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NATO forces and Afghan soldiers have launched operations against what could be the Taliban's long-anticipated "Spring offensive." We hear what's happening on the ground and what's at stake for President Hamid Karzai's regime. Would heavy casualties cause political trouble in Canada and other countries with troops involved? Also, the President asks Congress to lift the ban on off-shore drilling, and "Curveball"—who claimed Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction—says he is not a liar.

Photo: Marco Di Lauro/Getty Images

Making News President Asks Congress to Lift Ban on Off-Shore Drilling 5 MIN, 58 SEC

bush-kempthorne.jpgAfter Congress banned offshore oil drilling, the first President Bush signed an order along the same lines. Florida's former Governor, Jeb Bush, was also opposed. Today, the current President Bush said if Congress lift its prohibition, he will cancel his father's executive order. Sheryl Gay Stolberg is White House reporter for the New York Times.

Sheryl Gay Stolberg, New York Times (@SherylNYT)

Main Topic The Taliban in Afghanistan: Back with a Vengeance 35 MIN, 25 SEC

Hundreds of escaped prisoners and other Taliban militants are said to be dug in a few miles from Afghanistan’s second largest city. Thousands of villagers have fled from orchards and vineyards, and today NATO forces and Afghan soldiers launched an effort to drive the insurgents out. Is this the predicted "Spring offensive," with Taliban forces better armed and more strategically savvy than ever before? Can they further damage the already shaky regime of President Hamid Karzai? Can they kill enough coalition soldiers to weaken support in NATO countries? 

Mark Laity, Spokesman, North Atlantic Treaty Organization
Graeme Smith, Afghanistan Correspondent, Globe and Mail
Larry Goodson, Professor of Middle East Studies, US Army War College
Ahmed Rashid, Pakistani journalist
Paul Fishstein, Executive Director, Afghanistan Research and Evaluation Unit

Reporter's Notebook A Second Look at Curveball 7 MIN, 32 SEC

curveball.jpgPresident Bush and former Secretary of State Collin Powell told the world that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction, including mobile factories for germ warfare. When it turned out to be untrue, the CIA blamed an informant. Now, the man code-named Curveball has gone public, claiming he's not a liar. Today's Los Angeles Times reveals that he is Rafid Ahmed Alwan, who fled his native Iraq to avoid arrest. Applying for asylum in Germany, he told the German intelligence service he'd run a secret Iraqi program to produce biological weapons.

Bob Drogin, National Correspondent, Los Angeles Times
John Goetz, Reporter, Der Spiegel


Bob Drogin

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