- The Washington Times - Thursday, March 6, 2003

Osama bin Washington
A Democratic congresswoman compared Osama bin Laden and his al Qaeda terrorists with America's Revolutionary War armies.
"If you think back to our founding as a country, we are a country of revolution," Rep. Marcy Kaptur of Ohio said in an interview with the Toledo Blade.
When America "cast off monarchical Britain" in 1776, it involved the help of many religious people who had fled repression in other countries, the 11-term lawmaker said. Among the nontraditional American revolutionaries were the Green Mountain Boys, a patriot militia organized in 1770 in Bennington, Vt., to confront British forces, she said.
"One could say that Osama bin Laden and these non-nation-state fighters with religious purpose are very similar to those kind of atypical revolutionaries that helped to cast off the British crown," Miss Kaptur said.
According to the newspaper, Miss Kaptur and the Rev. Jim Bacik, pastor of Toledo's Corpus Christi University Parish, will speak at a workshop tomorrow for local Catholic leaders titled "Preaching and Teaching Peace in the Face of War."
Miss Kaptur also told the Blade that rather than initiating military action, the United States should try to counter poverty and repression in the Middle East.
"I think food and education will help stem the poverty of the young people who are being drawn into terrorism every day," she said.
Bin Laden was raised in one of Saudi Arabia's richest and most-prominent families, and most of the 19 September 11 terrorists were university-educated citizens of Saudi Arabia, one of the world's richest countries.
France's behavior
"We have been reminded that France is not to be trusted at any time, on any issue," historian Paul Johnson writes at www.forbes.com.
"The British have learned this over 1,000 years of acrimonious history, but it still comes as a shock to see how badly the French can behave, with their unique mixture of shortsighted selfishness, long-term irresponsibility, impudent humbug and sheer malice. Americans are still finding out the hard way that loyalty, gratitude, comradeship and respect for treaty obligations are qualities never exhibited by French governments.
"All they recognize are interests, real or imaginary. French support always has to be bought. What the Americans and British now have to decide is whether formal alliances that include France as a major partner are worth anything at all, or if they are an actual encumbrance in times of danger," Mr. Johnson said.
"We also have to decide whether France should be allowed to remain as a permanent member of the U.N. Security Council, with veto power, or whether it should be replaced by a more suitable power, such as India.
"Linked to this is the question of whether France can be trusted as a nuclear power. The French have certainly sold nuclear technology to rogue states in the past, Iraq among them. In view of France's attempts to sabotage America's vigorous campaign to halt the spread of weapons of mass destruction, we need to be sure that France is not planning to cover the cost of its flagging nuclear weapons program by selling secrets to unruly states. Certainly Anglo-American surveillance of French activities in this murky area must be intensified."
Paige surrenders
"What was the point of setting up a blue-ribbon commission?" Kathryn Jean Lopez asks at National Review Online (www.nationalreview.com).
"That's the question currently on the mind of supporters of Title IX reform. Last week, upon receiving the final Commission on Opportunity in Athletics report, Secretary of Education, Rod Paige announced that he would only consider the recommendations that received unanimous consent.
"In other words, any reform has to be embraced by the likes of the Women's Sports Foundation, which was already [over]represented on the commission and which sets the terms of most of the Title IX debate and coverage.
"Reception of the report has been far from unanimous: Feminist groups oppose some of the 19 'unanimous' recommendations, even those that their own sisters signed onto while serving on the commission. So, that criterion might not even pass the test in the end," the columnist said.
"Supporters of reform are left perplexed. Eric Pearson, chairman of the College Sports Council, sent a letter to Paige over the weekend expressing his distress at the apparent cave. He wrote: 'Instead of creating the commission, the Department of Education would have been better served if it had just convened a meeting with the Feminist Majority and the National Women's Law Center and let them write the report. This would have saved the time of those citizens who made sacrifices to participate in the hearings.'"
Hollywood Edwards
"You can call him Sen. John 'Hollywood' Edwards," the New York Post says.
"The Democratic presidential hopeful met Friday afternoon with the 10-percenters at the William Morris agency. 'John's book agent is [William Morris chairman] Norman Brokaw,' said our source.
"An insider said, 'It was weird we never had someone in here tub-thumping before. It was somewhat of a surprise. But [Mr. Edwards] is young, Southern and attractive, and I can see Hollywood getting behind him.'
"The North Carolina lawmaker handed out press clippings. 'He went into this long pitch about who he is and what he's about it was like a Hollywood version of grass-roots campaigning. … He was trying to be the next Bill Clinton.' …
"Later, Casey Wasserman, grandson of the late MCA mogul Lew Wasserman, threw a $2,000-a-head fund-raiser for Edwards with such Tinseltown guests as Jack Valenti and Sid Sheinberg," the newspaper said.
Bad news for mayor
Two of Los Angeles Mayor James Hahn's most prominent rivals have captured seats on the City Council.
Former police Chief Bernard Parks and former state Assembly Speaker Antonio Villaraigosa were elected to the City Council on Tuesday, reviving their political careers and setting up a potential City Hall power struggle, the Associated Press reports.
Mr. Parks won Tuesday's election with 78 percent of the vote, easily beating four minor candidates in South Central Los Angeles' 8th District.
Mr. Villaraigosa beat incumbent City Council member Nick Pacheco, 56 percent to 40 percent, with a third candidate trailing.
"Tonight is a night to be proud and also humble," said Mr. Villaraigosa, who lost a bitter mayor's race to Mr. Hahn two years ago.
The victories by Mr. Parks and Mr. Villaraigosa could be political trouble for Mr. Hahn, who ran a combative mayoral race against Mr. Villaraigosa in 2001 and refused to support Mr. Parks for a second term as chief. Mr. Hahn often wins council battles by just one or two votes, and his majority could now be in jeopardy.
Both men are also considered potential challengers to Mr. Hahn in the 2005 mayoral race.
Voice of Saddam
A man employed by CBS News to speak the words of Saddam Hussein during his interview with Dan Rather last week reportedly adopted a fake Arabic accent.
CBS News hired Steve Winfield, a Screen Actors Guild member with no such accent in real life. Mr. Winfield is advertised on the Web as a specialist in foreign accents, the Los Angeles Times reported yesterday.
Mr. Winfield spoke Saddam's words after they had been translated by three independent Arabic translators, CBS said.
He recorded the audio "in a voice compatible with the piece," CBS spokeswoman Sandra Genelius said on Thursday.
The translation was fully accurate and "in complete compliance with CBS News standards," she said.

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