• Trump tweets threat: 'If Iran wants to fight, that will be the end of Iran'
    Politics
    The Guardian

    Trump tweets threat: 'If Iran wants to fight, that will be the end of Iran'

    Incendiary message follows disavowals of intent from both sidesOpinion: Trump supporters don’t want war with Iran In a picture released on Friday, the USS Abraham Lincoln sails in the Arabian Sea near the amphibious assault ship USS Kearsarge. Photograph: Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Brian M Wilbur/AP Donald Trump has issued one of his most direct threats yet to Tehran, warning that “if Iran wants to fight, that will be the official end of Iran”. The US president emerged from his golf club in Sterling, Virginia, on Sunday to tweet belligerently at around 4.30pm, thereby risking a quickening of tension that is already rising. “Never threaten the United States again!” he wrote. The tweet will do little to assuage jitters in the Middle East and in Washington about aggressive language coming out of the White House. Concern is already running high that Trump’s hawkish national security adviser, John Bolton, who played a key role in instigating the invasion of Iraq under George Bush, might be nudging the administration towards military action. In 2015, Bolton wrote a New York Times op-ed entitled “To stop Iran’s bomb, bomb Iran”. Trump withdrew the US from the Iran nuclear deal last year. On the other hand, Trump has a way of blowing hot one minute and cold the next. As with so many of his social media missives, the precise import of his Sunday tweet was hard to read. It directly conflicted with reports of just three days ago that the president had been telling the Pentagon he did not want to go to war and wanted to find a way to wind down tensions. Those reports were also subject to qualification. In response to reports about a draft plan for the deployment of 120,000 troops, Trump said that though he did not want war, if it came to it he would send “a hell of a lot” more soldiers than that. Earlier on Sunday, the Utah senator and former Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney had joined the commander of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards in dismissing the threat of war. “Going to war with Iran?” Romney asked on CNN’s State of the Union. “Not going to happen.” According to the Fars news agency, Maj General Hossein Salami followed foreign minister Mohammad Javad Zarif by saying Iran was not pursuing war either. But both men offered caveats. Romney, a member of the Senate foreign relations committee, said the threat to US interests was “real” and added: “We’re going to make sure they understand that if they take action against our people, against our allies and against our friends, there will be consequence and it will be far more severe than the initial action taken by Iran.” Salami said Iran was ready to fight, as the difference “between us and them is that they are afraid of war and don’t have the will for it”. The White House has not said what is behind its claim of an increased threat. Romney said the “intelligence community says there’s a great deal of risk” but did not elaborate. It has been reported that US intelligence believes Iranian commercial vessels have carried missiles and ammunition, which some analysts say indicates preparations to defend against a US attack. Saudi Arabia is the major US ally in the region. Four oil tankers, two of them Saudi, were attacked off the coast of the United Arab Emirates. Iran-allied rebels in Yemen claimed a drone attack on a Saudi oil pipeline. Adel al-Jubeir, Saudi Arabia’s foreign minister, told reporters on Sunday his country also “does not want war … but at the same time, if the other side chooses war, the kingdom will fight this with all force and determination”. The US has sent an aircraft carrier strike group and cautionary moves include an evacuation of personnel by the oil firm ExxonMobil and a warning from the US to commercial air traffic of increased risk in the region. The Associated Press reported on Sunday that Democrats in Congress will be briefed by former CIA director John Brennan, a stringent Trump critic, and Wendy Sherman, a former state department official who helped negotiate the Iran deal. Among Democratic presidential hopefuls on Sunday, the presumption was that Trump either wanted war or was behaving irresponsibly. The Hawaii congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard, a military veteran, told ABC’s This Week Trump was “leading us down this dangerous path towards a war in Iran”. Seth Moulton of Massachusetts, another veteran, said war with Iran would be “exactly what John Bolton wants”. But David Petraeus, a retired general who led US troops in Iraq in 2003 and later led the CIA, told ABC it was “pretty clear” Trump “doesn’t want to go to war with Iran. He’s not after regime change”. Romney agreed. “I don’t believe for a minute,” he said, “that either the president or John Bolton or anyone else in a serious senior position of leadership in the White House has any interest in going to the Middle East and going to war. That’s just not going to happen … barring some kind of attack from Iran or something of that nature which I don’t think anyone anticipates. “Look, the president made it very clear that he thinks the greatest foreign policy mistake probably in the modern age was the decision by President Bush to go into Iraq. The idea that he would follow that by going after Iran, a more difficult enemy if you will, that’s just not going to happen.” Famously, Trump said at the time that he supported George W Bush’s invasion of Iraq. He has since vehemently denied that he did so.

