Meteorologist Mike Haddad has a look at the weather ahead.
Meteorologist Mike Haddad has a look at the weather ahead.
It's different from four years ago, when the president was "helped by the fact that Hillary had 20 years of built-in negatives," one Republican said.
Iran has executed a former employee of the defense ministry who was convicted of spying on behalf of the Central Intelligence Agency, the country's judiciary said Tuesday. The report said Reza Asgari was executed last week. Judiciary spokesman Gholamhossein Esmaili said Asgari had worked in the airspace department of the ministry and retired in 2016.
Leaders in the black community are calling on the New York Police Department to bring back the plainclothes Anti-Crime Unit that was eliminated last month as shootings and murders spike across the city.About 600 undercover officers from the unit were set to be transferred to other assignments including detective work and policing neighborhoods, NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shea said a month ago. The anti-crime unit, which was responsible for getting guns off the streets, had been criticized as stoking distrust in law enforcement in minority communities.Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams, one of the African-American voices calling for action on gun violence, criticized the police force's decision to completely disband the unit. He deplored the recent deadly shooting of a one-year-old, one of the victims of New York City's recent spike in gun violence.“I think that a total elimination is something we need to reevaluate,” Adams said, CBS New York reported. “Right now, bad guys are saying if you don’t see a blue and white you can do whatever you want.”Tony Herbert, an activist in New York's black community, agreed and lamented the rise in violence, criticizing New York officials for their failure to address the situation.“The guns keep going off and now we have a 1-year-old and the blood is on the hands of the mayor and the state Legislature,” Herbert said.The decision to disband the anti-crime unit was also panned by Police Benevolent Association President Pat Lynch, who warned that consequences would follow if city leaders refused to deal with increased gun violence."Anti-Crime's mission was to protect New Yorkers by proactively preventing crime, especially gun violence," Lynch said in a statement. "Shooting and murders are both climbing steadily upward, but our city leaders have decided that proactive policing isn't a priority anymore. They chose this strategy. They will have to reckon with the consequences."The city’s murder rate for the month ending June 7 has more than doubled from the same period last year, and shooting victims have increased by 45 percent. Meanwhile, arrests for illegal gun possession have dropped dramatically, with only 29 people arrested during the week that ended July 5, down from 70 during the same week last year, according to NYPD data.In recent weeks, the NYPD has experienced a surge of over 400 percent in retirement applications from officers amid tensions with city officials and after the city’s police budget was slashed by $1 billion.
The federal prosecutor whom Attorney General Bill Barr ousted in June told House investigators that he was alarmed at the way Barr attempted to replace him, saying that “the “irregular and unexplained actions by the Attorney General raised serious concerns for me,” according to a transcript of the closed-door interview released by the House Judiciary Committee on Monday. Geoffrey Berman, formerly the U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York, was brought in for a closed-door session of the Judiciary Committee on July 9 to talk about the events surrounding Barr’s public announcement on June 19 that Berman had “stepped down” from his post, even though the U.S. attorney made clear to Barr multiple times that he was not stepping down. The late-night announcement by Barr immediately sparked confusion and raised questions about his involvement in a crucial prosecutor’s office. The next day, Berman said he would leave the job when Barr agreed to let his deputy take over as acting U.S. attorney, as opposed to Craig Carpenito, the U.S. attorney for the district of New Jersey, whom Barr wanted to install in the position until the Trump administration’s pick, Securities and Exchange Commission chief Jay Clayton, was confirmed by the U.S. Senate.Berman, who at SDNY handled sensitive investigations into Trumpworld figures such as Rudy Giuliani, did not comment specifically to the Judiciary Committee on what he believed Barr’s motivations to be, and he studiously avoided any questions about how specific SDNY probes might have factored into the situation. But Berman made clear that the attorney general’s preferred plan would have slowed and complicated the work of the office, and he raised several questions challenging Barr’s handling of the process. Trump Thought He’d Picked His Perfect U.S. Attorney in Geoffrey Berman. He Was Very Wrong.