Tuesday, January 10, 2012

North Korea to top agenda at Lee-Hu summit in China (Reuters)

SEOUL (Reuters) ? South Korean President Lee Myung-bak will this week ask China to use its influence to lean on North Korea to show restraint amid a delicate transition to a new leadership in Pyongyang focused on projecting a militaristic image.

Lee will hold a summit with China's president, Hu Jintao, in Beijing and will "discuss ways to develop the strategic partnership between the two nations and cooperative measures for peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula," the South Korean president's office said in a statement.

Lee's three-day state trip to China, his second in four years, starts Monday.

The South has said its primary foreign policy goal this year is maintaining stability on the divided peninsula as its unpredictable neighbor embarks on a third generation of dynastic rule following Kim Jong-il's death last month.

Little is known about Kim's chosen successor, his son Kim Jong-un, who in his late 20s and who will be relying on a small circle of trusted members of the military and political elite to act as minders while he cements his grip on power.

As part of efforts to consolidate his power, state television in Pyongyang released a documentary Sunday containing footage of the young Kim watching a 2009 long-range rocket launch with his father. He was also shown driving a tank.

The 50-minute documentary, aired on what South Korean media speculated was Kim Jong-un's birthday, offered no new personal details or insights into his thinking.

Analysts say the young Kim may order a "provocation," such as a small-scale military attack or nuclear or missile test, to burnish a hardline image with the powerful military.

In line with his push to project a songun, or military-first, policy, Sunday's documentary quoted Kim Jong-un as saying he was determined to wage war if any enemies intercepted the 2009 rocket launch.

Over the past week, the North, which has twice tested nuclear devices, has also stepped up its use of hostile language against the South.

Both South Korea and the United States have urged China, the North's main ally and benefactor, to help restrain the new leadership from staging any hostile acts.

China voiced its support for the North's new leadership soon after Kim's death was announced.

South Korea's ambassador to China, Lee Kyu-hyung, said last week that the South would continue to raise the issue of China's unwillingness to condemn North Korea when it provokes the South.


In 2010, South Korea criticized China for refusing to censure North Korea for torpedoing a South Korean warship, killing 46 sailors. The North denied it sank the vessel.

"It is problematic because China has appeared to take an attitude of protection and support for North Korea, while the North sometimes makes military provocations and implements some incorrect policies," Ambassador Lee Kyu-hyung told the South's Yonhap news agency.

South Korea would "continue to raise the issue and make efforts to persuade" China to change that attitude, he said.

China backed North Korea during the 1950-53 Korean War while the United States fought for the South. The United States still has about 28,000 troops in South Korea.

Lee and Hu are also expected to discuss how the two nations will push preliminary talks to launch formal negotiations for a free trade agreement.

Since 2008, South Korea and China have held a series of joint feasibility studies on a possible free trade deal and reached an agreement to exchange their views on sensitive issues.

The two leaders will also discuss the rising number of Chinese fishing boats caught illegally fishing off South Korea's west coast. Last December, a South Korean coastguard was killed while trying apprehend a Chinese vessel.

(Editing by Ron Popeski)

Source: http://us.rd.yahoo.com/dailynews/rss/asia/*http%3A//news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20120108/wl_nm/us_korea_china

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Monday, January 9, 2012

Obama's Military Cut May Mean More Layoffs in Ohio (ContributorNetwork)

President Obama outlined his plan for $1 trillion in military cuts over the next decade during a press conference at the Pentagon yesterday, according to NewsMax. The planned cuts may mean more layoffs in Ohio. The southwestern and centrals regions of the state are home to some of the nation's largest military supply manufacturers and research centers, according to the Cincinnati Enquirer.

In 2011, military spending accounted for $1.7 billion of the $2 billion the federal government spent in the Cincinnati region, according to the Cincinnati Enquirer. Former Army Lieutenant Colonel and current Florida Representative Allen West told Fox News that a "one-size-fits-all" approach to military needs in dangerous.

