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CC Tonight - a big night

in the big apple - the

temptation of Kevin. It's temptation of Kevin. It's

responsibility for my own embarrassing, I accept

actions. I make no excuses for

it. Farmers ver nous as veals

slips further into drought.

Australia's Titanic -

remembering the sinking of the

Dunbar. Just terrible to think

those women and children

drowned so helplessly, in circumstances beyond their

control. Very... Moving. And - the Melbourne Cup favourites

threatened by an outbreak of

horse flu. Good evening. The

gloss has come off Kevin Rudd's

political image after he

admitted to a drunken night at

a New York strip club. The

Labor leader apologised to his

wife and the nation for what he

said was an embarrassing lapse

in judgment four years ago. Mr

Rudd went to the club with a

fellow Labor MP and a

seniorinist Limited - News

limited editor. He said today

it proved he was as flawed as

everyone else. Girls, booze,

cigars and a would-be prime

minister. The Scores strip club

on New York's east side serve

as heady cocktail, one Kevin

Rudd wishes he'd never

tasted. Obviously it's

embarrassing. I accept

responsibility for my own

actions. I make no excuses for

it. It was in 2003 on a

taxpayer funded trip to the UN

that Mr Rudd joined Murdoch

News paperman Col alap and

Warren snow done for a

post-dinner drink at Scores.

What happened next is

unclear. I don't have a

completely clear recollection

because I'd drunk a fair

bit. He doesn't deny a newspaper claim he was asked to newspaper claim he was asked to leave over inappropriate

behaviour but his companion has

a much clearer memory. No inappropriate behaviour and

no-one was asked to leave. Even

so, Kevin Rudd did feel the

need to explain himself to his

wife the next day. She's a very understanding woman and

forgiving woman. A moderate

intellectual clean-living Christian family man not known

for drinking the Rudd persona

is anything but the play

boy. I'm not into this captain

perfect, captain morality

stuff. I'm a tiny tiny bit

surprised Z Peter Beattie

thinks a happy hour with

strippers is just what his

Federal Labor leader needed. I

think it'll enhance his vote.

Show he is human. He is bracing

him sof for a change in the

polls. Asked if he thinks this signals the start of a Liberal

Party smear campaign he's

pointedly referred all

questions to Alexander Downer

and his staff. The Government

so far playing it softly I

have decided to be to Trap pist

monk on this topic. It's a

matter for Mr Rudd. I think

I'll leave it there. Peter

Costello's not so shy when it

comes to the States - addressing Reserve Bank loans

about easy credit low dock

loans he has called on them to

either regulates the mortgage

lending industry or let him do

it. If they want to refer

powers to us whe would be

willing to step in and take

their powers. The New South

Wales Government says it's on

track to deliver laws for other

States to copy later this year. Peter

year. Peter Beattie has pulled

back over his stoush with the

Prime Minister. When the State

Government halved the N of

councils angry ratepayers

demanded referenda on the

issue. The Prime Minister

promised to back the councils.

The Queensland Premier

threatened to to sack them. He

has changed his mind but denies

it's about winning Queensland

seats to gain Government

Federally. I don't think this

will cost us one vote

federally. I think what was

damaging was our decision not

to allow them to rav a proo

test vote. I think perhaps we

over-reacted to that. Local

polls held this weekend have

overwhelmingly opposed the

amalgamations. It might have

been a wet 24 hours by the

States' winter crop harvest is

under threat from a lack of

rain. This month's figures show

parts of the State moving back

into drought leaving three

quarters of New South Wales in

serious need of rain once again. It's a sight that's

become increasingly rare in

some parts of the State where

it was thought the drought hah

broken, bringing high hopes of

an easier future. In the last six weeks there hasn't been

much rain around. It's really

been pulling on the heart

strings of lots of people who

put in some big crops this year. Two-thirds of New South

Wales received little rain fall

last month.

