• The World Agrees With Trump on One Thing When It Comes to Iran
    Politics
    Bloomberg

    The World Agrees With Trump on One Thing When It Comes to Iran

    Governments worldwide are alarmed at the tension between Washington and Tehran, concerned about the risk of escalation or military miscalculation and frustrated at a lack of communication about U.S. goals. What keeps the anxiety in check from Berlin to Moscow to Ankara is President Donald Trump’s oft-stated aversion to starting fresh wars.

  • Swedish prosecutor requests Assange's detention over rape allegation
    World
    Reuters

    Swedish prosecutor requests Assange's detention over rape allegation

    Sweden reopened the rape investigation last week. It was begun in 2010 but dropped in 2017 after Assange took refuge in the Ecuadorean embassy in London. "I request the District Court to detain Assange in his absence, on probable cause suspected for rape," Deputy Chief Prosecutor Eva-Marie Persson said in a statement on Monday.

  • Boeing acknowledges flaw in 737 MAX simulator software
    Business
    AFP

    Boeing acknowledges flaw in 737 MAX simulator software

    Boeing acknowledged Saturday it had to correct flaws in its 737 MAX flight simulator software used to train pilots, after two deadly crashes involving the aircraft that killed 346 people. "Boeing has made corrections to the 737 MAX simulator software and has provided additional information to device operators to ensure that the simulator experience is representative across different flight conditions," it said in a statement. Its statement marked the first time Boeing acknowledged there was a design flaw in software linked to the 737 MAX, whose MCAS anti-stall software has been blamed in large part for the Ethiopian Airlines tragedy.

  • Texas girl allegedly kidnapped by stranger found safe; suspect in custody
    U.S.
    KGO – San Francisco

    Texas girl allegedly kidnapped by stranger found safe; suspect in custody

    An 8-year-old who was allegedly abducted in broad daylight while her mother tried to stop the kidnapping was found safe early Sunday, thanks to the help of police and her Texas community.

  • Elizabeth Warren has a plan to fix everything, even our sad love lives
    Politics
    Mashable

    Elizabeth Warren has a plan to fix everything, even our sad love lives

    Elizabeth Warren is all about making plans, and she's bringing her expert policy-making skills to social media.The 2020 presidential candidate has plans to forgive student debt, rebuild the middle class, and even end the opioid crisis. But she's also open to helping people navigate their tricky love lives.On Saturday, comedian Ashley Nicole Black asked her 88,000 followers if they thought Warren had a plan to fix her love life. On Sunday, Warren, queen of policies, unexpectedly replied to the tweet directly."DM me and let's figure this out," Warren tweeted. Simply iconic. DM me and let's figure this out. -- Elizabeth Warren (@ewarren) May 19, 2019SEE ALSO: Elizabeth Warren takes a 'hard pass' on Fox News town hallBlack was absolutely shook upon receiving Warren's response, and she tweeted a screenshot of the exchange, along with the words, "I am deceased. And ready to welcome new love in my life. And then get our new pres elected. ~~~~ shehasaplan" We stan a Queen. Nay, a PRESIDENT. https://t.co/WIPCbUzWNJ -- Ashley Nicole Black (@ashleyn1cole) May 19, 2019Other Twitter users were equally impressed by Warren's hilarious tweet, and digitally bowed down to the Democratic candidate by showering her with praise. Welp, she did it. Elizabeth Warren just won the presidency. Give her the White House, the Iron Throne, a Nobel prize, a pony, whatever she wants. pic.twitter.com/AlKOC9oFDy -- Chuck Wendig (@ChuckWendig) May 19, 2019 This is the most magical thing I've ever seen happen on this website or anywhere -- Katie MacBride (@msmacb) May 19, 2019 How effin' awesome is this?! A POTUS with a heart, a mind, a sense of humor and two X chromosomes. Yes! We are so ready for this! ElizabethWarren Warren2020 -- Annie Fox (@Annie_Fox) May 19, 2019 All hail.... pic.twitter.com/RCNOy0SzMp -- Isaac Butler (@parabasis) May 19, 2019 This is the kind of leadership I want for this nation pic.twitter.com/3aVFYd88ki -- Karen Kilgariff (@KarenKilgariff) May 19, 2019 First, this is hilarious. Second, if you give folks student loan debt relief, some help with higher wages and access to affordable housing and daycare, all those things give space to actually wanna go on dates and make it possible to build a family. So she kinda does have a plan! https://t.co/Nrs0w74xiJ -- Brittney Cooper (@ProfessorCrunk) May 19, 2019 She has a plan for EVERYTHING! https://t.co/0fsaqJAuQD -- Jenny Han (@jennyhan) May 19, 2019 Whoever says women candidates aren't relatable or likeable or funny is nuts. I adore this woman. https://t.co/AJtlEhbRiR -- Belle Resists (@BelleResist) May 19, 2019Many were well aware Warren has established herself as the 2020 election's Sam from Holes by saying "I can fix that" in the face of any challenge. But to see her keeping things light, acknowledging, and extending her own strong policy plans to social media was a delight.Warren, the American people stan you giving relationship advice, but can you please make it public next time so we can all benefit? Thanks. WATCH: Beto O'Rourke announces $5 trillion climate crisis plan

