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Saturday, Nov 29th

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500: Deadly U.S. Milestone in Afghan War

June was the second deadliest month for the military in Afghanistan since the war began, with 23 American deaths from hostilities, compared with 22 in Iraq. July was less deadly, with 20 deaths, compared with six in Iraq. On July 22, nearly seven years after the conflict began on Oct. 7, 2001, the United States lost its 500th soldier in the Afghanistan war.

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U.S. Paying Through the Nose for Poor Quality Health Care

American medical care is the most expensive in the world, and it is definitely not worth every penny. A recent study by the Commonwealth Fund highlights the stark contrast between what the United States spends on its health system and the quality of care it delivers.

The report shows that the United States spends more than twice as much on each person for health care as most other industrialized countries. But it has fallen to last place among those countries in preventing avoidable deaths through use of timely and effective medical care.

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The Lies Of Hiroshima Are The Lies Of Today

In the immediate aftermath of the bomb, the allied occupation authorities banned all mention of radiation poisoning and insisted that people had been killed or injured only by the bomb's blast. It was the first big lie.

The atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki was a criminal act on an epic scale. It was premeditated mass murder that unleashed a weapon of intrinsic criminality.

The most enduring lie is that the atomic bomb was dropped to end the war in the Pacific and save lives. "Even without the atomic bombing attacks," concluded the United States Strategic Bombing Survey of 1946, "air supremacy over Japan could have exerted sufficient pressure to bring about unconditional surrender and obviate the need for invasion. Based on a detailed investigation of all the facts, and supported by the testimony of the surviving Japanese leaders involved, it is the Survey's opinion that ... Japan would have surrendered even if the atomic bombs had not been dropped, even if Russia had not entered the war and even if no invasion had been planned or contemplated."

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Doubt cast on U.S. version of terror suspect's arrest

As U.S. authorities took a purported al Qaida operative to court on attempted murder and assault charges Tuesday in New York, her family, the Afghan police and the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan cast doubts on the accuracy of the American story.

Siddiqui's family, meanwhile, alleges that she'd been in secret custody since she disappeared five years ago from the Pakistani city of Karachi with her three children, and the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan, an independent organization, called the U.S. account a "cock and bull story."

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Bin Laden ex-driver found guilty

A US military jury at Guantanamo Bay has found Osama Bin Laden's former driver guilty of terrorism charges.

The verdict on Salim Hamdan is the first to be delivered in a full war crimes tribunal at the US prison facility in Cuba.

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Unmanned spy planes to police Britain

The Government is drawing up plans to use unmanned "drone" aircraft currently deployed in Iraq and Afghanistan to counter terrorism and aid police operations in Britain.

The plans have been backed by the House of Commons Defence Committee but have attracted criticism from civil liberties campaigners concerned about the implications of covert surveillance of civilians.

Gareth Crossman, director of policy at the civil rights watchdog Liberty, said: "The question is not so much about the technology but what one does with it. We have quite definite laws about where CCTV can be used but of course with UAVs you have much greater ability to gather material in private spaces and this would lead to concern."

He added: "If they are used to simply hover to gain random information then that would obviously be a matter of worry and a civil liberty issue."

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Broccoli may undo diabetes damage

Eating broccoli could reverse the damage caused by diabetes to heart blood vessels, research suggests.

A University of Warwick team believe the key is a compound found in the vegetable, called sulforaphane.

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Follow This Dime: Why Misgovernment Was No Accident in George W. Bush's Washington

Yes, today's conservatives have disgraced themselves, but they have not strayed from the teaching of their forefathers or the great ideas of their movement. When conservatives appoint the opponents of government agencies to head those government agencies; when they auction their official services to the purveyor of the most lavish "golf weekend"; when they mulct millions from groups with business before Congress; when they dynamite the Treasury and sabotage the regulatory process and force government shutdowns - in short, when they treat government with contempt - they are running true to form. They have not done these awful things because they are bad conservatives; they have done them because they are good conservatives, because these unsavory deeds follow naturally from the core doctrines of the conservative tradition.

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Hackers steal 40 million credit card numbers

The indictments, which alleged that at least nine major U.S. retailers were hacked, were unsealed Tuesday in Boston, Massachusetts, and San Diego, California, prosecutors said.

It is believed to be the largest hacking case that the Justice Department has ever tried to prosecute.

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