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Northeast U.S. braves ‘crippling’ blizzard

A woman walks though Central Park as it snows in the Manhattan borough of New YorkBy Jonathan Allen and Barbara Goldberg NEW YORK/MAPLEWOOD, N.J. (Reuters) – A massive blizzard slammed into the U.S. Northeast on Monday, canceling thousands of flights, curtailing mass transit and closing hundreds of schools, as officials warned that the storm could dump as much as 3 feet of snow on the region. New York, New Jersey, Connecticut and Massachusetts declared states of emergencies as tens of millions of people were urged to stay home with transit systems suspending services. The potentially historic storm poses the latest challenge to New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, who has been under fire in recent weeks from police who criticized his support of public protests about white police violence against black men. The National Weather Service issued a blizzard warning for New York City and surrounding areas between coastal New Jersey and Connecticut, forecast to worsen overnight.



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Greece’s first radical left prime minister sworn in

A woman waves a Greek flag during a speech by the leader of Syriza left-wing party Alexis Tsipras outside Athens University Headquarters, Sunday, Jan. 25, 2015. A triumphant Alexis Tsipras told Greeks that his radical left Syriza party's win in Sunday's early general election meant an end to austerity and humiliation and that the country's regular and often fraught debt inspections were a thing of the past. "Today the Greek people have made history. Hope has made history," Tsipras said in his victory speech at a conference hall in central Athens. (AP Photo/Fotis Plegas G.)ATHENS, Greece (AP) — Tieless and eschewing the traditional religious swearing-in ceremony, but with a surprise coalition deal in the bag and a sanguine international reception, radical left leader Alexis Tsipras took over Monday as austerity-wracked Greece's new prime minister.



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Late night snack shack in Istanbul

tim constable has added a photo to the pool:

Late night snack shack in Istanbul

www.redbubble.com/people/timconstable/works/13753721-late…

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Don’t let storm catch you off guard, officials warn

Governors throughout the Northeast declare emergencies ahead of a blizzard that could bring up to 3 feet of snow. | SIGHTS AND SOUNDS


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S&P downgrades Russia credit rating to junk

Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks during a cabinet meeting at the Novo-Ogaryovo residence outside Moscow, Russia, Monday, Jan. 26, 2015. The meeting focused on the government’s anti-crisis plan. (AP Photo/RIA-Novosti, Alexei Nikolsky, Presidential Press Service)LONDON (AP) — Standard & Poor's rating agency on Monday downgraded Russia's credit grade by one notch to junk status, citing a weakened economic outlook.



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Millions brace for monster blizzard in US Northeast

NOAA-NASA GOES East satellite image taken at 1400 UTC on January 26, 2015 shows a winter storm over the northeastern United StatesTens of millions of Americans from New Jersey to the Canadian border braced themselves Monday for a ferocious blizzard that New York's mayor warned could be one of the worst in history. "It could be a matter of life and death, and that's not being overly dramatic, so caution is required," New York state Governor Andrew Cuomo said, as residents stockpiled supplies. States of emergency were declared in New York and New Jersey, and a travel ban imposed in Connecticut as residents scrambled to get home as quickly as possible and prepare for the worst. Heavy snow began falling across the region, expected to escalate into a major storm with poor visibility and dangerous winds overnight that will paralyze parts of New York and New England.



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Eurozone looks for dialogue after stunning Greece elections

A woman waves a Greek flag during a speech by the leader of Syriza left-wing party Alexis Tsipras outside Athens University Headquarters, Sunday, Jan. 25, 2015. A triumphant Alexis Tsipras told Greeks that his radical left Syriza party's win in Sunday's early general election meant an end to austerity and humiliation and that the country's regular and often fraught debt inspections were a thing of the past. "Today the Greek people have made history. Hope has made history," Tsipras said in his victory speech at a conference hall in central Athens. (AP Photo/Fotis Plegas G.)BRUSSELS (AP) — For a man long seen as the eurozone's worst nightmare, Alexis Tsipras has had a smooth first day as prime minister of Greece.



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Drone crashes at White House; hobbyist says it’s his

WASHINGTON (AP) — A two-foot-long drone apparently flown by a hobbyist crashed on the White House grounds Monday in an extraordinary, if unintended, breach that raised fresh questions about the president’s security — and a growing threat from the sky.
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US drone strikes resume in Yemen despite turmoil

FILE - In this Tuesday, Jan. 20, 2015 file photo, Houthi Shiite Yemenis gather while guarding a street leading to the presidential palace in Sanaa, Yemen. A U.S. drone strike targeting al-Qaida in Yemen signals Washington’s determination to keep fighting the militants despite political paralysis brought on by the minority Shiite power grab. But officials say an effective ground strategy to truly uproot the militants will have to await the emergence of a functioning local government that can act as an ally.(AP Photo/Hani Mohammed, File)SANAA, Yemen (AP) — A U.S. drone strike targeted al-Qaida in Yemen on Monday, signaling Washington's determination to keep fighting the militants despite political paralysis brought on by a Shiite power grab.