  • News
    Reuters

    U.S. Border agent accused of calling migrants 'savages' before knocking one over

    Agent Matthew Bowen sent the messages in November 2017, two weeks before he is accused of deliberately knocking over a Guatemalan man with his Border Patrol vehicle in Nogales, Arizona, according to documents filed in U.S. District Court in Tucson. Prosecutors Monica Ryan and Lori Price filed the documents on April 30 with a request to use the messages in court to show Bowen's "state of mind" prior to the incident and his "willful" intent to knock over the migrant on Dec. 3, 2017.

  • ‘Fox & Friends’ Bashes Pete Buttigieg’s Fox News Town Hall: He Showed ‘No Courage’ by Attacking Us
    Politics
    The Daily Beast

    ‘Fox & Friends’ Bashes Pete Buttigieg’s Fox News Town Hall: He Showed ‘No Courage’ by Attacking Us

    The morning after Democratic presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg took aim at stars Tucker Carlson and Laura Ingraham during a Fox News town hall event, Fox & Friends co-host Brian Kilmeade blasted the South Bend mayor as cowardly, suggesting Democrats shouldn’t come on Fox if they’re going to attack the network’s primetime hosts.During Sunday night’s forum with anchor Chris Wallace, Mayor Pete acknowledged the controversy over his participation, considering fellow Democratic contenders Elizabeth Warren and Kamala Harris have refused network invitations and the DNC has barred Fox from hosting any 2020 primary debates. Buttigieg conceded that his fellow candidates do have a point, ripping into Carlson and Ingraham for their inflammatory rhetoric.“I get where that’s coming from especially when you see what goes on with some opinion hosts on this network,” Buttigieg declared. “I mean when you’ve got Tucker Carlson saying that immigrants make America dirty. When you’ve got Laura Ingraham comparing detention centers with children in cages to summer camps.”With fellow host Steve Doocy noting Monday morning that Buttigieg received loud applause from the New Hampshire audience for wanting to get rid of the Electoral College, Kilmeade claimed the mayor had stacked the crowd.“Because they are all his friends,” the pro-Trump Fox host replied. “I think he is related to the whole audience.”After that little conspiratorial bit, Kilmeade then tore into the Indiana mayor for his criticism of Fox’s hard-right opinion side.“Don’t hop on our channel and continue to put down the other hosts on the channel, or the channel,” Kilmeade exclaimed. “If you feel that negative about it, don’t come.”He added: “Because for him to go out there and take shots at our primetime lineup without going on our primetime lineup shows, to me, absolutely no courage.”Buttigieg, meanwhile, also told Wallace that there are reasons “why anybody has to swallow hard and think twice before participating in this media ecosystem,” noting that Fox News opinion hosts don’t operate in “good faith.”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.

  • Al Jazeera suspends two journalists over Holocaust report
    World
    AFP

    Al Jazeera suspends two journalists over Holocaust report

    Qatari state-funded broadcaster Al Jazeera suspended two journalists on Sunday over a video they produced claiming the extent of the Holocaust was being misrepresented by Jews. The clip, posted by Al Jazeera's online AJ+ Arabic service, claimed "the narrative" that the Nazis killed six million Jews was "adopted by the Zionist movement". The video said that "along with others, the Jews faced a policy of systematic persecution which culminated in the Final Solution".

