Italian, U.S. police make arrests as Mafia clan looks to regroup
Italian and U.S. police have launched a coordinated crackdown against major crime families who were looking to rebuild their Mafia powerbase in Sicily, Italian investigators said on Wednesday. More than 200 police, including officers from the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), have been carrying out 19 arrest warrants since dawn targeting the Inzerillo clan in Sicily's capital Palermo and the New York-based Gambino family. Sicily's organised crime group, known as 'Cosa Nostra' (Our Thing), has been in a state of flux since the death of the feared boss of bosses Salvatore "Toto" Riina, who died in prison in 2017 after spending almost a quarter of century behind bars.
07/17/2019 - 05:06 AM
Pakistan arrests US-wanted terror suspect in Mumbai attacks
Pakistan on Wednesday arrested a radical cleric and U.S.-wanted terror suspect implicated in the 2008 Mumbai attacks, officials said, just days ahead of Prime Minister Imran Khan's trip to Washington. Hafiz Saeed was taken into custody in Punjab province while traveling from the eastern city of Lahore to the city of Gujranwala, according to counterterrorism official Mohammad Shafiq. Saeed founded the Lashkar-e-Taiba group, which was blamed for the Mumbai attacks that killed 166 people.
07/17/2019 - 11:12 AM
Israeli NGO seeks sale of seized Iranian tanker over attack
An Israeli NGO petitioned Gibraltar's top court Tuesday to sell an impounded Iranian oil tanker to compensate parents of a child allegedly killed by Iran-backed Hamas. Shurat Hadin, which wages legal battles worldwide against what it calls "Israel's enemies", says it won a $178.5 million US court judgement against Iran and Syria in 2017 over the death of an American infant killed in an attack in Jerusalem. The Iranian tanker Grace I, capable of carrying two million barrels of oil, was seized on July 4 by police and customs officers in Gibraltar -- a British overseas territory on Spain's southern tip -- with the aid of a detachment of British Royal Marines.
07/16/2019 - 11:34 AM
Investigators 'discover mysterious 200lb load' on board MH370 after take-off
Investigators looking into the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 have discovered a “mysterious 200lb load” added to the flight list after take-off, according to an engineer whose wife and two children were on board. Ghyslain Wattrelos said the cargo was revealed in a report on the passengers and baggage by French investigators. Mr Wattrelos, who believes the flight was deliberately downed, told Le Parisien newspaper: “It was also learned that a mysterious load of 89 kilos was added to the flight list after take-off. A container was also overloaded, without anyone knowing why. It may be incompetence or manipulation. Everything is possible. This will be part of the questions for the Malaysians.” MH370 became one of the world’s greatest aviation mysteries when it vanished with 239 people on board en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing on March 8, 2014. French investigators who examined flight data at Boeing’s headquarters in Seattle believe that the pilot was in control of the airliner “right up to the end”. A modern mystery | Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 Mr Wattrelos said the investigators told him the data “lends weight” to the theory that the pilot crashed into the sea in a murder-suicide, although they stressed that there was no proof. The investigators expect it to take up to a year to examine the data fully. However, some experts believe a hijack by a stowaway is a possibility and the mysterious load could lend credence to the theory. Tim Termini, an aviation security specialist, told Channel 5 earlier this month: “It’s highly likely that a hijack took place and again, there’s four options for the hijack. "One is the hijack of the aircraft through a crew member. The second is a hijack coming from a passenger. A third option, which is a fairly unusual one, would be a stowaway. And then of course the fourth option is an electrical takeover of the aircraft from a ground-based station.” Mr Wattrelos, 54, who has led a campaign to find out what happened to the flight, acknowledged that “there is a risk that I may never learn the full truth.” Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings.
07/16/2019 - 12:55 PM
An Air Force Pilot Tells Us What Flying a B-2 Stealth Bomber Is Like
(Washington, D.C.) When B-2 stealth bombers attacked Serbia on the opening night of Operation Allied Force in 1999, destroyed Iraqi air defenses during 2003’s “Shock and Awe” and eliminated the Libyan fighter force in 2011 -- the attacks were all guided by highly-specialized pilots trained in stealth attack tactics.Given the dangers of these kinds of missions, such as flying into heavy enemy ground fire from air defenses, confronting the prospect of air attacks and preparing for electronic warfare over hostile territory, B-2 pilots need to be ready.“We prepare and train every single day in case we get called up tomorrow,” Lt. Col. Nicola Polidor, Commander of Detachment 5 of the 29th Training Systems Squadron, told Warrior in an interview.While performing missions, B-2 pilots need to maintain the correct flight path, align with specific targeting intelligence and load and prepare weapons, all while manning a digital cockpit to control a wide range of additional variables at one time. Polidor, who trains future B-2 pilots at Whiteman Air Force Base in Missouri, says Air Force pilot trainees have adjusted well to learning a seemingly overwhelming amount of new information.“The biggest challenge for pilots is being able to manage flying for long periods of time at the same time as managing a communications suite and robust weapons package,” Polidor said.Polidor is only the 10th female B-2 pilot in history.Training is broken down into an academic phase and a flight phase, with classroom training as the first step. Trainees, Polidor explained, typically spend about two months working on a simulator, before taking their first flight.
