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Iraq protests U.S.and British airstrikes
■Saddam Hussein explores ways to
protect Iraq from Ui .and British air raids.
THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
BAGHDAD, Iraq—Thousands of Iraqis
marched in the rain Sunday to protest U.S.
and British airstrikes, and Iraqi television
showed damaged houses and shops in a
town where one man was killed when allied
missiles hit nearby.
President Saddam Hussein met with his
top air defense commander to explore ways
of protecting the country from allied attacks
in the wake of the raid, which targeted radar
and command-and-control sites.
Friday nighds strikes around Baghdad -
which killed two people and wounded at
least 20-have raised strong condemnations
from Arab allies of the United States. And
Iraq warned that it raised tensions ahead erf
key talks with the United Nations.
Iraqi Foreign Minister Mohammed
Saeed al-Sahhaf is due to meet U.N.
Secretary-General Kofi Annan for Feb. 26-27
discussions seen as a chance to restart dia
logue on resuming weapons inspections
and lifting economic sanctions.
In a letter to Arman and the Security '
Council, al-Sahhaf said the U.N. chief
should “condemn the dangerous aggres
sion and the increaseof tension” and should
take “speedy steps to prevent such attacks
from taking place again,” the official Iraqi
News Agency said Sunday.
On Sunday, Saddam met with Minister
of Military Industrialization Abdel-T&wab
MuflaHuwaish and Lt. Gen. Shaheen Yassin
Mohammed, commander of air defense
units, according to Iraqi News Agency.
“The meeting discussed improving
means of defending the great Iraq and its
steadfastness in order to protect toe brave
Iraqis from harm,” said toe agency
The news agency reported Saturday that
Saddam ordered the training of about
300,000volunteers for what he called the Al
Quds - or Jerusalem -Army aiming to free
Jerusalem from Israeli control.
“If little Bush considers his aggression a
message to Iraq, then we have the answer,
which is the formation of al-Quds Army...
ready for jihad (holy war) and liberating
Palestine,” the official Iraqi daily Al-Thawra
said in a front-page editorial Sunday.
The United States and Britain said the
strikes were needed to thwart Iraq's improv
ing capabilities in targeting allied jets
patrolling a southern no-fly zone. They said
five military facilities were hit
Iraq's state-run satellite station repeat
edly broadcast footage showing civilian
buildings in two towns it said were damaged
by die raids.
In the farming village of al-Hafriya, 25
miles south of Baghdad, houses had shat
tered windows and doors tom off after a
missile struck on the outskirts of town.
TWo stores, for agricultural supplies and
automotive spare parts, suffered similar
damage. A 28-year-old man from die town
"This is an agricultural area and there
are no military installations here,” Fawzia
Ibrahim, a resident of one of the damaged
houses, told the television station.
In al-Rashdiya, 12 miles north of the
capital, a witness said the missile had land
ed in a field of mud, softening the explosion.
Foreign media have not been allowed
access to the bombed sites. It was not
known where the strikes’ otherreportedvic
tim-a woman-was from.
More than 2,000 people - including
Deputy Foreign Minister NabilNajim-took
part in Sunday’s protest in central Baghdad,
and at least 1,000others gathered across the
city near the offices ofthe ruling Baath party
"This dangerous aggression shows how
much the Americans and Britons hate Iraqis
and do not respect any international law,”
Najim told the demonstrators. “This aggres
sion must be condemned.”
The demonstration came amid
renewed Arab condemnation of the
airstrikes. Egypt a key U.S. ally that rallied
behind the drive to oust Iraqi troops from
Kuwait 10 years ago, sent Economy Minister
Youssef Boutros-Ghali and Public Sector
Minister Mokhtar Khattab to Baghdad to
show solidarity with Iraq.
“We are here to support the Iraqi people
and promote economic and financial rela
tions between our countries,” Boutros
Ghali told reporters.
Umbilical cords could be alternate for stem research
THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
SAN FRANCISCO—Umbilical cords
discarded after birth may offer a vast
new source of repair material for fixing
brains damaged by strokes and other ills,
bee of the ethical concerns surrounding
the use of fetal tissue, researchers said
fa animal experiments, at least cells
bom umbilical cords appear to greatly
speed recovery after strokes. They work
with a simple infusion into the blood
stream without the need for direct
implantation into the brain.
Although many details need to be
worked out, Eh. Paul R. Sanberg of the
University of South Florida said he
hoped to hy the approach on stroke vic
tims within the next year or two.
Sanberg described the research at a
meeting in San Francisco of the
American Association for the
Advancement of Science. It was financed
by the state of Florida and Cryo-Cell
International Inc of Clearwater, Fla.
Many experts believe that primitive
tissue called stem cells will someday be
routinely used to make human spare
parts. They might replace tissue dam
aged by many different diseases, espe
cially such brain ailments as strokes and
Alzheimer's disease. These generic cells
can be nudged to develop into all sorts of
specialized tissue to repopulate every
part of the body from head to toe.
