House votes to arm Syrian rebels 8:42pm EDT

WASHINGTON - The U.S. House of Representatives approved President Barack Obama's plan on Wednesday to train and arm moderate Syrian rebels, but questions remain over whether it will give them the advanced weapons they say they need to defeat Islamic State militants.

Federal Reserve Board chair Janet Yellen delivers opening remarks at her news conference in Washington September 17, 2014. REUTERS/Gary Cameron

Fed rate hikes may come sooner than expected

WASHINGTON - The Federal Reserve renewed a pledge to keep interest rates near zero for a "considerable time" but it issued projections that suggested it may raise borrowing costs a bit quicker than it had been thinking a few months ago.  Full Article | Video 

Construction of new homes on Cape San Blas on Florida’s Gulf Coast has continued even though the area is on a federal “blacklist” preventing it from receiving federal aid to protect its fast-eroding shore. REUTERS/Phil Sears

Americans are flocking to sinking shores

Despite laws intended to curb development where rising seas pose the greatest threat, Reuters finds that government is happy to help the nation indulge in its passion for beachfront living.  Full Coverage 

A firefighter watches the King Fire burn near Fresh Pond, California September 17, 2014. REUTERS/Noah Berger

Wildfire in California menaces 1,600 homes

LOS ANGELES - Fire crews in California's rugged Sierra Nevada battled to gain the upper hand against a blaze that threatened 1,600 homes and has displaced 2,100 residents.  Full Article | Slideshow 

U.S. President Barack Obama speaks after a military briefing at U.S. Central Command at MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa, Florida, September 17, 2014.  REUTERS/Larry Downing

Obama's commitment to Mideast allies tested

WASHINGTON - Several important tests loom for the U.S. administration's nascent coalition to “degrade and defeat” the ultra-hardline Islamic State whose militants have seized a third of both Iraq and Syria.  Full Article | Related Story 

Phil Schiller, Senior Vice President at Apple Inc., speaks about the iPhone 6 (L) and the iPhone 6 Plus during an Apple event at the Flint Center in Cupertino, California, September 9, 2014. REUTERS/Stephen Lam

Apple to unveil new iPads, operating system

Apple is set to launch two new iPads and release the next version of its Mac operating system at its next event on Oct. 21.  Full Article | Related Story 

Shi'ite fighters, who have joined the Iraqi army to fight against militants of the Islamic State, formerly known as the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), take part in field training in the desert in the province of Najaf, September 16, 2014. REUTERS/Alaa Al-Marjani

Stay out of religious wars

There will be no peace in the Middle East until local peoples crave it so intensely they are willing to cultivate it.  Commentary