Monday News Brief: 6.16.2014

By Alex Honeysett 06.16.2014 blog

Here’s a wrap of the some of the biggest news stories from the past week (to read poolside, of course).

The White House is considering sending a small number of American special forces soldiers to Iraq in an urgent attempt to help the government in Baghdad slow the nation’s rampant Sunni insurgency, U.S. officials said Monday.

While President Barack Obama has explicitly ruled out putting U.S. troops into direct combat in Iraq, the plan under consideration suggests he would be willing to send Americans into a collapsing security situation for training and other purposes.

In the moments after Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl arrived back in the United States following five years of captivity by the Taliban in Afghanistan, he was nervous but “looked good” and saluted a commanding officer who welcomed him home, military officials said Friday.

Bergdahl is working daily with health professionals to regain a sense of normalcy and move forward with his life, officials added.

Starbucks is partnering with Arizona State University to make an undergraduate education available to its 35,000 U.S. employees who work at least 20 hours a week. Workers will be able to choose from 40 educational programs, and they won’t be required to stay at Starbucks after earning the degree.

Iconic Vermont ice cream maker Ben & Jerry’s announced a name change for a popular flavor Monday to help raise money to defend a new state law that requires the labeling of foods containing genetically modified organisms.

Gov. Peter Shumlin and company co-founder Jerry Greenfield together promoted a legal fund set up to fight the lawsuit outside the ice cream maker’s downtown Burlington store.

“We now need your help to beat the food manufacturers,” the governor said.

Ben & Jerry’s also renamed its fudge brownie ice cream Food Fight! Fudge Brownie for the month of July, The Burlington Free Press reported.

Greenfield said the company and brand he helped found will contribute $1 from each purchase at the Burlington and Waterbury scoop shops to the state’s Food Fight Fund.

Wondering how the rest of the world is experiencing the World Cup? Television and online rights for sporting events are typically sold by territory. For the World Cup, that means U.S. viewers are limited to what’s available through U.S. television networks ABC, ESPN and Univision.

ABC and ESPN, both owned by The Walt Disney Co., are splitting the English-language coverage on television. All games are available through ESPN’s website and mobile app, WatchESPN. Viewers will need a username and password with a participating pay-TV provider, such as Comcast or Dish. DirecTV is notably off the list.

Univision is doing the Spanish-language broadcasts and online streaming in the U.S. Starting with the quarterfinals, viewers will need a pay-TV password as well.

Outside the U.S., games are available on a variety of over-the-air and cable channels, with streaming available for free or for a fee. Legal viewing is restricted to people in those countries. Services are typically able to block outsiders based on the computer’s numeric Internet Protocol address.

Read the full story for a look at what viewers outside the U.S. are getting.

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