Donald Trump's fixation on water pressure, the bizarre tweets of Michael Bloomberg, a candidate who does push-ups at campaign gatherings, and another who can recite state capitals at lightning speed: AFP is starting its weekly list of the offbeat highlights from the run-up to the US presidential election. In a country where the age of several front-runners in the race for the White House has raised concerns, 38-year-old Army veteran Tulsi Gabbard, a Democrat from Hawaii, performed a set of push-ups wearing high heels at a campaign stop in New Hampshire on Thursday. During a campaign rally in Wisconsin on Tuesday Trump -- a notorious climate-change denier -- slammed the water-saving standards introduced by his predecessor Barack Obama, which he said affected the performance of toilets, sinks and showers.
Four teachers at an elementary school in California are suing Delta after one of its planes jettisoned jet fuel that landed on a neighborhood, during an emergency landing. The four teachers allege they experienced a "lasting and severe irritation" as a result of the Tuesday incident. Four teachers in Los Angeles, California, filed a lawsuit against Delta Air Lines on Friday, saying they felt "sick, dizzy, and nauseated" after they were drenched by jet fuel released by an Boeing 777 aircraft that made an emergency landing at nearby Los Angeles International Airport.
Twitter/AliBaroodi A well-known ISIS preacher was captured by Iraqi police, but he was apparently so overweight he had to be taken away in the back of a truck. Police said he incited extremist ideology and pledged allegiance to ISIS during their control of Mosul. Pictures posted to social media appear to show al-Nima being put in the back of a pickup truck by Iraqi forces.
The head of Puerto Rico's emergency agency has been sacked following the discovery of a warehouse filled with supplies dating back to Hurricane Maria. Governor Wanda Vazquez said the goods had sat unused since the September 2017 disaster, which killed an estimated 3,000 people. She ordered an investigation and described the inaction of Carlos Acevedo, the director of the office of emergency management (NMEAD), as “unacceptable”.
Vanessa Smallwood, who was 46 at the time of her disappearance, was identified in a statement from New Jersey State Police. Smallwood was a Maple Shade resident, according to the statement. Smallwood was last seen at a dry cleaner's store in Cherry Hill on Jan. 27, 2014, according to the FBI's missing-persons notice.
The U.S. government says it will deport a Honduran mother and her two sick children, both of whom are currently hospitalized, to Guatemala as soon as it can get them medically cleared to travel, according to court documents and the family's advocates. The family's advocates accuse the U.S. of disregarding the health of the children, ages 1 and 6, to push forward a plan currently being challenged in court to send planeloads of families to different countries so that they can seek asylum elsewhere. Both children have been hospitalized in recent days in South Texas' Rio Grande Valley.
The Trump administration warned European officials in three countries that if they didn't put Iran on notice about nuclear deal violations, the US government would slap a 25% tariff on all European cars.
Key point: The need for stealth grew only more urgent in 2019 when an Iranian missile knocked an MQ-4C out of the sky. U.S. forces on deployment to the Middle East include F-15E fighter-bombers, F-22 and F-35 stealth fighters and B-52 bombers, among others. But as tensions escalate between the United States and its allies including Saudi Arabia on one hand, and Iran and Yemen's Iran-backed Houthi rebels on the other hand, it's worth considering what other American aircraft might be in the region.
Spain's Balearic Islands passed a bill Friday aimed at clamping down on alcohol-fuelled holidays in the Mediterranean archipelago which bans happy hours when drinks are offered a discount and open bars. "This is the first law adopted in Europe which restricts the sale and promotion of alcohol in certain touristic areas," the regional government of the Balearic Islands which have long been a magnet for young German and British tourists, who often drink heavily and enjoy rowdy late-night clubbing. The restrictions will apply to three areas with a reputation for excess: San Antoni on the island of Ibiza and El Arenal and Magaluf -- which has been nicknamed "Shagaluf" because of its reputation for drunken casual sex -- on Mallorca, the largest of the Balearic's four islands.
An off-duty Hong Kong police officer was arrested along with seven other people on Friday as they tried to put pro-democracy posters on a footbridge, police said. It's the first known case of a police officer being apprehended for supporting the massive demonstrations that have led to more than 6,500 arrests in the past seven months. The officer, 31, and the seven other people aged 14 to 61, were arrested at 3:00 am on Friday in Tuen Mun, a district in northwest Hong Kong.
Trump's youngest son, Barron, is really tall. Social media users were quick to joke that Barron's height could make him an exciting NBA prospect. US President Donald Trump's youngest son Barron was pictured with his dad and mom, Melania, on Friday, and there's only one thing people on the internet can focus on: how tall he is.
Lev Parnas, the indicted associate of Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani who worked as his envoy in Ukraine, communicated with a top aide to Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.) about an effort to find damaging information on former Vice President Joe Biden, documents released Friday night by House Democrats revealed. The evidence shows Derek Harvey, a former White House official and top aide to Nunes, communicated extensively with Parnas and sought to speak with Ukrainian prosecutors who were giving Giuliani information about Biden, reports The Washington Post.