07/16/2019 - 03:02 AM
Over-the-Top Ice Cream Sandwich Recipes That Are Worth Every Calorie
07/16/2019 - 06:07 PM
Ilhan Omar Is Completely Assimilated
Beto O’Rourke, the losing Texas Senate candidate who bootstrapped his way into becoming a losing presidential candidate, had a message for refugees who had come to America: Your new country is a hellhole.The former congressman told a roundtable of refugees and immigrants in Nashville, Tenn., last week: “This country was founded on white supremacy. And every single institution and structure that we have in this country still reflects the legacy of slavery and segregation and Jim Crow and suppression.”Just in case the newcomers were inclined to believe that they had escaped to the greatest country on Earth, an open, dynamic, generous society that, whatever their struggles now, will afford them opportunities unimaginable back home -- Beto was there to tell them of all its sins.He had made himself into an instrument of woke assimilation.This is the backdrop of the controversy over Ilhan Omar, the Somali-born left-wing member of Congress whom Donald Trump urged, in particularly noxious tweets, to return to her native country and fix it before presuming to tell us what to do.It’s a mistake, though, to think that Omar is anything other than on her way to total assimilation, only on the terms set out by Beto O’Rourke.American has two assimilation problems. One is immigrants feeling only a tenuous connection to America, and getting isolated in ethnic enclaves. The other is immigrants like Omar -- and some of her second-generation colleagues -- assimilating into the America of identity politics and grievance.They have learned to speak not just English, but the language of oppression. They understand our system (at least no less than the average officeholder) but hold it in low regard. They know our history, as taught by an instructor cribbing from Howard Zinn.They may be citizens, but they are certainly outraged victims.According to a profile in the Washington Post, Omar felt betrayal immediately upon getting to America.“I arrived at the age of 12 and learned that I was the extreme other,” she explained to the Post, noting bullying when she was in school in Arlington, Va., an affluent Washington, D.C., suburb. “I was black. I was Muslim. I also learned I was extremely poor and that the classless America that my father talked about didn’t exist.”Somehow, despite all the depredations, she gained a seat in Congress. It wasn’t paeans to her new home that paved her way, but the tropes and priorities of a progressive Left, as you’d expect from a former director of the Women Organizing Women Network.Omar doesn’t represent a majority-minority district. She started her elected career, as the Post puts it, by getting to know “older peace-and-justice hippies.” She attended Black Lives Matter protests and established relationships with all the left-wing groups in Minneapolis.Most of these people wouldn’t object to, indeed would welcome and expect, her adversarial posture toward the country where she gained more notoriety and power than the vast majority of the native-born.Her narrative is the narrative of American malignancy. The Post wrote of her ambush of Trump official Elliott Abrams at a hearing: “For decades people like her had been on the receiving end of U.S. foreign policy. Such people typically get ‘beaten into submission,’ she said. Now, Omar was the one delivering the beating.”Her default is to blame America first. She explained that local Somali-Americans attempted to join the Islamic State as a function of “systemic alienation.” She contends that she has met American veterans “who say the most horrendous things, who have complete disregard for life.” And she accuses her congressional colleagues of singling her out for demonization.Anyone who thinks these attitudes are alien to America has never been to a college campus or watched MSNBC. In short, whatever foolhardy things Trump may tweet, Ilhan Omar is not suited to return and fix Somalia, rather to join a segment of the American elite.© 2019 King Features Syndicate
07/16/2019 - 09:21 AM
Susan Rice Calls Chinese Diplomat a ‘Racist Disgrace’ on Twitter
(Bloomberg) -- Sign up for Next China, a weekly email on where the nation stands now and where it's going next.Former U.S. National Security Advisor Susan Rice sparred with a senior Chinese diplomat on Twitter in an unusual and heated dispute over race in Washington.In a series of Tweets apparently aimed at making a broader point about diplomatic divisions over the mass detention of Muslims in China’s Xinjiang province, Lijian Zhao, a diplomat posted in Islamabad, said on Sunday that if “you’re in Washington, D.C., you know the white never go” to the southeastern part of the U.S. capital.“You are a racist disgrace. And shockingly ignorant too,” Rice told Zhao on Twitter. Likely assuming that Zhao was posted in China’s mission in Washington, she then addressed her next comment to China’s ambassador to the U.S., Cui Tiankai. “Ambassador Cui, I expect better of you and your team. Please do the right thing and send him home.”Zhao, who is deputy chief of mission at the Chinese embassy in Pakistan’s capital, is often vocal on Twitter against critics of China’s infrastructure-building projects in Pakistan and other parts of Asia. Beijing has invested tens of billions of dollars in Pakistan, whose leader Imran Khan has previously dodged questions about the issue.‘Shockingly Ignorant’“You are such a disgrace, too. And shockingly ignorant, too. I am based in Islamabad. Truth hurts. I am simply telling the truth,” Zhao fired back at Rice on Monday. “To label someone who speak the truth that you don’t want to hear a racist, is disgraceful & disgusting.”Read More: How China Is Defending Its Detention of Muslims to the WorldZhao didn’t immediately respond to phone calls, an email and a direct message on Twitter seeking comment.In a string of messages that appeared aimed at highlighting U.S. hypocrisy on human rights, Zhao referred to everything from income inequality and school shootings in the U.S. to immigration officers separating children from parents.He tweeted a list of mostly-Western nations that condemned China for its actions in Xinjiang as well as a separate list of other countries -- including Pakistan, Cuba, Tajikistan and Nigeria -- that wrote a joint letter to the United Nations supporting Beijing, which Zhao called “a big slap on the face of U.S. & its western cohorts.”Outspoken DiplomatsChina’s diplomats have become increasingly vocal and outspoken. This month, China’s ambassador to London, Liu Xiaoming, gave a rare televised statement accusing the British government of meddling in Hong Kong, the scene of mass protests against Beijing’s rule.Earlier this year, China’s envoy to Canada publicly accused his hosts of “white supremacy,” while the country’s chief envoy in South Africa said President Donald Trump’s policies were making the U.S. “the enemy of the whole world.”Asked about the Twitter dispute on Monday, China’s foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang didn’t comment directly.“I don’t know the specific situation,” he said. However, he added, “we resolutely oppose the interference of the U.S. and individual Western countries in interfering in China’s internal affairs with the Xinjiang issue.”To contact the reporters on this story: Iain Marlow in New Delhi at firstname.lastname@example.org;Dandan Li in Beijing at email@example.comTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Brendan Scott at firstname.lastname@example.org, Chris Kay, Gregory TurkFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
07/15/2019 - 10:44 PM
North Carolina father of 7 dies trying to save his drowning children at beach
A North Carolina father drowned Sunday while rescuing two of his youngchildren who were swept away by a wave while walking on a submerged jetty atWrightsville Beach
07/17/2019 - 03:36 PM
How Kim Jong Un Got Mercedes-Benz Pullman Limos Home to North Korea
Researchers tracked the luxury cars all the way from the Netherlands, in apparent defiance of sanctions.
