With a probable long-term hold on the position of the second-largest economy in the world and increased fears over the scope of its military, China's legitimate and perceived power is all over the news. GDP and military figures are telling, but sometimes just a picture can reveal all there is to know about international attitudes. In an intriguing welcoming ceremony for visiting heads of state, China's Prime Minister Wen Jiabao escorts visitors along a stretch of military honor guard. The reactions range from awkward glances to attempted indifference in the face of what could be deemed subtle intimidation.
Today brought the indication that Defense Secretary Robert Gates would retire in 2011. In an interview with Foreign Policy magazine, Gates expressed his desire to remove the burden of filling his role during an election year. With the rumor mill already buzzing, here are 10 possible candidates for the job.
Only football could have as much hype devoted to its warm-up bouts as some sports seem to have devoted to their entire seasons. Take a look at this year's gridiron battles so far, replete with enough jukes, tackles, familiar faces in new uniforms and of course, cheerleaders, to last you until the Sept. 9 kickoff game.
All of the glitz, glamor and cash in the world can't keep even celebrities from having the same superstitions as the rest of us. In light of Friday the 13th, take a look at 10 celebrity superstitions and see if your Hollywood idol needs a rabbit's foot to make it through the day.
With today's release of "The Expendables," a macho run through 1980's action films, and "Scott Pilgrim vs. the World," a film coated in 8-bit NES references, the age of the Reagan-era remakes continues. Take a look through 11 such recent or upcoming retreads of synthesizer-accented flicks.
Flooding brought on by heavy rains in Pakistan is creating a humanitarian and national disaster not seen in generations, a U.N. official said.
Heavy monsoon rains are soaking parts of Asia, triggering massive floods throughout the region. The U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs said more than 1,600 people have died and another 6 million are in need of emergency assistance.
Pakistani authorities said around 2.6 million acres -- around 4,000 square miles -- of crop land are under water and more than 300,000 homes were destroyed.
"Thousands of villages and towns in low-lying areas have not seen flooding on this scale in generations," Andrej Mahecic, a spokesman for the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees, was quoted by the United Nations as saying.
OCHA said it received more than $44 million for flood relief, with another $91 million pledged. The U.S. Agency for International Development said it was committing another $20 million in financial assistance.
"Our response is consistent with our humanitarian values and our deep commitment to Pakistan," a statement from the U.S. State Department read.
Heavy rain and flooding have cut parts of Pakistan off from the rest of the country, though U.N. agencies said weather conditions have improved.
Despite all of the hype and praise, Washington Nationals pitcher Stephen Strasburg was bound to have a bad outing eventually. Tuesday against the Florida Marlins, Strasburg proved he's human, and continued a long line of highly-touted rookies who proved no one's perfect forever. Now the question is whether Strasburg, like those in this gallery, will be remembered not for singular failure but for the sum of his successes.
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