April 2012 Archives

The United States reached an agreement with Afghanistan that will recognize the influence of both the Taliban and Al-Qaeda that is still strong in the region.

The Sydney Morning Herald reported that this new agreement would extend the timeframe for U.S.-withdrawal an extra ten years after the initial 2014 deadline.

The Herald also highlighted the significance of this agreement in light of recent tensions over the Kandahar massacre in March.

The New York Times reported that the specifics of the deal were not released publicly, though it is known the deal is responsive to economic and infrastructure needs as well as security.

Secret Service scandal grows

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The scandal surrounding the secret service agents grew as three more agents were discovered cavorting with prostitutes while in Colombia.

ABC News reported that now six agents have been forced out of the service with five more agents still under investigation.

The scandal happened prior to a Summit of the Americas meeting President Obama was set to attend.

NPR announced that members of the U.S. military were also involved and are now on administrative leave. Ronald Kessler or Newsmax.com took part in the discussion on NPR and commented that "Each one of them [the Marines], if blackmailed by one of these prostitutes, could have provided access to a terrorist, for example, to do an assassination."

127 die in Pakistani plane crash

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A plane crashed in Pakistan after flying through a thunder storm Saturday killing all 127 passengers and crew on board.

ABC News reported that no foreigners were on board, and noted that the Pakistani government insisted no terrorism was connected to the plane crash.

The Associated Press, in a report posted to the Wall Street Journal's website, reported that this marks the second time in two years that a private Pakistani airline has faltered and gone down during a storm and sparked the ministry to demand inspections of all privately owned airlines in the country.

The AP also commented that it is still unclear what specifically was the cause of the plane's malfunctioning.

A Minneapolis man was taken to the hospital after suffering injuries at the hands of police who showed up at his him looking to arrest the man's brother, who is wanted for assault.

Fox 9 News reported that police raided the home of Raejuan Telford, 21, last Thursday. "Wrong is wrong. Catch people that are doing the stuff, not the people who are not," Telford told Fox 9. "Just because you have a badge doesn't mean you can beat up on people."

The Star Tribune reported that Telford suffered fractured ribs and a collapsed lung as a result of the incident. Telford's mother, Linda, commented that she was fearful of what might happen to Raejuan's brother when police find him.

Hunting season for MN wolf population?

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After being removed from the Endangered Species Act's list of endangered species in January, wolves again face the dangers of hunting as a bill is on the table for November that would allow them to be hunted again this year.

Kare 11's broadcast on the topic noted that the wolf population in Minnesota at its lowest was only between 300 and 600, and that not it is upwards of 3,000.

Tom Landwehr, commissioner for the Department of Natural Resources, is quoted as saying that t wolf hunting season would only remove about 400 wolves. He went on to explain that authorities already kill nearly 200 problem wolves each year.

Minnesota Public Radio announced that the typical five-year waiting period between removal from the ESA list and the opening of a legal hunting season was removed last year. Currently, MPR added, the bill, which comprises a number of hunting and game related measures, is in a dead heat because of the debate.

Mike Wallace of "60 Minutes" dies at 93

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Mike Wallace, famed journalist and interviewer for "60 Minutes," died Saturday in New Canaan, Connecticut. He was 93.

David Bauder of the Chicago Sun-Times wrote, he "didn't just interview people. He interrogated them. He cross-examined them. Sometimes he eviscerated them pitilessly."

Wallace had the opportunity to grill many famous people, including Moammar Gadhafi, Deng Xiaoping, and seven U.S. presidents, the Chicago paper reported.

The Los Angeles Times reported that Wallace had helped to define a tough line of journalism that was able to get at the things people wanted to know.

Both papers mentioned the Coors beer ads that centered on Wallace's hardball interrogation: "The Four Most Dreaded Words in the English Language: Mike Wallace Is Here."

Home and Garden show a showstopper

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A 1,700-square-foot house was erected inside the Minneapolis Convention Center for the Home and Garden Show, an event that ran from late February to early March.

In a video posted to the Star Tribune's website, trees stretched to the height of the convention center, and a small pool and garden-size waterfall were together the culminating point of a stream that ran nearby.

According to Dan Frosch, builder of the house, it was designed to cater to empty-nesters. The rooms are compact and spread across one level, though nothing is cramped. The house showcased an especially beautiful, small, black and white kitchen with high ceilings.

In addition to the specially-built house, nine professional landscapers worked to contribute gardens based on movies, including Camelot and Lord of the Rings.

Chip Wade from HGTV and the Style Network's Mark Brunetz, an interior designer for that network's show, Clean House, made an appearance as well, offering their expertise in matters of design and home improvement.

Pat's Tap a place of sustainability

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Minneapolis' bar Pat's Tap is a bar that offers a fresh take on food and d├ęcor alike, giving good attention to vegetarian food alongside its more traditional burgers, and showcasing just how good sustainability can look.

Recycled tiles pattern the floor and music blares against a steady din of Skee-Ball machines, according to the Star Tribune's Rick Nelson.

Photos from the Star Tribune show people digging in to a central bowl of appetizers and bartenders with smiles on their faces.

Nelson commented that the "boisterous new Kim Bartmann venture is equal parts neighborhood bar and home away from home."

