving in Iraq and Afghanistan      unemployed, compared with            "bipartisan and bicameral"
implementing a long list of            - a victory for two New              4.6 percent of the general           legislation, she said, "will
democratic reforms, including          England      lawmakers       who     population. It also found that       greatly       assist      veteran
ensuring freedom of assembly           pushed for the expansion.            18 percent of veterans ages 18       entrepreneurs and the small
and     expression,      releasing          Senators John F. Kerry,         to 24 are out of work - double       businesses that employ them,
political detainees, ending            Democrat of Massachusetts,           the rate of their civilian           as well as companies that help
harassment and detention of            and       Olympia         Snowe,     counterparts.                        supply our defense needs."
journalists,     human       rights                                              Meanwhile, an estimated
                                                                                                                                      page 10
                                    parts of Baghdad, 225 miles to      died in Iraq in February were        elite Quds Force of supplying
                                    the south.                          killed by "friendly fire,"           sophisticated weapons to and
USA Today                                "We         have       some    according to a military              funding, directing and training
December 20, 2007                   intelligence that says it was       investigation. Pvt. Matthew          Shiite Muslim militias who
Pg. 8                               part of a bigger plot. There is     Zeimer, 18, and Spc. Alan            have attacked U.S. forces in
7. General: Enemy Still             some intelligence that they         McPeek, 20, were killed at an        Iraq. Tehran denies the
Capable Of 'Spectacular             may have wanted to cut off that     Army outpost in Ramadi on            accusations and says it is the
Attacks'                            side of the river to make safe      Feb. 2. The families of the two      presence of U.S. forces in Iraq
Infrastructure at risk, despite     havens," Hertling said. "There      soldiers initially were told the     that has fueled the bloodshed.
drop in violence                    are some indications that they      men were killed by enemy fire.            Caught between two key
By Patrick Quinn, Associated        wanted to close that route               In response to a Freedom        allies, Iraqi officials have
Press                               because it is used by coalition     of Information request by the        repeatedly urged the United
     BAGHDAD — The top              forces."                            Associated Press, the military       States to release Iranian
U.S. commander in northern               He said that during an         released its subsequent probe.       detainees            as         a
Iraq warned Wednesday that          ongoing operation against           The families were told in            confidence-building measure.
al-Qaeda in Iraq was still          insurgents and al-Qaeda in          March that the men may have          Iraq has hosted a series of
capable of staging spectacular      western     Diyala      province,   been killed by comrades.             meetings intended to promote
attacks despite a 50% drop in       military forces discovered               The investigation found         cooperation       between     the
bombings and other violence in      weapons caches, a torture           that the two were killed by tank     United States and Iran on Iraqi
his region.                         chamber with a bed that was         fire from a second Army              security,     overcoming       an
     Army Maj. Gen. Mark            wired to electrocute victims,       outpost      after     insurgents    official diplomatic freeze that
Hertling said al-Qaeda in Iraq      and knives and swords covered       engaged both outposts. The           lasted more than two decades.
was being pushed north by the       in blood.                           report said decisions and                 U.S. forces freed nine
increased numbers of U.S.                Violence in Iraq has           actions by the tank crews and        Iranians on Nov. 9, including
troops that went into Baghdad       abated in recent months, and        their     command        "directly   two of the five men detained in
during the summer and fall.         the U.S. military has said it has   created the conditions which         January in a U.S. raid in the
The insurgents are also being       dropped by as much as               caused this accident, including      Kurdish city of Irbil. The
flushed out of Anbar province       60%-70% in some places.             deficiencies in training."           military had accused the five of
by "awakening councils" —                In Baghdad, the death toll                                          being Quds Force members;
groups      of     Sunni    Arab    Wednesday was unusually low:                                             Iran has said they are
                                    One bullet-riddled body was         Los Angeles Times                    diplomats.
tribesmen the U.S. military has
                                    found washed up along the           December 20, 2007                         There was no immediate
backed to help fight al-Qaeda
in Iraq and its allies.             Tigris River, while another         8. U.S. Releases Iranian             information about the charges
     "Many of them have             man was killed by a roadside        Detained In Kurdish                  against Alawi; he returned to
transited our province" of          bomb.                               City In 2004                         Iran on Wednesday, according
Diyala, which has seen some of           Wednesday's drop may           The move occurs as                   to the Iranian Embassy.
the worst violence in Iraq,         have been a result of the start     Washington and Tehran                     A U.S. military spokesman
Hertling said. "There are still     of the Eid al-Adha holy             prepare for a new round of           said Alawi was released
some      very      bad    things   celebration for Sunni Muslims       talks on Iraqi security.             because he was determined to
happening in that province, but     in Iraq. Shiites, who also          By Alexandra Zavis, Los              no longer be a threat to the
we are continuing to pursue         celebrate the day, will mark        Angeles Times Staff Writer           security of Iraq.
al-Qaeda so they don't find a       Eid on Friday.                           BAGHDAD          —      The          About 10 other Iranians
safe haven anywhere."                    Hertling said the four         American military has released       are believed to still be in U.S.
     He        said     al-Qaeda    provinces under his command         an Iranian detainee, officials       custody.
extremists could still carry out    had seen a marked reduction of      from the U.S. and Iran said               Security experts from the
attacks against infrastructure      attacks      by       improvised    Wednesday, as the two                three countries had planned to
projects such as bridges.           explosive devices — also            countries prepared for a new         meet Tuesday in Baghdad, but
"There are going to be              known as IEDs — such as             round of talks on security in        the talks were postponed. That
continued spectacular attacks,"     roadside bombs. "We have            Iraq.                                same day, U.S. Secretary of
he said when asked about the        seen a precipitous decline in            The Iranian Embassy             State Condoleezza Rice flew in
bombing of a bridge across the      IED operations," he said,           identified the man as Haydar         to Iraq on a surprise visit.
Mosul dam on Monday. The            adding that they had dropped        Alawi, who was detained in the            U.S. Embassy spokesman
attack, carried out with a truck    by 50% from June, when there        northern Kurdish city of             Philip T. Reeker said this week
bomb, closed the bridge to          were 1,698 attacks, compared        Sulaymaniya in July 2004. The        that he expected the Iraqi
vehicle traffic.                    with 849 in November.               U.S. military gave a different       Foreign Ministry to announce a
     Built in the 1980s on the           Even so, such bombings         version of the name, Sayed           new date within days. The talks
Tigris River, the dam made          still plague the region, and        Hadir Alawi Mohammed, but            are intended to pave the way
headlines in June after a U.S.      Hertling's troops have been         provided no other information.       for            the           next
Army Corps of Engineers             working to restore a major               The detention of Iranian        ambassadorial-level meeting.
report said potential erosion of    highway in western Mosul that       nationals by U.S. forces in Iraq          In other developments, the
its foundation could cause it to    has been closed because of IED      has been an ongoing issue in         U.S. military announced the
buckle under the water              attacks.                            relations between the three          capture early today of a
pressure, flooding Mosul and             In other Iraq news:            countries.                           suspected leader of Shiite
                                         Two U.S. soldiers who               U.S. officials accuse Iran's    militants in the northern part of
                                                                                                                                         page 11
Baghdad. The suspect is             station north of Ramadi in the        Holmes, a United States              happened after Americans
alleged to have procured and        early morning of Dec. 17.”            marine reservist, was found          moved across from their own
stored weapons, including                While emphasizing that           guilty of killing an Iraqi soldier   watchtower to the Iraqis’ guard
armor-piercing bombs that           the investigation is still “in the    while they stood watch               tower. “I will not surrender my
U.S. officials say are being        initial stages,” Major Pool said      together at a guard post in          son’s rights,” he said at the
supplied by Iran.                   that “the incident appears to         Falluja, near Ramadi, on Dec.        funeral.
     The U.S. military has said     have      resulted     from      an   31, 2006.                                  “I call upon the governor
the decision of radical Shiite      argument escalating into a                 A military jury at Camp         and the provincial council
cleric Muqtada Sadr to freeze       physical       altercation.”     In   Pendleton        in    California    president to intervene to have
the operations of his militia has   e-mailed         responses       to   convicted Lance Corporal             this soldier who did the killing
played a key part in the marked     questions on Wednesday night,         Holmes, a 22-year-old from           brought to trial,” he declared at
downturn of violence since          he said the marine and Iraqi          Indianapolis, on Dec. 13 of          the       graveside,        where
U.S. forces completed a             policeman each received “knife        negligent homicide and making        black-garbed women were
28,500-troop buildup in June.       wounds.” The policeman “died          a false official statement over      wailing, and gunshots were
     But commanders say it is       from his wounds,” Major Pool          the stabbing death of the Iraqi      fired over the heads of the dead
too soon to tell whether Tehran     said, and the marine was              soldier,     Munther        Jasem    man’s many police colleagues.
is fulfilling a pledge to the       eventually taken to a military        Muhammed Hassin. But he                    Abdul Ghafour Abdul
Iraqi government to crack           hospital for treatment, though        was acquitted of the more            Baki, commander of the police
down on weapons-smuggling           his      wounds       were     not    serious          charge         of   station, said: “If they have
across their shared border.         life-threatening.                     unpremeditated homicide after        killed this policeman today,
                                         Neither man has been             his lawyers argued that he had       then they will kill us tomorrow.
                                    identified by the American            acted in self-defense after          We want to put an end to these
New York Times                      authorities, but relatives and        getting into a fight because the     violations. After the incident,
December 20, 2007                   colleagues identified the dead        Iraqi had exposed them to            we were locked inside the
Pg. 16                              Sunni         policeman          as   sniper fire by opening his           police station for more than 10
9. U.S. Investigating               18-year-old Waleed Khalid             cellphone and lighting a             hours. The American forces
Marine In Iraqi                     Khudhaier, who was stationed          cigarette.                           who were surrounding the
Policeman’s Death                   at the Wala’a base in the                  As part of the temporary        police station didn’t let us out.”
By Stephen Farrell                  Jazeera neighborhood, three           increase in American forces                In Baghdad, the most
     BAGHDAD — A United             miles north of the provincial         known as the surge, American         senior     American       military
States marine is at the center of   capital.                              reinforcements were moved to         officer in northern Iraq, Maj.
an       American        military        The      episode      is    an   Anbar earlier this year, where       Gen. Mark P. Hertling, warned
investigation into the death on     embarrassment          for      the   they work alongside 44,000           that Al Qaeda in Mesopotamia
Monday of an Iraqi policeman        American military, which has          Iraqi security forces.               still had the ability to carry out
from what appears to have           praised Anbar as a model for               The Sunnis here say it was      major attacks in his area,
been a knife fight between the      Sunni tribes and American             their decision to fight Al Qaeda     despite a steep drops in attacks
men at a base jointly staffed by    soldiers cooperating to fight         in Mesopotamia as part of a          on American and Iraqi forces
American and Iraqi forces in        fundamentalist groups like Al         tribal movement known as the         since June.
Anbar Province, a military          Qaeda in Mesopotamia.                 Awakening Council, not the                 General Hertling also
spokesman said.                          Major Pool said American         increase in American forces,         provided evidence of what he
     The    incident     is    an   commanders in Ramadi had              that proved decisive in tackling     called the group’s continuing
embarrassment for the United        already met with tribal leaders       the threat from the militant         brutality, saying that allied
States military, which has          and police officials. “Both the       group.                               forces in western Diyala
praised Anbar as a model for        Iraqi and Coalition Force                  The American military           Province        had       recently
Sunni tribes and American           leaders regret this incident and      confirmed       that   Monday’s      discovered a “torture facility.”
soldiers cooperating to fight       are working to assure incidents       incident happened while both         The building, he said, held
fundamentalist groups like Al       such as this do not occur in the      men were on duty, with               chains, an iron bed that was
Qaeda in Mesopotamia, the           future,” he said.                     “another marine standing post        still connected to a battery,
homegrown militant group that            At      Mr.      Khudhaier’s     nearby.”                             apparently with the intent to
United States intelligence          funeral      in     Ramadi       on        Major Pool said that            torture victims, and knives and
officials say is led by             Wednesday,         500      people,   agents with the Naval Criminal       swords still covered in blood.
foreigners. The death has           mostly members of his tribe,          Investigative Service, known         “We captured and killed
provoked local anger and            Albu Shaaban, chanted slogans         as the N.C.I.S., arrived at the      numerous Al Qaeda members
demands for legal action.           demanding the departure of            scene later that morning to take     in that particular find,” he said.
     Maj.    Jeff    Pool,     an   American forces from the area,        statements from witnesses. He              An Iraqi employee of The
American military spokesman         and proclaiming, “We are the          stressed that the investigation      New York Times contributed
in Iraq, confirmed that Naval       ones who liberated Anbar.”            was “still ongoing,” but that as     reporting from Ramadi, and
Criminal Investigative Service           Sheiks from at least six         of last night “N.C.I.S. has not      Damien Cave from Baghdad.
agents       “are       currently   major local Sunni tribes have         recommended any charges.”
investigating the death of an       threatened       to     call    for        At the funeral, Mr.
                                    demonstrations if no legal            Khudhaier’s father, Lt. Col.         Washington Times
Iraqi policeman and the
                                    proceedings are forthcoming.          Khalid Khudhaier Khalif, who         December 20, 2007
wounding of a U.S. marine
                                         The death comes less than        serves at the same police            Pg. 10
while on duty at a joint security
                                    a week after Lance Cpl. Delano        station, claimed that the killing    10. Kurds Push For Oil
                                                                                                                                          page 12
And Power Sharing                    announcement cast a shadow            of these Iraqi insurgents were       their own men may have
By Damien McElroy, London            on tentative efforts by Western       never motivated by anything          another way of looking at it.
Daily Telegraph                      firms to enter the region.            more than money and most                  "I'm not on the ground
     IRBIL, Iraq — Kurdish                The Kurdish government           only desire to live peacefully.      looking at their situation, and
leaders in northern Iraq             denounced Mr. Shahristani's           Many can be safely released          they're not in the detention
threatened to withdraw support       attempts to suppress its rights.      back to society, back to their       facility seeing these people,"
from the Baghdad government               Kurdistan is in a different      families      and     in     their   says Stone.
if demands for federal power         status from the rest of Iraq. It is   neighborhoods             without         He made an impassioned
sharing and a fair share of the      attempting to establish its           straining security or their          plea recently when Marine
oil wealth are not met.              credentials as a Dubai-style          communities, he says.                Commandant Gen. James
     Nechirvan Barzani, the          business center.                           Stone believes that there       Conway paid a visit to Bucca
prime minister of Kurdish                                                  should be debate about how           in November. General Conway
northern Iraq, said Iraq's                                                 many detainees US forces             came away impressed with the
Shi'ite-led              coalition   Christian Science Monitor             continue to hold and how many        programs          Stone        has
government, which relies on          December 20, 2007                     should now be freed.                 implemented there and is
Kurdish        members          of   Pg. 1                                      "I am of the strong             concerned that the growing
parliament to survive, "must be      11. Do U.S. Prisons In                viewpoint that there is [now]        number of detainees doesn't
changed" if it does not transfer     Iraq Breed Insurgents?                enough confidence in the             make sense anymore.
powers to his region.                Nearly 30,000 detainees crowd         process that I'm a champion for           "If you roll up 150 guys in
     "What we ask for as Kurds       two American-run detention            releasing those for whom the         a village and you don't have
comes within the constitution        facilities, and one US officer        process has worked and who           probable cause, you've just
of Iraq," he said. "We did           wants to set many free.               are essentially a reduced            created 150 little terrorists,"
whatever we could do to              By Gordon Lubold, Staff               security threat to the coalition,"   says Conway, who says the US
ensure that Iraq could succeed,      writer of The Christian Science       says Stone in a phone                must review the process.
but Iraq is a complicated            Monitor                               interview from Camp Bucca.                "I think there has to be
country. Now we have reached              WASHINGTON                  --        Indeed, the nature of the       more of a reason to hold a
one question: whether we are         American        officials     have    war may be shifting. The             detainee or, send them away,"
partners in the government or        detained        thousands        of   Pentagon's               quarterly   says Conway.
not. We don't have that kind of      insurgents in the months since        assessment of security and                In many ways, Iraq's
feeling.                             the surge of forces began this        stability in Iraq, released on       increased security could be
     "Certainly if we do not see     spring, in an effort that most        Tuesday, shows that violence         attributed to higher numbers of
any response from Baghdad to         agree has improved security in        is down across the country.          detainees. But much of the
solve the issues raised, we          Iraq. But now the commander           Roadside       bombings,       for   success stems from the
would be obliged to take             of the American detention             example, have dropped by 68          changing attitudes of Iraqi
another route," he said.             facilities in Iraq is wondering       percent since June.                  citizens toward their own
     Under        Iraq's      new    aloud if holding all those                 Stone, a Marine reservist       security and, to a lesser extent,
constitution, three northern         detainees is breeding a               who has headed a number of           their views of the American
provinces      were       granted    "micro-insurgency" and asking         software development firms, is       presence.
autonomy from Baghdad to             whether it's time to begin            known for his passion and                 "You're always worried
form the Kurdistan Regional          releasing thousands of people.        deliberate      approach        to   about 'Do you have the right
Government (KRG). Clauses                 The two main detention           understanding the nature of          guys?'" says Brig. Gen. Joe
detailed rights to oil revenues      facilities operated by the US         insurgencies. He is calling          Anderson, chief of staff for the
and a referendum on disputed         military in Iraq, at Camp Bucca       attention to the issue because       Multi-National Corps Iraq. The
areas, including the strategic       near Basra and Camp Cropper           he thinks it's time to rethink       American military has been
city of Kirkuk. Baghdad has          in Baghdad, have swollen to           holding so many detainees at         releasing as many as 80
since contested KRG efforts to       hold nearly 30,000 detainees.         this phase of the war. As the        detainees per week, and is
attract foreign oil investment       That's      not     the    40,000     commander        of     detention    looking to release more, says
and has failed to deliver the        individuals Army Gen. David           operations, he can provide           General Anderson, who notes
referendum.                          Petraeus allotted for when            input on the release of              that releasing detainees and
     "The problem in Baghdad         American forces began to              detainees through a new board        getting them back to where
is you have a structure, you         implement         the     Baghdad     process, but the commanders in       they belong is "a major
have a prime minister, but you       security plan this spring. But it     the field who send individuals       logistical task."
have nobody to make a                may be too many, says Marine          to him have the ultimate input            "You don't just open the
decision," Mr. Barzani said.         Maj. Gen. Doug Stone, who             on whether someone should be         gates and let them go," he says.
