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ChannelYahoo News - Latest News & Headlines    
RSS File: https://news.yahoo.com/rss/topstories
Description: The latest news and headlines from Yahoo! News. Get breaking news stories and in-depth coverage with videos and photos.
  • Trump says Kellyanne 'must have done some bad things' to George Conway      Fri, 22 Nov 2019 10:00:24 -0500

    Trump says Kellyanne 'must have done some bad things' to George ConwayKellyanne Conway, special counselor to President Trump, is known to berate journalists who speculate about her marriage to George Conway, a prominent Trump critic. In an interview with "Fox & Friends" on Friday, the president did just that.


    Trump says Kellyanne 'must have done some bad things' to George ConwayKellyanne Conway, special counselor to President Trump, is known to berate journalists who speculate about her marriage to George Conway, a prominent Trump critic. In an interview with "Fox & Friends" on Friday, the president did just that.


     

  • Gabbard and Harris clash over visions for the Democratic Party      Wed, 20 Nov 2019 22:19:39 -0500

    Gabbard and Harris clash over visions for the Democratic PartyAt the Democratic debate in Atlanta on Wednesday, Rep. Tulsi Gabbard of Hawaii and Sen. Kamala Harris of California clashed over their differing visions for the party, particularly when it comes to foreign policy.


    Gabbard and Harris clash over visions for the Democratic PartyAt the Democratic debate in Atlanta on Wednesday, Rep. Tulsi Gabbard of Hawaii and Sen. Kamala Harris of California clashed over their differing visions for the party, particularly when it comes to foreign policy.


     

  • Benjamin Netanyahu was just indicted on fraud and bribery charges, becoming the first Israeli prime minister to be indicted in office      Thu, 21 Nov 2019 12:00:48 -0500

    Benjamin Netanyahu was just indicted on fraud and bribery charges, becoming the first Israeli prime minister to be indicted in officeNetanyahu is accused of receiving gifts and positive news coverage in exchange for regulatory benefits from the government.


    Benjamin Netanyahu was just indicted on fraud and bribery charges, becoming the first Israeli prime minister to be indicted in officeNetanyahu is accused of receiving gifts and positive news coverage in exchange for regulatory benefits from the government.


     

  • Palestinians: Israeli settlers torch cars in West Bank      Fri, 22 Nov 2019 04:52:51 -0500

    Palestinians: Israeli settlers torch cars in West BankIsraeli settlers attacked five villages in the occupied West Bank overnight, torching vehicles and olive trees, and leaving graffiti on the walls of homes, Palestinian officials said Friday. Ghassan Daghlas, a spokesman for the Nablus governorate, said the Jewish settlers set fire to five cars and spray-painted graffiti on more than 20 others. Israeli police say they are investigating the reports and that police and military units will visit the area.


    Palestinians: Israeli settlers torch cars in West BankIsraeli settlers attacked five villages in the occupied West Bank overnight, torching vehicles and olive trees, and leaving graffiti on the walls of homes, Palestinian officials said Friday. Ghassan Daghlas, a spokesman for the Nablus governorate, said the Jewish settlers set fire to five cars and spray-painted graffiti on more than 20 others. Israeli police say they are investigating the reports and that police and military units will visit the area.


     

  • Russia 'ruined' Ukrainian naval vessels before handing them back, says Ukrainian navy      Thu, 21 Nov 2019 10:41:28 -0500

    Russia 'ruined' Ukrainian naval vessels before handing them back, says Ukrainian navyThree Ukrainian navy boats seized by Russia a year ago were vandalised before being handed back to Ukraine, the country's navy said.  The fast gunboats Nikopol and Berdyansk and the tugboat Tany Kapu were welcomed by Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelenskiy and onlookers waving national flags arrived in Ochakiv, a Ukrainian naval port on the Black Sea on Wednesday evening.  But Ukraine's navy said the vessels had been stripped bare and left so badly damaged that they had to be towed home by tug. "The Russians ruined them," said Admiral Ihor Voronchenko, the head of the Ukrainian Navy.   "They even took the ceiling lights, plug sockets, and lavatories," he said.  Mr Zelenskiy, who reviewed the vessels as they returned on Thursday morning, said: "I am very happy that our navy vessels are back where they belong. As promised, we have brought back our sailors and our ships.   "Some of the equipment is missing, as well as some weapons. There will be an investigation. We will see all of the details."   Russia blocked the Kerch strait with a tanker and deployed fighter jets to stop the three vessels entering the Azov Sea last year Credit: Pavel Rebrov/Reuters Russia's Federal Security Service (FSB), which oversees the border service that seized the vessels, denied tampering with the ships and said they had been "handed over to the Ukrainian side in normal condition."   The three vessels were boarded by Russian forces after they tried to pass through the Strait of Kerch in November last year.  Russia says they illegally violated the Russian border, then impounded the vessels and jailed 24 crew members pending trial.  Ukraine described the move as an act of war and a flagrant breach of the treaty that gives the countries joint sovereignty of the only channel between the Black and Azov seas.  Mr Zelenskiy said the return of the boats as the latest in a series of small steps "towards peace" ahead of a key summit with Vladimir Putin next month.  Mr Zelenskiy inspects the artillery boat Nikopol Credit: Arkhip Vereshchagin/TASS The two presidents will meet in person for the first time in Paris on December 9, at talks brokered by France and Germany that are designed to end the conflict in east Ukraine, which has killed 13,000 people since 2014.     In September the ships' crews were released in a prisoner swap that also saw Russia free Oleg Sentsov, a Ukrainian filmmaker and activist who had been held on trumped-up charges since the annexation of Crimea in 2014.    The sides have also agreed to pull back troops from key points on the line of contact in eastern Ukraine. The narrow sea way between Crimea and Russia's Taman peninsula is the only passage for ships sailing to and from Ukraine's industrial port of Mariupol, to which the flotilla was bound when it was seized.  Russia annexed Crimea from Ukraine in 2014 and opened a bridge across the strait in 2017 in defiance of Ukrainian objections. Mariupol is a few miles from the frontline where Ukrainian and Russian-directed separatist forces have been fighting a static war for five years.


    Russia 'ruined' Ukrainian naval vessels before handing them back, says Ukrainian navyThree Ukrainian navy boats seized by Russia a year ago were vandalised before being handed back to Ukraine, the country's navy said.  The fast gunboats Nikopol and Berdyansk and the tugboat Tany Kapu were welcomed by Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelenskiy and onlookers waving national flags arrived in Ochakiv, a Ukrainian naval port on the Black Sea on Wednesday evening.  But Ukraine's navy said the vessels had been stripped bare and left so badly damaged that they had to be towed home by tug. "The Russians ruined them," said Admiral Ihor Voronchenko, the head of the Ukrainian Navy.   "They even took the ceiling lights, plug sockets, and lavatories," he said.  Mr Zelenskiy, who reviewed the vessels as they returned on Thursday morning, said: "I am very happy that our navy vessels are back where they belong. As promised, we have brought back our sailors and our ships.   "Some of the equipment is missing, as well as some weapons. There will be an investigation. We will see all of the details."   Russia blocked the Kerch strait with a tanker and deployed fighter jets to stop the three vessels entering the Azov Sea last year Credit: Pavel Rebrov/Reuters Russia's Federal Security Service (FSB), which oversees the border service that seized the vessels, denied tampering with the ships and said they had been "handed over to the Ukrainian side in normal condition."   The three vessels were boarded by Russian forces after they tried to pass through the Strait of Kerch in November last year.  Russia says they illegally violated the Russian border, then impounded the vessels and jailed 24 crew members pending trial.  Ukraine described the move as an act of war and a flagrant breach of the treaty that gives the countries joint sovereignty of the only channel between the Black and Azov seas.  Mr Zelenskiy said the return of the boats as the latest in a series of small steps "towards peace" ahead of a key summit with Vladimir Putin next month.  Mr Zelenskiy inspects the artillery boat Nikopol Credit: Arkhip Vereshchagin/TASS The two presidents will meet in person for the first time in Paris on December 9, at talks brokered by France and Germany that are designed to end the conflict in east Ukraine, which has killed 13,000 people since 2014.     In September the ships' crews were released in a prisoner swap that also saw Russia free Oleg Sentsov, a Ukrainian filmmaker and activist who had been held on trumped-up charges since the annexation of Crimea in 2014.    The sides have also agreed to pull back troops from key points on the line of contact in eastern Ukraine. The narrow sea way between Crimea and Russia's Taman peninsula is the only passage for ships sailing to and from Ukraine's industrial port of Mariupol, to which the flotilla was bound when it was seized.  Russia annexed Crimea from Ukraine in 2014 and opened a bridge across the strait in 2017 in defiance of Ukrainian objections. Mariupol is a few miles from the frontline where Ukrainian and Russian-directed separatist forces have been fighting a static war for five years.


     

  • American Airlines admits a midair accident that knocked out 2 flight crew was not caused by spilled soap      Wed, 20 Nov 2019 14:19:02 -0500

    American Airlines admits a midair accident that knocked out 2 flight crew was not caused by spilled soapAmerican Airlines admitted Tuesday the powerful fumes that knocked two flight attendants unconscious and forced a flight to make an emergency landing were not caused by spilled soap, as the airline had previously claimed.


    American Airlines admits a midair accident that knocked out 2 flight crew was not caused by spilled soapAmerican Airlines admitted Tuesday the powerful fumes that knocked two flight attendants unconscious and forced a flight to make an emergency landing were not caused by spilled soap, as the airline had previously claimed.


     

  • Cory Booker is right: Joe Biden must be 'high' to oppose legalizing marijuana      Thu, 21 Nov 2019 12:51:54 -0500

    Cory Booker is right: Joe Biden must be 'high' to oppose legalizing marijuanaJoe Biden isn’t just old-fashioned. He’s a stubborn prohibitionist averse to catching up with reality — the inevitability of marijuana legalization.


    Cory Booker is right: Joe Biden must be 'high' to oppose legalizing marijuanaJoe Biden isn’t just old-fashioned. He’s a stubborn prohibitionist averse to catching up with reality — the inevitability of marijuana legalization.


     

  • Billionaire Michael Bloomberg files paperwork to run for U.S. president      Thu, 21 Nov 2019 13:30:49 -0500

    Billionaire Michael Bloomberg files paperwork to run for U.S. presidentBillionaire Michael Bloomberg filed paperwork on Thursday with the Federal Election Commission to run for U.S. president as a Democrat, the latest sign that the former New York City Mayor is joining the crowded nominating contest. The filing allows Bloomberg to raise money in a bid for the White House, but an aide said on Thursday that no final decision on whether he will run has been made. Bloomberg, 77, has signaled that he plans a late-entry in the Democratic primary, suggesting he feels the field of nearly 20 candidates is vulnerable.


    Billionaire Michael Bloomberg files paperwork to run for U.S. presidentBillionaire Michael Bloomberg filed paperwork on Thursday with the Federal Election Commission to run for U.S. president as a Democrat, the latest sign that the former New York City Mayor is joining the crowded nominating contest. The filing allows Bloomberg to raise money in a bid for the White House, but an aide said on Thursday that no final decision on whether he will run has been made. Bloomberg, 77, has signaled that he plans a late-entry in the Democratic primary, suggesting he feels the field of nearly 20 candidates is vulnerable.


     

  • Dozens of dogs tested in French search for woman's forest killers      Thu, 21 Nov 2019 12:22:44 -0500

    Dozens of dogs tested in French search for woman's forest killersFrench police investigating the death of a pregnant woman mauled to death by dogs while walking in the woods have carried out DNA tests on 67 dogs to try identify those that attacked her, investigators said Thursday. Elisa Pilarski, 29, was found dead on Saturday in Retz forest about 90 kilometres (55 miles) northeast of Paris. A deer hunt with hounds was underway in the forest where Pilarski, a dog lover, was walking her own American Staffordshire terrier.


    Dozens of dogs tested in French search for woman's forest killersFrench police investigating the death of a pregnant woman mauled to death by dogs while walking in the woods have carried out DNA tests on 67 dogs to try identify those that attacked her, investigators said Thursday. Elisa Pilarski, 29, was found dead on Saturday in Retz forest about 90 kilometres (55 miles) northeast of Paris. A deer hunt with hounds was underway in the forest where Pilarski, a dog lover, was walking her own American Staffordshire terrier.


     

  • Sondland pressed on why Trump has blocked witnesses: 'I wish I could answer'      Wed, 20 Nov 2019 17:57:18 -0500

    Sondland pressed on why Trump has blocked witnesses: 'I wish I could answer'Rep. Denny Heck, D-Wash., took aim at the members of the Trump administration who have refused to testify in the impeachment inquiry.


    Sondland pressed on why Trump has blocked witnesses: 'I wish I could answer'Rep. Denny Heck, D-Wash., took aim at the members of the Trump administration who have refused to testify in the impeachment inquiry.


