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International Iraq Attacks Escalate; U. S. Presses Self-Government – Attacks by Saddam Hussein loyalists and other unidentified insurgents in Iraq grew more deadly in November. Sixteen U. S. soldiers died and 20 were injured NOV. 2 after Guerrillas shot down a Chinook helicopter near Falluja, 30 miles west of Baghdad, with a surface-to-air missile. A 2nd missile narrowly missed hitting a 2nd Chinook. A Black Hawk helicopter exploded and crashed Nov. 7 in Tikrit, killing the 6 American soldiers aboard. In response, U. S. tanks, howitzers, and planes Nov. -8 struck an area in trikrit from which guerrilla attacks had been launched, and U. S. aircraft struck at 2 targets in Baghdad Nov. 12. Pres. George W. Bush declared Nov. 3 that “ America will never run ” from Iraq, and in a Nov. 6 speech, he called on Middle East states to embrace a democratic tradition and recognize that the outster of Saddam Hussein was “a watershed event in the global democratic revolution. ” U. S. hopes for a broader military force in Iraq were set back Nov. 7 when Turkey withdrew its offer of troops, which Iraq’s Governing Council had opposed. In Nasiriya, Nov. 2 a truck and car crashed into a building housing Italian military police; 19 Italians and 13 Iraqis were killed and more than 100 people were wounded. The senior U. S. commander in the Middle East, Gen. John Abizaid, said Nov. 13 that the coalition faced 5,000 guerrilla fighters in Iraq who were getting better organized and financed. At least 17 U. S. soldiers were killed 2 days later when two Black Hawk helicopters collided over the northen city of Mosul and crashed. One soldier was missing and 5 others were injured. U. S. forces were reacted by strikes against sites believed to have been staging areas for attacks.Bombs at 2 police stations near Baghdad killed 14 people. U. S. officials Nov. 14 confirmed that the administration now supported an acceleration of the move toward Iraqi self-government even before a new constitution, with transitional assembly selecting interim leaders. Independence was to be restored in 2004; foreign troops, however, would remain. On Nov. 26, a leading Shiite, Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, denounced the U. S. plan, calling for a direct election, which would likely benefit the Shiite majority. On Nov. 27 Pres.Bush flew to Iraq under tight security to have Thanksgiving dinner in the mess hall ay Baghdad International Airport with 600 soldiers of the First Armored Division and 82nd Airborne. The trip was known in advance only to a few and not announced to the public until the president had left Baghdad air space; he was accompanied by only a few select reporters and a small official entourage. The month ended with a spate of violence, much of it aimed at non-American foreigners. Seven Spanish intelligence officers died south of Baghdad Nov. 29 when their SUVs were attacked by rocket-propelled grenades and a rifle fire.Separate attacks the same day also killed 2 Japanese diplomats and a Colombian oil worker, and 2 South Korean contracters were killed in ambush Nov. 30. For all of November, guerrillas killed 104 coalition troops, including 79 Americans. When they came under attack in Samarra, Nov. 30, U. S. forces struck back, killing 54 Iraqi fighters according to U. S. military sources, although bodies were not recovered and Iraqi sources claimed many fewer were killed. Bombing Rock Turkey- Twice during November, terrorists struck at Turkey, a largely Muslim nation that supported the U.S. invasion of Iraq. On Nov. 15, 2 Truck bombs exploded outside 2 synagogues in Istanbul, killing 25 people and wounding more than 250; most had been attending Sabbath prayers. On Nov. 20, Truck bombs exploded in Istanbul, at the British consulate and Turkish headquarters of HSBC bank, killing 30 and injuring 450; the British consul general, Roger Short, was among those killed. An anonymous caller attributed the bank attack to al-Qaeda and the Islamic Front of Raiders of the Great Orient, a Turkish group that had also claimed responsibility for the synagogue bombings.A car bomb that exploded Nov. 8 in a residential compound in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, claimed 17 lives and wounded more than 120. * Bush Visits Britain- Pres. Bush arrived in London Nov. 18 to begin a state visit to Britain. The next day he was welcomed by Queen Elizabeth IIat Backingham palace; in a speech he urged Britain to stand with the U. S. in a long term effort to defeat terrorism and bring democracy to Islamic nations of Middle East. Bush’s movements were sharply risricted for security reasons; the usual procession htrough the streets was scrubbed, and he did not address Parliament.At a meeting between Bush and Prime Min. Tony Blair Nov. 20, the 2 deplored terrorist attacks that day in Turkey. The same day a crowd of anti Bush protesters estimated by authorities at 100,000 to 110,000 marched through London streets. President of Georgia Resigns – Pres. Eduard Shevardnadze resigned his office Nov. 23, after mass protest in Georgia. On Nov. 20, the Central Ellection Commission had certified that his supporters won the parliamentary election of Nov. 2, but international observers had reported instances of fraud, On Nov. 2, protestors had broken into Parliament, forcing Shevardnadze, the last foreign minister of Soviet Union, to