hSenate issues apologyfor lynching of blacks
WASHINGTON -- The Senate acknowledged Monday its own failure to stand against the lynching of thousands of black people, a practice that continued well into the 20th century. "It's important that we are honest with ourselves and that we tell the truth about what happened," Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-La., said before the Senate by voice vote approved an apology for blocking anti-lynching legislation at a time when mob violence against blacks was commonplace. Landrieu, above right, greets, Doria Dee Johnson, great-great-granddaughter of a black S.C. farmer who was killed by a white mob nearly a century ago. At least 80 senators signed on as co-sponsors. Nearly 200 descendants of lynching victims, and a 91-year-old man thought to be the only living survivor of a lynching attempt, listened from the visitors' gallery to speeches about what Sen. George Allen, R-Va., described as "the failure of the Senate to take action when action was most needed."
Study: Viagra helps kidswith rare lung disease
DALLAS -- Children suffering from a rare and fatal lung disease were able to walk farther and breathe easier after taking the impotence pill Viagra, a small study suggests. Researchers say that use of the drug to treat these very sick children, suffering from pulmonary hypertension, needs more study. But they called these early results promising. "I think that it's an important finding, but an awful lot more work has to go into finding its place in treatment," said lead study author Dr. Ian Adatia, associate professor of pediatrics at the University of California San Francisco Children's Hospital. Just a week ago, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved using the main ingredient in Viagra to treat adults with pulmonary hypertension.
Bush meets privately withdefector from North Korea
WASHINGTON -- President Bush met privately Monday with a well-known North Korean defector who spent 10 years in a prison camp and has since become an outspoken critic of his homeland's government, a move that could provoke Pyongyang just as it was reviving stalled nuclear talks. Bush invited Kang Chol-hwan Kang, a journalist and director of the Democracy Network Against North Korean Gulag, to visit with him in the Oval Office and recount his tale of suffering in North Korea, where he was arrested in 1977 at age 9 and had to eat rats, cockroaches and snakes to survive. The White House did not list the meeting on the president's public schedule, but a spokesman later confirmed it. According to aides, Bush has been fascinated with Kang's story ever since he began reading the former prisoner's book, "The Aquariums of Pyongyang: Ten Years in a North Korean Gulag," published in English in 2001. Bush has recommended the book to senior White House and Bush administration officials, who have been poring through the book lately as well.
4 U.S. soldiers injuredin blast in Afghanistan
KABUL, Afghanistan -- A suicide bomber blew up his car near a U.S. military vehicle Monday outside Kandahar, injuring four soldiers and adding to the violence in the restive south in recent weeks, officials said. The man drove his Toyota Corolla cab close to a convoy of U.S. military vehicles, near a popular shrine west of Kandahar, and set off a bomb just before 9 a.m., said Abdulahad Fazli, secretary to the Kandahar provincial governor. Witnesses at first reported that several U.S. soldiers were killed, but that information proved false. The four injured soldiers were taken to the U.S. military hospital near Kandahar, a southern city that once was a stronghold of the Taliban.
Gaza peace commitment
GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip -- The Palestinian Authority renewed its commitment to the cease-fire with Israel on Monday, despite fresh threats from Islamic militants to withdraw from the 4-month-old truce because of recent fighting with Israeli troops. A collapse in the shaky truce would be a major setback for Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas, who hopes to restart peace talks with Israel. The Israelis have said there can be no peace talks until Abbas takes tougher steps toward reining in militants.