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September 17, 2013 - Image 3

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The Michigan Daily, 2013-09-17

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The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com

Tuesday Sepebr1,2013_-3

N ew Tuesday, September17, 2013 - 3

U.P. airport gets
large federal grant
Kingsford's Ford Airport in the
western Upper Peninsula is get-
ting a $114,000 federal grant for
improvements to its safety equip-
ment, terminal and runway.
U.S. Sens. Carl Levin and Deb-
bie Stabenow announced the
grant Monday. The Michigan
Democrats say the aid will sup-
port the regional economy and
increase air safety.
The funds come from the Fed-
eralAviation Administration.
Part of the grant will pay for
the purchase of firefighting and
snow removal equipment. It also
will cover the cost of rehabilitat-
ing the main terminal building,
runway and taxiway.
Jail guard accused
of sex with prisoner
An Oakland County sheriff's
deputy has been charged with
criminal sexual conduct on accu-
sations that he had sex with a
The sheriff's department says
the 24-year-old woman volun-
tarily had sex with Deputy Garry
D. Jackson but says Michigan law
makes sexual contact with pris-
oners a crime because they can't
give consent.
The 52-year-old deputy has
been a jail guard since 1997. He
was arraigned Monday on a
charge of second-degree criminal
sexual conduct, which can carry a
penalty of up to 15 years in prison.
He's free on a $5,000 personal
bond. The Associated Press left a
phone message for Jackson seek-
ing comment Monday afternoon.
Summers leaves
Fed race, stocks rise
Wall Street was happy to see
Larry Summers go.
Stocks rose on Monday after
Summers, who had been the lead-
ing candidate to replace Federal
Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke,
withdrew his name from consid-
Summers, a former Treasury
secretary, was viewed as being
more likely to rein in the govern-
ment's massive stimulus program,
which has kept interest rates low
and boosted corporate profits.
Stocks were also helped by
news that U.S. factory output rose
0.7 percent in August, the most in
eight months.
The Dow Jones industrial
average rose 118.72 points, or 0.8
percent, to close at 15,494.78.
The Standard & Poor's 500 index
rose 9.61 points, or 0.6 percent, to
1,697.60. The Nasdaq composite
fell 4.34 points, a fraction of a per-
cent, to 3,717.85, pulled down by a
loss in Apple.

34 dead in
tropical depression
The remnants of Hurricane
Ingrid and Tropical Storm Man-
uel drenched northeastern and
southwestern Mexico with tor-
rential rains Monday, flooding
towns and cities, cutting high-
ways and setting off landslides in
a national emergency that federal
authorities said had caused at least
34 deaths.
The Mexican government said
the country had not seen a similar
weather crisis since 1958, when
the country was simultaneously
hit by two tropical storms, also on
separate coasts.
The governor of the Gulf Coast
state of Veracruz announced that
12 people died when a landslide
smashed into a bus traveling
through the town of Altotonga,
about 40 miles northwest of the
state capital.
More than 23,000 people fled
their homes in the state due to
heavy rains spawned by Ingrid,
and 9,000 went to emergency
shelters. At least 20 highways
and 12 bridges had been dam-
aged, the state's civil protection
authority said.
-Compiled from
Daily wire reports

U.N. confirms
poison gas
was used in
Syrian city

The Costa Concordia ship lies on its side on the Tuscan Island of Giglio, Italy,Monday. An international team of engi-
neers is trying a never-before attempted strategy to set upright the luxury liner.
C onc ordiafi nally upright

Ill-fated cruise
ship upright after
19-hour operation
- Engineers have declared the
crippled Costa Concordia cruise
ship completely upright after
a 19-hour operation to pull it
from its side where it capsized
last year off Tuscany.
Shortly after 4 a.m. Tuesday,
a foghorn rang out on Giglio
Island and the head of Italy's
Civil Protection agency, Franco
Gabrielli, announced that the
ship had reached vertical and
that the operation to rotate it
was complete.
Applause rang out among
firefigters in the tent where
Gabrielli and other project engi-
neers made the announcement.
Officials said there was no
apparent pollution in the waters
around the ship as a result of the
Using a vast system of steel
cables and pulleys, maritime
engineers on Monday gingerly
winched the massive hull of the
Costa Concordia off the reef
where the cruise ship capsized
near an Italian island in Janu-
ary 2012 and were poised to set
it upright in the middle of the
After 15 hours of slower-
than-expected progress in
pulling the heavily listing lux-
ury liner to an upright position,
engineers said they finally hit

