March 8, 1998 in Nation/World

Week In Review A Look Back At The Top Stories From The Last Week

Compiled By News Editor Kevin Gr
 

NATION

Trial by media

President Clinton angrily denounced a leak of details of his account of the Monica Lewinsky controversy this week as his friend, Vernon Jordan, spent two days under grand jury interrogation about his role in the case.

Two individuals familiar with Clinton’s Jan. 17 deposition in that civil suit confirmed a report that the president acknowledged under oath that he and Jordan had discussed efforts to find Lewinsky a job.

But Clinton testified that the job-seeking effort on behalf of the former intern with whom he is accused of having an affair was initiated by his personal secretary, Betty Currie, the individuals said, speaking on condition of anonymity.

The president’s attorneys asked the judge in the Paula Jones case, U.S. District Judge Susan Webber Wright, to order an FBI investigation into how the Washington Post got ahold of Clinton’s deposition despite a court seal.

You’re cut off

The Senate voted Wednesday to set a national drunken driving standard of .08 percent of blood alcohol, after overcoming complaints that the new level would infringe on the right of states to enforce their own limits.

Although 15 states have lowered the legal limit to .08 percent, the other 35 states still abide by a .10 percent blood-alcohol content in determining whether a person is driving while intoxicated. If the House goes along with the Senate, those 35 states must lower their limit or risk losing federal highway funds.

In thanking the Senate for its vote, President Clinton said, “I hope that’s an indication that these kind of publicsafety issues will be high on the agenda of Congress.”

Macrosoft

Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates came under 4-1/2 hours of hostile questioning at a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing Tuesday that provided strong political ballast to the government’s antitrust case against the software giant.

Gates was grilled by senators from both parties, and the panel even permitted two of Microsoft’s bitterest Silicon Valley rivals - Scott McNealy, chief executive officer of Sun Microsystems, and Jim Barksdale, chief of Netscape Communications - to participate in the questioning.

Billed as an investigation into “Market Power and Structural Change in the Software Industry,” the hearing was clearly a bellwether of the increasing antipathy in Washington toward Gates and Microsoft.

WORLD

Not-so-big stick

Exposing fundamental divisions between the United States and most other U.N. members over how to deal with Iraq, the Security Council unanimously passed a resolution Monday night that did not authorize an automatic military response if Baghdad violates its agreement with Secretary General Kofi Annan.

Led by China, France and Russia, the Security Council held out against any explicit threat and agreed to warn Iraq of “severest consequences” only after Great Britain and Japan assured members that the warning did not imply approval, in advance, of a U.S. airstrike on Baghdad at the first sign of Iraqi noncompliance.

What this means is that the United States remains nearly alone in asserting that existing U.N. resolutions give it such authority.

SCIENCE

Nature over nurture

Scientists Monday reported the first strong physiological evidence that lesbian and bisexual women may be biologically different from heterosexual women.

The researchers at the University of Texas in Austin found that, compared with heterosexual women, the hearing of homosexual and bisexual women tends to be a bit more like that of men.

The findings suggest that homosexual and bisexual women develop in subtly different ways than heterosexual women. Therefore, their brains may also form differently, accounting for their sexuality, the researchers said.

“The results support the theory that differences in the central nervous system exist between homosexual and heterosexual individuals and that the differences are possibly related to early factors in brain development,” said Sandra Witelson of McMaster University, who studies the relationship of brain anatomy to sexual orientation.

Lunar seas

A U.S. spacecraft has found evidence that relatively large amounts of water ice exist on the moon, scattered in craters over vast spans of the north and south poles.

Rather than being a barren, dry wasteland, scientists say, the moon apparently has enough water, in the form of small ice crystals mixed in loose dirt, to sustain lunar colonies and provide fuel for rockets exploring the solar system.

, DataTimes ILLUSTRATION: Photo

The following fields overflowed: CREDIT = Compiled by news editor Kevin Graman from staff and wire reports.


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