     

  • Colorado's Mesa County Valley School District 51 is closing all its schools amid 'unprecedented' illness outbreak      Thu, 21 Nov 2019 00:26:42 -0500

    Colorado's Mesa County Valley School District 51 is closing all its schools amid 'unprecedented' illness outbreakMesa County Valley School District 51 is closing all of its schools until after Thanksgiving break because of an illness outbreak.


    Colorado's Mesa County Valley School District 51 is closing all its schools amid 'unprecedented' illness outbreakMesa County Valley School District 51 is closing all of its schools until after Thanksgiving break because of an illness outbreak.


     

  • 20 of the Most Beautiful Bridges in the World      Thu, 21 Nov 2019 08:00:00 -0500

    20 of the Most Beautiful Bridges in the World


    20 of the Most Beautiful Bridges in the World


     

  • AG Barr to unveil plan on missing, murdered Native Americans      Fri, 22 Nov 2019 00:25:05 -0500

    AG Barr to unveil plan on missing, murdered Native AmericansAttorney General William Barr will announce a nationwide plan on Friday to address the crisis of missing and murdered indigenous people as concerns mount over the level of violence they face. Barr will announce the plan, known as the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Persons Initiative, during a visit with tribal leaders and law enforcement officials on the Flathead Reservation in Montana. Native American women experience some of the nation’s highest rates of murder, sexual violence and domestic abuse.


    AG Barr to unveil plan on missing, murdered Native AmericansAttorney General William Barr will announce a nationwide plan on Friday to address the crisis of missing and murdered indigenous people as concerns mount over the level of violence they face. Barr will announce the plan, known as the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Persons Initiative, during a visit with tribal leaders and law enforcement officials on the Flathead Reservation in Montana. Native American women experience some of the nation’s highest rates of murder, sexual violence and domestic abuse.


     

  • Latina women will finally earn the same as white men – in 2224      Thu, 21 Nov 2019 15:04:25 -0500

    Latina women will finally earn the same as white men – in 2224Latina women in the US get paid 53 cents to a white man’s dollar. On current trends equality is a long way offThe gap persists for Latina women regardless of education, experience, or where they live. Photograph: AlamyYesterday, nearly 23 months after the start of 2018, the average Latina woman in the US finally earned what a white man earned in a year.That’s because Latina women were paid barely half of what a white man was in 2017 – earning 53 cents to every white man’s dollar. That pay gap has also widened at an alarming rate: in 2016, Latina women were paid 67 cents to every white man’s dollar.When you lump all women from all demographics in together, they collectively have to work up until 2 April 2019 before they earn as much as white men did in 2018 (the equivalent of four extra months).Native American women earn 58 cents to every dollar earned by a white man; black women earn 61 cents for every dollar. White women and Asian women in the US are a little closer, earning 77 cents and 85 cents, respectively.Research suggests that this gap persists for Latina women regardless of their education, experience or where they live.What’s more, research by the Institute for Women’s Policy suggests that at the current rate of (non-)improvement, it will be 205 years before Latinas get pay equity in the US.Let me spell that out for you: this would mean Latina women can’t expect to earn as much as white men until 2224.


    Latina women will finally earn the same as white men – in 2224Latina women in the US get paid 53 cents to a white man’s dollar. On current trends equality is a long way offThe gap persists for Latina women regardless of education, experience, or where they live. Photograph: AlamyYesterday, nearly 23 months after the start of 2018, the average Latina woman in the US finally earned what a white man earned in a year.That’s because Latina women were paid barely half of what a white man was in 2017 – earning 53 cents to every white man’s dollar. That pay gap has also widened at an alarming rate: in 2016, Latina women were paid 67 cents to every white man’s dollar.When you lump all women from all demographics in together, they collectively have to work up until 2 April 2019 before they earn as much as white men did in 2018 (the equivalent of four extra months).Native American women earn 58 cents to every dollar earned by a white man; black women earn 61 cents for every dollar. White women and Asian women in the US are a little closer, earning 77 cents and 85 cents, respectively.Research suggests that this gap persists for Latina women regardless of their education, experience or where they live.What’s more, research by the Institute for Women’s Policy suggests that at the current rate of (non-)improvement, it will be 205 years before Latinas get pay equity in the US.Let me spell that out for you: this would mean Latina women can’t expect to earn as much as white men until 2224.


     

  • Vindman's Lawyer Asks Fox News to Retract Espionage Allegation      Thu, 21 Nov 2019 08:10:48 -0500

    Vindman's Lawyer Asks Fox News to Retract Espionage AllegationLt. Col. Alexander Vindman is hitting back at the smear campaign against him.A lawyer for Vindman, the National Security Council's Ukraine expert, sent a warning letter to Fox News on Wednesday seeking a retraction or correction of an October segment hosted by one of the network's biggest personalities, Laura Ingraham, which baselessly suggested that the colonel, a decorated Iraq War veteran, might be guilty of espionage.The letter sent by David Pressman, a partner at Boies Schiller Flexner, the law firm run by David Boies, also highlighted inflammatory statements made on the network by others, including Donald Trump Jr., President Donald Trump's son, who has repeatedly attacked Vindman, and Tucker Carlson, another prominent Fox host."LTC Vindman and his family have been forced to examine options, including potentially moving onto a military base, in order to ensure their physical security in the face of threats rooted in the falsehood that Fox News originated," Pressman wrote in the letter.Pressman's letter mainly focused on an Oct. 28 segment of "The Ingraham Angle," a show hosted by Ingraham, featuring an exchange between her and John Yoo, who was a top lawyer in the George W. Bush administration.During their exchange, Ingraham said, "Here we have a U.S. national security official who is advising Ukraine, while working inside the White House, apparently against the president's interest, and usually, they spoke in English. Isn't that kind of an interesting angle on this story?""I found that astounding," Yoo replied. "Some people might call that espionage."Espionage is a felony punishable by death, Pressman wrote, adding that before the Fox segment, Vindman "had never in his decorated 20-year career of service to his country been accused of having dual loyalties or committing espionage."Vindman was not trying to silence the news media, Pressman wrote. "He wants, as any responsible news organization would want, to see the truth published. And Fox News is in a unique position to correct its falsehoods with truth."The segment "sparked a torrent republications and copycat false charges," he said.A statement released Wednesday by Fox said that "as a guest on Fox News, John Yoo was responsible for his own sentiments, and he has subsequently done interviews to clarify what he meant."In an opinion article in USA Today, under the headline, "No, I didn't call Alexander Vindman a spy," Yoo wrote that he was accusing Ukraine of conducting an espionage operation."Despite what might appear on twitter, I didn't say that Lt. Col. was a spy or that he had committed espionage," he wrote in an email. "I had no reason to question that he was doing his duty as an officer. But I think the Ukrainians are engaged in espionage against us."Pressman, in his letter, wrote that "Mr. Yoo's argument that he did not intend to accuse LTC of Vindman of 'espionage' -- that he was accusing the nation of Ukraine instead -- is as legally irrelevant as it is factually incredible."Much of the right-wing criticism of Vindman accuses him of being partisan, despite his long career of nonpartisan military service, or that he has divided loyalties, since he immigrated from Ukraine when he was 3 years old.The president himself has suggested that the colonel is a "Never Trumper," without evidence. And critics like Ingraham have seized on the fact that he had high-level contacts with Ukrainian officials and provided guidance to them on U.S. policy, even though a key part of his job at the NSC is to interact with the Ukrainian government and communicate security policy.The letter also said that Trump had "built on and amplified Fox News' falsehoods" in his Twitter posts, and cited a segment in which Donald Trump Jr., referred to the colonel as "a leftist," although a Fox News host interjected to say "we don't know if he's a leftist."In testimony Tuesday before the House Intelligence Committee, Vindman said that he twice reported his concerns about the Trump administration's dealings with Ukraine to National Security Council officials. At the hearing, Republicans ominously highlighted an episode where the Ukrainians sounded out the colonel about becoming the country's defense minister, an offer the colonel said he rejected immediately and reported to his supervisors.In the aftermath of his appearance, attacks against Vindman escalated, including from Donald Trump Jr., who called the colonel "a low level partisan bureaucrat and nothing more."Carlson and Ingraham seized on Ukraine's job offer, with Carlson saying on-air, according to the letter, "Now we learn that the Ukrainian government repeatedly asked Vindman to take formal control of the entire Ukrainian military, which, for the record, is a very strange thing to ask of an active duty American military officer."Pressman lamented such insinuations about his client's loyalty."Not once in his twenty-year career has LTC Vindman sought out the public eye," he wrote. "LTC Vindman came into the public not because of his actions, but despite them."This article originally appeared in The New York Times.(C) 2019 The New York Times Company


    Vindman's Lawyer Asks Fox News to Retract Espionage AllegationLt. Col. Alexander Vindman is hitting back at the smear campaign against him.A lawyer for Vindman, the National Security Council's Ukraine expert, sent a warning letter to Fox News on Wednesday seeking a retraction or correction of an October segment hosted by one of the network's biggest personalities, Laura Ingraham, which baselessly suggested that the colonel, a decorated Iraq War veteran, might be guilty of espionage.The letter sent by David Pressman, a partner at Boies Schiller Flexner, the law firm run by David Boies, also highlighted inflammatory statements made on the network by others, including Donald Trump Jr., President Donald Trump's son, who has repeatedly attacked Vindman, and Tucker Carlson, another prominent Fox host."LTC Vindman and his family have been forced to examine options, including potentially moving onto a military base, in order to ensure their physical security in the face of threats rooted in the falsehood that Fox News originated," Pressman wrote in the letter.Pressman's letter mainly focused on an Oct. 28 segment of "The Ingraham Angle," a show hosted by Ingraham, featuring an exchange between her and John Yoo, who was a top lawyer in the George W. Bush administration.During their exchange, Ingraham said, "Here we have a U.S. national security official who is advising Ukraine, while working inside the White House, apparently against the president's interest, and usually, they spoke in English. Isn't that kind of an interesting angle on this story?""I found that astounding," Yoo replied. "Some people might call that espionage."Espionage is a felony punishable by death, Pressman wrote, adding that before the Fox segment, Vindman "had never in his decorated 20-year career of service to his country been accused of having dual loyalties or committing espionage."Vindman was not trying to silence the news media, Pressman wrote. "He wants, as any responsible news organization would want, to see the truth published. And Fox News is in a unique position to correct its falsehoods with truth."The segment "sparked a torrent republications and copycat false charges," he said.A statement released Wednesday by Fox said that "as a guest on Fox News, John Yoo was responsible for his own sentiments, and he has subsequently done interviews to clarify what he meant."In an opinion article in USA Today, under the headline, "No, I didn't call Alexander Vindman a spy," Yoo wrote that he was accusing Ukraine of conducting an espionage operation."Despite what might appear on twitter, I didn't say that Lt. Col. was a spy or that he had committed espionage," he wrote in an email. "I had no reason to question that he was doing his duty as an officer. But I think the Ukrainians are engaged in espionage against us."Pressman, in his letter, wrote that "Mr. Yoo's argument that he did not intend to accuse LTC of Vindman of 'espionage' -- that he was accusing the nation of Ukraine instead -- is as legally irrelevant as it is factually incredible."Much of the right-wing criticism of Vindman accuses him of being partisan, despite his long career of nonpartisan military service, or that he has divided loyalties, since he immigrated from Ukraine when he was 3 years old.The president himself has suggested that the colonel is a "Never Trumper," without evidence. And critics like Ingraham have seized on the fact that he had high-level contacts with Ukrainian officials and provided guidance to them on U.S. policy, even though a key part of his job at the NSC is to interact with the Ukrainian government and communicate security policy.The letter also said that Trump had "built on and amplified Fox News' falsehoods" in his Twitter posts, and cited a segment in which Donald Trump Jr., referred to the colonel as "a leftist," although a Fox News host interjected to say "we don't know if he's a leftist."In testimony Tuesday before the House Intelligence Committee, Vindman said that he twice reported his concerns about the Trump administration's dealings with Ukraine to National Security Council officials. At the hearing, Republicans ominously highlighted an episode where the Ukrainians sounded out the colonel about becoming the country's defense minister, an offer the colonel said he rejected immediately and reported to his supervisors.In the aftermath of his appearance, attacks against Vindman escalated, including from Donald Trump Jr., who called the colonel "a low level partisan bureaucrat and nothing more."Carlson and Ingraham seized on Ukraine's job offer, with Carlson saying on-air, according to the letter, "Now we learn that the Ukrainian government repeatedly asked Vindman to take formal control of the entire Ukrainian military, which, for the record, is a very strange thing to ask of an active duty American military officer."Pressman lamented such insinuations about his client's loyalty."Not once in his twenty-year career has LTC Vindman sought out the public eye," he wrote. "LTC Vindman came into the public not because of his actions, but despite them."This article originally appeared in The New York Times.(C) 2019 The New York Times Company


     

