Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Quake Drill to Span Globe

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Quake Drill to Span Globe

Article excerpt

LOS ANGELES -- More than 13 million people from Los Angeles to southern Italy are being asked to crouch under desks and tables Thursday in an earthquake readiness drill that organizers say is the biggest ever.

Schools, hospitals, banks and other organizations have signed up to practice the survival technique known as "Drop, Cover and Hold On" at 10:18 a.m. in each time zone in the Great ShakeOut conceived by the U.S. Geological Survey, according to the Southern California Earthquake Center.

The ShakeOut, which began in 2008 in Southern California, has spread to other regions of the U.S. and overseas.

Suicide blast kills CIA agent

WASHINGTON -- A CIA officer was among the six people killed by a suicide bomber in southern Afghanistan last weekend, sources familiar with the incident said Wednesday, in the latest of a series of fatal insider attacks.

A NATO spokesman said the bomber was a member of Afghanistan's intelligence service, the National Directorate of Security, or NDS. An NDS spokesman disputed that, telling the Associated Press that the attacker had worn an Afghan uniform to gain access to the building in Kandahar.

The Pentagon identified the U.S. military casualty as Army Spc. Brittany B. Gordon, 24, of St. Petersburg, Fla., who was assigned to a military intelligence company.

Russia arrests activist

MOSCOW -- Russian authorities Wednesday arrested one of the country's most prominent political opposition leaders, accused him of plotting to organize mass riots and said he could face terrorism charges.

The arrest of Sergei Udaltsov, the buzz-cut, black-clad leader of the Left Front, a radical socialist group, seemed to accelerate the government's efforts to bring serious criminal cases -- with the prospect of long prison terms -- against critics of President Vladimir V. Putin.

Mr. Udaltsov, a fixture at antigovernment rallies, is arrested frequently. …

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