By Sui-Lee Wee and Adam Rose TIANJIN, China (Reuters) - Two huge explosions tore through an industrial area where toxic chemicals and gas were stored in the northeast Chinese port city of Tianjin, killing at least 50 people, including at least a dozen fire fighters, officials and state media said on Thursday. At least 700 people were injured, more than 71 seriously, the Tianjin government said on its Weibo microblog, and the official Xinhua news agency said two fires were still burning. Wednesday night's blasts, so large that they were seen by satellites in space, sent shockwaves through apartment blocks kilometers away in the port city of 15 million people. Internet videos showed fireballs shooting into the sky and the U.S. Geological Survey registered the blasts as seismic events. Vast areas of the port - the 10th largest in the world - were devastated, crumpled shipping containers were thrown around like match sticks, hundreds of new cars were torched and port buildings left as burnt-out shells, Reuters witnesses said. "I was sleeping when our windows and doors suddenly shook as we heard explosions outside. I first thought it was an earthquake," Guan Xiang, who lives 7 km (4 miles) away from the explosion site, told Reuters by telephone. Guan, 24, said he saw flames and a mushroom cloud in the sky as he and other residents scrambled to get out of the building. Tianjin authorities said 12 firefighters were among the 44 killed. The cause of the blasts was being investigated but Xinhua said several containers caught fire beforehand. Industrial accidents are not uncommon in China following three decades of breakneck economic growth. A blast at an auto parts factory in eastern China killed 75 people a year ago when a room filled with metal dust exploded. The state-run Beijing News earlier cited Tianjin fire authorities as saying they had lost contact with 36 firefighters. By late afternoon, Xinhua reported 18 were missing, while 66 were among the hundreds of people being treated in nearby hospitals. Xinhua said 1,000 firefighters and more than 140 fire engines were struggling to contain a blaze in a warehouse that held "dangerous goods". "The volatility of the goods means the fire is especially unpredictable and dangerous to approach," Xinhua said. Several fire trucks had been destroyed and nearby firefighters wept as they worked to extinguish flames, the Beijing News reported. President Xi Jinping demanded that authorities "make full effort to rescue and treat the injured and ensure the safety of people and their property". Xi said in a statement carried by official media that those responsible should be "severely handled". City officials had met recently with companies to discuss tightening safety standards on the handling of dangerous chemicals. The Tianjin Administration of Work Safety posted a notice about the meeting with companies at the port on its website a week ago. POTENTIALLY TOXIC SMOKE Anxious residents rushed to hospitals to seek news about injured loved ones. Dozens of police guarded the entrance of the TEDA hospital, a Reuters witness said. Pictures on Chinese media websites showed residents and workers, some bleeding, fleeing their homes. Xinhua said people had been hurt by broken glass and other flying debris. Authorities told reporters they expected the blasts to have forced 6,000 people from their homes by nightfall. Grey clouds of smoke billowed above the blast site and several trucks carrying paramilitary police - wearing masks to protect them from potentially toxic smoke - headed to the area. The blasts shattered windows in buildings and cars and knocked down walls in a 2-km radius around the site. Photographs on news websites showed burned-out cars inside a multi-storey car park at a logistics base at the port. Video posted on YouTube from what appeared to be an apartment building some distance from the scene showed an initial blast followed by a second, much bigger, explosion. Shockwaves hit the building seconds later. "Our building is shaking. Is this an atomic bomb?" said a frenzied voice inside. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YeXBME2YVQo) Despite the devastation, the port was operating normally, a port official said. Tianjin port is the gateway to northern China's industrial belt. Xinhua said the explosions, the first equivalent to 3 tonnes of TNT and the second to 21 tonnes of TNT, ripped through a warehouse. A team from the International Atomic Energy Agency's Beijing environmental emergency response center, as well as 214 Chinese military nuclear and biochemical materials specialists, had gone to Tianjin, the news agency said. It identified the owner of the warehouse as Tianjin Dongjiang Port Ruihai International Logistics. The company's website said it was a government-approved firm specializing in handling "dangerous goods". Company officials could not immediately be reached for comment. According to an assessment by government environmental inspectors published in 2014, the facility was designed to store several dangerous and toxic chemicals including butanone, an explosive industrial solvent, sodium cyanide and compressed natural gas. CCTV said at least one person at a "relevant company" had been detained. Among the injured were some employees of John Deere & Co , the U.S. farm and construction equipment maker based in Moline, Illinois. Company spokesman Ken Golden said several employees who were at home at the time of the blasts sustained serious injuries and that some are in critical condition. In addition, a small group of Deere employees working at the company's facilities sustained minor injuries from blown-out windows, Golden said in a written statement. (Additional reporting by Joseph Campbell in TIANJIN, Kazunori Takada, Chen Yixin, Brenda Goh and Sue-Lin Wong in SHANGHAI, and Michael Martina, Jason Subler, Megha Rajagopalan and Judy Hua in BEIJING, Meredith Davis in CHICAGO; Writing by Dean Yates; Editing by Nick Macfie and Matthew Lewis)
- Business Insider
Rudy Giuliani has reportedly shed his entourage and hired a part-time driver to cut costs as his legal fees mount
The former New York City mayor reportedly pays as much as $42,000 per month in alimony, which may have factored into the layoffs, Politico reported.
