Sun News Digest

SUN NEWS DIGEST

August 24, 2005

NATIONAL

Robertson's remarks criticized

Televangelist Pat Robertson's call for the assassination of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez provoked a storm of criticism yesterday, triggering condemnation from fellow religious leaders and international outrage, while the Bush administration said he was a private citizen whose remarks were inappropriate. [Page 3a]

Bush rebuts protesters

Stepping up their response to an antiwar movement that has gained momentum in recent weeks, President Bush and his aides said yesterday that heeding protesters' wishes to withdraw troops from Iraq would weaken the United States' broader efforts to combat terrorism. [Page 3a]

Early fetal pain called unlikely

A review of medical evidence has found that fetuses likely don't feel pain until the final months of pregnancy, a powerful challenge to abortion opponents.[Page 6a]

WORLD

Gaza settlements evacuated

Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's Gaza and West Bank disengagement plan came to an end yesterday as Israeli forces removed settlers and protesters from two West Bank settlements. After the weeklong operation, all 21 Jewish settlements in Gaza and four in the West Bank have been evacuated. [Page 1a]

Rifts stall Iraqi constitution

Deep divisions remained yesterday between Iraqi Shiite and Sunni leaders over the country's draft constitution presented to the Iraqi parliament on Monday. [Page 8a]

MARYLAND

New bishop to be ordained

The Rev. Denis J. Madden, a licensed clinical psychologist and Benedictine priest, is scheduled to be ordained today at the Cathedral of Mary Our Queen as auxiliary bishop and urban vicar, overseeing 50 parishes in Baltimore as well as archdiocesan schools and hospitals. A former Baltimore priest, he is the first bishop appointed by Pope Benedict XVI. [Page 1b)

Future of Fort Meade, APG

Maryland will learn over the next four days whether years of lobbying to bring thousands of high-paying defense jobs to the state has paid off. The federal commission that controls the fate of a national military realignment is scheduled to meet beginning today to vote. On today's agenda: proposals that would affect Fort Meade and Aberdeen Proving Ground. [Page 1b]

High schoolers slip on tests

Maryland high schoolers lost ground in biology and algebra, and barely improved in government, in the latest batch of standardized tests released yesterday. Nearly half of all students would be out of luck if a passing score were required for a diploma right now. [Page 6a]

SPORTS

O's rally falls short

Miguel Tejada hit two home runs, including a grand slam in the ninth inning to pull the Orioles within one, but the Los Angeles Angels held on for a 7-6 win. The Orioles lost their fourth straight. [Page 1e]

Armstrong denies '99 drug claim

Lance Armstrong is brushing aside a Paris newspaper's report that his blood showed traces of the drug EPO during his first Tour de France win in 1999. American sports fans will probably do the same, marketing experts and Armstrong observers said. [Page 1e]

NCAA lifts ban on FSU mascot

The NCAA removed the Florida State Seminoles from the list of 18 schools that were banned from using American Indian mascots, nicknames and imagery in national championship events. Florida State was the first university to appeal the matter to the NCAA. [Page 1e]

BUSINESS

Gas eats away at free delivery

As the price at the pump rises, businesses that deliver are feeling the pinch. From pizza makers to taxi services to florists, companies are raising fees, adding fuel surcharges and restricting days of delivery. Some predict the recent rise in fuel costs, which some say shows little sign of retreat, could signal an end to what's left of free delivery. [Page 1a]

Pensions in hedge funds

Pension funds for Baltimore's city employees, police and firefighters have turned to hedge funds - lightly regulated investment vehicles that can pursue exotic and sometimes risky trading strategies. The move reflects a nationwide push by public pension systems into hedge funds as returns in stocks and bonds have been lackluster in recent years, leaving many pensions underfunded. [Page 1d]

At Ravens stadium, charge it

As part of $11 million in renovations to M&T Bank Stadium, the Ravens yesterday announced that fans will be able to use a credit card to pay for food, as well as merchandise. [Page 1d]

TODAY

Cell phones use film quotes

Cell phone ringers increasingly are featuring memorable movie quotes, like Angelina Jolie inquiring, "Still alive, baby?" from Mr. & Mrs. Smith. Also rising, though, are questions about royalties. More than 17 million U.S. cell phone customers downloaded at least one ringtone in June, with the average customer buying two in the month. [Page 1c]

Jessica Simpson's `plus size' line

Dukes of Hazzard actress Jessica Simpson has designed a line of denim jeans in "plus sizes" for much curvier women. At Mondawmin Mall yesterday, reviews were mixed. [Page 1C]

Actor Brock Peters dies

Brock Peters, 78, who starred in To Kill a Mockingbird as a black man falsely accused of rape, died yesterday of pancreatic cancer. [Page 3c]

TODAY ONLINE

UNISUN ON THE WEB

Look for UniSun Editor Karlayne Parker's datebook and daily headlines of African-American interest at www.baltimoresun.com/unisun.

ISRAELI EVACUATION

An era came to an end as the last settlements in the West Bank set for disengagement were emptied. For archived coverage, go to www.baltimoresun.com/mideast

QUOTE OF THE DAY

"She's really thin. Isn't she kind of risque with her clothes? She has to understand what it's like being big. ... Jessica Simpson jeans? Nooo, thank you."

Shopper Sharnell Carter, about the star's new "plus size" line of jeans (Article, Page 1C)

MARKETS

DOW -- DOWN

-50.31

10,519.58

NASDAQ -- DOWN

-4.16

2,137.25

S&P -- DOWN

-4.14

1,217.59

SUNINDEX -- DOWN

-0.11

325.04

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