Monday, March 28, 2016

Why is there a question stating, "Who is responsible for Donald Trump?" That is nonsense. It is an empty question.

To begin with the Trump campaign reflects the VALUES of the Republicans turning out at his rallies. Is there a question about that? I don't think there is. His rallies are full of enthusiastic Republicans. Questions?

Not only that, but, if there is any entity responsible for the rise of Trump, it is the Republican establishment that has received complete defeat. 

There was something like twenty candidates in the beginning? Trump was a choice and he still is.

Donald Trump is addressing issues of concern to Republican voters otherwise he would not be in the race and would have retired to his empire by now. He is also receiving endorsements by very popular people, including Sarah Palin and Dr. Ben Carson. Donald Trump has been endorsed by police and I think it was a police union. 

Donald Trump is not taking money and is the only Republican candidate that is not taking money. He has no false reasons to be in the race. As a matter of fact I have been surprised to the degree he is campaigning. He really means it. He wants to be President of the USA because he strongly believes he can solve the problems of the country no one else can.

Donald Trump's ideas are classical Republican. He is a businessman. A successful businessman. The Republican model for the government is to be treated as a business. There is nothing about him that surprises me. The only reason anyone is asking "Who is responsible for Trump?" is because the Republican establishment is pouting.

I don't see one thing wrong with his candidacy. His issues with Muslims and illegal immigrants are based in reality. Are they noble? Do the people of the USA want noble or practical?

He is running for President, he wants to win and he is determined to have a White House that will solve the problems of the country. He doesn't have to do it alone. As a matter of fact it is impossible to do it alone and he has a successful way of moving through the weeds. 

The question is silly. Every primary voter is responsible for the candidacy of Donald Trump.

It looks like Yemen doesn't want the USA's help.

March 26, 2016
By Ali al-Mujahed and Sudarsan Raghavan

 Tens of thousands protested in the Yemeni (click here) capital Saturday on the anniversary of a U.S.-backed, Saudi-led coalition’s entrance into a civil war that has killed thousands and strengthened the Islamic State and al-Qaeda in this strategic Middle Eastern nation.
As coalition jets roared overhead, some demonstrators carried the Yemeni flag and chanted “End the siege!” while others vowed to “fight the Saudi aggression and its agents until their last man.”
The conflict in this nation, which straddles the southern tip of the Arabian Peninsula and borders key oil shipping routes in the Red Sea, pits the government, supported largely by Saudi-led airstrikes, against the rebel Houthis and forces loyal to former president Ali Abdullah Saleh....

That is the way it works in the middle east. The more killed, the more alliances form around terrorist regimes. No one is celebrating pluralism.

...On Saturday morning, many protesters carried pictures of Saleh, who gave a speech to his supporters condemning the Saudi intervention. But the former president also said that he would be open to discussions with the Saudis to bring the conflict to an end....

It looks like the United Nations' Security Council needs to take the movement seriously and begin talks to end the war. This might not ever present itself again. Power sharing governments are going to dominate the middle east. There are dearly few countries exclusively Sunni or Shia outside of Iran. Even Iran has a small population of Jewish (click here). There is an ethnic group in Iran called the Jewish National Committee, on Palestine Street.
I would expect the power sharing government would denounce terrorist groups.

These things happen. It is why it is called "Due Process."

Back to searching for any one who thinks they can cause violence. Looking at the picture it is easy to see why someone was wrongly accused. The police were just doing their job. 

March 28, 2016
By Andrew Higgins and Aurelien Breeden

Brussels — In another blunder acknowledged after (click here) the Brussels bombings, the Belgian authorities said Monday that they had misidentified a man arrested as the missing suspect shown in an airport surveillance photo, wearing a dark hat and white coat.
The man, arrested on Thursday and charged on Friday, was released after three days in custody, during which some officials publicly vilified him as a terrorist. On Monday, the police said the real suspect, one of the men who took bombs hidden in luggage to a departure hall at Brussels Airport, remained at large, and they issued a new plea to the public to help identify him.
The release of the man — identified by the Belgian news media and Belgian officials as Fayçal Cheffou, who has called himself a freelance journalist — is a setback for the Belgian authorities, who have struggled for more than a year to get a handle on the growing threat of Islamic State militants....
...The release of the man — identified by the Belgian news media and Belgian officials as Fayçal Cheffou, who has called himself a freelance journalist — is a setback for the Belgian authorities, who have struggled for more than a year to get a handle on the growing threat of Islamic State militants....

I think there is a mosque that needs to be visited, in all sincerity. The community has to feel safe and their young people are leaving them. That is a tragic all by itself. I don't know how parents bear that knowledge. 

Australia definition of "Free Range" chicken is a prime example of what occurs with TPP.

March 28, 2016
By Esther Han

Eggs from farms with 10,000 birds per hectare (click here) -  more than six times the number considered fair by consumer and animal welfare groups - could be labelled "free range" under proposed, legally binding standards.
Consumer affairs ministers will this week sign-off on one of four legal definitions, three of which hinge on hens having "meaningful access" to the outdoor range, with a maximum stocking density of 10,000 hens per hectare.
The list of options leaked to Fairfax Media, show one option is the status quo, meaning nothing changes and consumer confusion would still abound....

Why bother having a government at all if what they do is blur lines of quality so their Wall Street cronies have more clout than any other form of economic size and scope?

It is corruption to confuse the consumer and provide profits to Wall Street. This is what free trade agreements do. They remove the law of the land no matter the country and write new standards that minimize the clout of wholesomeness.

Small family farms that supply healthy, untainted food to the market should be rewarded for their dedication to the consumer. But, that is not what occurs. Kindly listen to the farmer in the video at the article above and hear the pride he shares with people about his work and product to them as consumers. There is no factory farm that can claim these standards.

"...We are running 150 birds per hectacre (one hectare contains about 2.47 acres)..." That matters to consumers and there should be a dedicated indication on the product to prove it.

Free Trade Agreements are dangerous to consumers.

Who owns this country, Wall Street or the people? If one answers 'the people' then one has to realize there is a demand for the end of corruption.

" comes from my heart and my brain..."

Donald Trump has his own credentials. How many times has he consulted on projects or a variety of issues. 

