Overheard on CNN.com: So, yeah, about that bachelor's degree thing ...
Yahoo removed all references to CEO Scott Thompson's degree from his biography on its website.
May 7th, 2012
07:26 PM ET

Overheard on CNN.com: So, yeah, about that bachelor's degree thing ...

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.

Yahoo CEO Scott Thompson does not have a bachelor's degree in accounting and computer science. Rather, he has a bachelor of science degree in business administration, with a major in accounting. The discovery that his resume was fudged a little has sparked a discussion among our writers and readers about the act of resume embellishment and what it says about a person.

Résumé padding: inconsequential or inexcusable?

One reader says some sins are of omission.

jt99: "I have never padded my resume, but I did not include one item, which is on my resume now. I am a veteran, serving from 1968 to 1972. I the '70s and '80s, being an honorably discharged veteran was not viewed as a positive. I never denied my service during that time period, but I didn't make it a resume line item. I won't go into the issue any further."

This person feels they got the raw end of the stick.

Morgansher: "I never once padded my resume. It was unthinkable and unconscionable, but I am bitter about having lost out twice to people who lied on their resumes (for different jobs) and got the jobs I'd been applying for. The only consolation was learning years later that one of the people hired had been hiding a criminal record and that they embezzled nearly $350,000 before getting caught."

Maybe Thompson was just management material. FULL POST

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Filed under: Business • Jobs • Overheard on CNN.com
May 7th, 2012
06:09 PM ET

Official: Attempt to blow up plane thwarted

Editor's note: U.S. and international intelligence agencies have broken up an attempt to blow up a U.S.-bound jetliner, a U.S. counterterrorism official told CNN. Follow further developments here.

[Updated at 6:09 p.m. ET] A U.S. official told CNN the plot was disrupted "well before it was ever a threat to the United States.”

The official added that al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula was the group responsible for the plot.

"We believe AQAP produced the device, and we believe it was intended to be used by a suicide bomber on an aircraft," the official said. "The device and the plot are consistent with what we know about AQAP’s plans, intentions, and capabilities. They remain committed to striking targets in Yemen, Saudi Arabia, the Homeland, and Europe. And AQAP is probably feeling pressure to conduct a successful attack to, from their perspective, avenge the deaths of Bin Laden and (Anwar al-Awlaki).”

Terrorist's death signals U.S-Yemen cooperation

The official added, as others have, that the device has the hallmarks of their previous bombs including the failed assassination attempt on Saudi security official Mohammed Bin Nayif as well as the failed 2009 Christmas Day bombing.

"While similar, a preliminary review of this device shows that it has some significant differences from the device used in the Christmas day attack," the U.S. official said. "It is clear that AQAP is revamping its bomb techniques to try to avoid the causes of the failure of the 2009 device."

The official said the FBI was thoroughly examining the device.

The U.S. official added it believed that the threat from al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula is due in part to territorial gains they were able to make during Yemen's political standoff in early 2011.

"Those territorial gains have allowed the group to establish additional training camps," the official said.

[Updated at 5:58 p.m. ET] Defense Secretary Leon Panetta confirmed the plot during a press conference on an unrelated issue.

"What this incident makes clear is that this country has to continue to remain vigilant against those that would seek to attack this country," Panetta said. "We will do everything necessary to keep America safe"

[Updated at 5:36 p.m. ET] CNN Terrorism Analyst Paul Cruickshank says one of the key things officials will be looking at is the exact make-up of the device and how it may be similar or different to the device used in the attempted bombing of an airliner in 2009.

Cruickshank said the suspect in the 2009 attempt, dubbed the "underwear bomber" wore the device for a long time as he traveled throughout Africa and it may have become desensitized. Tests on this device may allow officials to learn more about what changes al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula may have been made following the failed bombing.

Al Qaeda's biggest threat: al Asiri

[Updated at 5:20 p.m. ET] Matt Chandler, a spokesman for the Department of Homeland Security, released a statement saying that they had no specific threat about an active plot against the U.S.

