Army engineers say two runaway barges did "minimal" damage when they struck an Arkansas River dam. The barges, filled with 1,500 tons of fertilizer, swept down the flood-swollen river and hit the Webbers Falls Lock and Dam about noon Thursday and sank. Town officials in the riverfront town of Webbers Falls had warned residents to flee for fear such a collision would catastrophically breach the dam and flood the town.
For the purposes of Lockheed's marketing campaign, the F-21 is a new fighter, although it shares many of its major features with the F-16V the company has sold to Bahrain, Greece, Slovakia, South Korea and Taiwan. Lockheed can build new F-16Vs or upgrade older F-16s to the V-standard.Lockheed Martin is developing a new variant of its iconic F-16 single-engine fighter in order to compete in India’s 2019 tender for 110 new warplanes.(This first appeared earlier in the month.)But don’t count on the American firm’s “F-21” to win the contract.According to journalist Angad Singh, the likely winner is French company Dassault’s Rafale twin-engine fighter.Singh explains his rationale in the May 2019 issue of Combat Aircraft magazine. India previously ordered 36 Rafales as part of an earlier fighter tender. “With 36 aircraft already on order and the infrastructure in place for an additional 36, a case could certainly be made that training, basing and sustainment costs for additional aircraft would not be an impossible burden.”Other candidates for the Indian tender are the Saab Gripen from Sweden, the European Eurofighter Typhoon, the MiG-35 from Russia and the Boeing Super Hornet from the United States. Whichever fighter New Delhi selects, it needs the new jets now, according to Singh.
The Pentagon expected on Thursday to present the White House with plans to send up to 10,000 extra troops to the Middle East to bolster forces against potential threats from Iran, officials said.The morning meeting between defence chiefs and Trump administration officials comes as tensions continue to simmer with Tehran.Any move to deploy more forces would signal a shift for Donald Trump, who has repeatedly emphasised the need to reduce the US presence in the region. It’s unclear whether the White House might approve all or some of the requested forces.Officials, speaking on condition of anonymity, told the Associated Press the possible surge is not in response to any new threat from Iran.They said troops would be defensive forces and discussions include additional Patriot missile systems, more ships and increased efforts to monitor Iranian activities.Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said that Mr Trump was currently evaluating the forces required in the region “every day”. He told Fox News: “We’re evaluating the risks, making sure that we have it right.”US officials have provided few details about possible Iranian threats but indicated missiles have been taken off the boats near Iran’s shore.Sending more troops could also raise questions on Capitol Hill. During closed briefings for the House and Senate on Tuesday, defence leaders told congressional officials the US doesn’t want to go to war with Iran and wants to de-escalate the situation.Mr Pompeo and the acting secretary of defence Patrick Shanahan have insisted the US was only seeking to deter, not provoke, Iran – despite Mr Trump’s posting a series of hostile tweets over the past week. On Sunday the president tweeted: “If Iran wants to fight, that will be the official end of Iran. Never threaten the United States again.”In early May, the US accelerated the deployment of an aircraft carrier strike group to the Middle East and sent four B-52 bomber aircraft to the region. The Pentagon also decided to move a Patriot air-defence missile battery to an undisclosed country in the area.The Trump administration has evacuated nonessential personnel from Iraq, amid unspecified threats the administration said are linked to Iranian-backed militias in the country. If Iran wants to fight, that will be the official end of Iran. Never threaten the United States again! — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 19, 2019On Sunday, a rocket was fired into Baghdad’s heavily fortified Green Zone, landing less than a mile from the sprawling US Embassy. There were no injuries and no group claimed responsibility, but the rocket was believed to have been fired from east Baghdad, home to Iran-backed Shiite militias.Some Democrats say Mr Trump is responsible for drawing Iran’s anger. Last year he abruptly pulled the US out of the Iran nuclear deal, negotiated during the Obama administration to prevent Iran from nuclear weapons production.The president also has re-imposed sanctions that have hurt Tehran’s economy, and designated Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps as a foreign terrorist organisation.The tensions with Iran comes as the US military revealed it sent two Navy ships through the Taiwan Strait on Wednesday, angering China at a time of fraught relations between the world’s two biggest economies.
JPMorgan Chase & Co has cut ties with Purdue Pharma LP over the OxyContin maker's alleged role in the U.S. opioid crisis, forcing it to find a new bank to manage cash and bill payments, people familiar with the matter said on Thursday. The move makes JPMorgan, the largest U.S. bank by assets, the most high-profile corporation known to have distanced itself from Purdue and its wealthy owners, the Sackler family, amid thousands of lawsuits alleging the company pushed addictive painkillers while downplaying their abuse and overdose risks. JPMorgan's decision also underscores a drive among U.S. banks to reassess their relationships with clients and industries in response to controversy and political debates over matters such as immigration detention and mass shootings.
