Tag Archive: CNN


The ‘heart attack proof’ diet

Editor’s note: Dr. Sanjay Gupta explores the signs, tests and lifestyle changes that could make cardiac problems a thing of the past on “The Last Heart Attack” at 8 p.m. ET Sunday on CNN.

Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn Jr. didn’t become a doctor to change the way America eats. He was a general surgeon.

But researching cancer, he stumbled on a fact that changed his career: Certain cultures around the world do not suffer from heart disease, the No. 1 killer in the Western world.

Esselstyn’s practice took a dramatic turn — from performing surgery to promoting nutrition. For more than 20 years, the Cleveland Clinic doctor has tried to get Americans to eat like the Papua New Guinea highlanders, rural Chinese, central Africans and the Tarahumara Indians of Mexico.

Follow his dietary prescription, the 77-year-old Esselstyn says, and you will be “heart attack proof” — regardless of your family history.

“It’s a foodborne illness, and we’re never going to end the epidemic with stents, with bypasses, with the drugs, because none of it is treating causation of the illness,” Esselstyn says.

The Esselstyn diet is tough for most Americans to swallow: no meat, no eggs, no dairy, no added oils.

Bill Clinton’s new vegan diet

Esselstyn has written a book to spread the word, “Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease — The Revolutionary, Scientifically Proven, Nutrition-Based Cure,” and he has given talks around the world.

He is also a focus of the new documentary “Forks Over Knives.” Esselstyn has won some high-profile allies — such as Dr. T. Colin Campbell, co-author of “The China Study,” and Dr. Terry Mason, chief medical officer at Cook County Hospitals in Chicago and the city’s former health commissioner.

“We’ve eaten ourselves into a problem, and we can eat ourselves out of it,” Mason says. But Esselstyn’s prescription goes against conventional wisdom, which considers diet only one factor in preventing heart disease.

“Diet alone is not going to be the reason that heart attacks are eliminated,” says Nancy Brown, CEO of the American Heart Association.

Ornish: Asking the right health care questions

Other key factors include physical activity, cholesterol, blood pressure and weight, she says. The meat, dairy and egg industries defend the benefits of their protein-rich foods, all of which remain on the U.S. Department of Agriculture‘s MyPlate dietary guidelines for healthy eating.

Esselstyn’s plant-based prescription also runs up against a culture where meat is served at most meals.

“Most doctors eat meat because most Americans eat meat, and if they don’t really see for themselves or for their family why it might be a good idea to cut down or even cut meat out of their diet altogether, they might not be so inclined to recommend it to their patients,” says Michele Simon, author of “Appetite for Profit.”

Tests predict heart attack risks

Even doctors who see the benefits of Esselstyn’s diet may not prescribe it for their patients.

“Anyone who is able to do that diet can have dramatic success. The problem is that many people are unable or unwilling to make these changes so in my practice, I try to take baby steps — one step at a time,” says Dr. Erin Michos, a cardiologist at the Ciccarone Center for the Prevention of Heart Disease at Johns Hopkins University.

Esselstyn diet worked for me: One patient’s story

To help heart patients and others make the leap to his diet, Esselstyn holds a monthly, five-hour seminar at the Cleveland Clinic Wellness Institute to explain the science behind “plant-based” nutrition.

Esselstyn’s wife, Ann, offers practical advice on how to prepare kale, bok choy, collard greens and other foods that may not be on the typical family’s shopping list.

Editor’s note: Dr. Sanjay Gupta explores the signs, tests and lifestyle changes that could make cardiac problems a thing of the past on “The Last Heart Attack” at 8 p.m. ET Sunday on CNN.

(CNN) — Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn Jr. didn’t become a doctor to change the way America eats. He was a general surgeon.

But researching cancer, he stumbled on a fact that changed his career: Certain cultures around the world do not suffer from heart disease, the No. 1 killer in the Western world.

Esselstyn’s practice took a dramatic turn — from performing surgery to promoting nutrition. For more than 20 years, the Cleveland Clinic doctor has tried to get Americans to eat like the Papua New Guinea highlanders, rural Chinese, central Africans and the Tarahumara Indians of Mexico.

