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Showing posts from September 25, 2013


Qassem Suleimani is the Iranian operative who has been reshaping the Middle East. Now he’s directing Assad’s war in Syria.


SEPTEMBER 30, 2013

A former C.I.A. officer calls Suleimani, the head of Iran’s Quds Force, the “most powerful operative in the Middle East today.” Illustration by Krzysztof Domaradzki.

Last February, some of Iran’s most influential leaders gathered at the Amir al-Momenin Mosque, in northeast Tehran, inside a gated community reserved for officers of the Revolutionary Guard. 

They had come to pay their last respects to a fallen comrade. Hassan Shateri, a veteran of Iran’s covert wars throughout the Middle East and South Asia, was a senior commander in a powerful, élite branch of the Revolutionary Guard called the Quds Force. 

The force is the sharp instrument of Iranian foreign policy, roughly analogous to a combined C.I.A. and Special Forces; its name comes from the Persian word for Jerusalem, which its fighters have promised to libe…

Oracle Team USA caps stunning comeback to win America's Cup

The crew on Oracle Team USA celebrates after winning the 19th race against Emirates Team New Zealand to win the America's Cup sailing event, Wednesday, Sept. 25, 2013, in San Francisco. / AP PHOTO/MARCIO JOSE SANCHEZ


Skipper Jimmy Spithill and Oracle Team USA won the America's Cup on Wednesday with one of the greatest comebacks in sports history.

Spithill steered Oracle's space-age, 72-foot catamaran to its eighth straight victory, speeding past Dean Barker and Emirates Team New Zealand in the winner-take-all Race 19 on San Francisco Bay to keep the oldest trophy in international sports in the United States.

Near collision in America's Cup

Turning America's Cup into NASCAR on water

Watch: Man goes overboard at America's Cup

Most high-tech sailboats ever made could also be most dangerous

All but defeated a week ago, the 34-year-old Australian and his international crew twice rallied from seven-point deficits to win 9…

After Comeback for the Ages, a Last Dash for America’s Cup

Jim Wilson/The New York Times

Oracle Team USA, once way behind, has tied the series to force a winner-take-all race on Wednesday.

Published: September 24, 2013

SAN FRANCISCO — The America’s Cup has produced no shortage of strange scenes in its 162 years. There have been capsizings, shattered masts and shattered spirits, but it has never produced a reversal of fortune quite like this year.


Interactive Feature
Racing Above Water


Extended America’s Cup Leaves Some High, Dry and Homeless(September 25, 2013)

Oracle Team USA Now Has the Wind at Its Back (September 24, 2013)

Josh Edelson/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

Oracle Team USA, bankrolled by the billionaire Larry Ellison, has surged back from an 8-1 deficit to tie Emirates Team New Zealand.

A week ago, the defender of the trophy, Oracle Team USA, bankrolled by the American billionaire Larry Ellison, trailed by eight races to one and was just one defeat from losing the most prestigious prize in yachti…

LEADERSHIP : Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos Had his Top Execs Read these Three Books

September 25, 2013

At the beginning of the week I flew up to Seattle for a rare on-camera interview with Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos for CNBC. (You can view the full interview here.

The occasion: He's unveiling Amazon's newest line of Kindle Fire tablets, including the new Fire HD at $139, and the Fire HDX at $229 and $379.

As usual with this kind of sit-down with a singular character like Bezos, some of the most fun moments came outside of the obvious news. As we sat down and got wired up for the interview, for example, the sound technician was trying to get people in the hallway to quiet down. Bezos joked that he's the last person who can complain, since he's so... expressive himself.

It got to the point, he said, where growing up his brother and sister refused to go to the movies with him. "They said I laughed too loud," he told me. "I can't help it."

The guy's got plenty to be happy about. Amazon stock has been on a tear this year, up about 22%,…

USA : New debt limit deadline is Oct. 17

By Lori Montgomery

Wednesday, September 25, 9:16 AM 

Treasury Secretary Jack Lew warrned congressional leaders Wednesday that he will exhaust emergency borrowing measures “no later than Oct. 17,” leaving him with less than $30 billion on hand to pay the nation’s bills.

In a letter sent to all members of Congress, Lew urged immediate action to raise the federal debt limit, which now stands at $16.7 trillion. Without additional borrowing authority, Lew warned that cash on hand “would be far short of net expenditures on certain days, which can be as high as $60 billion.

“If we have insufficient cash on hand,”
the letter said, “it would be impossible for the United States of America to meet all of its obligations for the first time in our history.”

The letter comes a week after Treasury closed the books on the most recent round of quarterly corporate and individual income tax receipts, which Lew previously warned were running a bit behind expectations. It marks the first time Lew has given l…

This Map Shows Where You're Most Likely To Die From Air Pollution


SEP. 24, 2013, 3:52 PM 

A toxic type of outdoor air pollution, known as fine particulate matter (PM 2.5), causes 2.1 million deaths worldwide each year, according to a July study led by University of North Carolina earth scientist Jason West.

The researchers measured human-caused air pollution around the world based on the difference in pollution levels between 1850 and 2000.

Now NASA has published a map, based on the results, that estimates the average number of deaths per 386 square miles per year due to air pollution.

Blue areas have experienced an improvement in air quality relative to 1850, and the dark brown areas have seen the most premature deaths.

NASA notes that the effect of air pollution can be seen "all areas where urbanization has added considerable quantities of PM2.5 to the atmosphere since the start of the Industrial Revolution."

Check it out:


Jason West, et. al.

The map informs extreme smog events, which are caused by short-term weather events me…



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