USA

With national attention swirling around what President Bush knew about Al Qaeda threats - and when - the White House took the extraordinary step Saturday of releasing a top-secret briefing from Aug. 6, 2001. The presidential daily briefing, reviewed by Bush five weeks before the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, was cited by National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice in her testimony before the 9/11 commission last week. The commission had asked the White House to declassify the document, which Rice said was "historical" and lacked specifics. Initial opinions of its content by the commissioners varied. Bob Kerrey, a Democrat, said it should have warned Bush to push for more intelligence information about domestic hijackings. James Thompson, a Republican, said the brief backs up Rice's assessment.

Sony Pictures Entertainment has purchased the film rights to "Against All Enemies," the new book by Richard Clarke, the excounterterrorism adviser who has been critical of the Bush administration, reports said. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Two Sept. 11 hijackers under suspicion of involvement in the October 2000 bombing of the destroyer USS Cole might have been intercepted before entering the US had investigators not missed the significance of a series of clues, The New York Times reported Sunday. The CIA and FBI had their eyes on Khalid al-Midhar and Nawaq alhazmi but did not attempt to bar their entrance until they were already in the country. Their movements were troubling enough to merit keeping them out, but miscommuni-cations and restrictions on CIA and FBI information-sharing failed to close the loop, a point the 9/11 commission will focus on this week, commission members told the Times.

Results of a Los Angeles Times poll released Saturday show public acceptance of homosexuals has grown significantly over the last two decades. The level has doubled since two polls taken by the newspaper in the mid 1980s, the report indicates. Familiarity was cited as a factor: In 1985, 46 percent of those polled said they knew a homosexual man or woman; now 69 percent do. A slim majority of respondents said they oppose same-sex marriage, however.

Thousands of people took to Philadelphia's streets Saturday to protest the violent deaths of more than 20 children in the city this school year. The latest victim, Kyree Cohen, who was 17, was killed in a drive-by shooting last week.

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