NEW DELHI (Reuters) - India's earth sciences minister has blamed climate change for a heatwave that has killed 2,500 people and for deficient monsoon rains, after the government said on Tuesday the country was headed for its first drought in six years. "Let us not fool ourselves that there is no connection between the unusual number of deaths from the ongoing heat wave and the certainty of another failed monsoon," Harsh Vardhan said. "It's not just an unusually hot summer, it is climate change," he said. The minister's comments affirm warnings from the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change that India will be hit by frequent freak weather patterns if the planet warms. The arrival of the June-September monsoon rains, on which nearly half of the India's farmland depends, has already been delayed by about five days, and Vardhan said there was no certainty about when the rains would arrive. India, the world's No. 3 emitter of greenhouse gases, is under growing pressure to tackle its carbon emissions after the world's top two emitters - China and the United States - last year agreed to new limits starting in 2025. But Prime Minister Narendra Modi has said he would not bow to foreign pressure and instead focus on increasing the country's use of renewable energy. His ministerial colleagues have said that because India's per-capita energy consumption is lower than Western countries, its economy should not be unfairly shackled by commitments to curb carbon when it needs to grow its economy to cut poverty. The U.N. is hoping countries can agree a deal to slow global warming at an upcoming climate summit in Paris in November. (Reporting by Krishna N. Das; Editing by Tommy Wilkes)
- Business Insider
Dr. Fauci has a stunningly simple way to explain how Johnson & Johnson's COVID-19 vaccine differs from Pfizer's and Moderna's shots
All three of the COVID-19 shots authorized for use in the US train the body to recognize the coronavirus, but J&J's uses a cold virus instead of mRNA.
- Associated Press
Maine Sen. Susan Collins said Wednesday she will support New Mexico Rep. Deb Haaland to be Interior secretary, the first Republican senator to publicly back a nominee set to become the first Native American to lead a Cabinet agency. The announcement makes Haaland's confirmation by the Senate nearly certain and follows Haaland's endorsement last week by Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin, chairman of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee. Manchin, a moderate from West Virginia, had been publicly undecided through two days of hearings on Haaland’s nomination by President Joe Biden.
- The Telegraph
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s autumn 2018 tour of Australia, New Zealand, Fiji and Tonga was “stressful” for staff, with at least one aide visibly upset after a discussion with the Duchess. One engagement in particular has long been shrouded in mystery, with no credible explanation given as to why the Duchess was abruptly whisked from a market in Fiji’s capital Suva, cutting short the visit. At the time, even palace aides appeared confused about what had happened, with a succession of contradictory briefings. The engagement was organised to allow Meghan to learn more about a UN Women's project called Markets for Change, which promotes women's empowerment in marketplaces throughout the Pacific. Sources have now claimed that the Duchess was upset when she saw branding for UN Women, an organisation she had worked with before. Meghan had allegedly said she would only go to the market if there was no branding for the organisation, a source told the Times, although the reason behind it is unknown.
- The Week
Former Vice President Mike Pence broke his silence Wednesday with an op-ed in The Daily Signal, criticizing congressional Democrats for their voter reform push and giving new life to former President Donald Trump's baseless claims that the 2020 presidential election was stolen. Despite being a central target of the mob that breached the Capitol on Jan. 6 because of his refusal to answer Trump's call to somehow block the Electoral College certification, Pence claimed the election was "marked by significant irregularities and numerous instances of officials setting aside election law." He said he shares "the concerns of millions of Americans" about its integrity, suggesting he still hasn't fully broken with Trump on the matter. For many people, the show of loyalty was baffling. That said, Pence's op-ed didn't outright call the 2020 vote fraudulent. Rather, he framed its outcome as uncertain so he could launch into his argument about why Congress should not pass HR 1, the For the People Act, which includes measures such as required early voting and same-day voter registration in every state. Pence called the bill "an unconstitutional power grab" with the sole goal of giving "leftists a permanent, unfair, and unconstitutional advantage in our political system." Read the full op-ed at The Daily Signal. More stories from theweek.com7 scathingly funny cartoons about Trump's CPAC appearanceJoe Biden just yanked away stimulus checks from 17 million AmericansCuomo claims kissing is his 'usual and customary' greeting
- The Independent
The new subpoena replaces the one sent earlier that expired in January with the new administration
- Associated Press
A former Pakistani prime minister Wednesday defeated a ruling party candidate in Senate elections in a major setback to the government of Prime Minister Imran Khan, election authorities and opposition parties said. Yusuf Raza Gilani defeated the ruling Tehreek-e-Insaf party's Hafeez Sheikh, an adviser to Khan who was named finance minister in December 2020, Gilani received 169 votes to Sheikh's 164. Gilani's success suggested some ruling party lawmakers revolted and didn't vote for Sheikh for the key seat reserved for the capital Islamabad.
