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A van full of equipment for President Obama — including his teleprompter and podium — was stolen from a Virginia parking lot, NBC reports. The truck was recovered later on Monday.

Held captive in Gaza by Hamas for 5 years, Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit is now back in Israel, released in exchange for more than 1,000 Palestinian prisoners, several hundred of whom are being released on Tuesday.

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has just arrived in the Libyan capital of Tripoli on an unannounced trip. The visit, kept quiet for security reasons, is meant to support for post-Qaddafi Libya.

Updated: Oct. 18, 1:00PM

First it was a joke. Then people thought it wasn't a joke. Then Herman Cain said it was a joke. And on Monday, Cain said his proposal for a 20-foot electrified border fence might not be a joke after all.

Cain was in Arizona on Monday night to meet with controversial Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, who is under federal investigation by the Justice Department for potential civil rights abuses.

So of course Cain was asked about his joke/proposal for a border fence that has signs which say "it can kill you" in English and Spanish. James King reports for the Phoenix New Times:

"Let me first say it was a joke, and some people don't think that it was a good joke, and it's probably not a joke that you're supposed to make if you're a presidential candidate," Cain continued. "I apologize if it offended anyone. Mea culpa, mea culpa, mea culpa."

Only, it might not be a joke, he later said, before finally saying he just doesn't want to offend anyone.

"I don't like to offend anyone...however, I don't apologize for using a combination of a fence. And it might be electrified -- I'm not walking away from that," Cain backtracked. "I just don't want to offend anybody. It was a joke to the extent in the context of the views of that speech, but in terms of what we need to do, I fully intend to do so because I'm more sensitive to our citizens being hurt."


Here's the video:

Oversight Committee Chairman Darrell Issa (R-CA) said Sunday that he was worried about what he saw as certain inconsistencies in the investigation into the murder of Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry and floated the theory that there was a third weapon at the scene. Federal officials say he didn't do his homework.

Two weapons linked to ATF's botched Fast and Furious operation (which allowed guns to "walk" into Mexico) had been found at the scene of Terry's death, but investigators haven't determined conclusively if one of those weapons killed him. It was Terry's murder that lead to complaints from ATF agents about the the bureau's anti-gun trafficking program.

"If weapon number one [which] appears to be missing were ballistically matched," Issa said on CBS "Face the Nation", "we would have an absolute rather than the inconsistency." From the interview:

Host Bob Schieffer: Are you suggesting that maybe that might be the gun, that evidence shows was the murder weapon, and for some reason the FBI has not disclosed that?

Chairman Issa: Well, we certainly want to know in some cases, as you know, there are investigations where there's materials that people feel are very sensitive.


Issa also added that the FBI "has a history in some cases of working with felons and criminals and hiding their other crimes."

A Justice Department spokeswoman said that Issa's false accusation "maligns the dedicated agents investigating the murder of Agent Terry" and "mischaracterizes evidence in an ongoing case."

"The FBI has made clear that reports of a third gun recovered from the perpetrators at the scene of Agent Terry's murder are false," Justice Department spokeswoman Tracy Schmaler said in a statement to reporters.

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British entrepreneur Sir Richard Branson on Monday officially christened the United States' first built-from-scratch spaceport, from which passengers will be taking commercial flights into suborbital space.

Ever the showman, Branson rappelled from a balcony at Spaceport America in southern New Mexico, shook up a bottle of champagne and christened it, reports the Associated Press.

"Today is another history-making day for Virgin Galactic," Branson said in a press statement. "We are here with a group of incredible people who are helping us lead the way in creating one of the most important new industrial sectors of the 21st century. We've never wavered in our commitment to the monumental task of pioneering safe, affordable and clean access to space, or to demonstrate that we mean business at each step along the way."

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Facebook may or may not be the greatest threat to our values of privacy, but the company is unabashedly trying to be a force for good when it comes to energy efficiency. At least, that's how it is promoting its new "social energy application," a web-based smart energy measurement tool it is developing with the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) and Opower, a four-year-old energy efficiency software company.

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We've all heard the saying that "my enemy's enemy is my friend." In Rush Limbaugh's case that's just put him in bed with some rather unsavory characters.

The characters in question are the Lord's Resistance Army - a notorious gang of child abductors, rapists, mutilators, thieves and murderers who have marauded across Africa's "Great Lakes Region" for more than 20 years. President Bush declared them a terrorist organization in 2001, and the U.S. has ramped up its efforts to help African governments battle the group ever since then.

However, now that President Obama has committed 100 combat advisers to the region to help finish them off, the right wing talk show host Rush Limbaugh has suddenly discovered these murderers are in fact princes among men.

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