  • Obama Warns Technology Has Created a More Splintered World      Thu, 21 Nov 2019 15:28:56 -0500

    Obama Warns Technology Has Created a More Splintered World(Bloomberg) -- Former U.S. President Barack Obama warned that technology is creating a more splintered world, fueling the disparities among wealthy and poorer nations, and people within countries.“The rise of extreme inequality both within nations and between nations that is being turbocharged by globalization and technology” is one of the biggest risks for young people, Obama said Thursday at Salesforce.com Inc.’s annual Dreamforce conference in San Francisco. “New technologies have allowed us reach. We have a global market. I can project my voice and you can take your technology to new markets. It has also amplified inequalities.”Though his successor Donald Trump has taken presidential use of Twitter to new heights, Obama has long been associated with the tech industry. His 2008 and 2012 presidential campaigns were known for their use of the internet and social media to galvanize supporters. Some of Obama’s staffers came from Silicon Valley companies, including Alphabet Inc.’s Google, and there’s a diaspora of former Obama administration officials who have worked in the tech industry since leaving the White House, including David Plouffe, formerly with Uber Technologies Inc. and Amazon.com Inc.’s top spokesman Jay Carney.Still, the 44th president talked about how the internet has helped divide American politics and society.“People remark on the polarization of our politics and rightfully so,” Obama said. “People rightfully see challenges like climate change and mass refugees and feel like things are spinning out of control. Behind that, what I see is a sense of anxiety, rootlessness and uncertainty in so many people. Some of that is fed by technology and there’s an anger formed by those technologies.”Social-media services including Facebook Inc. and Google‘s YouTube have been accused of fueling polarization with algorithms that show people news and other content that match their preconceived thinking and viewpoints.“If you watch Fox News, you live in a different reality than if you read the New York Times. If you follow one rabbit hole on YouTube or the internet, then suddenly things look completely different,” Obama said during his conversation with Salesforce co-Chief Executive Officer Marc Benioff. “We are siloing ourselves off in ways that are dangerous. I believed, and I still believe the internet can be a powerful tool for us to finally see each other and unify us, but right now it’s disappointing.”Since leaving the White House in January 2017, Obama has become a fixture on the paid-speaker circuit. Thursday’s appearance at Dreamforce is at least Obama’s second appearance at a tech event in San Francisco in the last two months. He also spoke at a Splunk Inc. conference in September.To contact the reporter on this story: Nico Grant in San Francisco at ngrant20@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Jillian Ward at jward56@bloomberg.net, Andrew Pollack, Alistair BarrFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.


    Obama Warns Technology Has Created a More Splintered World(Bloomberg) -- Former U.S. President Barack Obama warned that technology is creating a more splintered world, fueling the disparities among wealthy and poorer nations, and people within countries.“The rise of extreme inequality both within nations and between nations that is being turbocharged by globalization and technology” is one of the biggest risks for young people, Obama said Thursday at Salesforce.com Inc.’s annual Dreamforce conference in San Francisco. “New technologies have allowed us reach. We have a global market. I can project my voice and you can take your technology to new markets. It has also amplified inequalities.”Though his successor Donald Trump has taken presidential use of Twitter to new heights, Obama has long been associated with the tech industry. His 2008 and 2012 presidential campaigns were known for their use of the internet and social media to galvanize supporters. Some of Obama’s staffers came from Silicon Valley companies, including Alphabet Inc.’s Google, and there’s a diaspora of former Obama administration officials who have worked in the tech industry since leaving the White House, including David Plouffe, formerly with Uber Technologies Inc. and Amazon.com Inc.’s top spokesman Jay Carney.Still, the 44th president talked about how the internet has helped divide American politics and society.“People remark on the polarization of our politics and rightfully so,” Obama said. “People rightfully see challenges like climate change and mass refugees and feel like things are spinning out of control. Behind that, what I see is a sense of anxiety, rootlessness and uncertainty in so many people. Some of that is fed by technology and there’s an anger formed by those technologies.”Social-media services including Facebook Inc. and Google‘s YouTube have been accused of fueling polarization with algorithms that show people news and other content that match their preconceived thinking and viewpoints.“If you watch Fox News, you live in a different reality than if you read the New York Times. If you follow one rabbit hole on YouTube or the internet, then suddenly things look completely different,” Obama said during his conversation with Salesforce co-Chief Executive Officer Marc Benioff. “We are siloing ourselves off in ways that are dangerous. I believed, and I still believe the internet can be a powerful tool for us to finally see each other and unify us, but right now it’s disappointing.”Since leaving the White House in January 2017, Obama has become a fixture on the paid-speaker circuit. Thursday’s appearance at Dreamforce is at least Obama’s second appearance at a tech event in San Francisco in the last two months. He also spoke at a Splunk Inc. conference in September.To contact the reporter on this story: Nico Grant in San Francisco at ngrant20@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Jillian Ward at jward56@bloomberg.net, Andrew Pollack, Alistair BarrFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.


     

  • Mexicans sue Walmart over Texas shooting that left victims on both sides of border      Wed, 20 Nov 2019 20:27:42 -0500

    Mexicans sue Walmart over Texas shooting that left victims on both sides of borderTen Mexican citizens have sued Walmart over the shooting at a store in the U.S. border town of El Paso, Texas, that killed eight Mexicans and left eight more injured, saying that Walmart did not do enough to protect its customers, Mexico said on Wednesday. The suspected gunman told police he was targeting "Mexicans" in the August shooting, which killed 22 people in total.


    Mexicans sue Walmart over Texas shooting that left victims on both sides of borderTen Mexican citizens have sued Walmart over the shooting at a store in the U.S. border town of El Paso, Texas, that killed eight Mexicans and left eight more injured, saying that Walmart did not do enough to protect its customers, Mexico said on Wednesday. The suspected gunman told police he was targeting "Mexicans" in the August shooting, which killed 22 people in total.


     

  • Putin honours 'hero' pilots for Russian corn field landing      Thu, 21 Nov 2019 11:27:41 -0500

    Putin honours 'hero' pilots for Russian corn field landingRussian President Vladimir Putin on Thursday bestowed the country's top state honour on two pilots who safely landed a plane carrying more than 230 people in a corn field after a bird strike. At a ceremony in the Kremlin, Putin handed pilot Damir Yusupov and co-pilot Georgy Murzin the Hero of Russia awards, praising the crew's courage and professionalism. "They were able to land the plane literally in an empty field and saved dozens of lives," Putin said.


    Putin honours 'hero' pilots for Russian corn field landingRussian President Vladimir Putin on Thursday bestowed the country's top state honour on two pilots who safely landed a plane carrying more than 230 people in a corn field after a bird strike. At a ceremony in the Kremlin, Putin handed pilot Damir Yusupov and co-pilot Georgy Murzin the Hero of Russia awards, praising the crew's courage and professionalism. "They were able to land the plane literally in an empty field and saved dozens of lives," Putin said.


     

  • Lindsey Graham: DOJ Watchdog Report on FISA Abuse Set for December 9 Release Date      Thu, 21 Nov 2019 11:03:19 -0500

    Lindsey Graham: DOJ Watchdog Report on FISA Abuse Set for December 9 Release DateSenate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham (R., S.C.) confirmed that a Justice Department report detailing the FBI’s surveillance against the Trump campaign will be released on December 9, two days before Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz will testify before the committee.“I look forward to reviewing the report and hearing Mr. Horowitz’s testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee, where he will deliver a detailed account of what he found regarding his investigation, along with recommendations as to how to make our judicial and investigative systems better,” a statement from Graham’s office reads. Graham first revealed the news in an appearance on Fox News’ Hannity.The report, first announced by Horowitz in March 2018, will examine whether the FBI deliberately deceived the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court to get warrants to secretly spy on former Trump adviser Carter Page, after concerns over news that the now-discredited Steele dossier was used in the FBI’s FISA application.Horowitz’s work is independent of the DOJ’s administrative probe into the origins of the Russia investigation, which was upgraded to a criminal inquiry last month.During a Senate hearing in April on the Mueller investigation, which did not find sufficient evidence to charge President Trump with collusion with Russia, Attorney General William Barr stated that he believed “spying did occur” during the original FBI probe, and that he would investigate whether those FBI and Department of Justice officials misled the FISA court to surveil Trump’s campaign.In October, the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court ruled that the FBI’s foreign surveillance program is unconstitutional, after reports showed that the program collected the personal information of American citizens along with the foreign targets of the surveillance.In one case revealed in the ruling, an FBI official used a database to search for information on himself, his relatives and other FBI personnel.Editor’s Note: This piece originally misidentified Lindsey Graham as chair of the Senate Intelligence Committee. Graham is chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee.


    Lindsey Graham: DOJ Watchdog Report on FISA Abuse Set for December 9 Release DateSenate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham (R., S.C.) confirmed that a Justice Department report detailing the FBI’s surveillance against the Trump campaign will be released on December 9, two days before Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz will testify before the committee.“I look forward to reviewing the report and hearing Mr. Horowitz’s testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee, where he will deliver a detailed account of what he found regarding his investigation, along with recommendations as to how to make our judicial and investigative systems better,” a statement from Graham’s office reads. Graham first revealed the news in an appearance on Fox News’ Hannity.The report, first announced by Horowitz in March 2018, will examine whether the FBI deliberately deceived the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court to get warrants to secretly spy on former Trump adviser Carter Page, after concerns over news that the now-discredited Steele dossier was used in the FBI’s FISA application.Horowitz’s work is independent of the DOJ’s administrative probe into the origins of the Russia investigation, which was upgraded to a criminal inquiry last month.During a Senate hearing in April on the Mueller investigation, which did not find sufficient evidence to charge President Trump with collusion with Russia, Attorney General William Barr stated that he believed “spying did occur” during the original FBI probe, and that he would investigate whether those FBI and Department of Justice officials misled the FISA court to surveil Trump’s campaign.In October, the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court ruled that the FBI’s foreign surveillance program is unconstitutional, after reports showed that the program collected the personal information of American citizens along with the foreign targets of the surveillance.In one case revealed in the ruling, an FBI official used a database to search for information on himself, his relatives and other FBI personnel.Editor’s Note: This piece originally misidentified Lindsey Graham as chair of the Senate Intelligence Committee. Graham is chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee.


     

  • The U.S. Submarine That Could Bring Nuclear Doomsday With It      Thu, 21 Nov 2019 17:30:00 -0500

    The U.S. Submarine That Could Bring Nuclear Doomsday With ItOne sub to end a country.


    The U.S. Submarine That Could Bring Nuclear Doomsday With ItOne sub to end a country.


     

  • 'Don't let them in': Arrests made as hundreds protest Ann Coulter speech at UC Berkeley      Thu, 21 Nov 2019 06:34:33 -0500

    'Don't let them in': Arrests made as hundreds protest Ann Coulter speech at UC BerkeleyCoulter was invited to the California university by the Berkeley College Republicans for a speech about immigration called 'Adios, America.'


    'Don't let them in': Arrests made as hundreds protest Ann Coulter speech at UC BerkeleyCoulter was invited to the California university by the Berkeley College Republicans for a speech about immigration called 'Adios, America.'


     

  • US woman could be forced to register as a sex offender after appearing topless in front of step-children      Thu, 21 Nov 2019 15:32:00 -0500

    US woman could be forced to register as a sex offender after appearing topless in front of step-childrenAn American woman could be forced to register as a sex offender after appearing topless in front of her step-children in her own home. Tilli Buchanan, from Utah, was charged with three counts of misdemeanour lewdness involving a child after appearing topless along with the children's father in their home last year. Ms Buchanan's lawyers are contesting the charge, arguing it is unfair to treat men and women differently for baring her chest. She said she and her husband were working in their garage in late 2017 or early 2018 and removed their shirts to prevent them from getting dusty.   She told the court that when the children, aged nine and 13, entered the garage she “explained she considers herself a feminist and wanted to make a point that everybody should be fine with walking around their house or elsewhere with skin showing”. “It was in the privacy of my own home. My husband was right next to me in the same exact manner that I was, and he’s not being prosecuted,” she said after the court hearing. The charge occurred after child welfare officials began an investigation involving the children on an unrelated matter and the children’s mother reported the incident to authorities because she was “alarmed.” If convicted, Ms Buchanan could be required to register as a sex offender for 10 years. Her husband was not charged. Ms Buchanan's lawyers appeared in court on Tuesday to ask a judge to overturn the charges, arguing that they are unconstitutional. The lawyers cited a previous court ruling that overturned a Colorado ban on women going topless in public. However the prosecution said that in the US, nudity is commonly understood to include women's breasts. The judge in the case, Kara Pettit, declined to rule immediately on the case, saying it was “too important of an issue”. A ruling is expected in the next few months.


