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Two hundred fifteen people were killed in a massive bombing and mortar attack on a Shiite neighborhood in Baghdad, marking Iraq’s largest single-day death toll since the U.S. invasion. The killings prompted Shiite militiamen to seize and burn alive as many as twenty-four Sunnis; other Shiite residents of the capital stoned Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki. “It’s all your fault!” one man shouted.AP via MSNBCReutersElsewhere in Baghdad, insurgents set fire to a U.S. base, APand the host of a popular satirical Iraqitelevision show was found murdered. “He was a star in the galaxy of Iraqiarts,” said the show’s director. “Now, he’s another sacrifice on the altar of this slaughtered country.”Washington PostPreviously unreleased video footage from early 2003 showed Saddam Hussein and his generals preparing to fight the United States with slingshots and crossbows. “Letâ??s use all the methods we can,” says Hussein. “These methods can be made at home.”New York TimesIn Washington, D.C., President George W. Bushpardoned two turkeys, Flyer and Fryer, AP via local6.comand in Ramsey, New Jersey, a flock of turkeys was spotted waiting for a New York-bound train.AP via Seattle Post-IntelligencerFormer Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet accepted responsibility for everything that occurred during his eighteen-year rule,BBCand former Speaker of the HouseNewt Gingrich announced that he would lead an effort to revitalize the Republican Party. “I am not ‘running’ for president,” said Gingrich. “I am seeking to create a movement to win the future by offering a series of solutions so compelling that if the American people say I have to be president, it will happen.”NewsMax.comBritish Prime Minister Tony Blair announced that state-sponsored supernannies would be dispatched to deal with the United Kingdom’s problem children. “Life isn’t normal if you’ve got 12-year-olds out every night,” said Mr. Blair, “drinking and creating nuisance on the street with their parents not knowing or even caring.”GuardianPresident Bush’s daughter Barbara was robbed in Argentina,ABC Newsa college student in Portland, Oregon, was expelled after questioning a classmate’s belief in leprechauns,Portland Mercuryand residents of Oberlin, Ohio, were upset by the presence of gingerbreadNazis. ABC News
In London, Col. Alexander Litvinenko, an ex-KGB agent, died several weeks after being poisoned with polonium 210, a rare isotope that is used in nuclear bombs and moon buggies. Investigators fear that Litvinenko, who accused Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin of ordering his assassination, may have spread radiation to his wife and son as they hugged and kissed him on his deathbed.Sky NewsSun (U.K.)Daily MailResearchers in Navajo territories suggested that abandoned, rain-filled uranium-mining pits had led to eyeless sheep and disabled Native-American children.Los Angeles TimesChinesescientists revealed that showing pornography to pandas has helped increase the captive panda population; Vassar scientists said that they had successfully mated robotfish.AP via AustralianXinhuaAmerican scientists announced the creation of a self-aware robot that can heal itself,Information Weekand researchers from Vienna and Massachusetts were studying aggression in fruit flies by crushing the heads of female fruit flies and encouraging two males to fight over the corpses.ReutersA conference of Muslim scholars in Cairo denounced female circumcision,BBCand Israeli military officials decided that Miss Israel, in order to prevent bruises on her legs, should not have to carry a rifle.Reuters via Yahoo! NEWSA San Francisco-based organization called for a “Global Orgasm for Peace.”AP via local6.com
The dancing bears of India were in dire need of medical attention,People.co.ukand Rhesus macaque overpopulation in Delhi was causing extreme environmental stress. “The problem of man-monkey conflict,” said an environmentalist (who argued against building more monkey prisons) “is only going to increase.”Financial Times Deutschland A ninety-two-year-old woman was killed in a shootout with Atlanta police,AP via Breitbarta Houston teenager was sentenced to jail for sodomizing a Hispanic teenager with a patio umbrella while shouting “White Power!,”AP Via CourtTV Newsand a professional dominatrix testified that an officer in the Greenburgh, New York, police department had extracted sexual favors from her. “He wanted to go to a motel in the Bronx where I would defecate on him,” she said, “but I told him I was uncomfortable going to the Bronx.”Journal NewsPolice in the Mpumalanga region of South Africa were looking for the owner of an unclaimed penis,METRO.co.ukand two Texas penguins that survived a truck crash hatched a chick.Houston ChronicleThe Yellow River turned red for the second time in a month,BBC48 boxing orangutans retired to Indonesia from Thailand,BBCand Indian officials announced that they would establish seven vulture havens in order to relieve shortages at the Towers of Silence, where Zoroastrians leave their dead to be eaten.Mumbai Mirror
More from Rafil Kroll-Zaidi:
Average portion of its yearly household expenditures that a South African family will spend on a funeral:
Neuroscientists were hoping to use rat brain waves to find people buried by earthquakes.
Four people were arrested for using a remote-controlled hexacopter to fly two pounds of tobacco to prisoners inside the yard at Calhoun State Prison in Georgia.
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Our congratulations to Alice Munro, winner of the 2013 Nobel Prize for Literature