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Top eight today

Top eight stories for today including fears of war breaking out in Ukraine have reached a boiling point; A new study shows Covid-19 booster shots begin to become less effective after about four months; Attorneys for Sarah Palin rested their case in a libel trial against The New York Times, and more.

National

Biden splits $7 billion in frozen Afghan funds for aid, 9/11 victims

President Joe Biden signed an executive order Friday morning to fund humanitarian aid in Afghanistan and U.S. victims of terrorism, including survivors of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, with $7 billion in frozen Afghan funds seized by the U.S.

Hundreds of people gather near a U.S. Air Force C-17 transport plane at a perimeter at the international airport in Kabul, Afghanistan, on Aug. 16, 2021. (AP Photo/Shekib Rahmani)

Booster shots lose their bite four months in, CDC warns

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released a study Friday that shows Covid-19 booster shots begin to become less effective against the omicron variant after about four months but still provide substantial protection against hospitalization.

CDC Director Rochelle Walensky speaks during a Covid-19 response press briefing about new CDC studies on the effectiveness of booster shots against the omicron variant on Jan. 21, 2022. (Screenshot via Courthouse News)

Goldman banker linked to $4.5B global corruption scandal heads to trial

A long-awaited trial on a record-shattering global financial scandal will open Monday in New York. The case is expected to test the U.S. government's role in taking on foreign corruption.

Construction workers chat in front of a billboard for state investment fund 1 Malaysia Development Berhad at the fund's flagship Tun Razak Exchange development in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, on May 14, 2015. (AP Photo/Joshua Paul, File)

Regional

Jurors begin deliberations on NY Times editorial that Palin calls libelous

Urging a jury to hold The New York Times liable for libel, attorneys for the failed vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin rested their case Friday with an emphasis that the newspaper was more than careless in linking Palin to a mass shooting.

Sketch shows James Bennet, former New York Times editorial page editor, holding up a copy of the paper as he testifies on Feb. 9, 2022, in former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin's federal defamation lawsuit against The New York Times. (AP Photo/Elizabeth Williams)

Former airman and ‘Boogaloo’ extremist pleads guilty to killing federal officer

A former U.S. Air Force sergeant with ties to a violent antigovernment group stood before a federal judge on Friday and admitted to deliberately shooting and killing federal protective officer David Patrick Underwood and gravely wounding Underwood's partner during a protest in Oakland on May 29, 2020.

This May 29, 2020 surveillance photo provided by the FBI shows a van with the passenger side door open as U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Steven Carrillo shot and killed federal officer Dave Patrick Underwood, 53, and wounded of another officer outside the Ronald V. Dellums Federal Building on May 29, 2020. (FBI via AP)

International

France, Brussels brace for ‘Freedom Convoy’ protests

Paris and Brussels are bracing for large protests against Covid-19 restrictions inspired by Canadian truckers who've paralyzed Ottawa and caused officials there to issue a state of emergency.

A protester clenches his fist from his car, part of a convoy heading to Paris on Friday, Feb. 11, 2022. (AP Photo/Jean-Francois Badias)

War fears hit new heights as Biden tells Americans to flee Ukraine

Fears of a European war breaking out reached an even higher level of intensity on Friday as the White House warned that Russia might invade Ukraine at any moment and Russian troops and war ships engaged in large-scale military drills on its southern neighbor's borders.

Ukrainian servicemen load Javelin anti-tank missiles, delivered as part of U.S. security assistance, into military trucks at the Boryspil airport outside Kyiv, Ukraine, on Friday, Feb. 11, 2022. (AP Photo/Efrem Lukatsky)

Controversial London police chief forced out by mayor

The commissioner of London’s Metropolitan Police, Cressida Dick, was forced to resign on Thursday after an intervention from Mayor Sadiq Khan, who claimed the public had lost trust in the United Kingdom’s most powerful police force.

New Scotland Yard, headquarters of London’s Metropolitan Police. (Mary_R_Smith/Pixabay via Courthouse News)

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