In a stunning escalation of the Trump administration's war on the press, the Justice Department has indicted WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange for revealing government secrets under the Espionage Act. The charges invoke broad provisions of the Espionage Act that make it a crime to disclose or retain any defense information knowing it “could be used to injure” the U.S. The act has no exception for reporters or publishers, but prior administrations have balked at invoking the law against journalists for fear of colliding with the First Amendment.
The Fed’s 2018 report on the economic well-being of households, published Thursday, indicated “most measures” of well-being and financial resilience “were similar to, or slightly better than, those in 2017.” The slight improvement coincided with a decline in the average unemployment rate to 3.9% last year, from 4.3% in 2017. The statistic, which was a bit better than in the 2017 report, has become a favorite rejoinder to U.S. President Donald Trump’s boasts about a strong economy among Democratic politicians, including 2020 presidential candidate Kamala Harris, the U.S. senator from California. “Relatively small, unexpected expenses, such as a car repair or replacing a broken appliance, can be a hardship for many families without adequate savings,” the report said.
If you've got Touch Bars on the brain but you've been unwilling to cough up the extra cash to get one, today is your lucky day. Amazon is running a one-day Gold Box deal on renewed MacBook Pro with Touch Bar models, and the prices are crazy. This product has been tested and certified to work and look like new, with minimal to no signs of wear, by a manufacturer or specialized third-party seller approved by Amazon.
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Pakistani rival Imran Khan sent messages highlighting the need for "peace" Thursday after Modi's hawkish party won a new term in power. While the nuclear-armed rivals launched cross-border air strikes at each other barely three months ago, some analysts say the return of Modi's Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in a new landslide could help peace prospects. Khan congratulated Modi on the win by the BJP, which has long taken a strong anti-Pakistan stance.
The bodies of a man and a woman were discovered Friday in a submerged vehicle near the Mississippi River in Missouri, bringing the death toll to nine from storms that have ravaged the central U.S. this week and threaten major flooding through the holiday weekend. John Reinhardt, 20, and Caitlin Frangel, 19, both of Hazelwood, Missouri, were reported missing May 15. Missouri State Highway Patrol Trooper Dallas Thompson said an autopsy determined they both drowned.
Facebook has been accused of leaving 'broken children' as collateral damage in the wake of their commercial aims, the child sex abuse inquiry has heard. Barrister William Chapman, representing the victims of abuse at the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA), said social media companies were not preventing paedophiles reaching children as it was “contrary to their business model” and that their apps needed to be “fundamentally redesigned”. Police also warned that tech firms were going ahead with plans to encrypt more features "in the certain knowledge" it would lead to more children being abused.
Simulator training remains a "possible option" for Canadian Boeing 737 MAX pilots, but it's too early to say whether it would be mandatory, a Transport Canada official said on Thursday night, further distancing the regulator from previous remarks by the country's transport minister. "It would be premature not seeing what Boeing has fully proposed yet to determine if simulator training will in fact be included," said Nicholas Robinson, the regulator's director general, civil aviation, told reporters on a conference call following a meeting of global regulators in Texas. Canada's Transport Minister Marc Garneau called in April for pilots to received simulator training for Boeing's software fix.
At a rambling White House news conference, President Trump on Thursday sought to refute House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's description of his demeanor at a meeting on infrastructure that the president walked out of the day before. “She said I walked into the room right next door yesterday and walked in and started screaming and yelling,” Trump told reporters. Seeking backup from his staff, Trump asked White House counselor Kellyanne Conway for her description of his bearing during the meeting with Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer.
U.S. stocks markets are closed Monday in observance of Memorial Day. Foreign financial markets will be open. The New York Stock Exchange and the Nasdaq will resume normal trading hours on Tuesday.
China on Friday denounced U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo for fabricating rumours after he said the chief executive of China's Huawei Technologies Co Ltd was lying about his company's ties to the Beijing government. The United States placed Huawei on a trade blacklist last week, effectively banning U.S. firms from doing business with the world's largest telecom network gear maker and escalating a trade battle between the world's two biggest economies. "Recently, some U.S. politicians have continually fabricated rumours about Huawei but have never produced the clear evidence that countries have requested," Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang said, when asked about Pompeo's remarks.
