The Michigan Daily - michigandailycom
Bush Iraq plan
A second Republican joined
Senator Chuck Hagel, a Nebraska
Republican, and signed onto a Sen-
ate resolution yesterday oppos-
ing President Bush's 21,500-troop
buildup in Iraq, setting a marker
for a major clash between the
White House and Congress over
the unpopular war.
Sen. Olympia Snowe, a moderate
from Maine, said she would support
a nonbinding resolution that would
put the Senate on record as saying
the U.S. commitment in Iraq can be
sustained only with support from
the American public and Congress.
Snowe's decision to join the
effort came as the White House
and GOP leaders struggled to keep
Republicans from endorsing the
resolution, and raised questions
about how many more defections
there might be.
kill, eat giant gorilla
Rebels in eastern Congo have
killed and eaten two silverback
mountain gorillas, conservation-
ists said yesterday, warning they
fear more of the endangered ani-
mals may have been slaughtered in
the lawless region.
Only about 700 mountain goril-
lasremain intheworld, 380 of them
spread across a range of volcanic
mountains straddling the borders
of Congo, Rwanda and Uganda in
The London-based Africa Con-
servation Fund blamed rebels loyal
to a local warlord, Laurent Nkunda,
for the latestkilling. Nkundais a ren-
egade soldier who commands thou-
east who have in recent years
assaulted cities and clashed sporadi-
cally with government forces.
World ticks two
HEAVY ON THE ICE
\/\ Thursday, January 18, 2007 - 3A
Defense chief: Afghan war
needs more troops, too
Gates says U.S. should
be wary of letting
success 'slip away'
BAGRAM AIR BASE, Afghani-
- A stan (AP) - Defense Secretary Rob-
ert Gates suggested yesterday that
he is likely to urge President Bush
to send more troops to Afghanistan
to fight the resurgent Taliban.
Gates said U.S. commanders in
Afghanistan have recommended
ROB MIGRIs/Da" an unspecified troop boost, and
A student changes his course to avoid a fallen tree covering the sidewalk on Huron while he did not explicitly endorse
Street. The tree was one of the many around campus that collapsed under the weight thie he d d a rtioale.
of Sunday's ice storm. the idea, he offered a rationale.
"I think it is important that we
not let this success here in Afghani-
1tstan slip away from us and that we
p an el W C keep the initiative," he told report-
erstraveling aboard his aircraft as it
*ed es i- refueled here for a flight to Riyadh,
Saudi Arabia, where he was to meet
*1-' with King Abdullah. "There's no
WASHINGTON (AP)- TheBush the approval of the Foreign Intel- reason to sit back and let the Tal-
administration changed course and ligence Surveillance Court." iban regroup," Gates said.
agreed yesterday to let a secret Gonzales said Bush would not There are approximately 24,000
but independent panel of federal reauthorize the program once it U.S. troops here, of which about
judges oversee the government's expires. Justice Department offi- 11,000 serve under NATO com-
controversial domestic spying pro- cials later said authorization for one mand. Another increase would
Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton
(D-N.Y.), the potential 2008 presi-
from a trip to the region, said com-
manders in Afghanistan told her
they have "an urgent need" for
about 2,300 more troops, including
some who mightbe held in reserve.
"It would be tragic if we fail in
Afghanistan because of an unwill-
ingness to deploy a manageable
size of additional troops to aid an
important and willing ally during a
time of true need," she wrote in a
letter to Gates. The letter was also
signed by Sen. Evan Bayh (D-Ind.),
who was also on the trip.
As described by U.S. military
officers in Afghanistan, the Taliban
already have regrouped, at least to
the extent that they were able last
year to launch vastly more attacks
on U.S. and allied forces than in
2005. They have been particularly
resurgent in the south and the east,
along the Pakistan border.
Gen. Peter Pace, chairman of
the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said new
troop commitments would further
strain the U.S. military in the short
run. But if done as partof a success-
ful strategy against the Taliban, it
might hasten the day when the U.S.
military can withdraw its combat
forces altogether, he said.
A U.S. troop increase in Afghani-
stan would come on top of Bush's
decision to send another 21,500
soldiers and Marines to Iraq over
the coming four months. The two
wars, each now longer than U.S.
involvement in World War II, have
stretched American land forces so
thin that the Army and Marines are
requesting tens of billions more in
funding and have persuaded Bush to
ask Congress to increase their size.
On Tuesday, Gates said before
he arrived in Afghanistan for talks
with U.S. and NATO commanders
- as well as Afghan government
officials - that he wanted to hear
their views on what should be done
to arrest the resurgence of the Tal-
iban and provide the security need-
ed to reconstruct the country.
