At impeachment trial, Democrats address Biden corruption allegations as Graham promises more developments

At impeachment trial, Democrats address Biden corruption allegations as Graham promises more developmentsSen. Lindsey Graham made it clear that he plans to make Hunter Biden a much bigger part of the impeachment debate in the coming days.


White Nationalists Arrested ahead of Richmond Rally Planned to Kill Gun-Rights Demonstrators to Spark Civil War

White Nationalists Arrested ahead of Richmond Rally Planned to Kill Gun-Rights Demonstrators to Spark Civil WarThree alleged members of a white supremacist group were plotting to murder demonstrators at Monday's gun rights rally at the Virginia Capitol before they were arrested by the FBI last week, according to court documents.The men were caught discussing their plans on a hidden camera set up in their Delaware apartment by FBI agents.“We can’t let Virginia go to waste, we just can’t,” said Patrik J. Mathews, one member of the hate group "the Base" that promotes violence against African-Americans and Jews.According to authorities, the 27-year-old former Canadian Armed Forces reservist also discussed creating "instability" in Virginia by killing people, derailing trains, poisoning water, and shutting down highways in order to "kick off the economic collapse" and possibly start a "full blown civil war."Mathews also discussed the possibility of "executing" police officers and stealing their belongings and remarked that, “We could essentially be like literally hunting people.”“Virginia will be our day,” said 33-year-old Brian M. Lemley Jr., adding, “I need to claim my first victim.”“Lemley discussed using a thermal imaging scope affixed to his rifle to conduct ambush attacks,” the court filings read.The two were arrested along with a third man, 19, last Thursday. They are charged with federal firearms violations and “transporting and harboring an alien,” referring to Mathews, who is a Canadian national. Four more members of The Base have also been arrested and charged in Georgia and Wisconsin.In a search of the apartment, prosecutors said that FBI agents found propaganda fliers for The Base, communications devices, empty rifle cases, "go bags" with "numerous Meals-Ready-to-Eat," knives, and materials for building an assault rifle.Tens of thousands of gun rights advocates rallied in Richmond on Monday to protest the state’s Democratic legislature's gun-control agenda. Critics raised fears beforehand that militant white supremacists could disrupt the rally, but the day ended peacefully with no violence.


Wife: China's ex-Interpol boss jailed for reformist views

Wife: China's ex-Interpol boss jailed for reformist viewsIn her first comments about her imprisoned husband's sentence in China, the wife of former Interpol president Meng Hongwei dismissed his bribery conviction as “a lie, a fake case” and said he is being punished for using his senior position in the ruling Communist Party to push for reform from within. Grace Meng said during in an exclusive interview Wednesday with The Associated Press that her husband, a long-serving vice minister of public security, had been part of a reformist faction of China's secretive ruling party. In response to worsening corruption, Meng Hongwei and others argued, out of the public eye and at the highest circles of power for a “modern” constitutional and election-based political system, she said.


Michelle Carter, who encouraged boyfriend's suicide, released from jail early for good behavior

Michelle Carter, who encouraged boyfriend's suicide, released from jail early for good behaviorMichelle Carter, the Massachusetts woman who encouraged her boyfriend, Conrad Roy, to kill himself has been released from jail in Bristol County.


Virologist who helped identify SARS on coronavirus outbreak: 'This time I'm scared'

Virologist who helped identify SARS on coronavirus outbreak: 'This time I'm scared'Experts are seeing shocking similarities between the coronavirus that has now spread beyond China and the SARS outbreak of 2003.Like the infectious pneumonia that has killed at least 17 people, SARS was caused by a coronavirus that originated in China. But when one of the virologists who helped identify the SARS virus visited Wuhan, where this virus originated, he didn't see nearly enough being done to fight it. People were out at markets without masks, "preparing to ring in the New Year in peace and had no sense about the epidemic," Guan Yi of the University of Hong Kong's State Key Laboratory of Emerging Infectious Diseases told Caixin. Airports were hardly being disinfected, Guan continued, saying the local government hasn't "even been handing out quarantine guides to people who were leaving the city."The city did disinfect the market where the virus has been traced to, but Guan criticized Wuhan for that, saying it hurts researchers' abilities to track down the virus's source. "I've never felt scared," Guan told Caixin. "This time I'm scared."A case involving the coronavirus was identified in Washington state on Wednesday, and cases have also been identified in Thailand, Japan, South Korea, and Singapore. A total of 639 cases were confirmed in China.More stories from theweek.com Democrats walked right into Mitch McConnell's trap Texas legalized hemp, and Austin just responded to the resulting chaos by effectively decriminalizing weed The Oprah's Book Club controversy, explained


U.S.-Israeli woman jailed in Russia has not yet sought pardon: Kremlin

U.S.-Israeli woman jailed in Russia has not yet sought pardon: KremlinThe Kremlin said on Friday that the possible release of Naama Issachar, a U.S.-Israeli woman jailed in Russia on drug charges, was being held up because she had not yet formally asked to be granted a pardon. Israel has called on Russia to release Issachar, who was sentenced by a Russian court to seven-and-a-half years in jail for drug offences in October.


The American Airlines flight attendant union is calling on US airlines to step up precautions for the deadly Wuhan coronavirus

The American Airlines flight attendant union is calling on US airlines to step up precautions for the deadly Wuhan coronavirusThe Wuhan coronavirus outbreak has sickened more than 630 people and killed 18. It has spread to at least 8 countries.


Utah bans LGBTQ conversion therapy for minors

Utah bans LGBTQ conversion therapy for minors"It simply will save lives," said GOP State Representative Craig Hall, who originally sponsored the proposal.


Presidential candidate Tom Steyer: ‘I’m for reparations’

Presidential candidate Tom Steyer: ‘I’m for reparations’On Yahoo News’ “Hot Mic with Brittany Shepherd,” Democratic presidential candidate Tom Steyer spoke about race and reparations, saying that if he were elected to office, “I would start a commission on race on day one.”


Yahoo News/YouGov poll shows two-thirds of voters want the Senate to call new impeachment witnesses

Yahoo News/YouGov poll shows two-thirds of voters want the Senate to call new impeachment witnessesIn a new poll, 63 percent of registered voters agree that the Senate should call new witnesses to testify during President Trump’s impeachment trial.


Ex-Maryland police officer has been charged with raping and attempting to transmit HIV to a woman he pulled over

Ex-Maryland police officer has been charged with raping and attempting to transmit HIV to a woman he pulled overA Maryland Grand Jury has indicted former police officer Martique Vanderpool on charges that he raped and attempted to expose a woman with HIV.


Girl's family: 'Impossible' to lean from cruise ship window

Girl's family: 'Impossible' to lean from cruise ship windowThe parents of an Indiana girl who fell to her death from the open window of a cruise ship docked in Puerto Rico contend it was “physically impossible” for the child’s grandfather to lean out of that 11th floor window, as the cruise line has alleged, just before the toddler slipped from his hands. The parents of Chloe Wiegand also accuse Royal Caribbean Cruises of releasing deceptive surveillance images, and allege in their preliminary response filed Wednesday in U.S. District Court in Miami that the cruise line lied in its recent motion seeking the dismissal of the family’s lawsuit. In its Jan. 8 filing, Royal Caribbean alleged that surveillance video shows the child’s 51-year-old grandfather, Salvatore Anello, leaning out of the open window for about eight seconds just moments before he lifted his granddaughter up to the window, from which she fell to her death on July 8.


Smugglers tried to bring 3,700 invasive crabs through the Port of Cincinnati

Smugglers tried to bring 3,700 invasive crabs through the Port of CincinnatiMitten crabs are a delicacy in Asia and sell for about $50 each in the United States, officials say. They are considered an invasive species.


Schiff thanks senators at the start of impeachment argument after Nadler accused Republicans of 'voting for a cover up'

Schiff thanks senators at the start of impeachment argument after Nadler accused Republicans of 'voting for a cover up'Democrats officially kicked off their opening arguments in the impeachment trial of President Trump Wednesday with a bit of a shift in tone after one particularly contentious late-night exchange.Near the end of an impeachment trial session beginning Tuesday, House Judiciary Committee Chair Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.) on the Senate floor accused Republican senators of "voting for a cover up" as he argued in favor of an amendment to subpoena former National Security Adviser John Bolton, per The Wall Street Journal. Nadler also suggested Republicans were engaging in "treacherous" behavior, The Washington Post reports. Republicans throughout the day on Wednesday slammed Nadler for his statement; Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) told CNN it was "insulting and outrageous," while Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) said the comment "offended her" and Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) said in a press conference, "To my Democratic colleagues, you can say what you want about me but I am covering up nothing."Following this criticism, House Intelligence Committee Chair Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) began Democrats' opening arguments Wednesday with a less combative tone, thanking senators for having "paid attention to every word and argument you heard from both sides" the day before."I want to begin today by thanking you for the conduct of the proceedings yesterday and for inviting your patience as you go forward," Schiff added. "We have some very long days yet to come."CNN's Kaitlan Collins noted Schiff appeared to be addressing Republican criticism with his opening comments, although Republicans weren't the only ones not thrilled with the tone of Tuesday night's debate. Sen. Jon Tester (D-Mont.), for instance, conceded to The Washington Post that Nadler "could have chose better words."More stories from theweek.com Democrats walked right into Mitch McConnell's trap 5 brutally funny cartoons about Mitch McConnell's impeachment rules The Oprah's Book Club controversy, explained


China Praised By Germany For Transparency in Combating Virus

China Praised By Germany For Transparency in Combating Virus(Bloomberg) -- China is doing a better job and the world community is more prepared in dealing with the new coronavirus than they were during the 2002 to 2003 SARS episode, Germany’s health minister said in an interview.“There’s a big difference to SARS. We have a much more transparent China,” Jens Spahn told Bloomberg TV on Friday on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum in Davos. “The action of China is much more effective in the first days already.”The World Health Organization on Thursday stopped short of calling the new SARS-like virus from central China a global health emergency.Chinese official have imposed travel restrictions on millions of people as Singapore reported a case of the new virus.Read More:WHO Says Coronavirus Remains Local Chinese Emergency for NowSingapore Reports Virus Case as China Limits Some TravelWuhan Virus Lockdown Casts Cloud Over Industry & Tech HubMapping the Outbreak of China’s CoronavirusGlobal health authorities are also better prepared today, said Spahn.“We learned a lot because of SARS. The WTO has reformed, developed permanent institutions of exchange,” the 39-year-old former under-secretary of finance said. “We know what do. That’s an important signal for people back home too.”G20 health ministers have been rehearsing for emergencies since SARS and Ebola, he added.“Our national health systems in Europe and in the U.S., by the way in many western countries -- we are able to deal with this. As soon as somebody is found with this infection, he’ll be put in an isolated station,” said Spahn.The virus is believed to have emerged last month in a seafood and wildlife market in Wuhan, spreading from infected animals to humans.To contact the reporters on this story: Arne Delfs in Berlin at adelfs@bloomberg.net;Francine Lacqua in Davos, Switzerland at flacqua@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Ben Sills at bsills@bloomberg.net, Raymond Colitt, Andrew BlackmanFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.


Australia bushfires contribute to big rise in global CO2 levels: UK's Met Office

Australia bushfires contribute to big rise in global CO2 levels: UK's Met OfficeAustralia's bushfires are contributing to one of the biggest annual increases in the concentration of carbon dioxide in the Earth's atmosphere since record-keeping began more than 60 years ago, according to a forecast published by Britain's Met Office on Friday. While human-caused greenhouse gas emissions are responsible for the bulk of the increase in CO2 levels, Australia's bushfires have made the problem measurably worse, underscoring the impact of the catastrophe on the global climate system. "A forecast of the atmospheric concentration of carbon-dioxide shows that 2020 will witness one of the largest annual rises in concentration since measurements began at Mauna Loa, in Hawaii, 1958," the Met Office said in a statement.


REI’s January Sale Offers 50% off Cold-Weather Outdoor Gear

REI’s January Sale Offers 50% off Cold-Weather Outdoor Gear


Thunberg fires back at Mnunchin after college degree jab

Thunberg fires back at Mnunchin after college degree jabTreasury Secretary Steven Mnunchin said Greta Thunberg can discuss fossil fuel divestment "after she goes and studies economics in college."


Donald Trump shares image of Barack Obama scaling Trump Tower

Donald Trump shares image of Barack Obama scaling Trump TowerDonald Trump has tweeted a photoshopped image of Barack Obama scaling the walls of Trump Tower with suction cups and holding binoculars.The image, which was posted without a caption, appeared to be a reference to Mr Trump’s claims that Mr Obama and the FBI illegally spied on him.


The US plans to force passengers to change routes, and potentially redirect entire flights, to make sure they get screened for the Wuhan virus

The US plans to force passengers to change routes, and potentially redirect entire flights, to make sure they get screened for the Wuhan virusUS officials described an ambitious 'funnel' system to make sure every passenger from Wuhan, China, to the US gets screened — no matter their route.


Mexico sees rise in gangs, vigilantes recruiting children

Mexico sees rise in gangs, vigilantes recruiting childrenOne day after a vigilante group revealed that it was using children as young as 8 as “recruits” for armed defense patrols, Mexico's president said Thursday that drug cartels too are recruiting ever-younger kids. The whole issue has sparked a debate in Mexico over the use of children in armed confrontations, with rights groups saying the practice threatens not only kids' safety, but their mental health. President Andrés Manuel López Obrador said that because social programs are giving more youths opportunities to study or work, drug cartels are having trouble finding gunmen, leading them to recruit children.


See This Nuke? Meet the Most Destructive Nuclear Bomb Ever Made By Man

See This Nuke? Meet the Most Destructive Nuclear Bomb Ever Made By ManThank god the Soviets never deployed it.


No qualms for India's hangman before first job of executing rapists

No qualms for India's hangman before first job of executing rapistsPawan Kumar feels zero sympathy for the four men he is due to hang next month for a 2012 gang rape and murder that appalled India. The group set to meet their demise before dawn on February 1 -- although it may be delayed -- were convicted for a brutal crime against Jyoti Singh, a 23-year-old student. Angry demonstrations by tens of thousands of people broke out across the vast South Asian nation, sparking soul-searching about the plight of Indian women and leading to heavier sentences for sex crimes.


U.S., China Must Adjust for Stable World, Singapore Leader Says

U.S., China Must Adjust for Stable World, Singapore Leader Says(Bloomberg) -- Sign up here to receive the Davos Diary, a special daily newsletter that will run from Jan. 20-24.Both the U.S. and China must make adjustments if they are going to reach a lasting phase-two trade deal that benefits the rest of the world, Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said.Speaking in an interview with Bloomberg’s Editor-in-Chief John Micklethwait, Lee said “both sides have to make quite basic adjustments.” The U.S., he said, must decide whether to create rules that allow “the best man” to win or only let America come out on top.“America First means you do the best for the United States,” Lee said in Davos, Switzerland, while attending the World Economic Forum. “So do you do the best by prospering in the world and there are other countries who are doing well, or do your best by being a big country in a troubled world? And I’m not sure that the second is a very good answer.”The U.S.-China War Over Trade and Tariffs, Explained: QuickTakeChina, on the other hand, must decide whether they are going to be “constructive players” in world affairs and accept that “rules which were acceptable to other countries when they were smaller and less dominant now have to be revised and renegotiated,” Lee said.“It’s not so easy for them to concede and voluntarily step back from what they feel they can hold on to for a while longer,” he said. But if they make that adjustment, “there’s some possibility of working out a modus vivendi which will be stable and constructive for the world,” he said.Huawei ConcernsSingapore, a city-state heavily dependent on trade, had been one of the most outspoken countries in Asia calling for the U.S. and China to reach a trade deal. Lee has warned that Southeast Asian nations might one day be forced to choose if the world economy gets pulled apart into different blocs.The Trump administration has sought to convince countries around the world to avoid using equipment from Huawei Technologies Co., China’s biggest tech firm, for 5G networks, arguing it poses a national security threat. Singapore’s government so far has left the decision up to its telecommunications operators.How Huawei Landed at the Center of Global Tech Tussle: QuickTakeLee reiterated that Singapore hasn’t “banned Huawei” but will evaluate it based on operational requirements. Any system will have weaknesses, he said, and governments must try to keep them secure.“We have to make our own assessments, and the assessments have to be based on facts and risks,” Lee said. “And having made those assessments, well we may come to a conclusion which is different from what the Americans have come to, but it doesn’t mean that we’re not concerned about similar issues.”Lee added that differences of opinion on Huawei don’t necessarily signal a loss of U.S. influence. “If you ask us on security cooperations, certainly we are closer to the U.S. than to China,” Lee said. “But in terms of our trade, the Chinese are our biggest trading partner. In terms of our overall relationship, we have deep relationships with both.”March SummitPresident Donald Trump last November invited countries in the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations, or Asean, to a special summit in the U.S. after he skipped the bloc’s meeting in Bangkok. At the time, most leaders in the region snubbed the group’s meeting with Trump’s representative, National Security Adviser Robert O’Brien.Lee said he would join other Asean leaders for a meeting with Trump in Las Vegas on March 14.“I’m sure we’ll be discussing areas where we can cooperate and do more together,” Lee said. “I hope that Mr. Trump, amidst his many domestic preoccupations, will send a message that Asia is important to him and Southeast Asia has its part in the Americanscheme of things.”China has recently stepped up efforts to assert its territorial claims in the South China Sea, prompting fellow claimants like Vietnam, Malaysia and Indonesia to resist those advances in the energy-rich waters. The Asean bloc has been negotiating a legally binding code of conduct in the waters for more than two decades, and aim to complete it in the next few years.“It’s not an easy thing to do,” Lee said of the code of conduct. “We’re working at it and we’ve made some progress in the negotiating process, but I think it’s better to be talking and working toward this rather than abandoning this and actually coming to blows on the ground.”\--With assistance from Joyce Koh, Faris Mokhtar, Michelle Jamrisko and Ruth Pollard.To contact the reporters on this story: Iain Marlow in Hong Kong at imarlow1@bloomberg.net;Philip J. Heijmans in Singapore at pheijmans1@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Daniel Ten Kate at dtenkate@bloomberg.net, Nasreen SeriaFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.