Donald Trumps credentials matter. Stop treating him like a man without capacity.

Foreign relations is one aspect of the qualifications for President. I defy anyone to say Donald Trump is going to be a worse President than "W." Bush entered the White House with three bankrupt oil companies.

Where was the qualification of "W" for the presidency? Perhaps a C student at Harvard. 

"W" had no credentials to enter the presidency. He was elected because of his name, not because he had a substantial record of excellence in government. He oversaw some of the highest rates of executions in Texas.

"Good job, Brownie."

There was not one campaign promise he kept. He didn't keep up safe. If 911 happened with Donald Trump in the White House there would be a very different reaction by the country. Donald Trump's views of Iran is best defined by the old Bush view as expressed during a State of the Union speech and his "Axis of Evil Speech." There is nothing new with Donald Trump. Donald Trump is an extension of the "W" White House. 

The people want their country back. It has been in the back pocket of Wall Street for far too long. 

People in poverty are not lazy. They are oppressed.

In 2014, 47 million people lived in Poverty USA. That means the poverty rate for 2014 was 15%.
The 2014 poverty rate was 2.3 percentage points higher than in 2007, the year before the 2008 recession.
This is the fourth consecutive year that the number of people in poverty has remained unchanged from the previous year’s poverty estimate.

Source: Income, Poverty, and Health Insurance Coverage in the United States: 2014, U.S. Census Bureau; Income and Poverty in the United States: 2014, U.S. Census Bureau
Who is going to end poverty in the USA? 
All those who make less (click here) than the Federal government’s official poverty threshold. . . which for a family of four is $24,000.00. People working at minimum wage, even holding down several jobs. Seniors living on fixed incomes. Wage earners suddenly out of work. Millions of families everywhere from our cities to rural communities.
Poverty does not strike all demographics equally. For example, in 2014, 13% of men lived in Poverty USA, and 16% of women lived in poverty. Along the same lines, the poverty rate for married couples in 2014 was only 6%–but the poverty rate for single-parent families with no wife present was up to 16%, and for single-parent families with no husband present 31%.
And though poverty is often perceived as a problem of urban environments and inner cities, the poverty rate in metropolitan areas (15%) is actually lower than the poverty rate for people outside of metropolitan areas (17%).
In 2014, the poverty rate for people living with a disability was 29%. That’s more than 4 million people living with a disability—in poverty....

The final stage of the email mess should bring a resolve to this issue.

The Hillary Clinton campaign should encourage any more interviews be conducted as soon as possible and bring a close to this investigation. The lethargy of this investigation has cost her momentum and voters.

The fact the private server was at the former President's home also brings a level of security. The circumstances to all this is extraordinary. I believe the measure of this isn't possible considering all the facts.  This is a call by the FBI and they will weigh all the possibilities and file the case in the way the facts roll out.
March 28, 2016
By Del Quentin Wilbur
Federal prosecutors investigating (click here) the possible mishandling of classified materials on Hillary Clinton’s private email server have begun the process of setting up formal interviews with some of her longtime and closest aides, according to two people familiar with the probe, an indication that the inquiry is moving into its final phases.
Those interviews and the final review of the case, however, could still take many weeks, all but guaranteeing that the investigation will continue to dog Clinton’s presidential campaign through most, if not all, of the remaining presidential primaries.
No dates have been set for questioning the advisors, but a federal prosecutor in recent weeks has called their lawyers to alert them that he would soon be doing so, the sources said. Prosecutors also are expected to seek an interview with Clinton herself, though the timing remains unclear....

Aaron Brown was the voice of sanity for many, me included. I retained his transcripts as an accurate record of the events of an illegal war.

Pentagon Requests More Troops; Interview With Anna Quindlen

Aired April 15, 2004 - 22:00 ET


AARON BROWN, CNN ANCHOR: Good evening again everyone. On a day when the Pentagon formally acknowledged the obvious, more troops are needed in Iraq, it is fair to ask about the reasons why. There are many, of course. The insurgency is larger than expected. It has spread from the Sunni north to parts of the Shiite south. The insurgents themselves have proven to be more resilient than expected, more adaptive and more dedicated but that's just a part and here is another. 

The Iraqi security forces seem to be a mess. It's been easy to find soldiers willing to join, far harder to find leaders willing to lead. Today, too many Iraqis believe they are fighting for us, for the Americans not for themselves and their country. Until that changes and it won't be easy to change, the bad months are likely to continue. Iraq again is a large part of the program but it is not the start.The whip (Whip Around the World was the news segment. Don't know where the name came from.) begins with a tape almost certainly bearing the voice of Osama bin Laden. CNN's Nic Robertson is in Afghanistan where the hunt for bin Laden is centered, so Nic a headline from you tonight.

NIC ROBERTSON, CNN SR. INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Aaron, an attempt by Osama bin Laden it appears to isolate the United States, perhaps his most politically astute message so far, offering a truce from attacks to European countries -- Aaron.

BROWN: Nic, thank you. We'll get to you at the top tonight. Iraq next and the announcement military families have been anticipating but hoping just the same not to hear. Jamie McIntyre, our Senior Pentagon Correspondent with the details of that tonight, Jamie start with a headline.

JAMIE MCINTYRE, CNN SR. PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT: Well, Aaron, the news that's been dribbling out over the past couple of days that thousands of U.S. troops will have to stay on in Iraq has been a tacit admission that the Pentagon didn't anticipate what's happening now in Iraq and today the defense secretary made that tacit admission explicit.

BROWN: Jamie, thank you.Finally, the work of the 9/11 Commission and the search for responsibility, CNN's Kelli Arena covering for us, so Kelli a headline. 

KELLI ARENA, CNN JUSTICE CORRESPONDENT: Aaron, the 9/11 Commission hearings shed considerable light on the intelligence failures leading up to the attacks but one single question remains. Was there any one thing that would have prevented September 11th?

