The latest edition of Inspire, an English-language Al Qaeda magazine based in the Arabian Peninsula, slammed Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad for suggesting that the United States was behind the 9/11 attacks.Read it all here.
"The Iranian government has professed on the tongue of its president Ahmadinejad that it does not believe that al Qaeda was behind 9/11 but rather, the U.S. government," wrote Abu Suhail, an opinion writer for the publication. "So we may ask the question: why would Iran ascribe to such a ridiculous belief that stands in the face of all logic and evidence?"
President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad delivered a speech at the United Nations last week in which he called the 9/11 attacks a mystery.
"Last year, when the need to form a fact-finding team to undertake a thorough investigation concerning the hidden elements involved in September 11 incident was brought up; an idea also endorsed by all independent governments and nations as well as by the majority in the United States, my country and myself came under pressure and threat by the government of the United States," said Ahmadinejad. [...]
September 28, 2011
Michael Jackson’s children saw the body of their lifeless father as a nervous and sweating Dr. Conrad Murray, who is charged with involuntary manslaughter of the pop star, attempted to resuscitate him, Jackson’s head of security testified Wednesday.Read it all here.
"Dr. Murray asked the question, 'Does anyone know CPR?'" said Jackson’s former head of security, Faheem Muhammad, who saw the body and said that Jackson appeared to be dead.
It’s unclear from Muhammad’s testimony whether Murray, a cardiologist, needed help in administering CPR.
Jackson’s daughter, Paris, aged 11 at the time, and son, Prince, then 12, were outside the room, according to Muhammad’s testimony. [...]
Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney is the GOP front-runner again following the third presidential debate, according to a Fox News poll released Wednesday.
Texas Gov. Rick Perry, who was leading Republican contenders just a few weeks ago, dropped in the poll to second place. Herman Cain is now in the top three.
Cain has benefited not only from his debate performances, but also significant media attention after winning the Florida Republican Party’s straw poll on Saturday.
Perry now garners 19 percent, a drop of 10 percentage points from a month ago. That puts Romney back in the top spot with the support of 23 percent. Last month Romney was at 22 percent.
Read more here.
He's done it again. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu spoke at the UN General Assembly Friday and reminded the audience that he's a master orator. Netanyahu extended a hand in peace to Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas—a gesture that will be rebuffed—while he carefully laid out a case for the United Nations' single-minded condemnation of Israel.
"It's here, year after year that Israel, is unjustly singled out for condemnation," said Netanyahu. Indeed, of all the General Assembly resolutions, 21 out of 27 condemn Israel. That is more than all of the other nations combined, although Israel, a tiny, multi-ethnic country, is the freest country in the region, according to Freedom House.
On Thursday Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad delivered a speech at the United Nations where he condemned the United States and European countries as "arrogant powers." The Iranian president's comments calling the 9/11 attacks a mystery prompted a walkout. Netanyahu responded to those comments during his address.
"Last night I laid a wreath on the 9/11 memorial. It was deeply moving," said Netanyahu. "But as I was going there, one thing echoed in my mind: the outrageous words of the president of Iran on this podium yesterday." The Israeli Prime Minister pointed out some delegates left the hall and argued that all the delegates "should have."
September 26, 2011
A record 46.2 million Americans--1 out of every 6 people--are living in poverty, according to U.S. Census Bureau findings on income, poverty and health insurance released this month.Read it all here.
"The only word for it is grim," said Robert Greenstein, president of the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities.
Local and state organizations are concerned about the staggering numbers, but it's unclear if they will be able to keep up with an aging population and increased poverty.
The Department of Aging is particularly focused on "low income, socially isolated" senior citizens who require more assistance, according to Laura Trejo, general manager of the Los Angeles Department of Aging.
"We are keeping a watchful eye so people are not falling through the cracks," said Trejo in an interview. The organization provides support to senior citizens and disabled individuals, including transportation, especially for disabled citizens, and a daily nutritious meal for senior citizens who are in need. [...]
September 22, 2011
Republican hopefuls sparred over immigration at the Fox News/Google Republican presidential debate in Florida Thursday evening.Read it all here.
Rep. Michelle Bachmann said that as president, she would build a fence along America's southern border Thursday evening at the Fox News/Google Republican presidential debate in Florida.