Here are some facts and figures about military spending in the Ohio area:

* Military purchases ranging from mundane toiletries to next generation weapons account for $8 out of every $10 the federal government spends in southwestern Ohio and Northern Kentucky, according to the Cincinnati Enquirer.

* Wright-Patterson Air Force Base is the state's single largest employer and plays a huge role in the Dayton area economy, according to Examiner. Most of Wright-Patterson's activity supports logistics and intelligence.

* Wornick Company is a major supplier of ready-to-eat (MREs) military meals, according to the Cincinnati Enquirer. Chief Financial Officer Dustin McDulin told the Enquirer that the Blue Ash-based company employs 500 people.

* The Springfield Air National Guard Base in central Ohio also performs intelligence support endeavors, according to the Columbus Dispatch.

* GE Aviation in Evandale employs 800 workers who manufactured the engine for the Joint Strike Fighter and a next-generation multi-role fighter, according to the Enquirer. A total of $3 billion were funneled into the company for military equipment during the past 15 years.

* Battele in Columbus routinely completes $700 million of work on Pentagon development and research programs, according to the Columbus Dispatch. The non-profit research center is currently working on weapons to modernize the American military's fleet which could be impacted by President Obama's plan, according to spokeswoman Katy Delaney's statements to the Dispatch.

* The L-3 Communications Corporation's Fuzing and Ordnance Systems Union Township plant is one of the largest supplies of safe-arming devices in the world. The company recently expanded its business to include contracts with United States allies, according to the Cincinnati Enquirer. The company employees 600 workers.

* Ohio Senator Rob Portman told the Columbus Dispatch that he is among those in Congress willing to vote to reverse President Obama's planned budget cuts.

* According to the Cincinnati Enquirer, military agencies which currently hold contracts in the Greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky area include the Defense Logistics Agency, Department of the Army, Department of the Navy, Defense Media Center, Department of the Air Force, Department of Defense Education Activity, Defense Finance and Accounting Service, Defense Contract Management Agency, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences and the Defense Logistics Agency.

Source: http://us.rd.yahoo.com/dailynews/rss/obama/*http%3A//news.yahoo.com/s/ac/20120107/us_ac/10800725_obamas_military_cut_may_mean_more_layoffs_in_ohio

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Grandma Confirms It: Justin Timberlake Proposed to Jessica Biel!

Justin Timberlake and Jessica Biel are engaged to be married.

Two of the most private celebrities around, they've yet to discuss their relationship status in any public way. But it happened. His grandmother admitted as much!

Sadie Bomar confirmed that her pride and joy and the actress, his on-again, off-again girlfriend of over four years, have taken the leap and gotten engaged.

"He called me on Christmas Day and told me he's engaged," Bomar said, adding that JT asked her not to discuss the news with anyone "until after the holidays."

Jessica Biel and Justin Timberlake Pic

She also shared that, "the family loves Jessie. She's a very sweet girl."


Sadie has actually commented on his relationship status before. In October 2009, when breakup rumors surfaced, she explained what was really going on.

"Jessica was keen to marry, but Justin isn't ready," she told The Daily Mail, "He's working hard to be successful, doing own thing and he isn't ready to marry just yet."

The couple broke up in March of last year and finally, the lovebirds' makeup (for the final time) happened around September. If he wasn't ready then, he is now.

According to reports, the proposal happened (and supposedly included a "custom designed" ring) while they were on vacation in Jackson, Wyoming.

Congratulations to the happy couple, and their families!

[Photo: WENN.com]

Source: http://www.thehollywoodgossip.com/2012/01/grandma-confirms-it-justin-timberlake-proposed-to-jessica-biel/

