Nation

At least Jackson is in good company. On election night, when Florida was initially handed to Al Gore, Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor was reported by Newsweek to have remarked at a party, "This is terrible." D.C. wags speculated that O'Connor—who later sided with the majority in stopping the recount, effectively handing the White House to Bush—was pissed either because a Gore victory would have forced her to push back her retirement plans, or because it would've ruined her chance of being named the next chief justice.


Milosevic Points Finger at NATO Powers
When Slobodan Squeals

In his upcoming war-crimes trial, Slobodan Milosevic, a/k/a the Butcher of Belgrade, will try to portray himself as a secret partner with NATO powers, who he says gave him a "green light" for the use of force that ended in genocide, reports the London Telegraph.

Among other things, lawyers for the former Yugoslavian strongman are likely to raise the embarrassing business deal between Slobo and Lord Douglas Hurd, a British foreign secretary from 1989 to 1995. Hurd opposed a U.S. plan to provide arms to Bosnian Muslims so they could defend themselves against the Serbs, and later joined the National Westminster Bank, which made a profitable arrangement with Milosevic to jumpstart the Yugoslavian economy. As deputy chairman of NatWest Markets, Hurd brokered a second agreement to privatize Serbia's telecom service. The Telegraph reports he had at least one secret business breakfast with Milosevic, accompanied by fellow bank exec and former British diplomat Dame Pauline Neville-Jones.

"Our hands are clean," whined a Foreign Office official to the paper. "We have nothing to hide."

Hurd likewise told the Telegraph he was free from blame. "[The deal] occurred during a lull in which sanctions were relaxed and we were trying to make Milosevic see sense," he said. "I don't quite see how it could be connected with any accusations about atrocities."

Slobo will also aim to portray the French as a bunch of sick collaborators in the genocide. They are thought to have deliberately screwed up NATO's air strikes against Serb positions in Bosnia by leaking target info to the enemy. Worse, Hague prosecutors say the French are scandalously thwarting plans by elite British forces to swoop in and nab indicted war criminals Radovan Karadzic and Ratko Mladic.

Meanwhile, Yugoslavian chief of staff General Nebojsa Pavkovic has boasted he could have bumped off Hillary Clinton with a missile strike when she visited refugees in Albania in 1999, adding that Slobo ordered him to take out English prime minister Tony Blair.


Derbyshire Housewife Captures UFO on Tape
Screened at NASA?

A British housewife recently sold a homemade video of what she thinks was a flying saucer to a Hollywood film producer. The BBC reports officials at NASA want to look at her tape because they think it might be the same kind of craft the agency's cameras picked up on a space shuttle mission.

Sharon Rowlands of Derbyshire told reporters she first heard an noise in the sky last October, then saw an object about two miles away. "It resembled a giant disc with a bite taken out of the bottom," she said. "As it hovered over the woods, it seemed to expand and then get smaller again. We could see it pulsing as if it started up and then it just went. It came really close at one stage and I thought it was going to land in the field."

The video reportedly shows a large craft with red, yellow, orange, and blue lights, and with a dark circle in its center. In the video, it turns over, then shoots off in a red glare. The sighting seemed doubly mysterious since there were no weather disturbances.

Other people in this area claim to have seen strange flying objects. One woman spoke of a "ball of fire," and a man walking his dog said he observed a "pink glow, vertically shaped like a shoe box." What's more, a Scottish photographer reportedly snapped a picture of a UFO flying over Glasgow.


Foot-and-Mouth Facts, U.K.

• Animals infected, as of 7/2/01: 1807
• Sheep killed: 2.78 million
• Pigs: 128,000
• Cattle: 545,000
• Animals awaiting slaughter: 14,000
• Animals still to be disposed of: 16,000
• Soldiers sick with flu-like Q fever from burying dead animals: 3
• Other countries with foot-and-mouth: France, Uruguay, Brazil, Colombia, Kazakhstan, Mongolia
• Occurrences in U.S., so far: 0


Surplus Value

Contrary to all of the tongue-wagging about what to do with the enormous surplus, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office last week reported that any overage is tenuous and is in danger of being swallowed up. "If the nation's leaders do not change current policies . . . deficits are likely to reappear and eventually drive federal debt to unsustainable levels," said the CBO.


Additional reporting: Ariston-Lizabeth Anderson and Sandra Bisin

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