A suicide bomber has killed at least five people at the United Nations World Food Program center in Islamabad, Pakistan. The five killed were all UN staff workers – four were Pakistani nationals and one was from Iraq. The bomber entered the lobby wearing a military uniform and detonated around 16 pounds of explosives, New York Times.
The 2009 Nobel Prize in medicine has been awarded to Americans Elizabeth H. Blackburn, Carol W. Greider and Jack W. Szostak. Blackburn, a former professor at Berkeley, and her two students Greider and Szostak discovered “a key mechanism in the genetic operations of cells, an insight that has inspired new lines of research into cancer,” AP.
More than 220 people have been killed in southern India after massive flooding. 1.5 million others are said to be displaced, Voice of America.
A major corruption trial has begun in Johannesburg, where South Africa’s former chief of police Jackie Selebi has pleaded not guilty to being involved with organized crime and accepting over $150,000 in bribes. Selebi was elected as Interpol president in 2004 and resigned last year after he was charged, BBC News.
Hot Topic: Probing the Arctic Sea Conspiracies.
Angela Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union has won the German election. The CDU will have to team up with the Free Democratic Party (FDP or commonly referred to as the Liberals) for a majority. Merkel will remain Germany’s Chancellor. In the elections four years ago, the CDU had to align with the Social Democratic Party (SPD) which is more liberal than the CDU and was not an easy fit. The new CDU-FDU coalition will be more pro-business and Merkel has also promised tax cuts, CNN International.
More than 140 people are confirmed dead in severe floods caused by heavy rains in the Philippines. Over 400,000 people have been displaced. Aid agencies are trying to get food and water to the areas affected, Voice of America. Photo Gallery, CNN.
Newspaper columnist and former Nixon speechwriter William Safire died at the age of 79 on Sunday at a hospice in Rockville, Maryland. Safire was a libertarian and conservative and an expert on language usage, New York Times.
A police officer in Britain will be charged for assaulting a protestor during during last April’s G-20 protests in London. The assault was caught on video and posted on YouTube, BBC News. The protestor was attending a vigil for Ian Tomlinson, a newspaper vendor who died during the protests after being struck by a police officer. That assualt was also caught on video but no charges have been filed, Wikipedia.
A British journalist working for the New York Times, Stephen Farrell, who was captured by Taliban militants while he was reporting on the airstrikes that struck two fuel tankers outside Kunduz in northern Afghanistan earlier this week, has been rescued in a dramatic mission by Nato forces. Mr. Farrell’s translator Sultan Munadi, an Afghan journalist, was killed during the rescue as well as a British Nato soldier. Farrell had previously been kidnapped in 2004 in Fallajuh, Iraq, New York Times. Stephen Farrell’s NY Times Blog. A moving essay by Sultan Munadi on his committment to Afghanistan, Hell? No. I Won’t Go.
The U.S. Supreme Court is hearing a case involving the release of a documentary about Hillary Clinton. Filmmakers attempted to release “Hillary: The Movie” during Clinton’s 2009 primary run for the Democratic nomination but were blocked because of campaign finance laws. The decision of the Court will have far-reaching implications, including whether political speech by unions and corporations is protected, Associated Press. Video is not allowed in Supreme Court arguments, but C-SPAN will have audio. Oral arguments are scheduled to start at 11:30 am EDT. C-SPAN’s Supreme Court Homepage. Discussion of the case and its significance, Bill Moyers Journal.
Heavy rains have caused intense flooding in Istanbul, Turkey. 28 people have died, CNN International.
NASA is considering supplementing its budget with private funds, BBC News.