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Sunday, January 8, 2012

Defense Cuts Worry Communities With Military Ties

POSTED: 5:10 pm EST January 6, 2012

UPDATED: 7:04 pm EST January 6, 2012

News of cuts to the country's defense budget has some Indiana communities with close ties to the military on edge.President Barack Obama announced Thursday a new strategy to align with the limits created by the Budget Control Act of last fall, including a focus on airpower and naval strength and fewer ground forces.Since 2003, thousands of reserve and regular soldiers have trained at Camp Atterbury near Edinburgh before their deployments to Afghanistan and Iraq.The facility's public affairs officer directed all questions about possible cuts to the Secretary of Defense.But it's no secret that soldiers are welcomed and coveted for their commerce in the surrounding areas.The general manager at a nearby LaQiunta Inn said soldiers and their families were 70 percent of the hotel's business last year, accounting for 3,200 room nights."We have a mixture of soldier, corporate and leisure, but the soldiers are the ones that are perfect for the rooms because they come and stay for months at a time," said Rhonda Thompson. "They are just important for everyone's business."Testimonials about the retail ripple that soldiers produce at local restaurants and shopping malls were also echoed at the Columbus Visitors Center."You will see the military and their families and their staff from Atterbury. That all matters to Columbus, Indiana and Bartholomew County," said Executive Director Lynn Lucas. "It brings us dollars. That's my job, to bring us dollars, outside dollars in this county."With the planned cuts, reports suggest troop numbers could be cut to levels last seen in the 1990s. This change is justified by the strategy's de-emphasis of stability operations like Iraq and Afghanistan and renewed focus on Asia, where naval and air forces are the main tool.

Copyright 2012 by TheIndyChannel.com All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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Source: http://www.theindychannel.com/news/30153295/detail.html

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Saturday, January 7, 2012

The Future of the US Military: Drones, Computer Viruses, and Outer Space [War]

Now that we're both out of Iraq and money, the US government has to make some very important decision about how it'll kill its enemies in the future. Obama and his generals have weighed in: cheap war is getting techier. More »

Source: http://feeds.gawker.com/~r/gizmodo/full/~3/2eJtLMgwy64/the-future-of-the-us-military-drones-computer-viruses-and-outer-space

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Falcons, Giants showcase big-play offenses

New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning walks off the field after NFL football practice Friday, Jan. 6, 2012, in East Rutherford, N.J. The Giants are slated to host the Atlanta Falcons on Sunday in a wild-card playoff game. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun)

New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning walks off the field after NFL football practice Friday, Jan. 6, 2012, in East Rutherford, N.J. The Giants are slated to host the Atlanta Falcons on Sunday in a wild-card playoff game. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun)

New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning (10) throws a pass as center David Baas blocks during NFL football practice Friday, Jan. 6, 2012, in East Rutherford, N.J. The Giants are slated to host the Atlanta Falcons on Sunday in a wild-card playoff game. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun)

FILE - In this Jan. 1, 2012, file photo, Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan (2) looks to pass against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers during the first half of an NFL football game in Atlanta. Ryan threw 10 TD passes and no interceptions in his last four regular-season games and will lead the Falcons in Sunday's wild-card playoff game against the New York Giants in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/John Amis, File)

New York Giants wide receiver Victor Cruz smiles as he walks off the field after NFL football practice Friday, Jan. 6, 2012, in East Rutherford, N.J. The Giants are slated to host the Atlanta Falcons on Sunday in a wild-card playoff game. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun)

(AP) ? Anyone looking for the big play this weekend, the coast-to-coast catch and run, should turn on the NFC wild-card game with the Atlanta Falcons and New York Giants.

There's bound to be a few of them at MetLife Stadium on Sunday.

Start with the Falcons (10-6) and Matt Ryan. While halfback Michael Turner and receiver Roddy White move the chains, Ryan has developed a big-play chemistry with rookie receiver Julio Jones. The two have combined on eight touchdowns. The shortest has been 17 yards and there are four over 48 yards.

The big combo for the Giants (9-7) is Eli Manning and rising second-year star Victor Cruz. The two have combined on five touchdowns of 68 yards or more, including a league record-tying 99-yarder against the Jets two weeks ago.

The big-play nature of the two offenses isn't surprising in an NFL that has been dominated this season by the quarterbacks and the offenses. A record 11,356 points were scored, with games averaging 44.4 points, the highest average in 46 seasons (46.1 in 1965).

