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An Iranian-directed plan to assassinate the Saudi ambassador to the U.S. and possibly attack the Saudi and Israeli embassies in Washington has been disrupted, Justice Department officials announced this afternoon.
Saying that the alleged "deadly plot ... [was] directed by factions of the Iranian government" and involved an attempt to hire killers from a Mexican drug cartel, Attorney General Eric Holder also said Iran will be held to account.
Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, the Nigerian suspect in a failed Christmas Day 2009 attack of a U.S.-bound airliner, prayed and perfumed himself in the plane's restroom moments before trying to detonate a bomb sewn into his underwear, a federal prosecutor said Tuesday.
"He was engaging in rituals. He was preparing to die and enter heaven," Assistant U.S. Attorney Jonathan Tukel told a court in Detroit as Abdulmutallab's trial opened. "He purified himself. He washed. He brushed his teeth. He put on perfume. He was praying and perfuming himself to get ready to die."
The Occupy Wall Street movement, as we noted last week, has latched on to the idea that its supporters are the "99 percent" of Americans who aren't superrich and have been falling behind in recent years.
Northrop Grumman announced, yesterday, that the X-47B drone it is developing for the U.S. Navy had flown in cruise mode — with its landing gear retracted — for the first time during a test flight from Edwards Air Force Base.
The aerospace company called it a "major milestone," but what caught our attention were simply the pictures of this tail-less plane that looks like hybrid UFO and a B-2 bomber:
Dozens of states are considering laws that would require drug testing for government benefit recipients. Those in favor say it would help ensure that tax dollars are used properly, but opponents say it would perpetuate stereotypes about the poor and withhold help from those who need it.
I ate a lot of cantaloupe in the weeks before a listeria outbreak led to a recall in September. And probably like many of you out there, I found myself wondering: Is there any chance that I ate some of the contaminated melons?
"Probably a lot of people ate this cantaloupe," Don Schaffner, a food scientist with Rutgers University, told me. "And a lot of people probably ate lots of (bacterial cells of) listeria."
The news from State Farm Insurance that "for the third consecutive year, the number of deer-vehicle collisions in the U.S. has dropped," is getting noticed in states where Buck vs. Buick encounters are common and usually don't end up well for either party.
Finally. Something the right and the left can agree on: nuclear disarmament.
On Tuesday, more than 70 notable people from around the world will convene at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, Calif. They will beseech international potentates and personages to seriously work toward eradicating nuclear weaponry from the face of the Earth.
To many observers, the idea of undoing what has been done is like trying to put shaving cream back in the can — or, more to the point, radiation back in the warhead.
Originally published on Tue October 11, 2011 8:32 am
An Egyptian military appeals court ruled today that blogger Maikel Nabil Sanad, who was sentenced to prison this spring for insulting government authorities, would receive a new military trial. The decision is regarded as a setback by his supporters, who were hoping for a reduced sentence or a retrial in a civilian court.
Self-proclaimed Seattle superhero Phoenix Jones has had a run-in of his own with the law.
The 23-year-old Jones (real name Benjamin John Francis Fodor) was arrested "on suspicion of fourth-degree assault" by Seattle police early Sunday, "after he allegedly doused a group of people with pepper spray," The Seattle Times reports.
Jones posted a $3,800 bail and is due back in court on Thursday.
Originally published on Tue October 11, 2011 8:04 am
Cancer often takes a heavy toll not only on people's bodies but on their finances as well. And just as some types of cancer are more deadly than others, some types cause more financial pain, as recent research from Seattle's Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center shows.
Originally published on Tue October 11, 2011 11:44 am
Opening statements in the trial of Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, the suspect in the failed Christmas Day attack on a U.S.-bound airliner, begin Tuesday in Detroit. Besides the obvious issue of Abdulmutallab's guilt or innocence, questions remain about his ties to the American-born radical imam killed last month in a CIA drone strike.
Originally published on Tue October 11, 2011 5:34 am
The political debate over what to do about the nation's stubbornly high unemployment rate and weak employment growth ratchets up again today when the Senate's expected to say no to President Obama's $447 billion jobs bill.
Liberians go to the polls Tuesday to elect a new president and lawmakers in the second key elections since the end of the civil war in 2003. The incumbent leader, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf — Africa's first democratically elected female president — was jointly awarded the Nobel Peace Prize on Friday, but her opponents say she deserves neither the award nor re-election.
The Labor Department announced last week that the U.S. economy grew by just 103,000 jobs in September. A number like that isn't even enough to keep up with population growth. The fact that the report was widely greeted as positive news suggests just how low expectations have sunk this year.
Since January, the U.S. economy has been hit by a series of external shocks that brought a modest recovery nearly to a halt. The slowdown, however, may have been under way even before the shocks took place.
Any industry looking for major growth in the U.S. market can't ignore Latinos, who make up 16 percent of the U.S. population. As the Latino population grows, beer marketers are trying more nuanced ways of influencing this key segment.
"They love beer," says Jim Sabia, chief marketing officer for Crown Imports, which distributes Mexican beers including Corona and Modelo. "Hispanics are 19 percent more likely to purchase beer than the rest of U.S. consumers." On top of that, Hispanics will make up a large portion of the legal drinking-age population in the future.
Think Desi Arnaz on I Love Lucy, Freddie Prinze on Chico And The Man, Sofia Vergara on Modern Family. While Spanish has long had a recurring bit role on English-language television, it has slowly but surely become an integral part of the American soundtrack. Here's a look at a few highlights from the past six decades.
More than 94 years after being sunk by a torpedo, a ship carrying tens of thousands of pounds of silver has been located by a marine salvage company. Odyssey Marine Exploration Inc. says it has found the SS Mantola, which came under attack by a German ship in 1917, as it sailed from London to Calcutta.
The wreck was found at a depth of around 8,000 feet, near the coast of Ireland. The ship's cargo was insured for 110,000 British pounds — a figure that has been used to deduce that the cargo contained nearly 19 tons of silver bars.
The Frys.com Open brought the first PGA Tour win for Bryce Molder, who joined the tour in 2002. But the tournament was also memorable for Tiger Woods, who played well — and survived having a hot dog thrown at him on the putting green.
Molder holed a 12-foot birdie putt on the 18th that got him into a playoff with Briny Baird. Molder then outlasted Baird on the sixth extra hole, the longest playoff on tour this year, by making a 6-foot birdie putt.
Bowing to customers' anger and confusion over its move to divide its streaming and DVD video offerings, Netflix is reversing itself, snuffing the plan to offer DVDs by mail via a new service called "Qwikster." News of the backpedaling move was published on the company's blog early Monday.
Originally published on Fri October 26, 2012 11:05 am
Christopher Columbus first encountered the cacao bean on his final voyage to the New World some 500 years ago. It took a while for Europeans to embrace the taste — one 16th-century Spanish missionary called the chocolate that indigenous people drank "loathsome."
But by the 17th century, chocolate met sugar, and it became a hit the world over — it's now a $93 billion a year global industry, according to market research firm Mintel.
Several hundred Christians pelted police with rocks outside a Cairo hospital Monday, in fresh clashes one day after more than two dozen people died in riots that grew out of a Christian protest against a church attack. Sunday's sectarian violence was the worst in Egypt since the uprising that ousted Hosni Mubarak in February.
Security officials said Monday that the death toll from Sunday night's clashes rose to 26 from 24, after two people died of their wounds.