Navy to demonstrate Great Green Fleet this summer
A Navy F/A-18 powered by a blend of biofuel and conventional fuel is shown after a flight test in April 2010 in Maryland.
May 9th, 2012
09:52 PM ET

Navy to demonstrate Great Green Fleet this summer

The U.S. Navy for the first time will demonstrate what it calls a Great Green Fleet, a carrier strike group operating in large part on nonfossil fuels, during a larger, 22-nation exercise this summer.

The Navy’s two-day demonstration, which will happen during the biennial Rim of the Pacific exercise around Hawaii from June 29 to August 3, is part of its plan to send such a strike group on a regular, months-long deployment in 2016, Navy Secretary Ray Mabus said on Wednesday.

It’s also a step in the Navy’s plan to meet at least half of its energy needs on shore and afloat with nonfossil fuels by 2020, Mabus said.

“(This summer’s demonstration) will focus on the fact that we are well down the path of meeting these goals,” Mabus said.

The demonstration strike group will include aircraft operating on 50/50 blends of biofuel and conventional aviation fuel, and noncarrier ships operating on 50/50 blends of biofuel and diesel. Other parts of a strike group a carrier and submarines already are nuclear-powered.

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Filed under: Energy • Military • U.S. Navy
Overheard on CNN.com: Will Obama's same-sex marriage support help or hurt him?
The historic Greenwich Village gay bar, Stonewall Inn, invites customers to celebrate Obama's support of gay marriage.
May 9th, 2012
08:31 PM ET

Overheard on CNN.com: Will Obama's same-sex marriage support help or hurt him?

Editor's note: This post is part of the Overheard on CNN.com series, a regular feature that examines interesting comments and thought-provoking conversations posted by the community.

President Barack Obama had said he was "evolving" in terms of his position on same-sex marriage, but then he said Wednesday that he in fact supports it. There was plenty of discussion on Tuesday as North Carolina headed to the polls, and the issue continued to gain steam. There are different views on the consequences of such a move. If you have an opinion, share your views via CNN iReport.

Writer Charles Kaiser asserts that Obama has made an important statement.

Gay marriage support: Obama's most courageous move

We've received a number of iReport video responses to this development.

These readers said there could be political consequences, but applauded Obama nonetheless.

dinydave: "Courageous move, definitely. I hope like crazy it doesn't come back to bite him, though. Nothing loses votes like riling up your reactionary opponents, and nothing riles up reactionary 'phobes like the opportunity to deny someone else equality. Witness North Carolina. Courageous move, and Obama is showing just how much more of a LEADER he is than any of the pandering, pansy-arsed regressive Republican field of this year could dream of being. All this, while there's another article fawning over the slowly growing number of Republicans who are finally getting it and going on record as in favor of marriage equality."

Duke Smith: "Courageous, but stupid. Can you envision the TV ads now?"

Some said calling the move "courageous" is a bit much.

sirm777: "How is this courageous? I support gay marriage. There, I must be courageous. No, in Afghanistan facing gunfire is courageous. This here at home is just politics, get real Kaiser."

And this reader said Obama will not be getting her vote. FULL POST

Overheard on CNN.com: Can you describe U.S. economy with poker metaphors?
JP Morgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon says the United States has a "royal straight flush." What hand would you suggest?
May 9th, 2012
07:27 PM ET

Overheard on CNN.com: Can you describe U.S. economy with poker metaphors?

Editor's note: This post is part of the Overheard on CNN.com series, a regular feature that examines interesting comments and thought-provoking conversations posted by the community.

JP Morgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon recently suggested that the United States has a "royal straight flush," a name for the best hand you can have in poker. Dimon cites the world's strongest military, best businesses, most entrepreneurial workforce and deepest capital markets. And, he says, things would be even better were it not for government policies. Some readers at the proverbial table nodded in agreement, while others thought he might be bluffing a bit.

Jamie Dimon is bullish on U.S. economy

A few commenters responded with poker terminology of their own, while others could potentially have such lingo applied to their remarks. Let us explore some poker metaphors.

Pair of threes

Mtl300: "Jamie Dimon sees a 'royal straight flush' with stacked red and blue chips on the table ... most of us see a 'pair of threes' with a handful of one-penny white chips on the same economic table ..."

Ride it out

David R Priest: "I know of 16 trillion reasons that the U.S. is not holding a good hand right now, but if we take a few cards and throw away a few bad ones, we could get back in the game."