  • Google and Android system start to cut ties with Huawei
    Business
    AFP Relax News

    Google and Android system start to cut ties with Huawei

    US internet giant Google, whose Android mobile operating system powers most of the world's smartphones, said Sunday it was beginning to cut ties with China's Huawei, which Washington considers a national security threat. In the midst of a trade war with Beijing, President Donald Trump has barred US companies from engaging in telecommunications trade with foreign companies said to threaten American national security. The measure targets Huawei, a Chinese telecoms giant in Washington's sights that is listed by the Commerce Department among firms with which American companies can only engage in trade after obtaining the green light from the authorities.

  • This Missile Might be the U.S. Navy's Most Important Weapon in Decades
    World
    The National Interest

    This Missile Might be the U.S. Navy's Most Important Weapon in Decades

    The Tomahawk and its controversies might make headlines, but as the U.S. Navy re-arms for high-tech warfare, the SM-6 is the missile to watch.The U.S. Navy in late January 2019 confirmed the designation of its newest cruise missile, in the process clarifying its long-term plan for arming its growing fleet of warships.The plan heavily leans on one missile, in particular. It's the SM-6, an anti-aircraft weapon that quickly is evolving to perform almost every role the Navy assigns to a missile.(This first appeared earlier in the year.)The Navy dubbed the newest version of the venerable Tomahawk cruise missile the "Block V" model, Jane's reported. There are two separate variants of the Block V missile, one with an anti-ship warhead and another with a warhead the Navy optimized for striking targets on land.Raytheon's Tomahawk has been the subject of controversy in Washington, D.C. In order to save money the Obama administration wanted to pause production of the long-range missile, which since the 1980s has been the Navy's main weapon for striking land targets from the sea.Congress overruled the Obama administration and continued buying Tomahawks for roughly $1 million apiece, adding potentially hundreds of the missiles to the thousands the fleet already possesses.

  • Incest in Game of Thrones - why Jon and Daenerys shouldn't have children
    Entertainment
    The Telegraph