the tipping point they eagerly
were awaiting.
Shortly before midnight, the
Concordia was raised by 25
degrees -- after that, engineers
said, the effect of gravity start-
ed giving the rotation a boost.
Then engineers quit operat-
ing the pulleys, and by using
remote controls, carefully
began opening valves to let
seawater start filling huge bal-
last tanks that had been welded
onto the already exposed side.
The weight of the water in the
tanks helped pull the cruise
liner up much faster.
"We're in the final phase of
rotation," said Franco Gabrielli,
the Italian government official
who is overseeing the opera-
tion. "We have passed the 24
degree mark and now are filling
the tanks with water," he told
journalists early Tuesday.
Originally, engineers had
been confident complete rota-
tion might take as little as 10
hours, and be reached by early
evening Monday.
But the timetable quickly
went off plan.
First, an unpredicted early
morning thunderstorm pushed
back the start time. Then the
wreck resisted for three hours
before it allowed itself to be
wrested off the jagged rocks
that were embedded into one
side of the hull after the Con-
cordia had hit another reef
close to Giglio Island's coast-
line, took on water through a
70-meter-long (76-yard-long)

gash, and eventually capsized
a few hundred meters (yards)
away onto another reef.
There it lay on its side until
Monday's daring engineering
operation pulled it free.
"Things are going like they
should, but on a timetable
that is dragging out," Gabrielli
chief of Italy's Civil Protection
Agency, said earlier on Mon-
Never before has such an
enormous cruise ship been
righted. Salvage workers strug-
gled to overcome obstacle after
obstacle as they slowly inched
toward their goal of raising the
crippled ship 65 degrees to the
upright position.
At one point, some of the
cables dragging the ship's hull
upright went slack, forcing
engineers to climb the hull to
fix them.
The Concordia itself didn't
budge for the first three hours
after the operation began,
engineer Sergio Girotto told
The initial operation to
lift the ship moved it just 3
degrees toward vertical. After
10 hours, the crippled ship had
edged upward by just under 13
degrees, a fraction of what had
been expected.
After some 6,000 tons of
force were applied - using a
complex system of pulleys and
counterweights - Girotto said
"we saw the detachment" of the
ship's hull from the reef thanks
to undersea cameras.

Rockets with
chemical agent
found at military
Careful not to blame either side
for a deadly chemical weapon
attack, U.N. inspectors reported
Mondaythatrocketsloaded with
the nerve agent sarin had been
fired from an area where Syr-
ia's military has bases, but said
the evidence could have been
manipulated in the rebel-con-
trolled stricken neighborhoods.
The U.S., Britain and France
jumped on evidence in the
report - especially the type of
rockets, the composition of the
sarin agent, and trajectory of the
missiles - to declare that Presi-
dent Bashar Assad's government
was responsible.
Russia, Syria's closest ally,
called the investigators' findings
"deeply disturbing," but said it
was too early to draw conclu-
sions. The Syrian government's
claims that opposition forces
were responsible for the attack
"cannot be simply shrugged
off," Russian Ambassador Vitaly
Churkin insisted.
The conclusions represented
the first official confirmation by
impartial scientific experts that
chemical weapons were used in
Syria's civil war, but the inspec-
tors' limited mandate barred
them from identifying who
was responsible for the Aug. 21
"This is a war crime," U.N.
Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon
told the Security Council when
he presented the report. "The
results are overwhelming and
indisputable. The facts speak for
Ban called it "the most signifi-
cant confirmed use of chemical
weapons against civilians since
Saddam Hussein used them" in
Halabja, Iran, in 1988, and "the
worst use of weapons of mass
destruction in the 21st century."
The deep division between
Western backers of rebels seek-
ing to overthrow Assad and Rus-
sian and Chinese supporters of
the regime has paralyzed the
U.N. Security Council since the
Syrian conflict began 21/2 years
Eventhoughthe UnitedStates
and Russia agreed Saturday on
the framework to put Syria's
chemical weapons stockpile and
precursors under international
control for future destruction,
their top diplomats were at odds
Monday over a new Security
Council resolution that would
make the deal legally binding
- and whether there should be
a reference to possible military
enforcement if Syria doesn't
After months of negotia-
tions, the U.N. inspectors went
to Syria to visit the sites of three
alleged chemical attacks earlier
this year and were in the capital
of Damascus on Aug. 21 when
reports and videos began surfac-
ing of a shelling attack in which
victims experienced shortness
of breath, disorientation, blurred
vision, nausea, vomiting, weak-

