Jobs report boosts Obama; Romney not impressed
FAIRFAX, Va. (AP) — Mitt Romney was still celebrating his widely praised debate performance when the campaign lurched in a different direction. Unemployment dropped last month to the lowest level since 2009, and suddenly it was President Barack Obama’s turn to smile.
US suspects Haqqani tie to Afghan insider attacks
KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — The Haqqani insurgent network, based in Pakistan and with ties to al-Qaida, is suspected of being a driving force behind a significant number of the ‘‘insider’’ attacks by Afghan forces that have killed or wounded more than 130 U.S. and allied troops this year, American officials said Friday. Until now, officials had said the attacks seemed to stem either from personal grievances against the allies or from Taliban infiltration. The Taliban has publicly claimed to be orchestrating the campaign to subvert the U.S.-Afghan alliance.
Steep drop in unemployment rate spawns conspiracy
WASHINGTON (AP) — Sasquatch might as well have traipsed across the White House lawn Friday with a lost Warren Commission file on his way to the studio where NASA staged the moon landing. Conspiracy theorists came out in force after the government reported a sudden drop in the U.S. unemployment rate one month before Election Day. Their message: The Obama administration would do anything to ensure a November victory, including manipulating unemployment data.
Abu Hamza extradited to US after UK ruling
LONDON (AP) — Radical preacher Abu Hamza al-Masri and four other terror suspects who fought for years to avoid facing charges in the United States lost their grounds for appeal and were flown to the U.S. from Britain late Friday, officials said. The U.S. Embassy said it was pleased with the ruling earlier Friday by Britain’s High Court, and Scotland Yard said the five departed from an air force base in eastern England just before midnight on two jets bound for the U.S.
FBI: Friendly fire likely in border shootings
PHOENIX (AP) — A preliminary investigation has found friendly fire likely was to blame in a shooting that killed one federal agent and wounded another along the Arizona-Mexico border, the FBI said Friday, shaking up the probe into an incident that reignited the political debate over border security. ‘‘There are strong preliminary indications that the death of United States Border Patrol Agent Nicholas J. Ivie and the injury to a second agent was the result of an accidental shooting incident involving only the agents,’’ FBI Special Agent in Charge James L. Turgal Jr. said in a statement.
Docs say spine shots for steroids are usually safe
CHICAGO (AP) — Millions of people get steroid shots in their backs to relieve pain. Now they are probably wondering if it’s safe. In 23 states, hundreds, possibly thousands, of back-pain patients are being warned to watch for symptoms of meningitis because of a custom-mixed steroid solution that may have been contaminated with fungus. Five people have died and more than 40 others have fallen ill.
Mexico: Mayan ball court was celestial 'marker'
MEXICO CITY (AP) — Mexican archaeologists say they have determined that the ancient Mayas built watchtower-style structures atop the ceremonial ball court at the temples of Chichen Itza to observe the equinoxes and solstices, and they said Friday that the discovery adds to understanding of the many layers of ritual significance that the ball game had for the culture. The structures sit atop the low walls of the court, where the Mayas played a game that consisted, as far as experts can tell, of knocking a heavy, latex ball with their elbows, knees or hips, through a stone ring set in the walls.
Well-preserved mammoth carcass found in Siberia
MOSCOW (AP) — A teenage mammoth that once roamed the Siberian tundra in search of fodder and females might have been killed by an Ice Age man on a summer day tens of thousands of years ago, a Russian scientist said Friday. Prof. Alexei Tikhonov of the Zoology Institute in St. Petersburg announced the finding of the mammoth, which was excavated from the Siberian permafrost in late September near the Sopochnaya Karga cape, 3,500 kilometers (2,200 miles) northeast of Moscow.
Short supplies keep gas prices rising in Calif.
LOS ANGELES (AP) — California gas prices continued surging Friday, adding another 17 cents per gallon on average, and the increases are expected to continue for at least several more days, ensuring long lines and short tempers at pumps around the state. A week of soaring costs has led some stations to close and others to charge record prices — in some places $5 or more — as California leapfrogged Hawaii as the state with the most expensive fuel. The average price for a gallon of regular unleaded across California was nearly $4.49 on Friday, 32 cents more than a week ago and the highest statewide average in the nation, according to AAA’s Daily Fuel Gauge report.
Cardinals beat Braves 6-3 in disputed playoff
ATLANTA (AP) — David Freese and the St. Louis Cardinals rediscovered their postseason touch. Chipper Jones and the Braves kept throwing the ball away. And the Atlanta fans turned Turner Field into a trash heap. They said anything could happen in baseball’s first wild-card playoff.