Trump Admin: Pregnant Travelers Could Threaten U.S. Security

Trump Admin: Pregnant Travelers Could Threaten U.S. SecurityThe Trump administration has unveiled its latest national security measure—a crackdown on pregnant travelers—leaving both immigration and women’s rights attorneys shaking their heads.New State Department rules, slated to take effect Friday, allow consular officials to deny tourist visas to anyone they believe may give birth on their trip to the United States. The administration says this is to stop pregnant women from entering the country solely to seek birthright citizenship for their children. But attorneys say it is just another license to discriminate. “What this measure seems to be doing is creating another basis for discriminating against women in their ability to come to the United States of America,” said Lynn Paltrow, executive director of National Advocates for Pregnant Women. “It portrays women and people with the capacity for pregnancy as a danger to the United States of America.”Until now, traveling to the U.S. to give birth has been entirely legal, as long as women did not lie about their intentions on their visa application. The lack of restrictions helped fuel a lucrative “birth tourism” business, in which U.S.-based brokers—including several operating out of Trump properties—charged women tens of thousands of dollars for lodging during their pregnancy and birth.  Russians Flock to Trump Properties to Give Birth to U.S. CitizensTrump, however, has long railed against the concept of birthright citizenship, calling it a “magnet for illegal immigration” and falsely claiming that the U.S. is the only country in the world that allows it. He even proposed eliminating birthright citizenship outright via executive order—a proposal experts dismissed as blatantly unconstitutional.The State Department said Thursday that the new rules are meant to close an immigration “loophole” that threatens national security. But officials were unable to name a single instance in which so-called “birth tourism” had created a national security threat. They also could not provide the exact number of tourists who give birth in the U.S. each year, putting the number somewhere in the thousands. Approximately 4 million people give birth in the U.S. annually.The ACLU slammed the new rules, calling on the administration to “reverse course.” “This is the same administration that admitted to tracking the periods of migrant teens and ramping up its detention of pregnant immigrants,” said Ria Tabacco Mar, director of the ACLU’s Women’s Rights Project. “We have real questions, but we know this: This new regulation is rooted in misogyny, xenophobia, and racism.” Experts also questioned exactly how the new rules would be enforced. According to the State Department rules, consular officers will be required to question any woman for whom they have a “specific, articulable reason” to believe she is traveling for the primary purpose of giving birth. But they declined to say how exactly an officer would determine this, saying it could become apparent in an interview, in an application form, or as part of “information that comes to a consular officer.”Jeffrey Gorsky, an attorney who previously worked in the State Department’s visa office, said it would be rare for a woman to wait until she was visibly pregnant to apply for a visa. In fact, many travelers apply for multiple-entry visas that are good for at least 10 years. “Are they going to restrict visas for young women who are married under the presumption they could be coming to the U.S. to give birth?” Gorsky asked.Paltrow said this system would incentivize officers to deny visas to any woman who could be pregnant, for fear they would be accused of not doing their jobs. “They’re going to see virtually every woman who wants to come into the country as possibly pregnant and someone they should keep out,” she said. “Because there’s no way you can tell just by looking.” The rule allows exceptions for women who plan to give birth in the U.S. for legitimate medical reasons or who have some other reason for coming to the country late in their pregnancy. (An example listed in the text of the rules is a pregnant woman who is coming to visit her terminally ill mother.) Women who enter the country for medical reasons related to their pregnancy are required to demonstrate that they can pay for the services in full. The issue of “birth tourism” has received increased media attention in recent years, as Trump lashed out against immigrants he claimed were cheating their way into the country. Women from China and Russia have paid anywhere from $50,000 to $100,000 to have their children in sunny locales like Southern California or Florida.A previous Daily Beast investigation found several Miami-based birth tourism firms  advertising rentals in Trump-owned properties. One such company advertised lodging in the local Trump Towers, with a gold-tiled bathtub and chauffeured Cadillac Escalade or Mercedes Benz. Others offered a Trump Royale penthouse apartment, starting at $7,000 a month.“I was looking particularly for Trump Towers,” said one expectant mother who traveled from Russia to Miami. “[Now] in the evenings, I have a great view because you have the bay, and the buildings aglow. The building is great. No regrets.”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.


Huge explosion rips through Houston building, heard for miles around

Huge explosion rips through Houston building, heard for miles aroundSmoke poured out from inside a structure in the pre-dawn darkness about two hours after the blast as emergency vehicle lights flashed and first responders blocked access and checked for damage, aerial video from KTRK television showed. The moment of the explosion was captured on a home security camera, also aired on KTRK, that showed a blinding flash in the distance followed by a fireball. Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo said the debris field from the explosion was about a half mile (1 km) wide, but that there were no known toxic gases emitted from the blast.


Spirit Airlines passenger: Cabin crew didn't take my groping allegation seriously

Spirit Airlines passenger: Cabin crew didn't take my groping allegation seriouslyA Michigan college student says she was sexually assaulted on a Spirit Airlines flight, but that flight attendants treated her like an annoyance.


These 9 Dining Chairs Are Sculptural, Surprising, and Downright Sleek

These 9 Dining Chairs Are Sculptural, Surprising, and Downright Sleek


Lindsey Graham is offering unsolicited legal advice to Trump's team

Lindsey Graham is offering unsolicited legal advice to Trump's teamSen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), a juror in President Trump's impeachment trial, is offering free legal advice to his counsel, if they want to accept it.So far, the House impeachment managers have "done a good job" of "painting ... a tapestry, taking a series of events and telling a story," Graham told reporters on Thursday. When Trump's legal team starts delivering his defense on Saturday, they will "start pulling on the threads."Graham also thinks Trump's attorneys will need to shift the focus to former Vice President Joe Biden and his son, Hunter Biden. Hunter Biden was on the board of Burisma, a Ukrainian gas company, and is in the center of a debunked conspiracy theory being peddled by Trump allies, including Rudy Giuliani. Graham said Trump's team needs to "really go hard at the idea that when they tell you there's not a scintilla of evidence, groundless, baseless, phony accusations regarding the Bidens, I would challenge that very hard."More stories from theweek.com Democrats walked right into Mitch McConnell's trap Texas legalized hemp, and Austin just responded to the resulting chaos by effectively decriminalizing weed The Oprah's Book Club controversy, explained


School headmaster charged in fatal gold robbery in Thailand

School headmaster charged in fatal gold robbery in ThailandAn elementary school headmaster said Thursday he planned a gold shop robbery in Thailand due to personal and financial problems and apologized to the families of the three people who were killed. A 2-year-old boy was among the victims of the shooting earlier this month that caused public outrage and increased pressure for a swift arrest. Police arrested Prasitthichai Khaokaew, 38, early Wednesday and said he confessed to his crimes during interrogation.


The FBI reportedly stopped a Saudi plot to kidnap a YouTuber on US soil after he criticized Mohammed bin Salman for Jamal Khashoggi's killing

The FBI reportedly stopped a Saudi plot to kidnap a YouTuber on US soil after he criticized Mohammed bin Salman for Jamal Khashoggi's killingAbdulrahman Almutairi used social media to criticize the Saudi government. It appears to have almost cost him his life.


Successor to slain Iran general will be murdered if he kills Americans: U.S. envoy

Successor to slain Iran general will be murdered if he kills Americans: U.S. envoyThe successor to the Iranian commander killed in a U.S. drone strike would suffer the same fate if he followed a similar path by killing Americans, the U.S. special representative for Iran said, according to the Asharq al-Awsat newspaper.


China Puts 13 Cities on Lockdown as Coronavirus Death Toll Climbs

China Puts 13 Cities on Lockdown as Coronavirus Death Toll ClimbsChina is striving to contain a deadly virus outbreak the World Health Organization has termed a domestic health emergency


German Defense Chief Warns Islamic State Could Resume ‘Terror’

German Defense Chief Warns Islamic State Could Resume ‘Terror’(Bloomberg) -- Germany’s defense minister warned that Islamic State fighters could return in force in the Middle East if an international coalition is unable to continue its work against the militant organization.Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, speaking in an interview at the World Economic Forum on Thursday, said that Germany aims to keep its forces in Iraq, but can only do so at the behest of the government in Baghdad.“We need to keep in mind that in Iraq, IS is not yet defeated,“ Kramp-Karrenbauer told Bloomberg Television in Davos, Switzerland. “If the pressure is reduced, then the danger is great that it resumes its regime of terror.”The concerns by a key U.S. ally underscore how the mission has been shaken since the killing of Iranian General Qassem Soleimani, which prompted the Iraqis to demand the departure of 5,000 American troops from the country. The self-declared caliphate was largely subdued by early last year in Syria and Iraq, where it once controlled territory the size of Iceland.Germany, which has some 120 troops in Iraq as part of an anti-ISIS campaign, suspended its operations amid the crisis. Thirty-two German troops were transferred to Jordan and three to Kuwait.Kramp-Karrenbauer, who visited German troops in the region last week, said that the European nation had made progress in training Iraqi forces to fend off the militants.The German defense chief, who is also Chancellor Angela Merkel’s presumptive heir as leader of her Christian Democratic Union, said that her country is doing more to take on global responsibility in the face of public skepticism about troop presence in places such as Iraq, Afghanistan and Mali.“What we have to continue to explain in domestic politics is why these missions serve our own interests,” Kramp-Karrenbauer said.To contact the reporters on this story: Patrick Donahue in Berlin at pdonahue1@bloomberg.net;Chad Thomas in Davos, Switzerland at cthomas16@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Ben Sills at bsills@bloomberg.net, Raymond ColittFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.


Spotted: America's Shadowy Stealth Spy Drone

Spotted: America's Shadowy Stealth Spy DroneDoes it have a new mission now?


Lebanon to seek up to $5bln in soft loans, prime minister rallies support

Lebanon to seek up to $5bln in soft loans, prime minister rallies supportLebanon's new government must reassure international donors it is serious about reforms to tackle a financial crisis as it looks initially to secure up to $5 billion in soft loans for basic goods, its finance minister said on Thursday. The government that took office on Tuesday faces an emergency in which banks have imposed controls, the Lebanese pound has weakened and protesters have turned to violence which a senior U.N. official described as "politically manipulated". "The entire international community has its eye on what this government will do," Finance Minister Ghazi Wazni said in televised comments.


Residents paint a picture of Epstein's life on "Pedophile Island"

Residents paint a picture of Epstein's life on "Pedophile Island"When Epstein was convicted and serving time for procuring an underage girl in Florida for sex, word of his 13 month sentence and his alleged crimes made their way to St. Thomas.


Chief Justice John Roberts drops 'pettifogging' bomb while reprimanding both sides in impeachment trial

Chief Justice John Roberts drops 'pettifogging' bomb while reprimanding both sides in impeachment trial"Those addressing the Senate should remember where they are," Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts said, admonishing participants in President Trump's impeachment trial to keep it civil.


Prosecutor: DNA match leads to Florida 'pillowcase rapist'

Prosecutor: DNA match leads to Florida 'pillowcase rapist'Prosecutors announced Thursday that a sophisticated DNA match has led to the cold case arrest of a Florida man believed to be the “pillowcase rapist" who terrorized greater Miami with a series of assaults on women in the 1980s. Robert Koehler, 60, was arrested over the weekend and was being held without bond Thursday in a Miami jail. The “pillowcase rapist” was so named because he used a pillowcase or other fabric to cover the faces of his terrified victims, usually after he had broken into an apartment or town home, according to investigators.


These gun enthusiasts at the Virginia rally carried more firepower than many US troops

These gun enthusiasts at the Virginia rally carried more firepower than many US troops"This sends a strong visual message," a man holding a .50 caliber rifle said. Attendees also came with an armored vehicle and a grenade launcher.


This App Is a Dangerous Invasion of Your Privacy—and the FBI Uses It

This App Is a Dangerous Invasion of Your Privacy—and the FBI Uses ItWhat if you could instantly identify every stranger you ever saw?


26 Coffee Makers for Every Type of Coffee Drinker

26 Coffee Makers for Every Type of Coffee Drinker


'End of the world': Wuhan a ghost town under quarantine

'End of the world': Wuhan a ghost town under quarantineWuhan residents called for help and shared worries of food shortages Thursday, with streets in the virus-hit central Chinese city left deserted after it was put on lockdown. After he bought some, the person behind him in the queue bought the remaining stock in the shop.


Russia, China, and Iran Would Love to Take Out a Nuclear Aircraft Carrier. Here's Why They Can't.

Russia, China, and Iran Would Love to Take Out a Nuclear Aircraft Carrier. Here's Why They Can't.The beasts are more survivable than they seem.


Militia ally of Iran's Soleimani shot dead in southwest Iran: IRNA

Militia ally of Iran's Soleimani shot dead in southwest Iran: IRNAGunmen in Iran shot dead a commander of the hardline Basij militia who was an ally of Qassem Soleimani, the senior Revolutionary Guards commander killed in a U.S. drone strike in Iraq, the official news agency IRNA reported on Wednesday. The Basij are under the command of the Guards, the most powerful and heavily armed security force in the Islamic Republic. IRNA said that Abdolhossein Mojaddami, a Basij commander in the city of Darkhovin in the southwestern province of Khuzestan, was shot on Tuesday in front of his home by two men riding a motorcycle.


Rep. Ilhan Omar launches 'Send her back to Congress!' reelection bid with big advantages

Rep. Ilhan Omar launches 'Send her back to Congress!' reelection bid with big advantagesRep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., is kicking off her reelection campaign Thursday night with a massive bank account and no challengers who pose a serious threat from either party. Her campaign slogan — “Send her back to Congress!” — gleefully evokes President Trump’s personal attacks on her.


Report: Kamala Harris is considering endorsing Joe Biden

Report: Kamala Harris is considering endorsing Joe BidenSen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) is seriously contemplating endorsing former Vice President Joe Biden, several Democratic officials with knowledge of the matter told The New York Times. Harris dropped out of the 2020 Democratic presidential race in December, and although she sparred with Biden during debates last summer — most famously when she criticized him for once opposing school busing — they are back on good terms and talk often, the officials said.She likely won't announce an endorsement until after President Trump's Senate impeachment trial is over, the Times reports, and she understands the importance of her decision, especially since two of her fellow female senators — Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts and Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota — are also still in the presidential race.Biden has said he "of course" would consider asking Harris to join his ticket if he is the Democratic nominee. By giving him an endorsement, it could secure her spot as his running mate — or, if he chooses someone else to be vice president, his administration's attorney general.More stories from theweek.com Democrats walked right into Mitch McConnell's trap Texas legalized hemp, and Austin just responded to the resulting chaos by effectively decriminalizing weed The Oprah's Book Club controversy, explained


4 killed in plane crash at Southern California airfield

4 killed in plane crash at Southern California airfieldFour people were killed Wednesday in the crash of a small airplane at a Southern California airfield, authorities said. The plane went down at Corona Municipal Airport, about 40 miles (64 kilometers) east of Los Angeles, police said. Four fatalities were confirmed, the Corona Fire Department said on Twitter.


'The new evidence raises deeply troubling questions': did Arkansas kill an innocent man?

'The new evidence raises deeply troubling questions': did Arkansas kill an innocent man?Revealed: two years after Ledell Lee was executed, damning evidence emerges that experts say could prove his innocenceThe day before Ledell Lee was executed on 20 April 2017, he talked to the BBC from death row. He said that while he could not prevent the state of Arkansas from killing him, he had a message for his executioners: “My dying words will always be, as it has been: ‘I am an innocent man’.”Almost two years after Lee was strapped to a gurney and injected with a lethal cocktail of drugs, it looks increasingly likely he was telling the truth: he went to his death an innocent man. New evidence has emerged that suggests Lee was not guilty of the brutal murder of a woman in 1993 for which his life was taken.The deceased inmate’s sister Patricia Young lodged a lawsuit on Thursday with the circuit court of Pulaski county, Arkansas, petitioning city authorities and the local police department in Jacksonville to release crime scene materials to her family.The ACLU and the Innocence Project, who are investigating the case on the family’s behalf, believe state-of-the-art forensic examination of the materials, including DNA testing and fingerprint analysis, could definitively prove Arkansas did indeed execute an innocent man.An 81-page filing in the lawsuit provides damning new evidence that key aspects of the prosecution case against Lee were deeply flawed. The complaint includes expert opinion from a number of world-leading specialists who find glaring errors in the way forensic science and other evidence was interpreted.The lawsuit also includes a bombshell affidavit from Lee’s post-conviction attorney who admits to having struggled with substance abuse and addiction throughout the years in which he represented him.Lawyers who prepared the filing, led by Cassandra Stubbs of the ACLU and the Innocence Project’s Nina Morrison, conclude: “It is now clear that the state’s forensic experts from trial misinterpreted the evidence in plain sight, and their flawed opinions were further distorted by the state in its zeal to convict [Lee] of the crime. The new evidence raises deeply troubling questions about the shaky evidentiary pillars on which the state executed Ledell Lee.”Innocence has always been the achilles heel of America’s death penalty: how to justify judicially killing prisoners who may have been wrongfully convicted. The question is far from academic: since 1973 no fewer than 167 death row inmates have been exonerated.The most harrowing question is whether innocent prisoners have been executed before the flawed nature of their convictions emerged. In recent years, there have been several cases that, with near certainty, suggest that innocent men have been put to death.They include Cameron Todd Willingham executed in Texas in 2004 for allegedly having caused a fire that killed his three young daughters. After the execution, further evidence emerged that conclusively showed that he could not have set the fire.The Columbia Human Rights Law Review carried out a groundbreaking investigation in which it concluded Carlos DeLuna was innocent when he was executed – also by Texas – in 1989. The six-year study discovered that the convicted prisoner had almost certainly been confused with another man, a violent criminal who shared the name Carlos.Now Ledell Lee looks as though he may be added to the grim rollcall of the wrongly executed. He relentlessly insisted he was not guilty from the moment he was arrested less than two hours after the brutally beaten body of Debra Reese was discovered in her home in Jacksonville on 9 February 1993.The difficulties with the case against Lee began almost immediately. He was picked up nowhere near the crime scene and was not in possession of any possessions that could be linked to the break-in at Reese’s home.The only evidence against him was inconclusive at best. There were two eyewitnesses, but they gave conflicting reports of the suspect’s identification.> In recent years, there have been several cases that, with near certainty, suggest innocent men have been put to deathThe crime scene was shocking, with blood splattered over the walls and floor. Yet when Lee was arrested on the same day detectives could find no blood on his clothes or body including under his fingernails and nothing was found in a forensic search of his house.Given the paucity of evidence, it is not surprising that it took two trials to find Lee guilty and sentence him to death. The first trial collapsed after the jury was unable to reach a verdict.The ACLU and Innocence Project took up Lee’s case very late in the day having been asked to get involved shortly before his scheduled execution date. What they discovered when they opened the case records astounded even these experienced death penalty lawyers.Very quickly they established there were major problems with the prosecution case against Lee. One area that especially concerned them was the inadequacy of Lee’s legal representation, both during the second trial in which defense attorneys inexplicably failed to call alibi witnesses that could have placed Lee elsewhere at the time of the murder, and in terms of the help he received at the appeal stage of his case.At one post-conviction hearing, a lawyer working for the state of Arkansas approached the judge and raised concerns about Lee’s attorney, Craig Lambert. “Your honor, I don’t do this lightly, but I’m going to ask that the court require him to submit to a drug test,” the counsel said. “He’s just not with us … His speech is slurred.”In an affidavit obtained since Lee’s execution, signed by Lambert in October, the lawyer admits: “I was struggling with substance abuse and addiction in those years. I attended inpatient rehab. Ledell’s case was massive and I wasn’t in the best place personally to do what was necessary.”Partly as a result of poor legal representation, terrible errors were made in Lee’s defense – both at trial and for years afterwards during the appeals process. The complaint goes into detail about these “deeply troubling” shortcomings.One of the key examples relates to the marks found on the victim’s cheek. The state’s experts mistakenly interpreted the marks as having come from a pattern on a rug in Reese’s bedroom where she had been beaten to death with a wooden tire club.In fact, the filing says, the pattern on the body’s cheek did not match that on the rug. Instead it was consistent with the murderer stomping on Reese’s face directly with his shoe.That is critically significant because the shoes that Lee was wearing that day, which the state used during the trial as evidence against him, were incompatible in the composition of their soles with the injury pattern on Reese’s face.To establish this point, an affidavit is provided by Michael Baden, former chief pathologist for New York who is recognized internationally as a leading forensic pathologist. He concludes: “The soles of Mr Lee’s sneakers have a much more closely spaced pattern than was transferred in the cheek imprint.”That inconsistency is just one of many that were uncovered when Baden and four other specialists were invited to review the case.Lee was executed in a flurry. When the state of Arkansas realized its supply of one of its three lethal drugs, the sedative midazolam, was about to expire at the end of 2017 with no hope of replacing it due to a global ban on medicines being sent to the US for use in executions, it went into overdrive.It announced plans to kill eight prisoners in 11 days.The declaration prompted revulsion from around the US and the world and accusations that the state was engaging in conveyor-belt executions. It was in that climate that attempts by the ACLU and the Innocence Project to have materials gathered at the crime scene of Reese’s murder released for DNA testing fell on deaf ears.Though the lawyers presented a strong argument that DNA testing could be crucial in casting doubt on Lee’s conviction and pointing towards the real killer, a federal district court denied the request on grounds that Lee had “simply delayed too long” in asking for the materials.It is too late now for Lee. But his lawyers hope that it is not too late to get to the bottom of the case posthumously.The city of Jacksonville is in possession of a rich array of crime scene materials including “Negroid” hairs collected from Reese’s bedroom and fingernail scrapings likely to contain DNA from the actual killer – Lee or otherwise.“This evidence can now be tested with state-of-the-art methods unavailable at trial, and compared to Mr Lee’s unique DNA profile,” the filing says.After a welter of legal challenges, Arkansas succeeded in killing four prisoners in one week, including the first double execution held in the US in a single day since 2001. The first of the four to die was Ledell Lee.Should Arkansas now agree belatedly to hand over the crime scene materials for testing, he may yet be proven to have been, just as he always said he was, an innocent man.


