Thursday, April 21, 2005

Thursday 21 April 2005

Bush Weighs Move To Texas for Sadam Trial
Backs Iraqi Calls For Execution; Swift Delivery of Death Sentence If Guilty Guaranteed

President Bush is considering a change of venue for the trial of Sadam Hussein, and moving it to Texas. The news backs calls in Iraqi for the execution of Hussein, if found guilty of war crimes.

Since 1976, Texas leads the nation in executions.

Ali Dabagh, a spokesman for the largest bloc of the new Iraqi government, the clergy-led United Iraqi Alliance, which holds 140 seats in Iraq's 275-member National Assembly, is calling for Hussein to be executed if found guilty.

'We feel he is a criminal. He is the number one criminal in the world. He is a murderer."

Dabagh also called for new Iraqi President Jalal Talabani to resign if he objects. The Iraqi leader opposes capital punishment.

White House Spokesman Scott McClellan said the President is "very open" to moving the Hussein trial to Texas and is "confident" the former Iraqi dictator will get a "fair trial".

Inside sources say that Bush is worried over the delays in establishing a government in Iraqi and that the trial of Hussein will further inflame the insurgency. Hussein and his top lieutenants were to be put in trial before a Special Tribunal that was put in place in late 2003.

Court TV has applied to the White House to televise the trial of Hussein. The BBC, Al-Jazeera and E! also have applications in.

"Moving it to Texas would be great", said Fred Graham, Court TV's anchor and managing editor. "We might be able to get it on primetime".

Since the Supreme Court lifted the ban on capital punishment in 1976, over 957 executions have been carried out. Texas leads the nation in executions, performing over 340. Bush was Governor of Texas when over half the executions took place and it was a issue in Bush's presidential campaign.

This week, Texas was scheduled to carry out a rare double execution. Last night, two men convicted of separate murders were to receive lethal injections. Douglas Roberts, 42 was executed however Milton Mathis, 26, got a reprieve when the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals said his case should be reviewed because of claims he may be mentally retarded

"The President is confident", McClellan offered, "that if found guilty of his crimes, Hussein would receive swift execution of his sentence - whatever that may be - in Texas".

McClellan said the President understood that Iraqi's may object, and will want the trial to take place in Baghdad

McClellan went on to say that should Iraqi become a state (The Garlic April 12 - Bush Moves On Making Iraq 51st State), it would be that much easier to move the Hussein trial to Texas.

Egypt Protests New U.S. Use of Pyramids
Says Mocking Historic Culture and Islam; Call for American Food Boycott

Egypt is expected today to formally protest to the Bush Administration its MyPyramid, the new food guidance system released on Tuesday by Agriculture Secretary Mike Johanns.

Nabil Fahmy, the ambassador of the Arab Republic of Egypt to the United States said in a press conference yesterday that the MyPyramid "mocks the historic culture" of Egypt, who has pyramids going back to 4,600-years.

"President Mubarak is very distressed over this", offered Fahmy. "He is worried, as is many Egyptians, that fat Americans will only know of this food pyramid, and not the rich history Egypt's pyramids."

Johanns, in a lively press conference on Tuesday, complete with colorful charts and video, said the new MyPyramid program, which replaces original Food Guide Pyramid introduced in 1992, is tailored to age and daily physical activity, and emphasizes the need for a more individualized approach to improving diet and lifestyle.

"MyPyramid was developed to carry the messages of the dietary guidelines and to make Americans aware of the vital health benefits of simple and modest improvements in nutrition, physical activity and lifestyle behavior".

Johanns was joined in the announcement by fitness guru Denise Austin, a member of the President's Council on Physical Fitness and Sports, to help unveil the new guide.

Fahmy indicated that Egypt is considering a boycott on American foods.

"I don't think Americans would be pleased to see Egypt take a United States cultural or religious artifact and make mockery of it".

A spokesperson from the Agricultural Department indicated that Secretary Johanns was unaware of any Egyptian protest and that many ideas and symbols were considered in developing a new food guidance system, including using the Eiffel Tower, The Great Wall of China and Sistine Chapel

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