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Witnesses report bodies in the streets in Libya

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Cairo - The bodies of protesters shot to death by forces loyal to Moammar Gadhafi were left on the streets of a restive district in the Libyan capital Tuesday, an opposition activist and a resident said, while the longtime leader defiantly went on state TV to show he was still in charge.

The eruption of turmoil in the capital after a week of protests and bloody clashes in Libya's eastern cities has sharply escalated the challenge to Gadhafi. His security forces have unleashed the bloodiest crackdown of any Arab country against the wave of protests sweeping the region, which toppled leaders of Egypt and Tunisia.

The U.N. Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, citing sources inside the country, said Tuesday that at least 250 people have been killed and hundreds more injured in the crackdown on protesters in Libya. New York-based Human Rights Watch has put the toll at at least 233 killed. The difficulty in getting information made obtaining a precise figure impossible.

Yoda

Top Sunni cleric says army should kill Kadhafi

 Muslim ,cleric ,Yusuf al-Qaradawi
© AFP
Influential Muslim cleric Yusuf al-Qaradawi, pictured in 2007, issued a fatwa on Monday that any Libyan

Doha - Influential Muslim cleric Yusuf al-Qaradawi issued a fatwa on Monday that any Libyan soldier who can shoot dead embattled leader Moamer Kadhafi should do so "to rid Libya of him."

"Whoever in the Libyan army is able to shoot a bullet at Mr Kadhafi should do so," Qaradawi, an Egyptian-born cleric who is usually based in Qatar, told Al-Jazeera television.

He also told Libyan soldiers "not to obey orders to strike at your own people," and urged Libyan ambassadors around the world to dissociate themselves from Kadhafi's regime.

Family

Two-Thirds of Wisconsin Public-School 8th Graders Can't Read Proficiently - Despite Highest Per Pupil Spending in Midwest

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© AP/Sharon Cekada
Students from Appleton West High School protest a proposal by Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker that would make teachers pay a fraction of their own pension and health-insurance costs.

Two-thirds of the eighth graders in Wisconsin public schools cannot read proficiently according to the U.S. Department of Education, despite the fact that Wisconsin spends more per pupil in its public schools than any other state in the Midwest.

In the National Assessment of Educational Progress tests administered by the U.S. Department of Education in 2009 - the latest year available - only 32 percent of Wisconsin public-school eighth graders earned a "proficient" rating while another 2 percent earned an "advanced" rating. The other 66 percent of Wisconsin public-school eighth graders earned ratings below "proficient," including 44 percent who earned a rating of "basic" and 22 percent who earned a rating of "below basic."

The test also showed that the reading abilities of Wisconsin public-school eighth graders had not improved at all between 1998 and 2009 despite a significant inflation-adjusted increase in the amount of money Wisconsin public schools spent per pupil each year.

Stormtrooper

Reversing Itself, US Navy Grants Ensign Conscientious Objector Status

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Reversing two earlier denials, the U.S Navy has granted conscientious objector status to Michael Izbicki, a Naval Academy graduate most recently stationed at the Naval Submarine School in Groton.

Izbicki, 24, filed a lawsuit in federal court in Hartford in November, asking for an honorable discharge as a conscientious objector, contending that the Navy's hearings on his two requests were deeply flawed with legal, factual and procedural errors.

Deborah H. Karpatkin, a New York City attorney who represented Izbicki along with the American Civil Liberties Union of Connecticut, said the Navy offered no explanation of why it overruled its earlier decisions.

Attention

Airline Apologizes To Jewish Customers

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© shawnzam | Creative Commons License

London - UK budget airline easyJet apologized Tuesday to Jewish customers after the only food choices served on a flight from Israel were ham melts and bacon baguettes.

Passengers who follow the faith's ban on eating pork were forced to go hungry for the four-and-a-half hour journey from Tel Aviv to London.

The airline introduced the route in November, proudly promising that in-flight menus would feature kosher food that met Jewish dietary laws.