flee. His decade-long rule had been marked to ward the end by national economic collapse and charges of official corruption. General U. S. Episcopal church consecrates Gay Bishop- The Rev. V. Gene Robinsonwas consecrated Nov. 2 as bishop of New Hampshire, becoming the first openly gay prelatein The Episcopal Church U. S. A. The consecration went forward despite warnings from Anglican primates in Africa, Asia, and Latin Americathat it could cause a schism in church.Rowan Williams, the archbishop of Canterbury, issued a statement Nov. 2 that recognized the right of the American branch to choose its bishops, but expressed regret that the concerns of other church leadrs had not been given consideration. On Nov. 3, Anglican leaders in Africa declared that they were in State of “impaired communion” with the U. S. Episcopalians. Man admits killing 48 women in”Green River” case- Gary Ridgway, a resident of a seattle “(WA) suburb pleaded guilty Nov. 5 to killing 48 young women, most of them prostitutes or runaways.Since the 1980s authorities had been seeking the so-called Green River Killer, who had strangled the women after having sex with them and left many of their bodies near the river. Ridgway confessed the crime in an agreement with prosecutors that spared him the death penalty; no other serial murderer in U. S. history had been convicted of so many killings. On Dec. 18, Ridgway was sentenced to 48 consecutive life terms. 2002 DC Sniper Convicted – A Virginia Beach (VA) Jury Nov. 17 found John Muhammad guilty in sniper attacks that plagued the Washington, DC, area in fall 2002.Muhammad had been arrested along with a suspected teenage accomplice, Lee Malvo, currently on trial separately. He was convicted of 2 counts of capital murder, one for committing multiple murders over 3 years and one for killing Dean Meyers in Oct. 2002 to further a terrorist scheme aimed at extorting $10 mil. Muhammad was also found guilty of conspiracy to commit murder and illegal use of a firearm. Prosecutors relied on strong circumstantial evidence, including a rifle found in his car that ballistics tests showed had been used in 13 shootings. The jury Nov. 4 recommended a death sentence, which was imposed by the judge Mar. 9,2004. Michael Jackson Arrested for Child Abuse- law enforcement officials in Santa Barbara, CA, Nov. 19 issued an arrest warrant for singer Michael Jackson on multiple counts of child molestation. They said that the pop star would be charged with “lewd and lascivious conduct” with a child under age 14. Allegations a decade earlier that he had molested a 13-year- old boy had been resolved out of court with a multimillion-dollar settlement. Jackson was booked at the Santa Barbara County Jail, Nov. 0, and released on $3 mil bail; he was formally charged Dec. 18. Jackson rejected the charge as unfounded. DECEMBER 2003 NATIONAL Bush Lifts Tarrifs on Steel Imports- Pres. George. W. Bush reversed one of his state policies Dec. 4 when he lifted tarrifs on sport imported steel, effective Dec. 5. His administration had imposed the tarrifs in March 2002, and they were scheduled to be in effect for 3 years. However, the World Trade Organization Nov. 10 had upheld an earlier ruling declaring the tariffs illegal, and the European Union and a number of countries had threatened to retaliate against them.South Dakota Congressman Resigns After Conviction- Rep. William Janklow (R,SD), a former governor of the state, was convicted Dec. 8 of 2nd-degree manslaughter and other charges, and announced he would resign from Congress in January. In August, Janklow’s car had struck and killed a motorcyclist. Gore Endorses Dean for democratic nomination – Former Vice Pres. Al Gore Dec. 9 endorsed Howard Dean for a Democratic presidential nomination. Gore, the party’s presidential nominee in 2000, passed over another candidate, Sen .Joe Liebeman (CT), his 2000 running mate, and was criticized by some specially for having failed to notify Lieberman of his decision before it was made public. In Dec. 9 speeches in New York and Iowa, Gore praised Dean for being the only leading Democratin contender who had consistently opposed the Iraq war. The 9 Democrats seeking the nomination debated that day in Durham, NH. On Dec. 14, Lieberman remarked, “If Howard Dean had his way, Saddam Hussein would be in power today, not in prison. ” On Dec. 15, Dean asserted,”The capture of Saddam Hussein has not made America safer. ” On Dec. 3, consumer advocate Ralph Nader, the Green Party presidential nominee in 1996 and 2000, said he would not seek the party’s nomination for 2004. Democrats elected in San Francisco, Houston- In a nonpartisan election, businessman Gavin Newsom, a Democrat, won a runoff elaection for mayor of San Francisco Dec. 9, defeating Green Party member Matt Gonzalez, 53% to 47%; this was the best showing yet by a green in a U. S. bigcity mayoral election. Newsom was to succeed outgoing Mayor Willy Brown. In Houston, TX, Dec. 6, in another nonpartisan runoff, Bill White, A Democrat and a former U.S. deputy energy secretary, won with 62% of the vote, defeating Cuban-born Ornaldo Sanchez, a Republican. Supreme Court Upholds Campaign Finance Law- A 5-4 majority on the U. S. Supreme Court, Dec. 10, upheld the 2002 campaign-finance law as a constitutional approach to combating spending abuses in a political process. The 2002 Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act