BROWN: Kelli, thank you. We'll get back to you and the rest shortly.
Also coming up on the program tonight, the truly frightening story of a man convicted five times of molesting children who is now free again. How did this happen?
And on the opposite end of the spectrum architect David Adjay (ph). He and his designs are very much "On the Rise." And speaking of rising, the rooster stops by with what you'll see in the morning when you rise, your morning papers for tomorrow, my goodness, all that and more in the hour ahead.
We begin tonight with the voice on the tape, according to the CIA, a voice almost certainly belonging to Osama bin Laden. It is not to our ears at least the message of a fugitive cut off from the rest of the world. Which we expect is precisely the point being made. The tape refers to a number of recent events and restates a series of familiar threats. This time, however, there is also a "peace offering." We put that in quotes because it seems tailored to cause maximum turmoil and is phrased in such a way as to make the menace behind it unmistakable. So maybe peace offering doesn't quite say it. Maybe blackmail says it better. We have two reports tonight beginning first in Afghanistan with CNN's Nic Robertson.


ROBERTSON (voice-over): As U.S. troops were conducting early morning raids hunting Osama bin Laden in the remote Afghan villages (When he was comfortably in Pakistan), Arabic language news channels were just receiving the latest message appearing to be from the al Qaeda leader. Striking a new tone, it offers a truce for European nations apparently trying to isolate the United States.

OSAMA BIN LADEN (through translator): I offer a truce to them with the commitment to stop operations against any state which vows to stop attacking Muslims or interfere in their affairs, including participating in the American conspiracy against the wider Muslim world.

ROBERTSON: Seemingly, a more politically astute posture than previous messages, bin Laden appears to be exploiting the March 11th Madrid bombings and Spain's subsequent announcement it may pull troops out of Iraq.
In a further indication the tape was recorded recently, the speaker refers to the March 22nd killing of Sheikh Yassin, the spiritual leader of Hamas.

BIN LADEN (through translator): Our actions come in response to your actions of destroying and killing our people in Afghanistan, Iraq and Palestine. It is enough to witness the event that shocked the world, the killing of the elderly wheelchair bound Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, God have mercy on him, and we pledge to God to take revenge on America, God willing.

ROBERTSON: For the U.S. troops hunting bin Laden and his supporters suspected of anti-coalition activity, the message and what the troops can learn from it have much interest.

They didn't learn much because Osama bin Laden was in Pakistan.

CAPT. ANTHONY GIBBS, U.S. ARMY: It's obvious now that Osama is still out there. It doesn't make me feel any worse about the work that we're doing up here because I'm rest assured now that he's not operating in this part of the country.



ROBERTSON: Osama bin Laden has given nations a three month deadline to accept his truce offer or face continued war. For the troops here they can't put a deadline to when they expect to catch Osama bin Laden but they do say however long it takes they're ready -- Aaron.

BROWN: Let's talk a little bit about what the captain said and what the officer said and where you are. He said he's sure that Osama's not in that part of the country. What part of the country was he talking about? Where are you and what's going on there?

ROBERTSON: I'm about 15 miles from the Pakistan border. The search that we've witnessed over the last few days was underway. Perhaps as one villager described it three days donkey ride from the Afghan-Pakistan border.
So sort of within striking distance for anyone who wants to run between the two countries, stay off the main highway, stay on the little trails in the mountains, very extensive, very difficult searches going to some of the remotest regions.

But, as the officer later told me, impossible to go to all the houses, impossible to know when villagers say they'll offer information on Osama bin Laden, impossible to know if they're telling the truth -- Aaron.

BROWN: Nic, we look forward to more of your reporting from that area and that search. Thank you tonight. Nic Robertson in Afghanistan.
If the message today is, in fact, intended to drive a wedge between the United States and western Europe, eastern Europe too, recent history leaves room for concern. As Nic mentioned, just days after the terror attacks killed 200 people in Madrid, Spain's government was voted out of power, a new government elected promising to pull troops out of Iraq. Now the Spain case isn't perfect. There were other issues in play there but it is hard to imagine the bombing of Madrid wasn't a part. That government said no, in public at least. So did others, no to the bin Laden bait.

Just to note, the Madrid bombings were carried out by a small group of Hashish traffickers from North Africa. The group was inspired by a recorded Osama bin Laden made to the internet relaying an ambition to disrupt Spanish elections with an explosion that would pull the Spanish troops out of Iraq. Except for the recording al Qaeda was not involved in deciding the people in the group or supplying the explosives. The entire attack was committed by criminals at one time residing in prison together. (The Guardian) That is how diffuse this entire mess is. Most of these attacks are inspired a variety of ways, but, they are mostly carried out in a vacuum of one to three or more.

In London, here's CNN's Guy Raz.


GUY RAZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): In Europe, the message was greeted with universal rejection.

JACK STRAW, BRITISH FOREIGN SECRETARY: One has to treat such claims, proposals by al Qaeda with the contempt which they deserve. This is a murderous organization which seeks impossible objectives by the most violent of means.RAZ: Germany, France and Italy have also dismissed the offer.

FRANCO FRATTINI, ITALIAN FOREIGN MINISTER (through translator): It is unthinkable we would establish any kind of negotiation with bin Laden. Everyone understands this.

RAZ: The prime minister elect of Spain who's threatening to withdraw troops from Iraq didn't directly address the tape but members of his government have dismissed it as well. In European capitals, the public is following suit.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): I just think they should not accept it because terrorists are unpredictable.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think there should be no negotiation with somebody like that and it would be horrendous and a surrender if we were to negotiate with Osama bin Laden.

RAZ: Experts believe antiwar sentiment in Europe and transatlantic divisions over the war on terror has allowed bin Laden to exploit those differences.

SAIJAN GOHEL, TERROR EXPERT: It seems that they want to isolate the U.S. on the ground inside Iraq. They wish to go after the U.S. without having to worry about any of its coalition partners and that, in turn, would then bring the U.S. into pressure into leaving from Iraq.

RAZ (on camera): European analysts believe al Qaeda's strategy will backfire and actually strengthen Europe's commitment to the war on terror.Guy Raz, CNN, London.


BROWN: We have more on the bin Laden tape coming up a little bit later. Other news first. The State Department today ordered all non- essential diplomats and their dependents out of Saudi Arabia. Officials say intelligence indicates that al Qaeda is planning a series of attacks on Americans, other foreigners too, and those attacks could come shortly.
Meantime at the Pentagon, the defense secretary made a long expected announcement on troop levels in Iraq. It came with a less expected twist.
Again, our Senior Pentagon Correspondent Jamie McIntyre.