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Ex-CIA officer convicted of leaking secrets to reporter

ALEXANDRIA, Va. (AP) — A former CIA officer was convicted Monday of leaking classified details of an operation to thwart Iran’s nuclear ambitions to a New York Times reporter.
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Sunni officials in Iraq say Shi’ite militias executed 70 civilians

BAGHDAD (Reuters) – An Iraqi governor, parliamentarian and two tribal chiefs on Monday accused Shi’ite militias of executing more than 70 unarmed civilians who had fled fighting with Islamic State militants. Interior ministry spokesman Brigadier General Saad Maan denied the claims, saying Islamic State was trying to undermine the reputation of Iraqi security forces. A local official said it was too soon to draw conclusions and suggested Islamic State could have been behind the deaths in the eastern village of Barwanah. …
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The 10 worst snowstorms in Northeast US in last 60 years

FILE - In this Jan. 20, 1978 file photo, New York City Mayor Ed Koch, right, accompanied by unidentified aides, steps through snow in queens during a tour of New York, to see first hand the conditions brought about by the city's worst storm of the decade. (AP Photo, File)The National Weather Service was predicting a "potentially historic" storm on par with some of the biggest to ever hit the densely populated northeastern U.S.



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Ex-Thai PM’s party vows calm, U.S. calls for inclusive politics

Ousted former Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra greets in a traditional way as she leave Parliament after delivering a statement during the National Legislative Assembly meeting in BangkokBy Amy Sawitta Lefevre BANGKOK (Reuters) – Former Thai Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra's Puea Thai Party vowed on Monday it would not retaliate against a five-year political ban imposed on the ousted leader, and a leading party figure said the movement could survive without the powerful family. In a nearly identical repeat of her billionaire brother's fall from power, Yingluck last week was banned from politics for five years and indicted on criminal charges over her involvement in a state rice buying scheme that cost Thailand billions of dollars. Yingluck's supporters say the charges against her are an attempt to limit the political influence of her brother, ousted former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra, and weaken his Puea Thai Party. Anusorn Iamsa-ard, spokesman for the Puea Thai Party, said the decision to ban Yingluck from politics would not be a trigger for unrest.



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Alabama appeals decision blocking ban on same-sex marriage

Shanté Wolfe, left and Tori Sisson embrace near the Montgomery County Courthouse, Sunday, Jan. 25, 2015, in Montgomery, Ala., where they plan to stay overnight to be married Monday morning. A federal judge has stayed her order overturning Alabama's gay marriage ban for two weeks. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — Alabama on Monday began the process of appealing a federal judge's decision that overturned the state's ban on same-sex marriage — a decision that was put on hold to allow time for the appeal.



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LeBron, Cavs climb in standings, back in title conversation

Cleveland Cavaliers' LeBron James, right, shoots over Oklahoma City Thunder's Kendrick Perkins, center, and Serge Ibaka in the first half of an NBA basketball game Sunday, Jan. 25, 2015, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Mark Duncan)CLEVELAND (AP) — LeBron James sat in his corner cubicle with a towel wrapped around his waist and a look of satisfaction on his face that had been missing for weeks.



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Suspect in custody in Craigslist disappearance

Police have identified a suspect in the case of a Georgia couple who went missing after contacting a car seller on Craigslist.


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Kurds celebrate ousting Islamic State fighters from Kobani

BEIRUT (AP) — Jubilant Kurdish fighters ousted Islamic State militants from the key Syrian border town of Kobani on Monday after a four-month battle — a significant victory for both the Kurds and the U.S.-led coalition.
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Italy PM says ‘entire continent’ watching new Greek PM Tsipras

Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi said all of Europe is watching the new Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras, who was sworn in earlier on Monday. “An entire continent is following the Greek political developments.” Renzi has often called on the European Union to focus more on growth than austerity as he struggles to cut Italy’s 2-trillion-euro debt pile amid the third recession in six years. All that makes Renzi a possible ally of the new Greek prime minister who won office pledging to renegotiate a 240-billion-euro bailout deal with creditors.
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Greek anti-austerity coalition takes power after bombshell vote

Syriza's leader Alexis Tsipras poses for a photograph as he is sworn in as Greek Prime Minister at the Presidential Palace in Athens on January 26, 2015Alexis Tsipras was sworn in as Greece's youngest prime minister in 150 years on Monday and is set to lead an anti-austerity coalition after a stunning election win that has sent shockwaves through Europe. Tsipras's decisive victory in Sunday's vote set the country on a collision course with international creditors over plans to renegotiate its massive bailout deal. His radical leftwing Syriza took 149 out of the 300 seats in parliament, becoming the first party to take power in Europe that openly rejects spending cuts and austerity measures. Having fallen two seats short of an absolute majority, the leftists quickly forged a coalition with the small right-wing Independent Greeks (ANEL) party.



