WASHINGTON (AP) - President Barack Obama on Thursday defended America's controversial drone attacks as legal, effective and a necessary linchpin in an evolving U.S. counterterrorism policy. But he acknowledged the targeted strikes are no "cure-all" and said he is haunted by the civilians unintentionally killed. The president also announced a renewed push to close the Guantanamo Bay detention center in Cuba, including lifting a moratorium on prisoner transfers to Yemen. However, shutting the prison will still require help from Republicans reluctant to back Obama's call to move some detainees to U.S. prisons and try them in civilian courts.
WASHINGTON (AP) - President Barack Obama said Thursday that the Justice Department will review the policy under which it obtains journalists' records in investigations of the leak of government secrets. Obama acknowledged he is "troubled by the possibility that leaks investigations may chill the investigative journalism" that he says holds government accountable and said he has expressed his concerns to Attorney General Eric Holder. But he said his administration would continue to try to find the government employees who are responsible for leaks.
LONDON (AP) - Two Muslim hardliners say the man seen wielding a bloody butcher's knife after the killing of a British soldier is a Muslim convert who took part in demonstrations with the banned radical group al-Muhajiroun. Meanwhile, British police on Thursday evening announced the arrests of two more suspects in the case. Police said a man and a woman, both aged 29, were arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to murder.
GRAPEVINE, Texas (AP) - In one of their most dramatic choices in a century, local leaders of the Boy Scouts of America voted Thursday on whether to ease a divisive ban and allow openly gay boys to be accepted into the nation's leading youth organization. Whether yes or no, the result will bitterly disappoint many. The decision expected Thursday evening could trigger defections among those on the losing side.
BEIRUT (AP) - Lebanese supporters and opponents of Syrian President Bashar Assad fired heavy machine guns and lobbed mortar shells at each other Thursday in some of the worst fighting in the port city of Tripoli in years. The battles raised the five-day death toll to 16 and fed fears of the Syrian civil war spreading to Lebanon and other neighboring countries.
MOORE, Okla. (AP) - A massive tornado was carving its way through town. There was no time to hesitate. LaTisha Garcia had to get to her children. And so she raced against the storm. She had 30 miles to cover from her job in Edmond to Plaza Towers Elementary School, where her 8-year-old daughter Jazmin Rodriguez is a third grader.
WASHINGTON (AP) - Three days of congressional hearings about the Internal Revenue Service's targeting of conservative political groups have lawmakers looking for ways to widen an investigation that has so far been largely contained within the tax collection agency. More than 11 hours of testimony and an inspector general's report have revealed plenty of wrongdoing within the IRS. But so far, investigators have not produced evidence that anyone outside the IRS authorized the targeting, or even knew about it before a few weeks ago.
NEW YORK (AP) - For decades, people have been getting rid of cockroaches by setting out bait mixed with poison. But in the late 1980s, in an apartment test kitchen in Florida, something went very wrong. A killer product stopped working. Cockroach populations there kept rising. Mystified researchers tested and discarded theory after theory until they finally hit on the explanation: In a remarkably rapid display of evolution at work, many of the cockroaches had lost their sweet tooth, rejecting the corn syrup meant to attract them.
CLEVELAND (AP) - The man who famously put down his Big Mac to help rescue three women held captive in a Cleveland house is getting complimentary McDonald's for the next year. A spokeswoman for Oak Brook, Ill.-based McDonald's Corp. said Thursday that local franchisees in Charles Ramsey's neighborhood have offered him free food at their restaurants.
CANNES, France (AP) - One of the more buzzed-about films at the Cannes Film Festival, "Omar," is set in the West Bank, and the Palestinian conflict is a key part of the plot. But the film's lead actor, Adam Bakri, says the location or political motif isn't that important.