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Trial by Fire - Did Texas execute an innocent man?

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The fire moved quickly through the house, a one-story wood-frame structure in a working-class neighborhood of Corsicana, in northeast Texas. Flames spread along the walls, bursting through doorways, blistering paint and tiles and furniture. Smoke pressed against the ceiling, then banked downward, seeping into each room and through crevices in the windows, staining the morning sky.
Buffie Barbee, who was eleven years old and lived two houses down, was playing in her back yard when she smelled the smoke. She ran inside and told her mother, Diane, and they hurried up the street; that’s when they saw the smoldering house and Cameron Todd Willingham standing on the front porch, wearing only a pair of jeans, his chest blackened with soot, his hair and eyelids singed. He was screaming, “My babies are burning up!” His children—Karmon and Kameron, who were one-year-old twin girls, and two-year-old Amber—were trapped inside.
Willingham told the Barbees to call the Fire Department, and while Dia…

Islamic State releases video of execution of Syrian soldiers

Palmyra: 25 Syrian soldiers killed by IS teenage members
Palmyra: 25 Syrian soldiers killed by IS teenage members
The Islamic State group has released a video showing the killing of 25 government soldiers in the historic town of Palmyra in central Syria.

The video showed the soldiers being taken in pick-up trucks from the town’s notorious Tadmur prison to the amphitheatre.

They were then shot dead by young IS members armed with pistols, killed simultaneously after a command with a shot to the head.

IS said the men were soldiers captured in the city of Homs. The killings took place on a stage at the front of the Palmyra amphitheatre before a large black Islamic State flag.

Hundreds of people were seen watching the killings. It was not clear when the video was filmed.

Stills from the video showed the killers to be young males, possibly even as young as 13 or 14.

Islamic State has regularly released videos of its mass executions, with production values and gruesome violence that experts say is a key propaganda tool for the group.

It was reported in May that scores of troops and state employees were killed after the Islamic State group captured the town.

Palmyra is a Unesco world heritage site famous for its 2,000-year-old Roman colonnades, other ruins and priceless artefacts.

Source: The Irish Times, July 4, 2015

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