May 11, 2011

OSAMA BIN LADEN TAPES SHOW 'PATHETIC' SIDE OF AL QAEDA LEADER: EXPERTS

The U.S. government is running a full-court press to prevent Osama bin Laden from becoming a hallowed martyr by by means of what are essentially out-takes of videos made by bin Laden to paint him instead as a unsuccessful, pathetic old man, experts said today.



Of the five videos made public by the White House this weekend, perhaps the most outstanding shows bin Laden huddled under a blanket, inspection himself on television with a remote control in his supply, changing the channels whenever he sees pictures of president Obama. "He's always been very careful about controlling his image and here was nurturing his image, watching himself on television in what was the nearly everyone revealing, most human, least proscribed moment of his entire career," Lawrence Wright, Osama bin Laden expert and author of "The Looming Tower," said.

May 6, 2011

WAS KILLING OF OSAMA BIN LADEN LEGAL UNDER INTERNATIONAL LAW?


Since the death of Osama bin Laden Sunday, administration officials have repeatedly said that the task to kill him complied with domestic and international law. "Let me make something very clear," Attorney General Eric Holder told Congress on Wednesday, "the operation in which Osama bin Laden was killed was legalized. He was the head of al Qaeda, an organization that conducted the attacks of Sept. 11. He admitted his involvement."



But as new details of the operation emerge, and some Pakistani leaders protest the U.S. incursion into their state, legal experts say the administration must more forcefully lay out its case. Law lecturer Kenneth Anderson, who specializes in legal issues related to war and terrorism, said that differing management accounts as to whether bin Laden was armed or invite to surrender or even involved in a firefight have muddled the legal discuss and left the administration open to international criticism.

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May 4, 2011

COURIER HID OSAMA BIN LADEN WELL


He was a man of many names. Arshad, Ahmed, Abu Ahmed to name a few. To his neighbors within Abbottabad, Pakistan, he was a friendly man from the country's tribal areas who worked as a money changer and built 12-foot walls to keep out the "many enemies" he'd acquired in the course of doing industry.



What no one who lived near him in the sleepy, semi-rural enclave knew was that Arshad Khan was really al Qaeda operative Abu Ahmed al Kuwaiti, Osama bin Laden's most trusted courier, and his identity additionally location became the key to killing bin Laden. Little is known about al Kuwaiti, but interviews with neighbors, Pakistani officials and U.S. officials make clear that the Kuwaiti-born Pakistani was for several existence the second most-wanted terrorist during the world, if only because the CIA had become convinced he could led them in the direction of the al Qaeda leader.

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OSAMA BIN LADEN'S YOUNG WIFE, WOUNDED IN RAID, IDENTIFIED

U.S. intelligence officials have been forced to reconsider many of their assumptions about Osama storage bin weighed down and his terror network with the discovery that he was living in relative luxury not far from Pakistan's capital in a house full of children. By the time bin Laden moved to his sprawling compound in Abbottabad, he was down to only one of this five wives. He had divorced one and three others have moved to Syria.


"He married very young, first a cousin from Syria," said Steve Coll. author of the book "The Bin Ladens." "Then a couple of very knowledgeable women from Saudi Arabia." The youngest and his supposed favorite, Amal Ahmed Abdul Fatah stayed with him. Pakistani says her passpoprt was found in the compound before the raid. She be 29 and had been given to bin Laden as a gift by a Yemeni family when she was only a teenager.

May 3, 2011

SKEPTICS QUESTION OSAMA BIN LADEN DEATH, ASKING FOR PROOF

As elated crowds celebrated the death of Osama bin Laden after Navy SEALs killed the al-Qaida chief in a weekend raid in Pakistan some are asking, "Where's the proof?" Photos depicting a bloodied and bruised face appearing to be that of bin Laden began appearing on Twitter and Face manuscript last night soon after intelligence of his death spread across the Internet. According to Reuters, an archive photo of bin Laden at a news conference proves that image was a fake. Now people are asking to see the evidence proving bin Laden is dead.


"We have released a tremendous amount of information to date," Obama's top counter terrorism adviser John Brennan said. "At the same time we don't want to do anything with the intention of is going to compromise our aptitude to be as successful the next time one of these guys needs to be taken off the battlefield."

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May 1, 2011

OSAMA BIN LADEN OPERATION MONTHS IN MAKING

President Obama heralded Osama bin Laden's death as a major milestone in the war against al Qaeda, and "justice" for family of the nearly 3,000 victims of the Sept. 11 attacks.Obama said the operation carried out Sunday afternoon in northwest Pakistan resulted from "years of meticulous work" by intelligence agency that yielded clues to bin Laden's whereabouts starting last summer.


