RSS
10 things you need to know today: March 20, 2012
Feds investigate the death of a Florida teen, violence erupts across Iraq, and more in our roundup of the stories that are making news and driving opinion
 
A NATO strike that killed two dozen Pakistani soldiers last year has fueled calls for the U.S. to end drone attacks in Pakistan.
A NATO strike that killed two dozen Pakistani soldiers last year has fueled calls for the U.S. to end drone attacks in Pakistan.
REUTERS

1. FEDS WILL INVESTIGATE TRAYVON MARTIN'S DEATH
The Justice Department announced late Monday that it would be launching a federal investigation into the death of Trayvon Martin, the unarmed black teen in Florida who was shot and killed by a neighborhood watch captain. The shooter, George Zimmerman, 28, says he fired in self defense and is alternatively described as white and Hispanic. Martin was carrying nothing more than a bag of Skittles. Zimmerman pursued the boy against the advice of a 911 dispatcher, but he has not been arrested, eliciting outrage and protests. Florida law's broad definition of self-defense could inhibit the prosecution in the case. [Associated Press]
………………………………………………………………………………

2. IRAQ ATTACKS KILL DOZENS
On Tuesday, a string of violent shootings and bombings across Iraq left 46 dead and hundreds wounded. The attacks come ahead of next week's Arab summit, where Iraq's Shiite-led government had hoped to demonstrate the country's increasing stability and security. Officials expect more attacks as insurgents look to send the message that they still have plenty of fight left. [Associated Press]
………………………………………………………………………………

3. GUNMAN MAY HAVE FILMED ATTACK IN FRANCE
The motorcycle gunman who allegedly shot and killed four people at a Jewish school in Toulouse, France, on Monday may have filmed the attack. A witness says the suspected killer, who remains at large, had a camera strapped to his chest to record the incident. A French official says anti-Semitism likely motivated the attack. [Wall Street Journal]
………………………………………………………………………………

4. PAKISTAN CALLS FOR END TO U.S. DRONE STRIKES
A cross-party national security committee on Tuesday demanded that Pakistan's parliament end U.S. drone strikes in the country. The committee also called for an apology for a NATO airstrike in November that killed 24 Pakistani soldiers. "The U.S. must review its footprints in Pakistan," a committee document stated. "No overt or covert operations inside Pakistan shall be tolerated." [New York Times]
………………………………………………………………………………

5. HUMAN RIGHTS GROUP CRITICIZES SYRIAN REBELS
U.S.-based Human Rights Watch says the Syrian regime isn't the only one guilty of human rights abuses. The watchdog organization says fringe Syrian rebel groups have engaged in "serious human rights abuses," like kidnapping and torture, against government forces and civilians. The rebels accused of the abuses do not appear to be reporting to any of the main opposition leadership. [CBS News/Associated Press]
………………………………………………………………………………

6. ROMNEY SMELLS VICTORY IN ILLINOIS
Things are looking up for Mitt Romney heading into today's Illinois primary. The latest polls show him ahead of Rick Santorum by 14 points in the state. Santorum stumbled on the campaign trail Monday, telling an Illinois crowd that the unemployment rate "doesn't matter to me" in an awkward attempt at saying his campaign was focused on the bigger picture. [CBS News]
………………………………………………………………………………

7. U.S. COMMANDER IN AFGHANISTAN TESTIFIES
On Tuesday, Gen. John R. Allen is set to testify before Congress and try to convince lawmakers to stay the course and not drastically cut spending on the war in Afghanistan. The administration has called for cutting troop levels in the country from 90,000 to 68,000 later this year, a decision commanders contest. [Washington Post]
………………………………………………………………………………

8. PEYTON MANNING PICKS DENVER
Four-time MVP quarterback Peyton Manning is set to join the Denver Broncos after one of the most dramatic free-agent chases in NFL history. Broncos exec and former Super Bowl-winning quarterback John Elway is said to have wooed Manning with a deal expected to be worth $95 million over five years. The deal raises questions as to what the Broncos will do with Tim Tebow. The headline-grabbing QB, dismissed by critics as a flash-in-the-pan, still has three years left on his contract. [Washington Post]
………………………………………………………………………………

9. JOHN CARTER TO COST DISNEY $200 MILLION
Disney released a report on Monday saying it expected to take a write-down of $200 million as a result of John Carter's abysmal performance at the box office. The adventure flick cost a reported $250 million to make and another $100 million to market. It opened to just $30.2 million two weeks ago and saw a 55 percent drop last weekend. [Entertainment Weekly]
………………………………………………………………………………  

10. DESPERATE HOUSEWIVES CASE ENDS IN MISTRIAL
A judge has declared a mistrial in the wrongful termination suit filed by actress Nicollette Sheridan against the producers of Desperate Housewives. The decision came after jurors said they were "hopelessly deadlocked" and could not agree on a verdict. [Reuters]

 

THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER

Subscribe to the Week