     Relations between the two       oversees detainees for the            held or let go. But some             "It is a deliberate methodical
governments hit an all-time          US-led force.                         commanders are resistant to          operation."
low last month when Iraqi Oil             Holding thousands of             letting detainees go.                     General Petraeus is deeply
Minister Hussein Shahristani         "moderate detainees," marked               Stone,      who       doesn't   concerned about fighting the
said companies dealing with          by green jumpsuits at Camp            participate in field operations,     insurgency in Iraq, both on the
the Kurds will be blacklisted.       Bucca, runs counter to the            recognizes that his perspective      ground and inside the walls of
The bulk of Iraq's oil wealth        notion of winning over a              is from "inside the wire."           detainee facilities, says a senior
lies outside the Kurdish region      population       in    a    classic        Commanders whose troops         military official in Baghdad. In
but its reserves are an attractive   counterinsurgency, he says.           detain insurgents and other          the meantime, holding Iraqis is
pool of future supply. The           General Stone believes many           criminals for activities against     all about "legitimacy," says the
                                                                                                                                          page 13
official.                                growing         within        the   a home, but how, and where?”        the whole government needs to
     "We're not out arresting            American-run facility, an irony          Tens of thousands of           be involved,” said Hamdiya A.
Iraqis [at random], we're out            that has emerged as the facility    returning refugees face similar     Najaf, an official with the Iraqi
detaining individuals for whom           grows.                              uncertainties throughout Iraq,      Ministry of Displacement and
we have reasonable grounds [to                Before      Stone      took    where       the     government’s    Migration. Her ministry is
believe] that they are an                command, there was a riot in        inability to manage the uneven      overloaded     with     property
imperative for security in Iraq,"        March, followed by another in       reverse exodus has left the         dispute cases from Saddam
says the official, who asked not         May, that may have involved         most vulnerable in an uneasy,       Hussein’s       time,       when
to be named due to the                   as many as 10,000 detainees.        potentially explosive limbo.        thousands      were      forcibly
sensitivity of the issue.                There are also a series of               The government’s widely        relocated. “We’re still working
"Everything we do is within              tunnels that have been dug in       publicized plan to run free         on the old problems,” she said.
the law."                                and outside the facility that       buses from Damascus, Syria, to      “We don’t have the mechanism
     After the Abu Ghraib                have been used, in some cases,      Baghdad was suspended after         to solve the new ones.”
prison scandal, the US military          to target guards, Stone says.       just two runs. Thousands of              The brewing housing crisis
transferred many detainees to                                                Sunni refugees get no aid           extends to millions who
Bucca and set about creating a                                               because they fear registering       abandoned their homes but
model prison system.                     New York Times                      with the Shiite-led government.     stayed in Iraq. In Baghdad
     Since arriving in April,            December 20, 2007                   While aid organizations are         alone, more than 300,000
Stone       is      credited       for   Pg. 1                               distributing emergency packets      people left one neighborhood
spearheading an innovative               12. Iraqi Refugees                  that include utensils, blankets     for another, as Sunnis fled to
detainee program in which                Return, And Are                     and food, deeper structural         the west and Shiites to the east,
education,         respect,       and    Stranded                            issues,        like      securing   often moving into recently
vocational        and       religious    By Cara Buckley                     neighborhoods,         supplying    evacuated houses.
programs are a primary focus.                 BAGHDAD          —      The    housing and creating jobs,               Afraah Kadhom’s family
     Stone brought imams from            widow Hashim crossed the            remain unresolved and largely       is among the uprooted. She is
Baghdad to teach detainees,              border into Iraq from Syria at      unaddressed.                        36, and usually shrouded in a
many of whom are illiterate,             dusk last month, heading                 A small fraction of the        billowing black abaya, a
about the teachings of the               homeward as the sun set             millions of refugees who fled       symbol of mourning. Her
Koran with the aim to foster a           behind her and the sky ahead        Iraq have come back. While          father and four brothers were
more moderate outlook among              grew dark.                          the government trumpeted their      killed two years ago when
the population.                               Her dwindling savings had      return as proof of newfound         gunmen broke through the
     For       the    first     time,    bought her family passage           security, migration experts said    doors to the family’s house in
detainees participate in boards          aboard a crowded bus, but           most of them were forced back       Huriya, a neighborhood in
that allow them to better                there was no telling what           by expired visas and depleted       north central Baghdad, and
understand why they are being            awaited her at journey’s end.       savings. Ms. Hashim, for one,       methodically hunted the men
held – key, Stone says, to               The only sure thing was that        pawned her wedding ring and         down. One of her brother’s
getting them to learn how their          she would have to look for a        gold jewelry to stay in Syria,      sons, Mustafa, cradled his
conduct affects their situation.         new home and a job in a city        but came back after her uncle’s     father’s head as the man lay
     Stone says that on his              starved for work and crudely        visa application was denied.        dying. Mustafa, who is 9 now
watch, more than 3,000                   reshaped by war.                         The American military has      and shy, is the oldest surviving
detainees have been released                  Four weeks later, Maha         expressed deep concerns about       male member of the family.
using his methods. So far, he's          Hashim is sharing her uncle’s       the Iraqi government’s ability      “The man of our house,” Ms.
seen a very slight recidivism            musty two-bedroom apartment         to feed and house its returnees,    Kadhom said.
rate – only a few former                 with her four children, sister-in   or manage people who wish to             The family stayed in
detainees were recaptured and            law and four nieces and             reclaim their homes. It is          Huriya until last December,
brought back to the detention            nephews, in the once tortured       widely feared that property         when armed Shiite militiamen
facility.                                Baghdad neighborhood around         disputes or efforts to return to    swept through, routing more
     There are still hard-core           Haifa Street. She has vowed         newly               homogenized     than 100 Sunni families,
insurgents and terrorists living         not to stay long, but has no job    neighborhoods could set off         including Ms. Kadhom’s. Ms.
inside the yards. In contrast to         and cannot afford an apartment      fresh waves of sectarian            Kadhom and her relatives fled
the      green-clad       detainees      of her own. Her husband, a          attacks.                            to Ghazaliya, in western
determined to be more                    policeman, was killed by                 For most Iraqi refugees,       Baghdad, where an imam
moderate, those individuals are          insurgents in mid-2006, and         the trip home is just the           found them an apartment
given red jumpsuits to wear              her old house in southern           beginning of their troubles.        belonging to a Shiite family
and are largely segregated from          Baghdad was destroyed by a          Many return to find their           that had left for eastern
the rest of the detainee                 truck     bomb.      Her     old    homes destroyed or filled with      Baghdad.
population.         Amber-colored        neighborhood, Saydia, remains       squatters, most of them                  The government has aid
jumpsuits indicate the wearer is         one of most dangerous in the        displaced people themselves.        programs that could help Ms.
"changing" to a more moderate            capital.                            But the government committee        Kadhom, but she views them
stance.                                       “I loved Saydia but I can      that decides property disputes      with deep suspicion. To apply
     But Bucca has had its               never go back; it broke my          is charged with hearing only        for the food program, for
problems, giving rise to Stone's         heart,” said Ms. Hashim, 40, a      cases that predate the invasion     example, she would have to
concern that if not done right, a        Sunni. “I need to get a job and     of 2003.                            return to Huriya to unregister
microinsurgency could be                                                          “We urgently need a plan;      the family with the local
                                                                                                                                         page 14
council, but she is desperately     ministers      to    create     an   their business. But the Iraqi        with his arm around the neck
afraid of going there.              emergency plan to rebuild            government said it’s not their       of a cow before dispensing
     Iraq’s internally displaced    homes and tackle recent              business either.”                    with the beast.
are entitled to 150,000 dinars,     property disputes. She says               Mudhafer al-Husaini, Qais            U.S. commanders say
or $123, a month from the           only the prime minister, Nuri        Mizher and Balen Y. Younis           violence across Iraq is at its
government. But Ms. Kadhom          Kamal al-Maliki, has the             contributed reporting.               lowest level since the first year
also      worries    that     the   power to find a solution. But                                             after the 2003 American-led
Shiite-dominated government         she has had trouble even                                                  invasion. They credit the
would punish her if she             reaching him by phone.               Los Angeles Times                    deployment of additional U.S.
applied. Her pride is also a             “Iraqis by nature can be        December 20, 2007                    troops, a freeze in activities by
factor. Ms. Kadhom’s father         nervous, easily agitated,” she       Pg. 1                                a powerful Shiite Muslim
was a sheik. The family was         said. “If they see another           13. Iraq's Sunnis                    militia and the decision of
used to giving alms, not asking     person in their homes, who           Celebrate Holiday With               thousands of Sunni Arab
for them.                           knows what will happen next.         A Renewed Vigor                      tribesmen      to    resist     the
     If the apartment’s owners      All Iraqis have pistols.”            They venture out to mark Eid         insurgents they once backed.
come back, Ms. Kadhom’s                  Local courts offer the only     al-Adha in Baghdad and other              But officials in Baghdad
family will have nowhere to         official means of settling the       cities that are experiencing a       on Wednesday were leaving
go. Three weeks after her           more recent property disputes.       relative calm.                       nothing to chance. Extra
family fled, its house was          But migration officials say that     By Alexandra Zavis and Said          security was deployed with
bombed and the rubble               they are backlogged and move         Rifai, Los Angeles Times Staff       bomb-detecting         equipment
bulldozed away.                     at a glacial pace, and that in       Writers                              around       mosques,        parks,
     “The Shiites who moved         any event their decisions are             BAGHDAD — Thousands             markets and other places where
into the homes near our             rarely       enforced.        The    of Sunni Muslim faithful             people gather for the holiday.
property in Huriya, they will       responsibility for resolving         bowed their heads at dawn                 Though an unusually quiet
kill us if we go back,” she said.   property disputes, those few         Wednesday in mosques around          day, there were reminders that
     The housing situation in       that are addressed, often falls      Baghdad for the first prayers of     militants remain active. A
Baghdad resembles a fraught         to city council members or           the Eid al-Adha holiday -- a         bomb targeting a police patrol
game of musical chairs. Some        tribal sheiks.                       time of renewed hope after           in east Baghdad killed one
displaced people are renting             Dhia’a al-Dien, 42, an          months of reduced bloodshed,         policeman and injured three
refugees’ homes; others moved       engineer, leads the local            yet tinged with sadness for          others, authorities said. And
in secretly or by force. Still      council in the area of Haifa         those not there to share it.         the body of a slain person was
others, like Ms. Kadhom and         Street where Ms. Hashim and               It was the largest turnout      found in Baghdad.
Ms. Hashim, have nowhere to         her family now live. Haifa           in years at Abu Hanifa,                   But the relative calm
move back to, either because        Street used to be one of the         Baghdad's       largest      Sunni   pervading the capital was a
their homes are gone or their       most turbulent neighborhoods         mosque, where worshipers             stark contrast to the holiday's
neighborhoods are unsafe. And       in Baghdad, and its middle           spilled into the yard and the        start last year, when at least 78
as refugees return in greater       class fled as kidnappings and        streets outside. After the           people      were      killed     in
numbers, and find strangers,        mob-style       street    killings   service, long lines formed to        explosions across Iraq and
especially strangers from a         soared.                              buy slices of pastry eaten with      sixteen corpses were recovered
different sect, living in their          When squatters descended        syrup and cream, a traditional       in Baghdad alone, victims of
homes, security gains here          on some apartments, Mr. Dien         holiday breakfast.                   execution-style slayings. On
could be erased.                    said he felt helpless. “They              Relatives long separated        that day, people woke up to
     “If these people become        were displaced from other            by the killing that raged in         hear the news that Saddam
desperate, we’re going back to      neighborhoods. I felt pity for       Baghdad's bloodied streets           Hussein had been hanged,
square one,” said Dr. Said          some of them. Others had             were reunited again.                 spreading bitterness, fear and
Hakki, director of the Iraqi Red    weapons, the invaders. There              "I visited family and           anger among his fellow Sunnis,
Crescent Society. “The Iraqi        was such chaos.”                     friends all over Baghdad,"           even as Shiites fired guns into
government is aware of it and            Mr. Dien said he had been       marveled Sabah Abdul-Wahab,          the air to celebrate the tyrant's
so is General Petraeus’s            able to negotiate the return         a young chef, who spent last         demise.
office,” he said, referring to      process for the handful of           year's      four-day      holiday         Those days seemed a dark,
Gen. David H. Petraeus, the         owners who have reclaimed            confined with his parents and        unpleasant        memory         as
top American commander here.        their buildings. Some of the         siblings in the upmarket             members of Naif Talal's
     Yet the American forces        squatters left; others agreed to     Karada district. "I also went to     extended family gathered at his
here       have      emphasized     pay rent. But hundreds of the        Zawra Park, and the place was        grandfather's home in the Adil
repeatedly that they do not         apartments’ owners have yet to       filled with families having          neighborhood, scene of some
want to get involved in             return, and he fears getting         picnics and just relishing the       of the worst fighting of
property disputes, and the Iraqi    stuck in the middle when they        newfound security."                  Baghdad's       sectarian     war.
government appears to be            do.                                       Later, goats, sheep and         Everyone brought a dish:
ignoring calls from its own              “There’s no one helping us      cows were slaughtered for            sizzling kebabs, an eggplant
ranks to step up the appeals        negotiate the return,” he said,      family feasts commemorating          casserole, carrot pilaf and
process.                            shaking his head. “The               the      prophet      Abraham's      savory stews.
     Ms. Najaf, the migration       Americans are telling us that        willingness to sacrifice his son          "I remember last year, all
official, said she had been         we’ve got to negotiate between       for God. One proud man was           we would talk about is how so
pleading with government            each other, because it’s not         spotted posing for a snapshot        and so was killed or involved
                                                                                                                                      page 15
in a terrorist incident," said       ever increasing prices.              student in the Nineveh             could come from elsewhere,
Talal, a technical surveyor with          "Shirts and pants now cost      provincial capital, Mosul, the     Morrell told reporters at a
a young wife and 18-month-old        more than 40,000 Iraqi dinars,       holiday meant another day shut     Pentagon news conference.
daughter.                            which is about $35," said            up at home by parents fearful           "I can tell you just this
     This year, the conversation     Ahmed Ubaidi, who was                for her safety.                    week, for example, that the
was all politics: U.S. Secretary     forced to buy secondhand for              "I find Eid days are          commanders in Afghanistan
of State Condoleezza Rice's          his wife and children this year.     depressing," she said. "For me     are of the mind that perhaps
visit to Iraq on Tuesday and the     "This is a steep price for us        and other Mosul girls, holidays    they would like more in
United States' difficulties in the   government employees with            and staying at home means          Afghanistan than they have
Middle East.                         salaries not exceeding [about        cleaning and hard housework."      originally requested," he said.
     Life is slowly picking up       $200 per month]."                         Times staff writer Wail            Morrell estimated that the
in Adil, where families venture           In a reminder of the            Alhafith in Baghdad and            need in Afghanistan could
out later at night and markets       persistent differences between       special correspondent Ruaa         increase from about 500 to 600
stay open past sunset. But by 7      the two Muslim sects, Shiites        al-Zarary in Mosul contributed     MRAPs.
p.m., most people are home,          will begin celebrating Eid           to this report along with               The MRAP, with its raised
Talal said. In previous years,       al-Adha on Friday. For Sunnis        special correspondents in          chassis and V-shaped hull,
he would have driven out of          living in Shiite areas, that         Baghdad and Kirkuk.                disperses     the    force     of
town for a picnic and visited        meant subdued gatherings that                                           explosions better than the
the family graves. But the           would not attract the attention                                         Humvee,       the     workhorse
cemetery is in Baghdad's             of their neighbors.                  USA Today                          vehicle of the military.
western         Abu       Ghraib          "Last year's Eid was a very     December 20, 2007                       However, MRAPs are
neighborhood, which remains          mournful event because of            Pg. 10                             heavier and less nimble than
volatile.                            Saddam's execution," said Udai       Troops at Risk -- IEDs in          Humvees. That lack of
     "The      main      setback,    Ali, a Sunni resident in             Iraq                               mobility can limit their use in
though, is that many of our          overwhelmingly Shiite Basra,         14. Military Sets Sights           Afghanistan's steep, rugged
friends and loved ones have          Iraq's second-largest city. "I'm     On At Least 15,000                 terrain.    Still,   improvised
moved abroad," he said.              not defending him, but Eid is        MRAPs                              explosive devices (IEDs) have
"Everybody         has       been    supposed to be an occasion for       By Tom Vanden Brook, USA           taken a heavy toll on U.S.
dispersed, so we miss them and       happiness, and it is considered      Today                              troops there, and commanders
wish that we were able to            a holy event... . No one should           WASHINGTON — The              are asking for more MRAPs,
spend some time with them on         be executed on this day,             Pentagon remains committed         Morrell said.
this occasion."                      regardless of their crime."          to buying at least 15,000 new           "Commanders            there
     In Amiriya, a former                 This year is better, he said.   armored vehicles to withstand      clearly believe that there is use
Baghdad insurgent stronghold,        "The only thing that saddens         roadside bombs and may seek        for these vehicles in numbers
children raced through the           me is that Muslims are not           more based on requests from        even above and beyond what
streets setting off firecrackers     united in celebrating this day.      commanders in Afghanistan,         they originally thought were
and men filled a local mosque        It would have been better and        Pentagon press secretary Geoff     necessary," he said. "So,
-- except for Anas.                  more beautiful if the case was       Morrell said Wednesday.            despite whatever limitations
     "I don't like the way the       the opposite."                            The Pentagon currently        there might be on the vehicles,
preacher speaks," said the man,           Some Shiites, however,          plans to procure at least 15,374   they are proving to be
who did not want his full name       made a point of visiting Sunni       Mine       Resistant     Ambush    extraordinarily         valuable,
published       in    case      of   friends in Basra, where British      Protected (MRAP) vehicles,         lifesaving,        and        the
retribution. "When Al Qaeda          forces last weekend handed full      Morrell said. It has ordered       commanders in Afghanistan
were in control, he used to          responsibility for security to       almost 12,000 MRAPs to date,       seem to want more of them."
preach for jihad [holy war].         Iraqi authorities.                   including orders announced              Tuesday's order for 3,100
Before that, he used to pray for          "The recent transfer of         Tuesday for 3,100 with a total     MRAPs included an order for
Saddam. And now there are the        security authority is also an Eid    value of about $2.7 billion.       second-generation        vehicles
Americans. He goes with the          [celebration] for us," said               Lt.     Gen.       Raymond    capable      of     withstanding
times."                              Aqeel Musawi, a Shiite taxi          Odierno, the No. 2 commander       explosively               formed
     The ebb in violence has         driver, who was making the           in Iraq, said recently that,       penetrators, the most lethal
been a boon to shopkeepers           rounds in the predominantly          because of improving security      IEDs. The Pentagon's MRAP
and market vendors, as Iraqis        Sunni suburb of Zubair.              conditions, forces there might     office will pay $18 million for
turn out in large numbers to              There was greater unease        need fewer MRAPs than earlier      further testing of the Bull, a
buy candy, nuts and clothes for      north of Baghdad, where much         anticipated. Commanders have       thickly armored vehicle.
the holiday.                         of the current fighting is taking    said since the inception of the         The Pentagon anticipates
     "More people are buying         place. The U.S. command says         MRAP program that they             meeting its goal of fielding
and shopping, and we have            insurgents pushed out by the         would revise needs based on        1,525 MRAPs in Iraq by Dec.
made big profits," said              troop buildup in Baghdad and a       battlefield conditions.            20, Morrell said.
