Nation briefs 1/2/05

Sunday, January 2, 2005

U.S. troops stretched around the world

WASHINGTON -- Nearly a million members of the U.S. armed forces have been deployed to Iraq, Afghanistan, and other danger zones since the Sept. 11, 2001 terror attacks and almost a third of them have been sent more than once, figures released by the Pentagon show. That figure has implications both for the military and society at large, experts on the military say. For the first time in 30 years, a significant portion of society will have seen the misery and violence of war for an extended period.

Army medics are getting more intensive training

FORT CAMPBELL, Ky. -- As the insurgents in Iraq step up their attacks, the Army has increased the intensity of its training of battlefield medics. That has meant moving the training from classrooms to more realistic settings and teaching medics to keep fighting the enemy. This year, about 500 medics and others who work in small, isolated units will undergo training at the Alfred V. Rascon School of Combat Medicine at Fort Campbell.

Thousands watch Rose and Mummers parades

PASADENA, Calif. -- Hundreds of thousands of revelers welcomed the new year Saturday by lining the streets to watch the 116th Rose Parade. It featured 50 flower-covered floats reflecting the theme "Celebrate Family" with a fanciful mix of characters. Mickey Mouse was the grand marshal. For others, the day wasn't complete without the Mummers Parade in Philadelphia. About 10,000 brightly dressed marchers strummed, strutted and pirouetted down Broad Street.

FBI questions person in aircraft laser beam probe

TRENTON, N.J. -- A laser beam was aimed at a police helicopter Friday and federal authorities were questioning someone who had been at a house where they said the light had originated. Port Authority officials and the FBI went to a Parsippany home where they had tracked the laser beam and were questioning a person there in connection with both incidents, said Steve Coleman, an authority spokesman. Federal agents are looking into several recent incidents involving lasers and aircraft, including cases in Cleveland, Washington, Houston, Colorado Springs, Colo., and Medford, Ore. In some cases the lasers locked onto aircraft several thousand feet up as they approached airports for landing.

Respond to this story

Posting a comment requires free registration: