Archive for April 1, 2013

Central African Republic’s new leader and self proclaimed president Michel Djotodia has proposed a three year transition period leading to elections in 2016.

Addressing a rally in the capital Bangui, the Seleka rebel chief who toppled President Francois Bozize on 24 March also said there would be no reprisals against supporters of the ousted president.

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Elwin Wilson, a former Ku Klux Klan member who later apologized for his racist actions, has died.

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According to an Associated Press report, Wilson died at a South Carolina hospital at the age of 76. Wilson’s wife, Judy, related that he had struggled with hearth and lung problems for years, and recently contracted the flu.

It isn’t often that members of the Ku Klux Klan publicly renounce their views on race, but Wilson made news with a very public apology in 2009. He apologized directly to John Lewis, a U.S. Representative from Georgia. Wilson had reportedly taken part in a beating which included Lewis during a civil rights march in the early 60s.

Wilson admitted to being a Ku Klux Klan member in the past, but stated that he could not reconcile his religious beliefs with his racism. He recalled that he attended cross burnings, hung effigies, and threw fruit at black men during his time with the Klan.

Lewis has stated that Wilson’s apology was meaningful to him as it was the first apology he received for the violence he encountered during his time as a freedom rider in 1961.

 

If you’ve ever felt like your MD brushed off your concerns, but that the problem wasn’t in fact in your head, you may be suffering from one of these often overlooked conditions. By Kathleen Rellihan

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Sleep apnea
Fighting low energy is a normal part of a busy life, right? Not always. When fatigue becomes chronic, it may be a sign of a lurking health disorder. “As women, we tend to brush off our symptoms, thinking they may be from overextending ourselves or taking on too much, but this may not be the case,” says Dr. Lauren Weber, a physician at the Cleveland Clinic’s Center for Specialized Women’s Health. Depression, hypothyroidism, vitamin-D deficiency, diabetes, and sleep apnea are among the issues Dr. Weber says could be the underlying reason for your fatigue. Sleep apnea is particularly common and worrisome because if left untreated, it can increase your risk for hypertension, stroke, and even heart attack. Focus on good sleep habits – like keeping the same bedtime every night and not watching TV in bed – and eat a well-balanced diet to combat fatigue. If you’re still falling asleep at your desk or behind the wheel, it’s a good idea to get tested for sleep apnea via a sleep study.


Perimenopause or menopause
Hot flashes, night sweats, decreased sex drive – women might feel that these less-than-pleasant symptoms of perimenopause and menopause are just something that they have to cope with. But, that’s not necessary, says Dr. Weber, who advises starting treatment as soon as possible. “The best time to get treated is within the first 10 years of menopause; there is actually a decreased cardiovascular risk associated with starting hormone therapy, which is the best treatment for moderate to severe menopause symptoms,” says Dr. Weber. And if you needed another reason to quit – smokers are at higher risk for early menopause.

Hypothyroidism
Are you tired, achy and finding it hard to lose that mysterious 10 pounds you gained? Intolerant to cold? Suffering from elevated cholesterol? Constipated? Dealing with unexplained infertility? These are all symptoms of a low thyroid, says Dr. Jacob Teitelbaum, author of From Fatigued to Fantastic. “In my 35 years as a physician, I have found that the majority of women who need thyroid hormone have normal blood testing,” he says. If you have unexplained fatigue, and two to three of the other symptoms, you may be one of them, in which case Dr. Teitelbaum advises asking your doctor about trying thyroid hormone.

Fibromyalgia
If you have insomnia despite being utterly exhausted, widespread pain and “brain fog,” you may have fibromyalgia, suggests Dr. Teitelbaum. The good news: It’s now very treatable. “By restoring energy production with the S.H.I.N.E Protocol (Sleep, Hormones, Immunity, Nutrition, Exercise), our study found that 90 percent of patients improved with an average 91 percent increase in quality of life,” says Dr. Teitelbaum. The strategy can help support recovery when dealing with fibromyalgia symptoms, and aid in maintaining healthy energy levels when you’re well. There is no blood test for fibromyalgia, so a conversation with your doctor about your symptoms is the best route to diagnosis.

Prediabetes
Even if your blood sugar tests come back normal and you avoid sugary foods, you’re not necessarily in the clear for developing diabetes. “Many people with prediabetes don’t even know they have it,” says digestive care expert Benda Watson. “But with the epidemic of obesity and diabetes – also known as diabesity – controlling the situation before it gets out of hand is imperative.” Watson advises even those with normal blood sugar levels to be tested for high insulin levels, which could put you at risk for developing diabetes and heart disease. And like with all these sneaky health issues, eating a balanced diet, exercising regularly and limiting stress is key. “Exercise helps to stabilize blood sugar levels, and stress reduction helps with a major underlying contributor to chronic disease,” says Weber. Whether it be kickboxing or a painting class, find a calming activity that you enjoy, and do it regularly for a lasting impact on your overall health.