"A lot of times, you do what you have to do," Giants coach Tom Coughlin said. "You make the adjustments and so-on and so-forth. I think we've had four or five games in a row where we've had pretty good balance and that's the way we like to play. In circumstances where it wasn't so obvious that we could run, we'd do whatever we had to do. The quarterback naturally has responded very well to that."

While Ryan and Manning have both had career seasons, the big-play nature of their play this season has been unexpected.

Much of the credit for that goes to Jones and Cruz.

Atlanta moved up to No. 6 in the NFL Draft this spring to grab Jones, a burner from Alabama. They haven't regretted it. His 54 catches for 959 yards and eight TDs led all NFL rookies.

Having Jones has forced opposing defenses to pick their poison. They can double any receiver, but they can't double everyone. That helps White, who had an NFC-high 100 catches, and Pro Bowl tight end Tony Gonzalez.

"When you have Julio on one side, Roddy on the other, Tony in the middle, and then you add another guy like Harry Douglas who has had a great season as well, somebody is going to have one-on-one matchups and I think it is primarily because we added Julio this year that defenses have played us this way," said Ryan, who finished the regular season with a career-best 29 touchdown passes.

Jones admits there was an adjustment period, including learning how to deal with injuries that forced him to miss three games.

"Once I got the hang of that, everything feels like it's coming naturally to me again," Jones said.

While concerned about Jones, Giants defensive coordinator Perry Fewell said everything starts with slowing down Turner, who rushed for 1,340 yards. If New York can do that, then it can put pressure on run with a front four led by All Pro defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul, Justin Tuck and Osi Umenyiora.

"It's well documented that when he goes over 100 yards, they win," Fewell said. "It's going to be vitally important that we control him, that we have to come up with a body part on that guy. He's a big strong guy. When I say big, strong guy, he's like Maurice Jones-Drew in that he's very powerful. We've got to do a great job of wrap tackling."

The Falcons don't have to worry about the Giants' running game as much. New York finished last in the league in rushing, averaging less than 90 yards. That's forced Manning and the passing game to step up and he's had a spectacular season.

Manning threw for 4,933 yards, with Cruz catching 82 passes for a team-record 1,536 yards and nine touchdowns. The Giants set a team record, averaging 295.5 yards passing and they led the NFL with 18 completions of 40 or more yards this season.

"We always have that capability ? to hit the big play," Manning said. "Now it's just being consistent, making those third downs, those third and shorts, intermediate plays that become big, keep drives going."

Cruz is fast but most of his big plays have come when he makes a defender miss a tackle and he gets into the open field. His 99-yard touchdown against the Jets came after he split two defenders after a 10-yard catch. His 74-yarder against Dallas last weekend was on a short square out where one player missed the tackle, and he outraced two defenders down the sideline.

"I think anytime I get a chance to get the ball, I want to make the big play," said Cruz, who was signed as a free agent in 2010. 'Whether it be a deep route or an intermediate route, I am just trying to do the most I can with that catch or route."

The Giants have as much depth at receiver at Atlanta. Hakeem Nicks also had a 1,000-yard season, catching 76 passes for 1,192 yards and seven touchdowns. There is also the forgotten man, Mario Manningham. He has been bothered by a knee injury in the final month, but finished with 39 catches for 523 yards, a 13.4 yard average. Tight end Jake Ballard (38 catches for a 15.9 yard average) returned to practice this week after missing two games with a knee injury and expects to play.

"I believe in our receiving corps and high-flying offense right now," said Nicks, who expects a breakout game from Manningham. "With Eli in charge, we can get the job done. Eli has been doing a great job of leading us so far this season, so our confidence is in him and we know we can get the job done. "

Falcons safety William Moore said it's going to be hard to confuse Manning.

"It's the playoffs. We're going to have to (force turnovers)," Moore said. "Turnovers are going to be key this weekend. I'm really comfortable with our game plan this week and what we've got going on. We know what to expect against a great offense like that."

