Indonesia visit will happen, says Obama

UNITED States President Barack Obama says his twice delayed trip to Indonesia is going to happen.

His trip to the most populous Muslim nation is tied with a trip to Australia but he made no specific mention of Australia.

Domestic emergencies including the massive Gulf of Mexico oil spill have kept Mr Obama from visiting previously.

Mr Obama held a bilateral meeting with Indonesia's President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono on the sidelines of Toronto's G20 meeting.

"Because of the crisis that we've had in the Gulf, I've had to delay the trip," Mr Obama told reporters at G20.

"But graciously, for a second time now, the president has re-extended the invitation, and I am confident that we are going to get there."


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'Bird man' faces court for sitting in tree

A MAN in southwestern China who lived in a eucalyptus tree for more than three months to protest the planned demolition of his home is being tried for disturbing public order.

Chen Maoguo was dubbed the "bird man" for his tree-top sit-in last year in the Chongqing region, staged to protest what he considered inadequate compensation for the razing of his home, the Yunnan Information News said.

His home was one of many to be knocked down to make way for a shopping mall in Fengjie county.

However, his unusual protest beginning last August attracted crowds and media attention, leading to his arrest in November for disturbing public order, said the report, posted on the popular Chinese web portal

During his demonstration, Mr Chen pulled all of his food, water, clothing and other needs up by rope into the small makeshift shelter he constructed in a eucalyptus tree, it said.

The report said Mr Chen was to appear in a local court today. It did not say how old Mr Chen was, or what penalties he could face.

Land seizures, often involving corrupt officials and businesses eyeing real estate profits, have been a growing source of unrest in China.

The problem stirred an uproar last year as a property boom and resulting rash of mass evictions caused a number of violent clashes, protests and even suicides by stubborn homeowners.


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Murder Victim's Dad -- OJ Simpson Butchered My Son ... NOT Florida Serial Killer

Murder Victim's Dad
OJ Simpson Killed My Son
... NOT Florida Serial Killer


The father of one of OJ Simpson's victims doesn't believe an alleged confession by a death-row serial killer -- who's now taking credit for the Nicole Brown/Ron Goldman murders -- telling TMZ, OJ's still guilty guilty guilty.

In case you didn't know, a famed serial killer named Glen Rogers -- who's currently on death row in Florida -- has allegedly confessed to murdering Nicole Brown and Ron Goldman ... claiming OJ paid him to break into Nicole's home and steal $20,000 in jewelry ... and kill her if necessary.

The "confession" is the subject of a new Discovery Channel documentary airing this week -- but�Ron's dad Fred Goldman (a prominent figure in the 1995 OJ trial) insists it's just a BS story to market the show.

Fred says, "OJ Simpson murdered Nicole Brown Simpson and Ron Goldman. The criminal trial showed overwhelming and monumental evidence that OJ Simpson was the killer. There was no contrary evidence other than guess, innuendo, and rumor."

Fred adds, "The fact of the acquittal at the hands of the jury will never wash away this murder from the hands of OJ Simpson, no matter how many Glen Rogers pop up on the media radar screen."

Fred and his lawyer, David Cook, add, "Nothing would change the fact that OJ Simpson murdered these people in cold blood."

For the record -- OJ did it.


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Israel 'deflects 44 million cyber-attacks'


A screen grab from an Anonymous video announcing the group's intention to target Israel for its "barbaric, brutal and despicable treatment of the Palestinian people". Source: Supplied

THE Israeli government has admitted it to being the victim of a mass cyber-warfare campaign with millions of attempts to hack state websites since the start of its Gaza offensive four days ago.

Speaking ahead of the weekly cabinet meeting, Israeli Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz said the government was now waging war on "a second front - of cyber-attacks against Israel".

Mr Steinitz said in the past four days, Israel had "deflected 44 million cyber-attacks on government websites. All the attacks were thwarted except for one, which targeted a specific website that was down for six or seven minutes."

