Scarred by two decades of conflict, Iraq finds itself caught in the middle of a US-Iranian tug-of-war, fearing it could pay the price of any confrontation between its two main allies. Analysts say third parties may seek to exploit the latest spike in tensions between Tehran and Washington to spark a showdown that serves their own interests. Iraq "pays a disproportionate tax on Iranian-American tensions and (has) an unenviable front-line position in any future conflict between the two," said Fanar Haddad, an Iraq expert at the National University of Singapore.
The HUD secretary faced a tough hearing before the House Financial Services Committee on Tuesday.
The region is still reckoning with significant flooding from the storm system
While Americans are more concerned about Iran as a security threat to the United States now than they were last year, few would be in favor of a pre-emptive attack on the Iranian military. Historically tense relations between Washington and Tehran worsened in May after U.S. President Donald Trump hardened his anti-Iran stance and restored all sanctions on Iranian oil exports following his decision a year ago to pull the United States out of a 2015 international nuclear accord with Tehran. The United States moved an aircraft carrier and forces to the Gulf region in response to intelligence that Iran may be plotting against U.S. interests, an assertion Iran denies.
This immaculate 1967 Ford Mustang Fastback is estimated to sell at British auction for $95K. It’s hard not to whisper Steve McQueen’s name when presented with a Ford Mustang 390 GT Fastback, even if it isn't a 1968 model. The American classifieds may provide evidence of eye-watering sums being traded for healthy Fastback specimens, but it’s not always the case in Great Britain.
Grady Wayne Wilkes, 29, was arrested Monday following a massive manhunt that involved multiple police agencies and aircrafts.
Mississippi's fetal heartbeat law which bans abortions after approximately six weeks could be blocked or upheld by Judge Carlton Reeves.
Democrats call meeting after former White House counsel Don McGahn defies House subpoena; Doug McKelway reports from Capitol Hill.
The U.S. Commerce Department blocked Huawei Technologies Co Ltd from buying U.S. goods last week, a major escalation in the trade war between the world's two top economies, saying the firm was involved in activities contrary to national security. The two countries increased import tariffs on each other's goods over the past two weeks after U.S. President Donald Trump said China had reneged on earlier commitments made during months of negotiations. On Monday, the Commerce Department granted Huawei a license to buy U.S. goods until Aug. 19 to maintain existing telecoms networks and provide software updates to Huawei smartphones, a move intended to give telecom operators that rely on Huawei time to make other arrangements.
Jose Luiz Gonzalez/ReutersThe U.S. Secret Service is now participating in a not-so-secret undertaking: dealing with the influx of migrants at America’s southern border. According to a communication from the Department of Homeland Security’s headquarters reviewed by The Daily Beast, the small law enforcement agency has sent personnel to the border already and is looking to send more in the coming weeks. The move came in response to a directive then-DHS Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen sent out earlier this spring asking each component of the department to find volunteers and dispatch them to the border. Even though it’s most closely associated with the White House, the Secret Service—along with a host of other entities and agencies—is a component of DHS. And as a result, it’s shipping people south. A DHS spokesperson did not dispute this reporting. “As we have consistently said, the Department is considering all options to address the humanitarian and security crisis at our southern border,” said the spokesperson. “We will continue to work with our workforce to find dynamic solutions and funding to address this very serious problem. As part of this effort, it is our responsibility to explore fiscal mechanisms that will ensure the safety and welfare of both our workforce and the migrant population, which is also reflected in the supplemental request submitted to Congress.”The Daily Beast reported last week that the arm of DHS that handles threats to America’s cybersecurity and critical infrastructure, called the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, has struggled to find enough volunteers to head to the border and fulfill DHS headquarters’ request. The agency works to secure election systems, schools, and places of worship—all of which face acute threats. Besides protecting the president, the first family, and other prominent government figures, the Secret Service also conducts criminal investigations. Its focuses include financial crimes and cybersecurity threats. The diversion of law enforcement and national security personnel to the border has concerned some congressional Democrats, who say it may be a misuse of limited government resources. But pushing back against the dramatic increase in people trying to enter the U.S. through the southern border has become has become a singular priority of President Trump. In both March and April, law enforcement officials apprehended more than 100,000 people trying to enter the U.S., according to DHS statistics. During the Obama administration, the agency was beset by scandal: Washington socialites slipped past agents and crashed the president’s first state dinner; a Secret Service agent told his counterparts to stand down after a man fired a gun at the White House, thinking the sound came from a car backfiring; an agent who traveled to Amsterdam with the president to protect him got drunk and passed out in a hallway; and more, as NBC News has detailed. 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.
