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Supreme Court may wade back into abortion debate

SC to take up abortion rights againNearly a quarter-century after its last major ruling on abortion created a fragile balance between women's rights and government restrictions, the Supreme Court appears ready for a rematch.

And like the last time, the debate would unfold in the midst of a presidential election.

The first act could play out as early as Friday, when the justices may decide whether to hear a challenge to tough new limits placed on abortion clinics and doctors in Texas. The restrictions — forcing doctors to have admitting privileges at nearby hospitals and requiring clinics to measure up to outpatient surgery centers — threaten to leave the state with just 10 clinics clustered in four population centers and along the Mexican border.


How the Bush administration ignored this warning from the CIA months before 9/11

CIA knew about 9/11Bin Laden Determined to Strike in U.S.” The CIA’s famous Presidential Daily Brief, presented to George W. Bush on August 6, 2001, has always been Exhibit A in the case that his administration shrugged off warnings of an Al Qaeda attack. But months earlier, starting in the spring of 2001, the CIA repeatedly and urgently began to warn the White House that an attack was coming.

By May of 2001, says Cofer Black, then chief of the CIA’s counterterrorism center, “it was very evident that we were going to be struck, we were gonna be struck hard and lots of Americans were going to die.” “There were real plots being manifested,” Cofer’s former boss, George Tenet, told me in his first interview in eight years. “The world felt like it was on the edge of eruption. In this time period of June and July, the threat continues to rise.


Consumers behind accelerated shift to cage-free eggs in US

Cage=free chickens

Alert and curious, hundreds of hens with bright red crowns and faces strolled out of a large chicken house midmorning into the fresh air and a fenced pasture amid rolling fields of alfalfa, clover, corn and soybeans. They cluck and coo, peck and scratch at the ground.

"They're obviously much more comfortable without cages," Iowa organic farmer Francis Blake said of his flock of 5,000 hens, which live a cage-free life.


IS suicide blast, roadside bomb hit Baghdad Shiites, kill 26

Iraqi blast kills 26The Islamic State group claimed responsibility for a suicide blast and a roadside bombing that targeted Shiites in Baghdad on Friday, killing a total of 26 people and wounding dozens.

The attacks came as Iraqi Kurdish militias, backed by U.S. airstrikes, seized the town of Sinjar from the Islamic State group in a major blow to the extremists. Following its blitz last year, the IS — which splintered off from Iraq's al-Qaida branch — now holds about a third of Iraq and neighboring Syria in its self-declared caliphate.


Sexting arrest latest embarrassment for Secret Service

Lee Robert MooreThe arrest of a uniformed Secret Service officer on charges of trying to solicit a teenage girl for sex and sending obscene images and texts online is the latest embarrassment for the agency charged with protecting the president and his family.

Lee Robert Moore, 37, of Church Hill, Maryland, waived his right to a preliminary hearing without appearing in court Friday in Delaware on state charges of sexual solicitation of a child under 18 and providing obscene material to a person under 18. He is charged separately in federal court with attempted transfer of obscene material to a minor.


Hebron hospital shooting: 'It was unnecessary killing'

Hebron hospital shootingA day after Israeli forces fatally shot 28-year-old Abdullah al-Shalaldeh inside a West Bank hospital, the victim's cousin has also died of wounds inflicted by Israeli forces.

Mahmoud al-Shalaldeh, 18, died on Friday after being shot by an Israeli soldier the previous day during clashes in Hebron, a relative told Al Jazeera.

"The Israelis have committed a crime against this family. It was unnecessary killing," Fatima al-Shalaldeh, a journalist who is distantly related to the victims, told Al Jazeera.


US guards 'taunt hunger-striking asylum seekers'

Guards taunt hunger strikersA series of mass hunger strikes have rocked for-profit detention centres across the US, as rights groups call for asylum seekers to be released while their cases are pending.  

Hundreds of immigrants, including asylum seekers, have participated in the hunger strikes in California, Texas and Louisiana.  At least 26 asylum seekers are on hunger strike in the Adelanto facility, a for-profit detention centre in southern California.

They are all that remain of an original 90 hunger strikers who launched the collective fast on November 4.


Chicago native Lt. Gen. Ronald Lewis removed from top Pentagon post

Lt. Genera; Ronald LewisAthree-star Army general from Chicago was removed from a top post at the Pentagon on Thursday amid misconduct allegations.

Lt. Gen. Ronald Lewis, who was profiled in a front-page story in the Tribune in January, will no longer be the senior military assistant to Defense Secretary Ash Carter, according to a Pentagon statement.


Collapsing Greenland glacier could raise sea levels by half a metre, say scientists

Collapsing Greenland glaciersA major glacier in Greenland that holds enough water to raise global sea levels by half a metre has begun to crumble into the North Atlantic Ocean, scientists say.

The huge Zachariae Isstrom glacier in northeast Greenland started to melt rapidly in 2012 and is now breaking up into large icebergs where the glacier meets the sea, monitoring has revealed.

The calving of the glacier into chunks of floating ice will set in train a rise in sea levels that will continue for decades to come, the US team warns.


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