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Overnight News Digest, aka OND, is a community feature here at Daily Kos. Each editor selects news stories on a wide range of topics.

The OND community was founded by Magnifico.

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Adrian becomes hurricane in Pacific

The eastern Pacific Ocean has its first hurricane of the year.

Hurricane Adrian, churning south of Mexico's Pacific coast, was upgraded from a tropical storm Wednesday afternoon, the National Hurricane Center said.

The hurricane's center was about 265 miles southwest of Acapulco, Mexico, at about 5 p.m. PT. It was moving northwest - roughly parallel to Mexico's coast - and had maximum sustained winds of 75 mph.



Solar flare? Yes, but tonight's northern lights have a more spectacular cause.

Skywatchers in the northern US tonight may become the beneficiaries of a major burps from the sun that took place June 7.

While the solar storm did include a solar flare, the giant pulse of plasma, electricity, and matter that fountained across nearly half the sun's surface was a coronal mass ejection – and that's what we can thank for the auroral display filling the skies Wednesday night.

If the oncoming hordes of charged particles from that event reach Earth at the right time, aurora could be visible on the northern horizon as far south as Washington, D.C., according to an alert today from the University of Alaska's Geophysical Institute.



Lightning strike in Mississippi lands 77 cadets in hospital

A lightning strike at a southern Mississippi military base sent 77 cadets to a hospital on Wednesday.

The cadets, enrolled in the Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps at Camp Shelby in Hattiesburg, were admitted after a bolt struck during a severe thunderstorm about 2 p.m., a base spokeswoman said.

Two cadets were transported by ambulance and the rest by bus, and all were "very responsive and in stable condition," Mississippi Army National Guard Major Deidre Musgrave told Reuters.



Japan's radiation fallout 'a monster you can't see'

For more than two weeks following the earthquake, tsunami and subsequent nuclear accident that struck Japan in March, I reported  on Fukushima every day from Tokyo.  Now, nearly three months later, I’ve been able to actually go there – not to the nuclear plant, but as close as 12 miles away, to the Fukushima Prefecture that surrounds the crippled reactors and gives them their name.

My first impression upon arriving was of the beauty of the place: Rice paddies line the slopes, and traditional Japanese houses sit on the hillsides where rivers and waterfalls flow. These forests rival California’s Big Sur for their grand display of nature’s serenity.



Gaddafi investigated over use of rape as weapon

The International Criminal Court's chief prosecutor says there is evidence that Libyan leader Col Muammar Gaddafi ordered the rape of hundreds of women as a weapon against rebel forces.

Luis Moreno-Ocampo said rape was a new aspect of Colonel Gaddafi's repression.

He said he was also looking at possible evidence that pro-Gaddafi security forces had been given medication such as Viagra to enhance their sex drive.



Facebook gives regulators info on facial recognition

Facebook is providing European regulators with information about its use of facial recognition technology, in response to concerns about the company's roll-out of the technology's availability outside of the United States.

Facebook, the world's No. 1 Internet social network, said there was no "formal investigation" under way.

"We have noted the comments from some regulators about this product feature and we are providing them with additional information which we are confident will satisfy any concerns they will have," Facebook spokeswoman Sophy Tobias told Reuters in an email on Wednesday.



U.S. intensifying covert war in Yemen: report

The Obama administration has intensified air strikes on suspected militants in Yemen in a bid to keep them from consolidating power as the government in Sanaa teeters, The New York Times reported on Wednesday.

A U.S. official confirmed to Reuters that a U.S. strike last Friday killed Abu Ali al-Harithi, a midlevel al Qaeda operative, which followed last month's attempted strike against Anwar al-Awlaki, the leader of al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula.

Citing U.S. officials, the Times said a U.S. campaign using armed drones and fighter jets had accelerated in recent weeks as U.S. officials see the strikes as one of the few options to contain al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula.



Obama Takes Heat From Some Environmentalists

Environmentalists have been quietly grumbling about the Obama administration for months. Now one of the country's most prominent conservationists — former Interior Secretary Bruce Babbitt — is retaking the public stage to scold President Obama.

Bruce Babbitt left the limelight 10 years ago after spending eight years as former President Clinton's interior secretary. But Babbitt says he couldn't stay quiet after Obama signed a deal with Congress that traded away environmental protections. The pact ejected gray wolves from the endangered species list, blocked approval of some new fisheries programs and squelched a policy to protect special landscapes.



Residents flee as major Alaska wildfire grows

All residents near an expanding wildfire near Fairbanks have fled, making way for firefighters to combat the blaze, officials said on Wednesday.

Residents heeded an advisory issued this week recommending that people evacuate until the 17,624-acre Hastings Fire is better controlled, a state fire information officer said.

As of late Tuesday, "everybody had left," said Tacy Skinner, a spokeswoman for the wildfire incident command.

She said no one had been ordered to evacuate.




Family of Cuban hunger striker headed to Miami

The mother of Orlando Zapata Tamayo, a political prisoner who died last year after a prolonged hunger strike, says she will continue to fight for democracy in Cuba after she emigrates to the United States on Thursday.

Reina Luisa Tamayo and 12 relatives will land in Miami as political refugees, taking the ashes of Zapata with them.

"This whole process have been very painful," she said as the extended family walked out of the U.S. diplomatic mission in Havana on Wednesday. "I have here with me the ashes of a martyr for democracy, the peaceful warrior Orlando Zapata Tamayo."



China warns U.S. debt-default idea is "playing with fire"

Republican lawmakers are "playing with fire" by contemplating even a brief debt default as a means to force deeper government spending cuts, an adviser to China's central bank said on Wednesday.

The idea of a technical default -- essentially delaying interest payments for a few days -- has gained backing from a growing number of mainstream Republicans who see it as a price worth paying if it forces the White House to slash spending, Reuters reported on Tuesday.

But any form of default could destabilize the global economy and sour already tense relations with big U.S. creditors such as China, government officials and investors warn.



Teen held over cyber attacks targeting US government

An 18-year-old has been arrested and accused of hacking into websites of the U.S. government and the international crime fighting agency Interpol, Greek police said Wednesday.

The two-year manhunt ended with the help of authorities in France and the United States, officials said. The investigation will examine whether the suspect had links to militants.

In a raid on the suspect's house in greater Athens on Monday, police seized computers, flares, shotgun cartridges, a homemade incendiary device, 130 fake credit cards, and €7,850 ($11,500) and $300 (€205) in cash hidden in a hollowed-out book, police said in a statement.



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