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Alex Rodriguez suspended

Bill Ritter's daily take on the news.
August 5, 2013 1:16:56 PM PDT
Mighty trees falling.

That's the theme for us tonight. The mighty tree that was once Alex Rodriguez - who for a spell was promoted as the man who could become the most prodigious home run hitter in baseball history - tonight stands suspended by Major League Baseball.

A giant tree toppled. Sort of. He's appealing, so because of a negotiated asterisk in the player's union agreement with MLB, A-Rod can still take the field even while baseball is trying to stop him from playing. And in fact, the suspension doesn't officially start till Thursday, so Rodriguez will likely play tonight with the Yankees (for the first time since last season because of injuries) in Chicago.

And then there's the giant Oak branch that toppled in Queens, and killed a young woman who was pregnant. She was just sitting there in a park in Flushing. She's the latest victim of a series of trees that have fallen in New York City this summer, and it's raising once again the troubling question about the effectiveness of tree maintenance in the City.

Or lack of.

We'll have the latest on both stories, tonight at 11.

Also at 11, so are there fewer cries of outrage now that U.S. intelligence agencies have detected a terrorist threat through clandestine intercepts from Al Qaeda in Yemen. That's what led to the closure of so many U.S. embassies and consulates. And now we're learning that the fear is a new generation of liquid explosive that is undetectable could be used in a potential attack. There are some cynics who have suggested the terrorist threat is some kind of ploy to draw attention away from the National Security Agency spying controversy. These skeptics tend to be anti-Obama peeps, which raises again the bizarre political situation in this story. Some of those who decry the actions of whistle-blower Edward Snowden, the man who leaked the NSA spying program, are supporters of Pres. Obama. Would these people have been as critical if this had happened under, say, Pres. Bush?

Similarly, would those who express doubt about the current terrorist threat have been as skeptical if this had arisen under Pres. Bush?

Or is political bent determining perspective here? I'm just sayin'.

Also at 11, we're at the George Washington Bridge where expect huge delays at night and through sunrise until the end of the year- as they rebuild part of the span. Lane closures will be nightly events. Oy.

We'll also have any breaking news of the night, plus Meteorologist Jeff Smith (in for Lee Goldberg), and Rob Powers, leading our coverage of the Arod suspension.

I hope you can join Sade Baderinwa and me, tonight at 11.

BILL RITTER

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