Politics this week
America's Senate Intelligence Committee released a controversial report into the CIA's interrogation techniques, which revealed some more details about the torture of suspected terrorists after the September 11th 2001 attacks, and claimed that the CIA had not properly briefed Congress. Some prisoners were subjected to near drownings, week-long periods of sleep deprivation and “rectal hydration”.
American special forces attempted to free two men, an American and a South African, who were being held captive by the local al-Qaeda affiliate in Yemen. Both hostages were apparently shot by their kidnappers in the melee and died from their injuries.
Democratic and Republican leaders in Congress unveiled a $1 trillion budget bill they have crafted to keep most of the government running until September 2015. As well as laying out the spending commitments to federal departments, the bill also expands the amount that individual donors can give to political parties. It also blocks the legalisation of marijuana in Washington, DC, that voters in the city approved last month.
As expected, Bill Cassidy won a Senate seat in Louisiana for the Republicans, beating Mary Landrieu, the Democratic incumbent, by 56% to 44% in a run-off election and leaving her party without any senators or governors in the Deep South. The Republicans will have a 54-46 majority in the Senate when the new Congress convenes in January.
The bankruptcy under which Detroit has operated for over a year was lifted following the approval of its debt-restructuring plan. This allows the mayor and council to take back control from the city's emergency manager. The city still faces many problems and a commission will oversee its finances for years to come.
After 13 years in Afghanistan, NATO-led combat missions formally ended with a flag-lowering ceremony in Kabul, the capital. About 13,000, mainly American, troops will remain to train Afghan forces, and to help them in combat operations with air support and medical evacuation.
Police in Hong Kong began clearing the main camp set up by demonstrators more than ten weeks ago to call for free elections in the Chinese territory. Some protesters wanted to maintain their occupation of the area to press their demands, but others said it was time to leave.
Naming and shaming
Brazil's National Truth Commission named 377 people it says are responsible for 434 murders and disappearances during the military regime that ruled from 1964 to 1985. About 100 of the culprits are still alive, but under an amnesty law they cannot be prosecuted. Many fewer people were murdered by Brazil's dictatorship than were killed by other Latin American regimes, such as those of Argentina and Chile.
The United States Congress voted in favour of sanctions targeting members of Venezuela's government. Officials who violated the rights of anti-government demonstrators during last February's protests could be denied visas and have their assets frozen. The Obama administration, which had opposed sanctions, recently signalled that it might agree to them.
Uruguay accepted six inmates freed by the United States government from the detention centre in Guantánamo Bay. They had been imprisoned for 12 years for alleged links to al-Qaeda but were never charged. Uruguay's president, Jose Mujica, had been imprisoned by the country's military regime.
Paranoia and power
Robert Mugabe, who has been president of Zimbabwe since independence in 1980, sacked his vice-president, Joice Mujuru, and seven ministers in a purge that cleared the way for Emmerson Mnangagwa, the hardline former justice minister, to become his likeliest successor. Ms Mujuru denied accusations of corruption and plotting to kill Mr Mugabe.
A French hostage held by jihadists in Mali was freed after reportedly being swapped for two prisoners held in jail in Mali. He had been kidnapped in 2011 along with another Frenchman who was killed by his captors, Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb, in 2013.
A senior Palestinian official attending a protest against land confiscations in the West Bank died after a confrontation with Israeli soldiers. Medical staff said that Ziad Abu Ein had inhaled tear gas; video showed him being grabbed by the neck by a member of the security forces. The Israeli army said it would investigate.
巴勒斯坦一名高级官员在抵制约旦河西岸征地示威中，与以色列士兵发生冲突后去世。医院工作人员说Ziad Abu Ein吸入催泪瓦斯；监控显示他被违和警力扼住脖子。以色列军队说会进行调查。
Greece set off new jitters in the euro zone when it brought forward its presidential election to later this month. The markets fretted that if parliament fails to choose a president, a general election must be held, which many fear would be won by Syriza, an anti-austerity party. The Athens stockmarket fell by 13% and yields on Greek bonds soared.
Ukraine's government staged a “day of silence”, a renewed ceasefire with pro-Russian rebels. The hope is that this may be a prelude to renewed peace talks. Previous ceasefires have repeatedly been broken.
Germany's Christian Democrats re-elected Angela Merkel as their leader without any opposition. She has led the party for 14 years.
The French cabinet gave its approval to a package of liberalising measures known after the new economy minister as the loi Macron. But the law, which will have a hard time gaining parliamentary approval, has already been watered down by the government.
A last-minute deal was reached in the European Union on its 2015 budget, conceding a slight budgetary increase to placate the spendthrift European Parliament.
John Micklethwait, the editor of The Economist since 2006, is leaving the newspaper to become editor-in-chief of Bloomberg. His successor will be appointed in January.
1.die from 死于
Forty-thousand children a day die from preventable diseases.
In a severe winter, wild animals can die from lack of food.
2.take back 收回；取消；拿回
Take back what you said about Jeremy!
Shops are often reluctant to take back unsatisfactory goods.
3.call for 需要；提倡；要求
A call for a vote of no-confidence in the president was rejected.
The Finance Minister has renewed his call for lower interest rates.
4.responsible for 为…负责，是造成…的原因
I feel partly responsible for the problems we're in.
Ludlam was responsible for making Ridiculous Theatre something of a cult.