Ahead of the curve: The next 7 days
August 21st, 2011
09:11 PM ET

Ahead of the curve: The next 7 days

Libyan rebels began clashing with pro-government forces in Libya's capital over the weekend, setting the stage for what could be a defining moment in the country's months-long conflict. Here is a look at this and other stories that CNN plans to follow this week:

Libyan rebels set sights on Gadhafi

Rebel fighters say they were advancing toward ruler Moammar Gadhafi's compound on Sunday, as gun battles and NATO airstrikes were reported in parts of the city. NATO for months has conducted airstrikes in Libya under a U.N. Security Council resolution authorizing force to protect Libyan civilians.

Libyan rebel representatives claimed that rebels captured Saif al-Islam Gadhafi and Saadi Gadhafi, two of Gadhafi's sons, on Sunday. A rebel spokesman in Libya said early Monday that rebels were in control of most parts of the capital, while a Libyan government spokesman said hours earlier that some areas of eastern Tripoli were out of government control Sunday.

Moammar Gadhafi, in an audio address broadcast just before midnight - his second of the day - claimed that "very small groups of people who are collaborators with the imperialists" were fighting inside the capital, and called on Libyan Arab tribes to come to the defense of Tripoli and "cleanse" it of rebel forces, warning they would be "enslaved" by Western powers if they fail.

Tropical Storm Irene could become hurricane, forecasters say

Tropical Storm Irene may become a Category 1 hurricane as it approaches Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic late Sunday and early Monday, forecasters said.

The storm could pass south of Puerto Rico overnight, strike the Dominican Republic on Monday and reach the southeastern United States by Thursday, forecasters projected.

The National Hurricane Center said Haiti and the Dominican Republic could see up to 20 inches of rain in isolated areas, with six to 10 inches possible across the rest of Hispaniola.

At 5 p.m. ET Sunday, the storm - with top winds of 50 mph - was centered about 25 miles east of St. Croix and about 120 miles east-southeast from Puerto Rico, moving west-northwest at 17 mph, forecasters said.

Tensions rise as Israel retaliates for rocket attacks

Rocket attacks from Gaza into southern Israel have showed no signs of abating. Dozens of rockets have been fired since Thursday, when rockets killed seven Israeli civilians and one soldier and wounded more than 30 other people, according to Israeli authorities.

The Israeli military responded by targeting 15 "terrorist infrastructure sites" with airstrikes in Gaza, the Israel Defense Forces said in a statement.

Fifteen people, including three children, have been killed in the Gaza airstrikes, and 44 others were injured, said Sami Zaqout of the Al Mezan Center for Human Rights.

Meanwhile, tensions are rising between Israel and Egypt after what Egypt called "indiscriminate shelling" that led to the deaths of at least three security forces in its Sinai region last week. An Egyptian military official said Israeli forces may have been targeting militants near Egypt's border with Gaza when they struck and killed the Egyptian security personnel. Israel issued a rare statement of regret and says it is investigating the event.

U.N. humanitarian team visiting Syria

A United Nations humanitarian team this week is expected to visit four Syrian cities where opposition and human rights groups say the government has been behind blood crackdowns on protesters.

Reports of the crackdowns prompted the United States and other Western governments to call for the ouster of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, who has denied that his military has targeted peaceful protesters. The U.N. team plans to visit the areas of Latakia, Homs, Idlib and Hama - four places reported to have seen some of the worst violence.

International pressure on al-Assad to halt the crackdown on protesters who are demanding political change has grown steadily since March, when demonstrations began.

Will Strauss-Kahn prosecution proceed?

A Manhattan district attorney is expected to say Tuesday where the case against  former International Monetary Fund chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn - who is accused of sexual assaulting a woman in a New York hotel in May - stands.

Prosecutors have raised questions about his accuser's credibility. At a status hearing for the case Tuesday, Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance could drop all or most of the charges or move forward with the case intact.

Strauss-Kahn was  indicted on charges that he sexually assaulted the woman in his luxury New York City hotel suite in May.  His attorneys insist any sexual encounter was consensual. Strauss-Kahn has pleaded not guilty to the charges.

