Reagan's Inaugural Ratings Better Than Obama's

NewsMax is reporting that:

Although the number of viewers watching the presidential inauguration coverage of Barack Obama was impressive, they fall short of those who saw Ronald Reagan take the oath of office for his first term in 1981.

According to Nielsen Media Research, 37.8 million television viewers tuned in Tuesday to watch the swearing-in ceremony, which was the largest inaugural audience in 28 years. Reagan's first inauguration in 1981 drew a whopping 41.8 million.

Obama's figures include telecasts on 17 broadcast and cable networks, while Reagan's swearing-in ceremony nearly three decades ago could only be seen on ABC, CBS and NBC.

Ex-Gitmo Detainee Joins al-Qaida

Well, here you have it Folks, evidence to back up what I said on the show yesterday, the releasing of these detainees back into the world will result in many of them back on the battlefield or back in the al-qaeda organization.

A Saudi man released from Guantanamo after spending nearly six years inside the U.S. prison camp is now the No. 2 of Yemen's al-Qaida branch, according to a purported Internet statement from the terror network.

The announcement, made this week on a Web site commonly used by militants, came as President Barack Obama ordered the detention facility closed within a year. Many of the remaining detainees are from Yemen, which has long posed a vexing terrorism problem for the U.S.

The terror group's Yemen branch known as "al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula" said the man, identified as Said Ali al-Shihri, returned to his home in Saudi Arabia after his release from Guantanamo about a year ago and from there went to Yemen, which is Osama bin Laden's ancestral home.

"He managed to leave the land of the two shrines (Saudi Arabia) and join his brothers in al-Qaida," the statement said.


Rep. Pete Hoekstra, of Michigan, the top Republican on the House Intelligence Committee, criticized the executive order Obama signed Thursday to close the facility as "very short on specifics."

He said there are indications that as many as 10 percent of the men released from Guantanamo are "back on the battlefield. They are attacking American troops."


Al-Shihri allegedly traveled to Afghanistan after the Sept. 11 attacks, provided money to other fighters and trained in urban warfare at a camp north of Kabul, according to a summary of the evidence against him from U.S. military review panels at Guantanamo.

He also was accused of meeting extremists in Iran and briefing them on how to enter Afghanistan, according to the documents.

Al-Shihri, however, said he traveled to Iran to buy carpets. He said he felt bin Laden had no business representing Islam, denied any links to terrorism and expressed interest in rejoining his family.

Obama: Gitmo Closed Within 1 Year

President Obama on Thursday will order the closure of "all permanant detention facilities overseas," dismantling much of the Bush admistration's architecture for the war on terror, according to four individuals familiar with a draft executive order.

The individuals said there will be three executive orders. One will close the prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba within 12 months, in accordance with an Obama campaign pledge.

Mr. Obama, in one of his first acts as president, on Wednesday suspended all the military commissions for 120 days.

Congressional committees were informally briefed about the executive
orders on Wednesday. Administration officials discussed them with
senior Republican legislators late Wednesday and will be briefing
others opposed to changing current U.S. policies involving terrorist
suspects.

A former Justice Department official familiar with the drafts said;

"there are serious concerns as to where the detainees will be held" and that sending them "into the U.S. federal court system may lead to some of them being released"


A Pentagon official said;
"it would be to speculative to say what will happen with each detainee once the facility is closed" but "clearly
there are some dangerous detainees at Guantanamo and they will continue to fight us.
It's still way to soon to make judgement calls as to what facilities they will be held in the U.S. or abroad."

40 Al-Qaeda Terrorists Killed by Plague

40 al-Qaeda fanatics died horribly after being struck down with the disease that devastated Europe in the Middle Ages.

The killer bug, also known as the plague, swept through insurgents training at a forest camp in Algeria, North Africa. It came to light when security forces found a body by a roadside.

The victim was a terrorist in AQLIM (al-Qaeda in the Land of the Islamic Maghreb), the largest and most powerful al-Qaeda group outside the Middle East.

It trains Muslim fighters to kill British and US troops.

Now al-Qaeda chiefs fear the plague has been passed to other terror cells or Taliban fighters in Afghanistan.

One security source said:
"This is the deadliest weapon yet in the war against terror. Most of the terrorists do not have the basic medical supplies needed to treat the disease. It spreads quickly and kills within hours. This will be really worrying al-Qaeda."


Black Death comes in various forms.

Bubonic Plague is spread by bites from infected rat fleas. Symptoms include boils in the groin, neck and armpits. In Pneumonic Plague, airborn bacteria spread like flu.

It can be in the body for more than a week, highly contagious but not revealing tell tale symptoms.

The al-Qaeda epidemic began in the cave hideouts of AQLIM in Tizi Ouzou province, 150km east of the capital Algiers. The group, led by wanted terror boss Abdelmalek Droudkal, was forced to turn its shelters in the Yakouren forest into mass graves and flee.

The extremists supporting madman Osama bin Laden went to Bejaia and Jijel provinces, hoping the plague did not go with them.

A source said:
"The emirs (leaders) fear surviving terrorists will surrender to escape a horrible death."


AQLIM boss Droudkal claims to command around 1,000 insurgents. Training camps are also based in Morocco, Tunisia and Nigeria.

AQLIM bombed the UN headquarters in Algiers in 2007, killing 41. Attacks across Algeria last year killed at least 70 people.

In an interview last July, Droudkal boasted his cell was in constant contact with other al-Qaeda "brothers".

UPDATE:

An Al Qaeda affiliate in Algeria closed a base earlier this month after an experiment with unconventional weapons went awry, a senior U.S. intelligence official said Monday.

The official, who spoke on the condition he not be named because of the sensitive nature of the issue, said he could not confirm press reports that the accident killed at least 40 Al Qaeda operatives, but he said the mishap led the militant group to shut down a base in the mountains of Tizi Ouzou province in eastern Algeria.

He said authorities in the first week of January intercepted an urgent communication between the leadership of Al Qaeda in the Land of the Maghreb (AQIM) and Al Qaeda's leadership in the tribal region of Pakistan on the border with Afghanistan. The communication suggested that an area sealed to prevent leakage of a biological or chemical substance had been breached, according to the official."We don't know if this is biological or chemical," the official said.

The story was first reported by the British tabloid the Sun, which said the Al Qaeda operatives died after being infected with a strain of bubonic plague, the disease that killed a third of Europe's population in the 14th century.

But the intelligence official dismissed that claim.

President Bush Commutes Ramos & Compean Sentences

President Bush commuted the sentences of two former border patrol agents who had been sentenced to more than a decade in prison for shooting a suspected Mexican drug dealer in Texas in 2005.

President Bush exercised his constitutional power to grant clemency in a case that touched off fierce debate in the Southwest. The two former agents, Ignacio Ramos and Jose Alonso Compean, had attracted considerable support among advocates of tougher border security, who argued that the agents were just doing their jobs.

Both agents were convicted of assault with a dangerous weapon and several other crimes. Mr. Compean was sentenced to 12 years in prison, to be followed by three years of supervised released, with a $2,000 fine. Mr. Ramos was sentenced to 11 years, with the same supervised release and fine.

The commutation granted by President Bush means the prison sentences of the men, both from El Paso, will expire on March 20, the Justice Department said.

The supervised release and fines will still apply. A commutation is not as generous as a presidential pardon, which essentially erases a crime from a defendant's record.