"I met repeatedly with my National Security team as we developed more information about the possibility that we had located Bin Laden thrashing within a compound deep inside Pakistan," Obama said in an address from the East Room of the White House Sunday night."in conclusion, last week I determined that we had enough cleverness to take action and authorized an operation to get Osama bin Laden and bring him to justice," Obama said.

April 30, 2011

QUIET FOR A WHILE, PALIN'S VOICE IS BACK

Her support among Republicans has shrunk. She's kept an unusually low profile. And there's no evidence that she's anywhere close to announcing whether she will run for president.  But it's clear she still necessities to be part of the conversation.

After weeks of seemingly staying on the sidelines, the GOP's 2008 vice presidential nominee is back with public appearance, fiery criticism of President Barack Obama and a physically powerful defense of Donald Trump, the reality TV show congregation who has raised questions about the president's background without offering any proof of his assertions.

April 28, 2011

TORNADO AFTERMATH: SOUTHERN STORMS LEAVE MORE THAN 300 DEAD

President Obama and the first lady determination travel to the south this morning, following the deadly storms that left more than 300 dead across six states this week. Obama will visit the hardest hit state, Alabama, where at least 210 people were killed. Elsewhere in the region, Mississippi report 32 fatalities, Tennessee had 34, Georgia with at least 15, Virginia had 5 and Arkansas with 13.



"In a matter of hours, these deadly tornadoes took mothers and fathers, sons and daughters, friends and neighbors, even entire communities," Obama said Thursday. Obama is expected to tour the debris while on his way to Cape Canaveral for the launch of the space shuttle Endeavour in Florida. He pledge full federal government support on behalf of all those affected by the storms and signed a disaster declaration for Alabama to assist in recovery and clean up pains from the tornado destruction.

BUDGET 2011: CUTTING THE DEFICIT WITHOUT REALLY CUTTING


Parsing Rhetoric on Government Spending, Savings from Budget Deal Will the bipartisan deal with the intention of shaved $38.5 billion as of the central budget for 2011 immediately affect the soaring deficit so many Americans say they're worried about.


The answer is not really, according to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, a group of accountants along with analysts who study the plans. The agency says the much-touted deal, approved Thursday, will only set aside $352 million through the end of the fiscal year a tiny division of the $1.4 trillion the U.S. has spent beyond its means.

April 27, 2011

OBAMA SAYS HE WANTS OIL PRODUCERS TO BOOST OUTPUT


As the high cost of gasoline takes a toll on politics and pocket books, President Barack Obama said Tuesday he be calling on major oil producers such as Saudi Arabia to increase their oil supplies to help stabilize prices, warning starkly that lack of relief would harm the global economy.


"We are in a lot of conversations with the major oil producers like Saudi Arabia to let them know that it's not going to be good for them if our economy is hobbled because of high oil prices," Obama told a Detroit TV station. His annotations signaled a broad new appeal in the face of skyrocket gasoline prices in the United States and they came as he reiterated a call for Congress to repeal oil industry tax breaks.

April 26, 2011

TORNADO OUTBREAK: SEVERE WEATHER IN ARKANSAS LEAVES 7 DEAD, FLOODING IN MISSOURI


At least seven deaths have been reported in connection with a series of tornadoes and severe weather with the intention of ripped through several states from Kentucky to Tennessee Monday, authorities said. Forecasters anticipate more rain and storms today to slam across the Midwest, as the system moves east. 


In Arkansas, three people were killed in rising floodwaters and two died in a town where a possible tornado barreled through Monday, according to the Associated Press. In Vilonia, Ark., north of Little Rock, where a possible whirlwind killed two people, Caroline Thompson recalled taking cover seeing that the storm approached. "We all ended up in the closet. And then you possibly will just hear crashing and stuff being knocked around and blown around. And it tore us up," Thompson said. 

April 25, 2011

TALIBAN BREAK OUT MORE THAN 450 FROM AFGHAN PRISON


Taliban militants dug a long-lasting tunnel underground and into the main jail in Kandahar city and whisked out more than 450 prisoners, most of whom were Taliban fighters, officials and insurgent said Monday.


The massive overnight jailbreak in Afghanistan's second-largest city underscores the Afghan government continuing weakness in the south despite an influx of international troops, funding and advisers. Kandahar city, in particular, has be a focus of the intercontinental effort to establish a strong Afghan government presence in former Taliban strongholds.

April 22, 2011

DRILL OFF ALASKA COAST? GULF MESS RENEWS DEBATE

A year after the disastrous Gulf oil spill, the prospect of a major accident in oil's next frontier - the icy waters off Alaska's north coast - has experts even more concerned.


With no roads connecting remote coastal towns, storms and fog that can ground aircraft, no deepwater ports for ships and the nearest Coast Guard station about 1,000 miles away - it would be nearly impossible to respond on the scale that was needed last year to stop the runaway oil well and clean up the mess. That means the burden to respond would rest to an even greater degree on the company doing the drilling.