This month, a number of

regions have slipped back into

drought, such as areas in the

far north, around Casino, Tweed

Heads, Lismore, Armidale and Kempsey. It's a

Kempsey. It's a similar story

further south in the

Coonabarabran and Condobolin

regions. The Yass region is the

only area to improve. Now 76% of New South Wales is in

drought, while the marginal

regions have also

grown. Farmers are now

anxiously looking at the skies

hoping for some rain. We were

predicting a near-record

harvest this year. That's still

on track provided we get some

rains across the State in the

Bureau isn't expecting next few weeks. The weather

significant rain for the State

this week although there will

be heavy falls in the north-east. It was supposed to

be a deal done for nature -

land owners were dedicate some

of their property to

conservation in return no

cut-price rates. But now some

people are re-considering the

rangement after the State

Government changed the rules,

bumping up the rates and

leaving them with devalued

properties. This area around Merimbula on the New South

Wales coast is a critical site

for the threatened grey-headed

flying fox. It's for that

reason J sto signed a voluntary

conservation agreement. A deal

that dedicated some of her land

as a refuge for wildlife. I

think people enter these

agreements in good faith and

goodwill and because they want

to do something tangible about the global ecological crisis. The bonus for land

holders was a State Government

discount on their rates. But

last month they got a

surprise. The rate relief had

gone and the portion of land

held under the agreement had

been devalued. We suddenly have

to pay an awful lot more money,

this year our rates have gone

up by 400%. Environmental

groups are furious. This is

clearly a slap in the face

because the State Government

had clearly undertaken to give

that financial incentive. 280 land holders across New South

Wales have signed up for these

solitary conservation agreements. The concern is

given this new level of

uncertainty people will be less

likely to get involved. Some are already reconsidering. We're

considering requesting et

Minister get us out of our VCA

and see if that will have any effect because if the

Government no longer wants to

adhere to its part of the

agreement why should we be

forced to adhere to our part? The dilemma is that the

scones vasion agreements are -

conservation agreements are

legally binding and once signed they're permanently registered

on the title of the land. The

State Government says it will

investigate. Hundreds of people turned out in the Blue

Mountains today for the biggest

Vietnam veterans Day march this

weekend. Old and young took part in the march to

commemorate the 41st

anniversary of the battle of

Long Tan in which 18 Australian

soldiers were killed. Rain

forced the wreath laying ser

Men knloi indoors to - ceremony

indoors. Be proud of what you

achieved and hold your heads high, hold them high in the

knowledge that you werer the

equal of the very best

Australians that ever went away

to serve our nation. There was recognition too for the

families of the soldiers who

also had to cope with a very

tense political debate. The hardships endured during hardships endured during the

Vietnam war are being brought

back to life by the Australian

War Memorial a film

re-enactment of the bathle of

Long Tan has been made to

reflect Australia's Vietnam

experience for future generations. 41 years ago at

Long Tan the Australian army

achieved its greatest victory

of the Vietnam War. (Gun

fire) You no the Australian War

Memorial has film add highly

detailed re-enactment of the

battle. We're saying, this is

what it was like for our

diggers. We want you to maybe

hear and see a lot of what wnt

on and hopefully some of those

feelings reach you and touch

you: It's the first time the

War Memorial has ever commissioned such a

reenangtment. The film was made

in Queensland with the help of

present day soldiers and in

close consultation with

veterans. You can't recreate

everything accurately on the

ground 40 years later but we're

making every effort to make

sure that this film, flew the

soldiers' actions, through the

players' actions, through the

equipment they're wearing is as

realistic as we can make it on

the day . 110-minute movie will

be a key part - 10 minute

movie. Long Tan veterans say

the film SIM pornt even if it

does stir up difficult

memories. I can fill in the

bits with my memories that the

film doesn't contain so yeah,

it's kind of moving in one

plain but disturb ing on another. A new generation of Australians will have a chance

to understand the sacrifice

made by those who fought at

Long Tan. The State's outgoing

police Commissioner has stepped

up his campaign against

reckless drivers. He has

written an emotional open

letter describing their actions

as sheer bastardry. In an

extraordinary plea on the eve

of his retirement Ken Maroney has challenged reckless drivers

to witness the consequences of

their actions. Maybe you have to stand beside me in a

hospital ward watching the

nurses and doctors and the

ambulance officers working

frantically, look at the blood,

watch the trauma, hear the

anguish. He's already suggested

that street racers should have

their cars crushed and dumped

on their front lawns. A massive

hurricane is churning its way

through the Caribbean causing

widespread destruction.

