President Biden’s attorney general nominee Merrick Garland testifies before the Senate Judiciary Committee for his confirmation hearing, vowing he is “not the president’s lawyer” but “the United States’ lawyer.” Senator Dick Durbin, the Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, joins Ari Melber.
- The Daily Beast
Prince Harry Tells Friend James Corden He Left the Royal Family Because It Was Destroying His Mental Health
KOEN VAN WEELPrince Harry has said that he stepped back from royal duties because the British press was “toxic” and “destroying” his mental health.In an extraordinary interview unparalleled in the annals of royal history, Harry gave a candid interview to his close friend James Corden on The Late Late Show while they toured Los Angeles on an open-air double-decker bus. Corden was a guest at Harry and Meghan’s wedding in 2018 and arrived at the evening reception dressed as Henry VIII. Another guest at the wedding, Oprah Winfrey, has taped an interview primarily with Meghan that will be screened next weekend.Oprah Winfrey’s Interview With Meghan Markle and Harry Will ‘Shine a Light on What They Have Been Through’The two men were served afternoon tea, which Corden said he had provided to remind Harry of home, however the tea service was abandoned after the bus braked sharply, depositing the contents of a tea trolley on top of the prince.“Clear it up, Harry,” Corden joked as the prince picked up tea cups and scones.While the 17-minute long package had a humorous tone and was packed with jokes and gags, it also provided the most candid insight yet into why Harry withdrew from royal duties.Asked about his decision to leave royal life, Harry said he was left with no choice because the British press “was destroying my mental health.”He said of the “toxic” situation: “I did what any husband and father would do—I need to get my family out of here.”In what will be perceived as a dig at the royal establishment that refused to accept Harry and Meghan’s proposal of a hybrid public-private role, Harry said: “We never walked away, and as far as I’m concerned, what decisions are made on that side, I will never walk away.”Royal Family ‘Wringing Their Hands’ at Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s ActivismHarry said that his life now would continue to be about “public service” and added that he and Meghan were “trying to bring some compassion and try to make people happy and try to change the world in any small way we can.”When Harry said he and Meghan often watched Jeopardy! and Netflix (with whom the couple recently signed a $100 million production deal) in the evenings after putting Archie to bed, Corden asked him about The Crown and its controversial portrayal of his family’s history.Harry, who joked he would like to be played in the series by Damian Lewis, said he preferred it to the tabloid media coverage of the royals because it “does not pretend to be news.”He added: “It’s fictional. But it’s loosely based on the truth.“Of course it’s not strictly accurate, but it gives you a rough idea about what that lifestyle—the pressures of putting duty and service above family and everything else—what can come from that.”He continued: “I’m way more comfortable with The Crown than I am seeing the stories written about my family, or my wife or myself, because it’s the difference between fiction—take it how you will—and being reported on as fact because you’re supposedly news. I have a real issue with that.”Harry also opened up about meeting Meghan and how he knew she was the one on their second date.“We hit it off with each other, and we were just so comfortable in each other’s company,” he said.“Dating me or any member of the royal family is kind of flipped upside down. All the dates become dinners or watching the TV or chatting at home.“We went from zero to 60 in the first two months.”Meghan, who is pregnant with the couple’s second child, made a cameo in the interview via FaceTime when Harry and Corden paid a trip to the house from the ’90s TV show The Fresh Prince of Bel Air.When Corden suggested the couple should buy the house, Meghan said: “I think we’ve done enough moving.”During the visit to the house, Corden and Harry spoke to the owner and jokingly made an offer to buy it, before Harry asked if he could use the toilet.“I’m actually dying for a pee. Can I use your bathroom?” he asked.Showing that family relations are at least still somewhat functional, Harry said his grandmother, the queen, bought his son Archie a waffle maker for Christmas.He revealed Meghan now makes waffles with a “beautiful organic mix” and they eat them for breakfast with toppings including berries and syrup.He also said that both his grandparents know how to use Zoom, but joked that his grandfather slams the laptop shut physically to finish a call.Over to you, Oprah.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.
- Associated Press
A woman who ran away from London as a teenager to join the Islamic State group lost her bid Friday to return to the U.K. to fight for the restoration of her citizenship, which was revoked on national security grounds. Shamima Begum was one of three east London schoolgirls who traveled to Syria in 2015. Begum's lawyers appealed,, saying her right to a fair hearing was harmed by the obstacles of pursuing her case from the camp.
An official report says Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman approved the journalist's murder.
- The Independent
The anchor was called out “fatphobic” on social media
What Harry thinks of The Crown, what the Queen got Archie for Christmas, and other key information.
