Senate Republicans blocked a proposed probe into President Bush's domestic spying operation, as the chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence said he had reached an agreement with the White House to pursue legislation that would clarify rules for the surveillance program. pg 1a
Review of ports deal sought
Citing national security concerns, members of Congress are asking the Bush administration to review its approval of a deal to allow a United Arab Emirates company to take over a business that helps run several U.S. ports, including Baltimore's. pg 1a
Water taxi lawsuit expected
Two insurance firms representing the company whose water taxi overturned in Baltimore's Inner Harbor in 2004, killing five, are expected to sue the U.S. Coast Guard today, claiming it wrongly certified the vessel. pg 1b
Additive being phased out
MTBE, the gasoline additive that has become synonymous with tainted wells, including many in the Baltimore suburbs, is on the way out as fuel companies decide to drop the chemical in the face of lawsuits and regulatory changes. pg 1b
Iraq to probe deaths
Iraq's Shiite-dominated Interior Ministry announced an inquiry into allegations of death squads in its ranks as police found a dozen more bodies, bringing the number of apparent victims of sectarian reprisals to at least 30 this week. pg 12a
Tallest building conceptOK'd
A glass skyscraper soaring 59 stories and 717 feet will become Baltimore's tallest building, dominating the Inner Harbor with a distinctive, slender shape, under a concept approved yesterday by the city's design panel. pg 1a
Educate Inc. stock falls 25%
Shares of Baltimore-based Educate Inc., the company known for its Sylvan tutoring centers, tumbled 25 percent after executives announced a series of changes in response to a $4.7 million fourth-quarter loss. pg 1
Plushenko wins skating
Russian Evgeni Plushenko won the gold medal in men's figure skating at the Winter Olympics. pg 1f
J. Gordon, Sadler win qualifiers
Jeff Gordon won one of the two qualifying races at Daytona International Speedway that are used to set the field for Sunday's season opener. Elliott Sadler captured the first race. pg 1f
In Freedomland, a white woman blames a black man for her son's disappearance, igniting racial tensions between towns. Sun movie critic Michael Sragow reviews the new film. pg 1c
QUOTE OF THE DAY
"This building will do much to reposition Baltimore's skyline in people's minds. ... "
Anirban Basu, chairman of Sage Policy Group Inc., on proposal for city's tallest building. Article, PG 1a
Grab your binoculars and a field guide and go bird-watching.
IN GO TODAY
Going to Wisp
Get away for a weekend at Wisp resort in Western Maryland, the state's only Alpine skiing facility.
The American Craft Council's Baltimore Fine Craft Show draws hundreds of artists and craftspeople and thousands of visitors.
In Modern Life
Rain, wind and snow
Winter or spring? Find out which way the wind's blowing at
The Cowherd files
Find archived Kevin Cowherd columns and check out his weekly podcast at