    Incest in Game of Thrones - why Jon and Daenerys shouldn't have children

    Warning: contains spoilers   If you had to sum up Game of Thrones to a newcomer, two words would immediately spring to mind: “dragons” and “incest”. The latter has been a key plot point since the very first episode. Without Jaime and Cersei’s scandalous rutting, Bran Stark might still be climbing the walls of Winterfell, and Ned would still have a head. At the end of season 7, Daenerys Targaryen and Jon Snow's simmering romantic tension had bubbled over into full-blown sex and, judging by their dragon-date and continual camaraderie, their relationship shows no sign of ending. There’s just one slight hitch with this burgeoning romance – and it’s not that Jon refused to bend the knee. As viewers watched Jon sneak into Daenerys’ cabin, a flashback confirmed what viewers had long suspected. Dany is actually Jon’s aunt. With season eight kicking off by Sam telling Jon the truth about his lineage (and the Throne-deserving nephew to his aunt shortly thereafter), we’ll finally find out what the repercussions of this (mis)match will be. But there are some historical lessons that might be of interest to the pair.  Can an aunt and her nephew get married? Short answer? No. It’s illegal. It is in UK law, anyway. (It’s also prohibited by many world religions, including Christianity, Islam and Hinduism.) Daenerys Targaryen and Jon Snow on HBO's Game of Thrones But while it may seem icky to us, avunculate marriages have taken place throughout history. In fact, they were once frequent among the royal houses of Europe. More often than not, this was to consolidate alliances between countries. Couples skirted around the religious questions with a special dispensation from the Pope. One family who had to call on this papal permission frequently were the Hapsburgs, the Holy Roman Emperors who dominated Europe for over three hundred years. One of the reasons they clung on to this power for so long was their tendency to “keep it in the family”. The Hapsburgs became so inbred that they had a deformity named after them. The “Hapsburg Jaw” ensured that these almighty kings struggled in the looks department. Years of inbreeding culminated in King Charles II of Spain, the last and most deformed of the Spanish Hapsburg rulers. His prominent jaw was immortalised in portraits by Titian and Velázquez, and his tongue was said to be so big for his mouth that he would struggle to speak and drool when he managed. Charles II of Spain and the “Hapsburg Jaw” (1677-9) by Juan Carreño de Miranda Scientists have since concluded that Charles’s many symptoms, which included impotence, an oversized head and swelling all over his body, suggest that he suffered from two genetic disorders: thyroid deficiency and renal tubular acidosis. His parents were uncle and niece. Jon and Daenerys, take note. The Hapsburgs clearly didn’t learn from these mistakes. Charles II’s sister, Margaret Theresa of Spain, was married off to their maternal uncle (and paternal first cousin once removed), the Holy Roman Emperor Leopold. Unsurprisingly, all four of Margaret and Leopold’s children suffered from the consanguineous union, with only one surviving infancy. Overall, then, while intermarriage might make political sense, it could result in dodgy jawlines and sickly children. It would also raise a few eyebrows. Not that Tyrion seemed to mind, en route to King's Landing. The Raven newsletter in-article What about brother and sister? As Cersei often states in a desperate attempt to justify her relationship with twin Jaime, the Targaryens have been marrying brother to sister for hundreds of years. Like all marriages, though, these weren’t without their problems. It’s often hinted that years of incestuous Targaryen marriages produced several mad kings – most famously, Daenerys’s father Aerys II. Viserys Tragaryen, brother of Daenerys, on Game of Thrones Credit: HBO George RR Martin’s latest work Fire and Blood (a prequel to A Song of Ice and Fire, on which the TV series is based) might be more than just a treat for superfans, and something from which we can learn as well. The most famous sibling marriage in Westerosi history is Aegon the Conqueror, who had a bigamous marriage with his two sisters. Between them, the siblings conquered Westeros with their dragons. Despite some protest from religious figures, the Targaryens kept up this tradition. When a sibling wasn’t available, they tended to marry a relative that was. Sibling incest has pretty much always been taboo in the real world. There have, however, been a few examples of royal sibling marriages. Most famous of all were those in the Ptolemaic dynasty of Egypt. Cleopatra VII (she of Shakespearean fame) was married to her younger brother Ptolemy XIII. As if that wasn’t narrowing the gene pool enough, her parents were uncle and niece as well as cousins. Similarly, Tutankhamun’s parents were siblings, and he was married to his own half-sister Ankhesenamun. Scientists have proven from King Tut’s remains that, for all the beauty of his famous golden death-mask, he can’t have been much of a looker. He suffered from a cleft palate and club foot, congenital defects which likely came about through his incestuous ancestry. These ancient royal marriages were often “justified” by the fact their gods married their siblings. In the Egyptians’ case, this was Osiris and Isis. The Egyptian royal family believed they were descendants of the gods and needed to keep the bloodline pure.  This pureblood argument is one that the Targaryens were especially fond of, too. The less dragon blood in other families, the less likely it was that rivals could get hold of a dragon and take the throne. Game of Thrones: 20 book bits they cut from the show, from Daenerys's lesbian sex to Tyrion's hideous crimes Nor do marriages between former brothers and sisters-in-law seem to be a problem in Game of Thrones. After Joffrey’s traumatic purple-infused death, the freshly widowed Margaery was hitched to Joffrey’s brother Tommen. Compare Henry VIII, who wanted to marry his dead brother’s wife Catherine of Aragon, but had to get a special dispensation from the Pope because, according to Leviticus, “if a man shall take his brother's wife, it is an unclean thing: he hath uncovered his brother's nakedness; they shall be childless’. Later Henry would decide that the marriage was cursed because it was incestuous – and that was why he and Catherine had failed to produce a male heir. (Funny how this epiphany happened around the same time Anne Boleyn arrived on the scene...). All in all, history teaches us that Jon and Daenerys’s match wouldn't be too unfeasible – and, as relationships go, it would be less taboo than Jaime and Cersei’s. But spare a thought for the children. Not to mention those who might have to be ruled by the little interbred princeling. GOT What happens next no-reg Will Jon and Dany rule together? Twincest-wise, it wasn't a good idea for Cersei and Jaime and it wouldn't be much better for Dany and Jon. If not, arguably, far worse. It's not so much that the duo being related is issue number one, either, but that these related rulers-in-waiting would be trying to do so in a landscape filled with bereavement and madness. Dany doesn't want to share the Iron Throne, Jon has never wanted it altogether, and their respective followers would be far from happy to see them take it together. Especially after they were clearly in clear opposition to each other with Dany bonfired King's Landing. Game of Thrones Season 8 | Latest news You can catch up on Game of Thrones season 1-8 on NOW TV with a one week free Entertainment Pass trial.

