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EDUCATION with Student News

Quick Guide & Transcript: Hamas dominates Palestinian elections, Week in Review


(CNN Student News) -- January 27, 2006

Quick Guide

Hamas Victory - Find out what Palestinians hope to gain from their new, Hamas-dominated leadership.

Week in Review - Relive an adventure on the high seas as part of our Week in Review.

Gaming Fitness - Check out a video game that likely would meet the approval of many parents and P.E. coaches.



SHANON COOK, CNN STUDENT NEWS ANCHOR: Glad to have you along for this Friday edition of CNN Student News! In Atlanta, I'm Shanon Cook. Colors of change: Palestinians put their political power, in the hands of a terrorist group. What could this mean for peace in the middle east? Adventure on the high seas: Relive the U.S. Navy's capture of suspected real-life pirates in the Indian Ocean. And gettin' in shape, while gettin' your groove on: Step up to a game that some parents would want you to play!

First Up: Hamas Victory

COOK: The winds of change are blowing stronger in the Middle East than experts originally thought. Palestinians not only voted to give the "Hamas" party control of their parliament, they're letting it play a huge role in deciding their future. That's significant because Hamas has said it wants to destroy Israel. The U.S. says that threat, and its history of murder and violence, makes it a terrorist group. Time will tell if Hamas tones down its tough talk, and works to advance the peace process between Israelis and Palestinians. What we do know is it'll dominate the new Palestinian Parliament with about 76 seats. A second party called "Fatah" ran things for many years. They now have only around 43 seats. Bill Schneider describes what the Palestinian people hope to get out of the deal.


BILL SCHNEIDER, CNN REPORTER: Here's the Bush Doctrine, as President Bush stated it a year ago in his second inaugural address.

U.S. PRESIDENT GEORGE W. BUSH: It is the policy of the United States to seek and support the growth of Democratic movements and institutions in every nation and culture.

SCHNEIDER: So what does President Bush make of Wednesday's Palestinian election?

BUSH: Democracy can open up the world's eyes to reality by listening to people.

SCHNEIDER: The reality is that the Palestinians voted for a radical Islamist political movement that the United States, Europe and Israel have labeled a terrorist organization. President Bush has to argue that Palestinians were not actually voting for terrorism. They were voting for change.

BUSH: I'm not surprised that people say, `let's get rid of corruption.' if government hadn't been responsive, I'm not the least bit surprised if people say, `I want government to be responsive.

SCHNEIDER: Americans vote against the status quo all the time. Apparently, so do Palestinians.

MAN ON THE STREET: A Hamas government should first of all put an end to unemployment, and then do something about the high prices of food and fuel.

SCHNEIDER: Are Palestinians really willing to destroy the peace process and provoke the United States in order to get better government? The way out, President Bush insists, is for Hamas to renounce extremism. We expect that to happen when a radical party assumes the responsibilities of civil government.

BUSH: I made it very clear that the United States does not support political parties that want to destroy our ally Israel, and that people must renounce that part of their platform.

SCHNEIDER: For the Bush doctrine to work, the winners must also accept the rules of democracy and abandon extremism. That's true for the Palestinian Authority and Iraq as well. Bill Schneider, CNN, Washington.


Word to the Wise


status quo (noun) the existing state of affairs

source: www.m-w.comexternal link

Week in Review

COOK: It's been anything but the "status quo" for sailors aboard the USS Winston S. Churchill. Deanna Morawski tells us whom they captured, in our Week in Review.


DEANNA MORAWSKI, CNN STUDENT NEWS REPORTER: Over the weekend the U.S. Navy captured what it says are modern-day pirates off the coast of Somalia. After receiving a report of a piracy attempt, U.S. naval forces closed in on the vessel with the suspected pirates. The Navy says some of it occupants were detained and weapons were found. Authorities believe the suspects were planning to hold certain vessels for ransom - a tactic that authorities say has become all too common in the area in recent months.

In Washington, lawmakers held hearings on mining safety, following the deaths of 14 miners in West Virginia. In question -- whether the Mining Health and Safety Administration could be doing more.

SEN. JOE LIEBERMAN/(D) CONNECTICUT: We gotta take a quick and urgent look to make sure the laws to protect those miners are all that they should be.

MORAWSKI: The White House has said it wants specific ideas within 60 days for how to improve mining safety. That might include: Better tracking equipment to communicate with trapped miners...And better oxygen supplies.

SENATE JUDICIARY COMMITTEE: The committee confirms the nomination of Alito for floor action...

