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Nixon orders withdrawal of National Guard from Ferguson

Gov. Jay Nixon is ordering the Missouri National Guard to begin withdrawing from Ferguson, where nightly scenes of unrest have erupted since a white police officer fatally shot an unarmed black 18-year-old. Continue reading...

U.S. airstrikes fly anew after decapitation

No letup, Obama asserts; earlier bid at rescue failed

Subscriber onlyThe United States stood firm Wednesday in its fight against Islamic State militants, launching a new series of airstrikes against the extremist group that has seized a swath of territory across Iraq and Syria and beheaded a U.S. journalist, despite its threats to kill another American hostage. Continue reading...

Holder visits Ferguson to ease tensions

He recounts own profiling

Subscriber onlyU.S. Attorney General Eric Holder visited Ferguson on Wednesday and met with students, community leaders and federal investigators as the St. Louis County prosecutor opened grand jury hearings in the fatal police shooting of unarmed, 18-year-old Michael Brown. Continue reading...

Navy to boot 34 in long-running reactor-school cheating ring

Subscriber onlyAt least 34 sailors are being kicked out of the Navy for their roles in a cheating ring that operated undetected for at least seven years at a nuclear-power training site, and 10 others are under criminal investigation, the admiral in charge of the Navy's nuclear reactors program said. Continue reading...

Stagehand union, Met Opera in tune

Subscriber onlyNew York City’s Metropolitan Opera reached a deal early Wednesday with its stagehands and said it expects to avert a lockout by reaching agreements with the remaining unions. Continue reading...

New Orleans' new norm: Charter schools

Subscriber onlyNine years after Hurricane Katrina, charter schools are the new reality of public education in New Orleans. Continue reading...

Less sex, more birth control cut teen birthrate to all-time low in '13

Subscriber onlyThe birthrate for American teens hit an all-time low in 2013, and government statisticians attribute the decline to a reduction in teenage sexual activity and more widespread use of birth control among those who are having sex. Continue reading...

High Court stays Virginia gay nuptials

Ruling on county clerk’s request for delay mirrors earlier Utah decision

Subscriber onlySame-sex couples will have to wait longer to begin marrying in Virginia after the U.S. Supreme Court agreed Wednesday to delay an appeals court ruling striking down the state's gay marriage ban. Continue reading...

Police free hostages, arrest 2 near Chicago

Subscriber onlyAbout two dozen heavily armed law enforcement officers stormed a home in Chicago's southern suburbs Wednesday to free four hostages and capture two suspects, ending a 20-hour standoff that police said began as a robbery attempt. Continue reading...

Slain journalist remembered

Subscriber onlyIn 2011, just after he was released from the Libyan prison where he'd been held for six weeks, James Foley acknowledged the peril journalists face covering the world's most dangerous places, soberly conceding that a mistake could mean death. Continue reading...

The nation in brief

Subscriber onlyMcDonnell testifies in corruption trial RICHMOND, Va. -- Former Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell took the stand Wednesday in his own defense, testifying at his public corruption trial about his sometimes volatile relationship with his wife, Maureen. Continue reading...

Names and faces

Subscriber onlySeth Meyers is no stranger to live television. For years he anchored "Weekend Update" on Saturday Night Live. Nor is playing host on TV an alien experience. Continue reading...

In the news

Subscriber onlyGeorge W. Bush, the former president, was doused by ice water in the ALS ice bucket challenge that raises awareness and funds to fight amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or Lou Gehrig's disease, and nominated his predecessor, Bill Clinton, to get wet, too. Continue reading...

Obama: U.S. won't stop confronting Islamic State

President Barack Obama pledged Wednesday to continue to confront Islamic State militants despite the beheading of an American journalist in Iraq, standing firm in the face of the militants' threats to kill another hostage unless the U.S. military changes course. Continue reading...

Stay in at night, Ferguson urges

Leaders pledge outreach to city’s blacks; streets fill as dark falls

Subscriber onlyFerguson's leaders urged residents Tuesday to stay home after dark to "allow peace to settle in" and pledged several actions to reconnect with the predominantly black community in the St. Louis suburb where the fatal shooting of 18-year-old Michael Brown has sparked nightly clashes between protesters and police. Continue reading...

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