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Steve Gilliard, 1964-2007

It is with tremendous sadness that we must convey the news that Steve Gilliard, editor and publisher of The News Blog, passed away June 2, 2007. He was 42.

To those who have come to trust The News Blog and its insightful, brash and unapologetic editorial tone, we have Steve to thank from the bottom of our hearts. Steve helped lead many discussions that mattered to all of us, and he tackled subjects and interest categories where others feared to tread.

Please keep Steve's friends and family in your thoughts and prayers.

Steve meant so much to us.

We will miss him terribly.

photo by lindsay beyerstein



Chlorine truck blast kills five in Iraq

20 Feb 2007 17:53:13 GMT

(Adds detail on British forces in Basra)

By Claudia Parsons

BAGHDAD, Feb 20 (Reuters) - A bomb destroyed a truck carrying chlorine north of Baghdad on Tuesday, killing five people and spewing out toxic fumes that sickened nearly 140 others, Iraqi police said.

In Baghdad, a suicide bomber and two car bombs killed at least 17 people. Police also said 20 unidentified bodies were found on Monday, a spike in the daily death toll after a marked reduction since the start of a U.S.-backed security crackdown aimed at restoring order to the Iraqi capital.

One of the bombs hit an area visited on Tuesday by Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki, who made a rare public foray outside the fortified international Green Zone to meet citizens and police involved in the crackdown.

A source at police headquarters said the chlorine truck was rigged with explosives. A second police source also said the bomb was on the truck.

The truck exploded near a restaurant at a rest stop on the main highway in Taji, 20 km (12 miles) north of Baghdad.

Twisted metal and debris littered the ground in front of a tyre repair shop after the blast, which sent out toxic fumes that caused scores of people to be taken to hospital.

Police said at least five people were killed and the total number of hurt, including those made ill by the chlorine as well as those hit by the explosion, was 139. Many women and children were among them

This is scary. Gas dirty bombs? Shit.

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