Storm Damage Throughout Central US and Other Headlines

Pierce City, Missouri-AP -- Homes are torn apart -- and trees and lives are uprooted -- after violent storms brought tornadoes to the central US. The storms yesterday are blamed for at least 14 deaths in Missouri, seven in Kansas and eleven in Tennessee. One Tennessee man says the damage makes Jackson look like Baghdad.

(Little Rock, Arkansas-AP) -- The governor of Missouri says downtown Pierce City looks like it's been bombed. He toured the town of 14-hundred today, after a tornado damaged or destroyed nearly every building. Meanwhile, President Bush promises that federal aid will go to tornado-damaged areas where "help is justified."

(Pentagon-AP) -- It's not clear exactly how many terrorism suspects will be freed from Guantanamo Bay, but US defense officials say several will be released. They also say the release was planned well before the secretary of state wrote to the Pentagon, pressing it to move faster in processing the prisoners.

(Pentagon-AP) -- The only woman on the US most-wanted list in Iraq is now in American custody. The woman is a scientist who received advance degrees in microbiology from universities in the US. Intelligence officials say she had a key role in Baghdad's biological weapons program.

(Tikrit, Iraq-AP) -- Iraq's third-largest city is a step closer to having a municipal government. Representatives from the different tribal and ethnic groups in Mosul have named leaders to run the city alongside the US military until they can hold elections.

(Little Rock, Arkansas-AP) -- President Bush says he asked Congress for tax cuts four months ago -- and he's still waiting. Bush told a cheering crowd of G0P faithful in Arkansas that Congress is moving too slowly on his economic plan.

(Oklahoma City-AP) -- The federal government sent him to prison for life -- and now the state of Oklahoma wants to put Terry Nichols to death for the Oklahoma City bombing. A hearing into whether there's enough evidence for a state trial started today with testimony from a former senators' aide and from Nichols' ex-wife.

(Modesto, California-AP) -- Scott Peterson's new lawyer says his defense team will prove Peterson didn't kill his wife and unborn son. The attorney spoke after a hearing today in Modesto, California, where the judge denied a defense motion that he disqualify himself from the case.

(Capitol Hill-AP) -- A Senate historian says he hopes the excesses of Senator Joseph McCarthy will serve as a cautionary tale. The Senate today unsealed four-thousand pages of transcripts from closed door hearings McCarthy held in the early 1950s to root out Communists. They show that he avoided calling witnesses who might publicly challenge him.

(New York-AP) -- Stocks were mixed in light trading, ahead of tomorrow's Federal Reserve meeting on interest rates. The Dow industrials fell 51 points, and the S-and-P 500 fell three and a-half points. The Nasdaq composite gained just over a point.

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