Associated Press

Source: http://hosted2.ap.org/APDEFAULT/347875155d53465d95cec892aeb06419/Article_2012-01-06-FBN-Falcons-Giants/id-a7179a9113ee4853a186ce596e71e117

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Friday, January 6, 2012

D-Link DHP501-AV Powerline AV 500 Adapter Starter Kit

Powerline networking, which uses your home?s electrical wiring to send and receive data, has been around for years, but until recently it has been held back by slow throughput speeds, interference from other electrical appliances, and the emergence of Wi-Fi as the preferred home networking technology. However, the latest crop of powerline devices now offer ?theoretical? throughput speeds of 500 Mbps and are impervious to interference from all but the most power hungry appliances. And when it comes to transferring large chunks of data, powerline is exponentially faster than Wi-Fi. D-Link?s DHP501-AV Powerline AV 500 Adapter Starter Kit ($159.99 list) has everything you need to add powerline technology to your network. It offers speedy transfer rates and installs in minutes, but the adapters are bulky and can be easily disconnected from their outlet.

Features and Design
Like Netgear?s Powerline AV 500 Adapter Kit?($159, 4 stars)?the D-Link DHP501-AV Kit comes with two adapters, two Ethernet cables, and a CD containing a quick installation guide and a Management utility. ?The disc also includes a user manual, a feature missing from the Netgear kit. Measuring 3.9 x 2.7 x1.8-inches (HWD) the DHP501-AV adapters are taller and wider than the Netgear AV 500 adapters but are identical in weight (0.4 pounds). However, the D-Link adapter?s electrical contacts are mounted on a block that juts out 3/8 of an inch from the back of the housing, preventing the adapter to sit flush with the wall. As a result, the adapter can be easily knocked out of the outlet. In fact, I had to tape one adapter to the wall to keep it from falling out of an older outlet in my house. The adapter?s height also makes it difficult to use the second outlet; I was able to use a two-pronged plug above the adapter but a three-pronged plug, such as those used for most PCs, doesn?t fit.

The DHP501-AV?s housing is done up in a high-gloss white finish and sports rounded edges and a small D-Link logo on the front. There are also three LED indicators on the front that keep you abreast of what?s going on. The Power LED maintains a solid green glow when the adapter is powered up and blinks when it enters power saving mode or when security settings are being changed. The Powerline LED is green when connected to a network and blinks when transmitting data. The light is off if no compatible powerline device are found. A green light indicates a link rate greater than 80 Mbps, while an amber light means the link rate is somewhere between 50-80 Mbps. Red means a rate of less than 50 Mbps. The Ethernet port is positioned on the right side of the adapter, as are a security button and a reset switch that returns the adapter to its factory settings. Setting up the 128-bit AES security is painless; simply press the security button on one adapter until the Power LED blinks (about two seconds). That generates a random encryption key that will be used by all compatible HomePlug AV adapters on the network. Next, press the security button on the second adapter, but make sure you do it within two minutes of pressing the first button, otherwise it will not share the key. For more than two adapters, repeat the process.

Setup and Installation
In order to use the D-Link Powerline Management Utility you first have to install the WinPcap packet capturing software. The utility console lists all powerline devices installed and running on your network and displays the name, MAC address, location (local or remote), connection quality, link rate, and firmware version of each device. From this console you can upgrade the firmware for each device, change encryption key settings, and rename the adapters. However, you can?t assign QoS (Quality of Service) priorities to each adapter like you can with the Netgear Powerline Utility. Instead, the DHP501-AV uses a proprietary QoS technology that looks for data that typically requires high bandwidth, such as gaming and video files, and automatically gives it a high priority. ?

Installation is a snap. Plug one adapter into an outlet close to your router and connect it to the router with one of the Ethernet cables. Avoid using power strips, surge protectors, or extension cords as they may reduce performance. Also, try to use an outlet that isn?t servicing a device that draws a lot of power. Plug the second adapter into any outlet in the house (as long as it shares the same circuit breaker box), and you?ve got wired Ethernet connectivity.

The DHP501-AV performed quite well on my transfer tests. Copying a 100MB folder from my desktop PC to my laptop (in another room) took 14 seconds, while a 500MB folder took 1 minute and 14 seconds. Both times were slightly faster than the Netgear Powerline AV 500 Adapter Kit, which needed 15 seconds for the 100MB transfer and 1 minute and 20 seconds for the 500MB transfer. In comparison, my Wi-Fi connection needed 1 minute and 18 seconds to transfer the 100MB folder and 9 minutes and 25 seconds to transfer the larger 500MB folder.