MCINTYRE (voice-over): With the U.S. taking casualties at a higher rate than when the war began and the Pentagon forced to cancel the return of 20,000 troops needed to deal with a growing insurgency, U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld made what for him is a rare admission. He was wrong about how stable Iraq would be after a year's occupation.

DONALD RUMSFELD, DEFENSE SECRETARY: If you had said to me a year ago describe the situation you'll be in today, one year later, I don't know many people who would have described it, I would not have described it the way it happens to be today.

MCINTYRE: April has been the deadliest month of the war with nearly 90 Americans killed and more than 540 wounded, more than half of the deaths coming in the past week.

RUMSFELD: I certainly would not have estimated that we would have had the number of individuals lost that we have had lost in the last week.

MCINTYRE: The Pentagon estimates during the same time between 1,500 and 2,000 enemy fighters have been killed but those figures are not released to avoid the mistake of Vietnam when body counts were cited as a measure of success.The decision to hold 20,000 troops in Iraq for three more months will affect some 40 Army units, including 11,000 soldiers from the 1st Armored Division, 3,200 from the 2nd Armored Cavalry Regiment and about 6,000 Guard and Reserve troops. Despite the strain on the forces, the Pentagon continues to reject the argument the U.S. military is too small.

GEN. PETER PACE, JOINT CHIEFS VICE CHAIRMAN: We have the capacity. We have 2.4 million individuals available to us, active Guard and Reserve, to handle this ongoing war and anything that I can think of that's on the horizon.


MCINTYRE: Defense Secretary Rumsfeld said he regretted the fact that he had to extend the tour of duty of combat troops who were supposed to be home after just one year but he stopped short of promising that they'd definitely come home after three more months. Instead, he said the current plan was to replace them with fresh troops in the summer if U.S. commanders said they still needed the extra force levels -- Aaron.

BROWN: Jamie, thank you, Jamie McIntyre at the Pentagon.On to the day in Iraq, which every day seems to bring something new as well as more of the same. An Iranian diplomat there to negotiate between Shiite rebels and coalition forces was gunned down today.A shaky ceasefire in Fallujah remains very shaky indeed with U.S. Marines and insurgents trading fire again tonight. And some, but not all of the foreign hostages were set free. Those are the headlines.Some detail from CNN's Karl Penhaul.


KARL PENHAUL, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): A kiss from a cleric, the feel of safety for these three Japanese hostages. Last week the scene was very different, kneeling, blindfolded as their kidnappers threatened to burn them alive unless Japanese troops pull out of Iraq. Japan's troops stayed. The two humanitarian workers and freelance journalist are free.

MOHAMMED BASHAR AL-FAYDI, MUSLIM SCHOLARS ASSOCIATION SPOKESMAN (through translator): We received a call at midnight from the group holding the hostages. They said they wanted to release them and there had been an agreement.PENHAUL: They were taken here to Baghdad's Japanese Embassy. This French journalist was also fortunate. His four day kidnap ordeal began Sunday.

ALEX JORDANOV, FRENCH JOURNALIST: They were screaming jihad and they blindfolded me and threw me in the back of the car with a blade under my throat.

PENHAUL: He says he was moved to ten different locations before being released Wednesday, a very different end for Italian hostage Fabrizio Quattrocchi. This tape was sent late Wednesday by a previously unknown insurgent group called the Green Brigade to Arabic broadcaster Al- Jazeera. Minutes later Quattrocchhi, a private security guard, was murdered. Three colleagues seized at the same time are still being held.Earlier this week, coalition authority said 40 international hostages from 12 different countries were in insurgent hands. And, on Baghdad streets, the killing continued, the wreck of an Iranian diplomat's car, unidentified gunmen pumped bullets into (unintelligible), Iran's first secretary to Baghdad. The drive-by shooting came as an Iranian delegation was here to mediate between the coalition forces and Shiite cleric Muqtada al- Sadr's militia, a standoff that's threatening to become a battle.Karl Penhaul, CNN, Baghdad.


BROWN: Ahead on NEWSNIGHT tonight, as the 9/11 Commission continues its work, one question is paramount. Could the attack have been prevented? Many on the commission believe the answer is yes. An explanation of that coming up.And, is it an echo of the '60s, college students turning against the war and the president?From New York this is NEWSNIGHT.


BROWN: The 9/11 Commission has been churning out a steady stream of information since it began its work. This week brought many more hours of televised testimony and new interim reports by the staff of the commission, an awful lot of information to digest.All along the focus has been on finding where the system failed and how to prevent it happening again. This week it pinpointed where and how one of the balls was dropped, how two of the 9/11 hijackers got into the United States in the first place.Here's CNN's Kelli Arena.


ARENA (voice-over): It all started at this apartment in Malaysia in January of 2000, a suspicious meeting of al Qaeda operatives, among them 9/11 hijackers Khalid Almihdhar and Nawaf Alhazmi. The CIA followed the two but lost them in Bangkok.

COFER BLACK, FORMER DIRECTOR, CIA COUNTERTERRORISM CENTER: The advisory information, the alert to the people down range in Bangkok did not arrive in time to put coverage upon the targets upon arrival. It got there late.ARENA: The agency spent the next few months looking for them but they were never placed on a watch list to prevent them from coming to the United States. Both had valid U.S. visas.In March, the CIA discovered they had already departed Bangkok and had flown to the U.S. They had settled in San Diego. Nawaf Alhazmi's name was listed in the phone book and at one point the two rented a house from this FBI informant. Almihdhar left the U.S. in June, 2000 and returned a year later with a newly-issued visa.

GEORGE TENET, CIA DIRECTOR: We made mistakes. Our failure to watch list Alhazmi and Almihdhar in a timely manner or the FBI's inability to find them in the narrow window at the time afforded them showed systemic weaknesses and the lack of redundancy. 

ARENA (on camera): CIA officials say they're convinced that they told the FBI about the two men in the spring of 2001 but the September 11th Commission this week said they did not.(voice-over): According to CIA and FBI records, it was not until August of 2001, amid a steady stream of threat information that the CIA told the FBI and other organizations the men might be in the country.

