| |5. Greek conservatives scrap plans to take clergy off state payroll16:00[−]
Greece's newly-elected conservative government on Tuesday scrapped plans to remove priests from the state payroll, reversing a decision by its leftist predecessor that aimed to carve a clearer distinction between church and state. Priests in the powerful Greek Orthodox Church have been treated as civil servants in Greece and their salaries - estimated at about 200 million euros annually - have therefore been paid directly from the state budget. The deal also foresaw a settlement of a decades-old dispute over property rights between the Greek state and the Church, which is one of Greece's largest real estate owners.
|↑|6. Russia bars opposition candidates from Moscow city ballot14:48[−]
Russian officials on Tuesday refused to register nearly 30 candidates for elections to Moscow's local parliament including prominent critics of President Vladimir Putin despite protests over the move. Opposition politicians have been fighting to get on the ballot for September's elections to the Moscow city legislature as they seek to capitalise on growing public discontent over falling living standards and unchecked corruption. On Tuesday, Moscow election officials said they had rejected 27 candidates so far while 216 candidates had been registered for the September 8 election.
|↑|7. 'Executed' North Korean negotiator is alive, says South Korea's spy agency14:36[−]
A North Korean nuclear negotiator who was reported to have been executed over the failure of the February Hanoi summit between Kim Jong-un and US President Donald Trump is still alive, South Korean intelligence said on Tuesday. News of Kim Hyok Chol’s death by firing squad as part of a purge of top North Korean officials was first reported in South Korea’s Chosun Ilbo newspaper in late May and generated headlines around the world. However, the National Intelligence Service contradicted that account on Tuesday, telling a closed-door meeting of parliamentarians in Seoul that reports of his demise were greatly exaggerated. The meeting between Kim Jong-un and Mr Trump in Vietnam earlier this year had been billed as a landmark summit to make progress on nuclear disarmament, but it ended abruptly without a deal after a disagreement over sanctions. The official in question - Mr Kim, a former ambassador to Spain - and four others who were responsible for laying the groundwork for the summit were alleged to have been charged with espionage on behalf of the US and executed at Mirim airport, near the capital, Pyongyang. The same report claimed that Kim Yong Chol, a former spy chief, who travelled to Washington in the run-up to the summit, had been banished to a labour camp. It said that Kim Yo-jong, the leader’s sister, had also fallen out of favour and been told to keep a low profile. However, Kim Yong Chol was later spotted at a weekend concert with the North Korean leader and Kim Yo-jong has been seen at ruling party events, casting doubt on the original claims. Hyon Song-wol was reported to have been killed in 2013 but is now one of North Korea's most influential women Credit: Yonhap/Reuters The latest assertion by the NIS would not rule out the demotion of senior aides who were deeply involved in discussions with Americans ahead of the Hanoi meeting. Kim was widely seen to have overplayed his hand in talks with Mr Trump and his inability to secure any form of sanctions relief was a humiliating outcome. The leading officials in the pre-summit negotiations appear to no longer be acting on the frontline of Kim’s US strategy, giving way for the rise of Choe Son-hui, the vice minister of foreign affairs, and Kim Myong Gil, the former ambassador to Vietnam who is now reportedly the North’s new special envoy. In June, a report on CNN suggested that Kim Hyok Chol was in state custody and under investigation for his role in the summit, along with the chief translator, Sin Hye Yong. Earlier news of his alleged execution highlighted the difficulties of verifying facts from the hermit kingdom, and can now be added to a growing list of high-ranking officials who have been believed to be executed, only to come back from the dead. Another prominent example was Hyon Song-wol, the head of the Samjiyon orchestra, who was alleged to have been shot in a “hail of gunfire” in 2013. She later reemerged as an envoy to the South Korean Winter Olympics in 2018, and is now known as one of the most influential women in North Korea.
|↑|8. Iran aims to woo 2 million Chinese tourists with visa-free entry ‘within weeks’14:29[−]
Iran will waive visas for Chinese visitors as early as the end of July in a bid to boost the economy, faltering under the weight of US sanctions. Tourism officials have said they hope to attract as many as two million Chinese a year to Iran, a massive increase from the 52,000 Chinese visiting last year. Tapping into the Chinese tourism market could pay off in the long run. China has the world’s most outbound tourists. Last year the Chinese made nearly 150 million trips abroad, spending a whopping ?233 billion overseas. And those numbers are expected to grow as more Chinese apply for passports. Now only nine per cent of the country’s 1.4 billion people hold passports. Iran’s economy has been sliding toward recession after the US reimposed sanctions last November, heavily targeting vital oil exports and international financial transactions. The country’s GDP is expected to shrink by 6 per cent this year, a further slide from last year’s 3.9 per cent contraction; inflation could reach 40 percent, according to the International Monetary Fund. In response, Tehran has been looking for other ways to boost the government’s non-oil revenues. Tourism is seen as an “unsanctionable” sector,” tourism board chief Ali Asghar Mounesan told IRNA, a state media agency, in June. In an earlier move to support tourism, Iran announced last August that it would no longer stamp visitors’ passports, allowing some to bypass a US entry ban on travellers who have visited the country. China, one of the remaining partners in the nuclear deal that the US withdrew from last year, has openly defied the sanctions and continued to buy Iranian oil. Tehran has threatened to abandon commitments under the nuclear deal, such as uranium stock limits, unless other countries still part of the deal – including the UK – help it to circumvent sanctions.
