Quote of the day.
"The pope prays for all people who speak Arabic. May God bless you all." Pope Benedict XVI, adding Arabic as one of the official languages at his weekly general audiences on Wednesday as part of a Vatican attempt to reach out to Christians and Muslims in the Middle East.
1. 5 things to watch in VP debate.
The best case scenario for each? A clear win. The worst case scenario for each? A clear loss. The murkiest scenario for each? A debate that gets fought to a draw, which the press will interpret in different ways but which also likely won’t stop the GOP ticket’s momentum.
2. Supreme Court divided over affirmative action in college admissions.
A deeply divided Supreme Court squared off Wednesday over the future of affirmative action in college admissions, with liberals defending a university’s right to assemble racially diverse student bodies and conservatives worrying about the constitutional rights of those who are denied admission because of their race.
3. This election, a stark choice in health care.
When Americans go to the polls next month, they will cast a vote not just for president but for one of two profoundly different visions for the future of the country’s health care system.
(New York Times)
4. State Dept. acknowledges rejecting requests for more security in Benghazi.
The State Department acknowledged Wednesday that it rejected appeals for more security at its diplomatic posts in Libya in the months before a fatal terrorist attack in Benghazi as Republicans suggested that lapses contributed to the deaths of the U.S. ambassador and three other Americans.
5. Gunmen kill U.S. embassy security chief in Yemen.
Masked gunmen shot dead a Yemeni security chief on his way to work at the U.S. embassy in Sanaa on Thursday in an attack a Yemeni security source said appeared to be the work of al Qaeda.
6. Pakistan teen activist in critical condition.
Pakistani officials have moved an injured teenage rights activist to the city of Rawalpindi for further treatment after she was shot in the head in the northwestern Swat Valley.
7. Russia says Turkey endangered lives by grounding plane.
Moscow accused Ankara of endangering Russian lives on Thursday after Turkey forced a Syrian passenger plane to land and seized what it suspected was military equipment being ferried from Russia to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
8. Afghan officials denounce Western group’s report on country’s future.
The Afghan government and some politicians and local news outlets denounced Western research organizations and news media, blasting them as spies and political agents in the wake of a report that suggested it was possible the Afghan government would collapse after 2014.
(New York Times)
9. Africa shows progress on hunger.
Africa has had more success than South Asia in tackling the problem of hunger over the past decade, according to a report on world food production.
10. Norway to double carbon tax on oil industry.
Norway is to double carbon tax on its North Sea oil industry and set up a £1 billion fund to help combat the damaging impacts of climate change in the developing world.