- The Daily Beast
GettyWhen Sen. Josh Hawley voiced his support late last year for giving millions of Americans $2,000 checks, he said he got a call from Sen. Bernie Sanders’ camp. What happened next was the formation of one of Capitol Hill’s stranger political odd couples, as the Trumpist Republican from Missouri and the Democratic Socialist from Vermont joined together to make a very public push for a shared priority.That partnership might have continued last week, with another Hawley announcement that put him in league with Sanders and other progressives: his support for requiring companies with revenues of $1 billion or more to pay their workers a $15 hourly minimum wage.But of course, something rather important happened since Hawley and Sanders first joined forces. The Missouri Republican was a lead endorser and amplifier of former President Donald Trump’s conspiracy theories that he unfairly lost the 2020 election—theories that fueled the deadly assault on the U.S. Capitol by a pro-Trump mob on Jan. 6. In a now-infamous photograph, Hawley was pictured raising his fist in solidarity with those gathered outside the Capitol that morning. When the Senate convened after the mob was cleared, Hawley was the only senator to speak in favor of objecting to the Electoral College certification.So when Hawley floated his minimum wage plan on Friday, no apparent public or private efforts to collaborate with progressives followed. There was no sequel to the fight for $2,000 checks. Hawley told The Daily Beast on Tuesday that he had not gotten a call from Sanders or any Democratic colleague about the proposal or spoken with any of them about it. Sanders, meanwhile, declined to say if he had even talked to Hawley, only saying in response to questions that Democrats had moved on from an effort to force companies to pay a $15 wage in their COVID bill. A source close to Sanders confirmed that the two men did not speak about the proposed amendment to require companies to pay a $15 minimum wage.Asked if Democrats wanted to work with him right now, Hawley said, “I don’t think they particularly want to work with anybody.”But that doesn’t appear to be so.Sen. Jon Ossoff—the Democrat from Georgia who won his race for Senate the same day Hawley encouraged the mob that attacked it—told The Daily Beast on Tuesday, “I’m not going to rule out working with any colleagues.” He said he’d be open to considering Hawley’s proposal, adding, “I’m encouraged that there is interest among Republican senators in taking action to increase wages.”Ever since Jan. 6, Democrats have contemplated how they could work again as normal with the over 150 congressional Republicans who voted to object to the 2020 election results and who spread conspiracies that President Joe Biden somehow did not win fairly. Relationships on typically chummy Capitol Hill have been strained, with flare-ups and personal attacks boiling over in committee hearings. Some Democratic lawmakers now keep lists of who they can work with and who they cannot, based on the votes that took place after the attack on Jan. 6.But Hawley’s case might be a unique test of the strained new atmosphere on Capitol Hill. To some Democrats, no other high-profile GOP lawmaker is more associated with the events of Jan. 6. Among many, particularly activists, Hawley is now firmly persona non grata—a contemptible figure who has fully earned himself a career as a pariah. “Josh Hawley has a lot to answer to,” said Joe Sanberg, a California businessman and advocate for raising the wage. “I don’t think he’s a relevant part of the conversation about the righteous fight for the minimum wage for 22 million people who earn less than $15 an hour.”But few, if any, occupy the space on the political spectrum that the freshman Republican has staked out—space that has situated Hawley to find, on occasion, common ground with progressives.In addition to the splashier $2,000 check campaign and the minimum wage proposal, Hawley has introduced legislation to require some colleges to pay off the debts of students who default on their loans and bills to rein in pharmaceutical prices. He has been an outspoken critic of Wall Street and corporate America, albeit from a conservative perspective, but in ways that found him occasionally hitting similar notes as some on the left.For many progressives who might be inclined to agree with some of Hawley’s