    US woman could be forced to register as a sex offender after appearing topless in front of step-childrenAn American woman could be forced to register as a sex offender after appearing topless in front of her step-children in her own home. Tilli Buchanan, from Utah, was charged with three counts of misdemeanour lewdness involving a child after appearing topless along with the children's father in their home last year. Ms Buchanan's lawyers are contesting the charge, arguing it is unfair to treat men and women differently for baring her chest. She said she and her husband were working in their garage in late 2017 or early 2018 and removed their shirts to prevent them from getting dusty.   She told the court that when the children, aged nine and 13, entered the garage she “explained she considers herself a feminist and wanted to make a point that everybody should be fine with walking around their house or elsewhere with skin showing”. “It was in the privacy of my own home. My husband was right next to me in the same exact manner that I was, and he’s not being prosecuted,” she said after the court hearing. The charge occurred after child welfare officials began an investigation involving the children on an unrelated matter and the children’s mother reported the incident to authorities because she was “alarmed.” If convicted, Ms Buchanan could be required to register as a sex offender for 10 years. Her husband was not charged. Ms Buchanan's lawyers appeared in court on Tuesday to ask a judge to overturn the charges, arguing that they are unconstitutional. The lawyers cited a previous court ruling that overturned a Colorado ban on women going topless in public. However the prosecution said that in the US, nudity is commonly understood to include women's breasts. The judge in the case, Kara Pettit, declined to rule immediately on the case, saying it was “too important of an issue”. A ruling is expected in the next few months.


     

  • Mayor of St. Louis suburb charged in election fraud case      Thu, 21 Nov 2019 14:33:25 -0500

    Mayor of St. Louis suburb charged in election fraud caseThe 81-year-old mayor of a St. Louis suburb was charged Thursday with submitting fraudulent absentee voter applications in what prosecutors say was an effort to illegally influence the city’s municipal elections. Berkeley Mayor Theodore Hoskins is charged with four counts of committing an election offense and one forgery count. The charges were filed by Jackson County prosecutor Jean Peters Baker, who was assigned to the case as special prosecutor at the request of St. Louis County Prosecuting Attorney Wesley Bell to avoid the appearance of conflict of interest.


    Mayor of St. Louis suburb charged in election fraud caseThe 81-year-old mayor of a St. Louis suburb was charged Thursday with submitting fraudulent absentee voter applications in what prosecutors say was an effort to illegally influence the city’s municipal elections. Berkeley Mayor Theodore Hoskins is charged with four counts of committing an election offense and one forgery count. The charges were filed by Jackson County prosecutor Jean Peters Baker, who was assigned to the case as special prosecutor at the request of St. Louis County Prosecuting Attorney Wesley Bell to avoid the appearance of conflict of interest.


     

  • Gordon Sondland May Have Just Sealed President Trump's Impeachment      Thu, 21 Nov 2019 00:32:30 -0500

    Gordon Sondland May Have Just Sealed President Trump's ImpeachmentGordon Sondland’s testimony may very well mark the moment President Donald Trump's impeachment by the House reached an irreversible momentum


    Gordon Sondland May Have Just Sealed President Trump's ImpeachmentGordon Sondland’s testimony may very well mark the moment President Donald Trump's impeachment by the House reached an irreversible momentum


     

  • Saudi Arabia’s Oil Heartland Is Calm. That’s Bad News for Iran      Fri, 22 Nov 2019 00:01:32 -0500

    Saudi Arabia’s Oil Heartland Is Calm. That’s Bad News for Iran(Bloomberg) -- At a cultural gathering in the region of Qatif in Saudi Arabia’s oil-rich east, a poet recited some of his work before taking questions. The audience of 80 or so people was engaged and smiling, while a man quietly served coffee and tea in espresso-sized paper cups.The scene of relaxed conviviality on a Monday evening in November might have been anywhere, save for the white thobes worn by the men, the women in mainly black abaya cloaks and the smell of cardamom in the coffee. But the event stood out for where and when it was, rather than what it was.Qatif is an area inhabited mainly by Shiites, who make up roughly 15 percent of the Saudi population and whose branch of Islam is most identified with Iran. The poet was a Sunni, the sect that dominates the kingdom.  The organizers said they had hosted Sunnis before, yet the atmosphere during a tense period for Saudi-Iranian relations showed how much Saudi Arabia has changed over the past three years. Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the leader and heir, is trying to fashion a kingdom underpinned by national identity rather than the traditional Wahhabi religious conservatism that defined society for generations. He has sought to crush any dissent against that new narrative.Read More: Where Have All the Wahhabis Gone?As a proxy war rages with Iran, there’s been none of the usual tightening of security around Shiite areas in Eastern Province. Also absent are the verbal attacks by radical Sunni clerics that accompanied previous episodes of tension with Iran.Saudi Shiites interviewed on two days in Qatif, less than an hour’s drive from oil giant Aramco’s headquarters, said anti-Shiite language in religious classes in their area has been toned down, more effort is being made to include a few Shiites in scholarship and training programs and more jobs are open for them.A science teacher who now lives in the adjacent city of Al Khobar said Shiites would pay the price every time there was conflict with Iran. One woman said the difference now is they no longer felt like “the scapegoat.”  These people declined to be identified by name, something that’s common among Saudis of all backgrounds when talking about the new era.There was only one checkpoint outside the city and no sign of security personnel. In the past, there were at least four, manned by the Saudi military, on the way from the city of Dammam to Qatif.“One of the biggest problems for the Saudis has been that the Iranians have made inroads into the Sunni Arab world, and significant ones,” said Kamran Bukhari, founding director of the Center for Global Policy in Washington. “It’s a strategic move by Mohammed bin Salman to say if we alienate our Shiites, then they will go running into the arms of Iran.”Saudi Arabia has led an offensive against Yemeni guerrillas that it says are backed by Iran. The two regional rivals funded forces on either side of the Syrian civil war. Riyadh hasn’t extended the usual financial aid to Lebanon because of concern money would flow to the Iranian-backed militants of Hezbollah.During the 2011 Arab Spring, Saudi security forces were quick to put down an uprising in Shiite-dominated Bahrain in case it spread to Eastern Province. The two territories are connected by bridges and causeways. In the years since then, the Saudi region has been blighted by bouts of unrest, detentions and demonstrations.The Shiites, whose split with the Sunnis goes back to the period following the Prophet Mohammed’s death, have been marginalized in Saudi Arabia and excluded from top jobs in the government and military. Those interviewed earlier this month said that while they’re happy with the changes, they also worry that progress could be reversed at short notice.“The problem is, the remote control is not with us,” one Shiite man who ran his own investment company said over a fish lunch in Qatif. “They have turned down the volume, but they still have the remote control. We don’t know when they will use it.”  That sentiment seems prevalent. “Yes, there’s been an improvement, but it will take time to change the mindset of ordinary Saudis who have been bred on hatred of Shiites,” said a Shiite woman.Saudi Shiites say the atmosphere changed after a three-month campaign in the Shiite-majority town of Awwamiya in Eastern Province in 2017 that leveled dozens of homes and sent thousands fleeing. A year later, the government announced plans for a new downtown area with a cultural center and a gallery in what Saudi-owned Al Arabiya TV said was deploying development to fight terrorism.The government, meanwhile, clipped the wings of the radical Sunni clerics who held sway over religious, social and legal policies and used the most derogatory language to describe Shiites, Jews and Christians. It also introduced a law against hate speech in August 2017 that gave the Department of Public Prosecution the power to charge offenders with spreading hate speech and threatening peace and security.The Wahhabi version of Sunni Islam considers Shiites heretics. Saudi Shiites frequently had to defend themselves against claims they might be a potential fifth column for Iran. “Their enmity to Islam and Muslims has long been known,” Sheikh Saleh al-Fowzan, a member of the Council of Senior Scholars, the kingdom’s highest religious authority, was quoted by Al-Madina newspaper as saying in June 2013. The remark came after Hezbollah said it had joined the fight alongside the Syrian regime against mostly Sunni rebels.In early 2016, a prominent Shiite cleric was beheaded along with dozens of others charged with terrorism offences. He was blamed for inciting unrest in Eastern Province five years earlier. His execution prompted protests in Tehran against the Saudi embassy, which has remained shut since then because diplomatic ties were severed.  There are more recent cases. Human Rights Watch said a mass execution in April included 33 Saudi Shiite men, and that maltreatment under Prince Mohammed has continued.The relative peace now could be an unintended consequence of “Vision 2030,” the crown prince’s blueprint for his transformation of the kingdom, according to another Shiite businessman.The situation is “much better and the atmosphere is more relaxed, but that’s also because Prince Mohammed crushed the dissent and jailed many of the agitators,” Sunnis and Shiites alike, he said. “The religious establishment was one of the main tools against us. We definitely don’t feel under attack anymore.”Indeed, many Shiites in Qatif have bought into the prince’s focus on Saudi identity and the new social freedoms, such as allowing men and women to interact with fewer restrictions, the businessman said. “Our families and most Shiites here feel a religious connection to Iran,” said a Shiite woman. “But whenever there’s trouble, they know it’s only Saudi Arabia that can help us.”To contact the authors of this story: Rodney Jefferson in Edinburgh at r.jefferson@bloomberg.netDonna Abu-Nasr in Riyadh at dabunasr@bloomberg.netTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Paul Sillitoe at psillitoe@bloomberg.netFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.


    Saudi Arabia’s Oil Heartland Is Calm. That’s Bad News for Iran(Bloomberg) -- At a cultural gathering in the region of Qatif in Saudi Arabia’s oil-rich east, a poet recited some of his work before taking questions. The audience of 80 or so people was engaged and smiling, while a man quietly served coffee and tea in espresso-sized paper cups.The scene of relaxed conviviality on a Monday evening in November might have been anywhere, save for the white thobes worn by the men, the women in mainly black abaya cloaks and the smell of cardamom in the coffee. But the event stood out for where and when it was, rather than what it was.Qatif is an area inhabited mainly by Shiites, who make up roughly 15 percent of the Saudi population and whose branch of Islam is most identified with Iran. The poet was a Sunni, the sect that dominates the kingdom.  The organizers said they had hosted Sunnis before, yet the atmosphere during a tense period for Saudi-Iranian relations showed how much Saudi Arabia has changed over the past three years. Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the leader and heir, is trying to fashion a kingdom underpinned by national identity rather than the traditional Wahhabi religious conservatism that defined society for generations. He has sought to crush any dissent against that new narrative.Read More: Where Have All the Wahhabis Gone?As a proxy war rages with Iran, there’s been none of the usual tightening of security around Shiite areas in Eastern Province. Also absent are the verbal attacks by radical Sunni clerics that accompanied previous episodes of tension with Iran.Saudi Shiites interviewed on two days in Qatif, less than an hour’s drive from oil giant Aramco’s headquarters, said anti-Shiite language in religious classes in their area has been toned down, more effort is being made to include a few Shiites in scholarship and training programs and more jobs are open for them.A science teacher who now lives in the adjacent city of Al Khobar said Shiites would pay the price every time there was conflict with Iran. One woman said the difference now is they no longer felt like “the scapegoat.”  These people declined to be identified by name, something that’s common among Saudis of all backgrounds when talking about the new era.There was only one checkpoint outside the city and no sign of security personnel. In the past, there were at least four, manned by the Saudi military, on the way from the city of Dammam to Qatif.“One of the biggest problems for the Saudis has been that the Iranians have made inroads into the Sunni Arab world, and significant ones,” said Kamran Bukhari, founding director of the Center for Global Policy in Washington. “It’s a strategic move by Mohammed bin Salman to say if we alienate our Shiites, then they will go running into the arms of Iran.”Saudi Arabia has led an offensive against Yemeni guerrillas that it says are backed by Iran. The two regional rivals funded forces on either side of the Syrian civil war. Riyadh hasn’t extended the usual financial aid to Lebanon because of concern money would flow to the Iranian-backed militants of Hezbollah.During the 2011 Arab Spring, Saudi security forces were quick to put down an uprising in Shiite-dominated Bahrain in case it spread to Eastern Province. The two territories are connected by bridges and causeways. In the years since then, the Saudi region has been blighted by bouts of unrest, detentions and demonstrations.The Shiites, whose split with the Sunnis goes back to the period following the Prophet Mohammed’s death, have been marginalized in Saudi Arabia and excluded from top jobs in the government and military. Those interviewed earlier this month said that while they’re happy with the changes, they also worry that progress could be reversed at short notice.“The problem is, the remote control is not with us,” one Shiite man who ran his own investment company said over a fish lunch in Qatif. “They have turned down the volume, but they still have the remote control. We don’t know when they will use it.”  That sentiment seems prevalent. “Yes, there’s been an improvement, but it will take time to change the mindset of ordinary Saudis who have been bred on hatred of Shiites,” said a Shiite woman.Saudi Shiites say the atmosphere changed after a three-month campaign in the Shiite-majority town of Awwamiya in Eastern Province in 2017 that leveled dozens of homes and sent thousands fleeing. A year later, the government announced plans for a new downtown area with a cultural center and a gallery in what Saudi-owned Al Arabiya TV said was deploying development to fight terrorism.The government, meanwhile, clipped the wings of the radical Sunni clerics who held sway over religious, social and legal policies and used the most derogatory language to describe Shiites, Jews and Christians. It also introduced a law against hate speech in August 2017 that gave the Department of Public Prosecution the power to charge offenders with spreading hate speech and threatening peace and security.The Wahhabi version of Sunni Islam considers Shiites heretics. Saudi Shiites frequently had to defend themselves against claims they might be a potential fifth column for Iran. “Their enmity to Islam and Muslims has long been known,” Sheikh Saleh al-Fowzan, a member of the Council of Senior Scholars, the kingdom’s highest religious authority, was quoted by Al-Madina newspaper as saying in June 2013. The remark came after Hezbollah said it had joined the fight alongside the Syrian regime against mostly Sunni rebels.In early 2016, a prominent Shiite cleric was beheaded along with dozens of others charged with terrorism offences. He was blamed for inciting unrest in Eastern Province five years earlier. His execution prompted protests in Tehran against the Saudi embassy, which has remained shut since then because diplomatic ties were severed.  There are more recent cases. Human Rights Watch said a mass execution in April included 33 Saudi Shiite men, and that maltreatment under Prince Mohammed has continued.The relative peace now could be an unintended consequence of “Vision 2030,” the crown prince’s blueprint for his transformation of the kingdom, according to another Shiite businessman.The situation is “much better and the atmosphere is more relaxed, but that’s also because Prince Mohammed crushed the dissent and jailed many of the agitators,” Sunnis and Shiites alike, he said. “The religious establishment was one of the main tools against us. We definitely don’t feel under attack anymore.”Indeed, many Shiites in Qatif have bought into the prince’s focus on Saudi identity and the new social freedoms, such as allowing men and women to interact with fewer restrictions, the businessman said. “Our families and most Shiites here feel a religious connection to Iran,” said a Shiite woman. “But whenever there’s trouble, they know it’s only Saudi Arabia that can help us.”To contact the authors of this story: Rodney Jefferson in Edinburgh at r.jefferson@bloomberg.netDonna Abu-Nasr in Riyadh at dabunasr@bloomberg.netTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Paul Sillitoe at psillitoe@bloomberg.netFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.


