October 08, 2002

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Congressional Hearings on Iraq Begin
The house started debate this morning and could vote as soon as tomorrow authorizing the use of force against Iraq. Passage of the president’s version of the bill is assured in the Republican dominated house. Democratic amendments to limit the president’s power and keep the power to declare war in the hands of the congress seem likely to die. Josh Chaffin prepared this collage from the hearings.

Bush Addresses Cincinnati  (3:52)
The debate in Congress comes on the heels of a nationwide address last night by President Bush in Cincinnati. Evan Davis reports.

Europe Still Divided on Iraq  (3:24)
As the international community listened last night to Bush’s speech, European governments are still debating their support for military action against Iraq. While Tony Blair’s administration has expressed its backing for US strikes, France, a member of the UN security council is not satisfied with US drafted Security Council resolution. Germany?s Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder continues to with hold German support for an attack against Iraq. The European Union therefore remains divided. Former Assistant Secretary General at the UN and Former Humanitarian Coordinator for Iraq, Hans Von Sponeck is in Copenhagen this week. Von Sponeck is hoping to persuade the EU to choose a path that embraces international law and humanitarian concern. Patrick Beckett has the story from Copenhagen.

Mexican Trucks to US Raises Safety Concerns  (3:36)
One of the provisions of NAFTA that has become controversial is one that would allow Mexican trucking companies to operate in the interior of the US. American politicians and others have raised concerns about the safety of Mexican trucks, as we hear in Part 2 of our series by Nick Layman.

Few Kashmiri Voters Despite Violent Coercion   (5:05)
With the final round of elections ending today in Indian controlled Kashmir, what was not on the ballot was an option for self-determination for Kashmiri people. As Vinod Jose reports from New Delhi, the low voter turnout is being attributed more to the call to boycott the elections made by advocates for independence than the use of force and coercion by Indian military.

Louisiana Activists Say Two Prisoners Are Innocent  (3:13)
Tomorrow the state of Florida will execute Aileen Wournos for a series of murders she committed in Florida in late 1989 and 1990. She confessed to six murders, but claimed she killed only in self-defense, resisting violent assaults by men while working as a prostitute. This as in Louisiana, two men have been sitting in solitary confinement for the past 30 years. Herman Wallace and Albert Woofox, both in barren 6 by 10 foot cells at Angola State Penitentiary in Louisiana, are serving life sentences without the possibility of parole for the 1972 death of prison guard Brent Miller. A growing movement of activists and lawyers asserts that these men are innocent. Noelle Hanrahan reports.

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