Brexit Bulletin: Law of the Land

Brexit Bulletin: Law of the LandDays to Brexit: 8(Bloomberg) -- Sign up here to get the Brexit Bulletin in your inbox every weekday.What’s Happening? The Withdrawal Agreement Bill received royal assent, making Brexit on Jan. 31 a matter of U.K. law.Seventeen words brought an end to the British side of this phase of the Brexit saga. In a statement to the House of Commons, Deputy Speaker Nigel Evans delivered the news to listening lawmakers: “Her Majesty has signified her royal assent to the following act: European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Act 2020.”Royal assent brings to a close the crisis that paralyzed U.K. politics after the country voted to leave the European Union in June 2016. Former Prime Minister Theresa May failed to get her version of the deal through the House of Commons after reaching an agreement with the EU in November 2018. Her successor, Boris Johnson, succeeded only after winning a large majority in last month’s general election.With the U.K. due to slip out of the EU at 11 p.m. London time next Friday, all that remains is for the European Parliament to rubber-stamp the deal. That was due to move a step closer on Thursday afternoon via a vote of the assembly’s constitutional affairs committee, a group of the parliament’s most influential members. The panel was expected to nod the deal through.The full EU parliament, which officially has a veto over the deal, will vote on Jan. 29. It will almost certainly follow the committee’s lead. The U.K. is scheduled to leave the EU two days later.Beyond BrexitClimate activist Greta Thunberg should go back to school and study economics, U.S. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin said at the World Economic Forum in Davos. These billionaires made their fortunes by trying to stop climate change. The £200 million ($262 million) London mansion bought by Cheung Cheung Kie earlier this month isn’t even his most valuable property.Brexit in BriefRule Makers | U.K. financiers are asking the government to revamp regulations to attract global business after Brexit. Watchdogs should have the power “to make the U.K. a better place to do business” through a new mandate to support London’s financial hub against rivals, according to the International Regulatory Strategy Group, a panel backed by the City of London.Diverging Views | Speaking at Davos on Thursday morning, U.K. Chancellor of the Exchequer Sajid Javid tried to reassure business over Britain’s post-Brexit ties with the EU. “We won’t diverge just for the sake of it,” he said. That’s despite telling the Financial Times last week that “there will not be alignment” with EU rules after Brexit.Off-Piste? | Did Javid speak out of turn at Davos when he said that talks for a U.K.-EU trade deal will take priority over any agreement with the U.S.? Today’s Bloomberg Westminster podcast discusses his motivations.Time Is Tight | The clock is ticking for the EU and the U.K. to hammer out a trade deal by the end of the year, according to Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte. “It’s an awfully short amount of time so I hope that coming next summer, June, July, that Boris Johnson will at least contemplate extending, if necessary, this transition phase,” Rutte said in a Bloomberg TV interview in Davos. “I’m Still Here” | Steve Bray, otherwise known as the “Stop Brexit Guy” was a fixture outside Westminster during the height of the U.K.’s Brexit tension, often disrupting live TV interviews. On Thursday he took his protest to Brussels, joining a small rally outside the European Parliament, the Brussels Times reports. “I came to Brussels just to visit this parliament,” the Times reported him as saying. “I’m still here because I still care.”Want to keep up with Brexit?You can follow us @Brexit on Twitter, and listen to Bloomberg Westminster every weekday. It’s live at midday on Bloomberg Radio and is available as a podcast too. Share the Brexit Bulletin: Colleagues, friends and family can sign up here. For full EU coverage, try the Brussels Edition.For even more: Subscribe to Bloomberg All Access for our unmatched global news coverage and two in-depth daily newsletters, The Bloomberg Open and The Bloomberg Close.To contact the authors of this story: Thomas Penny in London at tpenny@bloomberg.netIan Wishart in Brussels at iwishart@bloomberg.netTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Adam Blenford at ablenford@bloomberg.net, Chris KayFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.


At impeachment trial, Democrats address Biden corruption allegations as Graham promises more developments

At impeachment trial, Democrats address Biden corruption allegations as Graham promises more developmentsSen. Lindsey Graham made it clear that he plans to make Hunter Biden a much bigger part of the impeachment debate in the coming days.


White Nationalists Arrested ahead of Richmond Rally Planned to Kill Gun-Rights Demonstrators to Spark Civil War

White Nationalists Arrested ahead of Richmond Rally Planned to Kill Gun-Rights Demonstrators to Spark Civil WarThree alleged members of a white supremacist group were plotting to murder demonstrators at Monday's gun rights rally at the Virginia Capitol before they were arrested by the FBI last week, according to court documents.The men were caught discussing their plans on a hidden camera set up in their Delaware apartment by FBI agents.“We can’t let Virginia go to waste, we just can’t,” said Patrik J. Mathews, one member of the hate group "the Base" that promotes violence against African-Americans and Jews.According to authorities, the 27-year-old former Canadian Armed Forces reservist also discussed creating "instability" in Virginia by killing people, derailing trains, poisoning water, and shutting down highways in order to "kick off the economic collapse" and possibly start a "full blown civil war."Mathews also discussed the possibility of "executing" police officers and stealing their belongings and remarked that, “We could essentially be like literally hunting people.”“Virginia will be our day,” said 33-year-old Brian M. Lemley Jr., adding, “I need to claim my first victim.”“Lemley discussed using a thermal imaging scope affixed to his rifle to conduct ambush attacks,” the court filings read.The two were arrested along with a third man, 19, last Thursday. They are charged with federal firearms violations and “transporting and harboring an alien,” referring to Mathews, who is a Canadian national. Four more members of The Base have also been arrested and charged in Georgia and Wisconsin.In a search of the apartment, prosecutors said that FBI agents found propaganda fliers for The Base, communications devices, empty rifle cases, "go bags" with "numerous Meals-Ready-to-Eat," knives, and materials for building an assault rifle.Tens of thousands of gun rights advocates rallied in Richmond on Monday to protest the state’s Democratic legislature's gun-control agenda. Critics raised fears beforehand that militant white supremacists could disrupt the rally, but the day ended peacefully with no violence.


Wife: China's ex-Interpol boss jailed for reformist views

Wife: China's ex-Interpol boss jailed for reformist viewsIn her first comments about her imprisoned husband's sentence in China, the wife of former Interpol president Meng Hongwei dismissed his bribery conviction as “a lie, a fake case” and said he is being punished for using his senior position in the ruling Communist Party to push for reform from within. Grace Meng said during in an exclusive interview Wednesday with The Associated Press that her husband, a long-serving vice minister of public security, had been part of a reformist faction of China's secretive ruling party. In response to worsening corruption, Meng Hongwei and others argued, out of the public eye and at the highest circles of power for a “modern” constitutional and election-based political system, she said.


Michelle Carter, who encouraged boyfriend's suicide, released from jail early for good behavior

Michelle Carter, who encouraged boyfriend's suicide, released from jail early for good behaviorMichelle Carter, the Massachusetts woman who encouraged her boyfriend, Conrad Roy, to kill himself has been released from jail in Bristol County.


Virologist who helped identify SARS on coronavirus outbreak: 'This time I'm scared'

Virologist who helped identify SARS on coronavirus outbreak: 'This time I'm scared'Experts are seeing shocking similarities between the coronavirus that has now spread beyond China and the SARS outbreak of 2003.Like the infectious pneumonia that has killed at least 17 people, SARS was caused by a coronavirus that originated in China. But when one of the virologists who helped identify the SARS virus visited Wuhan, where this virus originated, he didn't see nearly enough being done to fight it. People were out at markets without masks, "preparing to ring in the New Year in peace and had no sense about the epidemic," Guan Yi of the University of Hong Kong's State Key Laboratory of Emerging Infectious Diseases told Caixin. Airports were hardly being disinfected, Guan continued, saying the local government hasn't "even been handing out quarantine guides to people who were leaving the city."The city did disinfect the market where the virus has been traced to, but Guan criticized Wuhan for that, saying it hurts researchers' abilities to track down the virus's source. "I've never felt scared," Guan told Caixin. "This time I'm scared."A case involving the coronavirus was identified in Washington state on Wednesday, and cases have also been identified in Thailand, Japan, South Korea, and Singapore. A total of 639 cases were confirmed in China.More stories from theweek.com Democrats walked right into Mitch McConnell's trap Texas legalized hemp, and Austin just responded to the resulting chaos by effectively decriminalizing weed The Oprah's Book Club controversy, explained


U.S.-Israeli woman jailed in Russia has not yet sought pardon: Kremlin

U.S.-Israeli woman jailed in Russia has not yet sought pardon: KremlinThe Kremlin said on Friday that the possible release of Naama Issachar, a U.S.-Israeli woman jailed in Russia on drug charges, was being held up because she had not yet formally asked to be granted a pardon. Israel has called on Russia to release Issachar, who was sentenced by a Russian court to seven-and-a-half years in jail for drug offences in October.


The American Airlines flight attendant union is calling on US airlines to step up precautions for the deadly Wuhan coronavirus

The American Airlines flight attendant union is calling on US airlines to step up precautions for the deadly Wuhan coronavirusThe Wuhan coronavirus outbreak has sickened more than 630 people and killed 18. It has spread to at least 8 countries.


Utah bans LGBTQ conversion therapy for minors

Utah bans LGBTQ conversion therapy for minors"It simply will save lives," said GOP State Representative Craig Hall, who originally sponsored the proposal.


Presidential candidate Tom Steyer: ‘I’m for reparations’

Presidential candidate Tom Steyer: ‘I’m for reparations’On Yahoo News’ “Hot Mic with Brittany Shepherd,” Democratic presidential candidate Tom Steyer spoke about race and reparations, saying that if he were elected to office, “I would start a commission on race on day one.”


Yahoo News/YouGov poll shows two-thirds of voters want the Senate to call new impeachment witnesses

Yahoo News/YouGov poll shows two-thirds of voters want the Senate to call new impeachment witnessesIn a new poll, 63 percent of registered voters agree that the Senate should call new witnesses to testify during President Trump’s impeachment trial.


Ex-Maryland police officer has been charged with raping and attempting to transmit HIV to a woman he pulled over

Ex-Maryland police officer has been charged with raping and attempting to transmit HIV to a woman he pulled overA Maryland Grand Jury has indicted former police officer Martique Vanderpool on charges that he raped and attempted to expose a woman with HIV.


Girl's family: 'Impossible' to lean from cruise ship window

Girl's family: 'Impossible' to lean from cruise ship windowThe parents of an Indiana girl who fell to her death from the open window of a cruise ship docked in Puerto Rico contend it was “physically impossible” for the child’s grandfather to lean out of that 11th floor window, as the cruise line has alleged, just before the toddler slipped from his hands. The parents of Chloe Wiegand also accuse Royal Caribbean Cruises of releasing deceptive surveillance images, and allege in their preliminary response filed Wednesday in U.S. District Court in Miami that the cruise line lied in its recent motion seeking the dismissal of the family’s lawsuit. In its Jan. 8 filing, Royal Caribbean alleged that surveillance video shows the child’s 51-year-old grandfather, Salvatore Anello, leaning out of the open window for about eight seconds just moments before he lifted his granddaughter up to the window, from which she fell to her death on July 8.


Smugglers tried to bring 3,700 invasive crabs through the Port of Cincinnati

Smugglers tried to bring 3,700 invasive crabs through the Port of CincinnatiMitten crabs are a delicacy in Asia and sell for about $50 each in the United States, officials say. They are considered an invasive species.


Schiff thanks senators at the start of impeachment argument after Nadler accused Republicans of 'voting for a cover up'

Schiff thanks senators at the start of impeachment argument after Nadler accused Republicans of 'voting for a cover up'Democrats officially kicked off their opening arguments in the impeachment trial of President Trump Wednesday with a bit of a shift in tone after one particularly contentious late-night exchange.Near the end of an impeachment trial session beginning Tuesday, House Judiciary Committee Chair Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.) on the Senate floor accused Republican senators of "voting for a cover up" as he argued in favor of an amendment to subpoena former National Security Adviser John Bolton, per The Wall Street Journal. Nadler also suggested Republicans were engaging in "treacherous" behavior, The Washington Post reports. Republicans throughout the day on Wednesday slammed Nadler for his statement; Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) told CNN it was "insulting and outrageous," while Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) said the comment "offended her" and Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) said in a press conference, "To my Democratic colleagues, you can say what you want about me but I am covering up nothing."Following this criticism, House Intelligence Committee Chair Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) began Democrats' opening arguments Wednesday with a less combative tone, thanking senators for having "paid attention to every word and argument you heard from both sides" the day before."I want to begin today by thanking you for the conduct of the proceedings yesterday and for inviting your patience as you go forward," Schiff added. "We have some very long days yet to come."CNN's Kaitlan Collins noted Schiff appeared to be addressing Republican criticism with his opening comments, although Republicans weren't the only ones not thrilled with the tone of Tuesday night's debate. Sen. Jon Tester (D-Mont.), for instance, conceded to The Washington Post that Nadler "could have chose better words."More stories from theweek.com Democrats walked right into Mitch McConnell's trap 5 brutally funny cartoons about Mitch McConnell's impeachment rules The Oprah's Book Club controversy, explained


China Praised By Germany For Transparency in Combating Virus

China Praised By Germany For Transparency in Combating Virus(Bloomberg) -- China is doing a better job and the world community is more prepared in dealing with the new coronavirus than they were during the 2002 to 2003 SARS episode, Germany’s health minister said in an interview.“There’s a big difference to SARS. We have a much more transparent China,” Jens Spahn told Bloomberg TV on Friday on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum in Davos. “The action of China is much more effective in the first days already.”The World Health Organization on Thursday stopped short of calling the new SARS-like virus from central China a global health emergency.Chinese official have imposed travel restrictions on millions of people as Singapore reported a case of the new virus.Read More:WHO Says Coronavirus Remains Local Chinese Emergency for NowSingapore Reports Virus Case as China Limits Some TravelWuhan Virus Lockdown Casts Cloud Over Industry & Tech HubMapping the Outbreak of China’s CoronavirusGlobal health authorities are also better prepared today, said Spahn.“We learned a lot because of SARS. The WTO has reformed, developed permanent institutions of exchange,” the 39-year-old former under-secretary of finance said. “We know what do. That’s an important signal for people back home too.”G20 health ministers have been rehearsing for emergencies since SARS and Ebola, he added.“Our national health systems in Europe and in the U.S., by the way in many western countries -- we are able to deal with this. As soon as somebody is found with this infection, he’ll be put in an isolated station,” said Spahn.The virus is believed to have emerged last month in a seafood and wildlife market in Wuhan, spreading from infected animals to humans.To contact the reporters on this story: Arne Delfs in Berlin at adelfs@bloomberg.net;Francine Lacqua in Davos, Switzerland at flacqua@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Ben Sills at bsills@bloomberg.net, Raymond Colitt, Andrew BlackmanFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.


Australia bushfires contribute to big rise in global CO2 levels: UK's Met Office

Australia bushfires contribute to big rise in global CO2 levels: UK's Met OfficeAustralia's bushfires are contributing to one of the biggest annual increases in the concentration of carbon dioxide in the Earth's atmosphere since record-keeping began more than 60 years ago, according to a forecast published by Britain's Met Office on Friday. While human-caused greenhouse gas emissions are responsible for the bulk of the increase in CO2 levels, Australia's bushfires have made the problem measurably worse, underscoring the impact of the catastrophe on the global climate system. "A forecast of the atmospheric concentration of carbon-dioxide shows that 2020 will witness one of the largest annual rises in concentration since measurements began at Mauna Loa, in Hawaii, 1958," the Met Office said in a statement.


REI’s January Sale Offers 50% off Cold-Weather Outdoor Gear

REI’s January Sale Offers 50% off Cold-Weather Outdoor Gear


Thunberg fires back at Mnunchin after college degree jab

Thunberg fires back at Mnunchin after college degree jabTreasury Secretary Steven Mnunchin said Greta Thunberg can discuss fossil fuel divestment "after she goes and studies economics in college."


Donald Trump shares image of Barack Obama scaling Trump Tower

Donald Trump shares image of Barack Obama scaling Trump TowerDonald Trump has tweeted a photoshopped image of Barack Obama scaling the walls of Trump Tower with suction cups and holding binoculars.The image, which was posted without a caption, appeared to be a reference to Mr Trump’s claims that Mr Obama and the FBI illegally spied on him.


The US plans to force passengers to change routes, and potentially redirect entire flights, to make sure they get screened for the Wuhan virus

The US plans to force passengers to change routes, and potentially redirect entire flights, to make sure they get screened for the Wuhan virusUS officials described an ambitious 'funnel' system to make sure every passenger from Wuhan, China, to the US gets screened — no matter their route.


Mexico sees rise in gangs, vigilantes recruiting children

Mexico sees rise in gangs, vigilantes recruiting childrenOne day after a vigilante group revealed that it was using children as young as 8 as “recruits” for armed defense patrols, Mexico's president said Thursday that drug cartels too are recruiting ever-younger kids. The whole issue has sparked a debate in Mexico over the use of children in armed confrontations, with rights groups saying the practice threatens not only kids' safety, but their mental health. President Andrés Manuel López Obrador said that because social programs are giving more youths opportunities to study or work, drug cartels are having trouble finding gunmen, leading them to recruit children.


See This Nuke? Meet the Most Destructive Nuclear Bomb Ever Made By Man

See This Nuke? Meet the Most Destructive Nuclear Bomb Ever Made By ManThank god the Soviets never deployed it.


No qualms for India's hangman before first job of executing rapists

No qualms for India's hangman before first job of executing rapistsPawan Kumar feels zero sympathy for the four men he is due to hang next month for a 2012 gang rape and murder that appalled India. The group set to meet their demise before dawn on February 1 -- although it may be delayed -- were convicted for a brutal crime against Jyoti Singh, a 23-year-old student. Angry demonstrations by tens of thousands of people broke out across the vast South Asian nation, sparking soul-searching about the plight of Indian women and leading to heavier sentences for sex crimes.


