Content Section
  1. DIPLOMACY Obama Calls for Action on Syria Mike Segar/Reuters

    1. Obama Calls for Action on Syria

    President Obama is taking Iran’s recent diplomatic overtures very seriously. In a speech at the United Nations, he announced that Secretary of State John Kerry will meet with Iran’s foreign minister to discuss Iran’s nuclear program, the highest-level meeting between the two countries in 30 years. “The roadblocks may prove to be too great,” Obama said, “but I firmly believe the diplomatic path must be tested.” Obama also said the evidence that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad used chemical weapons against his own people is “overwhelming” and that the international community must act.

    Highlights from Obama's UN speech.

    September 24, 2013 11:03 AM

  2. TERRORISM Kenya Trial: Grant Had 'Explosive' Chemicals Joseph Okanga/Reuters

    2. Kenya Trial: Grant Had 'Explosive' Chemicals

    Jermaine Grant, a British Islamist on trial in Kenya for plotting attacks, had chemicals in his home that could be turned into explosives, investigators testified on Tuesday. Robert John Garrick, a Scotland Yard detective, said they found a stash of battery acid after arresting Grant, who is accused of collaborating with Samantha Lewthwaite, the fugitive widow of one of the London 7/7 bombers. Grant pleaded guilty in December 2011 to being in Kenya illegally and lying about his nationality. He’s currently serving two years for those charges. Security for the trial, which is taking place in Mombasa, Kenya, was ramped up after the mall siege.

    September 24, 2013 6:12 PM

  3. in a box, with a fox Ted Cruz Recites ‘Green Eggs and Ham’ J. Scott Applewhite/AP

    3. Ted Cruz Recites ‘Green Eggs and Ham’

    Around 8 p.m. EST, Ted Cruz’s fauxlibuster took an odd turn when he decided it would be appropriate to read his daughters a bedtime story. The Texas senator began to recite Dr. Seuss’s Green Eggs and Ham on the Senate floor, with dramatic pause and all. “Green Eggs and Ham has some applicability, as curious as it may sound, to the Obamcare debate,” Cruz said once he had finished. Americans “did not like green eggs and ham, and they did not like Obamacare either.” Watch Cruz’s entire rendition here.

    September 24, 2013 9:19 PM

  4. FINAL TALLY Walsh, Connolly to Face Off for Boston Mayor Jim Davis/The Boston Globe via Getty

    4. Walsh, Connolly to Face Off for Boston Mayor

    Then there were two. The primary election for the first wide-open mayoral race in two decades culminated in victory for the top two candidates, Martin J. Walsh and John R. Connolly. The two candidates, one a state representative and the other a city councilor, will meet again on November 5 to vie for Mayor Thomas M. Menino’s role. The much-anticipated election, which hosted 12 candidates, brought Boston voters out in record numbers, with 95 percent of precincts reporting. The final tally showed Walsh in the lead with 18.6 percent of the vote and Connolly close behind with 17.7 percent.

    September 24, 2013 10:10 PM

  5. THANKS ANYWAY Iran Turns Down Meeting With Obama Rouzbeh Jadidoleslam/Presidency Office, via AP

    5. Iran Turns Down Meeting With Obama

    Almost doesn’t count. A long-awaited meeting between President Obama and Iranian President Hassan Rouhani was called off by Iran, who called the encounter “too complicated," White House officials said Tuesday. The encounter would have been the first coming together of the two nations since 1979, when the Islamic Revolution in Iran led to the ousting of the shah. At a speech to the United Nations earlier in the day Tuesday, Obama stressed the importance of discussing nuclear weapons with Iran. “I firmly believe the diplomatic path must be tested,” he said.