His remarks came a day after the online activist group Anonymous claimed to have downed dozens of websites of Israeli state agencies and a top bank in protest over the Jewish state's deadly air assault.

It also comes as both Israel and the Palestinians try exploiting the social networks in a furious effort to win over public opinion amid the worst outbreak of Middle East violence in four years.

Mr Steinitz did not say who was responsible, but said the government had successfully managed to deflect almost every attack, thereby avoiding serious disruption or other damage.

On Saturday, Anonymous claimed to have downed or erased the databases of nearly 700 Israeli private and public websites, including that of the Bank of Jerusalem finance house.

It also claimed to have briefly downed the foreign ministry website in protest over an alleged Israeli threat to cut the Gaza Strip's Internet communications.

"For far too long, Anonymous has stood by with the rest of the world and watched in despair the barbaric, brutal and despicable treatment of the Palestinian people in the so called 'Occupied Territories' by the Israel Defence Force," Anonymous said in a statement.

"But when the government of Israel publicly threatened to sever all internet and other telecommunications into and out of Gaza they crossed a line in the sand."

Mr Steinitz made no direct reference to Anonymous and failed to specify if the government was dealing with a coordinated attack. He also refused to disclose which countries these efforts were being conducted from.

But the minister stressed that the government had come up with backup for "essential websites" should they be taken down.

"This is an unprecedented attack, and our success has been greater than we anticipated," Mr Steinitz said.


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More discounts leak ahead of Click Frenzy

online shopping

Retailers increasingly see online shopping as being where it's at. Source: The Courier-Mail

MORE specials have leaked from Australia's first nationwide online sale, including discounted television sets and music downloads.

But overseas competition is heating up prior to Click Frenzy's local launch, with America's Cyber Monday and Black Friday specials already appearing and predictions that more than half of all American consumers will venture online for bargains.

Australia's Click Frenzy event, which begins on Tuesday at 7pm AEDT, will feature specials from more than 200 retailers, including Myer, Dick Smith, Westfield, Jeans West, Bonds and Toys `R Us.

The specials are not due to be publicised until the sale begins, but online retailer Kogan has aired some of its bargains early, including a 46-inch TV for $499 (33 per cent off) and 22-inch TV with built-in personal video recorder for $139 (26 per cent off).

Telstra also unveiled two of its Click Frenzy specials - half-price on all BigPond Music albums and half-price bed linen on its BigPond Shopping website.

But America's Cyber Monday sales event, on which Click Frenzy is modelled, will be held next Tuesday, Australian time, and the local version will have to offer big discounts to compete. American holiday specials already revealed include a 7-inch Samsung tablet for $US179 at Best Buy, Beats Solo HD headphones for $US179 at Target, and a 250GB Xbox 360 console with Call of Duty: Black Ops II for $US249.

Australians may not be able to buy all deals directly, though can use a mail-forwarding service to participate.

Research firm Radium One predicted that 57 per cent of US consumers would participate in the Cyber Monday event, spending as much as $1.4 billion online in just 24 hours.

But financial counselling service MoneyHelp yesterday warned buyers from either event to take their time before adding items to virtual shopping carts to avoid pre-Christmas over-commitment.

"This type of marketing is designed to get you to make on-the-spot decisions," advice services manager Penelope Hill said.

"All we're saying is take a deep breath before typing in your credit card details and consider your financial position before buying."

Ms Hill said bargains could lose their value if purchased with credit cards that attracted high interest.


- Register at before the sale begins

- Check the time: the sale goes live at 7pm Australian Eastern Daylight Savings Time

- Buyers will be directed to retailers' websites: look for the lock icon in the address bar for security

- The sale lasts for 24 hours: consider your purchases carefully

- Consider delivery dates at check-out to ensure pre-Christmas arrival


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Protesters swamp Hong Kong streets

Hong Kong protests

Thousands of protesters take to the streets chanting slogans against new Hong Kong Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying in Hong Kong. Source: AFP

Leung Chun-ying

Hong Kong's Chief Executive-elect Leung Chun-ying, right, and his wife Regina. Source: AP

HONG Kong's biggest protest for nearly a decade has packed the former British colony's streets in a defiant reception for its new leader and a show of popular anger after 15 years of Chinese rule.

