The percentage of available ICU beds has dropped.
- The Independent
‘It was my pleasure to crush a white nationalist insurrection’: DC officer injured in Capitol riot speaks out
Daniel Hodges recounted pro-Trump mob’s attempt to crush him inside a doorway during siege on 6 January
- National Review
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- The Week
- National Review
President-elect Joe Biden announced Friday that he will make the director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy a Cabinet-level position for the first time in U.S. history. The big picture: Biden said he will nominate geneticist Eric Lander to the post. He announced other key members of his science team, including Francis Collins, who will stay on as director of the National Institutes of Health. Support safe, smart, sane journalism. Sign up for Axios Newsletters here.The White House science team includes: * Lander, who will be nominated as OSTP director and serve as the presidential science adviser. * Alondra Nelson, who will serve as the OSTP deputy director for science and society. * Frances Arnold and Maria Zuber, who will serve as the external co-chairs of the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology. * Collins, who will continue to lead the NIH. * Kei Koizumi, who will serve as OSTP chief of staff. * Narda Jones, who will serve as OSTP legislative affairs director.What he's saying: “Science will always be at the forefront of my administration — and these world-renowned scientists will ensure everything we do is grounded in science, facts, and the truth," Biden said in a statement. * "Their trusted guidance will be essential as we come together to end this pandemic, bring our economy back, and pursue new breakthroughs to improve the quality of life of all Americans."Get smarter, faster with the news CEOs, entrepreneurs and top politicians read. Sign up for Axios Newsletters here.
- Miami Herald
“I thought, ‘This could be the end,’” the D.C. police officer said.
- The Week
Less than a week before the inauguration, Vice President Mike Pence has reportedly called Vice President-elect Kamala Harris to offer his congratulations.Pence and Harris spoke over the phone Thursday, with Pence congratulating the incoming vice president and offering "his belated assistance," The New York Times reported on Friday and The Associated Press confirmed.This is the first time Pence and Harris have spoken since their debate in October, and the call was "described as gracious and pleasant," the Times writes. President Trump has yet to speak with President-elect Joe Biden since the election, having spent more than two months falsely claiming to have won.Pence may invite Harris and her husband, Doug Emhoff, to the vice-presidential residence prior to next week's inauguration, according to the Times, though this is reportedly not set in stone due to scheduling issues created by the ongoing security concerns following last week's Capitol riot.Trump is reportedly expected to leave Washington, D.C. the morning of the inauguration. The president previously confirmed he will skip Biden's swearing-in, but Pence is expected to attend.More stories from theweek.com 5 more scathing cartoons about Trump's 2nd impeachment Trump's vaccine delay is getting suspicious Here's what Biden reportedly plans to do his 1st day in office
- The Telegraph
Beijing spying fears as it emerges airframes of new MoD spy planes were previously used by Chinese airlines
Ministers have been accused of risking national security by buying second hand Chinese 737 airliners to convert into new spy planes in a bid to save money. The five E-7 Wedgetail aircraft costing £1.5billion have been ordered from Boeing to deliver the UK’s Airborne Early Warning and Control capability, from 2023 from RAF Lossiemouth in Scotland. Information gathered by E-7s would be used by the Armed Forces to keep watch on fighter jets or warships by enemy powers. However the Government has admitted that two of the five new RAF Wedgetail spy planes were previously operated by commercial airlines in China. Labour MP Kevan Jones, a member of Parliament’s security and intelligence committee which has oversight of the Security Services, said: “The Ministry of Defence is purchasing military equipment from a state opposed to UK interests, in order to save money. “There are serious concerns with regards to the security of the airframe, which may be defective or actively sabotaged prior to transfer. “This decision by the government represents a disturbing, and possibly historical, piece of misjudgement.” Tom Tugendhat MP, the Conservative chairman of the House of Commons Foreign Affairs select committee, added: “No one’s travelling and planes are cheap, so why are we buying spy planes from a country that’s spying on us? "Who knows what’s in the millions of nooks and crannies of a massive 737? We could just buy a plane from a trusted partner instead.” Ministry of Defence sources insisted that "the aircraft were sourced via a broker from the commercial market and at no time was the end destination of the aircraft released to the vendors or known to the market through that process". Defence minister Jeremy Quin defended the decision, insisting that the two second hand airframes will be stripped down and thoroughly checked for bugs that could have been put there by the Chinese. Mr Quin said: "The safety and security of our personnel are our highest priorities meaning that it must be demonstrated that second-hand airframes, regardless of origin, meet our requirements. "This might involve the airframes being stripped down, refitted and subjected to stringent security checks as required." He added: “In common with all 737 Next Generation airliners, the first two airframes to be modified to become RAF Wedgetail AEW Mk1 aircraft were manufactured by Boeing in the United States. “They were initially operated by commercial airlines based in China and Hong Kong, and were then acquired by Boeing from the commercial market via a broker. “The use of second-hand airframes provides a significant schedule and cost benefit to the programme, which will enable this vital capability to be introduced sooner than would have been the case if new airframes had been manufactured." A Ministry of Defence spokesman said: "Converting previously civilian-owned airframes for military use is commonplace and has no impact on the quality or capability of the aircraft.” “The Boeing 737s will undergo comprehensive security checks before mission system equipment is installed. “The sensible, cost-effective approach will enable this vital capability to be introduced sooner than would otherwise be possible.” MoD sources said that the "use of previously-owned airframes is not unusual for military aircraft derived from civil aircraft, in this case the Boeing 737. It provides a cost and time-effective path to production". They added: "The modification process that transforms a 737 into an E-7 Wedgetail is extensive, with the aircraft stripped back to the basic airframe. "All the sensitive mission system equipment is installed new and does not originate from the ‘donor’ 737."
- Architectural Digest
- Associated Press
- NBC News
- The Independent
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Bottoms is set to be vice chair in charge of the campaign organization’s civic engagement and voter protection. Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms has been nominated by President-elect Joe Biden as a vice chair of the Democratic National Committee. In the role, Bottoms would be in charge of civic engagement and voter protection.
China on Saturday finished a five-day construction project on a 1,500-room hospital as clusters of COVID-19 spread in Beijing and the surrounding provinces.The state of play: The facility is the one of six hospitals with a total of 6,500 rooms in the works in Nangong, the Xinhua News Agency said Saturday per AP reporting. They are all expected to be completed next week.Get smarter, faster with the news CEOs, entrepreneurs and top politicians read. Sign up for Axios Newsletters here. * China reportedly put roughly 28 million people on lockdown this week in the the Hebei provincial capital of Shijiazhuang.By the numbers: China has reached a 10-month high for COVID cases and on Friday reported 168 cases. * Yes, but: The numbers remain far below the infection levels the nation saw last February, when China reached a record high of approximately 15,000 daily cases. * The country has reported more than 97,000 cases and over 4,700 deaths as of Saturday, according to Johns Hopkins university data. * It remains possible that China — the site of the original coronavirus outbreak — has been underreporting its cases.What they're saying: The Chinese government has blamed the surge on food imports and travelers visiting the country. * The new cases "are all imported from abroad. It was caused by entry personnel or contaminated cold chain imported goods," the National Health Commission said in a statement, per AP. The big picture: The WHO agreed last May to a call from over 110 countries to lead an independent review of the global coronavirus response after China backed the move following clashes with Australia, which had earlier advocated for a sweeping inquiry.Go deeper... Timeline: The early days of China's coronavirus outbreak and cover-upBe smart: sign up FREE for the most influential newsletter in America.