Wednesday, January 29, 2014
During a 2010 event in Yemen, President Obama's half-brother Malik wore this Hamas keffiyeh featuring the slogans 'Jerusalem is ours -- WE ARE COMING!' and 'From the River to the Sea'
Malik Obama was the best man at the 1992 wedding of Barack and Michelle Obama
The photo appears on the website of the Barack H. Obama Foundation, a group that Malik founded and manages, despite its lack of a connection with he U.S. president. The name in the organization's title refers to the president's father, the parent whom the two men share in common.
Malik Obama has been a visitor to his half-brother's Oval Office in the White House, and also appears to be a die-hard supporter of the Hamas terrorists
In 2004 when the president first ran for election to the U.S. Senate, his half-brother Malik showed off a photo of himself in Kenya with Barack Obama (L in photo)
His first foray into politics ended badly when he was trounced in a regional governorship election in 2013, despite using a photograph of him and President Barack Obama in the Oval Office as his political calling card.
This aerial photo shows stranded vehicles on I-20 near Leeds, Alabama on Wednesday after a winter storm dumped snow in central and southern parts of the state
The I-75 Chattahoochee River overpass near downtown Atlanta was littered with abandoned cars today after a winter snow storm slammed the city with just over 2 inches of snow on Tuesday
Not going anywhere fast: The roads surrounding Atlanta were clogged with 18-wheeler trucks that were unable to move after two inches of snow fell
Brookhaven police monitor a car fire in a vehicle left overnight by a motorist who was stranded by impassable roads after winter weather moved through Georgia
It was disaster on the roads on Wednesday morning in Atlanta, Georgia after hundreds of drivers abandoned their cars
Thick ice has created a waterfall effect on a hill as traffic moves south on I-75 in Covington, Kentucky where temperatures remain in single digits
The ice-covered interstate system outside of downtown Atlanta was virtually empty today after other stretches of highway were snarled with traffic
Cody Carpp, left, and Michael Gane, both of Mobile, Alabama, walk through Bienville Square as ice covers downtown and temperatures remain below freezing on Wednesday
Traffic moves slowly on Ocean Boulevard in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina as a rare snowstorm pummeled the American South over the past 24 hours
Elsewhere, Virginia's coast had up to 10 inches of snow, North Carolina had up to 8 inches on parts of the Outer Banks, South Carolina had about 4 inches and highways were shut down in Louisiana.
A teacher at E. Rivers Elementary school covers sleeping children in the gymnasium of the school who were forced to stay in the aftermath of a winter storm in Atlanta, Georgia on Tuesday night
Firefighters work to clear a jack-knifed semi-truck that slid onto the median on U.S. Highway 98 in Mary Esther, Florida in the icy road conditions
A Best Buy parking lot shows the effects of a winter snow storm on tire tracks on Wednesday
In this aerial view looking south toward downtown Atlanta, the ice-covered interstate system shows the remnants of a winter snow storm
In this aerial view of Hoover, Alabama, vehicles sit on and near the road after commuters pleaded for help via cellphones while still holed up in their cars for hours while others trudged miles home, abandoning their vehicles outright
Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed took some of the blame for schools, businesses and government all letting out at the same time, and he said they should have staggered their closings.
Cars sit on an impassable steep road in Hoover, Alabama after icy weather chaos gripped the South as a tractor-trailer sits spun out while trying to get around stalled vehicles on I-65 North into Birmingham, Alabama
One Atlanta school district admitted that 90 buses full of students had been stranded on roads overnight on Tuesday
A hill looks dramatic covered in ice on Wednesday in Covington, Kentucky where temperatures remain in single digits following a snow storm in the South
Deadly winter storm grips the South causing traffic chaos
Neither Governor Deal nor Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed would accept blame for the fact that thousands of people left schools, government offices and places of business at the same time - leading to huge congestion and pile-ups on the roads. However Deal placed some blame on the drivers of 18-wheeler trucks who had not placed chains on their tires.
The National Guard was sending military Humvees onto Atlanta's snarled freeway system in an attempt to move stranded school buses and get food and water to people.
'We are all in this together and we will get through it together,' read a statement from police in Anniston, Alabama. 'What was to be a simple dusting (of snow) has turned into something more. None of us were prepared.'
