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Branch Davidian Survivors Chide Feds

BRANCH Davidians who survived last year's siege returned to their Waco, Texas, home to admonish the federal government for the tragedy that took 79 lives.

``Don't let the pressure off the government. They want you to forget,'' said David Thibodeau, who escaped when fire destroyed the compound April 19, 1993.

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A year later, it consists of debris, dirt, and wildflowers. Placards with names of the dead rest near a tree, and tables were loaded with pictures and reports about the siege. The fire began after Federal Bu-reau of Investigation tanks pumped tear gas into the compound. The government said Branch Davidians set the fire, but survivors claimed the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms attacked them.

In February, 11 Branch Davidian members were acquitted of murder and conspiracy from the botched Feb. 28, 1993, raid, when ATF agents tried to arrest leader David Koresh on weapons charges. The raid became a gun battle in which four federal agents and six Branch Davidians died. ROTC and gay policy

DARTMOUTH College's Board of Trustees has voted to keep Army ROTC but says it will pressure the federal government to change its policies discriminating against homosexuals.

``The [`don't ask, don't tell' policy enacted last year] forces Dartmouth ... to make an unconscionable choice as to which students they wish to disadvantage,'' a statement said. The board says it wants to ensure that the Hanover, N.H., college students can participate in the military program, but it wants an officers' training program that doesn't discriminate. New Jersey job growth

NEW Jersey has created more jobs than any other northeastern state except Massachusetts since March 1992, reports a study of Rutgers University economists James Hughes and Joseph Seneca. They say their account is more accurate than Department of Labor statistics because they do not overlook small-businesses.

New Jersey posted a 2.2 percent jobs-growth gain from March 1992 to January 1994. ``New Jersey is now part of the bicoastal economic recovery, and in the Northeast, is at the crest of the wave,'' said Mr. Hughes.

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