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[ {"id":"53841487-da88-5e0a-9f7c-47bb81245639","type":"article","starttime":"1461907748","starttime_iso8601":"2016-04-29T00:29:08-05:00","lastupdated":"1461908768","priority":0,"sections":[{"world":"news/world"}],"flags":{"ap":"true"},"application":"editorial","title":"North Korea sends another US citizen to prison","url":"http://muscatinejournal.com/news/world/article_53841487-da88-5e0a-9f7c-47bb81245639.html","permalink":"http://muscatinejournal.com/news/world/north-korea-sends-another-us-citizen-to-prison/article_53841487-da88-5e0a-9f7c-47bb81245639.html","relatedAssetCounts":{"article":0,"audio":0,"image":2,"link":0,"vmix":0,"youtube":0,"gallery":0},"byline":"Associated Press","prologue":"PYONGYANG, North Korea (AP) \u2014 North Korea on Friday sentenced a U.S. citizen of Korean heritage to 10 years in prison after convicting him of espionage and subversion, the second American it has put behind bars this year.","supportsComments":true,"commentCount":0,"keywords":["wire","general news","espionage","crime"],"internalKeywords":["#lee"],"customProperties":{},"images":[{"id":"cd5ec8b6-e748-594c-9dd1-df52a57157f6","description":"Kim Dong Chul, center, a U.S. citizen detained in North Korea, is escorted to his trial Friday, April 29, 2016, in Pyongyang, North Korea. A North Korean court has sentenced an ethnic Korean U.S. citizen to 10 years in prison for what it called acts of espionage. (AP Photo/Kim Kwang Hyon)","byline":"Kim Kwang Hyon","versions":{"full":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"512","height":"341","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/muscatinejournal.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/c/d5/cd5ec8b6-e748-594c-9dd1-df52a57157f6/5722f520a0828.image.jpg"},"100": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"100","height":"67","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/muscatinejournal.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/c/d5/cd5ec8b6-e748-594c-9dd1-df52a57157f6/5722f520a0828.image.jpg?resize=100%2C67"},"300": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"300","height":"200","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/muscatinejournal.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/c/d5/cd5ec8b6-e748-594c-9dd1-df52a57157f6/5722f520a0828.image.jpg?resize=300%2C200"},"1024":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"1024","height":"682","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/muscatinejournal.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/c/d5/cd5ec8b6-e748-594c-9dd1-df52a57157f6/5722f520a0828.image.jpg"}}},{"id":"2cdccd6f-9284-583f-88b7-6a4bd9e87ab1","description":"Kim Dong Chul, center, a U.S. citizen detained in North Korea, escorted from the court room after his trial Friday, April 29, 2016, in Pyongyang, North Korea. A North Korean court has sentenced the ethnic Korean U.S. citizen to 10 years in prison for what it called acts of espionage. (AP Photo/Kim Kwang Hyon)","byline":"Kim Kwang Hyon","versions":{"full":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"487","height":"512","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/muscatinejournal.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/2/cd/2cdccd6f-9284-583f-88b7-6a4bd9e87ab1/5722f520c915c.image.jpg"},"100": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"100","height":"106","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/muscatinejournal.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/2/cd/2cdccd6f-9284-583f-88b7-6a4bd9e87ab1/5722f520c915c.image.jpg?resize=100%2C106"},"300": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"300","height":"316","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/muscatinejournal.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/2/cd/2cdccd6f-9284-583f-88b7-6a4bd9e87ab1/5722f520c915c.image.jpg?resize=300%2C316"},"1024":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"1024","height":"1077","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/muscatinejournal.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/2/cd/2cdccd6f-9284-583f-88b7-6a4bd9e87ab1/5722f520c915c.image.jpg"}}}],"revision":5,"commentID":"53841487-da88-5e0a-9f7c-47bb81245639","body":"

PYONGYANG, North Korea (AP) \u2014 North Korea on Friday sentenced a U.S. citizen of Korean heritage to 10 years in prison after convicting him of espionage and subversion, the second American it has put behind bars this year.

Kim Dong Chul had been detained in the North on suspicion of engaging in spying and stealing state secrets. He was sentenced to 10 years in prison with hard labor after a brief trial in Pyongyang. North Korea's Supreme Court found Kim guilty of crimes and espionage and subversion of under Articles 60 and 64 of the North's criminal code.

Further details were not immediately available.

Kim's sentencing comes on the heels of a 15-year sentence handed down on Otto Warmbier, an American university student who the North says was engaged in anti-state activities while visiting the country as a tourist earlier this year.

North Korea regularly accuses Washington and Seoul of sending spies to overthrow its government to enable the U.S.-backed South Korean government to control the entire Korean Peninsula. Some foreigners previously arrested have read statements of guilt they later said were coerced.

Most of those who are sentenced to long prison terms are released before serving their full time.

In the past, North Korea has held out until senior U.S. officials or statesmen came to personally bail out detainees, all the way up to former President Bill Clinton, whose visit in 2009 secured the freedom of American journalists Euna Lee and Laura Ling. Both had crossed North Korea's border from China illegally.

It took a visit in November 2014 by U.S. spy chief James Clapper to bring home Mathew Miller, also arrested after entering the country as a tourist, and Korean-American missionary Kenneth Bae, who had been incarcerated since November 2012.

Jeffrey Fowle, a U.S. tourist detained for six months at about the same time as Miller, was released just before that and sent home on a U.S. government plane. Fowle left a Bible in a local club hoping a North Korean would find it, which is considered a criminal offense in North Korea.

"}, {"id":"d2ac1521-dbf2-5ed8-928c-510d00f93463","type":"article","starttime":"1461907718","starttime_iso8601":"2016-04-29T00:28:38-05:00","priority":0,"sections":[{"world":"news/world"}],"flags":{"ap":"true"},"application":"editorial","title":"Yearning for North Korea - the nation they fled","url":"http://muscatinejournal.com/news/world/article_d2ac1521-dbf2-5ed8-928c-510d00f93463.html","permalink":"http://muscatinejournal.com/news/world/yearning-for-north-korea---the-nation-they-fled/article_d2ac1521-dbf2-5ed8-928c-510d00f93463.html","relatedAssetCounts":{"article":0,"audio":0,"image":4,"link":0,"vmix":0,"youtube":0,"gallery":0},"byline":"By TIM SULLIVAN","prologue":"INCHEON, South Korea (AP) \u2014 For much of the world, North Korea is a Stalinist nightmare, an isolated enclave of prison camps, poverty and hunger.","supportsComments":true,"commentCount":0,"keywords":["wire","general news","political refugees","famine","extended family","government and politics","human welfare","social issues","social affairs","humanitarian crises","relationships","lifestyle"],"internalKeywords":["#lee"],"customProperties":{},"images":[{"id":"631a857d-a272-53f3-a47c-bd3772d0040f","description":"An employee displays a popular North Korean street food snack called Injogogibap in Korean at a restaurant in Incheon, South Korea, Friday, April 15, 2016. 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INCHEON, South Korea (AP) \u2014 For much of the world, North Korea is a Stalinist nightmare, an isolated enclave of prison camps, poverty and hunger.

