2 - The Michigan Daily - Tuesday, January 31, 2006
Al-Zawahiri calls Bush a "butcher"
In first video since the
Pakistani airstrike, bin
Laden's No. 2 expresses
fury toward U.S.
CAIRO, Egypt (AP) - Al-Qaida
No. 2 Ayman al-Zawahri said in a vid-
eotape aired yesterday that President
Bush was a "butcher" and a "failure"
because of a deadly U.S. airstrike in
Pakistan targeting the bin Laden dep-
uty, and he threatened a new attack on
the United States.
AI-Zawahri, shown in the video
wearing white robes and a white
turban, said a Jan. 13 airstrike in
the eastern village of Damadola
killed "innocents," and he said the
United States had ignored an offer
from al-Qaida leader Osama bin
Laden for a truce.
"Butcher of Washington, you are
not only defeated and a liar, but also
a failure. You are a curse on your own
nation and you have brought and will
bring them only catastrophes and
tragedies," he said, referring to Bush.
"Bush, do you know where I am? I am
among the Muslim masses."
The airstrike hit a building in Dam-
adola, killing four al-Qaida leaders.
Thirteen villagers also were killed in
the strike, angering many Pakistanis.
"The American planes raided in
compliance with Musharraf the traitor
and his security apparatus, the slave of
the Crusaders and the Jews," he said,
referring to Pakistani President Gen.
"In seeking to kill my humble self
and four of my brothers, the whole
world has discovered the extent of
America's lies and failures and the
extent of its savagery in fighting Islam
The video was al-Zawahri's first
appearance since the airstrike. Intel-
Center, a contractor working with
U.S. intelligence agencies, said the
video of al-Zawahri is new.
The Al-Jazeera newscaster said
the network was airing excerpts, and
it showed two short segments. It was
not immediately known how long the
entire tape was.
"My second message is to the
American people, who are drowning
in illusions. I tell you that Bush and
his gang are shedding your blood
and wasting your money in frustrated
adventures," he said, speaking in a
forceful and angry voice.
"The lion of Islam, Sheik Osama bin
Laden, may God protect him, offered
you a decent exit from your dilemma.
But your leaders, who are keen to
accumulate wealth, insist on throwing
you in battles and killing your souls
in Iraq and Afghanistan and- God
willing - on your own land."
Al-Zawahri then vented more fury
at the United States and Britain, its
main coalition partner in Iraq.
"Your leaders responded to the
initiative of sheik Osama, may God
protect him, by saying they don't
negotiate with terrorists and that they
are winning the war on terror. I tell
them: You liars, greedy war mon-
gers, who is pulling out from Iraq and
Afghanistan? Us or you? Whose sol-
diers are committing suicide because
of despair? Us or you?" he said.
"You, American mother, if the Pen-
tagon calls to tell you that your son is
coming home in a coffin, then remem-
ber George Bush. And you, British
W AP PHOTO
In this image from television transmitted by news network AI-Jazeera yesterday, al-
Qaida's deputy leader Ayman al-Zawahri gestures while addressing the camera.
NEWS IN BRIEF
All 72 trapped miners rescued
Rescuers retrieved all 72 central Canadian potash miners who were
trapped underground by a fire and survived until yesterday by using oxy-
gen, food and water stored in subterranean emergency chambers.
The rescued miners were all in good health.
They were trapped early Sunday when a fire started in polyethylene pip-
ing more than a half-mile underground, filling the tunnels with toxic smoke
and prompting the miners to take refuge in the sealed emergency rooms.
Thirty-two miners were brought to the surface at about 3:30 a.m., said
Mosaic Co., which owns the mine. Another 35 emerged a few hours later,
followed by the remaining five. No serious injuries were reported.
"They are glad to be on the surface," said Brian Hagan, director of
health and safety for Dynatech Corp., the contractor that employed some
of the miners. "They protected themselves and that is what they are
trained to do."
Jury selected for Enron chiefs' trial
Jury selection began yesterday in the trial of former Enron Corp. chiefs Kenneth
Lay and Jeffrey Skilling with a federal judge warning a pool of about 100 not to use
the closely watched case to exact vengeance for the company's epic implosion four
"I can assure you this will be one of the most interesting and important cases ever
tried," U.S. District Judge Sim Lake told potential jurors, who crammed into five rows
of a cavernous courtroom and were being questioned individually throughout the day.
The judge hoped to seat a jury by day's end yesterday, meaning opening state-
ments could come Tuesday morning in the trial - perhaps the premier criminal case
to emerge from corporate scandals that began when Enron went under in 2001.
ExxonMobil posts record profits for year
ExxonMobil Corp. posted record profits for any U.S. company yester-
day - $10.71 billion for the fourth quarter and $36.13 billion for the year
- as the world's biggest publicly traded oil company benefited from high
oil and natural-gas prices and solid demand for refined products.
The results exceeded Wall Street expectations and Exxon shares rose
more than 3 percent in afternoon trading.
The company's earnings amounted to $1.71 per share for the October-
December quarter, up 27 percent from $8.42 billion, or $1.30 per share, in
the year ago quarter. The result topped the then-record quarterly profit of
$9.92 billion Exxon posted in the third quarter of 2005.
Savings rate lowest since Great Depression
Americans are spending everything they're making and more, pushing the national
savings rate to the lowest point since the Great Depression.
Soaring home prices apparently have convinced people they don't have to worry about
saving, a belief that could be seriously tested as 78 million baby boomers begin to retire.
The Commerce Department reported yesterday that Americans' personal savings
fell into negative territory at minus 0.5 percent last year. That means that people not
only spent all of their after-tax income last year but had to dip into previous savings or
increase their borrowing.