|↑|9. Founder of neo-Nazi website should pay Jewish woman $14m for unleashing antisemitic 'troll storm' on her, judge rules13:57[−]
The founder and editor of the neo-Nazi website The Daily Stormer should be forced to pay more than $14m (?11.2m) to a Jewish woman targeted by a “troll storm” of abusive messages for months on end, a judge has said.The US magistrate called the campaign, launched by the website’s publisher Andrew Anglin, as “egregious and reprehensible” with Tanya Gersh, her husband and her 12-year-old son being flooded with vile phone calls, text messages, emails and social media posts that included death threats and antisemitic slurs.Ms Gersh, from Whitefish, Montana, said that she was told she should have perished in the Holocaust and that voicemails she received contained the sounds of guns firing again and again. The mother was left suffering from panic attacks that left her short of breath and vomiting.“I was frightened to the point that we couldn’t think straight,” Ms Gersh – a real estate agent – said after a recent court hearing. “We talked about waking our children in the middle of the night — to run from Nazis.”The abuse began in December 2016 after The Daily Stormer published, under Mr Anglin’s byline, a call to arms to readers. “Are y’all ready for an old fashioned Troll Storm?” the post said. “Because AYO — it’s that time, fam.” Ms Gersh’s contact details were posted online and followers were urged to “tell them you are sicked by the Jewish agenda”. There were also photographs of Ms Gersh and her son, photoshopped against an image of the Auschwitz concentration camp. The Daily Stormer claimed the posts were protected by free speech laws.Judge Jeremiah Lynch said that Mr Anglin had “acted with actual malice” in posting the contact details.The source of the abuse followed accusations from Mr Anglin and others that Ms Gersh had tried to extort the mother of prominent white nationalist Richard Spencer. Spencer has been widely denounced for telling supporters to “party like its 1933” – the year Adolf Hitler came to power – after the election of Donald Trump. Mr Spencer was also a featured speaker at the Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, where a civil rights activist was killed and 19 other people were injured in August 2017.Sherry Spencer, who owned a commercial property in Ms Gersh’s town of Whitefish, had faced scrutiny over her son’s extreme views and residents had discussed protesting outside the building.According to her lawsuit, Ms Gersh said that Ms Spencer had phoned her for advice after Ms Gersh had contacted friends in the building to tell them protests may be coming.Ms Gersh suggested that Ms Spencer sell the building and disavow her son’s views, with the lawsuit saying Ms Spencer had appeared receptive, but that changed.More than 30 articles naming Ms Gersh were then said to have appeared on The Daily Caller, according to the lawsuit filed on her behalf by the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC). The suit claims that Ms Gersh and her family received more than 700 hate-filled messages.With Mr Anglin having not appeared at a deposition in April, Judge Lynch recommended a default judgement against the publisher – but he went further. He recommended that Mr Anglin, who is in his mid-30s, be ordered to pay $4,042,438 in compensatory damages and $10 million, the maximum under Montana state law, in punitive damages for “the particularly egregious and reprehensible nature of Anglin’s conduct.” Judge Lynch's findings and recommendations must be approved by US District Judge Dana Christensen to take effect.Ms Gersh said that she may not receive the money, but Monday’s judgement has sent a message to others.“A clear message has been sent to Anglin and other extremists: No one should be terrorised for simply being who they are, and no one should ever be afraid for being who they are,” she said in a statement.“This lawsuit has always been about stopping others from enduring the terror I continue to live through at the hands of a neo-Nazi and his followers, and I wanted to make sure that this never happens to anyone else,” she added.Last month, Mr Anglin was ordered to pay $4.1 million after he failed to respond to a defamation lawsuit filed by the Muslim radio host and comedian Dean Obeidallah after The Daily Stormer falsely labelled him a terrorist.
|↑|10. Don’t Compare the Situation on the Border to the Holocaust13:30[−]
As the number of U.S.-bound migrants from Central America continues to overwhelm the ICE officials tasked with detaining them, many Americans — Jewish and non-Jewish alike — have invoked the Holocaust. They’ve described holding facilities as “concentration camps,” used “never again” as a cry of protest against them, and even juxtaposed pictures of the top Nazi brass at a concentration camp with a photo of Mike Pence visiting a migrant detention center. A new organization, “Never Again Action,” has formed to protest the treatment of migrants in American detention facilities, with many across the country getting themselves arrested for illegally protesting outside ICE buildings.As with most emotionally charged issues, the most vocal tend to be the most radical. There will never be an organization formed, or a mass movement generated, to politely object to the use of a phrase. But I object. The abuse of the phrases “concentration camp” and “never again” are deeply inappropriate, revealing an ignorance of history, the deleterious effects of concept creep on our discourse, and a total lack of argumentative restraint. This toxic mix shamefully belittles the horrors of the Holocaust and amounts to a slander against American border agents facing an impossible situation.Start with the “concentration camp” charge. Yes, all Americans should agree that conditions for migrants, particularly those seeking asylum at the border, are unacceptable by the high standard to which we hold our country. At least seven children have died in ICE custody this year, and there are credible allegations of sub-standard medical care.But the term “concentration camps” connotes something far worse, especially when it comes amid a slew of Holocaust analogies. Using it downplays what people such as my grandfather, Moshe, dealt with. Here is an excerpt from a letter he and his brother wrote to American relatives in 1946 from a displaced-person camp in Paris, describing the wartime fates of their immediate family members:> The Jews from [Lukov Ghetto] were the first to be destroyed. Among them was our Bobbe [grandmother] Hena, and Faiga with her child. They had been killed and burned in the well-known concentration camp Treblinka. In November 1942, it was our ghetto’s turn. They expelled us in cattle cars to Auschwitz. There they took away our parents and our only sister Hinda to the gas chamber and burned them. My brother and I were sent to a concentration camp. What happened to us from the years 1942–1945 in the concentration camp of Buchenwald-Auschwitz can only be described in a separate book.Moshe and David (my great uncle, of blessed memory) were starving slave laborers for more than two years in one of Auschwitz’s satellite concentration camps, after which they were forced on a death march (the same one on which Elie Wiesel based part of Night). When he finally escaped the Nazis by jumping off a transport train and running through the forest several weeks before the end of the war, my grandfather, at 21 years of age, weighed roughly 100 pounds. That is what an actual concentration camp does to a person — and to millions of people.There is scarcely anything more contemptible to be found in our public life than the habit of treating the history of the Holocaust so unseriously. The insistence that Americans are running concentration camps on our southern border, unacceptable and inadequate as the facilities may be, is both a category error and a spectacular insult to those murdered, vivisected, tortured, and starved in the real ones.And this insistence by activists (and, unfortunately, members of Congress) on using Nazi analogies bleeds into our discourse in another, more subtle way, as ICE agents themselves are now likened to war criminals. The New York Times prints op-eds calling for public shaming of individual officers. Antifa fanatics are incited to bomb ICE premises. Not everyone takes the phrase “abolish ICE” so figuratively.I do not wish to recount all of the sadisms and cruelties that rank-and-file Nazi officers inflicted on my grandfather. But it is beyond doubt that no concentration camp could function without its low-level soldiers. We are now expected to believe that members of ICE, our fellow citizens, are thugs like the Nazis rather than normal Americans facing a deluge of new migrants and struggling to deal with the population flow. We are expected to believe that ICE agents enjoy hurting Hispanic babies, and withholding medical care. This is a slander, and should be rejected by people of any charitable disposition.Americans can and should protest bad conditions on the border. But activists should leave the Holocaust-appropriating rhetoric out of it. If we are to describe the problem we face, much less solve it, we need to maintain the integrity of our language. It is impossible not to notice that the circle of people being called Nazis these days is getting larger and larger. And if we do not get a handle on our vocabulary, then when the time comes, distant as it may seem, we will have no words left to describe the real thing.
|↑|11. U.S. judge expected to address whether ex-Trump adviser Stone violated gag order13:06[−]
President Donald Trump's former adviser, Roger Stone, will appear in federal court on Tuesday and the judge is likely to decide whether to revoke his bond after prosecutors alleged Stone violated a gag order by discussing his case on social media. Tuesday's hearing in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia was originally scheduled as a routine event ahead of Stone's November criminal trial for his lawyers to present arguments for why certain evidence should be suppressed or turned over by the government. “Stone’s posts appear calculated to generate media coverage of information that is not relevant to this case but that could prejudice potential jurors,” they wrote, in reference to posts Stone made citing articles that questioned whether Russia actually hacked Democratic Party computer servers in the 2016 presidential election.