Sanberg said his research suggested
that umbilical cords could be an excel
lent source of stem cells without die eth
ical headaches of fetal tissue. He noted
that 4 million babies were bom in the
United States each year, and 99 percent
of their cord blood was tossed away.
He said one or two cords could prob
ably provide enough stem cells to treat
one human stroke victim, if the current
approach proves useful. The cells could
be frozen for use when needed.
In experiments so far, his team
removed stem cells from cords and then
used retinoic add and growth hormones
to transform them into immature nerve
cells. They then injected 3 million of
these cells into the Wood streams of rats
that had suffered strokes.
In experiments on about 60 rats, die
team found that after one month, those
given the cells had recovered about 80
percent from their strokes, compared
with about 20 percent in untreated rats.
Sanberg said the treatment worked
best when given within 24 hours of a
stroke but would still help up to a week
later. Just how the new cells rewire the
damaged parts of the brain is unclear,
although the cells can take on the form of
distinctly different types of brain tissue,
and they also appear to prompt dam
aged cells to repair themselves.
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Relatives demand answers from
U.S. Navy in fishing boat accident
T1IE ACC/V'IATCn DDCCC Farm mfnmanHpr of thp Pacific
HONOLULU — Japanese
family members examined a
videotape of the sunken ship
Ehime Maru sitting upright on
the ocean floor as atop U.S. Navy
official announced a high-level
investigation into why a U.S.
submarine surfaced directly
underneath it, leaving nine of
their relatives missing.
The videotape, taken by
robot submersibles, shows the
exterior of the fishing vessel
seemingly in pristine condition,
with no signs of the nine men
and boys who have been missing
since Feb. 9 when the USS
Greeneville collided with the
ship during an emergency sur
Damage to the bottom of the
boat was not visible because of
the downward angle of the video,
taken 2,033 feet below the ocean
surface, Coast Guard spokesman
Lt Greg Fondran said Saturday.
Relatives have demanded
answers as to why the 360-foot
nuclear-powered submarine sta
tioned two civilians at key con
trols during the emergency drill.
As the 6,900-ton submarine sur
faced, its rudder superstructure
knifed through the hull of the
500-ton Ehime Maru, which sank
Twenty-six survivors were
plucked from the waters near
Pearl Harbor. The remaining
nine crew and passengers’ are
missing and presumed dead.
“The court of inquiry will
provide a full and open account
ing for the American and
Japanese people,” Adm. Thomas
Fleet, said during a news confer
Fargo said the Navy expected
to convene the inquiry - the
Navy’s highest form of adminis
trative investigation - at Pearl
Harbor on Thursday.
The hearing could result in a
recommendation for courts
martial of the USS Greeneville’s
officers, Fargo said.
The submarine’s command
er, executive officer and officer of
the deck have been named par
ties to the inquiry.
Three Navy flag officers will
make up the court, Fargo said.
“The seriousness in which I
view this tragic accident is
reflected in the level of investiga
tion and the seniority of the court
members,” Fargo said.
The submarine’s command
er, Cmdr: Scott Waddle, was reas
signed to a staff position after the
incident. The other two officers
named were Lt Cmdr. Gerald K.
Pfeifer and Lt.j.g. Michael J.
“The families have been a
great concern of ours throughout
this past week,” said Fargo. “I've
got a great empathy for the
Japanese people and their fami
lies and we’ll do everything in our
power to make sure we have a full
accounting on this accident and
take care of their needs here in
As for the families’demand
for an apology from Waddle, the
admiral noted that because
Waddle’s actions are under inves
tigation “there are legal implica
tions, I think, with respect to that
It will certainly be his judgment”
Marc Rich pardon
■ Clinton denies he gave pardon because Rich's
former wife made political contributions.
THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
WASHINGTON—Former President Clinton gave
his fullest defense yet of the Marc Rich pardon on
Sunday, but failed to silence critics who argue that
political donations and connections helped the fugi
tive financier’s cause.
“I want every American to know that, while you
may disagree with this decision, I made it on the mer
its as I saw them, and I take full responsibility for it,”
Clinton wrote in an op-ed column in The New York
“The suggestion that I granted the pardons
because Mr. Rich’s former wife, Denise, made politi
cal contributions and contributed to the Clinton
library foundation is utterly false.”
Clinton also wrote that three well-known
Republican lawyers who once represented Rich
“reviewed and advocated” the case for his pardon. All
three denied that assertion. “I was astounded,” one
The former president’s last-minute pardon of
Rich, who has lived in Switzerland since fleeing a 1983
indictment on tax evasion and other charges, has
prompted an investigation by federal prosecutors in
NewYork and congressional hearings.