The Management utility recorded a 500 Mbps connection from the adapter to the router and 158 Mbps from point to point. The Netgear kit also gave me 500 Mbps to the router but came in at a slightly higher point to point connection rate of 185 Mbps. The DHP501-AV provides more than enough bandwidth for streaming video; The Blues Brothers on Netflix (via my PS3) played smoothly with no stutter and was perfectly in sync. ?

If you want wired Ethernet connectivity throughout your house but want to avoid running cable, the D-Link DHP501-AV Powerline AV 500 Adapter Starter Kit will get the job done. Its bulky adapters may be an issue when it comes to sharing an outlet, however, and it doesn?t allow you to prioritize network traffic. If either issue is a deal breaker, consider the Netgear Powerline AV 500 Adapter Kit instead. ??

More Networking Reviews:
??? Netgear Powerline AV 500 Adapter Kit (XAVB5001)
??? D-Link Powerline AV 500 4-Port gigabit Switch (DHP-540)
??? D-Link DHP501-AV Powerline AV 500 Adapter Starter Kit
??? Netgear Universal Internet Adapter for Home Entertainment-3D (XAVB5004)
??? SoMud 1.3.3
?? more














Source: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ziffdavis/pcmag/~3/4N_RoSmKIck/0,2817,2398214,00.asp

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American Airlines Mexico, Latin America And Caribbean Bag Limitations / AA.com

Sorry, Readability was unable to parse this page for content.

Source: http://www.aa.com/viewPromotionDetails.do?fN=box_bag_embargo.xml&locale=en_US&fromRSS=true

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Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Taliban strike deal with Qatar on office there

Afghan victims of a suicide attack are seen on beds at the hospital in Kandahar, south of Kabul, Afghanistan, Tuesday, Jan. 3, 2012. A suicide bomber driving a motorcycle killed four civilians and a police officer in southern Afghanistan's Kandahar city on Tuesday, police said. (AP Photo/Allauddin Khan)

Afghan victims of a suicide attack are seen on beds at the hospital in Kandahar, south of Kabul, Afghanistan, Tuesday, Jan. 3, 2012. A suicide bomber driving a motorcycle killed four civilians and a police officer in southern Afghanistan's Kandahar city on Tuesday, police said. (AP Photo/Allauddin Khan)

Afghan and foreign soldiers are seen on alert near the scene of a suicide attack in Kandahar, south of Kabul, Afghanistan, Tuesday, Jan. 3, 2012. A suicide bomber driving a motorcycle killed four civilians and a police officer in southern Afghanistan's Kandahar city on Tuesday, police said. (AP Photo/Allauddin Khan)

U.S. soldiers walk with their Afghan translator near the scene of a suicide attack in Kandahar, south of Kabul, Afghanistan, Tuesday, Jan. 3, 2012. A suicide bomber driving a motorcycle killed four civilians and a police officer in southern Afghanistan's Kandahar city on Tuesday, police said. (AP Photo/Allauddin Khan)

KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) ? The Afghan Taliban said on Tuesday they have reached a preliminary deal with the Gulf state of Qatar to open a liaison office there in what could be the first step toward peace talks to end more than a decade of war.

Taliban spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid said the liaison office will conduct negotiations with the international community. He did not say when it would open.

For the United States and its allies, the idea of a Taliban political office in the Qatari capital Doha has become the central element in efforts to draw the insurgents into peace talks.

"Right now, having a strong presence in Afghanistan, we still want to have a political office for negotiations," said Mujahid. "In this regard, we have started preliminary talks and we have reached a preliminary understanding with relevant sides, including the government of Qatar, to have a political office for negotiations with the international community."

Mujahid's emailed statement also said the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan ? the name of Afghanistan under Taliban rule ? , has "requested for the exchange of prisoners from Guantanamo."

