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News Briefs

Attacks in Middle East Continue Despite Negotiations

The Washington Post

JERUSALEM

The attack came at mid-day. Out of an alley, gunmen poured automatic weapons fire into the Israeli army's rooftop outpost at the Cave of the Patriarchs, a site holy to Muslims and Jews, in the West Bank town of Hebron, killing one soldier and wounding another. The assailants fled in a car.

Almost three hours later, a roadside bomb in southern Lebanon detonated just as a convoy of trucks rumbled by, sending lethal shards of metal into the air, killing five Israeli soldiers and wounding five others.

And Monday, in retaliation for the roadside blast, Israeli forces bombed and shelled villages in southern Lebanon north of the area Israel occupies as a self-declared "security zone." Reports from the area said the attacks killed one civilian and injured 11 people.

The attacks on Sunday were carried out by separate Arab groups, but together with Monday's Israeli retaliation they underscored a painful reality of the Middle East peace talks that began a year ago at the Madrid conference. Although Israel, a Palestinian delegation and the neighboring Arab states are now at the bargaining table in Washington discussing peace, here in the Middle East there are armies, militias and individuals still fighting a series of deadly day-to-day conflicts.

Perot Steps Up Advertising Blitz

The Washington Post

Ross Perot Monday stepped up the most expensive advertising blitz in presidential campaign history, putting nine new 30- and 60-second spots on the air in addition to his already formidable arsenal of half-hour commercials.

In the new ads, Perot takes dead aim at the news media, the two political parties and the argument that a vote for him would be wasted. "You got to stop letting these people tell you who to vote for," he says in one spot. "You got to stop letting these folks in the press tell you you're throwing your vote away. You got to start using your own head."

But Perot's paid media efforts could well be overshadowed by the harsh news coverage of his charges on "60 Minutes" Sunday that President Bush's campaign secretly plotted to disrupt his daughter's wedding and wiretap his office. "He came across on `60 Minutes' like a kook, a wealthy nut," said Democratic consultant Mark Mellman.

Money appears to be no object. Perot has donated almost $10.8 million to his campaign in the last 12 days, an aide said Monday, although the Federal Election Commission hasn't received any of the required notifications.

The rule, designed to let the public know the source and amount of late donations, says any contribution of $1,000 or more must be reported to the FEC within 48 hours. Perot spokeswoman Sharon Holman said Monday night that the reports "have been sent."

A Confident Yeltsin Shrugs Off Recent Anti-Reform Protests

Los Angeles Times

MOSCOW

Shrugging off as "hysteria" the anti-reform protests conducted across Russia last weekend, a feisty President Boris N. Yeltsin voiced confidence in his government Monday and said that he saw "no political earthquakes" on the horizon.

But Yeltsin cautioned that changes were entirely possible in acting Prime Minister Yegor T. Gaidar's Cabinet, implying that he may fire some ministers to stem a rising wave of political opposition before the Russian Congress of People's Deputies meets on Dec. 1.

"I cannot exclude changes in personnel before the Congress, but hope they will not be radical," Gaidar himself said Sunday.

But Yeltsin's comments appeared to rule out a wholesale replacement of Gaidar's team of bright young economists now struggling to build capitalism in Russia; they are said by their enemies to be selling Russia out to the West and reducing its populace to poverty.

Yeltsin's remarks, reported by the Itar-Tass news agency, came as he met with American financiers and bankers in the Kremlin to try and spur commercial exchanges between the countries. In particular, the news agency said, Yeltsin reiterated support for forging a democratic, market-driven Russia, assuring his guests that, "the strategy of reform is unchanged."

Weather

Quiet Autumn Weather

By Michael Morgan
Staff meteorologist

A weak cold front will continue south of the area today as colder airgently drifts into the area on light northwest winds. High pressure building in the area during the period will be associated with fair weather through mid Thursday. A cyclone approaching the Mid Atlantic coast from the Midwest threatens to bring cold, stormy weather to the area late Thursday into early Saturday.

Today: Partly cloudy. Cool. High 56F (13C).

Tonight: Clear and chilly. Low around 39F (4C).

Tomorrow: Mostly sunny and cool. High 53F (12C). Low 35-40F (2-4C).

Thursday: Increasing clouds. Rain may arrive late in the day. High near 50F (10C).