Hurricane Dean has battled

several islands. Four people

have been killed including a

mother and son who were crushed

by a land slide as they slept. Jamaicans have now

preparing themselves for a

direct hit in the next 24

hours. Winds near the centre

the hurricane are currently

over 230km/h, there are fears

the storm may grow to be an

even more powerful category 5

by the time it reaches Mexico

on Monday. Hurricane Dean may

yet force the current space

shuttle mission to finish a day

early. NASA officials are

worried the storm could force

the evacuation of the area

around ground control in Hughesen. You close the

hatches. The reason we did that

is so we can be out ahead.

Hurricane Dean. The astronauts

have now completed the last of their planned space walks to their planned space walks to

prepare the ISS rr - International Space Station for

new editions. A major

redevelopment in Salt Lake City

in the United States - the

20-storey building was toppled

despite still being

structurally sound and less

than 30 years Old A retail and

residential complegs will go up

in his its place. The people of

Thailand took part in a

referendum today to vote on a

new constitution. The last

wound was dissolved in the wake

of the military coup. the new

document is designed to tighten the military's grip on

power. Many voters came out

early to beat the summer

heat. 88,000 polling booths

were set up in fields, towns and cities across Thailand. It's

Thailand. It's the kingdom's

18th constitution but it's

first referendum. In Bangkok

the daughter of exiled prime

minister Thaksin shin a watt

dress end black to mourn the

the absence of her father.

Thailand as national symbol has

been helping to promote the

referendum. "The elephants want

Thais to participate" says

their owner. "So that we their owner. "So that we can

see peace in our country." This

man says this constitution

should be better than the old

one. But this lady isn't so

sure. She wants more time to

study the draft. The

constitution is expected to be

accepted by a majority of

voters but critics say it will

weaken political parties. They

also worry that it will

increase the role of the

military, the courts and the bureaucracy

bureaucracy and they say that

the "No" campaign has been

largely shut out of the influential broadcast media

which is controlled by the

junta. It's partly a referendum

on Junta, whether people like

the Junta or not. And it is

also partly a tactical move to

get back to normalcy. After

almost a year of military rule and almost two and almost two years of

political turmoil many Thais

are ready for change, even if they don't like everything

that's in this constitution.

Hundreds of naked art lovers

have gathered on a Swiss glacier to promote

understanding of climate

change. They were directed by

the New York photographer

Spencer Tunick, better known

for his images of naked crowds

in cities. This time he in cities. This time he

combined with Greenpeace and

600 people from all over Europe

to make a statement about

global warming. I feel that

the body is vulnerable in a

city situation and I also feel

that the body is extremely

vulnerable in even nature

now. They were photographed on

the Aletsch glacier which has

been retreated rapidly and

could disappear within 40

years. There have been

emotional ceremonies to mark

the 150th anniversary of what's

described as Australia's

Titanic - the sinking of the SS

Dunbar off Sydney Heads.

Hundreds gathered in St

Stephens church in newtown to

remember the 121 passengers and crew

crew who died. A re-enactment

had to be cancel this had morning because of bad weather,

that didn't dent the numbers at

this service. (Bell tolls)

Among the dead on the Dunbar

were 8 members of the Waller

family, today their descend abt

the former coroner Kevin Waller

reflected on the tragic

of events. Just terrible to think

of those women and children

drowning so helplessly in circumstances beyond their

control. It's really, really

moving. It's still unclear why

the ship ran aground in foul

weather at the end of an 81-day

voyage from England. It was

carrying members of many

prominent Sydney family ains

its sinking had an enormous

impact on the small community. Once the vessel had

been identified as the Dunbar,

or convicts, they weren't faceless imgramts

or convicts, they were the

bodies ever people The Might

know. For some the passing of time hasn't diminished the

scale of the tragedy. They'll

always feel these family

members have never been at rest

because they've had this pain.

Today when we went down to lay

the wreaths it was very, very

moving. The Maritime Museum

was satisfied so many people,

young and old, took time to

mark the loss of the

mark the loss of the Dunbar. A

reminder of tonight's top story

- the Federal Opposition

leaders has apologised after

admitting to a drunken night at

a New York strip club four

years ago. Still to come - Brad

Fittler he's' unbeaten run

ended. An outbreak of horse flu

in Japan is threatening to

scratch the favourites for this

year's Melbourne Cup. Japan's

been forced to temporarily shut

down its entire racing industry

and it's not known if last

years' Melbourne Cup winner and

runner up Delta Blues and Pop

Rock will clear Australia's

strict quarantine standards for

a return visit. They were last

year's winning double. just Japanese turf stars took year's winning double.

first and second place in the

Melbourne Cup and made history

in the process.