     

  • Pot stocks soar as U.S. House committee clears bill on federal weed legalization      Thu, 21 Nov 2019 11:49:51 -0500

    Pot stocks soar as U.S. House committee clears bill on federal weed legalizationThe bill, which was passed 24 to 10 in the House Judiciary Committee on Wednesday, sent shares of Canopy Growth , Aurora Cannabis , Aphria Inc and Tilray Inc up between 8% and 15%. "We think federal legalization would be a big positive for investor sentiment surrounding cannabis equities, which have been battered by oversupply and a steep price decline for the underlying commodity since becoming legal in Canada," said Garrett Nelson, senior equity analyst at CFRA Research.


    Pot stocks soar as U.S. House committee clears bill on federal weed legalizationThe bill, which was passed 24 to 10 in the House Judiciary Committee on Wednesday, sent shares of Canopy Growth , Aurora Cannabis , Aphria Inc and Tilray Inc up between 8% and 15%. "We think federal legalization would be a big positive for investor sentiment surrounding cannabis equities, which have been battered by oversupply and a steep price decline for the underlying commodity since becoming legal in Canada," said Garrett Nelson, senior equity analyst at CFRA Research.


     

  • Ninth family member dies after Israeli strike: ministry      Fri, 22 Nov 2019 09:23:38 -0500

    Ninth family member dies after Israeli strike: ministryA Palestinian wounded in an Israeli strike that killed eight members of his family has died, the health ministry in the Hamas-run strip said on Friday. Mohammed Abu Malhous al-Sawarka, 40, succumbed after being wounded in "the massacre in which eight members of a family died when they were targeted in their homes," ministry spokesman Ashraf al-Qudra said in a statement. It said he was the brother of Rasmi Abu Malhous who was killed when his home was hit by an air strike on November 14.


    Ninth family member dies after Israeli strike: ministryA Palestinian wounded in an Israeli strike that killed eight members of his family has died, the health ministry in the Hamas-run strip said on Friday. Mohammed Abu Malhous al-Sawarka, 40, succumbed after being wounded in "the massacre in which eight members of a family died when they were targeted in their homes," ministry spokesman Ashraf al-Qudra said in a statement. It said he was the brother of Rasmi Abu Malhous who was killed when his home was hit by an air strike on November 14.


     

  • FBI lawyer reportedly altered document in Russia investigation origin, didn't change outcome      Fri, 22 Nov 2019 06:44:54 -0500

    FBI lawyer reportedly altered document in Russia investigation origin, didn't change outcomeJustice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz did uncover a flaw in the FBI's initial application to surveil Trump campaign aide Carter Page in 2016, CNN and The Washington Post report, and Horowitz will include it in his final report on the origins of the investigation of Russian campaign interference and President Trump's campaign. Horowitz is expected to release his report Dec. 9 and testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee two days later.A low-level FBI lawyer may have made "substantive change to an investigative document" used to secure a FISA court warrant to monitor Page's communications, and "the alterations were significant enough to have shifted the document's meaning," CNN reports. But, the Post adds, the line lawyer's "conduct did not alter Horowitz's finding that the surveillance application" had "a proper legal and factual basis." In fact, Trump campaign officials have "corroborated Special Counsel Robert Mueller's finding that the Trump campaign planned some of its strategy around the Russian hacks, and had multiple contacts with Kremlin-linked individuals in 2016," CNN notes.The unidentified FBI lawyer "altered an email to back up" an erroneous claim about having purported documentation, the Post reports, and "the employee was forced out of the FBI after the incident was discovered." Horowitz reportedly shared this information with U.S. Attorney John Durham, who is conducting a parallel investigation of the origins of the Russia probe, "and Durham is expected to pursue the allegation surrounding the altered document to see whether it constitutes a crime," the Post reports.More stories from theweek.com The story Republicans are really telling themselves about impeachment Ivanka Trump tries to defend father with awkwardly fake Tocqueville impeachment quote Watch Kamala Harris learn from Stephen Colbert that Lindsey Graham is investigating Joe Biden and Ukraine


    FBI lawyer reportedly altered document in Russia investigation origin, didn't change outcomeJustice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz did uncover a flaw in the FBI's initial application to surveil Trump campaign aide Carter Page in 2016, CNN and The Washington Post report, and Horowitz will include it in his final report on the origins of the investigation of Russian campaign interference and President Trump's campaign. Horowitz is expected to release his report Dec. 9 and testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee two days later.A low-level FBI lawyer may have made "substantive change to an investigative document" used to secure a FISA court warrant to monitor Page's communications, and "the alterations were significant enough to have shifted the document's meaning," CNN reports. But, the Post adds, the line lawyer's "conduct did not alter Horowitz's finding that the surveillance application" had "a proper legal and factual basis." In fact, Trump campaign officials have "corroborated Special Counsel Robert Mueller's finding that the Trump campaign planned some of its strategy around the Russian hacks, and had multiple contacts with Kremlin-linked individuals in 2016," CNN notes.The unidentified FBI lawyer "altered an email to back up" an erroneous claim about having purported documentation, the Post reports, and "the employee was forced out of the FBI after the incident was discovered." Horowitz reportedly shared this information with U.S. Attorney John Durham, who is conducting a parallel investigation of the origins of the Russia probe, "and Durham is expected to pursue the allegation surrounding the altered document to see whether it constitutes a crime," the Post reports.More stories from theweek.com The story Republicans are really telling themselves about impeachment Ivanka Trump tries to defend father with awkwardly fake Tocqueville impeachment quote Watch Kamala Harris learn from Stephen Colbert that Lindsey Graham is investigating Joe Biden and Ukraine


     

  • Is China’s DF-17 Hypersonic Missile Really a Super-Weapon?      Thu, 21 Nov 2019 03:30:00 -0500

    Is China’s DF-17 Hypersonic Missile Really a Super-Weapon?China’s new DF-17 hypersonic missile could penetrate U.S. missile-defense and destroy ports and air-defense systems, a Hong Kong newspaper warned.


    Is China’s DF-17 Hypersonic Missile Really a Super-Weapon?China’s new DF-17 hypersonic missile could penetrate U.S. missile-defense and destroy ports and air-defense systems, a Hong Kong newspaper warned.


     

  • Prince Andrew Was ‘Given’ ‘Beautiful Young Neurosurgeon’ by Epstein, Says Ex-Housekeeper      Fri, 22 Nov 2019 09:32:33 -0500

    Prince Andrew Was ‘Given’ ‘Beautiful Young Neurosurgeon’ by Epstein, Says Ex-HousekeeperChristopher FurlongIf you love The Daily Beast’s royal coverage, then we hope you’ll enjoy The Royalist, an all-new members-only series for Beast Inside. Become a member to get it in your inbox on Sunday.Prince Andrew was “given” a “beautiful young neurosurgeon” by Jeffrey Epstein when he stayed at the predator’s New Mexico ranch, according to a former housekeeper at the property.Deidre Stratton worked at Epstein’s notorious Zorro Ranch, and she told a podcast, Epstein: Devil in the Darkness, that Andrew was “kept company” by the woman for three days when he stayed at the ranch on his own.How Palace Fear of U.S. Epstein Probe Forced the Queen to Fire Prince AndrewStratton said her main job was to procure Epstein with a “stable” of young female masseurs, maintaining a list of women that “didn’t have tattoos or piercings” who were willing to drive out to the ranch and massage him.“Massages being in air quotes. I don’t see how his guests wouldn’t know that,” Stratton said.Prince Andrew’s Daughters, Beatrice and Eugenie, Are ‘Deeply Distressed,’ but Standing by HimStratton said Andrew came to stay at the Zorro Ranch on his own, and was put up in a self-contained three-bedroom guest property on the estate. Epstein was not there, but he arranged for Andrew to be accompanied by the young medic, according to the former housekeeper.Stratton said: “At the time, Jeffrey had this, she supposedly was a neurosurgeon, quite young, beautiful, young and brilliant, and she stayed in the home with him... At one point we had all these different teas and you could pick the teas that you wanted and she asked me to find one that would make Andrew more horny.”“I’m guessing she understood her job was to entertain him because I guess, the fear, I don’t know; the fear would be that Andrew would say, ‘No I didn’t really find her that attractive.’ ... He would tell Jeffrey that and then she would be on the ropes.”“I’m guessing that, another theory is, that Jeffrey probably had her on retainer and she knew what her job would be, should be, to make these people happy... Sex was all they thought about. I mean, I know for sure that Jeffrey would ideally like three massages a day.”Stratton said she asked Andrew what he would like for breakfast, and the royal said he wanted to try and cook some bacon for himself.“I offered to come up and fix his breakfast and he said, ‘No I want to try.’  ... When I got up there later to tidy up, you could smell burnt bacon and he was like, ‘I didn't do so well.’ ... He had a croissant and green tea or something. I remember him trying to cook his own breakfast. Isn’t that cute? He couldn’t even fry bacon.”Prince Andrew was this week ordered to step down from royal life by his mother, Queen Elizabeth II, in the aftermath of a disastrous interview he gave to the BBC about his friendship with Epstein.Read more at The Daily Beast.Get our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.


    Prince Andrew Was ‘Given’ ‘Beautiful Young Neurosurgeon’ by Epstein, Says Ex-HousekeeperChristopher FurlongIf you love The Daily Beast’s royal coverage, then we hope you’ll enjoy The Royalist, an all-new members-only series for Beast Inside. Become a member to get it in your inbox on Sunday.Prince Andrew was “given” a “beautiful young neurosurgeon” by Jeffrey Epstein when he stayed at the predator’s New Mexico ranch, according to a former housekeeper at the property.Deidre Stratton worked at Epstein’s notorious Zorro Ranch, and she told a podcast, Epstein: Devil in the Darkness, that Andrew was “kept company” by the woman for three days when he stayed at the ranch on his own.How Palace Fear of U.S. Epstein Probe Forced the Queen to Fire Prince AndrewStratton said her main job was to procure Epstein with a “stable” of young female masseurs, maintaining a list of women that “didn’t have tattoos or piercings” who were willing to drive out to the ranch and massage him.“Massages being in air quotes. I don’t see how his guests wouldn’t know that,” Stratton said.Prince Andrew’s Daughters, Beatrice and Eugenie, Are ‘Deeply Distressed,’ but Standing by HimStratton said Andrew came to stay at the Zorro Ranch on his own, and was put up in a self-contained three-bedroom guest property on the estate. Epstein was not there, but he arranged for Andrew to be accompanied by the young medic, according to the former housekeeper.Stratton said: “At the time, Jeffrey had this, she supposedly was a neurosurgeon, quite young, beautiful, young and brilliant, and she stayed in the home with him... At one point we had all these different teas and you could pick the teas that you wanted and she asked me to find one that would make Andrew more horny.”“I’m guessing she understood her job was to entertain him because I guess, the fear, I don’t know; the fear would be that Andrew would say, ‘No I didn’t really find her that attractive.’ ... He would tell Jeffrey that and then she would be on the ropes.”“I’m guessing that, another theory is, that Jeffrey probably had her on retainer and she knew what her job would be, should be, to make these people happy... Sex was all they thought about. I mean, I know for sure that Jeffrey would ideally like three massages a day.”Stratton said she asked Andrew what he would like for breakfast, and the royal said he wanted to try and cook some bacon for himself.“I offered to come up and fix his breakfast and he said, ‘No I want to try.’  ... When I got up there later to tidy up, you could smell burnt bacon and he was like, ‘I didn't do so well.’ ... He had a croissant and green tea or something. I remember him trying to cook his own breakfast. Isn’t that cute? He couldn’t even fry bacon.”Prince Andrew was this week ordered to step down from royal life by his mother, Queen Elizabeth II, in the aftermath of a disastrous interview he gave to the BBC about his friendship with Epstein.Read more at The Daily Beast.Get our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.


