President Bush cautioned in his speech to the nation Monday night that there are "difficult days ahead" in transferring the government of Iraq to its people June 30. In anticipation of increased violence from insurgents before and after the hand-over, he said more US soldiers could be sent to bolster the 138,000 already there. Bush also said Abu Ghraib prison, site of the abuse scandal, would be destroyed. The speech, one of a series planned on Iraq, was given before a live audience at the US Army War College in Carlisle, Pa. It coincided with the introduction of new draft UN resolution sponsored by the US and Britain that urges other nations to send peacekeeping troops to Iraq.
Army Lt. Gen. Ricardo Sanchez, the top ground commander in Iraq, is to be replaced by higher-ranking Gen. George Casey, The Los Angeles Times reported, citing defense officials. Although Sanchez has faced challenges in dealing with terrorist violence and the prisoner abuse scandal, his reassignment was long anticipated and unrelated to his job performance, the Pentagon said. Meanwhile, Brig. Gen. Janis Karpinski, who's come under fire for insufficient supervision at Abu Ghraib prison, was suspended by the Defense Department, she told MSNBC Monday.
The FBI apologized to Brandon Mayfield hours after a judge in Portland, Ore, dismissed the case Monday in which he was jailed as a material witness in the Madrid train bombings that killed 191 and injured 2,000 others. Mayfield, a lawyer whose fingerprints were mistakenly tied to the terrorist attack, called his treatment "humiliating" and said he believes he was singled out as a convert to Islam. Court documents suggest a computer error led to the misidentification. The FBI said it would review its fingerprint-analysis practices.
Terry Nichols was portrayed as the "biggest contributor" to the carnage of the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing by prosecutors, who wrapped up their case in his trial on 161 first-degree murder counts. Nichols's attorneys, who claim he was made the "fall guy" for other, unidentified conspirators, were expected to present their closing arguments Tuesday at the trial in McAlester, Okla. Nichols already is serving a life sentence for the deaths of eight federal agents in the attack. But, if convicted, he could be sentenced to death since this is a state case.