The Two Way

The Two-Way
11:18 am
Mon October 7, 2013

MIT Scientists Develop New Breed Of Self-Assembling Robots

M-Block cube robots rest on a work table in the Distributed Robotics Lab in CSAIL at MIT in Cambridge, Mass. The robots are 50mm cubes that can reconfigure themselves into various arrangements using self-propulsion and magnets.
M. Scott Brauer MIT

Originally published on Tue October 8, 2013 9:49 am

They're called M-Blocks and the tiny, cubical robots that can spin, flip and jump their way into new configurations are the brainchild of scientists at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

According to MIT's Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL), M-Blocks:

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The Two-Way
9:52 am
Mon October 7, 2013

Rabbi Ovadia Yosef, A 'Kingmaker' In Israeli Politics, Dies

Followers of Rabbi Ovadia Yosef mourn outside his home in Jerusalem on Monday. The rabbi, who transformed his downtrodden community into a powerful force in Israeli politics, died at age 93.
Sebastian Scheiner AP

Originally published on Sat October 12, 2013 9:49 am

Israel is mourning a legendary political and spiritual figure, after Rabbi Ovadia Yosef died in Jerusalem on Monday. He was 93.

The longtime spiritual leader of Sephardic Jews, Yosef also was a founder of Shas, the ultra-Orthodox political party that has played crucial roles in governing coalitions. The daily Haaretz called him a "kingmaker of Israeli politics and Jewish law."

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The Two-Way
9:48 am
Mon October 7, 2013

In Blow To Boeing, JAL Places Nearly $10 Billion Airbus Order

An Airbus A350-900 takes off from an airport in Toulouse, France, on its maiden flight. Japan Airlines reportedly has ordered 18 A350-900s and 13 A350-1000s.
AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon October 7, 2013 4:02 pm

Japan Airlines is buying $9.5 billion worth of new jetliners from Airbus, placing its first-ever order with the European plane-maker for 31 A350s to replace the carrier's aging fleet of Boeing 777s.

The airline's president, Yoshiharu Ueki, said the order was unrelated to Boeing's problems with the 787, but the huge order is seen as a major coup for the Toulouse, France-based manufacturer at the expense of its American rival.

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The Two-Way
8:49 am
Mon October 7, 2013

No End In Sight: Shutdown Showdown Enters Week 2

Texas Republican Sen. John Cornyn speaks on CBS's Face the Nation on Sunday. Cornyn said the partial federal government shutdown cannot end unless President Obama sits down with congressional Republicans.
Chris Usher AP

Originally published on Mon October 7, 2013 12:26 pm

The second week of the shutdown is, so far, looking a lot like Week 1. Even so, here are a few data points that might be worth your attention:

U.S. civilian defense workers heading back to work on Monday

As The Two-Way's Bill Chappell reported earlier, the Department of Defense is ordering most of its furloughed civilian employees — amounting to about 400,000 workers — back to work.

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The Two-Way
7:34 am
Mon October 7, 2013

U.S. Raids In Libya And Somalia Target Al-Qaida Network

This image from the FBI website shows Abu Anas al-Libi, who was captured in a U.S. operation on Saturday in Libya.
AP

Originally published on Mon October 7, 2013 2:00 pm

More details are emerging after a pair of U.S. commando raids over the weekend that targeted alleged terrorists in Libya and Somalia.

In Libya, Abu Anas al-Libi, a top al-Qaida operative accused by Washington of involvement in the 1998 bombings of U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania, was snatched from a street in the capital, Tripoli, in an operation on Saturday.

