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Tourist arrested with loaded gun at September 11 memorial

NEW YORK (Reuters) – A tourist from Tennessee was arrested after she brought a loaded handgun to the National September 11 Memorial in her handbag, and she could face a possible prison term, authorities said on Thursday. Meredith Graves, 39, was trying to visit the New York City memorial on…

Holiday tourists overwhelm top Florida theme parks

WASHINGTON — Free-spending US tourists shrugged off economic worries to overwhelm Disney World and other top Florida theme parks this week, forcing them to temporarily shut the gates, local officials said Thursday. Some visitors to Legoland, the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, and three Disney destinations found parking lots and…

As U.S. commander, Petraeus ruled out resigning: book

WASHINGTON — The former US military commander in Afghanistan, General David Petraeus, rejected suggestions to resign over disagreements with President Barack Obama, concluding it would be a “selfish, grandstanding move,” a new book says. “All In: The Education of General David Petraeus,” describes how the general — now CIA director…

Orthodox Israeli charged with insulting woman soldier

JERUSALEM — An orthodox Jew was charged with sexual harassment on Thursday after a young Israeli woman soldier was verbally abused for refusing to sit at the back of a bus, a judicial source said. Shlomo Fuchs, a 44-year-old father, was charged for allegedly insulting the soldier several times, including…

Rights groups urge Egypt to free jailed blogger

GENEVA — Thirty rights groups and activists united on Thursday in a call for Egypt to release a jailed blogger who has been staging a hunger strike since August. A military court sentenced Michael Nabil, 26, to three years in prison in April for insulting the armed forces on his…

Google top U.S. Web destination in 2011: Nielsen

WASHINGTON — Google was the most-visited Web destination in the United States in 2011, followed by Facebook and Yahoo!, industry tracker Nielsen said Thursday. Google received an average of 153.4 million unique US visitors a month from home and work computers, according to Nielsen. Facebook notched up 137.6 million unique…

U.S. sends ‘strong message’ with Saudi fighter deal

HONOLULU, Hawaii — The United States announced Thursday the signing of a $30 billion arms deal to provide Saudi Arabia with 84 new fighter jets, a move it said sent a “strong message” to the Gulf region. The announcement came with tensions between Iran and the United States on the…

Gunman kills two foreign aid workers in Mogadishu attack

MOGADISHU — A gunman killed two foreign aid workers after opening fire at a Doctors Without Borders compound in Mogadishu on Thursday, police and medics said. Somali security forces arrested the man, a witness told AFP, while a police officer identified him as a Somali employee with Medicins Sans Frontieres…

Dark horse conservative Santorum rides Iowa surge

Republican presidential hopeful Rick Santorum, surging in Iowa thanks to the state’s social conservatives, declared Thursday that the party must not compromise its core beliefs to win back the White House. “We don’t need someone who can just be a little better” than embattled Democratic President Barack Obama, the long-shot…

U.S. warships cross Hormuz despite Iran threats

Two American warships have crossed through the Strait of Hormuz without incident despite Iranian threats to close the strategic oil route, the US Navy said Thursday. The aircraft carrier USS John C. Stennis and the guided-missile cruiser USS Mobile Bay “conducted a pre-planned, routine transit through the Strait of Hormuz”…

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