Mohammed Faruq, who runs a           tribal rebellion in Anbar                 Last month, Marine Corps
market stall in the oil-rich         province are establishing new        Commandant James Conway
northern city of Kirkuk, where       hide-outs in parts of Diyala,                                           USA Today
                                                                          said the Marines would cut
Rice made a stop Tuesday.            Salahuddin       and     Nineveh                                        December 20, 2007
                                                                          their projected needs from
     But many people are             provinces.                                                              Pg. 1
                                                                          3,700 MRAPs to 2,300.
struggling to cope with the               For Alya Ali, a college              Demand for more MRAPs         15. In Wartime Calls
                                                                                                                                              page 16
Home, The Art Of Being say he almost got his leg blown families.                                                    home "to saying a prayer. …
Positive               off.                                As                             a       result,    the    Once you finish, and feel that
With communicating easier                   The spouse at home               spouse-at-war can remain               your prayer has been heard,
than ever, troops, families walk       doesn't say Junior flunked            involved at home — to hire a           you feel a whole lot better."
fine line                              biology or Sis came home with         lawn service, pay the bills, yell           But because of what
By Rick Hampson, USA                   a nose ring. She doesn't say          at the kids.                           Ender,      the     West     Point
Today                                  someone's been breaking into               Last month, Army Maj.             sociologist, calls "information
     On      the    war's      fifth   the empty houses near the base.       Eric Karis participated by             overload," the home front
Christmas, here's a tableau            She doesn't say she cries in the      phone in his daughter's                sometimes intrudes on the war
Norman Rockwell might have             shower so the kids won't see.         parent-teacher conference in           zone, and vice versa.
appreciated:       the       family         Hayes acknowledges the           Fayetteville, N.C.                          In a 2005 study reported in
gathered by the tree for a new         cost of such survival tactics. In          "If there's a real problem        the September issue of the
holiday ritual — the phone call        a way, she says, perpetual            with the kids, I'll let him step in    journal Military Medicine,
from Iraq.                             discretion "compromises a             and say to them, 'Knock it off         researchers        found      that
     There are the soldier's           marriage. You're almost lying         — listen to your Mom!' " says          home-front issues — including
parents and siblings, spouse           to make sure he's peaceful and        Karis' wife, Margaret.                 family, money and legal
and children, aunts, uncles,           happy."                                    When                    Gwen      problems — worried troops
cousins. As the phone passes                Constant contact allows          Devera-Waden           was     first   stationed in Baghdad more
from hand to hand, everyone            some people to give too much          deployed in 2005, she was able         than combat.
says the same thing. "Are you          information — and forces              to call her husband and kids in             Constant contact with
OK? Stay safe! I love you."            others to give too little. On the     North Carolina once a week;            home "is as much a hindrance
The conversation is intense and        line to Iraq, the old Rockwell        on this tour, the Army major           as a blessing," says Army Maj.
emotional. And it is less than         virtues — openness, honesty,          can call every day. Spc. Brandi        Denise Michel of Lockport,
entirely honest.                       spontaneity — don't always            Palmer, an Army reservist,             N.Y.
     That's because the purpose        apply. Not even at Christmas.         calls Salt Lake City first thing            "It increases the inability
of this call — like tens of                 In Iraq, for the first time in   in the morning to speak to her         to focus here, and doesn't allow
thousands of real ones that will       U.S. military history, the            18-month-old daughter, Camri.          adjustment and consistency on
take place this holiday season         human voice has become the                 "It's so reassuring to hear       the home front," Michel says.
between the home front and the         most important link to home.          her little voice, and hear her         "And it increases depression,
war zone — is not to inform                 Troops      who       invaded    say, 'Mama!' when she hears            worry and frustration in some
and enlighten, but to comfort          Afghanistan         in        2001    my voice," Palmer says. "It's          (who) realize they have no
and support. Few of the callers,       sometimes were out of direct          good to know she still knows           control over the things they
here or there, tell the whole          contact with their families for       who I am."                             once did."
truth all the time.                    weeks or months. Now,                      Each           type          of        Don Williamson, an Army
     Cindy Hayes, 32, is an            servicemembers head to Iraq           communication has its niche.           chaplain in Afghanistan and a
Army wife who lives with her           with laptops, prepaid phone           E-mail is for daily details,           father of four from Missoula,
daughter near Fort Campbell,           cards, software for Internet          minor      news       and     quick    Mont., commanded infantry on
Ky. When she talks with her            phone calls and video cameras.        questions       (Where's        the    an earlier tour in Iraq.
husband, Zack, in Iraq, "I don't            In 2004, according to a          checkbook?).                 Video          "If a soldier does call
tell him anything that would           survey by U.S. Military               conferencing is for special            home       every       day"   and
distract him. If our daughter's        Academy sociologist Morten            occasions — everything from            sometimes twice a day, he
sick, I just say she's sick. I         Ender, one-quarter of the             births to custody hearings.            says, "then spouses simply tell
don't give any details, because        troops in Iraq called family or       Letters are for romance and            their soldiers everything that is
he'll think about that while he's      friends in the States at least        reflection.                            going on — good, bad and
on a mission."                         twice a week, and 10% phoned               The phone is for the most         indifferent."
     Nor does she ask about            daily. Because more troops            immediate        and       intimate         Personally, he says, "when
what he's doing: "I don't want         have cellphones now, Ender            conversations.                         I call home, my wife does not
to know anything. I've heard           says       calling      frequency          "It's a true connection,          need to tell me that our
stuff I shouldn't have heard           probably        has      increased    because you can tell from his          youngest threw a tantrum, or
when he was home. Now, we              significantly among the current       voice how he's really feeling, if      the two oldest are fighting
don't talk about it at all."           force of 160,000.                     he's tired or happy or what,"          constantly."
     Because people separated               They log more than 11.6          says Jessica Kurtzman of Fort               Constant contact also has a
by the Iraq war can                    million minutes a month,              Campbell, whose husband,               downside at home. Families
communicate so quickly and             according to the Defense              Josh, commands an Army                 accustomed to daily phone or
easily, many are careful about         Department.                           company in Samarra.                    Internet contact with Iraq can
what they say, via text                     The military has installed            "One phone call can make          be spooked when the military
messages, e-mail, video and            thousands of phone lines and          everything happening at the            cuts      off     communication
phone — not so much to                 established scores of Internet        time go away, and lift the             because of an enemy attack or
protect military secrets as to         cafes in Iraq. The USO has            spirits," Marine Sgt. Randy            a U.S. casualty.
protect each other. In the             given away more than 2                Morrow says. "Anytime I can                 "When you don't get a call,
military, the mantra is: "Keep it      million prepaid phone cards.          talk to my wife and children on        it's all you think about," says
positive."                             The Freedom Calls Foundation          the phone, it is a great day."         Pat Vardaro of Norwood,
     The spouse at war doesn't         provides 1.5 million free calls a          Army Maj. Christopher             Mass., whose son, Pat Jr., is an
                                       month to servicemembers and           West of Memphis likens a call          Army          officer.      "Your
                                                                                                                                       page 17
imagination runs away from               She never cries on the         about coming home."                  Of Religious Violations
you."                              phone, no matter how she                  What       matters     most,    Suit claims troops pressured to
     This fall, Vardaro went for   feels, and keeps her emotions        however, is not what is said,        back Christian beliefs
three weeks without hearing        in check. "I miss you" is OK,        but that it can be said. Even        By John Milburn, Associated
from his son — and was in the      she says; "I miss you and I          that is no sure thing. Kathy         Press
shower when he finally called.     can't make it without you here"      Quast worries that something              A foundation that has sued
     Nothing hurts worse than      is not.                              will happen to force U.S.            the       military       alleging
missing a call.                          The self-censoring works       commanders to close the phone        widespread       violations     of
     Cindy Hayes was in a          both ways. Hayes says her            lines, as they did last              religious freedom said Tuesday
department store when Zack,        husband broke a rib in Iraq but      Christmas. She stayed home all       that it has evidence showing
an Army staff sergeant who         told her he didn't know how.         day waiting for a call that          that soldiers are pressured to
escorts long-distance convoys,           "How," she wonders, "do        never came.                          adopt fundamentalist Christian
was able to place his first call   you not know how you broke                Some troops will have to        beliefs.
home in weeks.                     your rib?"                           travel long distances or stand            The photos and videos of
     She realized she'd missed           The need to keep it            in long lines to get through.        religious      materials      and
the call only after she was        positive, even if it's not, puts          Cindy Hayes and her             activities are part of a lawsuit
outside in the parking lot and     stress on the spouse who must        daughter will fly to Los             filed by the Military Religious
heard her phone's voice-mail       dissemble.                           Angeles to spend the holiday         Freedom Foundation and Army
beep. She started sobbing.               Tiffany Rodriguez of           with her family. They'll gather      Spc. Jeremy Hall, an atheist,
     Now she sleeps with her       Syracuse, N.Y., says that when       by the tree, her cellphone on        against Maj. Freddy J. Welborn
cellphone under her pillow and     her husband was serving in           the coffee table, waiting for a      and Defense Secretary Robert
has moved the bed closer to the    Iraq she would try to hold her       ring.                                Gates.
window for better reception.       breath and "go numb" to avoid             If Zack calls, it will be            The material was gathered
Like a lot of other military       crying.                              wonderful; if not, Cindy will        from Fort Riley in Kansas, the
wives, she's always checking             Kathy Quast of Rockford,       have to be strong.                   Air Force Academy in
her phone signal.                  Ill., says that when she talks to         "I can't get mad," she says.    Colorado Springs and Fort
     Sometimes, a call only        son Matt, "I try to be up for        "I have to learn to be very          Jackson, S.C.
reinforces the sense of            him. I don't want to cry. But it's   patient."                                 Examples at Fort Riley,
separation. Army Sgt. Neil         so hard not to."                          Tips for calling                where Hall is stationed,
Conant calls his wife, Ashley,           Jenn Marner, an Army                According to interviews         included a display outside his
at Fort Carson, Colo., almost      wife who lives in Colorado           with home-front families and         military     police    battalion's
daily from Baghdad.                Springs, says that when her          servicemembers, here are some        office with a quote from
     She says she loves their      husband was deployed, "I tried       generally accepted do's and          conservative      writer     Ann
talks, but it's almost easier      to be the strong one" and kept       don'ts for phone calls with          Coulter saying, "We should
when he can't call: "If I'm not    problems to herself.                 those in Iraq:                       invade their countries, kill their
talking to him, I'm not missing          That lasted for about a             DO's                            leaders and convert them to
him so much. It's like I don't     month, during which she cried             *Before deployment, work        Christianity."
know he's missing."                herself to sleep each night. Her     out a communication plan.                 Another photo from Fort
     The pitfalls of constant      relationship with her husband             *Rehearse            younger    Riley shows the book A
calling have given rise to a new   suffered. "He wondered what          children before a call, lest they    Politically Incorrect Guide to
telephone etiquette based on a     was going on with me. … You          get tongue-tied, and write           Islam for sale at the post
code that Jaine Darwin, a          have people who cheat, and the       down your own talking points,        exchange.
Massachusetts       psychologist   worst goes through your              in case a call catches you by             "These astonishing and
who has counseled military         mind."                               surprise.                            saddening evidence which our
families, calls "shield your             Her conclusion: "Couples            DON'Ts                          foundation is making public
soldier."                          need to exchange deep,                    *Don't lie, because the         today only further buttress our
     Kristin Henderson is the      heartfelt messages, not just         soldier is coming home               lawsuit," said Mike Weinstein,
author of While They're at         'keep it light.' They must walk      someday.                             an attorney in Albuquerque and
War, a book on deployments.        the line between candor and               *Don't ask, "Are you            president of the foundation,
She says that when her             discretion," she says, "and you      OK?" more than once per              who graduated from the Air
husband, a Navy chaplain, was      know when you've crossed it."        conversation.                        Force Academy in 1977.
in Iraq and Afghanistan, "I was          At Christmas, a single              Lisa Jacobs, with Navy               Fort Riley spokesman Maj.
playing a role. My job was to      telephone call can bear the          Customs in Kuwait, says she          Nathan Bond said the matter
keep his morale up. 'I'm fine —    weight of a long separation —        never says goodbye; it's too         was being referred to post
how are you?' That's all I         between the Kurtzmans at their       final.    When        she    calls   commanders for investigation.
wanted to say."                    family home in Maine and Josh        Stockbridge, Mich., she tells        He said it is the Army's policy
     Hayes knows the drill.        in Samarra; the Karises in           her folks, "I'll talk to you         to accommodate all religious
She'll write an e-mail and,        North Carolina and Eric in           later."                              beliefs to the extent that they
before sending it, spend 15        Baghdad; the Quasts in Illinois                                           don't conflict with military
minutes editing out "everything    and Matt in Taji.                                                         missions.
I think would upset him, things          Kathy Quast knows the          Denver Rocky Mountain News                "We      do     take     this
you can't let him know." Like      direction the conversation will      December 19, 2007                    seriously," he said. If they are
that she was crying as she put     take. "He never talks about          Pg. 44                               true, he added, they "do not
up the Christmas decorations.      war," she says. "He just talks       16. GI Accuses Military              seem in line with the Army
                                                                                                                                            page 18
values of respect."                   Army                                   the Army secretary. It was           Therefore, Defense Secretary
     The lawsuit filed in federal     By Thom Shanker                        driven by the president’s            Robert M. Gates decided on
court in Kansas City, Kan., in             WASHINGTON                  —     approval to expand the Army          holding troops and families in
September        alleges       that   President Bush has approved            by 74,000, including the             Europe until they could move
Welborn threatened to file            what officials are describing as       Reserves, to meet the needs in       directly into their final
military charges against Hall         the        most         significant    Iraq and Afghanistan and to          residences.
and to block his re-enlistment        realignment of the Army since          prepare for future threats.               “It would have cost
for trying to hold a meeting of       World War II, signing off on a              Army       and     Pentagon     millions of additional dollars to
atheists and non- Christians in       plan that will keep more troops        officials involved in the plan       build temporary housing to get
Iraq.                                 than previously envisioned in          made no secret that some             those two brigades back as
     Hall is with the 97th            Europe and add large numbers           members of Congress had              originally scheduled,” said
Military Police Battalion out of      of soldiers to bases in                weighed in heavily to secure         Geoff Morrell, the Pentagon
Fort Riley. He was serving his        Colorado, Georgia and Texas,           additional forces in their states,   press secretary.
second tour in Iraq and has           Army          officials        said    and to assure that the plan to
since returned to the U.S.            Wednesday.                             hold off for several years the
     Weinstein said materials              The basing plan is the final      return of two brigades from          Philadelphia Inquirer
for a Bible studies course from       step in a detailed program for         Germany would not diminish           December 20, 2007
Military Ministry, part of            deciding where a larger Army           the eventual level of forces to      18. Army To Create Six
Campus Crusade for Christ             will live and train in the years       be based in their areas.             Brigades For Bases In
International, teach soldiers         ahead, as it grows by 65,000                Fort Carson, Colo.; Fort        U.S.
that the U.S. military and            active-duty       soldiers.       It   Stewart, Ga.; and Fort Bliss,        The move is part of a plan to
government are instruments to         significantly     changes       the    Tex., will each receive two          increase the size of the force by
spread the word of God. The           military’s footprint from before       additional combat brigades.          74,000 soldiers by 2010.
material was found at Fort            the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001,         Additional support brigades          By Lolita C. Baldor,
Jackson, S.C., he said.               and alters a global basing plan        will be based at Schofield           Associated Press
     A     spokeswoman          for   adopted with great fanfare by          Barracks,       Hawaii;      Fort         WASHINGTON--             The
Campus Crusade for Christ             the Pentagon in 2004.                  Leonard Wood, Mo.; Fort Bliss        Pentagon will send six new
said ministry officials hadn't             The revised plan freezes          and Fort Hood, Tex.; Fort            combat brigades to bases in
had a chance to review the            previous orders for rapidly            Lewis, Wash.; and Fort Polk,         Texas, Georgia and Colorado
evidence and declined to              reducing Army forces in                La.                                  in the coming years as part of
comment.                              Europe by two heavy brigades                “The Army is undergoing         an extensive plan to enlarge the
     The lawsuit also alleges         scheduled to come home from            the largest transformational         Army.
that Gates permits a military         Germany at least two years             change since 1942,” General               As the Army moves to
culture in which officers are         sooner than under the new              Cody said, as a full one-third       grow by 74,000 soldiers by
encouraged to pressure soldiers       program. Now, one brigade              of the Army will be based at         2010,      officials   yesterday
to     adopt     and      espouse     will remain in Germany until           different stations by 2011.          mapped out decisions to add
fundamentalist          Christian     2012 and the other until 2013.              The active-duty Army            the combat brigades and eight
beliefs, and allows a culture              Even after the return of          end-strength is scheduled to         support units around the
that sanctions activities by          those two brigades to the              reach 547,000 by then, as the        country, as well an agreement
Christian organizations.              United States, two brigades            Army’s fighting force will           to delay moving two brigades
     It also says the military        will remain in Europe, one in          grow to 48 brigade combat            out     of     Germany       until
permits      proselytizing      by    Germany and one in Italy,              teams from 33 in 2003.               2012-2013. The overall effort
soldiers,                tolerates    along with a large contingent               New construction for            would cost $66.4 billion across
anti-Semitism and the placing         of     service    and       support    housing, headquarters and            743     military     construction
of religious symbols on               personnel. Altogether, the             motor pools — as well as             projects through 2013.
military equipment, and allows        Army will maintain more than           health care and child care                Fort Bliss in Texas, Fort
the use of military e-mail            37,000 troops on the continent.        centers — will top $66.4             Carson in Colorado, and Fort
accounts to send religious                 The commitment to keep            billion by 2013, General Cody        Stewart in Georgia will be big
rhetoric.                             about 10,000 extra troops in           said, emphasizing that the           winners, with each getting two
     The Pentagon has said that       Europe above the level of              Army was paying special              new combat brigades. But
the military values and respects      previous plans was advocated           attention to quality-of-life         every Army installation across
religious freedoms but that           as necessary to sustain training       issues for the all-volunteer         the country will see more
accommodating            religious    and other exercises with               force. He said that under the        soldiers - anywhere from a few
practices should not interfere        foreign militaries, and as a           new plan, combat brigades            to thousands.
with unit cohesion, readiness,        hedge      against      risks    to    would live alongside and train            A brigade is generally
standards or discipline.              American security.                     with the support, sustainment        about 3,500 soldiers, but its
                                           The full basing plan for          and intelligence units with          size can vary depending on the
                                      the United States, Europe and          which they would go to war.          type of unit. Fort Stewart will
New York Times                        South Korea was presented to                One compelling argument         lose one of its existing heavy
December 20, 2007                     Mr. Bush and Vice President            for keeping more troops in           brigades, but will have a net
Pg. 18                                Dick Cheney in the Oval                Germany          longer      than    gain of nearly 4,000 troops.