07/16/2019 - 06:30 PM
Trump’s better deal with Iran looks a lot like Obama’s
Trump has repeatedly urged Iran to negotiate, saying that Tehran’s nuclear ambitions are his chief concern, talking points that experts say echo the 2015 deal.
07/17/2019 - 05:05 AM
Greece: Suspect charged for US scientist's slaying in Crete
A 27-year-old man was charged with murder and rape Tuesday in the killing of an American scientist who disappeared on the Greek island of Crete and whose body was found in a tunnel formerly used as a storage site during World War II. Crete police said a Greek man from the island confessed to the "violent criminal act," telling investigators he struck Suzanne Eaton with his car and abducted her "motivated by the intention to commit sexual assault," Crete police spokeswoman Eleni Papathanasiou said. Eaton, 59, went missing on July 2 while attending a scientific conference in Crete.
07/16/2019 - 11:07 AM
At least 1 dead, 15 injured — including 3 firefighters — in California house explosion
A California gas company reports one of its employees died in an explosion Monday afternoon in Murietta, California.
07/16/2019 - 12:05 PM
Afghanistan Isn't Worth Dying For
Army Sgt. Maj. James Sartor was killed in action in Afghanistan’s Faryab Province on Saturday. He was “only” the twelfth soldier to die there this year. That makes his death no less inexcusable, no less an unacceptable sacrifice for Washington’s failed foreign policy.What do we tell Sartor’s family? That he heroically “gave the last full measure” for the defense of our nation? In some conflicts in American history, that might have been true. But in Afghanistan, it is a trite and insulting bromide.This man, like the eleven that preceded him this year, sacrificed his life in an operation that provided no benefit to our country. America is not safer because of this supreme, excruciatingly painful sacrifice. The truth is that hardly any Americans pay any attention to our war in Afghanistan and fewer still genuinely care that another trooper has tragically been killed.Instead, the entire burden of the grief—the unquenchable, searing pain of loss—falls to a tiny number of family members and close friends of those who died. My blood boils in anger when I hear—as I have many times—some callously claim, “Hey man, nobody forced them to sign up. They volunteered and knew what they were getting themselves into.” This implies that we service members forfeit the value of our life once we raise our right hand.
07/16/2019 - 01:13 PM
L.A. parking program seeks to provide safety to homeless people sleeping in cars
A program in Los Angeles offers safe places to park for homeless people who live in their vehicles.
07/17/2019 - 03:43 AM
Prehistoric city offers glimpse of ancient living near Jerusalem
The 9,000-year-old metropolis, uncovered during a survey before the construction of a new highway, is one of the biggest ever found, the Israel Antiquities Authority said on Tuesday. It covered dozens of acres near what is today the town of Motza, some five km (three miles) west of Jerusalem. "This is most probably the largest excavation of this time period in the Middle East, which will allow the research to advance leaps and bounds ahead of where we are today, just by the amount of material that we are able to save and preserve from this site," Lauren Davis, an archaeologist with Israel's antiquities authority, told Reuters.
07/16/2019 - 08:02 AM
Couple kiss in photo with lion moments after shooting it dead
A couple photographed kissing next to a lion they have just killed while on safari has caused outrage.Darren and Carolyn Carter, from Edmonton in Canada, posed for the camera minutes after shooting dead the animal while trophy hunting in South Africa.“Hard work in the hot Kalahari sun,” they wrote underneath the picture posted online. “A monster lion.”Another image shows the couple in front of a second dead big cat. “There is nothing like hunting the king of the jungle,” the photo is captioned.But the pictures were widely condemned after being placed on the website of Legelela Safaris – a tour company which specialises in organising big game hunts.> Darren and Carolyn Carter. I hope this kiss makes you famous. pic.twitter.com/V2QUkZq5NB> > — Danny Clayton (@DannyjClayton) > > July 15, 2019Eduardo Goncalves, the founder of the Campaign to Ban Trophy Hunting, said: “It looks as though this lion was a tame animal killed in an enclosure, bred for the sole purpose of being the subject of a smug selfie.“This couple should be utterly ashamed of themselves, not showing off and snogging for the cameras.”Australian TV host Danny Clayton said: “More idiots that get their rocks off by pointing a boomstick at a beautiful animal."But the couple have refused to be drawn on the photos. Speaking to the Daily Mirror, Mr Carter, who runs a taxidermy business with his wife, said: “We aren’t interested in commenting…it’s too political.”Legelela Safaris charges up to £2,400 for tours which include giraffe, zebra, leopard, elephant, rhino and lion hunts.
07/16/2019 - 05:16 AM
Australia calls on China to let Uighur mother and son leave
Australia's government on Wednesday called on China to allow an Australian child and his Uighur mother to leave the country, days after co-signing a letter denouncing Beijing's treatment of the Muslim minority. China has rounded up an estimated one million Uighurs and other mostly Muslim Turkic-speaking minorities into re-education camps in tightly controlled Xinjiang region, in the country's northwest. Sadam Abdusalam has campaigned for months for his Uighur wife, Nadila Wumaier, and their son Lutifeier, whom he has never met, to be allowed to come to Australia.
07/17/2019 - 05:31 AM
All the best Prime Day deals on Apple Watch, iPad, and iPad Pro are still available today!