“Why did the attorney general say that I was stepping down when he knew I had neither resigned nor been fired?” Berman asked rhetorically, in response to questions from Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler (D-NY). “Why did the attorney general not tell me the actual reason he was asking me to resign instead of saying that it was to get Clayton into the position? And why did he announce the appointment of Craig Carpenito as acting U.S. attorney when Audrey Strauss was the logical and normal successor?”“Replacing me with someone from outside the district would have resulted in the disruption and delay of the important investigations that were being conducted,” Berman said later. “I was not going to permit that. And I would rather be fired than have that done.” At numerous points, Berman expressed his dismay at Barr’s wish to install Carpenito—who would have retained his previous job in New Jersey—in the job instead of Berman’s top deputy, Strauss, a move he said violated 70 years of precedent at SDNY.According to his opening statement that was obtained by The Daily Beast last Thursday, Berman said that during a private meeting in New York that Barr called to open the discussion, the attorney general praised his performance as U.S. attorney but said the Trump administration wanted Clayton to take the SDNY post. Berman said Barr tried to lure him away by dangling other offers—to head the Department of Justice’s civil rights division and, later, the SEC—but Berman declined. Barr told him that if he did not resign, he would be fired. “I believe the attorney general was trying to entice me to resign so that an outsider could be put into the acting U.S. attorney position at the Southern District of New York, which would have resulted in the delay and disruption of ongoing investigations,” Berman told the Judiciary Committee.At one point in the interview, GOP committee attorney Steve Castor asked if Barr had laid out to Berman a set of actions that would have allowed him to keep his job—if there was any “quid pro quo for you getting to keep your job.”Berman said no, and he confirmed that Barr did not mention any specific SDNY investigations—Castor raised Jeffrey Epstein and Guiliani-related probes—in pressuring him to leave. But Berman did say Barr’s offering of other positions could have been construed as a quid pro quo.“You know, he wanted me to resign to take a position. I assume you could call that a quid pro quo. You resign and you get this, that would mean quid pro quo,” said Berman. Asked to clarify those comments later, he said it wasn’t his term but reiterated that “it could be seen as a quid pro quo, his offering me a job in exchange for my resignation.” Berman is a rare U.S. attorney in that he was not confirmed by the Senate but was appointed by the judges of SDNY to hold the position in April 2018. Berman insisted that, as he was a court-appointed prosecutor, neither Barr nor President Trump had the authority to fire him before the Senate confirmed a successor, but some past legal precedent has indicated the president can fire a court-appointed U.S. attorney. Trump has said he had nothing to do with Berman’s ouster. 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.
A photo claiming to be of Rep. Ilhan Omar was taken in 1978, four years before she was born. Social media posts claiming this are false.
ICE rescinded its position that international students who were taking courses entirely online couldn't stay in the US after colleges and states sued.
Confronting a drastic rise in coronavirus cases across the United States, the nation’s top public health officials urged all Americans to wear masks in order to prevent the spread of the disease.
Virginia police are investigating white supremacist flyers that are appearing in local resident mailboxes across the state.
Donald Trump Jr. claimed Weiss' resignation exposed the "rampant attacks on anyone who breaks from the far-left narrative."