But for tens of thousands of people scattered across South Korea and living underground in China, it's something far more complicated. It's a memory they wrestle with. It's home. It's the place they left behind. And even if there is plenty they hate about it, there is also much that they miss, sometimes achingly.

They miss relatives and friends and the small-town neighborliness that can come, admittedly, in not having many recreation choices. They miss dancing to accordion music in public parks on their days off, and the greasy street food they'd yearn for when they were most hungry. At times, they even miss the three generations of dictators \u2014 Kim Il Sung, Kim Jong Il and now Kim Jong Un \u2014 who have controlled the country for nearly 70 years.

\"I think all the time about the people I knew there,\" said a former coal miner, a gentle man who works at least 12 hours a day in a Seoul convenience store, and who has the disheveled look of someone who rarely gets enough sleep. He left North Korea a decade ago with his family. \"Whenever we're together, and we're eating a good meal, we think about those people.\"

More than 27,000 North Korean refugees live in South Korea. Thousands more live underground in China, often working menial jobs for low pay, though just how many remains widely debated. A handful of other refugees live in countries ranging from England to the United States.

The convenience store manager, whose muscular arms still betray his years as a miner, misses the siblings he left behind, and the nieces and nephews he may never meet. Relatives in South Korea paid smugglers to get his family out, he said, but his siblings wouldn't go.

\"They were too afraid,\" he said. \"Now they regret it.\" Like nearly all North Korean exiles, he spoke on condition his name not be used, fearing retribution against extended family still in the North. Researchers say relatives of refugees, particularly those known to live in South Korea, can face a range of punishments, from job demotions to imprisonment.

He has no warmth for the Pyongyang government, railing against the regime for leaving nearly all North Koreans in poverty as a handful grow rich.

But some other refugees disagree. Polls of North Korean refugees, often known here as defectors, say many still have some fondness for the leaders in Pyongyang.

\"All three (of the Kim family dictators) really did think of the North Korean people,\" said another exile, a former North Korean policeman who acknowledged that he is torn about his feelings.

North Korea, he noted, has spent billions of dollars on its military even as so many of its people have gone hungry. In the worst times, hundreds of thousands of people are thought to have died in a famine that ripped through the country in the mid-1990s, following the collapse of the Soviet Union, North Korea's most important patron at the time.

But, he added, his homeland is also a small, poor country that has successfully stood up to the world, surviving international isolation and years of economic sanctions. So when Pyongyang sets off a nuclear test or test-fires a missile, he sees a leader proving that he cannot be bullied.

\"Maybe this is the way Kim Jong Un can protect his family, protect his people, protect his country,\" said the former policeman, pride filling his voice. \"If I was in his position, sometimes I think I might do the same thing.\" He paused: \"Well, sometimes.\"

He knew how that sounded, and it surprised even him a little. But like all North Koreans, he grew up enveloped in an all-pervasive personality cult that portrays the Kims as something akin to gods. They are studied in schools and discussed by every adult in mandatory political sessions. Thousands of monuments to them \u2014 statues, paintings, busts, inscriptions, memorials, mosaics, historic sites \u2014 have been built across the country, and occupy central positions in every town and city.

In official hagiographies, they defeat every enemy, win every race and outsmart every other world leader. Their titles are repeated endlessly in announcements: the Marshal, the Respected General, the Great Leader of Mankind, the Sun in the Sky.

While the famine changed much in North Korea, including how the leaders are seen by ordinary people, it is impossible for North Koreans to escape the worshipful propaganda, and very difficult for them not to be affected by it.

Plus, North Korea is more than the Orwellian cliche that it sometimes appears to be in Western headlines. It's a complex place where even those who suffered terribly can remember good times, whether that was visiting their grandparents over the New Year holiday, families looking out for one another when food ran low, or the small-town feel \u2014 with flirting young people and gossiping elders \u2014 after the staged mass political rallies that can bring tens of thousands of people together.

For the ex-policeman, his sometimes-generous view of North Korea is mixed up with his difficulty adjusting to life in South, a common problem among the refugees who live here. He hasn't been able to hold a job for more than few months, and constantly worries that he's being discriminated against. He's overwhelmed by the South, sometimes talks about wanting to return home. Lost amid Seoul's dual whirlwinds of consumerism and competitiveness, he yearns for the days when things seemed simpler.

\"In South Korea, tradition only decreases as time goes by,\" he said. \"Now it looks like a Western society.\"

For instance, he says few wives in North Korea would begin eating a meal before their husbands had eaten, an ancient custom that has been largely abandoned in South Korea.

The government in Pyongyang, for its part, openly detests North Koreans who flee the country, once calling them \"human scum who betrayed their homeland and people\" in an official report. Leaving North Korea has also become much more difficult in recent years, with security tightened dramatically along the border with China \u2014 the usual method of escape \u2014 since Kim Jong Un came to power.

Last year, 1,277 North Koreans resettled in the South, according to Seoul's Unification Ministry, less than half as many as in 2011.

Ask those people, though, and nearly all say there is something they miss.

A middle-aged woman, once a black-market gold dealer, says she is happy in South Korea. After some initial cultural confusion \u2014 \"When I first heard rap music I said: 'What is this? Is it a song?'\" \u2014 she has grown to love her life in Incheon, a city near Seoul.

What she missed was injogogibap, a popular North Korean street food and meat substitute, made from rice and leftover bits of tofu, that became popular at the height of the famine. Not long ago, she found a couple of restaurants near her new home that serve it.

She smiled when she talked about eating injogogibap in North Korea, and smiled again when she said she finally found places in Incheon to buy it.

