• Airstrikes in Syria and Iraq are just the start

    Updated: 8 hr ago

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The one-two-three punch of American and Arab airstrikes against Islamic State militants in Syria and Iraq was just the beginning, President Barack Obama and other leaders declared Tuesday. They promised a sustained campaign showcasing a rare U.S.-Arab partnership aimed at Muslim extremists. At the same time, in fresh evidence of how the terrorist threat continues to expand and mutate, the U.S. on its own struck a new al-Qaida cell that the Pentagon said was "nearing the execution phase" of a direct attack on the U.S. or Europe. "This is not America's fight alone," Obama said of the military campaign against the Islamic State group.

  • Feds to meet with Kansas nuclear plant officials

    Updated: 8 hr ago

    BURLINGTON, Kan. (AP) — Federal regulators plan to meet with Wolf Creek nuclear plant officials next month to discuss long-standing design issues with the cooling system at the eastern Kansas facility. The meeting is scheduled Oct. 2 at the Nuclear Regulatory Commissions' office in Arlington, Texas. The public will be allowed to ask questions, and can phone in to participate. The NRC says in a news release that Wolf Creek's cooling system draws water from Coffey County Lake, pumps it to the plant's systems for cooling and then returns it to the lake. That water does not contact any radioactive steam or water. At issue are problems with corrosion and pressure surges in the system's pipes. Federal regulators want to hea

  • Webb 'seriously looking' at 2016 campaign

    Updated: 8 hr ago

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Former Virginia Sen. Jim Webb said Tuesday he is "seriously looking" at a Democratic presidential campaign in 2016, a move that could create a challenge to former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton if she seeks the White House again. Webb said at a speech to the National Press Club that he has talked to respected advisers about a presidential bid and will continue to have those discussions during the next four or five months. "I'm seriously looking at the possibility of running for president. But we want to see if there's a support base from people who would support the programs that we're interested in pursuing," he said.

  • Abbas: Seeks Israeli pullout resolution Friday

    Updated: 8 hr ago

    NEW YORK (AP) — Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas Abbas said Tuesday that he will submit a resolution to the U.N. Security Council on Friday seeking a three-year timetable for the withdrawal of Israeli forces from the West Bank. The resolution will be handed in immediately after Abbas speaks at the U.N. General Assembly. Abbas meets with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry later Tuesday and express little optimism the resolution would survive a Security Council vote. The United States will almost certainly veto such a measure, having said the only resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is through direct negotiations between the two sides. A day earlier, Abbas said a U.N.

  • Philippine leader questions intent of China ships

    Updated: 8 hr ago

    NEW YORK (AP) — Philippine President Benigno Aquino III said Tuesday his nation will stick up for its territorial rights in the disputed South China Sea and voiced concern that a recent mission by two Chinese survey ships could presage an attempt to drill for oil there. In an interview with The Associated Press, Aquino said that all nations that ply the South China Sea, a major conduit for world trade, should also be concerned about intimidatory behavior by China, which claims most of resource-rich waters for itself. Philippines, a treaty U.S. ally, has riled China by challenging its expansive maritime claims at an international tribunal.

  • Carmax and Medtronic are big market movers

    Updated: 8 hr ago

    NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks that moved substantially or traded heavily Tuesday on the New York Stock Exchange and the Nasdaq Stock Market: NYSE Carmax Inc., down $5.01 to $47.80 The used car retailer reported a boost in quarterly profit, but the results fell short of Wall Street expectations. Medtronic Inc., down $1.90 to $64.08 New regulations could make the medical device maker's buyout of Ireland-based Covidien for tax purposes more difficult to complete. Peabody Energy Corp., up 21 cents to $12.86 The coal mine operator raised its third-quarter financial outlook, partly citing higher-than-expected results from the western U.S. Spectrum Brands Holdings Inc., up $2.43 to $88.

