Shiites elect Jafari to be their leader

By Kelly McKee
February 24, 2005

Ibrahim Jafari has been chosen by the elected Shiites as their leader after months of speculation and many voters risking their lives. The winning slate of the elections picked the leader of the country’s oldest Islamist party to head the government on Feb.22. If confirmed this decision would lead the way for a unity government reaching out to the Sunni Arabs who mostly boycotted the election. Jafari is viewed as a studious man, noted for his honesty and integrity. However his connections with the orthodox Islamic religion have led to fears, especially from women, on the future of the country under his rule. Jafari once preached “Islam makes a woman the responsibility of her father until she marries, and then she is the responsibility of her husband,” according to the New York Times.

Quake shakes Iran
A powerful earthquake shook central Iran early on Feb. 22 collapsing buildings and flattening sections of towns and villages. So far the disaster has reportedly killed 370 people and injured hundreds more. The quake, measuring 6.4 on the Richter scale, was centered on the outskirts of Zarand, a town of about 15,000 people, according to the seismological unit of Tehran University’s Geophysics Institute. It struck the mountainous region at 5:55 a.m., damaging at least 40 villages. The rescue operation is underway, hindered by hazardous weather conditions in the aftermath of the disaster, according to the New York Times.

New finds on Mars
A frozen sea has been discovered under the red planet’s surface, raising the possibility that life may exist there. The European Space Agency’s Mars Express orbiter discovered this phenomenon in exploration this week. Above this area was found high levels of methane gas, a by-product of the metabolism of many organisms, which raises the suspicion that there may well be organisms surviving on the planet. This find has excited many renowned scientists working on the Mars mission and a paper will be published on the discovery in March, according the the Washington Post.

California hit by storms
Deadly storms pounded California for several days. Several people have lost their lives due to mudslides, car accidents, and flooding. Homeowners all over the area were forced to evacuate, due to the possibility of their homes collapsing. A local engineer was killed when he fell into a sink hole that he was assessing. Tornados caused a problem in the northern part of the state. Those out at sea had a rough time trying to survive high waves. One man had to jump overboard in order to be rescued. The storms were expected to die down by Wednesday afternoon, according to MSNBC.

Simpsons break barriers
‘The Simpsons’ outed its first gay character on Sunday Feb.20. Patti Bouvier, Marge Simpson’s, husky voiced, hairy sister came out of the closet to the millions of viewers of the Fox network show. Even more controversial, the show challenged the issue of gay marriage having Patti set to marry Veronica, a female golf pro. The show which has been on television for 19 years has pushed a few buttons and will continue to do so until it has finished its last show, according to CNN.

Posted to the web by Shawn Rice

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Kelly McKee

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