April 20, 2014 |
WASHINGTON - The fragile diplomatic accord to resolve the Ukraine crisis frayed Sunday as an armed clash erupted in eastern Ukraine and top Russian and Ukrainian officials, appearing on television talk shows, each demanded the other side lay down its weapons. Russia's ambassador to the United States, Sergey Kislyak, said a gunfight early Easter morning that left at least three people dead at a checkpoint outside the eastern Ukrainian city of Slovyansk showed the need for all sides to disarm.
April 16, 2014 |
MOSCOW - Russia's economy has been hit hard by the turmoil in neighboring Ukraine, Kremlin officials said Wednesday, as pro-Russia separatists battled to take over more territory in Ukraine's east - and potentially add to Moscow's economic burden. Russia's annexation of Ukraine's Crimea region last month and the instability it created in Russian financial markets were cited by government officials for record capital flight and sharply downgraded growth forecasts for the country. Finance Minister Anton Siluanov said that instead of projected 2.5% growth this year, Russia's economy might show no growth at all. Russia's economic slide has accelerated since a rebellion in Ukraine ousted President Viktor Yanukovich, a Kremlin ally, in late February.
April 16, 2014 |
The vast majority of Californians believe, unsurprisingly, that the state is in the throes of a serious water crisis. But many disagree about what can be done about it. About 54% of Golden State voters believe farmers could cut down on their water with no real hardship by changing crops and being more efficient, according to the latest Field Poll. Separately, two-thirds said they support voluntary water rationing, while only 27% favored mandatory cuts in water use. Opinions also were divided when people assigned blame for the drought.
April 14, 2014 |
JOHANNESBURG, South Africa -- Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan blamed Boko Haram for an explosion that killed scores of people Monday at a bus station outside the capital, Abuja, calling the Islamic militant group an “unnecessary distraction” and a temporary problem. Jonathan, whose leadership has been under intense pressure over his failure to curb the rebellion of Boko Haram in the north of the country, called on Nigerians to be more vigilant about terror attacks. Police confirmed that at least 71 people were killed and 124 injured in the early morning blast.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 14, 2014 |
I figured that teachers wouldn't let me off easy - even though my Saturday column took their side. I wrote about the recent classroom scuffle between a teacher and student at Santa Monica High, defending the teacher and listing the forces that make teaching so hard - including spineless administrators and unruly students. Still, many of the teachers I heard from last weekend had the same indignant response: What about the parents? If parents raised their children right, we wouldn't have problems on campus.
April 12, 2014 |
BEIRUT - Each side in the Syrian conflict blamed the other Saturday for an alleged poison gas attack that reportedly injured scores of civilians in the central province of Hama. There was no independent confirmation of a chemical strike, which reportedly hit the village of Kfar Zeita, an agricultural center northwest of the provincial capital, Hama. Fierce clashes between rebel and loyalist forces have been reported in the area. Various pro-opposition accounts said a government air raid Friday in Kfar Zeita included bombardment with an unspecified chemical agent, causing choking and suffocation among scores of residents.