  • Funds through divisive visa system helped SD dairy

    Updated: 8 hr ago

    SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) — Rodney and Dorothy Elliott had a milking operation in Northern Ireland when a newspaper ad — "Wanted: Dairy farmers in South Dakota" — caught their attention. Along with more favorable regulations and cheaper land, there was also the incentive of four foreign investors putting up $500,000 each through a U.S. visa program. The Elliotts used that $2 million at their Drumgoon Dairy near Lake Norden to build a larger barn to accommodate more cows and start off stronger financially after their 2006 move to South Dakota. "I can honestly say we've had no regrets," Dorothy Elliott said about packing up their dairy operation and three children and leaving Europe. But the federal EB-5 program, which

  • Soft data, Syria strikes hit US, European markets

    Updated: 8 hr ago

    NEW YORK (AP) — Weak economic news and airstrikes against militants in Syria sent global stock markets lower. The biggest declines came in Europe, where France's benchmark index fell sharply. The selling was more modest in Asia and the U.S., where the economy remains healthier. The Dow Jones industrial average fell 116 points, or 0.7 percent, to 17,055 Tuesday. The Standard & Poor's 500 fell 11 points, or 0.6 percent, to 1,982. The Nasdaq composite fell 19 points, or 0.4 percent, to 4,508. CarMax plunged 9 percent after reporting earnings that fell short of analysts' expectations. European markets fell after a closely watched gauge of business activity in the eurozone fell to a nine-month low this month.

  • More insurers to offer health law plans next year

    Updated: 8 hr ago

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The Obama administration says consumers in most states will have more insurance options next year under the president's health care law. The Health and Human Services department on Tuesday reported a net increase of 63 insurers joining the market in 43 states plus Washington, DC. The preliminary figures show 77 insurers entering for the first time, while 14 are dropping out. The health insurance exchanges offer subsidized private plans to people who don't have coverage on the job. Last week the largest provider in Minnesota's marketplace announced its exit, prompting concerns in that state and beyond. HHS Secretary Sylvia Mathews Burwell said greater competition will help keep premiums in check. <

  • New jihad appeal makes policing even harder

    Updated: 9 hr ago

    PARIS (AP) — The Islamic State group's call on Muslims to go after the "filthy French" and other Westerners multiplies already deep security concerns in nations targeting the militant organization. The appeal made public Monday makes intelligence tracking of potential suspects virtually impossible and opens up Muslims in the West to the possibility of being unfairly put under suspicion or stigmatized. Nations are honing mechanisms to monitor Westerners who head to Syria and Iraq to fight in the jihad, the better to catch them when they return home with deadly skills.

  • NYC officials denounce anti-Islam transit ads

    Updated: 9 hr ago

    NEW YORK (AP) — Elected officials and faith leaders are denouncing anti-Islamic ads soon to appear on New York City transit buses and subway stations. Six different ads will appear next week on 100 buses. Some depict American journalist James Foley just before his beheading. A group led by anti-Islam blogger Pamela Geller is paying $100,000 for the ads. Geller says they're meant to warn of a "coming jihad" that politicians ignore. City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, Comptroller Scott Stringer and others said Tuesday the ads represent "hate speech." Mark-Viverito said they "have no place in New York City" and urged Geller to remove them. The Metropolitan Transportation Authority is required to run s

  • Venue change denied for marathon suspect's friend

    Updated: 9 hr ago

    BOSTON (AP) — A judge on Tuesday denied a motion to move next week's trial for a college friend of Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. Robel Phillipos, 21, of Cambridge, is charged with lying to authorities investigating the bombing. Prosecutors say he was in Tsarnaev's dorm room at the University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth several days after the attack, when two other friends decided to remove Tsarnaev's backpack, laptop computer and other evidence. Phillipos is accused of lying about being present when the items were removed. Lawyers for Phillipos had again asked to move the trial from Boston to Springfield, Providence, Rhode Island, or Portland, Maine. The defense says Phillipos can't get a fair trial in B

  • Louisiana: Where politics and kegs mix quite well

    Updated: 9 hr ago

    BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Photos of a vulnerable Democratic senator helping a constituent drink upside-down from a beer keg would be a faux pas six weeks before Election Day in many places. But in party-centric Louisiana, prominent players say the image of Sen. Mary Landrieu at an LSU pregame tailgate party, which went viral on social media, won't hurt the senator in this land of "laissez les bons temps rouler." "Let the good times roll," that is. If anything, the snapshots could affirm Landrieu's home-state connections as she fights GOP attacks tying her to President Barack Obama and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid. Even her Republican opponents, Rep. Bill Cassidy and retired Air Force Col.

  • Filmmaker: Ambush suspect was odd but not a threat

    Updated: 9 hr ago

    Eric Frein obsessively collected military memorabilia, dismissed his fellow war re-enactors as dilettantes, and took his hobby so seriously that he spoke French during a simulated Vietnam War-era interrogation, according to a filmmaker who interviewed the man now suspected of ambushing a Pennsylvania State Police barracks. Frein appears in an upcoming documentary about Vietnam re-enactors called "Vietnam Appreciation Day," identifying himself by name and saying that re-enactments are "about teaching the public and showing the equipment that was used, talking about the history of it all." Frein, 31, is charged with killing Cpl. Bryon Dickson and injuring another trooper in the Sept. 12 ambush outside a rural barracks.