Follow his dietary prescription, the 77-year-old Esselstyn says, and you will be “heart attack proof” — regardless of your family history.

“It’s a foodborne illness, and we’re never going to end the epidemic with stents, with bypasses, with the drugs, because none of it is treating causation of the illness,” Esselstyn says.

The Esselstyn diet is tough for most Americans to swallow: no meat, no eggs, no dairy, no added oils.

Bill Clinton’s new vegan diet

Esselstyn has written a book to spread the word, “Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease — The Revolutionary, Scientifically Proven, Nutrition-Based Cure,” and he has given talks around the world.

He is also a focus of the new documentary “Forks Over Knives.” Esselstyn has won some high-profile allies — such as Dr. T. Colin Campbell, co-author of “The China Study,” and Dr. Terry Mason, chief medical officer at Cook County Hospitals in Chicago and the city’s former health commissioner.

“We’ve eaten ourselves into a problem, and we can eat ourselves out of it,” Mason says. But Esselstyn’s prescription goes against conventional wisdom, which considers diet only one factor in preventing heart disease.

“Diet alone is not going to be the reason that heart attacks are eliminated,” says Nancy Brown, CEO of the American Heart Association.

Ornish: Asking the right health care questions

Other key factors include physical activity, cholesterol, blood pressure and weight, she says. The meat, dairy and egg industries defend the benefits of their protein-rich foods, all of which remain on the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s MyPlate dietary guidelines for healthy eating.

Esselstyn’s plant-based prescription also runs up against a culture where meat is served at most meals.

“Most doctors eat meat because most Americans eat meat, and if they don’t really see for themselves or for their family why it might be a good idea to cut down or even cut meat out of their diet altogether, they might not be so inclined to recommend it to their patients,” says Michele Simon, author of “Appetite for Profit.”

Tests predict heart attack risks

Even doctors who see the benefits of Esselstyn’s diet may not prescribe it for their patients.

“Anyone who is able to do that diet can have dramatic success. The problem is that many people are unable or unwilling to make these changes so in my practice, I try to take baby steps — one step at a time,” says Dr. Erin Michos, a cardiologist at the Ciccarone Center for the Prevention of Heart Disease at Johns Hopkins University.

Esselstyn diet worked for me: One patient’s story

To help heart patients and others make the leap to his diet, Esselstyn holds a monthly, five-hour seminar at the Cleveland Clinic Wellness Institute to explain the science behind “plant-based” nutrition.

Esselstyn’s wife, Ann, offers practical advice on how to prepare kale, bok choy, collard greens and other foods that may not be on the typical family’s shopping list.

Esselstyn began recruiting patients in 1985 and says his diet has worked even on people deemed too sick for surgery. Esselstyn has published results from a small group of patients showing how his diet either halted the progression of heart disease or reduced the blockages in the blood vessels leading to the heart.

“We know if people are eating this way they are not going to have a heart attack,” says Esselstyn, whose father had a heart attack at 43.

Anthony Yen, an entrepreneur who emigrated from China and came to love the fried foods, meat and desserts of the American diet, adopted the Esselstyn program in 1987 after undergoing bypass surgery.

“I’m still alive because of this diet,” Yen says, now 78.

Esselstyn says people shouldn’t hold off on starting his diet until after they develop symptoms of heart disease because most heart attacks strike with no warning.

“The reason you don’t wait until you have heart disease to eat this way is often, sadly, the first symptom of your heart disease may be your sudden death,” he says.

Esselstyn says his diet works because it keeps the lining of the blood vessels free of the dangerous blisters or bubbles or cholesterol-laden plaque that causes heart attacks.

Two decades after Esselstyn started trying to spread the gospel of his plant-based diet, the American Heart Association says 83 million Americans have some form of cardiovascular disease and many of the traditional risk factors for heart disease, such as obesity, are at all time highs. The association says the cost of treating heart disease tops $270 billion and is expected to more than double by 2025.

Esselstyn, a member of the U.S. gold medal rowing team at the 1956 Olympics, is not someone who gives up easily.

