Kerry calls for forceful response to Syria...Protesters call for peace...IBM to move retirees off health plan

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Associated Press

Posted on September 8, 2013 at 9:00 AM

Updated Sunday, Sep 8 at 9:00 AM

PARIS (AP) — Secretary of State John Kerry says "this is not the time to be silent spectators to slaughter." Speaking in Paris about last month's chemical weapons attack in Syria, Kerry said the world cannot allow the "unfettered use" of some of the most "heinous weapons on earth." The Obama administration is calling for a limited military response.

VATICAN CITY (AP) — The Vatican estimates that 70,000 people have jammed St. Peter's Square for a four-hour Syria peace vigil called by Pope Francis. The pope spent most of the vigil in silent prayer but also made a plea for peace, telling the crowd that "Violence and war are never the way to peace!"

WASHINGTON (AP) — Dozens of people opposed to President Barack Obama's call for a U.S. military strike against Syria are picketing outside the White House. They say their picket line marks a line Congress should not cross as it prepares to vote on the issue. Many lawmakers in both parties oppose Obama's request for Congress to authorize a military strike against Syria over its use of chemical weapons.

UNDATED (AP) — IBM plans to move many retired workers off its health plan and give them money to buy coverage on a health-insurance exchange. The move is part of a corporate trend away from providing traditional retiree health benefits as costs rise. The company says it acted after projections showed that costs under its current plan for Medicare-eligible retirees will triple by 2020. An IBM spokesman says the change will affect about 110,000 retirees who are eligible for Medicare.

BOSTON (AP) — A paper replica of the gown worn by Jacqueline Bouvier when she married John F. Kennedy will be displayed in Boston to mark the 60th anniversary of their nuptials. The actual gown she wore at her Sept. 12, 1953, wedding in Newport, R.I., is now too fragile for display. Marshall Field's department store commissioned the replica in 2004 and later donated it to the JFK Library and Museum, where it will be displayed from Sept. 12 until Nov. 3.

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