|↑|12. June was the warmest June ever recorded, but there's a bigger problem13:00[−]
In 139 years of record-keeping, this June was the warmest June ever recorded. But June 2019 also revealed a deeper warming reality. The first half of 2019, January through June, finished up as the second warmest half-year on record, newly released NASA data shows. On top of that, each of the last five January through Junes are now the five warmest such spans on record. Only 2016 started off hotter than 2019. "At this point, the inexorable increase in global temperatures is entirely predictable," said Sarah Green, an environmental chemist at Michigan Technological University. She noted that NASA's updated data is added proof that climate models have accurately predicted Earth's continued warming as heat-trapping gasses amass in the atmosphere."As we have shown in recent work, the record warm streaks we've seen in recent years simply cannot be explained without accounting for the profound impact we are having on the planet through the burning of fossil fuels and the resulting increase in atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations," added climate scientist Michael Mann, the director of the Earth System Science Center at Penn State University.Indeed, atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations, already at their highest levels in at least 800,000 years, are now accelerating at rates that are unprecedented in both the historic and geologic record."The latest numbers are just another reminder that the impacts of human-caused warming are no longer subtle," said Mann. "We're seeing them play out in terms of both unprecedented extreme weather events and the sorts of planetary-scale temperature extremes betrayed by these latest numbers."The warmest January through Junes on record.Image: nasa gissThe well-predicted consequences of this heating are now unfolding. Here are some, of many, examples: * Warming climes have doubled the amount of land burned by wildfires in the U.S. over the last 30 years, as plants and trees, notably in California, get baked dry. * Greenland -- home to the second largest ice sheet on Earth -- is melting at unprecedented rates. * The last 12 months have been the wettest 12 months in U.S. history, leading to widespread flooding around the nation (For every 1 degree Celsius, or 1.8 degrees Fahrenheit, of warming, the air can hold 7 percent more water.) * The Arctic is on fire. * Ocean temperatures are going up, and up, and up. * Since 1961, Earth's glaciers lost 9 trillion tons of ice. That's the weight of 27 billion 747s. * Heat waves are increasing in duration and frequency, while smashing records. * Daily high record temperatures are dominating daily low records. Overall, the atmosphere is experiencing an accelerated upward temperature climb, though there are some ups and downs within the greater warming trend. This is due to natural climatic influences, particularly from events like El Ni?o, which can give global temperatures an added kick. > NASA global mean June temperature is out! Guess what - it's been the hottest June on record. Definitely felt like that in Germany... climatecrisis FridaysForFuture pic.twitter.com/vkOFP22NNM> > -- Stefan Rahmstorf (@rahmstorf) July 15, 2019"The year-to-year variations of the global temperature may be affected by El Ni?o, etc., but in the long-term [global temperature] keeps increasing steadily," said NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies scientist Makiko Sato, who helped prepare the June climate observations. SEE ALSO: This scientist keeps winning money from people who bet against climate changeThis June was "easily" the warmest June on record, NASA noted, and overall, this year's January through June temperatures were 1.4 degrees Celsius (or 2.5 degrees Fahrenheit) above average temperatures in the late 1800s. Seasonal temperature trends.Image: nasa Giss2019 will almost certainly end up being one of the hottest years on record. This is in line with another stark trend. Eighteen of the 19 warmest years on record have occurred since 2001 -- and the five hottest years have occurred in each of the last five years. (It's not just the first half of each year setting records.)"This is further evidence that temperatures will keep rising until government policies that decrease greenhouse gas emissions are actually implemented," emphasized Green. WATCH: Ever wonder how the universe might end?
|↑|14. $800,000 spent in one day on Malaysia ex-PM's cards, court hears12:03[−]
Credit cards belonging to Malaysia's disgraced ex-leader Najib Razak were used to spend over $800,000 in one day at a luxury jeweller in Italy, a court has heard. The 2014 spending spree is the latest evidence of what critics say is the lavish lifestyle enjoyed by Najib after he and his cronies allegedly plundered state coffers. The claims played a major part in Najib's government losing power at elections last year.
|↑|15. Greek man confesses to rape, murder of U.S. scientist, police say11:07[−]
Greek police believe they have found the man who raped and murdered an American biologist whose body was discovered on the island of Crete on July 8, a senior official said on Tuesday. Suzanne Eaton, 60, a molecular biologist at the Max Planck Institute in Dresden, Germany, was found dead in a disused military bunker around a week after going missing. A 27-year-old man detained in connection with her death had confessed to the crime, said Constantinos Lagoudakis, director general of the island's police directorate.