Climate change has long been a disaster in the making, but until recently the American public tended to treat it as an afterthought. The Green New Deal brought climate change front and center, and made Americans think about big bold solutions instead of technical tweaks and half measures. The think tank Data for Progress has a plan that actually predates Ocasio-Cortez’s, but which goes into much greater detail about how to combat climate change both at home and abroad.
Acting DHS Secretary Kevin McAleenan discusses the ongoing immigration crisis at the border on 'The Ingraham Angle.
The head of the United Nations organisation for Palestinian refugees on Thursday rejected a US call to dismantle the agency, saying it cannot be blamed for stalled peace efforts. UNRWA's commissioner general Pierre Krahenbuhl rebuffed the criticism from US envoy Jason Greenblatt during a visit to the Gaza Strip. "I unreservedly reject the accompanying narrative that suggests that somehow UNRWA is to blame for the continuation of the refugee-hood of Palestine refugees, of their growing numbers and their growing needs," he said in response to a question about Greenblatt's comments.
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — The Latest on storm damage in the Southern Plains and Midwest (all times local):
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It’s been 73 days since Sarah Huckabee Sanders last held a “daily” White House press briefing. For the most part, she has chosen to bring the Trump administration’s message to Fox News and Fox News only. But on Thursday morning she stepped out of her comfort zone and was quickly reminded what it feels like to be questioned by a real reporter. Sanders’ interview with CNN’s Alisyn Camerota on New Day started out all smiles as the two women exchanged pleasantries. But as soon as the host began to dig in on President Trump’s ultimatum to Democrats in Congress that he will not work with them on infrastructure until they stop investigating him, things went south.Alisyn Camerota Loves Doing Journalism at CNN, After Doing the Opposite at Fox News“Congress say they can do two things at once, the Democrats is Congress say this isn't a problem,” Camerota said. “So is the president saying that he cannot do infrastructure while he's being investigated?” “I think it’s a complete lie that Democrats in Congress think they can do two things at once,” Sanders replied. “So far we haven't seen them do anything. Nancy Pelosi has had the majority in the House for months and is yet to accomplish a single thing. They literally haven’t gotten anything done since she took over.” When Camerota pointed out that since January, the House has passed 248 bills and the Senate has passed 161, Sanders laughed it off as insignificant. “I just want to say, it's the president who is saying that he can't do infrastructure while he's being investigated,” Camerota reiterated. “He is the one who walked out of the meeting. So just so that we're clear, he's saying that bridges are not going to be fixed until he's no longer investigated, is that what we hear from the White House?” Instead of answering that question, Sanders stammered a bit as she once again accused Democrats of being “incapable of doing anything other than investigating this president.”“They spend all of their time attacking him and the fact that they would have a meeting an hour before they are set to arrive at the White House where Nancy Pelosi literally accuses the president of a crime and then wants to walk into his office and sit down as if nothing happened, that's just—that's lunacy,” she continued. “That's not even in the realm of possibility. The president absolutely wants to get infrastructure done, he wants to secure our border, he wants to do things that help our veterans, he wants to improve our education system, he wants to do all of those things but Democrats have been unwilling to work with him.”Fox News' Chris Wallace Shuts Down Sarah Huckabee Sanders’ Claim About Terrorists Crossing BorderLater, after confirming that Trump’s “merit-based” immigration plan will not prioritize DREAMers, Sanders returned to her attacks on Pelosi for suggesting the president may have committed a crime. “That would be like John telling you that he thought you were stealing from the network and then sitting down in the chair next to you and saying, but no big deal, let's just move forward,” she said, referring to Camerota’s co-host John Berman. “John would never accuse me of something like that,” Camerota said with a smile. “I would hope not,” Sanders added. 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.
This month Alabama passed a law banning abortions at any time period with no exceptions for rape or incest, only when the mother's health is at risk. Two other states – Ohio and Mississippi – have passed similar legislation, which also do not include exceptions for rape or incest. Georgia passed a bill banning abortions after six weeks and includes the exceptions, but requires an official police report alleging the crimes (research shows 3 out of every 4 sexual assaults are not reported, and out of every 1,000 rapes only five perpetrators are convicted). INTERACTIVE MAP: Where is abortion legal? Debate over the exceptions has dominated headlines and ignited Twitter wars.
U.S. energy firms this week reduced the number of oil rigs operating for a third week in a row as weaker oil prices encourage drillers to follow through on plans to cut spending. Drillers cut five oil rigs in the week to May 24, bringing the total count down to 797, the lowest since March 2018, General Electric Co's Baker Hughes energy services firm said in its closely followed report on Friday. RIG-OL-USA-BHI That compares with 859 rigs operating during the same week a year ago.