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Posted: 1/9/2003 10:27:39 PM EST
Thursday, January 09, 2003 WASHINGTON — Sen. Patty Murray on Wednesday defended comments she made last month that seemed to praise terror leader Usama bin Laden for his humanitarian efforts. The Democratic senator from Washington said she’s no big fan of the terrorist leader and that the media has misconstrued remarks she made to a group of advanced placement students in her home state on Dec. 18. "I have to tell you that it's really important that people don't twist or construe remarks that were made to an AP student group in a Vancouver high school," she told Fox News in a Senate corridor after attending a "power coffee" with the 13 other women senators on Capitol Hill. "We all know -- everyone in this country knows -- that Usama bin Laden is an evil terrorist and in my remarks I told the students we're taking the right steps now. The question is what do we do next ... and it's an important question," Murray said. In the meeting with students, Murray asked why bin Laden is so popular in some places around the world. Her answer was caught on tape by the school’s video department. "He's been out in these countries for decades building schools, building roads, building infrastructure, building day care facilities, building health care facilities and people are extremely grateful," she said. "He's made their lives better. We have not done that." Outcry against Murray's comments was immediate, even among some who think the United States should give more foreign aid to Afghanistan. "She should know better than that -- [bin Laden] is public enemy No. 1 and is behind despicable things. To use him for effect is outrageous," said Josh Feit, editor of The Stranger, Seattle's alternative weekly paper. Several experts said it’s true bin Laden has spent some of his money in the Sudan and Afghanistan on infrastructure projects such as building hospitals, schools and roads. But they say most of those roads were built to take soldiers to and from training camps, the schools built were madrasas, which often indoctrinate students to the bin Laden brand of Islam, and the hospitals were not intended for average Muslims but for injured Mujahadeen fighters battling the Soviets. Diplomats, biographers and aid workers all say bin Laden’s popularity does not stem from his benevolence, but from his message of hate towards Israel and the United States. "I think he developed a following because he became the embodiment of someone who would represent the powerless and confront the powerful," said Fox News contributor Dennis Ross, a former ambassador and director of The Washington Institute for Near East Policy. In fact, the United States is the largest international donor of aid to several countries where bin Laden is popular, and was so even before the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. Recently, the United States gave $320 million in aid to Afghanistan, mostly in the form of food and refugee assistance, thus providing 80 percent of the international relief given to that country. Some have also criticized the disproportionate response to Murray’s comments compared to the drubbing given to former Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott, R-Miss., who resigned from his leadership post after a huge public outcry over remarks he made regarding segregationist policies of the past. But there are others in Murray’s corner, including several in Seattle’s anti-war coalition who believe she is right. "I would believe that as a fundamentalist, he believes very much in the values of his religion and that he would have been providing charity," said Alice Woldt of the Church Council of Seattle. Murray’s defenders have said her remarks were made off the cuff, but the tape showed the senator using those words as her closing statements, which may have left a lasting impression. The GOP is now seizing the moment. Republicans, and even President Bush, are said to be trying to draft Rep. Jennifer Dunn to run against Murray in the 2004 election. Fox News' Dan Springer contributed to this report. [img]http://www.foxnews.com/images/78247/0_41_100_murray_patty.jpg[/img] "Yes, I am one stupid bi-zzzitch!"
Link Posted: 1/9/2003 10:34:25 PM EST
"He's been out in these countries for decades building schools, building roads, building infrastructure, building day care facilities, building health care facilities and people are extremely grateful," she said. "He's made their lives better. We have not done that."
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Whats all the hubub about?
Link Posted: 1/9/2003 10:35:46 PM EST
[v]
Link Posted: 1/9/2003 10:41:37 PM EST
You know that Pablo Escobar was really swell guy. He helped build schools and improve the lives of the impoverished in his country.
Link Posted: 1/10/2003 3:04:49 AM EST
What do you expect from a socialist?
Link Posted: 1/10/2003 3:52:21 AM EST
Link Posted: 1/10/2003 9:11:18 AM EST
Originally Posted By USNJoe_Retired: Thursday, January 09, 2003 But there are others in Murray’s corner, including several in Seattle’s anti-war coalition who believe she is right. "I would believe that as a fundamentalist, he believes very much in the values of his religion and that he would have been providing charity," said Alice Woldt of the Church Council of Seattle.
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And also as a fundamentalist, he believes very much in values of killing Jews, stoning women to death for even trivial reasons, commit mass murders, etc etc. But thanks to Murray's big mouth, the Republican may pick up another senate seat in two years.
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