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Mall of America bedlam: 9 arrested after fights force lockdown in some stores

Jessica Fleming, Pioneer Press, St. Paul, Minn. – Nine people were arrested after fights involving possibly hundreds of youths roiled the jam-packed Mall of America on the day after Christmas.…

Proposed improvements to U.S. 30 and I-35 in Story County to be discussed Jan. 12

AMES, Iowa – Dec. 27, 2011 – The Iowa Department of Transportation (DOT) will hold a public information meeting Thursday, Jan. 12, to discuss the proposed improvements of Interstate 35…

Death toll in Philippine floods climbs to nearly 1,500

By Girlie Linao MANILA — The death toll from floods in the southern Philippines has climbed to 1,453 as heavy rains triggered fresh floods in provinces on the east coast,…

Pakistani government defends nuclear program against rising internal criticism

By Tom Hussain, McClatchy Newspapers ISLAMABAD, Pakistan — A destabilizing confrontation between Pakistan’s fledgling democratic government and its powerful military is turning into a debate over the country’s nuclear weapons program.…

Action aboard airplane creates a reluctant hero

By Tony Rizzo, McClatchy Newspapers KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A man foaming at the mouth lunged for the airliner’s cabin door, attempting to open it as flight attendants struggled to hold…

Repairs to begin on stranded fishing boat in Antarctic

By David Barbe   WELLINGTON, New Zealand —Repairs are set to start Tuesday on a stricken Russian fishing boat, Sparta, stranded for 11 days in the Antarctic after striking an…

Syria opposition says at least 20 killed in Homs

By Alexandra Zavis and Rima Marrouch, Los Angeles Times BEIRUT, Lebanon — The video was horrific. What appeared to be the bloodied and broken bodies of four men lay in a…

Measure requiring porn actors to wear condoms qualifies for L.A. ballot

By Scott Glover, Los Angeles Times LOS ANGELES — A proposed ballot measure that would require porn actors to wear condoms while filming in the city of Los Angeles has qualified…

Post-Christmas shoppers seek drastic discounts

By E. Scott Reckard, Los Angeles Times LOS ANGELES — Post-Christmas shoppers hit the malls to buy what they didn’t get for the holiday, but they were still looking for huge…

Tension over Israeli proposal to commemorate Armenian genocide

By Batsheva Sobelman, Los Angeles Times – JERUSALEM _ Israeli lawmakers plan to discuss the possibility of setting a day to commemorate the Armenian genocide of 1915-18. But the initiative…

Obamas visit Marines, celebrate a quiet Christmas in Hawaii

By Peter Nicholas, Tribune Washington Bureau HONOLULU — The Obama family celebrated a low-key Christmas on Sunday, trading presents, attending church and singing Christmas carols before the first couple left their…

Heroin use on the rise

Kim Norvell, St. Joseph News-Press, Mo. As addictions to pain pills increase, so does an addiction to what officials say is a cheaper and often more convenient illicit drug. Heroin use…

Downtown Burlington, Iowa bustling

Rex L. Troute, The Hawk Eye, Burlington, Iowa The pounding of hammers and buzzing of electric saws were common sounds this year in downtown Burlington.Construction projects ranged from the extremely large…

DNA didn’t match, charges dropped, but rape case haunts Superior youth

By Brandon Stahl, Duluth News Tribune, Minn. Dec. 26–A typical day for Andrew Lawrence seems to be a pretty simple one. The 18-year-old said it usually consists of him sleeping…

Op-ed: Former ambassador’s plight reflects decline of U.S.-Pakistan ties

By Trudy Rubin, The Philadelphia Inquirer The scary decline of relations between the United States and Pakistan — the world’s most dangerous nuclear-armed country — is illustrated by the perilous plight…

Navy says remains of 1804 crew will stay in Libya

By Herb Jackson, The Record (Hackensack N.J.) WASHINGTON — The U.S. Navy crew perished more than 207 years ago, but an effort to repatriate their remains is getting new attention in…

North Korea is a tough target for US intelligence agencies

By Ken Dilanian, Tribune Washington Bureau WASHINGTON — Robert Egan has a pretty good feel for how desperate the CIA is for scraps of information about North Korea. Egan has served…

40 killed in Christmas Day attacks in Nigeria

By Habiba Salihu and Shabtai Gold ABUJA, Nigeria — A series of attacks on churches in Nigeria during Christmas Day services killed at least 40 people, witnesses said Sunday, with…

Bomber hits funeral in Afghanistan; legislator among 19 killed

By Laura King, Los Angeles Times KABUL, Afghanistan — A suicide bomber struck a funeral gathering in northern Afghanistan on Sunday, killing at least 19 people, including a member of parliament,…

Clues emerge from North Korea on Kim Jong Un’s regime

By John M. Glionna, Los Angeles Times SEOUL, South Korea — Like the Soviet Union during the Cold War, North Korea plays out its politics out almost exclusively behind iron gates,…

