Altoona Mirror, November 17, 2001

Altoona Mirror

November 17, 2001

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Issue date: Saturday, November 17, 2001

Pages available: 88

Previous edition: Friday, November 16, 2001

Next edition: Sunday, November 18, 2001 - Used by the World's Finest Libraries and Institutions
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Publication name: Altoona Mirror

Location: Altoona, Pennsylvania

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Altoona Mirror (Newspaper) - November 17, 2001, Altoona, Pennsylvania SPEEDWAY RACING TAKES A BACKSEAT FREE INSIDE COMMUNITY NEWS: THAT HOLIDAY FEELING IN HOLL1DAYSBURG PAGE A10 Buying solo s'. Wot! home ownership page 01 UKrror Copyright 2001 SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 17, 2001 500 newsstand ENTERTAINMENT Wild about Harry Area Potter fans flock to theaters to catch showing of new movie By ROBERT IGOE StaffWriter Given the hoopla, it seems like an obvious question, but one that was asked to a boy at.the box office of Carmike 8 Cinema at Logan Valley Mall. Instead of offering enthusiastic expectations of "Harry "Potter and The Sorcerer's the hoy shakes his head. "No. Monsters he said. So not every child in the area has been looking forward to Friday' s release of the "Harry Potter" film, based on the success- ftil children's book series. But the majority of children were there to see the adventures of the young wizard in the Warner Brothers film as he begins his studies in spells and magic at Hogwarts Academy. In fact, a sign at the box office at 5 p.m. advised moviegoers that all but the last two showings of the eveningwere soldout. "I've been anxious for this since 1 heard about the movie from said Jasmine Ressler of Altoona. "I think the movie will be better than the book." :-The plot follows Harry's intro- duction to his powers, from a mis- erable childhood raised by abu- sive guardians after the death of his parents at (lie hands of an evil wizard, Voldemort, to his enroll- ment at Hogwarts, where he learns, to use his awesome powers. The 2 Vz-hour film is long by movie standards, but many chil- dren didn't seem to care. "I really liked said Dan Tilten of Altoona. "It was really cool, even though they left out some parts like this wizard's duel. 1 think the book was better, though, because it had more infor- mation to use to imagine." Brittany Cook of Altoona said she didn't read the books, but she liked the movie. Mary Anne Cook, Brittany's mother and Dan's grandmother, said Harry Potter is an effective tool for teaching. Please see A3 Mirror pholo by Gary M. Baranee The Associated Press Above: Dillon Sorber of Harveys Lake, sporting Harry Potter-style glasses, carries his popcorn into the theater to see "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone" on the film's opening day Friday at Gateway Cinema in Edwardsville. At left: Brett Braley, 10, of Fishertown waits in line for his ticket at Carmike 8 Cinemas at Logan Valley Mall. Getting straight As on his last report card earned him the opportunity to skip school to watch the movie with his father, Bruce. WAR ON TERRORISM fr Pages Taliban, al-Qaida on heels Top bin Laden deputy reported to be dead; Regime's leader ready to leave Kandahar. BY KATHY GANNON The AsscKiated Press KABUL, Afghanistan........In twin blows to the Taliban and al-Qaida, the regime's supreme leader was reported ready Friday to abandon his home base of Kandahar, and U.S. officials disclosed that Osama bin Laden's military chief may have been killed. The developments came as U.S. warplanes struck the Taliban's two remaining strongholds, Kan- dahar and the northern city of Kunduz, on the first day of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. If confirmed, the death of bin Laderi's military chief Mohammed Atef would deal a serious setback to the al-Qaida ter- rorist network. Its Taliban pro- tectors already are reeling from sweeping territo- rial losses and their flight from the capital, Kabul, this week. U.S. officials said the Taliban had lost control of more than two-thirds of Afghanistan. Atef was a close confidant of bin Laden, and his daughter was mar- ried to bin Laden's son. U.S. offi- cials suspect him of involvement in the Sept. 11 attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, which-triggered the current mili- tary confrontation. One