U.S. forces invaded Afghani-
stan to topple the Taliban regime
in October 2001. No longer a
sanctuary for terror mastermind
Osama bin Laden, Afghanistan
has struggled to build a national
government, attract international
investment and rid the country of
Taliban extremists who want to
"Ifthe people who are leadingthe
struggle out here believe that there
is a need for some additional help to
sustain the success that we've had,
I'm going to be very sympathetic to
that kind of a request," Gates said.
gram. Officials say the secret court
has already approved at least one
request for monitoring.
The shift will likely end a court
fight over whether the warrantless
surveillance program was legal.
The program, which was secretly
authorizedby President Bush shortly
after the Sept.11, 2001, terror attacks,
was disclosed a little over a year ago,
resulting in widespread criticism
from lawmakers and civil libertar-
ians who questioned its legality.
The program allowed the
National Security Agency - with-
out approval from the secretive
Foreign Intelligence Surveillance
Court - to monitor phone calls and
e-mails between the United States
and other countries when a link to
terrorism is suspected.
In a letter to senators yesterday,
Attorney General Alberto Gonzales
said that "any electronic surveil-
lance that was occurring as part of
the Terrorist Surveillance Program
will now be conducted subject to
investigation under the warrantless
program was set to expire soon, but
they would not specify when.
Justice Department officials say
the court already has approved at
least one warrant to conduct sur-
veillance involving a person sus-
pected of having ties to al-Qaida or
an associated terror group.
After it was revealed in 2005, the
the program as essential to national
security. Although the secret court
was established precisely to review
requests for domestic surveil-
lance warrants, the White House
insisted that such oversight was
not required by law and would slow
efforts to stop terrorists.
From the start, Bush maintained
the warrantless program's exis-
tence was "fully consistent with my
constitutional responsibilities and
authorities," and said he would con-
tinue to reauthorize it "for as long as
our nation faces a continuing threat
from al-Qaida and related groups."
raise questions about the future
course of a war which the United
States is increasingly handing off
to NATO forces.
The Un IVerSityofe oi UChigna e s
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minutes closer to Northwest apologizes to
The world has nudged closer
to a nuclear apocalypse and envi-
ronmental disaster, a trans-Atlan-
tic group of prominent scientists
of its symbolic Doomsday Clock two
minutes closer to midnight.
It was the fourth time since the
end of the Cold War that the clock
has ticked forward, this time from
11:53 to 11:55, amid fears over what
the scientists are describing as
"a second nuclear age" prompted
largely by atomic standoffs with
Iran and North Korea.
But the organization added that
the "dangers posed by climate
change are nearly as dire as those
posed by nuclear weapons."
ally deposed from
The Somali parliament stripped
the speaker position yesterday from
a top lawmaker who was closely
associated with the recently oust-
ed Islamic movement, a move the
European Union said was disap-
pointing and could hurt reconcilia-
tion efforts in the restive country.
Diplomats said the fired speaker,
Sharif Hassan Sheik Aden, was
capable of pulling together moder-
ate elements in Somalia's Islamic
Deputy Speaker Osman Ilmi
Boqore announced the move against
Aden in proceedings on the radio.
Lawmakers cited his public criti-
cism of a proposed African peace-
keeping mission that parliament
had endorsed and his meetings with
Islamic movement leaders without
authority from parliament.
- Compiled from
Daily wire reports
Number of federal employees
working in the Executive Office
of the President who failed to pay
their federal income taxes for the
2005 tax year, according to docu-
ments obtained by WTOP radio
in Washington D.C. About 20 of
those employees have entered IRS
Muslims barred from flight
Free Food will be Provided for All!!!
DETROIT (AP) - Seeking to
quell an uproar over alleged pro-
filing, Northwest Airlines offered
an apology yesterday to a group of
40 American Muslims who were
barred from boarding a Michigan-
bound plane in Germany.
The airline also said it will reim-
burse the pilgrims for hotel costs
and other flights the passengers
were forced to take on their way
back from the Hajj, or pilgrimage
to Mecca, Saudi Arabia.
Andrea Newman, a University
Regent and the senior vice presi-
dent for government relations for
Northwest, said barring the pil-
grims should not have happened.
She said the Jan. 7 incident
resulted from a series of mistakes
involving a German travel agen-
cy, the baggage handlers for the
previous chartered flight from
Saudi Arabia and misleading
information on a printed ticket
that the passengers had received,
The Detroit News reported yes-
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