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April 24, 2011 | By Ned Parker, Los Angeles Times
Rebel fighters drove Moammar Kadafi's loyalist forces from all but one base in Misurata on Saturday and appeared to be on the verge of expelling all government troops from the besieged port city. After furious street fighting, Kadafi's forces abandoned a college and a vegetable market that had been hubs for shelling the city. At least 24 rebel fighters were killed and 70 wounded, doctors at Misurata's Hikma hospital said. But even if rebels push all Kadafi fighters from the city, Misurata would remain surrounded by the Libyan leader's security units.
April 17, 2011 | Cathryn Delude, Delude is a special correspondent
Time may heal all wounds, but the scars that remain can be unsightly, itchy, stiff and painful. Pharmacy aisles beckon with "clinically proven, doctor-recommended" scar products, and the Internet teems with anecdotes of different creams and elixirs that supposedly erase old scars or prevent new ones from forming. But not all of those claims stick. "There are a thousand wives' tales and a whole bunch of things you can buy, but none have scientific validity to speak of," says Dr. Terence Davidson, a professor of surgery at UC San Diego School of Medicine.
March 12, 2011 | By Borzou Daragahi, Los Angeles Times
The shot-up ambulances at this oil town's hospital attest to a battle in which normal rules of engagement did not apply. The burnt-out carcasses of vehicles show the ferocity of the combat between Libyan rebels and Moammar Kadafi's forces. The pro-Kadafi soldiers manning checkpoints and waving green flags illustrated the authority the Libyan regime has reasserted over this strategic oil refinery city on the Mediterranean Sea coast. In a bold assertion of confidence, Libyan authorities loaded dozens of foreign and local journalists onto a plane and flew them hundreds of miles east to battle-scarred towns Bin Jawwad and Ras Lanuf , which only days ago were under the control of forces loyal to the rebel interim government.
December 28, 2010 | By Mark Magnier, Los Angeles Times
The scrubbing, cooking and sweeping started as early as 3 a.m. When the landlord's children awoke hours later, the 9-year-old girl got them ready for a school she could only dream of attending. Afternoons and evenings were spent cutting hay and tending animals. Around 10 p.m., she'd collapse for a few hours before starting again, seven days a week. It must be my fate, she thought, a feeling eventually replaced by anger and bitterness. Every January or February she'd see her family for a week, only to watch her father "sell" her back into another year of drudgery for a mere $25. Although some of her friends spent most of their childhood this way, she was lucky: A civic group persuaded her parents to end the arrangement after three years.
December 23, 2010 | By Jeffrey Fleishman, Los Angeles Times
Victor Ladu drops his crutches in the dirt and sits with his one leg folded beneath him. He looks like a dark bird perched for flight. He brushes dust from the right cuff folded high at the knee. It's a hot afternoon. Women balance water buckets on their heads and soldiers, so young, almost like boys, wander through the grass in lazy patrols. They may have to fight one day, but for now they stroll with their guns, lighting trash fires along the road near the new schoolhouse and clinic.
November 27, 2010 | Bill Plaschke
It was a touchdown. Then, it wasn't. These are still the same old Trojans. No, they aren't. In a rainy Saturday night mist, USC's forbidden autumn found itself on the fingertips of receiver Ronald Johnson, 15 yards from a game-winning score, nothing between him and the end zone but deep green grass and red Trojans paint. The defender had slipped. The pass had not. Johnson swiveled to make the glorious catch and complete the glorious run and . . . he dropped it. USC had a chance to win its ninth consecutive game against Notre Dame, and it dropped the ball.
October 16, 2010 | Bill Plaschke
The Coliseum was dead. The Cal Bears were dregs. The USC season plowed past its halfway point Saturday finally in the throes of a probation hangover that left one thinking about the final six games and wondering, why? Then lucky little 13 showed up again, helmet flying, pads quaking, scoreboard blinking. Robert Woods is why. Robert Woods is one reason the rest of this USC season matters, the next great Trojans playmaker straightening out those weary shrugs and jolting those sad smiles.
October 7, 2010 | By Michael OrdoƱa
The 3D, ultra-derivative, torture-porn extravaganza "Scar" was available for review only in 2D, so only one eyeful of its worthlessness is captured here. The depth of its depravity, though, is clear. In the latest excuse to exhibit beautiful girls being slowly mutilated, a woman (Angela Bettis) who survived such treatment at the hands of a serial killer returns to her hometown, the scene of the crime, years later. Lo and behold, copycat murders ensue. The killer captures two victims and slices and dices one until he or she tells him to kill the other victim.
August 23, 2010 | By Robert Lloyd, Los Angeles Times Television Critic
In "If God Is Willing and Da Creek Don't Rise," airing Monday and Tuesday on HBO, Spike Lee returns to New Orleans, the scene of his post-Katrina documentary "When the Levees Broke" to assess what might be called the damage being done by the recovery. He also assesses the actual recovery, the illusory recovery, the psychological recovery, and the assault on the recovery that is the BP oil spill — an unfortunate and unavoidable late addition that, though not specifically related to Katrina or the following flood, fits his larger themes of class war and bad luck and enlarges his portrait of a land that can seem beleaguered by God or cursed through voodoo but which most definitely shows the scars of human mismanagement, corruption and greed.
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