- Business Insider
I'm an Amazon seller and I experienced how Amazon's hidden fees and crushing requirements choke out small businesses
Amazon's mysterious algorithm and extra fees make selling products on the site difficult. Here is how Amazon kept my business from making a profit.
- Raleigh News and Observer
Drivers stopped and the fight continued around them.
- Associated Press
France dispatched two patrol boats Thursday as French fishermen angry over loss of access to waters off their coast gathered for a maritime protest off the English Channel island of Jersey, the flashpoint for the first major dispute between France and Britain over fishing rights in the wake of Brexit. The naval policing boats Athos and Themis were sent to keep watch on waters between France and Jersey, French maritime authorities for the English Channel and North Sea said. The deployment came after Britain on Wednesday directed two Royal Navy vessels, HMS Severn and HMS Tamar, to also patrol the waters around the island, a self-governing British Crown Dependency near the coast of northern France.
- Business Insider
Tucker Carlson is attacking the COVID-19 vaccine again, baselessly claiming that thousands have died from taking the shot
Fox News host Tucker Carlson used a segment of his show on Wednesday to question the "potential risks" of taking the COVID-19 vaccine.
- The Week
Tucker Carlson was right: House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) is living in the Washington, D.C., penthouse of Republican pollster and messaging maven Frank Luntz, and it does sound like a pretty sweet deal. Carlson was tipped off to the roommate arrangement, and McCarthy confirmed it Tuesday, telling Fox & Friends he has "rented a room from Frank for a couple of months, but don't worry, I'm back to — going back to where I normally am, on my couch in my office. But, yes, we pay fair market rate" Washington Post fact-checker Glenn Kessler looked into Luntz's apartment, and it's actually a 7,000-square-foot, 12-bedroom, 16-bathroom amalgamation of 4 three-story penthouses Luntz purchased for nearly $4.3 million in August and September 2018 and merged in November 2019. The homeowner's association fees on the four units is $4,976 a month, Kessler calculates, citing Redfin. Neither McCarthy nor Luntz responded to the Post's request for comment, but a McCarthy spokesman told the Daily Wire the minority leader "calculated the fair market value amount at $1,500/month" to rent an "approximately" 400-square-foot room in Luntz's penthouse. Kessler's Apartments.com search found that a comparable studio or one-bedroom would run about $5,000 a month. Regardless, he writes, "besides the 'room' he rented, McCarthy would have had access to a 24/7 concierge, a rooftop pool, a fitness center, a media room, a business center, and a party room with a bar and pool table." "This is quite a deal, especially considering that Luntz has talked about how he's on the road all the time," Politico muses. "Imagine paying $1,500 a month for what is essentially a mansion carved into a high-rise? It's good to be the minority leader!" Carlson was less amused by the "sleazy and corrupt" arrangement. "Kevin McCarthy promises Republicans he shares their values" and "will fight for them against permanent Washington, the forces that would like to destroy their lives," he said. "And at the end of the day, Kevin McCarthy goes home to Frank Luntz's apartment in Penn Quarter and laughs about it." More stories from theweek.comPfizer, Moderna shares plummet after Biden administration backs a COVID-19 vaccine patent waiverMitch McConnell, asked about the Liz Cheney purge, says '100 percent of my focus is on stopping' BidenAmerica's nervous breakdown is right on schedule
2 California students were sentenced to life in prison for stabbing and killing a police officer in Rome
California natives Finnegan Elder, 21, and Gabriel Natale-Hjorth, 20, were sentenced on Wednesday to life imprisonment for murder.
