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Obama counterterrorism adviser slams congressional efforts to block Guantanamo’s closure

President Obama’s counterterrorism adviser, John O. Brennan, delivered the administration’s most forceful public call to date for the closure of the Guantanamo Bay Detention Center and the use of federal courts to try some detainees held there. Pointing the finger at Congress, he called legislative efforts to block prisoner transfers…

UCLA student quits over ‘appalling’ Japan YouTube rant

LOS ANGELES – A US student whose “appalling” anti-Asian and anti-Japanese rant went viral on YouTube announced she was quitting college, after receiving death threats. The University of California in Los Angeles (UCLA) undergraduate said the video had led to “the harassment of my family … death threats and being…

San Francisco tries ‘get tough’ approach with homeless

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – San Francisco prides itself on helping the homeless, and it even created a special committee for grievances from those kicked out of shelters. But this month, it began a new experiment that treats the homeless more harshly than the city’s other policies. After lengthy training, police…

Wikileaks controversy forces US ambassador to Mexico to resign

WASHINGTON (AFP) – The US ambassador to Mexico has resigned, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton announced, after Mexican President Felipe Calderon said diplomatic cables written by the envoy damaged bilateral ties. Ambassador Carlos Pascual “has relayed his decision to return to Washington based upon his personal desire to ensure the…

DoJ still protecting Bush eavesdroppers, says ACLU

The American Civil Liberties Union has released a statement that memos it requested by way of the Freedom of Information Act have been released, but in “heavily redacted” form. The two memos, one by former head of the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel Jack Goldsmith, and another by then…

Less tax for taps? Tax breaks for small breweries in the works

SOUTH DEERFIELD, Massachusetts (Reuters) – Help may be on tap for independent beer brewers, who say a tax break could keep their businesses from running dry. A new congressional measure would cut taxes for the nearly 1,700 small craft breweries that pump out far fewer barrels of suds than do the multinational…

Tea party invites GOP 2012 hopefuls to summit, but not Bachmann

The Americans for Prosperity Foundation, a tea party-affiliated group funded by the Koch brothers, will hold a summit in New Hampshire next month. Among attendees will be some familiar names with buzz about trying for the Republican nomination for the 2012 nomination. Tim Pawlenty will be in attendance, as will…

Wired! Young Americans increase coffee consumption

NEW ORLEANS (Reuters) – Young American adults have increased the amount of coffee they drink daily in 2011, after feeling better about their finances following the global economic crisis, a survey showed on Saturday. Forty percent of the 18- to 24-year-olds who responded to theNational Coffee Association’s National Coffee Drinking…

Clinton: US seeks dialogue with Bahrain

PARIS (Reuters) – The United States is pressing Bahrain’s leaders to make good on offers of dialogue with anti-government protesters, although it recognizes the tiny state’s right to call in security help from its Gulf neighbors, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said. “We have made clear that security alone cannot…

Former secy of state Warren Christopher dies

LOS ANGELES — Former secretary of state Warren Christopher, a “diplomat’s diplomat” who helped negotiate peace in the former Yugoslavia and advanced the Middle East peace process, has died at the age of 85, officials said. He had reportedly been suffering from kidney and bladder cancer. A lawyer by training,…

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