Quote of the day.
"The death toll is staggering, the destruction is reaching catastrophic proportions, and the suffering of the people is immense." Lakhdar Brahimi, new UN-Arab League envoy for Syria, in his first comments to the UN General Assembly.
1. Bill Clinton offers forceful defense of Obama’s record.
Former president Bill Clinton delivered a spirited defense of President Obama’s handing of the nation’s struggling economy here Wednesday night, criticizing the agenda and philosophy of Mitt Romney and accusing the Republican Party of ideological rigidity and an unwillingness to compromise.
2. Democrats stumble on party platform language.
The second night of the Democratic National Convention began in confusion and dissent Wednesday over a last-minute effort to reinsert language in the party''s platform invoking God and affirming Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, an embarrassing episode that marred what otherwise has been a highflying gathering.
(Los Angeles Times)
3. Key portion of SB 1070 to take effect.
One of the last major barriers to implementing a controversial portion of Arizona''s immigration law fell Wednesday when a federal judge decided not to impose a new injunction on the so-called "show me your papers" provision.
4. Hunger rose in 2011 as economy struggled.
Record numbers of U.S. households struggled at times to feed their families last year, according to a report Wednesday from the U.S. Department of Agriculture on the state of hunger in America.
5. Activists block Texas site of proposed new Keystone pipeline route.
Activists battling a new oil pipeline chained themselves to bulldozers in Texas on Wednesday, temporarily halting route-clearance work in the latest protest against the Keystone XL project to carry oil from the tar sands of northern Canada.
6. U.S. to retain role as jailer in Afghanistan.
The United States military will maintain control over dozens of foreign detainees in Afghanistan for the indefinite future, even as the two countries prepare to ceremonially mark the hand-over of detention operations to the Afghan government.
(New York Times)
7. Evidence of wider U.S. waterboarding.
Human Rights Watch said it has uncovered evidence of a wider use of waterboarding in American interrogations of detainees than has been acknowledged by the United States, in a report Thursday that details further brutal treatment at secret CIA-run prisons under the Bush administration-era U.S. program of detention and rendition of terror suspects.
8. Egyptian president warns Assad that ‘your time won’t be long.''
President Mohamed Morsi of Egypt on Wednesday warned the Syrian president, Bashar al-Assad, that “your time won’t be long,” as Syrian warplanes and artillery shelled the battleground city of Aleppo and opposition groups reported heavy fighting around the Euphrates River city of Deir el-Zour.
(New York Times)
9. Pakistan orders Save the Children foreign workers to leave.
Pakistan has given foreigners working for Save the Children a week to leave the country after becoming convinced that the aid organization was used as cover by US spies hunting Osama bin Laden.
10. Lebanon's cedar trees threatened by climate change.
King Solomon used them in the construction of the temple that would bear his name, the Phoenicians used them to build their merchant ships, and the ancient Egyptians used their resin in the mummification process. But now Lebanon''s cedar trees (Cedrus libani), described in the Scriptures as "the glory of Lebanon" … face a new threat in the form of climate change.