The Department of Homeland Security statement added that the incident showed that enemies still have a high interest in targeting air transportation, which underscores the continued need for increased security at airports.

The statement reads:

“We have no specific, credible information regarding an active terrorist plot against the U.S. at this time, although we continue to monitor efforts by al-Qaeda and its affiliates to carry out terrorist attacks, both in the Homeland and abroad. Since this IED demonstrates our adversaries’ interest in targeting the aviation sector, DHS continues, at the direction of the President, to employ a risk-based, layered approach to ensure the security of the traveling public.

"These layers include threat and vulnerability analysis, prescreening and screening of passengers, using the best available technology, random searches at airports, federal air marshal coverage and additional security measures both seen and unseen. DHS will continue to work with our federal, state, local, international and private sector partners to identify potential threats and take appropriate protective measures. As always, we encourage law enforcement and security officials, as well as the general public, to maintain vigilance and report suspicious activity to the appropriate authorities.”

[Updated at 5:16 p.m. ET] The FBI released a statement Monday afternoon saying that the device was seized abroad.

It reads in full:

"As a result of close cooperation with our security and intelligence partners overseas, an improvised explosive device (IED) designed to carry out a terrorist attack has been seized abroad. The FBI currently has possession of the IED and is conducting technical and forensics analysis on it. Initial exploitation indicates that the device is very similar to IEDs that have been used previously by al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) in attempted terrorist attacks, including against aircraft and for targeted assassinations. The device never presented a threat to public safety, and the U.S. government is working closely with international partners to address associated concerns with the device. We refer you to the Department of Homeland Security, including the Transportation Security Administration, regarding ongoing security measures to safeguard the American people and the traveling public."

[Updated at 5:10 p.m. ET]  CNN Chief White House Correspondent Jessica Yellen reports that a counterterrorism official said they do not believe the attack was  planned to coincide with the anniversary of the death of Osama bin Laden.

Officials said they believed the device never posed a threat to the public and heralded the thwarted plot and recovered device as a sign that American intelligence capabilities have improved.


May 7th, 2012
05:35 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.

Get ready to be inspired, and to cry a little

If you haven't yet experienced "The Gift of Charles," you should leave this blog right now and go read the words, watch the videos and study the photos of a remarkable family dealing with the challenge of a lifetime. Tremica Thompson, whose son was battling a dreadful disease, said this about the struggle:

We can't change it. We can't go around it. We have to walk straight through it together, as a family.

37-pound cat dies

More sad news: Meow, the 37-pound cat who captured the national spotlight, including his moment on this blog last Wednesday, died Saturday afternoon from respiratory distress, CNN affiliate KOAT reports. Anderson Cooper memorialized his late guest on his syndicated show's website.

Was Elvis in good hands?

Elvis Presley was an entertainment superstar, but judging by the contents of his wallet and other items in a new exhibit, he also was a regular guy. Kevin Kern, Graceland's communications director, noted that the megamillion-selling artist had an insurance card in his billfold:

Even the King of rock 'n' roll had insurance.

Police get their man

A plastic rendering of a part of the male anatomy dangling from the back bumper of a pickup truck caught the attention of deputies in South Carolina. The driver tried to talk his way out of a ticket, but the deputies wouldn't play ball, CNN affiliate WYFF reports.

Hadn't thought of that

Computers and robots are getting smarter all the time, but they should remember where they came from. The machines will never rule over us as long as we continue to remind them of this truth from Paul Nussbaum, clinical neuropsychologist at the University of Pittsburgh:

We tend to really get so impressed with the latest gadget, the latest phone, the latest whatever it is, and we forget that all of the technology that built it came from the human brain.

iReporters share super pictures of Supermoon

Yup, it sure was big and bright, and people all over the world shared what they saw via CNN's iReport.

