The vice president criticized Chief Justice John Roberts after he sided against conservatives on several key cases, particularly one pertaining to abortion.Says SCOTUS' future depends on election »
Less than 24 hours after President Trump said some “great generals” told him they thought that Tuesday's massive explosion in Beirut was an “attack” involving “a bomb of some kind,” Defense Secretary Mark Esper seemed less than convinced by that explanation. Speaking to an online audience Wednesday as part of the Aspen Security Forum, Esper said he was “still getting information” on the blast in the Lebanese capital, but that “most believe that it was an accident, as reported.” Asked to explain the discrepancy between Trump's comments and Esper's explanation, and to identify which generals the president might have been referring to as the source of his information, a Pentagon spokesman replied via email: “We have nothing to offer at this time beyond the Secretary's comments.”
Lebanon's Supreme Defense Council said on Tuesday that 2,750 tons of ammonium nitrate from an abandoned ship had been left in storage at Beirut's port, state media reported. Lebanese officials believe it was behind the explosion at Beirut's port on Tuesday, according to state media. A Beirut law firm said in a legal summary in 2015 that the ship, the MV Rhosus, had technical difficulties while sailing in September 2013, was forced into Beirut's port, and was banned from continuing.
Federal prosecutors have charged 11 alleged members and associates of the MS-13 street gang with sex trafficking and other charges after they say a 13-year-old runaway was repeatedly beaten with a baseball bat and forced into prostitution in northern Virginia. A child trafficking task force found the 13-year-old girl nearly two months later at an apartment in Mount Rainier, Maryland. The girl, initially reluctant to talk to police, eventually told authorities she was twice beaten on her backside and legs 26 times on two separate occasions with a baseball bat – once as an initiation to the gang, and once as a punishment for talking to rival gang members and allegedly stealing from fellow gang members.
At a time when Americans are reassessing so many painful aspects of our nation's past, it is an opportune moment to have an honest national conversation about our use of nuclear weapons on Japanese cities in August 1945. The accepted wisdom in the United States for the last 75 years has been that dropping the bombs on Hiroshima on Aug. 6, 1945, and on Nagasaki three days later was the only way to end the World War II without an invasion that would have cost hundreds of thousands of American and perhaps millions of Japanese lives. The allied demand for unconditional surrender led the Japanese to fear that the emperor, who many considered a deity, would be tried as a war criminal and executed.
Chuck Lovell, the police chief of Portland, Oregon, called for violent protesters to stop their actions at a Wednesday press conference. While protests in downtown Portland have been peaceful since the presence of federal agents was scaled back last week, there have been violent offshoot protests in other parts of the city. Wednesday marked the 70th consecutive day of demonstrations in the city, which started after George Floyd's death in late May.
More than 100 people in a Mississippi school district have been instructed to self-isolate, due to an outbreak of coronavirus less than two weeks after they reopened. At least 116 people in Corinth, a city in Mississippi, have been told to quarantine for two weeks, after six students and one staff member tested positive for Covid-19 over the past week. Taylor Coombs, spokeswoman for the Corinth School District, told NBC News that any person who was considered to have been in close contact with the people who tested positive for Covid-19, have been instructed to self-isolate.
The U.S. secretary of Health and Human Services is scheduled to visit Taiwan in coming days in the highest-level visit by an American Cabinet official since the break in formal diplomatic relations between Washington and Taipei in 1979. The visit by Alex Azar, and especially a planned meeting with Taiwan's president, will likely create new friction between the U.S. and China, which claims Taiwan as its own territory to be annexed by force if necessary. Taiwan is a key irritant in the troubled relationship between the world's two largest economies, which are also at odds over trade, technology, territorial claims in the South China Sea and China's response to the coronavirus pandemic.
