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Wednesday, Sep 17th

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A Military for a Dangerous New World

As president, Barack Obama will face the most daunting and complicated national security challenges in more than a generation — and he will inherit a military that is critically ill-equipped for the task.

Troops and equipment are so overtaxed by President Bush’s disastrous Iraq war that the Pentagon does not have enough of either for the fight in Afghanistan, the war on terror’s front line, let alone to confront the next threats.

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Nordic countries top gender equality list; US is 27th

Nordic countries again topped this year's scorecard measuring equality between women and men in 130 countries. The gap between men and women was widest in Yemen, with Chad, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Benin, Morocco, Egypt, Turkey, Ethiopia and Bahrain near the bottom of the list.

The United States moved up four places to 27 this year, closing just over 71 percent of the gender gap.

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Thousands of Ecstasy pills seized in synagogues

Local police, who were tipped off about the drugs a few days ago, found 3,000 Ecstasy pills and a pistol concealed in the ceiling of a synagogue on Shivtei Yisrael Street.

An additional 3,000 pills were found in the bathroom of another synagogue located nearby.

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Obama could change dynamics in the Arab world

To many in the Middle East, he is that rare thing: a minority who, with breathtaking speed and without a military coup, has risen to political prominence. This strikes deeply in a part of the world where repression carries a twofold meaning: Western power and military dominance, and Arab regimes that silence dissent.

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Chrysler leaders get millions

As Detroit's crumbling auto industry asks Congress for a bailout, Chrysler is in the awkward position of paying about $30 million in retention bonuses to keep top executives while the company cuts thousands of jobs.

Documents obtained by the Free Press show that at least six Chrysler executives are due to receive bonuses of more than $1 million apiece to stay through August 2009, the two-year anniversary mark of when private equity firm Cerberus Capital Management bought an 80.1% stake in Chrysler.

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New Blackwater Iraq Scandal: Guns, Silencers and Dog Food

A federal grand jury in North Carolina is investigating allegations the controversial private security firm Blackwater illegally shipped assault weapons and silencers to Iraq, hidden in large sacks of dog food, ABCNews.com has learned.

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Al-Sadr Throws Down the Gauntlet on US-Iraq Talks

Firebrand Shi'ite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr on Friday threw down the gauntlet: he threatened to resume attacks against U.S. troops if they don't leave Iraq "without retaining bases or signing agreements."

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Counting the dead gets more complicated in Iraq

This much is agreed - a double bombing in Baghdad struck a school bus and those responding to the first blast. But the difference in casualty figures was stark. Iraqi officials said 31 people died; the U.S. military put the death toll at five.

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Obama's biggest Guantanamo dilemma may lie in Yemen

President-elect Barack Obama's pledge to close the prison camp at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, faces a major obstacle: Yemen.

Yemeni officials say they're ready to try many of the men and imprison those who are convicted, but they complain that U.S. officials refuse to share evidence with them.

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TVNL Comment: Just trust the US and jail hundreds of people without evidence. Democracy at its best.

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