posted by GeoT
SHERWANGAI, Pakistan – Pakistani soldiers battling their way into a Taliban stronghold along the Afghan border have seized passports that may be linked to 9/11 suspects, as they confront an enemy skilled in operating in a mountainous terrain with endless ways to wage a guerrilla war.
Passport of Spanish citizen Raquel Burgos Garcia
The military on Thursday took foreign and local journalists for a first look inside the largely lawless territory since it launched a ground offensive here in mid-October.
The U.S.-backed operation is focused on a section of the tribal region where the Pakistani Taliban are based and are believed to shelter al-Qaida.
Soldiers displayed passports seized in the operation, among them a German document belonging to a man named Said Bahaji. That matches the name of a man thought to have been a member of the Hamburg cell that conceived the 9/11 attacks. Bahaji is believed to
have fled Germany shortly before the attacks in New York and Washington.
The passport included a tourist visa for Pakistan and a stamp indicating he’d arrived in the southern city of Karachi on Sept. 4, 2001.
Another passport, from Spain, bears the name of Raquel Burgos Garcia. Spanish media have reported that a woman with the same name is married to Amer Azizi, an alleged al-Qaida member from Morocco suspected in both the 9/11 attacks and the Madrid train bombings in 2004.
Her family in Madrid has had no news of her since 2001, according to Spanish media. Her passport included visas to India and Iran, and the army displayed a Moroccan document with Burgos Garcia’s photo and other information.
It was impossible to determine whether the passports are genuine, and German and Spanish officials did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
Full Story here:
Speaking last week at a fundraising dinner for the top New York gay rights group ESPA, Senator Chuck Schumer articulated a far broader vision for same-sex marriage than he or most Democrats typically state publicly. “If Dick Cheney can support (same-sex) marriage, so can every Senator.”
Posted by Audiegrl
There are two additions to the lineup for tonight’s opening game of the World Series at Yankees Stadium: Michelle Obama and Dr. Jill Biden.
Michelle Obama, Jill Biden, Yogi Berra and Capt. Tony Odierno
The first wives will participate in ceremonies honoring Welcome Back Veterans, accompanied by Yankees legend Yogi Berra, and West Point graduate and Iraq War veteran Tony Odierno.
Odierno, who lost his left arm in the Iraq War, is an operations employee at Yankees Stadium. Berra served in the Navy during World War II.
“We are looking forward to welcoming the First Lady and Dr. Biden to Yankee Stadium and Game One of the 2009 World Series,” said Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig, “We hope their presence at both the game and the hospital visit will be an inspiration to the veterans, who proudly served our country.”
Mrs. Obama and Dr. Biden, along with several members of the Yankees, will visit patients at the James J. Peters VA Medical Center in the Bronx.
Long before their husbands became President and Vice President, the two women have made veterans and military families a central priority. Mrs. Obama has visited Fort Bragg to talk to military families twice since the President took office. Dr. Biden is a Blue Star Mom – the Vice President’s son Beau Biden recently returned from a tour of duty in Iraq.
Tonight’s game in New York highlighted the work of welcomebackveterans.org, an organization that has awarded $5.8 million in grants to non-profit agencies across the country targeting veterans’ greatest needs, including mental health and job training/placement.
Michelle Obama and Jill Biden Support Our Veterans
First Lady Michelle Obama and Dr. Jill Biden express their support for our returning heroes, and ask all Americans to get involved.
posted by GeoT
That Was Then:
National health insurance pool-free for poor and children
Q: How would your health plan improve insurance coverage for the new generation?
LIEBERMAN: There is a morally scandalous fact-that that 43 million Americans don’t have health insurance, 2 million more than when George Bush became president. I’m proposing to create a national health insurance pool like the one that members of Congress get our insurance from. If you don’t have insurance now, you’ll be able to get it, probably free, if you’re among the low-income working poor. If you’re a child, you will be covered by insurance at birth. If you are fired from your work or lose your job, you will not lose your health insurance. MediKids is part of my program. Every child born in America will become a member of MediKids, and it will cover them from birth through 25. Why 25? Because young adults have a hard time affording health insurance, and a lot of them think they’re not going to get sick, but they do, and we need to cover them.
Source: Democratic 2004 Primary Debate at St. Anselm College Jan 22, 2004
This Is Now:
On Tuesday, Sen. Joseph Lieberman (I-Conn.) announced that he would withhold his vote for the Senate’s final health care reform bill if it included a government-run public health insurance plan, the Wall Street Journal reports. Lieberman, who usually caucuses with the Democrats, said that the bill in its current state would have to be changed significantly to secure his support. Lieberman said, “To put this government-created insurance company on top of everything else is just asking for trouble for the taxpayers, for the premium payers and for the national debt. I don’t think we need it now,” adding, “We’re trying to do too much at once.”
Lieberman said that Reid’s plan for a public option with a state opt-out clause also would not garner his support because “it still creates a whole new government entitlement program for which taxpayers will be on the line”
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PETITION TO SENATE DEMOCRATS:
“Any Democratic senators — including Joe Lieberman — who support a Republican attempt to block a vote on health care reform should be stripped of their leadership titles. Americans deserve a clean up-or-down vote on health care reform that includes a public option.”
Over 90,000 signatures and growing…
CLICK HERE TO SIGN THE PETITION
See 2-Part In-depth interview with Pakistani journalists below
Oct. 29 (Bloomberg) — U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said some Pakistani officials probably know where al- Qaeda is holed up in the country and urged the government to hunt down the terrorist group.
“Al-Qaeda has had safe haven in Pakistan since 2002,” Clinton told a group of editors in the eastern Pakistani city of Lahore. “I find it hard to believe that nobody in your government knows where they are and couldn’t get them if they really wanted to. Maybe that’s the case; maybe they’re not gettable. I don’t know.”
Sec. of State Hillary Clinton
Clinton made the comments on the second day of a visit to support economic development, counter rising anti-American sentiment and chip away at mistrust of U.S. aims in the region, during which she was due to meet with Pakistani opposition leaders as well as military and intelligence chiefs.
Clinton, who condemned yesterday’s bombing in the northwestern city of Peshawar that killed at least 105 people, called on former premier Nawaz Sharif, leader of the main opposition. She is scheduled to meet Pakistan’s most powerful national security policymaker, the army chief General Ashfaq Pervez Kayani, this evening in Islamabad.
Saying that she was “more than willing” to listen to Pakistani complaints about U.S. policies, Clinton stressed that Pakistan has to be mindful of American security concerns.
“But this is a two-way street,” Clinton said. “I ask in the pursuit of mutual respect that you take seriously our concerns.”
Read more at:
In depth interview with Pakistani journalists:
Clinton to Meet Abbas, Netanyahu
ISLAMABAD (AP) — U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton will meet Israeli and Palestinian leaders over the weekend to push ahead with flagging efforts to restart peace talks, the State Department said Thursday.
Same as the difference between Chris Wallace and Glen Beck…