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China moves to accept imports of all US apple varieties

SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) — For the first time in several years, all varieties of apples from the United States will go on sale in China.
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Monster snowstorm swirls into densely populated Northeast US

This is the Weather Underground forecast for Tuesday, Jan. 27, 2015, for the United States. Offshore low pressure will rapidly strengthen Monday night into Tuesday, bringing a risk of blizzard conditions to the Northeast. Rain showers will be a possibility for the West Coast, with snow showers affecting the Intermountain West. (AP Photo/Weather Underground)NEW YORK (AP) — The Philadelphia-to-Boston corridor of more than 35 million people began shutting down Monday as a monster storm that could unload a paralyzing 1 to 3 feet of snow swirled into the Northeast.



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The latest on the Northeast snowstorm

Workers attach snow plows to trucks at a New Jersey Dept. of Transportation maintenance yard, Monday, Jan. 26, 2015, in Newark, N.J. New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie declared a state of emergency saying NJ Transit will shut down late Monday as a winter storm threatens to dump as much as two feet of snow over parts of the state. (AP Photo/Mel Evans)3 P.M. EST



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Israeli intel unit drops soldiers who refused to spy on Palestinians

Israel’s top military electronic surveillance unit expelled dozens of veterans on Monday for refusing to spy on Palestinians living under occupation, Army Radio said. The commander of Unit 8200, named as Brigadier-General “A”, barred the 43 reserve soldiers who wrote to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and top army chiefs in September, saying they could no longer serve in the unit, the radio said. Coming a few weeks after Israel’s 50-day war against Islamist militants in the Gaza Strip, the letter was seen as an unprecedented rebuke of Netanyahu’s security policies but the military dismissed it as a publicity stunt by a small fringe. By decrying the sweep of eavesdropping on Palestinians, and the role such espionage plays in setting up air strikes that have often inflicted civilian casualties, the move opened a window on clandestine practices.
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Boeing will be first to carry US astronauts to space

Undated NASA image shows SpaceX's uncrewed Dragon cargo spacecraft docked to the International Space Station with a load of supplies and equipment for the station crewBoeing will be the first commercial company to carry a NASA astronaut to space in July 2017 under a contract with the US space agency, followed by its competitor SpaceX, officials said Monday. NASA is funneling billions of dollars to both companies so that they can replace American access to the orbiting International Space Station after the US space shuttle program was retired in 2011. The announcement of $4.2 billion for Boeing and $2.6 billion for SpaceX was made in September 2014. The US Government Accountability Office (GAO) denied the protest by Sierra Nevada earlier this month, allowing NASA and its partners to speak publicly about the contracts and future plans for test flights.



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Feds announce charges in New York Russian spy ring case

NEW YORK (AP) — Federal authorities say three people are charged in connection with a Russian spy ring that tried to recruit New York City residents as intelligence sources.
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Feds announce charges in Russian spy ring case, say 3 defendants tried to recruit New Yorkers

NEW YORK (AP) — Feds announce charges in Russian spy ring case, say 3 defendants tried to recruit New Yorkers.
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Russia defiant after more threats from West over Ukraine

Russian President Vladimir Putin wears special glasses as he visits a recearch facility in "Gorny" University in St. Petersburg on Monday, Jan. 26, 2015. In televised comments after a meeting with students in St. Petersburg, President Vladimir Putin said that Ukraine’s army was at fault for the increase in violence and accused it of using civilians as “cannon fodder” in the conflict. “(Ukraine’s army) is not even an army, it’s a foreign legion, in this case a foreign NATO legion,” Putin said. “They have totally different goals, connected to the geopolitical containment of Russia, which absolutely do not coincide with the national interests of the Ukrainian people.” (AP Photo/RIA Novosti Kremlin, Mikhail Klimentyev, Presidential Press Service)MOSCOW (AP) — A defiant President Vladimir Putin on Monday called the Ukrainian army a "NATO foreign legion," reflecting his readiness to stand up to the West regardless of rising economic costs, as Standard & Poor's rating agency downgraded Russia's credit rating to junk.



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Thousands cheer for Patriots at Super Bowl sendoff in Boston

New England Patriots fans cheer before the start of an NFL football send-off rally at City Hall in Boston Monday, Jan. 26, 2015. The Patriots play the Seattle Seahawks in Sunday's Super Bowl XLIX in Glendale, Ariz. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)BOSTON (AP) — Brushing aside the controversy over deflated footballs, jubilant New England fans gathered downtown Monday for a spirited send-off as the Patriots headed to Arizona for the Super Bowl.



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