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The Two-Way
7:49 am
Tue September 24, 2013

U.N. Must Battle 'Cold Logic Of Mass Graves,' Obama Says

President Obama addresses the 68th session of the United Nations General Assembly at the United Nations in New York.
Timothy Clary AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu September 26, 2013 12:09 pm

While conceding that nations will disagree about when and how to step in as "tyrants ... commit wanton murder," President Obama told the U.N. General Assembly on Tuesday that "we must get better" at preventing atrocities.

The president again laid out his case for strong international action to hold Syrian President Bashar Assad accountable for his regime's alleged use of chemical weapons. Then Obama told world leaders that:

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The Two-Way
7:03 am
Tue September 24, 2013

UPDATED: Obama And Iranian President Rouhani Will Not Meet

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani during an interview with NBC — part of a charm offensive ahead of his visit to the U.N. General Assembly.
Rouzbeh Jadidoleslam AP

Originally published on Tue September 24, 2013 12:59 pm

Update at 3:07 p.m. ET. Leaders Will Not Meet:

After intense speculation that the United States and Iran were on the verge of making history today by coordinating a meeting between President Obama and new Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, there came word this afternoon that the two would not meet during the ceremonies surrounding the opening session of the U.N. General Assembly.

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The Two-Way
7:02 am
Tue September 24, 2013

Siege Over, Kenya Has 'Defeated The Monster Of Terrorism'

Kenyan police officers take cover outside the Westgate mall in Nairobi on Monday.
Simon Maina AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue September 24, 2013 1:12 pm

Update at 12:55 p.m. ET:

Telling his nation that security forces have "ashamed" those who attacked a shopping mall in Nairobi, Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta on Tuesday declared "we have defeated the monster of terrorism."

As night fell in Kenya and after four days that captured attention around the world, it appeared the crisis was over.

Kenyatta said, as the BBC reports, that the death toll from Saturday's attack by Somalia-based terrorists and the siege that followed was:

-- 61 civilians.

-- 6 security officers.

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The Two-Way
7:01 am
Tue September 24, 2013

Dozens Killed By Strong Quake In Southwestern Pakistan

A U.S. Geological Survey map showing the location of Tuesday's earthquake in Pakistan.
USGS.gov

Originally published on Tue September 24, 2013 10:14 am

(This post last updated at 1:00 p.m. ET)

A strong, 7.7-magnitude earthquake in southern Pakistan on Tuesday has killed at least 45 people, according to Reuters. The U.S. Geological Survey says the initial temblor was followed by several aftershocks — one of them a 5.9-magnitude.

The affected area is reportedly about 145 miles southeast of Dalbandin in Pakistan's western province of Baluchistan.

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It's All Politics
7:00 am
Tue September 24, 2013

Tuesday Morning Political Mix

Yes, we know this is the Capitol Hill Peace Monument. But it seems a handy symbol for the partisan spending showdown in Washington.
J. Scott Applewhite AP

Originally published on Tue September 24, 2013 1:06 pm

A brief and abstract chronicle of some of Tuesday's more interesting political stories, the kinds of stories that might get people who like politics talking around a water cooler, if people still did that sort of thing.

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Shots - Health News
6:46 am
Tue September 24, 2013

After The Floods, Colorado Hospital Braces For Winter

One bad winter storm could leave Estes Park Medical Center isolated and unable to transfer seriously ill patients to facilities with intensive care units and other specialized services.
Eric Whitney

Originally published on Tue September 24, 2013 8:38 am

As snow begins falling in Colorado's Rocky Mountain National Park, the town at its doorstep, finds itself newly isolated.

The only year-round road into or out of Estes Park, Colo., now is the Peak to Peak Highway.

It traverses a jumble of mountains all the way. It's not the kind of road an ambulance can scream over at 60 miles an hour. "Not while I'm in the back, hopefully," jokes paramedic Erle Collum.

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The Two-Way
6:38 am
Tue September 24, 2013

Home Prices Rise At Best Pace In Seven Years

This home was under contract last month in Chicago.
Scott Olson Getty Images

Originally published on Tue September 24, 2013 9:02 am

Led by more strong gains in Las Vegas, San Francisco, San Diego and Los Angeles, home prices in major U.S. cities were up just more than 12 percent on average in July vs. July 2012, according to the latest S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices report.

The average increase was the largest since February 2006, Reuters adds, and is yet another sign that the housing sector is among the economy's strongest sectors.

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The Two-Way
6:32 am
Tue September 24, 2013

Word Spreads Far Of Canceled Wedding That Fed The Homeless

Carol Fowler (in blue dress) at the dinner her family turned into a charity event after her daughter's wedding was canceled.
Hosea Feed the Hungry, via Here & Now

Originally published on Tue September 24, 2013 8:57 am

We first heard about Carol and Willie Fowler's generosity from our friends at Here & Now late last week.

Now, the feel-good story of how they turned something sad into something glad is spreading across the Web.

ABC News describes what happened earlier this month in Atlanta this way:

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Environment
6:13 am
Tue September 24, 2013

How Many Scientists Does It Take To Write A Climate Report?

An iceberg floats through the water in Ilulissat, Greenland, in July. Researchers are studying how climate change and melting glaciers will affect the rest of the world.
Joe Raedle Getty Images

Originally published on Tue September 24, 2013 7:53 am

Scientists and government representatives are meeting in Stockholm this week to produce the latest high-level review of climate change. It's thousands of pages of material, and if it's done right, it should harbor very few surprises.

