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HeadlinesApril 05, 2001

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Senate Votes to Slash Bush Tax Cut by Nearly a Third

Apr 05, 2001

The Senate voted yesterday to slice President Bush’s $1.6 trillion tax cut by nearly a third to provide more funds for education and debt reduction, dealing an unexpected and significant blow to the administration’s top legislative priority. The Democratic proposal picked up the backing of 49 of the chamber’s 50 Democrats, as well as three Republican moderates, who said the president’s proposed budget outline devotes too much money toward cutting taxes and not enough toward other domestic priorities.

V-22 Osprey Crash Caused by Known Design Flaw

Apr 05, 2001

In this piece from The Washington Post, the crash of a V-22 Osprey aircraft that killed four Marines in December was caused by a design flaw that had been known for months but went largely uncorrected. According to pilots interviewed by the paper anonymously, all current or former officers in the Marines 1st Osprey Squadron, they said the design flaw in the aircraft’s hydraulic system was compounded by a software glitch that could have been detected by more rigorous testing, but, they said, they believe both problems slipped by because the Marine Corps wanted to win Pentagon funding for full production of the plane. The production decision was postponed after two Osprey crashes last year killed 23 Marines, raising questions about the safety of the aircraft.

Bush Admin Seeks to Reverse Mandatory Ground Beef Testing in Gov’t School Lunch Programs

Apr 05, 2001

All ground beef used in government school lunch programs have to be tested to ensure that it is free of salmonella, but the Bush administration wants to reverse that federal policy. Officials say the zero tolerance standard for salmonella in school lunch meals was not scientifically justified. The decision has been hailed by the meat industry and criticized by consumer groups and some legislators, who note that the tougher standard had resulted in the rejection of almost 5 million pounds of ground beef during the school year, almost 5% of the total purchase by the USDA. More than 26 million children participate in the school lunch program. Salmonella poisoning in a variety of foods causes 1.4 million illnesses, generally diarrhea and intestinal distress, and 600 deaths a year in the United States.

Israeli Troops Fire on Convoy of Top Palestinian Security Officials

Apr 05, 2001

Israeli troops fired from close range early today on a four-car convoy carrying top Palestinian security officials who had just returned from talks with Israel on how to reduce friction after six months of fighting. Mohammed Dahlan, one of the three security chiefs, said Israel tried to assassinate him and his colleagues with heavy machine gun fire. His car was struck by seven bullets, and a bag with personal belongings that had rested near his feet in the car was also hit. Three of his bodyguards were hurt, including one who was shot in the leg and two who suffered broken limbs when one of the four cars overturned. Dahlan said no progress was made in security talks.

U.N. Human Rights Envoy to Burma Meets Opposition Leader Aung San Suu Kyi

Apr 05, 2001

U.N. human rights envoy to Burma, Paulo Sérgio Pinheiro, met opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi today at the end of a landmark three-day visit to the military-ruled country. Suu Kyi, the leader of the opposition National League for Democracy, has been held under de facto house arrest since September, with access to her strictly controlled. The envoy, on the first visit by a senior U.N. human rights official to Burma for five years, was not immediately available for comment.

Laurie Berenson Refuses to Condemn MRTA Rebel Group

Apr 05, 2001

Laurie Berenson yesterday refused to condemn the MRTA rebel group that she’s accused of aiding. The presiding judge in her case concluded his fourth day of questioning of Laurie Berenson in her civilian trial by giving her a chance to speak out against the guerrillas, but Berenson said she was not going to condemn anybody. Berenson conceded she may have unwittingly aided the MRTA rebels, but maintained she is innocent of the charges against her.

Cuba Welcomes 8 American Medical Students

Apr 05, 2001

This news from Havana: A U.S. flag was flown and the American anthem was played as Cuba welcomed eight young Americans to study medicine courtesy of the Cuban government. The six women and two men arrived in Havana late Tuesday and were welcomed yesterday. They are the first Americans to attend a free six-year program to become physicians, originally designed for impoverished students in Latin America. President Fidel Castro offered to extend the free medical training to include up to 500 Americans when he met last May with a delegation from the Congressional Black Caucus.

13,000 Public School Teachers Strike in Hawaii

Apr 05, 2001

The nation’s only statewide public school system was shut down today in Hawaii as nearly 13,000 teachers gave up their pointers for picket signs.

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