The Week That Was

March 30, 2003

The war

The Bush administration asked Congress for $75 billion to pay for the war, relief efforts and upgrades in homeland defense.

Coalition forces, stymied by a two-day sandstorm, remained about 50 miles from Baghdad and appeared to be gearing up for a fight for the city.

More than 1,000 U.S. paratroopers flown from Italy dropped into Kurdish-held areas of northern Iraq.

Heavy bombing of Baghdad resumed at the end of the sandstorm.

Tons of desperately needed food and water reached the port city of Umm Qasr - escorted by attack helicopters and a minesweeping ship, but the people it could benefit most - 1.3 million residents of nearby Basra - remained under siege and under fire from Iraqi fighters.

At least 17 civilians were killed by an explosion in a residential area of Baghdad. Iraqi authorities said it was a U.S. missile, but coalition officials said it might have been an errant Iraqi anti-aircraft device.

Fighting continued around the town of Nasiriyah along the supply line to U.S. troops near Baghdad. U.S. officials accused Iraq of war crimes, including the execution of several U.S. Army mechanics captured near Nasiriyah.

More than 3,500 Iraqi soldiers have been taken prisoner, according to the United States.

Two British airmen died when a Patriot missile accidentally hit a RAF fighter returning to Kuwait.

Sgt. Asan Akbar, 31, was detained on suspicion that he threw grenades into three tents of his 101st Airborne Division colleagues, killing two and wounding 14.

An extensive United Nations role in the rebuilding of Iraq was opposed by the United States.

Arab foreign ministers meeting in Cairo called for an immediate withdrawal of coalition troops from Iraq.

Crude oil prices that fell when the war began rose sharply.

The Pentagon identified two U.S. prisoners of war, captured when their helicopter was shot down near Karbala, Iraq, as Ronald D. Young Jr. of Georgia and David S. Williams of Florida.

In televised addresses, Iraqi officials, including Saddam Hussein, called for continued resistance to coalition troops and said U.S. troops would lose a fight for Baghdad.

The United States accused Russia of selling high-tech military devices, including anti-tank missiles and night-vision goggles, to Iraq.

British Prime Minister Tony Blair met with President Bush at Camp David, and both pledged to see the war through to victory.

The World

A suspect in the killing of Serbian Prime Minister Zoran Djindjic two weeks ago was arrested in Belgrade.

At least 150 people died when a ferry on its way from the Congo to Burundi capsized in Lake Tanganyika.

Islamic militants were suspected in the shooting deaths of 24 Hindus in the disputed Indian territory of Kashmir. A one-time Islamic militant who sought dialogue over the issue also was assassinated.

Russian officials said an overwhelming approval of a new constitution by voters in Chechnya discredits rebels fighting for a separate state.

Deaths from a severe acute respiratory syndrome rose in Asia leading to quarantines in Singapore, school closings in Hong Kong and Vietnam and promises from officials in China -- where the disease is suspected to have started -- for closer cooperation with international health authorities.

Three Americans searching for three other Americans kidnapped by leftist rebels in Colombia died when a single-engine plane crashed 230 miles south of Bogota.

Steel tariffs levied by the United States a year ago were ruled illegal by the World Trade Organization.

The Nation

Treasury Secretary John W. Snow received a total of $68.9 million when he left CSX Corp. last month.

Top officials at the Air Force Academy were removed in a controversy over handling of sexual assault cases.

William T. Owens, suspended chief financial officer of HealthSouth, pleaded guilty to multiple counts of fraud, admitting he conspired for years to manipulate earnings to keep the stock price high.

The Senate approved a $2.2 trillion budget and slashed the Bush administration's $726 million tax cut by more than half.

A federal appeals court ruled that former Attorney General Janet Reno and other government officials cannot be sued by relatives of Elian Gonzales.

Adrian O'Neill Robinson, 25, was arrested near Norfolk, Va., suspected of killing his father in Georgia, abducting two nuns who lived nearby and killing one of them in Virginia.

Federal regulators ruled that energy companies manipulated the market during California's 2001 energy crisis.

The Region

The House of Delegates approved a water-downed version of the Ehrlich administration proposal on charter schools.

Bethlehem Steel retirees will lose their health care and insurance benefits, a U.S. bankruptcy judge ruled.

New Maryland driver's licenses that make it harder to counterfeit and easier to identify under-21 drivers were introduced.

The City Council approved Mayor Martin O'Malley's plan for 14 single-member districts.

Baltimore County schools will end their year June 20, extended by one day due to snow closings.

Guillermo Diaz Lopez, 23, was arrested after enraged witnesses chased a car that had struck and killed a 6-year-old girl leaving the circus in downtown Baltimore.

Quote

"The enemy we're fighting is different from the one we'd war-gamed against."

Lt. Gen. William S. Wallace, the Army's senior ground commander in Iraq.

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