An American citizen who allegedly served as a sniper for ISIS and became a leader for the terrorist group is expected to appear in federal court on Friday after being returned to the United States by the Defense Department, officials said. Ruslan Maratovich Asainov, who was born in Kazakhstan and became a naturalized U.S. citizen, is charged with providing and attempting to provide material support to ISIS, the Justice Department announced on Friday. A U.S. official confirmed to Task & Purpose that the Defense Department had transported Asainov from Syria to the United States.
Iran and the US were locked in a bizarre war of words on Friday, after Tehran denied President Donald Trump's claim that a US Navy ship had "destroyed" an Iranian drone. Mr Trump said on Thursday that the drone had flown to within 1,000 yards of the USS Boxer and had ignored "multiple calls to stand down" in the latest episode to stir tensions in the Gulf. It was the first US military engagement with Iran following a series of increasingly serious incidents and the Trump administrator threatened more yesterday if Iranian planes flew too closely to its ships.
An appropriate number of guys were arrested when a fight broke out at a Five Guys restaurant in Florida on Wednesday. Police apprehended three juvenile males and two adult males — a total of five guys — following a lunchtime brawl at the burger chain's location in Stuart, Fla. according to the Orlando Sentinel.
A baby alligator was found far from the tropics in the parking lot of a grocery store outside Pittsburgh on Friday morning, the fourth alligator discovered near the city since May. An employee found the 2-foot-long (60-centimeter-long) creature near a garbage can at the Giant Eagle grocery store in Shaler, about 10 miles (15 kilometers) north of Pittsburgh. "It looks like a little baby alligator," Shaler Township Police Lt. Dave Banko told the Tribune Review newspaper.
An unruly passenger has been billed $105,000 after her “extremely disruptive behavior” caused a flight to be diverted with a military escort. British budget carrier Jet2 accused passenger Chloe Haines of “a catalogue of aggressive, abusive and dangerous behavior,” including trying to open the aircraft door, during a flight from the U.K. to Turkey. The airline said in a statement Haines was restrained by crew with the help of other passengers as two military fighter jets escorted the aircraft back to London Stansted.
Emergency officials responded around 2 p.m. to North Fork Park along the Little North Fork of the river after getting reports that a swimmer went underwater and didn't resurface, according to Sgt. Jeremy Landers, a spokesperson with the Marion County Sheriff's Office. Witnesses at the river were able to take the man out of the water before first responders arrived.
The Vermont senator has so far retained his standing in the Democratic primary's top tier, coming in second to former Vice President Joe Biden in most polls and hauling $18 million in fundraising this quarter, the fourth highest sum. Two ex-elected officials—former Rep. John Delaney (D-MD) and former Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper—have been leading the anti-Sanders group and by the luck of the draw, they both will be on stage during the first night of debates in Detroit later this month (though, it should be noted, Hickenlooper did not confront Sanders during last month's debate despite sharing the stage with him).
Ramush Haradinaj, who resigned as Kosovo's prime minister on Friday, is hailed as a hero at home -- where he is nicknamed "Rambo" -- but considered a war criminal by Belgrade, which has long sought to see him behind bars. The controversial 51-year-old, who was a wartime commander of the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA), stepped down after being summoned as a suspect by a war crimes court in the Hague. It is the second time he has resigned after being called before a war crimes court over crimes allegedly committed by the ethnic Albanian KLA separatists during the 1998-99 war.
New much-longer range sensors and weapons, incorporating emerging iterations of AI, are expected to make warfare more disaggregated, and much less of a linear force on force type of engagement. The Navy is currently analyzing air frames, targeting systems, AI-enabled sensors, new weapons and engine technologies to engineer a new 6th-Generation fighter to fly alongside the F-35 and ultimately replace the F/A-18. The Navy program, called Next-Generation Air Dominance, has moved beyond a purely conceptual phase and begun exploration of prototype systems and airframes as it pursues a new, carrier-launched 6th-Gen fighter to emerge in 2030 and beyond, service officials explained.
Mexican Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard said on Friday that Mexico has followed through on its commitment to the United States to reduce migration from Central America, as a deadline in a bilateral pact approaches. U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is scheduled to travel to Mexico City to discuss migration and trade with Ebrard on Sunday, a day before the end of a 45-day period in which the Mexican government pledged to significantly lower the number of people trying to cross the U.S. border illegally. Mexico struck the deal in June to avert punitive trade tariffs.
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has powerfully confronted a Trump administration official over a secret Facebook group for border agents, that contained twisted jokes about migrant children and showed computer generated images of her being raped and sexually assaulted. The existence of the group, consisting of current and former members of the nation's border patrol agency often referred to as CBP, was revealed earlier this month by an investigative journalism site. This week, the New York congresswoman, who recently visited migrant detention facilities overseen by the US authorities and spoke of her horror at what she saw, questioned the acting head of the department of homeland security about the Facebook group and its contents.
Philippine police have recommended sedition charges against the vice president and other opposition figures, a move slammed Friday as an attempt to stifle dissent under President Rodrigo Duterte. Police allege Vice President Leni Robredo, Catholic Church leaders and opposition politicians plotted to destabilise the Duterte government by implicating him in the narcotics trade. Duterte launched a war against the drug trade when he came into power three years ago.
