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Congressman Kucinich to visit Syria, Lebanon

WASHINGTON — A US lawmaker strongly opposed to US military involvement in Afghanistan and the Libyan conflict is on a “fact-finding” visit to Syria and Lebanon, his office said Monday. Democratic Representative Dennis Kucinich was expected to meet with Presidents Bashar al-Assad of Syria and Michel Sleiman of Lebanon during…

U.S. nuclear regulator withheld information: report

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The head of the U.S. nuclear safety regulator did not break the law when he stopped a review of a proposed Nevada burial site for radioactive waste, but he “strategically” kept information from his fellow commissioners, the Wall Street Journal said, citing a report from the agency’s internal watchdog. The confidential report…

French academic faces backlash after his satire compares Papa Smurf to Josef Stalin

PARIS – Just in time for Global Smurfs Day and a Smurfs movie in 3-D comes a little blue book from a French academic that has some fans of the sock-topped comic book characters seeing red. Antoine Bueno, who lectures at the high-brow Paris Institute of Political Studies, thought he…

Endeavour spacewalk marks 1,000 hours on station work

WASHINGTON (AFP) – The crew of the US space shuttle Endeavour wrapped up their fourth and final spacewalk Friday, a walkabout that surpassed the 1,000th hour of such trips to build the International Space Station. The marathon seven hour, 24 minute spacewalk began at 7:39 am (0415 GMT) and mission…

Two environmentalists gunned down in Brazil

RIO DE JANEIRO — A husband and wife team of environmentalists have been killed by gunmen in Brazil’s northern Amazon state of Para, one of the most restive regions in the country due to land disputes, officials said Wednesday. Brazilian President, Dilma Rousseff ordered an immediate federal investigation to find…

Senator Mark Kirk: End probe of CIA interrogators accused of torture

Republican Senator Mark Kirk (IL) says that President Barack Obama should announce the end of the Justice Department’s “unwarranted” investigation of CIA interrogators when he visits their headquarters on Friday “These Americans did their jobs at the direction of the President of the United States and this politically motivated investigation…

World’s oldest man Walter Bruening dies at 114

WASHINGTON (AFP) – Walter Bruening, a retired railworker who was the world’s oldest man, has died in the US state of Montana at the age of 114. Breuning died Thursday of natural causes at a Great Falls hospital, Stacia Kirby, spokeswoman for the Rainbow Senior Living retirement home where he…

Nonprofit defends payment to Bristol Palin

ANCHORAGE, Alaska – The head of a nonprofit group against teen pregnancy on Wednesday defended the $332,500 his organization paid Bristol Palin over a two-year period to advocate for sexual abstinence. “Bristol did a tremendous amount of work for us — many, many days and weeks,” said Neil Cole, founder…

Chinese artist Ai Weiwei detained, staff says

BEIJING – Outspoken Chinese artist Ai Weiwei was detained on Sunday as he tried to board a flight for Hong Kong and police later raided his studio outside Beijing, Twitter postings by his staff said. The move comes just days after Ai, one of China’s best-known artists, announced plans for…

TEPCO recruiting nuclear workers for up to $5,000 per day

What would you do for $2,500 a day? How about $5,000 a day? Do you have “a passport, a family willing to let you go”, and a “willingness to to work in a radioactive zone”? Then you could have what it takes to work at the Fukushima nuclear power plant,…

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