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Monday, Nov 24th

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Interior Dept. Changes Rule to Remove Congress Veto

In another regulatory action in the waning days of the Bush administration, the Interior Department on Thursday unveiled a new rule that challenges Congress’s authority to prevent mining planned on public lands.

Congress has emergency power to stop mineral development, and has used it six times in the last 32 years. The most recent was in June, when it put a three-year moratorium on uranium mining on one million acres near the Grand Canyon. Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne has ignored that Congressional directive, saying it was procedurally flawed.

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Children 'executed' in 1950 South Korean killings

The killings, details of which were buried in classified U.S. files for a half-century, were intended to keep southern leftists from aiding the invaders at a time when the rightist, U.S.-allied government was in danger of being overrun by communist forces.

Family survivors last month met with the U.S. Embassy for the first time, saying afterward they demanded an apology for alleged "direct and indirect" American involvement in the killings.

Declassified records show U.S. officers were present at one killing field and that at least one U.S. officer sanctioned another mass political execution if prisoners otherwise would be freed by the North Koreans. Uncounted hundreds were subsequently killed, witnesses reported.

TVNL Comment: History shows that America has never protected "democracy" or "freedom". America has only protected "capitalism." U.S. Military actions, for the most part, have protected the profits of capitalists.

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UC professor under fire for White House memo

Berkeley's City Council will delve into national policy again next week when it votes whether to demand the United States charge Berkeley resident and former Bush adviser John Yoo with war crimes.

Yoo, a tenured professor at UC Berkeley's Boalt Hall School of Law, wrote the memos offering legal justification for torture while he worked for the White House from 2001 to 2003.

The City Council will vote Monday on the five measures. In addition to demanding that Yoo be charged with war crimes, the city will decide whether to order Boalt to offer alternatives to Yoo's courses, so no student is forced to take a class from him if they don't want to. Yoo has taught constitutional and international law at Boalt since 1993. 

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U.S. military frets over Iraqi prisoners

One of the powers the U.S. military loses under the new deal is the right to detain Iraqis indefinitely without charge. That means it will have to turn the 16,000-17,000 detainees currently in its custody over to Iraqi authorities in an orderly manner. Under Iraqi law, they will have to be tried or released.

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The Real Bill Ayers

In the recently concluded presidential race, I was unwillingly thrust upon the stage and asked to play a role in a profoundly dishonest drama. I refused, and here’s why.

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6 Ways to Reduce Inflammation -- Without a Statin Drug

Experts predict that as a result of the so-called JUPITER study, which seemed to show that the statin drug Crestor lowers the risk of heart attacks and strokes in those with high levels of inflammation, will lead to millions of people being put on statin drugs.

But the benefits were actually tiny -- about 0.72 percent of the statin takers in the trial had a heart attack or stroke, compared with 1.5 percent of those taking placebos.

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Pentagon to recruit aliens on visas

Struggling to find enough doctors, nurses and linguists for the war effort, the Pentagon will temporarily recruit foreigners who have been living in the states on student and work visas, or with refugee or political asylum status.

Defense Secretary Robert Gates has authorized the Army, Navy, Air Force and Marine Corps to recruit certain legal residents whose critical medical and language skills are "vital to the national interest," officials said, using for the first time a law passed three years ago.

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Feds OK rule allowing loaded weapons in national parks

Some visitors to the nation's parks and wildlife refuges will be allowed to carry loaded weapons beginning in January under a plan given final approval Friday by the Bush administration.

Under current regulations, firearms in the national parks must be unloaded and inoperable. That means they must have trigger locks or be stored in a car trunk or in a special case. 

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TVNL Comment: Another gift known as the Bush Legacy.

Reporter reflects: 'Their grief is my last remembrance of Iraq'

I saw a lot of people cry while I was in Iraq, but I think of the hugging soldiers and the rocking civilian most often. Maybe it was the strangeness of seeing uniformed soldiers in tears. Maybe it's because they're the last sad scene I saw before I flew away. Or maybe it's the way they made me feel: guilty, because I got to leave.

Whatever the reasons, I'm glad that I think about them, glad that their grief is my last remembrance of Iraq. Because for all the stories of reduced violence and political and social successes there, Iraq remains, for the most part, a devastated country.

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