Headlines from around the world: 9-20-10

A Venezuelan man and his wife have are being investigated for allegedly attempting to pass classified US nuclear secrets to an agent they believed to belong to the Venezuelan government. Leonardo Mascheroni, 75, a naturalized U.S. citizen, will face up to life in prison if convicted.

Little Italy in New York City is experiencing a taste of old-world Italian fun, featuring the Feast of San Gerrano street fair and its traditional favorite, the cannoli-eating contest. Rather than “athletes” competing for cash prizes, the Feast of San Gerrano gives free food to anyone who wants to eat, and the only prize is a full stomach.

Tornado warnings in NYC preceded a devastating storm Thursday evening, where winds were reported in excess of 70 mph. With at least one dead and cars and homes damaged or crushed, many are saying that it was a tornado. Authorities have confirmed that two did touch down.

Police in London, UK arrested six men on suspicion of terrorism Friday before Pope Benedict XVI’s visit scheduled for Friday. Scotland Yard, London’s Metropolitan police service, apprehended the men based on suspicious acts of preparation, instigation, and performance of terrorism. They were later released without charge.

In an effort to disrupt Afghanistan’s parliamentary elections Saturday, the Taliban kidnapped two candidates and several poll workers Friday before the elections. Staffan de Mistura, the chief United Nations envoy in Afghanistan, said “The afghan elections will be a violent day, probably the most violent day of the year.”

Seeking to draw more students in their doors, private colleges across the nation are resorting to an old car-salesmen trick – raising the sticker price of tuition then offering a ‘special’ discount to every student who crosses the threshold. The College Board recently issued a report that indicated private colleges are now only receiving 67% of advertised tuition, down from 72% eight years ago.

Meg Whitman, the former executive for eBay, is defending the $119 million contribution she made to her own campaign for governor. Running for governor of California, Whitman has set a new record in personal campaign spending, and has spent more than any other American politician in history.

While Sarah Palin draws many a hoot and holler for her speeches, a recent poll by CBS News/New York Times found that 46% of those polled viewed her unfavorably. The poll also showed that only 19% supported the Tea Party movement.

Reggie Bush relinquished his Heisman trophy after inquiries into his past with University of Southern California have raised questions that he may have accepted cash gifts from sports agents. Bush maintains that this is not an admission of guilt, but rather it is a show of respect to others who have won the trophy.

With 28 million viewers, the Packers-Eagles game on Sunday became the most-watched week-1 Sunday football game ever. The NFL continues to buck the downward trend of TV viewership by posting the most-watched kickoff weekend in the past 23 years, averaging 19.5 million viewers per game.

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