Quote of the day.
"The archbishop is of the view that Mr. Blair''s decision to support the United States'' military invasion of Iraq, on the basis of unproven allegations of the existence in Iraq of weapons of mass destruction, was morally indefensible.… In this context, it would be inappropriate and untenable for the archbishop to share a platform with Mr. Blair." Roger Friedman, spokesman for Archbishop Desmond Tutu, explaining why Tutu has withdrawn from a seminar in South Africa in protest at the presence of Tony Blair.
1. Isaac nears New Orleans, floods rural La. levee.
Hurricane Isaac pushed water over a rural levee, knocked out power and flooded beach-front roads before dawn in Louisiana and Mississippi as it began a slow, drenching slog inland from the Gulf of Mexico with a newly fortified New Orleans in its path.
2. Nomination secure, Romney pitch starts.
Mitt Romney, a former governor of Massachusetts who has aspired to reach the White House since his father first sought the office four decades ago, was nominated by the Republican Party here on Tuesday as its choice to become the 45th president of the United States.
(New York Times)
3. GOP platform shows rightward shift.
The Republican Party, viewed through its quadrennial platform documents, is consistently business-oriented and committed to a strong defense, but has morphed over the past half-century from a socially moderate, environmentally progressive and fiscally cautious group to a conservative party that is suspicious of government, allied against abortion and motivated by faith.
4. Young immigrants in Arizona battle governor''s policy.
Lilia Romo will tell you plainly: She didn''t ask for this fight, but now that the immigration war has been declared in this politically conservative state, the confident 24-year-old says she intends to win it.
(Chicago Tribune/Los Angeles Times)
5. EPA issues tougher mpg standards.
The Obama administration announced strict new vehicle fuel-efficiency standards Tuesday, requiring that the U.S. auto fleet average 54.5 miles per gallon by 2025, an uncontroversial move that, unlike other administration energy policies, was endorsed by industry and environmentalists alike.
6. Federal court rejects GOP-drawn Texas voting maps.
The long-awaited ruling was hailed as a sweeping victory by minority rights groups that sued the state after the Republican-controlled Legislature pushed through new redistricting maps last year.
7. Pakistani Muslim leaders support Christian girl accused of blasphemy.
Islamic leaders in Pakistan on Monday came out in support of a Christian girl with learning difficulties who is being held in prison, in an unprecedented public denunciation of the blasphemy law by hard-line mullahs.
8. Assad claims Syrian forces gaining ground.
The Syrian government''s battle to put down the mass uprising that began last year is moving forward, and the situation has become better, President Bashar al-Assad says in a television interview to be broadcast on Wednesday.
9. U.N. sees bleak outlook for Gaza unless services are improved.
Gaza may not be “a livable place” by 2020 unless intensive efforts are made to improve infrastructure and services in fields like energy, health, water and sanitation, a United Nations report concluded this week.
(New York Times)
10. Iran opposition leaders in human rights plea to UN secretary general.
Iran''s opposition has urged the UN secretary general, Ban Ki-moon, to visit political prisoners and press the regime over its human rights record during a controversial trip to Tehran for a summit of the Non-Aligned Movement this week.