ness and a loss of consciousness.
They finally gained access
to three towns where the Aug.
21 attack occurred, and on one
occasion their convoy was hit
by sniper fire, but the inspectors
were nonetheless able to collect
a large amount of material and
talk to survivors and witnesses.
"The environmental, chemi-
cal and medical samples we have
collected provide clear and con-
vincing evidence that surface-
to-surface rockets containing
the nerve agent sarin were used
... in the Ghouta area of Damas-
cus," their report said.
"The conclusion is that chem-
ical weapons have been used in
the ongoing conflict between
the parties in the Syrian Arab
Republic, also against civilians,
including children, on a relative-

ly large scale," they said. "This
result leaves us with the deepest
The rebels and their West-
ern and Arab supporters have
blamed Assad's regime for the
attack in the rebel-controlled
area of Ghouta. The Syrian gov-
ernment insists the attack was
carried out by rebels. The U.N.
report mentions the Ghouta
areas of Ein Tarma, Moadami-
yeh and Zamalka, all of which
were featured in videos of vic-
tims that emerged after the
The U.N. report did not men-
tion how many people were
killed in the Aug. 21 attack. The
U.S. says more than 1,400, but
other death toll estimates have
been far lower.
The report cited the following
evidence to support its conclu-
- Rockets and fragments
were found to contain sarin.
"Several surface-to-surface
rockets capable of delivering sig-
nificant chemical payloads were
identified and recorded at the
investigated sites,"the investiga-
tors said.
- Close to the impact sites,
in the area where people were
affected, inspectors collected
30 soil and environmental sam-
ples - far more than any previ-
ous U.N. investigation - and in
a majority of the samples, "the
environment was found to be
contaminated by sarin," its by-
products, and "other relevant
chemicals, such as stabilizers."
- Blood, urine and hair sam-
ples from 34 patients who had
signs of poisoning by a chemical
compound provided "definitive
evidence of exposure to satin
by almost all of the survivors
- More than 50 interviews
with survivors and health care
workers "provided ample cor-
roboration of the medical and
scientific results."
"The large-scale use of sarin,
the direction of the rocket
attacks, and kind of rockets used
in the attacks all point to use by
Assad's forces beyond reason-
able doubt," said Daryl Kimball,
executive director of the Wash-
ington-based Arms Control
"The conclusions reached by
the United States and European
governments would now appear
to have received corroboration
by a source the Russians and
Syrians will have trouble dis-
crediting," Kimball said.
The inspectors described
the rockets used to disperse the
sarin as a variant of an M14 artil-
lery rocket, with either an origi-
nal or an improvised warhead.
The report said the rockets that
hit two of the suburbs - Zamal-
ka and Ein Tarma - were fired
from the northwest, but it didn't
say who launched them.
The inspectors did not pro-
vide a location for the rockets'
launch site, but Qassioun Moun-
tain, where the Syrian military is
known to have bases, is roughly
northwest of both suburbs.
"This was no cottage indus-
try use of chemical weapons,"
Britain's U.N. Ambassador Mark
Lyall Grant said.
"To put it in perspective,

just on those rocket samples
that they were able to examine,
they had a payload of a total of
350 liters, which is 35 times the
amount that was used in the
Tokyo subway" in 1995, he said,
adding that the inspectors also
confirmed "that the quality of
the sarin was superior" both to
that used in Tokyo and also to
what was used by Iraq against
U.S. Ambassador Samantha
Power noted that chief inspector
Ake Sellstrom said the weapons
"were professionally made."
"It defies logic that the oppo-
sition would have infiltrated the
regime-controlled area to fire on
opposition-controlled areas,"
she said. "Only the regime could
have carried out this large-scale

