Calif. may need loan if credit crisis persists
Cash-strapped California may ask the federal government for a multibillion-dollar loan if the nation's credit markets do not stabilize quickly.
Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger wrote Thursday to Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson warning that the state needs $7 billion and “may be forced to turn to the Federal Treasury for short-term financing.”
Treasurer Bill Lockyer said the state's reserves will be exhausted this month absent a thawing of the credit freeze. McClatchy Newspapers
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The Air Force said Friday it has ordered immediate inspections and repairs to about 130 of its A-10 aircraft to fix possible cracks in the wings. The A-10 Thunderbolt II is the workhorse in the fleet the Air Force uses for close-air support on the battlefront.
Priority is being given to the aircraft currently in the U.S. Central Command area of responsibility, which includes Iraq and Afghanistan. The Air Force said the inspections will not affect combat missions. Associated Press
A federal judge has ordered Syria to pay more than $400 million to the families of two American men kidnapped and decapitated while working as civilian contractors in Iraq.
The families of Jack Hensley of Georgia and Eugene “Jack” Armstrong of Michigan filed a 2006 lawsuit against Syria, which they claimed supported the group that killed the two men in 2004.
A federal judge in Washington handed down the award Sept. 26. Syria never answered the claims; nor did it appear to contest them. Associated Press
Israel will use “disproportionate force” if Hezbollah guerrillas attack Israel, a senior military commander said in published comments Friday, adding that any village used to fire missiles against the Jewish state will be destroyed.
Maj. Gen. Gadi Eizenkot, who commands forces along Israel's northern border, issued a similar threat against Syria. Eizenkot said Israel would show no mercy on Lebanese villages that harbor Hezbollah fighters.
Eizenkot stressed that this is “not a recommendation,” but a plan approved by the highest levels. “If fire is carried out from Shiite villages in Lebanon, this is the operational plan: Very aggressive fire.” Associated Press
A coded French diplomatic cable leaked to a French newspaper quotes the British ambassador in Afghanistan as predicting the NATO-led military campaign against the Taliban will fail. The best solution for the country, the ambassador said, would be an “acceptable dictator,” according to the newspaper.
“The current situation is bad, the security situation is getting worse, so is corruption, and the government has lost all trust,” the British envoy, Sherard Cowper-Coles, was quoted as saying by the author of the cable, Francois Fitou, the French deputy ambassador to Kabul.
The two-page cable – sent to the Elysee Palace and the French Foreign Ministry on Sept. 2 and leaked to Le Canard Enchaine – said the NATO-led military presence was making it harder to stabilize the country.