Content Section
  1. NEVERMIND U.N. Withdraws Iran Invitation Saad AboBrahim/Reuters

    1. U.N. Withdraws Iran Invitation

    Under pressure from the United States, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Monday withdrew an invitation for Iran to participate in a Syria peace conference. U.N. officials had surprised the U.S. with the invitation, prompting Washington to insist that Iran be excluded because it had not agreed to the conditions for the talks, to be held in Montreux, Switzerland. The invitation also angered Saudi Arabia, Iran's regional rival, which threatened to boycott the talks if it wasn't rescinded. The conditions for the conference were outlined in a communiqué from a 2012 meeting in Geneva. Ban's about-face came just 48 hours before the start of the conference.

    January 20, 2014 4:43 PM

  2. GETTING WORSE Bombings Kill Over 25 in Iraq Ako Rasheed/Reuters

    2. Bombings Kill Over 25 in Iraq

    Seven bombs exploded in the Baghdad-area, killing 26 people and injuring 67. No one has claimed responsibility for the attacks yet, but five of the bombs targeted mostly Shiite districts, suggesting potential Sunni militant involvement. On January 1, Al Qaeda forces took advantage of minority Sunni resentment to seize control of Fallujah and parts of Ramadi.

    January 20, 2014 8:37 AM

  3. A WAY OUT? Jailed American in NK: Help Me Kyodo/Reuters

    3. Jailed American in NK: Help Me

    In a press conference under guard supervision, Kenneth Bae, the longest-serving American prisoner in North Korea in recent years, pleaded for the U.S. to work diplomatically for his release. "I believe that my problem can be solved by close cooperation and agreement between the American government and the government of this country." However, it is unlikely that Bae is warming up to North Korea. Bae appeared in an inmate's uniform and under guarded supervision. Kim Jin Moo, a North Korea expert at the state-run Korea Institute for Defense Analyses in Seoul, said "The reason why North Korea had Kenneth Bae make this statement... is that they want Washington to reach out to them."

    January 20, 2014 8:22 AM

  4. PLAYING DEFENSE

    4. NJ Lt. Gov Denies Pressuring Mayor

    It's not like the Christie administration has never been known for playing quietly. Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno isn't mincing words over Hoboken Mayor Dawn Zimmer's accusation that she pushed a $1 billion development project at Chris Christie's behest. “Mayor Zimmer's version of our conversation is not only false but illogical and does not withstand scrutiny when all the facts are examined,” she said. Zimmer claims she was told her town would not receive relief funds for Superstorm Sandy unless she supported the development proposal.

    January 20, 2014 11:12 AM

  5. ANOTHER ONE BITES THE DUST Sharapova Out of Aussie Open Paul Crock/AFP/Getty

    5. Sharapova Out of Aussie Open

    And the upsets just keep on coming down under. Maria Sharapova, the No. 3 seed at the Australian Open, lost to No. 20 Dominika Cibulkova in the fourth round. Sharapova, a four-time Grand Slam winner, exits the tournament hot on the heels of Serena Williams, who also suffered a major loss. This wasn't the first time Sharapova lost to Cibulkova. In the 2009 quarterfinals of the French Open, she fell to the Slovakian tennis player. Cibulkova said “I went on the court, and I was more than 100 percent sure that I really can beat her. I did it before, and I knew she knows me.” We don't want to jinx it, but Roger Federer just made it to the quarterfinals.

    January 20, 2014 8:24 AM

  6. STRONG SWIMMERS Palestinian Jail Smuggles Sperm Suhaib Salem/Reuters

    6. Palestinian Jail Smuggles Sperm

    Well, you've never seen this on Orange is the New Black. According to a new report from from Al Jazeera, Gaza saw its first case of a prisoner successfully impregnating his wife from sperm smuggled out of prison. Using her husband's young nephews, a Palestinian woman managed to get hold of a box of her husband's semen and have a doctor perform in vitro fertilization. Dr Abdel-Kareem Hindawi, a gynecologist at the Gaza-based Basma IVF Center, said at least four other wives of prisoners have become pregnant this way.

    January 20, 2014 8:26 AM

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  8. GOOD TO BE THE KING Prince Charles Taking Over Chris Jackson/Getty

    7. Prince Charles Taking Over

    It looks like mom finally trusts him. At the ripe old age of 65, Prince Charles will finally get to start enjoying those top-tier royal responsibilities that his mother has maintained for over the past 50 years. The longest heir apparent to the throne will be taking on more of the Queen's public engagements and be the “face” of the royal family. Still Queen Elizabeth is not retiring yet. "The Queen is not shutting up shop. She is still the Queen and is still incredibly busy,” said an insider. Sorry, Charlie.