___

Follow Tim Sullivan on Twitter at twitter.com/ByTimSullivan

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SYDNEY (AP) \u2014 An Iranian refugee who set himself on fire at Australia's immigration detention camp on the Pacific island nation of Nauru has died of his injuries.

The 23-year-old man set himself alight on Wednesday in an apparent protest over Australia's strict asylum seeker policies. Australia's immigration department said he died in an Australian hospital on Friday after being airlifted there for treatment.

Nauru's government says the refugee's actions were a protest intended to coincide with a visit to the island by representatives of the U.N. refugee agency.

Australia refuses to accept asylum seekers who try to reach its shores by boat and pays Nauru and Papua New Guinea to hold them in detention camps instead.

"} ]
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[ {"id":"fc13dc05-78cd-57fa-b665-c26b2c06d893","type":"article","starttime":"1461906589","starttime_iso8601":"2016-04-29T00:09:49-05:00","priority":0,"sections":[{"national":"news/national"}],"flags":{"ap":"true"},"application":"editorial","title":"Police in Washington state fatally shoot man with knife","url":"http://muscatinejournal.com/news/national/article_fc13dc05-78cd-57fa-b665-c26b2c06d893.html","permalink":"http://muscatinejournal.com/news/national/police-in-washington-state-fatally-shoot-man-with-knife/article_fc13dc05-78cd-57fa-b665-c26b2c06d893.html","relatedAssetCounts":{"article":0,"audio":0,"image":0,"link":0,"vmix":0,"youtube":0,"gallery":0},"prologue":"SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) \u2014 Three Spokane officers fatally shot a man outside a homeless shelter after he approached them with a knife, police said.","supportsComments":true,"commentCount":0,"keywords":["wire","general news","police","violent crime","crime","law enforcement agencies","government and politics"],"internalKeywords":["#lee"],"customProperties":{},"revision":1,"commentID":"fc13dc05-78cd-57fa-b665-c26b2c06d893","body":"

SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) \u2014 Three Spokane officers fatally shot a man outside a homeless shelter after he approached them with a knife, police said.

Police responded to a suicide call Thursday evening and found a man sitting outside, The Spokesman-Review reported (http://goo.gl/wm1c0n).

Witnesses say the man approached police with a knife, asking them to kill him.

Spokane Police Officer Teresa Fuller said initial investigation indicates the man charged police. An officer then used a Taser on the man, which was ineffective, she said.

Three officers fired at the man, who was struck by two bullets and died at the scene, according to Spokane Police Officer Jennifer DeRuwe. A knife was found next to the man's body after the shooting, police said.

Other people at the shelter became \"unruly and confrontational\" afterward and police called for all other available officers to respond, DeRuwe said. No one was injured as the scene was brought under control. One person was arrested.

David Snyder, who said he was staying at the shelter and saw what happened, told The Spokesman-Review he didn't believe officers needed to shoot the man, but he acknowledged the man was \"in a rage\" and that \"he charged, no doubt.\"

\"He wanted them to kill him,\" Snyder said. \"They were trying to make him stand down.\"

Snyder said the man was homeless and staying at the shelter.

The three officers at the scene were wearing body cameras, police said.

The Washington State Patrol is investigating.

___

Information from: The Spokesman-Review, http://www.spokesman.com

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BOSTON (AP) \u2014 A dozen giant bronze animal heads representing the signs of the Chinese zodiac are stopping people in their tracks in downtown Boston and sparking conversations.

\"Circle of Animals/Zodiac Heads,\" by contemporary Chinese artist and human rights activist Ai Weiwei, is the latest in a series of outdoor public art projects on the Rose Kennedy Greenway intended to delight, awe, and educate the thousands of tourists and workers who walk through the park daily.

\"The goal of all public art is to engage people,\" said Lucas Cowan, the public art curator of the Greenway Conservancy, which oversees the 1.5-mile long ribbon of open space that was once a dim, grimy place in the shadow of an overhead highway.

\"To be able to bring people here where they see them up close and not in a museum is very important,\" he said. \"If people just walk past this, then we've failed.\"

The 10-foot-tall cast bronze sculptures, which weigh 1,600 to 2,100 pounds apiece when the stem and base are included, are arranged in an outward-facing circle surrounding a popular children's splash area called the Rings Fountain. They are positioned in order \u2014 rat, ox, tiger, rabbit, dragon, snake, horse, goat, monkey, rooster, dog and pig.

They are based on similar but smaller zodiac sculptures that once adorned the fountain clock in the European-style garden at the Yuanming Yuan, an imperial summer palace outside Beijing.

The palace was ransacked by British and French troops in 1860, and the heads stolen. Most have been recovered and returned to China, but two remain missing, Cowan said.

\"By enlarging them like this, the artist is saying, 'They belong to us; give them back,'\" he said.

Cowan also hopes people who see the sculptures educate themselves about the social justice and political issues the artist is involved in. Ai this year has been drawing attention to the European refugee crisis.

The Boston installation, which will be in place until October, is part of a world tour of the animal heads owned by a private collector that started in 2010 and has already visited several U.S. and international cities.

Even as workers put the finishing touches on the exhibit earlier this week, dozens of people stopped to take pictures or just gaze up at the detailed sculptures.

\"We live just down the street, and we knew they were putting them in, but when we saw them, we just said, 'Wow,'\" said Davida Carvin, who was checking out the sculptures with her friend, neighbor and walking partner, Andrea Mattisen-Haskins. \"I've seen a lot of art along the Greenway, and this is right up there with the best.\"

\"The quality is spectacular and the detail and texture is amazing,\" said Mattisen-Haskins, as the pair snapped pictures.

Howard Wu, a Bishop, California, resident visiting Boston for the first time, stumbled upon the animal heads on his way to the nearby New England Aquarium and was astonished.

Wu, who is half Chinese, immediately recognized them as the Chinese zodiac and understood their cultural significance.

