Now some fresh pickings from the Political Grapevine:
If you wonder how terrorists recruit young men with no history of radical activities, listen to this: An 18-year-old British Muslim tells the Daily Mirror that two London men tried to recruit him three years ago for a suicide bombing mission — promising "70 virgins in heaven and ... a place to have sex, covered in diamonds and pearls."
He says the men first approached him at his mosque just after his father died, and asked if he was "angry about the West's persecution of ... the Islamic nation." They showed him video of Muslims being killed in the Middle East. And for the next two weeks, he says they "befriended and groomed me ... cynically exploiting a time of turmoil and confusion in my life to convince me to end it ... by blowing myself to bits in a terror attack." When he refused, they left, never to be seen again.
The San Francisco Chronicle is calling for White House Spokesman Scott McClellan's resignation, saying he ruined his credibility by "stonewalling" on questions about Karl Rove. But former Clinton spokesman Mike McCurry says McClellan is doing exactly the right thing. Writing in Ariana Huffington's blog, McCurry says McClellan's now-familiar response that he won't comment on an ongoing investigation, "…happens to be the right answer when people face legal jeopardy and might go to jail."
McCurry also says Rove seems to have done nothing wrong, adding, "There has to be some other explanation for the zeal with which this investigation is being pursued."
Hip-Hopping to a New Job
The Transportation Security Administration has fired a baggage screener in Houston, Texas, because lyrics on his amateur rap CD appear to advocate terrorism. TSA officials told Bassam Khalaf, whose stage name is the "Arabic Assassin," that he was being fired for songs like "Bring the Pain," in which he warns that Americans will die on September 11, 2005.
Khalaf says his CD — "Terror Alert — is "just entertainment," and claims his firing was racially motivated. But he's not too upset about losing the job... Khalaf says all the publicity could help land him a record deal.
Fishing For A Name Change
Animal rights activists at PETA, or People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, are asking residents of Fishkill, New York to change the name of their town to something more fish-friendly.
The Poughkeepsie Journal reports that Fishkill is actually derived from Dutch words meaning Fish and Stream, but PETA says that when most people think of Fishkill "they think of abusing fish and that's not the right message." So what do the folks at PETA want the people of Fishkill to call their town? They're suggesting "FishingHurts.com" — the Internet address for PETA's "fish empathy project."
— FOX News' Michael Levine contributed to this report