proposals, wariness and skepticism about the ambitious senator’s populist overtures have prevailed. Many have noted that his brand of populism is animated by a nationalist, anti-immigration sentiment they find xenophobic or even racist; others simply don’t take his stances all too seriously.Show-Me State Tells Hawley to Show Himself Out, Poll Finds“I have always been immensely skeptical of it,” said Marshall Steinbaum, an economics professor at the University of Utah who focuses on inequality, labor, and antitrust issues. “It’s not a matter of making common cause with strange political bedfellows… I definitely take the view that having Hawley in some putative coalition discredits that coalition.”But other Democrats have welcomed the emergence of Republicans who could, potentially, help them advance the pro-worker economic policies they’ve been campaigning on for years. Clearly, Sanders previously believed that working with Hawley could help deliver direct relief to people hit hard by the pandemic. "We are working on bipartisan legislation," Sanders said in a speech from the Senate floor in December. "And Senator Hawley has done a very, very good job on this."Hawley, meanwhile, has been a vocal critic of the “radical left.” But when the partnership with Sanders emerged last year, he told reporters, “Hey, as I’ve said, I’ll work with anybody.”The senators’ efforts on stimulus checks prompted commentators to raise their eyebrows—at a “budding left-right populist alliance,” as The Washington Post’s Greg Sargent put it. Ultimately, the bill that passed on Dec. 26 fell far short of what the duo asked for, with direct checks of only $600, and a standalone floor vote on $2,000 checks they pushed for later was blocked by Senate GOP leadership. But that full amount will almost certainly come eventually, with the Democratic-controlled Congress slated to send out $1,400 direct payments as part of a new relief plan this month.The new round of relief was still an abstraction when Capitol Hill was ruptured on Jan. 6, the very day Democrats sealed the Senate majority. In the aftermath, seven Senate Democrats requested that the Senate Ethics Committee open an investigation to obtain a “complete account” of Hawley’s role, and that of Sen. Ted Cruz’s (R-TX), in the events of the day. Arguing that they had “lent legitimacy to the mob’s cause and made future violence more likely,” the senators said the body to determine whether the Republicans violated the rules and therefore merited punishment—including expulsion. Sanders was not on the letter.In response, Hawley accused the Democrats of trying to “cancel” him and filed his own complaint to the Ethics panel about their letter.The Missouri senator proceeded to play virtually no role in the shaping of the COVID relief plan that developed after Biden took office. Most Senate Democrats have avoided declaring they will never work with him again, but no one is rushing to work with him.Hawley has nevertheless tried to get a piece of the ongoing stimulus action, especially on the minimum wage, which has become a key focus of the current relief plan. In addition to proposing a requirement for “billion-dollar” companies to pay a $15 hourly wage, Hawley rolled out what he called the “Blue-Collar Bonus,” a tax credit intended to give employees of smaller companies a way to reach the $15 threshold, at government expense. Critics responded that the structure of his plan would give companies huge loopholes to avoid paying a fair wage.It also explicitly excludes non-citizens and undocumented workers—a nonstarter for Democrats, and a sign to progressives like Sanberg that it’s impossible to take any good in Hawley’s proposals without also taking on the bad. “He has terrible judgment. He’s always trying to move to where he thinks political winds are—when you’re moving with political winds without any moral center, it takes you right into hurricanes,” he said.But Pete d’Alessandro, a former top Sanders political adviser in Iowa, said sometimes there isn’t a choice. “Are you not gonna work with every single senator who thinks we still need to look into the election?” he told The Daily Beast. “Because there’s more than Hawley on that. If you buy into what Congress is supposed to do, if you draw these buckets, there’s not gonna be a lot of people to work with, at some point.”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.