“We are on the cusp of what could be an absolute revolution in health — not dependent on pills, procedures or operations, but on lifestyle,” Esselstyn says.

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On a recent Sunday morning just before dawn, two carloads of white teenagers drove to Jackson, Mississippi, on what the county district attorney says was a mission of hate: to find and hurt a black person.

In a parking lot on the western side of town they found their victim.

James Craig Anderson, a 49-year-old auto plant worker, was standing in a parking lot, near his car. The teens allegedly beat Anderson repeatedly, yelled racial epithets, including “White Power!” according to witnesses.

Hinds County District Attorney Robert Shuler Smith says a group of the teens then climbed into their large Ford F250 green pickup truck, floored the gas, and drove the truck right over Anderson, killing him instantly.

Mississippi officials say it was a racially motivated murder. What the gang of teens did not know was that a surveillance camera was focused on the parking lot that night, and many of the events, including the actual murder of Anderson, were captured live on videotape.

CNN has exclusively obtained that surveillance tape. The group of teens that night was led by 18-year-old Deryl Dedmon, Jr., of Brandon, Mississippi, according to police and officials.

Deryl Dedmon, Jr., right, could face two life sentences in connection with the killing. John Aaron Rice, left, has been charged with simple assault.
Deryl Dedmon, Jr., right, could face two life sentences in connection with the killing. John Aaron Rice, left, has been charged with simple assault. They all should hang !

“This was a crime of hate. Dedmon murdered this man because he was black,” said Hinds County District Attorney Robert Shuler Smith. “The evidence will show that.”

Asked if there could be any doubt whether the intent was to actually hurt and kill a black person, Smith responded: “No doubt about it. They were going out to look for a black victim to assault, and in this case, even kill.”

Dedmon led and instigated the attack from early in the evening, he took part in the beating of Anderson, and Dedmon was also the actual driver of the Ford 250 truck that would serve as the murder weapon, according to officials.

As the teens were partying and drinking miles away from Jackson that night, in largely white Rankin County, Dedmon told friends they should leave, saying “let’s go fuck with some niggers,” according to law enforcement officials.

Then, the gang of teens climbed into Dedmon’s green truck and a white SUV Cherokee, and drove 16 miles down Interstate 20, to the western edge of Jackson, a predominantly black area.

The teens would have seen Anderson immediately as they exited the highway, as the parking lot where he was standing is just beside the exit ramp.

“This is the first business that you get to coming off the highway and so that was the first person that was out here and vulnerable,” said district attorney Smith.

On the videotape, obtained and reviewed by CNN, the group of teens is seen pulling into the parking lot, and stopping where Anderson is standing, though he is just off camera and not visible.

The teens can then be seen going back and forth between their cars and Anderson. Witnesses told law enforcement officials this is when the repeated beatings of Anderson took place.

Dedmon pummeled Anderson repeatedly as he crumpled to the street, according to officials, though this is not visible in the videotape. Finally, after the beating some of the teens left and some got into the green truck.

At this moment on the video, Anderson becomes visible, as he staggered into view and walked towards the headlights of the truck. The truck suddenly surges ahead, running over Anderson, then continuing at high speed away from the scene.

Shortly after he allegedly drove the truck over Anderson, Dedmon allegedly boasted and laughed about the killing, according to testimony given by some of the teens to detectives.

“I ran that nigger over,” Dedmon allegedly said in a phone conversation to the teens in the other car.

He repeated the racial language in subsequent conversations, according to the law enforcement officials.

“He was not remorseful he was laughing, laughing about the killing,” said district attorney Smith.

Later that morning, James Craig Anderson’s family learned their 49-year-old brother and son died in a hit and run. Only later, when witness statements were taken did they learn the real horror.

“It appears there is no doubt that this was a racially motivated killing,” said Winston Thompson, the attorney representing Anderson’s family. “The family is still in shock still in disbelief.”

Smith and officials in the Hinds County District Attorney’s office say they plan to indict Dedmon for murder and a hate crime.

Deryl Dedmon is thin, weighing a mere 130 pounds, and short — at 5 feet; he has straggly blond hair and piercing blue eyes.

