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Saturday, Nov 29th

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DOJ: L-3 Communications To Pay $4 Million To Settle Army's Overbilling Claim

An L-3 Communications Holdings Inc. (LLL) unit agreed to pay $4 million to the U.S. government in a settlement over overbilling claims by the U.S. Army for hours worked to support military operations in Iraq.

The settlement with company subsidiary L-3 Vertex Aerospace involved allegations that L-3 submitted false time records and inflated claims of hours worked by the company's employees at Camp Taji in Iraq from March 2004 through August 2005, according the Justice Department.

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TVNL Comment:  What a joke... it's not "overbilling"  - it's grand larceny. 

Halliburton Accused of Supplying Rotten Food to US Forces

U.S military contractor KBR, a former subisidary of Halliburton, is facing a number of lawsuits over its activities in Iraq, and elsewhere.  KBR is the largest contractor for the United States Army and a top-ten contractor for the U.S. Department of Defense.

In one class-action suit Joshua Eller, a civilian who worked for the U.S. Air Force in 2006 at the Balad air force base northeast of Baghdad, alleges KBR 'knowingly and intentionally supplied to U.S. forces and other individuals food that was expired, spoiled, rotten, or that may have been contaminated with shrapnel, or other materials'.

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Top 9/11 suspects to plead guilty

Alleged 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and his four co-defendants have said they want to plead guilty at a pre-trial hearing at Guantanamo Bay.

But Mr Mohammed said he would postpone entering his plea until an investigation into the mental state of two of his co-defendants was complete.

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TVNL Comment:  This is a total farce.  After four years in captivity and six months of turture including water boarding, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed
 confessed to masterminding the September 11th attacks, the Richard Reid shoe bombing attempt to blow up an airliner over the Atlantic Ocean, the Bali nightclub bombing in Indonesia, the 1993 World Trade Center bombing and a host of other foiled attacks.  He probably would have confessed to the assassination of Abraham Lincoln as well, given enough torture.  So would you.

Malaria Vaccine Effective in Latest Trials

Mosquito-borne disease kills nearly 1 million people, mostly African children, every year. Results from two phase II trials in Africa show that a new malaria vaccine is effective at preventing both infection and the mosquito-borne disease itself in infants and children.

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Closing Guantanamo raises some nettlesome issues

Human rights advocates have called on Obama to seal the prison's fate with the stroke of a pen by signing an executive order on the day he takes office.

But the Obama transition team has said that no decision has been made on how to move ahead on the president-elect's commitment to shutter the facility. Analysts warn there is a host of complex issues that would need to be settled first, including what to do about the current military commissions system and ongoing trials.

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Vatican would rather gay people were executed than married

The full extent of the regressive nature of the Vatican under Ratzinger was made clear this week when it was revealed that the Vatican had opposed two United Nations resolutions aimed at protecting gay and disabled people from discrimination and death.

When France proposed a resolution seeking all nations to decriminalise homosexuality, the Vatican immediately said it would oppose the resolution. This is despite the fact that up to 70 nations still have legal punishments for gay people including, in some instances, the death penalty. In a number of Islamic countries such as Afghanistan, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Sudan and Yemen, homosexual acts are still a capital offence.

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NBC names David Gregory host of 'Meet the Press'

David Gregory's new job as moderator of "Meet the Press" was made official Sunday with an announcement on the long-running NBC interview program that he will take over starting next week.

The 38-year-old chief White House correspondent was introduced by Tom Brokaw, who stepped in as temporary host last June after the death of Tim Russert, the program's moderator since 1991.

TVNL Comment: He earned this job by being one of the walikng dead members of the Bush White House press corps(e). 

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The deluder in chief

We long ago gave up hope that President Bush would acknowledge his many mistakes, or show he had learned anything from them. Even then we were unprepared for the epic denial that Bush displayed in his interview with ABC News' Charles Gibson the other day, which he presumably considered an important valedictory chat with the American public as well.

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TVNL Comment: This editorial should have been written in the lead-up to the war against Iraq.  Who knows how many lives might have been saved if the NYT and other members of the fourth estate had opted to tell the truth back then.  This is far too little, and far too late.

5 misconceptions about health care

1. America has the best health care in the world.

Let's bury this one once and for all. The United States is No. 1 in only one sense: the amount we shell out for health care. We have the most expensive system in the world per capita, but we lag behind many developed countries on virtually every health statistic you can name.

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