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Taliban Strikes, US Must Do More

A terrorist blew himself up and killed up to 23 others outside Bagram Air Base in Afghanistan. The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack. "We wanted to target ... Cheney," said Taliban spokesman Mullah Hayat Khan in an interview with Reuters. While the Vice President was unharmed, at least one American soldier was reportedly killed in the attack, along with an American contractor. In Washington, National Intelligence Director Mike McConnell told the Senate Armed Forces Committee that the US must do more to disrupt al-Qaeda along the Pakistan/Afghanistan border. Defense Intelligence Agency chief Lt. Gen. Michael Maples told the Senators that the tribal leaders of North Waziristan were not living up the the Miramshah Agreement made last September with Pakistan's government.

China Dismisses Cheney's Remarks

After Vice President Cheney said "Last month's anti-satellite test and China's continued fast paced military build up are less constructive and are not consistent with China's stated goal of a peaceful rise" the Chinese government has denied the implications of Cheney's remarks. Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang said "China adheres to the road of peaceful development and we are an important force in the maintenance of peace and stability in the world and the region, Our positive and important role on the nuclear issue of the Korean peninsula is clear evidence of that." Qin's remarks came during a regular briefing and did not address the issue of Chinese military expansion directly, nor the 800 guided missiles along the coast of China's Fujian province west of Taiwan.

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