2 - The Michigan Daily - Tuesday, October 25, 2005
Courtney Watson, 14, surveys her neighborhood in Everglades, Fla., which was flooded by the waters of the Gulf
of Mexico driven in by Hurricane Wilma on Monday.
with winds over
NAPLES, Fla. (AP) - Hurricane
Wilma plowed into southwest Florida
early yesterday with howling 125 mph
winds and dashed across the state to the
Miami-Fort Lauderdale area, blowing
out windows in skyscrapers, peeling
away roofs and knocking out power to
millions of people. At least one death in
Florida was blamed on the storm.
The same storm that brought ruin
over the weekend to resort towns along
Mexico's Yucatan Coast came ashore
in Florida as a strong Category 3 hur-
ricane, but within hours had weakened
into a Category 2 with winds of 105
mph. Early in the afternoon, it was back
up to Category 3 with 115 mph winds as
it swirled out in the open Atlantic.
As it made its away across the state,
Wilma caused widespread damage, flat-
tening trees, tearing off screens, break-
ing water mains, littering the streets with
signs and downed power lines, and turn-
ing debris into missiles. Officials said it
was the most damaging hurricane to hit
the Fort Lauderdale area since 1950.
"We have been huddled in the liv-
ing room trying to stay away from the
windows. It got pretty violent there for
a while," said Eddie Kenny, 25, who
was at his parents' home in Plantation
near Fort Lauderdale with his wife. "We
have trees down all over the place and
two fences have been totally demol-
ished, crushed, gone."
In Cuba, rescuers used scuba gear,
inflatable rafts and amphibious vehicles
to pull nearly 250 people from their
flooded homes in Havana after Wilma
sent huge waves crashing into the capital
city and swamped neighborhoods up to
four blocks inland with 3 feet of water.
In Cancun, Mexico, troops and fed-
eral police moved in to control looting
at stores and shopping centers ripped
open by the hurricane, and hunger and
frustration mounted among Mexicans
and stranded tourists. President Vicente
Fox announced plans to start evacuating
some 30,000 frazzled tourists even as he
worked to restore the profitable image
of a carefree beachfront paradise.
Wilma, Florida's eighth hurricane in
15 months and the 21st storm in the busi-
est Atlantic hurricane season on record,
came ashore in Florida at 6:30 a.m.
EDT near Cape Romano, 22 miles south
of Naples, spinning off tornadoes and
bringing a potential for up to 10 inches of
rain, the National Hurricane Center said.
The hurricane is expected to race
up the Atlantic Seaboard and reach the
coast of Canada by early tomorrow.
Forecasters said that it should stay
largely offshore along most of the East
Coast, but another storm system com-
ing in behind it from the west could
bring heavy rain to New England and
the Mid-Atlantic states today.
The storm flooded large sections of
Key West and other areas and knocked
out power to up to 3.2 million homes
and businesses as it rushed across
the state and buffeted heavily popu-
lated Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm
Beach counties on the Atlantic coast
with gusts of more than 100 mph.
In Fort Lauderdale, the hurricane
blew out windows in numerous sky-
scrapers. In downtown Miami, broken
glass from skyscrapers littered some
streets and sidewalks in the Brickell
Avenue financial district. A broken
water main sprayed about 15 feet in the
air, flooding four or five blocks of the
avenue with up to 6 inches of water.
A gust was clocked at 104 mph
at the National Hurricane Center in
Miami, causing howling even in the
In Weston, near Fort Lauderdale,
Kim DuBois sat in her darkened
house with her two children and
husband, with the power out and the
storm shutters up. For light they used
a battery-powered pumpkin lantern
they bought for Halloween.
"I could hear tiles coming off the
roof," she said. "There are trees on
cars and flooding at the end of our
street." She added: "Really what I'm
afraid of is tornadoes."
Iraq's national security
advisor said the attackers
were deliberately trying
to take over hotel
BAGHDAD (AP) - Three mas-
sive vehicle bombs exploded yesterday
near the Palestine Hotel, home to many
Western journalists, killing at least 20
people. Dramatic TV pictures showed
one of the bombers driving a cement
truck through the concrete blast walls
that guard the hotel, then blowing up his
Iraq's national security adviser, Mou-
wafak al-Rubaie, said the attack -
which appeared well-planned - was a
"very clear" effort to take over the hotel
and seize journalists as hostages.
One of the car bombs exploded near
the police position on the northeast side
of Firdous Square, where a statue of
Saddam Hussein was toppled in April
2003 shortly after the fall of Baghdad,
and more than 100 yards east of the
hotel. Security officials said a third
bomb struck the area around the same
time. All three were believed to be sui-
"Three cars came from three differ-
ent roads in succession to create secu-
rity breaches for terrorists," al-Rubaie
told The Associated Press in a telephone
interview, adding that they were armed
with rocket-propelled grenades and
"The plan was very clear to us,
which was to take security control
over the two hotels, and to take the
foreign and Arab journalists as hos-
tages to use them as a bargain."
The U.S. military said no U.S. troops
were injured. It counted 10 dead Iraqis.
A U.S. Bradley Fighting Vehicle
parked inside the compound was
destroyed in the blast. No one was inside
at the time.
