Author Topic: WORLD NEWS UPDATE  (Read 1249 times)

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Offline freddiewit

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WORLD NEWS UPDATE
« on: January 10, 2008, 07:36:17 PM »
WORLD NEWS UPDATE
Introducing yet another NEWS thread for all Rubminders and visitors that like being current.
ENJOY!

2004 Dem nominee Kerry endorses Obama
CHARLESTON, S.C. - Sen. John Kerry of Massachusetts, the 2004 Democratic presidential nominee, endorsed Sen. Barack Obama for the White House Thursday in a timely slap at Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton as well as his own vice presidential running mate.

Quoting a black American hero in endorsing the man who hopes to be the first black president, Kerry declared, "Martin Luther King Jr. said the time is always right to do what is right. And I'm here in South Carolina because this is the right time to share with you, to make sure that we know that I have the confidence ... and that Barack Obama can be, will be and should be the next president of the United States."

Kerry delivered his endorsement in South Carolina at a time, two weeks before that state's primary, when Clinton is riding a wave of enthusiasm following her victory over Obama in the New Hampshire primary.

Kerry said there were other candidates in the race whom he also had worked with and respected.

"But I believe more than anyone else, Barack Obama can help our country turn the page and get America moving by uniting and ending the division we have faced," Kerry said.

Kerry took a swipe at Obama critics who say the Illinois senator lacks the experience to be president.

"We are electing judgment and character, not years on this earth," said Kerry, who added that Obama, an opponent of the Iraq war, was "right about the war in Iraq from the beginning."

Former Sen. John Edwards of North Carolina, the third contender in the Democratic presidential race, was Kerry's vice presidential running mate in 2004. Despite their political alliance, the two men were not close personally and differed behind the scenes on campaign strategy in a race that President Bush won.

Edwards responded to word of the endorsement with a diplomatic statement: "Our country and our party are stronger because of John's service, and I respect his decision. When we were running against each other and on the same ticket, John and I agreed on many issues."

Kerry was Obama's political benefactor once before, selecting the relatively unknown Illinois senatorial candidate to deliver the keynote address at the 2004 Democratic National Convention in Boston. It was Obama's first turn in the national spotlight and helped launch him on a remarkable ascent that has made him one of two leading contenders for the party's presidential nomination only four years later.

The Massachusetts senator lost the South Carolina Democratic primary in 2004 to Edwards.

Kerry and Edwards had their differences during the 2004 campaign over strategy and spending, and Edwards has said he would have been more aggressive in challenging the unsubstantiated allegations of the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth questioning Kerry's military record.

Kerry's endorsement also was a jab at Clinton, the New York Democrat who won the New Hampshire primary after a loss to Obama in the Iowa caucuses.

Kerry had withheld his endorsement, hoping to have an impact on the race and avoid the fate of fellow Democrat Al Gore, the 2000 nominee who endorsed Howard Dean in 2004 shortly before the former Vermont governor's campaign imploded. Gore has made no endorsement so far this year.

While Kerry has been close to Clinton's husband, the former president, he was incensed in 2006 when she chided him after Kerry suggested that people who don't go to school "get stuck in Iraq." Aides said Kerry meant to jab at Bush and say "get us stuck in Iraq," and that he didn't appreciate Clinton piling onto the criticism he was already getting for the remark.

The Republican National Committee pounced on the endorsement to brand Kerry and Obama "liberal soul mates."

Kerry himself had considered running for president in 2008, but that plan fizzled with the botched remark. For many Democrats, his words revived bitter memories of his missteps in 2004, when he lost to Bush.

As for Obama, Kerry gave the young Illinois state senator his first turn in the national spotlight when he chose him to deliver the keynote speech at the 2004 Democratic National Convention. Later that year, Obama won election as a U.S. senator.

Since announcing a year ago he would not make the run, Kerry has prodded Democrats to take a stronger anti-war stance, pushing for troop withdrawal deadlines. In another area, he has backed environmental causes, writing a book with his wife on the issue.

Kerry should be able to provide some organizational and fundraising muscle to Obama.

