The Vatican has launched a rare criminal investigation to uncover who is behind leaks of highly sensitive documents that allege corruption and financial mismanagement in Vatican City.
The documents also shed light on purported infighting over the Vatican Bank's compliance with international money-laundering regulations.
A television show in late January on an independent network first revealed letters addressed last year to Pope Benedict XVI from the then-deputy governor of Vatican City, Archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano.
Originally published on Thu March 29, 2012 9:57 am
There were plenty of weighty questions bandied about during this week's historic oral arguments on the future of the health care law — which our colleagues over at Shots did an excellent job covering. But we here at The Salt couldn't help noticing that when the Supreme Court justices talk, they let the food metaphors fly.
By now, you've probably heard the most famous of these: the broccoli question. If the government can mandate you to have health insurance, can it also force you to buy broccoli?
Afghan miners in a makeshift emerald mine in the Panjshir Valley in 2010. Reports suggest that Afghanistan is sitting on significant deposits of oil, gas, copper, iron, gold and coal, as well as a range of precious gems like emeralds and rubies. Currently these minerals are largely untapped and are still being mapped.
Credit Benjamin Lowy / Getty Images
Hesco barriers and concertina wire surround the living quarters of the Chinese-owned Ainak copper mine in Logar, Afghanistan, in 2011.
Credit Majid Saeedi / Getty Images
Afghan miners work a coal mine some 60 miles east of the western city of Herat, Afghanistan, in 2010.
Afghanistan faces the daunting prospect of a drastic reduction in foreign aid, which currently makes up about 90 percent of the country's revenue. Some have seen an economic life raft in geological surveys that indicate huge deposits of copper, iron, uranium and lithium in various parts of the country. But multinational mining firms have been slow to invest in Afghanistan — not least because of questions about stability after American troops draw down.
"The former superintendent of a southern West Virginia mine where an explosion killed 29 workers in April 2010 pleaded guilty Thursday to a federal fraud charge," The Associated Press reports. "Gary May of Bloomingrose, the highest-ranking Massey Energy official charged in connection with the blast, faces up to five years in prison when sentenced Aug. 9."
Paul Clement, the attorney representing the 26 states challenging the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, talks to the news media outside the U.S. Supreme Court on the third day of oral arguements over the constitutionality of the act March 28, 2012 in Washington, D.C.
Originally published on Thu March 29, 2012 7:20 am
Jay Cost is a writer for The Weekly Standard.
This week has really reminded me of Election Day 2004. Liberals, then, were just plain convinced John Kerry was going to be elected president, so much so Bob Shrum actually called Kerry, "Mr. President." The left had convinced itself Bush was unpopular, Kerry had closed the deal, and everything was swinging his way in the final week. So, when the early, unweighted exit polls came up Tuesday afternoon, they were exuberant.