March 22,  2004 Monday

Debate Grows Over Bush's Handling of Terror Threat

By CARL HULSE New York Times March 22, 2004

..."The facts are that within six months of the first bombs falling on Afghanistan, this administration was diverting military and intelligence resources to its planned war in Iraq, which allowed Al Qaeda to regenerate," said Senator Bob Graham...

Clarke Pulls The Plug, D.C. - 3-22-04
The gurgling sound you hear is the Bush administration swirling down the tubes. Richard Clarke basically flushed them yesterday. ...
FBI funds to fight terror cut after 9/11
Fresno Bee, CA - 3-22-04
... threat from al-Qaida and appeared never to have heard of the terrorist organization, according to Bush's former counterterrorism coordinator, Richard Clarke. ...

Should be interesting to see how Bush and his minions are going to try and spin this.

Do ya think they will try and blame Clinton and the liberals?

"John Kerry said today he wants to debate President Bush once a month. Hey good luck, if Bush couldn't make it to the National Guard once a month, he's not going to show up for this." -Jay Leno

Why it is important to have a president who reads the news.

In mid January 2001, I read an extensive article by Judith Miller of the New York Times and was startled by it.

See the links below.


One Man and a Global Web of Violence

Osama bin Laden has created a kind of clearinghouse for Islamic terrorism in his Al Qaeda group, which American officials say is the center of a global Islamic holy war.

Dissecting a Terror Plot From Boston to Amman
Jordanian and American officials say a thwarted terrorist attack in Jordan in late 1999 is a case study of how Osama bin Laden and his deputies, isolated in Afghanistan, have extended their reach.

Killing for the Glory of God, in a Land Far From Home
If the international terrorism that has haunted Americans for the last decade has a home, it is Afghanistan, the place that comes closest to the extremists' ideal of a state ruled by the strict code of Islamic law.



January 15, 2001

Holy Warriors: Dissecting a Terror Plot From Boston to Amman


After weeks of advanced training in explosives at one of Osama bin Laden's Afghan camps, Raed Hijazi, a onetime Boston cab driver, was ready for his mission. The chemicals for the explosives were stockpiled. The targets were selected, the homemade detonators wired.

The second of three articles.

SUNDAY: The making of an Islamic terror network.
MONDAY: A look inside a plot that could have crippled Jordan's capital.
TUESDAY: What motivates the jihad's young recruits.

An Empire of Violence

Related Articles
On Jordan's Death Row, Convicted Terrorist Says He Has No Regrets (Jan. 15, 2001)
U.S. to Offer Detailed Trail of bin Laden in Bomb Trial (Jan. 13, 2001)
MAGAZINE: The Education of a Holy Warrior (June 25, 2000)
International: Middle East Home
International Home

From the Archives
Blast Kills Sailors on U.S. Ship in Yemen (Oct. 13, 2000)
Foiled Terror Plot on Tourists Linked to bin Laden Aide (Feb. 29, 2000)
Two U.S. Embassies in East Africa Bombed (Aug. 8, 1998)
23 U.S. Troops Die in Truck Bombing in Saudi Base (June 26, 1996)
Where Arab Militants Train and Wait (Aug. 11, 1993)
World Trade Center Bombed (Feb. 27, 1993)
Soviet Soldiers Leave Afghanistan (Feb. 16, 1989)
The Afghan Warriors (Dec. 31, 1981)

Slide Show
Present at the Beginning: bin Laden and His Associates (3 photos)

Thank you grey lady. Maybe you should run the CIA.

Bush used 9/11 for own agenda, ex-official says

Claims al-Qaida warning was lost on Rice, ignored

Associated Press 3-22-04

WASHINGTON -- On the evening of Sept. 12, 2001, according to a newly published memoir, President Bush wandered alone around the Situation Room in a White House emptied by the previous day's calamitous events.

Spotting Richard A. Clarke, his counterterrorism coordinator, Bush pulled him and a small group of aides into the dark paneled room.

"Go back over everything, everything," Bush said, according to Clarke's account. "See if Saddam did this."

"But Mr. President, al-Qaida did this," Clarke replied.

"I know, I know, but ... see if Saddam was involved. Just look. I want to know any shred."

Reminded that the CIA, FBI and White House staffs had sought and found no such link before, Clarke said, Bush spoke "testily." As he left the room, Bush said a third time, "Look into Iraq, Saddam." ...

Disturbing News


al-Qaida's No. 2 Claims to Have Nukes

AP - 3-22-04

Osama bin Laden's terror network claims to have bought ready-made nuclear weapons on the black market in central Asia, the biographer of al-Qaida's No. 2 leader was quoted as telling an Australian television station.