“On every mile, on every yard, on every foot, on every inch of the southern border,” said Bachmann. “I think that's what we have to do."
The Minnesota congresswoman criticized Obama on Arizona.
“It’s reprehensible that President Obama has sued the state of Arizona for trying to protect the people of Arizona,” said Bachmann, referencing the president’s objection to SB1070, which requires law enforcement to determine a suspect’s immigration status during a "lawful stop, detention or arrest." [...]
Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann and Texas Gov. Rick Perry had a chance to clarify their views on the HPV vaccine Thursday night at the Fox News/Google presidential debate in Florida.Read it all here.
The GOP contenders last sparred over the issue during the last presidential debate when Bachmann attacked Perry for trying to make the vaccine mandatory for teen girls.
"Gov. Perry made a decision where he gave parental rights to a big drug company," said Bachmann.
Perry appeared ready for the attack.
"I got lobbied by a 31-year-old young lady who had stage 4 cervical cancer," said Perry. "The fact is, I erred on the side of life and I will always err on the side of life." [...]
Education is not a primary concern in this election cycle, but most GOP contenders would give the Department of Education a failing grade if the Fox News/Google debate Thursday night was any indication.Read it all here.
Former New Mexico Gov. Gary Johnson received a strong applause when he called for abolishing the Department of Education.
Texas Rep. Ron Paul called for the right to "opt out" of public education and for parents to receive certain credits. Paul argued that No Child Left Behind should not be enforced and that it is a policy “no one likes."
Texas Gov. Rick Perry said he supports school choices, which include charter institutions. Perry criticized former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, stating that Romney supports President Obama’s "Race to the Top plan."
"I'm not sure exactly what he's saying," said Romney in response. [...]
Not surprisingly GOP contenders spent the first few minutes Thursday evening criticizing President Obama’s economic record at the Fox News/Google debate.Read it all here.
Texas Gov. Rick Perry and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, both identified as frontrunners, said they oppose federal government regulations on small businesses and individuals.
“President Obama has done everything wrong,” said Romney to applause. “I happen to believe to create jobs, it helps to have had a job. And I have.”
Herman Cain, a businessman who was not initially taken seriously as a candidate, criticized Romney’s job plan.
“That dog won't hunt,” Cain said to applause. [...]
The Hollywood sign is one of Los Angeles' most iconic landmarks, attracting tourists of all stripes who are usually unaware of the frustrations they create for property owners.Read it all here.
Hollywoodland homeowners whose homes sit on the narrow streets above the Cahuenga Pass voiced their concerns to Councilman Tom LaBonge and represenatives of City Council President Eric Garcetti at a meeting Tuesday.
"We feel we are at high risk of fire and accidents from the behavior of tourists on our substandard streets," a message from the Hollywoodland Homeowners Association reads. "It is [a] serious situation, and we have very little protection. Even if you do not live in an area directly impacted, we all know how fast fires can spread."
Property owners complained Tuesday about tourists that park on residential streets illegally, leave rubbish behind, and create fire hazards when they smoke near brush. [...]
September 15, 2011
High unemployment is now the biggest concern for Americans, according to a Gallup poll released Thursday.Read it all here.
According to Gallup, 76% of respondents identified an economic issue as the most important problem for Americans.
39% of poll respondents in September identified unemployment or jobs as the most critical problem the nation faces—compared to 29% in August.
14% of Americans said they were dissatisfied with the government.
Asked which political party was better prepared to tackle the nation’s problems, 44% identified Republicans and 37% identified Democratic Party as more capable.
"It is the largest GOP advantage since January 1995, when Republicans had a 10-point edge," Gallup notes. [...]
United Against Nuclear Iran (UANI), a non-profit advocacy group, is calling on Warwick hotel not to host Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and his delegation during his stay in New York for the United Nations General Assembly which begins Sept. 19.Read it all here.
“Do you honestly think it is appropriate to provide accommodations to the leader of such a detestable regime, specifically in the very city where the worst of 9/11 occurred?” wrote UANI president Mark D. Wallace in a letter to Warwick executives.
