Friday, August 1, 1997

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  • CAMPAIGN FINANCE ABUSE HEARINGS

    The Senate panel looking into campaign fund-raising abuses subpoenaed White House documents and voiced anger over a private detective’s plans to investigate one of its members. Newsweek magazine revealed a memo from Terry Lenzner the head of Investigative Group International who testified at the hearings yesterday. His memo said his firm would investigate Oklahoma Republican Senator Don Nickles for an Indian tribe unhappy with the Senator’s stance against returning tribal land.

  • SCIENTOLOGY

    More than a thousand Scientologists in Frankfurt, Germany chanted slogans and songs borrowed from the US civil rights movement last week, alleging they are victims of religious persecution. In recent months, a number of German states and organizations have banned Scientologists from participation in political parties, and the German government voted to allow the country’s intelligence agency to keep tabs on members in Germany. The French Parliament recently designated Scientology a sect, included on a list of 173 groups that should be tracked to prevent cult activities. And in Los Angeles, at least three public school teachers are using Scientology teachings in their classrooms and one of them is hoping to establish a separate, tax-funded charter school using the same methods.

  • SEXUAL HARASSMENT IN THE MILITARY

    The Army leadership has decided that four mid-level officers at the Aberdeen Ordnance Center and School should only receive administrative punishment for failing to prevent a widespread sex scandal, and that the two star general in charge of the base should not be held responsible for the misconduct. No one in the chain of command was found culpable of any serious charge, such as dereliction of duty. This decision, which was not to be made public until next week, comes as the Army completes several major studies of gender relations in its ranks. Those studies reveal widespread bias against women in the military, including discrimination by male commanders against female troops and a selection system that allowed wife-beaters to fill the prestigious job of drill sergeant.