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Casualty numbers raise questions about Gaza war

GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip — Shopkeepers say they were sitting outside their shuttered businesses Wednesday, catching a break from being cooped up during wartime, when an Israeli missile struck a nearby mosque, killing a truck driver and wounding 45 people.

Social Security: $300M on ‘IT boondoggle’

WASHINGTON — Six years ago the Social Security Administration embarked on an aggressive plan to replace outdated computer systems overwhelmed by a growing flood of disability claims. Nearly $300 million later, the new system is nowhere near ready and agency officials are struggling to salvage a project racked by delays and mismanagement, according to an internal report commissioned by the agency.

Drought pushes farmers to the brink

The water could start at any time. Every few hours, Anita Pointon refreshes the website that tells when it’s their turn to tap into a canal they share with other farmers, because the work begins as soon as they know. Her husband, Chuck, 62, will set out to walk the farm with a moisture probe to see which fields are the driest. One run of water covers about only 18 acres of their 500, so they have to choose carefully.

China meat scandal hits Starbucks, Burger King

BEIJING — A suspect meat scandal in China engulfed Starbucks and Burger King on Tuesday and spread to Japan where McDonald’s said the Chinese supplier accused of selling expired beef and chicken had provided 20 percent of the meat for its chicken nuggets.

Jakarta governor wins Indonesian presidency

JAKARTA, Indonesia — Jakarta Gov. Joko Widodo, who captured the hearts of millions of Indonesians with his common man image, was declared the winner Tuesday of the country’s presidential election, calling it a victory for all of the nation’s people.

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Plane crash bodies removed from war zone in Ukraine

KHARKIV, Ukraine — A train bearing the dead from the downed Malaysian airliner finally reached Ukrainian government-held territory Tuesday, but the pro-Russian separatists in control of the crash site showed little willingness to allow the full-scale investigation demanded by world leaders.