The Battalion. (College Station, Tex.) 1893-current, February 19, 1980, Image 1

Below is the OCR text representation for this newspapers page. It is also available as plain text as well as XML.

homeini hands powers to Bani- United Press International Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini today landed over his powers as supreme com mander of Iran’s military to President llfolhassan Bani-Sadr, Iranian news re ts said. he announcement of the change came nil terse report by the official Pars news agency and in a Tehran Radio broadcast mfmitored in London. fin his message to the president, Khomeini, 79, said, “At this sensitive stage when the need for centralization is greater than at any other time,” Bani-Sadr was appointed to “represent” him as the sup reme commander, as defined by Iran’s new constitution, Tehran Radio said. “It is hoped that with your efficiency, the affairs of the country and the armed forces will continue running according to Islamic principles,” the message added. Khomeini’s order, coupled with an ear lier decision by the ruling Revolutionary Council to give Bani-Sadr, 47, full execu tive powers, broadened the president’s power base considerably. The Kuwaiti newspaper Al Watan re ported during the weekend Khomeini granted Bani-Sadr the power to remove the militants holding the hostages for 108 days and hand over the Americans to govern ment troops, another possible indication Khomeini intended to give the president the authority to make decisions that had been made by the ayatollah since he took power last February. Khomeini has been hospitalized in Tehran with a heart condition since Jan. 24. In Vienna, U.N. Secretary General Kurt Waldheim told the Austrian newspaper Die Presse today the hostages could be released within two weeks. The release would be achieved through the efforts of the committee set up by Wal dheim to examine Iran’s charges of the crimes during the shah’s regime, the sec retary-general said. He stressed the five men appointed to the commission had passed muster with officials in Washington as well as Bani-Sadr and Foreign Minister Sadegh Ghotbzadeh. Thus, formal acceptance by Iran was all that stood in the way of the commission to begin its probe. Western news reports said informed sources said Bani Sadr was expected to give his written approval today, but the head of the president’s secretariat, identified only as Dr. Taghavi, told a Western reporter: “Iran has not yet officially approved.’ Iran verbally informed U.N. Secretary- General Kurt Waldheim Monday it accepts the five international jurists he has chosen for the panel but Waldheim was awaiting a formal, written communication from Tehran before announcing the commis- Battalion Vol. 73 No. 104 8 Pages Tuesday, February 19, 1980 College Station, Texas USPS 045 360 Phone 845-2611 Groups encourage minority politics Chat with Staats By LAURA CORTEZ City Staff Efforts are being made in Brazos County to encourage minorities to become more poli tically active. The Mexican-American Democrats, a statewide organization which is part of the Democratic Party, and the Black Voters League Council, a local group, are both playing a major role in the effort. Daniel Hernandez, chairman of Mex ican-American Democrats, said the major goal of the organization is to educate the Hispanic community about the political process. He said the group, which is made up of about 55 members, stresses voter registra tion and tries to make people aware of the candidates and the issues. “The organization also tries to sensitize the candidates to the concerns of the Hispa nic community and the community in gen eral,” Hernandez said. He said that although most of the state wide and local issues concern the entire community, there are some issues that affect the Hispanics, especially those in the low income bracket, to a greater extent. “It is important that the Hispanics are unified and act as one cohesive group,” he said. The organization will endorse various Democratic candidates who will run for state and county offices May 3, but it has not yet been decided which ones. The Mexican-American Democrats will offer an opportunity for members of the community to meet the candidates and “get a feel for what they are all about” at a meet ing Feb. 28, Hernandez said. All of the Democratic candidates from this area will be invited, and questions con cerning the issues will be addressed to them by a panel made up of members of the organization. Hernandez said that the Hispanics were “late in coming into the political game,” but Mexican-American Democrats is working at making up for lost time. Another group concerned about the voice of the minorities in the local political system is the Black Voters League Council, headed by Olemuel Davis. Like Mexican-American Democrats, the organization stresses voter registration, knowledge of the candidates and participa tion in political affairs. “We do not tell the people who to vote for, but if they are unaware of who is run ning for office, we provide information ab out the candidates,” Davis said. The group sponsors such activities as block meetings, primarily held in black neighborhoods, to provide residents with answers to questions about the political process, candidates or issues, he said. Although the organization does not en dorse candidates, Davis said the group will express its views about certain candidates if a person asks. He said the group, made up of about 100 members, does not limit its services to the black community, and