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[美国国家公共广播] 【整理】NPR NEWS 2008-02-12

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From NPR News in Washington, I'm Nora Raum.

Defense Secretary Robert Gates is in Iraq, he prays the U.S. Troops there for bringing about what he describes as a remarkable change that Al-Qaeda has been routed and violence of all kinds has been dramatically reduced. But Gates endorsed the idea of pausing the drawdown of U.S. forces from Iraq this summer to assess the effect on Iraqi security.

"I think that the notion of uh, of a brief period of consolidation and uh, evaluation probably does make sense."

He spoke to reporters after a meeting with General David Petraeus, the top U.S. Commander in Iraq, who has indicated he'd like a period of evaluation, after initial pullout is completed in July. Gates arrived in Iraq yesterday, a day when more than 50 people were killed. The violence continued today, 2 car bombs exploded in Baghdad, at least 5 people were killed.

The president of East Timor José Ramos Horta was critically wounded during an assassination attempt just before dawn in the capital city of Dili, Chard Bushard reports from Jakarta in neighbor Indonesia.

The Nobel Laureate was shot in the stomach during a gun battle after 2 cars pulled up to his home and opened fire, Ramos Horta was stabilized at a military hospital in Dili, and then airlifted to Australia under intensive care with two bullet wounds. Among the shooters was rebel leader Alfredo Reinado, who was killed during the attack. Reinado deserted the army in 2006, and later revolted with hundreds of troops who were sacked by the government. He has been in hiding since escaping from a Dili prison in August that year. The rebel group also targeted the home of East Timor's Prime Minister Xanana Gusmao. Ramos Horta and Gusmao played key roles in the Timorese fight for independence from Indonesia, which ruled with an iron fist from 1975 to 2002. For NPR News, I'm Chard Bushard in Jakarta.

It looks increasingly likely the 3-month-old writers strike will be settled soon. Union leaders have approved a tentative new contract with Hollywood Studios. NPR's Sky Road reports.

Payment for work distributed online and another new media had been a sticking point in negotiations between the WGA and Studio heads. The proposed 3 year deal sets writers' compensation rates for streaming ad-supported programs, and increases residual payments they received for downloaded TV programs and movies. The Guild's 10,000 plus members were briefed on the plan by Union leaders on Saturday night. They vote Tuesday on whether or not to end strike before they vote on the new contract. Union leaders say there won't be any more picketing outside studios, and if writers vote to end the strike, they could be back at work as early as Wednesday. Sky Road, NPR News.

Senator Barack Obama won the democratic caucus in Maine yesterday after sweeping 3 States Saturday, Nebraska, Washington State, and Louisiana. Senator Hillary Clinton made a personnel change yesterday, replacing campaign manager Patti Solis Doyle with longtime aide Maggie Williams. Primaries will be held for both parties tomorrow in Maryland, Virginia and Washington.

This is NPR News.

The search will resume today in Port Wentworth Georgia for 2 workers missing since an explosion at a sugar refinery last week. Another body was recovered yesterday, bringing to 6, the number of confirmed dead. Dozens of workers were injured in the explosion Thursday night, possibly caused when combustible sugar dust ignited.

Jazz pianist Herbie Hancock surprised the field at the 50th Annual Grammy Awards in Los Angeles. He won Album of the Year for a River, the Joni Letters, and album of songs by Joni Mitchell. Joe Ross reports.

Herbie Hancock was considered a long shot to win Album of the Year, an award that was supposed to go to British singer Amy Winehouse or rapper Kanye West. As he took the podium, Herbie Hancock observed that it's been more than 40 years since Jazz record had won the Award.

"I'd like to, to thank the, the Academy for, courageously breaking the mode this time, (applausing…) and in doing so, honor, the giants upon whose shoulders I stand."

One of those giants is Joni Mitchell. The album re-imagines Mitchell's songs using its instruments and guest vocal lists including Leonard Cohen, Norah Jones, and Corinne Bailey Rae. For NPR News, I'm Joe Ross.

Actor Roy Scheider died yesterday in Little Rock, Arkansas. A hospital spokesman said he died of complications from a cancer of the blood cells. He may be best known for playing the police chief of a seaside resort who hunts for a maneating shark in Jaws. Roy Scheider was 75.

I'm Nora Raum, NPR News in Washington.
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