U.S., China Must Adjust for Stable World, Singapore Leader Says

U.S., China Must Adjust for Stable World, Singapore Leader Says(Bloomberg) -- Sign up here to receive the Davos Diary, a special daily newsletter that will run from Jan. 20-24.Both the U.S. and China must make adjustments if they are going to reach a lasting phase-two trade deal that benefits the rest of the world, Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said.Speaking in an interview with Bloomberg’s Editor-in-Chief John Micklethwait, Lee said “both sides have to make quite basic adjustments.” The U.S., he said, must decide whether to create rules that allow “the best man” to win or only let America come out on top.“America First means you do the best for the United States,” Lee said in Davos, Switzerland, while attending the World Economic Forum. “So do you do the best by prospering in the world and there are other countries who are doing well, or do your best by being a big country in a troubled world? And I’m not sure that the second is a very good answer.”The U.S.-China War Over Trade and Tariffs, Explained: QuickTakeChina, on the other hand, must decide whether they are going to be “constructive players” in world affairs and accept that “rules which were acceptable to other countries when they were smaller and less dominant now have to be revised and renegotiated,” Lee said.“It’s not so easy for them to concede and voluntarily step back from what they feel they can hold on to for a while longer,” he said. But if they make that adjustment, “there’s some possibility of working out a modus vivendi which will be stable and constructive for the world,” he said.Huawei ConcernsSingapore, a city-state heavily dependent on trade, had been one of the most outspoken countries in Asia calling for the U.S. and China to reach a trade deal. Lee has warned that Southeast Asian nations might one day be forced to choose if the world economy gets pulled apart into different blocs.The Trump administration has sought to convince countries around the world to avoid using equipment from Huawei Technologies Co., China’s biggest tech firm, for 5G networks, arguing it poses a national security threat. Singapore’s government so far has left the decision up to its telecommunications operators.How Huawei Landed at the Center of Global Tech Tussle: QuickTakeLee reiterated that Singapore hasn’t “banned Huawei” but will evaluate it based on operational requirements. Any system will have weaknesses, he said, and governments must try to keep them secure.“We have to make our own assessments, and the assessments have to be based on facts and risks,” Lee said. “And having made those assessments, well we may come to a conclusion which is different from what the Americans have come to, but it doesn’t mean that we’re not concerned about similar issues.”Lee added that differences of opinion on Huawei don’t necessarily signal a loss of U.S. influence. “If you ask us on security cooperations, certainly we are closer to the U.S. than to China,” Lee said. “But in terms of our trade, the Chinese are our biggest trading partner. In terms of our overall relationship, we have deep relationships with both.”March SummitPresident Donald Trump last November invited countries in the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations, or Asean, to a special summit in the U.S. after he skipped the bloc’s meeting in Bangkok. At the time, most leaders in the region snubbed the group’s meeting with Trump’s representative, National Security Adviser Robert O’Brien.Lee said he would join other Asean leaders for a meeting with Trump in Las Vegas on March 14.“I’m sure we’ll be discussing areas where we can cooperate and do more together,” Lee said. “I hope that Mr. Trump, amidst his many domestic preoccupations, will send a message that Asia is important to him and Southeast Asia has its part in the Americanscheme of things.”China has recently stepped up efforts to assert its territorial claims in the South China Sea, prompting fellow claimants like Vietnam, Malaysia and Indonesia to resist those advances in the energy-rich waters. The Asean bloc has been negotiating a legally binding code of conduct in the waters for more than two decades, and aim to complete it in the next few years.“It’s not an easy thing to do,” Lee said of the code of conduct. “We’re working at it and we’ve made some progress in the negotiating process, but I think it’s better to be talking and working toward this rather than abandoning this and actually coming to blows on the ground.”\--With assistance from Joyce Koh, Faris Mokhtar, Michelle Jamrisko and Ruth Pollard.To contact the reporters on this story: Iain Marlow in Hong Kong at imarlow1@bloomberg.net;Philip J. Heijmans in Singapore at pheijmans1@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Daniel Ten Kate at dtenkate@bloomberg.net, Nasreen SeriaFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.


Trump Admin: Pregnant Travelers Could Threaten U.S. Security

Trump Admin: Pregnant Travelers Could Threaten U.S. SecurityThe Trump administration has unveiled its latest national security measure—a crackdown on pregnant travelers—leaving both immigration and women’s rights attorneys shaking their heads.New State Department rules, slated to take effect Friday, allow consular officials to deny tourist visas to anyone they believe may give birth on their trip to the United States. The administration says this is to stop pregnant women from entering the country solely to seek birthright citizenship for their children. But attorneys say it is just another license to discriminate. “What this measure seems to be doing is creating another basis for discriminating against women in their ability to come to the United States of America,” said Lynn Paltrow, executive director of National Advocates for Pregnant Women. “It portrays women and people with the capacity for pregnancy as a danger to the United States of America.”Until now, traveling to the U.S. to give birth has been entirely legal, as long as women did not lie about their intentions on their visa application. The lack of restrictions helped fuel a lucrative “birth tourism” business, in which U.S.-based brokers—including several operating out of Trump properties—charged women tens of thousands of dollars for lodging during their pregnancy and birth.  Russians Flock to Trump Properties to Give Birth to U.S. CitizensTrump, however, has long railed against the concept of birthright citizenship, calling it a “magnet for illegal immigration” and falsely claiming that the U.S. is the only country in the world that allows it. He even proposed eliminating birthright citizenship outright via executive order—a proposal experts dismissed as blatantly unconstitutional.The State Department said Thursday that the new rules are meant to close an immigration “loophole” that threatens national security. But officials were unable to name a single instance in which so-called “birth tourism” had created a national security threat. They also could not provide the exact number of tourists who give birth in the U.S. each year, putting the number somewhere in the thousands. Approximately 4 million people give birth in the U.S. annually.The ACLU slammed the new rules, calling on the administration to “reverse course.” “This is the same administration that admitted to tracking the periods of migrant teens and ramping up its detention of pregnant immigrants,” said Ria Tabacco Mar, director of the ACLU’s Women’s Rights Project. “We have real questions, but we know this: This new regulation is rooted in misogyny, xenophobia, and racism.” Experts also questioned exactly how the new rules would be enforced. According to the State Department rules, consular officers will be required to question any woman for whom they have a “specific, articulable reason” to believe she is traveling for the primary purpose of giving birth. But they declined to say how exactly an officer would determine this, saying it could become apparent in an interview, in an application form, or as part of “information that comes to a consular officer.”Jeffrey Gorsky, an attorney who previously worked in the State Department’s visa office, said it would be rare for a woman to wait until she was visibly pregnant to apply for a visa. In fact, many travelers apply for multiple-entry visas that are good for at least 10 years. “Are they going to restrict visas for young women who are married under the presumption they could be coming to the U.S. to give birth?” Gorsky asked.Paltrow said this system would incentivize officers to deny visas to any woman who could be pregnant, for fear they would be accused of not doing their jobs. “They’re going to see virtually every woman who wants to come into the country as possibly pregnant and someone they should keep out,” she said. “Because there’s no way you can tell just by looking.” The rule allows exceptions for women who plan to give birth in the U.S. for legitimate medical reasons or who have some other reason for coming to the country late in their pregnancy. (An example listed in the text of the rules is a pregnant woman who is coming to visit her terminally ill mother.) Women who enter the country for medical reasons related to their pregnancy are required to demonstrate that they can pay for the services in full. The issue of “birth tourism” has received increased media attention in recent years, as Trump lashed out against immigrants he claimed were cheating their way into the country. Women from China and Russia have paid anywhere from $50,000 to $100,000 to have their children in sunny locales like Southern California or Florida.A previous Daily Beast investigation found several Miami-based birth tourism firms  advertising rentals in Trump-owned properties. One such company advertised lodging in the local Trump Towers, with a gold-tiled bathtub and chauffeured Cadillac Escalade or Mercedes Benz. Others offered a Trump Royale penthouse apartment, starting at $7,000 a month.“I was looking particularly for Trump Towers,” said one expectant mother who traveled from Russia to Miami. “[Now] in the evenings, I have a great view because you have the bay, and the buildings aglow. The building is great. No regrets.”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.


Huge explosion rips through Houston building, heard for miles around

Huge explosion rips through Houston building, heard for miles aroundSmoke poured out from inside a structure in the pre-dawn darkness about two hours after the blast as emergency vehicle lights flashed and first responders blocked access and checked for damage, aerial video from KTRK television showed. The moment of the explosion was captured on a home security camera, also aired on KTRK, that showed a blinding flash in the distance followed by a fireball. Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo said the debris field from the explosion was about a half mile (1 km) wide, but that there were no known toxic gases emitted from the blast.


Spirit Airlines passenger: Cabin crew didn't take my groping allegation seriously

Spirit Airlines passenger: Cabin crew didn't take my groping allegation seriouslyA Michigan college student says she was sexually assaulted on a Spirit Airlines flight, but that flight attendants treated her like an annoyance.


These 9 Dining Chairs Are Sculptural, Surprising, and Downright Sleek

These 9 Dining Chairs Are Sculptural, Surprising, and Downright Sleek


Lindsey Graham is offering unsolicited legal advice to Trump's team

Lindsey Graham is offering unsolicited legal advice to Trump's teamSen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), a juror in President Trump's impeachment trial, is offering free legal advice to his counsel, if they want to accept it.So far, the House impeachment managers have "done a good job" of "painting ... a tapestry, taking a series of events and telling a story," Graham told reporters on Thursday. When Trump's legal team starts delivering his defense on Saturday, they will "start pulling on the threads."Graham also thinks Trump's attorneys will need to shift the focus to former Vice President Joe Biden and his son, Hunter Biden. Hunter Biden was on the board of Burisma, a Ukrainian gas company, and is in the center of a debunked conspiracy theory being peddled by Trump allies, including Rudy Giuliani. Graham said Trump's team needs to "really go hard at the idea that when they tell you there's not a scintilla of evidence, groundless, baseless, phony accusations regarding the Bidens, I would challenge that very hard."More stories from theweek.com Democrats walked right into Mitch McConnell's trap Texas legalized hemp, and Austin just responded to the resulting chaos by effectively decriminalizing weed The Oprah's Book Club controversy, explained


School headmaster charged in fatal gold robbery in Thailand

School headmaster charged in fatal gold robbery in ThailandAn elementary school headmaster said Thursday he planned a gold shop robbery in Thailand due to personal and financial problems and apologized to the families of the three people who were killed. A 2-year-old boy was among the victims of the shooting earlier this month that caused public outrage and increased pressure for a swift arrest. Police arrested Prasitthichai Khaokaew, 38, early Wednesday and said he confessed to his crimes during interrogation.


The FBI reportedly stopped a Saudi plot to kidnap a YouTuber on US soil after he criticized Mohammed bin Salman for Jamal Khashoggi's killing

The FBI reportedly stopped a Saudi plot to kidnap a YouTuber on US soil after he criticized Mohammed bin Salman for Jamal Khashoggi's killingAbdulrahman Almutairi used social media to criticize the Saudi government. It appears to have almost cost him his life.


Successor to slain Iran general will be murdered if he kills Americans: U.S. envoy

Successor to slain Iran general will be murdered if he kills Americans: U.S. envoyThe successor to the Iranian commander killed in a U.S. drone strike would suffer the same fate if he followed a similar path by killing Americans, the U.S. special representative for Iran said, according to the Asharq al-Awsat newspaper.


China Puts 13 Cities on Lockdown as Coronavirus Death Toll Climbs

China Puts 13 Cities on Lockdown as Coronavirus Death Toll ClimbsChina is striving to contain a deadly virus outbreak the World Health Organization has termed a domestic health emergency


German Defense Chief Warns Islamic State Could Resume ‘Terror’

German Defense Chief Warns Islamic State Could Resume ‘Terror’(Bloomberg) -- Germany’s defense minister warned that Islamic State fighters could return in force in the Middle East if an international coalition is unable to continue its work against the militant organization.Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, speaking in an interview at the World Economic Forum on Thursday, said that Germany aims to keep its forces in Iraq, but can only do so at the behest of the government in Baghdad.“We need to keep in mind that in Iraq, IS is not yet defeated,“ Kramp-Karrenbauer told Bloomberg Television in Davos, Switzerland. “If the pressure is reduced, then the danger is great that it resumes its regime of terror.”The concerns by a key U.S. ally underscore how the mission has been shaken since the killing of Iranian General Qassem Soleimani, which prompted the Iraqis to demand the departure of 5,000 American troops from the country. The self-declared caliphate was largely subdued by early last year in Syria and Iraq, where it once controlled territory the size of Iceland.Germany, which has some 120 troops in Iraq as part of an anti-ISIS campaign, suspended its operations amid the crisis. Thirty-two German troops were transferred to Jordan and three to Kuwait.Kramp-Karrenbauer, who visited German troops in the region last week, said that the European nation had made progress in training Iraqi forces to fend off the militants.The German defense chief, who is also Chancellor Angela Merkel’s presumptive heir as leader of her Christian Democratic Union, said that her country is doing more to take on global responsibility in the face of public skepticism about troop presence in places such as Iraq, Afghanistan and Mali.“What we have to continue to explain in domestic politics is why these missions serve our own interests,” Kramp-Karrenbauer said.To contact the reporters on this story: Patrick Donahue in Berlin at pdonahue1@bloomberg.net;Chad Thomas in Davos, Switzerland at cthomas16@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Ben Sills at bsills@bloomberg.net, Raymond ColittFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.


Spotted: America's Shadowy Stealth Spy Drone

Spotted: America's Shadowy Stealth Spy DroneDoes it have a new mission now?


Lebanon to seek up to $5bln in soft loans, prime minister rallies support

Lebanon to seek up to $5bln in soft loans, prime minister rallies supportLebanon's new government must reassure international donors it is serious about reforms to tackle a financial crisis as it looks initially to secure up to $5 billion in soft loans for basic goods, its finance minister said on Thursday. The government that took office on Tuesday faces an emergency in which banks have imposed controls, the Lebanese pound has weakened and protesters have turned to violence which a senior U.N. official described as "politically manipulated". "The entire international community has its eye on what this government will do," Finance Minister Ghazi Wazni said in televised comments.


Residents paint a picture of Epstein's life on "Pedophile Island"

Residents paint a picture of Epstein's life on "Pedophile Island"When Epstein was convicted and serving time for procuring an underage girl in Florida for sex, word of his 13 month sentence and his alleged crimes made their way to St. Thomas.


Chief Justice John Roberts drops 'pettifogging' bomb while reprimanding both sides in impeachment trial

Chief Justice John Roberts drops 'pettifogging' bomb while reprimanding both sides in impeachment trial"Those addressing the Senate should remember where they are," Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts said, admonishing participants in President Trump's impeachment trial to keep it civil.


Prosecutor: DNA match leads to Florida 'pillowcase rapist'

Prosecutor: DNA match leads to Florida 'pillowcase rapist'Prosecutors announced Thursday that a sophisticated DNA match has led to the cold case arrest of a Florida man believed to be the “pillowcase rapist" who terrorized greater Miami with a series of assaults on women in the 1980s. Robert Koehler, 60, was arrested over the weekend and was being held without bond Thursday in a Miami jail. The “pillowcase rapist” was so named because he used a pillowcase or other fabric to cover the faces of his terrified victims, usually after he had broken into an apartment or town home, according to investigators.


These gun enthusiasts at the Virginia rally carried more firepower than many US troops

These gun enthusiasts at the Virginia rally carried more firepower than many US troops"This sends a strong visual message," a man holding a .50 caliber rifle said. Attendees also came with an armored vehicle and a grenade launcher.


This App Is a Dangerous Invasion of Your Privacy—and the FBI Uses It

This App Is a Dangerous Invasion of Your Privacy—and the FBI Uses ItWhat if you could instantly identify every stranger you ever saw?


26 Coffee Makers for Every Type of Coffee Drinker

26 Coffee Makers for Every Type of Coffee Drinker


'End of the world': Wuhan a ghost town under quarantine

'End of the world': Wuhan a ghost town under quarantineWuhan residents called for help and shared worries of food shortages Thursday, with streets in the virus-hit central Chinese city left deserted after it was put on lockdown. After he bought some, the person behind him in the queue bought the remaining stock in the shop.


Russia, China, and Iran Would Love to Take Out a Nuclear Aircraft Carrier. Here's Why They Can't.

Russia, China, and Iran Would Love to Take Out a Nuclear Aircraft Carrier. Here's Why They Can't.The beasts are more survivable than they seem.


Militia ally of Iran's Soleimani shot dead in southwest Iran: IRNA

Militia ally of Iran's Soleimani shot dead in southwest Iran: IRNAGunmen in Iran shot dead a commander of the hardline Basij militia who was an ally of Qassem Soleimani, the senior Revolutionary Guards commander killed in a U.S. drone strike in Iraq, the official news agency IRNA reported on Wednesday. The Basij are under the command of the Guards, the most powerful and heavily armed security force in the Islamic Republic. IRNA said that Abdolhossein Mojaddami, a Basij commander in the city of Darkhovin in the southwestern province of Khuzestan, was shot on Tuesday in front of his home by two men riding a motorcycle.


Rep. Ilhan Omar launches 'Send her back to Congress!' reelection bid with big advantages

Rep. Ilhan Omar launches 'Send her back to Congress!' reelection bid with big advantagesRep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., is kicking off her reelection campaign Thursday night with a massive bank account and no challengers who pose a serious threat from either party. Her campaign slogan — “Send her back to Congress!” — gleefully evokes President Trump’s personal attacks on her.


Report: Kamala Harris is considering endorsing Joe Biden

Report: Kamala Harris is considering endorsing Joe BidenSen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) is seriously contemplating endorsing former Vice President Joe Biden, several Democratic officials with knowledge of the matter told The New York Times. Harris dropped out of the 2020 Democratic presidential race in December, and although she sparred with Biden during debates last summer — most famously when she criticized him for once opposing school busing — they are back on good terms and talk often, the officials said.She likely won't announce an endorsement until after President Trump's Senate impeachment trial is over, the Times reports, and she understands the importance of her decision, especially since two of her fellow female senators — Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts and Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota — are also still in the presidential race.Biden has said he "of course" would consider asking Harris to join his ticket if he is the Democratic nominee. By giving him an endorsement, it could secure her spot as his running mate — or, if he chooses someone else to be vice president, his administration's attorney general.More stories from theweek.com Democrats walked right into Mitch McConnell's trap Texas legalized hemp, and Austin just responded to the resulting chaos by effectively decriminalizing weed The Oprah's Book Club controversy, explained


4 killed in plane crash at Southern California airfield

4 killed in plane crash at Southern California airfieldFour people were killed Wednesday in the crash of a small airplane at a Southern California airfield, authorities said. The plane went down at Corona Municipal Airport, about 40 miles (64 kilometers) east of Los Angeles, police said. Four fatalities were confirmed, the Corona Fire Department said on Twitter.


'The new evidence raises deeply troubling questions': did Arkansas kill an innocent man?