The teen, just 18 years old, has been charged with murder and now faces a possible double life sentence. Calls to Deryl Dedmon’s attorney have gone unanswered.

During a bond hearing his attorney told the court he saw nothing to back up the “racial allegations.”

At Dedmon’s home, a girl who answered the door pretended not to know him though the pick-up truck he allegedly used as a murder weapon sticks out of the family’s garage.

Police say they returned it after the vehicle was processed. A second teen, 18-year-old John Aaron Rice, has been charged with simple assault, for his part in the beating his attorney also did not return calls.

Neither teen has entered a plea.

The other teens in the group have not been charged.

And James Craig Anderson’s family has decided to remain silent for now, trying to come to grips with a crime they thought was in Mississippi’s past: the murder of a man just because he was black.

Casey Anthony, who was acquitted in her daughter's death, is released from jail in Orlando on July 17.

 

A Florida judge on Monday signed amended court documents mandating that Casey Anthony return to Orlando to serve a year of probation stemming from her check fraud conviction.

“From my reading of this, she should be reporting to probation in Orlando probably within 72 hours,” Orange County Circuit Judge Stan Strickland said in signing the documents, according to the Orlando Sentinel.

The action came after an apparent misunderstanding in the case.

Anthony pleaded guilty in January 2010 to felony check fraud charges, admitting she stole a checkbook from her friend Amy Huizenga and wrote five checks totaling $644.25. At the time, defense attorney Jose Baez asked that Anthony be given credit for time served and be placed on probation.

Strickland apparently intended for the supervised probation to begin after Anthony’s release from custody, said Randy Means, spokesman for the Orange County State Attorney’s Office. But the order signed by Strickland at the time seemed to indicate it was to run while she was in custody awaiting trial on murder charges in the 2008 death of her daughter Caylee.

A jury acquitted Anthony of charges in Caylee’s death. The 25-year-old Orlando woman was released from jail July 17. Her whereabouts since then have been unknown.

Means said prosecutors were surprised to receive a letter from the probation office indicating Anthony’s probation was completed.

He said there was a miscommunication between what Strickland said at the sentencing and what the court clerk understood. The clerk thought the probation and Anthony’s time in custody were to run concurrently.

The documents were amended Monday to add the words “upon release” to Anthony’s sentencing documents, the Sentinel said.

Orange County prosecutors will not take a position on whether Anthony should serve probation, Means said, adding the issue is between Strickland, Orange County Chief Judge Belvin Perry Jr. — who presided over Anthony’s murder trial — the probation department and the clerk’s office.

“We don’t think we have jurisdiction. The court is the sentencer, and if they think it (sentencing) was not followed, they can do something,” Means said. “Our position is to leave it up to the court.”

A Department of Corrections spokeswoman told CNN affiliate WESH that Anthony must report to Orange County within 72 hours. “We are moving forward to make sure she is following the judge’s orders,” Gretl Plessinger said.

Anthony’s defense attorneys may challenge the move and claim Anthony should not have to serve probation because she already did while in custody, according to the Orlando Sentinel.

Means said the defense would have a strong argument to have the amended sentencing order declared invalid on grounds of double jeopardy. It would be unconstitutional to have Anthony serve another year of probation if technically she already served it while in jail, he said.

Perry has indicated he wants to meet with officials from the Department of Corrections to go over what happened and “make corrections.” Means said he does not know what that means, and knew of no pending hearings regarding the issue.

Strickland recused himself from the Anthony case in April 2010 after the defense claimed he was biased against her. At Anthony’s sentencing on the check fraud charges, she was ordered to have no contact with Huizenga, who testified against her during her murder trial.

At her sentencing for the check fraud charges last year, Anthony said, “I just wanted to let everyone know that I’m sorry for what I did. I take complete and full responsibility for my actions, and I’d like to apologize to Amy. I wish I’d been a better friend.”

The purported leader of La Linea criminal organization, "El Diego," was arrested Saturday.

Mexico City (CNN) — A suspected leader of the Juarez drug cartel told authorities he had ordered the deaths of about 1,500 people, a Mexican federal police official said Sunday.

