The royal mummies of ancient Egypt apparently did, as a new study finds that "meat mummies" left in Egyptian tombs as sustenance for the afterlife were treated with elaborate balms to preserve them. Mummified cuts of meat are common finds in ancient Egyptian burials, with the oldest dating back to at least 3300 B.C. The tradition extended into the latest periods of mummification in the fourth century A.D. The famous pharaoh King Tutankhamun went to his final resting place accompanied by 48 cases of beef and poultry. University of Bristol biogeochemist Richard Evershed and his colleagues were curious about how these cuts were prepared. The oldest was a rack of cattle ribs from the tomb of Tjuiu, an Egyptian noblewoman, and her courtier Yuya.
CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. — NASA launched its newest Mars probe toward the Red Planet Monday (Nov. 18) on a mission to determine how the Martian atmosphere transformed the world into the desolate wasteland it is today. The robotic spacecraft, called the Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution probe (MAVEN), launched atop an Atlas 5 rocket from the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station here at 1:28 p.m. EST (1828 GMT), beginning a 10-month journey to Mars. "Liftoff of the Atlas 5 with MAVEN, looking for clues about the evolution of Mars through its atmosphere," NASA launch commentator George Diller said as the rocket climbed into a cloudy Florida sky. If all goes well, MAVEN should arrive at Mars on Sept. 22, 2014, mission scientists have said.
BERLIN (AP) — A retired Minnesota carpenter, shown in a June investigation to be a former commander in a Nazi SS-led unit, ordered his men to attack a Polish village that was razed to the ground, according to testimony newly uncovered by The Associated Press. The account of the massacre that killed dozens of women and children contradicts statements by the man's family that he was never at the scene of the 1944 bloodshed.
Elian Gonzalez, who at age six sparked an international custody battle that ended in his dramatic return to Cuba, blamed a US law for his mother's death in an interview posted Monday. In November 1999, Gonzalez was plucked from the sea off Florida's coast after an overcrowded motorboat capsized en route from Cuba, killing his mother and 10 others seeking to enter the United States illegally. His Florida relatives fought to keep him in the United States, but his father demanded he be returned. The event culminated on June 30, 2000, when heavily-armed US agents broke into the Miami home of Gonzalez's uncle, 2000, on orders of then-US attorney-general Janet Reno to return the boy to Cuba.
By Lawrence Hurley WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Supreme Court said on Monday it would not review a ruling by a secretive intelligence court that authorized government access to millions of Verizon Communications Inc (VZ.N) phone-call records. The long-shot case was brought to the court by the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC), a public interest research organization. It was first time the high-profile issue has come before the justices since the recent wave of leaks traced to former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden. The Obama administration argued in papers presented to the court that under existing law, only the government or Verizon itself could challenge a ruling by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court.