Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton was in Springfield, Ill., Wednesday where she sought to use the symbolism of a historic landmark to draw parallels to a present-day America that is in need of repairing deepening racial and cultural divides.

The Old State Capitol — where Abraham Lincoln delivered his famous "A house divided" speech in 1858 warning against the ills of slavery and where Barack Obama launched his presidential bid in 2007 — served as the backdrop for Clinton as she spoke of how "America's long struggle with race is far from finished."

Episode 711: Hooked on Heroin

58 minutes ago

When we meet the heroin dealer called Bone, he has just shot up. He has a lot to say anyway. He tells us about his career--it pretty much tracks the evolution of drug use in America these past ten years or so. He tells us about his rough past. And he tells us about how he died a week ago. He overdosed on his own supply and his friend took his body to the emergency room, then left.

New British Prime Minister Theresa May announced six members of her Cabinet Wednesday.

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

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Libya Faces Looming Crisis As Oil Output Slows To Trickle

Sep 12, 2013
Originally published on September 12, 2013 1:47 pm

If you looked for stories on Libya's oil industry after the revolution that ousted Moammar Gadhafi in 2011, you'd find encouraging headlines like these:

Spared in War, Libya's Oil Flow Is Surging Back

Libya rises fast from the ashes

So it seemed Libya's oil industry had survived intact and wouldn't be roiling international markets. As recently as April, the country was producing 1.4 million barrels per day, just a bit off its pre-war levels.

But now the oil sector is crippled by strikes; its crude exports are down to a trickle; and the country is running out of money to pay civil servants.

An Unexpected Hit

Worker strikes in Africa's largest oil producer first began in May, but that labor dispute was quickly resolved.

"It came out of nowhere," says Stuart Elliott, a senior managing editor at Platts, a news organization that covers the global energy sector.

Then in mid-July, armed guards took over the oil terminals in the coastal northeast that they were supposed to protect. The bulk of Libya's oil is produced in the east. The oil is carried by pipelines to these terminals on the Mediterranean coast and are then exported. But the government no longer had control of the terminals, so production fell, as did exports.

At the same time, tribespeople took control of two fields in the country's south. This meant little oil could flow to the terminals on the nation's northwest coast.

The demands of the strikers and the tribespeople range from more pay, to more jobs to protests over corruption.

"These are two separate groups of people. No one knows who's in charge of what," Elliott says. "It's a double whammy."

The protests have had their effect: In early September, Libya's output fell to just 150,000 barrels per day, though it has the capacity to produce 1.6 million barrels per day. Exports fell to 80,000 barrels per day.

Part Of Broader Problems

The challenges in the oil sector are in many ways reflective of the challenges facing Libya. The heady days of post-Gadhafi optimism have given way to the troubles that have accompanied political developments across many Arab Spring countries. Libya's central government, army and police are weak; armed militias are influential in large parts of the country.

"It's really hurt the country," says Frederic Wehrey, a former U.S. military attaché in Libya who is now a senior associate at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.

He says he is worried because the militias are paid by the government, but with the oil money, which accounts for 60 percent of gross domestic product. With oil revenue on the decline, he says, "it's hard to say what will happen."

Libya's finance minister says the country is losing $130 million a day because of the disruption, but he adds there's enough money to pay salaries at least until the end of the year.

Impact On World Markets

Oil prices spiked last month amid news of the Libyan protests, but have fallen since then, partly offset by increased production from fellow OPEC member Saudi Arabia.

"The market can cope without Libyan oil," Platts' Elliott says, but he points out that when Libyan production was halted during the civil war that toppled Gadhafi, Western governments released emergency oil stocks to balance the market.

The implications for Libya are more severe: Customers could start looking elsewhere for crude.

"You can't rely on Libya in the short-term and even in the medium-term," Elliott says. "There are no guarantees it won't be shut down again."

In a bid to end the disruption, Prime Minister Ali Zeidan hinted this week at military action — a move that could deepen divisions in a country already split along tribal and regional lines.

Elliott says that could only make matters worse.

"For Libya," he says, "it's looking pretty bleak."

Western Countries Offer Assistance

The Carnegie Endowment's Wehrey says there is a "bright light" despite the seeming doom and gloom.

"The situation has spurred the U.S. and other Western governments to play more of a role in the security situation," he says.

Some NATO members have agreed to train a Libyan military force; the U.S. says it's committed to training Libyan soldiers.

Wehrey also say that while the unrest could worsen, Libya won't likely slide into civil war.

"The saving grace is that there is a balance of weakness between all these groups," he says. "No one group dominates the others — and there's a tenuous need for interdependence."

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