'Not a comic book girl,' but thrilled to see 'Avengers'

"The Avengers" blew away box-office records over the weekend, thanks in part to CNN iReporter Meagan Hoffman in Port Washington, Wisconsin. She  saw the movie twice, Thursday at midnight and again on Saturday, despite not being a "comic book girl." She shared images and observations from Thursday night's blockbuster opening.

Student schools museum on history

OK, so he can't pronounce "Gibraltar," but a 13-year-old seventh-grader knew that a map of the Byzantine Empire he saw at New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art was wrong, and he let officials there know. Eventually, the museum admitted he was right.

Story gets likes and dislikes aplenty

Our readers were pretty fired up about our Tech section's "brogrammers" article, with some disagreeing strongly with the "frat boy" comparison and others reluctantly recognizing aspects of the concept in themselves. User frivless commented:

<brogrammer>Really?  Step foot into any successful organization where programming is done and tell me how many "brogrammers" you see?</brogrammer>

On the horizon: High-profile court proceedings

Sanford, Florida, neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman is scheduled to be arraigned on a second-degree murder charge Tuesday in the February death of unarmed teenager Trayvon Martin. Meanwhile, a court in Peru will hold a hearing on whether to extradite convicted murderer Joran van der Sloot to the United States to face extortion charges.

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Filed under: CNN Daily Mash-up
May 7th, 2012
02:23 PM ET

Greek uncertainty deepens as first coalition effort fails

Greece's main center-right party has failed to form a coalition government Monday, adding yet more uncertainty to the debt-ridden country's political situation.

New Democracy leader Antonis Samaras said he did "everything possible" to form a coalition, but that none of the parties agreed to join with his party, which won first crack at forming a government after finishing first in Sunday's parliamentary elections.

It will now be up to the leftist Syriza coalition, which opposes unpopular austerity measures imposed to secure a European bailout, to form a government.

That group will have three days to form a government.

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Filed under: Europe • Greece • World
Report: Dolphins died of drug overdose after rave
Dolphins perform at the Connyland marine park in Switzerland.
May 7th, 2012
01:43 PM ET

Report: Dolphins died of drug overdose after rave

Two dolphins at a Swiss theme park died after ingesting a heroin substitute around the same time as a weekend rave at the park last November, according to reports from Switzerland.

A toxicology report from a forensics institute in St. Gallen, Switzerland, showed tests found traces of the heroin substitute buprenorphine in the dolphins' urine, according to a report in London's Daily Mail online, citing Swiss media reports.

The dolphins died within five days of each other in November, after the area near their pool in the Connyland marine park had been rented out for a weekend rave, according to the reports.

Cornelis van Elk, a Dutch marine biologist, said the drugs turn off a part of the dolphins' brains which tells them when to surface for air.

Connyland keeper Nadja Gasser told local media how one of the dolphins, named Chelmers, died, according to the Daily Mail.

"He was drifting under the water and was clearly in trouble and so we jumped into the water.

"We tried to hold him. He was shaking all over and was foaming at the mouth.

"Eventually we got him out of the water. His tongue was hanging out. He could hardly breathe.

"He was given adrenalin, but it didn't help.

"After an hour the dolphin died."

In a report in the Daily Mail shortly after the rave, wildlife experts said noise from the event could have stressed the animals' immune systems and led to the death of the first dolphin, Shadow.

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Filed under: Animals • Dolphins • Switzerland
Overheard on CNN.com: Salute to families with 'young warriors battling cancer'
Charles Daniel was a troubled 13-year-old when he finally found a family that embraced him. He died of cancer two years later.
May 7th, 2012
01:26 PM ET

Overheard on CNN.com: Salute to families with 'young warriors battling cancer'

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.

Forest and Tremica Thompson brought reporter Wayne Drash and digital content producer Brandon Ancil into a very personal moment of their lives in January 2011: the last week of their adopted son's life. Charles Daniel battled brain cancer for two years, and then spent his last 19 days at George Mark Children’s House outside Oakland, California. Charles had come to live with the family in 2008, and received his diagnosis a few months later. The Thompsons invited CNN because they wanted to help other families going through similar ordeals.