Federal police detailed accusations against Jose Antonio Acosta Hernandez, known as “El Diego,” a day after authorities announced his capture. He was one of the country’s most wanted criminals, with officials offering a reward of 15 million pesos ($1.3 million) for his arrest.

Collaboration with the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration led to Acosta’s detention, said Eduardo Pequeno, head of the Mexican federal police anti-drug unit.

Acosta is accused of being a leader of the drug gang known as La Linea, the enforcement arm of the Juarez cartel, Mexican authorities have said.

Pequeno told reporters that Acosta “said he ordered the killings of about 1,500 people, mostly in Ciudad Juarez and Chihuahua’s capital.”

An investigation points to Acosta as the mastermind behind the March 2010 killing of three people connected with the U.S. Consulate in Juarez, Pequeno said.

More recently, Acosta ordered operatives to hang banners with threatening messages directed at the DEA and other U.S. authorities, Pequeno said.

Juarez, Mexico’s most violent city, shares a border with El Paso, Texas.

Pequeno also accused Acosta of having connections with some of the border city’s most notorious violence over the past two years, including the 2010 killing of a state prosecutor, a car bombing outside a police station and a massacre at a house party that killed 15 people — most of them students with no ties to organized crime.

Acosta told authorities the targets of his criminal organization included police, government officials, rival drug gangs and civilians, Pequeno told reporters.

Earlier this month, the U.S. consulate in Juarez issued a statement warning “American citizens to remain vigilant” based on information it had received that cartels may target the consulate or entry points on the U.S.-Mexico border.

The northwestern Mexican state of Chihuahua, which contains the namesake capital city as well as Juarez, has been a hotbed for drug-related violence.

The federal government has been targeting cartels’ operations, and especially its leaders, in an ongoing battle.

Mexican authorities have arrested several others they accuse of being connected to the slayings of three people connected with the consulate last year.

The shootings occurred March 13, 2010, when consulate employee Lesley Enriquez and her husband, Arthur Redelfs, were gunned down as they left a birthday party in their white SUV.

Jorge Alberto Salcido Ceniceros, the husband of another consulate employee, was killed in a separate vehicle.

banned baby names

The spawn of Hollywood celebrities will probably want to avoid giving birth in New Zealand in the future. The annoying trend of bequeathing ridiculous names to one’s offspring will no longer be tolerated in the island nation, according to CNN.

The country’s Registrar of Births, Deaths and Marriages is banning “weird” baby names: the current list includes Lucifer, Duke, Messiah, and 89 (let’s hope that’s not his/her birth order). Bishop, Baron, General, Judge, King, Knight, and Mr. were said to be too similar to titles. And letters such as C, D, I, and T and names involving punctuation marks? Nope.

In 2008, New Zealand’s names registrar approved non-traditional names (there’s a set of twins out there named Benson and Hedges). Apparently, circumstances or places of conception were also cool as namesakes. Hence, Violence and Number 16 Bus Shelter. But now there’s an end to the madness, and hopefully New Zealand will once again become a nation of Liam’s and Chloe’s.

Fortunately, Sweden (sorry, Brfxxccxxmnpcccclllmmnprxvclmnckssqlbb11116, pronounced Albin) and the Dominican Republic are getting on board with banning idiotic baby names. In 2007, a Dominican judge banned “Tonton” (Dummy) Ruiz, but only because it was confusing and/or gave no indication of gender.

I’m all for foreign or original baby names (despite to this day being called “Laura/Lauren/Nora/Floral/Coral” on a daily basis). But doesn’t it constitute a form of child abuse when you stick your kid with a handle guaranteed to inspire butt-kicking on the playground? You’d better learn taekwando, Bronx Mowgli Wentz.

Anders Behring Breivik

 

One week after the Oslo drama, Anders Behring Breivik’s 1518-page manifesto reveals a detailed portrait of the suspected Norway shooter and of what he himself describes as his “privileged upbringing.”

Breivik was born in 1979 in London, where his father Jens Breivik was stationed at the Norwegian embassy. Less than a year after his birth Breivik’s father and mother divorced, prompting his mother Wenche Behring to return to Oslo. Breivik’s father remarried and remained in Europe, accepting a position in Paris where Breivik used to visit him during school vacations.