Maxwell, who faces up to 35 years in federal prison, was denied bail and will remain in custody Ghislaine Maxwell appeared in Manhattan federal court via video feed on Tuesday, to plead not guilty regarding her alleged involvement in Jeffrey Epstein’s sex trafficking of minor girls.She was denied bail and will remain in custody, following lengthy arguments in which prosecutors painted her as a flight risk. The court also heard testimony from accusers. One, in an anonymous statement read to the court, described “the sociopathic manner in which [Maxwell] nurtured our [relationships]” and said that “she would have done anything to get what she wanted, to satisfy Mr Epstein”.Long out of the public eye, Maxwell, 58, appeared unsettled, a far cry from the glamorous, jet-setting image she once cultivated. She removed her glasses and mostly looked at the screen. At times, she shook her head.Maxwell was arrested on 2 July at a Bradford, New Hampshire, estate. She is charged in a 17-page indictment with conspiracy to entice minors to travel to engage in illegal sex acts, enticement of a minor to travel to engage in illegal sex acts, conspiracy to transport minors with intent to engage in criminal sexual activity, transportation of a minor with intent to engage in criminal sexual activity, and perjury.If convicted, Maxwell faces up to 35 years in federal prison.“Ms Maxwell,” Judge Alison Nathan asked, “have you had an opportunity to discuss the indictment in this case with your attorney?”Maxwell said she had and waived a public reading of the indictment. Asked how she pleaded, she said: “Not guilty, your honor.”Born in Maisons-Laffitte, Île-de-France, in 1961, Ghislaine Maxwell is the youngest of the nine children of Betty and Robert Maxwell, the media tycoon owner of the Mirror GroupGhislaine was rumoured to be his favourite child, and the former Labour MP named his £15m ($18.6m) yacht Lady Ghislaine after her. He put his daughter in charge of his football club he owned, Oxford United, and when he acquired the New York Daily News, he reportedly sent Ghislaine to warm up Manhattan society for his arrival.Following her father’s death in 1991 – after apparently falling overboard from Lady Ghislaine near the Canary Islands – Ghislaine Maxwell flew to New York onboard a Concorde. She left behind a huge uproar over $460m found to be missing from her father’s companies’ pensions funds.Her family’s wealth, status and influence considerably depleted, Maxwell found something of a replacement in her relationship with Jeffrey Epstein. Their relationship was initially romantic, but it evolved into something more akin to that of a close friend, confidante and personal assistant. Epstein was later convicted of sex offences, and subsequently died in prison in 2019.In 2015, Virginia Giuffre, one of Epstein’s accusers, sued Maxwell, alleging Epstein's confidante defamed her by claiming she was a liar in her accusations against the pair. Giuffre has accused Maxwell of recruiting her to work as Epstein’s masseuse at the age 15, when she was a locker-room attendant at Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago club in south Florida. Documents released as part of the lawsuit contain lurid claims about the alleged sex trafficking.In July 2020, after having been in hiding, Maxwell was arrested by the FBI on charges related to Jeffrey Epstein. She has pleaded not guilty, was refused bail, and will remain in custody.She is charged in a 17-page indictment with conspiracy to entice minors to travel to engage in illegal sex acts, enticement of a minor to travel to engage in illegal sex acts, conspiracy to transport minors with intent to engage in criminal sexual activity, transportation of a minor with intent to engage in criminal sexual activity, and perjury. If convicted, Maxwell faces up to 35 years in federal prison.The court video feed featured four panels, one showing Maxwell, one her defense team, one the judge and one prosecutors. Audio cut out continually and the judge told Maxwell to inform her if the audio feed didn’t work.“Thank you, your honor, I will do that,” Maxwell said.Prosecutors read a statement from one of Maxwell’s accusers, identified as Jane Doe. Maxwell, the statement said, “enjoyed drawing her victims in with perceived caring”. The same accuser also described Maxwell’s “sociopathic manner”.Another accuser, Annie Farmer, spoke to the court by phone. Maxwell “tormented her survivors”, she said.Maxwell has repeatedly denied wrongdoing. Her lawyers have said she “vigorously denies the charges” and is “entitled to the presumption of innocence”.But in court papers, prosecutors insisted she posed an “extreme risk of flight” owing to her vast wealth and background. Maxwell is a citizen of France, the UK and the US, possessing passports for all three countries. France, prosecutors noted, “does not extradite its citizens to the United States pursuant to French law”.Maxwell, they further claimed, “appears to be skilled at living in hiding”. When FBI agents arrived at the “remote” 156-acre property, she “tried to flee” and agents discovered a “cellphone wrapped in tin foil” which they maintain was “a seemingly misguided effort to evade detection … by law enforcement”.Prosecutors also said they learned Maxwell “had hired a security company staffed with former members of the British military to guard [her] at the New Hampshire property, in rotations”.