|↑|18. Michael Flynn’s Ex-Business Partner Points the Finger at Him in Court03:07[−]
Photo Illustration by Lyne Lucien/The Daily Beast/GettyIf there is a question of who worked on behalf of the Turkish government to influence the 2016 Donald Trump campaign, then the court should look no further than former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn, lawyers for Bijan Kian, the Iranian-American businessman and former Flynn partner, told jurors in the Eastern District of Virginia Monday. Kian is charged with two felonies—illegally lobbying on behalf of the Turkish government and conspiring covertly to influence U.S. politics about Fethullah Gulen, a Turkish cleric who is now living in Pennsylvania. He faces a maximum of 15 years in prison if convicted. But Kian’s team of attorneys said in their opening statements Monday that their client “did not conspire with anyone” to work on behalf of the Turkish government in the U.S. When questioning the Turkish government’s influence operations in the U.S., the jury should look at the newly announced cache of evidence the government has on Flynn, said attorney Bob Trout. Kian isn’t referenced in any of it, Trout said. Michael Flynn Putting Mueller Deal at Risk in ‘Dangerous’ New TrialIn the opening statements Monday the Kian legal team spent the majority of their time arguing that their client did not work on behalf of the Turkish government when he attempted to influence public opinion in the U.S. about Turkish cleric Fethullah Gulen. Gulen currently lives in Pennsylvania and is wanted by the Turkish government for allegedly planning a military coup in the country in 2016. Kian instead worked on behalf of a Turkish-Dutch businessman named Ekim Alptekin, Trout said. (Alptekin is named as a defendant in the Kian case but will likely avoid appearance because he is living in Istanbul.) Toward the end of his statements, Trout tried to create a degree of separation between Kian and Flynn who is currently awaiting sentencing in Washington for crimes carried out during his time working with the Trump team. He pointed to the government’s evidence, which was mentioned in a hearing last week, and said that prosecutors had all but conceded that Kian was not involved. The jurors have not seen the evidence yet and the details of what the government currently has in its position is unclear.According to a government indictment filed last year, Flynn and Kian worked together throughout the fall of 2016, when Flynn was an advisor to then candidate Trump, on a project to try and extradite Gulen back to Turkey. Prosecutors said the two took hundreds of thousands of dollars from the Turkish government to execute the plan. Flynn was also at the time accused of lying about his communications with Russian Ambassador Sergei Kislyak. He entered into a cooperation deal with Special Counsel Robert Mueller and admitted to lying about the communications and about his consulting firm’s business with the Turkish government. He said that the registration he filed for the Turkey-focused project in 2017 contained several inaccuracies, though his lawyers maintain that Flynn did not intentionally lie on the documents. As part of his deal with the government, Flynn was supposed to testify against Kian and his sentencing in Washington was postponed so he could appear as a witness in Virginia.That all changed last week when the government removed Flynn from the witness list and instead named him as a co-conspirator in the case. The government also said it had extensive information that the Turkish government attempted to influence the Trump campaign through Flynn. It was the first mention of an additional set of materials that show how Flynn was being extensively involved in the Turkish lobbying.It’s that evidence that lies at the heart of who really committed the crime of illegally lobbying for Turkey, Kian’s lawyers said Monday. Kian “didn’t know” about the alleged separate communications between Alptekin and Flynn that are in the government’s possession, Trout said.For its part, the government in its opening statement barely mentioned the former national security adviser, instead referring several times to Kian’s business team members as “associates.” The government focused on Kian’s email correspondences, including with Flynn, about the Gulen project and attempted to lay out for the jury how the money that flowed into Kian’s account for services rendered connected back to the Turkish government.After nearly an hour and a half of opening statements, both of which were at times tangled and difficult to follow, the jury seemed to fade by 5:30 p.m. Several individuals closed their eyes and appeared to be sleeping.They’re due back in court Tuesday morning for testimony, including evidence to be entered into the record and for witness examinations.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.
|↑|19. EU agrees measures against Turkey for Cyprus drilling03:04[−]
The European Union on Monday agreed measures to punish Turkey for pursuing drilling operations off Cyprus despite repeated warnings. The EU will halt high-level dialogue with Turkey, suspend talks over an aviation agreement and cut 145.8 million euros ($164 million) in pre-accession financial funds allocated for 2020. Foreign ministers from the bloc also told the European Commission, the bloc's executive, to keep working on possible financial sanctions targeting those involved in the drilling operations.
|↑|20. Four dead, 12 feared trapped after Mumbai building collapse03:03[−]
Four people were killed and at least others 12 feared trapped under rubble after a building collapsed as heavy monsoon rains lashed India's financial capital Mumbai on Tuesday, officials said, the second such tragedy in two weeks. "Four people are dead and over 12 people are still stuck under the rubble," disaster management spokesman Tanaji Kamble told AFP of the building collapse in southern Mumbai's congested Dongri area. Two teams from India's National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) as well as local volunteers, the fire department and police officials were scouring the rubble for survivors.
|↑|22. Man sentenced to 2nd life term in Charlottesville car attack01:23[−]
An avowed white supremacist was sentenced to life in prison plus 419 years Monday for deliberately driving his car into a crowd of anti-racism protesters during a rally in Virginia, killing one woman and injuring dozens. James Alex Fields Jr., 22, remained stoic as Circuit Court Judge Richard Moore formally imposed the recommendation of a state jury that convicted him in December of murder and malicious wounding charges for his actions in Charlottesville on Aug. 12, 2017. Fields showed no visible emotion as victims of the car attack described severe physical and psychological injuries — broken bones, post-traumatic stress disorder, anxiety and depression — inflicted by Fields when he plowed his car into them.
|↑|24. SpaceX: Leaky valve caused crew capsule to explode in test00:55[−]
A leaky valve caused a SpaceX crew capsule to explode during a ground test back in April, destroying the spacecraft and dealing a blow to the company's effort to launch astronauts. SpaceX's crew Dragon capsule had just returned, minus astronauts, from a successful test flight to the International Space Station and was undergoing a ground test April 20 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station. Hans Koenigsmann, a SpaceX vice president, said a check valve allowed a slug of liquid oxidizer to leak into the high-pressure abort system.
|↑|26. Imagine If Russia and China Built Nuclear-Powered Aircraft Carriers Together00:07[−]
China could partner with Russia in order to develop nuclear-powered icebreakers.While the vessels would be useful in their own right, the main benefit could be to help Beijing refine reactor technology for use in a future nuclear-powered aircraft carrier, according to the Hong Kong South China Morning Post.The Chinese navy already possesses two conventionally-powered flattops and is building a third.But naval expert Li Jie told the newspaper that to be truly competitive, the Chinese navy needs a ship capable of generating lots of power and high speeds in order to launch large aircraft. “China really needs a more powerful, nuclear-powered aircraft carrier to catapult its superheavy carrier-based fighter jet, the J-15,” Li said.“While China has good experience in the development of nuclear reactors for use on land, it has yet to master the miniaturisation process that is needed to make a nuclear power unit suitable for an aircraft carrier,” South China Morning Post reported.“China has strong naval building capabilities, but it is still very weak in nuclear miniaturisation. So it can learn from Russia,” Beijing-based military expert Zhou Chenming told the newspaper.The Chinese fleet already possess nuclear-powered submarines. But the subs’ reactors are poor candidates for transfer to a surface ship as large as an aircraft carrier. France learned that lesson a quarter-century ago, Zhou pointed out.> In a bid to cut costs in the development of the Charles de Gaulle – France’s first and only nuclear-powered carrier – its designers used two K15 submarine pressurised water reactors as the main propulsion system.
|↑|28. Italy seizes 'combat-ready' missile and automatic weapon stash in raids on far-Right figuresÏí., 15 èþëÿ[−]
Italian police have seized a large arsenal of weapons, including an air-to-air missile, in raids on neo-Nazi sympathisers, they said on Monday. Elite police forces searched properties across northern Italy following an investigation into Italians who had fought alongside Russian-backed separatist forces in eastern Ukraine, a police statement said. Three men were arrested, including a customs officer who has previously stood for parliament for an extreme right party. During their raids, police discovered a French-made Matra air-to-air missile that appeared to have once belonged to the Qatar armed forces. Subsequent checks showed the weapon was in working condition but lacked an explosive charge. A big cache of guns and ammunition was seized by the Turin special police force Credit: FRANCESCO AMMENDOLA,HO/AFP/Getty Images Police said the suspects had tried to sell the missile in conversations with contacts on the WhatsApp messaging network. Among other weapons uncovered were 26 guns, 20 bayonets, 306 gun parts, including silencers and rifle scopes, and more than 800 bullets of various calibres. The arms were primarily from Austria, Germany and the United States. Police also seized Nazi memorabilia from the properties. "The police investigation ... came into being because of the activities of some Italian fighters with extremist backgrounds who had taken part in the armed conflict in the Ukrainian region of Donbass," the police statement said. More than 10,000 people have been killed since 2014 in fighting between pro-Russian separatists and Ukrainian forces in eastern Ukraine.