The savings rate has been negative for an entire year only twice before - in 1932
and 1933 - two years when Americans were having to deplete savings to cope with the
massive job layoffs and business failures caused by the Great Depression.
wife, if the Defense Department calls
you to say that your husband is return-
ing crippled and burnt, remember Tony
The video came in the wake of a Jan.
19 audiotape by bin Laden in which
he warned that al-Qaida is preparing
attacks in the United States but offered
a truce "with fair conditions" to build
Iraq and Afghanistan.
The al-Qaida leader did not spell out
conditions for a truce in the excerpts
aired by Al-Jazeera.
In an Arabic transcription of the
entire tape on the A1-Jazeera website
bin Laden made an oblique reference
to how to prevent new attacks on the
United States but did not specify if
those were conditions for a truce.
The tape was the first message from
bin Laden in more than a year. The
CIA authenticated the voice on the
tape as that of bin Laden. Al-Jazeera
said the tape was recorded in the
Islamic month that corresponds with
The White House firmly rejected bin
Laden's suggestion of a negotiated truce.
Dems don't have enough votes to filibuster
voted to end their debate
WASHINGTON (AP) - The Sen-
ate all but guaranteed Samuel Alito's
confirmation as the nation's 110th
Supreme Court justice yesterday, shut-
ting down a last-minute attempt by lib-
erals to block the conservative judge's
nomination with a filibuster.
Republican and Democratic sena-
tors on a 72-25 vote agreed to end their
debate, setting up a vote this morning on
Alito's confirmation to replace retiring
moderate Justice Sandra Day O'Connor.
With at least 57 votes committed to Alito
- 53 Republicans and four Democrats -
approval by majority vote in the 100-mem-
ber Senate is now seemingly assured.
A bloc of Democrats, led by Mas-
sachusetts Sens. Edward Kennedy and
John Kerry, unsuccessfully tried over
the weekend and Monday to persuade
other senators to use a vote-delaying
filibuster to stop Alito, a 15-year veteran
of the U.S. Appeals Court and a former
lawyer for the Reagan administration.
"It is the only way we can stop a con-
firmation that we feel certain will cause
irreversible damage to our country,"
said Kerry, the Democrats' 2004 presi-
If confirmed, Alito would replace
O'Connor, who has been a swing vote
on abortion rights, affirmative action,
the death penalty and other issues.
Alito's supporters needed 60 votes to
block the filibuster, and they were joined by
some Democrats who oppose the judge.
"I find it regrettable that there are
those who are trying to resurrect a fili-
buster even as there is clearly nothing in
the record that constitutes extraordinary
circumstances," said GOP Sen. Olympia
Snowe of Maine, the only publicly unde-
cided Republican on Alito's nomination.
Sen. Lincoln Chafee of Rhode Island,
the only Republican to announce that
he will vote against Alito, also refused
to support the filibuster attempt. "How
are we going to get anything done if we
can't work together?" Chafee asked.
Other Republicans also criticized
the attempt to keep Alito from getting
a confirmation vote on Tuesday before
Bush's State of the Union address.
"If this hyperpoliticization of this
judicial confirmation process continues
I fear in this moment we will institution-
.r _ _
alize this behavior and someday we will
be hard pressed not to employ political
tests and tactics against the Supreme
Court nominee of a Democratic presi-
dent," said Senate Majority Whip Mitch
"We saw no reason for the members
of this group to support a filibuster,"
said senior Democratic Sen. Robert
Byrd of West Virginia, a member of the
"Gang of 14" - a group of Republicans
and Democrats who have pledged not
to filibuster unless there are "extraordi-
At least 53 of the Republicans' 55-
member majority and four Democrats
- Byrd, Tim Johnson of South Dakota,
Kent Conrad of North Dakota and Ben
Nelson of Nebraska - already publicly
support Alito's confirmation.
Rice wants other
countries to cut off aid to
LONDON (AP) - The United States
and its European allies have similar views
about aid for a Hamas-led Palestinian gov-
ernment, Secretary of State Condoleezza
Rice said yesterday as she tried to per-
suade other nations to cut off assistance to
a government led by the hard-line group.
"Everybody is saying exactly the
same thing," Rice said amid meetings
with other diplomats on Hamas' star-
tling election victory last week and its
impact on Middle East peacemaking
efforts. "There has got to be a peace-
ful road ahead. ... You cannot be on
one hand dedicated to peace and on the
other dedicated to violence. Those two
things are irreconcilable."
Rice was meeting other members of the
so-called Quartet of would-be Mideast
peacemakers yesterday. The group, which
includes the United States, Russia, the
European Union and the United Nations,
is already on record as saying "there is
a fundamental contradiction between
armed group and militia activities and the
building of a democratic state."n
"To say a Palestinian government
must be committed to peace with Israel
is at the core"' Rice said. "You have to
recognize Israel's right to exist."
Rice has ruled out any U.S. finan-
cial assistance to a government led by
Hamas, which has carried out terrorist
attacks against Israel and does not rec-
ognize its right to exist.
European Union foreign ministers yes-
terday called on Hamas to recognize the
state of Israel, renounce violence and dis-
arm. While EUi officials are barred from
A story in yesterday's SportsMonday (Blown lead leaves Icers feeling sick) incorrect-
ly said referees chose not to review a play. There is no instant replay at Joe Louis Arena.
Yesterday's 'M' Schedule on page 2B said the women's tennis match against South
Carolina on Feb. 4 is at home. It is at South Carolina.
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