     

  • A California nanny promised children would be 'safe' in his care. He instead used them in porn videos, authorities say      Wed, 20 Nov 2019 12:08:55 -0500

    A California nanny promised children would be 'safe' in his care. He instead used them in porn videos, authorities sayA former California nanny will serve 30 years in federal prison for filming child pornography with at least 5 victims in his care, authorities said.


    A California nanny promised children would be 'safe' in his care. He instead used them in porn videos, authorities sayA former California nanny will serve 30 years in federal prison for filming child pornography with at least 5 victims in his care, authorities said.


     

  • Eric Trump uses father's impeachment hearing to promote family's wine      Thu, 21 Nov 2019 09:31:08 -0500

    Eric Trump uses father's impeachment hearing to promote family's wineEric Trump reacted to damning testimony against his father at the impeachment hearings by promoting the family wine business.


    Eric Trump uses father's impeachment hearing to promote family's wineEric Trump reacted to damning testimony against his father at the impeachment hearings by promoting the family wine business.


     

  • Google's Tour Builder Is a Great New Way to Make Your Friends Hate You      Thu, 21 Nov 2019 15:18:00 -0500

    Google's Tour Builder Is a Great New Way to Make Your Friends Hate You


    Google's Tour Builder Is a Great New Way to Make Your Friends Hate You


     

  • Analysis: Lots of impeachment evidence but one thing missing      Thu, 21 Nov 2019 20:51:00 -0500

    Analysis: Lots of impeachment evidence but one thing missingAfter two weeks of riveting public hearings in the House impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump, there is a mountain of evidence that is now beyond dispute. Trump explicitly ordered U.S. government officials to work with his personal attorney Rudy Giuliani on matters related to Ukraine, a country deeply dependent on Washington’s help to fend off Russian aggression. The Republican president pushed Ukraine to launch investigations into political rivals, leaning on a discredited conspiracy theory his own advisers disputed.


    Analysis: Lots of impeachment evidence but one thing missingAfter two weeks of riveting public hearings in the House impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump, there is a mountain of evidence that is now beyond dispute. Trump explicitly ordered U.S. government officials to work with his personal attorney Rudy Giuliani on matters related to Ukraine, a country deeply dependent on Washington’s help to fend off Russian aggression. The Republican president pushed Ukraine to launch investigations into political rivals, leaning on a discredited conspiracy theory his own advisers disputed.


     

  • Aerospace suppliers prepare for prolonged grounding of 737 MAX      Fri, 22 Nov 2019 09:35:16 -0500

    Aerospace suppliers prepare for prolonged grounding of 737 MAXMakers of aircraft parts are making contingency plans for a prolonged grounding of Boeing's 737 MAX, with several expecting the jet's return to service to take longer than the planemaker hopes. The start date of deliveries of the MAX, grounded worldwide in March following a second fatal crash in five months, and the pace of production, which affects prices of aircraft parts, were key topics of discussion among suppliers at the Dubai Airshow this week. Boeing has said it hopes to begin deliveries of the jet next month after a software fix is approved by the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration, with pilot training requirements likely getting a nod in January.


    Aerospace suppliers prepare for prolonged grounding of 737 MAXMakers of aircraft parts are making contingency plans for a prolonged grounding of Boeing's 737 MAX, with several expecting the jet's return to service to take longer than the planemaker hopes. The start date of deliveries of the MAX, grounded worldwide in March following a second fatal crash in five months, and the pace of production, which affects prices of aircraft parts, were key topics of discussion among suppliers at the Dubai Airshow this week. Boeing has said it hopes to begin deliveries of the jet next month after a software fix is approved by the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration, with pilot training requirements likely getting a nod in January.


     

  • Bailed Ghosn speaks to wife after Japan court permission      Fri, 22 Nov 2019 04:31:06 -0500

    Bailed Ghosn speaks to wife after Japan court permissionFormer Nissan boss Carlos Ghosn spoke to his wife for the first time in eight months on Friday, his spokesman said, after a Tokyo court lifted a ban on contact between the pair. Ghosn is on bail in Tokyo as he awaits trial on four charges of financial misconduct related to his time as chairman of the Japanese car giant he is widely credited with saving from the brink of bankruptcy. Ghosn spoke to his wife Carole, now in New York, for an hour shortly after noon via videoconference, the spokesman for the family told AFP without clarifying details of their conversation.


    Bailed Ghosn speaks to wife after Japan court permissionFormer Nissan boss Carlos Ghosn spoke to his wife for the first time in eight months on Friday, his spokesman said, after a Tokyo court lifted a ban on contact between the pair. Ghosn is on bail in Tokyo as he awaits trial on four charges of financial misconduct related to his time as chairman of the Japanese car giant he is widely credited with saving from the brink of bankruptcy. Ghosn spoke to his wife Carole, now in New York, for an hour shortly after noon via videoconference, the spokesman for the family told AFP without clarifying details of their conversation.


     

  • Here's who will be onstage for the December Democratic debate co-hosted by PBS NewsHour and Politico, and how to watch      Thu, 21 Nov 2019 15:39:04 -0500

    Here's who will be onstage for the December Democratic debate co-hosted by PBS NewsHour and Politico, and how to watchSo far, six candidates have qualified for the next debate, which PBS NewsHour and Politico will co-host on December 19 in Los Angeles.


    Here's who will be onstage for the December Democratic debate co-hosted by PBS NewsHour and Politico, and how to watchSo far, six candidates have qualified for the next debate, which PBS NewsHour and Politico will co-host on December 19 in Los Angeles.


     

  • Would President Trump Ever Bring Back the Battleships?      Thu, 21 Nov 2019 23:30:00 -0500

    Would President Trump Ever Bring Back the Battleships?The U.S. Navy will never again be a dreadnought fleet of big-gun battleships. But it is time to reexamine the role of armor in naval architecture. Even the most forward-leaning offensive operation needs a few tough linesmen who can take a beating and stay in the game. A future battleship would give the Navy— and by extension the president—warfighting options other than the total annihilation of the enemy.


    Would President Trump Ever Bring Back the Battleships?The U.S. Navy will never again be a dreadnought fleet of big-gun battleships. But it is time to reexamine the role of armor in naval architecture. Even the most forward-leaning offensive operation needs a few tough linesmen who can take a beating and stay in the game. A future battleship would give the Navy— and by extension the president—warfighting options other than the total annihilation of the enemy.


     

  • President Andrew Yang's first words to Russia's Vladimir Putin: 'I'm sorry I beat your guy'      Wed, 20 Nov 2019 23:32:21 -0500

    President Andrew Yang's first words to Russia's Vladimir Putin: 'I'm sorry I beat your guy'Andrew Yang didn't get much speaking time at Wednesday night's Democratic presidential debate in Atlanta, but he made memorable use of the time he got. Near the end of the debate, Yang was asked what he would say, if elected, in his first call with Russian President Vladimir Putin. "Well, first I'd say I'm sorry I beat your guy," he said. "Or not sorry," he added, after a pause for applause. "And second, I'd say the days of meddling in American elections are over, and we will take any undermining of our democratic processes as an act of hostility and aggression."Yang continued with a substantive answer, though he got a little in the weeds of mixed metaphors with his proposal for a "new World Data Organization, like a WTO for data, because right now, unfortunately, we're living in a world where data is the new oil and we don't have our arms around it."More stories from theweek.com India is entering a new dark age Republicans are throwing Rudy Giuliani under the bus Stephen Colbert, Jimmy Kimmel, Seth Meyers recap 5 days of impeachment hearings, marvel at Fiona Hill


    President Andrew Yang's first words to Russia's Vladimir Putin: 'I'm sorry I beat your guy'Andrew Yang didn't get much speaking time at Wednesday night's Democratic presidential debate in Atlanta, but he made memorable use of the time he got. Near the end of the debate, Yang was asked what he would say, if elected, in his first call with Russian President Vladimir Putin. "Well, first I'd say I'm sorry I beat your guy," he said. "Or not sorry," he added, after a pause for applause. "And second, I'd say the days of meddling in American elections are over, and we will take any undermining of our democratic processes as an act of hostility and aggression."Yang continued with a substantive answer, though he got a little in the weeds of mixed metaphors with his proposal for a "new World Data Organization, like a WTO for data, because right now, unfortunately, we're living in a world where data is the new oil and we don't have our arms around it."More stories from theweek.com India is entering a new dark age Republicans are throwing Rudy Giuliani under the bus Stephen Colbert, Jimmy Kimmel, Seth Meyers recap 5 days of impeachment hearings, marvel at Fiona Hill


     

  • Nearly ¾ of transgender people slain since 2017 killed with guns      Thu, 21 Nov 2019 01:19:41 -0500

    Nearly ¾ of transgender people slain since 2017 killed with guns"Transgender violence is a gun violence issue," says Everytown for Gun Safety researcher


    Nearly ¾ of transgender people slain since 2017 killed with guns"Transgender violence is a gun violence issue," says Everytown for Gun Safety researcher


     

  • Jussie Smollett Files Suit against City of Chicago for ‘Malicious Prosecution’      Wed, 20 Nov 2019 12:56:31 -0500

    Jussie Smollett Files Suit against City of Chicago for ‘Malicious Prosecution’Jussie Smollett filed a countersuit on Tuesday in response to a lawsuit brought by the city of Chicago, alleging the city engaged in "malicious prosecution" that caused the actor "humiliation, mental anguish and extreme emotional distress," the Chicago Sun Times reported Monday.Smollett was alleged to have staged a racist, homophobic crime against himself in January with the help of two friends, who themselves are brothers of Nigerian origin.A grand jury indicted Smollett in March, but Cook County State Attorney Kim Foxx dropped the charges against the actor, citing the technically victimless nature of the hoax and his record of service to the community.The city of Chicago had filed a lawsuit against Smollett attempting to recover $130,106 from the Empire actor after investigating the staged crime. Smollett's lawyers assert in the counterclaim that because he has already paid $10,000 to the city "as payment in full in connection with the dismissal of the charges against him" he should be exempt from any further penalties.The counterclaim also alleges the two brothers made "false, self-serving, and unreliable statements" that the police nevertheless used "in order to close the investigation into the attack on Mr. Smollett."Foxx, who is running for reelection, admitted in a campaign video on Tuesday that she mishandled Smollett's case. In June the state appointed a special prosecutor to look into her actions regarding the case.After Foxx dropped charges against Smollett, an anonymous prosecutor in her office slammed her handling of the affair."This case was handled markedly different from any other case at 26th Street," the prosecutor wrote. "No one knows why, and more importantly, no one can explain why our boss, the head prosecutor of all of Cook County, has decided to so demean and debase both our hard work, and our already tenuous relationship with the Chicago Police Department."


    Jussie Smollett Files Suit against City of Chicago for ‘Malicious Prosecution’Jussie Smollett filed a countersuit on Tuesday in response to a lawsuit brought by the city of Chicago, alleging the city engaged in "malicious prosecution" that caused the actor "humiliation, mental anguish and extreme emotional distress," the Chicago Sun Times reported Monday.Smollett was alleged to have staged a racist, homophobic crime against himself in January with the help of two friends, who themselves are brothers of Nigerian origin.A grand jury indicted Smollett in March, but Cook County State Attorney Kim Foxx dropped the charges against the actor, citing the technically victimless nature of the hoax and his record of service to the community.The city of Chicago had filed a lawsuit against Smollett attempting to recover $130,106 from the Empire actor after investigating the staged crime. Smollett's lawyers assert in the counterclaim that because he has already paid $10,000 to the city "as payment in full in connection with the dismissal of the charges against him" he should be exempt from any further penalties.The counterclaim also alleges the two brothers made "false, self-serving, and unreliable statements" that the police nevertheless used "in order to close the investigation into the attack on Mr. Smollett."Foxx, who is running for reelection, admitted in a campaign video on Tuesday that she mishandled Smollett's case. In June the state appointed a special prosecutor to look into her actions regarding the case.After Foxx dropped charges against Smollett, an anonymous prosecutor in her office slammed her handling of the affair."This case was handled markedly different from any other case at 26th Street," the prosecutor wrote. "No one knows why, and more importantly, no one can explain why our boss, the head prosecutor of all of Cook County, has decided to so demean and debase both our hard work, and our already tenuous relationship with the Chicago Police Department."


