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THE FACTNET BLOG: Public Interest News & Dialog

Factnet Blog: News & Dialog on Issues of Vital Public Interest



ISIS, ISIL: Who They Are And What They Want

Submitted by adminx on Mon, 06/23/2014 - 09:57

Minnesota Public Radio News June 23, 2014

The alarming dispatches from Iraq often feature a jumble of letters new to many American ears: ISIL, or sometimes ISIS. ISIL stands for the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, a Sunni insurgent group.

Its previous name is more familiar: al-Qaida in Iraq.

The group emerged during the Iraq War as a major player in the Shiite vs. Sunni violence that threatened to rip Iraq apart along sectarian lines. The U.S. State Department classified al-Qaida in Iraq as a terrorist organization in 2004.


Submitted by nabashalam2 on Sun, 06/22/2014 - 13:45

Years after leaving the Church of Scientology, Oscar-winning writer and director Paul Haggis is still as disturbed as ever about the way those who leave the church are treated.


Submitted by nabashalam2 on Fri, 06/20/2014 - 18:13


A board investigation of the former president of a controversial Oak Brook-based religious and home-schooling organization, who resigned following allegations he sexually harassed teen girls, concluded he acted in an “inappropriate manner.”


But “no criminal activity was discovered” to have been committed by Bill Gothard, according to a statement by the board of directors of the Institute in Basic Life Principles posted on its website.

National Geographic Has to Radically Redraw Parts of Its Atlas Because of Arctic Ice Loss

Submitted by adminx on Fri, 06/20/2014 - 09:25

TIME Magazine June 20, 2014 by Melissa Hellmann

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'Drastic' changes need to be made to the new National Geographic Atlas of the World to reflect the effects of climate change

The Arctic ice sheet has shrunk so much that National Geographic is having to make what it calls “drastic” changes to its atlas.


Submitted by nabashalam2 on Thu, 06/19/2014 - 18:06

A former member of a tight-knit college prayer group describes his community's disintegration—and how one of its members ended up dead.


November 2, 2012, was a beautiful Friday in Kansas City—clear and cool and sunny. I had spent the afternoon reading in the library at an unaccredited college affiliated with the International House of Prayer, an evangelical Christian organization commonly referred to as IHOP (no relation to the restaurant). Around 6 pm, I got a call from my friend Hannah*.

What Exactly Is The Keystone XL Pipeline?

Submitted by adminx on Thu, 06/19/2014 - 09:33

National Public Radio's State Impact Project

The Keystone Pipeline already exists. What doesn’t exist fully yet is its proposed expansion, the Keystone XL Pipeline. The existing Keystone runs from oil sand fields in Alberta, Canada into the U.S., ending in Cushing, Oklahoma.

Senate Panel Advances Bill To Force Keystone Pipeline Approval

Submitted by adminx on Wed, 06/18/2014 - 21:33

Scientific American  June 18, 2014 by Ros Krasny

WASHINGTON (Reuters) The U.S. Senate Energy Committee advanced a bill on Wednesday that would force congressional approval of TransCanada's proposed Keystone XL oil pipeline project, but the measure seems unlikely to be taken up by the full Senate.

The bill, the latest effort by lawmakers to breathe life into the long-delayed pipeline from Canada to the U.S. Gulf Coast, will languish without a commitment from Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid to bring it to a vote.


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