Amid a sweeping crackdown on dissent in Egypt, security forces have forcibly disappeared hundreds of people since the beginning of 2015, according to a new report from Amnesty International.

It's an "unprecedented spike," the group says, with an average of three or four people disappeared every day.

The Republican Party, as it prepares for its convention next week has checked off item No. 1 on its housekeeping list — drafting a party platform. The document reflects the conservative views of its authors, many of whom are party activists. So don't look for any concessions to changing views among the broader public on key social issues.

Many public figures who took to Twitter and Facebook following the murder of five police officers in Dallas have faced public blowback and, in some cases, found their employers less than forgiving about inflammatory and sometimes hateful online comments.

As Venezuela unravels — with shortages of food and medicine, as well as runaway inflation — President Nicolas Maduro is increasingly unpopular. But he's still holding onto power.

"The truth in Venezuela is there is real hunger. We are hungry," says a man who has invited me into his house in the northwestern city of Maracaibo, but doesn't want his name used for fear of reprisals by the government.

The wiry man paces angrily as he speaks. It wasn't always this way, he says, showing how loose his pants are now.

Ask a typical teenage girl about the latest slang and girl crushes and you might get answers like "spilling the tea" and Taylor Swift. But at the Girl Up Leadership Summit in Washington, D.C., the answers were "intersectional feminism" — the idea that there's no one-size-fits-all definition of feminism — and U.N. climate chief Christiana Figueres.

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Arizona Hispanics Poised To Swing State Blue

2 hours ago
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Editor's note: This report contains accounts of rape, violence and other disturbing events.

Sex trafficking wasn't a major concern in the early 1980s, when Beth Jacobs was a teenager. If you were a prostitute, the thinking went, it was your choice.

Jacobs thought that too, right up until she came to, on the lot of a dark truck stop one night. She says she had asked a friendly-seeming man for a ride home that afternoon.

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Bradley Manning Court-Martial Begins In WikiLeaks Case

Jun 3, 2013
Originally published on June 3, 2013 8:50 pm

Starkly different views of Army Pfc. Bradley Manning were presented Monday, the first day of his court-martial on charges that he aided the enemy when he gave a large batch of classified data to WikiLeaks that was then posted online.

In February, Manning admitted to giving documents that included State Department cables to WikiLeaks because, he said, "I believed that these cables would not damage the United States. However, I believed these cables would be embarrassing."

A military prosecutor says that Manning "harvested hundreds of thousands of documents" that aided America's enemies after they reached the Internet, while his defense attorney says the private was young and "naive, but good-intentioned" in his actions.

The trial of Manning, 25, begins more than three years after the former military intelligence analyst was arrested in Iraq for facilitating the biggest leak of classified information in U.S. history. The files included diplomatic cables and military reports, which he then saved onto CDs.

A military judge accepted 10 guilty pleas from Manning at a pretrial hearing in February, as he admitted to more minor offenses in an effort to reduce the number of serious charges against him. But he still faces an accusation of aiding the enemy, specifically al-Qaida. Possible penalties for that charge include life in prison.

During opening statements of the trial being held at Fort Meade, Md., military prosecutor Capt. Joe Morrow said, "This is a case of about what happens when arrogance meets access to sensitive information," according to the AP.

Prosecutors said "they will present evidence that former al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden asked for and received information WikiLeaks published," the AP reports.

After Morrow's presentation, Manning defense attorney David Coombs said his client tried to find documents and records that, if released, would make the world a better place.

"He was young," Coombs said of Manning, reports NBC News. "A little naive, but good-intentioned in that he was selecting information that he thought would make a difference."

The first testimony in the case came from military investigators who described arresting Manning and inspecting his workstation and living space in Iraq, a task that found them short of brown paper evidence bags, The Washington Post reports.

Because of the harsh treatment he received before his trial, a military judge ruled that Manning should be given a credit of 112 days toward any punishment he ultimately receives.

"Manning chose to have his court-martial heard by a judge instead of a jury," as the AP reports. "It is expected to run all summer."

Because the requests for media credentials at the Manning trial (350) far exceeded the number granted (70), NPR and other media organizations have joined the Freedom of the Press Foundation in sending a letter to the court requesting the presence of a privately paid stenographer.

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