- A Perfect Rescue Operation:
French-Colombian politician Ingrid Betancourt and 14 other hostages freed from FARC rebels in a daring rescue mission has called her release after more than 6 years, a "miracle." She says, "there is no historical precedent for such a perfect operation." The mission was accomplished without a shot fired after the Colombian military penetrated the highest level of FARC and tricked them into handing over the hostages. Among those rescued were three American military contractors and 11 members of the Colombian security forces, all said to be in relatively good health. FARC has been trying to overthrow the Colombian government for 40 years, and still holds over 40 high-profile hostages, among up to 700 other captives.
- Mandela Not a Terrorist:
US President George W Bush signed a bill removing Nelson Mandela and South African leaders from the US terror watch list. Mandela and ANC party members will now be able to travel to the US without a waiver from the secretary of state. The African National Congress (ANC) was labeled as a terrorist organization by South Africa's former apartheid regime.
- Jobs and Airlines in Trouble:
The number of former workers signing up for unemployment insurance rose sharply last week. According to a Labor Department report, new applications jumped by 16,000 to 404,000, the highest level since late March. Meanwhile, the airline industry is predicting a $6.5 billion loss for the year, having been hit harder by fuel costs than expected.