|↑|30. Australian model sentenced for airline flight disturbanceÏí., 15 èþëÿ[−]
An Australian model was sentenced Monday in Los Angeles to community service and probation for slapping a flight attendant and going on an obscene tirade during a flight, with a federal judge saying he believed she was deeply remorseful and did not deserve fines or prison time. U.S. District Judge Cormac J. Carney sentenced Adau Mornyang to three years of probation and 100 hours of community service. Prosecutors had sought a month in jail for Mornyang.
|↑|32. Babysitter charged with homicide over death of two-year-old at unlicensed day careÏí., 15 èþëÿ[−]
A man has been charged with homicide after a toddler died at an unlicensed day care in Wisconsin.Hunter Jones was charged earlier this month with first-degree reckless homicide in the death of 2-year-old Matthew Bolinski.A criminal complaint said Mr Jones called 911 on 27 March to say the child had jumped out of his playpen and hit his head. The complaint also said Mr Jones was on the phone with a dispatcher for four minutes before he revealed the child wasn’t breathing.Katherine Bolinski, the little boy’s mother, told local news outlets she feels like she is living in an “ongoing nightmare”. “I still pretend like he’s sleeping in the other room,” Ms Bolinski told WITI.“Now it’s just like an ongoing nightmare of waking up and there are moments where I just wish he could be with me still.” Mr Jones’ wife, an in-home day care provider, told investigators she left the child and others in her husband’s care while she went out to pick up dinner.An autopsy listed the cause of the child’s death as undetermined, but also said the toddler had 18 contusions on his head and likely died of asphyxia. “That day I dropped him off, he threw a fit like no other fit and I obviously regret having to do that now because of the outcome, but that’s my last memory of him alive,” Ms Bolinski told the local news outlet.The mother said she was “confused,” “hurt” and “angry” after her son was found to have multiple injuries to his neck and head.Mr Jones did not have a defence attorney listed in court records. Additional reporting by AP
|↑|33. Land crabs infest Florida man's house after heavy rainfallÏí., 15 èþëÿ[−]
A man in Florida recently received hundreds of crabs as unexpected house guests.Heavy rain fall in south Florida forced hundreds of land crabs, which burrow underground, out of their holes and into the property of Dan Skowronski, a resident of of Port St Lucie. In a video shared to Facebook, the Florida man witnessed the home invasion with a surprising calm.“They must have got rained out of their holes,” he said while filming the crabs, which were scurrying all over his house and property. “All land crabs. Their homes got wiped out by the rain, and they’re all over.”“They’re more scared of me than I am of them,” he said, adding that “sometimes it happens once a year”.Florida saw heavy rainfall as Hurricane Barry geared up in the Gulf Coast throughout last week, before making landfall in Louisiana on Saturday. The storm left heavy flooding throughout New Orleans, but was downgraded to a tropical storm upon hitting the city, and did less damage than anticipated. Still, much of the city experienced rampant flooding, which is expected to continue and spread this week.In the Florida panhandle, far north above the crab invasion, the storm stirred up a mass influx of jellyfish, washing up on the sand as the water picked up into dangerous riptides. Public beaches were closed to swimmers while the fish and waves persisted.WPTV reports that the crabs in South Florida were gone by Friday.
|↑|36. Biden cancer nonprofit suspends operations indefinitelyÏí., 15 èþëÿ[−]
A nonprofit foundation set up by Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden that relied on health care world partnerships to speed a cure for cancer has suspended its operations, it announced Monday. The Biden Cancer Initiative's sudden move to cease its activities comes two years after it was founded in 2017 by the former vice president and his wife, Jill, as a philanthropic extension of Biden's stewardship of the White House Cancer Moonshot program. Biden, who on Monday was detailing his health care plan , headed the Obama administration effort to accelerate a cancer cure in tribute to his son Beau, who died of the disease in 2015.
|↑|39. ICE raids: Top immigration official admits he ‘does not know details’ of controversial arrestsÏí., 15 èþëÿ[−]
The acting director of US Citizenship and Immigration Services has said he does not have details about the ICE raids targeting undocumented immigrants, even though he has spoken about the operation in recent days.Ken Cuccinelli said during a CNN appearance on Monday he did “not have operational details”, including how many arrests were made during the operation that began on Sunday.Last week, Mr Cuccinelli discussed the operation and said there were approximately one million people in the US with removal orders.“I told you, I don't have details about any arrests that have taken place so far with respect to that operation,” Mr Cuccinelli said, explaining his lack of knowledge about specifics by saying “operational details are kept contained within the agency”.The raids were expected in Atlanta, Baltimore, Chicago, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New York and San Francisco.But, there were no reports of the raids in several cities, according to immigrant advocacy groups that are monitoring the situation.Mr Cucinelli’s agency is in charge of legal immigration, and it is left to Immigration and Customs Enforcement to detain undocumented immigrants for deportation.The US has conducted raids previously, including raids on workplaces where undocumented immigrants have allegedly been hired.Donald Trump's administration has overseen a spike in the number of those kinds of raids, compared to during the Obama administration.
|↑|40. Lindsey Graham Backs Trump’s Racist Tweets on ‘Fox & Friends’: The Squad Are ‘Communists’ Who Hate AmericaÏí., 15 èþëÿ[−]
With President Trump tripling down on his racist attacks on a group of Democratic congresswomen of color, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) backed the president on Monday morning, calling the so-called Squad a “bunch of communists” who are “anti-Semitic” and hate the United States.During an appearance on Fox & Friends, Graham—who played golf with the president on Sunday after Trump told the Squad to “go back” to where “they came” from—was asked about polls that show Trump is behind in the 2020 election.“What does he need to do to ensure a win?” Ainsley Earhardt asked.Graham addressed Trump through the screen, saying he’s going to win as long as he can “knock it down a notch,” prompting co-host Brian Kilmeade to ask the South Carolina lawmaker “in what way.” The one-time presidential candidate then brought up the president’s tweets.“We all know that [Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez] and this crowd are a bunch of communists, they hate Israel, they hate our own country, they’re calling the guards along our border—the Border Patrol agents—concentration camp guards,” Graham exclaimed. “They accuse people who support Israel as doing it for the benjamins, they are anti-Semitic, they are anti-America. Don’t get them—aim higher.”Asked if the tweets were negative, Graham demurred while continuing to blast the group of progressive lawmakers—which includes Reps. Ocasio-Cortez, Ilhan Omar, Ayanna Pressley and Rashida Tlaib—by repeatedly calling them anti-Semitic. He further called on the president to take aim at their policies rather than personally attacking them. “They’re socialists. They’re anti-Semitic,” Graham declared. “They stand for all the things that most Americans disagree with. Make them the face of the future of the Democratic Party. You will destroy the Democratic Party.”Co-host Steve Doocy, meanwhile, wondered if Graham was saying the president went “too far” with his attacks. Graham, however, wasn’t about to go down that road.“I don’t think—aim higher,” he stated. “They are American citizens. They won an election. Take on their policies.”Trump was obviously extremely pleased with Graham’s on-air performance. A short time after the senator’s interview aired, the president fired off a series of tweets quoting Graham calling the Squad anti-America, finishing it off by asking: “Need I say more?”Republicans in Washington, meanwhile, have remained almost entirely silent on Trump urging women of color to leave the country. Read more at The Daily Beast.Got a tip? Send it to The Daily Beast hereGet 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.
