Protesters took to the streets of Barcelona for the fifth consecutive night on Saturday following the arrest of Catalan rapper Pablo Hasel. Hasel was arrested on Tuesday for insulting police and Spanish royalty in his song lyrics and tweets, igniting a debate over freedom of expression laws in Spain. He is facing a nine-month jail term for glorifying terrorism. Before being detained, he had barricaded himself inside the University of Lleida to try and avoid jail.
The "calculated smear campaign" by palace staff was likely timed to undermine the couple's interview with Oprah, Markle's spokesperson has said.
- Business Insider
Stranded SpaceX engineers, a foldable iPhone, and Amazon's executive shakeup: here are the 10 things in tech you need to know today.
- The Independent
Anchors on RSBN have been playing conspiracy whack-a-mole, swatting down paranoid comments to which they themselves seem sympathetic.
- The Independent
5,000 National Guard troops remain in DC amid QAnon frenzy that Trump will be inaugurated again this week
QAnon followers believe that on 4 March, which was once the inauguration date of US presidents, Donald Trump will become president again
- The Independent
The trial is one of the biggest civil rights cases in a generation
- LA Times
Op-Ed: It's official. Mohammed bin Salman is responsible for Jamal Khashoggi's murder. Hold him accountable
President Biden's failure to punish the Saudi crown prince defies justice and weakens the rule of law everywhere.
- Associated Press
Veteran linebacker Kyle Van Noy is moving on after one season with the Miami Dolphins, and he's not happy about it. The Dolphins told Van Noy he will be released, two people familiar with the discussion confirmed to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity Tuesday because the Dolphins had not commented. In a statement, Van Noy said he was disappointed and surprised.
- Reuters Videos
WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said the rise in cases was "disappointing but not surprising" and urged countries not to relax measures to fight the disease.It was too early for countries to rely solely on vaccination programs and abandon other measures, he said.Adding, "If countries rely solely on vaccines, they are making a mistake. Basic public health measures remain the foundation of the response."
- The Independent
President’s warm tone towards Mexico has translated to substantial policy changes
The leader of Taiwan's main opposition party the Kuomintang (KMT) said on Tuesday he is in no rush to travel to China to meet President Xi Jinping, and that Beijing's proposals to get Taiwan to accept Communist rule had "no market" on the island. The KMT ruled China before retreating to Taiwan at the end of a civil war with the Communists in 1949. While ties across the Taiwan Strait have improved dramatically in the last three decades, Beijing continues to claim Taiwan as its own territory.
- Associated Press
The Biden administration sanctioned seven mid-level and senior Russian officials on Tuesday, along with more than a dozen government entities, over a nearly fatal nerve-agent attack on opposition leader Alexei Navalny and his subsequent jailing. The measures, emphasizing the use of the Russian nerve agent as a banned chemical weapon, marked the Biden administration's first sanctions against associates of President Vladimir Putin. The Russian leader was a favorite of former President Donald Trump even during covert Russian hacking and social media campaigns aimed at destabilizing the U.S.
- The Independent
Medical examiner is ‘awaiting toxicology results’ before releasing a report on the death
- USA TODAY
$1,400 stimulus checks in COVID relief bill would phase out at $80,000 instead of $100,000, according to deal between Biden and Democrats
The House's version of the bill phased checks out at $100,000 of income.
- Business Insider
The Trumps are trying to sell a Florida home for $49 million after buying it from the former president's sister for $18 million in 2018
Eric Trump tweeted a listing for the home, which the family is trying to sell through a limited liability company for more than twice its 2018 value.
- Associated Press
Capitol Police say they have uncovered intelligence of a “possible plot” by a militia group to breach the U.S. Capitol on Thursday, nearly two months after a mob of supporters of then-President Donald Trump stormed the iconic building to try to stop Congress from certifying now-President Joe Biden's victory. The threat appears to be connected to a far-right conspiracy theory, mainly promoted by supporters of QAnon, that Trump will rise again to power on March 4. The announcement comes as the Capitol police and other law enforcement agencies are taking heat from Congress in contentious hearings this week on their handling of the Jan. 6 riot.
- Business Insider
Several cruise trips have already been cancelled this year. See when major cruise lines plan on operating again.
Most cruises in the US won't be sailing until May at the soonest and cruise lines are consistently pushing back sail dates.
