Headline News

  • Obama heralds first U.S. Memorial Day without ground war in 14 years

    ARLINGTON, Va. President Barack Obama heralded the first U.S. Memorial Day in 14 years without a major ground war in an annual ceremony of remembrance on Monday for fallen American forces. In remarks at Arlington National Cemetery near Washington, Obama paid tribute to U.S. military personnel who served in conflicts such as World War Two as well as the more recent wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, which he wound down as commander in chief. “For many of us, this Memorial Day is especially meaningful. It is the first since our war in Afghanistan came to an end,” Obama said. “Today is the first Memorial Day in 14 years that the United States is not engaged in a major ground war.” As a Democratic presidential candidate in 2008, Obama sharply criticized the war in Iraq launched by his Republican predecessor, former President George W. Bush. U.S. forces are now involved in air campaigns against Islamic State …

    May 25, 2015 2:03 pm


  • Energy abundance: Bad news for Republicans?

    When gas prices go down, does Republican anger go up? Republicans have had to watch from the sidelines as the Obama White House has taken political credit for America’s unexpected energy boom and tumbling gas prices. Now it has left their presidential candidates scrambling for a way to reclaim leadership on an issue the party once seemed to own. Their apparent answer: calling time on a 40-year-old federal ban on crude oil exports and using the newfound energy bounty to strategic advantage. “We’ve got an abundance of supply,” Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker said this week in Oklahoma at a gathering of putative Republican candidates for next year’s presidential election. Lifting the ban, he said, would allow exports to “our allies in Europe, where, instead of being dependent on (President) Vladimir Putin and the Russians, they could be dependent on Americans.” President Barack Obama’s administration has allowed small exceptions but has said it will not open …

    May 25, 2015 12:43 pm


  • Vatican bank makes big profit

    Pope Francis has accelerated efforts to clean up the Vatican’s finances. It’s been a good year for the Vatican bank as it works to scrub clean the sins of the past. Stronger income from trading securities including bonds and a fall in operating expenses drove a sharp rise in profits last year. Net profits hit €69.3 million ($76.1 million) in 2014, up from €2.9 million ($3.1 million) a year earlier, according to the bank’s annual report released Monday. The bank said the improvement was “essentially the result of financial market developments.” Related: Pope blasts arms trade as industry of death The bank serves thousands of Catholic charities, religious orders and dioceses around the world. For the past several years, it has been trying to shake off a reputation for murky dealings that date back decades. It has been hit by a criminal investigation, high-level resignations and international accusations that it wasn’t doing enough to prevent …

    May 25, 2015 1:43 pm


  • Nervy Murray through to second round

    PARIS Andy Murray opened his latest campaign for a first French Open victory with a 6-3 6-3 6-1 win over Argentine Facundo Argueello on Monday. Black-clad and business-like, the world number three’s power, poise and new-found confidence on clay proved too much for the 22-year-old lucky loser who was playing only the second grand slam match of his career. “I was nervous today. It’s always like that in the first round of a major tournament. It shows that you care,” the Briton said. Murray is in the same half of the Roland Garros draw as favorite Novak Djokovic and nine-times champion Rafa Nadal and could play world number eight David Ferrer in the quarter-finals. Although he has two grand slam titles under his belt already, on the U.S. Open hard courts in 2012 and the grass of Wimbledon in 2013, the 28-year-old Scot has yet to lift the trophy on the red dirt courts of …

    May 25, 2015 2:03 pm

World News

  • Guineans jailed over Ebola taxi body

    There has been a big Ebola public health campaign across West Africa Six people have been put in isolation in prison in Guinea after being accused of travelling with a corpse of a relative who had died of Ebola. The authorities said the body was seated upright in a taxi, dressed in a T-shirt and jeans with sunglasses and sandwiched between three others. If after 21 days they show no signs of having the virus they will be tried for violating the health emergency. Guinea is battling to control a flare up in Ebola cases. Nearly 2,500 people have died in Guinea since the West Africa Ebola outbreak began more than a year ago. Africa news: Monday 25 May as it happened Why Ebola is so dangerous Ebola basics: What you need to know The BBC’s Alhassan Sillah in the capital, Conakry, says just nine days ago only nine patients were in Ebola treatment centres …

    May 25, 2015 2:04 pm


  • Meet YouTube’s 8-bit movie makers

    Japanese anime Spirited Away imagined as an 8-bit video game A team which recreates popular movies as 8-bit video games is attracting millions of views on YouTube. David Dutton from California makes the “old school” arcade-style films for film collective Cinefix. His four minute version of 2001 Japanese anime movie Spirited Away has attracted nearly 1m views since it was uploaded last month. Other films to get an “old school” makeover include Titanic, The Avengers and Frozen. Mr Dutton uses off-the-shelf software Adobe Photoshop and editing software After FX to create the films. His brother Henry writes the distinctive music and the sound is edited in Adobe Premiere. “We grew up playing video games in the 80s,” said Mr Dutton, who used to direct music videos. “But we had no background in animation.” Cinefix’s take on the 1997 film Titanic, which starred Leonardo di Caprio and Kate Winslet and was awarded 11 Oscars. Two years …