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The Two-Way
7:23 am
Mon October 7, 2013

Book News: Novel By Michael Hastings To Be Published Posthumously

Michael Hastings, who wrote a candid profile of Gen. Stanley McChrystal for Rolling Stone, died in June in a car crash in Los Angeles. He was 33.
Paul Morigi Getty Images for The Guardian

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

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The Two-Way
6:27 am
Mon October 7, 2013

Researchers From U.S., Germany, Share Nobel Prize For Medicine

Originally published on Mon October 7, 2013 2:42 pm

Two Americans, James Rothman and Randy Schekman, and German-born researcher Thomas Südhof have won the 2013 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for "solving the mystery of how the cell organizes its transport system," according to the Nobel committee.

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The Two-Way
10:28 pm
Sun October 6, 2013

Target Of U.S. Raid In Somalia Called A Top Attack Planner

Originally published on Mon October 7, 2013 12:53 pm

A Kenyan intelligence official says that the "high-value terrorist leader" whose residence was targeted in a Navy SEAL raid Saturday was the senior al-Shabab leader Abdikadir Mohamed Abdikadir, who used the alias Ikrima.

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The Two-Way
4:52 pm
Sun October 6, 2013

Monster Truck Crash Kills Eight At Outdoor Event In Mexico

People in a crowd flee as an out-of-control monster truck plows through spectators at a Mexican air show in the city of Chihuahua Saturday. Officials say they are investigating the incident, in which eight people died.
AP

Originally published on Mon October 7, 2013 9:00 am

Three days of mourning have been declared in Chihuahua, Mexico, where at least eight people were killed by an out-of-control monster truck this weekend. A crowd had gathered to watch the truck at an outdoor arena that lacked any visible barriers.

From Mexico, James Blears reports for our Newscast unit that the truck went from crushing cars to plunging into a crowd of spectators, leaving eight dead and dozens more injured:

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The Two-Way
3:47 pm
Sun October 6, 2013

Boehner And Cruz, And Lew Too: Voices On The Shutdown

On the sixth day of a federal government shutdown that has barricaded national parks and attractions, tourists take photos at the World World II Memorial in Washington Sunday.
Mandel Ngan AFP/Getty Images

With a government shutdown nearing its second week, there were no signs of a new deal in Washington Sunday. But several leaders are speaking out about the impasse, even as they look ahead to the next battle: an Oct. 17 deadline to raise the U.S. debt ceiling.

When House Speaker John Boehner was asked on ABC's This Week about the possibility that he might present a "clean" funding bill that doesn't attack the new health care system in the Affordable Care Act, the Ohio Republican said there was no point.

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The Two-Way
12:11 pm
Sun October 6, 2013

School Pulls All-Beef Burgers From Menu, Citing Complaints

Advocates for healthy food in Virginia schools have met a reversal, after cafeterias changed back to hamburgers with additives due to students' complaints. The schools had been serving all-beef burgers such as these, being grilled at a farmer's market.
Paul J. Richards AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sun October 6, 2013 2:21 pm

Students in a Virginia school system are now eating hamburgers with additives in them, after officials heeded their complaints about the appearance and taste of the all-beef burgers it had been serving. The burgers that are now being served include a reported 26 ingredients.

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The Two-Way
10:36 am
Sun October 6, 2013

The Votes Are In: Sandy Hook Elementary Will Be Torn Down

Voters in Newtown, Conn., have approved a plan to use nearly $50 million in state funds to demolish Sandy Hook Elementary and build a new school in its place. This photo provided by Craig Hoekenga shows his son Trey, a kindergarten student at Sandy Hook, on the school bus this year. The window has a quote from the late principal, Dawn Hochsprung, who was killed in last December's mass shooting.
Craig Hoekenga AP

Originally published on Sun October 6, 2013 2:23 pm

In a referendum marked by a large turnout and an emphatic result, the people of Newtown, Conn., have voted to demolish Sandy Hook Elementary and build a new school. Sandy Hook was the scene of a mass shooting last December, when 20 children and six staff members were killed.

Saturday's vote asked citizens to decide whether to take nearly $50 million in state money to fund the demolition of Sandy Hook and the planning and construction of a new school on essentially the same site.