'The new evidence raises deeply troubling questions': did Arkansas kill an innocent man?Revealed: two years after Ledell Lee was executed, damning evidence emerges that experts say could prove his innocenceThe day before Ledell Lee was executed on 20 April 2017, he talked to the BBC from death row. He said that while he could not prevent the state of Arkansas from killing him, he had a message for his executioners: “My dying words will always be, as it has been: ‘I am an innocent man’.”Almost two years after Lee was strapped to a gurney and injected with a lethal cocktail of drugs, it looks increasingly likely he was telling the truth: he went to his death an innocent man. New evidence has emerged that suggests Lee was not guilty of the brutal murder of a woman in 1993 for which his life was taken.The deceased inmate’s sister Patricia Young lodged a lawsuit on Thursday with the circuit court of Pulaski county, Arkansas, petitioning city authorities and the local police department in Jacksonville to release crime scene materials to her family.The ACLU and the Innocence Project, who are investigating the case on the family’s behalf, believe state-of-the-art forensic examination of the materials, including DNA testing and fingerprint analysis, could definitively prove Arkansas did indeed execute an innocent man.An 81-page filing in the lawsuit provides damning new evidence that key aspects of the prosecution case against Lee were deeply flawed. The complaint includes expert opinion from a number of world-leading specialists who find glaring errors in the way forensic science and other evidence was interpreted.The lawsuit also includes a bombshell affidavit from Lee’s post-conviction attorney who admits to having struggled with substance abuse and addiction throughout the years in which he represented him.Lawyers who prepared the filing, led by Cassandra Stubbs of the ACLU and the Innocence Project’s Nina Morrison, conclude: “It is now clear that the state’s forensic experts from trial misinterpreted the evidence in plain sight, and their flawed opinions were further distorted by the state in its zeal to convict [Lee] of the crime. The new evidence raises deeply troubling questions about the shaky evidentiary pillars on which the state executed Ledell Lee.”Innocence has always been the achilles heel of America’s death penalty: how to justify judicially killing prisoners who may have been wrongfully convicted. The question is far from academic: since 1973 no fewer than 167 death row inmates have been exonerated.The most harrowing question is whether innocent prisoners have been executed before the flawed nature of their convictions emerged. In recent years, there have been several cases that, with near certainty, suggest that innocent men have been put to death.They include Cameron Todd Willingham executed in Texas in 2004 for allegedly having caused a fire that killed his three young daughters. After the execution, further evidence emerged that conclusively showed that he could not have set the fire.The Columbia Human Rights Law Review carried out a groundbreaking investigation in which it concluded Carlos DeLuna was innocent when he was executed – also by Texas – in 1989. The six-year study discovered that the convicted prisoner had almost certainly been confused with another man, a violent criminal who shared the name Carlos.Now Ledell Lee looks as though he may be added to the grim rollcall of the wrongly executed. He relentlessly insisted he was not guilty from the moment he was arrested less than two hours after the brutally beaten body of Debra Reese was discovered in her home in Jacksonville on 9 February 1993.The difficulties with the case against Lee began almost immediately. He was picked up nowhere near the crime scene and was not in possession of any possessions that could be linked to the break-in at Reese’s home.The only evidence against him was inconclusive at best. There were two eyewitnesses, but they gave conflicting reports of the suspect’s identification.> In recent years, there have been several cases that, with near certainty, suggest innocent men have been put to deathThe crime scene was shocking, with blood splattered over the walls and floor. Yet when Lee was arrested on the same day detectives could find no blood on his clothes or body including under his fingernails and nothing was found in a forensic search of his house.Given the paucity of evidence, it is not surprising that it took two trials to find Lee guilty and sentence him to death. The first trial collapsed after the jury was unable to reach a verdict.The ACLU and Innocence Project took up Lee’s case very late in the day having been asked to get involved shortly before his scheduled execution date. What they discovered when they opened the case records astounded even these experienced death penalty lawyers.Very quickly they established there were major problems with the prosecution case against Lee. One area that especially concerned them was the inadequacy of Lee’s legal representation, both during the second trial in which defense attorneys inexplicably failed to call alibi witnesses that could have placed Lee elsewhere at the time of the murder, and in terms of the help he received at the appeal stage of his case.At one post-conviction hearing, a lawyer working for the state of Arkansas approached the judge and raised concerns about Lee’s attorney, Craig Lambert. “Your honor, I don’t do this lightly, but I’m going to ask that the court require him to submit to a drug test,” the counsel said. “He’s just not with us … His speech is slurred.”In an affidavit obtained since Lee’s execution, signed by Lambert in October, the lawyer admits: “I was struggling with substance abuse and addiction in those years. I attended inpatient rehab. Ledell’s case was massive and I wasn’t in the best place personally to do what was necessary.”Partly as a result of poor legal representation, terrible errors were made in Lee’s defense – both at trial and for years afterwards during the appeals process. The complaint goes into detail about these “deeply troubling” shortcomings.One of the key examples relates to the marks found on the victim’s cheek. The state’s experts mistakenly interpreted the marks as having come from a pattern on a rug in Reese’s bedroom where she had been beaten to death with a wooden tire club.In fact, the filing says, the pattern on the body’s cheek did not match that on the rug. Instead it was consistent with the murderer stomping on Reese’s face directly with his shoe.That is critically significant because the shoes that Lee was wearing that day, which the state used during the trial as evidence against him, were incompatible in the composition of their soles with the injury pattern on Reese’s face.To establish this point, an affidavit is provided by Michael Baden, former chief pathologist for New York who is recognized internationally as a leading forensic pathologist. He concludes: “The soles of Mr Lee’s sneakers have a much more closely spaced pattern than was transferred in the cheek imprint.”That inconsistency is just one of many that were uncovered when Baden and four other specialists were invited to review the case.Lee was executed in a flurry. When the state of Arkansas realized its supply of one of its three lethal drugs, the sedative midazolam, was about to expire at the end of 2017 with no hope of replacing it due to a global ban on medicines being sent to the US for use in executions, it went into overdrive.It announced plans to kill eight prisoners in 11 days.The declaration prompted revulsion from around the US and the world and accusations that the state was engaging in conveyor-belt executions. It was in that climate that attempts by the ACLU and the Innocence Project to have materials gathered at the crime scene of Reese’s murder released for DNA testing fell on deaf ears.Though the lawyers presented a strong argument that DNA testing could be crucial in casting doubt on Lee’s conviction and pointing towards the real killer, a federal district court denied the request on grounds that Lee had “simply delayed too long” in asking for the materials.It is too late now for Lee. But his lawyers hope that it is not too late to get to the bottom of the case posthumously.The city of Jacksonville is in possession of a rich array of crime scene materials including “Negroid” hairs collected from Reese’s bedroom and fingernail scrapings likely to contain DNA from the actual killer – Lee or otherwise.“This evidence can now be tested with state-of-the-art methods unavailable at trial, and compared to Mr Lee’s unique DNA profile,” the filing says.After a welter of legal challenges, Arkansas succeeded in killing four prisoners in one week, including the first double execution held in the US in a single day since 2001. The first of the four to die was Ledell Lee.Should Arkansas now agree belatedly to hand over the crime scene materials for testing, he may yet be proven to have been, just as he always said he was, an innocent man.


Brexit Bulletin: Law of the Land

Brexit Bulletin: Law of the LandDays to Brexit: 8(Bloomberg) -- Sign up here to get the Brexit Bulletin in your inbox every weekday.What’s Happening? The Withdrawal Agreement Bill received royal assent, making Brexit on Jan. 31 a matter of U.K. law.Seventeen words brought an end to the British side of this phase of the Brexit saga. In a statement to the House of Commons, Deputy Speaker Nigel Evans delivered the news to listening lawmakers: “Her Majesty has signified her royal assent to the following act: European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Act 2020.”Royal assent brings to a close the crisis that paralyzed U.K. politics after the country voted to leave the European Union in June 2016. Former Prime Minister Theresa May failed to get her version of the deal through the House of Commons after reaching an agreement with the EU in November 2018. Her successor, Boris Johnson, succeeded only after winning a large majority in last month’s general election.With the U.K. due to slip out of the EU at 11 p.m. London time next Friday, all that remains is for the European Parliament to rubber-stamp the deal. That was due to move a step closer on Thursday afternoon via a vote of the assembly’s constitutional affairs committee, a group of the parliament’s most influential members. The panel was expected to nod the deal through.The full EU parliament, which officially has a veto over the deal, will vote on Jan. 29. It will almost certainly follow the committee’s lead. The U.K. is scheduled to leave the EU two days later.Beyond BrexitClimate activist Greta Thunberg should go back to school and study economics, U.S. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin said at the World Economic Forum in Davos. These billionaires made their fortunes by trying to stop climate change. The £200 million ($262 million) London mansion bought by Cheung Cheung Kie earlier this month isn’t even his most valuable property.Brexit in BriefRule Makers | U.K. financiers are asking the government to revamp regulations to attract global business after Brexit. Watchdogs should have the power “to make the U.K. a better place to do business” through a new mandate to support London’s financial hub against rivals, according to the International Regulatory Strategy Group, a panel backed by the City of London.Diverging Views | Speaking at Davos on Thursday morning, U.K. Chancellor of the Exchequer Sajid Javid tried to reassure business over Britain’s post-Brexit ties with the EU. “We won’t diverge just for the sake of it,” he said. That’s despite telling the Financial Times last week that “there will not be alignment” with EU rules after Brexit.Off-Piste? | Did Javid speak out of turn at Davos when he said that talks for a U.K.-EU trade deal will take priority over any agreement with the U.S.? Today’s Bloomberg Westminster podcast discusses his motivations.Time Is Tight | The clock is ticking for the EU and the U.K. to hammer out a trade deal by the end of the year, according to Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte. “It’s an awfully short amount of time so I hope that coming next summer, June, July, that Boris Johnson will at least contemplate extending, if necessary, this transition phase,” Rutte said in a Bloomberg TV interview in Davos. “I’m Still Here” | Steve Bray, otherwise known as the “Stop Brexit Guy” was a fixture outside Westminster during the height of the U.K.’s Brexit tension, often disrupting live TV interviews. On Thursday he took his protest to Brussels, joining a small rally outside the European Parliament, the Brussels Times reports. “I came to Brussels just to visit this parliament,” the Times reported him as saying. “I’m still here because I still care.”Want to keep up with Brexit?You can follow us @Brexit on Twitter, and listen to Bloomberg Westminster every weekday. It’s live at midday on Bloomberg Radio and is available as a podcast too. Share the Brexit Bulletin: Colleagues, friends and family can sign up here. For full EU coverage, try the Brussels Edition.For even more: Subscribe to Bloomberg All Access for our unmatched global news coverage and two in-depth daily newsletters, The Bloomberg Open and The Bloomberg Close.To contact the authors of this story: Thomas Penny in London at tpenny@bloomberg.netIan Wishart in Brussels at iwishart@bloomberg.netTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Adam Blenford at ablenford@bloomberg.net, Chris KayFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.


At impeachment trial, Democrats address Biden corruption allegations as Graham promises more developments

At impeachment trial, Democrats address Biden corruption allegations as Graham promises more developmentsSen. Lindsey Graham made it clear that he plans to make Hunter Biden a much bigger part of the impeachment debate in the coming days.


White Nationalists Arrested ahead of Richmond Rally Planned to Kill Gun-Rights Demonstrators to Spark Civil War

White Nationalists Arrested ahead of Richmond Rally Planned to Kill Gun-Rights Demonstrators to Spark Civil WarThree alleged members of a white supremacist group were plotting to murder demonstrators at Monday's gun rights rally at the Virginia Capitol before they were arrested by the FBI last week, according to court documents.The men were caught discussing their plans on a hidden camera set up in their Delaware apartment by FBI agents.“We can’t let Virginia go to waste, we just can’t,” said Patrik J. Mathews, one member of the hate group "the Base" that promotes violence against African-Americans and Jews.According to authorities, the 27-year-old former Canadian Armed Forces reservist also discussed creating "instability" in Virginia by killing people, derailing trains, poisoning water, and shutting down highways in order to "kick off the economic collapse" and possibly start a "full blown civil war."Mathews also discussed the possibility of "executing" police officers and stealing their belongings and remarked that, “We could essentially be like literally hunting people.”“Virginia will be our day,” said 33-year-old Brian M. Lemley Jr., adding, “I need to claim my first victim.”“Lemley discussed using a thermal imaging scope affixed to his rifle to conduct ambush attacks,” the court filings read.The two were arrested along with a third man, 19, last Thursday. They are charged with federal firearms violations and “transporting and harboring an alien,” referring to Mathews, who is a Canadian national. Four more members of The Base have also been arrested and charged in Georgia and Wisconsin.In a search of the apartment, prosecutors said that FBI agents found propaganda fliers for The Base, communications devices, empty rifle cases, "go bags" with "numerous Meals-Ready-to-Eat," knives, and materials for building an assault rifle.Tens of thousands of gun rights advocates rallied in Richmond on Monday to protest the state’s Democratic legislature's gun-control agenda. Critics raised fears beforehand that militant white supremacists could disrupt the rally, but the day ended peacefully with no violence.


Wife: China's ex-Interpol boss jailed for reformist views

Wife: China's ex-Interpol boss jailed for reformist viewsIn her first comments about her imprisoned husband's sentence in China, the wife of former Interpol president Meng Hongwei dismissed his bribery conviction as “a lie, a fake case” and said he is being punished for using his senior position in the ruling Communist Party to push for reform from within. Grace Meng said during in an exclusive interview Wednesday with The Associated Press that her husband, a long-serving vice minister of public security, had been part of a reformist faction of China's secretive ruling party. In response to worsening corruption, Meng Hongwei and others argued, out of the public eye and at the highest circles of power for a “modern” constitutional and election-based political system, she said.


Michelle Carter, who encouraged boyfriend's suicide, released from jail early for good behavior

Michelle Carter, who encouraged boyfriend's suicide, released from jail early for good behaviorMichelle Carter, the Massachusetts woman who encouraged her boyfriend, Conrad Roy, to kill himself has been released from jail in Bristol County.


Virologist who helped identify SARS on coronavirus outbreak: 'This time I'm scared'

Virologist who helped identify SARS on coronavirus outbreak: 'This time I'm scared'Experts are seeing shocking similarities between the coronavirus that has now spread beyond China and the SARS outbreak of 2003.Like the infectious pneumonia that has killed at least 17 people, SARS was caused by a coronavirus that originated in China. But when one of the virologists who helped identify the SARS virus visited Wuhan, where this virus originated, he didn't see nearly enough being done to fight it. People were out at markets without masks, "preparing to ring in the New Year in peace and had no sense about the epidemic," Guan Yi of the University of Hong Kong's State Key Laboratory of Emerging Infectious Diseases told Caixin. Airports were hardly being disinfected, Guan continued, saying the local government hasn't "even been handing out quarantine guides to people who were leaving the city."The city did disinfect the market where the virus has been traced to, but Guan criticized Wuhan for that, saying it hurts researchers' abilities to track down the virus's source. "I've never felt scared," Guan told Caixin. "This time I'm scared."A case involving the coronavirus was identified in Washington state on Wednesday, and cases have also been identified in Thailand, Japan, South Korea, and Singapore. A total of 639 cases were confirmed in China.More stories from theweek.com Democrats walked right into Mitch McConnell's trap Texas legalized hemp, and Austin just responded to the resulting chaos by effectively decriminalizing weed The Oprah's Book Club controversy, explained


U.S.-Israeli woman jailed in Russia has not yet sought pardon: Kremlin

U.S.-Israeli woman jailed in Russia has not yet sought pardon: KremlinThe Kremlin said on Friday that the possible release of Naama Issachar, a U.S.-Israeli woman jailed in Russia on drug charges, was being held up because she had not yet formally asked to be granted a pardon. Israel has called on Russia to release Issachar, who was sentenced by a Russian court to seven-and-a-half years in jail for drug offences in October.


The American Airlines flight attendant union is calling on US airlines to step up precautions for the deadly Wuhan coronavirus

The American Airlines flight attendant union is calling on US airlines to step up precautions for the deadly Wuhan coronavirusThe Wuhan coronavirus outbreak has sickened more than 630 people and killed 18. It has spread to at least 8 countries.


Utah bans LGBTQ conversion therapy for minors

Utah bans LGBTQ conversion therapy for minors"It simply will save lives," said GOP State Representative Craig Hall, who originally sponsored the proposal.


Presidential candidate Tom Steyer: ‘I’m for reparations’

Presidential candidate Tom Steyer: ‘I’m for reparations’On Yahoo News’ “Hot Mic with Brittany Shepherd,” Democratic presidential candidate Tom Steyer spoke about race and reparations, saying that if he were elected to office, “I would start a commission on race on day one.”


Yahoo News/YouGov poll shows two-thirds of voters want the Senate to call new impeachment witnesses

Yahoo News/YouGov poll shows two-thirds of voters want the Senate to call new impeachment witnessesIn a new poll, 63 percent of registered voters agree that the Senate should call new witnesses to testify during President Trump’s impeachment trial.


Ex-Maryland police officer has been charged with raping and attempting to transmit HIV to a woman he pulled over

Ex-Maryland police officer has been charged with raping and attempting to transmit HIV to a woman he pulled overA Maryland Grand Jury has indicted former police officer Martique Vanderpool on charges that he raped and attempted to expose a woman with HIV.


Girl's family: 'Impossible' to lean from cruise ship window

Girl's family: 'Impossible' to lean from cruise ship windowThe parents of an Indiana girl who fell to her death from the open window of a cruise ship docked in Puerto Rico contend it was “physically impossible” for the child’s grandfather to lean out of that 11th floor window, as the cruise line has alleged, just before the toddler slipped from his hands. The parents of Chloe Wiegand also accuse Royal Caribbean Cruises of releasing deceptive surveillance images, and allege in their preliminary response filed Wednesday in U.S. District Court in Miami that the cruise line lied in its recent motion seeking the dismissal of the family’s lawsuit. In its Jan. 8 filing, Royal Caribbean alleged that surveillance video shows the child’s 51-year-old grandfather, Salvatore Anello, leaning out of the open window for about eight seconds just moments before he lifted his granddaughter up to the window, from which she fell to her death on July 8.


Smugglers tried to bring 3,700 invasive crabs through the Port of Cincinnati

Smugglers tried to bring 3,700 invasive crabs through the Port of CincinnatiMitten crabs are a delicacy in Asia and sell for about $50 each in the United States, officials say. They are considered an invasive species.


Schiff thanks senators at the start of impeachment argument after Nadler accused Republicans of 'voting for a cover up'

Schiff thanks senators at the start of impeachment argument after Nadler accused Republicans of 'voting for a cover up'Democrats officially kicked off their opening arguments in the impeachment trial of President Trump Wednesday with a bit of a shift in tone after one particularly contentious late-night exchange.Near the end of an impeachment trial session beginning Tuesday, House Judiciary Committee Chair Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.) on the Senate floor accused Republican senators of "voting for a cover up" as he argued in favor of an amendment to subpoena former National Security Adviser John Bolton, per The Wall Street Journal. Nadler also suggested Republicans were engaging in "treacherous" behavior, The Washington Post reports. Republicans throughout the day on Wednesday slammed Nadler for his statement; Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) told CNN it was "insulting and outrageous," while Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) said the comment "offended her" and Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) said in a press conference, "To my Democratic colleagues, you can say what you want about me but I am covering up nothing."Following this criticism, House Intelligence Committee Chair Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) began Democrats' opening arguments Wednesday with a less combative tone, thanking senators for having "paid attention to every word and argument you heard from both sides" the day before."I want to begin today by thanking you for the conduct of the proceedings yesterday and for inviting your patience as you go forward," Schiff added. "We have some very long days yet to come."CNN's Kaitlan Collins noted Schiff appeared to be addressing Republican criticism with his opening comments, although Republicans weren't the only ones not thrilled with the tone of Tuesday night's debate. Sen. Jon Tester (D-Mont.), for instance, conceded to The Washington Post that Nadler "could have chose better words."More stories from theweek.com Democrats walked right into Mitch McConnell's trap 5 brutally funny cartoons about Mitch McConnell's impeachment rules The Oprah's Book Club controversy, explained


China Praised By Germany For Transparency in Combating Virus

China Praised By Germany For Transparency in Combating Virus(Bloomberg) -- China is doing a better job and the world community is more prepared in dealing with the new coronavirus than they were during the 2002 to 2003 SARS episode, Germany’s health minister said in an interview.“There’s a big difference to SARS. We have a much more transparent China,” Jens Spahn told Bloomberg TV on Friday on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum in Davos. “The action of China is much more effective in the first days already.”The World Health Organization on Thursday stopped short of calling the new SARS-like virus from central China a global health emergency.Chinese official have imposed travel restrictions on millions of people as Singapore reported a case of the new virus.Read More:WHO Says Coronavirus Remains Local Chinese Emergency for NowSingapore Reports Virus Case as China Limits Some TravelWuhan Virus Lockdown Casts Cloud Over Industry & Tech HubMapping the Outbreak of China’s CoronavirusGlobal health authorities are also better prepared today, said Spahn.“We learned a lot because of SARS. The WTO has reformed, developed permanent institutions of exchange,” the 39-year-old former under-secretary of finance said. “We know what do. That’s an important signal for people back home too.”G20 health ministers have been rehearsing for emergencies since SARS and Ebola, he added.“Our national health systems in Europe and in the U.S., by the way in many western countries -- we are able to deal with this. As soon as somebody is found with this infection, he’ll be put in an isolated station,” said Spahn.The virus is believed to have emerged last month in a seafood and wildlife market in Wuhan, spreading from infected animals to humans.To contact the reporters on this story: Arne Delfs in Berlin at adelfs@bloomberg.net;Francine Lacqua in Davos, Switzerland at flacqua@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Ben Sills at bsills@bloomberg.net, Raymond Colitt, Andrew BlackmanFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.


