February 03, 2005

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Headlines (5:09)

Gonzales Set to Take Nomination
The nation’s next top cop is the same person who participated in crafting the Bush administration’s memo on what defines torture. More from Linley Smith in D.C.

U.S. Corps Leaving Iran
Some of the U.S. government’s biggest contractors are leaving Iran. Renee Feltz reports from KPFT in Houston.

Peace Process in Northern Ireland Halted
The peace process in Northern Ireland has come to a grinding halt as the Irish Republican Army announced they would withdraw their offer to decommission all weapons. Naomi Fowler explains from London.

French to Ban Neo-Nazis
French officials are preparing to ban Neo-Nazi groups after a reported rise in violent hate crimes last year. Jordan Davis reports from Paris.

Canada Moves Forward on Same-Sex Marriage
Canada’s ruling party introduced its long-awaited same-sex marriage bill into the House of Common this week.  From CKLN in Toronto, Kristin Schwartz has more.


Unlike the last three State of the Union Addresses, last night foreign policy took a back seat when President Bush addressed a joint session of Congress. Included in the few foreign policy details, Bush said the US will ask Congress for 350 million dollars to support Palestinian political, economic and security reforms. Of that amount, 80 million dollars would reportedly go to Israel to help build its wall around the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.Last night the President also refused to set a timeline to withdraw US troops from Iraq. According to our Capitol Hill Correspondent Mitch Jeserich, testimony at a Senate hearing today suggests the Bush administration is expected to keep a substantial number of troops there for years to come.

The domestic agenda outlined in the State of the Union Address included a long list of issue priorities in addition to the major focus on changes to Social Security. Jenny Johnson reports.

After a four-year stalemate, the leaders of Israel and Palestine are set to meet in Egypt early next week. Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas is expected to introduce a plan for Palestinian statehood, and ask Israel to halt expanding settlements in the West Bank. And, as Awad Duaibes reports plans for a formal ceasefire between the two territories looks promising.

After a gap of 27 years and a flood of violence that started in 1989, the first civic elections are being held in Indian administered Kashmir. Voters will be choosing municipal representatives for the cities and towns in Jammu and Kashmir. Separatist parties and militant groups have called for an election boycott, threatening to target voters who go to the polls. After two of six phases of elections that started January 29 and end February 17, Shanawaz Khan files this report.

On Tuesday, the Philippine Supreme Court ruled for the second time in two months to re-open the country’s mining industry to foreign-owned companies. The ruling came on the eve of a week-long international mining conference being held in Manila, essentially ending a moratorium set in place in January 2004 by a previous Supreme Court decision.Protestors accuse the government of brushing environmental concerns aside, and ignoring the potential destruction that mining in the region may cause. From Manila, FSRN’s Carey Biron reports.

After his talk at Hamilton College in New York State scheduled for tonight was cancelled, a professor at the University of Colorado in Boulder is at the center of a debate over free speech. Ward Churchill, whose book “On the Justice of Roosting Chickens”, which contains an essay on the September 11 attacks, describes some of  those killed in the World Trade Center as “Little Eichmanns” a reference to Adolf Eichman who ensured the smooth administration of the Nazi infrastructure. Colorado lawmakers, including Governor Bill Owens, are calling for his immediate termination from the university. Hamilton College said they cancelled the talk after death threats were received- but Professor Churchill says it’s another attempt to silence him. Maeve Conran reports from Boulder.


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