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Revealed: How Britain tried to legitimize Batang Kali massacre

Senior British diplomats introduced an extraordinary “licence to kill” law in an attempt to legalise retrospectively the colonial-era killing of 24 villagers by UK troops in Malaysia, the Observer can reveal. The Batang Kali massacre took place on 12 December 1948, as British troops carried out a counter-insurgency operation against…

NASA explains the ‘supermoon’ of May 5

In a video uploaded to YouTube in March, NASA explained the “supermoon” phenomenon that occurred the night of May 5. “The scientific term for the phenomenon is perigee moon,” the video explained. “Full Moons vary in size because of the oval shape of the Moon’s orbit. The Moon follows an…

Ritalin use soars fourfold in U.K. as psychologists warn of untested drug cocktails

Prescriptions of Ritalin for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder have quadrupled in a decade, prompting fears it is being pushed on children at the expense of alternative treatments and without appreciation of long-term effects. Figures released by the NHS business services authority to the Liberal Democrat MP Tessa Munt reveal the…

Obama knocks Romney: Corporations are not people

President Barack Obama launched his reelection campaign in Columbus, Ohio on Saturday by rebuking his presumptive Republican opponent’s approach to taxes and the economy. “We’ve come too far to abandon the change we have fought for these past few years” Obama told a crowd of 14,000 supporters. “We have to…

Krugman compares Republican economic plan to blood-letting

Nobel Prize-winning economist Paul Krugman said Saturday that Republican-backed austerity measures — such as cutting government spending and reducing public services — were self-defeating “We are very much like medieval doctors who thought the treatment for illness was to bleed you, then when the patients got sicker they bled them…

Facebook execs hit the road to persuade investors

NEW YORK — Facebook, already assured of becoming one of the most valuable US firms when it goes public later this month, now must convince investors in the next two weeks that it is worth all the hype. Top executives at the world’s leading social network have kicked off their…

Israel’s Labour leader slams Netanyahu on Iran

JERUSALEM — The head of Israel’s Labour party on Saturday slammed Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for presenting a potential nuclear Iran as the Jewish state’s greatest threat. “It is a mistake to make the Iranian threat into Israel’s central problem,” Shelly Yacimovitch said in a televised interview with privately-owned Channel…

Buffett jokes with shareholders after cancer diagnosis

WASHINGTON — Billionaire Warren Buffett, who announced last month he has been diagnosed with early-stage prostate cancer, on Saturday joked about his health and told shareholders: “I feel terrific.” “I have four doctors, at least a few own Berkshire Hathaway” stock, he said with a smile at the yearly stockholders’…

Iran slams Google for leaving Gulf nameless

TEHRAN — Iran on Saturday criticised Google for leaving the body of water separating it from the Arabian peninsula nameless on its online map service, saying it would hurt the Internet giant’s credibility. “Google fabricating lies… will not have any outcome but for its users to lose trust in the…

Pope asks U.S. bishops to keep to the Vatican script

VATICAN CITY — Pope Benedict XVI asked bishops Saturday to ensure that religious teachings are authorised by the Catholic Church, in a bid to keep US Catholics in line with the Vatican. The appeal comes after the Vatican last month upbraided a US association of Catholic clergy women for its…

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