Flush

Nelba: "The economic flush I see is of a different kind. :)"

Of fish and sharks FULL POST

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Filed under: Business • Economy • Overheard on CNN.com
Mystery of F-22 illnesses grows
Mystery still surrounds illnesses in people who fly or work on F-22 stealth fighter jets.
May 9th, 2012
06:09 PM ET

Mystery of F-22 illnesses grows

Even as the Air Force searches for the reason pilots are getting sick flying the F-22, a new mystery about the troubled stealth fighter jet has come to light: Why are mechanics on the ground getting sick in the plane as well?

The Air Force has been looking into a number of reports that pilots experienced "hypoxia-like symptoms" aboard F-22s since April 2008. Hypoxia is oxygen deficiency.

The Air Force reports 25 cases of such symptoms, including 11 since September, when the service cleared the F-22 fleet to return to flight after a four-month grounding.

"Early on in the return to fly, we had five maintainers that reported hypoxia symptoms," Gen. Daniel Wyman, command surgeon for the Air Combat Command, said during a conference call with reporters Wednesday.

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Filed under: Military • U.S. Air Force
24 hours through the lens
May 9th, 2012
05:00 PM ET

The CNN Daily Mash-up

The CNN Daily Mash-up is a roundup of some of the most interesting, surprising, curious, poignant or significant items to appear on CNN.com in the past 24 hours. We'll top it with a collection of the day's most striking photographs.

Lugar lays it on the line

After conceding defeat Tuesday night to tea party favorite Richard Mourdock in Indiana's Republican Senate primary, U.S. Sen. Dick Lugar issued a statement lashing out at Mourdock and his no-compromise philosophy.

He has pledged his support to groups whose prime mission is to cleanse the Republican Party of those who stray from orthodoxy as they see it. This is not conducive to problem-solving and governance. And he will find that unless he modifies his approach, he will achieve little as a legislator. Worse, he will help delay solutions that are totally beyond the capacity of partisan majorities to achieve.

A dunk tank at prom?

Your high school prom is supposed to be a time for making memories. This group of teens got more memories than they bargained for when they posed for a picture on a dock.

Cool images from Hong Kong

CNN iReporter Jerry Gonsalez shot some pretty cool photos of colorful fish during a visit to Hong Kong's Ocean Park. What could be more fun than a bunch of cool-looking fish?

Clothes make the man - or not

Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, never one to bow to corporate convention, showed up Monday wearing his trademark hooded sweatshirt for a meeting with potential investors on Wall Street. That caused Michael Pachter, an analyst for Wedbush Securities, to sniff to Bloomberg that Zuckerberg appears too immature to run a huge corporation. CNN.com users jumped all over Pachter. This comment from user silentazure is representative:

This just shows how little Wall Street understands the creative class. Knowledge workers don't care about wearing suits and puffing themselves up. They will crush your prehistoric business from behind a keyboard in their underwear.

You're fired. You're rehired. You're fired.

Try to keep up: A state prison sergeant who was fired after being accused of using excessive force on an inmate and then won his job back was notified within minutes of his return that he will be fired, CNN affiliate KCRA reports. See you in court.

On the horizon: Lighting the Olympic flame

The Olympic flame for this summer's London Games will be ignited in Greece on Thursday and transported aboard a special aircraft to the United Kingdom. A torch relay beginning May 19 will travel 8,000 miles across the UK, carrying it within 10 miles of 95% of the population.

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Filed under: CNN Daily Mash-up
Legendary hairstylist Vidal Sassoon dead at 84
Vidal Sassoon cuts the hair of a lookalike for Vogue editor Anna Wintour at his autobiography signing in 2010.
May 9th, 2012
03:56 PM ET

Legendary hairstylist Vidal Sassoon dead at 84

Vidal Sassoon, the legendary hairstylist, died of "apparent natural causes" at his Los Angeles home Wednesday morning, a Los Angeles police spokesman said. He was 84.

Police were called to Sassoon's Bel Air home on Mulholland Drive at 10:30 a.m., spokesman Kevin Maiberger said.

"When officers arrived, there were family members at the residence," Maiberger said.

Sassoon, a British native, spent several years as a young boy in a London orphanage after his father left and his mother could not afford to care for him.

Later, after his mother dreamed of her son being in a barber shop, she apprenticed him to a local barber. That began a career that saw him develop two classic hairstyles of the 1960s - the bob and the even shorter five-point cut - along with an eponymous hair care line, a range of hair care tools, and a chain of salons.

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Filed under: Obituary
Obama: Same-sex couples should have right to marry
President Obama told ABC on Wednesday that gays should have the right to get married.
May 9th, 2012
03:03 PM ET

Obama: Same-sex couples should have right to marry

President Barack Obama said in an interview with ABC that "it is important for me to go ahead and affirm that I think same-sex couples should be able to get married."

With his Wednesday announcement, the president reversed his longstanding position on the issue. It came on the heels of his own vice president and education secretary saying they were in favor of gay marriage.