    September 24, 2013 3:50 PM

  6. Oops MacArthur ‘Genius’ Grant Winners Leak

    6. MacArthur ‘Genius’ Grant Winners Leak

    It’s Christmas come early for recipients of the MacArthur “genius” grant. Ahead of the foundation’s press embargo, The Sun Herald accidentally published the list of this year’s “genius” grant recipients, a glaring mistake made even more obvious by the caption under their photo, which reads “hold for release at 12:01 a.m. Wednesday.” All of the 24 winners, which vary from jazz composers to organic chemists, will receive $625,000 over the course of the next five years—money that they can spend on, virtually, whatever they want. Among the winners is the 32-year-old author of Swamplandia!, Karen Russell

    September 24, 2013 11:02 PM

  7. HISTORY

    7. First Gay Circuit Court Judge Confirmed

    It’s nice they can agree on something. The Senate voted unanimously to confirm Todd Hughes to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, making him the first openly gay person to serve on the nation’s second-highest courts. Hughes is a 19-year veteran of the Justice Department, working as deputy director in the civil rights division since 2007. One down, 13 more of President Obama’s judicial nominees—nine of whom are women and four are African-American—to go. “We look forward to the ‘seconds’ and ‘thirds’ who will come after Todd Hughes and his fellow ‘firsts’ currently serving on our courts,” said White House counsel Kathryn Ruemmler.

    September 24, 2013 1:03 PM

  8. ASSAULT Mall Siege in Kenya Officially Over Tony Karumba/AFP via Getty

    8. Mall Siege in Kenya Officially Over

    After a three-day siege that left more than 70 people dead, the terrorist attack on a Nairobi mall is over. Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta announced that security forces have taken control of all three floors of the mall, killing five of the al Qaeda–linked attackers and taking 11 into custody. There have been reports that some of the attackers are Americans and one is a British woman, but they haven’t been confirmed. Kenyatta said several floors collapsed during the assault, and three bodies remain in the rubble. “Fellow Kenyans, we have been badly hurt and feel great pain and loss, but we have been brave, united, and strong,” Kenyatta said. “Kenya has stared down great evil and triumphed.”

    Terrorist group al-Shabab live tweeted throughout their Kenya mall massacre, despite Twitter efforts to shut down their accounts.

    September 24, 2013 12:55 PM

  9. TO EAT China Buys 5 Percent of Ukraine Arno Burgi, DPA / Corbis

    17. China Buys 5 Percent of Ukraine

    The breadbasket of Europe is living up to its name. In an effort to feed its growing population, China purchased 5 percent of Ukraine’s soil-rich land, an incredible 9 percent of its farmland. The deal, struck between Chinese and Ukrainian production companies, gives the middle kingdom access to the land for the next 50 years. Two Chinese state-owned grain farms plan to head up the operation, the first step of which involves swapping seeds and equipment with Ukraine in exchange for pigs and crops. According to experts, China consumes roughly 20 percent of the world’s food supplies.

    September 24, 2013 6:32 PM

  10. CONFESSION Dr. Drew Reveals Cancer Battle Donna Svennevik/ABC via Getty

    10. Dr. Drew Reveals Cancer Battle

    In an exclusive interview with People, Dr. Drew Pinsky shares the details of his secret two-year battle with prostate cancer, including the day he found out. “This could screw everything up. It was a terrible feeling,” he remembers. A bad case of prostatitis led to elevated PSA levels, which prompted doctors to do a biopsy. After months of battling the disease, Pinsky had his prostate removed last July. Now fully recovered, the board-certified internist and addiction-medicine specialist wants to add cancer survivor to his sex-rehab repertoire. He’s off to a great start, already offering up intimate details of his new sex life ... “erectile function is normal.”

    September 24, 2013 8:30 PM

  11. RECORD BREAKER

    11. Soldier Runs Fastest Mile in Bomb Suit

    If this doesn't make you feel lazy, nothing will. Breaking the record for fastest female one-mile run in a 75-pound EOD (Explosive Ordnance Disposal) bomb-disposal suit, First Lt. Ashley Sorensen finished her race in just 11 minutes, 6 seconds Monday. Sorenson’s time, which will be entered in the Guinness Book of World Records, shatters the previous record by more than two minutes. Turning their EOD training into a competition, Sorenson told the press afterward, helps her and fellow soldiers better prepare for real-life situations in which they'll need the EOD. After 18 months of training, the Milwaukee native was thrilled with the results. “It feels awesome,” she gushed.

