Syracuse Post Standard, November 14, 2005

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Post-Standard, The (Newspaper) - November 14, 2005, Syracuse, New York DO THE SUDOKU CHALLENGE... WIN A TRIP TO Post-Standard Affiliated with Syracuse.com MONDAY, NOVEMBER 14, 2005 riNAL EDITION O 2005 The Poit-Siandard SYRACUSE, N.Y. 50 CENTS GOOD MORNING SOME SUN Dry air will give sunshine a chance of breaking through the clouds across Central New York today, but wetter weather is getting closer and should start affec- ting the area Tuesday. Tem- peratures will be turning cool- er. Complete forecast, C-10 HIGH: 54 LOW: 32 France says riots may be tapering off French officials said rioting showed signs of subsiding Sun- day, but the most concentrated unrest came in Lyon, France's second-most-populous metropol- itan region. North of Paris, a police officer was hospitalized after being hit by a steel boccie ball thrown from the upper floors of a hous- ing project. Also Sunday, European Com- mission President Jose Manuel Barroso proposed that the Euro- pean Union give million to France for helping riot-hit towns recover. STORY, PAGE A-5 Kidnapping suspect led a double life, police say When a Connecticut sales- man was charged with trying to kidnap a New York teenager from her school parking lot Hal- loween night, police believed it was an isolated attempt. Now, the man is being investigated in at least three states for unsolved sex and murder cases. STORY, Meet the man who wants an NBA team in Syracuse There's nothing wrong with having a dream, right? Business- man Edward Topa says his group of investors is serious. "We all have discretionary money that we can spend, so we started to discuss bringing an NBA team back to Syracuse." SPORTS, PAGE C-l Busch brothers put the drama in Nextel Cup Reigning Nextel Cup cham- pion Kurt Busch was pulled from Sunday's race in Phoenix, Ariz., and was suspended by his team after deputies pulled him over Friday night for driving 60 mph in a 45 mph zone near the Phoenix International Raceway. Deputies said a breath test dis- closed the presence of alcohol, but the equipment failed during the second test. Sunday, Busch's brother Kyle went out and won the race, the Checker Auto Parts 500. SPORTS, PAGE C-l Online news updates The Post-Standard's reporters update the news of Central New York from morning until night seven days a week. Get the latest news when you want it at: Corrections Call Deputy Executive Editor Tim Bunn at 470-2240 to dis- cuss a correction on a news story. Subscription questions? Call 470-NEWS Index Bridge........ Classified... Comics....... CNY............ Puzzles...... Editorials.... Letters Local news Lottery...... .E-12 E-1 D-l A-8 A-9 B-l A-2 Movies........ New York... Obituaries.. Science....... Sean Kirst.. Sports......... Sudoku Television... Weather..... D-4 A-6 B-4 B-6 B-1 C-l D-7 D-5 .C-10 THE POST-STANDARD Report: U.S. Troops Freed Future Bomber Iraqi woman confesses on Jordanian television that she tried to bomb a wedding. By Hannah Allam Knight Ridder Amman, Jordan One of the suspected suicide bombers in the deadly attacks on three luxu- ry hotels in Jordan's capital ap- parently was detained and re- leased last year by U.S. forces in Iraq who determined that he was not a threat to security, a U.S. military spokesman said Sunday. The Jordanian government identified four suspected bomb- ers Sunday: three Iraqi men who died in the attacks and an Iraqi woman who survived when her explosives vest failed to deto- nate. The name of one of the male attackers, Safah Moham- med Ali, matches the name of a man who was detained for about two weeks during fierce clashes between insurgents and U.S. Marines in Iraq's western insur- gent stronghold of Fallujah, said the military spokesman, who spoke on condition of anonymi- ty- On Jordanian television Sun- day, the surviving female sus- pect confessed that she tried to blow herself up at a crowded wedding party at the Radisson SAS Hotel, but the explosives vest she wore under an evening gown failed to detonate. Ali and the other suspected bombers killed 57 people and in- jured more than 100 during three nearly simultaneous bombings at upscale hotels in Amman on Wednesday. Al-Qaida in Iraq later claimed responsibility for the attack. Insurgent sources in Iraq and one of Ali's colleagues at a fac- tory in Fallujah said in separate interviews that Ali was detained in November 2004, when he was injured while fighting U.S.-Ied forces information that corre- sponds with the U.S. military's account. CO-WORKERS, PAGE A-10 Image from television The Associated Press SAJ1DA MUBAREK ATROUS AL- RISHAWI confesses on Jordani- an television Sunday. "There was a wedding at the hotel with children, women and men inside. My husband detonated, I tried to explode but it wouldn't. I left, people fled running and I left running with them." Dhafir claims religious persecution Weeks after his conviction, Dr. Rafi! Dhafir criticizes the prosecution and media. By Renee K. Gadoua Staff writer As he awaits transfer to a fed- eral prison. Dr. Rafil Dhafir, of Manlius, begins each day as he always has. "I thank my maker for what I am and what I'm he said. He says goodnight with a sim- ilar prayer: "You let me go this day, and I'm grateful." Dhafir spoke briefly in the courtroom before he was sen- tenced Oct. 27, but for nearly two and a half years, his voice was not heard publicly. Prosecu- tors described