10A - The Michigan Daily - Thursday, September 16, 2004
Hurricane Ivan targets Alabama,
MOBILE, Ala. (AP) - Hurricane Ivan and its 135-
mph winds churned toward this historic port city with
frightening intensity yesterday as the storm began
its assault on the Gulf Coast, lashing the region with
heavy rain and ferocious wind, spawning monster
waves that toppled beach houses and spinning off
The storm was expected to make landfall early
today near Mobile and could swamp the coastline
with a 16-foot storm surge and up to 15 inches of rain.
Ivan offered a daylong preview of its destruction as it
took aim at the coast: sheets of rain across the region,
a series of tornadoes, and escalating winds that shred-
ded signs, knocked out power and made traffic lights
and oak trees whipsaw.
"We have never seen a hurricane of this size come
into Alabama," said Gov. Bob Riley, who earlier
asked President Bush to declare much of the state a
An 11th-hour shift turned Ivan away from New
Orleans, but the sheer size of the storm could create
catastrophic flooding in the bowl-shaped city. Offi-
cials warned that the levees and pumping stations that
normally hold back the water may not be enough to
protect the below-sea-level city.
In the Florida Panhandle near Panama City, tor-
nadoes produced by the storm killed two people and
trapped others in the rubble of their damaged homes.
Several people were injured and more than 70 homes
"We have a report from a deputy that it looks like a uated her1
war zone," said sheriffs spokeswoman Ruth Sasser. school ca
Hurricane-force winds extended out 105 miles prayer tha
from the Category 4 storm, threatening widespread here," she
damage no matter where it strikes. After reaching One pot
land, Ivan threatened to stall over the Southeast and cane, Ala.
southern Appalachians, with a potential for as much Mobile
.nnw ...r _
home in Mobile and found shelter in a high
feteria. "Say a prayer, say a prayer, say a
at I'll have some place to go when I leave
said. "We'll see in the morning."
tential target of Ivan is the tiny town of Hurri-
,where the storm surge could be the highest.
bar owner Lori Hunter said her business
main closed "until the landlord takes the
as 20 inches of rain.
At 11 p.m. last night, Ivan was
centered about 65 miles south of
the Alabama coast and was mov-
ing north at 12 mph. The storm,
which plowed through the Carib-
bean, has now killed at least 70
people in all.
Ivan's waves - some up to 25
feet - were already destroying
homes along the Florida coast
yesterday. Twelve-foot waves
boomed ashore at Gulf Shores,
but not a I
Owner of bar
boards down off the windows."
ring. "We're staying," she said. "I'm
..' * from New York. This is my first
scare me one. Terrorists scare me but not a
hurricane." As the storm drew near, streets
along Mississippi's Gulf Coast
.r n were all but deserted, and miles
- Lori Hunter of homes and businesses, includ-
r in Mobile, Ala. ing its 12 floating casinos, were
boarded up. Only patrol cars and
an occasional luggage-packed car
or van could be seen passing Gulfport's "Welcome to
the Gulf Coast" billboard.
New Orleans scrambled to get people out of harm's
way, putting the frail and elderly in the cavernous
Louisiana Superdome and urging others to move to
higher floors in tall buildings.
"If we turn up dead tomorrow, it's my fault," said
Jane Allinder, who stayed stubbornly behind at her
daughter's French Quarter doll shop to keep an eye
on her cat.
Ala., eroding the beach. A buoy about 300 miles south
of Panama City registered waves over 34 feet high.
In Mobile, majestic oaks that line the streets swayed
in gusting winds as the city of some 200,000 braced
for a hurricane expected to be even more destructive
than Frederic, which killed five people 25 years ago.
At least 11,000 people crowded into 95 shelters
across Alabama, and thousands more went to homes
of relatives and friends.
Betty Sigler, a 57-year-old substitute teacher, evac-
Nancy McDaniel of Pensacola, Fla., fights against wind and driving rain on her
way back to her car after coming down to a pier last night to check out the
surf as It began to be churned up by the approach of Hurricane Ivan.
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SAN'A, Yemen (AP) - A trial into
the almost four-year-old bombing of
warship U.S.S. Cole in Aden Harbor
that killed 17 Navy sailors concluded
yesterday with prosecutors seeking the
death penalty for six defendants.
The six defendants, including a
Saudi in U.S. custody who is being
tried in absentia, are the first people
to be tried in the attack,hcarried out by
two suicide bombers in an explosives
laden boat on Oct. 12, 2000.
The men are charged with belong-
ing to Osama bin Laden's al-Qaida
network, forming an armed gang with
the purpose of carrying out crimes
against the state, resisting authorities
and forging documents.
The judge adjourned the trial
until Sept. 29, when he will issue
If convicted, the men face between
15 years in jail and the death pen-
alty. The death sentence is considered
unlikely because the defendants are not
accused of being the actual bombers.
In closing arguments, the pros-
ecution demanded that the maximum
sentence be issued against the defen-
dants, but defense counsel rejected the
The five accused in court, all
Yemenis, are Jamal al-Badawi,
Maamoun Msouh, Fahd al-Qasa,
Ali Mohamed Saleh and Murad al-
Sirouri. None have ever formally
A sixth defendant, Saudi-born
alleged mastermind of the Cole attack
Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri, is in U.S.
custody at an undisclosed location.
The United States announced al-
Nashiri's arrest in 2002. He was
detained in the United Arab Emirates
and transferred to American custody.
U.S. officials believe he is a close asso-
ciate of Saudi-born bin Laden, who
is believed to have masterminded the
Sept. 11, 2001, attacks in the United
In addition to the Cole attack, al-
Nashiri is suspected of helping direct
the 1998 bombings of U.S. embassies
in Kenya and Tanzania.
The Cole attack was carried out by
suicide bombers identified by the court
as Yemenis Ibrahim al-Thawr and
Abdullah al-Misawa, who rammed an
explosives-laden boat into the destroy-
er as it refueled in the southern Yemeni
port of Aden.
The attack was blamed on al-Qaida
and sparked a manhunt in this conser-
vative, tribal-dominated nation locat-
ed at the southern tip of the Arabian
Peninsula long known for tolerating
I1 , r 6 t