2 - The Michigan Daily - Friday, February 3, 2006
NEWS IN BRIEF
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GOP chooses DeLay's replacement
Rep. John Boehner of Ohio won election yesterday as House majority leader,
promising a steady hand and a helping of reform for Republicans staggered by
Boehner, who replaces indicted Rep. Tom DeLay of Texas, said the GOP "must
act swiftly to restore the trust between Congress and the American people."
He defeated Rep. Roy Blunt of Missouri on a vote of 122-109 by House Repub-
licans after trailing his rival on an inconclusive first round.
"Life goes on," shrugged Blunt, who has long had close ties to DeLay and had
been the acknowledged front-runner in a race to replace him. Blunt retains his
post as GOP whip, third-ranking in the leadership behind Speaker Dennis Hast-
ert of Illinois and Boehner.
"People were ready for more reform than he (Blunt) was offering," said Rep.
Jeff Flake of Arizona, who supported a third contender, John Shadegg of Ari-
zona, on the first ballot.
Rep. David Hobson of Ohio, who backed Boehner, said the new leader will be
"good on TV, good on policy. Democrats fear and respect him because they know
he's tough but he is also fair."
Iranian President, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, prays at the grave of the late
revolutionary founder, Ayatollah Khomeini in Tehran, Iran, on Tuesday.
Iran issue Close
to critcal phase'
Bush to request 5-percent defense increase
President Bush next week will request a $439.3-billion Defense Department
budget for 2007, a nearly 5-pexcent increase over this year, according to senior
Pentagon officials and documents obtained yesterday by The Associated Press.
The spending plan would include $84.2 billion for weapons programs, a nearly 8
percent increase, including billions of dollars for fighter jets, Navy ships, helicop-
ters and unmanned aircraft. The total includes a substantial increase in weapons
spending for the Army, which will get $16.8 billion in the 2007 budget, compared
with $11 billion this year.
Senior defense officials provided the totals on condition of anonymity because
the defense budget will not be publicly released until Monday. The figures did not
include spending for wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, which the Bush administration
said Thursday would total $120 billion for 2006.
Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld would not provide any details of the budget
Thursday but called it appropriate, adding: "We have been able to fund the impor-
tant things that are needed. It is a sizable amount of money."
NEW BEDFORD, Mass.
Young man goes on rampage at gay bar
Chief nuclear negotiator
threatens retaliation if
referred to U.N.
VIENNA, Austria (AP) - Iran
threatened to retaliate yesterday in the
face of almost certain referral to the
U.N. Security Council for its nuclear
activities, and the head of the Interna-
tional Atomic Energy Agency said the
dispute was "reaching a critical phase."
Ahead of a decision by the IAEA's
35-nation board, U.S. and European
delegates turned to behind-the-scenes
diplomacy to build the broadest possible
support for reporting Iran to the coun-
cil over concerns it is seeking nuclear
Iran's chief nuclear negotiator, Ali
Larijani, in a letter made available to
the AP, warned IAEA chief Mohamed
ElBaradei that referral would leave Iran
no choice but "to suspend all the volun-
tary measures and extra cooperation"
with the IAEA - shorthand for reduc-
ing IAEA monitoring to a minimum.
Cuba, Venezuela, Syria and a few
other nations at odds with Washington
remained opposed to referral. India was
said to be leaning toward supporting
Diplomats accredited to the IAEA
meeting said backing for Iran had
shrunk among the U.N. nuclear watch-
dog's board since Russia and China
swung their support behind referral at
an overnight meeting with the United
States, France and Britain - the other
three permanent council members -
that started Monday.
"There's a solid majority in favor
of reporting," Gregory L. Schulte, the
chief U.S. delegate to the IAEA, told
The Associated Press. "There's even a
more solid majority after Monday."
State Department spokesman Sean
McCormack the number of nations
expected to vote against referral were in
the "low to single digits."
Iran remained defiant. Larijani
told ElBaradei that his country would
severely curtail agency inspections and
resume uranium enrichment if reported
to the council.
Furthermore, "all the peaceful nucle-
ar activities being under voluntary sus-
pension would be resumed without any
restriction," said the letter, suggesting a
resumption of work on full-scale ura-
nium enrichment - a possible pathway
to nuclear arms.
A young man dressed all in black went on a rampage at a gay bar with
a hatchet and a gun yesterday, wounding three patrons in what police said
appeared to be a hate crime.
One victim was in critical condition with head wounds.
Police searched for 18-year-old Jacob Robida, who was wanted on charges of
attempted murder, assault and civil-rights violations.
According to court papers, Robida's mother told police that he briefly stopped by
the house less than an hour after the brawl and was bleeding from the head. In Robi-
da's bedroom, officers found Nazi regalia and anti-Semitic writings on the wall.
GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip
Protests over Muhammad cartoons escalate
Outrage over caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad escalated in the Arab and
Islamic world yesterday, with Palestinian gunmen briefly kidnapping a German citi-
zen and protesters in Pakistan chanting "death to France" and "death to Denmark."
Palestinian militants surrounded European Union headquarters in Gaza, and
gunmen burst into several hotels and apartments in the West Bank in search of
foreigners to take hostage.
In Iraq, Islamic leaders urged worshippers to stage demonstrations from Bagh-
dad to the southern city of Basra following weekly prayer services today. Afghani-
stan and Indonesia condemned the drawings, and Iran summoned the Austrian
ambassador, whose country holds the EU presidency.
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