  • Elon Musk: Tesla needs to cut costs or it will run out of money in 10 months
    Business
    BGR News

    Elon Musk: Tesla needs to cut costs or it will run out of money in 10 months

    Defying skeptics, Tesla during the September quarter of 2018 actually managed to turn a profit of $312 million thanks to strong demand for the mass market Model 3. Tesla's profits for the quarter were far from staggering, but it nonetheless instilled faith that the electric automaker was on a path towards financial viability.Just a few months later, the narrative surrounding Tesla has drastically shifted. When the company last month released its earnings report for the March quarter, it posted a quarterly loss of $702 million. That said, it's worth noting that production, deliveries, and demand for Tesla vehicles have all grown at an impressive clip over the past many months. As an illustrative example, Tesla during Q1 of 2019 manufactured 77,100 vehicles, a figure which well more than double the amount it manufactured during the same quarter in 2018.Nonetheless, Tesla continues to burn through money at an alarming rate. So much so, in fact, that Tesla CEO Elon Musk recently sent an email (obtained via Electrek) wherein the Tesla CEO explained that the company -- which has approximately $2.2 billion in cash on hand -- may not have enough cash to last beyond a period of 10 months."This is a lot of money," Musk said, "but actually only gives us about 10 months at the Q1 burn rate to achieve breakeven!"Consequently, Musk explained that the company will be taking a much closer look at employee expenses as it pertains to "parts, salary, travel expenses, and rent."Musk conceded that the soon to be implemented cost-cutting measures are "hardcore," adding that it's the "only way for Tesla to become financially sustainable and succeed in our goal of helping make the world environmentally sustainable."This isn't the first time Musk has rung the alarm bells about drastically cutting costs, but it remains to be seen what the company can do within a 10-month timeframe.

  • Trump news: President threatens to 'end' Iran and blasts Republican congressman who accused him of 'impeachable conduct'
    Politics
    The Independent

    Trump news: President threatens to 'end' Iran and blasts Republican congressman who accused him of 'impeachable conduct'

    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

  • Modi’s jobs deficit: J&J’s largest India plant idle three years after completion
    Business
    Reuters

    Modi’s jobs deficit: J&J’s largest India plant idle three years after completion

    It was to eventually employ at least 1,500 people and help bring development to a rural area near Hyderabad in southern India. Two sources familiar with J&J's operations in India and one state government official told Reuters production at the plant, at Penjerla in Telangana state, never began because of a slowing in the growth in demand for the products. One of them said that demand didn’t rise as expected because of two shock policy moves by Prime Minister Narendra Modi: a late 2016 ban on then circulating high-value currency notes, and the nationwide introduction of a goods and services tax (GST) in 2017.

  • 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.

  • Blast hits Egypt tourist bus, 17 injured: security, medical sources
    World
    AFP

    Blast hits Egypt tourist bus, 17 injured: security, medical sources

    An explosion struck a tourist bus on Sunday near Egypt's famed pyramids, injuring 17 people including foreigners, security and medical sources said. South Africans and Egyptians were among those injured when an explosive device went off, hitting the bus in Giza, according to the sources. Sunday's incident comes after three Vietnamese holidaymakers and their Egyptian guide were killed when a roadside bomb hit their bus as it travelled near the pyramids outside Cairo in December.

  • 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.

  • Borrowing from your 401(k) is easy. But should you really break open that piggy bank?
    Business
    USA TODAY

    Borrowing from your 401(k) is easy. But should you really break open that piggy bank?

    Nearly 3 in 10 Americans dip into retirement savings, says Transamerica. It pays for higher education, lowering debt and covering medical costs.