\"They are just exceptional,\" he said as he snapped dozens of pictures. \"They will bring Boston good luck.\"

"}, {"id":"21d0b496-a2ae-50cd-ac5d-efb177de291d","type":"article","starttime":"1461906000","starttime_iso8601":"2016-04-29T00:00:00-05:00","sections":[{"crime-and-courts":"news/local/crime-and-courts"}],"application":"editorial","title":"Muscatine Police and Sheriff, Fire and Ambulance","url":"http://muscatinejournal.com/news/local/crime-and-courts/article_21d0b496-a2ae-50cd-ac5d-efb177de291d.html","permalink":"http://muscatinejournal.com/news/local/crime-and-courts/muscatine-police-and-sheriff-fire-and-ambulance/article_21d0b496-a2ae-50cd-ac5d-efb177de291d.html","relatedAssetCounts":{"article":0,"audio":0,"image":0,"link":0,"vmix":0,"youtube":0,"gallery":0},"prologue":"Muscatine Police and Sheriff April 27, 8:24 a.m., 100 block Moscow Road, fraud/forgery/identity theft, report. April 27, 12:53 p.m., 4600 block Concert Street, criminal mischief, report. April 27, 1:22 p.m., 400 block Walnut Street, warrant, arrest. April 27, 4:15 p.m., 1500 block Mulberry Avenue, attempt to locate, arrest.","supportsComments":false,"keywords":[],"internalKeywords":[],"customProperties":{},"revision":2,"commentID":"21d0b496-a2ae-50cd-ac5d-efb177de291d","body":"

Muscatine Police and Sheriff

April 27, 8:24 a.m., 100 block Moscow Road, fraud/forgery/identity theft, report.

April 27, 12:53 p.m., 4600 block Concert Street, criminal mischief, report.

April 27, 1:22 p.m., 400 block Walnut Street, warrant, arrest.

April 27, 4:15 p.m., 1500 block Mulberry Avenue, attempt to locate, arrest.

April 27, 4:35 p.m., 1800 block E Avenue, assault, under investigation.

April 27, 6:51 p.m., 3000 block N. Highway 61, theft, report.

April 27, 6:58 p.m., 1000 block Kammerer Court, stolen/recovered vehicle, report.

Muscatine Fire and Ambulance

April 27, 1:09 p.m., 4611 Citrus St., emergency medical services.

April 27, 3:28 p.m., 2002 Cedar St., emergency medical services.

April 27, 4:11 p.m., 2821 Musquota Dr., emergency medical services.

April 27, 5:13 p.m., 2900 block\u00a0Mulberry Avenue, gas leak.

April 27, 6:48 p.m., 1518 Mulberry Ave., emergency medical services.

April 27, 7:47 p.m., 312 Iowa Ave., emergency medical services.

April 27, 9:35 p.m., 1518 Mulberry Ave., emergency medical services.

April 27, 11:09 p.m., 2807 Cedar St., emergency medical services.

April 28, 2:52 a.m., 1615 Mulberry Ave., emergency medical services.

"}, {"id":"2dac081d-c543-57f3-91a9-2978bdaf19ff","type":"article","starttime":"1461906150","starttime_iso8601":"2016-04-29T00:02:30-05:00","lastupdated":"1461908774","priority":0,"sections":[{"world":"news/world"}],"flags":{"ap":"true"},"application":"editorial","title":"Australia blocks $284 million ranch sale to Chinese","url":"http://muscatinejournal.com/news/world/article_2dac081d-c543-57f3-91a9-2978bdaf19ff.html","permalink":"http://muscatinejournal.com/news/world/australia-blocks-million-ranch-sale-to-chinese/article_2dac081d-c543-57f3-91a9-2978bdaf19ff.html","relatedAssetCounts":{"article":0,"audio":0,"image":0,"link":0,"vmix":0,"youtube":0,"gallery":0},"prologue":"CANBERRA, Australia (AP) \u2014 The Australian government has blocked a Chinese-led consortium from buying the nation's largest private land holding, a collection of Outback cattle ranches, for 371 million Australian dollars ($284 million).","supportsComments":true,"commentCount":0,"keywords":["wire","business","general news","agriculture","industries","government and politics"],"internalKeywords":["#lee"],"customProperties":{},"revision":3,"commentID":"2dac081d-c543-57f3-91a9-2978bdaf19ff","body":"

CANBERRA, Australia (AP) \u2014 The Australian government has blocked a Chinese-led consortium from buying the nation's largest private land holding, a collection of Outback cattle ranches, for 371 million Australian dollars ($284 million).

Treasurer Scott Morrison said on Friday the sale of pioneering dynasty-owned S. Kidman & Co. Ltd. to Chinese-based Dakang Australia Holdings and Australian-listed company Australian Rural Capital was contrary to the national interest.

The refusal is only a preliminary decision and Dakang has until Tuesday to respond.

Kidman owns 10 cattle ranches, a bull breeding stud and a feed lot covering 101,411 square kilometers (39,155 square miles) in four states. That's an area bigger than South Korea and almost as big as the U.S. state of Virginia.

"}, {"id":"1c0792fb-a271-5bd9-9a24-372b15aa7c37","type":"article","starttime":"1461905822","starttime_iso8601":"2016-04-28T23:57:02-05:00","lastupdated":"1461908774","priority":0,"sections":[{"business":"business"}],"flags":{"ap":"true"},"application":"editorial","title":"Lawsuit claims discrimination at the New York Times","url":"http://muscatinejournal.com/business/article_1c0792fb-a271-5bd9-9a24-372b15aa7c37.html","permalink":"http://muscatinejournal.com/business/lawsuit-claims-discrimination-at-the-new-york-times/article_1c0792fb-a271-5bd9-9a24-372b15aa7c37.html","relatedAssetCounts":{"article":0,"audio":0,"image":0,"link":0,"vmix":0,"youtube":0,"gallery":0},"prologue":"NEW YORK (AP) \u2014 Two women who work in the advertising department at The New York Times have filed a federal discrimination lawsuit against the newspaper, its chief executive and chief revenue officer.","supportsComments":true,"commentCount":0,"keywords":["wire","business","general news","workplace discrimination","marketing and advertising","legal proceedings","law and order","personnel","labor issues","social issues","social affairs","human rights and civil liberties","corporate legal affairs","corporate news","media and entertainment industry","industries","race and ethnicity","gender issues"],"internalKeywords":["#lee"],"customProperties":{},"revision":4,"commentID":"1c0792fb-a271-5bd9-9a24-372b15aa7c37","body":"

NEW YORK (AP) \u2014 Two women who work in the advertising department at The New York Times have filed a federal discrimination lawsuit against the newspaper, its chief executive and chief revenue officer.

In the lawsuit filed Thursday in federal court in Manhattan, account managers Ernestine Grant and Marjorie Walker claim the workplace is \"rife with discrimination based on age, race and gender.\"

The lawsuit contends newspaper has an ideal staffer that is young, white and unencumbered with family. Both women are black. Grant has been with the paper for 16 years and Walker for eight years.