Readers told us they were touched by this story of a family sticking together in a difficult time, and we in turn were touched by their heartfelt responses.

The gift of Charles

Some had lost a child, too.

James Martinez: "Amazing parents and family. The death of a child is so unnatural, there's nothing you can do to prepare for it even when you know it will happen. You gave Charles a beautiful life and you were with him when he left this earth, there is nothing more important than your children knowing you stand with them and love them unconditionally. Our love for our children stands the test of time and is everlasting. Your son is with you still, just not present. Don't think of him as being in your past, think of him as being in your future. You will see him again. My young daughter's cancer journey lasted just four months. We were by her side every step of the way and she remained positive as did we even when the doctors told us her time was ending. She died on Thanksgiving Day 2011, just four months after being diagnosed with a rare form of ovarian cancer. A 5 year old girl with ovarian cancer is something you never expect to hear as a parent. We miss her, as you do Charles, and we struggle each day to make it through. We are anguished by her passing and are angry at everyone, from the doctors who were helpless to save her to God for letting this happen. We know time will ease our pain and temper our anger, but we will never be the same. I wish you peace and comfort. God Bless you. God Bless every family with young warriors battling cancer."

Others said the story brought tears to their eyes. FULL POST

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Filed under: California • Health • Health Care • Overheard on CNN.com • U.S.
May 7th, 2012
12:37 PM ET

Reports: South Korea clamps down on traffickers of 'human-flesh capsules'

South Korean customs officials said they are cracking down on an operation that is smuggling in pills from China made from the flesh of dead babies, according to Korean media reports.

Twenty-nine smugglers of "human-flesh capsules" have been arrested after trying to smuggle 11,000 pills into South Korea from China while disguised as tourists, according to The Korea Times.

“Some put herbs together in the capsules so that customs agents cannot distinguish the unique smell and color of the human-flesh capsules," a Korea Customs Service official told the newspaper. "Others put the capsules in medicine containers to deceive inspectors."

The pills, which are taken by people who believe they may help increase stamina, for rejuvenation or by terminal cancer patients, are made of powder made from dried fetuses or dead babies, the customs office told the Korea Times.

More than 35 cases and more than 17,000 pills have been found by customs authorities since August of last year, the South Korean website Dong-A Ilbo reported. 

South Korea's crackdown comes after a documentary called "Lee Yeong-don’s Food X File" aired in April 2011, describing the smuggling of the capsules as well as harmful effects of the pills. The documentary claimed that tests done in South Korea and by KCS showed that the content of the pills they received was "99.7 percent identical with humans," China Daily reported. 

The documentary team went to China, where they found and shot video of a hospital that sold materials, according to China Daily. Chinese officials said they have strict rules forbidding the sale of placentas or any medical waste.

The Ministry of Health began investigating the issue after the documentary.

"Since human flesh capsules are confirmed to contain ingredients lethal to humans, including super bacteria, we will preemptively curb their smuggling at borders to protect public health," a customs official told Dong-A Ilbo.

The website reported the capsules were being smuggled from northeastern China after requests from buyers in South Korea.

But now, Korean officials said, they will be putting in effect a significant number of measures to try to stem the smuggling of the pills.

Customs officials will be even more diligent in checking belongings of international travelers as well as global mail, Dong-A Ilbo reported. That includes opening packages and "checking all capsules and powder made from unknown substances" and labeled drugs that come from China.

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Filed under: China • Health • South Korea
May 7th, 2012
11:45 AM ET

U.S. hostage urges Obama to meet al Qaeda demands

The Obama administration is aware of a video of an American hostage urging the president to meet al Qaeda demands so he is not killed, a senior State Department official said Monday, but added that the United States "does not negotiate" for hostages.