17. President Approves                Office on Monday by Gen.               previously planned is that their          Gen. Richard Cody, the
Realignment Of The                    Richard Cody, the Army vice            new housing was not yet ready        Army vice chief of staff, said
                                      chief of staff, and Pete Geren,        at bases in the United States.       the Army took "a hard look at
                                                                                                                                        page 19
where we could station this          Pg. 3                                one of them must live the           Infantry Division, gave the
force ... and give them a            19. Nationline                       Army values and be leaders of       green light for a murder trial.
quality of life that is equal to        President    Bush     visits      character.     The    institution        Shore, 25, who returned
their quality of service to the      wounded troops at Walter Reed        depends on them."                   from a 15-month tour of Iraq in
nation."                             Army Medical Center in                    Soldiers who take the          October,      maintained       his
     Cody also echoed recent         Washington.                          exams are warned that cheating      innocence      and     expressed
statements        by       Defense                                        is also a crime under the           disappointment in the Army's
Secretary Robert Gates saying                                             Uniformed Code of Military          decision. He said he had hoped
that as the Army grew, the           Boston Globe                         Justice. But the Globe reported     to have the case wrapped up by
Pentagon could eventually            December 20, 2007                    that no soldier has been            now and go on with life,
shorten deployment times from        20. General Orders                   prosecuted nor has the Army         pursuing a career in the Army.
15 months back to 12 months.         Review Of Cheating                   implemented a series of             Now, just a week before
Gates has said it was not likely     Move follows reports on testing      anti-cheating measures a panel      Christmas, the news was hard
to happen until late next year.      By Bryan Bender, Globe Staff         of       testing      specialists   to take.
     Reducing         deployments         WASHINGTON - The                recommended as early as 2001.            "I guess they're playing
will depend on how fast the          four-star general in charge of            Spokesmen for Wallace          hardball," he said by telephone
Army can grow and how                Army training has ordered a          could not be immediately            from      his    apartment      in
quickly the number of troops         review to determine how many         reached to determine who will       Honolulu.
deployed can be decreased,           soldiers may have cheated on         conduct the review ordered by            Shore's father's reaction
Cody said. There are now             online      tests     to    obtain   Wallace and when it will be         was much stronger.
158,000 U.S. troops in Iraq,         promotion points - and to            completed.                               "I'm mad as hell," said
but that is expected to drop         identify the steps the military           Globe        correspondent     Brian Shore, who lives in
over the next six months as the      must take to secure the              Kevin Baron contributed to this     Lawrenceville.       "I      love
five brigades sent in early this     compromised courses, the             report.                             America, but the Army is not
year for the troop buildup           Army said in a statement                                                 part of my country anymore.
depart and are not replaced.         yesterday.                                                               We had faith in the system."
     Cody said the decision to                                            Atlanta Journal-Constitution             Shore and his platoon
                                          The Dec. 16 directive from
keep two brigades in Germany                                              December 20, 2007                   sergeant, Sgt. 1st Class Trey A.
                                     General William S. Wallace,
for several more years was                                                Pg. 1                               Corrales of San Antonio, were
                                     chief of the Training and
based on requests from               Doctrine Command in Fort             21. GI's Hopes Appear               accused of killing an Iraqi
commanders in Europe to              Monroe, Va., came the same           Dashed                              detainee during a nighttime
maintain troop levels there, and     day as a Globe investigation         Georgian faces murder trial in      raid last June in a village near
the need to ensure that troops       revealed that officials in charge    Iraq death                          the northern Iraqi city of
returning to the United States       of the Army Correspondence           By Moni Basu, Atlanta               Kirkuk.
had proper housing and other         Course Program did nothing           Journal-Constitution                     At the Article 32 hearing
facilities at their new base.        even though they had evidence              The good news that a          in October, Shore told the
     One brigade in Germany          soldiers were obtaining the          Winder soldier received last        investigating     officer     that
would move to Fort Bliss in          answers to the computerized          month soured this week as the       Corrales ordered him to
2012, and a second brigade           tests since at least 1999.           Army decided to press ahead         "finish" the Iraqi man, who
would move from Germany to                The Globe found that            with murder charges.                was bleeding and down on the
White Sands Missile Range in         thousands of soldiers have                 In the case against Spc.      ground. Shore said he fired his
New Mexico in 2013.                  been trading copies of the tests     Christopher P. Shore, the Army      rifle but intentionally missed
     The massive plan will           and answer keys through a            downgraded its initial charge       the man and the next day
affect 304 Army installations,       growing number of Internet           of premeditated murder of an        reported the incident to his
including 380,000 soldiers and       sites to gain valuable points for    Iraqi detainee to murder in the     supervisors.
family         members.        The   promotion to sergeant, the first     third degree, which amounts to           Corrales waived his right
construction projects include        rank in the noncommissioned          a manslaughter charge in the        to an Article 32 hearing. Maj.
69,000 barracks spaces, 4,100        officer corps. Reservists and        civilian world. The charge          Gary Johnson, the attorney for
family housing units, and 66         National Guard troops who            carries a maximum penalty of        Shore's brigade, said no
child centers.                       complete the tests are awarded       life in prison.                     decision has been made on
     Plans are to increase the       retirement points that help                The decision goes against     Corrales yet.
number of the active-duty            determine future benefits.           the recommendation made by               Lt. Col. Raul Gonzalez,
Army, Army Guard and Army                 Wallace        ordered    the   an investigating officer who        the Article 32 investigating
Reserve by 74,000 overall. In        review      on       Sunday    "to   presided over an Article 32         officer, recommended that the
October, top Army leaders said       determine the depth of the           hearing, the equivalent of a        charges against Shore be
they planned to move faster to       problem and take action,"            grand jury investigation. His       reduced to aggravated assault.
enlarge the force - adding the       according         to     Wallace's   report, released in November,            Gonzalez said no evidence
full 74,000 soldiers by 2010,        statement.                           determined      the    evidence     existed that linked the shots
two      years      sooner    than        "Cheating violates our          against Shore did not warrant       fired by Shore to the detainee's
originally planned.                  core Army values," the general       referral of the case to a           death.      He      said      that
                                     said. "The backbone of our           court-martial.                      "overwhelming          evidence"
                                     Army is our noncommissioned                But on Tuesday, Maj. Gen.     showed that Corrales "did with
USA Today                                                                 Benjamin Mixon, commander           intent to kill, shoot at and hit
                                     officers corps. Each and every
December 20, 2007                                                         of the Hawaii-based 25th            the detainee multiple times
                                                                                                                                      page 20
with an M-4 rifle."                Army outpost in Ramadi, in            than those of the two men who           What the soldier's father,
     However, in a memo            western Iraq. The soldiers'           died.                              Chris, would learn about his
issued to Mixon, the 25th          families initially were told the            According     to    Army     son's final days would lead the
Infantry Division commander,       men were killed by enemy fire.        officials    in    April,   unit   retired       Special       Forces
earlier this week, the staff            In response to a Freedom         commanders in Iraq did not at      commando, who teaches at
judge advocate, Lt. Col. Martin    of Information request by the         first suspect the two men were     Fort Bragg, to take on the very
Sims, said that the murder         Associated Press, the military        killed by U.S. forces, but an      institution he's spent his life
charge "is warranted by the        released      its      subsequent     investigation by the unit          serving - and ultimately prompt
evidence indicated in the report   investigation into the deaths.        concluded that may have been       an investigation by the Army
of the investigation."             The families were told in             the case.                          Inspector General's office.
     Mixon approved the memo       March that the soldiers may                 The Army came under               The documents, obtained
on Monday. The revised             have been killed by their             criticism over its handling of     by Freedom of Information Act
charge was issued the next day.    comrades.                             the death of pro football player   requests filed by Chris
     Shore's attorney, Michael          The investigation found          Pat Tillman, who was killed in     Scheuerman, reveal a troubled
Waddington of Augusta, said        that the two were killed by tank      April 2004 by fellow U.S.          soldier kept in Iraq despite
he didn't understand how Sims      fire from a second Army               troops in Afghanistan.             repeated signs he was going to
could justify a murder charge,     outpost      after      insurgents          Though dozens of soldiers    kill himself, including placing
based on the Article 32 report.    engaged both outposts from            knew quickly that Tillman had      the muzzle of his weapon in his
     "In a case like this, where   numerous locations. The tank          been killed by Americans, the      mouth multiple times.
the Article 32 report was so       gunner      and       commander       Army said initially that he was         Jason Scheuerman's story -
strong and well documented, it     thought they were taking on           killed by enemy gunfire when       pieced together with interviews
is extraordinarily rare for the    the enemy position, the               he led his team to help another    and      information     in    the
Army to contradict it,"            investigation concluded.              group of ambushed soldiers. It     documents - demonstrates how
Waddington said.                        The deaths were not a            was five weeks before his          he was failed by the very
     "The evidence has not         result       of       negligence,     family was told the truth; the     support system that was
changed," he said. "They           investigators said. Instead, "a       Army has blamed the delay on       supposed to protect him. In his
couldn't convince Colonel          series of decisions and actions       procedural mistakes.               case, a psychologist told his
Gonzalez that Shore murdered       by both the tank crews and                                               commanders to send him back
the detainee. Now they're          their      command,           taken                                      to his unit because he was
going to try to convince 12        collectively, fell short of the       Tampa Tribune                      capable of feigning mental
people that he did. I'm            high expectations we have of          December 20, 2007                  illness to get out of the Army.
disappointed, but I'm not          our soldiers and their leaders."      23. Parents Want Army                   He is not alone. At least
scared."                           It was not clear whether the          Officials Held                     152 U.S. troops have taken
     Johnson,     the    brigade   Army reprimanded the tank             Accountable In Son's               their own lives in Iraq and
attorney, said Mixon was not       crews and their command.              Suicide                            Afghanistan since the two wars
bound by the investigating              The report said their            By Kimberly Hefling,               started, contributing to the
officer's report. The Article 32   decisions and actions "directly       Associated Press                   Army's highest suicide rate in
recommendation, he said, was       created the conditions which               SANFORD, N.C. - Pfc.          26 years of keeping track. For
just that.                         caused this accident, including       Jason Scheuerman nailed a          the grieving parents, the
     Johnson said Shore will       deficiencies      in      training,   suicide note to his barracks       answers don't come easily or
probably be arraigned the first    manning, mission preparation,         closet in Iraq, stepped inside     quickly.
or second week of January,         target validation procedures,         and shot himself.                       For Jason Scheuerman,
after which a trial date will be   and tactical level friendly force          "Maybe finaly I can get       death came on July 30, 2005,
set.                               marking that, if addressed and        some      peace,"    said    the   around 5:30 p.m., about 45
                                   corrected, can limit fratricide       20-year-old,         misspelling   minutes after his first sergeant
                                   such as this in the future."          "finally" but writing in a neat    told the teary-eyed private that
Washington Post                         The author of the report,                                           if    he     was     intentionally
December 20, 2007                                                        hand.
                                   whose name was omitted, said               His parents didn't find out   misbehaving so he could leave
Pg. 11                             all parties acted prudently and                                          the Army, he would go to jail
22. Inquiry Cites                                                        about the note for well over a
                                   genuinely, and tried to fire at       year, and then only when it        where he would be abused.
Friendly Fire In Deaths            Army          targets.          The   showed up in a government               When the call came out
Of Two Soldiers                    recommendations were blacked          envelope in his father's rural     over the unit's radios that there
By Associated Press                out in the copy sent to the           North Carolina mailbox.            had been a death, one soldier
     Two U.S. soldiers who         Associated Press.                          The one-page missive was      later would tell investigators he
died in Iraq in February were           An Army spokeswoman,             among hundreds of pages of         suspected it was Scheuerman.
killed by "friendly fire,"         Maj. Anne Edgecomb, said she          documents the soldier's family          A Natural Path To The
according to a military            could not say whether anyone          obtained and shared with The       Military
investigation, which cited poor    was reprimanded. "The fact            Associated Press after battling         Scheuerman spent his
training and planning.             that these soldiers died as a         a military bureaucracy they        early years on military posts
     Spec. Alan E. McPeek, 20,     result of fratricide in no way        feel didn't want to answer their   playing GI Joe. The middle
of Tucson and Pvt. Matthew         diminishes their sacrifice," she      questions, especially this: Why    child, he divided his time after
Zeimer, 18, of Glendive,           said.                                 did Jason Scheuerman have to       his parents' divorce between
Mont., were killed Feb. 2 at an         Most names were also             die?                               his     mother's      house     in
                                   blacked out in the report, other                                         Lynchburg, Va., and his
                                                                                                                                       page 21
father's in North Carolina           of touch with reality; in a          not meet the criteria for a        was already too late," he said.
where he went to high school.        world all his own," his platoon      mental health disorder, and that        Scheuerman's body was
     Scheuerman liked military       sergeant said in a report.           a screening test he had taken      discovered in a closet.
history and writing, but                  Soldier Said Goodbye To         indicated he was exaggerating.          'My Worst Fears Were
decided college wasn't for him.      Mother                               He told Scheuerman's leaders       Realized'
After a short stint in                    An Army chaplain who            he was "capable of claiming             Initially,             Jason
landscaping, he followed what        met with him about a month           mental illness in order to         Scheuerman's father said he
seemed an almost natural path        before he died said his mood         manipulate his command."           trusted the Army would
into the military. His mother        had "drastically changed." He             Still, when he sent           investigate his son's death and
had spent a year in the Army,        said Scheuerman demonstrated         Scheuerman back to his             take action.
and his father, a physician's        disturbing behavior by "sitting      barracks, he told the private's         "I did not want to believe
assistant, retired as an Army        with his weapon between his          leaders that if Scheuerman         that it was as bad as I thought it
master sergeant. One of his two      legs and bobbing his head on         claimed to be depressed, to        was, so I chose not to make
brothers also joined and is now      the     muzzle."      He      told   take      it    seriously.   He    hasty      judgments,"      Chris
in Afghanistan.                      Scheuerman's leaders to have         recommended          Scheuerman    Scheuerman said from his
     He enlisted in 2004 and         his rifle and ammunition             sleep in an area where he could    kitchen table. "I chose to
was sent to Iraq from Fort           magazine "taken from him             be watched, that most of his       systematically try to get all the
Benning, Ga., in January 2005        immediately" and for him to          personal      belongings    and    information that I could and
with the 3rd Infantry Division.      undergo a mental health              privileges be taken away for       once I received all the
On leave a few months later,         evaluation.                          his safety.                        information I could, my worst
Scheuerman told his father he             Scheuerman checked on a              The evaluation "created in    fears were realized."
was having a hard time with          mental health questionnaire          the leaders' minds the idea that        Each       document      that
combat and killing people.           that he had thoughts about           the soldier was a malingerer all   arrived brought more pain.
     "I've seen war," his father     killing himself, was uptight,        along," an officer from his unit        When a copy of his son's
said. "I told him that a lot of      anxious and depressed, had           evaluating the case as part of a   suicide       note      appeared,
what he was seeing was               feelings of hopelessness and         post-suicide investigation later   Scheuerman        broke     down
normal. That we all feel it.         despair, felt guilty and was         would determine.                   crying. In the note, his son said
That we're all afraid."              having work problems. But in              Shortly        after    the   he wanted to say goodbye, but
     Back in Iraq, things didn't     person, the psychologist said,       psychologist's     determination   his ability to contact the family
improve. One soldier - whose         he denied having thoughts of         and a few weeks before he          was      taken     away      "like
name was blacked out on the          suicide.                             died, Scheuerman's Internet        everything else." He said he'd
documents like most others -              Less than a week later,         and phone communication            brought dishonor on his family
said he saw Jason put the            Scheuerman's mother got an           were shut off. His parents did     and his Army unit.
muzzle of his rifle in his           e-mail from her son telling her      not hear from him again.                "I know you think I'm a
mouth, and told investigators        goodbye. She contacted a                  The night before he shot      coward for this but in the face
other soldiers had seen him do       family support official at Fort      himself, his rifle - which had     of existing as I am now, I have
something similar.                   Benning and later received a         been returned to him - was         no other choice," Scheuerman
     "He said it was a joke," the    call saying her son had been         found in a Humvee. The next        wrote. "As the 1st Sgt said all I
soldier said. "He said he had        checked and was fine. Later,         morning, one soldier said          have to look forward to is a
thought about it before but          her son sent her an instant          Scheuerman "was quiet and          butt-buddy in jail, not much of
didn't have a plan to do it."        message and said her phone           seemed depressed. He said he       a future."
     Scheuerman               was    call had made things worse.          had a rough night and didn't            Chris Scheuerman wants
reprimanded for not bathing or            The same day as her call,       sleep well."                       to see a more thorough
shaving and spending too much        Scheuerman's            company           Later that day, he was        investigation, and some of his
time playing video games. He         commander requested a mental         punished again and given 14        son's leaders punished -
misplaced a radio and didn't         evaluation, noting that the          days of extra duty.                perhaps       even     criminally
wear parts of his uniform.           private was a "good soldier"              Scheuerman had tears in       charged - and the psychologist
Sometimes, Scheuerman was            but       displays       "distant,   his eyes, but one of his           brought before a medical peer
singled out for punishment,          depression like symptoms."           noncommissioned officers said      review committee. "We will
one soldier told an investigator.         Visiting       with       the   he was surprisingly calm           not see a statistical decrease in
"I don't know why," the soldier      psychologist for the second          before he went to his room,        Army suicides until the Army
said.     Another     said     his   time, Scheuerman said he             weapon in hand.                    gets serious about holding
noncommissioned          officers    sometimes saw other people on             "I told him to go upstairs    people accountable when they
were yelling at him "more days       guard duty that other soldiers       and clean his gear and change      do not do what they are trained
then not."                           do not see, suggesting he was        his uniform," his squad leader     to do," he said.