  • Fifth Migrant Child Since December Dies in Border Patrol Custody
    News
    National Review

    Fifth Migrant Child Since December Dies in Border Patrol Custody

    A 16-year-old boy from Guatemala passed away Monday after being apprehended by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agents, the fifth migrant child to die in Border Patrol custody since December, according to CBP.“The men and women of CBP are saddened by the tragic loss of this young man and our condolences are with his family,” read a statement from acting CBP commissioner John Sanders. “CBP is committed to the health, safety and humane treatment of those in our custody.”Customs and Border Protection said that the boy crossed the southern border illegally, and was arrested on May 13 near Hidalgo, Texas and placed in Border Patrol's Weslaco Station in the Rio Grande Valley Sector."Yet another child has died in US government custody," said Ashley Houghton, tactical-campaigns manager at Amnesty International USA. "This death, which comes days after the administration released a proposal to make it even more difficult for people to seek safety in this country, leads us to wonder how many deaths it will take for the administration to ensure the safety and security of children."Amnesty International, which advocates for undocumented immigrants, called for an independent investigation into the child's death and demanded the Trump administration end the detention of minors, saying, "it is dangerous and cruel to detain people, particularly children, in crowded and unsanitary conditions for seeking protection."After border authorities faced severe backlash when a seven-year-old girl from Guatemala died in their custody in December, the Department of Homeland Security said it was "begging" parents not to bring their children across the border illegally.Apprehensions at the southern border have spiked this year. 8,975 unaccompanied children and a record 53,077 family units crossed the border without authorization in March.

  • Business
    BGR News

    Anker’s true wireless earbuds fix everything wrong with the other brands’, and they’re down to $45 today

    The Soundcore Liberty Neo Truly-Wireless Earbuds by Anker are a tremendous value at their full retail price of $65, especially when you consider the fact that they improve upon Apple's $159 AirPods in every conceivable way. The graphene drivers produce better sound and deeper bass, the silicone tips fit better in your ears, and the IPX5 rating provides better water-resistance. They're among the best cord-free earbuds we've ever tested in this price range, and they just dropped to an all-time low of $44.99! Definitely pick up a pair before this excellent deal is done.Here are the bullet points from the product page: * Breathtaking Sound: Exceptional clarity delivered via Graphene drivers with deep, resonant bass. * Smaller & Lighter: Each bud weighs only 0.2 oz for incredible comfort and seamless sound that sits effortlessly in your ears. * 12-Hour Playtime: Get 3.5 hours' playtime from a single charge and 9 extra hours in the compact charging case. * Ultra-Fast Pairing: Push and Go Technology simplifies the setup: process so the last-paired device automatically connects on startup. * IPX5 Protection: Resists liquids for workouts in the sun or songs in the rain. * Hand-Free Calls: A built-in microphone ensures easy on-the-go phone calls.

  • Is Iran Testing Trump With Little Attacks in Iraq, Saudi Arabia, and the Persian Gulf?
    World
    The Daily Beast

    Is Iran Testing Trump With Little Attacks in Iraq, Saudi Arabia, and the Persian Gulf?

