- The Washington Times - Tuesday, October 23, 2001

Murkowski's decision
U.S. Sen. Frank H. Murkowski announced yesterday that he will run for governor of Alaska next year.
Mr. Murkowski, a Republican and chairman of the Energy and Natural Resources Committee, made the announcement in Talkeetna, Alaska, where he spent the weekend attending the Alaska Youth Summit.
"Many Alaskans have expressed to me their concerns about the lack of progress on important issues like the state's increasing budget deficits, declining education performance and funding, lack of economic growth and diversification, and the growing divide between rural and urban Alaska," Mr. Murkowski said in a prepared statement.

Boos for Hillary
"Senator Hillary Clinton's inner circle is furious at Miramax king Harvey Weinstein after the former first lady suffered through a public relations nightmare during Saturday's Concert for New York," Internet columnist Matt Drudge reports.
"Hillary Clinton was jeered and booed by thousands gathered at Madison Square Garden as she took to the stage unannounced to introduce a movie clip," Mr. Drudge said yesterday at his Web site, www.drudgereport.com.
"VH1 cameras captured firemen and police heroes wildly booing Clinton, who attempted to raise her voice above the shouting crowd.
"'Get off the stage! We don't want you here!' yelled one New York City police officer just feet from the senator.
"Anti-Clinton slurs spread and intensified throughout the Garden, with many standing near the stage lobbing profanities.
"Event-planner and close Clinton friend Harvey Weinstein was visibly shaken as he heard the crowd erupt with boos and jeers, according to an eyewitness.
"The junior senator from New York ending up giving the shortest presentation of the evening, clocking in at under 20 seconds.
"Other New York politicians received warmer welcomes during the five-hour concert, which featured Paul McCartney, Mick Jagger, Elton John and others.
"Former President Bill Clinton, who took the stage minutes after his wife, worked over scattered boos with talk of the rescuers' heroism."

Cheers for Lee
More than 3,000 people rallied behind Rep. Barbara Lee, the only member of Congress to oppose a resolution granting President Bush authority to use force against terrorists.
The crowd in downtown Oakland erupted in cheers Sunday when actor Danny Glover walked Mrs. Lee to the podium about two hours into the rally. Mr. Glover called Mrs. Lee a hero. Alice Walker, the writer, called her inspiring, the Associated Press reports.
Mrs. Lee thanked the crowd profusely for their support, following songs, poetry and speeches in her honor.
The California Democrat's decision has won both admiration and derision from California's 9th District, which includes the historically dovish cities of Oakland and Berkeley.
Last week, former state Assemblywoman Audie Bock announced she would run against Mrs. Lee in the March Democratic primary, and already had geared up a patriotic-themed campaign called "OK to love America."

Democrats hold hands
"It was like watching a rerun of 'All in the Family,'" New York Times columnist Bob Herbert writes.
"After several days of extremely neurotic behavior, the city's leading Democrats decided late last week that fratricide was not a reasonable option. They united behind the mayoral candidacy of Mark Green," Mr. Herbert said.
"On Friday afternoon in a tableau that one observer described as 'a nightmare for Bloomberg' a throng of big-time Democrats, including Senators Charles Schumer and Hillary Rodham Clinton and the Democratic national chairman, Terry McAuliffe, gathered at a midtown hotel to say nice things about Mr. Green and his primary opponent, Fernando Ferrer.
"Earlier in the week, some supporters of Mr. Ferrer were threatening to challenge Mr. Green's primary victory in the courts, and others were making sultry eye contact with Michael Bloomberg, the Republican mayoral candidate.
"But by Friday afternoon, the Archies and Meatheads had calmed down, the advances of the wealthy Republican had been rejected, and the Rev. Al Sharpton who has gleefully elbowed his way into the power circles of the establishment was preparing for his planned trip this week to Israel."

Silent Muslims
"What do Muslims think of Osama bin Laden?" Daniel Pipes asks in a column in the New York Post.
"Ask Westerners and you'll hear how marginal he is. President Bush says bin Laden represents a 'fringe form of Islamic extremism rejected by Muslim scholars and the vast majority of Muslim clerics.' American specialists on Islam agree. 'Osama bin Laden is to Islam like Timothy McVeigh is to Christianity,' says Mark Juergensmeyer of the University of California. Karen Armstrong, author of a best-selling book about Islam, reports that the 'vast majority of Muslims are horrified by the atrocity of Sept. 11.'
"Well, that 'vast majority' is well hidden and awfully quiet, if it even exists. With the exception of one government-staged anti-bin Laden demonstration in Pakistan and very few prominent Islamic scholars, hardly anyone publicly denounces him. The only Islamic scholar in Egypt who unreservedly condemns the Sept. 11 suicide operations admits he is completely isolated," said Mr. Pipes, who is director of the Philadelphia-based Middle East Forum.
"American officials are still waiting for Muslim politicians to speak up. 'It'd be nice if some leaders came out and said that the idea that the United States is targeting Islam is absurd,' notes one U.S. diplomat. They don't because the Muslim world is bursting with adulation for the Saudi militant."

'The Chomsky plague'
Radical-turned-conservative David Horowitz, never one to mince words, has declared left-wing academic Noam Chomsky to be "a loony."
Mr. Chomsky, a professor of linguistics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, is "a nut case a full-blown over-the-top narcissistic whack job," says Mr. Horowitz, head of the Los Angeles-based Center for the Study of Popular Culture (CSPC).
"To make myself eminently clear, let me draw a parallel to underscore the distinction," Mr. Horowitz declares on his Web site, www.frontpagemag.com. "Al Sharpton is an embarrassing buffoon and a disgusting racist. But he is not a loony. Louis Farrakhan is a loony. And so is Professor Chomsky."
Proclaiming Mr. Chomsky "the ayatollah of anti-American hate," Mr. Horowitz is working to counter the MIT professor's influence on American college campuses.
Mr. Horowitz has written an anti-Chomsky pamphlet, and the CSPC has already distributed 50,000 copies at universities and is preparing another 50,000 pamphlets to give to "student victims of the Chomsky plague."

Arming pilots
A survey commissioned by the Allied Pilots Association and the United Seniors Association finds that 75 percent of Americans favor arming airline pilots.
The groups, which support the arming of pilots, point to the poll results as the House prepares to debate legislation on airline safety.
The survey, conducted the the Winston group, also found:
Almost half (49 percent) of Americans would switch to an airline that armed its pilots.
More than half (51 percent) would be willing to pay up to $25 per ticket for new security measures.
Seventy-eight percent of married women with children support arming airline pilots.
The Airline Passenger Security Survey was conducted Oct. 9-10 with 800 registered voters across the nation. The margin of error was plus or minus 3.5 percent.

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