On July 1, a judge freed Strauss-Kahn from house arrest after  prosecutors told the court that his accuser admitted she had lied about the  specifics of her whereabouts after the incident and, in the past, in the details of an asylum application and information on tax forms.  Prosecutors said she admitted lying on the asylum application about having been a  victim of a gang rape, even providing details of an attack - and later admitting it never happened.

The accuser and her attorneys have said she was attacked by Strauss-Kahn, and that her case should go to trial.

Justice Department, kin of 9/11 victims to discuss phone hacking probe

Top Justice Department officials are expected to meet Wednesday with relatives of people killed in the 9/11 attacks to discuss whether any of their relatives' phone messages were hacked by employees of News Corp.

The FBI began looking into this amid a widespread scandal in Britain over the use of phone hacking by employees or associates of News Corp. papers there. Wednesday's meeting with Justice officials is expected to update the families on the progress of the investigation.

How far will local team go in Little League World Series?

This year's Little League Baseball World Series features a team based only 28 miles from where the series is played in Williamsport, Pennsylvania. This hasn't escaped the attention of the locals.

The club from Clinton County, Pennsylvania - champions of the Mid-Atlantic region - has drawn an average of 37,000 fans for the two games it has played so far at Lamade Stadium. Its game on Friday night drew a record 41,848 people.

Clinton County, one of 12 teams still in the competition, will next play Monday night at 8 p.m. - four hours later than originally scheduled. The game was moved because local law enforcement personnel believe that another large crowd will be at that game, and that they'll be in a better position to handle such a crowd in the evening, according to the Little League website.

The tournament's championship game is on Sunday, August 28.

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Filed under: Ahead of the curve
soundoff (25 Responses)
  1. One on One

    Let me be the first to congradulate the rebels in Tripoli, WTG

    August 21, 2011 at 9:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • One on One

      Sorry folks, I never posted that stupid comment above. Now I have some idiotic Tea Partier trolling me with his mumbo-jumbo! As for Libya, that country now has a grim future thanks to NATO, the un-holy alliance!!!

      August 21, 2011 at 9:33 pm | Report abuse |
    • One on One

      But really though, congrats to those rebels!

      August 22, 2011 at 9:16 am | Report abuse |
    • One on One

      I'm really glad about whats happening in Tripoli, but the battle of hoth worries me:

      [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yVgF07RK6qc&w=640&h=360]

      August 22, 2011 at 9:24 am | Report abuse |
  2. Patriot

    Congrats to the Libyans. Can't wait to see how Israel vs Gaza vs Egypt works out.. This planet is like whack a mole.

    August 21, 2011 at 9:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • RUFFNUTT

      Come on Patriot, you know better than that!

      August 21, 2011 at 9:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • RUFFNUT

      You know, i'm a very smart person. Just look at my name! My nut is very ruff.

      August 22, 2011 at 9:17 am | Report abuse |
  3. One on One

    Sorry folks, I posted that stupid comment above. Now I am an idiotic Tea Partier trolling with my mumbo-jumbo!
    I stole another name, yes I did!
    As for Libya, that country now has a future thanks to NATO, the holy alliance!!!

    August 21, 2011 at 9:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • RUFFNUTT

      Don't feel bad, One on One. This bozo pulls this on me all the time. What gets me is the fact that he what he posts isn't true in any way because nobody's that dumb!!!

      August 21, 2011 at 9:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • RUFFNUTT

      In order to avoid any confusion here, I was adressing One on One (9:33). Besides, I wonder if it's not the same bozo trolling all of us all along, trying to make the rest of us look stupid just for his personal amusement.

      August 21, 2011 at 10:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • RUFFNUT

      Now i've gotta scratch my ruffnut.

      August 22, 2011 at 9:20 am | Report abuse |
  4. Silver Wraith

    Nobody is in this place.
    I just wanted to see whether I could post without being bothered by a troll.

    August 21, 2011 at 10:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mr trololol

      "poke" HAHAHA!!

