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August 9th, 2010
02:43 PM ET
August 9th, 2010
02:37 PM ET

Farrow: Campbell said diamond was from Taylor

CNN Wire Staff

Mia Farrow says Naomi Campbell said Charles Taylor sent her a diamond

Mia Farrow says Naomi Campbell said Charles Taylor sent her a diamond

Actress Mia Farrow testified Monday that supermodel Naomi Campbell named Charles Taylor as the person who presented her with a diamond.

Farrow was testifying at the war crimes trial of Taylor, the former president of Liberia who prosecutors allege funded a brutal civil war in Sierra Leone using blood diamonds.

A so-called blood diamond is mined in war zones and used to fund rebels and warlords. The stones have fueled bloody conflicts in Africa for more than a decade.

Farrow's testimony at the United Nations-backed Special Court for Sierra Leone contradicted that of Campbell, who took the stand last week.

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Filed under: 360° Radar
August 9th, 2010
12:02 PM ET

Escaped convict might be en route to Indiana, U.S. marshal says

CNN Wire Staff

Three men escaped an Arizona prison July 30; one was recaptured

Three men escaped an Arizona prison July 30; one was recaptured

An escaped Arizona convict was seen in Casper, Wyoming, and now may be headed toward friends and family in Indiana, according to U.S. Marshal Fidencio Rivera.

Rivera told CNN Monday morning that escapee Tracy Province, 42, was in the northern part of Yellowstone National Park about 48 hours previously and authorities believe he is headed toward Indiana.

Province escaped July 30 from an Arizona prison with two other men. One of them, John Charles McCluskey, 45, and his alleged accomplice, Casslyn Mae Welch, 43, are believed to be hiding in Yellowstone, Rivera said.

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Filed under: Crime
August 9th, 2010
11:32 AM ET

Activists rally to 'Free Bradley Manning' in WikiLeaks case

Rachel Streitfeld
CNN

Activists rallied in Manning's support Sunday

Activists rallied in Manning's support Sunday

Activists rallied outside the Marine Corps base at Quantico, Virginia, Sunday to applaud the man military officials suspect leaked scores of military documents to the WikiLeaks website - a 22-year-old Army private named Bradley Manning.

"We are here to say that if he, indeed, was the whistle-blower, then we are proud of him," said Medea Benjamin, founder of anti-war group Code Pink. "In the United States that I know and love, transparency is a positive thing."

Manning, who served as an intelligence analyst in Iraq, is the military's focus in the investigation into the largest-ever intelligence leak in American history, to WikiLeaks.org.

He is being detained at Quantico pending a military investigation in a separate case, in which he's charged with eight violations of the U.S. Criminal Code, including for allegedly leaking a secret military video from the Iraq war to WikiLeaks.

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Filed under: 360° Radar
August 9th, 2010
11:28 AM ET

Opinion: Lesson of Obama's sky-high ambition

Bob Greene
CNN Contributor

The throaty, thumping churn of the military helicopter convoy is a sound like no other.

It's a common sound in Washington, but less so in the skies over Chicago. Barack Obama doesn't get back to his old town much these days.

He did last week; he returned to Illinois for slightly more than 24 hours to celebrate his 49th birthday with some friends, to make a public appearance at an auto plant, to raise some money for upcoming campaigns. And as he arrived late on a wet and cloud-darkened afternoon, there was that baritone rumble of the line of helicopters, there were the Chicagoans looking up toward the president in Marine One, there were the streets closed to traffic in anticipation of his motorcade.

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Filed under: Opinion • President Barack Obama
August 9th, 2010
11:26 AM ET

Trial for youngest Gitmo prisoner under way

Charley Keyes
CNN

Omar Khadr's trial begins as a defense motion for a delay is denied

Omar Khadr's trial begins as a defense motion for a delay is denied

More armed guards were visible early Monday morning near where two war crimes proceedings were under way for two terrorism suspects at the Guantanamo Bay Naval Base in Cuba.

One of the proceedings - for Canadian-born terrorism suspect Omar Khadr - marked the beginning of the first full Military Commission of the Obama administration.

The appearance of the 23-year-old Khadr, who was 15 when he was captured on the battlefield in Afghanistan, endedspeculation that he might refuse to attend the session. It is still unclear whether he will actively participate in his defense. Khadr is the youngest detainee at the U.S. detention facility.

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Filed under: Guantanomo Bay
August 9th, 2010
10:02 AM ET

In the Gulf, scientific questions still lurk beneath the surface

John D. Sutter
CNN

Scientists say little is known about the long-term environmental impacts the Gulf oil spill.

Scientists say little is known about the long-term environmental impacts the Gulf oil spill.

When Ed Overton looks at the remains of what's happened to the Gulf of Mexico over the past few months, he sees a stale, unsolved crime scene.

The oil has stopped leaking. The damage is largely done, he says. But what exactly happened?

Until more clues surface, that's anyone's guess.

