Friday, February 25, 2005

Kansas Attorney General Demands Abortion Records

In one of the boldest pro-life-inspired moves I have seen yet, Kansas AG Phill Kline (which CNN notes is an "abortion opponent") insisted Thursday, "I have the duty to investigate and prosecute child rape and other crimes in order to protect Kansas children."

Indeed he does. CNN goes on to report:

Kline is seeking the records of girls who had abortions and women who received late-term abortions. Sex involving someone under 16 is illegal in Kansas, and it is illegal in the state for doctors to perform an abortion after 22 weeks unless there is reason to believe it is needed to protect the mother's health.

Kline spoke to reporters after details of the secret investigation, which began in October, surfaced in a legal brief filed by attorneys for two medical clinics. The clinics argued that unless the high court intervenes, women who obtained abortions could find government agents knocking at their door.

The clinics said Kline demanded their complete, unedited medical records for women who sought abortions at least 22 weeks into their pregnancies in 2003, as well as those for girls 15 and younger who sought abortions. Court papers did not identify the clinics.
Is it just me or does it seem wholly ridiculous to use the defense of invasion of the privacy of the patients to argue that clinic records should remain sealed from the highest ranking authority in the state? It seems to me that some of these clinics are covering up crimes perpetrated by adults who have had sex with children under the age of 16 and have performed abortions on fetus' over the gestation period of 22 weeks. Both are considered illegal in the state of Kansas.

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Walmart Workers Say No To Unionization

First of all let me make it clear that I believe that Unions had their place in America. I believe they are responsible for vastly improving working conditions in this country. But the days of usefulness passed a long time ago. Today they are nothing more than political action groups who use union "dues" from unsuspecting members to fund left-leaning legislation and candidates.

The Associated Press Reports:

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (WMT) on Friday said workers at its Colorado tire shop have voted to reject union representation, a step which deals another blow to efforts to unionize at the world's largest retailer.

A Wal-Mart statement said tire and lube express associates at its Loveland supercenter voted 17-1 to reject representation by the United Food & Commercial Workers Union.

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Another al-Zarqawi Aid Captured By Iraqi Troops

Slowly but surely we are erroding the insurgents ability to command and control over distances. If indeed this AP article is accurate, the terrorist that was captured on February 20th was responsible to desiding who and how other terrorists would communicate with the al-Zarqawi terrorist cell(s). The Associated Press reports:

BAGHDAD, Iraq (AP) - Iraqi forces captured a key aide to Jordanian-born terrorist Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, who leads an insurgency affiliated with Osama bin Laden's al-Qaida network, the government said Friday.

The man, identified as Talib Mikhlif Arsan Walman al-Dulaymi, also known as Abu Qutaybah, was captured during a Feb. 20 raid in Anah, about 160 miles northwest of Baghdad, a government announcement said.

"Abu Qutaybah was responsible for determining who, when and how terrorist network leaders would meet with al-Zarqawi," the government said.

Al-Zarqawi, who has a $25 million bounty on his head, is believed to have orchestrated a relentless wave of car bombings, kidnappings, assassinations and beheadings across the country.

Qutaybah "filled the role of key lieutenant for the Zarqawi network, arranging safe houses and transportation as well as passing packages and funds to al-Zarqawi," the government said. "His extensive contacts and operational ability throughout western Iraq made him a critical figure in the Zarqawi network."

The government said Qutaybah was a known associate of other al-Zarqawi lieutenants already held by coalition forces, including Abu Ahmed, an al-Qaida-linked insurgent leader in the northern city of Mosul who was detained Dec. 22.

During the same Feb. 20 raid, Iraqi forces also captured another al-Zarqawi aide who "occasionally acted as his driver," the government said. The man was identified as Ahmad Khalid Marad Ismail al-Rawi, who also helped arrange meetings for al-Zarqawi.

He also is known as Abu Uthman.

Both suspects are Iraqi and their names belong to well-known Sunni tribes in and around the town of Ramadi, a hotbed of the insurgency in Anbar province west of Baghdad.

The government earlier announced it captured the leader of an al-Qaida-affiliated terror cell allegedly responsible for a string of beheadings in Iraq.

In a statement late Thursday, the government said Mohamed Najam Ibrahim was arrested by Iraqi National Guardsmen in Baqouba, 35 miles northeast of Baghdad. It gave no date for the arrest.

Ibrahim had carried out the beheadings with his brother, the government said.

"The two beheaded a number of citizens in addition to launching attacks against Iraqi security forces," the statement said.