     His platoon sergeant said       hallucinating. And he said that      told investigators. "I was so
in a disciplinary note that          if he wasn't diagnosed as            angry with him, I went outside
Scheuerman's       actions    put    having a mental problem, he          to smoke and talk to someone       San Diego Union-Tribune
everyone in danger. "If you          was going to be in trouble with      so I didn't blow up."              December 20, 2007
continue on your present             his leader. Yet he again denied           Less than an hour later, he   Pg. 1
course of action, you may end        being suicidal, the psychologist     said he heard someone yelling      24. You Know The Drill
up in a body bag," he wrote.         reported.                            that Scheuerman had done           Abuse of Marine recruits
     As he was punished, "it              The            psychologist     something.                         officially banned, but ...
appeared as though he was out        determined Scheuerman did                 "At that point, I knew I      By Steve Liewer and Rick
                                                                                                                                         page 22
Rogers, Staff Writers                    Glass and other former           Lasica, a spokeswoman for the       recalled the master sergeant,
     Almost every week, drill       drill instructors contend that        San Diego depot.                    who now trains drill instructors
instructors greet dozens of         recruit abuse is common                    Many       of    the   rules   at the San Diego depot. “When
young men arriving at the           despite the Marine Corps'             governing operations at the         I became a drill instructor, I
Marine Corps Recruit Depot in       official disapproval of it.           Corps' two boot camps               found out that most of the
San Diego by screaming orders            “There are always ways to        stemmed from two highly             things that happened to me
in their faces.                     circumvent the (rules),” Glass        publicized cases:                   were outside the (rules) – even
     Over the next 13 weeks,        testified. “Drill instructors do it        A 1956 exercise at the         at the time.”
the recruits will endure a          every day.”                           Marines' training depot at                A colonel who rose from
training ritual that's part              Often, he said, those            Parris Island, S.C., in which six   the enlisted ranks said hitting
exercise, part drill, part          actions       included       taking   recruits drowned while under        recruits was routine when he
motivation and part hazing.         advantage of loopholes that           the orders of drunken drill         went through boot camp in
The process will break some         allow drill instructors to touch      instructors.                        1980. He said his drill
and drive most to tears.            recruits when adjusting their              A 1975 incident at the San     instructor struck him several
     Marine boot camp, widely       equipment or correcting their         Diego depot in which a slow         times, usually as an example to
regarded as the most grueling       positions and movements.              recruit was beaten to death         others.
among the military branches, is          There's a big gap between        with pugil sticks while a drill           “It was just accepted. I
designed to mold undisciplined      the standards drawn up by             instructor watched.                 saw other Marines, the same
recruits into the world's finest    desk-bound officers and what               The cases prompted major       thing happened to them,” the
warriors.                           works on the drill field and in       revisions and caused the            colonel testified. “For training,
     “The more we sweat in          the recruit barracks, said Al         Marine Corps to boost officers'     it didn't seem like that big of a
peacetime, the less we bleed in     Batinga, a Marine drill               supervision of recruit training.    deal. After graduation, you
combat,” said Bill Paxton of        instructor in the 1970s.              Today, sergeants studying to        look back and see these things
Santee, a retired Marine                 “It is not really based in       be drill instructors spend 116      weren't supposed to happen.”
sergeant major, repeating an        reality,” said Batinga, now a         hours in classrooms studying              But not all drill instructors
oft-repeated training refrain.      corporate consultant in Orange        regulations.                        found the regulations vague.
“We don't want 'em to make it       County.        “It's    like     an        Yet recruit abuse persists.          Nick Popaditch of Linda
no softer.”                         administrator telling a football           In the past four years, at     Vista, a former gunnery
     But      experience      and   team how to win games.”               least 44 drill instructors have     sergeant, said the rules against
scandal have shown that the              The Corps' rules are too         been         disciplined      for   mistreating      recruits     were
Corps' tough-love approach to       restrictive for Marines destined      misconduct against recruits at      strong and clear when he
training can turn troublesome       for combat, said David Payne,         the San Diego depot, according      served as a drill instructor at
when the toughness runs             a former drill instructor who         to statistics provided by the       the San Diego depot in the late
roughshod over the love.            trained as many as 600 recruits       Corps.                              1990s.
     In February, the San Diego     at the San Diego depot from                Disciplinary         actions         “It's very black and white.
depot's commanders dismissed        1996 to 1999.                         jumped markedly after Brig.         You very definitely ... know
four drill instructors after what        “It's impossible to follow       Gen. Angela Salinas took            what's right and what's wrong,”
prosecutors described as “two       all the regulations and still turn    command of the base last year.      said Popaditch, who left the
months of terror” for recruits      out the type of trained Marine        In 2005, six drill instructors      Marine Corps after losing an
from Platoon 2167. Several          the service expects, especially       were punished for misconduct.       eye when insurgents ambushed
officers       charged       with   in time of war,” said Payne,          The number was 21 in 2006           his tank in Fallujah, Iraq, in
overseeing or investigating the     now a production worker for           and 17 this year.                   2004.
alleged cruelty also were           The San Diego Union-Tribune.               The        testimony      of         More than the other
relieved of their positions.             As a drill instructor, he        prospective jurors at Wendel's      services, the Corps has a
     The platoon's most junior      used an unwritten rule of             court-martial indicated that        reputation of seeking recruits
drill instructor, Sgt. Jerrod       thumb to guide his training: “If      recruit abuse has taken place       with exceptional physical
Glass, was sentenced last           you can explain the training          over the years. Six of the 13       abilities who yearn to prove
month to six months in prison       value of something, it's legal. If    Marines considered for the          themselves as elite fighters. It
and a dishonorable discharge        you can't, it probably isn't.”        panel – all officers or senior      prefers       to     focus      on
for mistreating 23 recruits.             For at least half a century      enlisted Marines whose names        expeditionary combat, while
Witnesses testified that he         and through a half-dozen wars,        weren't made public – said they     the Army trains its men and
struck his men with tent poles,     the Marines have formally             were abused during boot camp        women to not only fight battles
hit them with flashlights and       barred recruit abuse. Drill           years ago. All of them said the     but also take on long-term
forced them to drink water          instructors can't strike recruits,    misconduct        was     neither   reconstruction and security
until they vomited.                 for example. They can't starve        reported nor punished.              work in war zones.
     Sgt. Brian Wendel, the         them or give punishment                    A master sergeant said               The point of boot camp is
platoon's No.2 drill instructor,    exercises lasting more than           drill instructors whipped him       to toughen recruits by “slinging
received a demotion and a           eight minutes at a time. They         across the face with a rifle,       stress” so they're more
career-ending reprimand this        can't use degrading language,         threw him to the ground and         prepared to deal with war,
week for not reporting Glass'       nicknames or profanity against        kicked him in the chest at          Popaditch said. A drill
abuse. The senior drill             recruits.                             Parris Island on separate           instructor should instill fear
instructor,      Sgt.      Robert        “The Marine Corps has no         occasions in 1989.                  without doing harm, he added.
Hankins, is scheduled for           tolerance of drill-instructor              “At the time, I did not feel         “Just beating on somebody
court-martial next month.           misconduct,” said Maj. Kristen        like I was being abused,”           – it's not going to be scary the
                                                                                                                                         page 23
second time you do it,”               USA Today                            form. "I wanted to serve my          Hoagland, worked for years as
Popaditch said. “You threaten         December 20, 2007                    country," he said. "I figured it     a paramedic and is a skilled
a lot. Your bark is always            Pg. 6                                was the right thing to do."          carpenter. He made their
worse than your bite.”                25. Indiana Brothers                      Josh, who admits to being       home's kitchen cabinets from
      There's          widespread     Say It's Their Turn To               the worst loser in the family,       the wood of ash trees grown on
agreement that the Marine                                                  said brotherly competition had       their property. And he has
Corps has gradually become
                                      Serve Country                        nothing to do with his               found some unusual ways to
                                      Stoppenhagen trio to leave
clearer in defining recruit                                                enlistment a month after Zach.       teach his sons the skills he's
                                      behind Mom, Dad for tours of
abuse and more stringent in                                                He'd been thinking about the         picked up over the years.
                                      duty in Iraq
banning it, partly in response to                                          Guard. Zach's enlistment, he              A couple of years ago Stan
                                      By Robert King, The
each recruit-abuse crisis.                                                 said, simply confirmed his own       bought an old house and made
                                      Indianapolis Star
      Tom Richards of Rancho                                               choice.                              a deal with Zach and Josh: If
                                            DECATUR, Ind. — Tami
Bernardo said recruit abuse                                                     More laid-back, Jake has        they remodeled it, he would
                                      and Stan Stoppenhagen have
wasn't allowed in his day,                                                 never had that competitive           sell it and split the proceeds
                                      had a house full of boys for
either, but that drill instructors                                         streak, which, along with his        with them. They stripped it
                                      more than 20 years. They've
could get away with more in                                                personality, made his decision       down to the studs and went to
                                      stepped over toy soldiers on
those days because they had far                                            to enlist all the more shocking      work, eventually turning a nice
                                      the living room floor and
less supervision.                                                          to his parents. While his big        profit. In the same manner, he
                                      battled the Sunday-morning
      “I know people who                                                   brothers jostled for supremacy       bought Zach two go-carts for
                                      wiggles at church.
absolutely believed corporal                                               on the backyard basketball           Christmas one year. Neither of
                                            In       January,        the
punishment was necessary.                                                  court, he became best friends        which could run.
                                      Stoppenhagen boys will be
There are some who still do,”                                              with the girl next door. She and          Stan said he knew Zach
                                      gone. Josh, Zach and Jake are
said Richards, who served 28                                               Jake would sell lemonade and         would get them up and
                                      going to war. They are among
years in the Marine Corps and                                              night crawlers out by the road.      running, which he eventually
                                      3,400 Indiana National Guard
worked as a drill instructor in                                                 Army media relations Maj.       did. "It made them more fun to
                                      soldiers who will be deploying
the early 1970s.                                                           Anne Edgecomb said having            ride," Stan said.
                                      to Iraq next month.
      He said practices such as                                            three brothers in one combat              The boys gained a greater
                                            As much as she worries
slapping recruits or putting                                               theater together is at least         appreciation for their dad five
                                      about their safety, Tami
buckets over their heads and                                               "uncommon."                          years ago, when he was nearly
                                      Stoppenhagen draws some
banging on them with sticks                                                     Although in the same            killed in a car accident.
                                      comfort in knowing all three
are no longer allowed.                                                     brigade, the trio will not serve     Another car ran a stop sign and
                                      sons are going.
      “We don't want to                                                    side by side. And that could         smashed into his truck, leaving
                                            "If they are together," she
mollycoddle them,” Richards                                                challenge their mother's desire      him with a broken neck and
                                      said, "they will all check on
said. “We still should treat                                               to see them look out for one         other injuries.
                                      each other, and they will look
them with a basic level of                                                 other.                                    So the Stoppenhagens say
                                      out for each other."
human dignity. We can do that                                                   Josh will be working at         they recognize the frailty of
                                            Jake, the youngest at 19,
without putting them in                                                    brigade headquarters, handling       life, even far from a combat
                                      clings to a verse from the
garbage cans or pushing them                                               personnel        issues        and   zone.
                                      Bible, Matthew 17:20, in
into lockers.”                                                             monitoring, as best he can, his           The boys say they think
                                      which Jesus talks about how
      Paxton,      the      retired                                        brothers' whereabouts. Zach          sometimes about what their
                                      the power of faith can move
sergeant major from Santee,                                                will be a medic with the             parents might do if things go
                                      mountains. He is counting on
fears that punishing drill                                                 brigade commander's security         badly for the Stoppenhagens.
                                      his faith to bring all three
instructors might dissuade                                                 team. Jake will be a medic with      But never for too long. This is,
                                      brothers home safely.
them from doing their jobs.                                                an infantry unit, destination        after all, a family that believes
                                            "There is serious power in
      “We're not proud to know                                             unknown.                             resolutely in the war as a noble
                                      prayer," he said. "It doesn't just
that we're court-martialing our                                                 The boys speak reverently       cause.
                                      make you feel good. But if you
own drill instructors, or that                                             of their parents, who have been           "We       all   volunteered.
                                      want something to happen,
we're putting Marines in                                                   married 27 years.                    Nobody made us go. None of
                                      God will help you if it is for
prison,” said Paxton, who left                                                  Tami, 46, grew up in Fort       us are trying to get out of it,"
                                      the right cause."
the Marine Corps in 1983 but                                               Wayne. As a respiratory              said Josh, the eldest. "I think
                                            Josh, 24, and Zach, 23,
still works at the San Diego                                               therapist at a local hospital, she   this is what the Indiana
                                      their parents say, seemed
depot. “It's going to cause our                                            enforces a strict no-smoking         National Guard is all about:
                                      determined to compete in
drill instructors to back off.”                                            rule in her house and the            sacrificing for the greater
                                      everything as they grew up,
      But Paxton – like all the                                            family. She dutifully shuttled       good."
                                      from who would be first to
sources interviewed for this                                               the boys to various sporting              Their mother is resolved to
                                      shed their training wheels to
story – opposed pointless abuse                                            events.                              accept what lies ahead. Even if
                                      who would dominate the
of recruits.                                                                    She has never seen Saving       the Army offered one of her
                                      backyard basketball court.
      “For someone just to                                                 Private Ryan, the movie about        boys an out, she knows none of
                                            Zach joined the Guard
flat-out harm a recruit, with no                                           the Army's attempt to retrieve a     them would take it. "They
                                      first, signing up four months
intention of making him a                                                  mother's last surviving son          would say, 'Who would stay
                                      after Sept. 11, 2001. Because
Marine, that's abuse, and that                                             from the battlefield after her       home?' " she said. "They all
                                      he was only 17, and still a
won't be tolerated,” he said.                                              other sons perished. And she         want to be together. They all
                                      junior in high school, his
                                                                           has no plans to. Stan, 49, grew      want to go. They want to do
                                      parents had to sign a consent
                                                                           up on a farm in nearby               their duty, and all come home
                                                                                                                                        page 24
at the same time."                 Departments said Wednesday.           United States and Turkey. The       incursion until the first of two
                                        The question of whether          United States, Iraq and Turkey      waves of Turkish planes was
                                   Turkish authorities gave their        have an office in Ankara, the       either crossing the Iraq border
Washington Post                    counterparts adequate warning         Turkish capital, to share           or already over it.
December 20, 2007                  percolated         after     some     intelligence.                            The Turkish military did
Pg. B5                             American          officials      in        “Let me put it this way,”      not inform the American
26. Dead Soldier Is                Washington and Baghdad said           said a Pentagon spokesman,          military as quickly as had been
Identified As N.C.                 the two countries needed to           Geoff Morrell, using the            agreed. That meant the U.S.
Woman                              improve           communication,      initials by which the Kurdistan     had to rush to clear air space
     Fort Belvoir--A soldier       administration officials said.        Workers Party is known. “We         for the incursion, two defense
who was found dead at Fort              While the United States          had ample notification of the       officials      and     a      State
Belvoir on Monday was              provided Turkey with the              airstrikes by the Turkish Air       Department official said on
identified yesterday as Carolyn    intelligence to go after Kurdish      Force over the weekend on           condition       of     anonymity
Farrar-Johnson,      58,     and   rebels in northern Iraq, there        P.K.K. positions in northern        because      of     the     issue's
authorities said she was from      has been some mild grumbling          Iraq. I can sit here today and      sensitivity.
North Carolina.                    from the State Department that        tell you emphatically there was          While                Defense
     Authorities declined to say   not everyone up the chain of          indeed notification provided to     Department spokesman Bryan
why        they      considered    command was adequately                us prior to the bombing —           Whitman disputed there was
Farrar-Johnson's           death   informed beforehand. A senior         bombings — that it was              any problem, one Washington
suspicious.      An      autopsy   administration official said          communicated to us through an       official said the top U.S.
performed      yesterday     was   most of that concern centered         apparatus that we have set up       commander in Iraq, Gen.
inconclusive,                FBI   on Turkey’s decision to “chase        in     Ankara,    the   Ankara      David Petraeus, was angered.
spokeswoman               Debbie   some bad guys they followed           Coordination Center.”               Another        said     American
Weierman said.                     over the border.”                          The      United      States    diplomats complained to the
     Fort Belvoir officials said        Turkish troops carried out       considers the P.K.K. a terrorist    Turks about it.
Farrar-Johnson was an active       a brief attack into northern Iraq     organization. The group, which           The Turks said that they
reserve sergeant with the 11th     overnight        Monday.       The    wants an autonomous Kurdish         were chasing rebels and that
Battalion, 80th Regiment,          Turkish military, in a statement      region in eastern Turkey, has       there was too little time for
Officer Education System,          on its Web site, said the troops      fought the Turkish military for     more prompt notification, a
headquartered at Fort McCoy,       had inflicted heavy losses on         decades.                            senior      State     Department
Wis. She had been at Fort          the Kurdish forces after                   Thom Shanker contributed       official said.
Belvoir since January.             spotting them trying to cross         reporting.                               "There are supposed to be
     Farrar-Johnson was found      into Turkey.                                                              coordinating mechanisms for
in her residence, authorities           The operation took place                                             this kind of thing with us and
                                   two days after Turkey carried         Philadelphia Inquirer               the Iraqis, and whatever
said. The address was not
                                   out broad airstrikes in northern      December 20, 2007                   happens in the heat of the
released. Col. Brian W.
Lauritzen, post commander,         Iraq against the group. The           28. U.S. And Turkey                 moment, they have to tell us in
said in a statement that "the      United       States       provided    Work To Cut Fallout                 a reasonable and timely
information we have regarding      intelligence and opened Iraqi         From Strike                         manner," the official said.
the death indicates there is no    airspace for the strikes,             By Pauline Jelinek, Associated           Turkey's ambassador to
reason for residents or the        American and Turkish officials        Press                               Washington, Nabi Sensoy, told
workforce to feel any need for     said. Iraqi officials have                 WASHINGTON--            U.S.   reporters yesterday the strike
a heightened state of security     protested the attacks.                and Turkish military officials      against the Kurdistan Workers'
or to have a perception of an           The Turkish moves have           worked yesterday to streamline      Party, or PKK, was made
increased threat."                 placed the United States in a         procedures for any future           possible by intelligence given
     --Tom Jackman                 delicate     position     between     Turkish      attacks      against   by the United States.
                                   Turkey, a NATO ally, and an           Kurdish rebels in northern Iraq          Under       an     agreement
                                   Iraqi government that has             after top American officials in     between the countries, Turkey
New York Times                     refused to act against the            Baghdad expressed anger at          is to analyze U.S. data, decide
December 20, 2007                  Kurdish militants.                    how Sunday's Turkish air            whether it will take military
Pg. 16                                  In trying to minimize the        strikes unfolded.                   action, then notify the United
27. For Turkey And                 appearance of any rift,                    Americans have been            States of its plan, one official
U.S., A Delicate Issue Of          American military officers in         giving Turkey intelligence to       said.