Family

San Francisco May Ban Infant Circumcision

circumcision
© Unknown

Self-described "civil rights advocates" say that a ballot proposition to ban circumcision is on track for gathering signatures, meaning that San Franciscans may vote on the measure this November.

The proposed law is being spearheaded by local resident Lloyd Schofield, according to the San Francisco Examiner.

It's part of a national push to end the procedure, which some say is steeped in tradition but poses risks and has little medical benefit. The American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Medical Association do not recommend routine circumcision.

Family

Michigan orders DPS to close half of schools

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© Len Rubenstein/All Posters

Lansing - Swift and severe changes are coming to Detroit Public Schools.

State education officials have ordered Robert Bobb to immediately implement a financial restructuring plan that balances the district's books by closing half of its schools, swelling high school class sizes to 60 students and consolidating operations.

This week, Bobb, the district's emergency financial manager, said he is meeting with Detroit city officials and will set up a meeting with Wayne County Regional Educational Service Agency to discuss consolidation opportunities in areas such as finance, public safety, transportation and other areas.

Bobb also is preparing a list of recommended school closures and Friday said layoff discussions are under way and would be announced closer to April, when notices would be issued. "We are moving forward with the plan," he said "Right now my focus is on my transition plan and the DEP (deficit elimination plan)."

Wolf

Bill Calls for Illegals to Be Dumped at Offices of Congressmen

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© Unknown

This should get their attention.

A measure filed by State Rep. Lois Kolkhorst (R-Brenham) would allow any law enforcement agency that has custody of an illegal immigrant to take the illegal to 'the office of a U.S. Senator or Representative' and leave them there.

1200 WOAI news reports the measure also allows county sheriff's deputies or city police officers to 'request an agent or employee of the United States Senator or United States Representative to sign a document acknowledging the release or discharge of the illegal immigrant at the senator's or representative's office.

The measure covers individuals who are 'not a citizen or national of the United States' and who is 'unlawfully present in the United States.'

Kolkhorst concedes the measure is a 'cry for help' to convince federal officials to secure the border, but she says she is serious about getting the measure approved by the Legislature.

Beaker

Drugmakers Shielded from Lawsuits: US Supreme Court

supreme court bldg
© AFP/Getty Images/File Win McNamee
Vaccine makers are protected from lawsuits, the Supreme Court ruled Tuesday, dashing the hopes of a US couple who had sought monetary damages after their daughter fell ill after a round of routine childhood inoculations.

By a 6-2 vote, the US high court, in an opinion by written Justice Antonin Scalia, rejected the family's argument that they should allowed to sue drug maker Wyeth for not making a safer vaccine.

The case concerned Hannah Bruesewitz, who as a six-month-old infant received a series of injections to protect her against diphtheria, tetanus and pertussis, the illness also known as whooping cough.

The family, from the northeastern state of Pennsylvania, found that after the third injection, the cognitive development of their now-teenaged daughter slowed dramatically and she developed seizures and other health problems that continue to this day.

Che Guevara

Morocco Riots Leave Five Dead

Demonstrators in Casablanca
© Chafik/AFP/Getty Images
Demonstrators in Casablanca on Sunday. More than 37,000 demonstrated across Morocco, according to interior ministry figures.
Sporadic outbursts of violence have continued in Morocco after Sunday's peaceful pro-democracy protests gave way to rioting, with five people killed in a fire at a bank in the northern port of Al Hoceima.

Interior ministry figures showed that the protests were far more extensive than first thought, with nearly 40,000 people turning out in 57 towns and cities.

Protest organisers condemned the rioting and looting that followed the demonstrations, blaming it on thugs and football hooligans returning from matches.

While the mostly middle-class pro-democracy protesters had pledged to remain peaceful, there were warnings before the marches that the real tinderbox in Morocco lay in the poverty-stricken outer suburbs of the cities, where many of Sunday's rioters are thought to live.

Outbreaks of violence continued on Monday in Fes, with at least three people injured, according to Morocco's Atlantic Radio.