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Stem cell success — It was the first controversy of the Bush administration.  It flared anew as the former first lady, Nancy Reagan, broke with Republican policy opposing it — and after the death of one of its greatest proponents, the actor Christopher Reeve.  But opponents always had one unanswerable argument on their side: , whether necessary or immoral, had never produced anything resembling a cure, for any of the afflictions for which it was said to be essential.  But that all changed today.  Researchers at the University of Miami say embryonic stem cells can create an endless supply of "eye-lets," which can cure diabetes.

Middle East — What the Bush Administration is calling a march towards freedom in the region is gathering momentum in Egypt.  President Hosni Mubarak unexpectedly announcing that his regime will allow that country's first direct, multi-party elections this fall...The news out of Syria is harder to define.  U.S. officials confirmed for the first time today that Syria played a 'helpful role' in the recent arrest of Saddam Hussein's half-brother.  At the same time, those officials are now linking Syria to Friday's bombing in Tel Aviv.  NBC News has learned that the U.S. not only has firm new evidence was behind the explosion, but officials now say the Syrians were aware the Damascus-based terror group was planning the attack...Back at home, the prison abuse scandal is still getting Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld in trouble of his own.  on charges that he, and other government officials, were at least partially responsible for the torture of eight detainees in Afghanistan and Iraq.   The suit was filed by the ACLU and another group called Human Rights First.

WTC terrorists advocating terror behind bars— Convicted terrorists are held under the tightest possible security in U.S. prisons with communications and every little movement monitored — at least, that's what we thought.  NBC’s Chief Investigative Correspondent Lisa Myers reported this .  The criminals were somehow permitted to write what amounted to guest editorials in Arabic newspapers, encouraging more terrorism, and praising Osama Bin Laden... to say nothing of being allowed to correspond with would-be suicide bombers around the world.

Flick the bics — It was in retrospect so naive as to seem almost sweet.  Until 1988, every hour, every day, every month — airline passengers were permitted to (carry) small, easily concealed, incendiary devices with them on board.  And moreover, if they had neglected to bring with them the equivalent of the fuses for those devices, flight attendants were happy to provide them at no cost.  The devices were called cigarettes.  The "fuses" were called lighters — and matches.  .  But you may bring four books of matches with you.  The Transportation Security Administration has now spoken, which, apparently, doesn't say much.