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China dispatching ships to battle Somali pirates

Updated: 12/18/2008 - China said Thursday it is preparing to dispatch naval warships to join international forces battling Somali pirates, the first such far-ranging mission for the Chinese navy.

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Up to 25 Iraqis accused in Saddam party plot

Updated: 12/18/2008 - More than 20 employees of Iraq's Ministry of the Interior have been arrested on allegations that they were plotting to revive Saddam Hussein's outlawed Baath party, government officials said Thursday.

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Planner of Rwandan massacres convicted of genocide

Updated: 12/18/2008 - The main organizer behind the 1994 slaughter of more than 500,000 people in Rwanda was convicted of genocide Thursday and sentenced to life in prison, the most significant verdict of a U.N. tribunal set up to bring the killers to justice.

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Fox TV producers asked to trim budgets 2 percent

Updated: 12/18/2008 - News Corp.'s 20th Century Fox Television studio has asked producers of shows such as Fox's "24" and "My Name is Earl," produced for NBC, to trim their budgets this season by 2 percent, a spokesman said Wednesday.

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Aretha Franklin to sing at Obama inauguration

Updated: 12/18/2008 - Aretha Franklin will sing, the Rev. Rick Warren will pray and more than 11,000 U.S. troops will be watching over inauguration ceremonies in case of an attack during President-elect Barack Obama's swearing-in on Jan. 20.

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'Doubt' tops SAG pack with 5 nominations

Updated: 12/18/2008 - The Catholic school drama "Doubt" led contenders Thursday for the Screen Actors Guild Awards with five nominations, including honors for Meryl Streep, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Amy Adams and Viola Davis.

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Apple CEO Jobs absent from Macworld lineup

Updated: 12/18/2008 - Apple Inc. said Tuesday that Chief Executive Steve Jobs won't be delivering the highly anticipated presentation that usually marks the highlight of the annual Macworld computer trade show in January.

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Motorola to freeze pension plans, cut exec pay

Updated: 12/18/2008 - Motorola Inc., which has been struggling to revive its business in recent years, is freezing its pension plans and reducing executive pay in another set of cost-cutting measures.

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Scientists try to let the blind `see' fish

Updated: 12/18/2008 - As brightly colored fish dart in and out of the rocks scattered in a small aquarium, a bewildering melody follows each of their movements.

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LinkedIn founder updates resume, reclaims CEO job

Updated: 12/18/2008 - After taking a back seat for nearly two years, LinkedIn Corp. founder Reid Hoffman is reclaiming the CEO's job and bringing in former Yahoo Inc. executive Jeff Weiner to help steer the online professional network through its next phase of growth.

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Personalized spam rising sharply, study finds

Updated: 12/18/2008 - Yes, guys, those spam e-mails for Viagra or baldness cream just might be directed to you personally. So, too, are many of the other crafty come-ons clogging inboxes, trying to lure us to fake Web sites so criminals can steal our personal information.

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Calif. Dems try to pass budget without GOP votes

Updated: 12/18/2008 - Democrats were trying to break a weekslong impasse over California's multibillion-dollar deficit by making an end run around Republicans, offering a complicated mix of revenue cuts and increases that they said would raise billions without requiring two-thirds majority typically needed to raise taxes.

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2 trains derail in crash along Mississippi River

Updated: 12/18/2008 - Two freight trains collided early Wednesday, derailing 26 cars and plunging a locomotive into the Mississippi River, authorities said. No one was seriously hurt.

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Suicide of man accused in wildfire hits some hard

Updated: 12/18/2008 - For 30 years, Stephen Posniak sought out the solitude of the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness. He trekked there nearly every spring to camp, paddle and enjoy the peace and quiet.

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Mont., fed gov't loosen rules on Yellowstone bison

Updated: 12/18/2008 - State and federal officials have agreed to allow bison to migrate into parts of Montana from Yellowstone National Park - a move expected to slow but not stop an annual slaughter of the animals.

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Ohio's largest county aims to fight foreclosures

Updated: 12/18/2008 - Ohio's largest county is about to embark on an experiment in which government becomes the owner of foreclosed and abandoned properties, fixes them up and turns them back over to private owners.

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Oregon bomb expert's death leaves many questions

Updated: 12/18/2008 - By all accounts, Bill Hakim was one of those solid cops with plenty of experience and sound judgment who other police officers depend on to make a tough decision, especially on the bomb squad.

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Nursing home industry worries about new ratings

Updated: 12/18/2008 - Rating systems help people decide which restaurants to go to or hotels to stay at. So why not something similar from the federal government for the nation's 16,000 nursing homes?

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Illinois court rejects attempt to remove governor

Updated: 12/18/2008 - With the Illinois Supreme Court rejecting an effort to oust Gov. Rod Blagojevich, a legislative panel considering impeachment prepared to examine whether he abused his power, despite challenges from the Democrat's lawyer.

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Taiwan Prepares for Chinese Pandas

Updated: 12/18/2008 - Preparations are underway at Taipei Zoo ahead of the arrival of two giant pandas that China is giving to Taiwan in the latest sign of warming ties between the two once-bitter rivals.

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