He was referring to a Taliban demand that the U.S. military release about five Afghan prisoners believed to be affiliated with the Taliban from the prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

The Taliban are holding Bowe Bergdahl, a 25-year-old U.S. Army sergeant from Hailey, Idaho, who is the only U.S. soldier held by the insurgents. He was taken prisoner June 30, 2009, in Afghanistan.

A senior U.S. official told The Associated Press last week that Washington plans to continue a series of secret meetings with Taliban representatives in Europe and the Persian Gulf region next year.

The U.S. outreach this year has progressed to the point that there was active discussion on two steps that the Taliban seek as precursors to negotiations, said the official, speaking on condition of anonymity due to the sensitivity of the issue.

Trust-building measures under discussion involve setting up a Taliban headquarters office and the release of the Afghan prisoners from Guantanamo.

Last Tuesday, President Hamid Karzai said his government would accept the Taliban establishing a liaison office in Turkey, Qatar or Saudi Arabia for the purpose of holding peace talks.


Associated Press writer Slobodan Lekic contributed to this report from Kabul, Afghanistan.

Associated Press

Source: http://hosted2.ap.org/APDEFAULT/cae69a7523db45408eeb2b3a98c0c9c5/Article_2012-01-03-AS-Afghanistan/id-e52c8be8992b4555aabe02d902003279

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Postcard from Los Angeles: Not a celebrity in sight, unless you count some football players

LOS ANGELES?When the Ducks locked up their trip to the Rose Bowl, I was one happy sports writer. Who wouldn?t be excited about warm weather, a chance to get tan and some possible celebrity sightings?

Well, after five days in the City of Angels I?m disappointed to tell you I haven?t seen one celebrity, unless you count watching Chris Paul from the 300 level of Staples Center (I don?t.)

Those of us who cover sports for a living are around big-time athletes so much that we?ve become desensitized to their star power. Where are the Justin Timberlakes and Beyonces of the world? Don?t they want to watch the Rose Bowl, too? And why, oh why, did the Lakers have to go trade Lamar Odom before I got my chance to make friends with Khloe Kardashian?

At the media hotel, where Oregon and Wisconsin players and coaches came each day for press conferences, Chip Kelly?s security guards flanked the team, ready to hold off any crazy fans. On Wednesday morning I saw one green-and-yellow-clad teenager sneak into the press conference, pen and paper in hand. This kid was getting an autograph, and he looked determined.

It seems that around here, the biggest celebrity is a guy by the name of LaMichael.

--Lindsay Schnell (I came, I saw, I tweeted)

Source: http://www.oregonlive.com/ducks/index.ssf/2012/01/postcard_from_los_angeles_no_a.html

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Monday, January 2, 2012

Indian troops fire on Kashmir protesters, 1 killed (AP)

SRINAGAR, India ? Police say troops in Indian-controlled Kashmir have opened fire on hundreds of villagers who were protesting against frequent power cuts, killing one person and injuring two others.

Police say the paramilitary troops began shooting Monday as the protesters shouted slogans outside the main gate of a power plant near Baramulla town.

They say one protester died on the spot and two others were hospitalized.

The Himalayan region faces power cuts of up to 16 hours a day despite bitterly cold winter temperatures as low as 3 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 16 Celsius).

Kashmir is divided between India and Pakistan. There are frequent protests in the Indian-controlled portion in support of independence or a merger with Pakistan.

Source: http://us.rd.yahoo.com/dailynews/rss/asia/*http%3A//news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20120102/ap_on_re_as/as_kashmir_power_protest

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Sunday, January 1, 2012

HollandSentinel: Peter Bunn, Hope College men's basketball tops No. 20 Marietta (Ohio) in DeVette Classic semifinals http://t.co/kv5qcQW7

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Source: http://twitter.com/HollandSentinel/statuses/152583706840793089

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foodbeast: Carcinogens Found in Chinese Milk http://t.co/tRsCN67u

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Carcinogens Found in Chinese Milk bit.ly/u8z88O foodbeast


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Source: http://twitter.com/foodbeast/statuses/152698656166903808

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