Airlines are issuing travel waivers due to a winter storm headed for much of the U.S. this weekend – and at least one airport has experienced issues after a plane slid off the taxiway. Delta flight 1114 headed to Detroit slid off the taxiway at Kansas City International Airport in Missouri, according to Joe McBride, marketing manager for the airport. "Passengers were safely offloaded and bused to Terminal B. Crews will remove the aircraft sometime today," he said in a tweet.
The remains of a paratrooper who was killed a week ago in Afghanistan have been returned to his family in the U.S. The family of Staff Sgt. Ian McLaughlin greeted his flag-draped casket at Pope Army Airfield at Fort Bragg on Saturday, The Fayetteville Observer reported. The 29-year-old from Newport News, Virginia, was killed Jan. 11 by an improvised explosive device in Afghanistan. Also killed in the attack was 21-year-old Pfc.
The mother of a civil rights activist who died while demonstrating against the 2017 neo-nazi rally in Charlottesville, Virginia has a message for those planning to attend a major guns rights demonstration in the state on Monday: “To anybody planning violence: stay the hell away from Richmond. Susan Bro, co-founder and president of the social justice foundation named after her daughter Heather Heyer, spoke to The Independent on Friday after the FBI arrested multiple suspected neo-Nazis who had discussed attending the demonstrations next week with firearms. Ms Bro said she was concerned about an “incitement of violence” ahead of the annual Lobby Day demonstrations at the Virginia capitol.
Qatar Airways, Emirates and several other Gulf airlines still fly in Iraqi and Iranian airspace and to cities in both countries, even as other international carriers have rerouted planes since the United States and Iran traded military strikes. Executives and analysts said carriers in the Gulf, a major transit stop between European and Asian destinations, have few alternative routes to choose from in an area where much of the airspace is kept clear of civilian aircraft for military use. In the latest flare up, a U.S. drone strike killed a top general in Iraq on Jan. 3 and Iran fired missiles at U.S. targets in Iraq on Jan. 8.
Key Point: Despite the developments related above, the balance of opinion in Beijing seems impressively moderate on the prospects for a major nuclear buildup by China. When one reads enough Chinese naval literature, diagrams of multi-axial cruise missile saturation attacks against aircraft carrier groups may begin to seem normal. Targets include the biggest cities on the East and West Coasts, as well as in the Midwest, as one would expect.
Angola's former president Jose Eduardo dos Santos has denied links to alleged public company embezzlement during his rule, in his first response to corruption investigators last month freezing his daughter's assets. Isabel dos Santos, the ex-president's billionaire first-born, has been the target of an anti-corruption campaign led by her father's successor President Joao Lourenco. The investigation is looking at alleged irregularities involving diamond marketing firm Sodiam and Sonangol -- Angola's national oil company, which was handed over to Isabel dos Santos by her father in 2016.
Thought experiment No. 1: Suppose Bob Mueller's probe actually proves that Donald Trump is under Vladimir Putin's thumb. Fill in the rest of the blanks with your favorite corruption fantasy: The Kremlin has video of the mogul-turned-president debauching himself in a Moscow hotel; the Kremlin has a bulging file of real-estate transfers through which Trump laundered racketeering proceeds for Putin's favored mobsters and oligarchs; or Trump is recorded cutting a deal to drop Obama-era sanctions against Putin's regime if Russian spies hack Democratic accounts. Thought experiment No. 2: Adam Schiff is not a demagogue.
Molly Riley/Reuters Native American woman Tara Houska says a TSA agent grabbed her braids, whipped them like reins and said "giddyup" while she was going through security at the Minneapolis airport on Monday. A TSA official apologized to Houska for the incident, and released a statement saying "improper behavior is taken seriously" by the agency. The Transportation Security Administration was forced to issue an apology on Tuesday after a Native American woman described on Twitter a humiliating experience going through security at the Minneapolis-St.
As a former sex crimes prosecutor, I often encountered an inherent bias among law enforcement and prosecutors that favored more lenient treatment of “white-collar” defendants charged with sex crimes. Sometimes, that was due to wealthier clients getting more attention because their high-priced lawyers demanded it from the prosecutors. Vance's office already faced criticism for its initial reluctance to prosecute Harvey Weinstein—even conducting its own “oppo research” on one of his accusers—and its attempt to seek a lower sex-offender registration status for Epstein (which Vance later said was a mistake by an unauthorized assistant district attorney).
Nam Y. Huh/AP Winter storms wreaked havoc on airports and roads throughout the Midwest into the weekend. Chicago's O'Hare International Airport saw nearly 700 canceled arriving and departing flights Friday night before around 200 flights were canceled Saturday morning. Authorities issued alerts for areas across the Northeast as blizzard conditions were forecasted to move across the Great Lakes to New York and New England over the weekend.
The Alabama Supreme Court on Friday refused to reconsider a ruling that prohibits Birmingham from obscuring, or taking down, a Confederate monument in a city park. The court in November ruled that Birmingham violated a state law protecting Confederate monuments when it put plywood panels in front of a towering obelisk in a downtown park. The decision reversed a circuit judge's finding that the law was an unconstitutional violation of a community's free speech rights.
Republicans for the Rule of Law is launching a $1 million ad campaign aimed at pressuring Senate Republicans into calling witnesses during President Trump's impeachment trial.