- The Week
The Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine is extremely effective against two dangerous variants of the coronavirus, the B.1.1.7 strain first found in the United Kingdom and the B.1.351 variant discovered in South Africa, researchers reported Wednesday in the New England Journal of Medicine and The Lancet. Moderna also reported Wednesday that, according to early results from its booster shot trial, a third dose of its vaccine given six to eight months after the first two doses boosted antibodies to protect against the South African B.1.351 variant and other worrisome strain found in Brazil. Moderna is testing its original vaccine and a version modified to target the B.1.351 variant. The new variants are more transmissible than the original strain and, some studies suggest, deadlier. The New England Journal of Medicine study examined records of more than 200,000 people from Qatar's COVID-19 database. The Pfizer vaccine was 87 to 89.5 percent effective at preventing infection from the B.1.1.7 variant among people two weeks past their second shot, 72.1 to 75 percent effective against the B.1.351 variant, and 100 percent effective at preventing severe, critical, or fatal cases of either variant, the researchers found. The study in The Lancet was based on more than 230,000 cases from Israel. It found that the Pfizer vaccine was more than 95 percent effective against infection, hospitalization, or death in fully vaccinated people 16 and older, and 94 percent effective in people 85 and older. The vaccine efficacy numbers aren't self-evident, but Brains On!, a science podcast for kids, has a short, entertaining, and pretty effective explanation using defecating seagulls. You can watch that below. More stories from theweek.comPfizer, Moderna shares plummet after Biden administration backs a COVID-19 vaccine patent waiverMitch McConnell, asked about the Liz Cheney purge, says '100 percent of my focus is on stopping' BidenAmerica's nervous breakdown is right on schedule
The Pentagon said Wednesday it's tracking the uncontrolled descent of the Long March-5B Y2 rocket that carried a Chinese Space Station module to orbit last week.Details: Defense Department spokesperson John Kirby told reporters the rocket's debris was expected to return to Earth "somewhere around" May 8 and that the U.S. Space Command has said "almost the entire body of the rocket" remains intact. "It's too soon to know exactly where it's going to come down," he added.Stay on top of the latest market trends and economic insights with Axios Markets. Subscribe for freeOur thought bubble, via Axios' Miriam Kramer: This isn't the first time a rocket or spacecraft launched by China's space agency has come down to Earth uncontrolled. Space watchers also played a waiting game as China’s Tiangong-1 space station came back through the atmosphere in 2018, eventually burning up above the Pacific Ocean.Like this article? Get more from Axios and subscribe to Axios Markets for free.
Divorce is usually caused by one of the '3 i's,' therapists say. Here's what they are, and how they destroy a marriage.
Conflict caused by incompatibility or irreconcilable differences can impact a couple over the course of their marriage, therapist Tess Brigham said.
- Business Insider
Caitlyn Jenner praises Donald Trump and says she's in favor of building 'the wall' in Sean Hannity interview
Jenner, known for her appearances in "Keeping Up With the Kardashians," announced her run for the California governorship late last month.
- Associated Press
After nearly three decades in London, Christophe Reech was fed up with the city's pandemic lockdowns. This spring, he sold his luxury townhouse and jetted off to the desert sheikhdom of Dubai to start a new life with his family. The French business magnate’s super wealthy foreign friends were doing the same, driving an unprecedented surge in sales of Dubai's most-exclusive properties.
LONDON (Reuters) -U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said the West had to be very careful about the exact nature of Chinese investment in Western economies and think very carefully about investments in strategic assets. China's spectacular economic and military rise over the past 40 years is among the most significant geopolitical events of recent history, alongside the 1991 fall of the Soviet Union that ended the Cold War. The West has struggled to come up with an agreed policy on China and has flipflopped over the years from seeing China as a lucrative source of investment - for example in U.S. government bonds - to seeing China as a threat to global stability and avoiding its 5G technology.