  • Dozens rescued from Oklahoma floods as storms swamp central U.S.: officials
    News
    Reuters

    Dozens rescued from Oklahoma floods as storms swamp central U.S.: officials

    Rescue crews in boats pulled at least 50 people from flood waters as heavy downpours inundated roads and homes, said Oklahoma Emergency Management Agency spokeswoman Keli Cain. Only the tops of cars engulfed by water were visible on roadways near Oklahoma City, and some houses were entirely surrounded by floods, video footage of the location showed. "It's real dangerous," said Ross Reuter, a spokesman for Canadian County, where 10 people were rescued.

  • F-16 fighter jet crashes into warehouse near March Air Reserve Base in California
    News
    USA TODAY

    F-16 fighter jet crashes into warehouse near March Air Reserve Base in California

    The crash happened as the pilot was landing following a routine training mission, March Air Reserve Base Deputy Fire Chief Timothy Holliday said.

  • Abortion ban: Georgia prosecutors refuse to enforce 'heartbeat' law
    News
    The Independent

    Abortion ban: Georgia prosecutors refuse to enforce 'heartbeat' law

    District lawyers in Georgia have announced they will not prosecute women for getting an abortion after the US state effectively banned the procedure.Georgia governor Brian Kemp signed the controversial “heartbeat” abortion ban into law earlier in the month – giving the southern state one of the most restrictive laws in the US.The legislation, which has provoked outrage among women’s rights groups, bans abortion once cardiac activity can be detected in an embryo. This can be as early as six weeks – at which point most women do not yet know they are pregnant. The bill imposes jail sentences for women found guilty of aborting or attempting to abort their pregnancies, with the potential for life imprisonment and the death penalty. It is not scheduled to come into effect until 1 January and is expected to face challenges in the courts – with it potentially being postponed. But anti-abortion activists hope challenges will lead to the US Supreme Court reversing Roe vs Wade – the landmark Supreme Court decision which legalised abortion nationwide in 1973 – especially with new conservative justices Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh sitting on the court.The Supreme Court has previously ruled that states cannot ban abortion before a foetus is viable – about 23 to 25 weeks.District prosecutors for Georgia’s four most populous counties – Fulton, Gwinnett, Cobb and DeKalb – have said they would not, or could not, prosecute women under the controversial new law.“As District Attorney with charging discretion, I will not prosecute individuals pursuant to HB 481 [the heartbeat bill] given its ambiguity and constitutional concerns,” DeKalb County district attorney Sherry Boston told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.“As a woman and mother, I am concerned about the passage and attempted passage of laws such as this one in Georgia, Alabama, and other states.”She added: “There is no language outlined in HB 481 explicitly prohibiting a district attorney from bringing criminal charges against anyone and everyone involved in obtaining and performing what is otherwise currently a legal medical procedure”.According to the publication, the technical language of the bill means that district attorneys could potentially seek a murder charge against someone who breaches the heartbeat law.“As a matter of law (as opposed to politics) this office will not be prosecuting any women under the new law as long as I’m district attorney,” Gwinnett County DA Danny Porter said. He said he did not think it would be possible to prosecute a woman for either murder or unlawful abortion if she got an abortion after six weeks.John Melvin, acting District Attorney of Cobb County, echoed this position, saying women could “absolutely not” be prosecuted under the unlawful abortion statute.Fulton County district attorney Paul Howard “has no intention of ever prosecuting a woman under this new law", a spokesperson said, adding that he also would not prosecute abortion providers.Georgia’s new bill does include exceptions for cases involving rape, incest, or in situations where the health of a mother is in danger.“Planned Parenthood will be suing the State of Georgia. We will fight this terrible bill because this is about our patients’ lives,” Dr Leana Wen, president of Planned Parenthood Action Fund, said.Georgia’s bill comes after Alabama Governor Kay Ivey signed a controversial abortion bill into law last week that is the most restrictive abortion bill in the US.Under the law, doctors would face 10 years in prison for attempting to terminate a pregnancy and 99 years for carrying out the procedure. The abortion ban, which has been branded a “death sentence for women”, would even criminalise performing abortions in cases of rape and incest. Ms Ivey said the new law might be “unenforceable” due to Roe v Wade but said the new law was passed with the aim of challenging that decision.Alabama state lawmakers compare abortions in America to the Holocaust and other modern genocides in the legislation – spurring Jewish activists and abortion rights groups to rebuke the bill as “deeply offensive.”Alabama’s new bill comes as politicians in several other states propose legislation to restrict abortion – with some 16 other states looking at new measures.More than a dozen other states have passed or are considering versions of Georgia’s law. Kentucky, Mississippi and Ohio have also approved bans on abortion once a foetal heartbeat is detected. On Friday, Missouri lawmakers passed a bill banning abortions after eight weeks.Groups such as the American Civil Liberties Union of Georgia vowed to sue on the day the governor signed Georgia’s heartbeat bill. It has also fuelled many in the entertainment industry to threaten to boycott Georgia.“We’re putting lawmakers on notice: Your votes are far outside the mainstream, and we will now spend our time and energy launching a campaign to replace you,” Staci Fox, the president and CEO of Planned Parenthood Southeast, said at the time.A federal judge blocked a heartbeat bill in Kentucky which was scheduled to come into effect instantly as it could be unconstitutional, while Mississippi passed a six-week abortion law in March that is not due to come into force until July and is also facing challenges.Ohio passed a similarly restrictive law in 2016 which was vetoed by the governor.

