KABUL, Afghanistan - A U.S. Army sergeant complained in a rare opinion article that the U.S. flag flew at half-staff last week at the largest U.S. base in Afghanistan for those killed at Virginia Tech, but the same honor is not given to fallen U.S. troops here and in Iraq. In the article issued Monday by the public affairs office at Bagram military base north of Kabul, Sgt. Jim Wilt lamented that his comrades' deaths have become a mere blip on the TV screen, lacking the "shock factor" to be honored by the flag as the deaths at Virginia Tech were. "I find it ironic that the flags were flown at half-staff for the young men and women who were killed at VT, yet it is never lowered for the death of a U.S. service member," Wilt wrote. He noted that Bagram obeyed President Bush's order last week that all U.S. flags at federal locations be flown at half-staff through April 22 to honor 32 people killed at Virginia Tech by a 23-year-old student gunman who then killed himself. "I think it is sad that we do not raise the bases' flag to half-staff when a member of our own task force dies," Wilt said.
Writer Halberstam, 73, killed in crash
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SAN FRANCISCO - David Halberstam, a Pulitzer Prize-winning writer who chronicled the Vietnam War generation, civil rights and the world of sports, was killed in a car crash Monday, his wife and local authorities said. He was 73. Halberstam, of New York, was a passenger in a car that was broadsided by another vehicle in Menlo Park, south of San Francisco, San Mateo County Coroner Robert Foucrault said. The cause of death appeared to be internal injuries, he said. The accident occurred around 10:30 a.m., and Halberstam was declared dead at the scene, Menlo Park Fire Chief Harold Schapelhouman said. The driver of the car carrying Halberstam and the person driving the car that crashed into his were injured, but not seriously. Halberstam was being driven by a graduate journalism student from the University of California, Berkeley, which had hosted a speech by the author Saturday night about journalism and what it means to turn reporting into a work of history.
Kucinich to seek Cheney's impeachment
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CLEVELAND - Rep. Dennis Kucinich, a vocal critic of the Bush administration's war in Iraq, plans to introduce articles of impeachment against Vice President Dick Cheney today. Kucinich, a Democrat who is again running for president, said Monday that he will hold a news conference in Washington to discuss his bid to oust Cheney. Kucinich spokeswoman Natalie Laber declined further comment. Under the House impeachment process, Kucinich's articles would be reviewed by the House Judiciary Committee, which would decide whether to conduct an impeachment inquiry. The committee would seek authority from the entire House before beginning an inquiry. Cheney spokeswoman Megan McGinn responded to Kucinich's announcement by saying that the vice president has served the nation honorably for almost 40 years. "The vice president is focused on the serious issues facing our nation," McGinn said.