Thursday, April 17, 2014

Tiny power plants hold promise for nuclear energy

PARIS — Small underground nuclear power plants that could be cheaper to build than their behemoth counterparts may herald the future for an energy industry under intense scrutiny since the Fukushima disaster, the incoming head of the Nuclear Energy Agency told The Associated Press. Size is relative — the modular plants could be about as […]

Confused, chaotic scene described on sinking ferry

MOKPO, South Korea — There was chaos and confusion on the bridge of a sinking ferry, with the captain first trying to stabilize the listing vessel before ordering its evacuation, a crewman said Thursday. By the time the order came, however, he said it had become impossible to help many of the passengers — although […]

State Senate must do more to restore trust

Ever since San Francisco’s Leland Yee joined his colleagues Ron Calderon of Montebello and Roderick Wright of Los Angeles on the state Senate’s indicted/convicted list and then all three were suspended, other senators have recognized they must restore the public’s trust. That won’t happen if suspensions are all those other senators are willing to mete […]

Poor Judgement in Flight 370 column

I have enjoyed Brad Stanhope’s column in the past, but was incredulous in reading, the “What happened to Flight 370? I have theories,” piece published April 6, 2014. It was not funny or clever. The plane’s disappearance is a horrible tragedy and should not be used for amusement. Yes, this is a free country and […]

Oh, for the days of Dr. Welby

When our longtime family doctor retired in the early 1960s, he was, according to my mother, charging the same amount for an office visit as he did in the 1930s when she and my father first became his patients. I always thought that was a bit of an exaggeration and it probably was but not […]

Question of the week: Good idea to sell water to Napa County?

Solano County is progressing toward an agreement to sell water from Lake Berryessa to Napa County for emergency purposes. Do you agree with the idea? Participate in this week’s poll: Last week’s results: Do you agree with the Supreme Court decision to partially eliminate the limits on individual political donations? Yes: 30 percent No: 70 […]

Iraq scrambles to fight polio surge amid conflict

BAGHDAD — Across parts of Iraq, medical teams in white coats and gloves again roam the streets giving children polio vaccines and marking the walls of their homes, fighting a resurgent virus once more taking advantage of the country’s turmoil. The World Health Organization declared Iraq polio free in 1990, just before Saddam Hussein launched […]

Putin: Ukraine debt threatens Europe gas supplies

MOSCOW — Vladimir Putin warned Europe on Thursday that it may face a shutdown of Russian natural gas supplies if it fails to help Ukraine settle its enormous Russian gas bill — a debt that far exceeds a bailout package offered by the International Monetary Fund. The Russian president’s letter to 18 mostly Eastern European […]

Senseless babble that hurts

The Daily Republic News Editor Brad Stanhope should be chastised for his unnecessary, hurtful and stupid remarks concerning the fate of Flight 370 in the column published April 6. As news editor, he should well know that the families and friends of those poor souls on that airplane are suffering and still awaiting factual findings […]

Noses, made in Britain: UK touts lab-grown organs

LONDON — In a north London hospital, scientists are growing noses, ears and blood vessels in a bold attempt to make body parts in the laboratory. It’s far from the only lab in the world that is pursuing the futuristic idea of growing organs for transplant. But the London work was showcased Tuesday as Mayor Boris Johnson announced a plan to attract […]

Hagel: US strongly committed to protecting Japan

YOKOTA AIR FORCE BASE, Japan — Against the backdrop of Russia’s takeover of Ukraine’s Crimean region, U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said Saturday he will convey to Japanese leaders that the U.S. is strongly committed to protecting their country’s security. Hagel said it is understandable that countries are concerned by the unfolding events in Ukraine, […]

Expand Red Top Road

The city has been promising for years to make Red Top Road four lanes instead of two as currently – when certain construction occurred. City officials were able to sneak in a housing subdivision across from the high school without expanding the roadway. Residents were grateful for a high school but the school district sited […]

American spy’s release in play for Mideast peace

WASHINGTON — Every president since Ronald Reagan has refused to release Jonathan Pollard from prison. A CIA director once threatened to resign when Bill Clinton briefly considered freeing the convicted spy as part of Mideast peace talks. But now, in a gamble to extend negotiations that appear on the brink of collapse, the Obama administration […]

Palestinians seek further UN recognition

RAMALLAH, West Bank — In a surprise move that could derail U.S. peace efforts, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on Tuesday resumed a campaign for further international recognition of a state of Palestine, despite a previous promise to suspend such efforts during nine months of negotiations with Israel. Shortly after Abbas’ announcement, U.S. Secretary of State […]

Attacks threaten to undermine Afghan vote

KABUL, Afghanistan — Taliban militants attacked the main Afghan election commission’s headquarters in Kabul on Saturday, the latest in a series of audacious assaults threatening to scare voters away just a week before Afghans go to the polls. It was the third attack in Kabul in five days claimed by the Taliban. The Islamic militant […]

