Nation & world briefs, Sept. 1
Militia group now guards U.S. embassy
An Islamist-allied militia group in control of Libya’s capital now guards the U.S. Embassy and its residential compound, a commander said yesterday, as onlookers toured the abandoned homes of diplomats who fled the country more than a month ago.
An Associated Press journalist saw holes left by small-arms and rocket fire dotting the residential compound, reminders of weeks of violence between rival militias over control of Tripoli that sparked the evacuation.
The breach of a deserted U.S. diplomatic post – including images of men earlier swimming in the compound’s algae-filled pools – likely will reinvigorate debate in the U.S. over its role in Libya, more than three years after supporting rebels who toppled dictator Moammar Gadhafi.
It also comes just before the two-year anniversary of the slaying of U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans in Libya.
Weather helps slow growth of wildfires
The U.S. Forest Service said cloudy skies and lower temperatures have slowed the spread of two forest wildfires that are threatening as many as 250 homes in far Northern California.
The Forest Service reported yesterday that the fires had burned 98 square miles in the Klamath National Forest. That was 8 square miles more than a day earlier, but represented a significant reduction in the growth of the blazes that had picked up steam as humidity declined and winds increased late last week.