MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif.-Google has started a $100 million fund to invest in European startups, the beginning of what could become big-money investments for overseas entrepreneurs and lead to yet more acquisitions for the search giant.

Secretary of State John F. Kerry made an unscheduled stopover in Kabul early Friday in an attempt to resolve the dispute between two politicians claiming to have won Afghanistan's protracted presidential election, the State Department announced.

Sexy images of rippling abs and rock-hard biceps under those firefighter uniforms may obscure a serious problem: More than 70 percent of firefighters are overweight or obese, and most of them reported getting no advice to lose weight from their health care professionals, researchers said Thursday.

President Barack Obama's health care law has reduced the number of uninsured adults by between 8 million and 11 million in its first year, according to three new studies, and the vast majority of enrollees report satisfaction with their new health plans.

A new report says more than half of the people who work in Santa Fe live outside the northern New Mexico city.

The Navy is investigating allegations that a Washington-based sailor threatened to rape a California naval recruit in a comment posted on social media, military officials told the Los Angeles Times on Thursday.

Secretary of State John Kerry will meet foreign ministers of key world powers in Vienna this weekend for another effort to advance stalled talks on Iran's nuclear program as a July 20 deadline nears, the State Department said.

Epic Games is best known for its "Unreal Tournament" and "Gears of War" franchises. The independent development studio is working on a brand new free-to-play game, "Fortnite," which pits teams of four players against invading monsters. The gameplay experience is a blend of building fortresses through scavenging the surrounding area, and then the combat that ensues when storms usher in attacking monsters who are out to destroy players and their stronghold. "Fortnite" lead designer Darren Sugg talks about the new PC game in this exclusive interview.

The chief judge of the Guantanamo war court quit the USS Cole case on Thursday and assigned a U.S. Air Force colonel to preside at the likely first death-penalty trial of the Obama administration's military commissions.

Chromecast and Roku gadgets accounted for more than half of the video-streaming devices sold in the U.S. in 2013, according to a new survey.

NATION

There isn't a lot of precedent for this spectacle we are presently Witnessing. So much power. So, so, so much power. LeBron James is the most powerful athlete in sports, by a lot, and what is going on around him these days is equal parts lunacy and chaos.

The Phillies played for 3 hours, 6 minutes Thursday, and it was a maddening brand of baseball because a four-game sweep of the Brewers, who own the National League's best record, does not mitigate the pain of a 41-51 team. That did not stop its players from enjoying a 9-1 rout, not one bit.

The Justice Department announced Thursday it would not launch a criminal investigation into an embarrassing dispute between the CIA and the Senate Intelligence Committee over alleged mishandling of classified files relating to harsh CIA interrogations of terrorism suspects.

An infant who was seemingly cured of HIV following aggressive drug therapy just hours after her birth was recently discovered to be infected with the virus that causes AIDS after all, doctors announced Thursday.

Will the red carpet this August be for the Emmys or the Oscars? It's getting hard to tell.

The Chicago Cubs put up a fight Thursday before rallying for a 6-4 win over the Cincinnati Reds in 12 innings.

The buzz among agents and front-office executives during the NBA summer league this week is that the Detroit Pistons overpaid for free agent shooting guard Jodie Meeks.

The Dallas Mavericks formally delivered the offer sheet for Chandler Parsons to the Rockets this afternoon, ending any chance of a sign and trade for the small forward.

Now it's hurry-up-and-wait time for the Charlotte Hornets' front office.

Community leaders and attorneys renewed their calls for an independent investigation into the California Highway Patrol officer who was recorded on video punching a woman along the 10 Freeway.

Frank M. Robinson, an author of thrillers and science fiction who also helped slain San Francisco Supervisor Harvey Milk craft some of his most powerful speeches, has died. He was 87.

Bahrain's conflict with the United States worsened Thursday, as the Persian Gulf emirate filed criminal charges against the country's leading opposition figure for holding a meeting this week with a senior U.S. diplomat.