CHEERING AND APPLAUSE But

Australian race goers may miss

the chance to welcome back the

winning pair this year. Japan

is battling its first outbreak

of horse flu in 35 years. There

are concerns the champion pair

may not make it through

Australia's string emt

quarantine protocol. It is a

nervous wait. We are yet nervous wait. We are yet to

make contact with the trainer

of the horses, equine influenza

has been detect end the two

major training facilities in Japan. The Victorian Racing

Club is hoping for the

best. Would rob the Melbourne

significant interest to lose Cup, Spring racing carnival of

both of these horses. Australia

is one of the few racings

nations that remains free of

can not the highly contagious virus. We

can not take the slieghtsest

risk with equine influenza. Australia's horse population has never been

exposed to the vir leapt

disease and therefore has no

natural immunitiy. Experts warn

the impact of horse flu in Australia would be

devastating. It's not a disease

that kills horses but it would

certainly mean that racing

would be shut down for neak up

to 3-4

to 3-4 months and the obvious

fall out that to that would be

tragic. The Titans have ended

Brad Fittler's unbeaten start

to his NRL coaching career by

beating the Roosters today on

the Gold Coast. The

Drought stricken South-East

Queensland enjoy add welcome

down pour for the Titans last

game at Cararra. They started

the farewell party in style

with two tries, the loser this

have match will struggle to

make the finals and a

dislocated hip hurt the

Roosters' hopes. Anasta tried

to inspire his team. In a to inspire his team. In a busy

day for the video referee the

Titans pushed ahead through

several benefit of the doubt

calls. A late double from Sam

per et wasn't enough for the

Roosters. Their decision to

turn down a conversion attempt

in the final seconds is sure to

raise a few questions. The Panthers travelled to

Newcastle. They responded with

a flurry of points. Michael

Jennings scored two first-half

tries, Penrith led 20-6 at the

break. They kicked on in the

second half for a 34-point win

that will add to simmering club

tensions at Newcastle this

week. Last night the Raiders'

jek el and Hyde season

continued. They were woeful continued. They were woeful

last week but bounced back to

upset the top four hopes of the

Warriors thanks to a late try

from Scott Logan.

A cameo from Jason Smith

helped the Cowboys beat the

dragons and all but secure a

home semi-final. He scored one

try and set up

try and set up another for Ball

Bowman. Robbie farer was the

hero for the Wests Tigers

against the Sharks. He needed

pain killing injections just to

take his place in the team, but

proved his worth with a match

winner in the final minute.

Swans's The Sydney squans's - Sydney

Adelaide accounted for the

Bulldogs. Geelong had its 15th

win in a row.

goal in John than Brown kicked a 55m

goal in the dying seconds to

level the scores in

Brisbane. With both teams

playing a similar hard at the ball style collisions were

inevitable. Goals were rare.

Sydney was creating more scoring opportunities but

couldn't capitalise on

them. John than Brown provided

a sizeable target. Brisbane kept pace with

kept pace with Sydney. The

scores were level at half-time.

While the Swans continued to

struggle with their accuracy,

they kicked enough goals to

take a 17-point lead into the

last break. Whatever Brisbane

coach Leigh Matthews said at

three-quarter time had the

desired effect as the Lions

kicked the first three goals of

the final term to hit the

front. Sydney regained the lead

when Adam Schneider took on the when Adam Schneider took on the Brisbane defence and the goal

post. Brett Kirk's snap in the

dying minutes looked likely to

be the match-winner. In the

last minute the Brisbane co

captain Brown stepped up and

had an opportunity to level the

scores.

It keeps us in the finals It keeps us in the finals

race. You win the last two games you probably get there

anyway. You're worried when you

kick so many points early in

the game it's gonna come back

and bite you in the end. The

Swans take on Collingwood next

weekend, the Lions meet the

Crows in Adelaide. The

Australians rugby union coach

John Connolly says there's no

need for the entire Wallaby squad to

squad to voluntarily agree to a

midnight curfew next month.