Egyptian army officers petition
military chief to run for president

el-Sissi responsible
for ousting Morsi
amid unrest
in nation
CAIRO (AP) - A group of
professionals and former army
officers launched Monday a
petitionurging Egypt's military
chief, who ousted the country's
first freely elected leader, to
run for president, highlighting
the yearning for a strongman to
take charge after nearly three
years of turmoil.
The campaign for Gen.
Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi is
propped up by a pervasive per-
sonality cult, based on his suc-
cess in uprooting an Islamist
ruling elite. Still, there has
been a faint pushback from new
political groups calling for a
civilian leader for the nascent
democracy -despite little pub-
lic tolerance for criticism of the
military and a deepening sense
of nationalism.
In his one major political
speech after removing Islamist
President Mohammed Morsi on
July 3, el-Sissi said he had no
political aspirations. Soon after,
a military spokesman denied
reports the general would run
for office. But the spokesman
added that nothing would stop
el-Sissi from doing so if he
The clamor for him to run in
presidential elections expected
in early 2014 has only grown,
demonstrating the dramatic
seesawing Egypt has undergone
since the 2011 revolution top-
pled autocrat Hosni Mubarak,

a former military man. In part
the calls are fueled by a pow-
erful anti-Islamist fervor after
Morsi's one year in office, when
bitterness grew over what many
saw as attempts by his Muslim
Brotherhood to monopolize
power and take the country in a
more extremist direction.
State media and sympathetic
television stations have helped
fan the el-Sissi sentiment. Pop
songs praising him and the mil-
itary flood the airwaves. Post-
ers of el-Sissi in his dark glasses
and military cap are plastered
around the streets. Videos of
him addressing troops or train-
ing with them have become a
staple on TV.
In the upscale Cairo district
of Garden City, sweets shop
owner Bahira Galal says she
has been doing a brisk business
with her new chocolates bear-
ing el-Sissi's picture.
"I support el-Sissi in my own
way, especially after millions
went out in the streets, every-
one in their own way, support-
ing him," she said.
Millions turned out for
protests that began June 30
demanding Morsi's removal,
prompting el-Sissi to oust the
Islamist leader. Morsi's sup-
porters have continued protests
demanding his reinstatement,
even as a security crack-
down has jailed thousands of
Islamists. Detained since his
ouster, Morsi faces trial on
charges of inciting the killing
of protesters, and prosecutors
are preparing other charges,
including insulting the judi-
El-Sissi has said he was
only acting in response to the

people's demands, dismissing
charges of orchestrating a coup.
El-Sissi installed an interim,
civilian government that is pav-
ing the way for elections.
El-Sissi has cultivated a pop-
ular image for himself - that
of a strongman who acted to
save the nation and, at the same
time, a soft-spoken figure with
the interests of the people at
heart. That has helped restore
the prestige of the military
after the much criticized peri-
od when generals held direct
power for more than a year
and a half after Mubarak's fall.
Those generals came from an
older generation than el-Sissi
and have since been shunted
The new petition campaign
announced Monday brands
itself "complete your good
deed" - urging el-Sissi to take
the next step and run. Orga-
nizer Rifai Nasrallah, a judge,
said the goal was to collect 30
million signatures to convince
the general to give in to "popu-
lar will."
"Don't forget that you told
the Egyptian people to ask and
you will respond. Here we are
asking you to be president of
Egypt," Nasrallah said at the
launch gathering at a Cairo
hotel, addressing el-Sissi.
The campaign is modeled
after Tamarod, or Rebel, which
spearheaded anti-Morsi pro-
tests after claiming to have
gathered 22 million signatures
demanding his ouster.
Younan Gerges, who is run-
ning the campaign in Cairo,
denied it is funded by security
agencies or the military, or even
major businessmen.



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