The report released Friday on the murder of Jamal Khashoggi was short on evidence or new information, but Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) tells Axios that the “definitive” statement assigning responsibility to Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (MBS) speaks volumes.What he’s saying: Schiff, the chairman of the House intelligence committee, says that while some intelligence couldn’t be published because of the need to protect sources and methods, “we rarely see something published that is this definitive and I think that's an important accomplishment for the administration.”Stay on top of the latest market trends and economic insights with Axios Markets. Subscribe for free"I think it's a very accurate summary of what we know, and I was pleased that it was as forthcoming as it was. It really held nothing back in terms of attributing the capture/kill operation to the crown prince,” he said.From the report: “We assess that Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Muhammad bin Salman approved an operation in Istanbul, Turkey to capture or kill Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.”Asked about the “capture or kill” language, Schiff told Axios: "I think you should read it as meaning that the team the crown prince dispatched had his approval to either capture him, if that was either possible or desirable, or to kill him. And either outcome would have been satisfactory to the crown prince."The other side: The Saudi foreign ministry has vehemently rejected the report, and some pro-Saudi voices have seized on the fact that it doesn’t contain a “smoking gun.”"I don't know that I would use the standard of smoking guns,” Schiff said. “The intelligence community does not usually speak in such definitive terms without high confidence in its judgements.”What’s next: “I think the focus now is what are the repercussions that should follow. I've urged the administration to make sure that those repercussions apply to anyone involved and that includes the man who gave the orders," Schiff said. Between the lines: The Biden administration announced sanctions Friday in response to Khashoggi’s murder, but declined to directly target MBS.Like this article? Get more from Axios and subscribe to Axios Markets for free.
TikTokers tried to prove that snow in Texas was 'fake' as weather conspiracy theories ran wild online
From "fake snow" to Bill Gates, conspiracy theories about the Texas storm are spreading. Right-wing pundits and politicians aren't helping.
- Reuters Videos
Among the fatalities, most died from bullet wounds, a hospital source said, adding that about 120 protesters were wounded. At least 57 members of the security forces were injured, according to another hospital source and a security source.The clashes continued on Friday evening after a week of violence that erupted on Sunday when security forces fired to disperse protesters, who were trying to storm the provincial government building using rocks and Molotov cocktails.Protesters are demanding the removal of the governor and justice for protesters killed since 2019.Iraq's biggest anti-government protests in decades broke out in October 2019 and continued for several months, with hundreds of thousands of Iraqis demanding jobs, services and the removal of the ruling elite, whom they accused of corruption.Nearly 500 people were killed, and the protests caused the resignation of Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi.Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi, who took office in May 2020, has pledged justice for activists killed or abused by armed groups. But no prosecutions have occurred so far.The clashes come just a week before Pope Francis visits Iraq from March 5 to 8. He is due to tour the ancient Mesopotamian site of Ur, only about 20 kilometres away from the clashes.
- Business Insider
The study on car-buying trends argued that Tesla "could be displaced by a worthy alternative," and people are open to other options.
- Business Insider
Merkel says she won't take AstraZeneca's COVID-19 vaccine because she's too old, as 1.4 million jabs are left unused
The German chancellor said she wasn't eligible because the vaccine isn't approved for people over 65 in Germany.
- The Independent
Texas senator shamed for Cancun trip delivered a high-energy CPAC speech studded with Star Wars references
- The Telegraph
The Queen has said people who refuse the coronavirus vaccine "ought to think about other people rather than themselves". In her first comments on the subject, Her Majesty said it was important that people were "protected" by the vaccine. Speaking to the senior responsible officers overseeing the delivery of the vaccine across all four UK nations, she said that her own immunisation, administered at Windsor Castle in January, was “very quick,” adding: “It didn’t hurt at all.” She added: “Once you've had the vaccine you have a feeling of, you know, you're protected, which is I think very important. “And I think the other thing is that it is obviously difficult for people if they've never had a vaccine… but they ought to think about other people rather than themselves." The vaccine rollout has been beset by hesitancy, largely among black ethnic minority communities, of whom just 72 per cent are willing to have the jab. Nadhim Zahawi, the UK’s Covid-19 vaccine deployment minister said the Government rollout was battling a “tsunami” of vaccine misinformation. Royal sources said it was the Queen's “passionately held belief” that everyone should take part in the programme. Her comments were described as an "incredibly important vote of confidence” in the campaign. They are reminiscent of her decision in 1957, to let it be known that Prince Charles and Princess Anne had been given the polio vaccine in order to counter public fears. The Queen also intervened in the debate over Scottish independence, urging her subjects to “think carefully” before voting in the 2014 referendum. The Royal Family has taken an increasingly prominent role in publicising the campaign, returning to public engagements for the first time this year in order to visit vaccination hubs and speak to NHS staff and volunteers. Senior royals are said to be “very engaged” with the programme and aware of the lower rate of vaccine uptake among ethnic minority communities, a concern highlighted by the Prince of Wales, patron of the British Asian Trust, in a webinar last week. The Queen, speaking in 2020:
The Biden administration announced sanctions and visa bans on Friday targeting Saudi Arabian citizens over the 2018 killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, but stopped short of imposing sanctions on Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman himself. U.S. President Joe Biden's actions in the first weeks of his administration appear aimed at fulfilling campaign promises to realign Saudi ties after critics accused his predecessor, Donald Trump, of giving the Arab ally and major oil producer a pass on gross human rights violations. A senior Biden administration official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the approach aims to create a new launching-off point for ties with the kingdom without breaking a core relationship in the Middle East.
