It's Academic: December 26, 2020, Part 2
- The Independent
Kayleigh McEnany leaves White House after final two-minute press briefing following deadly Capitol riot
Trump’s press secretary refused to take questions following the deadly insurrection at the US Capitol earlier this month
- The Telegraph
Scientists say Colombia must cull its so-called “cocaine hippos” that roam the Magdalena river basin as they are breeding voraciously and are an increasing menace. The marshlands of Colombia have been home to these giant mammals since they were illegally imported in the late 1980s by the notorious drug lord, Pablo Escobar. When he was shot dead in 1993, the Colombian government took control of his extravagant estate, including his personal zoo. Most of the animals were shipped away, but four hippos were left to fend for themselves in a pond, and now there are dozens of them living in the wild. Although nobody knows exactly how many there are, estimates put the total number between 80 and 100, making them the largest invasive species on the planet. Scientists forecast that the number of hippos will swell to almost 1,500 by 2040. They conclude, that at that point, environmental impacts will be irreversible and numbers impossible to control. “Nobody likes the idea of shooting a hippo, but we have to accept that no other strategy is going to work,” ecologist Nataly Castelblanco-Martínez told The Telegraph.
- Associated Press
From “emaciated” refugees to crops burned on the brink of harvest, starvation threatens the survivors of more than two months of fighting in Ethiopia’s Tigray region. The first humanitarian workers to arrive after pleading with the Ethiopian government for access describe weakened children dying from diarrhea after drinking from rivers. A local official told a Jan. 1 crisis meeting of government and aid workers that hungry people had asked for “a single biscuit.”
Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny took off on a plane bound for Russia on Sunday, to return home for the first time since he was poisoned last summer, despite Russian authorities' stated desire to arrest him and potentially jail him for years. Navalny, one of President Vladimir Putin's most prominent domestic critics, was flown to Berlin in August last year for emergency medical treatment after being poisoned with what German tests showed was a Novichok nerve agent. "This is the best moment in the last five months," he told reporters after he boarded the plane in the German capital, bound for Moscow.
- Miami Herald
“I thought, ‘This could be the end,’” the D.C. police officer said.
- National Review
Senator Rand Paul (R., Ky.) warned Friday that one-third of Republican voters could leave the party if GOP senators vote in impeachment proceedings to convict President Trump. Paul made the comments in an interview on Fox News’ The Ingraham Angle. The senator’s remarks come amid an increasing divide between congressional Republicans who oppose impeaching the president and a smaller number who support the measure following the riots at the Capitol on January 6. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R., Ky.) is reportedly hopeful that Republicans can use impeachment to purge Trump from the GOP, although he would need the support of at least 16 additional Republican senators to vote to convict. “Look, I didn’t agree with the [Capitol] fight that happened last week, and I voted against overturning the election, but at the same time, the impeachment is a wrongheaded, partisan notion, [and] if Republicans go along with it, it’ll destroy the party,” Paul said during the interview. “A third of the Republicans will leave the party,” Paul continued. “This isn’t about, anymore, the Electoral College, this is about the future of the party, and whether you’re going to ostracize and excommunicate President Trump from the party. Well, guess what? Millions of his fans will leave as well.” While a majority of Americans believe Trump should be removed from office immediately, just 17 percent of Republicans support expelling Trump from the presidency, according to an Axios–Ipsos poll released on Thursday. Support for Trump among Republicans has fallen since the Capitol riots; however, 60 percent believe the party should continue to follow Trump once he leaves office, an ABC News/Washington Post poll found.
- Associated Press
New satellite images of a refugee camp in Ethiopia’s embattled Tigray region show more than 400 structures have been badly damaged in what a research group believes is the latest “intentional attack” by fighters. The report by the U.K.-based DX Open Network nonprofit, shared with The Associated Press, says “it is likely that the fire events of 16 January are yet another episode in a series of military incursions on the camp as reported by (the United Nations refugee agency).” The Shimelba camp is one of four that hosted 96,000 refugees from nearby Eritrea when fighting erupted in early November between Ethiopian forces and those of the defiant Tigray region.
China promised on Saturday to donate 500,000 COVID-19 vaccine doses to the Philippines as the two countries signed infrastructure deals aimed at boosting post-pandemic recovery efforts, officials said. Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte imposed one of the world's longest and strictest lockdowns to contain the virus in March last year - bringing one of Asia's fastest-growing economies to a standstill. "As a friend of the Philippines and your closest neighbour, we will firmly stand with the people of the Philippines until the defeat of this virus," senior Chinese diplomat Wang Yi said during a meeting with the Philippines' foreign minister.