  • US intelligence chiefs shared classified info with tech execs about doing business with China
    Business
    BGR News

    US intelligence chiefs shared classified info with tech execs about doing business with China

    The trade war with China has reached new heights in the past few weeks, as the Trump administration recently announced that US companies will be banned from buying equipment from certain Chinese companies. Huawei's name wasn't explicitly mentioned, but it was obviously implied that China's biggest tech company is included on the list. Separately, the US government also issued a ban that prevents Huawei from dealing with US tech companies, whether it's for parts procurement or software licenses. The first effects of that decision are already here, as Google has already said it will comply with the ban, effectively revoking Huawei's access to the version of Android that everybody wants. Several chipmakers, including Intel and Qualcomm, have also reportedly cut ties with Huawei for the time being.On top of that, a report reveals that top officials from the US intelligence community have been meeting with tech execs, universities, and trade organizations to brief them about the security perils related to doing business with China.The briefings began last October and have been held in California and Washington, The Financial Times reports (via The Verge), with US intelligence informing those in attendance about the cyber threats and the theft of intellectual property risks that come with dealing with China.Among those giving the briefings was Dan Coats, the director of national intelligence, the report notes. The meetings reportedly included the sharing of classified information, which is an unusual element for such meetings. It's unclear what kind of information was shared with tech execs during these meetings, and what companies attended them.Republican Senator Marco Rubio, one of the politicians who organized the meetings, confirmed their existence. "The Chinese government and Communist party pose the greatest long-term threat to US economic and national security," Rubio said. "It's important that US companies, universities, and trade organizations understand fully that threat."

  • 1967 Ford Mustang Fastback Restoration Is A Work Of Art
    Business
    motorious

    1967 Ford Mustang Fastback Restoration Is A Work Of Art

    The Ford Mustang is an American automotive icon known the world over. Ford’s pony car is the four-wheeled embodiment of the American dream. Petty’s Garage is well-known for its work on modern Mustangs, enhancing their performance and producing limited edition special models.

  • Donald Trump: 'If Iran wants to fight, that will be the end of Iran'
    Politics
    The Telegraph

    Donald Trump: 'If Iran wants to fight, that will be the end of Iran'

