Altoona Mirror (Newspaper) - December 28, 2001, Altoona, Pennsylvania
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© Copyright 2001FRIDAY, DECEMBER 28, 2001
Bin Laden: Hijackers are martyrs
By Tarek IssaWI The Associated Press DUBAI, United Arab Emirates -The world’s most wanted man. Osama bin Laden, appeared in a videotape Thursday, calling for the destruction of the U.S economy as the surest way to bring down America Looking gaunt but smiling occasionally. the terrorist leader appeared in front of a brown cloth, dressed in military fatigues. Though thinner than in past tapes, his voice was strong and clear lie spoke deliberately, often leaning into the camera.
"I concentrate on the importance of continuing holy war actions against America, militarily and economically, and America is retreating with God’s help." he said inn videotape sent anonymously by air courier from Pakistan to Qatar based Al-.Jazeera TV, which aired it in frill Thursday night.
“This economic hemorrhaging continues until today but requires more blows. And the youth should try to find the joints of the American economy and hit the enemy in these joints, with God’s permission.’’
In an apparent appeal to Muslim youths, bin Laden repeatedly referred to the 19 hijackers who carried out the Sept. ll attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon as martyrs. He said they "struck deep in the heart of America’s economy.”
The tape has raised new questions about where bin Laden is or if he is alive. A spokesman for Afghanistan’s new defense ministry said bin Laden was in a border area of Pakistan. Other Afghan officials said his whereabouts were unknown.
Please see Martyrs/Page A5
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Excerpts of Osama bin Laden's videotaped comments aired Thursday on the Qatar-based Al-Jazeera TV:
■ lf their economy ends, they will busy themselves away from the enslavement of oppressed people.... It is important to concentrate on the destruction of the American economy.
■ Our terrorism is against America. Our terrorism is a blessed terrorism to prevent the unjust person from committing injustice and to stop American support for Israel, which kills our sons.
■ lf America had sound evidence that those who carried out the attacks were Europeans, such as the IRA [Irish Republican Army], then it would possess many ways to solve this problem. But since there was a mere suspicion that indicated the Islamic world, the real ugly face and the Crusader hatred against the Islamic world were revealed.
Please see Tape/Page A5
Mirror graphic by Tom Worthington ll
HOLIDAY HOOPS TIME
Number of owners: 8.6 million Average cost for travel trailer: $14,700 Average cost for motor home: $76,390
Source Recreational Vehicle industry Association
Mirror photo by Kelly Bennett
fussey Mountain’s Tiffany Neville (left) and Bishop Guilfoyle’s Angela Greaser battle for the ball Thursday during the first round of the Huntingdon Lions Holiday Shootout at Juniata College. BG came away with a 60-38 victory to advance to tonight's final. I Page Bl
Dealers seek to reclaim rec sales
HY I..; I-.
■ Conventions seen as key to entice boat, RV buyers.
From Mirror staff and wire reports Boat and R V vendors are depending on conventions to woo customers back after a year of uneven sales punctuated by the Sept. ll terrorist attacks.
Nationally, retailers who were already struggling with the economic downturn when the attacks sunk sales, are finding hope between aisles of fold-out tables and display cases, all impressing customers with the latest models and features.
Industry officials say that while projections for 2002 are promising and cite improved consumer confidence and low interest rates — it's ultimately the conventions that draw people and drive sales.
“A lot of people that come to the boat shows come to buy," said Dan Green of Chicago based National Marine Manufacturers Association, which puts on 17 boat shows across the country
Please see Rec/Page A5
Gubernatorial race tab could top $40M
By Peter Jackson The Associated Press
HARRISBURG — Pennsylvania’s gubernatorial race will likely be one of the most expensive in the country next year, and spending by the four major candidates could set a state record of $40 million, political insiders said.
The price tag. however, is unlikely to set a national record.
Millionaire businessman Jon Corzine invested nearly $60 million of his own money in winning a Senate seat in New Jersey in 2000, and the four major candidates for the California governorship in 2002 raised $40 million even before the end of 2001.
But campaign officials and consultants agree the Pennsylvania campaign probably will cost more than the $36 million state record set in 1994 — the last previous gubernatorial election in which no incumbent was running—and most of the races in the other 35 states that will elect governors next year.
“One of the IO most expensive races in the country,” predicted Neil Oxman, a political consultant who is working for the campaign of Edward G. Rendell. The former Philadelphia mayor is competing with state Auditor General Robert P. Casey Jr. for the Democratic nomination.
Please see Tab/Page A6
The amount of money raised so far by the four leading candidates in the 2002
Pennsylvania gubernatorial race:
Rendell ti HUDON
Murtha shrugs off speculation
By Robert Igoe
JOHNSTOWN — U.S. Rep. John Murtha broke his silence Thursday concerning the state’s redrawing of its Congressional District map. He insists talk of his quitting if his district isn’t preserved is premature.
Murtha, D-12th District, spoke to reporters at the Holiday Inn before a scheduled reception for the area’s military academy students and said he is confident he will not be pitted against U.S. Rep. Frank Mascara, D 20th District, for a new 12th District as the state Senate plan would have him.
“We still haven’t worked out a plan that everyone is satisfied with.” he said. “I’ve been through this four times, and they always worked it out. It changes day by day. There have been about 30 plans, and I’m not sure which one will pass, and I’m also not sure if that one will be the one that is finally implemented.
Please see Murtha/Page A6
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Lottery numbers, A2
Cloudy with snow, 32°
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War on terrorism
United States to take Taliban, al-Qaida prisoners to a Navy base in Cuba.
Mirror photo by Jason Sipes U.S. Rep. John Murtha addresses reporters Thursday.