'Spider-Man' fans are theorizing that the 3rd movie's title could mean we'll see the return of Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield. Here's what's going on.
"Spider-Man: No Way Home" is set for release this December. Recent reports and clues have Marvel fans speculating about who could show up in the film.
- Business Insider
South Dakota's legislature is moving to impeach its attorney general after investigators uncovered a hit-and-run victim's glasses in his car
Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg initially said he thought he'd hit a deer. Then the victim's glasses were found in his car.
- Business Insider
Donald Trump Jr. gives fiery CPAC speech full of grievances against anti-Trump Republicans, big tech, and the mainstream media
Trump Jr. ranted about Wyoming Rep. Liz Cheney, saying her "politics are only slightly less popular than her father is at a quail hunt."
- Associated Press
Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman underwent a “successful surgery” to remove his appendix Wednesday, the royal court said, and he left the hospital soon after the operation. The 35-year-old prince had surgery for appendicitis at the King Faisal Specialist Hospital in the Saudi capital of Riyadh in the morning, according to the royal court. Prince Mohammed, the son of King Salman, has amassed immense powers in the kingdom since being appointed heir to the throne in 2017.
- Reuters Videos
A new study suggests that the first death from COVID-19 in Europe may have actually occurred in Serbia - 10 days before the first reported fatality came out of France.France reported Europe's first death on Feb. 15, 2020. But researchers in Belgrade now say that a 56-year-old construction worker from that city, who had not traveled abroad, was admitted to a hospital on Feb. 5 suffering from fever, cough and shortness of breath. He died within hours and an autopsy showed pneumonia was the cause. Months later, scientists at the Institute for Forensic Medicine of Belgrade's Medical Faculty, found evidence that the man had died from COVID.Milenko Bogdanovic, a forensic pathologist, says frozen samples were taken from the man's eye to prove the presence of the virus."One of the conclusions of this work would be that this is, for the time being, the first post-mortem corroborated death from COVID-19 in Europe to date."The study also says COVID-19 was probably the cause of reports of a pneumonia of unknown origin between January and February last year. Serbia's first official case was recorded on March 6, 2020.
- The Telegraph
Former SNP minister demands release of Salmond documents and says Sturgeon must go if they show conspiracy
A former SNP minister has called for secret documents about the Alex Salmond affair to be made public and said Nicola Sturgeon should resign if they prove allegations of a conspiracy. Alex Neil, an MSP who held senior cabinet posts in Edinburgh under both Mr Salmond and Ms Sturgeon, called for transparency from both the Scottish Government and the Crown Office, which have both been criticised for withholding evidence. Mr Salmond has alleged that senior figures in the SNP, including Ms Sturgeon’s husband and her chief of staff, conspired against him by using sexual assault allegations to attempt to ruin his political career and potentially imprison him. Ms Sturgeon has said claims of a conspiracy involving not only the SNP but the prosecution service and other public bodies are ridiculous.
- The Telegraph
'It's not as nice as Cancun': Ted Cruz jokes about controversial holiday in CPAC culture wars speech
Ted Cruz railed against "cancel culture" and mocked criticism of his trip to Mexico while his home state of Texas endured freezing conditions and power blackouts as he addressed the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) on Friday. The Texas senator was widely criticised last week for taking a family trip to Cancun, Mexico while millions in his state went without heat or water after severe winter weather crippled power supplies. He cut his trip short and apologised for the trip after facing a public backlash. As he addressed CPAC attendees in Orlando, Florida, Mr Cruz began by referencing the controversy, joking: "Orlando is awesome. It's not as nice as Cancun - but it's nice." The comments were met with laughter from the audience.