- The Washington Times - Saturday, January 31, 2004

Aides to visit Iran next month

A delegation of congressional aides will visit Iran next month with tacit Bush administration approval — testing whether there can be a warming of the icy relationship between the two longtime antagonists.

Sen. Arlen Specter, Pennsylvania Republican, said the trip was arranged in a meeting with Iran’s ambassador to the United Nations.

Pueblo’s commander, Bucher, dies at 76

SAN DIEGO — Retired Navy Cmdr. Lloyd “Pete” Bucher, who helped his USS Pueblo crew survive nearly a year of brutal captivity in North Korea and then faced criticism back home, has died. He was 76.

He died Wednesday at a nursing facility in the San Diego suburb of Poway.

The Pueblo was monitoring communist ship movements and intercepting messages in international waters near North Korea when it was attacked by torpedo boats Jan. 23, 1968. One sailor was killed and 82 were taken prisoner.

After 11 months, the crew was released two days before Christmas.

A Navy Court of Inquiry criticized Cmdr. Bucher’s surrender of the small ship and recommended that he face a general court-martial.

Navy Secretary John H. Chafee turned down the court-martial.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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