Iraqi army may be fighting losing battle for fast-access to US funds

AFP - Sun Mar 21, 3:24 AM ET

Iraq is creating an army in record time as it races towards sovereignty, but the slow arrival of funds promised by Washington threatens to delay the process, a senior military official said.


U.S. Must Repair Iraq Rift With Europe

AP - Sun Mar 21,12:49 PM ET

The United States is losing credibility in Europe because of the situation in Iraq and must quickly repair the damage or face eroding support for the fight against terrorism, lawmakers said Sunday.


Iraq's Sistani Warns U.N. Not to Back Constitution

Reuters -3-22-04

Iraq's top Shi'ite cleric has urged the United Nations not to endorse the country's interim constitution, his office said Monday, raising a potentially grave obstacle to U.S. plans to hand power to Iraqis on July 1.


European Nations Condemn Yassin Killing

AP -3-22-04

European governments condemned Israel's killing Monday of Hamas leader Sheik Ahmed Yassin, with several branding the airstrike a violation of international law and a blow to the stalled peace process.


U.N. Plans Independent Oil Program Probe

AP - Sat Mar 20, 8:12 AM ET

An independent commission will investigate allegations that United Nations staff collected millions of dollars in illegal profits from the program that allowed Iraq to sell some of its oil to pay for food during the years of economic sanctions.


Report: Shooting of Cameraman Tragic But Justified
Wired News - 3-22-04
... of Dana, a prize-winning Palestinian cameraman, was justified ... would not have died in the shooting outside Baghdad's ... The Army report said the soldier, who shot ...


Gaza Killing Spooks Global Markets

Reuters -3-22-04

The assassination of a Hamas spiritual leader and an uncertain political situation in Taiwan combined on Monday to push European shares close to a year's low and to weaken the yen and dollar.


Yahoo News - Mar 19, 2004


"According to a documentary airing next month on Cinemax, Hitler was gay. Of course, Bush is thrilled. Now he can blame World War II on gay people."-Jay Leno

Electronic Voting

Death of a patriot

By Bob Fitrakis

March 19, 2004—The subject line on Tuesday’s email read: “Another mysterious accident solves a Bush problem. Athan Gibbs dead, Diebold lives.” The attached news story briefly described the untimely Friday, March 12, death of perhaps America’s most influential advocate of a verified voting paper trail in the era of touch screen computer voting….

Click on the link below for the local story.

Collision on Interstate 65 fatal for Nashville man

Operation Richard Clarke

Richard Clarke's book is out, his 60 Minutes Lesley Stahl interview's been aired, and he's scheduled to testify before the 9/11 commission very shortly. Which means it's time to brace ourselves for an all out Karl Rovian "Operation Richard Clarke." And based on what I heard from Drudge on his Sunday night radio show, I suspect it will go something like this: 

Operation Richard Clarke.
Shifty eyes,
Motives dark.
Angling for a Kerry gig.
Operation Richard Clarke.

Operation Richard Clarke.
Suspect views,
Bias stark.

The rest is here:


Thank you!

Oddly, someone sent me this pic yesterday of a Palestinian woman being harassed by Israelis.

Flash point

Israel Kills Hamas Chief, Drawing Vows of Revenge

Reuters - 3-22-04

Israel assassinated Hamas leader Sheikh Ahmed Yassin outside a Gaza mosque Monday, striking its heaviest blow against the militant group behind dozens of suicide bombings and drawing enraged vows of revenge....

Hamas chief's funeral draws 200,000, New Zealand - 3-22-04
... Israel stepped up "track and kill" operations against Hamas leaders after suicide bombers killed ten people in a major port last week in an unprecedented ...

Hamas vows revenge, Australia -3-22-04
THE political leader of the Hamas militant group vowed today to escalate "the fire of resistance" to avenge the assassination by Israel of the group's founder ...

US Says Israel Has Right to Self Defense
Reuters, United States - 3-22-04
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States said on Monday it had no advance word before Israel's assassination of Hamas leader Sheikh Ahmed Yassin but said the ...

Dollar Down on Security Concerns
MSN Money - 3-22-04
... News that Israel killed the spiritual leader of the Hamas militant group added to recent security concerns, while Pakistani troops remained locked in battle ...

