2012 YEAR IN REVIEW

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  • Kiev to reinstate army conscription in coming months
    Kiev to reinstate army conscription in coming months

    Ukraine announced on Thursday that it will return to mandatory conscription in the coming months as its troops battle pro-Russian insurgents in the east. "The National Security and Defence Council has decided to restart conscription in the fall (autumn)," Mykhailo Koval, deputy head of the council, said after an emergency meeting chaired by President Petro Poroshenko. Ukraine's government decided last year to switch to a contract-based professional army, ending Soviet-style bi-annual drafts in the spring and fall for men between 18 and 25.

  • Do you play for 'Team Australia'? Muslims debate anti-terrorism push

    Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott has divided the country’s Muslim community by insisting it becomes part of his “Team Australia” project to combat the threat of homegrown terrorism.  Mr. Abbott invoked the rhetoric again on Tuesday when announcing a $64 million (Australian; US $60 million) anti-terrorism package that includes $11 million for community-based projects aimed at preventing Australians going overseas to join groups such as the Islamic State (IS) fighting in Syria and Iraq.  With at least 60 Australians fighting alongside IS, Australia, on a per capita basis, has more of its nationals involved in the Iraq-Syria theater than any other country, according to Australian intelligence agencies. 

  • Flight returns, 2 women facing charges
    Flight returns, 2 women facing charges

    TORONTO (AP) — Two Canadian women are facing charges after authorities say they drank their duty free alcohol in the flight's bathroom, triggered the fire alarm with a cigarette and got into a fight each other, forcing a Sunwing flight bound for Cuba to return to Toronto under a military escort.

  • China tells U.S. to reduce or halt 'close surveillance' patrols
    China tells U.S. to reduce or halt 'close surveillance' patrols

    China on Thursday urged the United States to cut back on, or even stop, its close surveillance of the Asian giant using patrol aircraft, if it seriously seeks to repair damaged bilateral ties. Ties between the world's two largest economies have been strained by competing territorial claims between China and its neighbors, some of them U.S. "If the United States really hopes to avoid impacting bilateral relations, the best course of action is to reduce or halt close surveillance of China," Defense Ministry spokesman Yang Yujun said in a statement on the ministry's website.

  • Couple Saves Chubby Prairie Dog from Hole in Road
    Couple Saves Chubby Prairie Dog from Hole in Road

    If you drive a car, you've seen roadkill on occasion. But how often do you actually see a "road rescue"? This save from danger might be one of a kind. A couple driving along a rural road on the Olkhon Island of Russia discovered a cute and chubby prairie dog in need of some immediate assistance.

  • WIFE IS UNWILLING TO SHOULDER BURDEN OF MOTHER-IN-LAW'S CARE

    DEAR ABBY: My mother-in-law is 80 and in the early stages of Alzheimer's. She lives alone an hour and a half from us. She also has a professional who takes care of her once a week. My husband, "Fred," goes to help and entertain her every weekend, and I sometimes accompany him. She has enough money to stay in an assisted living facility, but Fred wants to build a mother-in-law apartment for her on our property. Abby, I don't like her. She was a bully when she was younger, and she's still manipulative. She has made some comments about me hitting her, which never happened. ...

  • Smash! Aftermath of Colossal Impact Spotted Around Sunlike Star
    Smash! Aftermath of Colossal Impact Spotted Around Sunlike Star

    Astronomers have spotted the wreckage of a mammoth collision around a distant young star, a landmark find that could shed light on how our own solar system's rocky planets took shape long ago. "This is the first detection of a planetary impact outside of our own solar system," study lead author Huan Meng, of the University of Arizona in Tucson, told Space.com. Further, NGC-2547 ID8 is the same mass and size as our sun, and it's just 35 million years old — the same age the sun was when similar impacts were building Earth, Mars and the other rocky planets in our neck of the cosmic woods. Meng and his colleagues studied NGC-2547 ID8 using NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope and several different ground-based instruments.

  • UN: Ebola disease caseload could reach 20,000
    UN: Ebola disease caseload could reach 20,000

    The Ebola outbreak in West Africa is accelerating and could grow six times larger to infect as many as 20,000 people, the World Health Organization said Thursday. The U.N. health agency unveiled a new road map for containing the virus, and scientists are fast-tracking efforts to find a treatment or vaccine.

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