According to an ABC blog post, Obama further described his thought process as an "evolution" that progressed as he discussed the issue with staff members, gay and lesbian service members and his own family.

He said he thinks Americans are growing increasingly comfortable with the concept of gay marriage and cited his own daughters' views on the matter.

“It’s interesting, some of this is also generational,” he said. “You know, Malia and Sasha, they have friends whose parents are same-sex couples. There have been times where Michelle and I have been sitting around the dinner table and we’re talking about their friends and their parents.

"And Malia and Sasha, it wouldn’t dawn on them that somehow their friends’ parents would be treated differently. It doesn’t make sense to them, and frankly, that’s the kind of thing that prompts a change in perspective.”

Read CNN's full coverage of President Barack Obama's stance on gay marriage
May 9th, 2012
12:59 PM ET

U.N. says blast erupts near observers in Syria

A bomb exploded in the volatile Syrian city of Daraa near a convoy carrying U.N. observers and the head of the monitoring team Wednesday, the United Nations said.

There were no casualties among the observers, but several Syrian soldiers were injured and hospitalized, the U.N. Supervision Mission in Syria said.

"This was a graphic example of what the Syrian people are suffering on a daily basis and underlines the imperative for all forms of violence to stop," Maj. Gen. Robert Mood, head of mission and chief military observer, said in a statement.

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May 9th, 2012
12:36 PM ET

Russian jet missing in Indonesia

A Russian passenger airliner went missing Wednesday after it disappeared from radar screens over a mountainous region of Indonesia.

The Sukhoi Superjet 100, Russia's newest civilian airliner, was carrying 42 passengers and eight Russian crew members, said Sunaryo, an official with Sukhoi's Indonesian agent, Trimarga Rekatama.

However, the number was in dispute. The Indonesian National Search and Rescue Agency said only 37 of the 42 invited passengers were on board. Russian state-run news agencies reported 44 people were on the plane.

Ground teams were continuing to search. The air search will resume at daylight, depending on the weather.

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Filed under: Indonesia • Russia • World
Wife of fugitive suspect in Tennessee kidnappings charged with first degree murder
Authorities arrested Teresa Ann Mayes on Tuesday.
May 9th, 2012
12:36 PM ET

Wife of fugitive suspect in Tennessee kidnappings charged with first degree murder

Adam Mayes, who remains at large, has been charged with two counts of first-degree murder, two counts of especially aggravated kidnapping, and false report, police documents show. His wife, Teresa Ann Mayes, was charged with two counts of first-degree murder and two counts of especially aggravated kidnapping, said her lawyer, Shana Johnson. Additional kidnapping charges against her were dismissed.

The FBI on Wednesday will announce that Adam Mayes is being added to the agency's 10 Most Wanted Fugitives list. Authorities continued their search Wednesday for Mayes, who is suspected of kidnapping Jo Ann Bain and her three daughters in Tennessee.

The reward leading to Mayes' capture is now up to $175,000, including a combination of state and federal agency reward money.

Mayes, 35, is believed to be armed and dangerous with Bain's two youngest daughters, Alexandria, 12, and Kyliyah, 8. Bain and her eldest daughter, Adrienne, 14, were found dead in a home linked to Mayes in Guntown, Mississippi.

The case has drawn at least 17 law enforcement agencies and hundreds of investigators, but an FBI special agent had no updates Wednesday morning.

Teresa Mayes' lawyer, Shana Johnson, told CNN that her client is cooperating with police but would not say whether she knows the whereabouts of Adam Mayes or the girls.

The Mayes family and the Bain family are connected through Adam Mayes' sister Pamela, who used to be married to Jo Ann's husband Gary Bain, the lawyer said.  Adam and Teresa Mayes were married for 11 years and lived in Guntown, she said.

Johnson said she has asked for a mental health evaluation of her client.

According to an arrest warrant, Teresa Mayes admitted driving Jo Ann Bain and her three daughters from Hardeman County to Union County, Mississippi. Bain and her daughter Adrienne suffered "serious bodily injury as a result of their removal or confinement," according to the warrant.

FULL STORY
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Filed under: Tennessee
Rare gorilla species spotted on forest camera
Cross River gorillas are said to be the world’s rarest gorillas, with only about 250 still alive.
May 9th, 2012
11:45 AM ET

Rare gorilla species spotted on forest camera

A rare species of gorillas was captured on one of four video cameras set up in Cameroon’s Kagwene Gorilla Sanctuary, according to the Wildlife Conservation Society.

Cross River gorillas are said to be the world’s rarest gorillas, with only about 250 still alive.

“This video gives us all a spectacular view into the hidden world of one of our closest relatives, which is in dire need of our help to survive,” Steve Sanderson, president of the Wildlife Conservation Society,  said in an online statement.