|↑|42. Susan Rice Calls Chinese Diplomat a ‘Racist Disgrace’ on TwitterÏí., 15 èþëÿ[−]
(Bloomberg) -- Sign up for Next China, a weekly email on where the nation stands now and where it's going next.Former U.S. National Security Advisor Susan Rice sparred with a senior Chinese diplomat on Twitter in an unusual and heated dispute over race in Washington.In a series of Tweets apparently aimed at making a broader point about diplomatic divisions over the mass detention of Muslims in China’s Xinjiang province, Lijian Zhao, a diplomat posted in Islamabad, said on Sunday that if “you’re in Washington, D.C., you know the white never go” to the southeastern part of the U.S. capital.“You are a racist disgrace. And shockingly ignorant too,” Rice told Zhao on Twitter. Likely assuming that Zhao was posted in China’s mission in Washington, she then addressed her next comment to China’s ambassador to the U.S., Cui Tiankai. “Ambassador Cui, I expect better of you and your team. Please do the right thing and send him home.”Zhao, who is deputy chief of mission at the Chinese embassy in Pakistan’s capital, is often vocal on Twitter against critics of China’s infrastructure-building projects in Pakistan and other parts of Asia. Beijing has invested tens of billions of dollars in Pakistan, whose leader Imran Khan has previously dodged questions about the issue.‘Shockingly Ignorant’“You are such a disgrace, too. And shockingly ignorant, too. I am based in Islamabad. Truth hurts. I am simply telling the truth,” Zhao fired back at Rice on Monday. “To label someone who speak the truth that you don’t want to hear a racist, is disgraceful & disgusting.”Read More: How China Is Defending Its Detention of Muslims to the WorldZhao didn’t immediately respond to phone calls, an email and a direct message on Twitter seeking comment.In a string of messages that appeared aimed at highlighting U.S. hypocrisy on human rights, Zhao referred to everything from income inequality and school shootings in the U.S. to immigration officers separating children from parents.He tweeted a list of mostly-Western nations that condemned China for its actions in Xinjiang as well as a separate list of other countries -- including Pakistan, Cuba, Tajikistan and Nigeria -- that wrote a joint letter to the United Nations supporting Beijing, which Zhao called “a big slap on the face of U.S. & its western cohorts.”Outspoken DiplomatsChina’s diplomats have become increasingly vocal and outspoken. This month, China’s ambassador to London, Liu Xiaoming, gave a rare televised statement accusing the British government of meddling in Hong Kong, the scene of mass protests against Beijing’s rule.Earlier this year, China’s envoy to Canada publicly accused his hosts of “white supremacy,” while the country’s chief envoy in South Africa said President Donald Trump’s policies were making the U.S. “the enemy of the whole world.”Asked about the Twitter dispute on Monday, China’s foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang didn’t comment directly.“I don’t know the specific situation,” he said. However, he added, “we resolutely oppose the interference of the U.S. and individual Western countries in interfering in China’s internal affairs with the Xinjiang issue.”To contact the reporters on this story: Iain Marlow in New Delhi at firstname.lastname@example.org;Dandan Li in Beijing at email@example.comTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Brendan Scott at firstname.lastname@example.org, Chris Kay, Gregory TurkFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
|↑|43. Kamala Harris might be surging – but her record will soon catch up with herÏí., 15 èþëÿ[−]
A leftward moving party is hungry for change. Just like Joe Biden, Kamala Harris’ past will prove to be a liability‘Harris is talking about financial industry abuses, but she’s doing fundraisers with a Wells Fargo executive.’ Photograph: Vernon Ogrodnek/APThe first pair of Democratic presidential primary debates showed how wide open the field is. Former vice-president Joe Biden came in with a comfortable lead, but stumbled during the debates and has dropped in the polls since.California senator Kamala Harris emerged the victor after the debate, confronting Biden on his past chummy relations with segregationist senators and vehement opposition to busing policies meant to integrate public schools. According to one poll, she’s now within two points of him.Joe Biden had a couple things going for him: he was connected to a popular Obama administration and he is still widely perceived as being electable. For stalwart Democratic voters, preventing a second term for Trump and an ever-rightward moving Republican party is a key priority.Biden might have stood out with his relatively conservative stances on healthcare, the environment, financial regulations and other issues that the Democratic base cared about – but at least he seemed like a safe bet to take on Trump. But now with the former vice-president crumbling under debate pressure and committing a seemingly endless string of gaffes, his electability may now be in question.The Biden team is constantly talking about “Obama-Biden” accomplishments, trying to inexorably tie him to the first black president’s legacy, but the more people find out about his own record, the more they’re turned off by it. The same will be true of Kamala Harris, a candidate who says all the right things on the debate stage, is surging in the polls, but will soon find out that positive attention may soon turn into negative scrutiny.> Harris is talking about financial industry abuses, but she’s doing fundraisers with a Wells Fargo executiveHarris is talking about financial industry abuses, but she’s doing fundraisers with a Wells Fargo executive. Though often glibly compared to Obama, Harris’s policy triangulations, donor-base ties, and questionable political past are all reminiscent of Hillary Clinton. Take her stance on what was once seemingly her strongest policy stances. Harris was an initial endorser of Bernie Sanders’s 2017 healthcare bill, which would have set up a Medicare for All, single-payer system. Such a plan would get rid of private insurance middlemen, and improve health outcomes and efficiency across the country. “Let’s eliminate all of that. Let’s move on,” she said at a January town hall.Discussing her mother’s battle with colon cancer, Harris declared that “healthcare should be a right.”When candidates were asked during the debate whether they would “abolish private insurance in favor of a government-run plan”, she joined Bernie Sanders in raising her hand. That’s all fine and good, a brave stance that could have been followed up with an explanation telling millions of curious Americans that they can still keep seeing their regular doctors, only in our future universal healthcare system they no longer will have to deal with insurance companies and the accompanying hefty deductible and premium payments.Instead, she beat a hasty retreat. The morning after the debate, she said she had misunderstood the question and certainly believed the private insurance would continue to play a role providing supplementary coverage. In other words, she would keep around the same companies responsible for our failed healthcare system and allow them to rally their forces to undermine a Medicare for All plan. (Most Americans favor getting rid of private insurance, when told they can keep their doctors.)It’s no wonder that likely Democratic voters see Bernie Sanders as the best candidate to handle health policy – agree or