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More airstrikes...Fire causes widespread cancellations...Stocks finish higher

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BEIRUT (AP) — U.S. warplanes and drones have again hit Islamic State targets in Syria and Iraq today -- striking tanks, Humvees, checkpoints and bunkers. The new attacks came as the U.S.-led coalition expanded. Britain, Denmark and Belgium today agreed to take part in the airstrikes. But they've committed only to the Iraq part of the mission -- leaving the airstrikes in Syria to the U.S. and five Arab allies.

CHICAGO (AP) — Authorities say today's fire at an air traffic control center near Chicago was deliberately set by a contract employee -- but they are ruling out any ties to terrorism. The fire put a halt to air traffic at two of the nation's busiest airports for hours, and the delays and cancellations rippled through the air travel network from coast to coast. By midday, nearly 1,800 flights in and out of Chicago alone had been canceled.

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Police are waiting until the suspect in yesterday's deadly attack at an Oklahoma food processing plant is conscious before they charge him. The man is accused of beheading an employee with a knife. Police say he was attacking another worker when he was shot and wounded by a company official. The man had just been fired. And co-workers told authorities that he had recently tried to convert several employees to Islam.

NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. stocks are closing out a turbulent week with a solid gain. The Dow rose 167 points today, making up much of its loss from yesterday. Nike soared 12 percent, the most in the Dow, after reporting higher earnings. The S&P rose 16 points. The Nasdaq gained 45. The surge comes at the end of a roller-coaster week for the market. The S&P lost 1.4 percent, its biggest weekly loss since early August.

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Nearly an inch of rain, with more wet weather forecast for the weekend, is helping firefighters gain the upper hand on a massive wildfire burning in the mountains east of Sacramento, California. The fire, which authorities say an arsonist ignited amid dry conditions two weeks ago, is more than two-thirds contained. Firefighters took advantage of lower temperatures, higher humidity and the steady rain that fell yesterday.

WASHINGTON (AP) — Congressman Paul Ryan's plan to take over one of the most powerful committees in Congress could hit a snag when lawmakers return after the midterm elections. Ryan was the Republican Party's candidate for vice president two years ago -- and he has been telling colleagues that he wants to chair the powerful House Ways and Means Committee next year. But Ryan has competition from a formidable opponent. Congressman Kevin Brady, a senior Republican from Texas, said he too will compete to lead the committee.

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