In the statement Wallace also said that UANI will peacefully protest all of the hotel chain’s properties worldwide should the hotel host the Iranian president.“Warwick is accepting blood money from a regime that presents an overwhelming threat to global security,” said Wallace. [...]
The U.S. Supreme Court halted the execution of a black man convicted of a double murder 16 years ago in Texas following appeals from the man’s lawyers which argue race played a role in the man’s death sentence.Read it all here.
Duane Buck, 48, was to be put to death by lethal injection Thursday evening. He was convicted of shooting to death his former girlfriend, Debra Gardner, 32, and Kenneth Butler, 33, in July 1995.
His lawyers said a question asked during the trial was racially charged and a psychologist’s testimony that black people are more likely to pose a risk to society after prison release did not allow their client to receive a fair trial, according to CBS.
Buck’s lawyers made a similar request to Texas Gov. Rick Perry. [...]
September 14, 2011
There's an elephant to contend with at Glendale's City Council. Literally. City officials are trying to accommodate calls from People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) to change the city's float for the 2012 Pasadena Tournament of Roses Parade. The contentious float features a circus elephant--not a real one--that has animal activists pointing to inhumane treatment of elephants in the circus.Read it all here.
"We feel like its celebrating elephants in the circus," said Alicia Woempner, senior special project coordinator for PETA, in an interview. She said elephants are forced to perform painful tricks and are abused with electric prods and bullhooks, and that the float sends the wrong message. "It will give millions of people the idea Glendale approves."
September 10, 2011
It’s been a decade since Al Qaeda flew planes into the soaring World Trade Center and the seemingly impenetrable Pentagon. The passengers of the hijacked United Airlines Flight 93 bravely fought back and thwarted hijackers’ plans to hit the U.S. Capitol. That plane ultimately crashed into a field near Shanksville, Pa. before it could hit its intended target.Read the entire feature story here.
After the initial shock at the wreckage and destruction, overwhelming anger and sadness set in. 2,977 Americans were listed as killed—murdered—in the worst attacks this country has ever seen on its soil.
Since the attacks on 9/11, 6,236 more Americans have died trying to protect the rest of us. Their lives and their families, too, have been irrevocably changed. It’s more than most of us can begin to fathom.
Former Marine Corps Sgt. Drew Scott, 29, was 18 when he enlisted in September 2000. His parents were inordinately proud of their son’s decision to serve the nation, but worried the way any loving parents would worry. Their concern was slightly alleviated by the fact the U.S. was in peacetime. That changed just a year after Scott’s enlistment.
“I knew my original plan of joining the Marine Corps was about to be scrapped for this real service,” said Scott. “9/11 was gut wrenching and the drive to seek vengeance set in—I think of it as rattling a hornets’ nest.”
September 8, 2011
"The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department, which provides Metro Rail security, has heightened patrols and monitoring services in an effort to prevent possible anniversary attacks this upcoming tenth anniversary of 9/11.Read it all here.
Many Metro Rail riders have already noticed increased visibility of deputies, but much of the increased security will not be visible.
"There is a plain clothed [patrol] presence you won't see," said Capt. Daniel Cruz. "We're going to maintain liaisons with federal and local authorities."
The New York Police Department has increased security following what U.S. officials called "credible but unconfirmed" 9/11 anniversary threats.Read it all here.
"The threat at this moment has not been corroborated," New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg said Thursday evening at a news conference. "We do live in a world where we must take these threats seriously and we certainly will."
Bloomberg also said that the NYPD had already beefed up security ahead of the anniversary of 9/11.
Police commissioner Ray Kelly said Thursday night that security measures will include vehicle checkpoints, bag checks at subway stations, radiation-monitoring equipment and patrols with bomb-sniffing dogs. ...
September 1, 2011
Finnish crane manufacturer Konecranes has terminated business dealings with Iranian companies, according to a statement by United Against Nuclear Iran (UANI), a non-profit group that launched a campaign in May to bring attention to the Iranian regime’s grisly misuse of cranes.Read it all here.
UANI publicly called on Konecranes "to end its business in Iran" in August, citing the "Iranian regime's abhorrent executions by hanging from construction cranes."
According to a UANI statement, the crane manufacturer informed the organization it would "withdraw from the Iranian market" and that it is "systematically refus[ing] all opportunities to sell new equipment and services to the country."