By Warren Strobel WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The number of U.S. troops deployed in battle zones is at its lowest level since before the 2003 invasion of Iraq. The contradiction is the legacy of an emergency war fund, started in the aftermath of the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks, that has become a favorite Washington way to sidestep the impact of fiscal constraints on military spending. The Overseas Contingency Operations account, or OCO, has been tapped to fund tens of billions of dollars in programs with questionable links, or none, to wars, according to current and former U.S. officials, analysts and budget documents.
A Palestinian toddler was burned to death and four family members wounded in an arson attack by suspected Jewish settlers on two homes in the Israeli-occupied West Bank on Friday. Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called the firebombing in Duma village near the northern city of Nablus "an act of terrorism in every respect" and ordered security forces to hunt down the assailants. The attack further stoked tensions between Israelis and Palestinians, two days after Netanyahu controversially approved 300 new settler homes in the West Bank.
TOKYO (AP) — A Japanese judicial committee has decided that three former utility executives should face criminal charges and stand trial for their alleged negligence in the Fukushima nuclear disaster.