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November 13, 2003 - Image 2

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The Michigan Daily, 2003-11-13

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2A - The Michigan Daily - Thursday, November 13, 2003

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motivated
by hatred
Building may have
been bombed due to
pervasiveness of Western
influence
RIYADH, Saudi Arabia (AP) -
Residents of the mainly Arab residen-
tial compound attacked by suspected
al-Qaida suicide bombers said yester-
day they knew their Westernized
lifestyle was under scrutiny - they'd
received a surprise visit from Saudi
religious police suspicious that men
and women were mixing at a party.
The choice of target in the attack,
which killed 17 people, mostly Arabs
and Muslims, has baffled many in the
region - and indicates al-Qaida's
rage may be directed as much at Mus-
lims seen as having slipped from the
religion's true path as at Western
"infidels."
Saudi and U.S. officials have blamed
Saturday's attack on Osama bin
Laden's al-Qaida, the militant Muslim
terror network blamed for the Sept. 11
attacks and a sworn enemy of the Saudi
ruling family, which it accuses of being
insufficiently Islamic and too close to
the United States.
On Tuesday, a purported al-Qaida
operative claimed responsibility for
Saturday's bombing, saying in an e-
mail that al-Qaida believed "working
with Americans and mixing with
them" was forbidden. The e-mail was
sent to the London-based Arabic week-
ly Al-Majalla.
Most of the residents of the Muhaya
compound were Lebanese. Seven
Lebanese were among the dead; other
victims came from Saudi Arabia,
Egypt and Sudan.
Muhaya was typical of compounds
housing members of the large contin-
gent of foreign workers in Saudi Ara-
bia: a place where non-Saudis could
escape rules banning alcohol and mix-
ing of men and women in public and
requiring women to cloak and veil
themselves when outside their homes.
Muhaya had a coffee shop where
residents of both sexes chatted over
water pipes and watched foreign
movies and other entertainment on a
big screen television. It was located
next to a pool where women swam in
bikinis.
Agents of the Saudi religious police
- the Committee for the Propagation
of Virtue and Prevention of Vice -
roam Saudi streets and shopping malls
berating or even manhandling those
who violate the social code. Its chief
holds the rank of Cabinet minister in a
kingdom where the royal family retains
power in part with the support of con-
servative religious authorities.
Some Saudis chafe at the religious
restrictions. Saturday's bombings and
similar attacks in Riyadh in May have
sparked debate about whether the strict
form of Islam preached in Saudi Ara-
bia fosters intolerance and extremism.
BOMBING
Continued from Page 1A
ed through the capital.
"The facility is a known meeting,
planning, storage and rendezvous
point for belligerent elements cur-
rently conducting attacks on coali-
tion forces and infrastructure," the
Pentagon said.
The mission was part of "Opera-
tion Iron Hammer," a new "get
tough" policy for confronting insur-
gents.

Also yesterday, troops in Baghdad
spotted attackers firing mortars, a
statement by the 1st Armored Divi-
sion said. The attackers fled in a van.
An Apache helicopter gunship dis-
covered the van heading out of the
city near the Abu Ghraib suburb and
opened fire, disabling the vehicle
and killing two of the occupants, the
statement said. A search of the area
turned up one 82mm mortar.
President Bush met with his top
foreign advisers and chief Iraq
administrator L. Paul Bremer yester-
day to discuss the deteriorating secu-
rity situation and the impasse in
drafting an Iraqi constitution.
"We have said from the outset that
we wanted to transfer authority to
the Iraqis as quickly as they were
able to assume it and that is what we
have done," Bremer said in Washing-
ton. "We have been moving forward
on ways to continue to transfer
authority to the Iraqis as they are
ready for it."

