By Mark Memmott
There's quite a bit of news happening today, so let's get right to it.
This morning, President Barack Obama speaks at a one-day, 90-nation summit on climate change. As NPR's Richard Harris reported on Morning Edition, the gathering at the United Nations is "supposed to be a pep rally for action":
The president is due to address the group around 9:15 a.m. ET. We'll live-blog the highlights. So check back with us later.
Climate change is a popular topic at news outlets' websites this morning, as you might imagine. The Guardian reports that tomorrow airlines will "make a dramatic pledge to slash carbon dioxide emissions in half by 2050 in a move that will force up air fares and spark a green technology race among aircraft manufacturers." The New York Times looks at a project underway in West Virginia, where for the first time a coal-fired power plant is poised "to capture and bury some of the carbon dioxide it churns out."
Later this morning, the president is due to meet with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas. No diplomatic breakthroughs are expected.
This afternoon, Obama is scheduled to sit down with Chinese President Hu Jintao.
World leaders are gathered in New York for the opening of the U.N.'s general session. The president is scheduled to address the General Assembly tomorrow.
As for other stories making headlines, they include:
-- The Washington Post -- "U.S. Commanders Told To Shift Focus To More Populated Areas" In Afghanistan: "Gen. Stanley A. McChrystal, the top military officer in Afghanistan, has told his commanders to pull forces out of sparsely populated areas where U.S. troops have fought bloody battles with the Taliban for several years and focus them on protecting major Afghan population centers. But the changes, which amount to a retreat from some areas, have already begun to draw resistance from senior Afghan officials who worry that any pullback from Taliban-held territory will make the weak Afghan government appear even more powerless in the eyes of its people."
Related story by Politico -- Who Leaked McChrystal's Report And Why? Monday's story by The Washington Post's Bob Woodward about Gen. Stanley McChrystal's stark assessment of conditions in Afghanistan "touched off another familiar Washington ritual: speculation about the leaker's identity and motives. ... Unless the West Wing somehow orchestrated an elaborate head fake -- authorizing what looks at first blush like an intolerable breach of Obama's internal deliberations -- the Woodward story suggests deeper problems for a new president than a bad news cycle."
Related story on Morning Edition -- "Insurgent Success In Afghanistan Is Mystifying". NPR's Mary Louse Kelly reports:
-- Denver Post -- "Evidence In Colorado-NYC Terror Investigation Might Be Sealed": "Federal prosecutors signaled Monday that they will try to keep secret key portions of their case against an Aurora shuttle driver accused of ties to international terrorists. During a federal court appearance, and in documents filed later in the day, the U.S. Attorney's Office served notice that it intends to use classified information gathered under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act in the cases against Najibullah Zazi, 24, and his father, Mohammed Zazi, 53."
Related report by NPR's Dina Temple-Raston and Jeff Brady -- More Charges Likely: "It is clear the younger Zazi is of the most interest to the FBI, and officials close to the case told NPR that more charges are coming. His charging documents suggest as much. They were released Sunday by the Justice Department and, among other things, state that Najibullah Zazi admitted he trained in explosives at an al-Qaida camp. Zazi has publicly denied involvement in a terrorist plot and says the arrest is a mistake."
-- NPR News -- Senate Finance Committee Takes Up Chairman Baucus' Health Care Bill. NPR's Julie Rovner reports:
Related story by the Associated Press -- Hundreds Of Changes Up For Debate As Baucus' Bill Goes To Committee.
-- Atlanta Journal-Constitution -- "Six Dead In Floods; More Missing": "Four deaths occurred in Douglas County, with Gwinnett and Carroll also reporting fatalities."
Related report from NPR's WABE in Atlanta -- Motorists Advised To Stay Home" "Hundreds of roads remain closed throughout Cobb, Cherokee, Fulton, Douglas and Paulding Counties this morning."
-- USA TODAY -- Audit Shows That Schools Are Slow To Pull Tainted Food From Cafeterias: "Federal agencies that supply food for 31 million schoolchildren fail to ensure that tainted products are pulled quickly from cafeterias, a federal audit obtained by USA TODAY finds. The delays raise the risk of children being sickened by contaminated food, according to the audit by Congress' Government Accountability Office."
-- The Associated Press -- "Zelaya's Daring Return Reignites Honduras Crisis".
Contributing: Chinita Anderson of Morning Edition.
categories: Morning Roundup