Will wonders never cease? Someone over on Amazon forgot to flip the good old "Prime Day is over" switch on Apple products, because every single one of the best Apple device deals from Prime Day is still going strong right now. Pricing on Apple Watch Series 4 models starts at $349 instead of $399, current-generation iPads are $80 off at just $249, the 10.5-inch iPad Pro is $200 off at $579, and the 11-inch iPad Pro with 512GB of storage is a whopping $250 off! There's no telling when these deals will end, so definitely get in on the action while you still can! Apple Watch Series 4 * GPS * Over 30% larger display * Electrical and optical heart sensors * ECG app * Digital Crown with haptic feedback * 50% louder speaker * S4 SiP with faster 64-bit dual-core processor Apple iPad * 9.7-inch Retina display * A10 Fusion chip * Touch ID fingerprint sensor * 8MP back camera and 1.2MP FaceTime HD front camera * Two speaker audio * 802.11ac Wi-Fi * Up to 10 hours of battery life Apple iPad Pro (10.5-inch) * 10\. 5-Inch Retina Display with Promotion, true Tone, and wide Color * A10X Fusion chip * Touch ID Fingerprint Sensor * 12MP back camera, 7MP FaceTime HD Front camera * Four speaker Audio * 802\. 11AC Wi-Fi and LTE cellular data * Up to 10 hours of battery life Apple iPad Pro (11-inch) * 11-Inch edge-to-edge Liquid Retina display with Promotion, true Tone, and wide Color * A12X Bionic chip with Neural Engine * Face ID for secure authentication and Apple Pay * 12MP back camera, 7MP True Depth front camera * Four speaker Audio with wider Stereo sound * 802\. 11AC Wi-Fi and gigabit-class LTE cellular data * Up to 10 hours of battery life
07/17/2019 - 08:40 AM
Kellyanne Conway challenges reporter who questioned Trump's tweet: 'What's your ethnicity?'
The counselor to the president lashed out at a White House reporter who pressed her on President Trump’s tweets saying four Democratic congresswomen of color should “go back” to their home countries.
07/16/2019 - 01:28 PM
The Latest: Japan urges South Korea to agree to arbitration
Japan is making a final call for South Korea to agree to Japanese-requested arbitration over the Korean wartime labor dispute, while hinting at possible retaliation. Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Yasutoshi Nishimura on Wednesday urged Seoul to nullify court orders for Japanese companies to compensate former Korean wartime labors and settle by arbitration. Colonial-era Korean laborers are seeking a court approval for the sales of local assets held by their wartime employer Mitsubishi Heavy Industry, which has ignored a court's compensation order.
07/17/2019 - 05:02 AM
2-year-old girl who disappeared from Michigan campsite found alive
Police have found the 2-year-old who went missing from a campsite in Comins Township, Michigan, on Monday. The search lasted more than 24 hours.
07/16/2019 - 02:49 PM
America and Iran: On a Path Towards War?
Iran’s leader has taken a defiant stance against the United States and its allies, signalling a potential “fraying” of the 2015 deal limiting Iran’s nuclear program, The New York Times reported.Ayatollah Ali Khamenei on July 16, 2019 denounced “the vicious British” after U.K. forces earlier in the month seized an Iranian oil tanker off Gibraltar.In a speech to clerics, Khamenei “appeared to signal his intention to ignore diplomacy for the moment and stoke tensions with the West over the embattled nuclear accord,” the Times’ Rick Gladstone wrote.“Khamenei spoke as unconfirmed news reports suggested Iran’s Revolutionary Guards may have seized a United Arab Emirates tanker in the Persian Gulf, possibly in retaliation for Britain’s impounding of an Iranian tanker near Gibraltar this month.”Iranian militia troops had attempted to retaliate on July 10, 2019 by seizing a British tanker in the Strait of Hormuz. A Royal Navy frigate intervened and stopped the assault.Khamenei’s tone has sharpened of late. “The defiance expressed by the top leader ... contrasted with what seemed like a less confrontational stance taken at the White House,” Gladstone added.U.S. president Donald Trump told reporters his administration is “not looking for regime change” in Iran. “They’d like to talk, and we’ll see what happens,” Trump said.Mike Pompeo, the U.S. secretary of state, claimed Iran was willing to negotiate over its missile program, which Gladstone pointed out is “an area of Western concern that was not covered in the 2015 nuclear agreement.”
07/16/2019 - 05:46 PM
Landlords Sue NYC Over New Rent Caps on a Million Apartments
(Bloomberg) -- New York City’s rent-stabilization law is under attack after a group of real-estate trade groups and landlords sued to overturn regulations that cover more than 1 million apartments.The decades-old law that limits rent increases violates the U.S. Constitution by placing an unfair burden on property owners, particularly those who own pre-1974 buildings with six or more units, according to the suit, filed Monday in federal court in Brooklyn.The state legislature, now under full Democratic control, adopted sweeping tenant protections in June that further cap rent increases and restrict landlords’ ability to evict residents. The massive rewrite of the rent rules, which cover about 2.4 million residents, aimed to preserve affordable housing by eliminating tools landlords used to remove units from regulation. The package also abolished a “vacancy bonus” that allowed property owners to raise rents 20% when a tenant left.The plaintiffs say the update further eroded their rights and that the law’s “irrationality and arbitrariness” and “web of restrictions override core rights of property owners.”Read More: NYC Tenants Get a Rent-Law Blessing That Landlords See as CurseThe landlords claim the rules have morphed over the years so that they benefit too many higher earners, while renters who make less than $35,000 a year account for just 38% of rent-stabilized renters. The breakdown is about the same for unregulated apartments, the groups claim, suggesting the law isn’t much different from the unregulated market.The trade groups claim that 22% of rent-stabilized tenants make more than $100,000 a year and that married couples without children are over-represented in rent-stabilized apartments despite being less likely to suffer rental hardship than couples with children.The city said the suit threatens ordinary New Yorkers.“Dismantling rent stabilization would be a devastating blow to everyday New Yorkers who are working hard to call this great city home,” Jane Meyer, the mayor’s deputy press secretary, said in a statement. She said the city would review the suit and continue to “fight to protect affordability, prevent harassment and keep this a city for everyone.”Supreme Court SnubTenants-rights groups argued the changes were needed to counter decades of abuse by some landlords and a shrinking supply of affordable housing. Tens of thousands of apartments have been removed from rent-stabilized status, sending rents higher as neighborhoods are gentrified. The effort won support from Governor Andrew Cuomo, a third-term Democrat, as well as New York City mayor and 2020 presidential candidate Bill de Blasio.The U.S. Supreme Court rejected a challenge to the city’s rent-stabilization system in 2012, turning away an appeal from landlords who said the city had violated their constitutional rights by limiting rents on three one-bedroom apartments in their Upper West Side brownstone. The state of New York defended the statute, citing previous Supreme Court decisions that judges “should not sit as super-legislatures reviewing matters of economic policy, but should ask only whether a legislature’s policy judgments are rational.”Among the plaintiffs is the Rent Stabilization Association, which represents 25,000 landlords. When the law was amended, the landlords said it would cause buildings to fall into disrepair because owners wouldn’t be able to afford to maintain them.The case is Community Housing Improvement Program v. City of New York, 19-cv-4087, U.S. District Court, Eastern District of New York (Brooklyn).(Updates with second paragraph under Supreme Court Snub)\--With assistance from Gerald Porter Jr..To contact the reporters on this story: Erik Larson in New York at email@example.com;Henry Goldman in New York at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editors responsible for this story: David Glovin at email@example.com, Peter JeffreyFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
07/16/2019 - 05:13 PM
Woman Infected with Flesh-Eating Bacteria at Virginia Beach
A Norfolk woman says she was in the water at a Norfolk beach for maybe 10 minutes, but it was enough time for her to contract a flesh-eating bacteria.