According to the Telegraph, Breivik described growing up with his mother in his manifesto, saying: “I do not approve of the super-liberal, matriarchal upbringing as it completely lacked discipline and has contributed to feminise me to a certain degree.”

In school Breivik seemed to have been a rather quiet child. Friends told Time magazine that he became a bit of an outsider at the end of sixth grade. “He was getting bullied,” a friend told the magazine.

By the age of 15, Breivik lost contact with his father. “I tried to contact him five years ago,” theTelegraph quotes him writing in the document. “But he said he was not mentally prepared for a reunion.” He did keep in touch with his stepmother, Tove Oevermo, who had divorced his father three years before. In an exclusive interview with the Associated Press, Oevermo said she said she had never seen any violent behavior in her former stepson. She did remember him talking about a book he was writing. In the manifesto , he describes his stepmother as “intelligent” but “obviously a traitor.” According to the Daily Mail he said: “Although I care for her a great deal, I wouldn’t hold it against the KT (Knights Templar) if she was executed during an attack.”

When he was about 15, Breivik got into graffiti. CNN reports he claimed to be the most active graffiti artist in the Norwegian capital by 15. Of that time he also wrote: “Unless you had Muslim contactsyou could easily be subject to harassment, beatings and robbery,” according to CNN. The network also points at some of the more paradoxical paragraphs in the document. Breivik writes: “As all my friends can attest I wouldn’t be willing to hurt a fly and I have never used violence against others … If we wanted to we could have harassed and beaten up dozens of Muslim youth. However, as we didn’t share their savage mentality, violence was pointless.”

Breivik’s right-wing political views seem to have fully developed in his late twenties, childhood friends saying that he had friends of Middle Eastern descent earlier on. A friend told the Guardian that it was only then that Breivik began posting right wing opinions on Facebook.

Jarrod McKinney, a 37 year old skydiver, could not believe his iPhone 4 still works after fell from 13,500 feet height.

It happened when Jarrod was doing a double skydive attraction with his wife at Winsted, Minnesota.

Jarrod admitted he put his favorite gadget together with a cigarette lighter in his pocket. But when he landed, he realized his pocket was empty.

Jarrod never knew when it jumped out from his pocket. But, he still tried to look for the phone using gps trackingapp, then found it about half mile from the landing place.

“It’s the end of my fourth iPhone,” said Jarrod. The phone’s glass surface was shattered.

Jarrod had thought to throw away the iPhone 4. But Joe Johnson, his skydiving instructor, tried to dial the phone just for fun. They were surprised when the phone started to vibrate and ring.

“Hey! It’s still working,” said Jarrod happily.

Oslo, Norway (CNN) — The suspect in the deadliest attack in Norway since World War II has acknowledged carrying out the mass shooting and bombing and claims to have worked with two cells, a judge said Monday.

Judge Kim Heger said the suspect, Anders Behring Breivik, acknowledged carrying out Friday’s bombing and shooting, but has said they were necessary to prevent the “colonization” of the country by Muslims. Breivik accused the Labour Party, whose members were targets of the mass shooting, of “treason” for promoting multiculturalism, the judge said.

Police refused to release information about their investigation into the possibility that two cells aided Breivik, saying Monday that a court hearing was closed so as not to disclose any evidentiary information.

During his court hearing Monday, Breivik appeared “very calm,” a police official said. “He was very concise in trying to explain why he was trying to do this,” the official said. He has pleaded not guilty, police said Monday.

Monday’s hearing was closed to the public for “security reasons and because of a concern that it would impede the investigation,” court communications director Irene Ramm told CNN.

Afterward, Heger told reporters that he had ordered that Breivik remain in custody for eight weeks, until his next scheduled court appearance. Authorities continue to investigate the bombing in Oslo and the mass shooting at a nearby island that together killed at least 76 people. If police need more time, they can petition the court for it, he said.

Authorities initially said 93 people had died but announced Monday that eight people were confirmed dead in the bombing and 68 in the shooting. “Some people might have been counted two times,” a police official told reporters about the lowered toll.

