Families of alleged victims of reputed Boston mob boss James "Whitey" Bulger on Thursday take another step down what they say has been a long, frustrated quest for justice.
They waited 16 years before Bulger — who was finally captured this past June in Santa Monica, Calif. — was even charged in a string of alleged murders. And they've also spent the past decade trying to make the FBI pay for letting those murders happen.
A revolutionary fighter watches over two suspected Gadhafi loyalists in Sirte, Libya, last month. By some estimates, up to 30 to 40 percent of Libyans are sympathetic to former dictator Moammar Gadhafi.
Credit Karim Sahib / AFP/Getty Images
A small carpet with the portrait of Gadhafi lies on the ground near fighting at the front line of Bani Walid, southeast of Tripoli, earlier this month.
In Libya, anti-government fighters are facing fierce resistance in Moammar Gadhafi's hometown of Sirte. It's one of the last areas that has not fallen to rebel forces. But it's hardly the last bastion of support for the deposed leader.
On a busy afternoon in the market in the southern Tripoli neighborhood of Abu Salim, it doesn't take long for a man to approach a visiting reporter and say under his breath, "You know, we all support Gadhafi here."
The debate on trade sanctions against China that has roiled the Senate all week comes to a head in a make-or-break vote Thursday. Earlier this week, 79 senators voted to take up the bill, which could slap punitive tariffs on imports from China, the largest U.S. trading partner.
The legislation has strong backing from Democrats and Republicans alike; they say it could boost American jobs by punishing China's efforts to keep its currency undervalued and its exports underpriced. Opponents warn that should the bill become law, it could touch off a devastating trade war.
Former Alaska governor Sarah Palin says she will not seek the Republican nomination for the 2012 presidential election. Here, she speaks at a Tea Party Express rally in New Hampshire, Sept. 5, as part of the Reclaiming America bus tour.
Originally published on Wed October 5, 2011 5:16 pm
Former Alaska governor Sarah Palin will not be adding her name to the pool of candidates running for U.S. president in 2012, according to reports. In a statement provided to the Mark Levin radio show, Palin said, "I have decided that I will not be seeking the 2012 GOP nomination for president of the United States."
Senate Democrats haven't exactly been moving as one to embrace President Obama's $447 billion jobs bill.
The disagreement in their ranks arises partly from how the president proposes to pay for his plan, an approach seen by some senators as potentially making their already difficult path to re-election even more so.
The president envisions increasing taxes on couples who, after deductions, have at least $250,000 in taxable income.
A controversial law enforcement technique called a gang injunction "safety zone" has been getting the attention of law enforcement in at least eight states. Essentially, it lists people police say are gang members and bans them from meeting or even speaking to each other inside a defined geographic area.
Police in Wyandanch, N.Y., are trying to convince a judge that curtailing rights normally protected under the Constitution can make their community safer.
A Scottish restaurant's competition to see who could eat the spiciest curry — and raise money for charity in the process — has ended in painful trips to the emergency room for at least two participants.
The Kismot restaurant of Edinburgh, which serves Indian and Bangladeshi food, challenged competitors to eat its hottest curry. At least 20 people answered the bell. But problems became evident almost as soon as participants began eating the curry.
Illumatek makes windshields that are engraved and lit with fiber optics so motorcycles are more visible on the road. Its founder worked with VETransfer, a nonprofit that connects veteran entrepreneurs with funding and business skills.
Originally published on Tue October 25, 2011 3:08 am
As the U.S. winds down military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan and troops come home, many are eager to start work in the civilian sector. But it's been tough: The federal government reports the unemployment rate for young veterans has hovered around 30 percent this year.
Occupy Wall Street protesters join a labor union rally in New York's Foley Square on Wednesday.
Credit Al Behrman / AP
Protesters organized by Occupy Wall Street and Occupy Together yell slogans and hold signs at Courthouse Square in Dayton, Ohio, Wednesday. Several large unions have come out in support of Occupy Wall Street.
Originally published on Thu October 6, 2011 2:02 am
Occupy Wall Street is getting a shot in the arm, as some of America's largest unions have announced that they're now supporting the movement. The gain in momentum comes as off-shoots of the original Manhattan group plan marches and protests around the nation.
As the U.S. marks the 10th anniversary of its involvement in the Afghan war this week, a Pew Research Center report shows some wide differences between the way military members and the general public view the fighting in Afghanistan and Iraq.
Pew researchers talked to nearly 4,000 people, split almost evenly between military veterans and civilians. Paul Taylor, the editor of the study, said he wanted to explore this unique moment in American history.
Originally published on Wed October 5, 2011 2:13 pm
School lunch is a topic of endless fascination here at The Salt and, really, wherever parents of school age children compare notes. If we don't have time to pack their lunch, what exactly are the 32 million kids, including ours, eating?
Well, the secret of what's on the lunch tray has been out for some time in Chicago Public Schools, thanks to a blog called Fed Up With Lunch, and now the whole world knows who's been behind it.
They are the Nobel literature bridesmaids. Every year, they appear on Ladbrokes' betting site alongside their odds of winning. Les Murray: 16/1. Cees Nooteboom: 33/1. Claudio Magris: 40/1.
Perennial names probably more familiar to American readers include Haruki Murakami (7/1), Chinua Achebe and Amos Oz. The latter two aren't even ranked by Ladbrokes this time around. If recent history is any indicator, that means they've got a decent shot of winning. The Ladbrokes lads, after all, did not bother to place odds for such recent winners as Herta Muller or Elfriede Jelinek.
