4-Year Anniversary of Rachel Corrie Killing
And finally today is also the fourth anniversary of the death of Rachel Corrie. On March 16, 2003, an Israeli military bulldozer crushed Corrie to death as she tried to stop the demolition of the home of a Palestinian doctor in the Gaza town of Rafah. Eyewitnesses said Rachel was sitting directly in the path of the bulldozer holding a megaphone and wearing a fluorescent jacket. She was 23 years old.
Rove, Gonzales Discussed Attorney Firings in Jan. ‘05
New evidence continues to emerge further implicating the White House in what has been called the politically-motivated firing of eight U.S. attorneys. On Thursday, ABC News revealed previously undisclosed emails showing presidential advisor Karl Rove and Attorney General Alberto Gonzales directly engaged in the process to force out the prosecutors as early as January of 2005. In one email, former aide Kyle Sampson says he and Gonzales spoke about replacing up to one-fifth of the ninety-three US attorneys.Sampson added they had discussed retaining “[those who] are doing a great job [and] are loyal Bushies.” In another message, Sampson wrote: “Due to the history, it would certainly send ripples through the U.S. attorney community if we told folks they got one term only... That said, if Karl thinks there would be political will to do it, then so do I.” Another email from a White House aide reveals Rove requested in-depth updates on the ongoing discussions over whether to fire the attorneys. The White House immediately backed away from its previous claim former counsel Harriet Miers initiated a plan to dismiss all 93 US attorneys. In a statement, the Justice Department said Gonzales “has no recollection” of discussing the firing of US attorneys while he was White House counsel. The disclosures have given new momentum to calls for Gonzales’s removal. Senator Chuck Schumer of New York said: “The odds are very high that he will no longer be the attorney general.”
Report: Gonzales Advised Bush on Blocking Wiretap Probe
As Gonzales continues to take heat over the attorney firings, a new controversy is emerging over his role in the administration’s handling of a Justice Department probe into the warrantless domestic spy program. Investigative journalist Murray Waas is reporting Gonzales advised President Bush on whether to shut down the inquiry shortly after he learnt his own behavior would likely be examined in the investigation. It is unclear what Gonzales advised, but President Bush took action to effectively sideline the case. Insiders say the blocked inquiry would have likely focused on Gonzales’s own role in authorizing the eavesdropping program while he served as White House counsel.
Mugabe: Western Critics “Can Go Hang”
In Zimbabwe, fifty opposition activists have been released from prison after prosecutors failed to appear at their court hearing. The activists were rounded up Sunday in a police crackdown on a mass protest. Several were badly beaten. Opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai was released from the hospital earlier today. Meanwhile, President Robert Mugabe dismissed Western criticism of the protest crackdown.
- Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe: “Now when they criticise government that is trying to prevent that violence or to punish the perpetrators of that violence, then of course we take the position that they can go hang."