Bishops urge Catholics to avoid the Johnson & Johnson vaccine if possible because it was developed using cells from an aborted fetus
In December, Pope Francis said taking vaccines derived from aborted cells could be "morally acceptable."
- Business Insider
Last week, the US Supreme Court rejected former President Donald Trump's effort to keep his tax returns hidden from the Manhattan district attorney.
For the first time ever, the celebrity dermatologist let a patient take a smoke break halfway through the procedure to calm down.
- LA Times
The Jan. 6 Capitol attack has compelled many pastors across the country to speak out on their struggles to combat the spread of misinformation, conspiracy theories and QAnon beliefs among their congregations.
- Associated Press
Israeli authorities said Wednesday that a Libyan-owned tanker suspected of smuggling oil from Iran to Syria was responsible for spilling tons of crude into the eastern Mediterranean last month, causing one of Israel's worst environmental disasters. Over 90% of Israel’s 195 kilometer (120-mile) Mediterranean coastline was covered in more than 1,000 tons of black tar, the result of the mysterious oil spill in international waters. Environmental Protection Minister Gila Gamliel said the Panamanian-flagged “pirate ship owned by a Libyan company” — identified as the “Emerald” — filled its stores with oil in the Persian Gulf, then sailed with its transmitters off toward the coast of Syria.
- The Daily Beast
Photo Illustration by The Daily Beast/GettyAs Trump supporters gathered Sunday outside the Conservative Political Action Conference in Orlando to greet the former president’s motorcade, a correspondent for a popular pro-Trump YouTube channel went into the crowd to interview them—risking the fate of his entire company in the process.Interviewing random Trump supporters makes up much of the content on Right Side Broadcasting Network, a booming right-wing YouTube channel The Washington Post has called “the unofficial version of Trump TV.” But for a year, the Trump base has embraced conspiracy theories about election theft and COVID-19—exactly the kind of content, if livestreamed on RSBN, that could get the channel kicked off YouTube.In Orlando, the MAGA welcome crew seemed as excited to see pseudonymous RSBN correspondent “Mike Nificent” as they did former President Donald Trump. A man with a speaker encouraged the crowd to watch RSBN, while a woman declared that RSBN was only the media outlet she trusts.But then one of those RSBN fans claimed that Trump votes had somehow been altered from outer space.“You know how they said they changed the votes using a satellite?” one woman told him, in a remark that instantly went out live to more than 100,000 RSBN viewers on YouTube.Mike Nificent cut her off.“We can’t go there, we’ll lose our entire platform,” he said, backing away from the woman as she grew increasingly irate. “We have to play by the rules.”“I also covered this election, and it was stolen,” another woman said.“Well, some would say that it hasn’t been stolen,” Mike Nificent said, carefully. “They would say that Biden’s won the presidency fair.”“I’m sorry, is that getting you in trouble?” the woman said.“Wink, wink, Biden won,” Mike Nificent said.YouTube and other major social media platforms have ramped up their policing of conspiracy theories in the aftermath of the Jan. 6 U.S. Capitol riot, putting pro-Trump outlets like RSBN in an awkward position. After helping to create Trump’s base and fueling baseless allegations that Trump won in 2020, RSBN is now stuck between YouTube enforcement and a hoax-addled conservative audience it relies on for donations.The resulting attempts to keep RSBN free from pro-Trump conspiracy theories often result in comical ad hoc attempts at muting speakers or rapid changes in tone from RSBN talent. Faced with the prospect of losing its YouTube audience with a ban, RSBN has to constantly avoid crossing an invisible line—promoting election fraud promoters at one moment, then cutting their mics as soon as they say something that could get the channel banned.RSBN and Google, which owns YouTube, didn’t respond to requests for comment.Trump at CPAC Shows Why He Doesn’t Need a New PartyStill, despite having to navigate a field of verbal landmines in the crowd, RSBN had its own reasons to cheer Trump’s first public appearance since leaving office. Since Trump fan Joe Seales launched RSBN in 2015, the channel had amassed more than 1.5 million YouTube subscribers, based in large part on a willingness to livestream just about any pro-Trump event. The channel grew prominent enough on the right that it was the center of rumors claiming Trump, then still expected to lose his 2016 election bid, would team up with Seales to launch “Trump TV,” a MAGA-centric cable channel.RSBN played a key role promoting election fraud conspiracy