                                   Washington and overseas said          go after the Kurdish rebels, and         Sensoy said he was "not
Cooperation In                     the Turkish ground force sent                                             aware of any direct complaint"
Combating Militant                                                       a coordination center has been
                                   across the border numbered            set up in Ankara so Turks,          over the timing of Turkey's
Kurds                              only in the hundreds and              Iraqis and Americans can share      notification.
By Helene Cooper                   moved less than two miles into        information, officials said.             None of the officials gave
     WASHINGTON              —     Iraqi territory.                           State Department and           details of precisely what
Turkey provided the United              The         senior      Bush     Defense Department officials        procedures had been agreed to.
States with ample warning that     administration official said          in Washington and Baghdad           But one noted that the process
it was making an incursion into    that, over all, American              said top U.S. commanders in         is complex because it involves
Iraq this week, officials from     officials were satisfied with the     Iraq did not know about the         Turkey, Iraq, the U.S. and
the    State   and     Defense     coordination       between      the                                       potentially           neighboring
                                                                                                                                         page 25
governments such as Iran's             the long-delayed startup of the     inept.                              the capital, Kabul, with 30
because some PKK camps are             1,000-megawatt        light-water   By Henry Chu, Los Angeles           people killed aboard an army
near the Iranian border.               reactor in 2008.                    Times Staff Writer                  bus.
     For the United States, the             Iran    is    hoping     the        KABUL,                              Karzai's         spokesman,
issue cuts across two military         shipment      signals    Russian    AFGHANISTAN — On a cool             Humayun               Hamidzada,
commands - the European                willingness to prevent the          October evening, at the foot of     acknowledged that public
Command, which takes in                United Nations from imposing        one of the mountains that ring      opinion played an important
Turkey, and the Central                new sanctions against it over       this city, the crack of heavy       role in the decision to end the
Command, which manages the             Tehran's refusal to halt            gunfire ripped through the          moratorium.
war in Iraq.                           uranium enrichment, as sought       twilight.        When         the        "Implementing the law is
     It was the American               by Washington. Russia is one        reverberations finally faded        the duty of the government,"
military in Baghdad that ended         of the five veto-wielding           and all was still, 15 people lay    Hamidzada         said.      "And
up     notifying       the     Iraqi   permanent members of the            dead in a jumble of bloody          secondly, public pressure -- the
government        that      Turkish    U.N. Security Council.              bodies.                             people wanted this.
planes were attacking rebel                 "With nuclear fuel shipped          Thus did the Afghan                 "President Karzai himself
positions inside their country.        to Bushehr, we are going to see     government, after keeping its       is against executions. He
     Iraq's     parliament        on   a new approach in deepening         firing squad idle for 3 1/2         doesn't like executions. That's
Monday        condemned          the   strategic relations with Russia     years,       revive       capital   why he took so long to make
bombing,       calling      it    an   in all fields in the future,"       punishment in this war-ravaged      sure      every      case      was
"outrageous" violation of Iraq's       Mohammad Saeedi, deputy             land. Officials say more            investigated thoroughly."
sovereignty that killed innocent       head of the Atomic Energy           executions are to come.                  Karzai's             personal
civilians.      Iraqi       Foreign    Organization of Iran told the            The resumption of the          opposition to the death penalty
Minister Hoshyar Zebari said           official IRNA news agency           death penalty here has sparked      places him in a minority
his     government         believed    yesterday.                          concern among many of the           among his countrymen. During
Turkey would coordinate with                                               nations        that     provide     the Taliban's harsh rule, public
it before striking rebels inside                                           Afghanistan with military and       executions were carried out in
Iraq.                                  Boston Globe                        financial aid. Beyond moral         stadiums before thousands of
     Some reports said up to 50        December 20, 2007                   qualms, critics and human           spectators,        and         the
planes were involved Sunday,           Austria                             rights activists are worried        overwhelming majority of
which would make the strike            30. Syria Was Offered               about the ultimate punishment       Afghans still favor the death
the largest aerial attack in years     Nuclear Technology                  being meted out by a justice        penalty, and not just for
against the outlawed rebel                  VIENNA - Syria received        system widely regarded as           murderers.
separatist group. Sensoy said          a letter purportedly written by     corrupt and incompetent.                 "If     the      government
24 aircraft weer involved.             the head of the same nuclear             Some of those reservations     executes        thieves        and
     The Turkish army also             black market that supplied Iran     led President Hamid Karzai to       kidnappers, that's a good
sent soldiers about 11/2 miles         and Libya with technology but       declare a moratorium on             thing," said Faizuddin, a
into northern Iraq in an               did not respond, the country's      executions in 2004, after his       27-year-old Kabul resident
overnight        operation        on   president said in comments          government carried out the first    who, like many Afghans, goes
Tuesday, Kurdish officials             published yesterday. President      death sentence in the country       by only one name. "It serves as
said. Kurdish officials said the       Bashar Assad's remarks to the       since the fall of the Taliban       an example to others."
Turkish troops left Iraq about         Austrian daily "Die Presse"         regime in 2001. In that case, a          At     the    same      time,
15 hours later.                        appeared to be the first time       man was put to death even           however, the justice system,
                                       that a senior official linked the   though his trial had been           while improving, remains a
                                       country to Abdul Qadeer Khan,       criticized by the United            shaky institution. Due process
Baltimore Sun                          a Pakistani who heads an            Nations.                            and judicial impartiality are
December 20, 2007                      international black market in            Today,      Karzai    faces    often phantoms in a country
29. Iran Hails Fuel                    nuclear technology. In the          daunting new political realities.   with a history of tribal and
From Russia As                         interview, Assad said that in       His approval ratings have           vigilante justice and of
Building Ties                          early 2001, someone brought         tumbled amid a sharp upswing        warlords who bend police,
By Associated Press                    him a letter from Khan. "We         in insurgent attacks and violent    courts and local officials to
     TEHRAN,          Iran--Iran       had no interest in nuclear          crimes such as kidnapping and       their will.
called this week's delivery by         weapons," Assad is quoted as        robbery. Insecurity has climbed          "Still we're receiving lots
Russia of fuel for its first           saying.                             to the top of the list of           of complaints about the judicial
nuclear reactor a step in                   --AP                           problems that Afghans say           system       --     about      the
strengthening ties between the                                             have beset their country.           incompetence of judges, about
two countries and a sign of                                                     Implementing the death         bribery and corruption in
                                       Los Angeles Times                   penalty was an instantly            various levels of courts," said
Moscow's confidence that
                                       December 20, 2007                   popular move, allowing Karzai       Ahmad Fahim Hakim, deputy
Iran's nuclear program is
peaceful.                              31. Afghan Death                    to look tough on public safety      chairman of the Afghanistan
     The shipment of the               Penalty Raises Concerns             and shore up support for his        Independent Human Rights
nuclear fuel, which arrived            Some donor nations are              government. Observers note          Commission. "It would be
Monday at Iran's Bushehr               troubled by the revival of          that the mass execution Oct. 7      difficult to think that there are
power plant paved the way for          executions, especially in a land    came barely a week after one        opportunities for everyone to
                                       whose justice system is seen as     of the worst suicide attacks in     go through a fair and free
                                                                                                                                          page 26
trial."                               not confirm or deny details,                                               help clean up the worst oil spill
      Besides        trial     and    saying       some        accounts                                          in South Korean history.
sentencing, the executions            circulating about the execution      Japan Times                                Forty-five soldiers boarded
themselves can be botched.            were       exaggerated.        He    December 20, 2007                     a bus at Yongsan Garrison
      Sixteen prisoners were on       acknowledged that "not all           32. Leak Irks Pentagon                early Wednesday for the
the list for the Oct. 7 execution,    procedures were followed... .             WASHINGTON                       three-hour trip to Baeknipo
a mix of criminals and Taliban        The government is not happy."        (Kyodo)--A        senior       U.S.   Beach, in Taean Coastline
militants        whom       Karzai         Neither were inmates in         Defense Department official           National Park, where they
determined to have committed          Kabul's Pul-i-Charki prison,         expressed           dissatisfaction   donned protective gear and
the most heinous deeds and to         who staged a brief hunger            Tuesday over the Self-Defense         used old clothing to scrub oil
have had a fair trial. But            strike to protest the botched        Forces' improper handling of          off rocks.
moments before the execution,         execution.                           classified information.                    Thousands       of    South
a murderer named Timor Shah,               Also alarmed are foreign             Referring to the reported        Korean workers have been
possibly the most infamous of         governments, many of which,          leak      by      a      Maritime     laboring on the coast since a
the lot, managed to escape.           as members of the North              Self-Defense Force officer of         barge came free from its
      How he did so is still          Atlantic Treaty Organization,        secret data about the U.S.            tugboats in rough waters and
unclear. But three guards             have troops deployed in              Aegis defense system, James           smashed into a Hong Kong
reportedly were arrested on           Afghanistan.                         Shinn said Japan and the              supertanker seven miles from
suspicion of helping him.                  Britain        and        the   United States "had problems           shore on Dec. 7, spilling
      According to a source with      Netherlands,       among       the   with the proper handling of           10,500 tons of oil.
knowledge of what happened            countries with the largest           classified information in Japan            Lt. Col. Brodrick Bailey,
that evening, Shah somehow            military contingents here,           and are working together to           8th Army spokesman, said the
was able to jump over a low           condemned the executions and         prevent this in the future."          military community has been
wall and run off, shouting,           called for the abolition of the           Shinn       is      currently    clamoring to lend a hand.
"God is great!" while everyone        death penalty -- one of the top      principal     deputy      assistant        “We’ve been getting a
else was lined up to be shot.         human        rights     priorities   secretary and has been                couple cold calls a day with
The source asked not to be            worldwide of the European            nominated        for      assistant   people asking how they can
identified for fear of official       Union.        The       Canadian     secretary of defense for Asia         help,” Bailey said.
reprisal.                             government        also     sought    and Pacific security affairs.              Before boarding their bus,
      Shah's escape was just one      assurances from Kabul that                A 34-year-old MSDF               soldiers received a briefing
of several things to go wrong,        none of the 15 people executed       lieutenant commander was              about area safety hazards,
said the source, whose account        were prisoners caught by             arrested last week for allegedly      including overexposure to oil,
follows. (The account has since       Canadian soldiers.                   copying      highly      classified   the possibility for “slips, trips
been corroborated in many                  Foreign forces routinely        information on the U.S. Aegis         and falls” and the dangers of
respects by an interview given        turn over militants they have        defense system from a                 overheating.
to the Times of London by a           captured to Afghan authorities.      computer system task force in              They were warned not to
senior prosecutor who was             But the revival of capital           violation of an agreement with        allow the oil to touch their
present at the execution.)            punishment could complicate          the United States.                    skin,     not    to     overexert
      First, it took several hours    the process if troops from                Turning to a more general        themselves and to observe
for police in charge of the           countries that outlaw the            evaluation of Japan, Shinn said       proper lifting techniques.
execution to find somewhere to        practice fear prisoners would        the nation has been "slow in               Bailey said about 200
carry it out; the Ministry of         be in danger of execution.           expanding the role and                soldier volunteers will travel to
Defense refused to allow use of            The international criticism     missions" of the SDF.                 the beach over six days.
a site by an army camp.               has been met in Afghanistan               "Japan is wrestling with a            Transportation          and
      With daylight quickly           with a shrug.                        fundamental re-evaluation of          protective gear were provided
draining from the sky, the                 "They can't tell us not to      how to use its very capable           by members of the Good
police brought the condemned          carry out executions," said          Self-Defense         Forces      in   Neighbor Program, Bailey
men to the base of a mountain         Hussein Alemi Balkhi, a              international              security   said.
on Kabul's outskirts and lined        member of parliament. "Our           missions," he said. "The                   Lt. Col. Thomas Whitaker,
them up. Procedure dictates           law allows executions, and if        overall trend has been forward,       who coordinated the event,
that each prisoner be allowed         we don't carry them out, that        but slow."                            said joining the effort was a
to make a final ablution and          will encourage other people to                                             good way for soldiers to
prayer, and that the prisoners        commit wrongdoing."                                                        contribute to their host nation.
be shot one at a time, with a              Officials assert that violent   Pacific Stars and Stripes             He said many South Koreans
bullet to the chest.                  crime already has dropped            December 21, 2007                     give to the soldiers through the
      But none of that happened.      since the October executions.        33. GIs Pitch In To Help              Good Neighbor Program.
After Shah broke from the             But data are difficult to come       Clean Up Oil                               “We are always looking
crowd and fled, others tried to       by.                                  By Jimmy Norris, Stars and            for ways to give back,” he said.
escape as well. Panicked, the              Karzai is considering           Stripes                                    Soldiers participating in
firing squad unleashed a hail of      which death row inmates will              TAEAN, South Korea —             the event said they were glad
bullets. Some of the dead were        make up the next batch of            A group of 8th U.S. Army              for the opportunity.
disfigured and unidentifiable.        prisoners to be executed. The        soldiers traded their uniforms             “I’m in the infantry, so I
      Hamidzada,                the   "priority" list is believed to       for oil-resistant coveralls and       don’t mind getting dirty,” said
presidential spokesman, would         have dozens of names.                rubber boots Wednesday to             Staff Sgt. Shawn Wilson, who
                                                                                                                                    page 27
volunteered to spend a day              Two of the detainees,         build a friendship.                the committee might involve
away from the spit-and-polish      Adbenour        Samuer,       an        In an interview with Time     complex negotiations over
routine of the United Nations      Algerian, and Omar Deghayes,       magazine, which named him          legal immunity at a time when
Command Honor Guard.               a Libyan, both originally          its "Person of the Year," Putin    the Justice Department and the
     “I get to hang out with       seized           on          the   said Washington had adopted a      intelligence     agency       were
Korean kids and clean rocks,”      Afghanistan-Pakistan border,       strategy of belittling Russia to   reviewing        whether        the
Wilson said. “We don’t have to     were taken to a high-security      try to influence the country's     destruction of the tapes broke
be blowing stuff up to have        jail in London. The third          domestic and foreign policy.       any laws.
fun.”                              detainee, Jamil el-Banna, a        The interview was posted on              The agreement marked at
     The soldiers’ eagerness       Palestinian       seized      in   the      Kremlin's      website,   least a partial resolution of a
impressed Korean volunteers at     Afghanistan, was held in           kremlin.ru.                        standoff between the Bush
the beach.                         Luton.                                                                administration and Congress.
     “I’m really thankful that          A government statement                                                 The standoff began on
the Americans came out to          said the men’s return did not      Washington Times                   Friday, when the Justice
help,” said Lee Hae-choon, a       mean that they could remain in     December 20, 2007                  Department urged the House
volunteer from Asan. “Not          Britain.                           Pg. 12                             panel to postpone any inquiry
even all the Koreans are                A BBC report quoted           38. 100 Foreign Spies              on the grounds it might hinder
helping, so the U.S. soldiers      British officials as saying that   Exposed This Year                  the review by Justice and the
coming is really incredible.”      Spain planned to seek the               MOSCOW — Russia's spy         C.I.A.’s inspector general. The
                                   extradition of two of the men      chief said yesterday that his      committee’s           Democratic
                                   in connection with terrorist       service has thwarted the work      chairman,          Representative
Atlanta Journal-Constitution       attacks there.                     of nearly 100 foreign agents in    Silvestre Reyes of Texas, and
December 20, 2007                                                     the past year and that former      its        top        Republican,
34. 'Bulldozer' Elected                                               Soviet Baltic nations have         Representative Peter Hoekstra
In South Korea                     USA Today                          increased     their  espionage     of Michigan, responded by
     A former Hyundai CEO          December 20, 2007                  activity, Russian news agencies    refusing to put off the
known as "The Bulldozer" for       Pg. 10                             reported yesterday.                investigation, saying there
his determination to get things    36. Five Convicted In                   The comments by Nikolai       were many precedents for
done rolled over all opposition    France Of Terrorism                Patrushev, who heads the           Congressional inquiries to
and financial fraud allegations    Links                              Federal Security Service, the      proceed in parallel with
to     win    South     Korea's         A court in Paris convicted    main successor agency to the       criminal investigations.
presidency, ending a decade of     five French nationals of           KGB, reflect an increasingly             This        week,         the
liberal rule. Lee Myung-bak,       criminal association with a        assertive — and public —           administration has sought a
66, earned the landslide victory   terrorist enterprise for using     presence        of     Russia's    compromise. “The Department
on a wave of discontent with       phony identity papers and visas    intelligence     and    security   of Justice has changed their
incumbent     President     Roh    to "integrate into terrorist       agencies, both at home and         minds, and today we have
Moo-hyun,       whom      many     structures" in Afghanistan,        abroad.                            reason to believe that we will
believe bungled the economy.       prosecutor               Sonya                                        be getting the documents,” Mr.
                                   Djemni-Wagner said. The men                                           Reyes told reporters on
                                   were captured after the            New York Times                     Wednesday.