MORAWSKI: With a vote of the Senate Judiciary Committee, federal Judge Samuel Alito was one step closer to becoming the next Supreme Court justice. The vote was split 10 to 8 along party lines... with Republicans praising his qualifications, and Democrats voicing concern that he would push the court to the right and give too much power to the president. A vote by the full Senate is scheduled for early next week.

On Wednesday, Senator John Kerry of Massachusetts said he will filibuster Alito's nomination, which would require 60 votes out of the 100 to break. Republicans believe they already have enough votes to overcome a filibuster, and Alito is expected to be confirmed.

And President Bush continued to defend a government program involving electronic surveillance of suspected terrorists. He spoke Wednesday to employees at the NSA, which is conducting the surveillance. It involves secret wiretaps on communications between people in the U.S. and suspected terrorists abroad. The president says he was granted the authority by the congress and the constitution to carry out the program. But critics say the eavesdropping threatens civil liberties and privacy rights. Senate hearings into the legality of the program are scheduled to begin in less than two weeks. That's your Week in Review. For CNN Student News, I'm Deanna Morawski.



AZUZ: Time for the Shoutout! What is the NSA? If you think you know it, shout it out! Is it the:

A) National Surveillance Agency

B) National Space Administration

C) National Salvage Alliance

D) National Security Agency

You've got three seconds--GO! NSA stands for National Security Agency, a super-secret government organization. That's your answer and that's your Shoutout!

Gaming Fitness

COOK: You hardcore gamers have a new comeback when your parents call video games, a waste of time. Imagine how they'll look when you say, "actually, games help me exercise, lose weight, and really own school dances!" Elizabeth Cohen plugs in to a revolutionary program that's getting gamers off the couch.


ELIZABETH COHEN, CNN REPORTER: Video games... hours and hours spent on couches.... teenage obesity... one habit seems to feed the other. But what about a video game that might used as a weight loss aid? It's called Dance Dance Revolution. Two-years ago we met John Polchowski..he was spending up to 3 hours a day playing video games alone in his room... then he got hooked on DDR.

JOHN POLCHOWSKI: As I kept on playing I got better and realized that it would be a really good workout and I tried to use that to make it a goal and lose a lot of weight.

COHEN: After playing the game for 1 to 2 hours everyday for a year... he started to lose weight... along with eating healthier...John eventually lost 70 lbs.

POLCHOWSKI: I'm always able to do it whenever I want. I don't need to get other people.

COHEN: Today John is a 19-year old sophomore at Fairfield University. He doesn't have much time for DDR anymore but he's managed to keep the weight off by remaining active and playing sports with friends. John's mother says her son owes his healthier lifestyle to DDR.

MARIANNE POLCHOWSKI, JOHN'S MOTHER: It's hard to lose weight without exercise also and this was something he enjoyed.

COHEN: Dr. Richard Adler is a pediatrician who has been tracking active video games and their success in fighting obesity.

DR. RICHARD C. ADLER UNIVERSITY OF TENNESSEE HEALTH SCIENCES: There's never been any thing that I have seen that has the potential for increasing physical activity like this. It has potential for being absolutely tremendous in terms of its impact on children.

COHEN: There are no official numbers on how many kids have lost weight with these games, but manufacturers are developing more interactive games involving skateboarding, fighting and more the hope that others, like John can be persuaded to get off the couch. Elizabeth Cohen, CNN, Atlanta.


Off the Beaten Path

COOK Before we go... When bees become fashionable, babies show off speed, and pigs nurse puppies... You know we've gone "off the beaten path" with Carl Azuz.


AZUZ: Bee still my bee-ting heart: The buzz here is about a Colombian guy who dressed himself in a suit of bees! The satisfaction of a landing a Guinness World Record apparently quelled the pain of a hundred stingers. Wonder who volunteered to pluck those out? Shifting gears now...If you NASCAR fans don't know what to do in the off could always race your baby! It's a competition of truly small victories. And it's unique because not everyone cares about winning, not everyone knows how, and the loser is expected to cry about it! Now here's a scene that could make you hamster owners cry. It may look like the "before" shot in a show called "When Nature Strikes," but it's actually a freakish friendship between a snake and its lunch! Since befriending one hopeful hamster, the reptile has eaten other rodents. No one knows why it won't eat this one, but it's probably not a good idea for you to try it at home. And in other unlikely friendships...This pig has gone to the dogs! No, these aren't preternatural piglets -- they're actually purebred border collies without a trace of prejudice. They'll just have to get used to some nasty "yo mama" jokes. Reporting from Off the Beaten Path, I'm Carl Azuz.



COOK: That's all for today! Have a great weekend, and be sure to catch CNN Student News next Monday, same time, same place. I'm Shanon Cook.

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