    Anne SpeckhardBAGHDAD—The sound of an explosion echoed through the Green Zone on Sunday night around 9:00 p.m., a reminder that this most secure part of the Iraqi capital is not, in fact, all that safe. The projectile appears to have been aimed at the United States embassy and, after the blast, embassy sirens went off, accompanied by repeated warnings blaring on loudspeakers instructing everyone to take immediate cover. Within the hour the missile was reported to have been fired from the Amana bridge in Baghdad, missing its likely intended target and landing in an empty field near the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, with no casualties reported.What the Last War With Iran Tells Us About the Next OneBut for a brief and highly fraught moment alarms were going off in Washington, as well, where the much-publicized threat of Iranian “proxy” attacks on U.S. interests and personnel, and the American response positioning bombers and aircraft carriers, have conjured the specter of a new Middle Eastern war. One breaking news service breathlessly reported National Security Adviser John Bolton “just seen arriving at the White House amid rocket attack possibly aimed at the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad, Iraq.”President Trump, meanwhile, tweeted: “If Iran wants to fight, that will be the official end of Iran. Never threaten the United States again!” It is not clear if he was responding to the rocket, a Katyusha that might have been fired by any number of players in Iraq, or to threatening rhetoric by some Iranian officials, or both.In any case, non-essential American personnel at the embassy had already been ordered to depart days earlier, many moving to posts in nearby countries to continue their work, and the U.S. embassy was already expecting a possible attack.Our team of researchers for the International Center for the Study of Violent Extremism (ICSVE) landed in Baghdad on May 14, 2019, the day before the U.S. State Department issued the security alert to the “non-essentials” in Baghdad and Erbil, recommending they “depart Iraq by commercial transportation as soon as possible, avoid U.S. facilities within Iraq, monitor local media for updates, review personal security plans, remain aware of surroundings.” An earlier security alert on May 12 advised all U.S. citizens of heightened tensions in Iraq and the requirement to remain vigilant. It recommended not traveling to Iraq, avoiding places known as U.S. citizen gathering points, keeping a low profile and, once again, being aware of your surroundings.For those of use who have been visiting Iraq since 2006, this seems at once familiar and strange. Is the threat greater now than it was when the U.S. embassy was housed in Saddam’s former palace, and frequently underwent mortar fire? In those days none of the 5,000 embassy personnel were ordered home. Despite President Trump saying he does not want war, does this action signal that something more than just mortar fire is about to come? A former senior diplomat who served in Iraq following the 2003 invasion warned that if the U.S. or Israel had decided to launch air strikes on Iran, emptying the embassy might be a smart move.  Iran could strike back at a close and convenient target—the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad—and its ballistic missiles would be much more dangerous and difficult to withstand than mortars or Katyushas.According to a senior official in the Iraqi Counter Terrorism Services (CTS) the rocket Sunday night was launched by the Iranian-backed Kataib Hezbollah. If it came on Iranian orders, the lone, ineffectual projectile may have been intended as a pin-prick provocation testing reactions without triggering full-fledged war. Other recent incidents—a drone attack on a Saudi pipeline; minor explosions on Saudi and other oil tankers—could fall into the same category.Iraq, liberated from the tyranny of Saddam Hussein by the U.S.-led invasion of 2003, has come under increasing Iranian influence ever since, and the Iran-backed militias played a key role fighting the so-called Islamic State after the national army virtually imploded in 2014. They have since become a major element in the Iraqi defense apparatus, even though some 5,000 U.S. military personnel are on the ground training and working with other elements of the Iraqi military.The threat inside Iraq to U.S. personnel was revealed in part to Iraqi leaders during Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s surprise visit here on May 7. The secretary is reported to have told Iraqi officials that U.S. intelligence detected that Iranian-backed militias moving missiles near bases housing American forces. Reuters reported that, according to a senior Iraqi official privy to the substance of the talks, Pompeo asked the Iraqi government to rein in the Shiite militias. Pompeo also expressed U.S. concern about these militias’ increased presence and influence in Iraq and warned that the U.S. would use force to tackle the security threats if necessary, without first consulting Baghdad. Iraq's pro-Iranian military factions have long been a concern for U.S. personnel deployed in the region. Harakat Hezbollah al-Nujaba, a radical Shiite militia in Iraq has, for example, long been cooperating with the Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), a group that was just declared by the U.S. State Department as a terrorist organization. The newly appointed IRGC leader, Hossein Salami, replied