U.S. special operations forces killed a senior Islamic State leader, who helped direct the group's oil, gas and financial operations, during a raid in eastern Syria, the Pentagon and White House said on Saturday. The White House said President Barack Obama ordered the raid that killed the man identified as Abu Sayyaf. U.S. officials said his wife, Umm Sayyaf, was captured in the raid and was being held in Iraq. White House National Security Council spokeswoman Bernadette Meehan said in a statement that U.S. personnel based out of Iraq conducted the operation in al-Amr in eastern Syria.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Hillary Rodham Clinton and former President Bill Clinton reported Friday that they earned more than $30 million combined in speaking fees and book royalties since January 2014, putting them firmly within the upper echelon of American earners as the former secretary of state seeks the White House again.
By Jarrett Renshaw PHILADELPHIA (Reuters) - The Amtrak train that derailed in Philadelphia and a separate commuter train in the vicinity may have been hit by projectiles of some kind shortly before the wreck, a U.S. transportation safety official said on Friday, after investigators interviewed members of the Amtrak crew. The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) was called in to examine a remnant of a shattered windshield with a circular damage pattern from the Amtrak locomotive, Sumwalt said. The revelation that Amtrak train No. 188 might have been struck by an object added an unexpected twist to a crash probe that initially focused on why the train had accelerated to over 100 miles per hour (160 km per hour) in the minute before it barreled into a curved track segment where the authorized speed limit was just 50 mph (80 kph). The unexplained speed has renewed calls for the installation of "positive train control" technology, which can automatically slow or stop a train to prevent an accident.
By Scott Malone and Elizabeth Barber BOSTON (Reuters) - Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was sentenced to death by a U.S. jury on Friday for helping carry out the 2013 attack that killed three people and wounded 264 others in the crowds at the race's finish line. After deliberating for 15 hours, the federal jury chose death by lethal injection for Tsarnaev, 21, over its only other option: life in prison without possibility of release. The same jury found Tsarnaev guilty last month of placing a pair of homemade pressure-cooker bombs on April 15, 2013, as well as fatally shooting a policeman. William Richard, the father of bombing victim Martin Richard, described the decision to leave his 8-year-old son to die of his wounds so that he could save the life of his daughter, Jane, who lost a leg but survived.
The families of two Seattle teenagers missing in Nepal say there is no chance the girls survived a massive April earthquake, and the $51,000 that had been donated by Friday to fund a search mission will now go to the country's recovery. The families of Bailey Sage Meola and Sydney Jo Schumacher, both 19, posted a message on social media on Thursday announcing that they believe the girls died while hiking in Nepal's Langtang Valley when a 7.8 magnitude quake struck on April 25. Another quake, of 7.3 magnitude, rocked Nepal on Tuesday. In the days after the first earthquake, friends and family of Meola and Schumacher set up a crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo.com seeking money to help pay for a search-and-rescue mission to try to find the girls in the high-altitude, remote area of the Himalayas where they were hiking.
There comes a moment in the career of many government bureaucrats when they sit across the table from a high-ranking elected official — the president, even—and think, You know, I’m just as smart as these guys. “You understand they’re just another person,” says Mark Everson, who served in the Reagan administration and as commissioner of the Internal Revenue Service under George W. Bush. “You ask yourself, Do you like this? Do you think you qualify?” The answers he arrived at — yes and yes — led him, after a long period of soul-searching, to the Lincoln Dinner of the Linn County (Iowa) Republican Committee on May 1, where he shared a dais with the only other presidential candidate who showed up, an Indiana contractor named Mike Petyo. Because the hard truth about presidential politics is that while you may be just as smart as the guys who win, you almost certainly aren’t as famous, charismatic or rich.