The Week That Was

November 16, 2003

The World

As new attacks rocked the U.S.-led occupation, President Bush shifted policy on Iraq, approving ideas for turning power over to a provisional government by next summer.

A truck bomb exploded at the headquarters of the Italian Carabinieri police in the southern Iraqi city of Nasiriyah killing at least 32 people.

As part of a new offensive against guerillas, U.S. troops destroyed an empty dye factory in Baghdad and chased attackers who were seen firing mortars,

An Apache helicopter fired on Iraqi guerrillas preparing to fire rockets at U.S. troops near Tikrit, killing seven. Patrols uncovered hundreds of rockets hidden nearby.

Two U.S. soldiers were killed when a bomb exploded in a convoy in Samarra, 75 miles north of Baghdad, and a U.S. contractor died when gunmen ambushed a convoy near Balad, 45 miles north of the Iraqi capital.

A report by the United Nations said that the route Israel has set for a much-criticized security fence would take about 15 percent of West Bank land and disrupt the lives of about 600,000 Palestinians.

Palestinian legislators endorsed Ahmed Qureia as their new prime minister after he called for a cease-fire with Israel and an end to armed militants ruling Palestinian communities.

Humana Milchunion, a German company that produces a kosher-certified infant formula popular in Israel, acknowledged that the product was missing a vital ingredient after the deaths of two Israeli children from a severe vitamin deficiency.

The United States approved a $2 million reward for the capture of the former Liberian president, Charles G. Taylor.

The World Trade Organization ruled that steel tariffs imposed by President Bush last year were illegal.

Kenya gave formal recognition to the Mau Mau, striking out British colonial era law that classified the group as terrorists, helping a suit by survivors of the 1950s uprising to obtain compensation.

Former Guatemalan dictator Efrain Rios Montt lost his bid for election in that country's presidential race.

Turkey, acting to improve its eligibility for membership in the European Union, formally abolished the death penalty.

The Egyptian government said it would no longer grant work permits to belly dancers from foreign countries.

Japan delayed plans to send peacekeepers to Iraq, and South Korea resisted American pressure to increase a planned deployment of 3,000 troops.

The Nation

The Supreme Court agreed to decide whether prisoners at the U.S. Naval Base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, are entitled to access to civilian courts to challenge their open-ended detention - a move strongly opposed by the Bush administration.

A marathon 39-hour debate by Senate Republicans ended with a vote that failed to help the four judicial nominees blocked by Democrats.

Sen. John Kerry of Massachusetts fired the manager of his increasingly troubled campaign for the Democratic presidential nomination.

House and Senate negotiators reached agreement on an energy bill designed to improve the reliability of the electricity transmission grid while giving tax breaks to energy companies.

A jury in Texas found New York real estate heir Robert Durst not guilty of murder, despite Durst's admission that he dismembered his neighbor's corpse and threw the remains into Galveston Bay.

The Federal Communications Commission said subscribers may switch home telephone numbers to mobile phones.

The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees and the Service Employees International Union formally endorsed presidential hopeful Howard Dean.

An Alabama special court ordered the removal of Alabama's suspended chief justice, Roy S. Moore, after unanimously finding that he committed ethical breaches in defying a federal court order to remove a Ten Commandments monument from his courthouse.

Major League Baseball announced penalties for steroid use after tests showed more than 5 percent of players are using the drug.

The Region

Facing a $52 million deficit, the Baltimore school board agreed to lay off 1,000 employees. The move was recommended by the school system's new chief executive officer, Bonnie S. Copeland.

A U.S. audit severely criticized Baltimore's HOPE VI public housing program and demanded that the city return nearly $3 million to the federal government.

Baltimore Del. Howard "Pete" Rawlings, one of the most powerful members of the state legislature, died of cancer at 66.

Thirty-one gay and lesbian graduates of the Naval Academy filed an application with the college's alumni organization to start a national chapter for homosexual graduates.

A report filed in U.S. District Court in Baltimore, noting last year's torture death of Ciara Jobes, asserted that the city's Department of Social Services is putting hundreds of children at risk because of a lax approach and overburdened caseworkers.

The jury in the trial of sniper suspect John Muhammad ended its first four hours of deliberation without reaching a verdict.

Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. voiced support for a slot machine plan that limits gambling licenses to one per company, a concession that could imperil Pimlico Race Track.

John Gidwitz, who guided the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra through two decades of growth, said he will step down as president at the end of this season.

Quote

"Major combat operations have not resumed in Iraq by really any stretch of the imagination."

National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice

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