Since losing the 2004 race, Kerry has kept a national network of supporters intact. He has an e-mail network of 3 million supporters, according to aides. He also has traveled extensively raising millions of dollars for Democratic candidates nationwide.

___

Associated Press Writer Andrew Miga contributed to this report.

« Last Edit: January 10, 2008, 08:17:32 PM by freddiewit »

Offline freddiewit

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Re: NEWS UPDATE
« Reply #1 on: January 10, 2008, 07:42:00 PM »

Fears deepen after Pakistan bombing
By ARYN BAKER/ISLAMABAD
Thu Jan 10, 8:30 AM ET


[float=left][/float]It was only a matter of time. A suicide bomber struck in the Pakistani city of Lahore today, ending a two-week lull since the spate of spontaneous violence that followed the December 27 assassination of former prime minister and parliamentary candidate Benazir Bhutto. At least 23 riot police were killed and another 58 police and passers-by were injured when a man detonated his vest packed with ball bearings outside Lahore's High Court, according to Police Superintendent Aftab Cheema. Police have recovered the suicide bomber's head, which was thrown some 100 meters across a busy commercial square by the force of the blast.

The suicide attack - a first for Lahore, Pakistan's second largest city - took place just moments before the scheduled start of a rally by lawyers protesting the rule of Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf. Witnesses described to AFP a scene of carnage and mayhem, with dead and wounded scattered among debris and body parts across the square. "The target was the police force," Punjab Police Inspector General Nasim Ahmed told reporters at the scene. "Today's bombing was to demoralize the Punjab police, but it will not. They have given their lives while performing their duty."

The first terrorist attack of 2008 on a major Pakistani city follows last year's wave of suicide bombings, which killed more than 800 in Pakistan's most violent year since partition in 1947. The bulk of the 2007 attacks came in the wake of an army raid on a pro-Taliban mosque in the capital, Islamabad, which killed nearly 100 militants. Since then, government forces and police have been the main targets of suicide bombers, with the exception of two attacks on rallies held by Bhutto's Pakistan People's Party. The first, on October 18, killed 140; the second killed Bhutto along with 30 others.

Persistent rumors about the government's complicity in the attacks on Bhutto have only escalated in recent days, even though Musharraf has invited in British investigators from Scotland Yard to determine how Bhutto died and who was behind it. Musharraf has blamed al-Qaeda affiliate Baitullah Mehsud for her death, and the government is expected to attribute today's bombing to the Pakistani Taliban leader as well. Many Pakistanis, however, consider him simply a convenient scapegoat, and in any case, ascribing the attacks to an elusive militant leader hidden in the impenetrable mountains of Pakistan's North West Frontier Province will hardy assuage mounting fears of insecurity.

Today's bombing took place on the eve of Muharram, the Islamic month of mourning, and it could augur a new series of such attacks. Muharram has historically been associated with increased violence between the country's Sunni Muslims and its Shi'ite minority. While Muharram is important to both sects, it is particularly revered by Shias who stage elaborate processions mourning the death of the prophet Mohammad's grandson in battle - the very event that eventually led to the central schism of Islam. In 2005 a bomb in a Shi'ite shrine in southwestern Pakistan killed 50. Already sectarian violence has taken hundreds of lives in the northern district of Khurram. Leaders are pleading for peace, and security agencies are boosting security at holy sites across the country.

Upcoming parliamentary elections, which were supposed to take place on January 8 but were postponed until February 18 following Bhutto's assassination, only heighten the danger. Election rallies, the cornerstone of politicking in a country where only half the population is literate and only a third have access to television, will be irresistible targets for extremists seeking to create more mayhem. Musharraf says that the government did all in its power to protect Bhutto on the day of her ill-fated rally. If the government did indeed dedicate all possible resources toward keeping Bhutto safe that day, as it claims, security forces will likely be unable to prevent further attacks such as today's.

SOURCE: http://news.yahoo.com/s/time/20080110/wl_time/fearsdeepenafterpakistanbombing;_ylt=ArukIjYPamXHGL_LoU0G.2Gs0NUE
« Last Edit: January 10, 2008, 07:51:52 PM by freddiewit »