“There are no conditions of bail that would assure the defendant’s presence in court proceedings in this case,” they wrote. “Accordingly, any application for bail should be denied.”In court, pointing to such “serious red flags”, the US attorney Alison Moe claimed Maxwell was not being forthright about her finances, having claimed a “monthly income of nothing, zero dollars per month of income”.“It is simply implausible,” Moe said, “especially given the lifestyle she’s been living. It just doesn’t make sense.”Maxwell also told pre-trial services she “does not know the name of the corporation” that purchased the New Hampshire property, “but … was just permitted to stay in the house”.A real estate agent involved in the property’s sale in November 2019, meanwhile, told an FBI agent two people seeking to buy it, who apparently introduced themselves as Scott and Janet Marshall, “both had British accents”. The man said he was “retired from the British military and currently working on a book”. The woman said she was a journalist.The court audio was unclear, and the authorities later clarified that the pseudonym was Jen Marshall. The woman who introduced herself as Jen Marshall was in fact Ghislaine Maxwell, Moe said.Born in Brooklyn in 1953, Jeffrey Epstein was a convicted sex offender and financier who died in jail in August 2019 while awaiting trial for the sex trafficking of minors in Florida and New York. He had previously served 13 months in jail after being convicted in 2008 of procuring an underage girl for prostitution and of soliciting a prostitute. A medical examiner declared Epstein's death a suicide.His death came after unsealed documents in New York revealed the extent of his abuse of young women at his home in Palm Beach, New York and the Virgin Islands. An earlier attempt to prosecute him on similar charges had collapsed when authorities granted him an unusually generous deal to plead guilty to state prostitution charges in Florida. Epstein made his name at the investment bank Bear Stearns before opening his own firm in 1982, managing money for clients with wealth in excess of $1bn. The business came with an intensive social schedule. Epstein positioned himself as a party figure in Manhattan and Palm Beach, Florida, and courted the rich, famous and powerful across America and the world. Epstein’s circle of friends and acquaintances has included Donald Trump; Bill Clinton; Prince Andrew; Leslie Wexner, founder of the company that owns the Victoria’s Secret lingerie brand; and many other prominent names in law, entertainment and politics.In July 2020, his long-term confidante and personal assistant Ghislaine Maxwell was arrested by the FBI on charges related to Epstein's sex crimes.Maxwell’s lawyers had contended that Covid-19 presented a danger to Maxwell and limits her legal defense. They insisted that she was not a flight risk, and said she had remained out of public view to avoid the media following Epstein’s arrest last July. Epstein killed himself in federal jail last August.In court, one of Maxwell’s lawyers, Marc Cohen, repeated his argument that she should be released – claiming prosecutors had overplayed the circumstances surrounding Maxwell’s arrest.When the FBI came to Maxwell’s home, he said, she was wearing pyjamas. There was one security guard at the house.“The front door was unlocked,” Cohen said. “The windows were open.”They were asking the judge to release Maxwell on a $5m personal recognizance bond co-signed by six financially responsible individuals, backed by property in the UK worth more than $3.75m.Maxwell’s legal team also proposed limiting her travel to the New York City region, turning in all her passports and requiring home confinement in New York City with GPS monitoring.It was revealed in court that Maxwell had asked to be on house arrest in a “luxury hotel” in Manhattan.Denying bail, the judge ruled Maxwell “a risk of flight” and said “no combination of conditions could reasonably assure” her return to court.Maxwell’s trial was scheduled for 12 July 2021. It is expected to take about two weeks.