The government said Ibrahim was being interrogated by authorities.

Last week, police said they arrested two other leaders of the insurgency in Baqouba, including an aide to al-Zarqawi named Haidar Abu Bawari.

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This Is The Future of Iraq's Security

In the infancy of the Iraqi Military Forces, Samarra, north of Baghdad was controlled by the insurgents. One Iraqi General and his US counterpart began there:

Gen. Adnan, as he's known, commands a force of about 10,000 men. He formed the commandos last summer, when security here was spinning out of control, at the urging of his nephew, the current Iraqi minister of the interior. He has a tough-guy résumé: a former member of Hussein's military intelligence service who was imprisoned in 1996 after he joined a U.S.-backed coup plot. One look at him and you know he is not a man you'd want to antagonize.

Jim is Col. James Coffman Jr., an Army Special Forces officer. He works for the man who heads the U.S. military training effort in Iraq, Lt. Gen. David Petraeus. Last September Petraeus asked Coffman to go check out the Police Commandos. Despite the initial rebuff, Coffman kept returning each afternoon to pay his respects to Gen. Adnan. The two soldiers gradually became friendly, and Coffman began providing supplies and some training help.

Coffman sensed that the commandos had what Petraeus is trying to foster in his training mission here: discipline, leadership and the will to fight. "I was totally impressed by how they conducted operations," Coffman recalls. "They had command and control, pretty good fire discipline, and they didn't harass civilians." He admired Adnan's professionalism and the fact that he threatened to fire his officers if they engaged in any religious or political activity on the job.

So the Americans decided to test the commandos in early October by sending them as part of a mixed U.S.-Iraqi force to regain control of Samarra, north of Baghdad. On the day the commandos were set to go, their headquarters was hit by a car bomb, with dozens of casualties. Adnan's troops moved out anyway, a few hours later. They fought well in Samarra and, using their own local intelligence, captured 38 suspected insurgent leaders.

The commandos next moved into Mosul in mid-November, after local police there had been shattered by the insurgents. Coffman accompanied them into battle. On Nov. 14, he and the Iraqi commandos were caught in a well-prepared ambush. They fought for more than four hours; four of the commandos were killed and 38 wounded, but they held their ground. Coffman was shot in one hand, but with the other, he kept firing his M-4 rifle and then, when he ran out of ammunition, an Iraqi AK-47.

Coffman was still wearing a heavy bandage on his hand when we visited Adnan's headquarters. His thumb and two joints were shattered in the Mosul fight. U.S. Military doctors tried to evacuate him to Germany, but he refused. The Iraqi general looks over at his American adviser and says he's a brave soldier. "In the Mosul battle, he stood shoulder to shoulder with my men." It's obvious he could not pay a higher compliment.

I remember reading of the battle for Samarra. The previous Iraqi Military work was horrible. The Iraqi soldiers ran from battle and even joined the insurgents in some cases. The Samarra incursion was the beginning of getting Iraq's security forces up on their feet.

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A Prayer For The Pope

I am admittedly not a big fan of the Catholic Church. I do however believe that some Christianity is better than no Christianity. SO as far as The Pope is concerned, I consider him a man above most men in the sense that he was called to lead an entire international church and has for the most part done a decent job.

Dear Lord, We ask you today to bless your servant Pope John Paul II. A man above most men, Pope John Paul II spent his life chaste to do your will. We ask that you cause little suffering for this leader of a church in turmoil and when it comes time to call him from this place that you take him in your arms Lord. We also ask Lord (if it is your will) to see that the next Pontiff is a man of deep spiritual faith and not a slave to worldly distractions such as progressive politics.

We ask this in your name and in the name of The Trinity. Amen
(you may cross yourself now)

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Economic Growth For 2004 Much Better Than Previously Thought

Woh! Indeed, the economy at the end of 2004 at least was red hot. AP reports:

The Commerce Department said gross domestic product, the gauge of total goods and services production within U.S. borders, grew at a revised 3.8 percent annual rate in the final three months of last year instead of 3.1 percent reported a month ago. That was slightly stronger than the 3.7 percent rate that Wall Street economists had forecast and only a small decline from the third quarter's 4 percent pace.

Why is this signifigant? Because George W. Bush had been saying all through the election that "the economy is strong and getting stronger". It turns out he was correct. And will the naysayers and partisan politicos give him credit for this? Nope. They can't. To do so is to admit that President Bush was not only the man elected in the 2004 election but that he was the right choice indeed.

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