2012 YEAR IN REVIEW

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  • U.S. giving $53 million in new aid for Ukraine's struggle with Russian incursion

    By Steve Holland WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States pledged $53 million in fresh aid to Ukraine on Thursday for its struggle against Russia's incursion, including counter-mortar radar equipment, in a gesture of support for visiting Ukraine President Petro Poroshenko. Senior Obama administration officials said the new assistance would include $46 million to bolster Ukraine's security in its conflict with Russian-backed separatists in eastern Ukraine and $7 million in humanitarian aid. ...

  • Netanyahu rival shocks Israel with sudden plan to quit cabinet
    Netanyahu rival shocks Israel with sudden plan to quit cabinet

    Israel's interior minister, seen as a rival and potential successor to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, announced on Wednesday he was quitting the government, in a move that stunned the political right. Gideon Sa'ar, 47, widely viewed as a favorite to one day challenge Netanyahu for the leadership of the ruling Likud, told party faithful that he would step down from both the cabinet and parliament after the Jewish New Year later this month.

  • NFL sacked! Pepsi demands 'immediate' change
    NFL sacked! Pepsi demands 'immediate' change

    Jeff Macke on why the NFL is in deep trouble with its sponsors

  • A glance at disputed passages in Three Cups of Tea
    A glance at disputed passages in Three Cups of Tea

    Greg Mortenson's best-selling book "Three Cups of Tea" came under intense scrutiny after 60 Minutes, author Jon Krakauer and some people in the book said some of the stories were fabricated. Here's a look at some of those stories, what is being disputed and Mortenson's response in a recent interview with The Associated Press:

  • Russia's Putin says sanctions violate principles of WTO

    MOSCOW (Reuters) - President Vladimir Putin said on Thursday Western sanctions against Russia violated the principles of the World Trade Organization and the main way to combat them was to develop the domestic market. At a meeting with senior officials, Putin said Russia had no intention of punishing the West for the sanctions, imposed over Moscow's role in Ukraine, and said instead they had challenged Russia to strengthen its economy, boost competition and spur lending. ...

  • Fed renews zero rate pledge, but hints at steeper rate hike path

    By Michael Flaherty and Howard Schneider WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The Federal Reserve on Wednesday renewed its pledge to keep interest rates near zero for a "considerable time," but also indicated it could raise borrowing costs faster than expected when it starts moving. Many economists and traders had expected the U.S. central bank to alter the rate guidance it has provided since March, given generally improving data on the economy's performance. But the Fed repeated its assurance that rates would stay ultra-low for a "considerable time" after a bond-buying stimulus program ends. ...

  • DAUGHTER APPALLED BY CALLOUS TREATMENT OF HER DAD'S ASHES

    DEAR ABBY: My dad died in April after a brief illness. Before he passed, my stepmother encouraged him to donate his body to science because she is to be buried with her first husband, and she didn't want the expense of burying Dad. I went to pick up my father's ashes as she requested. When I got there, she invited me into her bedroom to see that she had made a shrine to her first husband, who had died three years before she and Dad were married. The one photo she had of Dad was 2 inches by 3 inches, and was the one from his memorial invitation. With a broken heart I made my way to the door. ...

  • Scots independence polls close, UK's future in the balance
    Scots independence polls close, UK's future in the balance

    By Guy Faulconbridge and Angus MacSwan EDINBURGH (Reuters) - Scotland has voted on whether to stay within the United Kingdom or declare independence to break the 307-year-old union in a finely balanced referendum with global consequences. Scotland's verdict on the union should be clear around breakfast time on Friday, but a YouGov poll of 1,828 voters previously polled indicated 54 percent of Scots would back the union while 46 percent would seek independence. ...

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