    May 25, 2015 12:03 pm


  • Cognitive impairment predicts worse outcome in heart failure

    24 May 2015: Cognitive impairment predicts worse outcome in elderly heart failure patients, reveals research presented today at Heart Failure 2015 by Hiroshi Saito, a physiotherapist at Kameda Medical Centre in Kamogawa, Japan. Patients with cognitive impairment had a 7.5 times greater risk of call cause death and heart failure readmission. Heart failure patients with cognitive impairment may get progressively worse at adhering to medications, leading to poorer prognosis. Heart Failure 2015 is the main annual meeting of the Heart Failure Association (HFA) of the European Society of Cardiology (ESC) and takes place 23 to 26 May in Seville, Spain. The scientific programme is available here. Mr Saito said: “Systematic reviews have shown that cognitive impairment is common in patients with chronic heart failure. However, the impact of cognitive impairment on the prognosis of heart failure patients is not known. Our study investigated whether cognitive impairment independently predicted the outcome of elderly patients with heart …

    May 25, 2015 12:23 pm


  • Too Many Women Who Need Bone Screening Aren’t Getting It

    MONDAY, May 25, 2015 (HealthDay News) — Too few women at high risk for osteoporosis are being tested for the bone-depleting condition, while too many women at low-risk are being screened, a new study suggests. A team led by Dr. Anna Lee Amarnath of the University of California, Davis, examined the medical records of nearly 51,000 women, aged 40 to 85, living in the Sacramento area. The researchers looked at whether or not women were getting a dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA) test, which measures bone mineral density. The result: Osteoporosis screening rates jumped sharply at age 50, despite guidelines suggesting that screening only begin at age 65, unless a woman has certain risk factors. However, the study also found that those risk factors — a small body frame, a history of fractures, or taking medications that could thin bones — had only a slight effect on a woman’s decision to get her bones tested. Over …

    May 25, 2015 12:43 pm


  • Kate Hudson Has Major Fashion Fail With Her Wedges And Sweatpants

    Posted on Mon May 25th, 2015 10:30am PDT       By X17 Staff She may be a red-carpet diva, but on Sunday Kate Hudson was an off-duty failure when she opted for sweatpants and a pair of wedges. Major fail! The leggy blonde who loves to show some skin decided to wear a pair of grey sweatpants with platform wedges when she grabbed a coffee in Malibu, Calif. We love the shoes, we have no problem with the sweats (everyone needs a break on Sunday!) but the two together has us scratching our heads. Maybe Kate had a wild night out with a new man and forgot to pack of pair of casual shoes for the sleepover? We wouldn’t put it past the newly single and on-the-prowl star! Kate’s currently on break from filming her upcoming movie, Deepwater Horizon, which she co-stars with Mark Wahlberg and Kurt Russell. The film is the first movie Kate has starred in …

    May 25, 2015 1:03 pm


  • Memorial Day 2015: What it means to be an American Indian veteran

    “Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave.”  These words are ingrained in us. We sing them proudly at ballgames, and BBQ’s, firework displays and ceremonies honoring the many occasions of celebration and remembrance that make us all American. Most likely choruses of our national anthem will be performed many times over this Memorial Day weekend in honor of our veterans. It’s America’s way of paying tribute for their service. This weekend always gives me pause. What is sacrifice, what is service, what does it mean to be an American veteran, what does it mean to be American? I pose these questions because I understand and represent this country the only way I can…as an American Indian. My history and heritage is beautiful and complex. I am a member of the Northern Cheyenne Tribe, and call Colorado home. I am also a veteran – I served proudly in the Air Force during Korean …

    May 25, 2015 9:02 am

Odd News

  • German grandmother gives birth to quadruplets at age 65

    BERLIN A 65-year-old German grandmother gave birth to quadruplets at a Berlin hospital this week, with the three boys and a girl born prematurely at 26 weeks being in good health and having a good chance of survival, German TV network RTL reported on Saturday. The network, which had covered the pregnancy, said Annegret Raunigk already had 13 children and seven grandchildren. The announcement of her pregnancy last month had sparked a public debate in Germany about its merits. Raunigk, an English and Russian teacher in Berlin, had received fertility treatment in Ukraine and is the oldest woman in the world to have had quadruplets, RTL said, although other women of her age and older have given birth. The four babies, born by Caesarean section on May 19, weighed between 655 grams an 960 grams. (Reporting by Erik Kirschbaum; Editing by David Holmes)

    May 23, 2015 12:03 pm