In his questioning of David Hale, undersecretary of state for political affairs, Ratcliffe reprised a now familiar defense of the president, that putting a hold on military aid to Ukraine was done out of concern about corruption in the country. The reasons for the hold in summer 2019, during Ukraine's ongoing war with Russia, were not communicated either publicly or within the diplomatic and national security bureaucracy. Citing other recent instances in which congressionally approved U.S. foreign aid had been withheld without explanation, Ratcliffe asked Hale, “So, having no explanation for why aid is being withheld is not uncommon?
Bolivian President Evo Morales, who had led the country for 14 years, resigned last week amid heated protests and pressure to leave from the country's military. Morales was a transformational figure in the often tumultuous history of the poor South American nation. The son of llama herders, he first rose to prominence as an advocate for coca leaf farmers before being elected as president in 2006 on a far-left socialist platform of redistributing wealth, fighting poverty and empowering the country's indigenous population.
An American woman could be forced to register as a sex offender after appearing topless in front of her step-children in her own home. Tilli Buchanan, from Utah, was charged with three counts of misdemeanour lewdness involving a child after appearing topless along with the children's father in their home last year. Ms Buchanan's lawyers are contesting the charge, arguing it is unfair to treat men and women differently for baring her chest.
During his testimony Wednesday before the House Intelligence Committee, Gordon Sondland was pressed on why so many members of the Trump administration, including the president himself, were refusing to testify in the impeachment inquiry. I wish I could answer,” responded Sondland, the U.S. ambassador to the European Union. His remark came at the end of an exchange with Rep. Denny Heck, D-Wash.
Billionaire Michael Bloomberg filed paperwork on Thursday with the Federal Election Commission to run for U.S. president as a Democrat, the latest sign that the former New York City Mayor is joining the crowded nominating contest. The filing allows Bloomberg to raise money in a bid for the White House, but an aide said on Thursday that no final decision on whether he will run has been made. Bloomberg, 77, has signaled that he plans a late-entry in the Democratic primary, suggesting he feels the field of nearly 20 candidates is vulnerable.
Two airmen were killed Thursday in an accident involving two jets during the landing phase of a training exercise at a U.S. Air Force base in northwestern Oklahoma, a military official said. The crash occurred shortly after 9 a.m. at Vance Air Force Base in Enid, about 65 miles (105 kilometers) northwest of Oklahoma City. Two airmen aboard one of the T-38 Talons were killed, Col. Corey Simmons, commander of the 71st Flying Training Wing, said during a news conference Thursday afternoon.
American Airlines admitted Tuesday the powerful fumes that knocked two flight attendants unconscious and forced a flight to make an emergency landing were not caused by spilled soap, as the airline had previously claimed.
A Colorado school district dealing with an "unprecedented spread of illness" has closed the doors to every one of its more than 40 schools. Mesa County Valley School District 51, the 14th-largest school district in Colorado, according to the district's website, announced on Wednesday that all of its schools will be closed until after Thanksgiving break is over on Dec. 2. "We have never before had to close all schools in the district due to illness," superintendent Diana Sirko said in a statement on the district's website.
California's Supreme Court on Wednesday dismissed a Catholic women's organization's challenge to state health regulators' designation of voluntary abortions as “medically necessary” procedures that must be covered by state health care service plans. The California Department of Managed Health Care in 2014 sent letters to seven health care service plans directing them not to limit or exclude coverage for abortions, including those abortions that are not required to save the life of the mother. Since then, the Missionary Guadalupanas of the Holy Spirit have sought legal remedies to the rule, arguing that California flouted the Administrative Procedures Act by neglecting to give the rule a public hearing and comment period.
At the Democratic debate in Atlanta on Wednesday, Rep. Tulsi Gabbard of Hawaii and Sen. Kamala Harris of California clashed over their differing visions for the party, particularly when it comes to foreign policy. Gabbard had criticized Hillary Clinton as the “personification of the left that has sickened the Democratic Party” after the 2016 Democratic presidential nominee suggested in an interview last month that she believed Republicans were “grooming” Gabbard to be a spoiler as a third-party candidate. Clinton, who did not mention Gabbard by name, further suggested that the Hawaii Democrat is “the favorite of the Russians.
Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.) traveled to Europe with three aides from Nov. 30 to Dec. 3, 2018, on a $63,000 taxpayer-funded investigative trip, and Lev Parnas, an associate of Rudy Giuliani arrested last month on federal campaign finance and conspiracy charges, helped arrange meetings and calls for his trip, The Daily Beast reports, citing Parnas lawyer Ed MacMahaon and congressional records. Nunes aide Derek Harvey was involved in the Parnas meeting, and he accompanied Nunes to Europe along with fellow aides Scott Glabe and George Pappas.