IRAQI PM TELLS MULLEN IRAQI TROOPS CAN TAKE OVER

Iraq's prime minister has told the top U.S. military officer that Iraqi forces are able to maintain safekeeping in their own country, as discussions intensify larger than whether to keep any U.S. forces in Iraq past this year.


Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki made the remark during a late Thursday meeting with Adm. Mike Mullen, the chairman of the U.S. combined Chiefs of Staff. Mullen’s visit comes as U.S. and Iraqi officials are trying to decide what, if any, U.S. troop presence be supposed to remain in Iraq subsequent to the end of this year.An agreement between both countries stipulates that all American forces are to leave by Dec. 31.


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April 20, 2011

NEW AIRLINE PASSENGER PROTECTION RULES UP LOST BAGGAGE FEES, PENALTIES FOR CARRIERS

Requirements Designed to Help Passengers, Officials Say; Industry Groups Raise Cost Questions For Americans who have had their baggage lost on flights, or who have spent hours stuck on the tarmac without creature allowed to use the bathrooms, a new set of rules the Department of Transportation put in place today will come as a relief.


The Obama administration has introduced new passenger protection measures that would impose fines on airlines for losing baggage and kicking off travelers from overbooked flights. Under the new guiding principle, airlines would have to give money back baggage fees in the case of a lost bag, in addition to the compensation they already pay. There will be an additional incriminate for even-tempered delays in getting passengers their bags, though the DOT has not clarified what it considers unreasonable.

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April 19, 2011

2012 PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION: OBAMA STRUGGLES, DITTO FOR GOP LINEUP

President Obama has gotten no bounce from his reelection campaign announcement, with his job approval rating dropping by 7 entitlement points since January, his personal popularity at a career low along with 57 percent of Americans censorious of his handling of the economy. Yet he leads the potential GOP field.


There are chances for the Republicans in next year's elections, with former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney and former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, in particular, nipping close to Obama in the latest News-Washington Post poll. Economic pessimism, its highest in two years amid high-ceilinged gab prices, raises serious political peril for the head. But he benefits from two factors: personal approval that, while down, still exceeds his job rating, and considerable doubts about the opposing party's lineup.

April 18, 2011

HEROISM AT THE HARDWARE STORE: STAFF SAVE DOZENS FROM TWISTER

More than 100 employees and customers at a home improvement store, crammed shoulder-to-shoulder seeking safety from solitary of the deadly storms that rip through the South, screamed in near unison once the steel roof curled off overhead, the store's manager said Sunday.


They all made it out alive Saturday, thanks to quick action by Lowe's store administrator Michael Hollowell and his employees, who carried out an urgent situation response plan they had learned. They herd all and sundry to the windowless rear area of the store, away from the through hit out front.

April 16, 2011

OBAMA: CONGRESS MUST AND WILL RAISE DEBT LIMIT

President Barack Obama confidently predict Friday that a divided Congress would raise the nation borrow limit to cover the staggering federal debt rather than risk triggering a worldwide recession, but he accepted for the first time he would have to offer more spending cuts to Republicans to acquire a deal.


Pushed to the brink, Obama said, the two parties would find "a smart compromise."In an interview with The Associated bear down on, Obama also took pains to promote his long-term plan to cuts trillions of dollars from federal deficits as a fairer, more concerned alternative to a Republican plan with the intent of surged to party-line passage Friday afternoon in the House.

April 15, 2011

BUDGET 2011: CUTTING THE DEFICIT WITHOUT REALLY CUTTING

Parsing Rhetoric on Government Spending, Savings from Budget Deal Will the bipartisan deal with the intention of shaved $38.5 billion as of the central budget for 2011 immediately affect the soaring deficit so many Americans say they're worried about.


The answer is not really, according to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, a group of accountants along with analysts who study the plans. The agency says the much-touted deal, approved Thursday, will only set aside $352 million through the end of the fiscal year a tiny division of the $1.4 trillion the U.S. has spent beyond its means.

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April 12, 2011

JAPAN NUCLEAR CRISIS: OFFICIALS RAISE SEVERITY LEVEL TO EQUAL CHERNOBYL

Japan's Nuclear and engineering Safety Agency Tuesday raised the level of severity at theFukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant from 5 to level 7 – the highest level on the international scale and equal to the Chernobyl disaster.


The agency says the level 7 ranking was made after the damaged reactors have been releasing large amounts of radioactive posing a menace to humans and the environment in a much wider area. "Echelon 5 is Three Mile Desert Island. Level 7 is Chernobyl. This doesn't mean it's as bad as Chernobyl. But that's the last time I think 7 was used. It's the highest set by the IAEA (intercontinental Atomic Energy Agency)," said physicist Michio Kaku.