Cross River gorillas are also the world’s most shy gorillas, at least around researchers. They don’t seem bothered by cameras though.

Footage from one camera shows several Cross River gorillas walking in the forest.

One male silverback appears to be showing off, researchers say. He beats his chest and appears to run toward the camera. Another gorilla takes a break and leans against a tree. One gorilla seems to be missing a hand.

“Cross River gorillas occur in very low densities across their entire range, so the appearance of a possible snare injury is a reminder that continued law enforcement efforts are needed to prevent further injuries to gorillas in the sanctuary,” said Dr. Liz Macfie, gorilla coordinator for WCS’s Species Program.

The Kagwene Gorilla Sanctuary was established by the government of Cameroon in 2008 to protect the endangered gorillas. It evolved out of the “Gorilla Guardian” community network, created by the WCS to give gorillas a better chance to survive in unprotected forest sites in Cameroon.

Kagwene is the only site where daily monitoring of Cross River gorilla movements takes place, WCS says.

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Filed under: Cameroon • Gorillas
May 9th, 2012
07:41 AM ET

Wednesday's live events

The race to the presidency now turns toward the general election in November.  CNN.com Live is your home for all the latest news and views from the campaign trail.

Today's programming highlights...

10:00 am ET - FBI oversight hearing - The foiled al Qaeda terror plot is expected to be a focal point of FBI Director Robert Mueller's testimony before a House Judiciary Committee hearing on FBI oversight.

FULL POST


Filed under: Elections • On CNN.com today • Politics
Russian airliner disappears over Indonesia
The jet, a Sukhoi Superjet-100, was on a demonstration flight.
May 9th, 2012
07:34 AM ET

Russian airliner disappears over Indonesia

[Updated at 7:34 a.m. ET] Transportation Ministry spokesman Bambang Ervan told Metro TV the Sukhoi jet went missing at about 2 p.m. local time in the area of Bogor, West Java.

The jet was on a demonstration flight that should've lasted 30 minutes, taking off and expected to land again in Jakarta's Halim airport. About 46 people were onboard he said.

National Search and Rescue Agency official Gagah Prakosa said on Metro TV that there was an initial search by air that's been suspended because of darkness. A ground search continues.

[Updated at 7:24 a.m. ET] Russia's newest civilian airliner disappeared Wednesday from radar screens during a demonstration flight in the Indonesian capital, Jakarta, state-run Ria Novosti news service reported. There were 44 passengers on board.

The pilots requested permission to descend from 10,000 feet to 6,000 feet, air traffic controllers said. After that, all radio contact was lost.

The plane began making its descent but vanished from radar screens at 6,200 feet in a mountainous area.

By the time the plane was due to return it should have burned up its fuel, RIA Novosti said.

The Sukhoi Superjet-100 airplane arrived in Jakarta as part of a demonstration tour of six Asian countries. It had been to Myanmar, Pakistan and Kazakhstan, and was due to visit Laos and Vietnam after Indonesia, RIA Novosti said.
Sukhoi manufactures military aircraft and is known especially for its fighter jets. Its civilian aircraft is narrow-bodied with a dual-class cabin that can transport 100 passengers over regional routes.

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Filed under: Aviation • Indonesia
May 9th, 2012
02:55 AM ET

Threats halt 2 Southwest flights

Two Southwest Airlines flights from Orange County, California, to Phoenix were the subject of security scares Tuesday night - and authorities are investigating whether the incidents are linked.

Both planes were eventually cleared after officials determined a threat did not exist.

Southwest Airlines flight 811 was headed to Phoenix's Sky Harbor International Airport from John Wayne Airport when officials removed passengers and brought in a bomb squad and canine units to search the plane, said Laura Eimiller, FBI spokeswoman in the agency's Los Angeles office said.

"No threats of any kind" were found, said Orange County Sheriff's Lt. Joe Balicki.

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Filed under: Justice • U.S.
May 9th, 2012
01:57 AM ET

Sanford police chief: Neighborhood watch programs need 'good, hard look'

 The man tasked with leading the police department in Sanford, Florida, in the wake of the Trayvon Martin killing said communities should "take a good, hard look at who is selected," for neighborhood watch programs.

But, said Sanford's interim Police Chief Richard Myers, he still supports the programs.

"Neighborhood watch is at work in literally thousands of neighborhoods across the country and with no problems whatsoever," Myers told CNN's Erin Burnett on Tuesday. "I think the problems emerge from who the person is and perhaps there's a cause for communities to take a good, hard look at who is selected or who volunteers.

"Let's not kill the concept because of one bad, really bad outcome."

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Filed under: Justice • U.S.