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‘Chairman Mao will bless you’: Why tourists flock to Mao’s birthplace

‘Chairman Mao will bless you’: Why tourists flock to Mao’s birthplace (+video) (via The Christian Science Monitor) On a cold and blustery December afternoon, groups of tourists cluster in front of a giant statue of Mao Zedong to have their pictures taken with the founder of modern China. “Bow three…

Japanese PM Abe paves the way for relocated U.S. base on Okinawa

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe looks set to win approval from Okinawa this week for the long-stalled relocation of a US military base after a meeting Wednesday with the island’s pugnacious governor. A deal with Okinawa would end a long-running dispute that has been a source of friction with Washington…

Egypt Brotherhood vows to continue protests despite ‘terrorist’ label

A leader of the Muslim Brotherhood vowed that the movement would keep up protests after Egypt’s military-installed government designated it a “terrorist” group on Wednesday. “The protests will continue, certainly,” Ibrahim Munir, a member of the group’s executive council who is in exile in London, told AFP, adding the move…

Federal judge rules that TSA, FBI can detain and arrest you for carrying Arabic flashcards

A former college student detained at Philadelphia International Airport after Transportation Security Administration (TSA) officials discovered he was carrying Arabic language flashcards lost his bid to sue the federal agents who detained him. Nicholas George alleged that the TSA agents violated his First and Fourth Amendment rights when they arrested…

Illinois man uses ‘Star Trek’ technology to defraud investors of $25 million

An Illinois man pleaded guilty on Monday in a $25 million fraud case predicated on technology from the television and film franchise Star Trek. According to prosecutors, Howard Leventhal told potential investors that Neovision USA, Inc. had written agreements with Canada’s deputy health minister to provide the country with “Heltheo’s…

Russia offers Kremlin-backed amnesty to Greenpeace activists as Sochi Olympics near

Russia on Wednesday dropped all but one of the cases against 30 crew members of a Greenpeace protest ship following a Kremlin-backed amnesty. The move marks the end of a three-month criminal probe against the 26 foreign and four Russian activists and comes less than two months before Moscow hosts…

Judge sentences man who beat girlfriend to write ‘boys do not hit girls’ 5,000 times

Yesterday, the Montana judge who only sentenced a teacher who raped one of his 14-year-old students to 30 days in jail because the teenage victim was “older than her chronological age” and “in control,” ordered a man convicted of abusing his girlfriend to write “boys do not hit girls” 5,000…

Watch Breaking Bad’s Aaron Paul help a fan propose to his Breaking Bad-loving girlfriend

When Jason Lord donated to Lauren Parsekian’s charity, The Kind Campaign, he had no idea how generously her husband, Breaking Bad star Aaron Paul, would pay him forward. Aaron Paul is the favorite actor of Lord’s girlfriend, Jackie Prater, and when he discovered that, he decided to help Lord propose…

Texas hospital forbids husband of brain-dead, pregnant wife to remove her from life support

A Texas man who wants his pregnant wife removed from life-support is being thwarted by hospital officials who insist that Texas law states they must continue to care for her. Under Texas law, “[a] person may not withdraw or withhold life-sustaining treatment under this subchapter from a pregnant patient.” Crucially…

Scientists retracing the footsteps of 1911 Antarctic expedition trapped in ice

Icebreaker ships go to help MV Akademik Shokalskiy after captain issues distress call A team of scientists and members of the public who have been retracing the footsteps of the Australasian Antarctic Expedition (AAE) of 1911 have become trapped in heavy ice a few miles from the coast of Antarctica.…

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