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US vows to pay relatives of Afghans killed in botched Kabul airstrike

The US military on Friday said it plans to compensate the relatives of the 10 civilians -- including seven children -- killed in a botched airstrike in Kabul, Afghanistan in August.
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Marcell Ozuna was choking wife as cops burst in, police video shows
The Braves outfielder was arrested on May 29 in Sandy Springs, Ga., a suburb of Atlanta, and charged with two counts of domestic battery.
Christian television network founder and preacher Marcus Lamb, who discouraged vaccinations, dies after being hospitalized for Covid-19
Prominent Christian televangelist and anti-vaccine advocate Marcus Lamb died after being hospitalized with Covid-19, his family announced Tuesday.
Gisele Bündchen pumps the breaks on Tom Brady’s Michigan plan for son
With Michigan football’s win over Ohio State on Saturday, former Wolverine Tom Brady started fantasizing about his family’s potential future. Tom Brady after Super Bowl 2021 with daughter Vivian (left), son Jack (top left), wife Gisele Bündchen (top right), and son Benjamin (right). The Buccaneers quarterback, who was at the University of Michigan from 1995...
Bring joy to your loved ones with a delicious gift from Harry & David this holiday season
Throughout the holidays, the memories you make with the people you love most are ones that will last forever. Memories made during big celebrations, family dinners and other special gatherings are made that much sweeter when filled with all the delicious treats that come with the start of the holiday and winter season. From decadent chocolates, to flavorful fruits and gorgeous charcuterie spreads, Harry & David gourmet gifts offers all the treats you could possibly need to sweeten all the memories you'll be making this holiday season.
1983 AL Cy Young Award winner LaMarr Hoyt dies at 66
LaMarr Hoyt, who won the 1983 AL Cy Young Award with the Chicago White Sox, has died. He was 66.
Microsoft shareholders vote to force company to better report sexual harassment data
Microsoft Corp. shareholders voted to force the company to more transparently address sexual harassment claims via independent investigations and public reporting.
‘Girls Trip’ Tracy Oliver: ‘The studio didn’t know if it would succeed’
"Girls Trip" writer Tracy Oliver talks about that movie's success and how it changed her career, the sequel, and impacted her new Amazon series "Harlem."
Jussie Smollett Initially Uncooperative, Upset Camera Didn't Record Attack: Detective
Smollett reported in January 2019 that he was the victim of a racist and homophobic attack in downtown Chicago, but prosecutors allege he staged the assault.
Fake Biologist Behind Post Claiming U.S. Scientists Told to Blame COVID on China: Facebook
Wilson Edwards regularly posted that U.S. officials were using "enormous pressure and even intimidation" to get scientists to blame China for COVID-19.
CNN's Toobin slammed for his own personal life after saying Wednesday was 'disaster' for abortion supporters
CNN legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin came under fire over his personal life after posting a tweet warning that Wednesday’s Supreme Court arguments over Roe v. Wade were a “disaster” for abortion supporters.
Harris condemns Russian test of anti-satellite weapon at Biden administration's first space council meeting
Leaders from all corners of the US government condemned Russia's recent test of an anti-satellite weapon on Wednesday at the inaugural meeting of the National Space Council under the Biden administration, calling for accelerating the development of rules and norms in space.
Fantasy football rankings for Week 13: Vikings' offensive recipe changes with no Dalvin Cook
Several top running backs are dealing with injuries this week, forcing fantasy managers to explore other options.
TikTok Trend Garners Newfound Attention After Police Involvement
Police are worried that community members might mistake the prank for a home invasion and "cause harm and fatalities."
Maxwell accuser cries on stand when asked about $2.9M Epstein payout
The first alleged victim to testify against Ghislaine Maxwell at her sex-trafficking trial cried Wednesday when she was asked about receiving $2.9 million from a Jeffrey Esptein victim compensation fund.
Stacey Abrams announces candidacy in Georgia governor's race
Stacey Abrams, who rose to national prominence in 2018, hopes to give Democrats a long-awaited victory in the key battleground state.
Sandra Bullock says 2014 home invasion left her with severe PTSD
The intruder was eventually arrested at Bullock's home while she was there. She said on "Red Table Talk" that she hasn’t “been alone since the day” of the invasion.
Connecticut university asks physical therapy professor applicants to advocate for 'anti-racist policies'
The University of Connecticut is asking applicants for an assistant therapy professor position to consider contributing to the dismantling of "structural racism" and advocating for "anti-racist policies."
