BEIRUT (AP) - Fierce street fighting in a Syrian town near the Lebanese border has killed at least 28 elite members of Lebanon's militant Hezbollah group, activists said Monday, as Syrian government forces pushed deeper into the strategic, opposition-held town. The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which tracks Syria's civil war, said that more than 70 Hezbollah fighters have also been wounded in the fighting around the town of Qusair. If confirmed, the casualties would be a significant blow to the Iranian-backed Shiite group, which has come under harsh criticism at home for its involvement in the war next door.
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - Yahoo is buying online blogging forum Tumblr for $1.1 billion as CEO Marissa Mayer tries to rejuvenate an Internet icon that had fallen behind the times. The deal announced Monday is Mayer's boldest move since she left Google 10 months ago to lead Yahoo's latest comeback attempt. It marks Yahoo's most expensive acquisition since the Sunnyvale, Calif., company bought online search engine Overture a decade ago for $1.3 billion in cash and stock.
Oklahoma, other tornado-hit states brace for more SHAWNEE, Okla. (AP) - When Lindsay Carter heard on the radio that a violent storm was approaching her rural Oklahoma neighborhood, she gathered her belongings and fled. When she returned, there was little left. Sunday's tornado that tore part of the roof from Carter's frame house - one of few such homes in the Steelman Estates Mobile Home Park near Shawnee - laid waste to many of her neighbors' places, and killed two people and injured several others.
MATAMOROS, Mexico (AP) - Just across the Rio Grande from Brownsville, Texas, stands a dormitory-style shelter filled with people recently deported from the U.S. and other migrants waiting to cross the border. The long rows of bunk beds offer immigrants a place to rest on their long journey. But the shelter is no safe haven in a town controlled by the Gulf cartel. Armed men once showed up and took away 15 men, who were probably put to work as gunmen, lookouts or human mules hauling bales of marijuana into the United States.
BAGHDAD (AP) - A wave of attacks killed at least 86 people in Shiite and Sunni areas of Iraq on Monday, officials said, pushing the death toll over the past week to more than 230 and extending one of the most sustained bouts of sectarian violence the country has seen in years. The bloodshed is still far shy of the pace, scale and brutality of the dark days of 2006-2007, when Sunni and Shiite militias carried out retaliatory attacks against each other in a cycle of violence that left the country awash in blood. Still, Monday's attacks, some of which hit markets and crowded bus stops during the morning rush hour, have heightened fears that the country could be turning back down the path toward civil war.
South Africa: Mandela name pulled into politics JOHANNESBURG (AP) - Nelson Mandela, old and frail, lives in seclusion in his Johannesburg home. Beyond the high walls of the house, the fighting over his image and what he stood for has already begun. The sense of possibility that Mandela embodied is fading as a gulf between rich and poor widens. Many South Africans believe their leaders are out to help themselves and not the nation, which showed such promise when it broke the shackles of apartheid by holding the first all-race elections in 1994 and putting Mandela, who had been jailed for 27 years by the country's racist leaders, into the presidency.
WASHINGTON (AP) - New government figures underscore the staggering long-term consequences of military sexual assaults: More than 85,000 veterans were treated last year for injuries or illness linked to the abuse, and 4,000 sought disability benefits. The Department of Veterans Affairs' accounting, released in response to inquiries from The Associated Press, shows a heavy financial and emotional cost that affects several generations of veterans and lasts long after a victim leaves the service. Sexual assault or repeated sexual harassment can trigger a variety of health problems, primarily post-traumatic stress disorder and depression. While women are more likely to be victims, men made up nearly 40 percent of the patients the VA treated for conditions connected to what it calls "military sexual trauma."
ZEPHYRHILLS, Fla. (AP) - It could be an anxious wait of up to two months for people in a small Florida city to find out who won the highest Powerball jackpot in history: an estimated $590.5 million. The lucky ticket was bought sometime Saturday or earlier at a Publix supermarket in Zephyrhills, a city of about 13,000 people best known around the state for its brand of spring water with the same name.
SOCHI, Russia (AP) - The mountains of Sochi are now home to Potanin's slope, Gazprom's gondola lift and Sberbank's ski jump. The nicknames used by locals and an army of construction workers leave no doubt about who is paying for the 2014 Winter Games: Russia's business powerhouses. Other countries that have hosted the Olympics have overwhelmingly used public funds to pay for the construction of needed venues and new infrastructure. The Russian government, however, has gotten state-controlled companies and tycoons to foot more than half of the bill, which now stands at $51 billion and makes the 2014 Winter Games by far the most expensive Olympics in history. In contrast, the much-larger 2012 Summer Olympics in London cost about $14.3 billion and the 2008 Summer Games in Beijing cost about $40 billion.