A video showing American journalist Steven Sotloff being beheaded by terror group ISIS is authentic, U.S. officials said early Wednesday.
The Islamic militant group released the video Tuesday.
It shows the second beheading of an American journalist in two weeks, and blames President Barack Obama's decision to conduct airstrikes against the militant group in Iraq for the killing.
"The U.S. intelligence community has analyzed the recently released video ... and has reached the judgment that it is authentic," said Caitlin Hayden, the spokeswoman for the National Security Council. "We will continue to provide updates as they are available,"
In the video, Sotloff kneels in the desert, dressed in an orange prison-style jumpsuit. A masked "executioner" lords over him, wielding a knife.
The journalist speaks; the executioner speaks.
And then the horrific happens: the victim is beheaded.
"It is almost the exact same choreography," said Peter Neumann, a professor at King's College London, comparing ISIS videos showing the deaths of journalists Sotloff and James Foley. A video of Foley's execution was released last month.
The executioner appears to be the same person. The location of the two killings also appears to be similar.
Neumann suspects they took place in or around the Syrian city of Raqqa, one of the safest areas for ISIS, which calls itself the Islamic State.
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Three Americans detained in North Korea spoke out about their conditions Monday in an exclusive interview with CNN.
Kenneth Bae, Matthew Todd Miller and Jeffrey Edward Fowle met with CNN's Will Ripley at a hotel in Pyongyang. Each was given five minutes for an interview.
Bae, who is serving a 15-year prison sentence for "hostile acts to bring down its government," said he is working eight hours a day, six days a week at a labor camp.
"Continue to pray for me," he asked of his friends and family.
Despite what he called "hard labor," Bae said he has been treated "as humanely as possible."
Miller pleaded for help from the U.S. government during his interview.
"My situation is very urgent, that very soon I am going to trial, and I would directly be sent to prison," Miller said.
Pro-Russia rebels in Ukraine should open a humanitarian corridor for surrounded Ukrainian troops to retreat from the battlefield, the Russian President's office said Friday.
The step comes a day after a U.S. official accused Russia of sending up to 1,000 of its soldiers into southern Ukraine to fight alongside the rebels.
NATO produced what it says are satellite images showing Russian troops engaged in military operations inside Ukraine.
NATO has called an emergency meeting Friday in Brussels, Belgium, at the request of the Ukrainian authorities, a day after the U.N. Security Council was summoned over the crisis.
Russia continues to deny that it is either supporting the rebel forces or has sent its own forces over the border.
Ukrainian troops were fighting on two fronts Thursday: southeast of rebel-held Donetsk, and along the nation's southern coast in the town of Novoazovsk, about 12 miles (20 kilometers) from the Russian border.
Mykhailo Lysenko, the deputy commander of the Ukrainian Donbas battalion, on Thursday described the fighting in the south as "a full-scale invasion."
Analysts suggest that Russia may have sent its forces into Novoazovsk in order to throw Ukrainian forces making gains against besieged rebel forces in the cities of Donetsk and Luhansk onto the back foot.
In a statement issued by the Kremlin, President Vladimir Putin said the rebels had been successful in halting a Ukrainian military operation in eastern Ukraine that he said had endangered the civilian population and caused many casualties.
As a result, he said, they should allow the Ukrainian soldiers - who he said were fulfilling orders, not volunteering - to leave the battlefield, to reunite with their families, get medical help for the injured and avoid more casualties.
The Prime Minister of the self-declared Donetsk People's Republic, Alexander Zakharchenko, said in a televised statement on Russia's state-run Russia 24 channel that the rebels would do so if the surrounded Ukrainian troops agree to hand over their weapons.
Separatist forces in eastern Ukraine, backed by Russian tanks and armored personnel carriers, battled government forces on two fronts Thursday, a Ukrainian military official said.
The fighting was taking place southeast of Donetsk, and along the nation's southern coast in the town of Novoazovsk, about 12 miles (20 km) from the Russian border, according to Mykhailo Lysenko, the deputy commander of the Ukrainian Donbas battalion.
"This is a full-scale invasion," Lysenko said, referring to the fighting in the south.
A day earlier, Ukraine's National Defense and Security Council told reporters that Russian forces were directing massive artillery fire over the border at Novoazovsk.
Russian forces and pro-Russia rebels have seized villages around the town, the NSDC said.
The NDSC also claimed that members of a Russian tactical battalion were present in the village of Pobeda, in Ukraine's Luhansk region.
"If these troops got lost and accidentally found themselves in Ukraine as well, they should go back East," the update said.
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"Breaking Bad" is in blue heaven.
The AMC series - about a chemistry teacher-turned-drug lord who rides powerful methamphetamine called "Blue" to wealth and pain - concluded its triumphant run last year as one of the most-lauded TV series of all time: the story of "Mr. Chips turning into Scarface," as creator Vince Gilligan liked to describe it. On Monday, the show received one more set of honors: a slew of nods at the 66th Primetime Emmy Awards, including the Emmy for outstanding drama series.
The show won six Emmys total, second only to "Sherlock: His Last Vow's" seven among all programs.
There was some tough competition this year, notably from "True Detective," the moody HBO detective series starring Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson.
Bryan Cranston won the lead actor Emmy for his performance as meth king Walter White, beating out the Oscar-winning McConaughey, who was the subject of laudatory and humorous remarks all night long.