Traffic moves south on Interstate 75 past a hill covered with ice today in Covington, Kentucky
Kevin Moore hands out snacks and water to a stranded motorist on Interstate 285 in Dunwoody, Georgia as Sunny Walker, a stranded motorist, holds her two dogs while in her truck Wednesday
Customers were forced to sleep at a Home Depot in Atlanta after they became stranded overnight when roads because iced over and treacherous
Angela Spain picks up her kids Neeley and Joel after a snow and ice storm stranded them at their school in Birmingham, Alabama. Pictured right, Johanna Klingler shields herself from the wind on Wednesday as she crosses Brooks Bridge in flip-flops on the way to work at Publix supermarket on Wednesday amid a snow storm in Fort Walton Beach, Florida
Stranded motorists take shelter overnight at a pharmacy in Atlanta after the frozen road surfaces caused chaos and left many drivers stranded
In this view looking at Cobb Parkway at I-285, abandoned cars are piled up on the median of the ice-covered road after a winter snow storm slammed the city with over 2 inches of snow that turned highways into parking lots creating massive traffic jams lasting through Wednesday
People rest at the aisle of a Publix grocery store after being stranded due to a snow storm in Atlanta. Kienan Dietrich sleeps at the aisle of a Publix grocery store after being stranded
Motorists abandon their vehicles on Georgia State Highway 140 near the bottom of the large hill on Tuesday as a vicious winter storm set in
A flaming car wreck in Georgia on a treacherous, icy road. At least one fatality had been reported in the state
Police assist at a five-car pileup early on Wednesday in Sandy Springs, Georgia. Hundreds of crashes were being reported across the state due to snowy conditions
NBC reported from Atlanta on Wednesday afternoon that dozens of children were still stranded inside one elementary school due to the ice. Georgia Power reported on Wednesday that 1,600 customers has power outages, according to ajc.com.
The governors of North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Louisiana and Mississippi declared states of emergency.
On Wednesday morning, traffic was inching along on Southern highways as the ice remained treacherous and up to two inches thick in some parts. Fuel was also proving a problem as motorists stuck overnight began to move again.
There were fatal crashes and hundreds of fender-benders across the South. Jackknifed 18-wheelers littered Interstate 65 in central Alabama.
Children play on a sand dune covered with snow after a rare ice storm blanked the normally warm city of Charleston, South Carolina
At least someone's having fun! Kelvin Pena, 21, Matthew Bell, 22, Christopher Nunez, 19 and Emanuel Austin, 24, from left, Marines assigned to 2d Battalion, 10th Marines, Camp Lejeune in Florida enjoy the ride on a makeshift toboggan on Wednesday. Right, Colby Daniels from Daphne slides down a hill in Alabama
Vehicles that were abandoned on Tuesday evening in Dunwoody, Georgia as traffic snarled in the freezing, snowy conditions
A car sits abandoned in the middle of the Southbound Connector in Atlanta after a rare snowstorm stopped commuters in their tracks
Ice shut down bridges on Florida's panhandle and the Lake Pontchartrain Causeway, one of the world's longest spans, in Louisiana.
Tuesday, January 28, 2014
Man who spent over 20 years holding vigil by his wife's grave EVERY day dies aged 97 Rocky Abalsamo lost his wife of 55 years, Julita, in 1993
She died from complications with heart surgery
The devoted widower said it made him feel better to sit by her grave at St. Joseph Cemetery in Boston
On January 22 he died, aged 97, after falling ill last year
He will be buried next to his wife
Rain, hail or shine: Rocky 'Roque' Abalsamo has sat by the grave of his wife, Julita, at St. Joseph's Cemetery in Boston since she died in 1993. On January 22 he passed away
Rocky Abalsamo is pictured here on November 26, 2000, aged 84. He died this month, aged 93
The love of his life: Julita Abalsamo died from complications with heart surgery in 1993
Rock became something of a celebrity in 2000 after The Boston Globe ran a story about his unwavering devotion to his late wife.
The story was picked up by media outlets all over the world.
The attention amused Rocky, but all he wanted was to remain close to his wife.
The pair met as teenagers in a cafe in their native Buenos Aires.
Rocky was sitting with his back to Julita when he overheard her talking with friends 'about the soul, about life, goodness,' Rocky said in the 2000 interview.
Everyday for 10 years Rocky Abalsamo went to the cemetery when it opened and would leave at closing. He rarely ate during the visits, mostly out of respect but also so he didn't need a bathroom
In 2000, at age 84, he said he had spent the seven years since his wife's death keeping vigil, arriving when the cemetery opened and heading home when it closed.
