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December 31st, 2013
10:18 AM ET

See Woman Freak Out After Winning Audi

You have to see this woman's reaction to becoming "The Price is Right's" biggest winner ever.

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December 31st, 2013
05:49 AM ET

Can Someone Explain These Crop Circles?

This isn't a scene from the movie "Signs."

This is actual footage of giant "crop circles" that appeared on a farm near the central California coast.

So, naturally this has people wondering - is this the work of aliens... Or some very talented pranksters?

Two friends driving on a nearby road sunday night witnessed strange bursts of green light flashing on the horizon.

They videotaped it and posted it on YouTube where it went viral, bringing a number of curious onlookers to the scene on Monday to see it for themselves.

See full story from CNN affiliate KSBW

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December 30th, 2013
06:14 AM ET

Man Pays $660 for 17th Century Masterpiece

Imagine buying a painting and then being told its worth 1,000 times what you paid for it.

That's what happened on the British version of "Antiques Roadshow."

The owner paid $660 for a portrait that turned out to be the work of 17th century Flemish artist Anthony van Dyck.

It's considered a masterpiece and it's valued now at $660,000!

The owner, a priest, says he wants to sell the painting to buy new bells for his church.

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December 27th, 2013
06:04 AM ET

Beirut Blast 'Kills ex-Ambassador'

Mohamad Chatah, a former Lebanese minister of finance and ambassador to the United States, was killed Friday when a car bomb struck his convoy in downtown Beirut, Lebanon's National News Agency reported.

Four others were killed and 71 were wounded, Lebanon's health ministry said. Cars were burned beyond recognition as a wall of flames and thick black smoke shot up from the blast site.

No one has claimed responsibility for the attack.

Chatah's last tweet, posted about an hour before his death, talked about Hezbollah - the Lebanese-based Shiite militant group that Chatah was at odds with.

"#Hezbollah is pressing hard to be granted similar powers in security & foreign policy matters that Syria exercised in Lebanon for 15 yrs," Chatah tweeted.

Chatah was known as a staunch critic of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, whom he accused of meddling in Lebanon's internal affairs. Chatah also opposed Hezbollah, which has sent fighters to help al-Assad's forces in the Syrian civil war.

"A united and peaceful Syria ruled by Assad is simply not possible anymore. It has been like that for some time," Chatah wrote in his last blog post. "The status quo ante cannot be restored. Iran and Hezbollah realize this more than anyone else."

Chatah graduated from American University in Beirut and served as Lebanon's ambassador to the United States from 1997 to 1999, according to his blog.

He also served as a senior adviser for former Prime Minister Saad Hariri.

Current Prime Minister Najib Mikati posted a tweet saying he is calling off his vacation and heading back to Lebanon.

"I condemn this assassination, which targeted a political, an academic, a moderate and an upscale figure who always believed in dialogue and the language of reason, logic and the right to have a different opinion" Mikati said.

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December 26th, 2013
06:00 AM ET

Captive American Warren Weinstein Feels 'Totally Abandoned and Forgotten'

Saying he feels "totally abandoned and forgotten," kidnapped U.S. government contractor Warren Weinstein called on President Barack Obama to negotiate for his freedom in a video released by al Qaeda on Christmas.

The 72-year-old Weinstein was abducted from his home in the Pakistani city of Lahore in August 2011.

In the 13-minute video provided to the Washington Post, Weinstein appeals to the President, Secretary of State John Kerry, the American media, the American public and finally his family.

"Nine years ago, I came to Pakistan to help my government and I did so at a time when most Americans would not come here," he said. "And now, when I need my government, it seems I have been totally abandoned and forgotten."

This is the second video with him making a direct plea to the Obama administration. The first was released in May 2012.

Dressed in a light gray jacket and black cap, and sporting a full beard, Weinstein spoke with little emotion, saying he's not in good health, has a heart condition and suffers from acute asthma, before adding that "the years have taken their toll."

"Needless to say, I've been suffering deep anxiety every part of everyday, not knowing what is happening to my family and not knowing how they are and because I am not with them."

Weinstein said his captors have agreed to let his family visit him, but only if Obama agrees to do the same for al Qaeda members held by the United States.

"Unless you continue to try to get President Obama and his administration to actively pursue my release, we may never see each other again," he said.

U.S. officials have repeatedly said Washington will not bargain with al Qaeda. There was no immediate response from the Obama administration on the latest video.

Weinstein was captured after his kidnappers managed to overcome the three security guards who were protecting him.

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December 24th, 2013
05:51 AM ET

Soldier's Surprise Homecoming & Proposal

See a Florida woman receive the surprise of a lifetime when her boyfriend comes home & proposes during a Christmas special.

CNN affiliate WTSP has the video above.

