2012 YEAR IN REVIEW

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  • BRIDE'S BEST FRIEND HESITATES TO STAND UP AT HER WEDDING

    DEAR ABBY: My best friend is getting married. She left me a message asking me to be a bridesmaid. Of course I'm honored, but I don't know what to do. I dislike her fiance. He is disrespectful and mean to her and to their son.I can't stand up with them and pretend to be happy for her when I think she's making a terrible mistake. I want her to marry someone who will be nice to her. Help! -- CONFLICTED IN MINNESOTADEAR CONFLICTED: If standing up with her will make you feel like a hypocrite, then don't do it. But recognize that if you don't, it will distance you from her. ...

  • Bike-riding nurse defies Ebola quarantine, on collision course with governor
    Bike-riding nurse defies Ebola quarantine, on collision course with governor

    By Steve Holland CAPE ELIZABETH Maine (Reuters) - A nurse who treated Ebola patients in Sierra Leone but has tested negative for the virus went for a bike ride on Thursday, defying Maine's order that she be quarantined in her home and setting up a legal collision with Governor Paul LePage. Attorneys for Kaci Hickox, 33, said they had not yet been served with a court order to enforce the 21-day quarantine - matching the virus's maximum incubation period - but remained prepared to fight such an order if necessary. ...

  • Pope Francis Speaks Out on Evolution (And Why It's No Surprise)

    When Pope Francis told a gathering of scientists this week that the Big Bang and evolution were real, he set off a firestorm of media coverage. For instance, Roger Bacon was a Franciscan friar and early proponent of the scientific method, and Gregor Mendel, whose work with pea pods elucidated the genetics of inheritance, was a Catholic monk.

  • Peshmerga at Turkish border to reinforce besieged Kobane
    Peshmerga at Turkish border to reinforce besieged Kobane

    Heavily armed Iraqi peshmerga forces reached the Turkish border Thursday and a first small party entered the town of Kobane as they prepared to join fellow Kurds battling jihadists. The 10 fighters briefly entered Kobane to coordinate with Kurdish militia who have been holding off an assault by jihadists of the Islamic State (IS) group for six weeks, said the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. Turkey's Firat news agency said they returned to the town of Suruc on the Turkish side of the border after talks on the logistics of the peshmerga and the weapons crossing the frontier. A peshmerga convoy reached Suruc Thursday after travelling through southeastern Turkey along roads clogged with flag-waving Kurds, an AFP photographer said.

  • Burkina army imposes interim government after crowd burns parliament
    Burkina army imposes interim government after crowd burns parliament

    By Mathieu Bonkoungou and Joe Penney OUAGADOUGOU (Reuters) - Burkina Faso's military dissolved parliament and announced a transitional government on Thursday after violent protests against President Blaise Compaore, but it was not immediately clear who was in charge. Army chief General Honore Traore said the new government would be installed after consultation with all political parties and would lead the country to an election within 12 months. He also announced a curfew from 1900 to 0600 GMT (1500 to 0200 ET). ...

  • Iran talks should weigh fatwas on nuclear arms: US bishops
    Iran talks should weigh fatwas on nuclear arms: US bishops

    Less than a month before a deadline to reach a nuclear deal with Iran, US Catholic bishops are urging negotiators not to underestimate the power of fatwas by Islamic leaders banning atomic weapons. In a ground-breaking visit, a six-strong delegation from the US Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) travelled in April to the holy city of Qom to meet with top Shiite leaders in a bid to bridge gaps between Iran and the West. "Iranians feel profoundly misunderstood by America and the West," said Bishop Richard Pates, the chairman of the USCCB's committee on international justice and peace, speaking publicly about the trip on Wednesday. As the West seeks to negotiate a deal by November 24 to rein in Iran's suspect nuclear program, the USCCB delegation argued Washington, in particular, should pay more heed to Iranian assertions that stockpiling and using nuclear weapons would be against the fundamental principles of Shiite Islam.

  • Magic Mushrooms Create a Hyperconnected Brain
    Magic Mushrooms Create a Hyperconnected Brain

    The active ingredient in the psychedelic drug, psilocybin, seems to completely disrupt the normal communication networks in the brain, by connecting "brain regions that don't normally talk together," said study co-author Paul Expert, a physicist at King's College London.

  • Apple CEO Tim Cook says he is 'proud to be gay'
    Apple CEO Tim Cook says he is 'proud to be gay'

    Apple CEO Tim Cook announced he was “proud to be gay” on Thursday, becoming the first leader of a major company to come out publicly.

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