Noontime News is a snapshot of the news from the past 24 hours.  (More)

Barack Obama warns Syria of chemical weapons ‘consequences’

Barack Obama has warned the Syrian regime that any use of chemical weapons on its own people would be “totally unacceptable” and would result in “consequences”.

Egypt’s judicial council to oversee referendum despite calls for boycott

Egypt‘s supreme judicial council will oversee a mid-December referendum on the draft constitution, despite calls for a boycott from other parts of the judiciary.

Israel defiant on settlements expansion after European condemnation

Israel was defiant on Monday in the face of a serious diplomatic rift with five European countries over its plans to expand illegal settlements in the West Bank, warning that it may take “additional steps” despite mounting international alarm that it was killing off any prospect of a future peace agreement with the Palestinians.

Mars Curiosity Finds Organic Molecules, But From Mars, Earth Or Space?

NASA’s Mars Curiosity Rover on Monday announced big news from the results of its first global soil sample analysis (soil representative of the entire Red Planet): It’s found chlorinated methane compounds, molecules containing carbon, a necessary tell-tale sign and byproduct of life. The problem is, NASA still isn’t sure whether the carbon has come from Mars, outer space, or Earth itself.

Boehner Counter Offer To Obama Includes Higher Medicare Age, Social Security Benefit Cut

Last November, a full year before President Obama’s decisive re-election, Erskine Bowles, a co-chair of President Obama’s fiscal responsibility commission, scratched out a series of measures to reduce 10-year deficits by nearly $4 trillion in remarks before the failed deficit Super Committee.

Obama Makes Case For Middle Class Tax Cut, Government Spending Via Twitter

President Obama once again took his argument for increased taxes on the wealthy (and investment in new programs) directly to the people Monday, hosting a Twitter Q & A about the so-called fiscal cliff and why he’s stood firm on raising tax rates so far.

Evidence Mounts Linking Head Hits To Permanent Brain Injury

Researchers at Boston University have found more evidence supporting a link between repeated knocks to the head and chronic brain disease.

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