07/16/2019 - 03:20 PM
Your Kids Won't Have Any Room For Candy After These Halloween Dinner Ideas
07/17/2019 - 03:46 PM
'You must be stupid': Duterte says he won't be tried by international court
Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has declared he will never be tried by an international court for mass killings in his war on drugs, and vowed no let up in a crackdown that he said he was winning and would see through "to the very end". In a television interview with a celebrity pastor, the firebrand leader said the Philippine justice system was working fine, so it would be "stupid" to imagine he would let an international court put him on trial.
07/17/2019 - 04:34 AM
Fed's Powell doubles down on rate cut signal
Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell added more weight to expectations the central bank will cut interest rates later this month, stressing Tuesday that the US inflation outlook is near historic lows. Economists and investors see it as a certainty that the Fed will lower the key borrowing rate at the policy meeting July 30-31, and Powell in recent statements has moved to solidify those predictions by pointing to some concerns about economic growth and persistent weak inflation. Central bankers have "raised concerns about a more prolonged shortfall in inflation below our 2 percent target," Powell said in a prepared speech at a Bank of France event.
07/16/2019 - 01:16 PM
House shoots down attempt to immediately impeach Trump
The proposal by Rep. Al Green drew limited support.
07/17/2019 - 09:56 AM
Family mourns 6-year-old girl killed by father's golf shot
Relatives of a 6-year-old Utah girl who died after her father accidentally struck her with a golf ball are remembering her as a loving, playful child. Aria Hill's uncle David Smith described her as a happy child who greeted strangers and enjoyed spending time with her parents. Police say the ball struck Hill in the back of the head on Monday morning, while the father and daughter were out golfing with Hill's uncle, Brayden Hill, at Sleepy Ridge Golf Course in Orem about 40 miles (65 kilometers) south of Salt Lake City.
07/17/2019 - 06:53 PM
'Dangerous': Air Force responds to plans to 'storm Area 51' and 'see them aliens'
As more than a million people on Facebook say they're "going" to a joke event to "storm Area 51," the U.S. military has responded to the plans.
07/16/2019 - 02:39 PM
Big Guns: Army Prototypes Range-Doubling New Artillery Weapon to Outgun Russia
The Army is building prototypes of a new artillery cannon that can more than double the range of existing weapons and vastly alter the strategic and tactical landscape shaping land war into the future.The Army program, called Extended Range Cannon Artillery, has been developing for several years; it is now entering a new phase through an Army deal with BAE Systems to build “Increment 1” prototypes.“This prototype phase will address capability gaps in the Army’s indirect fire systems and improve the rate and range of fire with the development of power distribution software and hardware integration solutions,” a BAE Systems statement said.During testing thus far, the Army has successfully fired a 155mm artillery round 62 kilometers - marking a technical breakthrough in the realm of land-based weapons and progressing toward its stated goal of being able to outrange and outgun Russian and Chinese weapons.Currently, most land-fired artillery shot from an M777 Towed Howitzer or Self-Propelled Howitzer are able to pinpoint targets out to 30km - so hitting 62km dramatically changes Army offensive attack capability. As part of an effort to ensure the heavy M777 is sufficiently mobile, the Army completed a “mobility” demonstration of ERCA prototypes last year.
07/17/2019 - 03:02 AM
Southwest and Boeing had a 'reckless, greedy conspiracy' to keep the 737 Max flying despite knowing about its flaws, a new lawsuit alleges
The lawsuit alleges Southwest has a unique relationship with Boeing, and that both companies knew about a fatal defect in 737 Max planes.