The suit says the plaintiffs \"have experienced discrimination\" and \"were retaliated against, when they complained.\"

Times spokeswoman Eileen Murphy (http://nyti.ms/1XXzQdL ) calls the suit \"entirely without merit.\" She said they intend to fight it vigorously in court.

___

Information from: The New York Times, http://www.nytimes.com

"}, {"id":"c9439220-c10d-5a0c-ae80-c7610225a4fa","type":"article","starttime":"1461905515","starttime_iso8601":"2016-04-28T23:51:55-05:00","lastupdated":"1461907977","priority":0,"sections":[{"world":"news/world"}],"flags":{"ap":"true"},"application":"editorial","title":"Australian believed to have been kidnapped in Afghanistan","url":"http://muscatinejournal.com/news/world/article_c9439220-c10d-5a0c-ae80-c7610225a4fa.html","permalink":"http://muscatinejournal.com/news/world/australian-believed-to-have-been-kidnapped-in-afghanistan/article_c9439220-c10d-5a0c-ae80-c7610225a4fa.html","relatedAssetCounts":{"article":0,"audio":0,"image":0,"link":0,"vmix":0,"youtube":0,"gallery":0},"prologue":"SYDNEY (AP) \u2014 Australian officials say an Australian aid worker is believed to have been kidnapped in Afghanistan.","supportsComments":true,"commentCount":0,"keywords":["wire","general news","kidnapping","crime"],"internalKeywords":["#lee"],"customProperties":{},"revision":3,"commentID":"c9439220-c10d-5a0c-ae80-c7610225a4fa","body":"

SYDNEY (AP) \u2014 Australian officials say an Australian aid worker is believed to have been kidnapped in Afghanistan.

Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop told reporters on Friday that the government was working with Afghan officials to determine exactly what happened to Katherine Jane Wilson, who generally goes by the first name Kerry. Bishop says Afghan officials believe she was kidnapped.

Ahmad Ali Hazrat, chief of the Nangarhar provincial council in Afghanistan, said Wilson was kidnapped Thursday morning in the eastern city of Jalalabad. It was not immediately clear who the alleged kidnappers were or what their motivation was.

Wilson has been living in Afghanistan for years and runs Zardozi. The organization helps support impoverished Afghan women by selling embroidered items they make.

"}, {"id":"a57f80f9-3c15-5591-8100-c7716cdfdc13","type":"article","starttime":"1461905222","starttime_iso8601":"2016-04-28T23:47:02-05:00","lastupdated":"1461907501","priority":0,"sections":[{"world":"news/world"}],"flags":{"ap":"true"},"application":"editorial","title":"Russia, China in agreement on North Korea, South China Sea","url":"http://muscatinejournal.com/news/world/article_a57f80f9-3c15-5591-8100-c7716cdfdc13.html","permalink":"http://muscatinejournal.com/news/world/russia-china-in-agreement-on-north-korea-south-china-sea/article_a57f80f9-3c15-5591-8100-c7716cdfdc13.html","relatedAssetCounts":{"article":0,"audio":0,"image":8,"link":0,"vmix":0,"youtube":0,"gallery":0},"prologue":"BEIJING (AP) \u2014 The foreign ministers of Russia and China are expressing their joint opposition to the U.S. deployment of an anti-missile system in South Korea and say non-claimants shouldn't take sides in the dispute over the South China Sea.","supportsComments":true,"commentCount":0,"keywords":["wire","general news","international relations","government and politics"],"internalKeywords":["#lee"],"customProperties":{},"images":[{"id":"52814d6d-a031-5bfd-8ff7-005f7050ccf5","description":"Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi speaks at a joint press conference with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, at the Chinese Foreign Ministry in Beijing, China, Friday, April 29, 2016. 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BEIJING (AP) \u2014 The foreign ministers of Russia and China are expressing their joint opposition to the U.S. deployment of an anti-missile system in South Korea and say non-claimants shouldn't take sides in the dispute over the South China Sea.

Russia's Sergey Lavrov said in Beijing Friday that North Korea's actions shouldn't be taken as a pretext for deployment of the Terminal High-Altitude Area Defense, or THAAD, system. China's Wang Yi said the security of China and Russia would be directly affected by such a deployment.

On the South China Sea, which China claims almost entirely, Lavrov said outside parties shouldn't interfere, a reference to the United States, which has challenged Beijing's claims.

Wang says those without direct territorial claims should play a constructive role and not make the situation more complicated.