that his people are proud to be called terrorists by President Trump while also threatening the U.S. and Israel.The Iraqi militia, Nujaba, also was added by the U.S. State Department to the U.S. list of global terrorist organizations on March 7 this year and its leader Akram Kaabi was sanctioned. Iran’s Qasem Soleimani is the Mastermind Preparing Proxy Armies for War With AmericaNujaba has been demanding that U.S. troops leave Iraq for quite some time. On May 12, Nujaba’s leaders proclaimed, "Confrontation with the United States will only stop once it is eliminated from the region, along with the Zionist entity,” while also stating that Iraqi resistance factions are ready to target U.S. interests in Iraq.The Iranian-backed Kataib Hezbollah militia, which our source says was behind the Sunday night rocket attack, warned in February 2018 that it might engage in armed confrontation with US forces in Iraq at any moment. According to one Iraqi source, the Kataib Hezbollah is one of the militias that recently placed missiles near U.S. military bases. The New York Times reported the the U.S. government was picking up an increase in conversations between the Revolutionary Guards and foreign militias discussing attacks on American troops and diplomats in Iraq.The New York Times also reported that American officials cited intelligence from aerial photographs of fully assembled missiles on small boats in the Persian Gulf as cause for the U.S. administration to escalate its warnings about a threat from Iran. This created concerns that the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps would fire them at United States naval ships or American commercial ships.An Iraqi source confirmed on May 18 that ExxonMobil was evacuating its personnel of 30 to 50 employees from Basra, Iraq, and that the Bahrain embassy had also evacuated its employees from both Iraq and Iran. And U.S. embassies disseminated a warning from the Federal Aviation Agency that U.S. commercial airliners flying over the waters of the Persian Gulf risk being misidentified and by implication shot down amid rising tensions between the U.S. and Iran.A potential conflict much larger than Iranian-backed Shia militias throwing mortar fire at the now fortress-like U.S. Embassy appears to be brewing amid credible intelligence coupled with heated anti-American rhetoric. Yet, security threats to U.S. personnel serving in Iraq are nothing out of the ordinary and date back to the 2003 U.S. invasion. At the height of its activities, the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad had thousands of personnel, including contractors. They regularly suffered all sorts of threats from IED attacks when they ventured out on the road, RPG fire when they used helicopters, snipers when they were out in public view and intermittent but regular mortar fire that rained down on the temporary trailers that served as housing near the old Saddam palace where they worked. One mortar penetrated a window to the bathroom of the Deputy U.S. Ambassador’s office, situated inside the palace, destroying the brick wall around the window. It was later bricked up completely. The walkway from the trailers to the palace was mortared so often and so hard that it was nicknamed “death alley” by embassy personnel serving there.While embassy personnel received danger and hardship pay, none were ordered home during those years, and danger was considered a part of the assignment. IED’s and mortars occasionally killed embassy personnel, but that did not stop the mission. At present, the U.S. Embassy Baghdad is housed in a complex on a closed street that only badged officials can enter. The grounds are heavily walled walled and difficult to enter and inside, the buildings appear strongly built to withstand assault. In Erbil, in Iraqi Kurdistan, which also fell under the non-essential personnel evacuation order, a restaurant nearby was attacked by a car bomb in 2015, killing three non-Americans. But, while less robustly built, the consulate also is behind a concrete walled-off security space.U.S. Embassy diplomatic personnel posted in both Baghdad and Erbil infrequently leave their fortresses and when they do travel around Iraq, their security requirements require using armored cars, wearing bullet proof vests and flack helmets and traveling with armed security guards, sometimes with chase and lead cars in a convoy.Likewise, U.S. Embassy Baghdad and the consulate in Erbil are not family postings—diplomatic personnel serve for one or two years, leaving their family members behind. The new embassy building, not far from the old one, was planned during the time of frequent attacks and was undoubtedly built to withstand mortar storms. Long and short-range ballistic missiles however constitute a whole different threat and it’s not publicly known if the new embassy has bomb-hardened resistant bunkers to protect embassy personnel.Whether U.S. embassy non-essential personnel will return to post anytime soon remains to be seen, and given the dangers such personnel have faced in the past and the fortress in which they currently serve, why they were really ordered home is also still an unanswered question. With ships coming to the region and troops readying for potential travel, serious troubles may well be on the horizon.While the saber rattling on both sides continues, Baghdad has also made clear that it doesn’t want to become the battlefield.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.

