Daily Briefing

10 things you need to know today: June 18, 2014

Harold Maass
Portrait of Ahmed Abu Khattala, according to The Washington Post. (Facebook)
Our '10 things you need to
know' newsletter
Your free email newsletter subscription is confirmed. Thank you for subscribing!


Commandos capture alleged ringleader in Benghazi attack

American commandos seized the suspected leader of the Sept. 11, 2012, attack that killed ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans in Benghazi, Libya, the Obama administration announced Tuesday. President Obama said the capture of the suspect, Ahmed Abu Khattala, should send the message that, "When Americans are attacked, no matter how long it takes, we will find those responsible and we will bring them to justice." [The New York Times, BBC News]


Bomber attacks soccer fans in Nigeria

An apparent suicide bomber riding a tricycle taxi attacked an outdoor viewing center in northern Nigeria on Tuesday as a crowd gathered to watch the Brazil-Mexico World Cup match. As many as 21 people, including small children, were killed, according to a hospital source. No one immediately claimed responsibility, but the prime suspect is Boko Haram, an Islamist insurgent group blamed for a similar attack that killed 14 earlier this month. [New York Daily News, CNN]


Executions resume after botched April lethal injection

Georgia and Missouri overnight conducted the country's first executions since a botched April 29 lethal injection in Oklahoma. Georgia executed 58-year-old Marcus Wellons for raping and murdering a 15-year-old girl in 1989. Early Wednesday, Missouri executed John Winfield for the 1996 shooting deaths of two women. Several states have postponed executions since Oklahoma halted the lethal injection of Clayton Lockett, who died anyway of a heart attack. [Voice of America]


Google confirms it is launching a paid streaming-music site

Google's YouTube announced Tuesday that it planned to start offering a paid streaming music service. YouTube reportedly has signed deals with 95 percent of the music labels included in its existing ad-supported music video site, and said it was partnering with "hundreds of major and independent" labels for the new one. Critics feared that YouTube might keep labels that don't join the paid service off of the free video site. [Rolling Stone]


SunTrust settles mortgage allegations for nearly $1 billion

SunTrust Banks has agreed to pay $968 million to settle allegations of possible wrongdoing in its mortgage business leading up to the 2008 financial crisis. The company admitted to making loans that were insured by the Federal Housing Administration but didn't meet its requirements. $500 million of the settlement goes toward relief for consumers hurt by bad mortgages, and the rest is a penalty. [Fox Business]


Maliki fires four military commanders as Sunni militants surge

Sunni militants in Iraq continued their offensive on Wednesday, attacking the country's largest oil refinery. Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki fired four of his top military officers on Tuesday over their failure to perform "their national duty" and stop the advance by the Islamic extremists, the government said. The rebels have taken over several cities over the last week and vowed to attack Baghdad. [USA Today, UPI]


Experts expect Amazon's hyped new product to be a smartphone

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos is unveiling a major new product in Seattle on Wednesday. A YouTube teaser video suggests the new gadget will be a long-rumored Amazon smartphone, according to industry analysts. Amazon already competes directly with Apple with its iPad-rivaling Kindle tablet, streaming entertainment, and digital music and books. An Amazon smartphone would present a new, low-budget challenge to Apple's iPhone, its most profitable gadget. [Forbes]


Obama proposes vast new marine sanctuary

President Obama on Tuesday announced a proposal to ban fishing, oil exploration, and other activities in a vast section of the central Pacific Ocean. "I'm going to use my authority to protect some of our nation's most precious marine landscapes," Obama said. The proposal is on track to take effect later this year after a comment period. If enacted, it would create the world's largest marine sanctuary. [The Washington Post]


Rare 1856 stamp fetches a record $9.5 million at auction

A rare, 1-cent stamp from 19th-century British Guiana sold for a record $9.5 million in a Sotheby's auction on Tuesday. The "British Guiana One-Cent Black on Magenta" was printed in 1856 after the then-colony ran out of stamps from London. The postmaster had clerks initial every stamp to prevent counterfeiting. This is the fourth time the stamp has broken the record for highest auction sale price. [CBS News]


Mexico holds Brazil to a scoreless World Cup tie

Mexico held soccer powerhouse and host team Brazil scoreless Tuesday in one of the biggest thrillers yet in the 2014 World Cup. The star of the game was Mexico goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa, who held Brazil to a 0-0 draw with several spectacular saves, including one that kept Brazilian superstar Neymar from knocking a header just inside the post. Ochoa "came up with at least four miracles," Brazil striker Fred said. [The Associated Press]

Around the web
Powered By ZergNet