theories in the aftermath of Trump’s election defeat. The channel provided blanket coverage of the Women for America First bus tour, a series of speaking events across the country that led up to the Jan. 6 rally where Trump incited his supporters to attack the U.S. Capitol. YouTube deleted three RSBN videos of the bus tour after the riot, saying they violated the site’s rules against “inciting violence” and “false election claims.”Faced with the threat of deletion, RSBN is stuck cutting off right-wing personalities who would otherwise be heroes to its audiences. On Feb. 20, the channel streamed a rally in Ventura, California, promoting a recall against Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom. The rally was headlined by Dr. Judy Mikovits, the conspiracy theorist whose appearance in the coronavirus hoax video Plandemic went viral in the first months of the pandemic.Almost as soon as Mikovits started talking, however, RSBN’s camera panned away from the stage to focus on RSBN personality Blake Marnell, who goes by the name “Brick Suit” because he often wears a brick-patterned suit meant to imitate Trump’s border wall.Marnell, who appeared surprised to suddenly be on camera, began talking in an apparent attempt to help RSBN avoid covering Mikovits’ speech.“QUIT TALKING!” wrote one YouTube commenter.“RSBN is so RUDE and I’m done with them,” wrote another.Suddenly, an unseen narrator who called themselves “Joe back here at the studio”—presumably RSBN founder Joe Seales—cut into the feed, saying RSBN couldn’t show Mikovits’ speech at risk of losing its channel.“If we let this speaker talk right now, we will lose our YouTube channel, they will take this video down,” Joe said, claiming that RSBN already had one strike from YouTube after broadcasting something from Infowars conspiracy theorist Alex Jones.RSBN’s camera returned to the stage once Mikovits was done, but not for long. Soon another speaker was talking about how he didn’t just not enforce mask-wearing at his business, he banned anyone who did wear a mask.CPAC Speaker Angela Stanton King Promotes QAnon From Stage“They represent the lockdown, they are the lockdown,” the speaker said, prompting RSBN’s camera to swiftly pull away from him.“Joe from the studio” cut back in.“Just to give you a full disclosure, that there are certain guidelines that we have on platforms that we cannot talk about certain subjects,” he said.This isn’t RSBN’s first encounter with the challenges of running a budding news empire that caters to some of the most extreme elements of Trump’s base.In June 2020, RSBN was covering Trump’s rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma, when viewers began complaining that its reporters were wearing masks—an implicit admission that the pandemic was more serious than Trump and his supporters wanted to admit. Outraged RSBN audience members accused the reporters of being liberal “slaves,” prompting RSBN host Liz Willis to launch a lengthy, on-air apology in which she said she was wearing a mask because she lived with her elderly parents.RSBN’s skittishness extends even to one of its biggest sponsors, MyPillow founder Mike Lindell. Lindell buys a huge amount of advertising on RSBN, with anchors cutting into broadcasts from CPAC to promote his pillows and sheets. At times, roughly a quarter of the screen during RSBN’s broadcast at CPAC was taken up by a still image of Lindell hugging one of his pillows.Not even Lindell, however, can avoid RSBN’s mute button. On Sunday, Willis was interviewing Lindell when he began to complain about vaccine rules in Israel, alleging that the vaccine is the “mark of the beast” from the biblical Book of Revelation.“This is our bodies, this is ‘mark of the beast’ stuff and I don’t care, I’ll just put it right out there, this is Revelation,” Lindell said. “I mean, if you’re going to make them do that over in Israel—and why do you think they went to Israel first? Whaaat? That’s kind of strange.”MyPillow's Mike Lindell gets his mic cut mid-interview on the network he sponsors (RSBN) because the COVID misinformation he's attempting to spread would get them banned from Youtube. The host apologizes to him: "We love you. We love you. We love you." pic.twitter.com/jBrw6krf1z— Italien Feeld 🕳 (@julianfeeld) March 1, 2021 RSBN cut Lindell’s mic, leaving him to rant in silence for 30 seconds next to the picture of him hugging his pillow. Eventually, Lindell’s mic was restored, with a warning not to talk about vaccines.“Super careful, I hate to do it, you know I love you, but due to YouTube’s platforms, we will get our whole platform shut down,” Willis said.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
Former world No. 1 Kim Clijsters, twice retired and now a 37-year-old mother of three, accepted a wild card to play in the Miami Open tennis tournament, which begins March 22 at Hard Rock Stadium.
