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Thursday, Apr 17th

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U.S. missile radar to shield Israel against Iran

Israel has received an advanced U.S.-made radar, staffed by American personnel, as part of preparations to fend off any future ballistic missile attack by Iran, officials involved in the deployment said on Sunday.

The arrival of the X-band radar is a gauge of the depth of defense ties between Israel and the United States. But by cementing Israel's technical dependency on its ally, it may boost Washington's power to veto unilateral Israeli action aimed at denying Iran access to nuclear weapons.

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Radical Settlers Take On Israel

A pipe bomb that exploded late on Wednesday night outside the Jerusalem home of Zeev Sternhell, a Hebrew University professor, left him lightly wounded and created only a minor stir in a nation that routinely experiences violence on a much larger scale.

But Mr. Sternhell was noted for his impassioned critiques of Jewish settlements in the West Bank, once suggesting that Palestinians “would be wise to concentrate their struggle against the settlements.” And the authorities found fliers near his home offering nearly $300,000 to anyone who kills a member of Peace Now, a left-wing Israeli advocacy group, leading them to suspect that militant Israeli settlers or their supporters were behind the attack.

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Europe and Japan turn cold shoulder to U.S. plea for bank bailouts

The German chancellor, Angela Merkel, also took the opportunity to sharply criticize the United States and Britain for opposing German attempts to put greater regulation, or at least reviews, of the financial sector on the international agenda last year, when she was chairing the Group of 7 industrialized nations.

"Everyone who produces a real product knows what it looks like and what standards it is up to," said Merkel, who was traveling in Austria. "One also needs to know with a financial product what's involved. Otherwise, these sorts of things happen that we then all have to pay for."

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Pakistan probes mystery of US Marines' steel boxes in Marriott

Pakistani authorities are trying to "solve the riddle" of US Marines and their mysterious steel cases that were shifted to the Marriott Hotel four days before it was razed in the worst terrorist attack in the federal capital, a media report on Tuesday said.

According to an official source, the authorities were told that mysterious activity of the US Marines took place around midnight on Sep 16.

"Already, the government has got information that several rooms on the fourth floor of the Marriott were in permanent use of the US authorities. Three of these rooms were said to be inter-connected and contained some intelligence equipment and other material allegedly used for espionage," the newspaper said.

Witnessed by many, including a PPP MNA and his friends, a US embassy truckload of steel boxes was unloaded and shifted inside the Marriott Hotel on Sep 16 midnight only after Mullen had met Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani and others in Islamabad and had already left the country.

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'Punish' those responsible for financial crisis: Sarkozy

Those responsible for the global financial crisis should be punished, French President Nicolas Sarkozy said, calling for more world leaders to recognize the seriousness of the situation.

"Today millions of people around the world are fearful of losing their nest eggs, their apartments, their savings in banks," Sarkozy said at a dinner Monday where he was awarded the Elie Wiesel Foundation's Humanitarian Award.

"We must provide them with clear answers. Who is responsible for this disaster. That those responsible will be held accountable and punished and that we government leaders will assume our responsibilities," he said without specifying those responsible.

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Pakistani President Delivers Broadside Against Terrorism and U.S. Intervention

President Asif Ali Zardari addressed a joint session of Parliament on Saturday, his first speech there since his election two weeks ago, and offered a program of peace and reform while vowing to root out terrorism and extremism.

But he also warned that Pakistan would not abide further American military incursions into the border areas. “We will not tolerate the violation of our sovereignty and territorial integrity by any power in the name of combating terrorism,” he said in a comment that was broadly greeted by legislators, who loudly thumped on their desks to show their support. 

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TVNL Comment: Now, THAT'LL scare the hell out of George Bush for sure!

'Anti-Americanism' in Australia

The presidency of George W. Bush has elevated anti-Americanism to a global sport more popular in some quarters than World Cup Football. The end of the Cold War, the emergence, at least temporarily, of the United States as the world's 'hyper-power', and Bush's unfortunate first-term tendency to act unilaterally and then boast about it have inspired many to sound off about how much they hate America.

Secondly, 'some of what appears to be anti-American sentiment in the world today is really a hostility to the ideology, policies, conduct and discourse of the present Bush Administration. And of course that hostility is shared by tens of millions of Americans.' 

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