     

  • Reeling progressives meet behind closed doors after 'Medicare for All' barrage      Wed, 20 Nov 2019 12:45:10 -0500

    Reeling progressives meet behind closed doors after 'Medicare for All' barrage"Medicare for All" has taken a beating lately. Its two biggest proponents in the presidential field, Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren, have come under sustained attack from centrist Democrats over the issue. The health care industry is spending millions to sow opposition.


    Reeling progressives meet behind closed doors after 'Medicare for All' barrage"Medicare for All" has taken a beating lately. Its two biggest proponents in the presidential field, Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren, have come under sustained attack from centrist Democrats over the issue. The health care industry is spending millions to sow opposition.


     

  • California court invalidates law requiring Trump tax returns      Thu, 21 Nov 2019 13:21:29 -0500

    California court invalidates law requiring Trump tax returnsPresident Donald Trump does not have to disclose his tax returns to appear as a candidate on California’s primary ballot next spring, the state Supreme Court ruled unanimously Thursday. The law, the first of its kind in the nation and aimed squarely at Trump, violates a specification of the state constitution calling for an “inclusive open presidential primary ballot,” the court said. “Ultimately, it is the voters who must decide whether the refusal of a ‘recognized candidate throughout the nation or throughout California for the office of President of the United States’ to make such information available to the public will have consequences at the ballot box,” Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye wrote in the 7-0 decision.


    California court invalidates law requiring Trump tax returnsPresident Donald Trump does not have to disclose his tax returns to appear as a candidate on California’s primary ballot next spring, the state Supreme Court ruled unanimously Thursday. The law, the first of its kind in the nation and aimed squarely at Trump, violates a specification of the state constitution calling for an “inclusive open presidential primary ballot,” the court said. “Ultimately, it is the voters who must decide whether the refusal of a ‘recognized candidate throughout the nation or throughout California for the office of President of the United States’ to make such information available to the public will have consequences at the ballot box,” Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye wrote in the 7-0 decision.


     

  • Pentagon denies U.S. is considering pulling troops from South Korea      Thu, 21 Nov 2019 02:50:08 -0500

    Pentagon denies U.S. is considering pulling troops from South KoreaThe Pentagon on Thursday denied a South Korean news report saying that the United States was considering a significant cut to its troop numbers in South Korea if Seoul does not contribute more to the costs of the deployment. "There is absolutely no truth to the Chosun Ilbo report that the U.S. Department of Defense is currently considering removing any troops from the Korean Peninsula," Pentagon spokesman Jonathan Hoffman said in a statement, referring to Secretary Mark Esper, who earlier on Thursday had said he was unaware of any such planning.


    Pentagon denies U.S. is considering pulling troops from South KoreaThe Pentagon on Thursday denied a South Korean news report saying that the United States was considering a significant cut to its troop numbers in South Korea if Seoul does not contribute more to the costs of the deployment. "There is absolutely no truth to the Chosun Ilbo report that the U.S. Department of Defense is currently considering removing any troops from the Korean Peninsula," Pentagon spokesman Jonathan Hoffman said in a statement, referring to Secretary Mark Esper, who earlier on Thursday had said he was unaware of any such planning.


     

  • Laura Loomer’s ‘Nonsensical’ Lawsuit Killed by Judge      Thu, 21 Nov 2019 13:43:25 -0500

    Laura Loomer’s ‘Nonsensical’ Lawsuit Killed by JudgeStephanie Keith/GettyFar-right conspiracy theorist Laura Loomer lost a lawsuit against a Muslim-rights organization this week after a judge ruled that her entire case was “to put it mildly, nonsensical.”Loomer was a prominent anti-Muslim internet personality until she was banned from most major social media platforms beginning last year. Since then, she has launched a congressional bid, which she acknowledged in a campaign email was at least partially a ploy to have her social media accounts restored. She also filed a lawsuit against the Council on American-Islamic Relations earlier this year, accusing the civil rights group of plotting to take down her Twitter account.Many of her claims in that lawsuit originated from a prank by leftist Twitter users who quickly confessed to the stunt. That didn’t stop Loomer from pursuing the lawsuit to its doomed end on Wednesday.Twitter banned Loomer in November 2018, after years of anti-Muslim posts. (She is also banned from Uber, Lyft, Venmo, GoFundMe, PayPal, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and other platforms for similar infractions.) But Loomer, who has promoted a number of conspiracy theories (she made her first headlines attempting to accuse her university of supporting ISIS) soon latched onto an elaborate explanation for her ban.Republican Lawmakers on Being Photographed With Laura Loomer: We Don’t Know HerShe tried to overturn the ban by handcuffing herself to the door of Twitter’s New York City offices. Twitter remained unmoved, but the stunt attracted the attention of Twitter users Nathan Bernard and Chris Gillen, who decided to pose as Twitter employees, Right Wing Watch first reported. Beginning in December, the pair sent Loomer messages claiming Twitter had met with CAIR representatives shortly before her ban.The pair said Loomer did not seek to authenticate any of their claims, including a ridiculous forged calendar they sent her, which appeared to show Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey scheduling two-and-a-half consecutive hours of meditation time every work day. “We couldn’t have done it dumber,” Gillen told Right Wing Watch in January. “We couldn’t have been less careful. It’s so obviously bullshit.”The pranksters also shared audio of a phone call in which Loomer accused Dorsey of “taking money from all these Muslims and implementing Sharia law.”Loomer passed the allegation to the Wall Street Journal, which implied that CAIR was among “outside groups and individuals [that] had privately lobbied Twitter executives to remove her from the site in late November.” A series of right-wing news sites picked up the story, accusing CAIR and Twitter of conspiring against Loomer.Although Bernard and Gillen came clean about the stunt in January, Loomer continued to press the conspiracy theory in court. In April, she filed suit against CAIR, accusing it of “tortious interference with an advantageous business relationship” between herself and Twitter.Anti-Muslim Activist Laura Loomer to Run for CongressThat argument had a fatal flaw: Loomer had no business relationship with Twitter, a judge ruled on Wednesday.“[E]ven accepting as true Plaintiffs’ proposition that Defendant reported Loomer’s account and convinced Twitter to ban Loomer, doing so does not create a cause of action for tortious interference with a business relationship,” the judge wrote in a dismissal. “Plaintiffs’ suggestion that the mere reporting of a Twitter user—however insistent such reporting may be—is sufficient to constitute tortious interference in a business relationship between Twitter and the targeted user is, to put it mildly, nonsensical.”In other words, tweeting isn’t a job, and getting banned isn’t the same as getting fired.If Loomer wants to find the culprit behind her ban, she can look in the mirror, CAIR said after the Wednesday dismissal.“We are pleased the court recognized that Loomer’s complaint against CAIR was baseless,” CAIR National Litigation Director Lena Masri said in a statement. “Her own pattern of anti-Muslim rhetoric is what caused Twitter and at least eight other internet platforms to ban her, not any actions by CAIR.”Read more at The Daily Beast.Get our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.


    Laura Loomer’s ‘Nonsensical’ Lawsuit Killed by JudgeStephanie Keith/GettyFar-right conspiracy theorist Laura Loomer lost a lawsuit against a Muslim-rights organization this week after a judge ruled that her entire case was “to put it mildly, nonsensical.”Loomer was a prominent anti-Muslim internet personality until she was banned from most major social media platforms beginning last year. Since then, she has launched a congressional bid, which she acknowledged in a campaign email was at least partially a ploy to have her social media accounts restored. She also filed a lawsuit against the Council on American-Islamic Relations earlier this year, accusing the civil rights group of plotting to take down her Twitter account.Many of her claims in that lawsuit originated from a prank by leftist Twitter users who quickly confessed to the stunt. That didn’t stop Loomer from pursuing the lawsuit to its doomed end on Wednesday.Twitter banned Loomer in November 2018, after years of anti-Muslim posts. (She is also banned from Uber, Lyft, Venmo, GoFundMe, PayPal, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and other platforms for similar infractions.) But Loomer, who has promoted a number of conspiracy theories (she made her first headlines attempting to accuse her university of supporting ISIS) soon latched onto an elaborate explanation for her ban.Republican Lawmakers on Being Photographed With Laura Loomer: We Don’t Know HerShe tried to overturn the ban by handcuffing herself to the door of Twitter’s New York City offices. Twitter remained unmoved, but the stunt attracted the attention of Twitter users Nathan Bernard and Chris Gillen, who decided to pose as Twitter employees, Right Wing Watch first reported. Beginning in December, the pair sent Loomer messages claiming Twitter had met with CAIR representatives shortly before her ban.The pair said Loomer did not seek to authenticate any of their claims, including a ridiculous forged calendar they sent her, which appeared to show Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey scheduling two-and-a-half consecutive hours of meditation time every work day. “We couldn’t have done it dumber,” Gillen told Right Wing Watch in January. “We couldn’t have been less careful. It’s so obviously bullshit.”The pranksters also shared audio of a phone call in which Loomer accused Dorsey of “taking money from all these Muslims and implementing Sharia law.”Loomer passed the allegation to the Wall Street Journal, which implied that CAIR was among “outside groups and individuals [that] had privately lobbied Twitter executives to remove her from the site in late November.” A series of right-wing news sites picked up the story, accusing CAIR and Twitter of conspiring against Loomer.Although Bernard and Gillen came clean about the stunt in January, Loomer continued to press the conspiracy theory in court. In April, she filed suit against CAIR, accusing it of “tortious interference with an advantageous business relationship” between herself and Twitter.Anti-Muslim Activist Laura Loomer to Run for CongressThat argument had a fatal flaw: Loomer had no business relationship with Twitter, a judge ruled on Wednesday.“[E]ven accepting as true Plaintiffs’ proposition that Defendant reported Loomer’s account and convinced Twitter to ban Loomer, doing so does not create a cause of action for tortious interference with a business relationship,” the judge wrote in a dismissal. “Plaintiffs’ suggestion that the mere reporting of a Twitter user—however insistent such reporting may be—is sufficient to constitute tortious interference in a business relationship between Twitter and the targeted user is, to put it mildly, nonsensical.”In other words, tweeting isn’t a job, and getting banned isn’t the same as getting fired.If Loomer wants to find the culprit behind her ban, she can look in the mirror, CAIR said after the Wednesday dismissal.“We are pleased the court recognized that Loomer’s complaint against CAIR was baseless,” CAIR National Litigation Director Lena Masri said in a statement. “Her own pattern of anti-Muslim rhetoric is what caused Twitter and at least eight other internet platforms to ban her, not any actions by CAIR.”Read more at The Daily Beast.Get our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.


