Interpress News Service is reporting that a National Intelligence Estimate on Iran has been held up for more than a year. It is reportedly part of an effort by Vice President Dick Cheney to pressure intelligence analysts to remove any dissenting judgments about Iran's alleged nuclear weapons program. Cheney was also accused of pressuring intelligence analysts prior to the invasion of Iraq.
The price of a barrel of oil is now approaching a record $100 dollars. Meanwhile the national debt has hit nine trillion dollars for the first time. The dollar has also hit a fresh record low against the euro and a new 26-year low against the pound.
Federal Grand Jury Indicts Bernard Kerik
A federal grand jury in New York has reportedly voted to indict former New York Police Commissioner Bernard Kerik on corruption charges. Kerik is a close friend and business partner with Republican presidential contender Rudolph Giuliani. Less than three years ago President Bush nominated Kerik to head the Department of Homeland Security. But Kerik withdrew from the confirmation process amid several scandals. Kerik is expected to surrender to authorities today to be arraigned.
Neil Bush's Education Firm Under DOE Investigation
The inspector general of the Department of Education has announced plans to investigate whether federal money has been inappropriately used to buy educational products from a company owned by the President Bush's brother, Neil Bush. His educational software company Ignite has received hundreds of thousands of dollars in federal funds under the No Child Left Behind Act, the president's signature education bill.
Report: 25% of Homeless Are Veterans
A new study has found that one in four homeless people in the country are veterans. The National Alliance to End Homelessness said this total includes 400 soldiers who fought in Afghanistan and Iraq.
Anti-War Groups Barred From Long Beach Veterans Day Parade
In other military news, Veterans For Peace, Iraq Veterans Against the War, and Military Families Speak Out have been barred from marching in Saturday's Veterans Day Parade in Long Beach California. Parade coordinators said the applications were rejected because of the groups' political views.
Tombstone of Dead Soldier Defaced
Meanwhile the parents of a Marine who was killed in Iraq have reported their son's gravestone has been defaced. Lance Corporal Alexander Scott Arredondo died in Iraq three years ago. Since then his parents Carlos and Mélida Arredondo have been vocal critics of the war.
18 Peace Activists Arrested At Iowa Campaign Offices
And in campaign news, eighteen anti-war activists were arrested in Iowa on Thursday at the campaign offices for Rudy Giuliani and Hillary Rodham Clinton. The activists occupied both offices for a few hours and demanded the candidates promise to withdraw all troops from Iraq if elected. The arrests mark the start of the Presidential Occupation Project organized by the Voices for Creative Nonviolence