07/16/2019 - 07:20 AM
This is what today's America looks like. The squad is us
We should all be grateful to the four women of color who are offering moral and political guidance to a nation goaded by its commander-in-chief‘To be told to “go back to where you came from” is a form of being told to shut up, an obvious attempt to silence dissent and political participation.’ Photograph: Carol Guzy/ZUMA Wire/REX/ShutterstockOn Monday, the best of the United States of America was on full display.In a moving press conference in Washington, DC, the four progressive congresswomen now known the world over as “the squad” – Ayanna Pressley, Ilhan Omar, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Rashid Tlaib – proclaimed their profound support for each other after enduring blatantly racist abuse by Donald Trump. And they did more. They redoubled their commitments to improving the lives of all the people in this country.It was a remarkable moment, an urgently needed example of what leadership – real leadership, leadership that is principled, intelligent, courageous, and resolute – looks like. I hope Nancy Pelosi was watching.What I saw at this press conference was an inspiring tableau of today’s America, four women of color offering moral and political guidance to a nation that is being goaded by its commander-in-chief to embrace the schoolyard taunts of a wanton bigot.Not that much prodding has ever been needed to activate racism in this country. If your skin is any darker than the peel of a honeydew melon, if your eyes have ever been compared to the shape of almonds, if your name has been called unpronounceable and changed without your consent, if you’re constantly asked “but where are you from from,” if you’ve been complimented for being different than the rest of them, if your faith elicits unsolicited political commentary, if people always seem to want to touch your hair, then chances are you’ve also been told, at many times in your life, that you should go back to where you came from.I, for one, have been frequently told this all my life, and it happens most often now in hate mail and missives that regularly land in my inbox. In my case, the insult routinely borders on the comical. Never quite sure where they should be sending me back to, my detractors will dutifully resort to some internet research, only to discover that I was born in Switzerland. Somehow, “Go back to Switzerland!” just doesn’t carry the menace that they seem to think it has.We can laugh at the racism of fools, but every person of color in this country will also recognize the simmering violence behind these (and similar) statements. To be told to “go back to where you came from” is to be told not only that you don’t belong, but that you have no say in what the standards of belonging should be in the first place.To be told to “go back to where you came from” is a form of being told to shut up, an obvious attempt to silence dissent and political participation. And being told to “go back to where you came from” is to deny the history of slavery and the colonization of indigenous lands in this country, since it also assumes that we call came to this territory voluntarily.Lurking behind the statement “go back to where you come from” is the clenched fist of a privileged but frightened group, one that is dreadfully afraid of listening to “those ignored, left out, and left behind,” as Ayanna Pressley put it on Monday. Merely listening, they believe, will weaken their traditional hold on power. All around them they see a fabled version of the old America slipping inexorably away.But the old America that they dream of never was and never will be. All the attempts by this administration to turn back the clock of change – from adding a citizenship question to the census, to distorting the rules on asylum, to wrenching families apart with Dickensian cruelty, to barring Muslims from entering the country – will ultimately fail to produce the America they desperately desire.On the contrary, the future belongs to a multicultural, multiracial, and multifaith America, and watching the four congresswomen of “the squad” on Monday only confirms this fact. “Our squad is big,” Pressley stated. “Our squad includes any person committed to building a more equitable and just world. And that is the work we want to get back to. Given the size of this squad and this great nation, we cannot, we will not be silenced.”She’s right. I have seen the squad. The squad is us.
07/16/2019 - 01:44 PM
House Vote to Repeal Obamacare Tax Shows Health Care Tension
(Bloomberg) -- The House voted overwhelmingly to repeal a tax Wednesday intended to fund the Affordable Care Act, preserving tax breaks for employer-sponsored insurance plans favored by large corporations.In a reversal of the usual partisan roles, Democrats rather than Republicans led the charge to kill a key part of Obamacare.The bill to repeal the levy commonly known as the “Cadillac tax” passed 419-6 with bipartisan support. The 40% excise tax on the most generous and expensive employer health-insurance plans was included in Obamacare as a measure that economists said would help curb health costs.Congress kept delaying its implementation so the tax has never actually been collected. Had it gone into effect, it would have hit about one in five employers that offer health benefits to their workers, according to estimates from the Kaiser Family Foundation.The vote to repeal the tax highlights the conflicting forces pulling at Democrats when campaigning versus legislating.Several of the party’s presidential candidates led by Senators Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren support replacing nearly all private insurance with a government-run system financed by tax increases. Former Vice President Joe Biden, the front-runner in the race, has a less sweeping plan to bolster Obamacare, but it still would offer a public health insurance option funded by tax hikes on the wealthy.But in Congress, Democrats and Republicans are facing pressure from labor unions and large companies to move in the opposite direction by keeping tax advantages for employer-sponsored plans. Supporters of repealing the tax say keeping it in place would force employers to offer less generous health insurance to their workers.Employers can reap large tax savings by compensating their employees in the form of more extensive health insurance, rather than wages, which are subject to payroll taxes. Employer-paid premiums are exempt from federal income and payroll taxes, and the premiums employees pay are also often excluded from taxable income.Changing Minds“I’ve been a supporter of the Cadillac tax because I thought it would” lower health care costs, said Representative Steny Hoyer of Maryland, the No. 2 Democrat in the House. “But I’ve read some additional material on it and it’s obviously overwhelmingly thought this will not have the effect in terms of raising money or controlling cost that I thought it would have.”The dissonance among Democrats about whether to expand or shrink employer-sponsored health coverage makes them look like “gymnasts,” said Representative Mike Kelly, a Pennsylvania Republican.“Where are you on this stuff?” he said. “Wait a minute, you’re all advocating that there be no such thing as employer-sponsored coverage.”The repeated delays in imposing the Cadillac tax delays mean that Congress was never able to test whether it would curb the explosion of health care spending, which has risen an average 4.2% every quarter between 2010 and 2018, according to data from the Kaiser Family Foundation.The repeal also would mean that the Treasury Department won’t collect the $201 billion the Joint Committee on Taxation estimated it would raise over a decade.Obamacare TaxesObamacare included several other tax increases, including a 3.8% tax on investment income and a 0.9% levy on wages for top-earners. The portion of the law that was supposed to be financed through the Cadillac tax instead would be paid for through deficit spending, unless lawmakers propose a last-minute tax increase to offset the cost.Democrats have generally opposed measures to chip away at President Barack Obama’s signature legislative achievement, but the Cadillac tax has been unpopular since it became part of the code.The measure to repeal it, H.R. 748, was passed under a fast-track procedure requiring two-thirds support among House members.Yet popularity doesn’t necessarily mean good policy, said Marc Goldwein, senior vice president at the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget. Politicians don’t like the tax on health benefits, but nearly every economist thinks the Cadillac tax or a similar measure is necessary to help slow the rise in health-care costs and curb overuse of health services, he added.