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Saturday, Nov 22nd

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Nevada earthquake swarm sparks warning

Nevada earthquake swarmAn intensifying swarm of hundreds of earthquakes in Nevada has rattled seismologists, who are issuing warnings that a major shaker could be on its way.

Nearly 750 earthquakes, mostly magnitude 2.0 to 3.0, have struck an area about 50 miles southeast of Lakeview, Ore., since the swarm started in July. They're growing steadily stronger, with one hitting 4.6. More than 40 have struck in the last two days.

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30 hurt as new clashes erupt in East Jerusalem

east Jerusalem clashesThirty young Palestinian protesters have been injured in the latest clashes with police in East Jerusalem following the death of a second Israeli in an attack earlier this week.

The Israeli died from injuries suffered when a Palestinian drove a van into pedestrians at an eastern Jerusalem rail station on Wednesday. The first clashes between Palestinians and police erupted when the driver was shot dead by police. The driver was identified by Israeli authorities as a member of Hamas, which claimed responsibility for the attack.

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Arizona's immigrant smuggling law struck down

Arizona immigration  lawA federal judge has struck down Arizona's 2005 immigrant smuggling law on the grounds that it's trumped by federal statutes.

The ruling Friday by U.S. District Judge Susan Bolton marked the latest in a string of restrictions placed by the courts on Arizona's effort to get local police to confront illegal immigration.

Bolton ruled the state law deprives federal authorities of their exclusive right to prosecute smuggling crimes.

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Car bombs kill 20 in Baghdad, Ramadi: police, medical sources

Baghdad bombingCar bombs killed 20 people, including five soldiers, in the Iraqi capital and the city of Ramadi to the west on Saturday, police and medical sources said, in attacks that resembled operations carried out by Islamic State militants.

Hours after the violence Al-Hadath television station reported that U.S.-led air strikes targeted a gathering of Islamic State leaders in Iraq's western province of Anbar, possibly including the group's leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.

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Gang members confess to mass killing of Mexico students

gang member skilled Mexican studentsSuspects in the disappearance of 43 college students have described a macabre and complicated mass murder and incineration ending with ashen remains in a landfill or being dumped into a river in southwest Mexico, Mexican authorities said Friday.

Attorney General Jesus Murillo cited the confessions of three detained gang members. Murillo said the detainees admitted they set fire to members of the group in a rubbish dump near the southwestern city of Iguala, where the students went missing on Sept. 26 after clashing with police on their way to a rally to protest proposed government educational reforms.

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US says North Korea releases 2 detained Americans

Korean prisoners releasedThe two remaining Americans who had been held in North Korea have been released and are on their way home, U.S. officials said Saturday.

A spokesman for Director of National Intelligence James Clapper said Clapper was accompanying Americans Kenneth Bae and Matthew Miller on their journey back to the United States.

Bae and Miller were the last Americans held by North Korea following the release last month of Jeffrey Fowle, an Ohio resident detained for nearly six months.

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Over 200 Cumulative Arrests including “Beyond Extreme Energy” Blockade

protests arrestsOver 200 people have been arrested in recent days carrying out nonviolent actions in four states and Washington, DC to resist fracking infrastructure: VT (60); RI (3); NY (25); MD (11); and Washington DC (now over 100).

The total number of people arrested in the Beyond Extreme Energy daily FERC blockades in Washington, DC is not yet known.
Nadia Prupis, staff writer for Common Dreams, sums up the week’s Beyond Extreme Energy actions:

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Head of Mississippi's Prisons Charged With Being Completely Corrupt

Mississippi prison scandalChris Epps resigned as head of the Mississippi Department of Corrections this week after more than a decade on the job. An indictment against him says he spent much of that time systematically robbing the state.

The indictment alleges that Epps conspired to pass out public contracts with his department in exchange for kickbacks—"taking more than $1 million in bribes and kickbacks over the last eight years in exchange for hundreds of millions of dollars in prison contracts." The Clarion-Ledger gives an example of how brazen Epps was:

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Obama authorizes 1,500 more troops for Iraq

More troops to IraqPresident Barack Obama authorized a broad expansion on Friday of the U.S. military mission in Iraq that will boost the total number of American troops there to about 3,100 and spread advisory teams and trainers to the north and west where fighting with Islamic State militants has been fierce.

The president's decision to escalate the U.S. effort in Iraq comes just three days after a bruising American election and amid persistent arguments that more U.S. troops are needed to bolster the struggling Iraqi forces. In particular, there have been calls to send troops to the western Anbar province, where extremists have been slaughtering men, women and children.

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