"}, {"id":"128e8314-4819-57da-810c-1fa420ea8851","type":"article","starttime":"1461904048","starttime_iso8601":"2016-04-28T23:27:28-05:00","lastupdated":"1461906836","priority":0,"sections":[{"world":"news/world"},{"business":"business"}],"flags":{"ap":"true"},"application":"editorial","title":"Japan abandons costly X-ray satellite lost in space","url":"http://muscatinejournal.com/news/world/article_128e8314-4819-57da-810c-1fa420ea8851.html","permalink":"http://muscatinejournal.com/news/world/japan-abandons-costly-x-ray-satellite-lost-in-space/article_128e8314-4819-57da-810c-1fa420ea8851.html","relatedAssetCounts":{"article":0,"audio":0,"image":2,"link":0,"vmix":0,"youtube":0,"gallery":0},"prologue":"TOKYO (AP) \u2014 Japan's space agency has abandoned its efforts to restore the operations of a multimillion-dollar satellite that was to probe the mysteries of black holes using X-ray telescopes.","supportsComments":true,"commentCount":0,"keywords":["wire","general news","science","technology","space exploration"],"internalKeywords":["#lee"],"customProperties":{},"images":[{"id":"84fcb102-d729-5665-9dd9-e14448868c46","description":"FILE - In this Feb. 17, 2016 file photo, an H-2A rocket carrying an X-ray astronomy satellite called \"Hitomi\", is launched from the Tanegashima Space Center in Kagoshima Prefecture, southern Japan. Japan\u2019s space agency has abandoned its efforts to restore the operations of a multimillion-dollar satellite that was to probe the mysteries of black holes using X-ray telescopes. (Kyodo News via AP, File) JAPAN OUT, MANDATORY CREDIT","byline":"SUB","versions":{"full":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"326","height":"512","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/muscatinejournal.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/8/4f/84fcb102-d729-5665-9dd9-e14448868c46/5722e7ff99d7a.image.jpg"},"100": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"100","height":"158","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/muscatinejournal.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/8/4f/84fcb102-d729-5665-9dd9-e14448868c46/5722e7ff99d7a.image.jpg?resize=100%2C158"},"300": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"300","height":"472","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/muscatinejournal.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/8/4f/84fcb102-d729-5665-9dd9-e14448868c46/5722e7ff99d7a.image.jpg?resize=300%2C472"},"1024":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"1024","height":"1609","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/muscatinejournal.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/8/4f/84fcb102-d729-5665-9dd9-e14448868c46/5722e7ff99d7a.image.jpg"}}},{"id":"77a74af0-08cd-5855-8dd7-b817f6d0bc02","description":"In this Thursday, April 28, 2016 photo, an official of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency talks about an X-ray astronomy satellite called \"Hitomi\", which two solar arrays had broken off at their bases, in the agency in Tokyo, Japan. Japan's space agency has abandoned its efforts to restore the operations of a multimillion-dollar satellite that was to probe the mysteries of black holes using X-ray telescopes.(Munehide Someya/Kyodo News via AP) JAPAN OUT, MANDATORY CREDIT","byline":"Munehide Someya","versions":{"full":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"392","height":"512","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/muscatinejournal.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/7/7a/77a74af0-08cd-5855-8dd7-b817f6d0bc02/5722e7ffc9997.image.jpg"},"100": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"100","height":"131","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/muscatinejournal.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/7/7a/77a74af0-08cd-5855-8dd7-b817f6d0bc02/5722e7ffc9997.image.jpg?resize=100%2C131"},"300": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"300","height":"392","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/muscatinejournal.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/7/7a/77a74af0-08cd-5855-8dd7-b817f6d0bc02/5722e7ffc9997.image.jpg?resize=300%2C392"},"1024":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"1024","height":"1338","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/muscatinejournal.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/7/7a/77a74af0-08cd-5855-8dd7-b817f6d0bc02/5722e7ffc9997.image.jpg"}}}],"revision":4,"commentID":"128e8314-4819-57da-810c-1fa420ea8851","body":"

TOKYO (AP) \u2014 Japan's space agency has abandoned its efforts to restore the operations of a multimillion-dollar satellite that was to probe the mysteries of black holes using X-ray telescopes.

The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency announced Thursday that it would stop trying to fix the satellite after determining that it was \"highly likely\" that its two solar arrays had broken off at their bases.

Contact was lost with the satellite on March 26, more than a month after its launch from southern Japan on Feb. 17.

The satellite, named Hitomi, was much larger than previous Japanese scientific satellites, measuring 14 meters (46 feet) in length and weighing 2.7 tons. It was designed to study X-rays emitted by black holes and other objects in space. The X-rays cannot be detected on Earth, because they are blocked by its atmosphere.

The space agency initially thought it had received signals from the lost satellite on three occasions, but later concluded that the frequencies of the communications indicated they were not from Hitomi.

NASA was a principal partner in the Japan-led mission, which involved eight other nations, including Canada and the Netherlands.

Japan's Kyodo News agency reported that Japan spent about 31 billion yen ($290 million) on the project, and NASA had invested about $70 million.

"}, {"id":"ebb0e0a5-9e36-5bf8-9fa1-62a66b737f38","type":"article","starttime":"1461903716","starttime_iso8601":"2016-04-28T23:21:56-05:00","lastupdated":"1461906837","priority":0,"sections":[{"world":"news/world"}],"flags":{"ap":"true"},"application":"editorial","title":"North Korea sentences an ethnic Korean U.S. citizen to 10 years in jail for espionage","url":"http://muscatinejournal.com/news/world/article_ebb0e0a5-9e36-5bf8-9fa1-62a66b737f38.html","permalink":"http://muscatinejournal.com/news/world/north-korea-sentences-an-ethnic-korean-u-s-citizen-to/article_ebb0e0a5-9e36-5bf8-9fa1-62a66b737f38.html","relatedAssetCounts":{"article":0,"audio":0,"image":0,"link":0,"vmix":0,"youtube":0,"gallery":0},"prologue":"PYONGYANG, North Korea (AP) \u2014 North Korea sentences an ethnic Korean U.S. citizen to 10 years in jail for espionage.","supportsComments":true,"commentCount":0,"keywords":["wire","general news","espionage","legal proceedings","law and order","crime"],"internalKeywords":["#lee"],"customProperties":{},"revision":2,"commentID":"ebb0e0a5-9e36-5bf8-9fa1-62a66b737f38","body":"

PYONGYANG, North Korea (AP) \u2014 North Korea sentences an ethnic Korean U.S. citizen to 10 years in jail for espionage.

"}, {"id":"7d896d30-140f-5783-86f5-ab4bc642e642","type":"article","starttime":"1461903724","starttime_iso8601":"2016-04-28T23:22:04-05:00","lastupdated":"1461906837","priority":0,"sections":[{"world":"news/world"}],"flags":{"ap":"true"},"application":"editorial","title":"Polls open in key runoff parliamentary election in Iran","url":"http://muscatinejournal.com/news/world/article_7d896d30-140f-5783-86f5-ab4bc642e642.html","permalink":"http://muscatinejournal.com/news/world/polls-open-in-key-runoff-parliamentary-election-in-iran/article_7d896d30-140f-5783-86f5-ab4bc642e642.html","relatedAssetCounts":{"article":0,"audio":0,"image":0,"link":0,"vmix":0,"youtube":0,"gallery":0},"prologue":"TEHRAN, Iran (AP) \u2014 Polls have opened in Iran's parliamentary runoff elections, a key vote to decide whether hard-liners or moderate forces backing President Hassan Rouhani will control the legislature.","supportsComments":true,"commentCount":0,"keywords":["wire","general news","run-off elections","elections","national elections","government and politics","legislature"],"internalKeywords":["#lee"],"customProperties":{},"revision":2,"commentID":"7d896d30-140f-5783-86f5-ab4bc642e642","body":"

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) \u2014 Polls have opened in Iran's parliamentary runoff elections, a key vote to decide whether hard-liners or moderate forces backing President Hassan Rouhani will control the legislature.

Iranian state television reported polls opened at 8 a.m. Friday. They will remain open until at least 6 p.m., though election hours often get extended.

Nearly 17 million Iranians are eligible to vote in 55 cities and towns. They will decide on 68 candidates for the 290-seat chamber.