Australia bushfires contribute to big rise in global CO2 levels: UK's Met Office

Australia bushfires contribute to big rise in global CO2 levels: UK's Met OfficeAustralia's bushfires are contributing to one of the biggest annual increases in the concentration of carbon dioxide in the Earth's atmosphere since record-keeping began more than 60 years ago, according to a forecast published by Britain's Met Office on Friday. While human-caused greenhouse gas emissions are responsible for the bulk of the increase in CO2 levels, Australia's bushfires have made the problem measurably worse, underscoring the impact of the catastrophe on the global climate system. "A forecast of the atmospheric concentration of carbon-dioxide shows that 2020 will witness one of the largest annual rises in concentration since measurements began at Mauna Loa, in Hawaii, 1958," the Met Office said in a statement.


REI’s January Sale Offers 50% off Cold-Weather Outdoor Gear

REI’s January Sale Offers 50% off Cold-Weather Outdoor Gear


Thunberg fires back at Mnunchin after college degree jab

Thunberg fires back at Mnunchin after college degree jabTreasury Secretary Steven Mnunchin said Greta Thunberg can discuss fossil fuel divestment "after she goes and studies economics in college."


Donald Trump shares image of Barack Obama scaling Trump Tower

Donald Trump shares image of Barack Obama scaling Trump TowerDonald Trump has tweeted a photoshopped image of Barack Obama scaling the walls of Trump Tower with suction cups and holding binoculars.The image, which was posted without a caption, appeared to be a reference to Mr Trump’s claims that Mr Obama and the FBI illegally spied on him.


The US plans to force passengers to change routes, and potentially redirect entire flights, to make sure they get screened for the Wuhan virus

The US plans to force passengers to change routes, and potentially redirect entire flights, to make sure they get screened for the Wuhan virusUS officials described an ambitious 'funnel' system to make sure every passenger from Wuhan, China, to the US gets screened — no matter their route.


Mexico sees rise in gangs, vigilantes recruiting children

Mexico sees rise in gangs, vigilantes recruiting childrenOne day after a vigilante group revealed that it was using children as young as 8 as “recruits” for armed defense patrols, Mexico's president said Thursday that drug cartels too are recruiting ever-younger kids. The whole issue has sparked a debate in Mexico over the use of children in armed confrontations, with rights groups saying the practice threatens not only kids' safety, but their mental health. President Andrés Manuel López Obrador said that because social programs are giving more youths opportunities to study or work, drug cartels are having trouble finding gunmen, leading them to recruit children.


See This Nuke? Meet the Most Destructive Nuclear Bomb Ever Made By Man

See This Nuke? Meet the Most Destructive Nuclear Bomb Ever Made By ManThank god the Soviets never deployed it.


No qualms for India's hangman before first job of executing rapists

No qualms for India's hangman before first job of executing rapistsPawan Kumar feels zero sympathy for the four men he is due to hang next month for a 2012 gang rape and murder that appalled India. The group set to meet their demise before dawn on February 1 -- although it may be delayed -- were convicted for a brutal crime against Jyoti Singh, a 23-year-old student. Angry demonstrations by tens of thousands of people broke out across the vast South Asian nation, sparking soul-searching about the plight of Indian women and leading to heavier sentences for sex crimes.


U.S., China Must Adjust for Stable World, Singapore Leader Says

U.S., China Must Adjust for Stable World, Singapore Leader Says(Bloomberg) -- Sign up here to receive the Davos Diary, a special daily newsletter that will run from Jan. 20-24.Both the U.S. and China must make adjustments if they are going to reach a lasting phase-two trade deal that benefits the rest of the world, Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said.Speaking in an interview with Bloomberg’s Editor-in-Chief John Micklethwait, Lee said “both sides have to make quite basic adjustments.” The U.S., he said, must decide whether to create rules that allow “the best man” to win or only let America come out on top.“America First means you do the best for the United States,” Lee said in Davos, Switzerland, while attending the World Economic Forum. “So do you do the best by prospering in the world and there are other countries who are doing well, or do your best by being a big country in a troubled world? And I’m not sure that the second is a very good answer.”The U.S.-China War Over Trade and Tariffs, Explained: QuickTakeChina, on the other hand, must decide whether they are going to be “constructive players” in world affairs and accept that “rules which were acceptable to other countries when they were smaller and less dominant now have to be revised and renegotiated,” Lee said.“It’s not so easy for them to concede and voluntarily step back from what they feel they can hold on to for a while longer,” he said. But if they make that adjustment, “there’s some possibility of working out a modus vivendi which will be stable and constructive for the world,” he said.Huawei ConcernsSingapore, a city-state heavily dependent on trade, had been one of the most outspoken countries in Asia calling for the U.S. and China to reach a trade deal. Lee has warned that Southeast Asian nations might one day be forced to choose if the world economy gets pulled apart into different blocs.The Trump administration has sought to convince countries around the world to avoid using equipment from Huawei Technologies Co., China’s biggest tech firm, for 5G networks, arguing it poses a national security threat. Singapore’s government so far has left the decision up to its telecommunications operators.How Huawei Landed at the Center of Global Tech Tussle: QuickTakeLee reiterated that Singapore hasn’t “banned Huawei” but will evaluate it based on operational requirements. Any system will have weaknesses, he said, and governments must try to keep them secure.“We have to make our own assessments, and the assessments have to be based on facts and risks,” Lee said. “And having made those assessments, well we may come to a conclusion which is different from what the Americans have come to, but it doesn’t mean that we’re not concerned about similar issues.”Lee added that differences of opinion on Huawei don’t necessarily signal a loss of U.S. influence. “If you ask us on security cooperations, certainly we are closer to the U.S. than to China,” Lee said. “But in terms of our trade, the Chinese are our biggest trading partner. In terms of our overall relationship, we have deep relationships with both.”March SummitPresident Donald Trump last November invited countries in the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations, or Asean, to a special summit in the U.S. after he skipped the bloc’s meeting in Bangkok. At the time, most leaders in the region snubbed the group’s meeting with Trump’s representative, National Security Adviser Robert O’Brien.Lee said he would join other Asean leaders for a meeting with Trump in Las Vegas on March 14.“I’m sure we’ll be discussing areas where we can cooperate and do more together,” Lee said. “I hope that Mr. Trump, amidst his many domestic preoccupations, will send a message that Asia is important to him and Southeast Asia has its part in the Americanscheme of things.”China has recently stepped up efforts to assert its territorial claims in the South China Sea, prompting fellow claimants like Vietnam, Malaysia and Indonesia to resist those advances in the energy-rich waters. The Asean bloc has been negotiating a legally binding code of conduct in the waters for more than two decades, and aim to complete it in the next few years.“It’s not an easy thing to do,” Lee said of the code of conduct. “We’re working at it and we’ve made some progress in the negotiating process, but I think it’s better to be talking and working toward this rather than abandoning this and actually coming to blows on the ground.”\--With assistance from Joyce Koh, Faris Mokhtar, Michelle Jamrisko and Ruth Pollard.To contact the reporters on this story: Iain Marlow in Hong Kong at imarlow1@bloomberg.net;Philip J. Heijmans in Singapore at pheijmans1@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Daniel Ten Kate at dtenkate@bloomberg.net, Nasreen SeriaFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.


Trump Admin: Pregnant Travelers Could Threaten U.S. Security

Trump Admin: Pregnant Travelers Could Threaten U.S. SecurityThe Trump administration has unveiled its latest national security measure—a crackdown on pregnant travelers—leaving both immigration and women’s rights attorneys shaking their heads.New State Department rules, slated to take effect Friday, allow consular officials to deny tourist visas to anyone they believe may give birth on their trip to the United States. The administration says this is to stop pregnant women from entering the country solely to seek birthright citizenship for their children. But attorneys say it is just another license to discriminate. “What this measure seems to be doing is creating another basis for discriminating against women in their ability to come to the United States of America,” said Lynn Paltrow, executive director of National Advocates for Pregnant Women. “It portrays women and people with the capacity for pregnancy as a danger to the United States of America.”Until now, traveling to the U.S. to give birth has been entirely legal, as long as women did not lie about their intentions on their visa application. The lack of restrictions helped fuel a lucrative “birth tourism” business, in which U.S.-based brokers—including several operating out of Trump properties—charged women tens of thousands of dollars for lodging during their pregnancy and birth.  Russians Flock to Trump Properties to Give Birth to U.S. CitizensTrump, however, has long railed against the concept of birthright citizenship, calling it a “magnet for illegal immigration” and falsely claiming that the U.S. is the only country in the world that allows it. He even proposed eliminating birthright citizenship outright via executive order—a proposal experts dismissed as blatantly unconstitutional.The State Department said Thursday that the new rules are meant to close an immigration “loophole” that threatens national security. But officials were unable to name a single instance in which so-called “birth tourism” had created a national security threat. They also could not provide the exact number of tourists who give birth in the U.S. each year, putting the number somewhere in the thousands. Approximately 4 million people give birth in the U.S. annually.The ACLU slammed the new rules, calling on the administration to “reverse course.” “This is the same administration that admitted to tracking the periods of migrant teens and ramping up its detention of pregnant immigrants,” said Ria Tabacco Mar, director of the ACLU’s Women’s Rights Project. “We have real questions, but we know this: This new regulation is rooted in misogyny, xenophobia, and racism.” Experts also questioned exactly how the new rules would be enforced. According to the State Department rules, consular officers will be required to question any woman for whom they have a “specific, articulable reason” to believe she is traveling for the primary purpose of giving birth. But they declined to say how exactly an officer would determine this, saying it could become apparent in an interview, in an application form, or as part of “information that comes to a consular officer.”Jeffrey Gorsky, an attorney who previously worked in the State Department’s visa office, said it would be rare for a woman to wait until she was visibly pregnant to apply for a visa. In fact, many travelers apply for multiple-entry visas that are good for at least 10 years. “Are they going to restrict visas for young women who are married under the presumption they could be coming to the U.S. to give birth?” Gorsky asked.Paltrow said this system would incentivize officers to deny visas to any woman who could be pregnant, for fear they would be accused of not doing their jobs. “They’re going to see virtually every woman who wants to come into the country as possibly pregnant and someone they should keep out,” she said. “Because there’s no way you can tell just by looking.” The rule allows exceptions for women who plan to give birth in the U.S. for legitimate medical reasons or who have some other reason for coming to the country late in their pregnancy. (An example listed in the text of the rules is a pregnant woman who is coming to visit her terminally ill mother.) Women who enter the country for medical reasons related to their pregnancy are required to demonstrate that they can pay for the services in full. The issue of “birth tourism” has received increased media attention in recent years, as Trump lashed out against immigrants he claimed were cheating their way into the country. Women from China and Russia have paid anywhere from $50,000 to $100,000 to have their children in sunny locales like Southern California or Florida.A previous Daily Beast investigation found several Miami-based birth tourism firms  advertising rentals in Trump-owned properties. One such company advertised lodging in the local Trump Towers, with a gold-tiled bathtub and chauffeured Cadillac Escalade or Mercedes Benz. Others offered a Trump Royale penthouse apartment, starting at $7,000 a month.“I was looking particularly for Trump Towers,” said one expectant mother who traveled from Russia to Miami. “[Now] in the evenings, I have a great view because you have the bay, and the buildings aglow. The building is great. No regrets.”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.


Huge explosion rips through Houston building, heard for miles around

Huge explosion rips through Houston building, heard for miles aroundSmoke poured out from inside a structure in the pre-dawn darkness about two hours after the blast as emergency vehicle lights flashed and first responders blocked access and checked for damage, aerial video from KTRK television showed. The moment of the explosion was captured on a home security camera, also aired on KTRK, that showed a blinding flash in the distance followed by a fireball. Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo said the debris field from the explosion was about a half mile (1 km) wide, but that there were no known toxic gases emitted from the blast.


Spirit Airlines passenger: Cabin crew didn't take my groping allegation seriously

Spirit Airlines passenger: Cabin crew didn't take my groping allegation seriouslyA Michigan college student says she was sexually assaulted on a Spirit Airlines flight, but that flight attendants treated her like an annoyance.


These 9 Dining Chairs Are Sculptural, Surprising, and Downright Sleek

These 9 Dining Chairs Are Sculptural, Surprising, and Downright Sleek


Lindsey Graham is offering unsolicited legal advice to Trump's team

Lindsey Graham is offering unsolicited legal advice to Trump's teamSen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), a juror in President Trump's impeachment trial, is offering free legal advice to his counsel, if they want to accept it.So far, the House impeachment managers have "done a good job" of "painting ... a tapestry, taking a series of events and telling a story," Graham told reporters on Thursday. When Trump's legal team starts delivering his defense on Saturday, they will "start pulling on the threads."Graham also thinks Trump's attorneys will need to shift the focus to former Vice President Joe Biden and his son, Hunter Biden. Hunter Biden was on the board of Burisma, a Ukrainian gas company, and is in the center of a debunked conspiracy theory being peddled by Trump allies, including Rudy Giuliani. Graham said Trump's team needs to "really go hard at the idea that when they tell you there's not a scintilla of evidence, groundless, baseless, phony accusations regarding the Bidens, I would challenge that very hard."More stories from theweek.com Democrats walked right into Mitch McConnell's trap Texas legalized hemp, and Austin just responded to the resulting chaos by effectively decriminalizing weed The Oprah's Book Club controversy, explained


School headmaster charged in fatal gold robbery in Thailand

School headmaster charged in fatal gold robbery in ThailandAn elementary school headmaster said Thursday he planned a gold shop robbery in Thailand due to personal and financial problems and apologized to the families of the three people who were killed. A 2-year-old boy was among the victims of the shooting earlier this month that caused public outrage and increased pressure for a swift arrest. Police arrested Prasitthichai Khaokaew, 38, early Wednesday and said he confessed to his crimes during interrogation.


The FBI reportedly stopped a Saudi plot to kidnap a YouTuber on US soil after he criticized Mohammed bin Salman for Jamal Khashoggi's killing

The FBI reportedly stopped a Saudi plot to kidnap a YouTuber on US soil after he criticized Mohammed bin Salman for Jamal Khashoggi's killingAbdulrahman Almutairi used social media to criticize the Saudi government. It appears to have almost cost him his life.


Successor to slain Iran general will be murdered if he kills Americans: U.S. envoy

Successor to slain Iran general will be murdered if he kills Americans: U.S. envoyThe successor to the Iranian commander killed in a U.S. drone strike would suffer the same fate if he followed a similar path by killing Americans, the U.S. special representative for Iran said, according to the Asharq al-Awsat newspaper.


China Puts 13 Cities on Lockdown as Coronavirus Death Toll Climbs

China Puts 13 Cities on Lockdown as Coronavirus Death Toll ClimbsChina is striving to contain a deadly virus outbreak the World Health Organization has termed a domestic health emergency


German Defense Chief Warns Islamic State Could Resume ‘Terror’

German Defense Chief Warns Islamic State Could Resume ‘Terror’(Bloomberg) -- Germany’s defense minister warned that Islamic State fighters could return in force in the Middle East if an international coalition is unable to continue its work against the militant organization.Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, speaking in an interview at the World Economic Forum on Thursday, said that Germany aims to keep its forces in Iraq, but can only do so at the behest of the government in Baghdad.“We need to keep in mind that in Iraq, IS is not yet defeated,“ Kramp-Karrenbauer told Bloomberg Television in Davos, Switzerland. “If the pressure is reduced, then the danger is great that it resumes its regime of terror.”The concerns by a key U.S. ally underscore how the mission has been shaken since the killing of Iranian General Qassem Soleimani, which prompted the Iraqis to demand the departure of 5,000 American troops from the country. The self-declared caliphate was largely subdued by early last year in Syria and Iraq, where it once controlled territory the size of Iceland.Germany, which has some 120 troops in Iraq as part of an anti-ISIS campaign, suspended its operations amid the crisis. Thirty-two German troops were transferred to Jordan and three to Kuwait.Kramp-Karrenbauer, who visited German troops in the region last week, said that the European nation had made progress in training Iraqi forces to fend off the militants.The German defense chief, who is also Chancellor Angela Merkel’s presumptive heir as leader of her Christian Democratic Union, said that her country is doing more to take on global responsibility in the face of public skepticism about troop presence in places such as Iraq, Afghanistan and Mali.“What we have to continue to explain in domestic politics is why these missions serve our own interests,” Kramp-Karrenbauer said.To contact the reporters on this story: Patrick Donahue in Berlin at pdonahue1@bloomberg.net;Chad Thomas in Davos, Switzerland at cthomas16@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Ben Sills at bsills@bloomberg.net, Raymond ColittFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.


Spotted: America's Shadowy Stealth Spy Drone

Spotted: America's Shadowy Stealth Spy DroneDoes it have a new mission now?


Lebanon to seek up to $5bln in soft loans, prime minister rallies support

Lebanon to seek up to $5bln in soft loans, prime minister rallies supportLebanon's new government must reassure international donors it is serious about reforms to tackle a financial crisis as it looks initially to secure up to $5 billion in soft loans for basic goods, its finance minister said on Thursday. The government that took office on Tuesday faces an emergency in which banks have imposed controls, the Lebanese pound has weakened and protesters have turned to violence which a senior U.N. official described as "politically manipulated". "The entire international community has its eye on what this government will do," Finance Minister Ghazi Wazni said in televised comments.


Residents paint a picture of Epstein's life on "Pedophile Island"

Residents paint a picture of Epstein's life on "Pedophile Island"When Epstein was convicted and serving time for procuring an underage girl in Florida for sex, word of his 13 month sentence and his alleged crimes made their way to St. Thomas.


Chief Justice John Roberts drops 'pettifogging' bomb while reprimanding both sides in impeachment trial

Chief Justice John Roberts drops 'pettifogging' bomb while reprimanding both sides in impeachment trial"Those addressing the Senate should remember where they are," Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts said, admonishing participants in President Trump's impeachment trial to keep it civil.


Prosecutor: DNA match leads to Florida 'pillowcase rapist'

Prosecutor: DNA match leads to Florida 'pillowcase rapist'Prosecutors announced Thursday that a sophisticated DNA match has led to the cold case arrest of a Florida man believed to be the “pillowcase rapist" who terrorized greater Miami with a series of assaults on women in the 1980s. Robert Koehler, 60, was arrested over the weekend and was being held without bond Thursday in a Miami jail. The “pillowcase rapist” was so named because he used a pillowcase or other fabric to cover the faces of his terrified victims, usually after he had broken into an apartment or town home, according to investigators.


These gun enthusiasts at the Virginia rally carried more firepower than many US troops

These gun enthusiasts at the Virginia rally carried more firepower than many US troops"This sends a strong visual message," a man holding a .50 caliber rifle said. Attendees also came with an armored vehicle and a grenade launcher.


