The Week That Was

January 26, 2003

The World

The Bush administration indicated it would welcome the exile of Iraqi President Saddam Hussein to prevent a war.

Venezuela's Supreme Court suspended a Feb. 2 referendum on President Hugo Chavez's rule until it can determine whether it is legal, a blow to opposition leaders hoping the vote would lead to his removal.

Three Israeli soldiers were killed by a Palestinian gunman while on patrol near Hebron.

An American working in Kuwait as a civilian contractor for the U.S. military was killed when gunmen attacked the vehicle he was riding in with another American, who was injured.

Chinese fossil hunters have discovered the remains of a creature as potentially significant as it was just plain strange: a four-winged dinosaur that swooped through the sky.

A Swedish study found that men with high levels of Vitamin A in their blood were more likely to have broken bones than those with lower levels.

Libya was elected to lead the United Nations Commission on Human Rights, despite strong objections from the United States.

Eight men were killed and two injured in a shooting in a gay massage parlor in Cape Town, South Africa.

The Nation

Fearing adverse reaction from the Senate, the Bush administration said it was reversing a recent policy change that would have permitted managed care organizations to restrict coverage of emergency services for poor people on Medicaid.

The bishop of the Roman Catholic Arcdiocese of Newark, N.J., has banned lay eulogies during funeral Masses after getting complaints that they were irreverent and trivial.

The Rev. Al Sharpton of New York City formally announced he would seek the Democratic Party nomination for president in 2004.

Complaints about identity theft nearly doubled last year as the fast-growing crime topped the government's list of consumer frauds for a third consecutive year, the Federal Trade Commission reported.

A federal judge dismissed claims by parents from Bronx, N.Y., that their children became obese and developed high blood pressure and diabetes because they frequently ate fast food from McDonald's.

American Airlines posted an industry record loss of $3.5 billion last year.

The Senate unanimously confirmed Tom Ridge as secretary of the newly created DepartMent of Homeland Security.

A methane gas explosion in a West Virginia coal mine air shaft killed three miners and injured three others.

The last surviving widow of a Union soldier from the Civil War, Gertrude Janeway, died at the age of 93 in her home in Tennessee.

A federal appeals court in California struck down a law enacted by the state legislature in 1999 allowing people forced to work as slave laborers for German and Japanese companies during World War II to sue for wages and reparations.

McDonald's reported the first quarterly loss in its history - $343.8 million - due in large part to expensive measures aimed at pulling the fast food retailer out of its slump.

Singer and actress Nell Carter, star of the television sitcom Gimme a Break, died at 54.

The Region

Edward T. Norris, who recently walked out on his job as Baltimore City police commissioner, has taken along his driver and confidant, Agent Thomas Tobin who is still on the city payroll.

Baltimore Mayor Martin O'Malley has asked most city agencies to cut their expenses by 2.5 percent to help prevent a budget shortfall that could range between $4 million and $10 million by June 30.

Mary Ann Saar, a longtime state employee who has worked for some of the state's most prominent Democrats, was picked by Republican Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. to run the state's prisons, and parole and probation services.

Kevin P. Clark, a veteran New York City police commander, was named Baltimore's police commissioner.

Median household income in Maryland crept upward by 2.5 percent in 2001 - from $52,447 in 2000 to $53,756, according to new Census Bureau estimates.

Brent Millard Johnson, a former state Cabinet official, was sentenced to six months of house arrest and ordered to repay the $92,000 that he admitted stealing from the Anne Arundel County social services program he ran for about seven years.

University System of Maryland Chancellor William E. Kirwan told state lawmakers the university has no choice but to pass a rare mid-semester tuition increase of 5 percent at most of its campuses and that layoffs and further increases are a strong possibility this year.

Hoping to stop opposition to their plan to sell Carefirst BlueCross BlueShield, company executives have told the state they are willing to forgo $119.6 million in bonuses.

Quote

"When Iraq is liberated, you will be treated, tried and prosecuted as a war criminal."

President Bush, warning Iraqi officers not to use weapons of mass destruction against American troops.

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