Warren Weinstein, 70, makes the emotional to President Barack Obama in a video released on several Islamist websites Sunday.

"My life is in your hands, Mr. President," Weinstein says in the video. "If you accept the demands, I live. If you don't accept the demands, then I die."

Weinstein, a development consultant, was abducted in August from his home in the Pakistani city of Lahore. In December, al Qaeda claimed responsibility for his capture.

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Filed under: Al Qaeda • Pakistan • Terrorism
U.S. officials confirm release of senior Taliban prisoners
May 7th, 2012
10:50 AM ET

U.S. officials confirm release of senior Taliban prisoners

Up to 20 high-level insurgent prisoners have been released from NATO custody in Afghanistan over the past two years in an effort to boost peace negotiations with the Taliban in various regions of the country, according to U.S. officials.

The insurgents, held at the jointly-run NATO-Afghan detention facility of Parwan, are considered "bad guys," said one U.S. official who did not want to be identified discussing a sensitive issue. Their release was undertaken, the official said, often at the request of the Afghan government. In all cases, they were assessed as unlikely to rejoin the insurgency.

The official added that the Taliban detainees had been in the maximum security Parwan detention center “for a reason” – but that NATO "does not release anyone when there is a high likelihood they will rejoin the insurgency." The official said he was aware of only two releases in the last nine months.

Some previously released Afghan detainees, especially from the U.S.-run detention facility at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, have allegedly rejoined the insurgency, suggesting such programs are not without risk.

The U.S. official said the releases occur “when officials determine that the benefits significantly outweigh the risks.”

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Filed under: Afghanistan • National security • NATO • Security
Army investigators: No foul play suspected in captain's death
Capt. Bruce Kevin Clark died on May 1 while serving in Tarin Kowt, Afghanistan, about 85 miles north of Kandahar.
May 7th, 2012
10:36 AM ET

Army investigators: No foul play suspected in captain's death

Military investigators said Monday that they do not suspect foul play in the death of an Army captain who suddenly collapsed during a video chat with his wife.

Capt. Bruce Kevin Clark, 43, was using the video chatting service Skype to speak with his wife, Susan Orellana-Clark, on April 30 when he suddenly slumped forward and collapsed. He was dead when military personnel arrived two hours later.

Orellana-Clark said in a statement Sunday that she saw what appeared to be a bullet hole on the wall behind her husband after he collapsed, leading to speculation he had been shot.

While the cause of Clark's death is not yet known, investigators have ruled out a gunshot, Army Criminal Investigation Command spokesman Chris Grey said in a statement.

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Filed under: Afghanistan • U.S. Army • World
May 7th, 2012
10:28 AM ET

Report: 'Hang on! I love you!' hang glider flier's boyfriend screamed

Hang-gliding enthusiasts gathered at the site of a fellow flier's death over the weekend as witnesses recalled the last words the victim's boyfriend yelled during her deadly flight over British Columbia.

Lenami Godinez-Avila, 27, was on her first flight on a hang glider on April 28, when she fell 1,000 feet to her death in a forest clearing near Agassiz, British Columbia.

Fellow hang glider pilots, most of whom had never met the woman, got together in the clearing on Saturday, erecting a cross and planting a cherry tree as a memorial, Canada's CTV reported.

"We embraced her as our own, and so because of that, the deep sorrow is like losing someone close to us," said a tearful Jason Warner, a safety officer for the Hang Gliding and Paragliding Association of Canada.

Meanwhile, Nicole McLearn, a witness to the accident, told Post Media News in Canada that Godinez-Avila and her boyfriend were "joyous" as they watched other hang gliders take to the air that Saturday.

Another witness, Frederic Bourgault, said Godinez-Avila flashed a big smile as she prepared for the tandem flight with instructor William Jonathan Orders.

Both witnesses said as Orders and Godinez-Avila ran for their takeoff, something looked wrong, according to the Post report.

“Oh, she’s hanging low,” Bourgault told the Post he said out loud.

