Welcome to Overnight News Digest, where the usual crew, consisting of founder Magnifico, regular editors maggiejean, wader, Man Oh Man, side pocket, rfall, and JML9999, alumni editors palantir, Bentliberal, Oke, Interceptor7, jlms qkw, and ScottyUrb, guest editor annetteboardman, and current editor-in-chief Neon Vincent, along with anyone else who reads and comments, informs and entertains you with tonight's news.
The featured story comes from Reuters.
Analysis: Obama may extend his hand to Iran's Rouhani at U.N.
By Arshad Mohammed and Matt Spetalnick
WASHINGTON | Thu Sep 19, 2013 10:30pm EDT
(Reuters) - Next week's U.N. General Assembly meetings will offer U.S. President Barack Obama a chance to extend a hand, both literally and figuratively, to new Iranian President Hassan Rouhani.
The White House said on Thursday a meeting was possible, the first between U.S. and Iranian presidents since the 1979 Islamic Revolution.
"It's possible, but it has always been possible," White House spokesman Jay Carney said. "The extended hand has been there from the moment the president was sworn in.
Follow over the jump for the rest of tonight's news.
Putin sees hope in Syria deal; Kerry says it's vital U.N. acts
By Alexei Anishchuk and Arshad Mohammed
MOSCOW/WASHINGTON | Thu Sep 19, 2013 6:54pm EDT
(Reuters) - Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Thursday he could not be 100 percent certain a U.S.-Russian plan for the destruction of Syrian chemical arms would be carried out successfully, but he saw reason to hope it would.
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said it was essential the deal reached last Saturday be enforced and that the U.N. Security Council be willing to act on it next week, when the U.N. General Assembly holds its annual meeting in New York.
"The Security Council must be prepared to act next week," Kerry told reporters In Washington. "It is vital for the international community to stand up and speak out in the strongest possible terms about the importance of enforceable action to rid the world of Syria's chemical weapons."
Manuel lashes northwest Mexico as storm misery spreads
By Lizbeth Diaz and Anahi Rama
MEXICO CITY | Thu Sep 19, 2013 6:17pm EDT
(Reuters) - Tropical Storm Manuel lashed Mexico's northwest coast with heavy rains on Thursday, prompting evacuations and adding to flash floods that have unleashed chaos across Mexico and killed at least 97 people.
Storms have inundated vast areas of Mexico since late last week, wrecking roads, destroying bridges and triggering landslides that buried homes and their occupants. Roads became raging rapids in the Pacific resort of Acapulco, stranding some 40,000 tourists.
Emergency services said heavy rains were beating down on the northwestern state of Sinaloa and that hundreds of people had been evacuated from coastal communities.
House approves bill with deep food stamp spending cuts
By Charles Abbott
WASHINGTON | Thu Sep 19, 2013 8:17pm EDT
(Reuters) - The Republican-run House of Representatives voted to cut spending on food stamps for the poor by $40 billion over 10 years on Thursday, defying a veto threat from the White House in the name of fiscal reform.
Majority Leader Eric Cantor, the driving force behind the legislation, said it was "wrong for working, middle-class people to pay" for abuse of the program, whose costs have skyrocketed in recent years.
Democrats pointed to nonpartisan estimates that the bill would end benefits to 4 million needy people in 2014.
Snowden disclosures prompt warning on widely used computer security formula
By Joseph Menn
SAN FRANCISCO | Thu Sep 19, 2013 11:56pm EDT
(Reuters) - In the latest fallout from Edward Snowden's intelligence disclosures, a major U.S. computer security company warned thousands of customers on Thursday to stop using software that relies on a weak mathematical formula developed by the National Security Agency.
RSA, the security arm of storage company EMC Corp, told current customers in an email that a toolkit for developers had a default random-number generator using the weak formula, and that customers should switch to one of several other formulas in the product.
Last week, the New York Times reported that Snowden's cache of documents from his time working for an NSA contractor showed that the agency used its public participation in the process for setting voluntary cryptography standards, run by the government's National Institute of Standards and Technology, to push for a formula that it knew it could break.
Business and the Economy
By standing pat, Fed's Bernanke leaves successor with no map
By Jonathan Spicer and Ann Saphir
NEW YORK/SAN FRANCISCO | Thu Sep 19, 2013 8:03pm EDT
(Reuters) - Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke's shock announcement on Wednesday that the U.S. central bank was not ready to pare back its stimulus program could make it more difficult for his successor to navigate the Fed's way out of its extraordinarily aggressive policy.
Economists had expected Bernanke to follow through with the rough chart he had drafted in June: trimming the Fed's bond-buying program before year-end and ending it by mid-2014, when he expected the unemployment rate to be around 7 percent.
On Wednesday, however, he said only that tapering the purchases could "possibly" begin later this year and that there was no "magic number" for unemployment to mark its end.
Hackers offered cash, booze to crack iPhone fingerprint security
By Jim Finkle
BOSTON | Thu Sep 19, 2013 6:33pm EDT
(Reuters) - Hackers are gearing up for Friday's iPhone 5S release with a contest to crack the device's first-ever fingerprint scanner, a high-tech feature that Apple Inc says makes users' data more secure.
A micro venture capital firm joined a group of security researchers to offer more than $13,000 in cash along with bottles of booze, Bitcoin currency, books and other goodies to the first hacker who breaks the device in a contest promoted on the website istouchidhackedyet.com/.
Arturas Rosenbacher, founding partner of Chicago's IO Capital, which donated $10,000 to the hacking competition, said that the effort will bring together some of the hacking community's smartest minds to help Apple identify bugs that it may have missed.
Entertainment and Sports
U.S. boat stays alive in America's Cup
By Jonathan Weber
SAN FRANCISCO | Thu Sep 19, 2013 6:27pm EDT
(Reuters) - Oracle Team USA stayed alive in the America's Cup sailing regatta on Thursday, taking the first of the day's two scheduled races by a comfortable 31-second margin and preventing Emirates Team New Zealand from closing out the competition.
The second race was canceled after the wind exceeded the limits, which has become a familiar pattern resulting largely from a decision earlier this summer to lower the wind limits following a fatal training accident.
In the race that did take place, Oracle won the start with a shrewd maneuver that pushed New Zealand away from the line, and then showed impressive speed on the critical upwind leg before dashing home for the victory.
Disney and 'Pirates' producer Bruckheimer to end film deal
By Lisa Richwine
LOS ANGELES | Fri Sep 20, 2013 12:46am EDT
(Reuters) - The Walt Disney Co and Jerry Bruckheimer, the producer behind the blockbuster "Pirates of the Caribbean" franchise and the summer flop "The Lone Ranger," will end their long-running film deal next year, the media company announced on Thursday.
The company and Bruckheimer decided not to renew their current deal which gives Disney first-look rights to the producer's films, according to a statement from Disney. They will continue working together on various projects, including a fifth installment in the "Pirates of the Caribbean" franchise.
Last week, Disney announced it would delay the release of the fifth "Pirates" movie, which had been scheduled to open in theaters in July 2015. No new date was set.