Front page

Permits for guns climb in Mass.

The number of firearms ­licenses issued in Massachusetts has climbed by more than one-third in the past five years.

Adrian Anantawan led a Dudamel Orchestra rehearsal in Brighton.

Violinist with one hand inspires young musicians

Adrian Anantawan has played at Carnegie Hall, earned a scholarship to the Curtis Institute of Music, and graduated from Harvard. Today, he will lead a concert featuring 41 children.

Sponsored by Rockland Trust

Pass it on: Succession plans crucial for family businesses

Sooner is better than later when planning who will take over the family business. Learn what it takes to make this necessary step a success.

This content was produced by Boston Globe Media in collaboration with the advertiser. The news and editorial departments of The Boston Globe had no role in its production or display.

Jhana Senxian serves food at a summer gathering celebrating the community garden on Coleman Street.

68 Blocks: Life, Death, Hope

Facing the future, or the dream of one

There were 19 shootings in Bowdoin-Geneva this year, but no one was killed. Here, that seems a step ahead. But progress, if real, feels like a fragile reed in a garden furrowed deep with promise and pain.

Senate Foreign Relations Chairman John Kerry, D-Mass., speaks to reporters following a closed-door briefing on the investigation of the deadly Sept. 11 attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, at the Capitol in Washington, Wednesday, Dec. 19, 2012. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

Libya hearing to put Kerry in spotlight

Insight into future US diplomacy could come Thursday when Senator John F. Kerry chairs a hearing on the fatal security failings at the US consulate in Libya.

The Nation

Libya hearing to put Kerry in spotlight

Senate Foreign Relations Chairman John Kerry, D-Mass., speaks to reporters following a closed-door briefing on the investigation of the deadly Sept. 11 attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, at the Capitol in Washington, Wednesday, Dec. 19, 2012. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

By Bryan Bender

Insight into future US diplomacy could come Thursday when Senator John F. Kerry chairs a hearing on the fatal security failings at the US consulate in Libya.

Obama urges compromise on fiscal cliff

House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio addressed reporters on the fiscal cliff negotiations on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Dec. 19, 2012. Boehner says President Barack Obama should support a Republican plan to avoid January tax increases on everyone but those earning over $1 million.

By Christopher Rowland

Talks between President Obama and House Speaker John Boehner on a deal to avoid the fiscal cliff were overshadowed by political skirmishing Wednesday.

Two parties at odds over Sandy relief

Senate Republicans on Wednesday proposed a $24 billion emergency aid package for Superstorm Sandy victims, less than half of what Democrats hope to pass by Christmas.

The World

South Korea elects its first woman president

Park Geun-hye won the presidential race with 51.6 percent of the vote.

By Choe Sang-Hun

In choosing Park Geun-hye, voters appeared to prefer stability and moderate leadership over her opponent’s calls for radical change.

Iraq president to be treated in Germany

Iraq’s president, Jalal Talabani, will be flown to Germany for further treatment after suffering a stroke earlier this week.

Gang rape triggers outrage in India

Indians demanded action Wednesday from authorities who have long ignored persistent violence and harassment against women.

Editorial & Opinion

nicholas burns

The peacemakers of 2012

Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi addressed supporters during a campaign rally on the outskirts of Yangon on March 21.

These people were champions of peace whose dedication at the village, national, and global level is inspiring.

Juliette Kayyem

Details are a distraction in Newtown killings

By Juliette Kayyem

As information emerges about the killings and as the narrative changes, a greater truth might be obscured: That rampage murderers use high-volume, rapid-firing guns.

joan vennochi

Casinos are a slow bet in Massachusetts

By Joan Vennochi

Casino developers are worried the slow approval pace puts them at a competitive disadvantage — especially with New Hampshire lawmakers threatening to expand gambling in that state.

Metro

68 Blocks: Life, Death, Hope

Facing the future, or the dream of one

Jhana Senxian serves food at a summer gathering celebrating the community garden on Coleman Street.

By Globe Staff

There were 19 shootings in Bowdoin-Geneva this year, but no one was killed. Here, that seems a step ahead. But progress, if real, feels like a fragile reed in a garden furrowed deep with promise and pain.

Permits for guns climb in Mass.

“Why would anybody in this country need an assault rifle? . . . There’s just too many weapons out there today,” said Russell Reeves a gun owner from Hingham.