'She is part of me, so here I am whole,' he said previously.
'Being here makes me feel better. Not good, but better. I do it for Julita, and for myself.'
Each morning he would greet Julia - 'I am here!' - unfold his blue chair and unpack the belongings he would bring with him, such as photos and other tokens.
He rarely ate or drank, mostly out of respect but also so he does not need a bathroom, and would toast Julita with sparkling cider on special occasions, such as her birthday on December 20.
At night he would pray and sprinkle crumbs on the grave so that chipmunks would keep her company after he leaves.
Over time, what began as a personal act of mourning touched dozens of others who came to the cemetery.
People would bring meals, boots, hats, and scarves, and they decorated Julita’s grave with plants, ceramic angels, flags, and stuffed animals.
He told them stories and shared his wisdom about life and love.
One of Rocky’s most regular visitors was Linda Handley, a math teacher who lived across the street from St. Joseph Cemetery and walked the grounds for exercise.
Rocky Abalsamo scaled back his visits to his wife's grave in 2005, after his son died in a car crash in California
Handley noticed that a groundskeeper named John Tobin also took special care of Rocky.
One day while Handley and Rocky were talking, Tobin brought Rocky a pair of sweat pants to wear as an extra layer on cold days.
Rocky knew Tobin and Handley were middle-aged and had never married. Rocky arranged to have them visit him at the same time on the 61st anniversary of his first kiss with Julita.
Handley and Tobin married a year later, and Rocky took a few hours away from his vigil to attend.
In their wedding program, they wrote: 'We are convinced that the miracle of this day is the work of a very special person, Julita Echeverria.'
Rocky continued his daily pilgrimage until 2005, when his son was killed in a car crash in California.
Although he still visited Julita’s grave regularly, Rocky spent more time with his surviving family members.
'I think he had a realization at that point that we need to let go and we need to continue to live,' his daughter, Angela Arai, told The Globe.
His last visit was in July, before he fell ill.
Angela said her father’s vigil was often difficult for the family.
'We always had a fear that something was going to happen to him, that we would find him frozen in the winter,' she said.
'We had to let go from our fear so he could live the life he wanted to live.
'The most special thing about my father was that he lived his life his way,' she added.
'He lived one day at a time and enjoyed that day without preoccupations for tomorrow.'
As per his requests, he will be buried to Julita’s left, just as they had walked together in life, side by side.
Justin Bieber's party pal Lil Za 'refuses to move out of star's LA mansion despite drugs possession arrest'
A Lil Twist in the tale: Justin Bieber's rapper friend Za, real name Xavier Smith, has not been kicked out of his Los Angeles home it has emerged
It was claimed the Baby star's handlers, including manager Scooter Braun, decided he had to go after the police raid earlier this month, and that he had actually already moved on.
But according to TMZ this is not the case, and in fact he has not the slightest intention of leaving and is not being made to live elsewhere.
While Za, real name Xavier Smith, was spotted at a hotel near the singer's house immediately after the arrest, sources say this was because he was visisting his mother.
She had flown in from Texas after his drugs arrest and decided she would rather stay at a hotel instead of Justin's party house.
Mummy's boy: He had actually been spotted at a nearby hotel as he had been visiting his mother, seen here with him as they left the establishment on Sunday
The hip hop hopeful's other half Atifa Barwany had also flown out to pay him a visit.
While Za is enjoying his time at the 19-year-old's home the singer is enjoying a relaxing retreat away from his worries in Panama.
He is being persecuted by the Miami DA's office on charges of DUI, driving with an expired licence and resisting arrest without violence following an alleged drag racing incident last week.
Model Milyn Jensen, who had a fling with Justin in December 2012, claimed he had become friends Za and another rapper, Lil Twist, in an attempt to change his public persona, but it backfired.
In bed with his boys: Justin has struck up an extremely close friendship with Lil Za and Lil Tiwst
She said: ''They are the bad influence. They took advantage of his desperation to shed his 'cheesy pop star' image.
''I've been friends with these guys for a long time. When I ask them how Justin is they always say he's fine, he just gets down about all the attention. I think he uses weed [marijuana] as an escape.'
Justin was said to have previously thrown both of them out of his house in September last year after expensive jewellery went missing while they were house-sitting for him when he was on tour.
No wonder he wants to stay: Justin's mansion in the posh Calabasas area beats his mother's bedroom any day