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10 things you need to know today: February 8, 2013
LAPD widens manhunt for suspected cop-killer, a storm descends on the Northeast, and more in our roundup of the stories that are making news and driving opinion
Pictures provided by the LAPD of alleged suspect Christopher Dorner are displayed during a briefing on Feb. 7.
Pictures provided by the LAPD of alleged suspect Christopher Dorner are displayed during a briefing on Feb. 7. Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

1. POWERFUL WINTER STORM BEGINS DROPPING SNOW IN NORTHEAST
Heavy and wet snow began to blanket the Northeast on Friday morning, as airlines announced the cancelation or suspension of thousands of flights out of airports in New York and Boston. Amtrak announced that it would suspend northbound service out of Penn Station in New York and southbound service out of Boston beginning early Friday afternoon. Schools across New York, Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island announced they would close or dismiss students early on Friday. Some areas in the region are forecasted to get up to 18 inches of snow, and wind gusts could exceed 60 miles per hour. [New York Times
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2. BRENNAN HEARING GETS HEATED
On Thursday, the Senate Intelligence Committee grilled Obama's little-seen top counterterrorism adviser John Brennan. In a rare moment of bipartisan agreement, senators from both parties unleashed "their anger at years of intelligence stonewalling from presidents of both parties," says Josh Gerstein at Politico. As expected, much of the focus was on the Obama administration's active drone-warfare program, which Brennan helps direct, though "many of the complaints had little or nothing to do with him." [The Week]
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3. IRAQ BOMBINGS LEAVE DOZENS DEAD 
Car bombs exploded in two outdoor markets and near a group of taxi vans in Shiite areas across Iraq on Friday, killing at least 31 people and wounding nearly 100 in the bloodiest day in more than two months, as minority Sunnis staged mass anti-government protests. A recent spike in attacks comes just over two months ahead of Iraq's April 20 provincial election, the first country-wide voting since the withdrawal of U.S. forces more than a year ago. [Associated Press
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4. MANHUNT FOR LOS ANGELES COP KILLER WIDENS
More than 100 police officers were going door-to-door overnight in Big Bear Lake, Calif., in search of suspected cop-killer Christopher Dorner. Dorner, 33, a former Los Angeles police officer and Navy reservist, is suspected of killing one police officer and injuring two others Thursday morning in Riverside, Calif. He was also accused of killing two civilians Sunday. He also allegedly released an angry "manifesto" airing grievances against police and warning of coming violence toward cops. [ABC News]
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5. EUROPEAN LEADERS STRUGGLE TO REACH BUDGET AGREEMENT
In their second attempt to reach a budget agreement that will last from 2014 to 2020, European Union leaders spent 15 hours in talks, attempting to reach a deal on a $1.3 trillion budget to support farming, transportation, and other infrastructure, as well as big research projects for the 27-nation bloc. The leaders were still seeking unanimity while also attempting to satisfy the wide array of national interests demanding attention. The first attempt at a deal collapsed in November. [New York Times]
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6. TUNISIANS MOURN OPPOSITION LEADER
Tens of thousands of Tunisians mourned slain opposition leader Chokri Belaid, who was shot to death at close range Wednesday as he left his Tunis home. His attacker fled on a motorcycle. The assassination prompted massive protests in the capital, as Tunisians fear clashes between secular opposition forces and Islamist forces could become a regular occurrence in the country, which ousted its longtime dictator Zine El Abidine Ben Ali in 2011. [Voice of America]
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7. SCIENTISTS ESTIMATE 'MOST ACCURATE' DATE OF DINOSAUR DIE-OUT
An international team of researchers has published a study in the journal Science in which they say they have estimated the "most accurate" date of dinosaur extinction. By using dating techniques on rock and ash samples, they concluded the creatures died out about 66,038,000 years ago — give or take 11,000 years. The date appears to coincide with the impact of a comet or asteroid on Earth. [BBC]
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8. GUNMEN KILL NINE HEALTH WORKERS IN NIGERIA
On Friday, gunmen on motorbikes shot dead nine health workers who were administering polio vaccinations in the northern Nigerian city of Kano. No one claimed responsibility for the murders, but Islamist militant group Boko Haram killed hundreds last year in its effort to impose sharia law. Muslim leaders in Nigeria have been known to oppose polio vaccinations because, they say, the drugs cause infertility and AIDS. [Reuters
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9. POLL: MILLENIALS QUITE UPBEAT ABOUT THE FUTURE
A new poll by Gallup shows that Millennials, a generation roughly defined as having been born after 1980, are overwhelmingly positive about the future. According to Gallup, a full 80 percent of 18- to 29-year-olds believe that their standard of living is getting better. "This most likely reflects the fact that for older Americans, the economics of daily life are more fixed," says Gallup, "whereas for younger Americans, it is much more likely that their income or other aspects of their living standards will improve." [The Week]
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10. STAR WARS MAKEUP ARTIST DIES
Stuart Freeborn, the famed makeup artist who created pointy-eared Yoda of Star Wars, died in London this week. He was 98. Freeborn worked on more than 75 movies, creating the makeup for stars like Marlene Dietrich, Burt Lancaster, Vivien Leigh, and Gregory Peck. For Star Wars, Freeborn also created Chewbacca and Jabba the Hutt. [New York Times]

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