<p>An alleged Iranian plot to assassinate Saudi Arabia's ambassador to the U.S., Adel al-Jubeir (shown here in 2004), may have been motivated by tensions between Iran and Saudi Arabia, but also could underscore an internal power struggle.</p>
The disclosure of an alleged Iranian plot to kill the Saudi ambassador in the U.S. is certain to worsen relations between Riyadh and Tehran, despite the baffling and improbable details that have emerged so far.
Relations between Iran and Saudi Arabia have been deteriorating for some years now, however, with growing hostility bubbling just below the surface. In that context, the plot may make more sense than is immediately apparent.
An NBC/Wall Street Journal poll out this week puts a new name at the top of the race for the Republican presidential nomination: Herman Cain. The poll shows the former head of Godfather's Pizza at 27 percent, with former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney just 4 points behind. Cain spoke with Weekend Edition Saturday host Scott Simon about his surge to front-runner status.
Scott Simon: So how do you keep your campaign from going the way of Mitt Romney, Rick Perry, Michele Bachmann, Donald Trump — for that matter, every other front-runner?
<p>As the Chicago Cubs' Moises Alou made a leaping attempt at a pop foul during the National League Championship Series, Steve Bartman (in Cubs cap and dark sweater) was among the fans reaching for the ball. While one image suggests he acted alone, the second photo tells another story.</p>
Credit Elsa / Getty Images
Credit Elsa / Getty Images
<p>Ted Zegarski and other dejected Cubs fans hang out in front of Wrigley Field as the Chicago Cubs were beaten by the Florida Marlins in Game 7 of the National League Championship Series on Oct. 15, 2003.</p>
We fans of the Chicago Cubs rarely hear good news in October, so there's a little buzz of excitement around Wrigley Field these days about the possibility of Boston Red Sox GM Theo Epstein reportedly coming to Chicago to take over a similar or expanded role with the hapless Cubs.
In 2004, Epstein helped guide the Red Sox to their first World Series title in 86 years and to another title in 2007. In Chicago, he'd be trying to end a Cubs' championship drought dating back to 1908; the Cubs haven't even been to the World Series since 1945.
<p>A researcher who wrote a famous report about dead polar bears is being re-interviewed by federal investigators, who are continuing to probe allegations of misconduct. Above, a polar bear walks on the frozen tundra on the edge of Hudson Bay.</p>
Federal officials continue to probe allegations of misconduct related to a famous report on dead polar bears that raised concerns about climate change. Later this month, officials plan to re-interview one of the two government scientists who wrote that report.
The new development suggests that scientific integrity remains a focus of the investigation, which recently detoured into allegations that the other researcher under scrutiny broke rules related to federal funding of research. Both scientists work for agencies of the Department of the Interior (DOI).
<p>SpaceShipTwo in full feather wing mode on a rapid descent from its drop altitude of 51,500 feet over Mojave, Calif. in May of 2011. This photograph was taken with high powered telescopes from the ground.</p>
Credit Mark Greenberg / Virgin Galactic/Clay Center Obse
Originally published on Fri October 14, 2011 5:49 pm
Virgin Galactic announced today that NASA has booked its first charter flight to space on the company's SpaceShipTwo, which the company says will take off from its New Mexico spaceport.
The contract could be worth up to $4.5 million if NASA exercises its right to book two more flights. Virgin said NASA will use its flight on the spacecraft for "engineers, technologists, and scientific researchers to conduct cutting-edge experiments in space."
Originally published on Sat October 15, 2011 10:52 am
After a 19-month review, the Obama administration has concluded that it can't implement the CLASS Act, the community-based long-term care program that was the late Sen. Edward Kennedy's most heartfelt contribution to the Affordable Care Act.