The rally came after Leung Chun-ying, a millionaire property consultant seen as close to China's communist authorities, was sworn in as chief executive in front of Chinese President Hu Jintao - who had his speech interrupted on Sunday.

Hu's visit and Leung's inauguration have become focal points for growing discontent towards Beijing, which has surged to a new post-handover high amid soaring housing costs, limited democracy and perceived meddling by China.

"Hong Kong has become much worse off," Eric Lai of the Civil Human Rights Front told the marchers. "Our rights are under serious threat."

Organisers put the crowd at 400,000, their largest claimed turnout for eight years.

Hong Kong protests

A poster with a picture of Hong Kong chief executive Leung Chun-ying reading "Guard the values of Hong Kong, tell Hong Kong people to say no to communist authority" is burnt by protesters. Source: AFP

In sweltering heat the last of the marchers reached their destination almost six hours after the first set out, and along the way they blocked streets far across the city, stranding buses and trams as they surrounded them.

Hong Kong does not yet choose its leader by universal suffrage, and Leung was elected as chief executive in March by a committee stacked with pro-Beijing business elites.

A spokesman for the Hong Kong government said it "fully respected" freedom of expression and the right to "take part in processions", and would listen to the demonstrators' views "in a humble manner".

Earlier, as President Hu began his speech to around 2300 guests at Leung's inauguration, a protester inside the harbour-front venue repeatedly shouted "End one-party rule".

Hong Kong protests

A protester hits a cut-out picture of wolf which represents new Hong Kong Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying during a pro-democracy protest march in Hong Kong. Source: AFP

The man also referred to the Tiananmen Square protests of 1989 in Beijing, and was rapidly bundled away by security personnel, while the audience drowned him out with extended applause for Hu.

Beijing's support for "one country, two systems" and the right of Hong Kongers to rule the territory was "unwavering", said Hu.

"We will follow the Basic Law ... to continue to advance democratic development in Hong Kong," said the president, who will step down as part of a once-in-a-decade leadership transition in Beijing starting later this year.

Late on Sunday some 300 protesters held a demonstration outside the Beijing representative office in Hong Kong, burning copies of the city's mini-constitution before dispersing around midnight.


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Craig to become highest-paid Bond

Skyfall premiere

Daniel Craig, seen here with Skyfall co-stars Naomi Harrisand Berenice Marlohe, is set for a financial windfall from the Bond role. Picture: Adam Taylor Source: The Daily Telegraph

DANIEL Craig will become the highest-paid James Bond actor after signing on for two more films as the famous British spy.

Craig, 44, who is in Australia driving the release of Skyfall - his latest outing as 007 - will be paid 31 million pounds ($48 million) to star in two more titles of the 50-year-old franchise, London's Sunday Times reports.

As Skyfall continues to prove itself a box office scorcher around the globe, plans are under way for a 2014 release of the next 007 instalment, followed in 2016 by Craig's fifth turn in the tuxedo.

Craig's pay packet has taken a steep climb since he first appeared as Bond in the 2006 flick Casino Royale, for which he received 3 million pounds, the newspaper reported.

Quantum of Solace, 2008, brought in 7 million pounds for the MI6 tough guy role, while Craig has collected 17 million pounds for his latest appearance.

Craig's 007 predecessor Pierce Brosnan earned up to $US16.5 million ($16 million) for his third and final Bond film, Die Another Day.

Sean Connery, the original Bond, was paid an average of 218,000 pounds for each film, equating to about 3.2 million pounds in 2012 terms.

The same calculations saw Australian George Lazenby paid 468,000 pounds for his one-off appearance, Roger Moore earn a 6.3 million pounds on average per film and Timothy Dalton pocket 5.4 million pounds per film for his efforts.

The latest deal offered to Craig will see him earn a 9.6 million pounds on average for each of his five bond films.


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