Investigators want to know if Rich bought his par
don by passing money through his ex-wife, Denise
Rich, who has acknowledged making large contribu
tions both to Hillary Rodham Clinton’s Senate race
and to die presidential library.
Sen. Aden Specter, R-Pa., a senior member of a
Senate Judiciary Committee, which is reviewing the
pardon, said there were "a great many questions
which the former president has left unanswered.”
“He does not say why he did not talk to the prose
cuting attorneys. He does not say why he didn't talk to
the pardon attorney for die Department of Justice”
and didn’t follow their regulations, Specter said on
nbc s Meet me ness.
“Nobody's questioning that the president had the
power to pardon whomever he wanted to,” said Rep.
Dan Burton, R-Ind., whose House Government
Reform Committee also held hearings on the pardon.
“The American people want to know why one of
the most wanted fugitives in the world was granted a
pardon," he said on CNN’s “Late Edition.” “This edito
rial doesn't explain it”
Clinton cited eight reasons for his decision, five of
which he said were directly related to his conclusion
that the case was improperly handled when criminal
charges were filed in 1983.
He wrote that he pardoned Rich only after con
cluding that a civil court should have handled the
case, and he fashioned the pardon to allow for the
pursuit of new civil charges.
Clinton added that many high-ranking Israeli
officials and Jewish community leaders urged the
pardon because of Rich’s contributions to Israeli
The former president also wrote that “the case for
the pardons was reviewed and advocated” by former
White House counsel Jack Quinn and three
Republican attorneys: Lewis Libby, Vice President
Dick Cheney’s chief of staff; Leonard Garment, a for
mer Nixon White House official; and William
Bradford Reynolds, who ran the Justice Department’s
civil rights division under President Reagan.
The three attorneys denied Clinton's statement
The Associated Press
10-year-old boy accused of
sexual assulting 4-year-old
MILWAUKEE — Police have
arrested a 10-year-old boy
accused of sexually assaulting a 4
The boy was taken into cus
tody Friday. Police said he admit
ted to having sex with the girl in
his house on Feb. 11.
"They're getting younger, but
at 10, this one is unique,” Police
Sgt Donald Derge said.
Erin Thornley, executive
director of the Wisconsin
Coalition Against Sexual Assault,
said many sexual assaults occur
between preteen children, but the
cases usually were shrouded in
the anonymity of juvenile courts.
"It's more common than what
we usually talk about,” Thornley
The boy is due in juvenile
court March 5.
Two women ski 2300 miles
across Antarctic land mass
explorers who were stranded on
an Antarctic ice shelf for two days
have been airlifted to McMurdo
Station where they were quickly
snowed in again.
Arm Bancroft, 45, of Scandia,
Minn., and Liv Amesen, 47, of
Oslo, Norway, became the first
women to ski 2300 miles across
the Antarctic land mass when
they reached the frozen ocean of
the Ross Ice Shelf on Sunday. They
had hoped to ski and parasail the
remaining 470 miles to the sta
tion, but poor weather conditions
convinced them to call for an air
plane rescue instead.
The women and their rescue
team arrived at McMurdo Station
on Saturday evening but a severe
snowstorm delayed their depar
ture via helicopter to a waiting
ship bound for Tasmania,
Australia, said Charlie Hartwell,
president of your
expedition.com, the company
supporting the trip.
Washington University human
sexuality researcher dies
ST. LOUIS — William H.
Masters, one of die first and lead
ing researchers in the field of
human sexuality, died in a
Tucson, Ariz. hospital Friday of
complications from Parkinson's
disease, a hospital spokeswoman
said. He was 85.
Masters gained an interest in
sexuality while a medical student
in New York in the 1940s. He
established himself as1 a
researcher in obstetrics and gyne
cology and moved on to study
human sexuality at Washington
University in St Louis, where he
cofounded the Masters and
Partnered with Virginia
Johnson, his future wife, Masters
conducted interviews and
observed sex in the act, research
ing biological responses and
monitoring the physiology of sex
Based on that research, the
pair published “Human Sexual
Response" in 1966, which became
a best-seller despite its technical
Wildfire bums out of control,
POLK CITY—An 8,500-acre
wildfire burning out of control
closed a 10-mile section of
Interstate 4 on Sunday and forced
the evacuation of dozens of
The wind-driven fire near
Polk City in central Florida had
grown overnight from 2,000 acres
and jumped to the south side of I
4, a heavily traveled route
between Orlando andTbmpa.
“This is very intense and
erratic fire behavior," said Paul
Palmiotto, assistant chief of forest
protection at die Florida Division
Fire officials were assessing
whether to also evacuate the Polk
County Correctional Institute.
Another 30 homes about a mil$
away also remained evacuated
after residents were told to leave
The fire was 20 percent con
tained and firefighters were dig
ging ditches for a fire line south of
the blaze, Polk County emergency
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