News for 2009-02-28

Saturday, February 28, 2009
Ottawa Wades Into Oilsands Debate
OTTAWA - The House of Commons environment committee is wading into a raging public relations war over the Alberta oilsands with a study of the industry's impact on water resources. The MP who proposed the study is Montreal-area Liberal Francis Scarpaleggia. In an interview, he said he assured...
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The Perpetual Protester
The weather was cold, and the protesters relatively few. But among the two dozen or so men who braved the whipping winds for a recent rally near the mayor's home on the Upper East Side, one man's sign stood out. "Straight Guy Protesting the NYPD's False Arrests of LGBTG People," read the message, a...
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US Won't Participate in UN Racism Conference
UNITED NATIONS - The United States won't participate in a U.N. conference on racism in April unless the final document is changed to drop all references to Israel and criticism of religion, a senior U.S. official said Friday. The conference is a follow-up to the contentious 2001 conference in the...
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California Declares Drought Emergency
SAN FRANCISCO - California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger on Friday declared a state emergency due to drought and said he would consider mandatory water rationing in the face of nearly $3 billion in economic losses from below-normal rainfall this year. As many as 95,000 agricultural jobs will be...
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U.N. Official Faults Evidence and Foreign States Linked to Guantánamo Interrogations
PARIS - A United Nations human rights official, investigating practices at Guantánamo Bay, has concluded that evidence obtained from the interrogations there is tainted and that foreign law enforcement and intelligence officials who took part in those interrogations violated their legal obligation...
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'We Are Trained to Kill, so Civilian Life Is Tough'
Two young men stood nose to nose on a south London street a few months ago, in a furious argument over a minor car accident so heated it had to be broken up by police. The scene would have been utterly common place, banal even, had one of the young men involved not been the country's greatest...
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W.Va. Guard Members May Have Been Exposed to Toxin in Iraq
WASHINGTON - The West Virginia National Guard is trying to track down 130 reservists who were probably exposed to a cancer-causing chemical in 2003 while guarding a water facility in southern Iraq. The move follows similar efforts by the Indiana and Oregon National Guards, whose soldiers were also...
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Activists Warn US Lawmakers of Uranium Mining Perils
WASHINGTON - A French physicist and a US actor have joined representatives of indigenous peoples from Africa, Australia and the United States to send US lawmakers a stark warning about the dangers of uranium mining. "We want US lawmakers to understand that uranium mining is highly pollutant and...
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Drawdown Plan May Leave Combat Brigades in Iraq
WASHINGTON - President Barack Obama has given military commanders a free hand to determine the size and composition of a residual force in Iraq up to 50,000 troops, apparently including the option of leaving one or more combat brigades or bringing them from the United States, after the August 2010...
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More Troops + Afghanistan = Catastrophe
President Obama has committed 17,000 more troops to Afghanistan. This decision raises serious questions about troops, costs, overall mission, and exit strategy. Historically, it has been Congress' duty to ask questions in the form of oversight hearings that challenge policymakers, examine military...
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