THOMAS PPICKARD, FORMER ACTING FBI DIRECTOR: The FBI did not know whether they had departed the United States and we certainly had no information, none that they were here to carry out an act of terrorism.

ARENA: Just weeks before the September 11th attacks, the FBI launched a search in Los Angeles and New York but time ran out. The two men boarded a plane and were part of a team that crashed into the Pentagon.Kelli Arena, CNN, Washington.


BROWN: Returning now to the present danger, bin Laden today and his apparent attempt to widen the gap that already exists between the United States and many countries in Europe, we're joined from Washington tonight by Charles Kupchan who was the Director of European Affairs at the National Security Council during the Clinton administration. Currently, he's a senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations. We're glad to see you.


BROWN: Presumably, Mr. bin Laden is not an idiot and he doesn't believe that the governments in Europe are going to go, hey, that's a great idea, where do we sign up? That being the case, what's the game?

KUPCHAN: Well, I think that Osama bin laden actually was pretty well timed in the sense that the coalition that formed to fight the war and to rebuild Iraq is about as wobbly today as it's been.I don't think that this tape is going to do anything to rattle the cage of Europeans but I do think that we're beginning to see the sand shift a little bit for three reasons.One, Iraq is a dangerous place right now. People are dying from all different countries. Two, we still don't have a clear roadmap of where we're headed here in terms of the political handover. And, three, as you mentioned a few minutes ago, ever since the bombings in Madrid and the fall of Aznar's government in Spain, other countries that backed the U.S., the Brits, the Italians, the Poles, are beginning to rethink the domestic politics of supporting the U.S. in Iraq. 

BROWN: But all of that -- all of that was happening and would continue to happen whether there was a bin Laden tape or not a bin Laden tape, so is the tape itself important?

KUPCHAN: I don't believe it is. It's important in that it says Osama bin Laden, assuming it is him, is alive, that he's able to communicate through these audio tapes and perhaps communicate with other al Qaeda cells that are out there. I don't think it in any way significantly changed the political dynamic in Europe.

BROWN: Is it -- this may seem far-fetched, it wouldn't be the first time for me, is it possible that he's actually sending a message to other cells or affiliated organizations to say this whole notion of attacking in Europe is a dangerous one for us, it can hurt us?

KUPCHAN: Well, you know, it's always possible that there is a subliminal message or a coded message that's being sent to various cells around the world but it appears in this case that it was very much targeted at the Europeans in the wake of the Madrid bombing, the fall of the Spanish government, the sense that the Europeans are getting a little bit skittish here and it's quite recent after the killing of the sheikh in the Gaza Strip.And one other thing that probably didn't play any role in the timing just in the last couple of days there has been a new split between the EU and the U.S. over the Sharon peace plan in Israel with the EU backing away from Bush's support for Israel's unilateral steps.

BROWN: Is it possible that it can have a reverse effect that it will, in fact, make it less likely for wobbly government, if that's what they are, to pull their troops out because they don't want to appear that they are appeasers?

KUPCHAN: I think in the short run it will have that effect because Osama bin Laden is enemy number one for everybody. Nobody wants to appear to be seen to be backing down under his threat or his offer of reconciliation but I do think that the meeting tomorrow between Blair and Bush is going to be important in demonstrating resolve.But keep in mind that there are election cycles coming forward in Europe that Berlusconi faces a challenge from Romano Prodi, the commissioner, the EU head and Prodi has been very antiwar.Blair may face a challenge from within his own party. Gordon Brown, the Chancellor of the Exchequer is eyeing the prime minister post. So, in that sense I think we are beginning to see some more complicated coalitional dynamics at play.

BROWN: Mr. Kupchan, good to have you on the program tonight. Thanks for your help tonight.

KUPCHAN: Thank you, Aaron.

BROWN: Thank you, sir.Coming up on NEWSNIGHT, still a convicted sexual predator who described himself as a monster is out of prison and living, well, the problem is no one knows exactly where he is and that is a problem.On CNN this is NEWSNIGHT.


BROWN: Politics and the youth vote now, a new survey released today shows that college students are far more dissatisfied with President Bush than they were just six months ago. Their opposition to the war in Iraq growing as well.The poll also found that presidential contender John Kerry hasn't exactly bowled over the college crowd either. In other words, the game is still very much in play on college campuses across the country.Keep this in mind too, less than 40 percent of the 18 to 24-year- olds who were eligible to vote actually did vote in the last presidential election so there are plenty of challenges for both sides.Here's CNN's Kelly Wallace.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It is my great pleasure to introduce to you the next president of the United States John Kerry.

KELLY WALLACE, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Courting the college vote has become politics 101. That's why John Kerry is touring campuses this week.

SEN. JOHN KERRY (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: So many young people don't believe in politics anymore.

WALLACE: And why the Republican Party chief brought Reggie the registration brig to MTV in Times Square a few weeks ago.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Young voters are a happy hunting ground for us.WALLACE: And they are up for grabs. According to a new national poll by Harvard University, 41 percent of students call themselves Independent as opposed to Democrat or Republican.

JEHMU GREENE, PRESIDENT, ROCK THE VOTE: We absolutely already know that they're swing voters. If these candidates reach out to them and address these issues and answer their questions and ask for their vote they're going to be surge voters.

WALLACE: The poll found the presumptive Democratic nominee leading President Bush by ten points with Ralph Nader getting five percent but students who helped design the survey say Kerry's support remains soft.

CAITLIN MONAHAN, HARVARD UNIVERSITY: Basically this is more of a no vote for George Bush than a yes vote for John Kerry, so people really don't know who he is and they're waiting for him to define himself.

WALLACE: And that's part of the reason why the Senator went on MTV a few weeks ago. No questions on boxers or briefs but on who can inspire the younger generation.

KERRY: I hope I can inspire young people to care about the system and this race.

WALLACE: One of the more surprising findings the traditional liberal or conservative labels don't fit most students. Fifty-two percent describe themselves as either religious or secular centrists concerned with social issues like gay marriage and affirmative action.

JONATHAN CHAVEZ, HARVARD UNIVERSITY: We're seeing a development of this new religious center among college students, people who believe in religious values but are not necessarily going to be Republican voters.

