A federal judge rejected a defense request for the release of John Walker Lindh pending his trial on charges of conspiring to kill Americans by fighting for the Taliban in Afghanistan. Lindh arrived at the Albert V. Bryan federal courthouse in Alexandria, Va., for the hearing surrounded by helmeted federal marshals. The Justice Department had argued against his release, saying the California-born Lindh repeatedly voiced "hostility" toward the US in emails to his mother from abroad. If convicted on all 10 counts against him, Lindh faces a maximum prison sentence of life plus 30 years.
Nearly 1,000 Al Qaeda agents have been detained in more than 60 countries as a result of the counterterrorism war, CIA Director George Tenet told the Senate Intelligence Committee. But he said that doesn't mean Osama bin Laden's network is no longer a threat. "Al Qaeda and other terrorist groups will continue to plan to attack this country and its interests abroad," Tenet said. He added that Iran and Iraq remained of concern for their pursuit of weapons of mass destruction. (Related story, page 1.)
In light of Enron's collapse, American workers need reassurance that their retirement savings are secure, Labor Secretary Elaine Chao told the House Committee on Education and the Workforce. To do that, she said the Bush administration wants Congress to amend pension laws to give workers more flexibility to diversify their company savings accounts and require employers to provide them with detailed information in quarterly statements. Many Enron employees lost their life savings when shares in the company became worthless. A dozen congressional panels are holding hearings related to Enron's bankruptcy.
In a compromise, a tattered Stars and Stripes from the World Trade Center will fly after all at the Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City. American officials had wanted US athletes to carry it into the stadium for tomorrow's opening ceremonies, but Olympic officials balked, saying that would violate a ban on political displays. They agreed to raise the banner, however, as the official US flag during the event. (Related story, page 1.)
Before traveling to New York to salute the heroic work of firefighters and police - and tout increased spending on homeland security - President Bush paid tribute to a predecessor, Ronald Reagan. With the flash of a pen, Bush made the former president's boyhood home in Dixon, Ill. a national historic site. Bush's father was Reagan's vice president and first successor in the Oval Office.
Worker productivity in the fourth quarter rose by the largest amount in more than a year, the Labor Department reported. As employers trimmed hours and laid off workers, productivity, gauged by output per hour, rose at an annual rate of 3.5 percent from October to December, up from 1.1 percent growth the previous quarter.
For at least another year, fans of the Minnesota Twins and Montreal Expos will be able to cheer their teams. Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig suspended plans to eliminate the two major league franchises this season to increase revenues for other teams. But he vowed to pursue the plan in 2003.