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The Two-Way
9:51 am
Sun October 6, 2013

Iran Says It Has Arrested 4 In Nuclear Sabotage Plot

Iran's Ali Akbar Salehi, who heads the country's Atomic Energy Organization, says four saboteurs have been arrested and are being interrogated.
Alexander Klein AFP/Getty Images

Iran has arrested four people who it says were intent on sabotaging facilities in its nuclear program. The head of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran says the four are now being questioned.

"Some time ago, a number of people were arrested in one of the (nuclear) facilities when they were involved in planning activities," Ali Akbar Salehi said Sunday, according to Iran's state-run Tasnim News Agency.

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The Two-Way
9:22 am
Sun October 6, 2013

Suicide Bombers In Iraq Kill Students At Elementary School

Originally published on Sun October 6, 2013 2:29 pm

Suicide car bombers carried out a deadly strike on a school and a police station near Tel Afar, a small town in northeastern Iraq, Sunday. At least 12 students and their principal died in the attack on an elementary school, according to reports.

Part of the school building is believed to have collapsed as a result of the blast. The suicide bombing at the town's police station reportedly did not cause further casualties.

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The Two-Way
8:32 am
Sun October 6, 2013

Destruction Of Syria's Chemical Weapons System Begins

United Nations vehicles leave a Damascus hotel last week. The team of international disarmament experts began to dismantle Syria's chemical weapons production facilities on Sunday.
Louai Beshara AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sun October 6, 2013 10:09 am

In Syria, a team of international weapons experts has begun the process of destroying the country's chemical weapons arsenal.

"The inspectors used sledgehammers and explosives to begin the work," NPR's Deborah Amos reports for our Newscast unit. "They are on a tight deadline to destroy more than 1,000 tons of nerve gas and banned weapons within a year."

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The Two-Way
7:52 am
Sun October 6, 2013

Karen Stalls In Gulf; Maximum Winds Fall To 30 MPH

A GOES satellite handout photo provided by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration shows Tropical Storm Karen churning in the Gulf of Mexico on Saturday afternoon. Karen, the second named storm to hit the U.S. this hurricane season, has weakened into a tropical depression.
NOAA Getty Images

Originally published on Sun October 6, 2013 9:50 am

Karen, once feared to hit the U.S. Gulf Coast as a hurricane, has stalled out and weakened into a tropical depression. The National Weather Service says the storm is "drifting" at 2 mph, moving toward Louisiana's southeastern edge. As of early Sunday morning, it was about 165 miles west-southwest of the mouth of the Mississippi River.

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The Two-Way
4:33 am
Sun October 6, 2013

U.S. Captures Al-Qaida Leader After Raids In Libya And Somalia

Abu Anas al-Libi, wanted in the 1998 bombings of two U.S. embassies that killed more than 200 people, reportedly has been captured in Libya.
FBI EPA /LANDOV

Originally published on Sun October 6, 2013 12:37 pm

U.S. forces carried out two commando raids on suspected terrorist in Northern Africa Saturday.

In Libya, an al-Qaida leader indicted in the United States for the 1998 attacks on two U.S. embassies in East Africa was captured in a daytime military raid. U.S. special forces captured the militant, known as Abu Anas al-Libi, near Tripoli.

Update at 12:15 p.m ET: Libya Asks U.S. About 'Kidnapping'

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The Two-Way
5:26 pm
Sat October 5, 2013

Navy SEAL Team Reportedly Attacks Militants On Somali Coast

Originally published on Sat October 5, 2013 8:50 pm

(Updated 8:50 p.m. ET)

A force that struck foreign fighters in Somalia early Saturday included members of a U.S. Navy SEAL team, according to reports. The team targeted a senior leader of the militant group al-Shabab, but there were conflicting reports about that man's fate.