But officials predicted the official toll could rise again. Police were still searching Monday in and around Utoya Island for victims, with 50 officers — some of them using cadaver dogs — combing through the crime scene for any remaining casualties.

At least four people have not been accounted for around Utoya Island, with investigators searching the waters nearby for victims who may have drowned trying to escape the shooter.

The suspect will be held in isolation for the next four weeks to ensure he has no opportunity to tamper with evidence, Heger said. Breivik has access to his lawyer but to no one else, and not to letters or news, court officials said.

Breivik, 32, asked to wear a uniform to the hearing but was not allowed to, Heger said.

The suspected right-wing Christian extremist appears to have written a 1,500-page manifesto that rants against Muslims and lays out meticulous plans to prepare for the attacks.

CNN has not independently confirmed that Breivik is the author of the manifesto, which bears his name and says it is intended to be circulated among sympathizers.

As Norwegians tried to come to grips with what had befallen their normally peaceful country, their government called Monday for a national moment of silence, ordering trains halted as part of a nationwide observance to remember the victims of Friday’s bombing in downtown Oslo and shooting at a political youth retreat on Utoya Island.

Nearly 200,000 people participated in a memorial Monday in downtown Oslo to honor the victims, police said.

Oslo Mayor Fabian Stang praised Monday’s memorial service as a display by Norwegians that they do not accept violence. “Today, people turned out to show that this town is ours and we don’t accept this,” he told CNN about the actions attributed to Breivik. “We’re going to punish him with democracy and love.”

Police spokesman Henning Holtaas told CNN that the suspect was charged with two acts of terrorism, one for the bombing and one for the mass shooting.

In Norway, which does not have the death penalty, the maximum sentence for such a charge is 21 years. However, the court could impose an extension if the person were deemed still to be a threat after having served the sentence, he said.

Breivik’s lawyer, Geir Lippestad, told Norwegian broadcaster NRK that his client is prepared to spend the rest of his life in jail.

Breivik had expected to be tortured by police and shot during Monday’s court proceeding, the lawyer said.

Breivik, a Norwegian, had told investigators that he acted alone and was not aided in the planning of the attacks, acting National Police Chief Sveinung Sponheim told reporters Sunday.

Sponheim said investigators were studying the manifesto published online on the day of the attack.

The suspect told investigators during interviews that he belonged to an international order, The Knights Templar, according to the Norwegian newspaper VG, which cited unidentified sources.

He described the organization as an armed Christian order, fighting to rid the West of Islamic suppression, the newspaper said. He also told investigators he had been in contact with like-minded people and said he counts himself as a representative of this order, it said.

Holtaas declined to confirm the news report, saying, “We are not commenting on such details.”

The newspaper report mirrors statements in the manifesto.

The manifesto contains photographs of Breivik wearing what appears to be a military uniform that features an altered U.S. Marine Corps dress jacket with Knights Templar medals.

The Knights Templar were Christian Crusaders who helped fight against Muslim rule of the Holy Land in the Middle Ages, but the order was shut down 700 years ago.

The manifesto bearing Breivik’s name refers to a “European Military Order and Criminal Tribunal (the PCCTS — Knights Templar) … created by and for the free indigenous peoples of Europe” in London in 2002.

It rails against Muslims and their growing presence in Europe and calls for a European civil war to overthrow governments, end multiculturalism and execute “cultural Marxists.”

The youth camp is an annual tradition in the Labour Party, Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg said in an interview. “I myself have participated every summer since 1974, since I was a teenager,” he said.

He predicted the attacks’ impact may be long-lasting, but will not fundamentally change the country. “We will have a Norway before and a Norway after the bomb and the killings,” he said. Still, he added, “I will do whatever I can to make sure that … Norway will be possible to recognize; that even after these terrible incidents, (it) will be an open society, will be a democratic society.”

Espen Barth Eide, the deputy foreign minister, predicted the shock of Friday’s events may linger in Norway, but the country will not fundamentally change. “Almost everyone in Norway is now determined to not allow this to change the way we live, and change the way we are — we are an open and tolerant society.”

