The Times Union, Albany, N.Y., on the CIA:
Just a month ago, when George Tenet unexpectedly resigned as director of the Central Intelligence Agency, some pundits said he was getting out because he had to - that is, before the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence issued a scathing report on the CIA's failure to get it right about Saddam Hussein's alleged weapons of mass destruction. On Tuesday, those pundits were proved right. It's difficult to see how Mr. Tenet could have remained on the job in the face of what amounts to an indictment of his leadership.
The report is sure to heighten the debate over President Bush's decision to go to war against Iraq, and might be used to provide some cover for it. ...
It's little wonder that Mr. Tenet refuses to confirm whether he ever told Mr. Bush that the case for Saddam's weapons of mass destruction was a "slam dunk" - a quote attributed to him in a book by Bob Woodward of The Washington Post. Regardless, the committee has performed a slam dunk of its own - on Mr. Tenet's failed leadership.
On the Net:
The Times-Picayune, New Orleans, on sexual misconduct in schools:
A report tendered to Congress as part of the No Child Left Behind Act ... demands a serious response.
Charol Shakeshaft, a professor at Hofstra University's School of Education, analyzed research on sexual misconduct in schools, looking at nearly 900 documents. That is the first such analysis.
Two large teacher organizations are finding fault with the report, saying that it lumps together harassment with molestation, which makes the problem seem worse than it is. ...
But alarm over sexual harassment isn't misplaced, and criminal behavior isn't the only thing that's unacceptable in schools. The report's author said she didn't concentrate solely on abuse because sexual harassment can also be extremely damaging to children - and she's right.
The fact that this report doesn't make those distinctions doesn't mean it isn't valid; it does mean that more research is needed. In fact, the report itself points out that there has been no nationally financed effort to collect data on sexual misconduct in schools.
On the Net:
The Jordan Times, Amman, on trying war criminals:
The trial in The Hague of former Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic before the war crimes tribunal on the former Yugoslavia ... appears to be open-ended after dragging on for two years now.
... Even before this former leader fell ill, the international legal process was too slow and too lenient in passing sentences.
The trial of other people accused of committing crimes in Croatia, Bosnia or Kosovo had also been dogged by repeated delays. And ... the sentences were too lenient for the crimes. ...
This ... makes one wonder whether it was worthwhile to rely on the International Criminal Court to administer justice. It would seem that reliance on national court systems serves justice better. Most probably, these courts pass judgments at a faster pace and apply sentences that are commensurate with the gravity of the crimes committed.
The Sierra Leone war crimes tribunal could serve as a better model than its counterparts in The Hague or the U.N.-created tribunal on war crimes committed in Rwanda.
... The Sierra Leone tribunal is situated right where the crimes were committed. This makes the trials easier, cheaper and more effective.
This gives reason to believe that the trial of former Iraqi President Saddam Hussein and his high-ranking aides can be better conducted, with evidence provided that the basic norms of a fair trial are observed. ...
© 2004 The Associated Press