Army-Navy at Meadowlands, with 20th anniversary of 9-11
As coaches and players from Army and Navy walked into MetLife Stadium on Wednesday, the backdrop was the skyline of New York City.
Biden and Harris pare Hanukkah down with late menorah lighting
President Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris were scheduled to hold a menorah lighting ceremony at the White House Wednesday evening -- four days after the holiday began.
PM Update: Scattered showers tonight ahead of a warmer Thursday
Very little rain falls, where it does. We're in the 60s tomorrow.
Northern Ireland collective wins the prestigious Turner Prize for art
A collective from Belfast won the prestigious U.K. prize. Prize organizers said the work tackles "urgent social and political issues affecting Northern Ireland with humor, seriousness and beauty."
Comedian Kathy Griffin revels in being 'cancer free' and 'uncanceled'
On Tuesday's 'Jimmy Kimmel Live,' Kathy Griffin said her cancer was gone and she celebrated being 'an actress again' after her 2017 Trump photo scandal.
Powerball Drawing For 12/01/21, Wednesday Jackpot is $264 Million
Wednesday night's 12/01/21 Powerball jackpot is worth $264 million, with a cash-value option worth $186.7 million.
Elizabeth Holmes testifies she reached out to Rupert Murdoch to try to kill a damning Wall Street Journal story
When Elizabeth Holmes got wind that then-Wall Street Journal reporter John Carreyrou was working on a damning expose that would publish in October 2015 about her blood testing startup Theranos, she went straight to the top in an effort to get the story killed.
‘Hot’ Grinch makes hearts grow three sizes on TikTok
Is TikTok thirsting after The Grinch? Alessa Dufresne, 26, was surprised to see users’ reactions to her flirty exchange with an actor playing the Dr. Seuss character at Universal Orlando Resort in Florida. “I just know he is FINE under that makeup,” one commenter wrote. Another joked: “HELP WHY IS HE HOT.”
Genetic detectives caught the omicron variant. The world needs more of them.
Researchers around the world are sequencing the genome of the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes Covid-19 in order to stay ahead of new variants. | Antonio Masiello/Getty Images The US’s genome sequencing system has improved, but surveillance is dangerously inadequate in much of the world. The omicron variant of the coronavirus has already shown up in more than 20 countries and it was in the United States by late November, health officials announced on December 1. A traveler who returned to California from South Africa was infected with the variant, which is also known to scientists as B.1.1.529. “The individual was fully vaccinated and experienced mild symptoms, which are improving at this point,” Anthony Fauci, head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease, said during a White House press conference on Wednesday. “So this is the first confirmed case of Covid-19 caused by the omicron variant detected in the United States.” Omicron may be more transmissible than other versions of the virus, and its arrival adds huge urgency to genome sequencing efforts. By looking at the genes that code for the virus, scientists can distinguish the various strains of SARS-CoV-2, the coronavirus that causes Covid-19. They can often trace where it came from and anticipate some of the traits that set it apart, like how readily it could spread or how easily it could evade our immune systems. The US has gotten drastically better at this kind of detective work, said Kristian Andersen, a professor of immunology and microbiology at California’s Scripps Research Institute, in an email. But the country is still relying on an ad hoc patchwork of laboratories, making it hard for scientists to sequence genomes quickly and report results for everyone to see. “A lot of it is still hacked together, including our own operations here in San Diego,” Andersen said. And there are still places in the world where barely any genetic sequencing of SARS-CoV-2 is occurring at all. Other more dangerous variants of the virus may be lurking in those blank spaces. That’s why scientists say the search for the next variant shouldn’t be limited to countries with the most resources and labs, like the US. Many are urging wealthier countries not only to distribute Covid-19 vaccines and treatments, but also to bolster viral sequencing across the world. Genome surveillance is why we know about the omicron variant at all The origins of omicron still aren’t clear, and we don’t know how it arrived in different countries. But the variant showed how quickly a virus can spread undetected. South Africa and Botswana announced in late November that they detected the new variant, but it was likely already circulating in those countries for weeks based on the number of cases detected. Health officials in Belgium, Germany, and the Netherlands later reported that samples showed that the omicron variant may have already been in Europe by the time South Africa and Botswana raised the alarm. It’s not an accident that South Africa was among the first to find it. “The variant is much more prevalent in South Africa than Europe — the higher the prevalence, the more likely one is to detect it,” Andersen said. “That said, South Africa has excellent surveillance that is better than most other countries.” Genetic surveillance might also explain why omicron was found in California first, at least according to California