    September 24, 2013 7:32 PM

  12. cheat

    12. AIG CEO Compares Bonus Anger to Lynching

    Talk about false equivalence. In a wide-ranging interview with The Wall Street Journal, AIG CEO Robert Benmosche compared the public anger and government targeting of bonuses paid by AIG in 2008 and 2009 after the insurer was bailed out to the horrific racial violence suffered by African-Americans in the 19th and 20th centuries. Criticism over the insurer’s practice of paying large bonuses—even though AIG needed an infusion of $182 billion in public funds to stay alive—“was intended to stir public anger, to get everybody out there with their pitch forks and their hangman nooses, and all that—sort of like what we did in the Deep South [decades ago]. And I think it was just as bad and just as wrong.”

    September 24, 2013 11:25 AM

  13. U.N. ADDRESS Iran President: We’re Not a Threat Seth Wenig/AP

    13. Iran President: We’re Not a Threat

    In his first official address to the United Nations, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani assured members that despite a nuclear weapon program, his country poses “absolutely no threat to the world or to the region.” The new president went on to compare U.N. sanctions on Iran—which, he claims, is pursuing a nuclear weapons program for “exclusively peaceful purposes”—as similar to those inflicted on Iraqis under Saddam Hussein. Delivered just hours after allegedly canceling a meeting with Obama, his statements offer hope that a resolution in the standoff will be reached. “We can arrive at a framework to manage our differences,” he said in closing.

    September 24, 2013 5:56 PM

  14. BETRAYAL @Horse_ebooks Is Human

    14. @Horse_ebooks Is Human

    It’s a dark day on the Internet. The beloved Twitter account @Horse_ebooks, whose absurdist excerpts from obscure digital books gained a cult following in 2011, has been revealed to be an art project by BuzzFeed employee Jacob Bakkila. There was once a time when @horse_ebooks was a real spambot, but in September Bakkila contacted the owner and took it over. “The idea was to perform as a machine,” Bakkila told The New York Times.

    September 24, 2013 11:38 AM

  15. DEFUND OBAMACARE Cruz: I’ll Talk Until I Can’t Stand J. Scott Applewhite/AP

    15. Cruz: I’ll Talk Until I Can’t Stand

    When the going gets tough, Ted Cruz gets going. Taking to the Senate floor Tuesday, the freshman Tea Partier vowed to keep talking about the need to defund Obamacare until he is “no longer able to stand.” Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell immediately shot down Cruz’s statement, which rang of an impending fillibuster, as counterproductive. “All it does is shut down the government and keep Obamacare funded, and none of us want that,” the minority leader said. Cruz’s crusade, which has thus far proved fruitless, aims to block the Senate from changing a bill that would strip funding for Obamacare.

    Twitter reacts to Ted Cruz's sort of filibuster. #DisappoinTed?

    September 24, 2013 3:04 PM

  16. ANTICIPATION ‘Breaking Bad’ Gets Record Ratings Ursula Coyote/AMC

    16. ‘Breaking Bad’ Gets Record Ratings

    There’s just one episode left of Breaking Bad—and no one can wait for their DVRs anymore. The AMC show had record ratings for its penultimate episode Sunday night, despite fierce competition from the Emmys and Sunday night football. Breaking Bad had 6.6 million viewers, up from its previous record of 6.3 million, including 4.3 million in the coveted 18- to 49-year-old demographic. The show’s final batch of episodes, which premiered last month, has already received record ratings ahead of the much-anticipated finale. In other words, don’t make any plans for this Sunday night.

    September 24, 2013 7:50 AM

  17. TO EAT China Buys 5 Percent of Ukraine Arno Burgi, DPA / Corbis

    17. China Buys 5 Percent of Ukraine

    The breadbasket of Europe is living up to its name. In an effort to feed its growing population, China purchased 5 percent of Ukraine’s soil-rich land, an incredible 9 percent of its farmland. The deal, struck between Chinese and Ukrainian production companies, gives the middle kingdom access to the land for the next 50 years. Two Chinese state-owned grain farms plan to head up the operation, the first step of which involves swapping seeds and equipment with Ukraine in exchange for pigs and crops. According to experts, China consumes roughly 20 percent of the world’s food supplies.