More security may not be the answer, he said. “There is always a balance between security and risk. If you have more police, you may protect something, but you may lose something. So, there’s something valuable in the sort of openness that we will try to protect together.”

Among those killed on the island was Trond Berntsen, the step-brother of Crown Princess Mette-Marit, according to a statement released by the Royal House Communications Office.

A giant explosion rocked government buildings in Oslo, Norway, on Friday, state TV broadcaster NRK said, with at least one person confirmed dead.

Windows in several buildings had been blown out, and people were in the street bleeding, NRK said on its website. The cause of the blast remains unknown.

There are conflicting reports about whether a second blast followed the first, which occurred mid-afternoon in the center of the Norwegian capital.

One explosion happened near a government building housing the office of Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg, said Linda Reinholdsen, a reporter for Norwegian state broadcaster NRK. Another hit near the Norwegian parliament, she told CNN.

Several buildings in Oslo were on fire, she said, and smoke was pouring from them.

Walter Gibbs, a journalist with Reuters, said he saw eight injured people, including two or three with serious wounds and one who looked dead.

Gibbs said he believes one explosion happened on an upper floor of a main government building. He said it blew out every window on the side of the building.

The blast also severely damaged the Oil Ministry and left it in flames, he said.

Reuters reported that Stoltenberg was safe.

Stoltenberg, who has been prime minister since October 2005, heads a coalition government made up of the Labour Party, the Socialist Left Party and the Centre Party.

A representative for Oslo University Hospital confirmed that seven patients were being treated there after the explosion.

“I am not aware whether they are major or minor injuries. We have spoken to the other hospitals in Oslo, and in total, we are sending 22 ambulances and five helicopters. We currently have no confirmation of any deaths.”

Nick Soubiea, an American-Swedish tourist in Oslo, told CNN he was less than 100 yards from the blast, which he described as deafening.

“It was almost in slow motion, like a big wave that almost knocked us off our chairs,” he said. “It was extremely frightening.”

He said the streets were crowded with people trying to get away from the center of the city. “There are people running down the streets, people crying, everyone’s on their cell phones calling home,” he said.

A hotel worker in Oslo’s Grand Hotel, about a five-minute walk from the government building, said everyone in the hotel felt and heard the explosion, which felt like someone was shaking the entire building.

“It’s crazy,” she said, not wanting to be identified because she is not authorized to speak to the media on behalf of the hotel. “This happens in the big world, not in Oslo. I’m shocked.”

Vivian Paulsen, media adviser for the Norwegian Red Cross, lives 20 minutes away from the center of Oslo in the northern outskirts of the city. She said she heard a “huge blast.”

“I heard the big bang, I didn’t think it was anything serious. I can still see smoke coming up from the place,” she said, watching from her apartment balcony. She also heard sirens and ambulances.

As for Oslo, she said what others have been saying: Events like this don’t happen in the northern European capital.

“There’s occasional arrests of terror suspects we read about in the paper, or people planning something.”

Covering her face with her long dark hair to avoid television cameras, a Southern California woman accused of cutting off her husband’s penis and throwing it into a garbage disposal appeared in an Orange County courtroom Wednesday.

In her first court appearance, Catherine Kieu Becker mumbled her response to the judge when asked if she understood she was due back in court for arraignment on July 22.

An initial police investigation alleges that Becker put a drug or poison in her husband’s dinner Monday evening to make him sleepy.

“The victim went to lie down and he woke up tied to the bed with his wife tugging his clothes off,” police said. “The suspect grabbed the victim’s penis and cut it off.”

Becker, 48, is charged with felony counts of torture and aggravated mayhem in the attack.

“The charges we have filed are some the most serious charges we could file short of someone being dead,” said Susan Kang Schroeder with the Orange County District Attorney’s Office.

Becker also could face additional charges.

“We’re looking at toxicology reports,” Schroeder told CNN affiliate KTLA. “They have not come in yet and we don’t have the evidence at this point to charge her with the poisoning.”

Becker is being held in the Orange County Jail.

Becker told police he “deserved it” when they arrived at the scene after she called 911, the police report said. The couple is going through a divorce.

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