Turkey burgers and veggie burgers are not given short shrift here, but instead are equally tasty alternatives to the bar's beefier options. Nelson noted that these dishes "cater rather than pander to vegetarian tastes."

F-18 jet crashes into Virginia apartments

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The burning carcasses of apartment buildings and the white foam and scattered wreckage that littered Virginia Beach Friday were the result of a fighter jet's crash landing after the jet's engine began to malfunction.

"Catastrophic engine system failure right after takeoff, which is always the most critical phase of flying, leaves very, very few options," J.F. Joseph, an aviation safety expert, commented to CBS.

Nobody was hurt in the incident, and the pilots in the jet, a student and instructor, successfully ejected themselves before the crash.

MLive, a Grand Rapids, Michigan, news outlet, reported that Jewels Martin and her family witnessed the F-18 go down while vacationing in Virginia. "'It was kind of scary. We wondered, "Is something going on that we don't know about, a Twin Towers kind of thing? Why did that plane crash?"'" Martin is reported as commenting.

Video footage taken by the Martins showed black smoke billowing up in clouds from behind a row of houses and cars slowing on the streets in the foreground.

Christians gathered together Saturday in a procession leading into Jerusalem's Church of the Holy Sepulcher in anticipation of Easter Sunday.

An article from the Associated Press, posted to the Washington Post's website, reported that "The Holy Sepulcher is a complex of cave-like rooms, winding corridors, a soaring domed roof, and ornate decorations alongside broken furniture." It is a solemn place where the Christians terminated their procession with a vigil during a time of waiting for Christ's resurrection.

"'The power of this place, to be here, it has to be experienced,'" The AP reported Jim Carnie, a New Yorker, as saying.

Photographs from the AP, published on the website of the Houston Chronicle, show worshippers gathered in tight groups and alone, in tradition dress and modern attire. Clergymen read from prayer books, and a backdrop of Christian paintings hung on a wall behind them.

Syrian rebels to receive international aid

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The U.S. agreed Sunday at a United Nations summit to send communications equipment to aid the Syrian rebels in their fight against President Bashar al-Assad.

Steven Lee Meyers, writing for The New York Times reported that Arab nations also agreed at the conference to aid the opposition movement in Syria, offering the rebels $100 million in aid.

Meyers wrote that these pledges of support "seemed to stretch the definition of humanitarian assistance and blur the line between so-called lethal and nonlethal support." Both Russia and China have vetoed any military action in the country.

The conference was one of "The Friends of the Syrian People," reported CBS News. The U.S. was one of 70 nations at the conference that agreed to support the rebel opposition with equipment and monetary aid.

Wild eke out 5-4 victory over Blackhawks

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The Minnesota Wild's Devin Setoguchi became the team's hero Sunday night when he scored a last-minute goal, allowing the Wild to just barely beat out the Chicago Blackhawks 5-4 and making this the team's third straight win of the season.

The score was even at 4-4 as of three minutes to the end when Chicago's Patrick Kane scored a goal, reported SB Nation Minnesota.

The tied score forced a shootout in overtime, added SB Nation Chicago. The first round of the shootout saw another tie, and Minnesota broke this tie 2-1 in the third round.

A $1 billion stadium for the Vikings?

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In an attempt to make a new Vikings Stadium more palatable to Minnesota voters, the newest piece of legislation on the table asks the team and Hennepin County to help out with funding.

The latest proposal will cost nearly $1 billion, coming in at $975 million, reported the Star Tribune's Mike Kaszuba.

The money to be generated from charitable gambling amounts to approximately $52 million a year, down from the original proposal of $72 million a year. According Kaszuba, who referenced Representative Morrie Lanning, one of the authors of the new legislation, this was decided on "in order to provide charitable gambling officials with more tax relief."

The Pioneer Press reported the new portioning of funding outlined by the bill: The team would pay $427 million, the state would pitch in $398 million, and $150 million would be financed by Minneapolis.

Nobel prize winner wins parliamentary seat in Burma

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Aung San Suu Kyi won a seat in Burma's parliament Sunday, a victory for the opposition party and for democracy.

CBS News reported that this is her first success in a political contest for parliament, though Suu Kyi is well known both within Burmese politics and internationally for her role in promoting democracy and for her selected as recipient for the Nobel Peace Prize in 1991.

Voters in Kahmu gave 82 percent of the vote to Suu Kyi, and ABC News reported its observation of a tally in Rangoon that proclaimed victory to the National League of Democracy, Suu Kyi's party, by a vote of 402-119.

Of the 664 seats in the parliament, 44 are now being contested through by-election, reported ABC News.

Gordon signs $37.5 million contract with Royals

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Alex Gordon, outfielder for the Kansas City Royals, signed a deal Friday with the team that awards him $37.5 million over four years.

Gordon started with the Royals in 2007 and ended up making a name for himself last year, hitting 23 homers and 87 RBIs, according to an Associated Press report published on CJOnline.

The contract includes a player option, meaning Gordon has the option of extending the contract for one year.

According to the Major League's website, catcher Salvador Perez and shortstop Alcides Escobar also signed long-term contracts with the Royals this year.

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This page is an archive of entries from April 2012 listed from newest to oldest.

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