Klitschko backs billionaire for Ukraine presidency

KIEV, Ukraine — Ex-world boxing champion Vitali Klitschko, considered a strong contender to become Ukraine’s next leader, upended the country’s presidential race Saturday by announcing he will throw his support instead behind a billionaire candy maker. Klitschko told his UDAR party that he plans to run for mayor of Ukraine’s capital city, Kiev, paving the […]

Kerry in Paris to meeting with Russia on Ukraine

PARIS — After a week of travel in the Mideast, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry changed course and arrived in Paris Saturday for talks with his Russian counterpart on the Ukraine crisis. Halfway home from Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, Kerry landed in Shannon, Ireland, for a refueling stop, when he decided to turn his plane […]

Crimea’s Tatars condemn annexation, seek autonomy

BAKCHYSARAI, Crimea — Leaders of Crimea’s Tatar minority gathered Saturday to condemn Russia’s annexation of the peninsula and appealed to international bodies for recognition as an autonomous group. Tatars, an ethnically Turkic and mainly Muslim group that was subjected to mass deportation from their native Crimea by Soviet leader Josef Stalin in 1944, gathered to […]

A look at some passengers on Flight 370

There were 239 passengers and crew on board Malaysia Airlines Flight 370, which disappeared March 8 after leaving Kuala Lumpur for Beijing. These are some of their stories. ___ ALWAYS NEW PASSIONS In 2006, Chinese artist Liu Rusheng reflected on his life, concluding with gratitude that “fate has been very kind to me.” As a […]

Flight 370: Stories of that final day

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia — One morning, many stories. The three women woke before sunrise that day, leaving their hotel while it was still dark and boarding a small plane in Katmandu, Nepal, for a look at Mount Everest. They were Chinese retirees, avid photographers ending a two-week tour of the Himalayan nation. Late that night, […]

New objects seen, but still no evidence of jet

PERTH, Australia — A day after the search for the Malaysian jetliner shifted to a new area of the Indian Ocean, ships on Saturday plucked objects from the sea to determine whether they were related to the missing jet. None were confirmed to be from the plane, leaving searchers with no sign of the jet […]

3 Palestinians killed in clash with Israeli army

JENIN, West Bank — Israeli troops killed three Palestinians in an early morning raid that was followed by a clash with angry protesters in a West Bank town on Saturday, the military and Palestinian security officials said, in the deadliest incident in months. The violence came amid a recent spike in clashes in the West […]

Turkey: Twitter allows ‘character assassination ‘

ANKARA, Turkey — Turkey’s government on Saturday accused Twitter of allowing “systematic character assassinations” a day after social media users easily evaded a government attempt to block access to the network. The attempted crackdown came after links to wiretapped recordings suggesting corruption were posted on Twitter, causing Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s government major embarrassment […]

Giraffe licks dying zoo worker

AMSTERDAM — A giraffe gave a lick to a dying man who asked as a last wish to be taken to Blijdorp Zoo in Rotterdam, Netherlands, where he had done odd jobs for 25 years. Mario Eijs, who is mentally disabled, had developed a brain tumor and had difficulty walking or speaking. He wanted to […]

Concerns about cancer centers under health law

WASHINGTON — Some of America’s best cancer hospitals are off-limits to many of the people now signing up for coverage under the nation’s new health care program. Doctors and administrators say they’re concerned. So are some state insurance regulators. An Associated Press survey found examples coast to coast. Seattle Cancer Care Alliance is excluded by […]

Mega Millions jackpot swells to $400 million

CHICAGO — The Mega Millions jackpot has grown to an estimated $400 million. No one matched all six numbers in Friday night’s drawing. The numbers were 7-20-40-54-69, with a Mega Ball of 12. Friday’s $353 million prize would have been the fifth-largest jackpot in the multistate lottery game’s history. The next drawing is Tuesday. The […]

3-year-old boy survives scrape by NYC subway train

NEW YORK — Police say a 3-year-old boy has survived a scrape with a New York City subway train after falling on the station platform. The New York Post reports the toddler was injured Friday night when he fell at the East Broadway station while waiting for the F train with his mother after his prekindergarten […]

New hearing set Monday in Army general’s sex case

RALEIGH, N.C.  — The case of an Army general accused of sexually assaulting a female captain under his command is set to return to a Fort Bragg courtroom less than a week after proceedings were postponed to allow time for a possible plea agreement. Officials at the North Carolina Army base said the trial of […]

Fish-eating ducks hard hit by severe winter, ice

DELMAR, N.Y. — The Niagara River corridor from Lake Erie to Lake Ontario is renowned as a spectacular winter haven for hundreds of thousands of water birds. But this year’s bitterly cold season has made it notable for something else: dead ducks. Biologists say carcasses began piling up by the hundreds in early January after […]