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February 08, 2007 - Image 3

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 2007-02-08

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The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com

North Koreans
ready to start talks
on nuclear weapons
North Korea expressed its readi-
ness earlier today to discuss initial
steps of its nuclear disarmament,
raising hopes for the first tangible
progress at international talks on
Pyongyang's atomic weapons pro-
gram since they began more than
three years ago.
"We are prepared to discuss
first-stage measures," the North's
nuclear envoy Kim Kye Gwan said
on arriving in Beijing for the six-
nation negotiations set to start later
Mediareportshave suggestedthe
North may agree to freeze its main
nuclear reactor and allow interna-
tional inspectors in exchange for
energy aid as a starting step to dis-
Five Army Reserve
officers indicted on
corruption charges
Three U.S. Army Reserve officers
were indicted yesterday, accused of
taking part in a hid-rigging scam
that steered millions of dollars for
Iraq reconstruction projects to a
contractor in exchange for cash,
luxury cars and jewelry.
An American businessman in
Romania was charged as the go-
between for the military officers
and the contractor. The husband of
one of the reservists was accused of
helping smuggle tens of thousands
of dollars into the United States
that the couple used to pay for a
deck and a hot tub at their New Jer-
sey house.
Charges against the five include
bribery, conspiracy, wire fraud,
money laundering and transport-
ing stolen property.
Poll: Americans
ready to normalize
relations with Cuba
In nearly equal measure,
Americans say they don't like
Cuban President Fidel Castro
but do want the United States to
re-establish regular diplomatic
relations with the communist
island nation after 46 years of
Less than half of those polled
think Cuba will become a democ-
racy after the 80-year-old revolu-
tionary leader dies or permanently
steps aside. However, 89 percent in
The Associated Press-Ipsos poll say
they think Cubans will be better off
or about the same when Castro is
Castro has appeared to be in fail-
ing health for six months and has
temporarily shifted power to his
younger brother Raul. Rumors have
been rampant about his ailments
and how long he can survive.
The poll suggests the Cold War
animosity that has defined U.S.-
Cuba relations for nearly a half-cen-
tury may be fading.
American soldier to
be tried in Italy for
'political murder'

A judge yesterday ordered
a U.S. soldier to stand trial in
absentia for the fatal shooting of
an Italian intelligence agent at a
checkpoint in Baghdad, the pros-
ecutor said.
Spc. Mario Lozano is indicted
for murder and attempted mur-
der in the death of Nicola Calipari,
who was shot on March 4, 2005,
on his way to the Baghdad airport
shortly after securing the release
of an Italian journalist who had
been kidnapped in the Iraqi capi-
tal, prosecutor Pietro Saviotti
According to prosecutors, the
judge said in his ruling that Lozano
can be tried for "political murder,"
because Calipari was a civil ser-
vant and his slaying damaged Italy's
Prosecutors so far have not
sought the soldier's arrest.
Pentagon spokesman Bryan
Whitman said there are no plans to
make Lozano available for the trial.
- Compiled from
Daily wire reports
The reward in U.S. dollars that
the health ministry of Brazil has
offered to high school students
who design the best condom vend-
ing machine, Stuff Magazine
reported. To increase safe sex
awareness, these machines may
be distributed throughout schools
as early as 2008 with hopes of
spreading the machines to bars
and 24-hour gas stations.

From page 1A
Administrators said that
although some students leave dorms
for off-campus housing because of
the strict rules, they aren't worried
that a perceived increase in enforce-
ment will dissuade students from
returning to live in the dorms.
"We certainly are aware that
some students choose to leave on-
campus housing to get out from rule
enforcement," Housing spokesman
Alan Levy said. "We're not aware
that students are leaving hous-
ing because they feel like housing
didn't doa good enough job enforc-
ing its rules."
Engineering senior Tony Bri-
eschke, an RA in Alice Lloyd Hall,
said in an e-mail interview that
there hasn't been any pressure on
RAs to crack down on students.
"I do not feel that there has been
much of a difference in the way in
which we are trained to deal with
such situations, nor has there been
a particular emphasis on being
more strict," said Brieschke, who
also served as an RA in Alice Lloyd
hall two years ago.
Brieschke said he has seen stu-
dents violating the rules more fre-
"It seems as though some feel
that they can do whatever they
want, which obviously leads to les-

sons being learned the hard way,"
Brieschke said.
Some dorm dwellers said they
were surprised to learn that the
number of incidents had increased.
"It seems like I'm under less
scrutiny now than a couple of years
ago," said Gideon DAssandro, an
LSA junior who lives in South Quad
Residence Hall.
Ben Ruano, an LSA sophomore
and chair of the Residence Hall
Association's Housing Student Con-
flict Resolution Affair Committee,
said University Housing is discuss-
ing ways to rein in student behavior.
"It does seem that they're trying
to crack down," Ruano said.
Housing administrators have dis-
cussed revising the student code of
conduct - which all students must
sign in order to live in the residence
halls - so that it would ban the pos-
session of empty alcohol containers
in substance-free housing. Even
students over the age of 21would be
forbidden from possessing alcohol
bottles, cans and paraphernalia.
Members of RHA discussed the
change and decided to oppose it
because it restricts the creative
expression of students living in the
residence halls, Ruano said.
Some students use bottles to
decorate their room, even making
lamps or vases from them.
"I already gave them the opinion
of RHA, butI don't know if they're
going to take that into consider-