In February, a bloc of reformists and moderate allies of Rouhani won a majority. The bloc needs to win 40 seats to control the parliament, which begins work in late May.

The results of the February elections were seen as a major setback for hard-liners opposed to the landmark deal reached with world powers last year.

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[ {"id":"fc13dc05-78cd-57fa-b665-c26b2c06d893","type":"article","starttime":"1461906589","starttime_iso8601":"2016-04-29T00:09:49-05:00","priority":0,"sections":[{"national":"news/national"}],"flags":{"ap":"true"},"application":"editorial","title":"Police in Washington state fatally shoot man with knife","url":"http://muscatinejournal.com/news/national/article_fc13dc05-78cd-57fa-b665-c26b2c06d893.html","permalink":"http://muscatinejournal.com/news/national/police-in-washington-state-fatally-shoot-man-with-knife/article_fc13dc05-78cd-57fa-b665-c26b2c06d893.html","relatedAssetCounts":{"article":0,"audio":0,"image":0,"link":0,"vmix":0,"youtube":0,"gallery":0},"prologue":"SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) \u2014 Three Spokane officers fatally shot a man outside a homeless shelter after he approached them with a knife, police said.","supportsComments":true,"commentCount":0,"keywords":["wire","general news","police","violent crime","crime","law enforcement agencies","government and politics"],"internalKeywords":["#lee"],"customProperties":{},"revision":1,"commentID":"fc13dc05-78cd-57fa-b665-c26b2c06d893","body":"

SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) \u2014 Three Spokane officers fatally shot a man outside a homeless shelter after he approached them with a knife, police said.

Police responded to a suicide call Thursday evening and found a man sitting outside, The Spokesman-Review reported (http://goo.gl/wm1c0n).

Witnesses say the man approached police with a knife, asking them to kill him.

Spokane Police Officer Teresa Fuller said initial investigation indicates the man charged police. An officer then used a Taser on the man, which was ineffective, she said.

Three officers fired at the man, who was struck by two bullets and died at the scene, according to Spokane Police Officer Jennifer DeRuwe. A knife was found next to the man's body after the shooting, police said.

Other people at the shelter became \"unruly and confrontational\" afterward and police called for all other available officers to respond, DeRuwe said. No one was injured as the scene was brought under control. One person was arrested.

David Snyder, who said he was staying at the shelter and saw what happened, told The Spokesman-Review he didn't believe officers needed to shoot the man, but he acknowledged the man was \"in a rage\" and that \"he charged, no doubt.\"

\"He wanted them to kill him,\" Snyder said. \"They were trying to make him stand down.\"

Snyder said the man was homeless and staying at the shelter.

The three officers at the scene were wearing body cameras, police said.

The Washington State Patrol is investigating.

___

Information from: The Spokesman-Review, http://www.spokesman.com

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BOSTON (AP) \u2014 A dozen giant bronze animal heads representing the signs of the Chinese zodiac are stopping people in their tracks in downtown Boston and sparking conversations.

\"Circle of Animals/Zodiac Heads,\" by contemporary Chinese artist and human rights activist Ai Weiwei, is the latest in a series of outdoor public art projects on the Rose Kennedy Greenway intended to delight, awe, and educate the thousands of tourists and workers who walk through the park daily.

\"The goal of all public art is to engage people,\" said Lucas Cowan, the public art curator of the Greenway Conservancy, which oversees the 1.5-mile long ribbon of open space that was once a dim, grimy place in the shadow of an overhead highway.

\"To be able to bring people here where they see them up close and not in a museum is very important,\" he said. \"If people just walk past this, then we've failed.\"

The 10-foot-tall cast bronze sculptures, which weigh 1,600 to 2,100 pounds apiece when the stem and base are included, are arranged in an outward-facing circle surrounding a popular children's splash area called the Rings Fountain. They are positioned in order \u2014 rat, ox, tiger, rabbit, dragon, snake, horse, goat, monkey, rooster, dog and pig.

They are based on similar but smaller zodiac sculptures that once adorned the fountain clock in the European-style garden at the Yuanming Yuan, an imperial summer palace outside Beijing.

The palace was ransacked by British and French troops in 1860, and the heads stolen. Most have been recovered and returned to China, but two remain missing, Cowan said.

\"By enlarging them like this, the artist is saying, 'They belong to us; give them back,'\" he said.

Cowan also hopes people who see the sculptures educate themselves about the social justice and political issues the artist is involved in. Ai this year has been drawing attention to the European refugee crisis.

The Boston installation, which will be in place until October, is part of a world tour of the animal heads owned by a private collector that started in 2010 and has already visited several U.S. and international cities.

Even as workers put the finishing touches on the exhibit earlier this week, dozens of people stopped to take pictures or just gaze up at the detailed sculptures.

\"We live just down the street, and we knew they were putting them in, but when we saw them, we just said, 'Wow,'\" said Davida Carvin, who was checking out the sculptures with her friend, neighbor and walking partner, Andrea Mattisen-Haskins. \"I've seen a lot of art along the Greenway, and this is right up there with the best.\"

\"The quality is spectacular and the detail and texture is amazing,\" said Mattisen-Haskins, as the pair snapped pictures.

Howard Wu, a Bishop, California, resident visiting Boston for the first time, stumbled upon the animal heads on his way to the nearby New England Aquarium and was astonished.

Wu, who is half Chinese, immediately recognized them as the Chinese zodiac and understood their cultural significance.