By Peter Schworm and Matt Carroll

The number of firearms ­licenses issued in Massachusetts has climbed by more than one-third in the past five years.

Yvonne Abraham

What do I tell you, my son?

By Yvonne Abraham

My 5-year-old has no inkling of what happened at Sandy Hook Elementary, or that luck alone separates us from them.

More Stories

Brown reverses stance on gun laws

By Stephanie Ebbert and Michael Levenson

MONTPELIER

FEMA denies 33 Vt. home buyouts

By LISA RATHKE

LIVERMORE FALLS, Maine

Maine tot recovering after dog attack

Holyoke

15 pounds of marijuana are seized

By Sarah N. Mattero

Pittsburgh

Kingston man is honored for courage

By Travis Andersen

Globe Santa

‘Nutcracker’ keeps up fine tradition

By Kathleen McKenna

Notebook

Shopping while black

By Akilah Johnson

Notebook

Front porch

By Meghan Irons

NOTEBOOK

Carnival

By Akilah Johnson

Man shot, arrested after chase

By Travis Andersen

Business

Vertex adds tougher warning to hepatitis C drug

By Robert Weisman

Vertex Pharmaceuticals will add the FDA’s most serious warning to the US label of the Cambridge company’s best-selling drug, Incivek.

Tech Lab

Google Maps puts iPhone back on track

By Hiawatha Bray

The new app has sophisticated features and a driver-friendly interface that’s even better than the one Google offers on Android phones.

US ban may hurt Smith & Wesson

Smith & Wesson M&P15s at a trade show. The firm sold $75 million of modern sporting rifles in its most recent fiscal year.

By Callum Borchers

President Obama’s push to resurrect an assault weapons ban may spell financial trouble for the gun maker’s line of rifles.

Obituaries

Rev. James Gower, 90; cofounded College of the Atlantic

The peace activist joined businessman Les Brewer, a former football teammate at Bar Harbor High School, to found the Maine college in 1969.

Alex Moulton, 92; created collapsible model for bicycles

ALEX MOULTON

By Bruce Weber

Mr. Moulton, who had made a number of innovations in automobile suspension systems, began toying with a small-wheel design for an adult bicycle in the late 1950s.

Amnon Lipkin-Shahak, 68; Israeli general encouraged peace negotiations

AMNON LIPKIN-SHAHAK

By Aron Heller

Revered in Israel as a daring commando and admired general, Mr. Lipkin-Shahak’s term as military chief in the 1990s included coping with a wave of suicide bombings

Sports

Celtics 103, Cavaliers 91

Paul Pierce’s surge ends Celtics’ losing streak

Paul Pierce acknowledged cheers from the TD Garden crowd late in the Celtics’ win.

By Gary Washburn

Pierce, looking like the team’s savior, scored a season-high 40 points as the Celtics held off a rally to finally crack the win column.

Christopher L. Gasper

Why do Red Sox love offense from shortstops?

Stephen Drew received a one-year, $9.5 million deal from the Red Sox on Monday, coming off a season in which he hit .223 with a .309 on-base percentage and a .657 OPS.

By Christopher L. Gasper

The logical move would be to play defensive-minded Jose Iglesias, but the Red Sox have an infatuation with offensive shortstops.

Ryan Dempster adds leadership to Red Sox

Ben Cherington (right) says Ryan Dempster will be a good fit for the Red Sox rotation.

By Nick Cafardo

Dempster, expected to be an innings-eater and a steady presence in the Red Sox rotation, said he was excited to come to Boston.

G: Style

A bar like no other bar

A crowd at the Belmont Club, a bar in Fall River that was established in 1933. Before they put up the bar’s first sign recently, the only way you’d have known would be if people had told you.

By Tony Lioce

The Belmont Club is one of the the best bars in Massachusetts, where the drinks are cheap and everyone is treated like a regular.

style

Buddies hit it big with their preppy activewear

Peter Mugford (left) and Robert Noe Jr., who co-own Custom Universe and Sail Loft Company.

By Christopher Muther

These 24-year-old friends and budding fashion entrepreneurs are continuing to find their niche, currently with preppy activewear.

A last-minute holiday gift, all bottled up

By Liza Weisstuch

Here’s a cheat sheet to help you navigate the crowded aisles and buy the perfect last-minute gift.