  • Man charged with threatening to take over ranch

    Updated: 9 hr ago

    HAMILTON, Mont. (AP) — A man who lost his western Montana ranch in a 1979 divorce and spent more than 20 years in prison for intimidating judges, attorneys and others involved in the case is now charged with threatening to kidnap the current owners and showing up at the property to "take back the ranch," Ravalli County court records said. John Fesler Lance II, 73, was arrested Sept. 15 after deputies arrived to find him on the ground with ranch owners Lee and Lucinda Hayne each pointing a gun at him. He remained jailed Tuesday on $200,000 bail on charges of intimidation, stalking, trespassing and violating a protective order, according to jail records. He has not entered a plea. Lance's public defender, Tom Schoenleben, was

  • Soda makers pledge to reduce calorie consumption

    Updated: 9 hr ago

    NEW YORK (AP) — Coke, Pepsi and Dr Pepper said Tuesday they'll work to reduce the calories Americans get from beverages by 20 percent over the next decade by more aggressively marketing smaller sizes, bottled water and diet drinks. The announcement was made at the Clinton Global Initiative in New York City and comes as the country's three biggest soda makers face pressure over the role of sugary drinks in fueling obesity rates. In many ways, the commitment follows the way customers' tastes are already changing: People have been moving away from soda on their own for several years. In response, Coca-Cola Co. and PepsiCo Inc. have been pushing smaller cans and bottles, which tend to be more profitable and are positioned as a

  • Cadillac to ditch Detroit for trendy NYC address

    Updated: 9 hr ago

    DETROIT (AP) — Cadillac wants a jolt from the city that never sleeps. General Motors' 112-year-old luxury car division, founded in Detroit and named for the city's founder, is moving its headquarters to New York. Cadillac, which has been steadily losing sales to its German rivals, wants to get closer to its ideal buyers. Executives and marketing staffers will set up shop in a loft office in Manhattan's trendy SoHo neighborhood starting next year. "There is no city in the world where the inhabitants are more immersed in a premium lifestyle than in New York," Johann de Nysschen, the brand's new president, said in a statement issued Tuesday announcing the move.

  • Assad backs all efforts to fight terrorism

    Updated: 9 hr ago

    DAMASCUS, Syria (AP) — President Bashar Assad said Tuesday he supports any international effort against terrorism, apparently trying to position his government on the side of the U.S.-led coalition conducting airstrikes against the Islamic State group in Syria. Assad's remarks came hours after the opening salvo in what the United States has warned will be a lengthy campaign to defeat the extremists who have seized control of a huge swath of territory spanning the Syria-Iraq border. Damascus said the U.S. informed it beforehand that the strikes were coming. One Syrian activist group reported that dozens of Islamic State fighters were killed in the pre-dawn strikes, but the numbers could not be independently confirmed.

  • Arkansas cowers under Senate advertising barrage

    Updated: 9 hr ago

    LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — Little Rock friends Mike Thomas and Jack Evans don't support the same candidate in the nationally watched U.S. Senate race here, but they certainly agree on what to do when the contenders' ads start pouring out of the television. "I grab the remote," said Thomas, a retired schoolteacher who's supporting Democratic Sen. Mark Pryor's bid for re-election. "I change it to the SEC Network," said Evans, a backer of GOP challenger Tom Cotton, referring to the college football channel. Although politics has always been fiercely contested sport in Arkansas, the state has been especially hard hit this year by an ad blitz focused on the state's Senate race and, to a lesser extent, the governor's office.

  • Climbers pay $4K for violations in Utah park

    Updated: 9 hr ago

    SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Three rock climbers have paid a $4,000 settlement to Capitol Reef National Park in Utah for violating climbing policies in the making of a photograph that appeared in a Patagonia clothing catalog, a park official said Tuesday. Park rangers discovered illegal climbing routes in the red rock park after seeing the photograph in a September 2011 Patagonia catalog, park Superintendent Leah McGinnis said. The image depicted a first climb on a new route. Rangers found illegal climbing bolts were embedded in rock, and other rocks had been moved to create three illegal climbing routes. Climbing is allowed in areas of the park, but climbers are not allowed to place new bolts or fixed hardware.