April 11, 2011

JAPAN EARTHQUAKE, TSUNAMI: 7.0 AFTERSHOCK RATTLES NORTHEAST ON MONTH ANNIVERSARY

Moments of Silence Observed in Country for Victims a 7.0 aftershock rattled Japan today on the one month anniversary of the clone disaster that left at least 25,000 dead along with officials scrambling to prevent a meltdown at damaged nuclear reactors.



A 3-foot tsunami warning was issued after the temblor hit the northeast coast 5:16 p.m. local time. All advisories and warning were later lifted about an hour later according to local Japanese TV. The aftershock was presently downgraded to a 7.0 by means of Japanese officials and USGS calculates the quake to subsist closer to a magnitude 6.6.

April 8, 2011

TIME'S UP: OBAMA AND GOP SCRAMBLE TO HALT SHUTDOWN

Nearing a shutdown that would affect millions, Obama and GOP scramble to reach budget deal uncomfortably close to a deadline, President Barack Obama and top congressional leaders have no more than hours to avert a Friday midnight government shutdown that all sides say would difficulty millions of people and damage a still fragile economy.


Obama said he still hoped to announce an agreement on Friday but did not have "wild optimism."In revealing nothing about what still divides them, Obama and the lawmakers, House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, and committee Majority organizer Harry Reid, D-Nev., all said another belatedly night of talks in the Oval administrative center had narrowed their differences over cutting federal spending and other matters.

April 7, 2011

PREVENTING BLASTS A FOCUS AT JAPAN NUCLEAR PLANT

After notching a rare victory by stopping highly radioactive water from flowing into the Pacific, workers at Japan's snowed under nuclear power many-sided turned to their next task early Thursday: injecting nitrogen to prevent more hydrogen explosions.


Nuclear officials said Wednesday there was no immediate threat of explosions like the three that rock the Fukushima Dai-ichi plant not long after a massive tsunami hit on March 11, but their plans are a reminder of how much occupation remains to stabilize the complex. Workers are racing to cool downstairs the plant's reactors, which have been overheating since power was knocked out by the 9.0-magnitude earthquake and tsunami that killed as many as 25,000 people along with destroyed hundreds of miles of coastline.

April 6, 2011

NO DEAL YET AS POSSIBLE GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN LOOMS

No deal yet but intensifying discussion as possible government shutdown looms Talks appear to be intensifying on Capitol Hill on reaching a deal on long-overdue legislation to finance the administration through the end of September and avoid a administration shutdown. Whether a shutdown can be avoided in three days' time is another matter.


A White House meeting Tuesday that included President Barack Obama, House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, and governing body Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., failed to manufacture the hoped-for burst through, however, with a temporary solution government funding bill set to expire Friday at midnight.

April 5, 2011

IDENTITY THIEVES TARGET TAX REFUNDS

Tax Identity Theft Has More Than Tripled in the Past Five Years Tax day is less than two weeks away, and this year, for the first time ever, the Federal Trade Commission says tax refunds are the No. 1 target of identity thieves.


Tracey Cochran was anxiously anticipating this year's tax refund, because money was tight."I had been unemployed and just started temp work .She expected to receive a $2,400 check from the Internal Revenue Service. Instead she received a notice that something was wrong. Somebody else had filed a return in her name, and a thief was trying to intercept her refund.

April 4, 2011

BUDGET BATTLE: IS THE GOVERNMENT ON THE BRINK OF A SHUTDOWN?

Tea Party Supporters Say $33 Billion Figure Not Enough; Democrats, Republicans Find Little Common Ground Members of parliament are working behind congested doors to hash out a deal to fund the management for the remainder of the fiscal year as federal workers nervously prepare contingency plans.


But just five days away from the deadline, the threat of a government shutdown looks more real than it has in recent weeks at the same time as pressure from the Tea Partyand conservative lawmakers mounts. Democratic source indicated last week with the purpose of the two sides had agreed $33 billion would be slashed from the 2011 budget. But the GOP leadership has downplayed those reports amid call from their caucus that the number is far from acceptable.

March 31, 2011

NATO TAKES SOLE CONTROL OF LIBYA AIR OPERATIONS

NATO's chief said Thursday the alliance doesn't support U.S. and British suggestions that the U.N. mandate for the international armed operation in Libya allow arming rebels who are fighting Moammar Gadhafi's troops.


NATO unspoken command of all air operations over Libya early Thursday, taking over from the U.S., which had been eager to be rid of that accountability. NATO Chief Anders Fogh Rasmussen told reporters in Stockholm that NATO's position is that "we are there to protect the Libyan people, not to division the people."