USA

Amid expectations that Chief Justice William Rehnquist's retirement is imminent, the Supreme Court ends its session Monday. The court still has at least three decisions to announce: appeals by Texas and Kentucky on the constitutionality of displaying the Ten Commandments; an Internet case involving illegal swapping of intellectual property such as movies and songs; and whether the justices will hear appeals by two journalists who could be jailed for refusing to divulge their sources in the leak of a CIA official's identity. If he steps down, Rehnquist, who recently missed five months because of treatment for cancer, would be the first justice to leave the court in 11 years.

Using Fort Bragg, N.C., as a backdrop, President Bush is to address the nation in prime time Tuesday night on the war in Iraq. He's expected to call for renewed confidence in a positive outcome, despite recent opinion surveys that have showed a majority of Americans no longer support keeping US troops there amid relentless incidents of terrorism. In his weekly radio address Saturday, the president said, "The terrorists' objective is to break the will" of Americans and the Iraqi people "before democracy can take root" but that Iraqis themselves are overcoming their fears and are working to defeat terrorism. Defense Secretary Rumsfeld told "Fox News Sunday" that another 12 years may be needed to defeat terrorism in Iraq.

For the first time in 50 years, the NAACP nominated a business executive to its top post in the hope he can reverse its declining membership and guide it out of a thicket of legal and financial woes. Bruce Gordon, former chief of retail markets for Verizon, the tele-communications giant, edged out 253 other candidates for the office of president. Since 1955, all presidents of the civil rights group have been clergymen, politicians, or grass-roots activists.

Seeking to ease consumers' worries and to reassure trading partners of the safety of American beef, Agriculture Department officials said DNA testing is being used to pinpoint the herd in which a new case of "mad cow" disease was confirmed. They called the incidence "a minor concern" and said safeguards are in place to protect the food supply. But within hours after confirmation of the case, Taiwan reimposed a ban on US beef. When the first case became known two years ago, almost 50 countries stopped buying American beef, causing billions of dollars in lost exports.

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