ation," he said.
Levy said University Housing
decided not to implement the plan.
Administrators said much of the
increase in alcohol-related inci-
dents can be explained by recent
changes in state law.
In 2004, Gov. Jennifer Granholm
signed Public Act 63, which deemed
the body a container for the purpos-
es of minor-in-possession citations.
Before the act went into effect,
minors couldn't receive a citation
for alcohol possession unless they
were discovered with alcohol.
Before the implementation of the
"body is a container" clause, many
alcohol-related incidents in the
residence halls weren't reported to
the University, said Stacy Vander
Velde, assistant director for student
conduct and conflict resolution at
"Now we don't have that option,"
Vander Velde said. "That's why
there's been this enormous volume
of incidents."
After the new law took effect on
Sept. 1, 2004, the number of alco-
hol- and drug-related incidents at
the University jumped. It increased
by 8.9 percent per resident the year
after the law went into effect.
The revised MIP law didn't have
the same effect on all state univer-
sities, though. There were less alco-
hol-related incidents at Michigan
State University last year than the
year before the law was changed,

documents show.
The increase in alcohol-related
incidents could have occurred
regardless - alcohol and drug vio-
lations increased by 39.2 percent
per resident in the two years before
the law went into effect, indicating
that the trend had already begun.
The increasing trend can't be
blamed entirely on binge-drinking
students, though.
Although violations of the Uni-
versity's drug and alcohol policy
still comprise more than half of all
incidents, other incidents - like
violations of quiet hours - have
increased nearly 80 percent over
the last five years.
Levy said the increase in alcohol-
related incidents has led to a corre-
sponding rise in other incidents. For
instance, many students cited for
quiet hours violations are also cited
for alcohol possession, he said.
A new method of compiling inci-
dents could also have artificially inflat-
ed the statistics, administrators said.
In 2005, the University revised
its methodology for counting inci-
dents. Starting with last year's data,
the University began to organize
incidents based on the location
of the violation, rather than the
residence of the students involved,
Vander Velde said. Students not
living in the residence halls and
visitors from outside the University
now appear in the data, while they
were previously omitted.

Thursday, February 8, 2007 - 3A
No residence hall hasbeen hit harder
than West Quad by the recent waveof
Preliminary documents show that inci-
dents involving 201students took place in
West Quad last semester, while just176stu-
dents were involved in West Quad incidents
during the previous twoyears combined.
West Quad had the most incidents
of any residence hall on campus last
LanaeGill,Coordinatorof Residence Edu-
cation for West Quad, refused to comment.
Students, though, said stricter enforce-
ment oftrulesby a new Departmentof
Public Safety officern- HousingSecurity
OfficerJason Green - might have helped
cause the increase.
LSA sophomore Kevin Grinnell said
his friend's room was searched earlierthis
year because theofficerwalked by and
smelled alcohol. Although thetofficer found
no alcohol in the room, he told the student
that he looked drunk because his eyes were
bloodshot, Grinnell said.
Grinnell said it was probably theresultof
sleep deprivation.
Declan Lugin, security captain for Uni-
versity Housing, said that there hasn't been
a policy shift towards tougherenforcement.
"While all of our officers operate under
thesame procedural guidelinessome may
be more intrinsicallyvigilant than others,"
Lugin said. "There is no truth to the notion
that either DPS or Housing Security have
become more strict."


Diplomats reluctant
to take Iraq postings

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The New York Times
WASHINGTON - While the
diplomats and foreign service
employees of the State Department
have always been expected to staff
"hardship" postings, those jobs
have not usually required that they
wear flak jackets with their pin-
striped suits.
But in the last five years, the For-
eign Service landscape has shifted.
Thanks to the wars in Iraq and
Afghanistan, the White House is
calling for more U.S. civilians to
head not just to those countries, but
also to some of their most hostile
regions - including Iraq's volatile
Anbar province - to try to establish
democratic institutions and help in
reconstruction. That plan is pro-
voking unease and apprehension at
the State Department and at other
federal agencies.
Many federal employees have
outright refused repeated requests
that they go to Iraq, while oth-
ers have demanded that they be
assigned only to Baghdad and not
be sent outside the more secure
"Green Zone," which includes the
U.S. embassy and Iraqi government
And while Secretary of State
Condoleezza Rice maintained
yesterday that State Department
employees were "volunteering in
large numbers" for difficult posts,
including Iraq, several department
employees said that those who have
signed up tend to be younger, more
entry-level types, and not seasoned
The reluctance highlights a
problem with the administration's
new strategy for Iraq, which calls

on U.S. diplomats to take challeng-
es on a scale unmatched anywhere
else in the world, when the lack of
security on the ground outside the
Green Zone makes it one of the last
places people, particularly those
with families, want to go.
Steve Kashkett, vice president
of the American Foreign Service
Association, the professional orga-
nization that represents State
Department employees, said that
"our people continue to show great
courage in volunteering for duty in
Iraq." But Kashkett added, "there
remain legitimate questions about
the ability of unarmed civilian dip-
lomats to carryout a reconstruction
and democracy-building mission in
the middle of an active war zone."
The issue flared this week when
Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates
testified at a Senate hearing that he
shared the concerns of officers who
complained about a request from
Rice's office that military person-
nel temporarily fill more than one-
third of 350 new jobs in Iraq that
the State Department is supposed
to be responsible for.
The New York Times reported
yesterday that senior military offi-
cials were upset at the request and
told President Bush and Gates that
the new Iraq strategy could fail
unless more civilian agencies step
forward quickly to carry out plans
for reconstruction and political
David Satterfield, the State
Department's senior adviser for
Iraq,told reporters during a telecon-
ference that the State Department's
request was only for temporary help
and for non-State Department posi-
tions that would probably be filled
by contractors anyway.

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