July 11, 2003

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Free Speech Radio News Headlines

As Ahmed Al-Arawi reports from Baghdad, charges by the U.S. military that the armed resistance is coming from Saddam Hussein loyalists are false.

Fewer U.S. workers will be eligible to collect overtime cash once new legislation, promoted by the Labor Department goes into effect.  Pamela Barnett reports from D.C.

The Florida Supreme Court struck down a law requiring minors seeking abortions to notify their parents first, saying it violated the teens’ right to privacy.  Mitch Perry reports from Tampa.

More than six years after a young black man was shot and killed in his car in Connecticut by an officer from a neighboring town — which at the time had an all-white police force — the mother of the victim won a stunning victory in federal court yesterday. Melinda Tuhus reports from New Haven.

Bush in Uganda
Today in Uganda, President Bush and National Security Advisor Condoleeza Rice blamed the CIA for approving false intelligence in the State of the Union Address, particularly the implication that Iraq was trying to acquire nuclear material from African countries. Meanwhile, a report issued by Human Rights Watch yesterday accused Uganda and Rwanda of violence in the Congo. According to the report, Uganda is accused of arming militias. Ugandan Army Commander, Major General James Kazini and President Yoweri Musevini’s brother, Major General Salim Saleh, was named in the illicit looting of the Congo’s wealth. Many in the opposition believe Bush’s visit will save President Musevini’s face perhaps in exchange for U.S. Military warplanes being refueled on Ugandan soil. Sasha Lilley reads for Joshua Kyalimpa who files this report from Kampala, Uganda.

Small Arms in Conflicts
As President Bush continues his five-nation tour of Africa, the U.S. is under mounting pressure to send troops to Liberia as part of a multinational peacekeeping force. A 1,000 strong West African contingent will be deployed there within two weeks in an effort to end nearly 14 years of conflict that has claimed thousands of lives. Much of the violence in Liberia, as elsewhere in Africa, has been carried out with assault rifles and rocket-propelled grenade launchers manufactured abroad. These so-called small arms and light weapons have found their way there despite a United Nations weapons embargo. As governments meet at the UN this week to review progress in curbing the illegal arms trade, grassroots organizations are calling for tighter controls. Susan Wood has more from the UN.

Questioning Computerized Voting
Following the Florida 2000 election dispute, Congress passed a major Election reform law called the Help America Vote Act in 2002. Not everyone is happy.  Designed to create a secure voting process, activists, writers and computer scientists claim the touch screen voting machines are extremely less secure and vulnerable to hackers. Now states are rushing to meet federal deadlines as a new breed of digital voting machines replace older punch cards and some optical scan systems. As Geoff Brady reports, the system that purged black voters before the Florida 2000 election is now the subtle blueprint within the Help America Vote Act that will be adopted by all fifty states.

Controversial Anti-Gang Measures
The City of Los Angeles filed an injunction yesterday against the largest of its “crip” gangs. The City calls it part of a strategy to put an end to gang violence by banning gang activity.  In the wake of the Rampart scandal where officers were accused of systematically violating the rights of suspected gang members, it’s a controversial measure among activists. Jordan Davis reports.

Public Access TV in Philadelphia
Earlier this week, the Philadelphia Community Access Coalition, or PCAC filed a business plan to the city’s managing director to start Public Access Cable Television. Currently, Philadelphia is the largest city without public access cable television, this despite a City Council law passed 20 years ago that provided for it without setting up an entity to oversee programming. The current Philadelphia Community Access Coalition plan was requested by the city’s Managing Director, Phil Goldsmith, during an on-going mediation to negotiate a settlement in a lawsuit filed by the PCAC. Dante Toza has more from Philadelphia.

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