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News Wrap: White House Releases 100 Pages of Emails and Notes on Benghazi Attack

May 15, 2013 at 12:00 AM EST
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KWAME HOLMAN: The White House has released 100 pages of e-mails and notes on the fatal attack on U.S. diplomats in Benghazi, Libya. The documents describe how officials developed talking points about the attack.

Last week, it came out that State Department officials and others lobbied to remove references to al-Qaida and previous warnings. White House officials deny there was any intent to deceive the public.

The U.N. General Assembly called again today for a political transition in Syria, but with less support than before. An Arab-backed resolution condemned President Bashar Assad and his troops for using heavy weapons during the more-than-two-year-long conflict; 107 of the 193 member nations approved the declaration. Last year, 133 nations supported a similar resolution.

A series of bombings across Iraq today killed at least 33 people. It started in the northern city of Kirkuk, where two car bombs exploded in the same area an hour apart. Seven people were killed, including two children. Later, bombs exploded in a Shiite — in Shiite sections of Baghdad. Two dozen Iraqis died there. Scores more were wounded.

Palestinians today marked the 65th anniversary of the Nakba, or Catastrophe, the name for the displacement of Palestinians during the 1948 war over Israel’s creation. Tens of thousands marched in rallies across Gaza and the West Bank. In East Jerusalem, Palestinian protesters clashed with Israeli police officers. A police spokesman said 19 demonstrators were arrested.

NASA may be losing one of its stars, the Kepler orbiting telescope. Kepler searches the heavens for other planets, but the space agency said today the telescope has lost the ability to control its position. If the problem can’t be fixed, Kepler’s planet-hunting days will be over. Since 2009, the telescope has discovered 132 planets and spotted signs of another 2,700 possible planets.

Wall Street kept up its forward progress today. The Dow Jones industrial average gained 60 points to close at 15,275. The Nasdaq rose nine points to close at 3,471.

Those are some of the day’s major stories — now back to Gwen.