Gov. Gavin Newsom. “It’s not surprising in many respects that California is announcing the first case,” Newsom said at a press conference on Wednesday. The state is a hub for biotechnology, and the University of California San Francisco has “one of the leading genomic sequencing institutions in the world,” he added. Detecting new variants as they start to spread is a massive scientific and logistical challenge. Scientists and health officials often have to sequence the entire set of genes — the genome — that codes for the coronavirus in a sample, a process that’s far more expensive and complicated than simply testing whether people are infected. SARS-CoV-2’s genome is about 30,000 base pairs long and codes for 29 proteins. Researchers then look for telltale mutations that reveal the presence of a variant. (Some conventional Covid-19 PCR tests can also be tweaked to sort between different variants, but that requires a more sophisticated screening system.) Genetic information is already helping Covid-19 vaccine manufacturers study how to tailor their immunizations to omicron, though companies say that their current vaccine formulations still appear to be effective. But the announcement of the variants also led to restrictions on travelers from African countries, something that scientists worry could deter countries from reporting future variants. Surveillance is most effective if the information is shared globally, so staying ahead of new mutations demands international cooperation. Many countries have struggled to keep up with the genetic surveillance needed to see which version of the virus is causing the most damage, often for lack of money and resources. The US was also criticized for not doing enough genome sequencing to stay ahead of variants as the new strains took root earlier this year. “It’s embarrassing, is all I can say,” Diane Griffin, a microbiologist and immunologist at Johns Hopkins, told Vox in January. The US has since stepped up its genetic surveillance of SARS-CoV-2, bolstered by an influx of more than $1 billion to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, city health departments, and state governments to identify the specific variants of the virus in circulation. Officials also invested in creating reporting systems for SARS-CoV-2 genomes. US government labs this year have more than doubled their rate of genome sequencing. Private labs and academic institutions have also chipped in. US labs are now sequencing and reporting 29 genomes for every 1,000 Covid-19 cases detected, about 20,000 per week, which puts the US among the top 20 countries in the world. “We have very few blind spots in the US as a result of this,” Anderson told Vox. Still, it takes the US a median time of 28 days to sequence these genomes and upload the results to international databases. Contrast that with the United Kingdom, which sequences 112 genomes per 1,000 cases, taking a median of 10 days to deposit their results. A delay of only a few days in detection can give variants time to silently spread within communities and across borders. Massive gaps in Covid-19 genetic sequencing leave the world vulnerable to variants There are huge swaths of the world where genome sequencing is lagging far behind the US and other wealthy countries. “This means that there is a delay in detecting and reporting novel variants in regions of the world where there are low levels of sequencing and data sharing,” Alina Chan, a molecular biologist at the Broad Institute, said in an email. COVID CG Countries like the US are sequencing many more genomes of the SARS-CoV-2 virus than much of the rest of the world. That leaves openings for new Covid-19 variants to emerge undetected. With vast shortfalls in genome sequencing across South America, Africa, and Asia, other dangerous mutations in the SARS-CoV-2 virus may remain undetected. But sequencing genomes demands time and resources that also have to be balanced with other public health needs. In a pandemic, health officials have to weigh genetic surveillance against testing, treatment, and vaccination, and there’s only so much money and lab capacity to go around. “We cannot sequence every single person who tests positive,” said Emma Hodcroft, a molecular epidemiologist at the University of Bern. “We will miss things that are circulating at very low levels.” Hodcroft and Andersen said an ideal benchmark would be to sequence between 5 percent and 10 percent of genomes in positive Covid-19 cases across the world. However, they acknowledged that this would be immensely difficult in countries with fewer resources. “Even getting a sequencing machine to a lot of these countries is an absolute logistical nightmare, and we have not done a whole bunch in this pandemic to try and support more global sequencing surveillance,” Hodcroft said. So in addition to sharing vaccines and tests for Covid-19 with developing countries, countries like the US should also help set up laboratories around the world to conduct more genetic surveillance and reporting. Otherwise, another variant could surprise the world and undo some of the hard-fought progress against the virus.
Waukesha parade suspect Darrell Brooks says he feels 'dehumanized,' 'demonized' in first jailhouse interview
Darrell Brooks Jr. has spent the last 10 days locked up in a Wisconsin jail cell after allegedly mowing through the barricades and into revelers at the Waukesha Christmas parade, killing six and injuring 62.