What does America need to save its troubled F-35 stealth fighter?Turkey, that’s what.Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan recently warned that the multinational F-35 program, of which Turkey is a member, would fail if Turkey were excluded. Turkey is facing sanctions, including being dropped from the F-35 program if it goes ahead with purchasing Russia’s S-400 anti-aircraft missile system, which has raised Washington’s fears that F-35 secrets might be leaked to Russia. The U.S. has stopped shipping equipment to Turkey for that nation’s planned purchase of 100 F-35s, while the first two aircraft officially delivered to Turkey are still in the United States.For its part, Ankara is adamant that it has a right to purchase both American stealth fighters and Russian anti-aircraft missiles, despite the fact that the S-400 is one of the most likely Russian weapons to be used against the F-35. “We were surely not going to remain silent against our right to self-defense being disregarded and attempts to hit us where it hurts,” Erdogan said at a Turkish defense trade show. “This is the kind of process that is behind the S-400 agreement we reached with Russia.”“Nowadays, we are being subject to a similar injustice - or rather an imposition - on the F-35s ... Let me be frank: An F-35 project from which Turkey is excluded is bound to collapse completely.”
ST. LOUIS (AP) — The Latest on severe weather in the central United States (all times local):
For months, tension between the US and Iran has been simmering – with Washington urging allies not to do business in Tehran, and Iranian proxies or allies launching attacks at the US and its partners, including two ballistic missiles reportedly fired towards Jeddah and Mecca on Monday.And the rhetoric is escalating. “In this face-off they are the ones who will be forced to retreat,” said Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, in a speech last week. “If Iran wants to fight,” US president Donald Trump wrote in a tweet after a rocket fell about a mile from the US embassy compound in Baghdad on Sunday, “that will be the official end of Iran”.Fears of a full-on war between the US and Iran have spiked in recent days. But the two countries and have been locked in a low-simmering conflict for decades.It’s not a very cheery relationship. More often than not they have managed their considerable disagreements through threats, hostage-taking, economic blackmail, bombings and assassinations. The conflict began shortly after Iran’s Islamic revolution, when students stormed the US embassy in Tehran in 1979, holding Americans hostage for 444 days, in an expression of anger for Washington’s quarter-century of support for the dictatorial monarch it installed after a 1953 CIA-backed coup. The animosity continued during the 1980s, when Tehran’s allies bombed US embassies and military barracks, and the US torpedoed Iranian ships in the Persian Gulf. In the 1990s, the US sought to strangle and isolate Iran with sanctions, and Tehran did its part to blow up the Israeli-Palestinian peace deal that was supposed to herald the start of a new Middle East. In the 2000s, the administration of George W Bush again ratcheted up the sanctions on Iran, threatening it with military action over its nuclear programme as it pursued its stillborn project to bring democracy to the Middle East, by way of Iraq.Iran responded by handing out explosively formed penetrators to its proxies in Baghdad, where they devastated US armoured vehicles. Both sides launched cyberattacks against each other. Israelis, likely with US acquiescence, gunned down and blew up nuclear scientists in Tehran’s streets.Accompanying the steady drumbeat of bombs was shrill rhetoric, each side’s threats and outrageous antics strengthening hardline counterparts. President Barack Obama and his team sought to end the cycle with the nuclear deal, which was meant to serve as a cornerstone for improving relations. Mr Trump withdrew from the deal a year ago, promising to pressure Iran into submitting to “a better deal” that would encompass Tehran’s missile programme and its support for militant groups. Ripping up the nuclear deal and resuming sanctions, the two countries’ relations have returned to default settings.As the US has increased pressure, attempting to strangle Iran’s economy, Tehran has begun to respond. US decisions to remove waivers on all international oil trades with Iran coupled with the designation of the Revolutionary Guards as a terrorist organisation “created the consensus within the Iranian leadership that they need to escalate or impose some costs for the US behaviour”, according to Ellie Geranmayeh, an Iran expert at the European Council on Foreign Relations, adding: “The US has gone so far in cornering Iran that Iran is already in a state of war