The security adviser said at least 40
people were injured, most of them pass-
ers-by. Another official, Deputy Interior
Minister Hussein Kamal, said four or
five Iraqi police were among the dead.
APTN footage showed that one of
three vehicle bombers had penetrated
the concrete blast walls surrounding the
hotel compound before exploding.
The cement mixer exploded in a huge
ball of flame and a cloud of smoke.
Iraqi security officials said the blasts
occurred two minutes apart, not long
before Muslims marking the Islamic
holy month of Ramadan were prepar-
ing to break their daylong fast. Shortly
before the explosion, a truck came under
fire nearby, according to APTN.
The attacks caused heavy damage to
the south side of the 18-story Palestine
Hotel, forcing journalists, including
those from AP, Fox News and the U.S.
government-funded Alhurra TV station
to take refuge in the corridor. Fox and
Alhurra said their employees were safe.
An AP photographer at a checkpoint
at the northwest corner of the hotel said
at least three photographers from other
media outside the hotel were injured
and taken away by ambulance. Two AP
employees and three other journalists
inside the hotel suffered minor injuries.
The AP counted six wounded inside
the hotel, which was last hit in an insur-
gent rocket attack on Oct. 7, 2004.
Inside the hotel, light fixtures were
blown out, pictures were blasted off the
walls and windows were shattered.
Moments before the second blast,
journalists, photographers and techni-
cians were walking up and down hazy
corridors in a state of confusion, urging
each other to remain calm, put on flak
jackets, and to stay away from windows.
Thicker clouds of smoke filled the far
end of one hallway, with many people
coughing and waving their hands.
The second explosion shook the
building momentarily. Confusion
and panic again set in, with those
inside debating whether to exit, but
all eventually deciding to stay in
the corridor and sit propped against
walls, most in flak jackets. Sounds
resembling gunshots could be heard
Strips of floorboards were strewn
about and air vents were blown in.
Capt. Patricia Brewer, a U.S. mili-
tary spokeswoman in Baghdad, said
they could hear the blasts from their
headquarters. A Pentagon spokes-
man, Lt. Col. Barry Venable, said
the U.S. military sent in a quick
reaction force to the site to assist
Elsewhere in Baghdad, suspected
insurgents opened fire at two civilian
cars, killing three municipal workers
'H A LNSWASHINGTON
Bernanke nominated for Fed Chair
President Bush yesterday selected Ben Bernanke, chairman of the president's
Council of Economic Advisers, to replace Alan Greenspan as Fed chairman, an
administration official said.
The official spoke on condition of anonymity because the nomination had not
yet been announced. Bush was to announce his choice at 1 p.m. EDT, said White
House spokesman Scott McClellan.
Greenspan, who took over in August, 1987, wraps up his term as chairman Jan.
31. Asked about Greenspan's successor, Bush said, "We'll be making an announce-
Bernanke, 51, is a former member of the Fed board. He also was a professor at
Princeton University and chairman of the economics department.
Bernanke and Greenspan differ on whether the Fed should set targets for infla-
tion, but otherwise they share a similar philosophy. In fact, while he was at the
Fed, market observers would often look at Bernanke's speeches for insight into
Report looks into deaths of detainees
WASHINGTON (AP) - At least 21 detainees who died while being held in
U.S. custody in Iraq and Afghanistan were killed, many during or after interroga-
tions, according to an analysis of Defense Department data by the American Civil
The analysis, released yesterday, looked at 44 deaths described in records
obtained by the ACLU. Of those, the group characterized 21 as homicides and said
at least eight resulted from abusive techniques by military or intelligence officers,
such as strangulation or "blunt force injuries," as noted in the autopsy reports.
The 44 deaths represent a partial group of the total number of prisoners who have
died in U.S. custody overseas; more than 100 have died of natural and violent causes.
In one case, the report said, a detainee died after being smothered during inter-
rogation by military intelligence officers in November 2003. In another case cited
by the report, a prisoner died of asphyxiation and blunt force injuries after he was
left standing, shackled to the top of a door frame, with a gag in his mouth.
Bush will not release conversation records
President Bush said yesterday that he will not release any records of his
conversations with Supreme Court nominee Harriet Miers that could threaten
the confidentiality of the advice that presidents get from their lawyers.
And a Democratic senator called on the beleaguered nominee to give the
Senate her income tax records.
Both Republicans and Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee are
demanding more documents about Miers, including from her work at Bush's
"It's a red line I'm not willing to cross," Bush said of White House
Palestinian fugitive killed in West Bank violence
Israeli troops killed a top Palestinian fugitive and a close accomplice in a West Bank
shootout yesterday, prompting threats of "unprecedented" revenge by the violent Islam-
ic Jihad group.
The wanted man, Luay Saadi, was the leader of Islamic Jihad's military wing ir
the West Bank and was blamed for the deaths of 12 Israelis in a series of attacks it
recent months. Saadi, 30, was killed in a hail of bullets as he fired on troops during at
attempted escape from a hide-out, an Israeli army commander said.
- Compiled from Daily wire reports
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in Saturday's hockey game. The story should have said that Travis Turnbull
created the short-handed opportunity.
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