In some of his most extensive remarks since Jan. 6, former Vice President Mike Pence wrote an op-ed Wednesday condemning House Democrats' sweeping election and anti-corruption proposal as an "unconstitutional power grab" by "leftists."Why it matters: Pence has largely stayed quiet since the Capitol insurrection, during which rioters were heard chanting "hang Mike Pence" after former President Trump promoted the claim that the vice president could block the certification of the Electoral College.Get market news worthy of your time with Axios Markets. Subscribe for free.The big picture: Writing in The Daily Signal, Pence repeated dubious claims that the 2020 election was "marked by significant voting irregularities."Be smart: While some irregularities occur in every election, state and federal officials have vouched for the election's security and integrity.Lawsuits challenging election results have been rejected by courts across the country, including the Supreme Court.What they're saying: "Polling shows that large numbers of Democrats did not trust the outcome of the 2016 election and that large numbers of Republicans still do not trust the outcome of the 2020 election," Pence wrote.Pence called the Democrats' reform bill, which the House will pass on Wednesday, "an unconstitutional, reckless, and anti-democratic bill that ... could permanently damage our republic." "Leftists not only want you powerless at the ballot box," wrote the former vice president, "they want to silence and censor anyone who would dare to criticize their unconstitutional power grab."Details: The Democrats' "For the People Act" first introduced in 2019, has provisions to restore voting rights for felons, expand early and absentee voting, set national standards for early voting and voter registration, allow voters to register online or on Election Day and prevent voter purges.Pence argued that the bill would undercut efforts to reform elections at the state and local levels. He wrote that the bill "mandates the most questionable and abuse-prone election rules nationwide, while banning commonsense measures to detect, deter, and prosecute election fraud."The bottom line: Pence called the events of Jan. 6 "tragic" and said they "deprived the American people of a substantive discussion in Congress about election integrity in America." He did not once mention the name "Trump."Go deeper: Democrats' sweeping reform bill Like this article? Get more from Axios and subscribe to Axios Markets for free.
- The Daily Beast
Michael Reaves/GettyAttorneys for Rep. Bennie Thompson (D-MS) and the NAACP have served former President Donald Trump at his Mar-a-Lago club with a lawsuit filed against him in February. Thompson and the NAACP filed suit against Trump alleging that his incendiary rhetoric and false claims of a “stolen” election amounted to a conspiracy to interfere with civil rights by inciting the Jan. 6 riot at the Capitol.The suit names Trump alongside his attorney Rudy Giuliani and the right wing extremist groups, the Proud Boys and the Oath Keepers, as co-defendants and builds off the 1871 “Ku Klux Klan Act,” which was “intended to protect against conspiracies, through violence and intimidation, that sought to prevent Members of Congress from discharging their official duties,” according to a complaint.If Jan. 6 Was ‘Domestic Terror,’ Who Was the Terrorist in Chief?“The Defendants conspired to prevent, by force, intimidation and threats, the Plaintiff, as a Member of Congress, from discharging his official duties to approve the count of votes cast by members of the Electoral College following the presidential election,” the lawsuit alleges.It accuses the defendants of acting “in concert to incite and then carry out a riot at the Capitol” that “created grave danger of harm” to Thompson and other lawmakers. Trump advisers did not immediately provide comment on who, if anyone, at this point is representing the former president for this lawsuit. When Trump was served, it was merely signed for by a “Ricky,” according to the court document.Several Trump attorneys who The Daily Beast asked about this said they had no involvement. As of Tuesday, Alan Dershowitz, a member of the Trump legal defense for the ex-president’s first Senate impeachment trial, said “nobody [on the Trump team] has reached out to me yet” regarding this suit, but added that he personally believes Trump’s rhetoric on Jan. 6 is “protected by the First Amendment” and that “I would hope that the ACLU would take on a case like this.”The suit adds to a growing list of legal troubles now facing former President Trump, his family, and his associates, since leaving office.After a victory at the Supreme Court in February, Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance obtained copies of Trump’s tax returns. The paperwork is reportedly part of a city fraud investigation looking into whether the former president lied about the value of his assets in order to gain financial advantages.It’s unclear who will represent Trump, the Proud Boys, and the Oath Keepers in the latest suit but court records show that Austin, Texas-based attorney Joseph D. Sibley IV accepted service of the suit on behalf of Giuliani. Sibley, a graduate of Harvard Law school, is a former U.S. Army Ranger.“I am representing Mayor Giuliani in the Thompson lawsuit, and I will also be representing him in the Smartmatic and Dominion cases,” Sibley told The Daily Beast on Wednesday afternoon.Orange Is the New Orange: Trump Just Might Go to JailSibley handles breach of contract, intellectual property, and other commercial law cases but has also represented clients in defamation cases and provided expert commentary for The Washington Post on defamation suits.He represented far-right blogger Charles Johnson in a 2020 libel lawsuit that was originally filed against Verizon, The Huffington Post, and reporter Andy Campbell for a 2019 article which labeled Johnson a “Holocaust-Denying White Nationalist”—a description Johnson strongly denies. Johnson dismissed the suits against Campbell and Verizon but has appealed a federal judge’s dismissal of his suit against The Huffington Post.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.
