Musical Chairs in DC as the Space Shuttle Program Winds Down
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At the Pentagon, the CIA and the war in Afghanistan, the most important personnel shakeup in the Obama Administration. We hear about that and talk with former astronauts about what's next for the government's manned space program after tomorrow's launch of Endeavour.
Banner image: The NASA logo on a protective box for a camera near the space shuttle Endeavour April 28, 2011 at Kennedy Space Center in Florida as preparations are under way for an April 29 launch of Endeavour, which will be its last flight. Photo: Stan Honda/AFP/Getty Images
Deadly Tornadoes Rip through Alabama and the Deep South ()
The swarm of tornadoes that hit five southern states yesterday killed well over 200 people, at least 131 in Alabama alone. Many more have suffered serious injuries, and the property damage is described as "catastrophic." Joey Kennedy is editorial writer and editor of the Sunday Viewpoint section for the Birmingham News.
Petraeus Goes to the CIA, Panetta to the Pentagon ()
There's been a major shift of familiar figures in the Obama security team. When Defense Secretary Robert Gates, a holdover from the Bush Administration, decided to call it quits, President Obama had a problem. He's decided to solve it by moving CIA Director Leon Panetta to the Pentagon and General David Petraeus to the CIA. Petraeus became America's favorite military leader after the successful troop "surge" in Iraq. President Obama gave him command of the war in Afghanistan. But the shakeup goes beyond those jobs.
Endeavour's Last Ride: Countdown to the End of the Shuttle Era ()
Tomorrow's launch of Endeavour will be the second-to-last in America's space-shuttle program, which has lasted for 30 years. The is expected to draw up to a million people, including President Obama, who will be making his second visit to the Kennedy Space Center, bringing his wife, Michelle, and daughters Sasha and Malia. Recovering Congresswoman Gabriel Giffords, whose husband Mark Kelly will command the Endeavour, will be there as well. We talk with former astronauts about privatizing the space program.
Gabby Giffords' Struggling Recovery ()
Since she was shot in the head at a town meeting in Tucson, Democratic Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords is said to have made dramatic progress, enough that she's been able to travel to Florida, where she'll watch the launch of Endeavour, piloted by her husband, Mark Kelly. Peter Boyer wrote an extensive story in last week's Newsweek magazine about what's really going on with Giffords.
- Peter Boyer: Newsweek
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