when it comes to the economic landscape.”Iran already perceives itself as under attack, surrounded by US military hardware and personnel in the Arabian Peninsula, Iraq, Afghanistan and the Caucasus, and strangled by sanctions. And the Trump administration has described Iran as the source of much of the world’s woes, calling it the world’s number one backer of terrorism and blaming it for everything from backing the Taliban to strengthening Nicolas Maduro in Venezuela. Both Ayatollah Khamenei and Mr Trump have said they don’t want to push for an all-out war. But the US has begun positioning hardware and personnel in preparation for any attack. Iranian officials, including major general Hussein Salami, the newly appointed chief of the Revolutionary Guards, have boasted in recent days that Iran too has set up networks, allies and infrastructure all over the region to exact costs on the US and its allies for Washington’s pressure campaign. Sunday’s rocket attack towards the US embassy in Baghdad was seen as a message to the Americans, although there is no solid evidence it was necessarily directed at the outpost and it has as yet been unclaimed. One European diplomat involved in Iranian affairs said they expected more “messages through proxies increasing in the coming weeks”.European officials have assured themselves that Mr Trump will restrain the more hardline players in his orbit, including his hawkish national security adviser John Bolton, who has long sought regime change in Iran and has publicly advocated for a campaign of airstrikes against the country. Asked about Mr Trump’s latest tweet, threatening to destroy the entire Iranian nation, the European official quipped: “Which one? There are 10 a day.”Others are less convinced of distance between the Trump and Bolton and other hardliners’ positions on Iran, or that it even matters what either thinks. Once the US scuttled the nuclear deal and chose the path of pressure, the longstanding dangerous state of affairs – the one Obama sought to dismantle – was inevitable .“What is taking place now was all too predictable,” US Democratic Party lawmaker Adam Schiff, chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, told CBS News on Sunday, citing the administration’s decisions to pull out of the nuclear deal, label the Revolutionary Guard a terrorist organisation and up the rhetoric. “All of these policy decisions have led us to a state where confrontation is far more likely. When you take a series of steps that ratchet up tensions, you shouldn’t be surprised when the intelligence tells you, hey, tensions have been ratcheted up.”
Earth's Moon only ever shows us one face. It's locked into its current orientation, with a permanent nearside and farside, but it wasn't until the Apollo missions that scientists were able to see just how different the two sides really are. The nearside, with its sea of dark gray basins standing in contrast to the brilliant white powder that covers the rest of its face, varies dramatically from the farside, which is marked with countless smaller craters in a more uniform distribution.The debate over how the Moon's split personalities developed has raged for decades, but new research seems to indicate that one of the possible explanations does indeed hold water. The theory, that Earth's Moon was struck by a tiny dwarf planet long ago, is the subject of a new research paper published in Journal of Geophysical Research: Planets.Using computer models to simulate what may have happened to the Moon's surface long ago, researchers suggest the most likely scenario seems to be the collision between the Moon and a very large body. The impact of a dwarf planet as large as 480 miles across would have struck what we see today as the Moon's nearside at a speed of 14,000 miles per hour.This theory stands in contrast to other proposed explanations, including the theory that Earth may have once had not one Moon, but two. The two-moon theory suggests that Earth's moon duo may have at one point collided and merged, leaving the Moon as we see it today looking oddly unsymmetrical.The dwarf planet collision scenario assumes that whatever the body that struck the Moon was, it was in its own path around the Sun and just happened to be in the right place at the right time to strike Earth's natural satellite. This, the researchers say, would also explain why the crust on the farside of the Moon is different than that of its nearside."We demonstrate that a large body slowly impacting the nearside of the Moon can reproduce the observed crustal thickness asymmetry and form both the farside highlands and the nearside lowlands," the paper explains. "Additionally, the model shows that the resulting impact ejecta would cover the primordial anorthositic crust to form a two‐layer crust on the farside, as observed."