7 found dead inside Texas apartment

By Tim Madigan and Domingo Ramirez Jr., McClatchy Newspapers GRAPEVINE, Texas — Seven members of a family were found shot to death Christmas morning in the living room of a Grapevine…

Sudan says it killed Darfur rebel leader

By Alexandra Zavis, Los Angeles Times BEIRUT, Lebanon — Sudan’s armed forces said Sunday that they killed the leader of Darfur’s main rebel group, inflicting what could be a severe blow…

Israeli domestic debate on war with Iran

MCT FORUM, By Chen Kane The recent debate in Israel about the urgency of Iran’s nuclear threat and the wisdom of an Israeli military attack to counter it are historically unprecedented.…

China, India and Brazil are on the rise as the West stagnates

MCT FORUM, By Carmelo Ruiz-Marrero – Here’s a trend to watch in the coming year: the rise of new economic powers. China, India and Brazil are in the ascendancy, as the…

Long shadow of the Iraq war

Mark Brunswick, Star Tribune, Minneapolis – In Chisago City, two little daughters bake Christmas cookies for a father they can start to get to know again after his yearlong deployment fixing…

Austin, MN City council approves $100 million in public improvements

Amanda Lillie, Austin Daily Herald Austin City Council unanimously approved a plan Monday night for more than $100 million in public improvements over the next five years. The plan includes upgrades…

Huge crowd convenes in Moscow to protest power of Putin

Huge crowd convenes in Moscow to protest power of Putin

By Sergei L. Loiko, Los Angeles Times MOSCOW — Tens of thousands of people fed up with Vladimir Putin’s domination of Russian politics and his perceived arrogance toward them jammed one…

In Alaska, becoming the militants next door

By Kim Murphy, Los Angeles Times FAIRTON, N.J. — A little more than a year ago, he was a weather forecaster at a remote outpost in King Salmon, Alaska, population 442.…

Soldier shot, paralyzed during welcome home party

By Raja Abdulrahim, Los Angeles Times – LOS ANGELES — A soldier on leave from Afghanistan was shot and seriously injured Friday night in San Bernardino, Calif., during a welcome home…

Veterans bring the war home

Veterans bring the war home

By Dahleen Glanton, Chicago Tribune CHICAGO — It was just after midnight when former Marine Cpl. James Dahan was awakened by a faint noise in the distance. Except for the glare…

Angry former ATF chief blames subordinates for Fast and Furious

By Richard A. Serrano, Tribune Washington Bureau – WASHINGTON — In a confidential deposition with congressional investigators, the then-head of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives blamed agents, field…

OPEC in pact on Libyan oil, minister says

By Summer Said CAIRO — Libya’s Oil Minister Abdurahman Benyezza said Saturday that there is a “gentlemen” agreement inside OPEC to accommodate the country’s crude oil as production recovers. “There…

Thousands flock to Bethlehem for Christmas celebrations

By Jeff Abramowitz and Jan-Uwe Ronneburger BETHLEHEM, Palestine — Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem Fouad Twal — the Catholic church’s top spiritual leader in the Holy Land — on Saturday led…

Iraq arrests four security officials following Baghdad bombings

By Roy Gutman and Laith Hammoudi, McClatchy Newspapers – BAGHDAD — The Iraqi government has arrested four of its own security officers in connection with a devastating wave of car bombs…

CIA has suspended drone attacks in Pakistan, U.S. officials say

By Ken Dilanian, Tribune Washington Bureau WASHINGTON — In an effort to mend badly frayed relations with Pakistan, the CIA has suspended drone missile strikes on gatherings of low-ranking militants believed…

Release of new Air Jordans sparks unruly crowds

By Stephen Ceasar, Los Angeles Times Not even the holiday spirit could overcome the frenzied demand for Nike Air Jordans on Friday. A release of one model of the popular basketball…

Christchurch hit by 2 major earthquakes

By David Barber WELLINGTON, New Zealand — Nineteen people were injured when two major earthquakes and a swarm of aftershocks hit New Zealand’s second-largest city, Christchurch, on Friday, news reports…

At least 30 reported dead as 2 explosions rock Syrian capital

At least 30 reported dead as 2 explosions rock Syrian capital

By Alexandra Zavis, Los Angeles Times – BEIRUT — Two explosions targeting buildings used by government security forces rocked the Syrian capital of Damascus on Friday, killing at least 30 people,…

Federal appeals court throws out ‘birthers’ lawsuit against Obama

Federal appeals court throws out ‘birthers’ lawsuit against Obama

By Carol J. Williams, Los Angeles Times LOS ANGELES — A group of Southern Californians who insist President Barack Obama was born in Africa and should be ousted from the Oval…

Opportunities growing for squatters

By Tina Susman, Los Angeles Times – NEW YORK — Slips of paper are pasted to the broken door of the corner row house, violations for the garbage piled near the…