disagree, he’s consistent, and has been standing firm for single-payer as others vacillate. Why trust newcomers to progressive stances over someone who has been saying the same thing for decades?Part of Harris’s dilemma must stem from the fact that she sees that her party’s voters are moving leftward, and sees Biden’s centrist vulnerabilities, but is at the same time reliant on far-from-progressive campaign donors. A recent New York Times headline captures the situation well: “Wall Street Donors Are Swooning for Mayor Pete. (And They Like Biden and Harris, Too.)”Harris is talking about financial industry abuses, but she’s doing fundraisers with a Wells Fargo executive, Miguel Bustos, implicated in the company’s fake accounts scandal. When it comes time to take on big banking interests, is it unreasonable to assume that she’ll be less willing to challenge the sector than, say, Senator Warren?And let’s not forget about racial justice, an issue Harris expertly used to contest Biden’s record. But what will happen when people start to pay closer attention to her history as California attorney general. Harris can talk about her past as a young black girl who personally benefited from school integration. But what about the young black people she sent to prison for drug violations? What about the poor mothers trying to get by in a society that gives them no support that Harris threatened to jail and fine if their kids didn’t show up on time to school?Some political evolutions are genuine, and Harris’s “law-and-order” past wasn’t out of place in the Democratic party at the time. But that old wisdom is now being called into question. It’s hard to imagine that a party tacking to the left in an increasingly polarized country is about to elect a criminal prosecutor as its nominee.For now, Sanders is still among the frontrunners but has some ground to make up. His debate performance was mediocre, and he needs to appeal better to older voters still in the Biden camp. But by having a record that matches his rhetoric and by avoiding monied interests, he’s showing that campaigns can be run on a very different basis than Harris is running hers.Bernie Sanders raised $24m in the second quarter of 2019. The workers that donated to him the most were teachers. His largest sum came from Walmart workers. That shouldn’t be a surprise – when other candidates were holding lavish fundraisers, Sanders was raising hell at a Walmart shareholder meeting, denouncing the Walton family’s greed and calling for the company to pay a living wage to its employees.That’s how you break from a stale establishment consensus. That’s how you actually show Americans that you’re different and that you care. That’s the type of angry and earnest politics that can beat President Trump. Kamala Harris isn’t just not leftwing enough to be the Democratic party’s nominee, she’s also not bold enough to win a presidential election and bring about the change we desperately need. * Bhaskar Sunkara is the founding editor of Jacobin magazine and a Guardian US columnist. He is the author of The Socialist Manifesto: The Case for Radical Politics in an Era of Extreme Inequality
|↑|44. Some Iranian women take off hijabs as hard-liners push backÏí., 15 èþëÿ[−]
The simple act of walking has become a display of defiance for a young Iranian woman who often moves in Tehran's streets without a compulsory headscarf, or hijab. With every step, she risks harassment or even arrest by Iran's morality police whose job is to enforce the strict dress code imposed after the 1979 Islamic Revolution. The hijab debate has further polarized Iranians at a time when the country is buckling under unprecedented U.S. sanctions imposed since the Trump administration pulled out of a 2015 nuclear deal between Iran and world powers last year.
|↑|45. Man 'shot polar bear and left its body outside his home for five months'Ïí., 15 èþëÿ[−]
A man has been charged with killing a polar bear and leaving the body to rot outside his home in Alaska for five months.Christopher Gordon, 35, allegedly shot the animal dead when it ventured into his front yard to try and eat some butchered whale meat.He then failed to report the polar bear carcass or attempt to “harvest” it for food between December 2018 and May this year.Gordon also allowed the bear to be covered with snow, which resulted in one of its legs being ripped off by a passing snowplough.Finally, on 22 May, he burned the carcass at the village dump in Kaktovik.He is now facing up to one year in prison and a $100,000 (?80,000) fine if convicted of the federal crime of “knowingly taking a polar bear in a manner unlawful under the Marine Mammal Protection Act”.Prosecutors say that the killing of the bear was not done in legal self defence and that he “left the harvestable remains to waste”.“Gordon allegedly left butchered whale meat outside in front of his yard of his residence for a substantial period of time, which attracted polar bear, as well as other animals to his front yard,” said federal prosecutor Ryan Tansey.“He then allegedly shot and killed the polar bear because it was trying to eat the improperly stored whale meat.”Gordon has also been charged with the state offence of wasteful taking of a marine animal.The investigation was carried out by the US Fish and Wildlife Service.Gordon declined to comment about the case and is scheduled to appear in court in Fairbanks in August.Kaktovik, with a population of just over 250, has experienced increasing encroachment by polar bears in recent years due to the disappearing Arctic sea ice.As a result it has become a popular tourist destination, with more than 2,000 people visiting the village during 2017.“These bears are getting used to people,” said council member Mike Gallagher. ”They’re domesticated.”Additional reporting by Associated Press
|↑|46. Russia’s Election Hackers Are Back—and Targeting George SorosÏí., 15 èþëÿ[−]
Sean Gallup/GettyThe Russian intelligence agency behind 2016’s election attacks is training its sights on billionaire financier George Soros, The Daily Beast has learned. The move comes hot on the heels of a surge in U.S.-focused hacking by Russia’s Main Intelligence Directorate with similarities to 2016 in targeting and methodology. Laura Silber, chief communications officer for Soros’ Open Society Foundations, confirmed the hack attempt, but couldn’t provide additional details over the weekend. “We were aware of an attack,” Silber told the Daily Beast.Last month Microsoft quietly seized a new batch of 10 deceptive domain names the company says were set up by the hackers known as Fancy Bear, the group intelligence officials and independent analysts have long attributed to Russia’s Main Intelligence Directorate, the GRU. Those web addresses imitate genuine domains used for Microsoft services like Sharepoint, an unmistakable sign that they were intended for use in phishing attacks, in which a victim is tricked into typing their password into a fake login page. Mueller Finally Solves Mysteries About Russia’s ‘Fancy Bear’ HackersOne domain targets a Singapore-based investment firm, and another references the Berlin anti-corruption organization Transparency International, which Russia has targeted before. Others are generic or ambiguous in their targeting. But one seized domain, soros-my-sharepoint[.]com, jumps out as a clear reference to Soros, a past GRU target from Russia’s 2016 election interference. An additional four phishing domains registered in the same time frame appear to target Soros’ Open Society Foundations, said Kyle Ehmke, an