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WASHINGTON (AP) — Former White House national security adviser Robert C. McFarlane, a top aide to President Ronald Reagan who pleaded guilty to charges for his role in an illegal arms-for-hostages deal known as the Iran-Contra affair, has died. He was 84.

McFarlane, who lived in Washington, died Thursday from complications of a previous lung condition at a hospital in Michigan, where he was visiting family, according to The Washington Post and The New York Times.

McFarlane, a former Marine lieutenant colonel and Vietnam combat veteran, resigned his White House post in December 1985. He was later pressed into service by the administration as part of secret — and illegal — plan to sell arms to Iran in exchange for the freedom of Western hostages in the Middle East and pass along the proceeds to the contra rebels in Nicaragua for their fight against the Marxist Sandinista government.

He played a major role in the affair, leading the secret delegation to Tehran, then as now a U.S. adversary, to open contact with so-called moderate Iranians who were thought to hold influence with kidnappers of American hostages. He brought with him a cake and a Bible signed by Reagan.

The scheme began to unfold a after a cargo plane carrying a CIA-arranged shipment of arms was shot down in October 1986 by the Sandinistas in Nicaragua, setting off what eventually became one of the biggest modern political scandals.

McFarlane was rushed to a Washington-area hospital in February 1987 after taking an overdose of Valium the day before he was scheduled to testify before a presidential commission investigating the affair.

He pleaded guilty in March 1988 to four misdemeanor counts of withholding information from Congress, readily admitting his role in the affair.

″I did indeed withhold information from the Congress,” he told reporters at the time. “I believe strongly that, throughout, my actions were motivated by what I believed to be in the foreign policy interest of the United States.″

He was pardoned by President George H.W. Bush, along with five other figures from the scandal.

McFarlane, a career Marine known as “Bud” to his friends, had risen to lieutenant colonel and to positions in the Nixon and Ford administrations. He served as national security special assistant to Richard M. Nixon and Gerald R. Ford during their presidencies.

During the Carter administration, he was on the Republican staff of the Senate Armed Services Committee. He returned to the executive branch with Reagan’s election, serving as a State Department counselor until moving to the White House as national security adviser William Clark’s deputy in January 1982. He was appointed to the top national security post in 1983.

McFarlane, a graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy, was the son of a former Democratic congressman from Texas, William Doddridge McFarlane, who served from 1932 to 1938. He is survived by his wife, two daughters and a son.

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Robert Williams wont start but is available for Celtics in Game 7 vs. Bucks

BOSTON (CBS) — The Celtics are getting Robert Williams back for Sunday’s deciding Game 7 against the Milwaukee Bucks at TD Garden. Or at least a little bit of Robert Williams back.

The center is available to play in the winner-takes-all tilt in Boston, but he won’t start against the Bucks, Celtics head coach Ime Udoka announced in his pre-game press conference. Williams, who missed the last three games of the series with left knee soreness, will be used “as needed” on Sunday.

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“He hasn’t done a whole lot of basketball activity the last week. He’s been managing the pain. Structurally he’s OK,” Udoka said ahead of Game 7. “He won’t start; we’ll go with our normal rotation the last three games and use him as needed.”

That will leave Grant Williams in the starting five for the fourth straight game. He has averaged 8.2 points and 4.3 rebounds over the first six contests, and played some solid defense against Giannis Antetokounmpo, but has struggled over the last two games. Williams had just two points over Games 5 and 6, both of which came at the free throw line, shooting 0-for-6 from the floor. He is just 5-for-24 and 2-for-14 from three-point range over the last four games.

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Robert Williams was a late scratch for Game 4 in Milwaukee last week and was questionable for both Game 5 and 6 but ultimately did not play. He’s dealing with soreness in the same knee that he underwent surgery on for a torn meniscus at the end of March, but this injury is courtesy of a collision with Antetokounmpo back in Game 3.

“He’s OK, but were not relying on him to come back for Game 7 to save the day. He’s available after getting better over the last week and is available,” said Udoka.

Williams started the first three games against Milwaukee, averaging 8.7 points, 5.7 rebounds, and 2.7 blocks. He appeared to be tentative at times as he worked his way back from surgery, but should be able to help Boston on defense and on the boards against the Bucks in Game 7 — if needed.

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Given it’s a Game 7 though, it’s good that the Celtics will have all hands on deck against Giannis and Company. Tipoff on Sunday is shortly after 3:30pm at TD Garden.

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