BATON ROUGE, La.
Gubernatorial hopefuls
make for historic race
The Louisiana governor's race poses
a dilemma for Bubba, a term that is no
insult in these parts: It will be a contest
between a Cajun woman and the son of
Indian immigrants.
No matter how pickup-driving con-
servative Southern white men vote Sat-
urday, Louisiana will make history. The
state has never had a woman governor
and has not put a non-white in the
office since Reconstruction.
The Republican candidate is Bobby
Jindal, a 32-year-old former Rhodes
Scholar who was an assistant health
secretary under President Bush. The
Democrat is Lt. Gov. Kathleen Blanco,
a 60-year-old veteran of Louisiana poli-
tics who has served in state government
for two decades.
Polls show the race is tight, but Jindal
has managed to garner support from an
odd combination of voters: Catholics in
southern Louisiana's Cajun country, con-
servative Protestants in the northern part
of the state, urban blacks in New Orleans
and suburbanites in Baton Rouge.
WASHINGTON
Law protecting a g
workers goes to court
Supreme Court justices with an aver-
age age of nearly 70 wrangled yester-
day over whether workers in their 40s
can sue employers for offering better
benefits to older colleagues, a type of
reverse age discrimination.

It already is clear that people over 40
can sue under a federal age discrimina-
tion law when younger colleagues get
preferential treatment because of age.
Justices will resolve before next summer
whether workers over 40 can sue when
older employees get better treatment such
as cheaper health care or choice hours.
Some justices joked about their own
senior citizen status, but then more seri-
ously focused on company efforts to help
older workers stay on the job longer.
WASHINGTON
Testosterone therapy,
growing among men-
Thousands of older men turn to that
macho hormone testosterone in search of
youthful vigor and virility, but scientists
issued a big caution yesterday: There's
little evidence the therapy fights any
effects of aging, much less that it's safe.
The government is planning to study
the already contentious treatment, hoping
to save men from the same kind of con-
fusion that has plagued women consider-
ing estrogen therapy. Studies should
begin in 2005, and until they're done,
testosterone use isn't justified except for
the relatively few men who have severe
deficiencies, cautioned National Institute
on Aging Director Richard Hodes.
The independent Institute of Media
cine highlighted the urgent need for
research, reporting rapid increases in
the numbers of older men using testos-
terone despite questions about benefit
- and the possibility that long-term
use could spur prostate cancer.
- Compiled from Daily wire reports.

1 . 1 1 V V 1 INE D I N E S F R O M ) JUi ) T E R
RA MA A HW est B aynk . ..' "
Palestinian leaders urge end to fighting
Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat swore in a new Palestinian Cabinet yesterday,
getting the government he wanted after a long wrangle and setting the stage for a
renewed push to implement the stalled, U.S.-backed "road map" peace plan.
The new government earlier won a vote of confidence from Palestinian legisla-
tors after Arafat - who appears to have survived the Israeli-American effort to
sideline him - joined Prime Minister Ahmed Qureia in calling for an end to
three years of violence that has claimed thousands of lives.
"The time has come between us and you Israelis ... to get out of this cycle of
destructive war," Arafat said, referring to the violence that buried an ambitious
effort to end a century of Arab-Israeli enmity.
Israeli officials said they will give the new premier a chance to restore calm, and
Islamic militant groups said they will consider a cease-fire. Officials on both sides
said they expected Qureia and Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon to meet soon.
The approval of the Cabinet, which was sworn in yesterday, ended a two-month
stalemate that stymied efforts to implement the peace plan accepted by both sides
six months ago.
VIRGINIA BEACH, Va.
Death penalty remains option for snipers
Despite little proof that John Allen Muhammad pulled the trigger, the judge at
his trial refused to take the death penalty off the table yesterday, saying the evi-
dence suggests he and fellow sniper suspect Lee Boyd Malvo worked together.
The prosecution's case indicates "they were involved in purposeful shootings,"
Circuit Judge LeRoy Millette Jr. said with the jury out of the room. "They perfect-
ed their ability to shoot people. They perfected their ability to escape."
The ruling came as Muhammad's defense rested its case after calling only five wit-
nesses who testified for a total of two hours. Muhammad did not take the stand. The
prosecution's case stretched over three weeks and included more than 130 witnesses.
Closing arguments are set to begin tomorrow, the same day as opening state-
ments in the murder case against Malvo, 18, who is on trial in nearby Chesapeake.
A jury was seated yesterday. Muhammad's lawyers argued unsuccessfully that Vir-
ginia law prohibits the death penalty for Muhammad on one of the two capital
murder charges against him because there is no evidence he was the triggerman.

4

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