U.S. official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said Atef is believed to have died during an American airstrike earlier this week near Kabul, the Afghan capi- tal. Another official said Atef s body has not been located. The report that Taliban leader Mullah Mohammed Omar was ready to leave Kandahar would be a dramatic development, if borne Atef out amounting to Taliban aban- donment of the city that was its birthplace. American military offi- cials were skeptical. "I don't put much stock in at this point. I don't believe Pentagon spokesman Rear Adm. John Stuff- lebeem said in Washington. "I think that our forces who arc there are still operating undor the assumption that it is a hostile envi- ronment. I think the opposition groups are operating in the same way." The Pakistan-based Afghan Is- lamic Press agency said Omar had agreed to leave the city within .24 hours and would head for the mountains, turning it over to local leaders from Pashtun tr jbes eth- nic kin to most of the top Taliban leadership. Under the deal reportedly reached with tribal leaders, control of the city would pass to Mullah Naqibullah and Haji Basher, two former commanders of Afghan re- sistance forces in the war against Soviet invaders. Basher is close to Yunus Khalis, a Pashtun leader who took over the northeastern city of Jalalabad this week. An official of Harkal ul-Mujah- edeen, a Pakistan-based group allied with the Taliban, said Omar was pressured by local leaders to leave the city and end U.S, attacks.- Reluctantly, Omar accepted the deal Friday night in return for safe passage out of the city, the source said, speaking on condition of anonymity. The South Asian Dispatch Agency quoted Taliban official Mohammad Jamal as confirming the decision to leave Kandahar, saying "we have been asked to re- group to prepare for the next phase of or holy war. Please see A3 Ex-Penn State Altoona coach gets probation for sex assault BY MARK LEBEHFINGEU Staff Writer The for- mer swimming and diving coach at Perm State Altoona apologized Friday for the pain he caused a 16- year-old Antis Township girl when he indecently assaulted her during a 16-month period. 'Eric T. Johnson, 34, 517 Orchard St., Bell wood, was sen- tenced to four years probation, and must pay fines and costs, as part of a plea agreement approved by Blair County Judge Norman D.Callan. "I'm truly sorry for what has Johnson said. In exchange for (he guilty plea, the most serious charge of aggra- vated indecent assault, a felony, was dismissed. Johnson pleaded guilty to three counts each of indecent assault, indecent exposure and corrup- tion of minors. The sentence also means that Johnson will be unlikely to work in a teaching situation around young people again. "A lot of thought and coopera- tion between the state trooper Please see A5 Claysburg submits plans for high school upgrade IF YOU GO What: A public input rneeling to discuss the Claysburg-Kimmel High School renovation project Where: ClaysburQ-Kimmel High School gymnasium When: Jan. 24 Building lour at p.m., meeting at p.m. Bv MICHAEL EMERY Staff Writer CLAYSBURG Claysburg-Kimmel High School's million renova- tion project is moving forward after the school board this week authorized submitting the district's plans to the state Department of Education. Board members approved submit- ting key paperwork that includes pro- ject justification, demographic infor- mation and a preliminary schematic design. The submission includes parts A and B of PlanCon, an acronym for Planning and Construction Work- book, as the first two steps of an. 11- step process. When a school district undertakes a major construction project and seeks reimbursement from the state, Plan- Con is initiated. PlanCon is a set of forms and proce- dures used to apply for reimbursement. Please see A5 ___________ Subscription or home delivery questions: 946-7480 or (800) 287-4480 Sunny, cool, Forecast, A2 1' THE GREAT COMBINATION Call us today..Make money today. Ask for' THE GREAT COMBINATION of MIRROR CLASSIFIEDS and HOT-ADS Phone (814) 948-7422 or fax us at (814) 946-7547 Business Movies Obituaries Opinion _ A4 All A8 SHsiftA-i." Classifieds _ C3-12 Nation in a minute C3 D5 Comics Local _________ Scoreboard B4, 6 B5 Community Puzzles D4 television D4 IKNRTIOK Tryinp to reassure travelers, Congress sent President Bush a sweeping aviation security bill Friday. PAGE C1 V, ;