- The Daily Beast
The Chaffee County Sheriff’s OfficeNearly a year after Suzanne Morphew disappeared without a trace while out on a bike ride last Mother’s Day, the 49-year-old’s husband—who once pleaded for her safe return—has been arrested and charged with murder.The Chaffee County Sheriff’s Office confirmed to The Daily Beast that Barry Morphew, 53, is currently in custody after being arrested Wednesday morning, just days shy of the one-year anniversary of his wife’s disappearance on May 10, 2020, in Maysville, Colorado. He has been charged with first-degree murder after deliberation, tampering with physical evidence, and attempting to influence a public servant.“Today is a good day for Suzanne. Today is all about Suzanne, and it’s about her family, and it’s about all the individuals that knew her, loved her, and cared about her,” 11th Judicial District Attorney Linda Stanley said during a Wednesday news conference announcing Morphew’s arrest. While authorities said Wednesday that the arrest “marks a major milestone” in a case that confounded investigators for months and garnered national attention—investigators are still searching for the mother-of-two. For that reason, they’re keeping Morphew’s arrest warrant under seal. However, Chaffee County Sheriff John Spezze said Wednesday “we believe that she’s not alive.” “My first reaction is relief,” Melinda Moorman, Suzanne Morphew’s sister, told Fox21 on Wednesday. “And grateful. I’m just so grateful.”“Today, justice is beginning for my sister. It’s been a journey that no one ever imagines that they’ll take,” she added, noting that she still loves her brother-in-law “though he’s done a terrible thing.”She Was Found Dead in the Woods. Her Family Doesn’t Buy ‘Suicide’ Claim.The investigation into the mother-of-two’s disappearance began on May 10, after one of her neighbors reported her missing when she didn’t return home from a bike ride. For several days, federal and local authorities conducted an extensive search over a 2.5-mile area—eventually finding her bike but not Morphew. Her body has still not been found.Stanley said Wednesday that while authorities are not revealing a cause of death, they have information about “a certain scenario” that they believe occurred last May. Barry Morphew, who was reportedly out of town on the day his wife went missing, released a video pleading for his wife’s safe return on May 17 and launched a social-media campaign to aid in the investigation. He even offered a $200,000 reward for information about her disappearance.“Oh Suzanne, if anyone is out there that can hear this, that has you, please, we’ll do whatever it takes to bring you back. We love you. We miss you. The girls need you. No questions asked. However much they want, I will do whatever it takes to get you back. Honey, I love you. I want you back so bad,” he said.Despite Morphew’s public appeal, questions began to surface about his possible role in his wife’s murder—including reports that he had scrubbed his Denver hotel room clean just prior to Suzanne’s disappearance. Morphew denied the claims.In one rare August interview with Fox21, Morphew insisted that unfair media coverage of his wife’s case made him out to be a villain. “People don’t know the truth, so they’re gonna think what they’re gonna think,” he said. Then, he began to offer different theories about what happened to his wife, suggesting she may have been the victim of an animal attack or had a run-in with another person.During the interview, Morphew also slammed the Chaffee County Sheriff’s Office, saying they had “screwed this whole [investigation] up from the beginning and now they are trying to cover it up and blame it on me.”On Wednesday, Spezze said that over the last year, 135 search warrants were executed, more than 400 individuals were interviewed, and officers investigated at least 1,400 tips. Morphew, who immediately asked for a lawyer after being arrested, is expected in court on Thursday at 10 a.m. 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.
- Miami Herald
Man holding shark in Florida river says he loves animals
- The Independent
Why Melinda Gates will probably let Bill Gates keep his dream ‘Xanadu 2’ mansion and move to smaller house
Tour of secretive Gates family estate went for $35.000 at charity auction in 2009
- The Week
Monyay Paskalides now celebrates two birthdays: the day she was born and the day she was officially adopted by Leah Paskalides, her former caseworker. Monyay, 19, of Bradenton, Florida, spent most of her childhood in foster care. Six years ago, Leah, 32, became her caseworker, and she told Good Morning America that once she gained Monyay's trust, "we just clicked." She became Monyay's mentor, and helped her as she aged out of the foster care system once she turned 18. This was a hard time, Monyay said, because she went from living in a group home where adults could "help you immediately" to being on her own. Leah couldn't adopt Monyay while she was still in the foster care system, as it would be a conflict of interest, but after she watched a documentary about a man who was adopted as an adult, she approached Monyay to see if she was open to the idea. "I wanted to make sure she knew that she had somebody who loved her and who would have done this years ago and still would as an adult," Leah told GMA. Monyay was overjoyed by the offer, telling GMA "that's the one thing I've wanted my entire life, to have a mom." On April 27, Leah officially adopted Monyay, who changed her last name and now calls Leah "mom." Monyay is also a mentor to foster youth, and talks with them about expectations and what they can accomplish in life. "I never expected to be adopted, and here I am," she said, adding that her new mom "never gave up on me." More stories from theweek.comPfizer, Moderna shares plummet after Biden administration backs a COVID-19 vaccine patent waiverMitch McConnell, asked about the Liz Cheney purge, says '100 percent of my focus is on stopping' BidenAmerica's nervous breakdown is right on schedule
- Yahoo News
President Biden said Wednesday that he didn't understand Republican efforts in the U.S. House of Representatives to replace Rep. Liz Cheney.
- The Independent
Melinda Gates could become world’s second-richest woman
- Business Insider
Ivanka Trump faces more anti-vaccine backlash from her followers after posting a photo of her 2nd COVID-19 shot
Many of Ivanka's anti-vaxx supporters rejected her efforts to promote the vaccine in the comments to her social media posts.