News in Brief: Halliburton Under Scrutiny for Possible Role in Oil Disaster and More

Halliburton Co., the notorious oil industry and military contractor, is under investigation by Congress for possible liability in the massive explosion and oil spill disaster at the BP’s Deepwater Horizon offshore drilling site. The Los Angeles Times reports that the energy services company was contracted by BP to set cement around the pipe after a hole was drilled in the sea floor, roughly 5,000 feet under the surface of the Gulf waters. The process known as “cementing” is said to be very difficult and risky. On Friday, Halliburton officials released a statement calling speculation about the cause of the disaster “premature and irresponsible.” The company has been accused of faulty cementing, leading to another oil spill off the coast of Australia, a charge that is currently under investigation.


Authorities continue to search for the perpetrators of the attempted car bombing in Manhattan’s bustling Times Square. Early Monday New York City officials released a video of a man who police say is possibly connected to the attempted attack. The man was seen changing his shirt and walking away from the explosives-laden SUV. The New York Times has an excellent diagram of the scene.

The New York Times is reporting that a video of Pakistani Taliban leader Hakimullah Mehsud, who was said to have been killed in a drone strike in January, shows Mehsud alive and healthy. In the video, Mehsud promises retaliation for the attempt on his life. The Pakistani Taliban have claimed responsibility for the attempted car bombing in Times Square over the weekend, however, those claims are not found to be credible by Pakistani and American experts, according to The New York Times.


The BBC is reporting on a bailout package for Greece of over $146 billion. The package has been put together by the International Monetary Fund and the Eurozone countries after months of negotiations and developments. Greek officials announced so-called “austerity measures” – essentially massive reductions in public services, cuts to pensions and tax increases – which were required by the international organizations that will be lending Greece billions. Greece’s Prime Minister George Papandreaou said the bailout would require “great sacrifices” from the citizens of Greece, a notion that protesters reject. Plans for a general strike on Wednesday have been announced by labor unions.