CNN anchor Brianna Keilar on Wednesday clashed with a Republican state lawmaker who is suing over mask mandates, eventually pointing out that he is not a “public health expert” while noting he’s already had one case tossed out.With coronavirus cases and hospitalizations spiking in Florida as the nation deals with a prolonged surge, Florida State Rep. Anthony Sabatini has attempted to challenge county ordinances in the state requiring face masks in businesses, claiming the mandates are constitutional violations.Appearing on CNN Newsroom, Sabatini immediately justified his lawsuits, claiming the ordinances are “unconstitutional” and that mask mandates violate the privacy of citizens. Keilar, meanwhile, wondered aloud if the GOP lawmaker believed that seat belts are therefore also unconstitutional.After he claimed the major difference is that seatbelt laws are only focused on “very highly regulated areas of public domain,” Sabatini went on to dispute that Florida was actually struggling with the virus, insisting that reporters have been too focused on rising cases.“The media’s almost exclusively focused on one number versus the two most important numbers, obviously: hospitalizations and fatalities,” he declared. “Where in most parts of the state, flat lines are going down, especially in mine. So if you focus on the two more relative metrics, Florida’s doing just fine.”Keilar, meanwhile, was struck by Sabatini’s assertion that Florida was doing fine, prompting the state representative to say that as long as she was just “counting cases” then she would “scare people.”“OK, deaths: 4,521,” she quickly retorted. “Hospitalizations increasing 19,344. 54 hospital ICUs have reached capacity in Florida. Another 40 hospitals show ICUs at 10 percent or less availability. And you say you're doing just fine?!”He continued to argue that Florida was dealing with a dire situation as the virus rapidly spreads, claiming the deaths weren’t that bad when weighed against the number of overall cases while insisting that the state’s economy should be “100 percent open.”The CNN anchor wondered why Sabatini was pushing against mask mandates if he wanted everything open, noting that mask-wearing in public spaces would help to stem the spread of the virus and allow many businesses to remain open.Sabatini said that he only opposed mandates and felt local and state governments should merely recommend voluntary mask-wearing. At the same time, he admitted that he doesn’t wear a face covering whenever he goes to the grocery store, claiming it’s unnecessary because he always “maintains social distance.”Towards the end of the lengthy and at-times contentious conversation, Keilar confronted Sabatini for claiming the media is “grossly exaggerating” the effectiveness of face coverings.“The media is repeating what public health experts are saying,” she shot back. “Just to be clear, you are not a doctor and you’re not a public-health expert. Right?”After the GOP legislator attempted to dismiss health experts’ recommendations on masks, Keilar interjected: “You’re not. I’ll just answer it for you.”Wrapping up the segment, and after Sabatini said citizens should merely take the CDC’s recommendations “with interest,” Keilar reminded her audience of Sabatini’s credentials.“OK, just to point out, we’re monitoring one loss at this point of a county that disagrees,” she plainly stated. “And you’re not a doctor. You’re not a scientist.”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.
The United States downgraded the safety rating of Pakistan's aviation system and will block Pakistan's airlines from launching service to the U.S. The move announced Wednesday follows revelations that nearly one-third of Pakistan’s pilots cheated on exams but still received licenses from the country's civil-aviation authority. The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration said that it put Pakistan in a so-called category 2 rating, which means airlines from Pakistan can't start new flights to the U.S. Also, U.S. airlines can't sell seats on Pakistani flights, a practice called code-sharing that is common among other international airlines.
It doesn't take a storm to inundate the coast with potentially ruinous floodwaters. "Nuisance" or "sunny day" high-tide flooding is becoming more commonplace.
Philippine police are being deployed to ensure people who test positive for the coronavirus and cannot self-isolate at home are taken to state-run quarantine centres, sparking warnings Wednesday of potential rights violations. The move comes as authorities step up efforts to slow the rapid spread of the disease by increasing testing, reimposing lockdowns, and building dozens of quarantine centres to isolate patients with mild symptoms. To clamp down on local transmission, police are accompanying health workers to the homes of people who have tested positive and taking them to government facilities if their homes are considered inadequate for self-isolation or if they live with "vulnerable" people, officials said.