Stephen Larkham suggested the

idea after two other players

had the curfew forced on them

after a late night drinking

session. The team flys to

Europe later this week where

they will attends a training

camp in Portugal. Lote Tuqiri

was out and about in Sydney

today. He and team-mate Matt

Dunning will be keeping a close eye on their watchs in eye on their watchs in Europe.

While they were cleared of any

involvement in the bashing of a

Brisbane taxesi driver this

month the ARU slap add midnight

curfew on the pair for putting

themselves in a vulnerable position. Their coach says it

won't be an issue in

France. Most sportsmen these

days and the professional area,

most are home well before that

anyway generally Z veteran fly-half Stephen Larkham fly-half Stephen Larkham wants

the whole squad to voluntarily

abide by the ban. Connolly says

that's not necessary. Everyone' individuals. The players choose

to do what they want to do,

that's fine. The potential

quarterfinal opponents at the

World Cup, England have

continued their shaky buildup

losing to France fro For the

second time in as many weeks.

Four first-half penalties set

up a 12-3 lead for the home

side before the centre helped

seal a comfortable 22-9

victory. A fort night after

their record 57-point drubbing

from England Wales got off to a

horror start against Argentina.

With only 3 wins from their

past 14 matchesthe Welsh were

desperate to spark some World

Cup momentum. They responded

with three first-half tries

before holding to win before holding to win

27-20. Berwick Barnes helped

the Tornado s to a lead over

the Sydney Fleet this weekend. Schifcofske's reliable right

boot produced six goals to seal

a 26-20 victory. Tournament

outsiders Melbourne made it it

23 from 2 running in five tries

to down the east coast Aces 34-24.

34-24. The Sydney Swifts have

dominated the last national netball league grand final

against the Melbourne Phoenix.

The 45-37 win gaifr the swoits

as fourth title in seven

years. It was an emotion

drenched finale to the national

league as its two most

successful clubs came

together. The Phoenix won the

minor premiership only dropping

one game and were still smarting smarting over not being grant

add home final. AAMI sergeant

found her range quickly. Sydney shooters would seize control of

the decider. Katherine Cox

found space. Susan Pratley

fired at 100% in the first

half. The Swifts opened a

13-goal buffer. It was

physical. Melbourne stood its

ground to reduce the margin ground to reduce the margin to

8. The Phoenix' run continued into the second half asmts

sequence of intercepts helped

cut away at the lead. As

quickly as the Phoenix looked

likely to repeat their 2003

away grand final success in

Sydney the Swifts lifted all

over the court to snuff out

their hopes. Sydney led by 8 at

three-quarter time and wasn't

threatened in the last. Thank

you for coming out and supporting us, supporting us, it's so good to

look up and see so much yellow.

Thank you for getting us home

in that game. When you gave us

voice we tried to give it back

to you. While the Swifts can

celebrate a fourth triumph

today Melbourne was the league's top club overall with

five titles. The other two were

won by Adelaide's Thunderbirds. Push Lleyton Hewitt has

continued his impressive buildup to the US

buildup to the US Open despite

Anna narrow loss to the world

No. 1 Roger Federer at the

Cincinnati Masters. The Roger

Federer won the third set in a

tie breaker to set up a final

against against the American

James Blake. Time for a look at

the weather on wet Sunday for

parts of the State.

14 degrees today is 5 degrees below below average.

The satellite picture shows

thick cloud spreading across Queensland and north-eastern

New South Wales ahead of a

trough, clouds being forced

across the southern New South

Wales coast. On to the synoptic

chart, that trough will deepen off the

off the east coast maintaining rain over north eastern New

South Wales and the south

eastern Queensland. Tomorrow's

rain fall prediction - showers for the north-east and

south-east coasts, and for

coastal Western Australia. In

the capital cities tomorrow -

Perth's expecting showers and a

storm. Showers for Brisbane,

Sydney and Hobart. A fine day

again in Darwin. a again in Darwin. a severe

weather warning for the

northern New South Wales coast,

mid-north coast and northern

rivers with heavy rain and

flash flooding.

In Sydney tomorrow - a few

showers, a top of 15.

A recap of our top stories -

Kevin Rudd has publicly

apologised after embarrassing

revelations about a drunken

night at a New York strip club

four years

four years ago. Despite today's

rain, new figures show parts of

New South Wales are slipping

back into drought. That's the

latest ABC tefgss news for this

Sunday night. Another update in

an hour. Until then, goodnight. Closed Captions by CSI