 

Associated Press/Alaska State Troopers - This 2008 image provided by the Alaska State Troopers shows their helicopter which crashed Saturday night March 30, 2013 while attempting to rescue a snowmobiler near Larson Lake 7 miles east of Talkeetna, Alaska. All three aboard are feared dead. (AP Photo/Alaska State Troopers)

Associated Press/Alaska State Troopers – This 2008 image provided by the Alaska State Troopers shows their helicopter which crashed Saturday night March 30, 2013 while attempting to rescue a snowmobiler near Larson Lake 7 miles east of Talkeetna, Alaska. All three aboard are feared dead. (AP Photo/Alaska State Troopers)

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — An Alaska State Trooper helicopter carrying a trooper, a pilot for the agency and a rescued snowmobiler crashed in the south-central part of the state, leaving all three aboard feared dead, a spokeswoman said Sunday night.

Trooper spokeswoman Megan Peters said the aircraft went down Saturday night, the wreckage spotted Sunday, and no survivors have been found.

Peters said that though the three are feared dead, there still has been no confirmation of any fatalities.

“This is a huge, profound tragedy for us. We can replace the helicopter but we can’t replace what went down with it,” she said. “It’s been a bad day.”

Wreckage of the helicopter burned, but Peters said it was not known how the fire started or how long it lasted. (more…)

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An Afghan teenager killed anAmerican soldier in eastern Afghanistan by stabbing him in the neck while he played with a group of local children, officials said Monday.

The killing comes as the monthly U.S. death toll rose sharply in March to 14 with the start of the spring fighting season when the Taliban and other insurgents take advantage of improved weather to step up attacks.

Sgt. Michael Cable, 26, was guarding Afghan and U.S. officials meeting in a province near the border with Pakistan when the stabbing occurred last Wednesday, two senior U.S. officials said. They spoke on condition of anonymity because the investigation is ongoing.

The attack occurred after the soldiers had secured the area for the meeting, but one of the U.S. officials said the youth was not believed to have been a member of the Afghan security forces or in uniform so it was not being classified as an insider attack.

The official said the attacker was thought to be about 16 years old, but the age couldn’t be verified.

The Afghan and American dignitaries were attending the swearing-in ceremony of Afghan Local Police in Shinwar district in Nangarhar province, senior district official Zalmai Khan said. Afghan Local Police, or ALP, recruits are drawn from villages and backed by the U.S. military.

The soldier was playing with a group of children outside when the attacker came from behind and stabbed him in the neck with a large knife, Khan said, adding the young man had escaped to nearby Pakistan.

Taliban spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid said the young man was acting independently when he killed the soldier but had joined the Islamic militant movement since fleeing the scene.

The Pentagon said in a statement last week that Cable, of Philpot, Ky., died from injuries sustained when his unit was attacked by enemy forces.

At least 14 U.S. soldiers died in March, compared with four in the previous two months, according to an Associated Press tally.

The number of American troops killed in Afghanistan has dropped sharply as international forces increasingly take a back seat while preparing to end their combat mission by the end of 2014. But they continue to face dangers ranging from roadside bombs to attacks by their Afghan counterparts or insurgents disguised as government forces.

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Associated Press writers Kimberly Dozier and Amir Shah contributed to this report.

Screenshot of Hulu.com by Hayley Tsukayama/Screenshot of Hulu.com by Hayley Tsukayama – For April Fool’s Day, Hulu is promoting fictional shows such as “The Itchy and Scratchy Show” from “The Simpsons” and “The Rural Juror” from “30 Rock.”

The new month has already brought a lot of major tech news: Google announced Saturday that it’s closing YouTube and launching a scent search engine; meanwhile, Twitter is launching a two-tiered service that will require users to pay $5 if they want vowels included in their messages.

In other words, it’s April Fool’s Day, and major tech companies are following tradition and pulling some big pranks.

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Kaufman, Texas — Fears that a white supremacist gang or someone else is targeting Texas law enforcement officials spread Monday to Houston, where the chief prosecutor went under 24-hour protection in the wake of the weekend shooting death of his counterpart in a suburban Dallas county.

Kaufman County — where District Attorney Mike McLelland and his wife, Cynthia, died Saturday — and Harris County were among numerous Texas and federal jurisdictions that participated in a task force targeting the Aryan Brotherhood of Texas in 2012.

The investigation resulted in an indictment that a federal prosecutor called a “devastating blow” to an organization investigators say is known to use threats and violence against its enemies.

The McLellands were found shot to death in their house.

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