- Business Insider
Which activities are safe once you're fully vaccinated? Experts say movies, travel, and family gatherings are on the table
Public-health experts say it's probably safe for vaccinated people to meet for dinner or gather together indoors.
- The Guardian
Kills quickly exceeded statewide limit, forcing the state to end the hunting season early Gray wolves in the North American wilderness. Photograph: GatorDawg/Getty Images/iStockphoto Hunters and trappers in Wisconsin killed 216 gray wolves last week during the state’s 2021 wolf hunting season – more than 82% above the authorities’ stated quota, sparking uproar among animal-lovers and conservationists, according to reports. The kills all took place in less than 60 hours, quickly exceeding Wisconsin’s statewide stated limit of 119 animals. As a result, Wisconsin’s department of natural resources ended the season, which was scheduled to span one week, four days early. While department officials were reportedly surprised by the number of gray wolves killed, they described the population as “robust, resilient” and expressed confidence in managing the numbers “properly going forward”. Most of the animals were killed by hunters who used “trailing hounds”, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported. The state’s overkill was exacerbated by Wisconsin law that mandates 24-hour notice of season closure, rather than immediate notification. Natural resources department officials also sold 1,547 permits this season, about 13 hunters or trappers per wolf under the quota’s target number. This equated to twice as many permits as normal – and marked the highest ratio of any season so far. State authorities had a total culling goal of 200 wolves, in an attempt to stabilize their population. As Native American tribes claimed a quota of 81 wolves, this left 119 for the state-licensed trappers and hunters. Because the tribes consider wolves sacred, they typically use their allotment to protect, not kill, them. “Should we, would we, could we have [closed the season] sooner? Yes.” Eric Lobner, DNR wildlife director, said, according to the Journal Sentinel. “Did we go over? We did. Was that something we wanted to have happen? Absolutely not.” The overshoot, which has never exceeded 10 wolves in prior seasons, spurred criticism. Megan Nicholson, who directs Wisconsin’s chapter of the Humane Society of the United States, commented in a statement: “This is a deeply sad and shameful week for Wisconsin.” She added: “This week’s hunt proves that now, more than ever, gray wolves need federal protections restored to protect them from short-sighted and lethal state management,” Nicholson also said. This hunt comes in the wake of federal policy, and local litigation, that stripped gray wolves of protection. In the 1950s gray wolves, which are native to Wisconsin, were extirpated from the state due to years of unregulated hunting. Heightened protections, such as the federal 1973 Endangered Species Act, helped the population rebound. Following the implementation of these protections, gray wolves emerged and spread from a northern Minnesota “stronghold”, the Journal Sentinel said. The implications of these protections were sweeping: while the gray wolf population had dropped to about 1,000 by the 1970s, the number now totals about 6,000 in the lower 48 states. The gray wolf was delisted for protection in 2012, however. Wisconsin officials subsequently provided three hunting and trapping seasons. In 2012, 117 wolves were killed; in 2013, 257; and in 2014, 154. A federal judge, in response to a lawsuit from wildlife advocates, decided in December 2014 that the gray wolf must be put back on the Endangered Species List. In October 2020, the Trump administration removed the gray wolf from the Endangered Species List. A Kansas-based hunting advocacy group filed suit against Wisconsin’s department of natural resources in January over its decision not to provide a gray wolf hunting or trapping season this winter. This legal action reportedly “forced” the department to hold a season before February ended. The season was also the first to take place in February, the gray wolf’s breeding season. Advocates have worried that killing pregnant wolves could have an even greater impact on their population, possibly disrupting packs. Because officials rushed to open the season, there was dramatically limited opportunity for legally mandated consultation with Native American tribes, the newspaper also notes. “This season trampled over the tribes’ treaty rights, the Wisconsin public and professional wildlife stewardship,” a representative for the Great Lakes Indian Fish and Wildlife Commission reportedly said.