"Even I thought about voting for Matthew," joked Cranston, and then turned serious.
"My own family nicknamed me Sneaky Pete," he said, noting he didn't expect he'd find his niche. And then he found acting.
He dedicated the Emmy to "all the Sneaky Petes of the world. ... Take a chance, take a risk. It's really worth it."
Aaron Paul got his third win for playing Jesse Pinkman, White's sometimes undependable right hand.
"I've learned so much, on screen and off," he said to Cranston, sitting in the audience.
And Anna Gunn won for outstanding supporting actress for her performance as White's wife. She also won last year.
Show writer Moira Walley-Beckett also won.
"Detective" wasn't completely shut out. It won four technical awards at the Creative Arts Emmys on August 16 and another one on the telecast, the latter for director Cary Joji Fukunaga.
See more on the awards HERE
In the heart of Northern California's wine country, piles of stemware lay shattered on the ground.
Building facades in historic downtown Napa crumbled into the streets.
And residents who enjoyed decades of calm were harshly reminded that intense quakes can strike anytime.
"I was in shock to see people's homes and offices on the floor," Napa resident Elise Martinez said. "This is life-changing."
But even as the Bay Area tries to clean up from its strongest earthquake in 25 years, the tremor could have been much worse.
No one was killed in the 6.0-magnitude earthquake that jostled residents awake early Sunday morning, though more than 100 people were injured.
And while 70,000 customers lost power after the quake, that number dwindled 2,200 by Monday morning, electric company PG&E said.
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America's top defense officials left open the possibility of targeting fighters with the so-called Islamic State in Syria, saying during a news briefing Thursday it was not enough to just hit the extremist group in Iraq.
Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel and Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, stopped short of calling for U.S. military action in eastern Syria, an ISIS stronghold.
"Can they be defeated without addressing that part of the organization that resides in Syria? The answer is no," Dempsey said during the briefing at the Pentagon.
Repeatedly pushed by reporters about whether that meant operations against ISIS in Syria, Hagel said, "We're looking at all options."
While it's unclear what those options may be, Hagel said the United States is "very clear-eyed" about ISIS.
"They are beyond just a terrorist group. They marry ideology, a sophistication of strategic and tactical military prowess," Hagel said.
"...This is beyond anything we have seen, and we must prepare for everything. And the only way you do that is that you take a cold, steely hard look at it and get ready."
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When war reporter James Foley wasn't writing for GlobalPost or recording video for AFP or appearing on the PBS "NewsHour," he occasionally shared stories on his own blog, aptly titled "A World of Troubles."
For a subtitle, he chose the famous Carl von Clausewitz sentence "War is fought by human beings."
And that is exactly what Foley sought to show with his reporting: humanity amid the horror of war.
Foley was abducted while on a reporting trip in northern Syria in November 2012. He was never heard from again.
A video published Tuesday by the extremist group ISIS showed Foley being beheaded. It is not known when or where the video was recorded.
For Foley's family and friends, the recording was the answer they hoped they'd never hear to their questions about his disappearance.
"We have never been prouder of our son Jim. He gave his life trying to expose the world to the suffering of the Syrian people," his mother, Diane, said Tuesday night,
She called him "an extraordinary son, brother, journalist and person."
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An evening of peaceful protests devolved into another night of chaos as gunfire, tear gas and Molotov cocktails flew through Ferguson, Missouri.
At least 31 people were arrested, some of whom came from as far away as New York and California, said Missouri State Highway Patrol Capt. Ron Johnson said.
For almost two hours, police in riot gear formed a barricade and stood watch as hundreds of peaceful protesters marched in a single-file line that stretched so long that different parts chanted different slogans.
"Hands up, don't shoot," some repeated. "No justice, no peace," others said. Still others were singing church hymns.
But the scene quickly deteriorated after a handful of protesters threw rocks, bottles and Molotov cocktails at police. Officers responded by firing stun grenades and tear gas canisters.
Amid the frenzy, the sounds of gunfire rang out from different parts of the city. Two people were shot within the protest site, Missouri State Highway Patrol Capt. Ron Johnson said.
One group of protesters made a barricade with portable toilets and orange cones. Some ripped out street signs, including the symbolic "Do Not Enter" sign.
Armored vehicles rolled down the streets with officers perched atop, their hands steadied on guns. Other officers darted into the protest crowd to make an occasional arrest before retreating.
Johnson, who was asked by Missouri's governor to try to keep order in Ferguson, said police are still trying to use a peaceful approach.
"For the most part it works," he said. "But tonight we had gunfire occur. Officers were taking shots at their vehicles."
He urged demonstrators to protest during the daylight hours Tuesday and not after dark.
"Make your voices heard where you can be seen and you're not the cover for violent agitators," he said.
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The chaos in Ferguson has gotten so unruly that Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon signed an executive order deploying National Guard troops to the St. Louis suburb.
"Given these deliberate, coordinated and intensifying violent attacks on lives and property in Ferguson, I am directing the highly capable men and women of the Missouri National Guard ... in restoring peace and order to this community," Nixon said in a statement.
Gunfire, tear gas and Molotov cocktails Sunday night marked some of the fiercest clashes yet between police and protesters furious over the death of an unarmed teenager.
And the tensions continued escalating after autopsy results revealed 18-year-old Michael Brown was shot six times.
See more on this developing story on CNN.com