Saying he was "living in the future," President Bush promoted his plans for a missile defense system on Tuesday and said that its opponents were putting the nation's security at risk, as he courted aerospace workers in Pennsylvania before rallying supporters in West Virginia. \n"We say to those tyrants who believe they can blackmail America and the free world, `You fire, we're going to shoot it down,'" Bush told Boeing employees in Ridley Park, Pennsylvania, south of Philadelphia. \n"I think those who oppose this ballistic missile system really don't understand the threats of the 21st century," Bush said. "They're living in the past. We're living in the future. We're going to do what's necessary to protect this country." \nBush did not mention his challenger, Senator John Kerry, by name. Kerry has called for diverting money from developing the missile-defense system, which Democrats say is untested, to pay for expanding the military by 40,000 troops. \nThe president noted that Boeing engineers helped load the first ground-based missile interceptor into a silo in Alaska last month and called that "the beginning of a missile-defense system that was envisioned by Ronald Reagan." \nThe administration's plans, which rely on ground-based rockets, are sharply scaled down from the space-based shield envisioned by Reagan's Strategic Defense Initiative and derided in the 1980s as a "Star Wars" system. \nRand Beers, a national security adviser to Kerry, said Bush's "near obsession" with missile defense preoccupied the administration in the months before the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. Beers said that Kerry believed that an "effective" missile defense was "crucial to our national security strategy," but that he "also understands the importance of facing our most pressing national security threats while continuing to develop and deploy a national missile defense which we know will work." \nBush's trip wrapped up here in eastern West Virginia, near Martinsburg, with a rally before several thousand supporters who did not quite fill a high school football field. \nPennsylvania, which Bush lost by 2 percentage points to Al Gore in 2000, and West Virginia, which he won by 6, are crucial battlegrounds in the election. \nBoth states have been hit hard by job losses, and the presidential race is neck and neck in both, with Kerry showing slight leads in some recent polls. \nThe visit to a Boeing plant was Bush's second in five days. On Friday, in Seattle, he said the US would go to the World Trade Organization if necessary to block European subsidies to Airbus, the leading Boeing competitor. \nKerry has said for more than a year that the federal government should subsidize Boeing in response, and his aides accused Bush on Tuesday of doing "too little too late." \nThe people who crowded into a factory parking lot were all invited, but it would have doubtless been a friendly crowd in any case. Boeing and its employees have given almost US$60,000 to Bush this election year, more than double what they have given to Kerry, according to the Center for Responsive Politics, which tracks campaign financing.
EVOLVING SITUATION: Of the latest cases, 23 percent were found to be asymptomatic, but the coronavirus strain in Da Nang is more contagious, authorities said A COVID-19 outbreak that began in the Vietnamese city of Da Nang more than a week ago has spread to at least four city factories with a combined workforce of about 3,700, state media reported yesterday. Four cases were found at the plants in different industrial parks in the central city that collectively employ 77,000 people, the Lao Dong newspaper said. Vietnam, praised widely for its decisive measures to combat the novel coronavirus since it first appeared in late January, is battling new clusters of infection having gone for more than three months without detecting any domestic transmissions. Authorities yesterday reported one new
Three Micronesian sailors stranded on a remote Pacific island have been found alive and well after a rescue team spotted their giant SOS message written into the sand on a beach. Australian and US military aircraft found the three men on tiny Pikelot island, nearly 200km west of where they had set off. Rescuers said that the men were “in good condition” with no significant injuries. The men had been missing for three days after their 7m skiff ran out of fuel and strayed off course. Authorities in the US territory of Guam raised the alarm on Saturday after the men failed to complete
A cat that went missing on a family holiday on the shores of Loch Lomond, Scotland, has been identified 12 years later. Tortoiseshell-and-white Georgie spent October half term in 2008 with her owners at the Rowardennan campsite, but vanished as they were due to return home to Greater Manchester, England. After a search of the site the Davies family departed without Georgie, hoping the three-year-old microchipped feline would be located by someone. Over the intervening 12 years, she remained close to the Queen Elizabeth Forest Park site, being fed and cared for by campsite staff and holidaymakers. After the COVID-19 pandemic hit and lockdown
LIFELONG LOSS: Jiro Hamasumi, who was not quite born when an atomic bomb hit Hiroshima, lost his father and other relatives, but said he thinks about his father daily As Japan marks 75 years since the devastating attacks on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the last generation of nuclear bomb survivors is working to ensure their message lives on after them. The “hibakusha” — literally “person affected by the bomb” — have for decades been a powerful voice calling for the abolition of nuclear weapons. There are an estimated 136,700 left, many of whom were infants or soon to be born at the time of the attacks. The average age of a survivor now is a little over 83, according to the Japanese Ministry of Health, lending an urgency as they share their testimonies