SUN NEWS DIGEST

THE BALTIMORE SUN

WORLD

Sri Lanka orphans face more pain

At an orphanage in northeast Sri Lanka, young tsunami survivors -- many also victims of a brutal civil war -- must cope with the loss of 120 of their friends and playmates. [Page 1a]

Suicide bombers kill 25 in Iraq

A suicide bomber near a police academy graduation in Hillah, Iraq, killed 20 graduates, and a second bomber killed five Iraqi service members. [Page 1a]

NATIONAL

Reserve memo causes concern

A senior Democrat on the Senate Armed Services Committee said he is deeply concerned over a memo written by the head of the 200,000-soldier Army Reserve that characterized his force as "broken." [Page 3a]

Maine probes removal of brains

A Maine prosecutor is interviewing the families of about 100 people who died suspicious or unexpected deaths to determine whether their brains were improperly removed from their bodies for research. The brains were shipped to a Bethesda institute for research, and a Maine state employee collected fees of $1,000 to $2,000 for each one. [Page 4a]

HEALTH & SCIENCE

Evidence of Md. dinosaur found

An amateur paleontologist from College Park has found in rocks pulled from streambeds in White Marsh and Prince George's County evidence that members of the Hypsilophodon dinosaur family roamed Maryland's swamps and mud flats more than 112 million years ago. [Page 1a]

MARYLAND

NTSB reveals tunnel fire theory

The National Transportation Safety Board said the most likely scenario behind the 2001 train derailment and fire in the Howard Street Tunnel "involved an obstruction between a car wheel and the rail, in combination with changes in track geometry." [Page 1a]

Optimism high for tuition cap

Democratic lawmakers and higher-education advocates are optimistic of chances next week to impose a cap on tuition rates. Some lawmakers say they might have enough votes to override a veto of a bill that would limit tuition increases to 5 percent but increase corporate income taxes. [Page 1a]

Ehrlich has road-spending plan

Declaring that he has kept his promise to improve the transportation system, Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. unveiled a plan for $143 million in road spending, including a project to relieve gridlock in Harford County. [Page 1b]

Ex-legislator named to DNR post

The Ehrlich administration appointed Ron Guns, a former Democratic legislator known for his support of industry and clashes with environmentalists, as assistant secretary for Chesapeake Bay programs in the Department of Natural Resources. [Page 1b]

SPORTS

O's Ponson apologizes for behavior

Orioles pitcher Sidney Ponson apologized for his behavior during a Christmas Day beach fight that led to his 11-day detainment in Aruba. Ponson spoke at a news conference in Aruba shortly before boarding a plane for Florida, where he plans to remain until reporting to spring training camp next month. [Page 1c]

Browns set to name Savage

Ravens director of player personnel Phil Savage will be named the Cleveland Browns' general manager at a news conference today barring a last-minute snag in negotiations, a Ravens source said. Savage, 39, has been the Ravens' top talent evaluator. [Page 1c]

Terps' Merriman to enter draft

Maryland junior defensive end Shawne Merriman said that he will forgo his senior season with the Terps and enter the NFL draft. Merriman finished tied for second in the Atlantic Coast Conference with 8 1/2 sacks and led the ACC with three forced fumbles. [Page 1c]

BUSINESS

Southwest to fly into Pittsburgh

Southwest Airlines announced that in May it will add Pittsburgh to the cities where it flies. The news is considered a major blow to US Airways, the bankrupt carrier that was shrinking in Pittsburgh. The move will offer more choice to passengers at Baltimore-Washington International Airport. [Page 1a]

Consumers like Delta's fare cuts

Consumers hailed a decision by Delta Air Lines to lower fares by as much as 50 percent, but analysts warned that the move could cost the major hub airlines billions this year. In a restructuring of its airfares, Delta capped domestic ticket prices at $499 each way in coach and $599 in first class. [Page 1d]

Micro Systems plans a stock split

After a year in which its stock price rocketed 80 percent, Columbia-based Micro Systems Inc. said that it would split its stock two-for-one. Micros, a leading global producer of information-management systems for hotels, restaurants and retailers, said it was making the move to attract investors. [Page 1d]

TODAY

Tsunami aid a job without end

In downtown Baltimore, Chandreyee Banerjee's job is to oversee Catholic Relief Services emergency field operations in four of the Asian countries hardest hit by the Dec. 26 earthquake and tsunamis. Banerjee has slept little in the past few days. She can't, with millions of people counting on her. [Page 1e]

Reality show for 'perfect' lifestyle

Lifestyle queen and king wannabes compete to become the next Martha Stewart on Wickedly Perfect, the latest reality show competition entry from CBS. It airs at 8 tonight. [Page 1e]

TODAY ONLINE

ANOTHER BLOODY DAY IN IRAQ

Violence continued to erupt in Iraq as election day draws near. Get developments and archived coverage. www.baltimoresun.com/iraq

RESERVE REACTION

Members of the Senate Armed Services Committee reacted to a high-ranking officer's critical memo about the state of Army Reserve in Iraq and Afghanistan. Read the memo at www.baltimoresun.com/reserve

QUOTE OF THE DAY

"To break that cycle of intimidation ... we're going to need the help of the Iraqi people."

Maj. Gen Peter Chiarelli of the 1st Cavalry Division, who commands more than 35,000 U.S. forces in an around Baghdad (Article, Page 1A)

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