    January 20, 2014 8:39 AM

  9. TONE-DEAF Palin: Obama, Don't Play Race Card Andrew Burton/Getty

    8. Palin: Obama, Don't Play Race Card

    Sarah Palin has a real knack for misinterpreting historical events. Her latest example is a Facebook post that quotes from the legendary “I Have a Dream” speech with Palin's own addendum: “Mr. President, in honor of Martin Luther King, Jr. and all who commit to ending any racial divide, no more playing the race card.” Thanks for dropping that knowledge on us, Sarah.

    January 20, 2014 3:06 PM

  10. SHAMEFUL Racist Response to Sherman's Rant Steven Bisig/USA Today Sports, via Reuters

    9. Racist Response to Sherman's Rant

    Nothing like an innocuous American sports classic to reveal an ugly layer of racism. After Seattle Seahawks' Richard Sherman post-game victory rant rubbed some people the wrong way, the Internet exploded in racial epithets directed towards him. Tweets included calling him a "jungle monkey" and "typical gorilla n----r." Richards responded in a post on MMQB "people find it easy to take shots on Twitter, and to use racial slurs and bullying language far worse than what you’ll see from me. It’s sad and somewhat unbelievable to me that the world is still this way, but it is. I can handle it."

    January 20, 2014 9:06 AM

  11. TMI Bieber Texts Gomez Angry Selfies Ethan Miller

    10. Bieber Texts Gomez Angry Selfies

    It's going to be hard for Justin Bieber and Selena Gomez to bounce back from this one. The on-again, off-again couple apparently exchanged a series of texts that were leaked by an unknown source. It started with Bieber begging Gomez to come back and escalated to him sending a photo of his erect penis with the text “Don't tell me you didn't miss this.” Gomez responded by telling Bieber to go to rehab and asking “how can u let[Lil Za] take the fall for your actions,” the rapper busted for drug possession during last week's raid on Bieber's house. “Can’t hear you over my cash, babe!,” texted Bieber. “You’re only famous cuz of me.”

    January 20, 2014 12:23 PM

  12. UH OH Mayor Goes to Feds Over Christie Jeff Zelevansky/Getty

    11. Mayor Goes to Feds Over Christie

    The Democratic mayor of Hoboken, New Jersey visited the office of the U.S. attorney for several hours Sunday after saying Chris Christie ordered aid for Superstorm Sandy to be ransomed in exchange for her support of a private business development. Dawn Zimmer said the lieutanant governor told her: "This was a direct message from the governor." Zimmer said she requested $100 million and was given $142,000. Christie's office ripped her: "It’s very clear partisan politics are at play here as Democratic mayors with a political axe to grind come out of the woodwork and try to get their faces on television."

    January 19, 2014 1:30 PM

  13. DRINK UP Bieber Downing Shots of Codeine Vivien Killilea/Getty

    12. Bieber Downing Shots of Codeine

    When he is not winning the hearts of tweens and running out of South American brothels, Justin Bieber's other favorite activity is drinking Actavis prometh with codeine syrup, according to TMZ. The medicinal beverage costs about $800 a pint and is definitely not available without a prescription in the U.S. Apparently, the Biebs can drink anywhere from eight to 12 shots of Actavis a day. His staff wants him to enter rehab.

    January 19, 2014 5:04 PM

  14. New Jersey, Ho! Broncos, Seahawks to Super Bowl Julie Jacobson/AP

    13. Broncos, Seahawks to Super Bowl

    Peyton Manning will face a quarterback 12 years his junior in the Super Bowl. Russell Wilson's Seattle Seahawks are heading to New Jersey to face the Broncos after winning the NFC Championship against San Francisco on Sunday night. They're also representing the only two states with legalized marijuana.

    January 19, 2014 5:50 PM

  15. IT'S COMPLICATED Iran Invited to Syria Talks SANA/Reuters

    14. Iran Invited to Syria Talks

    This is the most awkward last-minute invite. The United Nations has extended an invitation to Iran to attend to the peace conference on Syria, despite the fact that Western powers said Iran would not be welcome unless it backed a transitional government for Syria. With Syrian President Bashar al-Assad threatening to seek re-election, any diplomatic efforts for him to step down are effectively ruined. The Syrian Coalition, Assad's main political opposition, had threatned to withdraw, but says it will attend, despite the increased tensions.

    January 20, 2014 8:48 AM