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Amtrak announced a new program of security measures to begin this week at stations along its heavily traveled Washington-Boston corridor. The program later will extend across the US, officials said. The passenger rail service will employ random screening of carry-on luggage, counterterrorism police armed with automatic weapons, and bomb-sniffing dogs on both platforms and trains. Above, Amtrak policeman Joe Zawacki and his dog conduct a mock sweep of an empty train at Washington's Union Station.

The first attempt to shoot down an out-of-control spy satellite will be made Thursday from a Navy ship in the north Pacific Ocean, CNN reported. An Aegis cruiser will fire a surface-to-air missile at the satellite, whose tanks are full of toxic fuel that could disperse deadly fumes on reentry. A second attempt is planned if the first fails, defense officials said. Without intervention, the satellite likely would plummet to Earth at an unknown location early next month.

The headquarters of the US military's new regional command for Africa will remain in Stuttgart, Germany, a spokesman said Tuesday. Plans for the mission have been misunderstood by some African governments, and only Liberia has offered to base the headquarters on its soil. Plans call for Africom to build up the security and peacekeeping capabilities of African armed forces.

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