“Just because it’s bipartisan doesn’t mean it’s good,” he said.Not all Democrats are on board with eliminating the tax. Representative Ron Kind, a Wisconsin Democrat, said he opposes the repeal because the cost isn’t offset and there wasn’t any discussion about how scuttling the tax would affect the Affordable Care Act overall.“I think we are lapsing into some very bad habits in the majority,” he said. “We need to start instilling some fiscal discipline in this place and making some tough decisions.”Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, a Kentucky Republican, hasn’t committed to addressing the issue in his chamber. Because the repeal effort is led by Democrats, it sets up a path for McConnell to use it as a vehicle to attach Republican tax priorities, such as correcting errors in the 2017 tax law or extending several expired tax breaks that benefit the biodiesel and energy industries.“We’ve kicked the can down the road for so long on this one that the assumption is that it’s never going to go into effect,” said Representative Dan Kildee, a Michigan Democrat. “There’s a certain inevitability to this one getting repealed.”\--With assistance from Emily Wilkins.To contact the reporter on this story: Laura Davison in Washington at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Joe Sobczyk at email@example.com, Laurie AsséoFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
07/17/2019 - 06:58 PM
June was the warmest June ever recorded, but there's a bigger problem
In 139 years of record-keeping, this June was the warmest June ever recorded. But June 2019 also revealed a deeper warming reality. The first half of 2019, January through June, finished up as the second warmest half-year on record, newly released NASA data shows. On top of that, each of the last five January through Junes are now the five warmest such spans on record. Only 2016 started off hotter than 2019. "At this point, the inexorable increase in global temperatures is entirely predictable," said Sarah Green, an environmental chemist at Michigan Technological University. She noted that NASA's updated data is added proof that climate models have accurately predicted Earth's continued warming as heat-trapping gasses amass in the atmosphere."As we have shown in recent work, the record warm streaks we've seen in recent years simply cannot be explained without accounting for the profound impact we are having on the planet through the burning of fossil fuels and the resulting increase in atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations," added climate scientist Michael Mann, the director of the Earth System Science Center at Penn State University.Indeed, atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations, already at their highest levels in at least 800,000 years, are now accelerating at rates that are unprecedented in both the historic and geologic record."The latest numbers are just another reminder that the impacts of human-caused warming are no longer subtle," said Mann. "We're seeing them play out in terms of both unprecedented extreme weather events and the sorts of planetary-scale temperature extremes betrayed by these latest numbers."The warmest January through Junes on record.Image: nasa gissThe well-predicted consequences of this heating are now unfolding. Here are some, of many, examples: * Warming climes have doubled the amount of land burned by wildfires in the U.S. over the last 30 years, as plants and trees, notably in California, get baked dry. * Greenland -- home to the second largest ice sheet on Earth -- is melting at unprecedented rates. * The last 12 months have been the wettest 12 months in U.S. history, leading to widespread flooding around the nation (For every 1 degree Celsius, or 1.8 degrees Fahrenheit, of warming, the air can hold 7 percent more water.) * The Arctic is on fire. * Ocean temperatures are going up, and up, and up. * Since 1961, Earth's glaciers lost 9 trillion tons of ice. That's the weight of 27 billion 747s. * Heat waves are increasing in duration and frequency, while smashing records. * Daily high record temperatures are dominating daily low records. Overall, the atmosphere is experiencing an accelerated upward temperature climb, though there are some ups and downs within the greater warming trend. This is due to natural climatic influences, particularly from events like El Niño, which can give global temperatures an added kick. > NASA global mean June temperature is out! Guess what - it's been the hottest June on record. Definitely felt like that in Germany... climatecrisis FridaysForFuture pic.twitter.com/vkOFP22NNM> > -- Stefan Rahmstorf (@rahmstorf) July 15, 2019"The year-to-year variations of the global temperature may be affected by El Niño, etc., but in the long-term [global temperature] keeps increasing steadily," said NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies scientist Makiko Sato, who helped prepare the June climate observations. SEE ALSO: This scientist keeps winning money from people who bet against climate changeThis June was "easily" the warmest June on record, NASA noted, and overall, this year's January through June temperatures were 1.4 degrees Celsius (or 2.5 degrees Fahrenheit) above average temperatures in the late 1800s. Seasonal temperature trends.Image: nasa Giss2019 will almost certainly end up being one of the hottest years on record. This is in line with another stark trend. Eighteen of the 19 warmest years on record have occurred since 2001 -- and the five hottest years have occurred in each of the last five years. (It's not just the first half of each year setting records.)"This is further evidence that temperatures will keep rising until government policies that decrease greenhouse gas emissions are actually implemented," emphasized Green. WATCH: Ever wonder how the universe might end?
07/16/2019 - 06:00 AM
Lightening Deal Alert: MasterChef's 13-In-1 Pressure Cooker Is 47 Off Right Now
07/15/2019 - 08:38 PM
From Iraq to Yemen, drones raise U.S. alarm over Iranian plans
GENEVA/WASHINGTON, July 17 (Reuters) - The increased use of drones by Iran and its allies for surveillance and attacks across the Middle East is raising alarms in Washington. The United States believes that Iran-linked militia in Iraq have recently increased their surveillance of American troops and bases in the country by using off-the-shelf, commercially available drones, U.S. officials say.
07/17/2019 - 11:10 AM
Trump administration blasts WTO ruling on China
07/16/2019 - 04:34 PM
UK raises alarm after mother held by Iran is taken to mental ward
London demanded the immediate release Wednesday of a jailed British-Iranian aid worker whose husband said she has been transferred to the mental ward of a public hospital in Tehran. Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe's case has roiled Britain's relations with the Islamic republic since her 2016 arrest and conviction on sedition charges over which she has held a series of hunger strikes. "We are extremely concrned about Nazanin's welfare and call for her immediate release," Prime Minister Theresa May's spokesman said.
07/17/2019 - 11:38 AM
Man who stashed 1,000 guns in Bel-Air mansion charged with 64 felony counts
A California man faces 64 felony counts after authorities say they found more than 1,000 guns at his home in the Bel-Air section of Los Angeles.
07/16/2019 - 03:40 PM
Boris Johnson rejects EU compromise and pushes Britain towards the no-deal Brexit cliff edge
The likely next prime minister said he would not accept a time-limit or exit mechanism on the contentious backstop for Northern Ireland.
07/16/2019 - 04:58 AM
Teachers were told their student loan debt would be cancelled after 10 years of payments, but that didn't happen. Now they're suing Betsy DeVos.
Eight public school teachers filed a lawsuit against Betsy DeVos, criticizing the Department of Education for mismanaging their student loan debt.