This App Is a Dangerous Invasion of Your Privacy—and the FBI Uses It

This App Is a Dangerous Invasion of Your Privacy—and the FBI Uses ItWhat if you could instantly identify every stranger you ever saw?


26 Coffee Makers for Every Type of Coffee Drinker

26 Coffee Makers for Every Type of Coffee Drinker


'End of the world': Wuhan a ghost town under quarantine

'End of the world': Wuhan a ghost town under quarantineWuhan residents called for help and shared worries of food shortages Thursday, with streets in the virus-hit central Chinese city left deserted after it was put on lockdown. After he bought some, the person behind him in the queue bought the remaining stock in the shop.


Russia, China, and Iran Would Love to Take Out a Nuclear Aircraft Carrier. Here's Why They Can't.

Russia, China, and Iran Would Love to Take Out a Nuclear Aircraft Carrier. Here's Why They Can't.The beasts are more survivable than they seem.


Militia ally of Iran's Soleimani shot dead in southwest Iran: IRNA

Militia ally of Iran's Soleimani shot dead in southwest Iran: IRNAGunmen in Iran shot dead a commander of the hardline Basij militia who was an ally of Qassem Soleimani, the senior Revolutionary Guards commander killed in a U.S. drone strike in Iraq, the official news agency IRNA reported on Wednesday. The Basij are under the command of the Guards, the most powerful and heavily armed security force in the Islamic Republic. IRNA said that Abdolhossein Mojaddami, a Basij commander in the city of Darkhovin in the southwestern province of Khuzestan, was shot on Tuesday in front of his home by two men riding a motorcycle.


Rep. Ilhan Omar launches 'Send her back to Congress!' reelection bid with big advantages

Rep. Ilhan Omar launches 'Send her back to Congress!' reelection bid with big advantagesRep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., is kicking off her reelection campaign Thursday night with a massive bank account and no challengers who pose a serious threat from either party. Her campaign slogan — “Send her back to Congress!” — gleefully evokes President Trump’s personal attacks on her.


Report: Kamala Harris is considering endorsing Joe Biden

Report: Kamala Harris is considering endorsing Joe BidenSen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) is seriously contemplating endorsing former Vice President Joe Biden, several Democratic officials with knowledge of the matter told The New York Times. Harris dropped out of the 2020 Democratic presidential race in December, and although she sparred with Biden during debates last summer — most famously when she criticized him for once opposing school busing — they are back on good terms and talk often, the officials said.She likely won't announce an endorsement until after President Trump's Senate impeachment trial is over, the Times reports, and she understands the importance of her decision, especially since two of her fellow female senators — Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts and Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota — are also still in the presidential race.Biden has said he "of course" would consider asking Harris to join his ticket if he is the Democratic nominee. By giving him an endorsement, it could secure her spot as his running mate — or, if he chooses someone else to be vice president, his administration's attorney general.More stories from theweek.com Democrats walked right into Mitch McConnell's trap Texas legalized hemp, and Austin just responded to the resulting chaos by effectively decriminalizing weed The Oprah's Book Club controversy, explained


4 killed in plane crash at Southern California airfield

4 killed in plane crash at Southern California airfieldFour people were killed Wednesday in the crash of a small airplane at a Southern California airfield, authorities said. The plane went down at Corona Municipal Airport, about 40 miles (64 kilometers) east of Los Angeles, police said. Four fatalities were confirmed, the Corona Fire Department said on Twitter.


'The new evidence raises deeply troubling questions': did Arkansas kill an innocent man?

'The new evidence raises deeply troubling questions': did Arkansas kill an innocent man?Revealed: two years after Ledell Lee was executed, damning evidence emerges that experts say could prove his innocenceThe day before Ledell Lee was executed on 20 April 2017, he talked to the BBC from death row. He said that while he could not prevent the state of Arkansas from killing him, he had a message for his executioners: “My dying words will always be, as it has been: ‘I am an innocent man’.”Almost two years after Lee was strapped to a gurney and injected with a lethal cocktail of drugs, it looks increasingly likely he was telling the truth: he went to his death an innocent man. New evidence has emerged that suggests Lee was not guilty of the brutal murder of a woman in 1993 for which his life was taken.The deceased inmate’s sister Patricia Young lodged a lawsuit on Thursday with the circuit court of Pulaski county, Arkansas, petitioning city authorities and the local police department in Jacksonville to release crime scene materials to her family.The ACLU and the Innocence Project, who are investigating the case on the family’s behalf, believe state-of-the-art forensic examination of the materials, including DNA testing and fingerprint analysis, could definitively prove Arkansas did indeed execute an innocent man.An 81-page filing in the lawsuit provides damning new evidence that key aspects of the prosecution case against Lee were deeply flawed. The complaint includes expert opinion from a number of world-leading specialists who find glaring errors in the way forensic science and other evidence was interpreted.The lawsuit also includes a bombshell affidavit from Lee’s post-conviction attorney who admits to having struggled with substance abuse and addiction throughout the years in which he represented him.Lawyers who prepared the filing, led by Cassandra Stubbs of the ACLU and the Innocence Project’s Nina Morrison, conclude: “It is now clear that the state’s forensic experts from trial misinterpreted the evidence in plain sight, and their flawed opinions were further distorted by the state in its zeal to convict [Lee] of the crime. The new evidence raises deeply troubling questions about the shaky evidentiary pillars on which the state executed Ledell Lee.”Innocence has always been the achilles heel of America’s death penalty: how to justify judicially killing prisoners who may have been wrongfully convicted. The question is far from academic: since 1973 no fewer than 167 death row inmates have been exonerated.The most harrowing question is whether innocent prisoners have been executed before the flawed nature of their convictions emerged. In recent years, there have been several cases that, with near certainty, suggest that innocent men have been put to death.They include Cameron Todd Willingham executed in Texas in 2004 for allegedly having caused a fire that killed his three young daughters. After the execution, further evidence emerged that conclusively showed that he could not have set the fire.The Columbia Human Rights Law Review carried out a groundbreaking investigation in which it concluded Carlos DeLuna was innocent when he was executed – also by Texas – in 1989. The six-year study discovered that the convicted prisoner had almost certainly been confused with another man, a violent criminal who shared the name Carlos.Now Ledell Lee looks as though he may be added to the grim rollcall of the wrongly executed. He relentlessly insisted he was not guilty from the moment he was arrested less than two hours after the brutally beaten body of Debra Reese was discovered in her home in Jacksonville on 9 February 1993.The difficulties with the case against Lee began almost immediately. He was picked up nowhere near the crime scene and was not in possession of any possessions that could be linked to the break-in at Reese’s home.The only evidence against him was inconclusive at best. There were two eyewitnesses, but they gave conflicting reports of the suspect’s identification.> In recent years, there have been several cases that, with near certainty, suggest innocent men have been put to deathThe crime scene was shocking, with blood splattered over the walls and floor. Yet when Lee was arrested on the same day detectives could find no blood on his clothes or body including under his fingernails and nothing was found in a forensic search of his house.Given the paucity of evidence, it is not surprising that it took two trials to find Lee guilty and sentence him to death. The first trial collapsed after the jury was unable to reach a verdict.The ACLU and Innocence Project took up Lee’s case very late in the day having been asked to get involved shortly before his scheduled execution date. What they discovered when they opened the case records astounded even these experienced death penalty lawyers.Very quickly they established there were major problems with the prosecution case against Lee. One area that especially concerned them was the inadequacy of Lee’s legal representation, both during the second trial in which defense attorneys inexplicably failed to call alibi witnesses that could have placed Lee elsewhere at the time of the murder, and in terms of the help he received at the appeal stage of his case.At one post-conviction hearing, a lawyer working for the state of Arkansas approached the judge and raised concerns about Lee’s attorney, Craig Lambert. “Your honor, I don’t do this lightly, but I’m going to ask that the court require him to submit to a drug test,” the counsel said. “He’s just not with us … His speech is slurred.”In an affidavit obtained since Lee’s execution, signed by Lambert in October, the lawyer admits: “I was struggling with substance abuse and addiction in those years. I attended inpatient rehab. Ledell’s case was massive and I wasn’t in the best place personally to do what was necessary.”Partly as a result of poor legal representation, terrible errors were made in Lee’s defense – both at trial and for years afterwards during the appeals process. The complaint goes into detail about these “deeply troubling” shortcomings.One of the key examples relates to the marks found on the victim’s cheek. The state’s experts mistakenly interpreted the marks as having come from a pattern on a rug in Reese’s bedroom where she had been beaten to death with a wooden tire club.In fact, the filing says, the pattern on the body’s cheek did not match that on the rug. Instead it was consistent with the murderer stomping on Reese’s face directly with his shoe.That is critically significant because the shoes that Lee was wearing that day, which the state used during the trial as evidence against him, were incompatible in the composition of their soles with the injury pattern on Reese’s face.To establish this point, an affidavit is provided by Michael Baden, former chief pathologist for New York who is recognized internationally as a leading forensic pathologist. He concludes: “The soles of Mr Lee’s sneakers have a much more closely spaced pattern than was transferred in the cheek imprint.”That inconsistency is just one of many that were uncovered when Baden and four other specialists were invited to review the case.Lee was executed in a flurry. When the state of Arkansas realized its supply of one of its three lethal drugs, the sedative midazolam, was about to expire at the end of 2017 with no hope of replacing it due to a global ban on medicines being sent to the US for use in executions, it went into overdrive.It announced plans to kill eight prisoners in 11 days.The declaration prompted revulsion from around the US and the world and accusations that the state was engaging in conveyor-belt executions. It was in that climate that attempts by the ACLU and the Innocence Project to have materials gathered at the crime scene of Reese’s murder released for DNA testing fell on deaf ears.Though the lawyers presented a strong argument that DNA testing could be crucial in casting doubt on Lee’s conviction and pointing towards the real killer, a federal district court denied the request on grounds that Lee had “simply delayed too long” in asking for the materials.It is too late now for Lee. But his lawyers hope that it is not too late to get to the bottom of the case posthumously.The city of Jacksonville is in possession of a rich array of crime scene materials including “Negroid” hairs collected from Reese’s bedroom and fingernail scrapings likely to contain DNA from the actual killer – Lee or otherwise.“This evidence can now be tested with state-of-the-art methods unavailable at trial, and compared to Mr Lee’s unique DNA profile,” the filing says.After a welter of legal challenges, Arkansas succeeded in killing four prisoners in one week, including the first double execution held in the US in a single day since 2001. The first of the four to die was Ledell Lee.Should Arkansas now agree belatedly to hand over the crime scene materials for testing, he may yet be proven to have been, just as he always said he was, an innocent man.


Brexit Bulletin: Law of the Land

Brexit Bulletin: Law of the LandDays to Brexit: 8(Bloomberg) -- Sign up here to get the Brexit Bulletin in your inbox every weekday.What’s Happening? The Withdrawal Agreement Bill received royal assent, making Brexit on Jan. 31 a matter of U.K. law.Seventeen words brought an end to the British side of this phase of the Brexit saga. In a statement to the House of Commons, Deputy Speaker Nigel Evans delivered the news to listening lawmakers: “Her Majesty has signified her royal assent to the following act: European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Act 2020.”Royal assent brings to a close the crisis that paralyzed U.K. politics after the country voted to leave the European Union in June 2016. Former Prime Minister Theresa May failed to get her version of the deal through the House of Commons after reaching an agreement with the EU in November 2018. Her successor, Boris Johnson, succeeded only after winning a large majority in last month’s general election.With the U.K. due to slip out of the EU at 11 p.m. London time next Friday, all that remains is for the European Parliament to rubber-stamp the deal. That was due to move a step closer on Thursday afternoon via a vote of the assembly’s constitutional affairs committee, a group of the parliament’s most influential members. The panel was expected to nod the deal through.The full EU parliament, which officially has a veto over the deal, will vote on Jan. 29. It will almost certainly follow the committee’s lead. The U.K. is scheduled to leave the EU two days later.Beyond BrexitClimate activist Greta Thunberg should go back to school and study economics, U.S. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin said at the World Economic Forum in Davos. These billionaires made their fortunes by trying to stop climate change. The £200 million ($262 million) London mansion bought by Cheung Cheung Kie earlier this month isn’t even his most valuable property.Brexit in BriefRule Makers | U.K. financiers are asking the government to revamp regulations to attract global business after Brexit. Watchdogs should have the power “to make the U.K. a better place to do business” through a new mandate to support London’s financial hub against rivals, according to the International Regulatory Strategy Group, a panel backed by the City of London.Diverging Views | Speaking at Davos on Thursday morning, U.K. Chancellor of the Exchequer Sajid Javid tried to reassure business over Britain’s post-Brexit ties with the EU. “We won’t diverge just for the sake of it,” he said. That’s despite telling the Financial Times last week that “there will not be alignment” with EU rules after Brexit.Off-Piste? | Did Javid speak out of turn at Davos when he said that talks for a U.K.-EU trade deal will take priority over any agreement with the U.S.? Today’s Bloomberg Westminster podcast discusses his motivations.Time Is Tight | The clock is ticking for the EU and the U.K. to hammer out a trade deal by the end of the year, according to Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte. “It’s an awfully short amount of time so I hope that coming next summer, June, July, that Boris Johnson will at least contemplate extending, if necessary, this transition phase,” Rutte said in a Bloomberg TV interview in Davos. “I’m Still Here” | Steve Bray, otherwise known as the “Stop Brexit Guy” was a fixture outside Westminster during the height of the U.K.’s Brexit tension, often disrupting live TV interviews. On Thursday he took his protest to Brussels, joining a small rally outside the European Parliament, the Brussels Times reports. “I came to Brussels just to visit this parliament,” the Times reported him as saying. “I’m still here because I still care.”Want to keep up with Brexit?You can follow us @Brexit on Twitter, and listen to Bloomberg Westminster every weekday. It’s live at midday on Bloomberg Radio and is available as a podcast too. Share the Brexit Bulletin: Colleagues, friends and family can sign up here. For full EU coverage, try the Brussels Edition.For even more: Subscribe to Bloomberg All Access for our unmatched global news coverage and two in-depth daily newsletters, The Bloomberg Open and The Bloomberg Close.To contact the authors of this story: Thomas Penny in London at tpenny@bloomberg.netIan Wishart in Brussels at iwishart@bloomberg.netTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Adam Blenford at ablenford@bloomberg.net, Chris KayFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.


At impeachment trial, Democrats address Biden corruption allegations as Graham promises more developments

At impeachment trial, Democrats address Biden corruption allegations as Graham promises more developmentsSen. Lindsey Graham made it clear that he plans to make Hunter Biden a much bigger part of the impeachment debate in the coming days.


White Nationalists Arrested ahead of Richmond Rally Planned to Kill Gun-Rights Demonstrators to Spark Civil War

White Nationalists Arrested ahead of Richmond Rally Planned to Kill Gun-Rights Demonstrators to Spark Civil WarThree alleged members of a white supremacist group were plotting to murder demonstrators at Monday's gun rights rally at the Virginia Capitol before they were arrested by the FBI last week, according to court documents.The men were caught discussing their plans on a hidden camera set up in their Delaware apartment by FBI agents.“We can’t let Virginia go to waste, we just can’t,” said Patrik J. Mathews, one member of the hate group "the Base" that promotes violence against African-Americans and Jews.According to authorities, the 27-year-old former Canadian Armed Forces reservist also discussed creating "instability" in Virginia by killing people, derailing trains, poisoning water, and shutting down highways in order to "kick off the economic collapse" and possibly start a "full blown civil war."Mathews also discussed the possibility of "executing" police officers and stealing their belongings and remarked that, “We could essentially be like literally hunting people.”“Virginia will be our day,” said 33-year-old Brian M. Lemley Jr., adding, “I need to claim my first victim.”“Lemley discussed using a thermal imaging scope affixed to his rifle to conduct ambush attacks,” the court filings read.The two were arrested along with a third man, 19, last Thursday. They are charged with federal firearms violations and “transporting and harboring an alien,” referring to Mathews, who is a Canadian national. Four more members of The Base have also been arrested and charged in Georgia and Wisconsin.In a search of the apartment, prosecutors said that FBI agents found propaganda fliers for The Base, communications devices, empty rifle cases, "go bags" with "numerous Meals-Ready-to-Eat," knives, and materials for building an assault rifle.Tens of thousands of gun rights advocates rallied in Richmond on Monday to protest the state’s Democratic legislature's gun-control agenda. Critics raised fears beforehand that militant white supremacists could disrupt the rally, but the day ended peacefully with no violence.


Wife: China's ex-Interpol boss jailed for reformist views

Wife: China's ex-Interpol boss jailed for reformist viewsIn her first comments about her imprisoned husband's sentence in China, the wife of former Interpol president Meng Hongwei dismissed his bribery conviction as “a lie, a fake case” and said he is being punished for using his senior position in the ruling Communist Party to push for reform from within. Grace Meng said during in an exclusive interview Wednesday with The Associated Press that her husband, a long-serving vice minister of public security, had been part of a reformist faction of China's secretive ruling party. In response to worsening corruption, Meng Hongwei and others argued, out of the public eye and at the highest circles of power for a “modern” constitutional and election-based political system, she said.


Michelle Carter, who encouraged boyfriend's suicide, released from jail early for good behavior

Michelle Carter, who encouraged boyfriend's suicide, released from jail early for good behaviorMichelle Carter, the Massachusetts woman who encouraged her boyfriend, Conrad Roy, to kill himself has been released from jail in Bristol County.


Virologist who helped identify SARS on coronavirus outbreak: 'This time I'm scared'

Virologist who helped identify SARS on coronavirus outbreak: 'This time I'm scared'Experts are seeing shocking similarities between the coronavirus that has now spread beyond China and the SARS outbreak of 2003.Like the infectious pneumonia that has killed at least 17 people, SARS was caused by a coronavirus that originated in China. But when one of the virologists who helped identify the SARS virus visited Wuhan, where this virus originated, he didn't see nearly enough being done to fight it. People were out at markets without masks, "preparing to ring in the New Year in peace and had no sense about the epidemic," Guan Yi of the University of Hong Kong's State Key Laboratory of Emerging Infectious Diseases told Caixin. Airports were hardly being disinfected, Guan continued, saying the local government hasn't "even been handing out quarantine guides to people who were leaving the city."The city did disinfect the market where the virus has been traced to, but Guan criticized Wuhan for that, saying it hurts researchers' abilities to track down the virus's source. "I've never felt scared," Guan told Caixin. "This time I'm scared."A case involving the coronavirus was identified in Washington state on Wednesday, and cases have also been identified in Thailand, Japan, South Korea, and Singapore. A total of 639 cases were confirmed in China.More stories from theweek.com Democrats walked right into Mitch McConnell's trap Texas legalized hemp, and Austin just responded to the resulting chaos by effectively decriminalizing weed The Oprah's Book Club controversy, explained


U.S.-Israeli woman jailed in Russia has not yet sought pardon: Kremlin

U.S.-Israeli woman jailed in Russia has not yet sought pardon: KremlinThe Kremlin said on Friday that the possible release of Naama Issachar, a U.S.-Israeli woman jailed in Russia on drug charges, was being held up because she had not yet formally asked to be granted a pardon. Israel has called on Russia to release Issachar, who was sentenced by a Russian court to seven-and-a-half years in jail for drug offences in October.


The American Airlines flight attendant union is calling on US airlines to step up precautions for the deadly Wuhan coronavirus

The American Airlines flight attendant union is calling on US airlines to step up precautions for the deadly Wuhan coronavirusThe Wuhan coronavirus outbreak has sickened more than 630 people and killed 18. It has spread to at least 8 countries.