    The US is "afraid" of war with Iran, the head of Iran's Revolutionary Guard said as tensions between Tehran and Washington intensified over the weekend. Major General Hossein Salami told the Iranian state news agency, IRNA, that the country does not want war. "The difference between us and them is that they are afraid of war and don't have the will for it," he said. His remarks came against a backdrop of increased volatility in the region, with the US sending an aircraft carrier strike group to the Persian Gulf to counter an unspecified threat from Iran. Major General Salami's comments were dismissed by the US president on Twitter. "If Iran wants to fight, that will be the official end of Iran. Never threaten the United States again!" Mr Trump tweeted. The US Federal Aviation Administration has urged commercial aircraft to exercise caution when flying over the Persian Gulf, warning they ran the risk of being "misidentified". How Iran has stoked tensions in Gulf A similar misunderstanding in 1988 led to an American warship bringing down an Iran Air flight, killing all 290 people on board. Iraq, meanwhile, has condemned as "political" a decision by US energy giant ExxonMobil to evacuate staff from a southern oil field after Washington ordered personnel to quit its Baghdad embassy. Saudi Arabia responded to the escalating crisis by calling for a Gulf summit,  adding that while the country did not want war it would defend itself if hostilities erupted. "The kingdom of Saudi Arabia does not want a war in the region nor does it seek that," Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Adel al-Jubeir told a news conference on Sunday. "It will do what it can to prevent this war and at the same time it reaffirms that in the event the other side chooses war, the kingdom will respond with all force and determination, and it will defend itself and its interests." John Bolton wants tough line with Iran Credit: Joshua Roberts/Reuters In Washington Donald Trump has emerged as a dove within his own administration, telling his acting defence secretary, Patrick Shanahan, that he wants to avoid an armed conflict erupting. It has put the US president at odds with John Bolton, his national security adviser and a long-standing foreign policy hawk, who has made little secret of his desire for regime change in Tehran. Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, has also sought to lower the temperature by asking European allies to intervene with Iran. Washington's stance on Iran has put it at odds with European allies, notably after it withdrew from the nuclear deal negotiated by the Obama administration. Over the weekend Tulsi Gabbard, an Iraq war veteran and Democratic presidential candidate, rounded on Mr Trump and Mr Pompeo accusing them of leading the country into a war with Iran. "He says he doesn't want it, but the actions of him and his administration, people like John Bolton and Mike Pompeo, tell us a very different story," she said on ABC. "They are setting the stage for a war with Iran that would prove to be far more costly, far more devastating and dangerous than anything that we saw in the Iraq war."

  • AP Explains: How Yemen's rebels increasingly deploy drones
    World
    Associated Press

    AP Explains: How Yemen's rebels increasingly deploy drones

    DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — In Yemen, the high-pitched whine of drones has been a part of life for over 15 years, ever since the first U.S. drone strike here targeting al-Qaida in 2002. But now, Iran-backed Houthi rebels increasingly deploy drones in Yemen's brutal civil war.

  • Man charged in abduction of 8-year-old Texas girl
    U.S.
    USA TODAY

    Man charged in abduction of 8-year-old Texas girl

    A man has been charged in the abduction of an 8-year-old girl who was snatched from a street in Fort Worth, Texas, as she walked with her mother. Fort Worth police say the girl was found safe Sunday at a hotel in nearby Forest Hill. (May 20)

  • PHOTOS: Gun attack at bar in Brazil
    World
    Yahoo News Photo Staff

    PHOTOS: Gun attack at bar in Brazil

    A gang of gunmen reportedly attacked a bar in the capital of Brazil's northern Pará state Sunday afternoon, and authorities said 11 people were killed.The state security agency confirmed late Sunday only that six women and five men died in the incident in the Guamá neighborhood of the Pará state capital, Belém.The G1 news website said police reported that seven gunmen were involved in the attack, which also wounded one person. The news outlet said the attackers arrived at the bar on one motorcycle and in three cars.In late March, the federal government sent National Guard troops to Belém to reinforce security in the city for 90 days.Brazil hit a record high of 64,000 homicides in 2017, 70% of which were due to firearms, according to official statistics.Much of Brazil's violence is gang related. In January, gangs attacked across Fortaleza, bringing that city to a standstill with as commerce, buses and taxis shut down. (AP)See more news-related photo galleries and follow us on Yahoo News Photo Twitter and Tumblr.

  • 'DM me': Warren wins over comedian with Twitter quip
    Politics
    Yahoo News

    'DM me': Warren wins over comedian with Twitter quip

    "Do you think Elizabeth Warren has a plan to fix my love life?" comedian Ashley Nicole Black tweeted, probably not expecting the response she got from the senator and presidential candidate.