The New York Times reported Saturday night:

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The Two-Way
2:55 pm
Sat October 5, 2013

Pentagon Recalls 'Most' Furloughed Civilian Workers

Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel issued a statement announcing the recall of "most DoD civilians" who were put on furlough by the government shutdown.
Jacquelyn Martin AP

The Department of Defense is ordering most of its furloughed civilian employees back to work, in a move announced just after midday Saturday. The plan will put hundreds of thousands of workers back on the job next week.

"Today, I am announcing that most DoD civilians placed on emergency furlough during the government shutdown will be asked to return to work beginning next week," Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said in a statement.

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The Two-Way
1:44 pm
Sat October 5, 2013

Pirate Joe's Celebrates Dismissal Of Trader Joe's Lawsuit

"I bought the stuff at full retail. I own it," says Michael Hallatt, owner of the _irate Joe's grocery in Vancouver. Trader Joe's federal lawsuit against his business was dismissed this week.
_irate Joe's

Originally published on Sat October 5, 2013 3:32 pm

Pirate Joe's, the grocery store that made waves — and attracted a lawsuit — for selling Trader Joe's items in Canada, has won a battle in its legal fight with the supermarket chain. A U.S. district court judge has granted the Vancouver store's motion to dismiss a trademark infringement lawsuit.

After the lawsuit was filed, Pirate Joe's took on the name _Irate Joe's. The store's owner, Mike Hallatt, says he began his enterprise on a small scale last year, driving groceries across the border from Washington State to Vancouver. Trader Joe's does not operate any stores in Canada.

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The Two-Way
12:07 pm
Sat October 5, 2013

Man Who Set Fire To Himself On On National Mall Reportedly Dies

Police investigate the scene after a man set himself ablaze on the National Mall's lawn Friday afternoon in Washington, DC. The man did not survive his injuries, according to reports.
Win McNamee Getty Images

Originally published on Sat October 5, 2013 3:15 pm

The man who set himself on fire on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., Friday has died of his injuries, according to a police spokesman cited by the AP. The man reportedly used gasoline to commit the act, which drew attempts from passers-by to extinguish the flames.

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The Two-Way
11:43 am
Sat October 5, 2013

House Passes Bill Allowing Back Pay For Furloughed Workers

Furloughed federal workers demonstrate in Washington earlier this week. Hundreds of thousands of government employees can't work as long as the House of Representatives and Senate remain gridlocked.
Win McNamee Getty Images

Originally published on Sat October 5, 2013 3:58 pm

Federal workers who were furloughed by a government shutdown will receive back pay once they return to work, if a bill approved by the House of Representatives Saturday meets Senate approval. The White House has said it favors such a move.

The vote came after the U.S. government began the fifth day of a shutdown that has put 800,000 people out of work. The bill was approved without a vote against it. The Senate is expected to hold its own Saturday session that begins at midday.

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The Two-Way
11:26 am
Sat October 5, 2013

Obama: Shutdown Could Be Over By Now (Interview Highlights)

President Obama told The Associated Press Friday that the House has enough votes to end the federal government shutdown.
Getty Images

Originally published on Sat October 5, 2013 11:45 am

The federal shutdown that has idled some 800,000 government workers could be over by now — if members of Congress were able to vote on a bill that doesn't include an attack on the new U.S. health care system, President Obama says. "There are enough votes in the House of Representatives to make sure that the government reopens today," he told The Associated Press Friday.

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The Two-Way
10:39 am
Sat October 5, 2013

Storm Brings Blizzard To Wyoming And South Dakota

As snow fell in Rapid City, S.D., Friday Brenda Nolting took groceries to her car. An early snow storm swept through Wyoming and western South Dakota, dropping more than two fee of snow in some areas.
Steve McEnroe AP

Originally published on Sat October 5, 2013 4:15 pm

More than two feet of snow has crippled roadways in western South Dakota, the worst-hit target of a storm that brought snow to Wyoming and tornadoes to Nebraska Friday. Heavy snowfall and low visibility have combined to cause crashes and shut down roads.

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