anyone can become a member. “We consider ourselves public servants and will work in whichever areas of the community need our help, Davis said. Dwayne Staats(l.), the Texas A&M Basketball Radio Network’s chief announcer, interviews Coach Shelby Metcalf after the Aggies beat the University of Texas last weekend. Tonight’s game against Texas Christian University will be the last home game of the season for the Aggies. Coverage of the game will be carried live over the radio network, and will also be televised, beginning at 8 p.m. The game is especially important since the SMU Mustangs defeated the Arkansas Razorbacks 62-58 Mon day night to move the Texas Aggies into sole possession of first place in the Southwest Conference. For details, see page 8. Staff photo by Brian Blalock rill team Freshman cadets stand out at Mardi Gras Refugees may move to Guyana By SUSAN HOPKINS Campus Reporter The Texas A&M University Fish Drill ream did not appear to be the life of the larty. ^Amidst the painted faces, colorful cos tumes, exotic music and drunk people at Mardi Gras in New Orleans last weekend, FDT members stood out in their fresh green uniforms, cleanly-shaven heads, shiny boots and white gloves. , The 40-member drill team wasn’t there for the fun and excitement most college students seek when they go to Mardi Gras. But they did add color to the eighth annual Tulane University Invitational Drill Meet, where they won first place overall. ■The categories for the competition, Bainst six other college and university drill teams, were platoon inspection-basic, squad basic and platoon exhibition. JMike Holmes, FDT commander, said the team won first place with 703 out of 1,000 points in the inspection basic categ ory, in which four drill instructors in spected members on uniform and personal neatness. They also asked them questions about themselves and the weapons they carried. “The category is to rate us on how neat and together we look as a group but the men who inspect us are mainly there to intimidate us, and see how we react, ” he said. He said another part of the inspection- basic category involved marching to com mands and doing basic moves with weapons. The drill team won second place in the squad basic competition, in which nine members drill with their Springfield rifles to the commands of team member Joe Cronin. Holmes said platoon exhibition was the category where the drill team had a chance to show their “fancy drill.” Holmes said the 1,344 of 1,575 possible points the team earned in the third categ ory was unusually good considering the size of the squad. He said they were the largest group at the competition. Scot Sturgeon, a member of the team, won third place in individual competition for his ability to throw and spin his weapon, Holmes said. After the competition, on Friday, Homes said, the drill team members went to Jackson Square for yell practice, then were free to tour Bourbon Street. “It was the wildest thing I’ve ever seen, ” Holmes said. “One guy had on Christmas tree lights, and another guy had his shoes painted silver.” Holmes said the drill team saw more of the same activity when they marched in a nine-mile parade Saturday night. He said they also did a drill exhibition aboard the H.M.S. Hermes, of the Royal Navy. Holmes said the drill team and its advis ers stayed on the ship while in New Orleans, and had a chance to see how the enlisted men live — in beds 2V2 feet wide, and stacked three high. But Holmes said the sleeping conditions were not important because “whenever you walk off the field champions, holding five trophies, it’s all worth it.” The FDT started in 1947 when hazing of freshmen on campus was so bad that the freshmen were moved to barracks at Bryan Air Force Base to escape the constant har- rassment from upperclassmen. Holmes said the freshmen started the drill team because they had nothing else to do when together. The FDT won the national champion ship for five consecutive years in the early 1970s, causing the national meet to be dis continued. Texas A&M FDTs have won five of the last seven state titles. Although about 100 freshmen started out on the team in the fall, the team is now composed of 40 members. Pollution threatens water supply United Press International WASHINGTON — Pollution and mis- e of water resources threaten the quality d quantity of the U.S. water supply, a vemment report said today. ■ The 10th annual report from the Presi- gent’s Council on Environmental Quality ted examples of water problems ranging m dwindling supplies in the West to icid rain” in the Northeast. Also noted re toxic chemical contamination of the great Lakes and the impact of pollution on astal fisheries and the Chesapeake Bay. 1 The council reported an overall improve ment in urban air quality, but warned of rious soil erosion problems and loss of agricultural land to urban sprawl. “The nation’s water and the resources associated with it are in trouble, ” said coun cil Chairman Gus Speth. “We cannot expect an endless supply of cheap, clean water at the twist of a faucet, ” Speth said. He called for prompt action on administration projects aimed at water con servation and resource development, as well as ways to protect ground and surface water from hazardous wastes. While industry has made progress in re ducing conventional waste dumped into lakes and streams, other sources of pollu tion — urban sewer overflows, overworked sewage treatment plants, toxic industrial wastes — are proving more difficult to con trol, the report