A dispute involving Florida Sen. Marco Rubio and the nation's largest Spanish-language TV network, Univision, has spilled over into the presidential primary. At least five Republican presidential candidates say they will not take part in a debate planned by Univision in January, before the Florida primary.
Making the case that some of the tax increases that would partly pay for President Obama's $447 billion jobs bill are aimed at Americans who are not that rich, the Senate's Democratic leaders are proposing a 5 percent tax on annual incomes above $1 million instead.
Daniel Schectman, left, discusses the quasicrystal's structure with collaborators in 1985, just months after shaking the foundations of materials science. Schectman was awarded the 2011 Nobel Prize for chemistry.
If you or your mate shaved this morning with one of those thin-foil electric shavers, that face probably brushed up against a strange form of matter called a quasicrystal. Norelco is unlikely to get a Nobel Prize for that invention, but the man who discovered quasicrystals, Daniel Shechtman, will get this year's Nobel Prize in chemistry. And it didn't come easy.
Crystals, like diamonds and quartz, hold their sparkly allure because of the way the atoms inside those rocks line up so neatly.
Originally published on Wed October 5, 2011 7:45 pm
With Halloween rapidly approaching, you've probably heard about the shortage of pumpkins along the East Coast caused by the flooding rains of Hurricane Irene.
But while you may have troubling finding just the right shape or the right price for your jack o'lantern this year, there's good news for those looking ahead to the pies and cakes of Thanksgiving and Christmas.
In a first attempt (top), researchers removed an egg's genetic material and replaced it with the genes from an adult skin cell. These embryos didn't grow. The researchers tried another method: They left the egg's original genetic material in, but then also added genetic material from an adult cell (bottom). These embryos started growing.
This image shows the chromosomes from one of the cloned cells. Notice there are three sets of each chromosome; normal cells have just two copies of each chromosome.
Researchers in New York are reporting an advance in creating cloned human embryos. The embryos would not be used for reproduction, but rather the creation of embryonic stem cells. Many scientists believe that human embryonic stem cells made this way could revolutionize medicine.
The advantage of stem cells made this way is that they could be personalized to an individual.
In 2005, death penalty opponents protest the impending execution of condemned inmate Frances Newton in Huntsville, Texas. Newton was convicted of killing her husband and two children in their Houston apartment. She was put to death by lethal injection on Sept. 14, 2005.
Credit Fanny Carrier / AFP/Getty Images
"Old Sparky," the decommissioned electric chair in which 361 prisoners were executed between 1924 and 1964, is now housed at the Texas Prison Museum in Huntsville.
Credit Pat Sullivan / AP
A microphone hangs over the gurney in the Texas death house in 2008 in Huntsville, Texas.
Private bankers who serve some of the world's richest families are seeing clients pile money into "catastrophe portfolios" and real estate, seeking defensive positions that might help them weather a far-reaching economic storm that has roiled financial markets worldwide.
The Rev. Fred Shuttlesworth, a pioneer of the civil rights movement, died Wednesday in Birmingham, Ala. Shuttlesworth led Birmingham's battle against segregation — a battle that focused the national spotlight on the violent resistance to equal rights in the South and forced change. He was 89.
As Birmingham goes, so goes the nation. That belief was the driving force behind Shuttlesworth's crusade for equality.
"He was the soul and heart of the Birmingham movement," Georgia Congressman John Lewis said. It was Birmingham, he said, that brought the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
In this file photo from 2007, Sen. Barack Obama pushes civil rights activist Rev. Fred Shuttlesworth during a commemoration of the 1965 "Bloody Sunday" Voting Rights march in Selma, Ala. Shuttlesworth died Wednesday, at age 89.
Civil rights leader Rev. Fred Shuttlesworth has died, according to reports. He was 89. In the 1950s, Shuttleworth's activism resulted in beatings and attempts on his life in Birmingham, where he established the Alabama Christian Movement for Human Rights in 1956.
Ahmed Al Shayea left Saudi Arabia in November 2004 to join the insurgents in Iraq. He was misled into driving a butane-gas delivery truck, which was detonated by remote control in an attack that killed eight people and left him disfigured. Today, he wants would-be insurgents to listen to his advice: "There is no jihad. We are just instruments of death."
Credit Sven Bannuscher /
Ken Ballen is a former federal prosecutor and the founder and president of Terror Free Tomorrow, an organization that investigates the causes of extremism.
Ahmad Al Shayea grew up in Saudi Arabia in a middle-class family and dropped out of high school to join a local gang. Abdullah Al-Gilani fell in love with a girl who eventually married someone else. Zeddy was an old colleague of Osama bin Laden's.
The National Cathedral, closed since sustaining extensive damage from the August earthquake that shook Washington, D.C., and the surrounding area, will reopen on Nov. 12, according to officials.
The cathedral is also trying to raise money to pay for repairs, estimated to run into the tens of millions of dollars. A statement on the landmark's website says organizers are seeking "at least $25 million" to cover its expenses through the end of 2012.
Originally published on Wed October 12, 2011 8:02 am
I lied. My smartphone isn't a microscope — yet. But there are some smart physicists who want to make that transformation possible very soon, if not for you and me at first, then for doctors who don't have easy access to laboratories.