WALLACE (on camera): But will they go to the polls? If this survey is any guide the answer is yes. More than 60 percent say they definitely will vote in November.Kelly Wallace, CNN, New York.


BROWN: A couple of other items that made news around the country today. In Massachusetts, the governor there said that he will seek emergency legislation aimed at delaying gay marriages, which are scheduled to become legal in the state in a month on the 17th of May. The legislation would allow Governor Mitt Romney to appoint a special counsel who would then go to the state's highest court, seeking a stay of the recent ruling legalizing same-sex marriages in the state. And a federal court ruled today, court of appeals, that the city of Augusta, Georgia, illegally restricted a small protest last year at the Augusta National Golf Club, home of the Masters tournament. The National Council For Women's Organizations tried to pick outside the all-male club during the tournament and was forced to picket a mile away. Sometimes, it is possible for the law to get it exactly right and exactly wrong at the same time. Such we think is a fair way to describe a case out of California on the West Coast tonight. A serial child molester is free tonight because of an important legal principle, the right to confront an accuser. But, still, this is a man with five convictions on rape and sodomy and kidnapping, a man who has told authorities he's had hundreds of victims, a man who's described himself as a monster. This is a man who is free and can't be found. Here is CNN's Miguel Marquez. 


MIGUEL MARQUEZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Edward Harvey Stokes, a self-proclaimed serial child molester with over 200 victims was let out of prison last week, his case overturned on appeal and now he's flying under the radar. 

JOHN URQUNART, KING COUNTY SHERIFF'S OFFICE: He has to register as a sex offender within 30 days but, of course, at least so far has committed no law -- broken no laws. We're not looking for him. The police aren't looking for him but we're still interested that he's here in Washington. 

MARQUEZ: On September 11, 2001, Stokes was convicted of one count of sexual battery and oral copulation and sentenced to 19 years to life after he lured a 16-year-old boy from the streets of Seattle to Orange County, California. 

TONY RACKAUCKAS, ORANGE COUNTY D. A. : He goes after boys who are 15, 16, 17 years old, young men, and uses drugs to get control of them and forces sexual acts on them. 

MARQUEZ: Tony Rackauckas, the Orange County District Attorney whose office tried Stokes says this is a guy who has a long history of sexually abusing minors. 

RACKAUCKAS: They wake up shackled and tied up and at his mercy, him doing various kinds of forced sex acts on them. 

MARQUEZ: In the 1990s, while serving a different sentence on molestation charges in Colorado, Stokes wrote a statement to a prison therapist admitting to having 212 victims over 28 years and referred to himself as a monster. Even Stokes' sister by adoption can't believe he's out. 

SUSAN STOKES, ADOPTED SISTER OF EDWARD STOKES: I just think about the kids whose lives he's impacted and the damage he's done and the potential for some of those to also become predators. 

MARQUEZ: Stokes was released because his sole accuser killed himself shortly before trial. An attorney for Stokes' defense says the Constitution is clear on defendant's rights. 

JOHN BARNETT, ATTORNEY FOR STOKES: He did eight years for a crime that he never was afforded his most basic constitutional right, which is to confront and cross-examine his accuser. 

MARQUEZ (on camera): The district attorney's office here says that, though they can't retry Stokes, its investigator was able to track him to Washington state, where a Costco employee, after seeing the story, told authorities that Stokes was applying for a Costco card and purchasing candy. Under Washington state law, Stokes must register as a sex offender by mid-May. Miguel Marquez, CNN, Orange County, California.


BROWN: Still to come tonight, Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist Anna Quindlen looks at the 9/11 Commission and other matters. She joins us next. Around the world, this is NEWSNIGHT. 


BROWN: Every now and then, we book a guest simply because they are interesting, as opposed to expert or important. Anna Quindlen is such a guest, a columnist for "Newsweek" magazine and observer of life. She's a joy to read. Her latest book is called "Loud and Clear."And we talked with her earlier today. 


BROWN: I think just about every conversation we have had over the past 2 1/2 years has centered somehow around 9/11. And here you are again and the commission is working. Do you follow it? Do you think it is -- that it will matter to the country what the commission does? 

ANNA QUINDLEN, AUTHOR, "LOUD AND CLEAR": Sure. I mean, I follow it, of course, because of the business, because of the newspaper business, the magazine business. But I follow it, too, because it is helping me to understand certain things about Washington that I don't think most of us understood. I picture a lot of Americans sitting out there thinking if I ran my business the way these people run their business, I would be out of business, the lack of communication among the intelligence agencies, the, well, we told them, we don't know why they didn't get the message, it just makes you wonder whether anybody is doing their job in an efficient fashion in the nation's capital. 

BROWN: Do you think that -- I've noticed in the last week that -- and the fact, it mostly has come from Republicans, Mitch McConnell, Senator McConnell started it the other day -- that this is being cast in a more political way and a more partisan way than I'm comfortable. Our viewers know how I feel about this.Do you think there is a danger that people will ultimately see it as a political document, no matter how the commission, these five Democrats and five Republicans, do their business? 

QUINDLEN: You know, I don't think they will for two reasons. And that's Tom Kean and Lee Hamilton. I think that they've stayed a little bit above that political fray. That's played out with other members of the commission. And I think there has been a sense that they're going about their work in a thoughtful fashion. I'm just struck by the fact that the heroes of this entire commission hearing are not any of the politicians or any of the high-ranking officials. They are those four women that we call the -- now the Jersey girls, who made it all happen, who pass judgment, who say, we like that he apologized, who say, we don't like that she didn't. And it gives me hope that ordinary people can still affect the process. 

BROWN: Everything that is said, everything that is done these days, is viewed through the prism of your personal or how people perceive your personal politics, whether it is intended politically or not. 

QUINDLEN: It is very discouraging for me as a columnist, because I'll log on and get my e-mails on a column. And they fall into two big camps. You're a complete idiot and I hate everything you write, or, you're the most wonderful person and I agree with you completely, so that, when I find the e-mail that says, you know, Ms. Quindlen, have you thought about it this way because I really don't think you entirely thought that issue through, I fall upon it like meat and drink, oh, my God, respectful disagreement, because there is almost none of it at this point. BROWN: When you -- the book is a compilation of columns. When you look at columns that you have written a couple of years ago, do you ever look at them and go, what, what the hell was I thinking? 