New York Times                     U.S.-led invasion in 2001.         December 20, 2007                        In a conciliatory statement
December 20, 2007                  They were sentenced to one         Pg. 6                              Wednesday         night,     Brian
Pg. 17                             year in prison but will remain     39. C.I.A. To Cooperate            Roehrkasse,         a       Justice
35. Britain Detains 3              free because they spent at least   With House On Tapes                Department spokesman, said
Men Freed By U.S.                  two years at the U.S. military     By Scott Shane                     the department has “no desire
By New York Times                  prison at Guantanamo Bay,               WASHINGTON — The              to block any Congressional
     LONDON         —      Three   Cuba, and up to 17 months in       Central Intelligence Agency        investigation” and has not
former British residents who       French prisons. A sixth            has agreed to make documents       advised the C.I.A. against
were held for more than four       defendant was acquitted.           related to the destruction of      cooperating         with        the
years in the Guantánamo Bay                                           interrogation         videotapes   committee.
detention     center     arrived                                      available    to    the    House          “The wisdom, propriety
Wednesday at Luton, outside        Los Angeles Times                  Intelligence Committee and to      and appropriateness of the
London, aboard a jet chartered     December 20, 2007                  allow the agency’s top lawyer,     decision to destroy these tapes
by the government and were         Russia                             John A. Rizzo, to testify about    are worthy and compelling
turned over to the police.         37. Putin Criticizes U.S.          the matter, Congressional and      subjects of an oversight
     The transfer followed         Dominance                          intelligence    officials   said   investigation,” Mr. Roehrkasse
lengthy negotiations between            Russian        President      Wednesday.                         said. But he said officials were
the United States and Britain,     Vladimir V. Putin accused the           But it remained unclear       still     concerned      that     a
which sought their release on      United States of trying to         whether Jose A. Rodriguez,         Congressional inquiry could
the grounds that all three had     undermine his country to           who as chief of the agency’s       cause “disruption of our initial
British residence status when      further its global dominance       clandestine service ordered the    witness interviews, the delay
they were seized because they      and said Washington had            tapes destroyed in 2005, would     and disruption of our document
were suspected of having links     ignored Moscow's attempts to       testify. Officials said Mr.        collection, and the tainting of
to Al Qaeda.                                                          Rodriguez’s appearance before      any         future        criminal
                                                                                                                                        page 28
prosecutorial action because of       four high-level White House               Judge Filip, now on the        vary widely depending on
Congressional        grants      of   lawyers: Alberto R. Gonzales,        federal bench in Chicago, told      where they live, an exclusive
immunity to witnesses.”               who served as White House            lawmakers he might have             McClatchy news analysis has
     The      committee        sent   counsel until early 2005; David      counseled the C.I.A. not to         found.
unsigned       subpoenas        for   S. Addington, who was the            destroy the tapes.                       As a result, many of the
documents       and     for     the   counsel to Vice President Dick            “It might be the better        recent veterans who are getting
testimony of Mr. Rodriguez            Cheney and is now his chief of       practice to keep those in any       monthly        payments       for
and Mr. Rizzo to the agency on        staff; John B. Bellinger III,        event, given the interest in the    post-traumatic stress disorder
Tuesday, and Mr. Reyes said           who until January 2005 was           subject matter that was on the      from the Department of
he was prepared to sign the           the senior lawyer at the             tapes,” Mr. Filip told the          Veterans Affairs could lose
subpoenas if it became                National Security Council; and       Senate Judiciary Committee.         tens or even hundreds of
necessary.                            Harriet     E.     Miers,    who          Reporting was contributed      thousands of dollars in benefits
     A C.I.A. spokesman, Mark         succeeded Mr. Gonzales as            by Steven Lee Myers, Philip         over their lifetimes.
Mansfield, said the agency’s          White House counsel.                 Shenon, David Johnston and               The Bush administration
director, Gen. Michael V.                  In    a     statement      on   Mark Mazzetti.                      has sought to reassure soldiers
Hayden,       was      eager     to   Wednesday, the White House                                               that they will be treated fairly,
accommodate the committee as          press secretary, Dana M.                                                 but veterans in some parts of
it performed its oversight role.      Perino, criticized a subheading      Atlanta Journal-Constitution        the country are far more likely
“We’re in touch with the              on the Times article that said,      December 20, 2007                   to be well compensated than
House Intelligence Committee          “White House role was wider          40. Got A Query For                 their compatriots elsewhere
on these matters, and we look         than it said,” noting that the       Al-Qaida? Send It In                are, the analysis found.
forward to it being worked            White House has “not publicly              Al-Qaida    has    invited         McClatchy's analysis is
out,” he said.                        commented on the issue,”             journalists to send questions to    based     on     three    million
     An intelligence official,        except to note the president’s       its No. 2 figure, Ayman             disability compensation claims
offering more details on              “immediate reaction upon             al-Zawahri, in the first such       records obtained under the
condition of anonymity, said          being briefed on the matter.”        offer by the increasingly           Freedom of Information Act,
the     top-secret     documents      She called any suggestion that       media-savvy terror network to       as well as separate documents
would be made available either        might be taken from the              "interview" one of its leaders      that the VA provided. The
on Capitol Hill or at the             subheading to indicate that          since the Sept. 11 attacks. The     analysis is the first to examine
agency, as soon as the logistics      there was an effort by the           advertisement, issued by the        the issue of state-to-state
could be worked out, as early         White House to mislead the           group's media arm, Al-Sahab,        variations in compensation for
as Thursday afternoon.                public on the videotapes issue       on an Islamic militant Web          those young veterans who have
     The official also said Mr.       “pernicious and troubling.”          site,    invites   "individuals,    left the military since the war
Rizzo, the agency’s acting                 Citing       the      Justice   agencies and all media" to          in Afghanistan began in 2001.
general counsel, would be             Department’s          preliminary    submit written questions for             For veterans, their families
prepared to testify at a hearing      investigation, Ms. Perino said       al-Zawahri by sending them to       and their advocates, the issue
tentatively scheduled for Jan.        White House officials had been       the Web forums where                of disability compensation is
16. As the agency’s top lawyer        asked not to discuss the             Al-Sahab traditionally posts its    hugely important. Disability
for most of the last six years,       videotapes and declined to say       messages. It said it would take     checks are now worth up to
Mr. Rizzo played a central role       who on President Bush’s staff        questions until Jan. 16. It did     $2,527 a month for a single
in discussions of whether the         was aware of the tapes. “We          not say whether his answers         veteran with no children.
tapes should be destroyed.            have not described, neither to       would come in writing, video        Because they last a lifetime,
     The official declined to         highlight nor to minimize, the       or audiotape.                       low payments set now -- when
say whether Mr. Rodriguez             role or deliberations of White                                           veterans are young -- have a
would      testify,    and     Mr.    House officials in this matter,”                                         dramatic impact.
Rodriguez’s lawyer, Robert S.         she said.                            Miami Herald                             Prevalent ailment
Bennett, declined to comment.              The New York Times said         December 20, 2007                        So far, more than 43,000
     Current       and      former    it would publish a correction        McClatchy Analysis                  recent veterans are on the
intelligence officials have said      on Thursday, and noted that the      41. Vets' Mental                    disability compensation rolls
that the tapes of harsh               White      House      “had     not   Disability Pay Varies               for a variety of mental
interrogation of two Al Qaeda         challenged the content of our        Greatly                             conditions              including
operatives in 2002 were made          story,”     the      newspaper’s     Disability payments vary            post-traumatic stress disorder,
in part to document the               spokeswoman, Catherine J.            greatly from state to state for     or PTSD, depression and
methods being used for the            Mathis, said in a statement.         new veterans with mental            anxiety. Of those, more than
first time by C.I.A. officers.             At a confirmation hearing       illness, a McClatchy analysis       31,000 have PTSD, which has
But, they said, officials soon        for President Bush’s nominee         found.                              emerged as one of the
decided that taping sessions          for deputy attorney general on       By Chris Adams                      signature injuries from the war
was a bad idea and could              Wednesday, lawmakers voiced               Veterans coming home           on terrorism.
endanger interrogators if they        frustration about being denied       from the wars in Iraq and                The VA's assessments of
were ever leaked.                     details of the videotapes’           Afghanistan with debilitating       those injuries, however, are all
     The New York Times               destruction and urged the            mental       ailments         are   over the map.
reported on Wednesday that            nominee, Mark Filip, to              discovering that their disability        Of the recent veterans
discussions about the proposal        cooperate with Congressional         payments from the government        processed by the VA office in
to destroy the tapes involved         inquiries.                                                               Albuquerque, N.M., 56 percent
                                                                                                                                       page 29
have high ratings for PTSD. Of     placed on a scale that gives          the next morning, bleeding and       former KBR worker who says
those handled by the office in     them scores -- or ''ratings'' -- of   bruised. She said a KBR              she was gang raped while
Fort Harrison, Mont., only 18      zero, 10, 30, 50, 70 or 100.          representative kept her in a         working in Iraq told a House
percent do, the McClatchy               McClatchy's          analysis    shipping container for a day so      panel Wednesday that an Army
analysis found.                    found that some regional              she wouldn't report the assault.     doctor who examined her after
     The analysis found that a     offices are far more likely to             “This problem goes way          the alleged assault turned the
recent veteran with PTSD on        give veterans scores of 50 or         beyond just me,” Jones told the      physical evidence over to KBR
the rolls in Albuquerque is        70 while others are far more          House Judiciary subcommittee         security personnel.
likely to have a higher payment    likely to stick with scores of 10     on crime, terrorism and                   And at some point, some
than a new veteran with PTSD       or 30.                                homeland security.                   of the medical evidence
on the rolls in the Montana             Because payments are                  Poe said three women –          apparently went missing.
office.                            loaded toward the highest end         including Tracy Barker, who               Jamie Leigh Jones, 23,
     ''There's no reason in the    of the scale -- the difference        submitted written testimony of       formerly of Conroe, was calm
world that a veteran from Ohio     between the highest rating and        her account and was at the           and controlled as she told a
should be shortchanged on          the next highest rating is more       hearing – had contacted him.         House Judiciary Subcommittee
benefits simply because he is      than $1,000 a month -- the                 The Associated Press does       on Crime, Terrorism and
from Ohio,'' said U.S. Rep.        huge gap in ratings has a             not usually identify people who      Homeland Security how her
Zack Space, a Democrat from        significant impact on how             say they were sexually               life changed in July 2005.
Ohio, where veterans had           much the VA is paying, on             assaulted, but Jones and others           Four days after arriving at
among          the        lowest   average, to veterans in different     named here have made their           Camp Hope in Baghdad's
compensation rates in the          states.                               identities public.                   "Green Zone" to work for the
nation. ``And there's no reason         Factoring in all mental and           Ten others reported their       Pentagon's largest military
a veteran from New Mexico          physical      disabilities,     the   stories through a foundation         contractor, Jones accepted a
should be getting more benefits    average payment for recent            that Jones began to help             drink from a group of company
simply because he lives in New     veterans ranges from a high of        women          with        similar   firefighters.
Mexico.''                          $734 a month in the Little            experiences.                              "I believed that we were
     A VA benefits official,       Rock, Ark., office to a low of             In her statement, Barker        all on the same team," she said.
Michael Walcoff, said the VA       $435 a month in Honolulu. In          said she was sexually assaulted           She awoke the next day,
was working to minimize            Florida, the average is $518.         by a co-worker while working         bruised and bleeding between
unwarranted variations across                                            in Basra, Iraq, in 2005. That        her legs. She was taken to an
the     country.    Judging    a                                         followed       retaliation     for   Army support hospital and
condition such as PTSD,            San Diego Union-Tribune               reporting sexual harassment in       examined. The physician,
however, can be difficult.         December 20, 2007                     2004, she said.                      Jones said, told her it was
     So far, 1.5 million           42. Woman Tells Panel                      Poe said a third woman          apparent she had been raped.
Americans have served in the       Her Rape In Iraq Not                  was molested several times and            The       doctor       took
global war on terrorism, and       Isolated                              raped by a KBR co-worker.            photographs and prepared
half of them have left active      Others working for KBR come           After the alleged rape, her          what's known as a "rape kit,"
service and moved to veteran       forward                               attacker was allowed to work         containing forensic evidence,
status, VA documents show.         By Associated Press                   alongside her. Military officers     and handed the materials over
     Those discharged veterans          WASHINGTON – A                   escorted him off the base when       to KBR security personnel,
alone already have produced        woman who said she was raped          she complained, and she was          Jones told the panel.
more than 180,000 disability       by a fellow employee while            fired.                                    KBR           spokeswoman
cases, in which veterans are       working for a U.S. contractor              KBR said it was not             Heather Browne, in an e-mail
found to have mental or            in Iraq told House lawmakers          invited to testify at the hearing.   Wednesday, said a company
physical ailments linked to        yesterday that her case is far        Asked to comment yesterday,          security coordinator "was
their military service. Most       from unique.                          the Houston-based company            given the sexual assault
already are receiving monthly           A Texas congressman              reiterated a statement it has        examination kit by the Army
compensation checks.               agreed, saying several other          made since Jones' allegations        hospital upon Ms. Jones'
     Severity ratings              women have come forward               became public last week: “The        release from the hospital.
     Because it tends to be        with     reports   of    sexual       safety and security of all                "The kit was transported
quite debilitating -- and          harassment and assault while          employees remains KBR's top          with Ms. Jones back to Camp
generates far higher payments      employed       in   Iraq    for       priority. Our commitment in          Hope and was placed in a safe
-- PTSD is the most important      Halliburton's            former       this regard is unwavering.”          in     the     KBR       security
disability to emerge from the      subsidiary, KBR.                                                           department's office," Browne
recent wars. The VA workers             The women have given                                                  said. "The kit was released by
who decide PTSD cases                                                    Houston Chronicle                    KBR       Security    to    State
                                   lawyers and Rep. Ted Poe,
determine whether a veteran's                                            December 20, 2007                    Department investigators when
                                   R-Texas, accounts similar to
ability to function at work is     the allegations of Jamie Leigh        43. KBR Hearing                      the investigators arrived three
limited a little, a lot or         Jones of Conroe, Texas, who           Centers On Handling Of               hours after the kit was
somewhere in between. They         says she was raped in July            Rape Kit                             received.     KBR        Security
examine the frequency of panic     2005 by a co-worker who               By David Ivanovich, Houston          secured          a        signed
attacks and the level of           drugged her. She said she             Chronicle                            property/evidence receipt from
memory loss. The process is        awoke groggy and confused                 WASHINGTON — A                   the State Department."
subjective, and veterans are                                                                                       Jones said she spoke
                                                                                                                                             page 30
earlier this year with a special      efforts to prosecute the case.       bombings, and attacks on U.S.          after carrying out attacks in the
agent of the State Department              "It makes an awful steep,       forces and the Iraqi Army and          Holy City of Najaf, which was
Diplomatic Security — the             uphill battle to get a               police are down by an order of         widely reported on TV
State      Department's        law    conviction," said Scott Horton,      magnitude. Al Qaeda in Iraq            throughout the Arab world. In
enforcement arm — who was             a professor at Columbia Law          (AQI) has been tactically              addition, Coalition special
unaware of the rape kit's             School.                              defeated in the streets of             forces are effectively targeting
existence.                                 Why the Army hospital           Baghdad and in the Sunni               both Shiite terrorists and al
     Eventually, the agent            would have turned over the           stronghold of Anbar Province.          Qaeda           leaders        with
found the kit, but the                evidence      to    a     civilian   Roadside-bomb and rocket               intelligence-driven raids.
photographs and doctor's notes        contractor was not immediately       attacks (which can be deadly to             Finally, the Iraqi Army is
were missing, Jones said.             clear.                               our troops even when they are          now coming online with
     KBR officials say they                Army spokesman Paul             riding in armored vehicles)            disciplined and courageous
have no knowledge of any              Boyce could not comment on           from Shiite militias are down          units. They are successfully
materials that have gone              that, but said that normally,        markedly. Border crossings by          confronting the thugs and
missing. KBR declined to              such materials "would be kept        suicide jihadists from Syria           extremists who dominate the
address other specifics from          within the government."              have        plummeted.         The     streets of Iraq. The police,
Jones'      testimony,       citing        After her medical exam,         intelligence picture has shifted       previously a disaster, have
ongoing litigation.                   Jones said, she was locked up        from night to day as Iraqis by         been forcibly retrained, better
     The Chronicle reported           and denied access to food or a       the thousands come forward to          equipped, and most of their
last week that KBR President          telephone.       Finally,        a   identify AQI and criminal              senior       leaders      replaced.
and Chairman Bill Utt told            sympathetic guard shared his         Shiite extremists in their             Although                corruption,
employees in an e-mail that the       cell phone and she called her        communities.                           incompetence and inadequate
company        disputes      Jones'   father in Texas. He got in                 However, we must decide          equipment are prevalent, in
allegations.                          touch with Poe, who contacted        if this inflection point is real. Is   many neighborhoods Iraqi
     Rep. Ted Poe, R-Humble,          the State Department.                it sustainable as we begin our         Security Forces now control
a former state district judge in           Jones said she since has        inexorable drawdown and                the streets.
Houston, said the doctor              been diagnosed with post             disengagement        from       the         Brilliant leadership by
should have turned the rape kit       traumatic stress disorder.           theater?                               Gen. David Petraeus and U.S.
over to law enforcement — not              Since Jones went public               There are several profound       Ambassador Ryan Crocker ,
KBR.                                  with her story, 11 women have        changes taking place in Iraq.          and a new counterinsurgency
     The State Department             come forward alleging sexual         The Sunnis who dominated the           strategy combined with the
Diplomatic Security has since         harassment while working for         country in the Baathist era            uncommon valor and creativity
turned over its evidence to the       KBR in Iraq, said Jones'             have come to realize that al           of U.S. combat forces, have
Justice Department, State             lawyer, Todd Kelly.                  Qaeda was terrorizing their            turned the situation around for
Department          spokeswoman                                            own community with a                   now. In the coming months we
Leslie Phillips said.                                                      malignant and extremist form           will withdraw all five "surge
     The Justice Department, in       Wall Street Journal                  of Islam. The Sunnis also woke         brigades" and learn if the Iraqis
a letter sent to the House panel      December 20, 2007                    up to the fact that the                can hold it together. The jury is
late Tuesday, acknowledged it         Pg. 16                               Americans would eventually             out because of a weak and
was         conducting           an   44. Let's Seize The                  leave -- and they would be             sectarian central government
investigation       into     Jones'   Momentum In Iraq                     soon out in the cold with little       run by Prime Minister Nouri
allegations but declined to send      By Barry R. McCaffrey                participation in an Iraqi Army         al-Maliki, a clumsy Iraqi
a representative to appear at              I recently spent a week         or police dominated by Shiites         constitution, and continuing
today's hearing.                      touring Iraq, meeting with           and Kurds.                             centrifugal forces from a
     "In      light      of     the   American servicemen and                    The "tribal awakening"           bitterly divided and fearful
department's concerns about           women and interacting with           began a separate kind of surge ,       nation.
potentially compromising our          Iraqis. What I saw convinced         this one to put Sunnis into the             We need to press our
ongoing investigation, the            me that the war has changed in       police and the Army. In                advantage while it exists. The
department did not believe it         both tone and substance since        addition, the Coalition Forces         key to winning the war is to
was appropriate to testify,"          the president surged 30,000          created armed "concerned local         massively build Iraqi Security
spokesman Peter Carr said in          troops into the country earlier      citizen" groups that number            Forces with the equipment,
an e-mail.                            this year.                           some       60,000     to     guard     training and leadership needed
     Whether all of the                    A year ago, sectarian           neighborhoods. These groups            to maintain internal order and
evidence       was       eventually   brutality and violence were out      feed enormous amounts of               security as we withdraw.
recovered remains unclear.            of control. Every month              real-time intelligence into the        Without security for the
     But more than two years          approximately 1,000 American         counterterrorism forces and            population there will never be
after the alleged assault,            servicemen and women were            provide security.                      reconciliation in Iraq. In
investigators are left with           either killed or wounded as                The Shiite militia forces of     addition, we must recognize
evidence that, as Poe sees it,        they fought to staunch a bloody      Moqtada al-Sadr have also              that economic recovery is a
was "tampered with after it left      civil war that to date has killed    been maneuvered into a                 prerequisite       to      success.