\"They are just exceptional,\" he said as he snapped dozens of pictures. \"They will bring Boston good luck.\"

"}, {"id":"ab22b15b-600d-5fea-b9b1-4386af6220ff","type":"article","starttime":"1461902421","starttime_iso8601":"2016-04-28T23:00:21-05:00","lastupdated":"1461904625","priority":0,"sections":[{"national":"news/national"}],"flags":{"ap":"true"},"application":"editorial","title":"Ex-Montana Sen. Conrad Burns dies; influenced energy policy","url":"http://muscatinejournal.com/news/national/article_ab22b15b-600d-5fea-b9b1-4386af6220ff.html","permalink":"http://muscatinejournal.com/news/national/ex-montana-sen-conrad-burns-dies-influenced-energy-policy/article_ab22b15b-600d-5fea-b9b1-4386af6220ff.html","relatedAssetCounts":{"article":0,"audio":0,"image":1,"link":0,"vmix":0,"youtube":0,"gallery":0},"byline":"By MATTHEW BROWN and MATT VOLZ","prologue":"HELENA, Mont. (AP) \u2014 Former Montana Sen. Conrad Burns, a former cattle auctioneer whose folksy demeanor and political acumen earned him three terms and the bitter disdain of his opponents, died Thursday. He was 81.","supportsComments":true,"commentCount":0,"keywords":["wire","general news","government and politics","obituaries","legislature","political scandals","energy policy","appropriations","political issues","government policy"],"internalKeywords":["#lee"],"customProperties":{},"images":[{"id":"7d9aeddc-b377-5eaa-852f-330706c7abd8","description":"FILE - In this Nov. 7, 2006 file photo, Sen. Conrad Burns, R-Mont., watches returns at a victory party in Billings, Mont. Burns, a former cattle auctioneer whose folksy demeanor and political acumen earned him three terms and the bitter disdain of his opponents, has died. Montana Republican Party Executive Director Jeff Essmann said Burns died Thursday, April 28, 2016, of natural causes at his home in Billings. He was 81. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu, File)","byline":"Jeff Chiu","versions":{"full":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"512","height":"329","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/muscatinejournal.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/7/d9/7d9aeddc-b377-5eaa-852f-330706c7abd8/5722e44933416.image.jpg"},"100": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"100","height":"65","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/muscatinejournal.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/7/d9/7d9aeddc-b377-5eaa-852f-330706c7abd8/5722e44933416.image.jpg?resize=100%2C65"},"300": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"300","height":"193","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/muscatinejournal.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/7/d9/7d9aeddc-b377-5eaa-852f-330706c7abd8/5722e44933416.image.jpg?resize=300%2C193"},"1024":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"1024","height":"658","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/muscatinejournal.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/7/d9/7d9aeddc-b377-5eaa-852f-330706c7abd8/5722e44933416.image.jpg"}}}],"revision":2,"commentID":"ab22b15b-600d-5fea-b9b1-4386af6220ff","body":"

HELENA, Mont. (AP) \u2014 Former Montana Sen. Conrad Burns, a former cattle auctioneer whose folksy demeanor and political acumen earned him three terms and the bitter disdain of his opponents, died Thursday. He was 81.

Burns died of natural causes at his home in Billings, Montana Republican Party Executive Director Jeff Essmann said.

\"He was a colorful figure who loved people, politics and to serve,\" Essmann said. \"He brought a common-man, common-sense approach to his work in the Senate and returned to his home in Billings when his work was done.\"

As a Republican senator, Burns used his influence on the powerful Appropriations committee to set the course on energy development and public lands management across the rural West. But he was ousted from office in 2006 under the specter of scandal after developing close ties to \"super-lobbyist\" Jack Abramoff, who was later jailed for conspiracy and fraud.

No charges were ever filed against Burns, who dismissed criticism over the affairs as \"old political hooey.\"

After working as a livestock auctioneer, Burns in 1975 moved into broadcast radio, founding four stations known as the Northern Ag Network. The network eventually grew to serve 31 radio and TV stations across Montana and Wyoming, offering agricultural news to rural areas.

He sold the network in 1985 and \u2014 capitalizing on his name recognition \u2014 made his first foray into politics a year later, when he was elected commissioner for Yellowstone County in south-central Montana.

Before his first term was completed, Burns took on incumbent U.S. Sen. John Melcher, a two-term Democrat described by Burns opponent as \"a liberal who is soft on drugs, soft on defense and very high on social programs.\"

At the age of 53, he won election to the Senate by a 3-percentage-point margin. He rose to be one of the most influential positions in Washington with his seat on the Appropriations committee, serving as chairman of the Interior subcommittee.

Burns became a strong advocate for increased domestic energy production and expanded development of natural resources. But even before his first term was over, Burns' loose-talking ways \u2014 once credited with earning him favor among Montana's rural electorate \u2014 landed him in trouble.

After the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1991, the senator invited a group of lobbyists to a \"slave auction\" and later used a racial slur for blacks when relating a conversation he had with a Montana rancher. The resulting furor had little impact on his 1994 campaign, which he won in a landslide.

During the 2000 campaign, the controversy around Montana's backslapping senator nearly caught up with him. He prevailed by only a thin margin over rancher Brian Schweitzer, who went on to become governor four years later.

By the end of his third term, however, Burns had been affixed with the same Washington-insider label that he had used successfully against Melcher. His close ties to lobbyist Abramoff lent credence to the accusation, and his bid for a fourth term came up about 3,000 votes short against the president of the Montana Senate, Democrat Jon Tester.

Burns had long cultivated a reputation as being a plain talker, but by the time he left office, his incautious remarks had become legendary. The press catalogued derogatory comments directed at women, Arabs and even out-of-state firefighters who had come to Montana to battle a 2006 blaze near his hometown of Billings.

\"He had that fresh approach of just saying what he thought and not being very political,\" said Taylor Brown, a friend and fellow Republican who bought the Northern Ag Network from him. \"That was probably his biggest weakness in the end. He just said what he thought.\"

After leaving office, Burns went to work for his former chief of staff in a Washington lobbying firm, Gage Business Consulting. But the Abramoff scandal followed him, and he eventually gave away $150,000 in contributions from the lobbyist, his clients and friends.

After the U.S. Justice Department launched a probe of Burns' ties to the affair, he said he made nearly 10 years of records from his Senate office available to the government for review, including all electronic records. When the investigation was dropped in 2008 with no charges filed, he said he had never been interviewed as part of the investigation.

He credited his \"thick hide and clear conscience\" for helping him withstand the public scrutiny.

\"There's a hundred lobbyists who walk through that door every week,\" Burns said in 2006. \"If you don't have a deep-seated philosophy then you might find yourself getting lost. I vote my philosophy first.\"

Burns suffered a stroke in 2009, leaving him hospitalized for three months. It weakened his body, but not his mind, and less than two years later he was blasting President Barack Obama for wanting \"the whole country to become like an Indian reservation\" at a rally of tea party supporters.

Born in 1935 in Davies County, Missouri, Burns studied agriculture at the University of Missouri for two years before joining the U.S. Marine Corps in 1955. He first came to Montana as a regional salesman for Polled Hereford World magazine, and later settled in Billings to become the manager of a regional livestock expo in 1968.

___

AP writer Thomas Peipert contributed to this story from Denver.

"} ]
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