Police in Hong Kong discovered a stash of a powerful homemade explosive as the semi-autonomous Chinese city readied for another major pro-democracy protest on Sunday. Materials voicing opposition to an extradition bill that has sparked more than a month of demonstrations in Hong Kong were found at the site, local media said, but a police spokesman said no concrete link has been established and that the investigation is continuing. In a rally that aimed to counter the pro-democracy movement, thousands of people filled a park in central Hong Kong on Saturday to support the police, who have been accused of using rough tactics on protesters.
Defending Donald Trump's repeated racist taunts at Democratic congresswomen of color, Fox News host Pete Hegseth told correspondent-at-large Geraldo Rivera on Friday morning that it would be perfectly fine for him to utilize the president's “go back to where you came from” message on him. A day after Trump sorta disavowed the racist “send her back!” chant his rally crowd launched at Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN), Rivera appeared on Fox & Friends and said he was “glad the president has said” he didn't like the chants. At the same time, Rivera noted that the president's original tweets targeting the “Squad” tapped into an “old racist trope,” something the longtime Trump pal had criticized the president for days earlier.
Our spy photographers caught two different versions of the C8 out on the road with no camouflage for the first time. From Car and Driver
Alan Mendoza: The only surprise about Iran's seizure is that it didn't happen sooner Analysis: Boris Johnson could face early test as Iran 'exploits' political uncertainty US developing 'coalition' of navies to protect ships amid Iran tensions Mark Almond: Brexit myopia and a fatal lack of foresight has enabled Iran to put Britain on the spot Former head of Navy questions why British ships weren't protected Foreign office summon Iranian diplomats Britain has admitted its nearest warship was one hour away from the merchant vessel seized by Iran in the Strait of Hormuz on Friday and could do nothing to help.
Sebastien Roblin Security, And how mad will China get? On July 8, the U.S. State Department announced it would approve a $2.2 billion arms deal with Taiwan including 108 Abrams main battle tanks and 250 Stinger man-portable surface-to-air missiles—a deal which elicited new sanctions from Beijing on the companies involved. But the announcement was more notable for what the approval didn't include—a nearly done-deal for sixty-six F-16V jet fighters built fresh off the F-16 production line in Greenville, South Carolina.
MEXICO CITY, July 19 (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - A gay man in the tiny Caribbean nation of Dominica filed a legal claim challenging its laws that ban gay sex and punish same-sex relations with prison terms and psychiatric confinement, a Canada-based rights group said on Friday. Dominica is one of nine Caribbean countries that outlaw gay sex, and taking down its ban could build momentum to address the anti-gay laws throughout the region, supporters said. The challenge seeks to prove the law violates Dominica's constitution that guarantees rights to freedom of expression, privacy and freedom from inhumane or degrading punishment.
Senator Kyrsten Sinema (D., Ariz.) has joined a bipartisan group of nine colleagues proposing a pilot program that would expedite the deportation of migrants who make invalid asylum claims. The senators outlined the Operation Safe Return program, which would allow the deportation of migrants within 15 days if their asylum claims are not credible, in a letter sent to acting Secretary of Homeland Security Kevin McAleenan on Wednesday. “We write to urge you to use authorities in use as of June 30, 2019, to implement Operation Safe Return, a pilot program to rapidly, accurately, and fairly determine those families who have crossed the southern border that clearly do not have a valid legal claim and safely return them to their home countries,” the senators wrote.
A Utah school district is paying $62,500 to settle a lawsuit filed after a junior high student was caught in a bus door and dragged by his backpack. Brenda Mayes, the student's mother, sued the Davis School District in May. She alleged that bus driver John Naisbitt intentionally closed the door on her 13-year-old biracial son's backpack as he was getting off the bus. Surveillance video from inside the school bus on February 4 shows several students getting off the bus before the driver appears to close the doors right behind the boy believed to be Mayes's son, catching his backpack straps in the door before the bus drove about 150 to 175 feet.
A small group of asylum seekers sit under a canopy on the side of a road leading into the United States, chatting to pass the time as a blazing desert sun pushes the heat into triple digits and fumes roll in from dozens of cars lined up to cross the U.S.-Mexico border. Coming from Guatemala, Nicaragua, Mexico, Cuba and many other countries, they're waiting in San Luis Río Colorado, Mexico, to seek asylum at the official border crossing just south of San Luis, Arizona. Under the canopy, surrounded by little but fencing and some stores and restaurants, they look like old friends.
In a new filing against the National Rifle Association, lawyers for ad agency Ackerman McQueen suggest that longtime NRA executive Wayne LaPierre is lying about a critical moment in the gun rights group's recent leadership shake up. At issue is multi-million-dollar litigation between the NRA and its ex-ad firm. In court filings of its own, the NRA has alleged that Oliver North, the groups's former president, was ousted in part because he withheld information from the NRA about payments he took from Ackerman McQueen, which had served as the gun rights group's primary ad contractor until just months ago.
Landing on the moon was arguably the greatest achievement in human history, but filming the feat was a technological wonder, too. In the July 1969 issue of Popular Mechanics, released shortly before Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin stepped onto the lunar surface, our editors previewed the historic spacewalk soon to come—including just how the heck everyone back on Earth would be able to watch it from their living rooms.
Two British oil tankers were seized by Iran's Revolutionary Guards on Friday night, in a major escalation of tensions in the Gulf.