A second-grade student in Georgia tested positive for the coronavirus after attending the first day of school, leading the district to ask 20 other students and a teacher to self-quarantine for two weeks. The child, a student at Sixes Elementary School in Canton, about 44 miles north of Atlanta, did not begin to show symptoms until after school on Monday, the first day students returned. In a letter to parents, the school's principal, Ashley Kennerly, said the class will be taught remotely while the group is under quarantine.
Thousands of Michigan voters might be disenfranchised and the country could wait days for the November presidential election results unless the battleground state updates laws to handle a flood of absentee ballots, its top elections official warned on Thursday. Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson told reporters that more than 10,000 absentee ballots had been rejected - many because they arrived late - in the state's Tuesday primary, seen as a test of voting infrastructure amid the coronavirus pandemic. Benson called on Michigan legislators to update laws to allow election staff to begin processing mail-in ballots a day before the election, and to permit any postmarked on-time but arriving after the election to be counted.
Joe Biden, the presumptive Democratic nominee for president, bristled Wednesday at a reporter's question about taking a cognitive test, comparing it to asking his interviewer whether he was “taking cocaine” or “a junkie.” President Donald Trump has attacked Biden for his mental capabilities while boasting about his own performance during a cognitive exam. The clash prompted a question to Biden about whether he'd had a cognitive test during an interview with Errol Barnett, a CBS reporter, for the National Association of Black Journalists and National Association of Hispanic Journalists.
Mergan Ghappar, a 31-year-old Uighur man from Xinjiang, China, had been working as a model in Foshan, southern China. More than a month later, he contacted his family to say he was in an internment camp for Uighurs in Xinjiang, and described the brutal conditions there, the BBC reported. Ghappar had smuggled a cell phone into the camp, and was able to record footage of himself and the camp's conditions, which have since been passed to the BBC and The Globe and Mail.
Narendra Modi, the Indian Prime Minister, has invigorated his Hindu support base after laying the foundation stone of a controversial new temple on a site contested by Muslims. In November, after a decades-old legal battle, India's highest court ruled a temple could be built in the city of Ayodhya, where a mosque had stood until it was destroyed by Hindu mobs in 1992. Mr Modi made its construction a key pledge as part of his Hindu nationalist campaign, which saw him re-elected with a landslide victory last year.
COLOGNE, Germany – German Defense Minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer is pushing for a new yardstick to measure Berlin's contributions to NATO, suggesting the country could shoulder 10 percent of alliance requirements. The figure is meant to reflect the share of NATO's total “planning targets,” which are tabulated periodically, a defense ministry spokesman told Defense News. Such math would be able to more accurately capture Germany's efforts across the categories “cash, capabilities and commitments” than the current defense-spending objective of 2 percent of GDP, according to the spokesman.
Hackensack Police arrested 25-year-old Terri Thomas in connection to an attack on a 54-year-old woman inside a Staples store in New Jersey.
Alex Milan Tracy/SIPA USA/Reuters Caesar McCool, "the no drama llama" is keeping the peace at the Portland protests. The well-known llama tends to diffuse situations, and people enjoy being in his company, his owner told Insider. Once a champion, the animal now works as a therapy llama and "llamactivist."
Clashes outside a U.S. courthouse in Portland, Oregon, have largely stopped since Democratic Gov. Kate Brown reached a deal that called for the draw down of federal agents sent by the Trump administration to protect the building — but the turmoil is far from over. For the past several nights, Portland police have skirmished with protesters in other parts of city, far from the Mark O. Hatfield Federal Courthouse, as residents rally around a call to defund the police force. Demonstrators are also mad at the use of tear gas by police multiple times over the summer to tamp down unrest.
The county partnered with United Way of Miami-Dade, which will distribute $20 million dollars in federal funds from the CARES Act through the program. The main two criteria are that applicants are Miami-Dade County residents and that they have been impacted by COVID in some way,” Vanessa Benavides told the Herald. Benavides is associate vice president of United Way and is leading the program.