  • Chips are down: Huawei U.S. blacklisting knocks semiconductor stocks
    Business
    Reuters

    Chips are down: Huawei U.S. blacklisting knocks semiconductor stocks

    U.S. and European chipmakers fell sharply on Monday amid worries the Huawei Technologies suppliers may suspend shipments to the Chinese firm due to a U.S. crackdown. The selling came after Nikkei Asian Review reported that Infineon had halted shipments to Huawei after Washington added the world's No. 2 smartphone maker to a trade blacklist last week, imposing restrictions that will make it difficult to do business with U.S. companies. Reuters reported that Alphabet Inc's Google had suspended some business with Huawei and Lumentum Holdings Inc, seen as a major supplier of Apple Inc's face ID technology, said it had discontinued all shipments to Huawei.

  • 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".

  • Sig Sauer vs. Glock vs. Every Other Gun: Who Really Makes the Best Guns?
    News
    The National Interest

    Sig Sauer vs. Glock vs. Every Other Gun: Who Really Makes the Best Guns?

    The company’s Model 1 handgun was purchased privately by soldiers on both sides of the U.S. Civil War, while the heavier Schofield revolver was carried by postwar U.S. cavalrymen. America’s prolific firearms industry means that choosing the top five manufacturers is no easy task. While boutique handgun builders may produce some very fine pieces, quantity has a quality all its own, and several companies ship hundreds of thousands of handguns a year. Like the auto industry, some of the best handguns come from foreign manufacturers. Here are the five best handgun manufacturers.(This article first appeared in 2017 and is being republished due to reader interest).GlockGaston Glock’s initial attempt to build a handgun for the Austrian military has exploded into an international empire, all the more amazing considering that it was built solely on handguns. From the original Glock 17, the company now offers twenty-six handguns on the U.S. market in calibers from .380 Auto to .45 G.A.P. The company’s simple emphasis on lightweight, slim-profile, “pointable” pistols was a recipe for success, impressing first-time shooters with their ease of use and longtime shooters with their reliability and accuracy. For all of the variety, Glock’s handguns are strikingly similar to one another, demonstrating that Glock won’t fix what isn’t broken.

  • Australian PM heads to church, football after 'miracle' election win
    World
    Reuters

    Australian PM heads to church, football after 'miracle' election win

    Morrison's Liberal-led conservative coalition has won or is leading in 76 seats, the number needed to form a majority government, according to the Australian Electoral Commission. A jubilant Morrison hugged community members after an early Sunday service at the Horizon Church in Sydney's southern suburbs, from where he was first elected to parliament in 2007. The result drew comparisons with Republican Donald Trump's victory over Democratic rival Hillary Clinton in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.

  • Marlen Ochoa-Lopez: Police not alerted to early clues in case of murdered teenager who ‘had baby cut from womb’
    News
    The Independent

    Marlen Ochoa-Lopez: Police not alerted to early clues in case of murdered teenager who ‘had baby cut from womb’

    Police and Illinois' child welfare agency have said staff at a Chicago-area hospital did not alert them after determining that a bloodied woman who arrived with a gravely-ill newborn had not just given birth to the baby boy, as she claimed.The woman, Clarisa Figueroa, was charged more than three weeks later with killing the baby's mother, Marlen Ochoa-Lopez, after police found her body outside Ms Figueoa's home.Chicago police said she cut Ochoa-Lopez's baby out of her womb on 23 April, then called 911 to report she had given birth to a baby who was not breathing.Paramedics took Ms Figueroa and the baby to Advocate Christ Medical Centre in suburban Oak Lawn.Ochoa-Lopez's family spent those weeks searching for her and holding press conferences pleading for help finding her, unaware that the child was in a neonatal intensive care unit on life support.The baby remained hospitalised on life support on Saturday, according to authorities.Prosecutors said when Ms Figueroa was brought with the baby to the hospital, she had blood on her upper body and her face, which a hospital employee cleaned off. They also said Ms Figueroa was examined at the hospital and showed no physical signs of childbirth.Advocate Christ Medical Centre has declined to say whether or when it contacted authorities, citing state and federal regulations.Oak Lawn police said they were not contacted about Ms Figueroa by the medical centre or any other agency.Illinois Department of Children and Family Services spokesperson Jassen Strokosch said on Saturday the agency was alerted 9 May that there were questions about who had custody of the child in order to make medical decisions. He said he could not speculate about why the agency was not contacted sooner."We don't know what was happening at the hospital," he said.Mr Strokosch said the Department of Children and Family Services was alerted by someone required by law to contact the department about suspected abuse or neglect, but he could not say who contacted the agency.However, that was after Chicago police had connected Ms Figueroa to Ochoa-Lopez's disappearance.Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson said police learned Ochoa-Lopez was missing when her husband reported it on 24 April.On 7 May, Chicago police learned from one of Ochoa-Lopez's friends that she had been communicating via a private Facebook group with Ms Figueroa about buying clothing. Police then went to Ms Figueroa's home, where her 24-year-old daughter eventually told them her mother had recently had a baby."There was nothing to point us in that direction in the beginning," Mr Johnson told reporters on Thursday, after police had arrested Ms Figueroa and her daughter on murder charges.Police spokesperson Anthony Guglielmi said on Saturday that authorities had to subpoena medical records from the hospital for Ms Figueroa and the child.He said police did not learn Ms Figueroa showed no signs of childbirth until "a couple weeks" after she was examined.Both Mr Johnson and Mr Guglielmi referred questions about hospital protocol and policies to the medical centre. A spokesperson said in an emailed statement: "We have been cooperating with authorities and as this is an ongoing police matter, we're referring all inquiries to local law enforcement."DNA testing determined Ms Figueroa was not the baby's mother and that Ochoa-Lopez's husband was his father.Mr Strokosch said his department let protective custody of the child lapse on 13 May because his father had been identified.Associated Press