McLearn thought their silhouettes "didn't look right," according to the report.

McLearn told the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. that when the glider was in the air, Godinez-Avila appeared to be wearing her harness, but it wasn’t attached to the glider.

"He was horizontal but she was now hanging vertically, and it looked like in essence she had him in a bear hug around the chest area," McLearn told the CBC.

"I could see her starting to slip down his body ... past the waist, down the legs. Finally she got to the feet and tried to hang on and obviously couldn't hang on for that much longer and let go, tearing off the tandem pilot's shoes in the process," McLearn said.

Back at the launch site, Godinez-Avila's boyfriend watched her fall, according to the Post report.

“Lenami! Hang on! I love you!” he screamed, the Post reported.

She was in the air about 30 seconds before she fell.

After the flight, Orders was arrested and charged with obstructing justice. Police say he swallowed a memory card possibly containing video of the fatal accident.

He was granted bail on Friday after posting bond of 5,750 Canadian dollars, said Neil MacKenzie, communications counsel with the province's criminal justice branch.

The recording has since passed and is now in police custody, MacKenzie said. He declined comment on whether anything retrievable could be taken from the card.

Orders is expected to be released from custody on Monday, CTV reported.

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Filed under: Canada • Courts • Crime • World
Lockheed Martin launches Twitter offensive to defend maligned fighter jets
May 7th, 2012
10:22 AM ET

Lockheed Martin launches Twitter offensive to defend maligned fighter jets

Lockheed Martin has launched an offensive to combat complaints from pilots who have refused to fly its F-22s over concerns about oxygen deprivation while in the cockpit.

The company took its campaign to the skies - er, Twitter - to try to combat growing negative publicity about its Raptors.

The Air Force has been looking into about a dozen unexplained incidents related to hypoxia, or oxygen deficiency, with pilots but has been unable to pinpoint the cause, Air Combat Command has said.

Some pilots have come forward to say they won't get in the F-22s until the problem is solved.

Pilots began experiencing problems about four years ago.

“For some reason, the onboard oxygen generating system and the environmental control system that feeds it may be inputting some contaminant,” Gen. Gregory Martin, a retired Air Force veteran, told CNN affiliate WAVY in Virginia.

For a while, the problem was the subject of only a spattering of media reports, but Lockheed Martin went on the offensive (or defensive, depending whom you ask) by launching a Twitter campaign praising the fleet as "60 Minutes" aired a segment on the problems with the Raptors and interviewed decorated pilots who were refusing to fly them.


May 7th, 2012
10:07 AM ET

Airstrike, bombing in Afghanistan cause deaths, officials say

Violence raged in Afghanistan over the last 24 hours, with reports of civilian deaths in an airstrike and soldier deaths in a bombing.

At least 14 civilians were killed and six others were injured Sunday in a coalition airstrike in Badghis province in the northwest, a senior Afghan police source said. NATO's International Security Assistance Force said an airstrike in the province killed three insurgents.

"We are aware of and are looking into the reports of civilian casualties," said Lt Col Jimmie Cummings, a spokesman for the NATO-led force.

In eastern Afghanistan, attackers killed three U.S. soldiers Monday, a Western official said.

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Filed under: Afghanistan
Michael Phelps says he will retire after London Olympics
Michael Phelps swims in the 100-meter butterfly event during the 2012 Indianapolis Grand Prix in March.
May 7th, 2012
10:04 AM ET

Michael Phelps says he will retire after London Olympics

U.S. swimmer Michael Phelps says he'll make one more push in the pool at the Olympics in London this summer, but after that he's hanging up his Speedo.

Phelps told Anderson Cooper in an interview on "60 Minutes" on Sunday that while it took him quite some time to get back into training for London, he's ready to go for the gold again. If he can get three medals during the Summer Olympics he will be able to retire as the athlete with the most Olympic career medals.

