The latest news on veterans healthcare, Iraq-refugees, abortion, Farm Bill, Iraq-military bases, immigration, nuclear fuel, nuclear weapons, Al Qaeda, PM Brown terror reforms, Israel-Palestine, contempt of Congress, children’s health insurance, adoption and Darfur.
+ Sign up to receive our daily news summary via e-mail »

Veterans health care. ‘Fundamental change’ in military healthcare urged “A presidential commission appointed to investigate the treatment of wounded service members and veterans called for “fundamental change” in the military and veterans healthcare system to overcome problems that prompted an outcry over shoddy treatment and bureaucratic failures.” Health-care overhaul urged for veterans “The bipartisan panel also recommended better diagnosis and treatment of brain injuries and guaranteed care for post-traumatic stress syndrome for all soldiers returning from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Up to 20 percent of those who’ve returned from Iraq have reported symptoms of PTSD, an anxiety disorder caused by reaction to traumatic events.” Bush Panel Seeks Upgrade in Military Care “A presidential panel on military and veterans health care released a report concluding that the system was insufficient for the demands of two modern wars and called for improvements, including far-reaching changes in the way the government determines the disability status and benefits of injured soldiers and veterans.”


Farm bill.Tax provision, veto threat complicate farm bill’s chances “AWhite House veto threat and Republican anti-tax sentiment complicate passage of a $286 billion farm bill that’s set for debate in the House of Representatives on Thursday.” On Eve of Vote, Farm Bill Draws Threat of a Veto “A huge multiyear farm bill ran into a White House veto threat and a sudden flurry of objections from Republicans yesterday on the eve of a vote on the House floor.” Farm Subsidies Seem Immune to an OverhaulBut as the latest farm bill heads to the House floor on Thursday, farm-state lawmakers seem likely to prevail in keeping the old subsidies largely in place, drawing a veto threat on Wednesday from the White House.” Editorial. Cut farm welfare (Chicago Tribune) “If you believe it’s outrageous to pay federal subsidies to millionaire farmers, then root for U.S. Rep. Ron Kind on Thursday. If you believe that farmers reaping near-record prices for corn and soybeans have no business collecting money from taxpayers, then root for Kind on Thursday.”

Abortion. Democrats shift approach on abortion “For years, the liberal response to abortion has been to promote more accessible and affordable birth control as well as detailed sex education in public schools. That’s still the foundation of Democratic policies. But in a striking shift, Democrats in the House last week promoted a grab bag of programs designed not only to prevent unwanted pregnancies, but also to encourage women who do conceive to carry to term.”

Iraq-refugees. Crisis warning on Iraq refugees “The scale of the exodus of refugees fleeing violence in Iraq has prompted a “humanitarian crisis”, a conference in Jordan has heard. More than two million Iraqis have left their war-ravaged homeland.” Iraq’s perils dire for minority faiths “In a hearing convened by the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom, Canon Andrew White, vicar of St. George’s Anglican Church in Baghdad, and four other panelists unfolded tales of horrors overtaking Christians, Yezidis (angel worshippers) and Mandaeans, members of a pacifist faith that follows the teachings of John the Baptist.”

Iraq military bases. House Resolution Rejects Permanent Bases in IraqThe House voted overwhelmingly to bar permanent United States military installations in Iraq as lawmakers readied for yet another clash over a Democratic demand to withdraw combat troops from the conflict.”

Immigration. GOP border bill fails in Senate “Lawmakers clashed anew over immigration as Senate Republicans pushed to introduce far-reaching new enforcement measures and California’s senators led an impassioned plea to allow in more foreign agriculture workers.” Democrats pitch citizenship path for some illegals “Senate Democrats defeated a Republican effort to authorize $3 billion for new border security and immigration enforcement. Instead, the Democrats proposed a new agriculture workers program to bring in hundreds of thousands of foreign workers and grant legal status to illegal aliens now working in the fields.”

Nuclear fuel. U.S. will help India to obtain nuke fuel “The Bush administration, in a major concession aimed at saving a civilian nuclear-energy deal with India, has agreed to help New Delhi secure fuel for its reactors, even if it conducts another atomic test, diplomats and knowledgeable nonproliferation specialists said yesterday.”

Nuclear weapons. Administration Urges Full Warhead Funding “The Bush administration has told Congress that delays in funding for a new generation of nuclear weapons may require a return to underground testing to ensure that older warheads remain reliable.”

Al Qaeda. Analyst counters Bush on Al Qaeda “A day after President Bush sought to present evidence showing that Iraq is now the main battlefront against Al Qaeda, the chief US intelligence analyst for international terrorism told Congress that the network’s growing ranks in Pakistan and Afghanistan pose a more immediate threat to the United States.” Al Qaeda in South Asia called top threat “Undercutting new assertions by President Bush, a top U.S. intelligence official testified that Al Qaeda’s organization in Iraq is overwhelmingly composed of fighters from that country, and that the terrorist network’s ability to operate in Pakistan poses the greater danger to the United States.”

PM Brown terror reforms. Brown sets out sweeping but risky terror and security reforms “Gordon Brown moved to dominate the terror and security agenda, grabbing a Tory proposal for an integrated single border force and then challenging David Cameron to accept that the scale of the terrorist threat requires an extension of detention without charge to up to 56 days.” British Leader Seeks New Terrorism Laws “Taking an early firm stand on terrorism, Prime Minister Gordon Brown told Parliament that his government would establish a highly visible border police force that would patrol airports and seaports, a proposal that the opposition Conservatives have long supported.”

Israel-Palestine. In Israel, Arab envoys push for talks on Palestinian statehood “Two Arab envoys on a landmark visit to Israel presented its leaders with a regional land-for-peace plan on Wednesday and called for a rapid timetable for talks with the Palestinians over statehood.” Arabs woo Israel over peace plan “The two Arab countries with ties to Israel have paid an historic visit to the Jewish state to “extend the hand of peace” on behalf of their fellow Arabs. The Egyptian and Jordanian foreign ministers’ visit was to present a peace plan backed by the Arab League, which has no diplomatic ties with Israel.”

Contempt of Congress. Panel Votes to Hold Two in Contempt of Congress The House Judiciary Committee voted along party lines to hold President Bush’s chief of staff and the former White House counsel in contempt of Congress.” House panel endorses contempt case vs. 2 aides “The House Judiciary Committee approved a resolution calling for the criminal prosecution of President Bush’s chief of staff, Joshua Bolten, and former White House Counsel Harriet Miers for refusing to cooperate with a congressional probe into the firing of U.S. attorneys last year.”

Childrens health insurance. Cigarette-tax hike would fund kids’ healthcare “The health program, created in 1997, is up for renewal this year, and Democrats are pushing to extend benefits to more children. Many Republicans, with an eye to next year’s elections, want to support the expansion. And that means buying into huge increases in tobacco taxes.”

Adoption. Adoption numbers increase “The number of adoptions by Americans has increased in six years, fueled by more adoptions of foster children and a near-doubling of adoptions of foreign-born children, the National Council for Adoption (NCFA) says in a publication.”

Darfur. Darfur rebels to hold peace talks “Darfur’s numerous rebel groups will meet next week in what diplomats described as the best opportunity for working towards peace in the war-torn region of western Sudan for more than a year. A conference in Arusha, Tanzania, will be hosted by a combined team from the African Union and the United Nations,”

More from Beliefnet and our partners
Close Ad