* US investigators believe bird collision may have triggered crash * Ethiopian Airlines crash occurred months after Lion Air disasterTwo local boys examine debris gathered by workers during the continuing recovery efforts at the crash site in Bishoftu, Ethiopia, in March. Photograph: Jemal Countess/Getty ImagesBoeing officials, shortly after the first fatal crash of its 737 Max jet, played down the likelihood that a bird strike could impair the plane’s sensor equipment. Now investigators are exploring whether such a situation led to a second deadly accident just five months later.According to the Wall Street Journal, US aviation authorities believe a bird collision may have set off the sequence of events that led to the downing of an Ethiopian Airlines 737 Max in March, in which 157 people died.American Airlines pilots called a meeting with Boeing last November after a Lion Air Max crashed in Indonesia, killing all 189 passengers and crew.The Journal reviewed a recording of the meeting in which Mike Sinnett, Boeing’s vice-president of product strategy, raised and dismissed the possibility that a bird strike could trigger a second crash by affecting the Max’s controversial sensor system.Sinnett told the pilots he was “absolutely” confident that heightened pilot awareness following the Lion Air disaster had further reduced the chances of another accident.Ethiopian Airlines has been facing criticism of its pilots’ conduct in the wake of the crash. At a House hearing into the accidents last week, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) administrator, Daniel Elwell, said pilot error contributed to the crash.In both crashes, the Max’s anti-stall system, called the Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System (Mcas), appears to have forced the planes’ noses down shortly after takeoff, leaving the pilots struggling unsuccessfully to right the jets before they crashed.The Mcas system may have been reacting to faulty information from sensors that could have been damaged by a bird strike.Ethiopian Airlines has rejected accusations that its pilots contributed to the crash. Officials have said Boeing failed to provide cockpit alerts that would have warned the pilots about sensor errors.Last week, the airline said its pilots followed procedures set out by the FAA and Boeing but “none of the expected warnings appeared in the cockpit, which deprived the pilots of necessary and timely information”.Nine countries and the US justice department are currently investigating the crashes.
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.
Rescuers successfully talked down a man who scaled the upper heights of the Eiffel Tower on Monday, forcing the monument's evacuation, and handed him over to police. Television channels ran live shots as rescuers perched on the 324-metre (1,063-foot) tower's wrought-iron struts, just below the highest viewing platform, tried to persuade the unknown man to give himself up. The lattice tower, named after its designer and builder Gustave Eiffel, is one of the world's most recognisable landmarks.
CHICAGO (AP) — The agency that licenses and inspects health care facilities in Illinois has started an investigation of a suburban Chicago hospital where doctors treated a baby brought in by a woman claiming to be his mother, a spokeswoman for the agency said Tuesday. The woman was charged weeks later with killing the actual mother and cutting the child from her womb.
China's ambassador to the United States said in a Tuesday interview with Fox News that Washington repeatedly "changed its mind overnight" and sunk deals that could have ended the two countries' trade war. Ambassador Cui Tiankai also slammed as "politically motivated" the White House's move to ban the transfer or sale of US technology to Chinese telcom giant Huawei. Such actions will really undermine people's confidence in the normal function of the market," Tiankai told Fox.
China’s navy has a new problem: not enough names for its rapidly growing fleet of warships.“China is running out of provincial capitals to name new destroyers, and it might have to turn to other big domestic cities, which reflects the country's rapid naval development in recent years,” according to Chinese newspaper Global Times.The People’s Liberation Army Navy recently named its first Type 055 destroyer the Nanchang, which is the capital city of East China's Jiangxi Province.One of the three other Type 055 destroyers will be named Lhasa, the capital of Southwest China's Tibet Autonomous Region, according to Chinese media. That just leaves Nanning and Taipei as the names of provincial capitals for destroyers (Taipei is Taiwan’s capital, though Taiwan has not yet declared independence as a separate nation from China).Which means non-capital cities will have to bequeath their names to Chinese destroyers. The latest destroyer is named Qiqihar, which is a non-capital city in in Northeast China's Heilongjiang Province. A few ships have been named after major cities, such as the Shenzen, a Type 051 destroyer.“Chinese destroyers and frigates should be named after big and medium Chinese cities, according to the naval vessels naming regulation,” Global Times said. “This means naming of destroyers does not necessarily have to use provincial capitals, as it was a non-binding tradition.”
