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September 5, 2013 (San Diego's East County) --ECM World Watch helps you be an informed citizen about important issues globally and nationally. As part of our commitment to reflect all voices and views, we include links to a wide variety of news sources representing a broad spectrum of political, religious, and social views. Top world and U.S. headlines include:



For excerpts and full stories, click "read more" and scroll down.



Prospects for Syira resolution dim in House (Washington Post)

Congress took the first formal step toward approving military action in Syria on Wednesday, with the Senate Foreign Relations Committee’s 10-7 vote to send its resolution to the full chamber. But whether or not the resolution winds up passing in the Senate, the real hurdle remains in the GOP-controlled House. And things on that front are looking progressively dimmer for the Obama administration.

U.S. private sectors adds 176,000 jobs; jobless claims fall (Reuters)

U.S. private employers added 176,000 jobs in August and new claims for jobless benefits fell last week, which could bolster expectations the U.S. Federal Reserve will begin winding down a bond-buying stimulus program this month.

Edward Snowden leaks again: five takeaways from the 'black budget'

(CS Monitor) -- The latest Edward Snowden leak reveals that the CIA claims the lion's share of the $52.6 billion classified 'black budget' that the US spent on its intelligence agencies in 2013, topping the NSA.

Navy: Training, testing may kill whales, dolphins

Navy training and testing could inadvertently kill hundreds of whales and dolphins and injure thousands over the next five years, mostly as a result of detonating explosives underwater, according to two environmental impact statements released by the military Friday.

Obama administration extends veterans’ benefits to same-sex couples (Washington Post)

…The move represents another Obama administration response to the Supreme Court decision this year that overturned a key provision of the Defense of Marriage Act. In recent months, the Pentagon and the Office of Personnel Management said they would treat gay marriages equal to opposite-sex marriages for purposes of federal benefits, while the Internal Revenue Service said the same last week in regard to tax treatment.


Fukushima: Japan plans to corral radioactive water behind frozen dam (CS Monitor)

Japan plans to surround the stricken Fukushima nuclear plant with a massive underground wall of frozen soil, thereby preventing contaminated groundwater from flowing into the sea.

What’s the evidence of Syrian chemical weapons attack? (CNN)

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry calls it proof "beyond any reasonable doubt." Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel says it's "very clear." President Barack Obama says the United States has "high confidence" that Syria used chemical weapons -- the strongest position the U.S. can take short of confirmation. Britain, France, and Germany say their intelligence backs up the same conclusion. But despite all the talk about conclusive intelligence, questions remain.

5 Years After Being Covered With Water, Chinese Village Emerges (NPR)

A powerful earthquake completely flooded their village in 2008 — but thanks to a steep drop in the water level, former residents of Xuanping are returning to look at homes, businesses, and their old school.

Obama arrives in Russia for G-20 summit (Huffington Post)

President Barack Obama is heading into the lion's den of Russia, confronting Syria's key patron as well as foreign leaders skeptical of his call for an international military strike against Bashar Assad's government.

Angry teachers paralyze Mexico City with protests (AP)

 This sprawling metropolis of honking cars and 22 million harried people has been brought to its knees, not by an earthquake or its ominous smoking volcanoes, but rather a small contingent of angry school teachers. Some 10,000 educators protesting a government reform program have in the span of a week disrupted international air travel, forced the cancellation of two major soccer matches, rerouted the planned route of the marathon and jammed up already traffic-choked freeways.

Skyscraper melting cars: How a London building is creating a flaming death ray (CS Monitor)

Skyscraper melting cars: A new skyscraper in London's financial center is melting parts of cars and setting carpets on fire, locals report. 

Indian `dowry deaths’ still rising despite modernization (Los Angeles Times)

Crime statistics and a Gender Scorecard compiled by women's rights activists have put chilling new perspective on an age-old social ill in India: Bride-burning and other "dowry crimes" take the life of a woman every hour.

Another 'Grand Canyon' Discovered Beneath Greenland's Ice

(NPR) -- Greenland is covered in an ice layer that's up to 2 miles thick. But below the ice, there's a vast terrain of bedrock. Now scientists have found a mega-canyon there, twice the size of the one in Arizona. The hidden canyon is drawing oohs and aahs from scientists around the world.

Facebook says governments in 74 countries have asked for user data (CS Monitor)

… According to Facebook, between Jan. 1 and June 30, government groups in more than 70 countries – including the the UK, Germany, and Australia – asked for information on users. In the United States alone, for instance, officials placed between 11,000 and 12,000 requests on 20,000 to 21,000 users. Facebook provided "some" data in response to 79 percent of those requests. 

Beijing’s drastic new anti-pollution rules aim to clean up the air (Mother Jones)

The air quality in Beijing has grown so bad that it's begun to produce its own catch-22s. All that smog is starting to keep tourists away, but tourism is just the kind of less energy-intensive industry that China needs to develop.

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