QUINDLEN: No. It makes me remember times that seem long gone by. I mention in the book that there is a column in there called "A Place Called Hope," which I wrote on election night in 1992, when, like a lot of other people, I felt incredibly jazzed and energized by the possibility that this really brilliant man from Arkansas might be a great president. And I read that column now and my heart sinks, both because of the promise was so real -- I wouldn't take back a word of that column -- and because the reality fell so short. 

BROWN: It's great to see you. You're welcome here any time you want to come by. You're a busy woman. You got a lot going on. But any time you want to come by and chat, do. 

QUINDLEN: Well, I have to say, the coverage of the Iraqi war here has just been exemplary, the best that the business does. 

BROWN: Thank you. That's kind. 

QUINDLEN: You're welcome. 

BROWN: Good to see you. 


BROWN: Anna Quindlen. We talked with her this afternoon. It was a nice thing for her to say. A couple of business items before we head to break. Lawyers for Martha Stewart say they've uncovered more evidence that impugns one of the jurors who voted to convict her. In court papers seeking a new  trial, they claim that Chappell Hartridge failed to disclose his son's conviction on attempted robbery charges. They also say that he was investigated by his employer and terminated either for padding his  expense account or drug abuse, so the filing claims. Goodness.And Apple's financial statement marks a milestone. Last quarter, Macintoshes were outsold by iPods; iPod sales rose 909 percent over the same period a year ago, as my child can attest.Mixed markets today, the Nasdaq taking a beating, the other indices on the flat side. It's been a tough market of late. Ahead on NEWSNIGHT, stories in stone, wood, glass and steel, a London architect, David Adjaye, "On the Rise."From New York, this is NEWSNIGHT. 


BROWN: Our "On the Rise" segment tonight takes us to London. Architect David Adjaye is the latest hotshot to land in our series. He's 37, which is young in the field, where most don't come of age until they're 50, sort of like news anchors. Just this week, Mr. Adjaye landed his first big U.S. commission, a big one at that, designing a permanent building for the Museum of Contemporary Art in Denver. He says that architecture is a lot like writing, which intrigued us. 


DAVID ADJAYE, ARCHITECT: I always say that architecture is fiction. It is about writing stories in stone and wood and glass and steel. It is about this idea of how you write stories about society and culture within built spaces. My name is David Adjaye. I'm an architect. And I live and work in London. I try to look at things from a conceptual point of view. And I try to make my ideas, rather than just solve problems and processes. (UNINTELLIGIBLE) was about concentrating on making a specific set of details to enrich an experience which they have already been built into. 

I was interested in trying to really look at it as an environment, like an artificial sky. Using coloring glass became a quick way of shifting the perception of glasses and materials that it's just transparent. That little space is the same process of the building that we're building. We're here in the East End of London standing inside the idea store, which was my first civic building. An idea store is a new type of building which mixes adult education, education facilities and traditional library facilities into one new type of complex. I was incredibly excited about that, because I thought that this represented something new and had to have a kind of new face to it. I was very keyed to try and destroy the idea of institutionalization. So the building is a transparent building. It flows from the inside out. It has a sense of light coming from the inside out. So it is communicating to a lot of people. I'm very interested in being part of that movement in architecture, that architecture no longer is just serving that simple corporate commercial. 

It's (UNINTELLIGIBLE) idea, but it's actually a kind of emancipation or a kind of enricher of people's lives. And the three houses are incredibly important to me. And, in a way, they are sort of family of ideas. They are a series of exploration about critiquing the built environment. The first house presents a mute blank facade. There's no windows. There's no doors. There's nothing. It's just a wall of plywood. But on the rear, it is almost like the light is bursting out of the back of the building. And in the backs of traditional English buildings, it is always about the front. It's always almost as though -- which I think is hilarious. It's almost like dressing with half your clothes on and being naked behind. The second house was something that all the authorities wanted us to demolish. They thought it was horrible, and build something shiny, gleaming and new. And what we wanted to do was to transform it. And so there are some ideas in there about sort of haloing and expanding and the idea of making presence to a space. In the evening, it has this halo effect which glows at night and becomes a kind of signal to the whole neighborhood about this little building. And the third house for me was about this idea of the historical building and not touching it, which is the '80s idea of conservation. So the house is on one side a traditional sort of Victorian brick building and on the other side, it's sort of series of glass boxes which protrude out. This is not about a style, about one kind of architecture being made. It is about looking at different contexts, different relationships, different places and talking about solutions. 


BROWN: "On the Rise."Morning papers after the break. 



BROWN: Okeydokey, time to check morning papers from around the country and around the world. And we'll do both. But it is not so much the headlines that I think are interesting today, or tomorrow, depending, as it is the pictures. 

"The International Herald Tribune" published by "The New York Times" in Paris. Can you give me a shot of the picture on the front page? I'm sure you can. It's just a great shot. "U.S. Troops in Najaf in Iraq Continue Preparations to Enter the City." It is an AP photo. Their lead story, "U.S. Agrees to U.N. Plan for Iraq, Aide Says. Caretaker Cabinet Would Replace the Governing Council." That's "The International Herald Tribune."

Another good picture in "The Guardian." The headline is "Spurned Blair in Plea to Bush. Prime Minister Urges U.S. President to Restore Even-Handed Approach." But there is the picture. This is one of the Sadr militias or a group of men in the Sadr militia in Iraq, another very good photo. 

"Christian Science Monitor" has an awfully good photo on the front page. It's a little dark. I'm not sure how you'll be able to pick this up. But it is a U.S. Marine Gerald Hooee Jr., I think, from Zuni, New Mexico, rubbing his face and getting some rest in -- outside of Fallujah. "As Violence Rises, Rebuilding Stalls. Russia to Begin Pulling Workers Out of Iraq."

And speaking of that, here is a picture in "The Moscow Times." Again, this is in black and white. Well, I guess you could figure it out it was in black and white. You probably didn't me to tell you it was in black and white. This is right there in black and white, Aaron. Sometimes I think I'm doing radio. Take the picture for me here. These are Russian workers who are pulling out of Baghdad because it is simply too dangerous. I think 700 were pulled out today. How are we doing on time? Thirty.