That's because it's supposed to compile what scientists know — and what they don't — about climate change. And that's left some scientists to wonder whether these intensive reviews are still the best way to go.

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It's All Politics
4:03 am
Tue September 24, 2013

Some GOP Leaders Tee Up Cruz For Blame If There's A Shutdown

Republican Sen. Ted Cruz is becoming the face of a possible government shutdown over Obamacare, and that has many fellow Republicans bashing him for what they see as an ill-conceived gambit.
J. Scott Applewhite AP

Originally published on Tue September 24, 2013 8:36 am

Just a week before the federal government could shut down if no agreement is reached to fund it past the end of September, it's anyone's guess whether Democrats and Republicans will avoid plunging over this particular cliff.

More certain, however, is that if a shutdown happens over Obamacare and Republicans wind up taking the heat, many GOP fingers of blame will point squarely at Sen. Ted Cruz.

The Texas Republican will likely become the face of the 2013 shutdown, just as Newt Gingrich became the poster boy of two government shutdowns of the mid-1990s.

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Business
2:03 am
Tue September 24, 2013

Small Businesses: Big Concerns And High Hopes

Since the recession ended, small businesses have started to rebound. But they still face headwinds.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Wed October 16, 2013 1:37 pm

Safe to say, Americans love small business. Or at least the Idea of Small Business.

President Obama once told owners: "What you share is an entrepreneurial spirit, a tireless work ethic and a simple hope for something better that lies at the heart of the American ideal. Businesses like yours are the engines of job growth in America."

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NPR Story
1:00 am
Tue September 24, 2013

Green Jobs Are Plentiful In Washington -- If You Define Them Loosely

Mike Mitzel took part in green jobs training in Washington, which was funded by the 2009 Recovery Act. He now works as a maintenance mechanic for the University of Washington’s Consolidated Laundry Facility.

SEATTLE, Wash. -- Hearing the term “green jobs” brings to mind images of people installing solar panels or constructing wind turbines.

Not maintaining laundry machinery, which is what Mike Mitzel does for a living.

Mitzel is an alum of the green jobs training initiative. He now works as a maintenance mechanic for the University of Washington’s Consolidated Laundry Facility.

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NPR Story
10:24 pm
Mon September 23, 2013

Warning: Some Columbia River Fish Not Safe To Eat

The Columbia River.

New advisories from health officials in Washington and Oregon warn that some fish in the Columbia River aren’t safe to eat.

The warnings do not apply to ocean-going fish like salmon and steelhead.

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Religion
11:12 pm
Thu September 19, 2013

Church Must Find Balance, Pope Says, Or Fall Like Cards

Pope Francis waves to faithful as he arrives for his weekly general audience in St. Peter's Square at the Vatican on Wednesday.
Riccardo De Luca AP

Originally published on Thu September 19, 2013 12:12 pm

Pope Francis, in a wide-ranging interview with 16 Jesuit publications, says "the moral edifice of the church is likely to fall like a house of cards" if it continues to focus on narrow issues such as abortion, gay marriage and contraception.

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It's All Politics
11:11 pm
Thu September 19, 2013

Sen. Ted Cruz Has House Republicans Seeing Red

Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, speaks during the Family Leadership Summit in Ames, Iowa, in August.
Justin Hayworth AP

Originally published on Thu September 19, 2013 2:40 pm

House Republicans, meet Sen. Ted Cruz. Ted Cruz, House Republicans.

Given the surprise expressed by some House members at the Texas senator's approach to the defunding of Obamacare, perhaps an introduction was in order.

A few dozen House members Wednesday morning successfully coerced a reluctant Speaker John Boehner into tying the Obamacare language to a must-pass government funding bill. This came after weeks of television ads featuring Cruz and fellow Senate Republican Mike Lee advocating exactly that plan, regardless of the consequences.

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Business
8:53 pm
Wed September 18, 2013

The Fed's Surprising Decision: Should You Cheer Or Boo?

Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke arrives to speak at a news conference Wednesday in Washington, D.C. The Fed cut its economic growth forecasts and said it would keep buying bonds in a bid to keep interest rates down.
Mark Wilson Getty Images

Originally published on Wed September 18, 2013 3:12 pm

If you are trying to buy a home, you just got good news: The Federal Reserve said Wednesday it is not going to try to drive up long-term interest rates just yet.

Stock investors are happy for you. They like cheap mortgages too because a robust housing market creates jobs. To celebrate, they bought more shares, sending the Dow Jones industrial average up 147.21 to an all-time high of 15,676.94.

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Politics & Government
9:12 am
Sat September 14, 2013

U.S. And Russia Form A Plan On Syria's Chemical Weapons

Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov announced a plan to eliminate Syria's chemical weapons arsenal from Geneva on Saturday.
Larry Downing AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sat September 14, 2013 10:06 am

Secretary of State John Kerry and his Russian counterpart have reached a deal that calls for Syria to destroy all of its chemical weapons. The plan, which Kerry announced in a news conference with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in Geneva on Saturday, gives Syria a week to detail its chemical arsenal.

"The world will now expect the Assad regime to live up to its public commitments," Kerry said. "And as I said at the outset of these negotiations, there can be no games, no room for avoidance, or anything less than full compliance by the Assad regime."

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