"Supreme Court Justice Antonin...Scalia. ... He announced he would not recuse himself from a case involving his friend, Vice President Dick Cheney, despite being Cheney's guest on a recent hunting trip. Cheney took him on a hunting trip, private jet, the whole bit. And Scalia said it is not reasonable that a Supreme Court justice could be bought so cheaply. So he's not questioning the fact that he can be bought. He's just arguing about the price."-Jay Leno

Cheney Snake


Disturbing Environmental News

Biologists Ask Why Wyo. Elk Are Dying

AP - 3-22-04

As the Wyoming countryside begins to thaw, biologists and game wardens are canvassing the rugged terrain to solve an alarming mystery: Why have hundreds of elk slumped to the ground and died in less than two months?

Carbon Dioxide Reported at Record Levels

AP - 3-22-04

Carbon dioxide, the gas largely blamed for global warming, has reached record-high levels in the atmosphere after growing at an accelerated pace in the past year, say scientists monitoring the sky from this 2-mile-high station atop a Hawaiian volcano.

Fresh Studies Support New Mass Extinction Theory

Reuters - Thu Mar 18, 7:07 PM ET

Fears that the earth is undergoing a mass species wipe-out similar to that which destroyed the dinosaurs 65 million years ago gained new ground on Thursday with the publication of two British studies.

West Faces Drought, Wildfires - NOAA

Reuters - Sun Mar 21, 7:08 AM ET

Drought conditions blanketing much of the Western United States are not expected to improve this spring, leading to more potential for "large, destructive" fires in some areas, U.S. government weather forecasters said on Friday.

Poor Venezuelans Catching Flamingos for Food

Reuters - Sat Mar 20,11:34 AM ET

Poor rural Venezuelans are using nets and hooks slung under kites to catch endangered flamingos to eat or sell their meat as they try to ward off hunger, regional authorities said.


5 Whiskey Shots

A man goes into a bar and seats himself on a stool.
The bartender looks at him and says, "What'll it be

The man says, "Set me up with five whiskey shots, and
make 'em doubles." The bartender does this and watches
the man slug one down, then the next, then the next,
and so on until all five are gone almost as quickly
as they were served. Staring in disbelief, the bartender
asks why he's doing all this drinking.

"You'd drink 'em this fast too if you had what I have.",
said the man.

The bartender hastily asks, "What do you have pal?"

The man drunkenly replies, "I have a dollar."

From Saturday's Minneapolis StarTribune, letters to editor:  

To paraphrase Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld:

• We know we know the Bush administration lied about the Iraqi threat and the cost of the Medicare drug bill.

• We know we don't know who in the Bush administration illegally outed a CIA agent and why, the day after 9/11, members of Osama bin Laden's family were allowed to leave the country (when all other flights were grounded, by the way) before the FBI could question them, helping to thwart the investigation into that heinous crime.

• Finally, we don't know that we don't know that after his defeat this November, George W. Bush will say the war against terror is too important to leave to the Democrats, declare a state of emergency and refuse to leave office.

Irving Kellman, Hopkins.

forwarded by

YIKES!  Kit K, voracious AHNC reader.

Thanks Kit!

Click on banner

Republican Shenanigans

Made-In-Burma Jacket Stirs Flap
Yahoo News -3-22-04


Spaniards Offended by Wolfowitz Comment

AP - Fri Mar 19,10:11 PM ET

From a fire station to a Madrid bar brimming with bullfighting paraphernalia, Spaniards said Friday they were offended by a senior Pentagon official's remark that bullfighting shows they are a brave people and they shouldn't run in the face of terrorism.


Republican punkers are rocking the vote for Bush
Seattle Post Intelligencer, WA - 3-22-04
... of Conservative Punk, one of a handful of Web sites and blogs that have sprung up recently as evidence of a heretofore latent political entity: Republican punks ...


Graphic by Bradley



Odd News


Microsoft co-founder donates millions to ET research
ABC Online, Australia - Mar 19, 2004
Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen, one of the richest men on Earth, has pledged to donate $US13.5 million for research into extra-terrestrial (ET) life. ...
Allen donates millions to hunt for aliens - USA Today


O'Connor Honored As Arrid 'Total Woman'

Fri Mar 19, 3:12 PM ET - (AP)

Sandra Day O'Connor is an influential jurist, best-selling author, accomplished horsewoman, even a hole-in-one golfer. But an "Arrid Total Woman"?


World Champion 'Snake Man' Killed by Cobra

Reuters - 3-22-04

Thailand's Boonreung Buachan, holder of the Guinness Book of World Records title for spending the most time penned up with snakes, was killed by a cobra that bit him during his daily show, a hospital doctor said on Monday.


Croutons Land Brain Surgeon in the Soup

Reuters -3-22-04

A leading British brain surgeon has been suspended from work following a dispute over a bowl of soup, the Daily Mail newspaper reported Monday.

Shredder sales soar in U.S.

