July 10, 2003

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Free Speech Radio News Headlines
The Congressional leaders behind the campaign finance reform law announced today that they are introducing legislation to replace the Federal Election Commission, calling the FEC ineffective. Jay Tamboli has more from D.C.

President Bush is threatening to veto a Congressional vote designed to insure federal funds for international family planning organizations like Planned Parenthood even if they INCLUDE abortion as an option.  James Cullum reports from D.C.

The American Civil Liberties Union has won a settlement from the city of Los Angeles over alleged charges that the LAPD mistreated people during a large scale arrest on skid row.  Patrick Burke reports from KPFK in Los Angeles.

Hundreds of Native Americans peacefully protested in a Pine Ridge border town yesterday charging the mostly white residents are looking to start their own police department because they refuse the newly elected Native one. Jim Kent reports.

Iraq War Justification Called in Question
Before a Senate Congressional Committee today, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld testified that the estimated monthly US Military cost in Iraq is 3.9 billion dollars, double what the Bush Administration cited in April. Republican Senator John McCain told Free Speech Radio News that another supplemental to Iraq is expected. An earlier supplemental was $70 billion dollars, this as the Bush administration is working to close a growing credibility gap over the justification for war in Iraq. Congressional Republicans are resisting calls for a full investigation – Josh Chaffin has more from Capitol Hill.

Guatemalan Elections
Revered by his supporters as the strong, God-fearing leader that Guatemala needs, and scorned by his detractors a genocidal dictator, Efrain Rios Montt remains one of the most controversial figures in Guatemalan history. And he also hopes to be the nation’s next president. Guatemala’s highest court is meeting today to debate whether he can run in the upcoming elections, despite a constitutional ban on former dictators running for president. Catherine Elton has more on this story from Guatemala City.

Senegalese Deportation
As President Bush continues his five day country tour of African, his administration is facing mounting international pressure to send troops to Liberia as part of a multinational peacekeeping force, this as the Senegalese government is deporting 15 French nationals from their soil this week. In early march, French authorities deported one hundred and ten Senegalese nationals, triggering an international outcry as human rights groups contested its ethics and international protocols. French authorities are obliged to send a police escort to accompany the 15 French nationals being expelled – from Senegal, Ndiaga Seck reports.

Maxxam Protested
Two California activists demanding corporate accountability from Houston-based Maxxam brought their forest defense tactics to the corporation’s home turf this week… now the campaign against Maxxam that has lasted for over a decade has entered a new phase. With a tree sit in a Houston city park, a lawsuit against its subsidiary Pacific Lumber in Humboldt County, California and possible revocation of logging permits, Maxxam is battling pressure over its business practices on several fronts. From KPFT in Houston, Texas, Renee Feltz has more:

New Pacifica By-Laws To Go Forward
More than 19 months ago the listeners and board members of Pacifica Radio won the right to draft new by-laws for the listener-sponsored Pacifica foundation. The new by-laws will allow Pacifica listeners and staff to elect the network’s governing boards thus making the 54 year old Pacifica Radio Network the first democratically governed media network in American history. A ruling this week in a California courtroom has now cleared the way for that dream to become a reality. Evan Davis files this report:


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