had been challenged on first-amendment grounds by a number of desperate organizations; they objected to the ban on unlimited “soft money” contributions to the political parties and to a ban on certain advertising just prior to elections.California Governor Declares Fiscal Crisis- Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R,CA) Dec. 18 declared that his state was in a fiscal crisis. This proclamation would allow him, he said, to cut spending by $150 mil without having to get the legislature’s approval. California’s bond ratings had been reduced to near junk-bond levels, and a state deficit of $15 bil was projected for 2004. Terror alert in U. S. Is Raised to ‘High’- Tom Ridge, secretary of homeland security, announced Dec. 21 that the U. S. ntiterrorism alert status was being raised to “high” (orange) from “elevated” (yellow). Ridge said that the danger of a terrorist attack was “perhaps greater now than at any point since Sept. 11, 2001. ” He cited unspecific new intelligence information that suggested plans to strike during the holiday season. On Dec. 24, Air France, responding to a U. S. request, canceled 6 flights between Paris and Los Angeles; U. S. officials reportedly suspected that the passengers on the flights could have links to terrorism.On the same day the FBI circulated a warning to law enforcement organizations to be on the watch for almanacs, since they could be used by terrorist “to assist with target selection and pre-operational planning. ” Some media reports noted the warning humorously, since these general referecnce works, of wchich the largest * selling is The World Almanac and Book of Facts, are read by millions of people each year. On Dec. 29, the Department of Homeland Security announced a Rule requiring armed air marshals on certain foreign carriers’ flights entering U.S airspace that intelligence suggested were at special risk of terrorist attack. When a British Airways plane landed at Dulles International Airport outside Washington, DC, Dec. 31, authorities held the passengers, interviewing some, and rescreened the luggage. U. S. Bans Use of Weight Reduction Pill- the Bush administration Dec. 30 said it would prohibit use of Ephedra, a herbal supplement used by millions of Americans to lose weight or to improve athletic performance. Tommy Thompson, secratory of Health nad Human services, said the supplement “was too risky to be used. Ephedra had been linked to heart attacks, stokes, and sudden deaths. In February 2003, Steve Bechler, a pitcher for the Baltimore Orioles, died after taking Ephedra tablets, and a medical examiner said that the supplement was a factor in his death. Special Councel to Investigate Leak of Agent’s Name- Atty. Gen. John Ashcroft Dec. 30 removed himself from any role in the investigation into the leaking of a CIA name to a journalist. At issue was whether anyone in the Bush administration had violated the law by revealing the name of the agent, Valerie Plame, to columnist Robert Novak, who published her name in July.The justice dept. said Dec. 30 that a special councel would head the investigation. Plame was the wife of Joseph Wilson, a former U. S. ambassador who had publicly cast doubt on an administration assertion of nuclear weapon links between Iraq and Niger. Stock Values Rise Sharply in 2003- After losses for 3 years in a row, investors had much to cheer about Dec. 31, as major stock indexes showed large gains for 2003. The Dow Jones industriel average has risen 25%to 10,453. 92. A broader measure, Standard and poor’s 500-stock index, posted a 26%gain, moving up to 1,11. 92.The tech-jeavy NASDAQ index advanced 50%, to 2003. 37. Averages were still below their all-time highs of the late 1990s, however. INTERNATIONAL U. S. Forces Strike Back in Iraq- U. S. forces continued the tactic of launching massive raids targeting insurgents resisting the occupation. On Dec. 2, 1,000 troops raided Hawija, west of Kirkuk, in an effort to capture an aide to former Pres. Saddam Hussein. At a meeting in Iraq Dec. 6 with U. S. Sec. OF Defense Donald Rumsfeld, Lt. Gen. Ricardo Sanchez said that attacks on U. S. forces were running below 20 a day, half the rate of a few weeks earlier.Rumsfeld Visits Afganistan- Amid reports of a growing number of attacks on U. s forces in Afganistan, Defense Sec. Rumsfeld met in Kabul Dec. 4 with Pres Hamid Karzai. Rumsfeld also met in Mazar-I-Sharif Dec. 4 with 2 warlods who controlled regional military forces. In 2 U. S. air strikes that went wrong Dec. 5 and Dec. 6, 15 Afgan children were among those killed. Chinese Premeir Visits U. S. – Premier Wen Jiabao of China visited the U. S. for the first time , Dec. 7-10. He met with Pres. George W. Bush and other administration officials at the White House, Dec. 9.During a joint news conference that dday, Bush said the U. s had warned the Taiwanese government against holding a planned referendum that would call on China to withdraw missiles aimed at the island. Administration officials said that Bush had also cautioned Wen against the use of force by China against Taiwan. Russia’s ruling Party Wins Parliamentary Elections- United Russia, the political party led by Pres. Vladimir Putin , drew 37%of the popular vote Dec. 7 in the elections for the Duma, or the lower house of parliament to win about half of the Duma seats. With allied parties it now had *

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