Rafael Fiziev, Brad Riddell putting friendship aside for potential thriller at UFC on ESPN 31
Rafael Fiziev and Brad Riddell won't enter the cage with any animosity on Saturday night, but both think it will be incredibly entertaining.       Related StoriesRafael Fiziev, Brad Riddell putting friendship aside for potential thriller at UFC on ESPN 31 - EnclosureJamahal Hill: UFC on ESPN 31 camp 'physically, emotionally' tough after injuries, friends' deathsJamahal Hill: UFC on ESPN 31 camp 'physically, emotionally' tough after injuries, friends' deaths - Enclosure
Alec Baldwin says he "didn't pull the trigger" in fatal movie set shooting
Alec Baldwin sat down with ABC's George Stephanopoulos for his first formal interview to discuss the fatal shooting on the set of "Rust."
Bug photographer draws fire for doping his tiny subjects
Some critics within the world of insect photography are up in arms over the morality of drugging bugs.
Mike Lindell is bringing an imaginary knife to a gun fight
The MyPillow CEO has countersued Dominion Voting Systems — and has no non-garbage evidence of his central claims of electoral fraud.
Defenses in spotlight for Oklahoma St-Baylor Big 12 matchup
Often, the chatter heading into the Big 12 championship game focuses on dynamic offenses and a quarterback chasing the Heisman Trophy.
The Bidens will attend Sunday’s Kennedy Center Honors, restoring a tradition that Trump rejected
Vice President Harris and husband Douglas Emhoff will also attend the celebration of arts luminaries.
I accidentally put my baby up for sale on Facebook
Lucy Battle had been trying to flog the old two seater couch when she accidentally included a picture of her son.
WATCH: Protests gather as Supreme Court considers historic abortion case
Thousands gathered outside the Supreme Court on Wednesday as the court heard arguments in the most serious challenge to Roe vs. Wade in 30 years.
China-Linked Operators Used Fake Biologist to Undermine World Health Org’s COVID Probe
STR/GettyChina-linked operators used a fake Swiss biologist in order to discredit a World Health Organization inquiry into the origins of the coronavirus pandemic, according to new research from Meta.The operators created an account on Facebook in the name “Wilson Edwards” and had it claim that the U.S. government had engaged in "enormous pressure and even intimidation" on the World Health Organization in the course of the group’s investigation into how the coronavirus pandemic began in an operation that spanned different social media platforms.Swiss officials confirmed that Edwards, the purported biologist, did not exist in a Twitter post noting that government databases held no entry for a citizen by that name.Read more at The Daily Beast.Got a tip? Send it to The Daily Beast here
How To Watch ‘Christmas With The Chosen: The Messengers’
The hit faith series tells the story of Jesus' birth.
Oklahoma players call out Lincoln Riley over USC quote
Lincoln Riley's former Oklahoma players let out their frustration about the coach after his surprise departure for the head coach job at USC over the weekend.
Craig Sager’s daughter Kacy roasts Monty McCutchen for TV outfit
Monty McCutchen went for a look resembling Craig Sager, but the daughter of the late broadcaster disapproves. On Tuesday, McCutchen — who is the NBA’s head of referee development and training — was seen wearing a beige suit, plaid vest, and bowtie on-air. As screenshots of the look made the rounds online, Sager’s daughter Kacy...
LA thieves go after baby-strolling mother
Follow-home robbers targeted a mother with a baby in a stroller after she opened the gates to her home in Los Angeles, police said.
Bodycam footage shows officer fatally shooting man in wheelchair
A Tucson police officer was fired after fatally shooting a man in a motorized wheelchair. The man was accused of shoplifting and pulling a knife when confronted outside a Walmart, officials said.
Man injured by needle attached to gas pump
Spotify Wrapped is here! Talking Tech podcast
Spotify Wrapped is here! Talking Tech podcast
WATCH: What we know about the victims of the Oxford High School shooting
Four students were killed and seven others were injured.
Kaapo Kakko’s Rangers future hinges more on Ryan Strome than Jack Hughes
The question has been raised on this side of the Hudson whether and what impact Hughes’ deal might have on Kakko’s next contract.
Wife of legendary music executive Clarence Avant fatally shot in Beverly Hills home
Jacqueline Avant, the wife of Grammy Award-winning music executive Clarence Avant, was fatally shot early Wednesday in her Los Angeles-area home.
Inside the Confusing COVID Rules on College Campuses
They don’t always make sense. Are they working?
Laid-off Meredith staff worked unpaid OT on Ayesha Curry’s ‘Sweet July’ magazine
Meredith is being accused of laying off Shape staffers without notice and stiffing them on pay for working overtime on Ayesha Curry's Sweet July magazine.