  • Alabama rape victim speaks out against anti-abortion bill
    News
    AFP

    Alabama rape victim speaks out against anti-abortion bill

    After being raped by a co-worker two years ago, Samantha Blakely had an abortion. The 25-year-old Blakely is among women speaking out after the conservative southern US state adopted the toughest anti-abortion legislation in the country. The Alabama bill, which takes effect in November unless it is blocked in the courts, places a near-total ban on ending a pregnancy, even in cases of rape and incest.

  • Business
    Reuters

    EXCLUSIVE-Google suspends some business with Huawei after Trump blacklist -source

    Alphabet Inc's Google has suspended business with Huawei that requires the transfer of hardware, software and technical services except those publicly available via open source licensing, a source familiar with the matter told Reuters on Sunday, in a blow to the Chinese technology company that the U.S. government has sought to blacklist around the world. The move could hobble Huawei's smartphone business outside China as the tech giant will immediately lose access to updates to Google's Android operating system. The next version of its Android smartphones will also lose access to popular services including the Google Play Store and Gmail and YouTube apps.

  • Austin Eubanks: Columbine shooting survivor found dead in Colorado, aged 37
    News
    The Independent

    Austin Eubanks: Columbine shooting survivor found dead in Colorado, aged 37

    A man who survived the 1999 Columbine school shooting has died at his home in Colorado.Austin Eubanks, who worked as an advocate for fighting addiction, died overnight in the city of Steamboat Springs, Routt County coroner Robert Ryg said.His cause of death is currently unknown but no foul play is suspected and an autopsy will be carried out on Monday.Mr Eubanks’ family said he had “lost the battle with the very disease he fought so hard to help others face”.“We thank the recovery community for its support,” they said in a statement.“As you can imagine, we are beyond shocked and saddened and request that our privacy is respected at this time.”Mr Eubanks was 17 when two gunmen entered Columbine High School’s library on 20 April 1999 and opened fire. The teenager was hit in the hand and the knee during the shooting, in which 13 people were killed, according to The Denver Channel.At the time the massacre was the deadliest high school shooting in US history.Mr Eubanks said he became addicted to the painkillers prescribed for his injuries in the aftermath of the shooting.He later worked at an addiction treatment centre and travelled across the US, telling his story.“I think that it’s really important that – not as survivors of trauma but survivors of addiction – speak out and they share their story,” he told Denver7 in 2016.“I remember... hitting multiple low points in my life and thinking there was no way out and I just want people to know there is a way out.”“Helping to build a community of support is what meant the most to Austin, and we plan to continue his work,” Mr Eubanks’ family said in a statement.Additional reporting by agencies

  • Iran Accelerates Production of Enriched Uranium as Tensions Rise
    World
    Bloomberg

    Iran Accelerates Production of Enriched Uranium as Tensions Rise

    The semi-official Tasnim news agency quoted Behrouz Kamalvandi, an official at Iran’s Atomic Energy Organization, as saying that Iran had increased its output of 3.67% enriched uranium as of Monday, and that the United Nations nuclear watchdog had been informed. Crucially, Iran hasn’t increased the level to which it is enriching beyond the agreed limit. Tehran has already announced it stopped complying with a 300-kilogram cap on the storage of enriched uranium and heavy water imposed by the multilateral accord, and said it would abandon limits on uranium enrichment unless Europe throws it an economic lifeline within 60 days, setting an ultimatum for the survival of the landmark agreement.

  • 9 Cool Things We Learned Driving the Spectre Land Rover Defender
    Business
    Popular Mechanics

    9 Cool Things We Learned Driving the Spectre Land Rover Defender

    Created by the custom shop Himalaya, this Defender is a Land Rover like you've never seen before-complete with a Chevy V8 and a Jeep steering box.From Popular Mechanics

  • 5 Catalan separatist leaders escorted to Spanish Parliament
    World
    Associated Press

    5 Catalan separatist leaders escorted to Spanish Parliament

    MADRID (AP) — The five separatist leaders on trial for Catalonia's 2017 secession attempt who were elected to the Spanish Parliament last month picked up their official credentials under police escort on Monday.