     

  • Christian group wrote legislation eerily similar to Ohio religious liberty bill      Fri, 22 Nov 2019 06:30:23 -0500

    Christian group wrote legislation eerily similar to Ohio religious liberty billCritics suspect hand of Project Blitz in draft passed by Ohio house which they fear could let students’ religious beliefs trump scienceThe draft law says a teacher ‘shall not penalize or reward a student based on the religious content of a student’s work’ – language strikingly similar to Project Blitz’s model legislation. Photograph: Justin Lane/EPAAn Ohio state bill which could allow students’ religious beliefs to trump science-based facts is almost identical to model legislation backed by an evangelical, anti-gay Christian group.The Student Religious Liberties Act, which passed the Ohio house last week, instructs schools to neither “penalize or reward” students on the basis of their religious speech. It also stipulates schools must provide opportunities for religious expression “in the same manner and to the same extent” as secular speech. Critics argue the bill would provide protect students from bad grades based on religion.The bill’s backers deny it is connected to the group, called Project Blitz but the bill has nearly identical language to the model legislation backed by Project Blitz in their 2018-2019 “playbook”.While student religious liberties bills existed before Project Blitz, its inclusion in a playbook by groups whose goal is to inject religion into law shows the priority they place on the matter. By contrast, many mainstream civil rights groups have lined up against the bill.Project Blitz model legislation says: “A student may not be penalized or rewarded based on the religious content of his or her work.” The Ohio Student Religious Liberties Act says teachers “shall not penalize or reward a student based on the religious content of a student’s work.”“This bill is under the guise of religious freedom for students, but it’s really designed to encourage students to pray and proselytize in public schools,” said Maggie Garrett, the vice-president of policy for Americans United for Separation of Church and State. “It adds more confusion than clarity, and of course current law already protects the rights of students,” she said.The law’s predicted effects have divided critics and supporters. Opponents have said the bill will cause controversy-averse teachers and school administrators to hedge against correcting students who might cite religious beliefs in classwork.Backers argue school officials are intimidated by “well funded groups” who are “biased against Ohio students’ religious freedom”. The most likely impact, groups such as the Anti-Defamation League said, is potential lawsuits against school districts.Student religious liberty bills have spread across the US south and midwest for more than a decade with roots in a 1995 set of guidelines from the Clinton administration, according to a University of California, Davis law review article.In 2007, Texas reincarnated the guidelines in a form which “intentionally lacks” some of the caveats the Clinton administration included, such as a prohibition on having a “captive audience” in school, the article said.“This bill has been around since before the Project Blitz campaign, but the bill is part of the Project Blitz playbook,” said Garrett, the vice-president for Americans United for Separation of Church and State. “We will be seeing more of these bills in the future, because we’re certainly seeing an increase in other Project Blitz bills.”In another example of their similarities, Project Blitz’s model legislation reads, “A student may organize prayer groups, religious clubs, and other religious gatherings before, during, and after the school day in the same manner and to the same extent that a student is permitted to organize secular activities and groups.”Ohio’s bill said students could attend “religious gatherings, including but not limited to prayer groups, religious clubs, ‘see you at the pole’ gatherings, or other religious gatherings” and “may engage in religious expression before, during, and after school hours in the same manner and to the same extent that a student is permitted to engage in secular activities or expression before, during, and after school hours.”Even though backers deny the bill has been designed to promote Christian values, others disagree. “It is negligent and reckless of our colleagues to push an agenda this way and act as if it is not based on this one religious tenet,” said Emilia Strong Sykes, the Democratic Ohio house minority leader and a Christian. “It is anti-American,” she said.Long-term Republican control of Ohio state politics through gerrymandering – a process of drawing district lines to benefit one party – has turned Ohio into a proving ground for conservative legislation. Including 2019, Republicans have held all three levers of Ohio state government for 21 of the last 27 years, according to Ballotpedia.Ohio was the first of several states to pass a six-week ban on abortion last summer. The same legislators introduced a bill to ban abortion outright last week, including new criminal penalties for “abortion murder”. Courts stopped Ohio’s six-week ban from going into effect. Abortion is legal in all 50 US states.“My personal feeling, quite frankly, is this is disgraceful,” said Paul Beck, an Ohio State University political science professor and an expert on gerrymandering, about the Student Religious Liberties Act. “One of the products of gerrymandering and Republican domination we have in the Ohio general assembly is these are not necessarily reasonable people making our laws,” he said.“Here you have legislation that is not only not needed, but will – at minimum – cause confusion,” said Gary Daniels, chief lobbyist for the American Civil Liberties Union of Ohio. The ACLU often sues on behalf of those who suffer religious discrimination, and opposes the bill.Project Blitz is organized by the Congressional Prayer Caucus, the National Legal Foundation and the WallBuilders ProFamily Legislators Conference. Other Blitz proposals include proclamations to establish, “Christian heritage week” and a “public policy resolution favoring sexual intercourse only between a married man and woman”.The privately run Congressional Prayer Caucus works to “preserve America’s Judeo-Christian heritage and promote prayer”, according to its website. WallBuilders is led by a widely criticized revisionist historian who claims the US was founded on Christian ideals. The not-for-profit National Legal Foundation aims to “create and implement” public policy “to support and facilitate God’s purpose for [America] … in such a way as to glorify the Lord Jesus Christ”.The Guardian contacted the Congressional Prayer Caucus, WallBuilders and the National Legal Foundation for comment. None responded.Representative Timothy Ginter, the bill’s sponsor and a pastor, said he had “no knowledge” of Project Blitz. He declined further requests for an interview.The Guardian contacted 11 co-sponsors of the legislation. None responded. The Guardian also contacted the legislator who originally introduced the legislation in 2016, former representative Bill Hayes. He did not respond to a request for comment.In a statement, Ginter argued the bill is necessary, “Because of increased pressure on our schools from groups who are biased against Ohio students’ religious freedoms, many school officials are confused, and frankly intimidated by the threat of litigation from these well-funded groups.” He also denied the bill is meant to promote Christianity. “Nowhere in the language of the bill is a specific religion mentioned,” Ginter said.The Republican-backed Ohio house passed the bill last week with a party-line vote. Only two Democrats voted in favor. The bill must be passed by the Republican-controlled Senate and the Republican governor, Mike DeWine, to become law. He did not respond to a Guardian request for comment.


    Christian group wrote legislation eerily similar to Ohio religious liberty billCritics suspect hand of Project Blitz in draft passed by Ohio house which they fear could let students’ religious beliefs trump scienceThe draft law says a teacher ‘shall not penalize or reward a student based on the religious content of a student’s work’ – language strikingly similar to Project Blitz’s model legislation. Photograph: Justin Lane/EPAAn Ohio state bill which could allow students’ religious beliefs to trump science-based facts is almost identical to model legislation backed by an evangelical, anti-gay Christian group.The Student Religious Liberties Act, which passed the Ohio house last week, instructs schools to neither “penalize or reward” students on the basis of their religious speech. It also stipulates schools must provide opportunities for religious expression “in the same manner and to the same extent” as secular speech. Critics argue the bill would provide protect students from bad grades based on religion.The bill’s backers deny it is connected to the group, called Project Blitz but the bill has nearly identical language to the model legislation backed by Project Blitz in their 2018-2019 “playbook”.While student religious liberties bills existed before Project Blitz, its inclusion in a playbook by groups whose goal is to inject religion into law shows the priority they place on the matter. By contrast, many mainstream civil rights groups have lined up against the bill.Project Blitz model legislation says: “A student may not be penalized or rewarded based on the religious content of his or her work.” The Ohio Student Religious Liberties Act says teachers “shall not penalize or reward a student based on the religious content of a student’s work.”“This bill is under the guise of religious freedom for students, but it’s really designed to encourage students to pray and proselytize in public schools,” said Maggie Garrett, the vice-president of policy for Americans United for Separation of Church and State. “It adds more confusion than clarity, and of course current law already protects the rights of students,” she said.The law’s predicted effects have divided critics and supporters. Opponents have said the bill will cause controversy-averse teachers and school administrators to hedge against correcting students who might cite religious beliefs in classwork.Backers argue school officials are intimidated by “well funded groups” who are “biased against Ohio students’ religious freedom”. The most likely impact, groups such as the Anti-Defamation League said, is potential lawsuits against school districts.Student religious liberty bills have spread across the US south and midwest for more than a decade with roots in a 1995 set of guidelines from the Clinton administration, according to a University of California, Davis law review article.In 2007, Texas reincarnated the guidelines in a form which “intentionally lacks” some of the caveats the Clinton administration included, such as a prohibition on having a “captive audience” in school, the article said.“This bill has been around since before the Project Blitz campaign, but the bill is part of the Project Blitz playbook,” said Garrett, the vice-president for Americans United for Separation of Church and State. “We will be seeing more of these bills in the future, because we’re certainly seeing an increase in other Project Blitz bills.”In another example of their similarities, Project Blitz’s model legislation reads, “A student may organize prayer groups, religious clubs, and other religious gatherings before, during, and after the school day in the same manner and to the same extent that a student is permitted to organize secular activities and groups.”Ohio’s bill said students could attend “religious gatherings, including but not limited to prayer groups, religious clubs, ‘see you at the pole’ gatherings, or other religious gatherings” and “may engage in religious expression before, during, and after school hours in the same manner and to the same extent that a student is permitted to engage in secular activities or expression before, during, and after school hours.”Even though backers deny the bill has been designed to promote Christian values, others disagree. “It is negligent and reckless of our colleagues to push an agenda this way and act as if it is not based on this one religious tenet,” said Emilia Strong Sykes, the Democratic Ohio house minority leader and a Christian. “It is anti-American,” she said.Long-term Republican control of Ohio state politics through gerrymandering – a process of drawing district lines to benefit one party – has turned Ohio into a proving ground for conservative legislation. Including 2019, Republicans have held all three levers of Ohio state government for 21 of the last 27 years, according to Ballotpedia.Ohio was the first of several states to pass a six-week ban on abortion last summer. The same legislators introduced a bill to ban abortion outright last week, including new criminal penalties for “abortion murder”. Courts stopped Ohio’s six-week ban from going into effect. Abortion is legal in all 50 US states.“My personal feeling, quite frankly, is this is disgraceful,” said Paul Beck, an Ohio State University political science professor and an expert on gerrymandering, about the Student Religious Liberties Act. “One of the products of gerrymandering and Republican domination we have in the Ohio general assembly is these are not necessarily reasonable people making our laws,” he said.“Here you have legislation that is not only not needed, but will – at minimum – cause confusion,” said Gary Daniels, chief lobbyist for the American Civil Liberties Union of Ohio. The ACLU often sues on behalf of those who suffer religious discrimination, and opposes the bill.Project Blitz is organized by the Congressional Prayer Caucus, the National Legal Foundation and the WallBuilders ProFamily Legislators Conference. Other Blitz proposals include proclamations to establish, “Christian heritage week” and a “public policy resolution favoring sexual intercourse only between a married man and woman”.The privately run Congressional Prayer Caucus works to “preserve America’s Judeo-Christian heritage and promote prayer”, according to its website. WallBuilders is led by a widely criticized revisionist historian who claims the US was founded on Christian ideals. The not-for-profit National Legal Foundation aims to “create and implement” public policy “to support and facilitate God’s purpose for [America] … in such a way as to glorify the Lord Jesus Christ”.The Guardian contacted the Congressional Prayer Caucus, WallBuilders and the National Legal Foundation for comment. None responded.Representative Timothy Ginter, the bill’s sponsor and a pastor, said he had “no knowledge” of Project Blitz. He declined further requests for an interview.The Guardian contacted 11 co-sponsors of the legislation. None responded. The Guardian also contacted the legislator who originally introduced the legislation in 2016, former representative Bill Hayes. He did not respond to a request for comment.In a statement, Ginter argued the bill is necessary, “Because of increased pressure on our schools from groups who are biased against Ohio students’ religious freedoms, many school officials are confused, and frankly intimidated by the threat of litigation from these well-funded groups.” He also denied the bill is meant to promote Christianity. “Nowhere in the language of the bill is a specific religion mentioned,” Ginter said.The Republican-backed Ohio house passed the bill last week with a party-line vote. Only two Democrats voted in favor. The bill must be passed by the Republican-controlled Senate and the Republican governor, Mike DeWine, to become law. He did not respond to a Guardian request for comment.


     

  • Why India's Aircraft Carrier from Russia Was a Total Lemon      Thu, 21 Nov 2019 21:00:00 -0500

    Why India's Aircraft Carrier from Russia Was a Total LemonThe Admiral Gorshkov was a terrible ship.


    Why India's Aircraft Carrier from Russia Was a Total LemonThe Admiral Gorshkov was a terrible ship.


     

  • Anger in China as it demands Trump veto Hong Kong bills      Thu, 21 Nov 2019 06:49:24 -0500

    Anger in China as it demands Trump veto Hong Kong billsChina on Thursday demanded President Trump veto legislation aimed at supporting human rights in Hong Kong and renewed a threat to take “strong countermeasures” if the bills become law.


    Anger in China as it demands Trump veto Hong Kong billsChina on Thursday demanded President Trump veto legislation aimed at supporting human rights in Hong Kong and renewed a threat to take “strong countermeasures” if the bills become law.


     

  • Fearful wait for justice a decade after Philippine massacre      Thu, 21 Nov 2019 01:23:56 -0500

    Fearful wait for justice a decade after Philippine massacreA decade after 58 people were killed in the Philippines' worst political massacre, none of the alleged masterminds have been convicted yet, leaving families fearful that justice may never come. "We are afraid for the life of the prosecutor or even our judge," said Mary Grace Morales, whose sister and husband were among 32 journalists killed in the attack, making it one of world's deadliest on media workers. Ampatuan family leaders, who ruled the impoverished southern province of Maguindanao, are charged with organising the mass killing in a bid to quash an election challenge from a rival clan.


    Fearful wait for justice a decade after Philippine massacreA decade after 58 people were killed in the Philippines' worst political massacre, none of the alleged masterminds have been convicted yet, leaving families fearful that justice may never come. "We are afraid for the life of the prosecutor or even our judge," said Mary Grace Morales, whose sister and husband were among 32 journalists killed in the attack, making it one of world's deadliest on media workers. Ampatuan family leaders, who ruled the impoverished southern province of Maguindanao, are charged with organising the mass killing in a bid to quash an election challenge from a rival clan.


     

  • 26 of the Most Fascinating Public Sculptures      Fri, 22 Nov 2019 08:00:00 -0500

    26 of the Most Fascinating Public Sculptures


    26 of the Most Fascinating Public Sculptures


     



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