said. The council estimated the United States spent $26.9 billion in 1978 as a result of federal pollution control and environmen tal quality programs. Combined public and private spending required by federal rules amounted to an average of $120 per person. The report said urban air quality im proved overall from 1974 to 1977, the last year for which complete data is available, primarily because of automobile emission controls. During the four years, the number of “unhealthful days” in the 25 largest metro politan areas — measured by the “pollutant standard index” — declined by 15 percent and the number of “very unhealthful days” was down by 32 percent. But the study said air quality in the two largest cities, New York and Los Angeles, was “unhealthful” two out of every three days in 1977. Nine cities — Cleveland; Denver; Louis ville; Riverside and Anaheim, Calif.; Chi cago; Philadelphia; St. Louis, and Washington, D.C. — averaged more than 100 “unhealthful days” a year from 1975 to 1977, the report said. On land resources, the report noted the loss of 3 million acres of agricultural land a year to urban sprawl and other develop ment. Soil erosion, estimated at more than 4 billion tons a year nationwide, is reducing productivity of farmland in Iowa, Illinois, Ohio, Kentucky, Pennsylvania and Indi ana, the report said. Agricultural runoff from eroded land is a major contributor to water pollution, it added. United Press International WASHINGTON — A group of U.S. re lief agencies is working on a plan to resettle Indochinese refugees at the site of the 1978 Jonestown massacre in the Guyana jungle. A State Department official said Monday night the U.S. government was not in volved but confirmed private agencies had the proposal under consideration. Andrea Braithwaite, third secretary of the Guyanese Embassy, said there was “some discussion” of the plan between her government and relief agencies “but I do not know they will be put into Jonestown or that the deal will go through.” Spokesmen for two of the relief agencies behind the proposal said no final decision had been made. “The plan is,” said a spokesman for the World Relief Corp. of Wheaton, Ill., “we would actually have to go down there and build a community. All the Guyana govern ment would give is citizenship and a 25- year lease.” He said the agencies would spend from $6 million to $10 million. “Right now, one of the most critical needs for the solution to the refugee prob lem is a permanent settlement,” said Franklin Graham, president of World Medical Missions and Samaritan’s Purse of Boone, N.G. “I checked into Guyana as a permanent site and it looks good.” Graham, son of evangelist Billy Graham, said Jonestown had been made available for the project, which he said would start out on a “pilot” basis. The Jonestown settlement could now accommodate 1,500 refugees but would re quire a lot of work to house a “developing community,” he said. The Chicago Tribune, which first re ported the project, said plans called for eventually resettling 100,000 Indochinese. Graham said under present plans organiz ers wanted to see how the pilot project fared before deciding on taking more re fugees. Graham said representatives of the Hmong, a Laotian ethnic group, would in spect the site “probably sometime within the next 30 days” and then a final decision would be made. More than 900 American followers of Peoples’ Temple cult leader Jim Jones died in the mass suicide-murder Nov. 18, 1978, in the Jonestown settlement. The World Relief spokesman said he had been told the Guyanese government asked the Thai government for permission to take the refugees almost two months ago but has received no answer. He said the proposal originated with staff members of his agency. “It occurred to some of the young people on our staff, ” he said, “that Jonestown was a black experience in the history of mankind and we would like to turn that around and turn it into a real positive experience. Pancake race begins today United Press International OLNEY, England — Women of Olney warmed their skillets today for the 31st running of the Great Trans*- Atlantic Pancake Race, determined to retain their trophy against a strong chal lenge from their Liberal, Kan. foes. The all-woman contest, which has be come an international event attracting hundreds of spectators in both towns, is run first in Olney and later in the day in Liberal. The two towns have competed for 30 years. Going into today’s race, Liberal had an 18-12 edge on Olney. The Great Trans-Atlantic Pancake Race began as the Olney Pancake race on Shrove Tuesday, 535 years ago. “Tradition declares the race was first run in the year 1445 A.D., pancakes at the time being a popular dish and re ceiving royal favor, ” reads a booklet en titled “The Worthies and Wonders of Olney Parish Church.” Shrove Tuesday, the last day before Lent, traditionally was given over to “many pranks ... forming part of a last fling celebrations before the long Len ten fast. “How the race originated nobody knows. Perhaps a harassed housewife, hearing the shriving bell, dashed off to the church still clutching her frying pan,” the booklet said. War interrupted the festivities until they were revived in 1949 by Rev. Ronald Collins, vicar of Olney. In 1950, Liberal’s Junior Chamber of Commerce, in search of a special project for the year, issued a challenge to Olney and the Great TransAtlantic Pancake Race was bom. The towns compete for a traveling trophy, an engraved skillet that spends the year with the winner. y