Debbie Phelps, Michael's mother, still likes the idea of him going to Rio de Janeiro for the 2016 Olympics, in part because she wants to travel there. His consolation for her: "We'll go watch."

"Once I retire, I'm retiring," he said on "60 Minutes." "I'm done."

His coach, Bob Bowman, said he wasn't sure Phelps would even get to the Olympics. After a series of paparazzi photos showed the Olympic golden boy partying and Phelps slacked on practicing, everything was up in the air.

"I thought it was a 50-50," Bowman said. "I really didn't have a feel for whether he would come back or not come back."

In the fall of 2009, Bowman said, Phelps probably missed six weeks of practice. Phelps said he took a trip to Vegas, lounged around the house, played video games and did anything to distract himself from the pool.

"It was hard, because I didn't know if the passion or the fire was still inside of me," Phelps told Cooper. "And it took awhile for me to actually realize it myself. Bob couldn't tell me, my mom couldn't tell me. They couldn't help me find it."


May 7th, 2012
07:42 AM ET

Monday'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...

1:00 pm ET - White House briefing - The elections in France and Greece are sending shockwaves through stock markets around the world.  How will the U.S. react to these new developments?  Press Secretary Jay Carney will likely discuss the results during his briefing.


Filed under: Elections • France • Greece • On CNN.com today • Politics • World
Pujols, Harper, Davis provide triple play of surprises in baseball
Albert Pujols hits his first home run of the season for the Los Angeles Angels on Sunday in Anaheim.
May 7th, 2012
06:24 AM ET

Pujols, Harper, Davis provide triple play of surprises in baseball

Sunday was a triple play of surprises in Major League baseball.

First, Albert Pujols homered. No surprise for someone who's hit 446 home runs in a 12-year career, you say? Well, Pujols' homer was his first as a player for the Los Angeles Angels and his first in 110 at bats, a career-long homer drought for the former St. Louis Cardinal who signed a 10-year, $240 million contract with the Angels during the winter.

The two-run blast ended up accounting for the winning runs as the Angels beat the Toronto Blue Jays 4-3 in Anaheim, California.

"I'm blessed that I had the opportunity to do it here in front of the fans," said Pujols after the game, according to a report in the Orange County Register. "They were being patient and waiting until the last couple of days, when I heard some boos. ... I was not performing the way everyone was expecting."

Teammates congratulate Washington Nationals outfielder Bryce Harper after he stole home on Sunday.

While Pujols was finally winning over Angels fans, rookie outfielder Bryce Harper was continuing to delight Washington Nationals fans.

The 19-year-old Harper stole home in the first inning against the Philadelphia Phillies, becoming the first teenager to steal home in a Major League game since 1964, the Washington Post reported. It was also Harper's first stolen base in the big leagues.

It came after Phillies pitcher Cole Hamels hit Harper with a pitch to put him on base. Harper advanced to third on a Jason Werth single before swiping home.

Hamels admitted later he hit the rookie on purpose.

"I was trying to hit him," Hamels said, according to a report on MLB.com. "I'm not going to deny it. That's just ... something that I grew up watching, that's what happened, so I'm just trying to continue the old baseball. I think some people kind of get away from it."

And Harper seemed to be OK with that.

"He is a great guy, great pitcher, he knows how to pitch, he is an All-Star. It's all good," Harper was quoted as saying on MLB.com.

In the end, Hamels and the Phillies won 9-3.

Baltimore Orioles players celebrate after completing a 17-inning victory over the Boston Red Sox on Sunday.

And Sunday's third surprise came during the 17-inning marathon between the Baltimore Orioles and Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park.

The winning pitcher in the six-hour, seven-minute marathon was Baltimore first baseman Chris Davis, who hadn't pitched in any competition in six years, when he was in junior college, according to the Baltimore Sun.

Davis took the mound in the 16th inning after the Orioles had used seven other relief pitchers in the game. He gave up two hits, struck out two and walked one in two innings, picking up the victory when Adam Jones hit a three-run homer in the top of the 17th.