      August 22, 2011 at 9:18 am | Report abuse |
  5. Patriot

    @Ruffnutt: I know better.. Lol.. I've been told this was prison planet, fun world, or Adam and Eve sinned a few thousand years ago, so now we have to pay for their mistake. I believe we used to be in the Garden, but were tricked by a snake like character to come to fun world, but instead landed on prison planet.. Maybe.. Haha.. I'm done chasing trolls. If I were getting paid then maybe. I guess I'm going to consider myself lucky to not live anywhere else, but America. It may get sucky here, but I'd hate to live somewhere else.

    August 21, 2011 at 10:49 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Joey Isotta-Frashini

    Good post one on one,thank you.

    August 21, 2011 at 11:47 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Cesar

    Good post JIF. The world is a werewolf and I am its mange.

    August 22, 2011 at 12:24 am | Report abuse |
  8. Jeff Frank ( R - Ohio )

    This Just In has some roaches, and I'm thier impending boot.

    August 22, 2011 at 12:32 am | Report abuse |
    • RUFFNUT

      Can you boot my nut?

      August 22, 2011 at 9:36 am | Report abuse |
  9. @Patriot

    You seem not to be able to grasp the fact that you have inherited your parent's imperfections. Many confuse 'sin' with crime. The word 'sin' lierally means 'to miss the mark of perfection'. Inherited sins are nothing more than inherited imperfections. Most believers understand that Jesus died for our sins, not our willful crimes. He didn't die to make-way for religious leaders to molest children criminally. He died so that honest-hearted individuals could approach his heavenly father without melting.

    August 22, 2011 at 7:39 am | Report abuse |
    • Patriot

      @@Patriot: I'm well aware of my imperfections. I'm also well aware of my parent's imperfections. I'm also well aware of every person I've encountered has imperfections. In examining myself and my own imperfections I have been able to better understand other's imperfections. I truly have humility and only ask that those who point their fingers at me do so to themselves with the same amount of scrutiny. I'm not going to give you my life story, but I can tell you that this is at least my second go at life and I obviously fell short of the mark of what God expects from me, but I also think anyone else here with me is also in the same boat. If you accept the Bible as law and "the plan" then you have to accept that all these serpent leaders we have represent the snake in the garden of eden. The media is also very deceptive as are people we come across in our daily lives. Jesus did not die, so we could be free to sin without impunity or consequence, in fact Jesus cursed God for abandoning him when he was crucified. That event was not a voluntary sacrifice and I believe Jesus just like the rest of us are here for punishment. We are surrounded and outnumbered by bad things. Anything that tastes or feels good is a sin or harmful. If anything the story of Jesus shows how cruel man can be, but maybe claiming to be God's only perfect son was something God couldn't accept and Jesus had to pay the price for it. Anyways his (in)voluntary sacrifice did little to stem anything that is destructive to humanity. We can agree to disagree here. The first commandment tells us not to worship men, yet you and others like you disobey that rule despite its importance to your savior.

      August 22, 2011 at 7:24 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Joey Isotta-Fraschini

    I see that this web page too is infested with Tea Partying trolls who never say anything but just steal other peoples' names for their self amusement! Like all these useless wars that we're fighting overseas, it just goes on and on!!!

    August 22, 2011 at 8:24 am | Report abuse |
  11. Joey Isotta-Frashini

    That post turns me on.

    August 22, 2011 at 9:20 am | Report abuse |
  12. RUFFNUTT

    @fakey...give it a rest... or i'll shoot a ruff nutt in your eye..

    August 22, 2011 at 9:51 am | Report abuse |
  13. One on One

    I give up. My Tea Partying troll thinks of everything. Too bad that he doesn't quit the Tea Party Movement and join us in opposing the right-wing idiots in Washington who already have brought this country to it's knees!!! The future of Libya does appear quite grim indeed!

    August 22, 2011 at 10:43 am | Report abuse |
  14. Dill whacker

    Tea sux, its all about coughee

    August 22, 2011 at 1:37 pm | Report abuse |