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Obama and Biden release tax returns to challenge Romney

US President Barack Obama released his tax return Friday, showing he earned nearly $800,000 last year, leveraging the annual rite to launch a new attack on his wealthy Republican foe Mitt Romney. Cranking up their campaign for a second term ahead of November’s election, Obama and Vice President Joe Biden…

Jewish human rights group tells Hollywood to drop Mel Gibson ‘Maccabee’ film

The Simon Wiesenthal Center has called on Hollywood to drop plans for a Mel Gibson film about the legendary Jewish warrior Judah Maccabee after the actor and film-maker was accused of making antisemitic remarks by screenwriter Joe Eszterhas. Deadline reports that the LA-based international Jewish human rights organisation said it…

Study: Meat eaters must cut consumption by half to forestall climate change

Meat eaters in developed countries will have to eat a lot less meat, cutting consumption by 50%, to avoid the worst consequences of future climate change, new research warns. The fertilisers used in farming are responsible for a significant share of the warming that causes climate change. A study published…

Blacks more likely to be unemployed in the UK than in the U.S.

Black people in Britain are more likely to be unemployed than those in the United States, especially during recessions, with successive UK governments “failing to protect minority ethnic groups”, research reveals. A paper presented on Friday at the British Sociological Association’s annual conference in Leeds shows that in the last…

London’s Gatwick airport disrupted by hot-air balloon

Flights at Britain’s second largest air hub, London’s Gatwick Airport, were disrupted on Friday when a hot-air balloon strayed into itsairspace, a spokeswoman said. Five departing flights were affected after airspace was shut on safety grounds at the airport in Sussex, she said. “Airspace was shut for safety reasons after a hot-air balloon strayed into the…

Qaeda battles to create safe haven in Yemen

Al-Qaeda, still smarting from the loss of its iconic leader Osama bin Laden, appears determined to capture the south Yemeni town ofLoder in a bid to build itself a secure base in the Arabian Peninsula. Its location between three provinces gives Loder strategic importance, and it can also provide a safe haven from…

Chivalry at sea a ‘myth’, Swedish study shows

Imagine a giant ship slowly sinking into the sea, with the men of course standing back allowing women and children to board the life boats and themselves to stoically be engulfed by the frothy waves. That idea of male chivalry at sea is however a complete myth, according to two Swedish researchers.…

Not guilty pleas at Danish newspaper ‘massacre’ trial

Four men pled not guilty Friday as they went on trial in Denmarkover a suspected plot to massacre the staff of a newspaper that first published controversial cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed. Sahbi Ben Mohamed Zalouti, Munir Awad and Omar Abdalla Aboelazm, all Swedish citizens of Tunisian, Lebanese and Moroccan origin respectively, along with a…

Japan bank to install palm-reading ATMs

A regional bank in central Japan will become the country’s first financial institution to adopt automated teller machines that will identify users by their palms. Ogaki Kyoritsu Bank said it would install about a dozen palm-scanning biometric ATMs in late September and planned more in the future. Under the system, developed by Fujitsu Ltd., users will be able to prove…

Cult cartoonist Crumb gets museum honors

His LSD-inspired heroes, rampant sex and frontal assaults on political correctness made comic artist Robert Crumb an icon of US counter-culture, but why on earth, he wonders, put his work on show in a museum? Crumb’s cult universe, from hippy-era characters like “Fritz the Cat” to his cartoon take on the Bible,…

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