- The Independent
Police discover more than 500 rounds of ammunition at checkpoint into security-heavy capital
- The Week
President Trump is known for going off script, but his premature presidential election victory declaration in the early hours of the morning on Nov. 4 wasn't a completely spur-of-the-moment decision, Axios' Jonathan Swan reports.In the first installment of a reported series on Trump's final two months in office, Swan writes that Trump began "choreographing election night in earnest" during the second week of October following a "toxic" debate with President-elect Joe Biden on Sept. 29 and a bout with COVID-19 that led to his hospitalization. At that point, Trump's internal poll numbers had reportedly taken a tumble, Swan notes.With that in mind, he reportedly called his first White House chief of staff, a stunned Reince Priebus, and "acted out his script, including walking up to a podium and prematurely declaring victory on election night if it looked like he was ahead." Indeed, in the lead up to Election Day, Trump reportedly kept his focus on the so-called "red mirage," the early vote counts that would show many swing states leaning red because mail-in ballots had yet to be counted. Trump, Swan reports, intended to "weaponize it for his vast base of followers," who would go to bed thinking he had secured a second-term, likely planting the seeds of a stolen election. Read more at Axios. > As I've been writing, the plan was to steal the election all along. Fantastic reporting here. https://t.co/k8C73o8vH7> > -- Jonah Goldberg (@JonahDispatch) January 16, 2021More stories from theweek.com 5 more scathing cartoons about Trump's 2nd impeachment Trump's vaccine delay is getting suspicious Biden's inaugural address expected to push unity, optimism
- Associated Press
Uganda’s electoral commission said Saturday that President Yoweri Museveni won a sixth five-year term, extending his rule to four decades, while top opposition challenger Bobi Wine dismissed “cooked-up, fraudulent results” and officials struggled to explain how polling results were compiled amid an internet blackout. In a generational clash watched across the African continent with a booming young population and a host of aging leaders, the 38-year-old singer-turned-lawmaker Wine posed arguably Museveni's greatest challenge yet. In a phone interview from his home, which he said was surrounded by soldiers, Wine urged the international community to “please call Gen. Museveni to order” by withholding aid, imposing sanctions and using Magnitsky legislation to hold alleged human rights users accountable.
- Yahoo News Video
A 16-year-old boy has admitted to fatally shooting his newborn daughter and leaving her body inside a fallen tree in the woods in Wisconsin, according to prosecutors.
The white woman caught on tape getting into a physical altercation with a Black female security guard the evening before the Capitol riots lost her job at UMass Hospital. The termination occurred after her daughter went viral for exposing her identity on social media. On January 5th, Therese Duke and a group of pro-Trump protesters that included other family members were filmed harassing Ashanti Smith, a security guard working at Black Lives Matter Plaza in Washington D.C.
The earthquake struck the island of Sulawesi on Friday, injuring hundreds and destroying a hospital.
- Architectural Digest
You'll love the twist these designers have put on old-school entertainmentOriginally Appeared on Architectural Digest
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas announced parliamentary and presidential elections on Friday, the first in 15 years, in an effort to heal long-standing internal divisions. The move is widely seen as a response to criticism of the democratic legitimacy of Palestinian political institutions, including Abbas's presidency. It also comes days before the inauguration of U.S. President-elect Joe Biden, with whom the Palestinians want to reset relations after they reached a low under President Donald Trump.
- Associated Press
The top U.N. official for Libya said Saturday an advisory committee for representatives of Libya's different regions has proposed a way forward for choosing a transitional government that would lead the war-torn country to elections late this year. The talks in Geneva, structured around the Libyan Political Dialogue Forum, have been taking place amid a heavy international push to reach a peaceful settlement to Libya’s civil war. U.N. acting envoy for Libya Stephanie Williams told a news conference in Geneva that the advisory committee’s members “have met their responsibility with a constructive spirit, cooperative efforts, and a great deal of patriotism.”
- The Independent
Trump news – live: President’s approval rating hits record low as fears grow over inauguration week violence
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- Miami Herald
Cindy Falco Dicorrado may have wanted a bagel at an Einstein Bros. Bagels near Boca Raton but she may have had to settle for eating one in a Palm Beach County jail the next morning.
Guatemalan security forces used sticks to beat back a migrant caravan early on Sunday after thousands of people set off from Honduras for the United States this week, just as President-elect Joe Biden prepares to enter the White House. Between 7,000 and 8,000 migrants have entered Guatemala since Friday, according to Guatemala's immigration authority, fleeing poverty and violence in a region hammered by the coronavirus pandemic and back-to-back hurricanes in November. However, around 3,000 Guatemalan security officials mustered in the village of Vado Hondo in eastern Guatemala to hold up the caravan, leading to the clashes on Sunday morning.