"We can see the beaches; we can see the dead animals; we can get a count on turtles and whales and all this stuff - and all of that is eye-level observation," said Overton, a professor emeritus at Louisiana State University and a veteran of oil-spill science.

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Filed under: Gulf Oil Spill
August 9th, 2010
09:51 AM ET

Mountain Climbing, Motivations, and the Deep-Seated Fear of Failure

Chris Guillebeau
AC360° Contributor

When I first started doing media interviews in 2008, I noticed that one question would almost always come up: “Why are you so obsessed with travel?”

(I learned to call it the mountain-climbing question, because it’s the same one climbers are asked about Everest and K2: “Why?”)

The question bewildered me until I got used to it. For a long time, I didn’t know how to answer; the quest to see the whole world was just something that made sense to me intuitively. I like travel, I like goal-setting, so why not put the two together?

I was reminded of this while reading a review of a new mountain climbing book on the Lufthansa flight last week. The journalist complained, “None of these books ever clearly answer the reason why people feel the need to climb mountains.”

I don’t climb real mountains very often, but I understand the desire and appeal very well. I guess if I sat in an office somewhere and read about people climbing mountains, I might want to know more about their motivations too. But because I’m out there working on my own proverbial mountains, I can read about other climbers and think, “Good for them!”

Small Goals, Small Worries

A friend and I were talking about a related subject, and she said, “I think there’s a deep-seated, hidden fear of failure behind the travel quest.” My response: it’s probably deep-seated, but it’s not hidden at all!

Of course I’m worried about failure. It’s getting harder and harder with each country I go to. Crashing into Bangkok is easy; wandering around Baku is… a bit different. It’s not bad, but it’s definitely harder. I know how to overcome my fears, but I’m definitely not fearless.

As I see it, small goals produce only small worries. If something easy isn’t going well, you can suck it up and still get it done. The real challenge comes with a big goal, or a big mountain to use the climbing analogy.


Photo by moragcasey

With a big mountain, you know you’re going to need more than just stubbornness. You may get wildly off track. You may encounter unforeseen difficulties. You may even have to come back down the mountain at some point before resuming the climb. Thus, you’re going to need some form of internal motivation.

I doubt that I’m going to get tired of my crazy adventures anytime soon, but even if I did, I’d keep going anyway. I don’t expect that mountain climbers enjoy every moment of the climb, and I bet there are plenty of times they think about giving up. The best ones, however, find a way to keep going even when it’s hard.

Do Your Part, Don’t Worry About the Rest

My theory is: Some things are out of our control, so don’t worry about what you can’t change. But if it’s within the realm of your control, do your part. I can fly over to Azerbaijan and figure out how to take the 15-hour midnight train to Georgia. I can’t control whether the train arrives on time or what happens next, but I can get my ass to the station. I think the universe is cool like that most of the time – show up, do your part, and trust the rest to be OK.

By the way, I’m not saying this perspective is 100% right for everyone. I’m just saying that in my worldview, the concept of an alternative doesn’t exist. Why bother with nuance? Let’s leave that to the people who wonder why mountain climbers are willing to sacrifice so much for what they believe in. I’d rather be climbing.

How about you? Been climbing any mountains lately?

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Editor’s Note: Chris Guillebeau writes for a small army of remarkable people at ChrisGuillebeau.com. Follow Chris's live updates from every country in the world at @chrisguillebeau.


Filed under: Chris Guillebeau • Travel
August 9th, 2010
09:22 AM ET

Letter to the President #567: 'Just keep running'

Tom Foreman | BIO
AC360° Correspondent

Foreman: I say to you what I would say to any president, or anybody involved in a long struggle: Don’t give up.  Muster your strength.

Foreman: I say to you what I would say to any president, or anybody involved in a long struggle: Don’t give up. Muster your strength.

Reporter's Note: The President continues to struggle with low approval ratings which are becoming a somewhat more serious matter as the fall elections get closer. But patience is a virtue even in politics where virtues in general are in short supply. Thank goodness he has an overabundant supply of my letters to remind him of that.

Dear Mr. President,

Did you happen to see Tiger’s meltdown over the weekend? It’s amazing to see someone with so much talent fare so badly at something at which he is normally great. But of course, he must have a lot on his mind. And we all have our up times and our down times and there is nothing to do when the downs come except soldier on. (And, btw, I would like to point out that his worst round is so much better than my best that I shant heave too many aspersions his way, even if he flings an iron or two…or a two iron…at me.)

The virtue of soldiering on when times get tough, I think is underrated these days. We’ve become a bit too enamored of the idea of someone who wins all the time, or who is sitting on top of the heap, and I think we have lost some of our respect for people who just hang in there. That’s a shame. Because for my money, the person who stands firm against adversity, who takes a beating but sticks to his or her principles, is more to be admired than a mere victor any day.

Things worth fighting for often take a long time, and anyone who expects to be in first place eating grapes the whole time is crazy.

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