Reuters - Sun Mar 21, 1:55 PM ET

Yuri Fernandez discovered recently that a stranger could snatch bills and receipts from his trash and empty his bank account.


Eight-year-old Chinese boy sues airline company for overcharging

AFP - Mon Mar 22, 5:07 AM ET

Lu Zhenyuan, an eight-year-old Chinese boy, did not look young enough to merit an airfare discount, but now he has proven old enough to drag the airline company to court.


Thief Steals Property From Jury Room


After listening to testimony in a murder case, jurors returned to their jury room to find that they had become victims of a crime — a thief had stolen their money, cell phones and car keys.


Bangkok pooches soak up luxury treatments at spa just for dogs

Sun Mar 21, 3:24 PM ET

Soaking in a fragrant tub scattered with flower petals, or stretched out on a massage table as an attentive therapist applies hot compresses -- it's a dog's life at a spa for stressed-out Bangkok pooches.


Corpse of monk in lotus position who died in 1723 found in Vietnam

AFP - Tue Mar 16, 3:50 PM ET

The corpse of a Buddhist monk sitting in a lotus position has been uncovered in a pagoda in northern Vietnam over 280 years after he died, a museum official said.







Good News

Democrats file suit over eavesdropping, VA - 3-22-04


Hadid Is First Woman To Win Pritzker Prize
Washington Post -3-22-04


Canada Plans Pharmacy Marijuana Project

AP - Sun Mar 21, 4:42 PM ET

Canada plans to make government-certified marijuana available in local pharmacies, a move that would make Canada the second country in the world after the Netherlands to allow the direct sale of medical marijuana.


Spanish Police Arrest Four More Suspects

AP - 3-22-04

Spanish police have arrested four more suspects in the Madrid terror bombings, National Court officials said Monday.


Egypt Shows Restored Ramses Sarcophagus

AP - 3-22-04

Egypt on Sunday unveiled the restored sarcophagus of pharaoh Ramses VI and a statue of Queen Tiye, one of the few well-known female rulers of the ancient world.


President Cocky Locky

Assorted News


Rove, Small Circle Lead Bush Campaign

AP - Sun Mar 21, 6:54 PM ET

President Bush entrusts adviser Karl Rove to oversee his bare-knuckle bid for a second term. Yet Rove is but one of a small group of counselors helping to guide the most expensive, and possibly the most corporate-like, presidential campaign in history…


Details on Government Bunker

AP - Sat Mar 20,12:59 PM ET

For decades during the Cold War, residents in a small West Virginia town 250 miles southwest of the nation's capital did not say a word about the secret bunker tucked in the Appalachian Mountains.


War on Terror Is Suffering in Courtrooms

AP - 3-22-04

The post-Sept. 11 war against terrorism is suffering as much in the courts as in the streets with several legal setbacks involving suspected members of al-Qaida and other groups around the world.

Egypt Official Wants Treasure from British Museum

Reuters - Sun Mar 21, 4:12 PM ET

First it was the Greeks wanting their Elgin Marbles back. Now Egypt wants the British Museum to return one of its ancient treasures too.


Al-Qaida Suspects May Have Fled in Tunnel

AP - 3-22-04

Top al-Qaida terrorists may have escaped a siege by thousands of Pakistani soldiers through several secret tunnels leading from mud fortresses to a dry mountain stream near the border with Afghanistan, a security chief said Monday.


Pentagon Bankrolls Swedish Stem Cell Study
Reuters, UK - Mar 19, 2004


STOCKHOLM, Sweden (Reuters) - The Pentagon has granted $240,000 to a Swedish team for embryonic stem-cell research linked to Parkinson's disease, the researchers said Wednesday…President Bush has forbidden the use of federal funds to manipulate or create human embryos for research and limited scientific research to a few existing batches of cells taken from fertility clinic leftovers…


So the Pentagon can finance stem cell research against Bush's ban? Sounds like the left hand doesn't know what the right hand is doing.  No wonder we are in such trouble.

It's Time For Name That Toon

Heaven knows we need to laugh today!

"It was as if Osama bin Laden, hidden in some high mountain redoubt, were engaging in long-range mind control of George Bush, chanting 'invade Iraq, you must invade Iraq,' " Richard Clarke

Check out who in your neighborhood has made campaign donations

"I'm convinced that we black women possess a special, indestructible strength that allows us to not only get down but to get up, to get through and to get over."
-- pop singer JANET JACKSON, receiving a career achievement honor at the Soul Train Music Awards.


A large iceberg at an undisclosed location that most thinking Americans would like to see the Bush administration relocated to. (AHNC/HO)