- Yahoo News
Democratic moderates in Congress sought to lower the price tag of President Biden's American Rescue Plan.
The actor who plays Migs Mayfield on the show said "it's f---ing crazy times" in regards to cancel culture.
- WCVB - Boston
Prosecutors say the newborn boy was inside two knotted plastic grocery bags when he was found in the trash cans.
- The Daily Beast
Michael Reaves/GettyAttorneys for Rep. Bennie Thompson (D-MS) and the NAACP have served former President Donald Trump at his Mar-a-Lago club with a lawsuit filed against him in February. Thompson and the NAACP filed suit against Trump alleging that his incendiary rhetoric and false claims of a “stolen” election amounted to a conspiracy to interfere with civil rights by inciting the Jan. 6 riot at the Capitol.The suit names Trump alongside his attorney Rudy Giuliani and the right-wing extremist groups the Proud Boys and the Oath Keepers as co-defendants and builds off the 1871 “Ku Klux Klan Act,” which was “intended to protect against conspiracies, through violence and intimidation, that sought to prevent Members of Congress from discharging their official duties,” according to a complaint.If Jan. 6 Was ‘Domestic Terror,’ Who Was the Terrorist in Chief?“The Defendants conspired to prevent, by force, intimidation and threats, the Plaintiff, as a Member of Congress, from discharging his official duties to approve the count of votes cast by members of the Electoral College following the presidential election,” the lawsuit alleges.It accuses the defendants of acting “in concert to incite and then carry out a riot at the Capitol” that “created grave danger of harm” to Thompson and other lawmakers. Similar to the case laid out by Democrats in Trump’s impeachment trial last month, the suit lays out a timeline of Trump’s “concerted campaign” to retain power at any cost, from his refusal to commit to a peaceful transition before the election to his explicit endorsement of efforts to overturn the election result to his fiery rally speech on January 6.Trump “solicited the support of, and endorsed the belligerent and violent actions of, organizations such as the Proud Boys that expressed support of his reelection,” the suit alleges.Trump advisers did not immediately provide comment on who, if anyone, at this point is representing the former president for this lawsuit. When Trump was served, it was merely signed for by a “Ricky,” according to the court document.Several Trump attorneys who The Daily Beast asked about this said they had no involvement. As of Tuesday, Alan Dershowitz, a member of the Trump legal defense for the ex-president’s first Senate impeachment trial, said “nobody [on the Trump team] has reached out to me yet” regarding this suit, but added that he personally believes Trump’s rhetoric on Jan. 6 is “protected by the First Amendment” and that “I would hope that the ACLU would take on a case like this.”The suit adds to a growing list of legal troubles now facing former President Trump, his family, and his associates, since leaving office.After a victory at the Supreme Court in February, Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance obtained copies of Trump’s tax returns. The paperwork is reportedly part of a city fraud investigation looking into whether the former president lied about the value of his assets in order to gain financial advantages.It’s unclear who will represent Trump, the Proud Boys, and the Oath Keepers in the latest suit but court records show that Austin, Texas-based attorney Joseph D. Sibley IV accepted service of the suit on behalf of Giuliani. Sibley, a graduate of Harvard Law school, is a former U.S. Army Ranger.“I am representing Mayor Giuliani in the Thompson lawsuit, and I will also be representing him in the Smartmatic and Dominion cases,” Sibley told The Daily Beast on Wednesday afternoon.Orange Is the New Orange: Trump Just Might Go to JailSibley handles breach of contract, intellectual property, and other commercial law cases but has also represented clients in defamation cases and provided expert commentary for The Washington Post on defamation suits.He represented far-right blogger Charles Johnson in a 2020 libel lawsuit that was originally filed against Verizon, The Huffington Post, and reporter Andy Campbell for a 2019 article which labeled Johnson a “Holocaust-Denying White Nationalist”—a description Johnson strongly denies. Johnson dismissed the suits against Campbell and Verizon but has appealed a federal judge’s dismissal of his suit against The Huffington Post.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.