him as a manipu- lative lawbreaker, while defense lawyers and supporters called him a pillar of the local Muslim community, motivated by faith and concern for starving children in Iraq. In a juilhousc interview last week, about two weeks after being sentenced Frank photographer NATHAN KEEFE, education coordinator for the Rosamond Gifford Zoo at Burnet Park, shows a blue-tongued skink to Molly Dano, 4, and her'dad, Tim. Some county legislators seek more oversight of the Friends of the Rosamond Gifford Zoo, which pays for many services and programs at the zoo. Inside: Who are the Friends? What's at issue? Who else has At the zoo, a dispute among Friends By Elizabeth Doran Staff writer If you're one of the who visit the Rosamond Gifford Zoo at Burnet Park each year and if you've purchased a soft drink, asked a zoo employee where the Humboldt penguins come from, or for directions to the bathroom, you've proba- bly met a Friend. Friends of the Rosamond Gifford Zoo is the nonprofit fundraising arm of the zoo and provides what zoo director Anne Baker calls the zoo's "shine." The county provides the bulk of the zoo's operating expenses and expertise with animals. The Friends of the Zoo provides more than 25 percent of the zoo's budget and handles most of the zoo's patron-friendly services. "The county provides the nuts and bolts..." Baker says, .but the Friends make the zoo shine." Everyone agrees the relationship be- tween the county and the Friends common between municipalities and fa- cilities like museums and zoos for dec- ades across the country is mutually beneficial. But like all friendships, there can be tension. Some county legislators would like more oversight of the Friends group, par- ticularly with the way they raise and spend money. "We as legislators are supposed to set the policies, appropriate the money and LEGISLATOR, PAGE A-4 years in federal prison, the Iraqi-born Muslim physician reiterated his innocence and criticized the prosecution and the media for implying he supported terrorist groups. "I am imprisoned illegally, unjustly, he said. Dhafir was charged Feb. 26, 2003. Nearly two years later, after a 1 7-week trial in Syracuse, he was convicted of 59 of 60 counts of fraud, tax evasion, Medicare fraud, money launder- ing, visa fraud, violating U.S. sanctions against Iraq and lying to federal agents. Throughout the case, prosecu- tors said they targeted Dhafir not for who he is, but for what he did. Dhafir' s lawyer, Deveraux Cannick, said he has filed a no- tice of appeal and expects the ap- peal to be final in mid-2006. Dhafir expects to be vindicat- ed. There are "zillions" of grounds for appeal, he said. "I will prove I am innocent of DHAFIR, PAGE A-10 The story so far Dr. Rafil Dhafir, a Manlius oncologist, is facing 22 years in federal prison after being convicted of stealing almost million intended for starving Iraqi children. A federal jury in February found Dhafir guilty of defrauding donors to the Syracuse charity he founded, Help the Needy, by using some of the donations for his own business ventures and on projects in Iraq other than its intended purpose. Dhafir's lawyers and a large contingent of supporters said the government targeted him as a prominent Muslim because of the terrorist attacks of Sept. Code name Omali: Translator tells her story MISSION TO By Hart Seely Staff Writer Baghdad Omali is a mid- dle-aged Iraqi woman, whose" dark hair and eyes reflect the dis- tinctive beauty of her people. To describe her in detail could get her killed. Each day, Omali translates for the American troops. It has been called the most dangerous job in Iraq, which is perhaps the most dangerous place in the world. "I like my job very she says. "I do like it. But I do get a lot of threats." Bravo Troop employs a hand- ful of interpreters. Some live on Forward Operating Base Inde- pendence, the military outpost in central Baghdad where this piece of the Army's 1-71 Cavalry is located. Some live with their families outside the wire. On missions, some translators wear body armor. Some wear ski masks to hide their identity. They earn good money, hun- dreds of dollars a week in a city where a laborer might make a day. But their papers must be kept in order and, Saturday, Omali's badge needed to be updated. So a Bravo platoon went into central Baghdad on a mission: Update Omali's papers. Omali laughs with the soldiers about the mission. She looks at ease in flak jacket, helmet and sunglasses. Staff writer Hart Seely and photographer Li-Hua Lan are accompanying soldiers from Fort Drum's 10th Mountain Division in Iraq. For more on their journey, go to An Iraqi, she learned English in college and taught for more than 10 years. When the war began in 2003, Omali decided the Americans offered the best hope for her family and nation. "They ask if we would like to work with them, and I tell them, 'Working? What? As a sol- she says, with a laugh. "They tell me, no, as interpreter. 1 tell them, 'OK, I can help.' She chose the code name Omali because of its meaning: 'THERE IS, PAGE A-4 INSIDE HEART OF DARKNESS Why the Adirondack; is perfect for an observatory. SCIENCE, PAGE B-6 5 TIPS ON LEGAL FEES Also, how to protect your benefits when switching jobs. MONEYWISE, INSIDE KRMMiR GOES TO COLLEGE He wants to be LeMoyne's newspaper adviser. CNY, PAGE D-1 Y-SHIHT TYCOON Howl became one. THE DAILY DOSE, PAGE D-8 ;

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