    September 24, 2013 6:32 PM

  18. GIVE HIM A BREAK Bush Defends Obama’s Golf Habit Getty

    18. Bush Defends Obama’s Golf Habit

    What’s wrong with a little golf? Former president George W. Bush told the Golf Channel that Obama should not be criticized for hitting the links once in a while. Said Bush: “I think he ought to play golf ... Because I know what it’s like to be in the bubble. And I know the pressures of the job. And to be able to get outside and play golf with some of your pals is important for the president. It does give you an outlet.” Obama has played some 140 rounds of golf since taking office.

    September 24, 2013 11:04 AM

  19. FINAL CHAPTER? Baby Veronica Given to Adoptive Parents Bruce Smith/AP

    19. Baby Veronica Given to Adoptive Parents

    Baby Veronica, the 4-year-old Native American girl at the center of a legal battle over Cherokee Nation rights, was returned to her adoptive parents Monday night. Veronica, whose biological father is a member of the Cherokee Nation, was adopted by a South Carolina couple, the Capobiancos, at birth and lived with them until she was 27 months old. Her biological father, Dusten Brown, an Iraq War veteran, was then awarded custody under the Indian Child Welfare Act, a federal law designed to stop adoptions of Native American children by white families. The Oklahoma Supreme Court invalidated the lower court’s decision and finalized Veronica’s adoption.

    September 24, 2013 7:31 AM

  20. GUNFIGHT

    20. Bullet Hits Schoolbus in Harlem

    A gunfight broke out in Harlem this morning, sending a bullet into the upper windshield of a parked schoolbus filled with 10 kindergarten-age kids. Luckily, no one was hurt. The shot was one of six to eight fired during the battle and managed to travel over a block to the bus, which was parked in front of Choir Academy of Harlem. Neighbors expressed fear and frustration. “This is a neighborhood filled with children,” said one. “Being a parent and a mother, it's heart-wrenching. And considering what's been happening in the world today, with these types of catastrophic gunfire situations, it makes you wonder, when will it stop?”

    September 24, 2013 10:34 AM

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  22. DEDICATED Ted Cruz All In on Obamacare Fight J. Scott Applewhite/AP

    22. Ted Cruz All In on Obamacare Fight

    So Ted Cruz is giving everyone a lesson in going at it alone. The Texas Republican insisted Monday that he will use “every procedural means available” to defund Obamacare—even if it means a government shutdown. And he doesn’t need any allies while he’s at it: Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and Minority Whip John Cornyn said Monday that they will not back Cruz’s bill to defund Obamacare. The bill already passed the House, and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid plans to strip that provision before putting the budget portions before the Senate. The bill to increase government spending must pass before October 1, or the government faces a shutdown. Your move, Cruz.

    September 24, 2013 7:04 AM

  23. THAT WAS CLASSIFIED Former F.B.I. Agent Pleads Guilty in AP Leak FBI

    23. Former F.B.I. Agent Pleads Guilty in AP Leak

    In a bizarre coincidence, it turns out the retired FBI agent who has agreed to plead guilty to leaking classified information to the Associated Press was already under investigation for child pornography. The Justice Department identified the retired bomb technician as the source of a leak about a foiled al Qaeda bomb plot after it secretely seized Associated Press phone records. They then discovered that Donald Sachtleben's computers had already been seized by law enforcement in a child porn investigation. The former agent has agreed to serve 43 months in prison, plus another 97 for child pornography. His is the eighth case of a leak-related prosecution under President Obama’s administration.

    September 24, 2013 9:15 AM

  24. HOT MIKE Obama: ‘Scared of My Wife’ Frank Franklin II/AP

    24. Obama: ‘Scared of My Wife’

    President Obama still hasn’t learned about those hot mikes. The president was caught on microphone Monday night saying he quit smoking because he’s scared of the first lady. “I haven’t had a cigarette in probably six years,” Obama said to a United Nations official. “That’s because I’m scared of my wife.” Good luck going back home now, Obama. He must really miss cigarettes: “probably six years” is likely closer to three, given comments Michelle Obama made in 2011.