- Business Insider
DC National Guard commander says it took more than 3 hours for Trump's Pentagon to tell him to send in troops to respond to the Capitol riot
Maj. Gen. William Walker said he could have had about 150 troops at the Capitol within 20 minutes and that they "could have made a difference."
- The Telegraph
The British ambassador in Beijing has been attacked by Chinese state media after she posted on social media about the watchdog role of an independent press holding governments and organisations to account. Caroline Wilson cited examples where scrutiny from the British press brought positive change, including the Telegraph’s 2009 investigation into MPs’ expense claims that led to parliamentary reform, while a BBC report exposed in 2019 how patients in a nursing home were being abused by staff. She added that when foreign media turn a watchdog eye toward China, it’s a “good faith” effort to ensure people have access to information, and to support those “who have no voice”. But multiple pieces in Chinese state media accused her of not understanding China and claimed foreign media were “launching an ideological propaganda warfare against the Chinese political system.” Ms Wilson, who was appointed ambassador last September, was previously posted to the British embassy in Beijing before serving as consul-general in Hong Kong, and speaks Mandarin. Chinese state media said that Ms Wilson had yet to learn “how unwelcome some Western media outlets are in China.” Foreign journalists face increasing threats, harassment and scrutiny by many parts of the Chinese state. Foreign journalists have been expelled for coverage that Chinese authorities disliked, assaulted while working, and threatened with long-term detention, according to a recent report by the Foreign Correspondents’ Club of China. The attacks against Ms Wilson are part of a broader campaign by China that has ramped up against the UK, denouncing British officials via the foreign ministry in Beijing, the embassy in London, and in Chinese state media. The two nations have clashed over espionage concerns and human rights abuses, especially in Xinjiang and Hong Kong. The foreign ministry in Beijing rejected Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab’s speech last week to the UN Human Rights Council, urging members to tackle China’s abuses against the Uighur ethnic minority. A Chinese government spokesperson instead claimed that accounts of human rights violations against Uighurs were “rumours and lies fabricated by anti-China forces.” Then, on Tuesday, the Chinese embassy in London warned the UK was “going further down the wrong path” after Mr Raab issued a statement about 47 Hong Kong politicians and activists being charged this week under a sweeping national security law. “It demonstrates in the starkest way the use of the law to stifle any political dissent, rather than restore security which was the claimed intention of the legislation,” said Mr Raab. Chinese state media have continued to single out the BBC in harsh rebukes after British broadcast regulator Ofcom revoked the license for Chinese state broadcaster CGTN to air programmes in the UK. Ofcom announced earlier this month it would cancel CGTN’s license as the organisation was “ultimately controlled by the Chinese Communist Party,” which violated British broadcasting rules that require outlets to exercise editorial oversight over progammes shown, and bar them from being controlled by political bodies. Beijing responded by banning the BBC in China, though in practice the network was only available as a pay channel in some hotels and homes. Censors block broadcast of BBC stories within China that go against the official propaganda narrative, for instance, reports about human rights violations. The Chinese embassy in London and foreign ministry in Beijing routinely reprimand the Telegraph and other British outlets for coverage of China that the authorities find unfavourable.