07/16/2019 - 01:05 PM
Pelosi Runs Afoul of House Rules in Calling Trump Tweets Racist
(Bloomberg) -- House Speaker Nancy Pelosi suffered an embarrassing setback Tuesday after Republicans called her out for violating the chamber’s rules by saying President Donald Trump’s comments about four freshman House members were racist.”These comments from the White House are disgraceful and disgusting and those comments are racist,” Pelosi had said on the House floor during debate on a proposed resolution condemning the president’s remarks as racist.The Democratic-controlled House then voted 232-190 against striking her remarks from the record. The vote was strictly along party lines, with former Republican Justin Amash of Michigan, now an independent, voting with the Democrats.House rules prohibit calling the president a racist or saying his statements were racist. After an objection by Republican Representative Doug Collins of Georgia, Steny Hoyer, the second-ranking Democrat who was presiding over the House, said her remarks were not in order.“I stand by my statement,” Pelosi told reporters as she returned to the House chamber during the vote, adding that she is “proud” of the attention being brought to the matter.“What the president said was completely inappropriate against our colleagues, but not just against them but against so many people in our country when he said to them go back where they came from,” Pelosi said.The floor dispute is part of the controversy following the president’s tweets on Sunday that the four lawmakers, all of whom are women of color, should “go back” to the countries they “originally came from,” instead of telling Americans “how our government is to be run.”(Updates with vote result in third paragraph)\--With assistance from Laura Litvan.To contact the reporter on this story: Billy House in Washington at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Joe Sobczyk at email@example.com, Laurie Asséo, Anna EdgertonFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
07/16/2019 - 05:29 PM
US military chiefs ordered to reveal if Pentagon used diseased insects as biological weapon
US lawmakers have voted to demand the Pentagon discloses whether it conducted experiments to “weaponise” disease-carrying ticks – and whether any such insects were let loose outside the lab.A bill passed in the House of Representatives requires the Defence Department’s inspector general to investigate whether biological warfare tests involving the tiny arachnids took place over a 25-year period.It follows claims that Pentagon researchers implanted diseases into inspects to study the potential of biological weapons in the decades after the Second World War.A tick-related amendment, first reported by Roll Call, was added to the fiscal 2020 defence authorisation bill by Republican congressman Chris Smith prior to its passing in the House.The New Jersey politician said the inspector general’s office should “conduct a review of whether the Department of Defence experimented with ticks and other insects regarding use as a biological weapon between the years of 1950 and 1975.”If the experiments did take place, the office must provide a report explaining “whether any ticks or insects used in such experiments were released outside of any laboratory by accident or experiment design”, the amendment also stated.A book released earlier this year, entitled Bitten: The Secret History of Lyme Disease and Biological Weapons, sets out the case that the Defence Department did conduct research on biological warfare.Author Kris Newby also suggests a possible relationship between the experiments and the spread of Lyme disease – an infectious disease spread by ticks causing fever, headaches and fatigue.“We need answers and we need them now,” said Mr Smith, a founding co-chairman of the Congressional Lyme Disease Caucus, which advocates for greater understanding of the disease.Pat Smith, president of the Lyme Disease Association, said uncovering past experiments might help with current work trying to tackle the illness.“We need to find out: is there anything in this research that was supposedly done that can help us to find information that is germane to patient health and combating the spread of the disease,” she said.The defence authorisation bill still needs to pass in the Senate before heading to Donald Trump’s desk at the White House.
07/16/2019 - 07:04 AM
We Now Know Why an American B-52's Engine Broke Apart During a Freak 2017 Incident
“The aircraft landed safely with no injuries,” said a spokesperson.A turbofan engine fell off the pod of a B-52H bomber during flight on Jan. 4 last year and the U.S. Air Force (USAF) has completed its investigation into the matter.It determined that the first stage fan disk of the Pratt & Whitney TF33 engine had failed in mid-air and caused the Number Three engine to break off the wing of the bomber.According Military.com, the incident occurred during a training flight near Minot Air Force Base (AFB). The engine broke up and debris landed in unpopulated area, they said. No injuries were reported.“The aircraft landed safely with no injuries,” said a spokesperson.The five personnel on board the Cold War Era heavy bomber landed back at the base and a UH-1N Huey helicopter was dispatched to recover what was left of the engine.
07/16/2019 - 06:19 AM
Ukraine's Russian-speaking president gives glimmer of hope to war-torn east
DONETSK/SLOVYANSK, Ukraine, July 17 (Reuters) - In one of his first acts as Ukrainian president, comedian-turned-politician Volodymyr Zelenskiy held out a symbolic olive branch to people in Ukraine's mostly Russian-speaking Donbass region, by switching from Ukrainian to Russian. Language was a factor in the outbreak of the conflict in 2014, with Russian speakers in Donbass saying they feared Kiev would impose the Ukrainian language on them.
07/17/2019 - 11:00 AM
The Latest: Protesters mark anniversary of Garner's death
The Latest on the U.S. Justice Department's decision not to prosecute the officer involved in Eric Garner's death. Several hundred people marched in lower Manhattan to mark the five year anniversary of Eric Garner's death. The marchers on Wednesday chanted and held signs saying "I Can't Breathe," a reference to Garner's dying words, as they marched past federal courthouses.
07/17/2019 - 05:55 PM
Geraldo Rivera on Trump's controversial tweets: It pains me to watch Trump take the low road
Trump embroiled in feud with progressive Democrats following tweet about congresswomen of color; reaction from Fox News correspondent-at-large Geraldo Rivera and Fox News contributor David Webb.
07/15/2019 - 07:32 PM
US manufacturing sinks into recession amid trade wars
US manufacturing sunk into recession in June after two consecutive quarters of declines amid President Donald Trump's bitter trade wars and a slowdown in China and other trading partners. The decline comes as the United States enters its 11th year of economic recovery and occurs despite Trump's constant pledges to restore America to manufacturing greatness -- even though services now drive three quarters of the US economy. Despite jumping in June, manufacturing fell by a 2.2 percent annual rate in the April-June period, and total industrial production lost 1.2 percent, in both cases the second consecutive quarterly decline, the Federal Reserve said Tuesday.
07/16/2019 - 02:38 PM
News Feed by