the doctor's hands."                  60,000 Iraqi civilians.              ceasefire that is making peace         Congress         must       support
     Questions about the chain             But now the facts on the        possible in the major cities.          programs to rebuild the
of custody of the evidence            ground are entirely different.       This is a fate Mr. Sadr and his        electrical, oil, transportation
could seriously complicate any        Sectarian killings, suicide truck    gunmen brought on themselves           and agricultural systems. Our
                                                                                                                                     page 31
new diplomatic outreach to         provided Turkey with the             Kurdish separatism in Turkey.        Kurdish refugees from the
Syria, Iran, Turkey and Saudi      coordinates for the air strikes.          The Kirkuk issue plays          mountains of Turkey after the
Arabia        must      continue        "We know Iraqi air space        into these fears. Many Turks         1991 Gulf War.
unabated.                          is under U.S. control," Barzani      believe the Kurds want to                 "The ticking bomb [of
     We are running out of         said bluntly on Monday in his        regain control of Kirkuk (a          Kirkuk] still ticks," De Mistura
time. The American people          well-guarded         presidential    once-Kurdish city forcibly           told me in Erbil, "but we have
have lost faith in this war.       office, when I asked him whom        Arabized by Saddam Hussein)          put a new engine into the
Some 34,000 of our sons and        he blamed. Standing stiffly, in      to use the city's oil wealth to      acceleration of the process,
daughters have been killed or      his signature red and white          finance statehood. Kurdish           called the United Nations,
wounded as we've poured $400       checked Kurdish turban and           government leaders' strong           which has the expertise and
billion into the mess. Secretary   olive-drab fatigues, he added:       denials don't convince them.         can provide legitimacy to the
of Defense Robert Gates has        "If there wasn't a [U.S.] green      Meantime, the failure to hold a      process." In this process, says
begun to heal fissures in the      light, the Turks could not have      referendum by the end of 2007        De Mistura, "Turkey has to be
national security process. He is   carried out the attack." Barzani     to resolve the status of Kirkuk -    an important part."
creating transparency with the     then turned down an invitation       as called for by Article 140 of           Indeed, the makings of
media, offering respect to         to lunch with Condoleezza            the Iraqi constitution - has         Turkish-Kurdish
Congress, giving initiative to     Rice during her quick visit to       turned the city into a new           rapprochement can already be
his field combat forces, and       Iraq.                                center of sectarian violence.        seen in Erbil. The dusty,
leveling with the international         So what's going on in                So why do I see a new           low-slung provincial capital is
community and the American         Kurdistan, the most peaceful,        chance for Kurdish-Turkish           booming with construction,
people.                            booming region in Iraq? Is           rapprochement?                       which is almost all done by
     It will probably be two       there a danger of a war in the            Reason one: Now that the        Turkish firms using Turkish
years before we know whether       north between two U.S. allies?       Turkish military has made its        workers. Trade with and
this will work. But there is now   Is America betraying the             military point, Prime Minister       transport from Turkey is
a sense of momentum and            Kurds?                               Recep Tayyip Erdogan may be          Kurdistan's lifeline.
advantage among our soldiers            The answer to both              better positioned to push for a           But despite positive signs,
and our Iraqi allies on the        questions is no (for now).           diplomatic solution.                 the border dispute with Turkey
streets of Iraq. And that counts   Despite the tragic deaths, new            "The Turks did what they        could still explode. Having
for a lot.                         possibilities have arisen in         wanted to do, and we don't           defused Turkish charges that
     Gen.      McCaffrey,      a   recent days that could help          need any more tensions," I was       we're soft on the PKK, the
professor of international         defuse           Kurdish-Turkish     told by the prime minister of        United States must now
security studies at West Point,    tensions and peacefully resolve      the       Kurdish         regional   persuade the Turkish military
led the 24th Mechanized            Kurdish      claims     to    the    government,            Nechirvan     that the issue can't be resolved
Infantry Division in the 1991      contested, and oil-rich, city of     Barzani. He hopes "after this        by force.
Gulf War.                          Kirkuk. But for either to            there could be the beginning of           "Turkey and the Kurds are
                                   happen, the United States will       dialogue with the Turks."            both allies of the United
                                   have to act more strategically            The Turkish government          States," says prime minister
Philadelphia Inquirer              as a mediator than it did in the     may be interested. The day           Nechirvan Barzani. "This issue
December 20, 2007                  case of the Turkish bombs.           before the air strikes, Emre         should be a top [U.S.] priority
45. Turkish Leaders                     The air attack had as much      Taner, chief of Turkey's             for a solution. Don't open
And Iraqi Kurds Need               to do with internal Turkish          national              intelligence   another front" in the north, he
To Mend Fences For                 politics as it did with Turkish      organization, visited Erbil on       pleads, "just as the security
Stability                          claims that the Kurdish              behalf of Erdogan and Turkish        situation is getting better in
By Trudy Rubin, Inquirer           regional government wasn't           President Abdullah Gul. His          Iraq."
Columnist                          doing enough to root out the         message to top Kurdish
     ERBIL, Iraq - The             PKK. The issue has become            leaders:       The        Turkish
                                   caught up in tensions between        government        wants       good   Los Angeles Times
president of Iraq's Kurdish                                                                                  December 20, 2007
region, Massoud Barzani,           a moderate Islamist Turkish          relations with the the Kurdish
                                   government that seeks better         regional government, and it          46. The Walls Around
leader of the legendary Barzani
clan, was angry - at Turkey and    relations with the Iraqi Kurds,      also wants the question of           Bush's Iraq Strategy
at the United States.              and a secular Turkish military       Kirkuk      to      be      solved   Barriers built to reduce
     On Saturday, Turkey           that feels it is losing ground       constitutionally.                    violence have turned sectarian
bombed Iraqi Kurdish villages,     and is looking for an issue to            Reason two: There is new        segregation into the status quo.
killing two civilians and          help it recoup.                      hope for progress on Kirkuk.         By Rosa Brooks
sending hundreds fleeing; 300           In recent months, the           All parties have agreed to let            'Something there is that
Turkish soldiers later made a      Turkish military has massed          the United Nations Mission for       doesn't love a wall," wrote the
raid across the Iraqi border.      tens of thousands of troops on       Iraq devise a way to implement       poet Robert Frost. But lately,
The attacks were meant to          the Iraq border. The invasion        Article 140 within six months.       that "something" hasn't been
target     Turkish      Kurdish    threat seems to have passed.         Stefan De Mistura, the               the U.S. military. From
separatists from the PKK           But the Turkish military             impressive      U.N.       special   Baghdad to Tall Afar, our
terrorist movement, who are        suspects leaders of the Kurdish      representative to Iraq, has won      military has been busily
based in Iraq's northern           regional      government        of   Kurds' trust; he helped              constructing walls between and
mountains. The United States       harboring      a    desire     for   organize the return home of          around Iraqi neighborhoods. In
                                   independence that would fuel         more than one million Iraqi          Baghdad, 12-foot-high walls
                                                                                                                                          page 32
now separate Sunni and Shiite         the side.                            to grade-school teachers as it is    terrorists or criminals. Such a
communities.        Broken      by         Over the last year,             to counterinsurgency experts.        crime could have grave
narrow checkpoints, the walls         sectarian cleansing has often        But it has always had a darker       national security implications
turn Baghdad into dozens of           occurred      with       reluctant   side. Historically, the same         for the United States or any of
replica Green Zones, dividing         American connivance. Our             impulse brought us Indian            the dozens of countries where
neighbor from neighbor and            troops have watched helplessly       reservations                   and   nuclear materials are held in
choking off normal commerce           as neighbors have driven out         apartheid-driven Bantustans. It      various states of security.
and communications.                   neighbors, and the walls that        gave us the Berlin Wall. At its           Shortly after midnight on
     The military isn't building      U.S. troops build help freeze        most paranoid and extreme, it        Nov. 8, four armed men broke
walls as a training exercise, of      the new sectarian boundaries in      led to the Warsaw Ghetto and         into the Pelindaba nuclear
course. The walls are meant to        place. In Washington, the            concentration camps.                 facility 18 miles west of
make it harder for militias,          administration still speaks of a          "Good fences make good          Pretoria, a site where hundreds
insurgents and death squads to        unified       Iraqi        central   neighbors," insists Robert           of kilograms of weapons-grade
coordinate and reach their            government and "national             Frost's smug neighbor in             uranium are stored. According
intended victims. With enough         reconciliation," but in practice,    "Mending Walls," a poem in           to the South African Nuclear
troops and enough concrete,           we've gained a respite from          which two men rebuild the            Energy Corp., the state-owned
the theory goes, you can keep         violence in part because we've       broken stone wall that marks         entity that runs the Pelindaba
the bad guys from operating           given up on reconciliation and       their rural property line. And       facility, these four "technically
effectively      and     gradually    accepted sectarian segregation       maybe that's right. Frost wrote      sophisticated          criminals"
reduce the sectarian violence         as the new status quo.               "Mending Wall" in 1915, as           deactivated several layers of
that has been tearing Iraq apart.          In other words, for all the     nationalism and ethnic rivalries     security,       including        a
     So far, it looks as if the       early       rhetoric        about    tore     Europe     apart.     But   10,000-volt electrical fence,
wall-building       strategy     is   benchmarks,             "political   meditating on the wall-building      suggesting insider knowledge
paying dividends. Civilian            progress" and reconciliation,        impulse, Frost also imagined,        of the system. Though their
deaths in Iraq are down               the truth is that most               superimposed on his stolid           images were captured on
significantly. And though 2007        Washington insiders accept           New England neighbor, a              closed-circuit television, they
has been the deadliest year of        that we're heading toward a          darker image:                        were not detected by security
the war for U.S. troops, attacks      different and much grimmer                I see him there,                officers because nobody was
on them have dropped sharply          version of Iraq. As Joost                 Bringing a stone grasped        monitoring the cameras at the
in recent months. After so            Hiltermann of the International      firmly by the top                    time.
many years of escalating              Crisis Group comments: "Iraq              In each hand, like an                So, undetected, the four
violence, it's almost eerie.          is moving in the direction of a      old-stone savage armed.              men spent 45 minutes inside
     How do Iraqis feel about         failed state, with competing              He moves in darkness as it      one of South Africa's most
the walls springing up around         centers of power run by              seems to me,                         heavily guarded "national key
their neighborhoods? Mixed,           warlords and militias. The                Not of woods only and the       points" -- defined by the
unsurprisingly: relieved by the       central government has no            shade of trees.                      government as "any place or
lull in violence but dismayed         political control whatsoever              He will not go behind his       area that is so important that its
by the cost. "Iraq is a prison,       beyond Baghdad, maybe not            father's saying,                     loss, damage, disruption or
and now I live in my own little       even beyond the Green Zone."              And he likes having             immobilization may prejudice
prison," one Iraqi told the                We used to say we wanted        thought of it so well                the Republic."
Christian Science Monitor.            freedom and democracy. But                He says again, "Good                 Eventually, the attackers
"We are not free; our                 these days, we'll settle for more    fences make good neighbors."         broke into the emergency
neighborhood is barricaded,"          warlords, more segregation and            Iraq today also still moves     control center in the middle of
complained another.                   fewer bodies.                        in darkness. We should be glad       the facility, stole a computer
     It's against this backdrop            Don't get me wrong --           of the lull in violence, but if      (which was ultimately left
that we should evaluate the           given our tragic early blunders      stability in Iraq depends on         behind) and breached an
success       of     the      Bush    in Iraq, and the diminishing         miles of concrete walls and an       electronically sealed control
administration's troop "surge"        likelihood that the Bush             indefinite U.S. occupation,          room. After a brief struggle,
in Iraq. Yes, violence is down.       administration will launch a         that's not "victory." It's defeat.   they shot Anton Gerber, an
Some of that is because of the        diplomatic surge to match the                                             off-duty emergency services
surge itself: More troops -- and      military surge, it may be that                                            officer. Gerber later explained
smarter        counterinsurgency      what we're getting is, in fact,      Washington Post                      that he was hanging around
tactics -- have indeed translated     the best that we or the Iraqis       December 20, 2007                    because         he       believed
into a reduction in violence.         can hope for: a divided state in     Pg. 29                               (reasonably, in retrospect) that
But violence also is down             which squabbling groups are          47. A Nuclear Site Is                his fianc¿e -- a site
because the process of                kept physically apart until,         Breached                             supervisor -- was not safe at
"sectarian cleansing" is nearing      someday, they can manage to          South African Attack Should          work. Although badly injured,
completion: Sunnis have been          simply     coexist.     Sectarian    Sound Alarms                         Gerber triggered the alarm,
driven      out      of      Shiite   segregation isn't ideal, but it      By Micah Zenko                       setting off sirens and lights and
neighborhoods, Shiites out of         beats genocide.                           An underreported attack         alerting police stationed a few
Sunni neighborhoods, the                   The wall-building impulse       on a South African nuclear           miles away.
Kurds have retaken their own          -- the impulse to separate           facility      last      month             Nevertheless, the four
historic territories and smaller      groups that don't get along -- is    demonstrates the high risk of        escaped, leaving the facility the
minorities have been shoved to        a time-honored one, as familiar      theft of nuclear materials by        same way they broke in.
                                                                                                                                          page 33
     Amazingly, at the same           making a nuclear weapon exist        be     a     rush     from     the   examine in detail all the
time those four men entered           in more than 40 countries, in        appeasement crowd to move            intelligence     gathered     that
Pelindaba from its eastern            facilities with differing levels     forthright to see how we can         formed the basis for the NIE’s
perimeter, a separate group of        of security. Unfortunately,          establish normal relations with      conclusions. The commission
intruders failed in an attempt to     there are still no binding global    Iran. Let’s not forget Iran is an    also must examine, in a
break in from the west. The           standards on how to secure           acknowledged state-sponsor of        comprehensive                  but
timing suggests a coordinated         nuclear        weapons        and    terrorism that has declared war      time-constrained review, how
attack against a facility that        weapons-grade             nuclear    against the United States not        the      DNI’s     Red      Team
contains an estimated 25              material. In the absence of          once but several times over the      challenged the conclusions of
bombs'            worth          of   sustained political leadership       last 28 years with no                the NIE and what the Red
weapons-grade               nuclear   from the world's nuclear             meaningful retaliatory response      Team’s findings were.
material. On Nov. 16, local           powers to develop, agree to          from us.                                  The fact that Iran has
police arrested three suspects,       and      implement       effective        Iran’s corrupt regime, by       accelerated its work on
ranging in age from 17 to 28,         nuclear security standards,          previously fomenting regional        uranium enrichment with more
in connection with this               armed attacks such as the one        instability, has displayed an        than 3,000 centrifuges at its
incident.                             at Pelindaba could become            unwillingness to play a              Natanz site is a key factor in its
     In     response      to    the   commonplace.                         constructive role except on its      drive to attain a nuclear
successful attack, the South               Micah Zenko is a research       own terms. The regime’s goal         weapon capability that cannot
African Nuclear Energy Corp.          associate in the project on          is hegemony over its neighbors       be      ignored.     They      are
suspended        six     Pelindaba    Managing the Atom at Harvard         with the United States driven        continuing work on a range of
security personnel, including         University's Belfer Center for       from the region. This is             technical capabilities that could
the general manager of                Science and International            unacceptable.                        have dual use for producing
security, and promised an             Affairs. The views expressed              The damage caused by the        nuclear weapons.
"internal investigation which         here are solely those of the         inept release of the NIE must             With Iran’s track record
will       cover      culpability,    author.                              be addressed promptly. In my         over the last 28 years for
negligence and improvements                                                view, the authors of the NIE         supporting terrorist operations
of Security Systems." It should                                            have been very cleverly              throughout the Middle East
be noted that Pelindaba's             Washington Times                     subjected       to    “perception    plus its current support of the
security was considered to            December 20, 2007                    management” by the Iranians.         insurgency in Iraq, we cannot
have been upgraded after a            Pg. 15                               They have used perception            afford to be wrong on Iran’s
break-in there two years ago          48. Vetting The Iran                 management in a very clever          nuclear weapons program.
(one individual was detained          NIE                                  way to shift the focus of the             James Lyons, U.S. Navy
shortly after breaching the           By James Lyons                       main issue from uranium              retired       admiral,       was
security fence).                           The recently released           enrichment to nuclear weapons        commander in chief of the U.S.
     It is still unclear why the      National Intelligence Estimate       warheads.        Certainly,    the   Pacific Fleet, senior U.S.
two groups of intruders sought        (NIE) on Iran’s nuclear              statement by the former Iranian      military representative to the
to break into this particular         weapon program not only left         President Hashimi Rafsanjani         United Nations, and deputy
facility.     More      important,    many questions unanswered            to a group of visiting American      chief of naval operations,
however, is that had the armed        but left our friends and allies      experts in 2005 that Iran had        where he was principal adviser
attackers       succeeded        in   caught offbase and confused. I       halted its nuclear weapons           on all Joint Chiefs of Staff
penetrating the site's highly         am sure they wonder how they         research program in 2003 was         matters.
enriched uranium storage vault,       are to support efforts for more      a key factor in the perception
where the weapons-grade               stringent sanctions against          management ruse.
nuclear material is believed to       Iran’s enrichment program.                The NIE fails to address
be held, they could have                   Let’s not forget that Iran’s    what state the nuclear weapon
carried away the ingredients          drive to achieve the enrichment      warhead had achieved in 2003.
for the world's first terrorist       of uranium is the key element        Nor does it address whether it
nuclear bomb.                         in its efforts to attain a nuclear   has been restarted. It is stressed
     As this incident shows,          weapons program. However,            that the “new evidence”
nuclear terrorism is a global         the NIE has had the reverse          supporting the conclusion Iran
issue, extending far beyond the       effect. Russia has now               halted its nuclear weapons
familiar policy talking points        announced it intends to              development program was
of U.S. cooperation with              complete construction of the         subjected to “Red Team”
Russia over its nuclear               nuclear power plant. And with        analysis. This is supposed to
stockpiles, the security of           China moving rapidly to              somehow raise our comfort
Pakistan's nuclear arsenal in         expand its commercial and            level. We need to ask, “Who
the face of threats from Islamic      military relations programs          were the members of the DNI
extremists, and concerns that if      with Iran, any hope of stiffer       Red Team?” If they came
Iran        acquires        nuclear   sanctions coming out of the          within the DNI (Office of the
capabilities it could provide a       United       Nations      Security   Director         of       National
bomb to sympathetic terrorist         Council has been scuttled by         Intelligence) structure, their
organizations.                        our own ineptness.                   credibility is suspect.
     Indeed,      the     essential        Compounding               the        A commission needs to be
ingredients       required      for   problem, there most likely will      formed        immediately       to

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