intelligence researcher at the Arlington, Virginia-based cybersecurity firm ThreatConnect. Those domains haven’t been seized and ThreatConnect hasn’t found enough evidence to definitively link them to the Russian hackers, said Ehmke. The Kremlin’s targeting of Soros and his organization carries echoes of 2016, when the GRU dumped 2,500 files stolen from the Open Society Foundations for the debut of “DC Leaks”, the fake leak site the spies created for their 2016 election interference campaign. “SOROS INTERNAL FILES – BIG DATA”, the site announced at the time.Some of the stolen files were reportedly altered to create the appearance that Soros was secretly financing Russian opposition candidates, making the leak politically useful to Vladmir Putin. More importantly, the Soros dump earned DC Leaks instant credibility in American right-wing circles, where the 88-year-old Hungarian-American philanthropist plays the role of villainous global puppet-master in countless conspiracy theories. Russia’s Internet Research Agency—the so-called “troll farm, later indicted by Special Counsel Robert Mueller—pushed the same trope on its Facebook and Instagram feeds in the run-up to election day. One meme featured a close-up of Soros against a backdrop of anti-Trump picketers. “No lives matter for those who sponsoring [sic] anti Trump protests,” the caption read. Another imagined Soros confronting the late Senator John McCain. “Hey Johnny, I’m paying you a fortune. I don’t care how much cancer you have, get back to DC and backstab Trump.”The Soros targeting comes in the wave of what one expert describes as a fresh wave of Fancy Bear attempts against political nonprofits in the U.S. that ran from last December to March or April of this year, using similar tactics to the mass phishing campaign that famously ensnared Hillary Clinton’s campaign chief in 2016. “It’s a similar type of activity to what hit Podesta,” said Robert Johnston, the former Marine Corp captain who investigated the 2016 DNC breach, and now heads the financial cybersecurity firm Adlumin. “These were against political organizations and NGOs. The FBI has reached out to of bunch of them.”Putin’s Hackers Now Under Attack—From MicrosoftIn 2016 Microsoft sued Fancy Bear in federal court in Virginia and won, unopposed, an injunction allowing the company to seize any web addresses registered by the GRU’s hackers that imitate a Microsoft product or service. The company has seized over 100 domains so far.Experts caution that Russia’s hackers have always cast a wide net, and there’s no way to tell what their motives are in revisiting old haunts now. It may be pure intelligence gathering, or the opening salvo of a 2020 election interference campaign.“We don't know whether they are ultimately looking to compromise targets for influence operations, internal intelligence uses, or both,” said Ehmke.Either way, Russia likely views its 2016 efforts as a success, and is certain to try for an encore. “I think you should absolutely anticipate a very vocal Russian interference in the 2020 elections,” said Johnston.Read more at The Daily Beast.Got a tip? Send it to The Daily Beast hereGet 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.
|↑|47. An Air Force Pilot Told Us What It Is Like to Attack with an F-15 Strike EagleÏí., 15 èþëÿ[−]
Developed to meet the U.S. Air Force (USAF) requirement for air-to-ground missions, the F-15E Strike Eagle can carry 23,000 pounds of air-to-ground and air-to-air weapons and is equipped with an advanced navigation and an infrared targeting system, protecting it from enemy defenses.Thanks to its capabilities the F-15E has been at the centre of every conflict in which the USAF has been involved since 1990 from Desert Shield to Operation Inherent Resolve.In 2002 during Operation Enduring Freedom a Strike Eagle belonging to 335th Fighter Squadron (FS) “Chiefs” from 4th Fighter Wing (FW) dropped the first-ever BLU-118/B Thermobaric Bomb.Lauded by the international press as a grisly weapon that burned the oxygen from the lungs of its victims, the thermobaric bomb was seen as a solution to the Coalition’s main problem at that time — flushing out Taliban fighters hidden deep inside a complex cave network built into the mountains.
|↑|48. The B-2 Stealth Bomber Is Now 30 Years Old. Take a Look Inside.Ïí., 15 èþëÿ[−]
(Washington, D.C.) Slicing through the sky with bat-like wings, eluding enemy radar with stealth technology, quietly destroying enemy air defenses from 50,000 ft and using computers to merge sensor data with targeting information -- the Air Force’s B-2 bomber … has been in the air attacking targets for “30-Years.”“You pull up the weapons suite screen, align the right weapon with the target and provide input into the DEP - Digital Entry Panel. Then, you enter text into the computer,” Lt. Col. Nicola Polidar, Commander of Detachment 5 of the 29th Training Systems Squadron, told Warrior in an interview.As this happens….the air attack begins.The B-2 took its first flight July 17, 1989 -- so now is the “30-Year Anniversary.” B-2 pilots have operated the sleek, curved air-defense-defying platform for sensitive, highly-dangerous missions many times in recent decades. After blasting onto the scene in the early 90s, the B-2s combat debut came in the late 90s when the aircraft destroyed Serbian targets over Kosovo. Three decades ago, the Air Force and Northrop Grumman thought to massively advance the paradigm for stealth attack, and create a first-of-its kind leap ahead bomber. It was conceived of as a Cold War weapon, engineered to knock out Soviet advanced air defenses. The intent was to build upon and surpass the F-117 Night Hawk’s stealth technology used in the Gulf War.The B-2s stealth configuration, buried engine, low heat signature and “radar absorbent” coating, is meant to not only avoid being hit by enemy weapons, but complete missions without enemies ever knowing it is there. Its core mission: launch secret, quiet, undetected attacks over heavily defended enemy territory to create a safer “air corridor” for less stealthy planes to operate within extremely lethal,otherwise uninhabitable airspace.
|↑|49. Report: A $15 Minimum Wage Would Be an Economic DisasterÏí., 15 èþëÿ[−]
Just in time for next week’s likely House vote on a federal $15 minimum wage, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office has come out with a caustic report on the consequences of the policy.The report confirms what even liberal economists caution: A $15 minimum wage would “risk undesirable and unintended consequences” and lead to a survival-of-the-fittest labor market, where only the highest-skilled workers come out on top. Democrats are under the illusion that the government can force employers to artificially increase wages with no adverse consequences for American workers. But that’s like saying the government could double families’ mortgage and rent payments without any consequence.Here are six ways this new report exposes the minimum wage proposal as bad policy.1\. It would be a job-killer.The Congressional Budget Office report estimated that a $15 minimum wage would lead to 1.3 million lost jobs by the year 2025, with job losses rising over time due to compounding negative impacts.The exact number of job losses are highly uncertain, but the report says losses would most likely range between zero and 3.7 million, with a not-insignificant chance that losses could exceed 3.7 million.A 2011 Heritage Foundation estimate was even bleaker. It estimated a $15 minimum wage would lead to 7 million lost jobs.