  • Mountain region of Slovakia named best destination in Europe 2019: Lonely Planet
    Lifestyle
    AFP Relax News

    Mountain region of Slovakia named best destination in Europe 2019: Lonely Planet

    A wild, rugged, mountainous region of Slovakia dotted with plunging waterfalls and lakes and hiking trails has been named the top European destination of 2019 by the travel experts at Lonely Planet. 

  • Huawei to the Danger Zone: Chinese Telecommunications Company Threatens Britain's National Security
    Business
    The National Interest

    Huawei to the Danger Zone: Chinese Telecommunications Company Threatens Britain's National Security

    The news that the United States has put Huawei on the Entities List comes as the Henry Jackson Society publishes a report on the prospect of including Huawei into the United Kingdom’s build of 5G. I coauthored this report alongside Member of Parliament Bob Seely and Professor Peter Varnish. My job was to look into claims around Huawei’s place within China’s foreign-policy strategy. We have all seen claims around it being too close to the PLA or China’s security services, but were they actually true? Were these claims just an overly-protectionist America seeking to discredit a successful Chinese tech competitor to Apple and Silicon Valley? This whole discussion took place in the wake of a UK National Security Council meeting in late April, during which time—if the Telegraph newspaper is to believed—the council decided that Huawei could take part in a limited part of the UK’s 5G network.Our findings were absolutely clear: Huawei was constrained, influenced and directed by the Chinese Communist Party and Chinese state in a multiplicity of ways.Economic Direction

  • India's Narendra Modi on track for a second term as PM, exit polls predict
    World
    The Telegraph

    India's Narendra Modi on track for a second term as PM, exit polls predict

    India’s prime minister Narendra Modi look set to retain power at the head of a coalition government last night, after exit polls showed his Bharatiya Janata Party and its allies were on track to win a majority of seats in India’s parliament. With polls showing the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance will win as many as 306 seats in India’s 543-seat lower house, the controversial Hindu-nationalist leader would secure a second five-year term, though with a slimmer mandate than in 2014. The opposition Congress-led United Progressive Alliance coalition, which sunk to historic lows last time out, were predicted to win an estimated 132 seats - but a Congress spokesman dismissed the exit polls as “laughable”, citing the shyness of voters in such a polarised contest. The exit polls, which have proved wildly unreliable in the past, were released yesterday evening after the last of India’s 900 million registered voters had cast their ballots. The counted result is due on Thursday. The six week campaign has been largely peaceful, though ended with violent clashes on the outskirts of Kolkata, the capital of West Bengal where the BJP have been skirmishing with the regional Trinamool Congress party. There were sporadic clashes throughout the campaign as Mr Modi pushed to pick up seats in the target-rich state to offset expected losses elsewhere. The projected result emerged as Mr Modi attracted attracted ire and bemusement yesterday after donning saffron robes to meditate in a Himalayan cave, in a bid to garner voters at the end of the campaign. In pictures released by his party press machine, the PM is seen wearing the orange garments synonymous with Hindu priests and sitting cross-legged in a cave near the Kedarnath shrine, in the northern state of Uttarakhand. A master of the grand political gesture, Mr Modi and his aides tweeted the photos, hoping they would strike a chord with his austere, religious supporters. Indian elections 2019 - Projected seat share However, as violence continued in West Bengal and people were voting in Mr Modi’s own constituency of Varanasi, the holy city on the River Ganges, the pictures were mocked online. “No meditation is complete or meaningful without the right attire, red carpet and of course a stage managed photo opportunity,” wrote Rupa Subramanya prominent economist and a former BJP supporter turned critic. Other observers and much of the Indian media turned their attention to the caves themselves - which are actually in a man-made retreat. They can be booked online for Rs 990 (£11.20) a day and the facilities include electricity, drinking water, and “morning tea, breakfast, lunch, evening tea and dinner at prescribed timing which can be changed upon request”, reported the Hindustan Times. The cave also has a telephone connection and an attendant who can be summoned with a bell, the newspaper added.