Palin lampoons scandals in nation's capital
Before an adoring crowd of religious conservatives in Washington, Sarah Palin mocked recent scandals swirling around the Obama administration, performing her own version of a Saturday Night Live parody. "They have this skit where they do this fake newscast, and they read this completely absurd news report and finish it with an incredulous 'Really?' " Palin told the audience Saturday. "As in, our government spied on every single one of your phone calls but it couldn't find two pot-smoking, deadbeat Bostonians with a hotline to Terrorist Central in Chechnya. The IRS says it can't figure out how it managed to spend more than $4 million on training conferences because it didn't keep its receipts. Really?" she said to uproarious laughter. "We're gathering in a town that is awash in scandal," said Palin, the closing speaker at the annual meeting of the Faith and Freedom Coalition. "In other words, just another Saturday afternoon in Washington, D.C."
Firefighters gain against wildfire
Crews gained the upper hand on the most destructive wildfire in Colorado history Saturday and had more than half the blaze contained as officials prepared to lift mandatory evacuation orders for hundreds of residents. Incident commander Rich Harvey said at a news conference that containment of the Black Forest Fire was at 55 percent, up from 45 percent earlier Saturday. Hundreds remained displaced after the fire destroyed nearly 500 homes and killed two people.
Five-block area emptied after fire
A fire engulfed a sprawling mixed-use building near downtown Indianapolis filled with tires and wooden pallets on Saturday, producing a towering pillar of black smoke that prompted the evacuation of a five-block area surrounding the structure, authorities said. Capt. Rita Burris of the Fire Department said about 100 firefighters from six departments were battling the fire that was consuming the two-story brick building about one mile southwest of downtown. She said the only injury had been a firefighter who hurt his knee.
Airliner diverted after note found
A plane from Cairo bound for New York was diverted by fighter jets to an emergency landing in Britain after a passenger discovered a note threatening the aircraft, officials said Saturday. Police said there had been no arrests, and authorities were working to ascertain who wrote the note in a lavatory which forced Flight 985 — carrying around 300 passengers en route to John F. Kennedy Airport — to make an emergency landing at Glasgow's Prestwick Airport. The BBC said one of its producers, Nada Tawfik, had discovered the note, written in pencil on a napkin, with the words "I'll set this plane on fire."
Vatican City: Pope Francis took his first major step in reforming the troubled Vatican bank on Saturday by tapping a trusted prelate to help oversee its management. The job had been left vacant since 2011.
Venezuela: Venezuelan authorities on Friday freed a judge who was arrested in 2009 after then-President Hugo Chavez objected to one of her rulings. The case of Maria Lourdes Afiuni became a cause celebre for the opposition and international human rights groups.