Sun News Digest

SUN NEWS DIGEST

June 11, 2005

NATIONAL

Military recruiting slump

All four of the main military services are having trouble attracting recruits to their reserve forces, though only the Army is falling short in attracting people for its active-duty ranks. The shortfall is significant because more than ever, the part-timers of the National Guard and Reserve are crucial to the overall military. [Page 3a]

Arlene targets Fla. coast

Tropical Storm Arlene took a squally swipe at South Florida yesterday and promised more soggy conditions through tomorrow, forecasters said. The storm was forecast to make landfall on the north Gulf Coast about 1 p.m. today -- possibly as a hurricane. [Page 4a]

Jackson jury still deliberating

The jury in Michael Jackson's child molestation case ended its sixth day of deliberations without a verdict as officials moved to tighten security at the court site. Jurors will return Monday at 8:30 a.m. to resume discussions. [Page 4a]

WORLD

5 Marines die in Iraq bombing

The U.S. military announced that five Marines had been killed in a roadside bombing in western Iraq, while the bodies of 21 executed Iraqis were found near the Syrian border. [Page 1a]

Bush, S. Korean president meet

During a White House meeting, President Bush and South Korean President Roh Moo Hyun downplayed their differences and said they are working toward the common goal of getting North Korea to return to the table for talks on its nuclear program. [Page 12a]

MARYLAND

Middle school test scores off

The enviable math and reading scores enjoyed by elementary schools across the state have eluded middle schools. The Maryland School Assessment test results released this week show that the percentage of pupils making the grade falls sharply as children move to middle school. While more than three-quarters of fourth-graders were declared proficient or advanced in math, only half of eighth-graders were. [Page 1b]

Sisters of Mercy turns 150

The Sisters of Mercy will mark its 150th anniversary in Baltimore with a celebration and historical display in Mount Washington. [Page 1b]

SPORTS

Orioles turn back Reds, 4-3

Melvin Mora hit a three-run home run in the third inning, and the Orioles got four big outs from relievers Jorge Julio and B.J. Ryan to hold off the Cincinnati Reds, 4-3, in an interleague game. It was the first time the teams have met in the regular season. [Page 1c]

Sorenstam takes LPGA lead

Annika Sorenstam seized control of the LPGA Championship at Bulle Rock Golf Course in Havre de Grace, shooting a 5-under 67 in the second round to take a two-shot lead over Laura Davies. Amateur phenom Michelle Wie, 15, was five strokes behind. [Page 1c]

Allenby up by 2 in Booz Allen

Robert Allenby shot a 6-under 65 to take the lead after two rounds of the PGA Tour's Booz Allen Classic at Congressional Country Club in Bethesda. Defending champ Adam Scott and first-round leader Matt Gogel were among four players two strokes back. [Page 9c]

BUSINESS

$2 billion Citigroup settlement

In one of the largest corporate settlements ever, Citigroup agreed to pay $2 billion to settle a class-action lawsuit over its role in helping Enron orchestrate a massive accounting fraud that led to the energy trader's collapse. The settlement marks the largest payout so far pledged to Enron investors, who claim they were bilked out of billions of dollars when the energy company went bankrupt in 2001, and may be a catalyst for future deals.[Page 1a]

Area home prices jump in May

Home prices in the Baltimore region rose more than 16 percent in May compared with a year earlier, showing continued strength in a housing market that continues to defy predictions of a slowdown. Many buyers said they have no choice but to take on larger mortgages so they can afford the escalating prices. [Page 10c]

Southwest tries to repeal limits

After being saddled for decades by a rule that limits its flights to its home base of Texas, Southwest Airlines is trying to build support to repeal the restriction. It released a study estimating how much cheaper flights to Love Field in Dallas would be from various markets, including Baltimore, without the so-called Wright Amendment. [Page 10c]

TODAY

Return of the musical native

In the past five years or so, singer-producer Julian Fleisher has performed all over the Big Apple and beyond, his energetic mix of modern pop, show tunes and jazz garnering praise as he went. "I'm surprised it's taken this long to get a show in Baltimore," Fleisher says of his performance at Everyman Theatre's fund raiser tonight. He'll play a duet with his dad, local concert piano legend Leon Fleisher. [Page 1d]

Sweet artistry on display

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