Syrian Suspicions

And now some fresh pickings from the wartime grapevine:

Syrian Suspicions

Documents and files found in Baghdad show that -- in the run-up to the war in Iraq -- a Syrian firm with close ties to the ruling regime in Syria ... was selling illegal weapons and ammunition to Saddam Hussein. According to the L.A. Times, the records show that the SES International Corporation -- controlled by members of Syria's ruling party and headed by a cousin of Syrian leader Bashar Assad -- signed more than 50 contracts worth tens of millions of dollars with Saddam ... who was looking for artillery, ballistic missiles and nerve agent antidotes, among other things.

After Saddam invaded Kuwait in 1990,  the U.N. Security Council imposed sanctions, barring any trade in arms with Iraq. In spite of the evidence, the Syrian firm insists any suggestion that it was involved in illegal arms trade with Iraq is "false."

Freedom Infracted?

A convicted criminal in a Bedford County, Pennsylvania, jail is suing the county's sheriff and deputy warden, accusing them of violating his religious freedom ---  by preventing him from practicing witchcraft. In his lawsuit, Charles Risenburg -- serving a two-year sentence for violating probation -- says he practices Wicca, a form of paganism.

But, he says, prison authorities insist -- "if it has spells in it, I'm not allowed to have it." He has been prohibited from keeping oils, wands and tarot cards in his cell, some of the tools in Wicca. But, according to the Bedford County Sheriff, the state department of corrections does not recognize Wicca as a religion... and, he argues, neither does the prisoner.

Iraq is Back?

For the first time in more than a decade, a boxing team representing Iraq is going to the Olympic qualifying rounds. Nineteen Iraqi boxers have been training for the last month, coached by Maurice "Termite" Watkins, an American contractor and former boxer ... looking for something to do in his spare time.

Before the war in Iraq, the boxing team -- like all Iraqi Olympic teams -- was led by Saddam's son Uday, who would torture and jail boxers who failed to perform well in competition. One boxer, 23-year-old Najah Salah, tells the newspaper The Australian, -- "We were persecuted ... [but] this time, we are very hopeful." An expression of that hope? The new boxing team is sporting new T-shirts, that say --  "Iraq is back."

FOX News' Michael Levine contributed to this report