Eight Marine Raiders recognized for their actions during the April 10, 2019, mission in southern Afghanistan.
At a moment in American cultural history when even a hint of opposition to the Black Lives Matter movement can result in jobs being lost and people hounded out of the public square, the muted reaction to open expressions of anti-Semitism is striking.When Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver DeSean Jackson posted fake Adolf Hitler quotes about Jewish perfidy and praised Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan last week, he was criticized and eventually apologized. But the outrage was nothing compared with that encountered by Drew Brees, the star quarterback of the New Orleans Saints, when he spoke last month of his opposition to fellow National Football League players kneeling during the national anthem. While many NFL players condemned Brees for preaching respect for the flag, few of Jackson’s fellow players responded to his calumnies, and, among those who did, expressions of support outnumbered criticisms.A week later, another Farrakhan-related flap has hit the news, and the public reaction has been strikingly similar. Over the weekend, it was revealed that television personality Nick Cannon, the host of Fox’s The Masked Singer, had spread anti-Semitic conspiracy theories and praised the Nation of Islam leader on his YouTube channel. Like Jackson, Cannon was caught repeating a popular NOI claim that African Americans are the “true Hebrews” and the real “Jewish people.” He also ranted about the power supposedly held by “the Illuminati, the Zionists, the Rothschilds.” Yet Fox was silent in the face of the news about his anti-Semitic diatribes, and there’s been no indication that it’s reconsidering its relationship with him.The proper response to such controversies is not necessarily to demand that the offending party be “canceled,” of course. But it is notable that documented anti-Semitism doesn’t result in the sort of widespread news coverage and instant cancellation that racism toward African Americans does. And it is telling that Farrakhan still seems to be able to fly below the radar of mainstream media that are otherwise quick to blame “influencers” for the actions of their adherents.It is unquestionable that Farrakhan has played a big part in legitimizing hateful attitudes toward Jews within the African-American community, as even the liberal writer and former ESPN personality Jemele Hill concedes:> In other posts around the same time, Jackson shared quotes from a speech made by the Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan during the Fourth of July weekend. The speech mostly centered on police brutality, the coronavirus, Black empowerment, and self-reliance. But with Farrakhan’s long, vile record of anti-Semitism, Jackson — who is far from alone among Black Americans in his support for Farrakhan — can’t be surprised that people now question his true feelings toward Jews.Yet Farrakhan continues to be treated as a respected figure in much of the black community. Indeed, few complained when he was given a place of honor at singer Aretha Franklin’s televised funeral in 2018. Former president Bill Clinton was not criticized in mainstream outlets for appearing with Farrakhan and publicly shaking his hand at the funeral.Farrakhan’s views are as hateful as those of, say, Klan leader David Duke, and he has many more followers and a much wider sphere of influence than Duke. Yet Duke is rightly ostracized across the political spectrum, while Farrakhan remains welcome on the left.Whether or not Jackson or Cannon are judged by a more generous standard than others who show prejudice is much less important than Farrakhan’s continued influence. So long as his anti-Semitism is dismissed rather than addressed head-on by African-American faith and political leaders as well as by their white friends and allies, we should not be surprised when statements such as Jackson’s or outbreaks of hateful violence against Jews occur. The willingness to downplay the anti-Semitism inspired by Farrakhan and his movement is a problem that must not be ignored.
After cancelling a campaign rally that was scheduled for New Hampshire on 11 July, Donald Trump made up for lost time by launching a nearly one-hour attack against Joe Biden from the White House Rose Garden as the president went down a literal list of grievances and the Democratic presidential candidate's platform pitches, which the president had grossly mischaracterised.Moments earlier, the administration rescinded controversial new measures that would have effectively banned any international students from living in the United States during the fall months amid the coronavirus pandemic, with the news being announced after a court hearing that lasted just minutes.