News Archive - April 24, 2013

Minaret Of Iconic Syrian Mosque Destroyed In Fighting

The Syrian government and rebels blamed each other for the destruction of the minaret of the 11th century Umayyad Mosque in the ancient city of Aleppo. One archaeologist described the damage as "a disaster."

'A Rare Bird Sighting:' 'Slash' As A New Conjunction

Anne Curzan, a professor at the University of Michigan, was stunned by a new slang word her students taught her. It's a new conjunction, a very rare bird for language nerds.

Hagel: Claims Syria Used Chemical Weapons Are 'Suspicions'

The defense secretary said the U.S. has to be "very careful" before drawing conclusions about Syria. The U.S. has said the use of chemical weapons is a "red line" in the conflict.

The Meaning Of Boston: Depends On Your Angle, Literally

The opportunistic political sentiment of never letting a crisis go to waste has been reframed since the Boston bombings by those seizing on the attack as certain evidence of their positions. But a national security expert warns against the inclination. "It's difficult to make law by anecdote," he says..

Bolivia Takes Chile To Court Over Access To Sea

The landlocked nation wants to reclaim access to the Pacific that it lost in a 19th century war. But it's unclear if Chile will submit to the International Court of Justice and engage in the process.

Giffords Group's Radio Ads Hit McConnell, Ayotte On Gun Vote

A pro-gun control superPAC started by former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords and her husband, onetime astronaut Mark Kelly, launched radio ads against Republican Sens. Mitch McConnell and Kelly Ayotte for voting against bipartisan background check legislation.

O'Malley Needs 'Reflection Time' Before Committing To Presidential Run

Maryland governor Martin O'Malley is taking his time deciding whether or not run for the White House in 2016, saying he needs to reflect later this year before making a decision.

Redesigned $100 Bill To Go Into Circulation After Long Delay

The new note, delayed for three years because of printing problems, will include a new 3-D security stripe and a color-shifting image of the Liberty Bell.

As Myanmar Reforms, Old Tensions Rise To The Surface

After decades of military rule, Myanmar is experiencing rapid economic and social reforms. But some now fear that long-suppressed ethnic and religious tensions will be hard to contain. Violence between Buddhists and Muslims that began in the western part of country last year now appear to be spreading.

Regulators Deem D.C. Tour Bus Company 'Imminent Hazard'

Federal regulators have shut down the Washington D.C Party Shuttle, citing inadequate screening for drivers and an ineffective maintenance program.

Another Boston Bombing Mystery: Who is @Al_FirdausiA?

The account is one of the most recent followed by Boston bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. It's a mystery who that account belongs to.

1960s Satellite Images Add To Evidence Of Shrinking Sea Ice

A new analysis of images taken from one of the first U.S. weather satellites appears to confirm shrinking Arctic sea ice.

WATCH: Nevada Lawmaker Comes Out During Gay Marriage Debate

"I'm black. I'm gay," Nevada State Sen. Kelvin Atkinson said for the first time in public. The senate went on to approve a first step in repealing a ban on gay marriage in the state.

D.C. Realigns Divisions For High School Football

In order to make for some more competitive high school football, DCPS is ditching geographical divisions in favor of grouping schools by competitiveness.

Federal Indictment Highlights Out Of Control Baltimore Prison

Federal officials have handed down charges to 14 female corrections officers at the Baltimore City Detention Center, many of whom were smuggling goods into the prison and having sex with inmates.

The DEA Wants Your Old Meds, No Questions Asked

Wondering what to do with that Vicodin that's gathering dust in the medicine cabinet? The DEA is happy to take it off your hands. That method spares the environment and solves a pesky problem: giving a narcotic like that to anyone other than the person whose name is on the prescription is a felony.

How About You Be The Decider

George W. Bush opens his presidential library this week in Dallas, where an interactive game gives visitors a taste of presidential decision-making. From one angle, Decision Points Theater is a cool learning tool. From another, it raises the question: Could an American president benefit from crowdsourcing?

Local Food Advocates Prescribe Fruits And Veggies For Food Stamp Recipients

With Congress weighing a farm bill, local food advocates would like to see more funds go towards acquiring healthy, fresh food for those on government assistance.

Distracted Driving The Target Of New Federal Guidelines

Federal safety officials are calling on car makers to follow guidelines that limit distractions from built-in devices to two seconds or less.

1 Inmate Impregnated 4 Guards At Md. Jail, Prosecutors Say

In what sounds like a plot from The Wire, authorities say one gang has basically been running things at the Baltimore City Detention Center. The ring leader is accused of not only running his gang from the jail, but also of having sexual relations with female guards. Twenty five people face charges.

China Calls Planned U.S.-Japan Drills 'Provocative'

The announcement of the military exercises comes as China and Japan square off over disputed islands in the East China Sea.

First Case Of New Bird Flu Found Outside China

Concerns about the flu have intensified as the cases and fatalities mount. Transmission of the virus between birds and humans appears to happen fairly easily. It's unclear whether it can spread from one person to another.

Update: Suspect, 5 Others Dead After Shooting In Ill. Town

Authorities say the killings happened in Manchester, Ill., north of St. Louis. A suspect is reportedly in custody. One other person, said to be a child, was injured.

Anita Bonds Wins D.C. Special Election, Budget Referendum Passes

In a crowded field to fill the at-large seat on the D.C. Council, Democrat Anita Bonds carried the day with nearly a third of votes.

Boeing To Resume 787 Deliveries; NTSB Probes Certification

The transportation safety agency is trying to find out why the certification process for the new passenger aircraft didn't catch a critical problem with batteries.

AP's Twitter Account Running Again Following Tuesday's Hack

One day after suspending its account because of a hacking, the wire service says it is back on Twitter.

Stunning Video: 3 Years Of The Sun In 3 Minutes

Mesmerizing. Dazzling. Gorgeous. Pick your word. NASA's collection of images taken of the sun over the course of three years is getting rave reviews.

Dozens Killed In Collapse Of Bangladesh Garment Complex

Officials say the eight-story building on the outskirts of the capital, Dhaka, housed several garment factories. More than 85 people are dead, and officials expect the toll to rise.

Violent Protests In Paris After Same-Sex Marriage Law Passes

Opponents of the new law threw bottles, cans and metal bars. Police responded with tear gas. President Francois Hollande has appealed for calm.

Book News: Letters Reveal A Caustic But Affectionate Salinger

Also: an unusual job posting on Craigslist; a guided tour of George Saunders' desktop; and charges of nepotism at The New York Times.

Boston Bombing Investigation: Wednesday's Developments

There are reports that the suspects planned to head to New York City next. Also, surviving suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev is said to have told investigators the plot was put together only recently.