Nearly three-fourths of transgender and gender non-conforming Americans slain in the last three years were killed with a firearm, according to data published this month by the gun violence prevention advocacy group Everytown for Gun Safety. The data sheds grim new light on the role of guns in what's been called an epidemic of violence against transgender Americans, as advocates honor the victims with nationwide vigils Wednesday during the Transgender Day of Remembrance. The data is available for the first time publicly via EveryStat for Gun Safety, the group's database detailing gun deaths in America.
Ambassador Gordon Sondland's explosive testimony Wednesday that “everyone was in the loop” on President Trump's efforts to secure an investigation of a political rival prompted rank-and-file Democrats to discuss whether it was time to expand their probe. Sondland testified in minute detail — down to the names of staffers and code words used internally to identify officials like Secretary of State Mike Pompeo — how Vice President Mike Pence, White House budget director Mick Mulvaney, former national security advisor John Bolton and others knew the intimate details of Trump's plans. “Was there a quid pro quo?” Sondland, the U.S. ambassador to the European Union, testified.
Three Ukrainian navy boats seized by Russia a year ago were vandalised before being handed back to Ukraine, the country's navy said. The fast gunboats Nikopol and Berdyansk and the tugboat Tany Kapu were welcomed by Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelenskiy and onlookers waving national flags arrived in Ochakiv, a Ukrainian naval port on the Black Sea on Wednesday evening. But Ukraine's navy said the vessels had been stripped bare and left so badly damaged that they had to be towed home by tug.
Designed by world-renowned architects such as Zaha Hadid and Santiago Calatrava, these bridges are travel destinations in their own right Originally Appeared on Architectural Digest
The son of former German president Richard von Weizsaecker was stabbed to death while he was giving a lecture at a hospital in Berlin where he worked as a head physician, police said Wednesday. A 57-year-old German man is in custody after he jumped up from the audience at the Schlosspark-Klinik and attacked Fritz von Weizsaecker with a knife on Tuesday evening. Von Weizsaecker died at the scene from a knife wound to the neck despite immediate attention from colleagues, said Martin Steltner, a spokesman for Berlin prosecutors.
A police officer shot and wounded a man before dawn Thursday at McCarran International Airport, according to authorities. Police received a report of a person who had gone through a security door at Terminal 3, but they did not find anyone there, according to police Capt. Nichole Splinter. Police tried to escort the man to a public area, according to authorities, but the man became "extremely irate" and attacked them.
Flickr/Oliver Holzbauer American Airlines admitted Tuesday that whatever knocked out two flight attendants and forced an emergency landing in October was not spilled soap, as the airline had previously claimed. On October 21, American Airlines flight 729 was flying from London Heathrow to Philadelphia, but was forced to land in Dublin, Ireland, when two staff members passed out. American Airlines said at the time that the incident was caused by "an odor caused by a spilled cleaning solution in the galley."
A Philippine Airlines flight bound for Manila suffered an apparent engine failure on Thursday shortly after takeoff from Los Angeles and made an emergency landing, authorities said. All 347 passengers and 18 crew aboard Flight 113, a Boeing Co 777 widebody, are safe, an airline spokeswoman said. Pilots of flight 113 declared an emergency and reported a possible engine failure, Los Angeles International Airport said.
A few days ago, Biden set himself apart from the rest of the top 2020 Democrats by calling marijuana a "gateway drug" and saying "legalization is a mistake." Booker brought that comment up in Wednesday's Democratic primary debate, saying while he has "a lot of respect" for Biden, when he heard that remark, he "thought you might have been high when you said it." After his well-timed zing, Booker explained why he had a problem with Biden's remark.
Former U.S. President Barack Obama warned that technology is creating a more splintered world, fueling the disparities among wealthy and poorer nations, and people within countries. The rise of extreme inequality both within nations and between nations that is being turbocharged by globalization and technology” is one of the biggest risks for young people, Obama said Thursday at Salesforce.com Inc. s annual Dreamforce conference in San Francisco.
Donald Trump has erupted over the ongoing impeachment inquiry in a series of false and misleading tweets in which he accused investigators of being “human scum”. “Corrupt politician Adam Schiff's lies are growing by the day,” the US president tweeted on Thursday morning. In fact there is no evidence Mr Schiff, the House intelligence committee chairman, has lied and the impeachment inquiry his committee is conducting does not deny the US president any rights granted to him by the Constitution.
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. The Pentagon maintains an extensive surveillance system in the Persian Gulf region that includes satellites, drones and ground- and sea-based sensors. Iran's shoot-down of a U.S. Navy Global Hawk drone in June 2019 put a dent in this system.
The 81-year-old mayor of a St. Louis suburb was charged Thursday with submitting fraudulent absentee voter applications in what prosecutors say was an effort to illegally influence the city's municipal elections. Berkeley Mayor Theodore Hoskins is charged with four counts of committing an election offense and one forgery count. The charges were filed by Jackson County prosecutor Jean Peters Baker, who was assigned to the case as special prosecutor at the request of St. Louis County Prosecuting Attorney Wesley Bell to avoid the appearance of conflict of interest.