Cowlix Wearing my mind on my sleeve

Tuesday, November 27, 2001 Permanent link to this day
Cloning reactions

Reactions to Sunday's announcement of the first human embryo cloning: Bush, the Vatican, and the European Commission (to name a few) condemn the action. Others feel that the medical benefits of therapeutic cloning outweigh the negligible risks of someone actually trying to bring a cloned child to birth. Then there are the "non-extremists", like Paul Vallely, who is "excited, but deeply worried". Libby Purves points out that despite best intentions, a cloned human child is now inevitable and that in fact there are groups and scientists whose aim is just that. The Wall Street Journal's editorial agrees it's inevitable and that the most important result of the announcement is that it will get us thinking about the issue now, while we're still at the base of Mount Clone, which scientists will climb because it's there. Two scientists involved in the Dolly cloning say that ACT's research isn't close to being ground-breaking and that it's more important politically and ethically than scientifically. Gina Kolata and Andrew Pollack agree, and discuss how the announcement was managed for maximum publicity. By provoking lawmakers, the New York Times editorial states, ACT may have done more to harm the field than help it. Clive Cookson raises the same point in the Financial Times. The Washington Post editorial urges Congress to refrain from banning the techniques before adequate scientific and ethical debates, while the Economist describes how the science may be moving too fast for laws. Reason has a collection of responses, collected before ACT's announcement, from scientists to a petition to criminalize cloning.

Afghanistan is only the start

Ariel Cohen of the Heritage Foundation reminds us that we may be winning in Afghanistan, but that's doing nothing to address the root cause of the problem.


Excerpts from the Justice Departments instructions on interviewing Middle Eastern men. Michigan will be sending invitations out to people in that state who are on the list to be interviewed.

What we're really fighting

Thomas Friedman on The Real War: "We're not fighting to eradicate "terrorism." Terrorism is just a tool. We're fighting to defeat an ideology: religious totalitarianism."

Tora Bora complex

A witness describes the underground cave complex near Tora Bora where bin Ladin is suspected to be hiding.

Somalian telecom shutdown

The US move to shut down Somalian telecom companies linked to al-Qaeda has drawn protest from the UN because of the impact to the already fragile economy in Somalia.

Terrorizing reporters

Reporter Basildon Peta: Mugabe will have to kill me to shut me up. Meanwhile, the U.S. has joined Britain in protesting the association of reporters with terrorism while police and students clash after a MDC supporter was killed by a soldier.

Chris McGreal describes Mugabe's version of the war on terror. [via zem]

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Copyright © 2001-2002 by Wes Cowley