“I'm like, sweet,” Davis said, according to the Sun report. “I get to try something different today because hitting ain't working.” Davis was hitless in eight at-bats in the game. He struck out five times.

And if that's not strange enough, the losing pitcher, who gave up Jones' homer, was Darnell McDonald, a Red Sox outfielder forced to pitch when the Red Sox depleted their relief corps.

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Filed under: Baseball • Sports
May 7th, 2012
05:17 AM ET

Clinton urges India to go further in reducing Iranian oil imports

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Monday applauded India's efforts to reduce its imports of Iranian oil but urged it to cut them further to keep pressure on Tehran over its nuclear program.

"We think India as a country understands the importance of trying to use diplomacy to resolve these difficult threats and is certainly working toward lowering their purchases of Iranian oil," Clinton said in Kolkata, the first stop on her visit to India. "We commend the steps they've taken thus far and hope they will do even more."

The United States and other Western countries are using economic pressure on Iran, particularly on its oil industry, to try to push Tehran into halting its nuclear program.

They have encouraged Asian countries like India, Japan and South Korea - key consumers of Iranian oil - to cut back their purchases.

U.S. officials say India has lowered the amount of oil it buys from Iran in recent months. But Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's government is also wrestling with stubbornly high inflation and is wary of provoking upward pressure on prices.

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Filed under: India • Iran • State Department
May 7th, 2012
05:09 AM ET

Greek elections leave political system in chaos

Greece's center-right New Democracy party looks set to get the first chance to form a new government Monday, but party leader Antonis Samaras will have a complicated task after an election where angry voters punished politicians for backing harsh government budget cuts.

No party is likely to have anything approaching a majority, leaving the politically and economically volatile nation even more in flux.

The Greek stock market plunged about 7% Monday morning as the final votes from Sunday's election were being counted.

With 97% of votes counted early Monday by the interior ministry, New Democracy - part of the present ruling coalition - finished first with 19% support to capture 109 seats.

That figure is barely half the percentage that it won in elections in 2009 and well short of what party leader Samaras admitted it hoped for entering this weekend.


Filed under: Politics • World
May 7th, 2012
05:05 AM ET

Indiana mom sends son to school with stun gun to confront bullies

An Indiana mother who sent her gay son to school with a stun gun after administrators apparently didn't do enough to stop the bullying against him said she would do it again - even though the teen now faces expulsion.

"I do not promote violence - not at all - but what is a parent to do when she has done everything that she felt she was supposed to do ... at the school?" the mother, Chelisa Grimes, told CNN's Don Lemon on Sunday. "I did feel like there was nothing else left for me to do, but protect my child."

The school district held an expulsion hearing last week but no decision has been announced.

Grimes sent her son, Darnell "Dynasty" Young, to Arsenal Technical High School in Indianapolis with the stun gun after he said he was taunted and bullied for months.


Filed under: U.S.
May 7th, 2012
02:37 AM ET

U.S. citizen abducted in Pakistan asks Obama to meet Qaeda demands

A 70-year-old U.S. citizen kidnapped in Pakistan last year has made an emotional plea to President Barack Obama to meet al Qaeda's demands in order to save his life, according to a video released on several Islamist websites Sunday.

"My life is in your hands, Mr. President," Warren Weinstein said in the video. "If you accept the demands, I live. If you don't accept the demands, then I die."

Weinstein, a development consultant, was abducted in August from his home in the city of Lahore. In December, al Qaeda claimed responsibility for his capture.

Ayman al-Zawahiri, leader of the terror network, listed eight demands that he said, if met, would result in Weinstein's release. The demands related to issues in the Middle East, Pakistan, Afghanistan and Somalia.

"It is important that you accept these demands and act quickly and don't delay," Weinstein said in the video posted Sunday. He made references to Obama's daughters and to his own children.

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Filed under: Al Qaeda • Pakistan • Terrorism
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