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

1 hour 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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Read The Report On IRS's 'Inappropriate' Scrutiny Of Groups

May 15, 2013
Originally published on May 15, 2013 1:58 pm

The language is not dramatic, but the message is clear: A much-anticipated report from the Treasury Department's inspector general for tax administration is straightforward about how Internal Revenue Service personnel unfairly singled out some conservative groups for unnecessary scrutiny during the 2012 campaign cycle.

As the report's summary says:

"The IRS used inappropriate criteria that identified for review Tea Party and other organizations applying for tax-exempt status based upon their names or policy positions instead of indications of potential political campaign intervention. Ineffective management:
1) allowed inappropriate criteria to be developed and stay in place for more than 18 months, 2) resulted in substantial delays in processing certain applications, and 3) allowed unnecessary information requests to be issued."

And in the report, the inspector general says that while IRS personnel did put applications from some other types of organizations through extra reviews, "we determined during our reviews of statistical samples of I.R.C. § 501(c)(4) tax-exempt applications that all cases with Tea Party, Patriots, or 9/12 in their names were forwarded to the team of specialists" for added scrutiny. (We added the bold face type.)

Was the extra scrutiny motivated by partisan politics? The report does not reach that conclusion. Investigators say lower-level IRS personnel applied terms such as "tea party" when dealing with the applications to streamline the process of determining which groups should and should not get tax-exempt status. Those personnel "did not consider the public perception of using politically sensitive criteria when identifying these cases," the report says.

We've put a copy of the report online, and will embed it in a box below.

Later today, Attorney Gen. Eric Holder is expected to face questions from members of Congress about the IRS scandal. He said Tuesday that the Justice Department is going to investigate whether any laws were broken by IRS personnel.

Related stories and posts:

-- "5 Takeaways From IRS Report." (Politico)

-- "IRS Inquiries Crossed The Line, Tea Party Groups Say." (Morning Edition)

-- "Controversies Risk Starving Obama's Agenda Of Air." (It's All Politics)

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