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December 23rd, 2013
06:02 AM ET

Girl Hit Between the Eyes With Bullet

Seattle police say a teenager's glasses might have saved her life.

Alonza Bryant,16, had fallen asleep on the couch with her glasses on when someone sprayed her family's home with bullets.

One of them hit Alonza right between the eye but her glasses kept the bullet from going all the way into her head.

Police say someone in the house is involved in gangs and that Alonza was not the target of the shootings.


December 23rd, 2013
05:59 AM ET

American Gets 1-Year Prison Sentence for Parody Video

Shezanne Cassim, the American jailed in the United Arab Emirates and accused of threatening national security for a video parody, was sentenced Monday to one year in prison and a 10,000 UAE Dirham fine (approximately $2,700).

The young American living in the United Arab Emirates has been imprisoned since April, his family says, for posting what was intended to be a funny video on the Internet.

The video in question is a 19-minute short that pokes fun at a clique of Dubai teens who are influenced by hip-hop culture. In the 1990s, the label "Satwa G" was coined for a group of suburban teens who were known to talk tougher than they really were.

The video depicts a look at a "combat school" in the suburb of Satwa, where these "gangsters" are trained. The training includes how to throw sandals at targets, using clothing accessories as whips, and how to call on the phone for backup.

Cassim's family says Shezanne, 29, has been charged with endangering national security, but they've not been told what about the video endangered security.

The charges were not read out in court. UAE officials would only say "Mr. Cassim was charged under the UAE's penal code. Anyone charged with a crime under the laws of the UAE is entitled to the fair trial protections contained in the UAE's constitution."

Cassim, from Woodbury, Minnesota, moved to Dubai in 2006 after graduating college to work for PricewaterhouseCoopers.

He and some friends made and posted the video online in 2012. He was arrested in April.

He was interrogated and arrested in Dubai before being transferred to a maximum security prison in Abu Dhabi. His family says it was five months before he was notified of the charges against him.

December 20th, 2013
11:45 AM ET

Mom Faces Charges For Topless Photo With Daughter

A suburban Saint Louis mother  is now facing charges after a topless photo of her and her 14-year-old daughter was shared on social media.

Prosecutors say in the photo the mother seems to be posing, topless, with her daughter in a hot tub.

But the mother insists that's not true. She says she was getting out of the hot tub when her other daughter snapped the photo without her permission and shared it on Snapchat even though she told her not to.


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December 19th, 2013
05:59 AM ET

Dennis Rodman Set for Third Trip to North Korea

Dennis Rodman's latest round of controversial "basketball diplomacy" in a country ruled by one of the world's most repressive regimes is about to begin.

The former NBA star and a documentary crew are due to fly Thursday afternoon from China to North Korea, where he is to spend four days helping train a team of North Korean basketball players for a January exhibition in Pyongyang.

That January 8 exhibition - said to be against a yet-unannounced team of former NBA players - will celebrate the birthday of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, whom Rodman has called a friend and a "very good guy" despite international condemnation of the country's human rights records.

Rodman's trip - sponsored by the UK-based online betting company Paddy Power - is the 52-year-old's third to North Korea.

Rodman said he struck a friendship with Kim, a basketball fan, during Rodman's first trip in February. After the two men sat next to each other watching a basketball exhibition in North Korea's capital, Rodman told Kim that "you have a friend for life."

Rory Scott, a Paddy Power spokesman, said earlier this month that December's trip is nonpolitical, but is intended "to prove once again that sport has the power to rise above all issues."

It's not clear whether Rodman will meet with Kim during the basketball training visit.

The trip comes at a time of political turmoil in the secretive nuclear-armed nation, ongoing tensions between North Korea and the United States and outcries over North Korea's human rights record.

Tensions in the region were ratcheted up as North Korea carried out a long-range rocket launch a year ago and an underground nuclear test, its third so far, in February. The U.N. sanctions that followed were met by a barrage of threatening rhetoric from Pyongyang.

Rodman was criticized over his first trip in part because it came during this period, in which North Korea was threatening missile strikes on the United States, South Korea and Japan.

The situation has calmed since. But in a sign of internal political upheaval, North Korea announced last week that the regime hadexecuted Kim's uncle, Jang Song Thaek, who had been regarded as the country's second-most powerful figure. North Korea's official news agency accused him of trying to overthrow the state.

Rodman is "really important" to the North Korean regime, said North Korea expert and Forbes.com columnist Gordon Chang.

"Got to remember that Kim Jong Un needs to show that his regime, his government, is united, which it isn't," said Chang, author of "Nuclear Showdown: North Korea Takes On the World."

"With Dennis Rodman, we're going to see a lot of made-for-television events. Everybody's going to be smiling, everything will appear normal, and this will bolster the regime," Chang told CNN Newsroom on Wednesday.

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Filed under: Dennis Rodman • North Korea
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