"The Grant County Herald Independent." This is Wisconsin's oldest newspaper. Another nice photo. This is the 229th National Guard Unit, an engineering company, coming home to Grant County. And they're greeted warmly. And that's a nice picture and a nice little newspaper. 

Now we'll just go quickly to "The Chicago Sun-Times." "Europe Scoffs at bin Laden's Truce." But that is not the story we care about. This is the one we care about up at the top. "Aaron, You're Fired! The Donald Drops NEWSNIGHT Anchor on 'Apprentice' Finale." Come on. Where did I get those glasses and why are they using that picture? The weather in Chicago tomorrow is "woo," 78 degrees. You betcha. Uh-oh, that was a Minnesota expression. We'll wrap up the day in just a moment. 


BROWN: Before we leave you tonight, a quick update of our top story. The broadcast of a taped message almost certainly from Osama bin Laden. In it, the voice refers to recent events in Iraq and Gaza and offers a separate peace with European countries, providing they pull their troops out of the Muslim world. So far, the answer from Europe is a resounding no. Tomorrow night on the program, a  souvenir of war, and a pretty good sized one at that, U-505, a German sub boarded and captured by American soldiers in World War II, something that hadn't been done since 1815. But there was treasure aboard as well, a prize that would help win the war. That's tomorrow right here on this program. Hope you'll join us."LOU DOBBS" next for most of you.Good night for all of us at NEWSNIGHT. 


The character of the unrest in Iraq hasn't changed. Maybe a player or two are different and from the next generation of jihadists, but, this is the middle east. Why is it that The West thinks they can change The East? When will they stop trying?

And what is that observation by an Iraqi recruit stating they were working to protect America and not Iraq. Iraq never had any kind of military. The people that showed up to fight Gulf War I wore their street clothes and shoes. They weren't soldiers, they were ordinary Iraqis. The only military Iraq had was trained personnel in the tanks and whatever missiles it had. 

The West does not belong in Iraq. 

I thought this Op-Ed in 2005 by Thomas Friedman was interesting.

January 23, 2005
By Thomas L. Friedman 

Paris — There's only one thing you can say about the elections in Iraq: (click here) They are either going to be the end of the beginning there or the beginning of the end.
Either Iraqis turn out in large numbers to take control of their own future and write their own constitution - and I think they will - or the fascist insurgents there prevent them from doing so, in which case the Bush team will have to move to Plan B. What's sad is that right when we have reached crunch time in Iraq, the West is totally divided. All that the Europeans care about is being able to say to George Bush, "We told you so." What happens the morning after "We told you so" ? Well, the Europeans don't have a Plan B either.
Ever since 9/11, I've argued the war on terrorism is really a war of ideas within the Muslim world - a war between those who want to wall Islam off from modernity, and defend it with a suicide cult, and those who want to bring Islam into the 21st century and preserve it as a compassionate faith. This war of ideas is not one that the West can fight, only promote. Muslims have to fight it from within. That is what is at stake in the Iraqi elections. This is the first great battle in the post-9/11 war of ideas.
This war also can't be won with troops - only with turnout. This is a war between Iraqi voters and insurgents - ballots versus bullets. And the people who understand that best are the fascist insurgents. That is why they are not focusing their attacks on U.S. troops, but on Iraqi election workers, candidates, local officials and police. The insurgents have one credo: "Iraqis must not vote - there must be no authentic expression of the people's will for a modern, decent Iraq. Because, if there is, the world will see that this is not a war between Muslims and infidel occupiers, but between Muslims with bad ideas and Muslims with progressive ideas."
And at this key juncture the West stands disunited. Condi Rice told the Senate that the "time for diplomacy is now." Give me a break. The time for diplomacy was two years ago. We would be so much better off now if the entire European Union was actively urging Iraqis to vote, and using its own moral legitimacy in the Arab world to delegitimize the insurgents. The divided West is a real liability.
"The most important threat [to the West] is Islamic terrorism," said Bernard Kouchner, the founder of Doctors Without Borders, and one of the few French intellectuals to support the ouster of Saddam. This is not a war with the Muslim religion, he stressed, but with a violent "fascist" Muslim minority. "We [in the West] have always been allied against fascism since the Second World War," he said. "We have to be together, America and Europe, because our enemies are the same, Muslim extremism and fascism," but right now, unlike in Bosnia, "we are apart."
Mr. Kouchner blames Paris for having been too quick to threaten a U.N. veto and blames even more the Bush team for having been too quick to go to war without a real U.N. alliance, and for mismanaging postwar Iraq. At least he cares. Most of his countrymen, I sense, are hoping Mr. Bush will fail in Iraq so that the ends will never justify his unilateral means. It's quite amazing, when you consider that Europe, with its large Muslim minorities, needs the moderates to win the war of ideas within Islam so much more than America.
I spent Friday morning interviewing two 18-year-old French Muslim girls in the Paris immigrant district of St.-Ouen. (It is about a mile from the school where in March 2003 a French Muslim girl, who had refused the veil and rebuffed the advances of a Muslim boy, was thrown into a garbage can by three Muslim teenagers, who then tossed lighted cigarette butts into the can and closed the lid.)
Both girls I interviewed wore veils and one also wore a full Afghan-like head-to-toe covering; one was of Egyptian parents, the other of Tunisian parents, but both were born and raised in France. What did I learn from them? That they got all their news from Al Jazeera TV, because they did not believe French TV, that the person they admired most in the world was Osama bin Laden, because he was defending Islam, that suicide "martyrdom" was justified because there was no greater glory than dying in defense of Islam, that they saw themselves as Muslims first and French citizens last, and that all their friends felt pretty much the same.
We were not in Kabul. We were standing outside their French public high school - a short ride from the Eiffel Tower.

Letter to the Editor:

January 25, 2005
To the Editor:

In ''Divided We Stand,'' (click here) Thomas L. Friedman reminds us that the election in Iraq is the first great battle in the ''post-9/11 war of ideas.'' Thankfully, we have Mr. Friedman to remind us why we are fighting a war in Iraq; I keep forgetting why we are there.

Ami Ghazala
Staten Island, Jan. 23, 2005