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10 things you need to know today: October 7, 2013
Boehner rules out raising the debt limit without concessions from Obama, IndyCar crash injures driver and spectators, and more
 
A safety team works to remove Dario Franchitti from the wreckage of his race car Sunday. 
A safety team works to remove Dario Franchitti from the wreckage of his race car Sunday.  (AP Photo/Juan DeLeon)

1. Fears of disaster grow as the shutdown drags on
Financial markets sank around the world early Monday as the U.S. government shutdown entered its second week, raising worries that the impasse in Washington could lead the federal government to default on some of its debt as early as October 17. On Sunday, House Speaker John Boehner said Republicans would not pass a straightforward bill to raise the debt ceiling without concessions from President Obama on his health-care law. [Associated Press]
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2. Crash injures spectators and ends IndyCar race
Driver Dario Franchitti's car clipped the tire of a competitor, went airborne, and crashed into a catch fence during the Grand Prix of Houston on Sunday, sending debris into the grandstands and leaving more than a dozen people injured, including Franchitti. Authorities were forced to halt the IndyCar race and declare Will Power, who was leading, to be the winner. [Los Angeles Times]
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3. Syria starts dismantling its chemical arsenal
Syria began the complicated job of destroying its chemical weapons on Sunday. International observers supervising the process said Syrian forces used cutting torches and grinders to destroy warheads, bombs, and other munitions. The effort, which is expected to last into mid-2014 or later, will deprive the Syrian government of some of its most feared weapons, but spare it from the possibility of a U.S.-led bombing campaign. [Reuters]
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4. Libya calls on the U.S. to explain its Tripoli raid
Libya on Sunday demanded "clarifications" from the U.S. on what it called the "kidnapping" of suspected al Qaeda leader Nazih Abdul-Hamed al-Ruqai, better known as Abu Anas al-Libi, in Tripoli. Al-Libi, who was captured in a raid by American special operations forces on Saturday, has been linked to the 1998 U.S. Embassy bombings in East Africa, but the Libyan government says that since he's a citizen of that country it should be the ones to put him on trial. [CBS News]
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5. Supreme Court starts session filled with divisive issues
The Supreme Court begins a new session on Monday that could include monumental decisions on affirmative action, campaign finance, abortion rights, and other divisive issues. No single case is likely to attract as much attention as last summer's same-sex marriage rulings or the 2012 upholding of President Obama's health-care law, but one court expert says this year's docket is "deeper in important cases than either of the prior two terms." [New York Times, Washington Post]
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6. U.S. professors share this year's Nobel Prize for medicine
Americans James Rothman and Randy Schekman — along with German-born researcher Thomas Suedhof — won the 2013 Nobel Prize in medicine on Monday, kicking off this year's Nobels. Rothman, of Yale University; Shekman, of the University of California, Berkeley; and Suedhof, of Stanford, won for their discoveries on how proteins and other materials are transported within cells. The other Nobel winners will be announced this week and next. [Associated Press]
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7. Airbus makes a landmark sale in Japan
Europe's Airbus has broken into a lucrative market long dominated by its U.S. rival Boeing, scoring its first order to sell airliners to Japan Airlines Co. The $9.75 billion deal for 31 long-haul A350 jetliners marked the clearest sign yet that Boeing's relationship is slipping with some of its major customers due to delays and technical problems with its flagship 787 Dreamliner. JAL was the second buyer of the massive new jets. [Wall Street Journal]
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8. Woods helps the U.S. clinch another President's Cup
Tiger Woods, despite a back injury, won the point that sealed the U.S. team's fifth consecutive victory in the President's Cup. It was America's fifth straight win in the contest, which pits U.S. golfers against a collection of international players from outside Europe. [Bloomberg]
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9. New $100 bills are making their debut
The Federal Reserve this week plans to release a new $100 bill with anti-counterfeiting features. The bills, which go into circulation on Tuesday, will feature a three-dimensional blue strip with images that appear to move when tilted, as well as an image of a copper inkwell with a holographic bell that changes color at different angles, making it easier to tell quickly whether the notes are genuine. [New York Times]
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10. Olympic torch touches down in Russia
The Olympic flame arrived in Moscow on Sunday as preparations geared up for February's 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi. Before the torch left Greece, the birthplace of the games, on Saturday, gay rights activists held protests to call attention to a new Russian law banning gay "propaganda." In Moscow, the torch's 123-day trip to the site of the Winter Games began inauspiciously, with the flame flickering out before being ignited again with a lighter. [ABC News, Huffington Post]


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Harold Maass is a contributing editor at TheWeek.com. He has been writing for The Week since the 2001 launch of the U.S. print edition. Harold has worked for a variety of news outlets, including The Miami HeraldFox News, and ABC News.

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