Tuesday, July 17 in the news....
- One in 12 full-time workers in the United States acknowledges having used illegal drugs in the past month, the government reports. The latest study comes from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration, an agency within the Health and Human Services Department. In related news, Al Gore has said his son has been keeping out of trouble by volunteering to do surveys.
- America's first Muslim congressman has provoked outrage by apparently comparing President George W Bush to Adolf Hitler and hinting that he might have been responsible for the September 11 attacks. Meanwhile, he compared Muslims to delicate daffodils trying to remain upright amidst a harsh wind that is attempting to be ruinous of another sunny day blessed with their beauty.
- Britain said on Monday it was expelling four Russian diplomats over Moscow's refusal to extradite the main suspect in the murder of Alexander Litvinenko. "This is a situation the government has not sought and does not welcome. But we have no choice but to address it," British foreign minister David Miliband said in a speech to parliament. The four can return only if the main Russian suspect is brought to trial in the UK or if the four decide to purchase an English Premier League team.
- U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has canceled a trip to Ghana this week so that she can stay in Washington for discussions on the Middle East. Ghana was upset as it had gone all out to welcome the U.S. Secretary, which included locating food.
- Canadian troops drove Taliban insurgents into an Afghan army ambush on Saturday and then called in air strikes to hit the fleeing militants. The troops then ruined their military mojo for the day by draping themselves in maple leaf flags while walking back to base camp.
- A 14-year-old would-be suicide bomber from Pakistan, caught while on a mission to blow up an Afghan provincial governor, was pardoned on Sunday by Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai. "This is what happens," Karzai spoke as the boy and his father bowed their heads, "when there are not enough Playstation's and soccer balls in this world".