Two dozen people in Hong Kong, including pro-democracy activist Joshua Wong, have been charged with participating in an illegal assembly at a vigil on June 4 commemorating the crackdown on protesters in and around Beijing's Tiananmen square in 1989. It was the first time the vigil had been banned in semiautonomous Hong Kong, with police citing coronavirus restrictions on group gatherings in refusing permission for it to take place. The anniversary struck an especially sensitive nerve in the former British colony this year, falling just as China prepared to introduce national security legislation later that month in response to last year's often violent pro-democracy demonstrations.
One of the first cruise ships to resume overnight sailing in U.S. waters since the coronavirus shut down the cruise industry this year has reported one case of COVID-19 on board. Passengers are quarantining on UnCruise Adventures' Wilderness Adventurer "until the State of Alaska deems it safe for them to return home" after one passenger tested positive, according to a travel alert posted on the cruise line's website. The ship, now off the coast of Alaska en route to Juneau, according to CruiseMapper, was able to bypass the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's no-sail order because its capacity is less than 250 passengers and crew.
The fall semester is quickly approaching for numerous US school districts, but lawmakers, school board members, and parents are still debating how and whether schools should reopen during the coronavirus pandemic. Matt Lambert, an emergency medicine physician and former chief medical information officer for New York City Health and Hospitals, told Business Insider that schools could reopen with strict health safety precautions but that the prevalence of the virus could challenge their ability to stay open. Lambert said it could be difficult identifying and separating coronavirus cases and flu cases because of the similarity between symptoms and increased exposure to others.
A Florida teenager who is accused of participating in last month's Twitter bitcoin scam, which saw several of the world's highest-profile accounts hacked, has reportedly been linked to an attempted robbery that ended in a lethal shooting. An investigation by the Tampa Bay Times has found that 17-year-old Graham Ivan Clark, who is credited by police as one of the “masterminds” of the scam, has also been named in the case of a burglary seven months ago that saw one teenager killed and another wounded. According to local police, it began when two teenagers from Tampa's Gaither High School broke into an apartment, one holding a gun; a resident shot them both, and one of them died.
The professor famous for accurately predicting the winner of every presidential election since 1984 has issued his verdict for 2020: Joe Biden will defeat President Trump. American University Professor Allan Lichtman uses a system he created of 13 "keys" that decide who will win the White House. In 2016, Lichtman was one of the few forecasters who said Mr. Trump would be the next president — and he also predicted that Trump would be impeached.
The United States retired both the warheads and the systems that carried them, including the nuclear Tomahawk Land Attack Cruise Missile. The TLAM-N was deployed from 1983 to 1991 on surface ships and submarines before being retired in 2010. Unfortunately, Russia and China did not follow our example regarding this class of weapons, and are instead expanding their arsenals despite repeated U.S. overtures for negotiations.
For one week, I recreated seven of Guy Fieri's signature recipes and favorite go-to meals to see if they lived up to their hype. Food Network personality and restaurateur Guy Fieri has established himself as the "Mayor of Flavortown" with his unique brand of down-to-earth humor and non-pretentious, yet elevated, American cuisine. Fieri's eccentric style has become iconic, and his twists on classic recipes like mac and cheese and chili are well-known among fans.
When Boris Prokoshev, a former sea captain spending his retirement years in a Russian village, woke up and found an email saying a ship he once commanded had carried the ammonium nitrate that blew up swathes of Beirut, he was astonished. “I didn't understand anything,” he told The Associated Press on Thursday from Verkhnee Buu, 1300 kilometers (800 miles) south of Moscow. The email was from a journalist, he said, and titled with the name of the MV Rhosus, which he had captained on a voyage that he was never paid for.
“He’s not a radical. But he is running on the most liberal policy platform of any Democratic candidate in modern history.”
“Public opinion has been shifting leftward, and Biden’s thinking has shifted with it.”
“Biden shows that he’s more moderate than some in his party.”
“Biden has always been a creature of his time, and the COVID-19 crisis could force him to veer further left.”
“Liberal activists have lauded the campaign’s outreach to progressives.”