Louisiana's governor toured a community where a possible weekend tornado damaged or destroyed at least 50 homes and businesses. People in areas of eastern Oklahoma are also dealing with severe weather damage. (May 20)
Donald Trump has taken to Twitter to threaten Iran and harangue Republican congressman Justin Amash for suggesting he had engaged in “impeachable conduct” while also criticising Fox News for “wasting airtime” by covering his 2020 Democratic challengers.“If Iran wants to fight, that will be the official end of Iran. Never threaten the United States again!” the president wrote in response to heated rhetoric from Tehran and the firing of a rocket close to the US embassy in Iraq as tensions over sanctions and the US military presence in the Gulf continue.Mr Trump was annoyed by a Twitter thread written by Representative Amash in response to his reading of the Mueller report and Fox for broadcasting a town hall event with Indiana mayor Pete Buttigieg, rare examples of him turning on his allies.Mr Buttigieg has mounted a surprisingly strong candidacy, but would still need to beat Joe Biden if he hopes to take Mr Trump on during the 2020 election.Meanwhile in the 2020 election, Mr Biden saw some troubling polls in Iowa, where Bernie Sanders tied up with him in the state.Elizabeth Warren followed behind those two men, but posted the best favourability ratings in the poll that was released.Please allow a moment for our liveblog to load
A string of tornadoes tore through the central United States in recent days, and the videos showing their power and havoc are stunning.
Bernie Sanders appears to be the favorite to secure Ocasio-Cortez’s prized endorsement in the Democratic presidential primaryCongresswoman Alexandria Ocasio Cortez told the Guardian: ‘I’m not close to an endorsement announcement any time soon.’ Photograph: Joshua Roberts/ReutersAlexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the progressive US congresswoman and social media sensation, has said she would be “hard pressed” to endorse the frontrunner, Joe Biden, in the Democratic presidential primary.The statement is the latest sign of the left’s apathy towards the former vice-president, who has surged ahead of the Senator Bernie Sanders and other rivals in recent polls.Sanders, a self-declared democratic socialist, appears to be the favourite to secure 29-year-old Ocasio-Cortez’s prized endorsement but she said she was still some way off making a decision.“I’m not close to an endorsement announcement any time soon,” she told the Guardian on Tuesday. “I’m still trying to get a handle on my job. It seems like ages but I’m just five months in and we have quite some time. The debates are in the summer and our first primary election for the entire country isn’t until next year.” Asked if she would consider endorsing Biden, widely seen as a centrist, Ocasio-Cortez replied: “I’d be hard pressed to see that happen, to be honest, in a primary.”Biden, comfortably leading every opinion poll, came under fire last week when Reuters reported he was pursuing a “middle ground” approach to the climate crisis. He later distanced himself from the implication.Ocasio-Cortez criticised politicians seeking “a middle-of-the-road approach to save our lives”. Sanders, running second in most polls, tweeted that there was “no ‘middle ground’ when it comes to climate policy”.If and when Ocasio-Cortez does endorse a candidate, Sanders probably remains the favourite to secure her support. She was an organiser for his 2016 primary campaign against Hillary Clinton. The pair appeared at a rally in Washington last week to support the Green New Deal climate plan.In a short interview on Tuesday the congresswoman, who has more than 4 million Twitter followers, also reiterated her demand for Donald Trump’s impeachment. “I think that the grounds have been there for quite some time but the case is really getting to a larger point that we haven’t seen before,” she said.Democratic leaders are putting the House speaker, Nancy Pelosi, under pressure to move ahead with the process. Ocasio-Cortez added: “I know that the conversation is really changing this week in the caucus and so we’ll see where the speaker lands.”
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.