Mourners honor Chilean bus crash victims

Sunday, March 26, 2006

MONROE TOWNSHIP, N.J. -- Hundreds of mourners paid emotional tribute Saturday to 10 senior citizens who lost their lives in a Chilean bus crash, recalling their love for life and for each other. Cantor Eli Perlman, the spiritual leader of the Jewish Congregation of Concordia, where six of the victims had worshipped, recited the names of the dead. Among the crowd of almost 400 people was Gov. Jon S. Corzine. The victims -- all in their 60s and 70s -- were part of a 64-member B'nai B'rith group traveling aboard the cruise ship Millennium. During a stop in Chile, they were on a side excursion on a tour bus Wednesday when it tumbled more than 300 feet down a mountainside. Many had known each other their entire lives, and had decided to spend their retirement together in a planned community.

Seven killed in shooting at party in Seattle

SEATTLE -- A gunman opened fire early Saturday in a home, killing six partygoers and critically injuring at least one other before committing suicide when confronted by police outdoors. Five victims' bodies were found in several places in the rented home in the Capitol Hill neighborhood east of downtown, said police spokesman Rich Pruitt. One of three other people taken to a hospital died. Officers transported about a dozen witnesses to a precinct to interview them. "It's one of the largest crime scenes the city has ever had," said police chief Gil Kerlikowske. Police believe the shooting happened at a party and the dead, men and women, were in their late teens and early 20s. Officers said they were not aware of a possible motive. They did not believe the gunman lived in the area.

U.S., Britain deadlocked over sharing technology

WASHINGTON -- The U.S. and Britain remain deadlocked over sharing stealth technology, more than a week after a top British official threatened to pull out of the multinational, $256 billion Joint Strike Fighter project. British defense officials are reporting some progress in negotiations, while maintaining their demand for access to specific software codes and weapons systems and threatening to go elsewhere to upgrade their warplanes. "We have a backup plan if we do not get a deal that's sufficiently workable," a Ministry of Defense spokesman said Friday. The spokesman declined to offer more details about backup plans but noted that the British press has speculated that the Rafale, the latest fighter by French-based Dassault Aviation, is one alternative. From the point of view of the Joint Program Office in Washington, where the U.S. military and representatives of eight other partner nations manage the Joint Strike Fighter project, the U.S. government has already been generous with its technology.

Wartime powers under review at Supreme Court

The Supreme Court will hear arguments Tuesday in a case in which Osama bin Laden's former driver is seeking to head off a trial before military officers. Analysts say if the high court rejects President Bush's plan to hold such trials, it could rein in the president's powers in pursuing and punishing suspected terrorists. Chief Justice John Roberts will not participate in the case because he was on a three-judge appellate court panel that ruled unanimously last year against the driver, Salim Ahmed Hamdan.

-- From wire reports

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