    September 24, 2013 7:38 AM

  25. TRAGIC Clinton Worker Killed in Kenyan Siege AP

    25. Clinton Worker Killed in Kenyan Siege

    Elif Yavuz, a senior vaccines researcher for the Clinton Foundation, was killed in the mall attack in Nairobi. Yavuz and her husband, Ross Langdon, were gunned down when Islamist extremists stormed the Westgate mall and began shooting at shoppers. In a statement, the Clintons praised Yavuz for her tireless devotion to helping others. "Elif was brilliant, dedicated, and deeply admired by her colleagues, who will miss her terribly,” the statement added. Yavuz, who worked in Tanzania, was expecting her first child in two weeks and had traveled to Kenya for its superior medical care.

    September 24, 2013 11:05 AM

  26. REMEMBER THEM? China Bans North Korea Exports Ed Jones/AFP/Getty

    26. China Bans North Korea Exports

    North Korea received a slap on the wrist over its budding weapons program from longtime ally China, which banned certain exports to Pyongyang over fears that the materials could be used for nuclear, chemical, or biological weapons. China published a 236-page list of prohibited exports just days after new satellite images from North Korea indicated that the country may be resuming its production of plutonium at a complex Pyongyang had pledged to shut down six years ago. A Chinese expert on North Korea put it bluntly: “China is increasingly unsatisfied with North Korea’s actions.” The list also comes just days after Beijing invited North Korea and other countries, including the U.S., to talks to persuade Pyongyang to give up its nuclear capabilities.

    September 24, 2013 7:33 AM

  27. HOMEGROWN Minneapolis Somalis Reject Terror Ties Jerome Delay/AP

    27. Minneapolis Somalis Reject Terror Ties

    Somali community leaders and imams in Minneapolis met Monday night to condemn the Kenyan shopping-mall attack amid claims that some of the attackers lived at least part of their lives in the Twin Cities. The Minneapolis–St. Paul area is home to the largest Somali population in the U.S. (the Cedars-Riverside neighborhood is even known as Little Somalia), and at least 22 young men have left the region since 2007 to join Al-Shabab, al Qaeda’s affiliate in Somalia. Kenyan officials said two or three of the attackers were Americans ages 18 and 19, and another is possibly a British widow of a 2005 London suicide bomber. But Al-Shabab told Reuters that “those who describe the attackers as American or British are people who do not know what is going on in the Westgate building.”

    September 24, 2013 7:01 AM

  28. SERIOUSLY George W. Bush Is on Instagram georgewbush, via Instagram

    28. George W. Bush Is on Instagram

    Forget paintings, George W. Bush has found another use of his time: Instagram. The former president joined the site earlier this month and has already shared baby photos and cat pictures. Looks like he’s getting the hang of it. He posted a picture with his granddaughter, Mila, with “Happy #GrandparentsDay.” (Hashtagging? Impressive.) This past weekend, he shared a photo of a cat named Bob in a basket, with the caption “Say hi to Bob, a stray who wandered onto the ranch in Crawford. Now he lives with Miss Beazley in Dallas.” Cute baby photos and cat pictures are what the Internet is all about.

    September 24, 2013 7:42 AM

  29. MURKY Al-Shabab: Hostages Still in Mall Jerome Delay/AP

    29. Al-Shabab: Hostages Still in Mall

    Al-Shabab insisted Tuesday that militants are “holding out” inside the besieged Nairobi mall with hostages, while Kenyan TV said six of the hostages have been killed. The al Qaeda–linked group said on its Twitter feed that there are “countless dead bodies” strewn about the Westgate shopping complex and described the militants as “unruffled and strolling around the mall in such sangfroid manner.” A Kenyan military official also confirmed that gunmen are still in the building, and said “we are not sure yet” if there are still hostages. A burst of gunfire broke the early-morning calm while helicopters buzzed over the complex and the government publicly insisted that it is in control of the mall.

    Terrorist group al-Shabab live tweeted throughout their Kenya mall massacre, despite Twitter efforts to shut down their accounts.

    September 24, 2013 6:57 AM