LOS ANGELES (AP) - The world's attention wavered between the tragic and the silly in 2012, and along the way, millions of people searched the Web to find out about a royal princess, the latest iPad, and a record-breaking skydiver.
BEIRUT (AP) - Three bombs collapsed walls in the Syrian Interior Ministry building Wednesday in Damascus, killing at least five people, as rebels fighting to overthrow President Bashar Assad edged closer to the capital, the symbol of his power.
WASHINGTON (AP) - U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez employed as an unpaid intern in his Senate office an illegal immigrant who was a registered sex offender, now under arrest by immigration authorities, The Associated Press has learned. The Homeland Security Department instructed federal agents not to arrest him until after Election Day, a U.S. official involved in the case told the AP.
WASHINGTON (AP) - White people will no longer make up a majority of Americans by 2043, according to new census projections, part of a historic shift that is already reshaping the nation's schools, workforce and electorate.
NEW YORK (AP) - Former first daughter Jenna Bush Hager (HAY'-gur) announced Wednesday that she's pregnant with her first child, due in the spring.
NEW YORK (AP) - Every year fashion offers up the good, the bad and the ugly. But what the industry is really built on - and consumers respond to - is buzz.
PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) - The gunman who killed two people and himself in a shooting rampage at an Oregon mall was 22 years old and used a stolen rifle from someone he knew, authorities said Wednesday.
BAMAKO, Mali (AP) - Soldiers arrested Mali's prime minister and forced him to resign before dawn on Tuesday, showing that the military remains the real power in this troubled West African nation despite handing back authority to civilians after a coup in March.
PHOENIX (AP) - An 11-year-old leukemia patient whose whereabouts have been unclear since her mother unexpectedly took her from a Phoenix hospital last month appeared to be safe and cared for, according to an interview broadcast Wednesday.
LOS ANGELES (AP) - The Civil War saga "Lincoln," the musical "Les Miserables" and the comic drama "Silver Linings Playbook" boosted their Academy Awards prospects Wednesday with four nominations apiece for the Screen Actors Guild Awards.
A Michigan sixth-grader will put aside her nerves and get her ears pierced on her 12th birthday. Two law-enforcement officials will exchange wedding vows at 12:12 p.m. in Pittsburgh's federal courthouse. And gamblers can take advantage of promotions some casinos are using to lure in patrons who want to test their luck.
MEXICO CITY (AP) - The plane carrying Mexican-American music superstar Jenni Rivera plunged almost vertically from more than 28,000 feet and hit the ground in a nose-dive at a speed that may have exceeded 600 miles per hour, Mexico's top transportation official said Tuesday.
WASHINGTON (AP) - In a test of divided government, President Barack Obama and House Speaker John Boehner sought an elusive compromise Tuesday to prevent economy-damaging tax increases on the middle class at year's end, conferring by phone after a secretive exchange of proposals.
PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) - A gunman opened fire in a suburban Portland shopping mall Tuesday, killing two people and wounding another as people were doing their Christmas shopping, authorities said.
NEW YORK (AP) - This Christmas travel season could be the busiest in six years, with AAA predicting that 93.3 million Americans will hit the road. That's 1.6 percent more than last year and just 400,000 people shy of the 2006 record.
SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) - Legislation sent to the governor's desk Tuesday intends to crack down on people who try to make immigrants pay unnecessary fees for driver's licenses.
They've lined the streets with police in riot gear, brought in a new black commander with an empathetic manner, imposed a curfew, lifted it and deployed the National Guard - and still the violence erupts nightly in the town of Ferguson, Missouri.
ISLAMABAD (AP) - Tens of thousands of protesters armed with wire cutters and backed by cranes broke through barriers protecting Pakistan's parliament and other government buildings Tuesday night, demanding the country's prime minister resign.
ANGLETON, Texas (AP) - A drunk driver did not deserve "execution" by a Texas father accused of taking the law into his own hands in a fit of rage over the killing of his two sons in a wreck, a prosecutor told jurors on Tuesday.
MONROVIA, Liberia (AP) - Three Liberian health workers receiving an experimental drug for Ebola are showing signs of recovery, officials said Tuesday, though medical experts caution it is not certain if the drug is effective.
FERGUSON, Mo. (AP) - The National Guard arrived in Ferguson but kept its distance from the streets where protesters clashed again with police, as clouds of tear gas and smoke hung over the St. Louis suburb where Michael Brown was fatally shot by a police officer.
BAGHDAD (AP) - Skirmishes broke out Tuesday between Iraqi security forces and militants on the outskirts of Tikrit, a local official and a resident said, a day after the Iraqi and Kurdish troops backed by U.S. airstrikes dislodged Islamic militants from a strategic dam in the country's north.
SOUTH PASADENA, Calif. (AP) - Police said they prevented a "horrific tragedy" by arresting two teenage boys who plotted to kill three high school staffers then gun down as many students as possible in a quaint Los Angeles suburb.
DONETSK, Ukraine (AP) - Ukrainian government troops were fighting pro-Russian rebels in the streets of Luhansk on Tuesday and captured most of a town near the eastern city of Donetsk, tightening the noose around that key rebel-held stronghold, Ukrainian officials said.
MARIPOSA, Calif. (AP) - Firefighters from throughout California were being dispatched Tuesday to protect homes threatened by an out-of-control wildfire burning in the foothills near Yosemite National Park, the second fire around the park in recent weeks.
NEW YORK (AP) - Few would recognize his face, but most knew his voice: the booming baritone that for nearly four decades heralded "Saturday Night Live."
GLENDORA (AP) - One of several wildfires burning across California prompted widespread evacuations Monday in a central California foothill community near Yosemite National Park, authorities said.
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - Pacific Gas & Electric Co. pleaded not guilty Monday to charges in a new indictment that accuses the utility of lying to federal investigators looking into a fatal pipeline explosion in a San Francisco Bay Area neighborhood.
NEW YORK (AP) - The nation's top dollar store chains are betting big that their once-thriving business will make a comeback if they band together.
LOS ANGELES (AP) - A wild chase that began Monday with two men in an SUV firing on pursuing police ended several hours later with one suspect dead, another arrested, and a SWAT officer with a gunshot wound to the leg, Los Angeles authorities said.