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Bush Pledges Increased Cooperation With Turkey

President Bush pledged Monday to increase intelligence cooperation with Turkey in its fight against Kurdish rebels, hoping to head off any significant Turkish military operation in Iraq.

Meeting in the White House with Turkey’s prime minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Bush declined to say how the United States would respond if Turkish forces entered northern Iraq, dismissing it as a hypothetical question that, he said, Erdogan himself had asked.

Instead, Bush promised that the American and Turkish militaries — allies in NATO — would work together to fight the Kurdistan Workers Party, or PKK, which he called “an enemy of Turkey, a free Iraq and the United States of America.”

“I can tell you that we — he asked what would my reaction be if there was an attack,” Bush said, sitting beside Erdogan in the Oval Office. “Well, that’s a hypothetical question. But what we did talk about is to make sure that there is good enough intelligence so that we can help deal with a common problem, and that problem is a terrorist organization called PKK.”

Google Will Spearhead Mobile Computer Project

What Apple began with its iPhone, Google is hoping to accelerate with an ambitious plan to make the software at the heart of cell phones.

The personal computer is climbing off of its desktop perch and hopping into the pockets of millions of people. The resulting merger of computing and communications is likely to transform the telecommunications industry as thoroughly as the PC changed the computing world in the early 1980s.

Google, which wants to be as central to the coming wireless Web as it is on today’s PC-dominated Internet, announced on Monday that it was leading a broad industry effort to develop new software technologies aimed at turning cell phones into powerful mobile computers.

If successful, the effort will usher in new mobile devices that, like the iPhone, will make it easier to use the Internet on the go. The phones, which would run on software that Google would give away to phone makers, could be cheaper and easier to customize.

Italy Arrests Top Boss In Sicilian Mafia

One of the most powerful bosses in the Sicilian Mafia was arrested on Monday, according to the Italian authorities.

The man identified as the Mafia boss, Salvatore Lo Piccolo, was arrested and his son Sandro and two other people were detained during a raid on an isolated villa outside of Palermo, the police said.

The four, all of whom are on Italy’s 30 most-wanted list, were holding a meeting when their hide-out was surrounded by some three dozen police officers, according to the Palermo police chief, Giuseppe Caruso. The four gave themselves up after officers fired warning shots in the air.

Lo Piccolo, 65, has been on the run since he was convicted of murder in 1983. According to Caruso, he took over the top Mafia post after the arrest in April 2006 of the so-called boss of all bosses at the time, Bernardo Provenzano.

The arrests on Monday — which happened to be Italy’s annual day of mourning for Mafia victims — followed a series of raids and arrests over the last 18 months that Caruso said had effectively decapitated the group. “These four were the last on our list,” he said.