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Pentagon denounces ‘swift-boating’-style attack on Obama

'Swift-Boating' Obama? Pentagon denounces politics of attack ad. (via The Christian Science Monitor) The US military is pushing back against the campaign of a group of former Special Operations Forces officers who have spoken out against President Obama in what some have described as a latter-day “Swift Boat” campaign.  The…

Dead stowaway found on British Airways flight in Heathrow

A suspected stowaway was found dead on board a British Airways flight that landed at London’s Heathrow Airport from Cape Townon Thursday, the airline said. The body of an unidentified man was found in the landing gear bay of a Boeing 747, British Airways said, adding that it was investigating how the “very rare…

Facebook rolls out faster iPhone and iPad app

Facebook unveiled a new mobile app Thursday for its users on Apple iPhone and iPad, saying it would speed up the performance of people accessing the world’s biggest social network. The new app is “a major update to the Facebook for iOS rebuilt from the ground up, to focus on one thing, performance,” said Facebook…

Study: 2012 campaign ‘nastier than normal’

President Barack Obama and Republican challenger Mitt Romney are both being portrayed in an overwhelmingly negative light as they battle each other in America’s 2012 presidential election, a new survey of media coverage has revealed. The result has been one of the most negative electoral contests in recent memory in…

Twitter agrees to remove fake Indian prime minister accounts

Twitter has agreed to remove six fake accounts which purport to bePrime Minister Manmohan Singh’s following a request from the Indian government, the premier’s spokesman said on Thursday. The government asked the micro-blogging website to remove the accounts on the grounds that they misrepresented the prime minister and risked increasing ethnic or religious tension.…

State Department condemns Zimbabwe raids on LGBT rights group

The United States on Thursday condemned Zimbabwe over raids on the offices of a gay rights group and urged authorities to end a “pattern of abuse” against civil society. Activists said that two truckloads of police on Monday raided offices of the group Gays and Lesbians of Zimbabwe, rounding up 44 people in what authorities called a…

Unemployment claims rise for the second straight week

More Americans filed claims for unemployment insurance last week, the second straight weekly rise amid a slow recovery in the jobs market, official data showed Thursday. Initial jobless claims rose by 4,000 to 372,000 in the week ended August 18, the Labor Department reported. The four-week moving average, which reduces week-to-week volatility, rose by 3,750 to 368,000. Three…

John Lennon’s killer denied parole for seventh time

Mark David Chapman, who shot dead Beatles star John Lennon in 1980, was denied parole from prison on Thursday for the seventh time, officials said Thursday. Chapman, 57, was told by the New York State Board of Parole at a hearing on Wednesday that despite his good behavior behind bars, he could not be…

NASA moves Curiosity rover from successful test drive to ‘blast mark’ site

After two weeks of checking instruments, testing software and practising its rock-zapping skills, Curiosity the Mars rover has taken its first baby steps across the surface of the red planet. Nasa announced on Wednesday that Curiosity had moved 4.5m and rotated through 120 degrees before reversing by 2.5m, a extra-terrestrial…

New Zealander jailed for ostrich egg assault on wife

A New Zealand man who assaulted his wife with an ostrich egg after her pet pig ran amok has been jailed for six months, it was reported Thursday. Phillip Russell lost his temper when he discovered the pig had damaged his power saw, verbally abusing his wife, spitting at her…

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