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In brief: Journal adding metro section

New York – It might be the last great American newspaper war. And Rupert Murdoch intends to win it.

On Monday, Murdoch is racheting up the challenge his Wall Street Journal poses to the New York Times. The Journal is launching a metro section that will vie for readers and advertisers on the Times’ turf.

Going after the Times is the fight Murdoch had in mind when News Corp. bought the Journal and its parent Dow Jones & Co. for $5 billion in 2007.

Times executives say they are confident they can withstand the challenge and maintain advertisers – and ad rates.

Military academy loses budget war

Cornwall-on-  Hudson, N.Y. – One of the nation’s oldest military-style boarding schools, whose students have included Donald Trump and Francis Ford Coppola, plans to close because of financial problems.

The New York Military Academy was founded in 1889. School superintendent Robert Watts said it will close after the academic year ends this spring.

The campus is a short drive north of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. It had about 150 students in grades 7-12.

Other notable past students include composer Stephen Sondheim and mobster John “Junior” Gotti.

Make-up sign may have been made up

New York – Was it a lovers’ quarrel or a stunt?

Jeff Ragsdale attracted media attention last week after he planted himself in a New York City park with a sign that said, “I was verbally abusive. I’m sorry, Megan.”

He told the New York Times he was trying to make up with his 29-year-old girlfriend, Megan Brady. Brady then told the newspaper she was touched by his willingness to humiliate himself.

But the newspaper said on its City Room blog Saturday that it was investigating whether the story was fake, saying, “There is considerable evidence this is a hoax.”

Ragsdale and Brady are both actors, and Ragsdale’s MySpace page contains video of him appearing in persona on a number of news programs. Both actors insisted Saturday they were telling the truth.


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Kim Jong Un says Koreas are on starting line of a new history

UPDATED: 9:53 p.m.

updated  With a single step over a weathered, cracked slab of concrete, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un made history Friday by crossing over the world’s most heavily armed border to greet South Korean President Moon Jae-in for talks on North Korea’s nuclear weapons. Kim then invited Moon to cross briefly back into the north with him before they returned to the southern side.