RSS
10 things you need to know today: July 25, 2012
Syrian rebels prepare to fight for Aleppo, Christian Bale visits Aurora shooting victims, and more in our roundup of the stories that are making news and driving opinion
Actor Christian Bale and his wife Sandra Blazic visit the memorial across the street from the Century 16 movie theater in Aurora, Colo., where 12 people were shot dead July 20 as they watched Bale's movie The Dark Knight Rises. 
Actor Christian Bale and his wife Sandra Blazic visit the memorial across the street from the Century 16 movie theater in Aurora, Colo., where 12 people were shot dead July 20 as they watched Bale's movie The Dark Knight Rises
Joshua Lott/Getty Images

1. TROOPS IN SYRIA PREPARE FOR ALEPPO SHOWDOWN
Rebel fighters say the Syrian regime has thousands of troops headed for the ancient city of Aleppo to prevent rebels from taking control of the commercial hub, which is the largest city in the country. If rebels were to take control of it, it could be a major turning point for the 16-month conflict. Meanwhile, state-run media reports that government forces have regained control in key parts of the Syrian capital, Damascus, and Turkish officials announced Wednesday that their country was closing "all border gates" with Syria, though refugees will still be allowed to enter Turkey. [CNN, New York Times]
………………………………………………………………………………

2. PROTESTS IN ANAHEIM AFTER POLICE SHOOTINGS
Protests and unrest in response to back-to-back weekend fatal shootings by police in Anaheim, Calif., continued for a fourth night Tuesday. Protesters clashed with riot police outside of City Hall; inside, council members voted unanimously in favor of having the U.S. Attorney's Office investigate the shootings and the use of police force. The two weekend shootings bring the total number of police shootings in the city to six for the year. One of the men killed was shot in the leg and in the back of the head, a fact that Anaheim Mayor Tom Tait called "unsettling." The man's family has filed a $50 million lawsuit claiming that police shot him as he was running away. [Associated Press]
………………………………………………………………………………

3. APPLE EARNINGS DISAPPOINT
Apple reported quarterly earnings Tuesday that failed to meet Wall Street expectations, a rare miss for the company. Apple shipped only 26 million iPhones for the quarter; analysts had forecast sales of 28 million to 29 million. The company blamed the disappointing results on the weak European economy and consumers waiting for the soon-to-be-released iPhone 5. Sales of the iPad exceeded expectations. [Reuters]
………………………………………………………………………………

4. CHRISTIAN BALE VISITS SHOOTING VICTIMS
Christian Bale, the actor who plays Batman in The Dark Knight Rises, made a surprise trip to Aurora, Colo., on Tuesday. Bale met with survivors and visited a memorial to victims. The suspect in the shooting, James Holmes, is set to be formally charged on July 30 for allegedly killing 12 and injuring 58 others. [CNN]
………………………………………………………………………………

5. CHURCH OFFICIAL GETS JAIL FOR SEX-ABUSE COVER-UP
In what's being called a "wake-up call" to the Roman Catholic Church, a judge has sentenced Monsignor William Lynn, a longtime secretary to the clergy in the Philadelphia archdiocese, to three to six years in prison. Lynn was convicted of felony child endangerment for covering up sex-abuse complaints against Edward Avery, a now-defrocked priest. Lynn is the first U.S. church official to be convicted of concealing sex-abuse complaints against clergy; the archdiocese says his sentence is too severe. [Associated Press]
………………………………………………………………………………

6. AL QAEDA CLAIMS IT'S BEHIND VIOLENCE IN IRAQ
An al Qaeda affiliate posted a statement on a radical Islamic website Tuesday claiming responsibility for a recent wave of violent attacks across Iraq, saying they were the start of a "new stage of jihad." Hundreds were wounded and at least 116 people were killed in attacks in the country on Monday, marking the deadliest day in Iraq since the U.S. troop withdrawal in December. [Reuters]
………………………………………………………………………………

7. POLL: NEGATIVE CAMPAIGNS HURTING CANDIDATES
A new NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll shows that the "increasingly negative tone" of the presidential campaign is dragging down both Mitt Romney and President Obama . "Very negative" ratings for both candidates are at all-time highs, and Romney's favorable/unfavorable score is a net negative, something not seen for a presumptive GOP presidential nominee in recent history. "This is not characteristic… for July," says a Republican pollster. "These are numbers you usually see in October." The poll also shows Obama with a six percentage point lead over Romney, up from three percent last month. [NBC News]
………………………………………………………………………………

8. JEFFERSONS STAR SHERMAN HEMSLEY DIES
Sherman Hemsley, the great comic actor known for playing George Jefferson on the classic sitcom The Jeffersons, passed away Tuesday. Hemsley was 74, and a cause of death was not given. [New York Times]
………………………………………………………………………………

9. BOY, 11, FLIES TO ROME WITHOUT TICKET, PASSPORT
An 11-year-old boy managed to sneak past passport control and ticket checks and board a plane from Manchester, England, to Rome. The boy was in the air and halfway to Italy before anyone noticed something was wrong. He had been reported missing Tuesday after slipping away from his mother at a shopping center approximately two miles from the airport. A number of staff members at the Manchester Airport have been suspended, and an investigation into the incident is said to be under way. [CNN]
………………………………………………………………………………

10. GREENLAND ICE HAS BIGGEST THAW IN DECADES
Scientists says that in a four-day period this month, Greenland's surface ice cover experienced the greatest thaw seen in recorded history. Satellites showed the area of melting ice expanded from 40 percent of the ice sheet to 97 percent over the period. During an average summer, about half of Greenland's ice sheet melts. [Guardian]

EDITORS' PICKS

THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER

Subscribe to the Week