WASHINGTON - ACE Cash Express, a leading payday lender, has agreed to pay $10 million to settle federal allegations that it used false threats of lawsuits and other illegal tactics to pressure customers with overdue loans to borrow more to pay them off.

Germany's practice of imposing a language proficiency test on Turks applying for family reunification visasis contrary toEuropean Union values and agreements, the European Court of Justice ruled Thursday.

SEATTLE - The Federal Trade Commission sued Amazon on Thursday for allowing children to make purchases within mobile applications even though the company knew that kids were doing so without parental permission.

Garth Brooks offered up what he called a simple solution to the controversy in Ireland over his five canceled concerts: "Open it up for five nights, let everybody have fun, then go to work on never letting it happen again."

The Federal Trade Commission is suing Amazon.com, alleging that the online retailer unlawfully billed parents millions of dollars for mobile in-app purchases made by their children.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Family Dollar said Thursday that profit during its most recent quarter fell by a third, news that's unlikely to help the discount retailer's attempts to fend off an activist investor who wants the company sold.

The unadorned wooden boxes arrive lashed to car roofs or secured in the beds of pickup trucks, a steady procession of mortal remains on a doleful final journey to this holy city.

On which side does a chicken have the most feathers?

Why are movies sometimes called flicks?

It's not every musician that gets to book himself as an opening act.

CHICAGO - Lawyers for convicted tax evader Ty Warner said his probation sentence was reasonable, pointing out that the punishment of the Beanie Babies billionaire was consistent with more than half of the offshore banking cases that the government has prosecuted, according to a court filing Thursday.

ALAN PARTRIDGE 2 1/2 stars. Steve Coogan imports his long-running stock comic character to the U.S. Partridge, a small-town British DJ, is a vainglorious twit. In this thin feature he gets caught up in a siege at his station that goes on far, far too long. 1 hr. 30 R (profanity, violence, nudity) - David Hiltbrand

Gov. Jay Nixon signed legislation Thursday expanding government-funded prenatal health coverage and allowing some newly trained doctors to go to work more quickly in areas of Missouri where there are physician shortages.

Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen says high school students who take University of Wisconsin classes offered in their schools for college credit can't be charged tuition.

NATION

Edilsa Cano was fleeing sexual assault, kidnapping and death threats - all from her own family - when she left her village in Guatemala at 16.

When Boko Haram invaded her village last year, the Islamist extremists burned the churches, destroyed Bibles and photographs, and forced Hamatu Juwanda to renounce Christianity.

Gov. Jay Nixon vetoed legislation re-writing Missouri's payday loan laws Thursday, describing the newly proposed limits as an industry-backed "sham" that fell short of "true reform."

Aereo is making a last-ditch effort to stay alive after the Supreme Court ruled last month that the startup service, which streams the signals of local TV stations over the Internet via remote antennas, violates the Copyright Act.

Germany demanded the departure from the country of the top spy at the U.S. Embassy in Berlin on Thursday, dramatizing its deepening unhappiness with reports of U.S. intelligence operations targeting its officials.

In just three weeks, Dov Charney went from chief executive of American Apparel Inc. to a paid consultant who is forbidden from accessing the company's computer systems.

WASHINGTON - Initial claims for unemployment benefits fell to near a seven-year low last week, the Labor Department said Thursday.

The 36-year-old Dearborn, Mich., man accused of punching a soccer referee who later died appeared in a Livonia courtroom Thursday to be arraigned on a charge of second-degree murder.

If you can't beat them, join them.

DETROIT-A Detroit high school teacher who said she was fired for breaking up a fight with a broom - and then offered her job back - is too traumatized to return to class, according to her attorney.

Mortgage rates rose slightly in this week's survey of lenders by Freddie Mac, with the average for a 30-year fixed loan rising to 4.15 percent, from 4.12 percent last week.

Here are the best-sellers for the week that ended Sunday, July 6, compiled from data from independent and chain bookstores, book wholesalers and independent distributors nationwide, powered by Nielsen BookScan (c) 2014, The Nielsen Co.

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