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FROM THIS EPISODE

Despite some explosions in Baghdad and other cities, the level of violence during today's election was relatively low. Some 7000 candidates are running for 275 seats in the new Parliament that will govern Iraq for the next four years. All eyes were on the Sunnis, whose boycott of past elections has marginalized them and whose participation is crucial for political stability. Will a new government provide security and basic services? Will Iraq's constitution be changed in time to reconcile differences that could produce civil war? Will American troops be able to come home? We update the turnout and hear what's at stake for Iraqis and for President Bush.
  • Reporter's Notebook: Bush Administration Announces Plan to Strengthen New Orleans' Levees
    After President Bush pledged another $1.5 billion to rebuild the levees destroyed by Hurricane Katrina, Mayor Ray Nagin told residents that it's time to "come back to the Big Easy." Also at the White House meeting were the Secretary of Homeland Security, head of the Army Corps of Engineers and Donald Powell, who heads federal efforts at reconstruction in New Orleans. Mark Schleifstein covers the environment for the Times-Picayune.

Independent Electoral Commission of Iraq

Makiya's (NYTimes) article on constitutional challenge facing Iraq despite election

Sanger's article on President Bush's strategy in Iraq

Schleifstein's article on LSU experts' defense of canal pilings

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