Utah bans LGBTQ conversion therapy for minors

Utah bans LGBTQ conversion therapy for minors"It simply will save lives," said GOP State Representative Craig Hall, who originally sponsored the proposal.


Presidential candidate Tom Steyer: ‘I’m for reparations’

Presidential candidate Tom Steyer: ‘I’m for reparations’On Yahoo News’ “Hot Mic with Brittany Shepherd,” Democratic presidential candidate Tom Steyer spoke about race and reparations, saying that if he were elected to office, “I would start a commission on race on day one.”


Yahoo News/YouGov poll shows two-thirds of voters want the Senate to call new impeachment witnesses

Yahoo News/YouGov poll shows two-thirds of voters want the Senate to call new impeachment witnessesIn a new poll, 63 percent of registered voters agree that the Senate should call new witnesses to testify during President Trump’s impeachment trial.


Ex-Maryland police officer has been charged with raping and attempting to transmit HIV to a woman he pulled over

Ex-Maryland police officer has been charged with raping and attempting to transmit HIV to a woman he pulled overA Maryland Grand Jury has indicted former police officer Martique Vanderpool on charges that he raped and attempted to expose a woman with HIV.


Girl's family: 'Impossible' to lean from cruise ship window

Girl's family: 'Impossible' to lean from cruise ship windowThe parents of an Indiana girl who fell to her death from the open window of a cruise ship docked in Puerto Rico contend it was “physically impossible” for the child’s grandfather to lean out of that 11th floor window, as the cruise line has alleged, just before the toddler slipped from his hands. The parents of Chloe Wiegand also accuse Royal Caribbean Cruises of releasing deceptive surveillance images, and allege in their preliminary response filed Wednesday in U.S. District Court in Miami that the cruise line lied in its recent motion seeking the dismissal of the family’s lawsuit. In its Jan. 8 filing, Royal Caribbean alleged that surveillance video shows the child’s 51-year-old grandfather, Salvatore Anello, leaning out of the open window for about eight seconds just moments before he lifted his granddaughter up to the window, from which she fell to her death on July 8.


Smugglers tried to bring 3,700 invasive crabs through the Port of Cincinnati

Smugglers tried to bring 3,700 invasive crabs through the Port of CincinnatiMitten crabs are a delicacy in Asia and sell for about $50 each in the United States, officials say. They are considered an invasive species.


Schiff thanks senators at the start of impeachment argument after Nadler accused Republicans of 'voting for a cover up'

Schiff thanks senators at the start of impeachment argument after Nadler accused Republicans of 'voting for a cover up'Democrats officially kicked off their opening arguments in the impeachment trial of President Trump Wednesday with a bit of a shift in tone after one particularly contentious late-night exchange.Near the end of an impeachment trial session beginning Tuesday, House Judiciary Committee Chair Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.) on the Senate floor accused Republican senators of "voting for a cover up" as he argued in favor of an amendment to subpoena former National Security Adviser John Bolton, per The Wall Street Journal. Nadler also suggested Republicans were engaging in "treacherous" behavior, The Washington Post reports. Republicans throughout the day on Wednesday slammed Nadler for his statement; Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) told CNN it was "insulting and outrageous," while Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) said the comment "offended her" and Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) said in a press conference, "To my Democratic colleagues, you can say what you want about me but I am covering up nothing."Following this criticism, House Intelligence Committee Chair Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) began Democrats' opening arguments Wednesday with a less combative tone, thanking senators for having "paid attention to every word and argument you heard from both sides" the day before."I want to begin today by thanking you for the conduct of the proceedings yesterday and for inviting your patience as you go forward," Schiff added. "We have some very long days yet to come."CNN's Kaitlan Collins noted Schiff appeared to be addressing Republican criticism with his opening comments, although Republicans weren't the only ones not thrilled with the tone of Tuesday night's debate. Sen. Jon Tester (D-Mont.), for instance, conceded to The Washington Post that Nadler "could have chose better words."More stories from theweek.com Democrats walked right into Mitch McConnell's trap 5 brutally funny cartoons about Mitch McConnell's impeachment rules The Oprah's Book Club controversy, explained


China Praised By Germany For Transparency in Combating Virus

China Praised By Germany For Transparency in Combating Virus(Bloomberg) -- China is doing a better job and the world community is more prepared in dealing with the new coronavirus than they were during the 2002 to 2003 SARS episode, Germany’s health minister said in an interview.“There’s a big difference to SARS. We have a much more transparent China,” Jens Spahn told Bloomberg TV on Friday on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum in Davos. “The action of China is much more effective in the first days already.”The World Health Organization on Thursday stopped short of calling the new SARS-like virus from central China a global health emergency.Chinese official have imposed travel restrictions on millions of people as Singapore reported a case of the new virus.Read More:WHO Says Coronavirus Remains Local Chinese Emergency for NowSingapore Reports Virus Case as China Limits Some TravelWuhan Virus Lockdown Casts Cloud Over Industry & Tech HubMapping the Outbreak of China’s CoronavirusGlobal health authorities are also better prepared today, said Spahn.“We learned a lot because of SARS. The WTO has reformed, developed permanent institutions of exchange,” the 39-year-old former under-secretary of finance said. “We know what do. That’s an important signal for people back home too.”G20 health ministers have been rehearsing for emergencies since SARS and Ebola, he added.“Our national health systems in Europe and in the U.S., by the way in many western countries -- we are able to deal with this. As soon as somebody is found with this infection, he’ll be put in an isolated station,” said Spahn.The virus is believed to have emerged last month in a seafood and wildlife market in Wuhan, spreading from infected animals to humans.To contact the reporters on this story: Arne Delfs in Berlin at adelfs@bloomberg.net;Francine Lacqua in Davos, Switzerland at flacqua@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Ben Sills at bsills@bloomberg.net, Raymond Colitt, Andrew BlackmanFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.


Australia bushfires contribute to big rise in global CO2 levels: UK's Met Office

Australia bushfires contribute to big rise in global CO2 levels: UK's Met OfficeAustralia's bushfires are contributing to one of the biggest annual increases in the concentration of carbon dioxide in the Earth's atmosphere since record-keeping began more than 60 years ago, according to a forecast published by Britain's Met Office on Friday. While human-caused greenhouse gas emissions are responsible for the bulk of the increase in CO2 levels, Australia's bushfires have made the problem measurably worse, underscoring the impact of the catastrophe on the global climate system. "A forecast of the atmospheric concentration of carbon-dioxide shows that 2020 will witness one of the largest annual rises in concentration since measurements began at Mauna Loa, in Hawaii, 1958," the Met Office said in a statement.


REI’s January Sale Offers 50% off Cold-Weather Outdoor Gear

REI’s January Sale Offers 50% off Cold-Weather Outdoor Gear


Thunberg fires back at Mnunchin after college degree jab

Thunberg fires back at Mnunchin after college degree jabTreasury Secretary Steven Mnunchin said Greta Thunberg can discuss fossil fuel divestment "after she goes and studies economics in college."


Donald Trump shares image of Barack Obama scaling Trump Tower

Donald Trump shares image of Barack Obama scaling Trump TowerDonald Trump has tweeted a photoshopped image of Barack Obama scaling the walls of Trump Tower with suction cups and holding binoculars.The image, which was posted without a caption, appeared to be a reference to Mr Trump’s claims that Mr Obama and the FBI illegally spied on him.


The US plans to force passengers to change routes, and potentially redirect entire flights, to make sure they get screened for the Wuhan virus

The US plans to force passengers to change routes, and potentially redirect entire flights, to make sure they get screened for the Wuhan virusUS officials described an ambitious 'funnel' system to make sure every passenger from Wuhan, China, to the US gets screened — no matter their route.


Mexico sees rise in gangs, vigilantes recruiting children

Mexico sees rise in gangs, vigilantes recruiting childrenOne day after a vigilante group revealed that it was using children as young as 8 as “recruits” for armed defense patrols, Mexico's president said Thursday that drug cartels too are recruiting ever-younger kids. The whole issue has sparked a debate in Mexico over the use of children in armed confrontations, with rights groups saying the practice threatens not only kids' safety, but their mental health. President Andrés Manuel López Obrador said that because social programs are giving more youths opportunities to study or work, drug cartels are having trouble finding gunmen, leading them to recruit children.


See This Nuke? Meet the Most Destructive Nuclear Bomb Ever Made By Man

See This Nuke? Meet the Most Destructive Nuclear Bomb Ever Made By ManThank god the Soviets never deployed it.


No qualms for India's hangman before first job of executing rapists

No qualms for India's hangman before first job of executing rapistsPawan Kumar feels zero sympathy for the four men he is due to hang next month for a 2012 gang rape and murder that appalled India. The group set to meet their demise before dawn on February 1 -- although it may be delayed -- were convicted for a brutal crime against Jyoti Singh, a 23-year-old student. Angry demonstrations by tens of thousands of people broke out across the vast South Asian nation, sparking soul-searching about the plight of Indian women and leading to heavier sentences for sex crimes.


U.S., China Must Adjust for Stable World, Singapore Leader Says

U.S., China Must Adjust for Stable World, Singapore Leader Says(Bloomberg) -- Sign up here to receive the Davos Diary, a special daily newsletter that will run from Jan. 20-24.Both the U.S. and China must make adjustments if they are going to reach a lasting phase-two trade deal that benefits the rest of the world, Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said.Speaking in an interview with Bloomberg’s Editor-in-Chief John Micklethwait, Lee said “both sides have to make quite basic adjustments.” The U.S., he said, must decide whether to create rules that allow “the best man” to win or only let America come out on top.“America First means you do the best for the United States,” Lee said in Davos, Switzerland, while attending the World Economic Forum. “So do you do the best by prospering in the world and there are other countries who are doing well, or do your best by being a big country in a troubled world? And I’m not sure that the second is a very good answer.”The U.S.-China War Over Trade and Tariffs, Explained: QuickTakeChina, on the other hand, must decide whether they are going to be “constructive players” in world affairs and accept that “rules which were acceptable to other countries when they were smaller and less dominant now have to be revised and renegotiated,” Lee said.“It’s not so easy for them to concede and voluntarily step back from what they feel they can hold on to for a while longer,” he said. But if they make that adjustment, “there’s some possibility of working out a modus vivendi which will be stable and constructive for the world,” he said.Huawei ConcernsSingapore, a city-state heavily dependent on trade, had been one of the most outspoken countries in Asia calling for the U.S. and China to reach a trade deal. Lee has warned that Southeast Asian nations might one day be forced to choose if the world economy gets pulled apart into different blocs.The Trump administration has sought to convince countries around the world to avoid using equipment from Huawei Technologies Co., China’s biggest tech firm, for 5G networks, arguing it poses a national security threat. Singapore’s government so far has left the decision up to its telecommunications operators.How Huawei Landed at the Center of Global Tech Tussle: QuickTakeLee reiterated that Singapore hasn’t “banned Huawei” but will evaluate it based on operational requirements. Any system will have weaknesses, he said, and governments must try to keep them secure.“We have to make our own assessments, and the assessments have to be based on facts and risks,” Lee said. “And having made those assessments, well we may come to a conclusion which is different from what the Americans have come to, but it doesn’t mean that we’re not concerned about similar issues.”Lee added that differences of opinion on Huawei don’t necessarily signal a loss of U.S. influence. “If you ask us on security cooperations, certainly we are closer to the U.S. than to China,” Lee said. “But in terms of our trade, the Chinese are our biggest trading partner. In terms of our overall relationship, we have deep relationships with both.”March SummitPresident Donald Trump last November invited countries in the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations, or Asean, to a special summit in the U.S. after he skipped the bloc’s meeting in Bangkok. At the time, most leaders in the region snubbed the group’s meeting with Trump’s representative, National Security Adviser Robert O’Brien.Lee said he would join other Asean leaders for a meeting with Trump in Las Vegas on March 14.“I’m sure we’ll be discussing areas where we can cooperate and do more together,” Lee said. “I hope that Mr. Trump, amidst his many domestic preoccupations, will send a message that Asia is important to him and Southeast Asia has its part in the Americanscheme of things.”China has recently stepped up efforts to assert its territorial claims in the South China Sea, prompting fellow claimants like Vietnam, Malaysia and Indonesia to resist those advances in the energy-rich waters. The Asean bloc has been negotiating a legally binding code of conduct in the waters for more than two decades, and aim to complete it in the next few years.“It’s not an easy thing to do,” Lee said of the code of conduct. “We’re working at it and we’ve made some progress in the negotiating process, but I think it’s better to be talking and working toward this rather than abandoning this and actually coming to blows on the ground.”\--With assistance from Joyce Koh, Faris Mokhtar, Michelle Jamrisko and Ruth Pollard.To contact the reporters on this story: Iain Marlow in Hong Kong at imarlow1@bloomberg.net;Philip J. Heijmans in Singapore at pheijmans1@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Daniel Ten Kate at dtenkate@bloomberg.net, Nasreen SeriaFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.


Trump Admin: Pregnant Travelers Could Threaten U.S. Security

Trump Admin: Pregnant Travelers Could Threaten U.S. SecurityThe Trump administration has unveiled its latest national security measure—a crackdown on pregnant travelers—leaving both immigration and women’s rights attorneys shaking their heads.New State Department rules, slated to take effect Friday, allow consular officials to deny tourist visas to anyone they believe may give birth on their trip to the United States. The administration says this is to stop pregnant women from entering the country solely to seek birthright citizenship for their children. But attorneys say it is just another license to discriminate. “What this measure seems to be doing is creating another basis for discriminating against women in their ability to come to the United States of America,” said Lynn Paltrow, executive director of National Advocates for Pregnant Women. “It portrays women and people with the capacity for pregnancy as a danger to the United States of America.”Until now, traveling to the U.S. to give birth has been entirely legal, as long as women did not lie about their intentions on their visa application. The lack of restrictions helped fuel a lucrative “birth tourism” business, in which U.S.-based brokers—including several operating out of Trump properties—charged women tens of thousands of dollars for lodging during their pregnancy and birth.  Russians Flock to Trump Properties to Give Birth to U.S. CitizensTrump, however, has long railed against the concept of birthright citizenship, calling it a “magnet for illegal immigration” and falsely claiming that the U.S. is the only country in the world that allows it. He even proposed eliminating birthright citizenship outright via executive order—a proposal experts dismissed as blatantly unconstitutional.The State Department said Thursday that the new rules are meant to close an immigration “loophole” that threatens national security. But officials were unable to name a single instance in which so-called “birth tourism” had created a national security threat. They also could not provide the exact number of tourists who give birth in the U.S. each year, putting the number somewhere in the thousands. Approximately 4 million people give birth in the U.S. annually.The ACLU slammed the new rules, calling on the administration to “reverse course.” “This is the same administration that admitted to tracking the periods of migrant teens and ramping up its detention of pregnant immigrants,” said Ria Tabacco Mar, director of the ACLU’s Women’s Rights Project. “We have real questions, but we know this: This new regulation is rooted in misogyny, xenophobia, and racism.” Experts also questioned exactly how the new rules would be enforced. According to the State Department rules, consular officers will be required to question any woman for whom they have a “specific, articulable reason” to believe she is traveling for the primary purpose of giving birth. But they declined to say how exactly an officer would determine this, saying it could become apparent in an interview, in an application form, or as part of “information that comes to a consular officer.”Jeffrey Gorsky, an attorney who previously worked in the State Department’s visa office, said it would be rare for a woman to wait until she was visibly pregnant to apply for a visa. In fact, many travelers apply for multiple-entry visas that are good for at least 10 years. “Are they going to restrict visas for young women who are married under the presumption they could be coming to the U.S. to give birth?” Gorsky asked.Paltrow said this system would incentivize officers to deny visas to any woman who could be pregnant, for fear they would be accused of not doing their jobs. “They’re going to see virtually every woman who wants to come into the country as possibly pregnant and someone they should keep out,” she said. “Because there’s no way you can tell just by looking.” The rule allows exceptions for women who plan to give birth in the U.S. for legitimate medical reasons or who have some other reason for coming to the country late in their pregnancy. (An example listed in the text of the rules is a pregnant woman who is coming to visit her terminally ill mother.) Women who enter the country for medical reasons related to their pregnancy are required to demonstrate that they can pay for the services in full. The issue of “birth tourism” has received increased media attention in recent years, as Trump lashed out against immigrants he claimed were cheating their way into the country. Women from China and Russia have paid anywhere from $50,000 to $100,000 to have their children in sunny locales like Southern California or Florida.A previous Daily Beast investigation found several Miami-based birth tourism firms  advertising rentals in Trump-owned properties. One such company advertised lodging in the local Trump Towers, with a gold-tiled bathtub and chauffeured Cadillac Escalade or Mercedes Benz. Others offered a Trump Royale penthouse apartment, starting at $7,000 a month.“I was looking particularly for Trump Towers,” said one expectant mother who traveled from Russia to Miami. “[Now] in the evenings, I have a great view because you have the bay, and the buildings aglow. The building is great. No regrets.”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.


Huge explosion rips through Houston building, heard for miles around

Huge explosion rips through Houston building, heard for miles aroundSmoke poured out from inside a structure in the pre-dawn darkness about two hours after the blast as emergency vehicle lights flashed and first responders blocked access and checked for damage, aerial video from KTRK television showed. The moment of the explosion was captured on a home security camera, also aired on KTRK, that showed a blinding flash in the distance followed by a fireball. Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo said the debris field from the explosion was about a half mile (1 km) wide, but that there were no known toxic gases emitted from the blast.


Spirit Airlines passenger: Cabin crew didn't take my groping allegation seriously

Spirit Airlines passenger: Cabin crew didn't take my groping allegation seriouslyA Michigan college student says she was sexually assaulted on a Spirit Airlines flight, but that flight attendants treated her like an annoyance.


These 9 Dining Chairs Are Sculptural, Surprising, and Downright Sleek

These 9 Dining Chairs Are Sculptural, Surprising, and Downright Sleek


Lindsey Graham is offering unsolicited legal advice to Trump's team

Lindsey Graham is offering unsolicited legal advice to Trump's teamSen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), a juror in President Trump's impeachment trial, is offering free legal advice to his counsel, if they want to accept it.So far, the House impeachment managers have "done a good job" of "painting ... a tapestry, taking a series of events and telling a story," Graham told reporters on Thursday. When Trump's legal team starts delivering his defense on Saturday, they will "start pulling on the threads."Graham also thinks Trump's attorneys will need to shift the focus to former Vice President Joe Biden and his son, Hunter Biden. Hunter Biden was on the board of Burisma, a Ukrainian gas company, and is in the center of a debunked conspiracy theory being peddled by Trump allies, including Rudy Giuliani. Graham said Trump's team needs to "really go hard at the idea that when they tell you there's not a scintilla of evidence, groundless, baseless, phony accusations regarding the Bidens, I would challenge that very hard."More stories from theweek.com Democrats walked right into Mitch McConnell's trap Texas legalized hemp, and Austin just responded to the resulting chaos by effectively decriminalizing weed The Oprah's Book Club controversy, explained


School headmaster charged in fatal gold robbery in Thailand

School headmaster charged in fatal gold robbery in ThailandAn elementary school headmaster said Thursday he planned a gold shop robbery in Thailand due to personal and financial problems and apologized to the families of the three people who were killed. A 2-year-old boy was among the victims of the shooting earlier this month that caused public outrage and increased pressure for a swift arrest. Police arrested Prasitthichai Khaokaew, 38, early Wednesday and said he confessed to his crimes during interrogation.


The FBI reportedly stopped a Saudi plot to kidnap a YouTuber on US soil after he criticized Mohammed bin Salman for Jamal Khashoggi's killing

The FBI reportedly stopped a Saudi plot to kidnap a YouTuber on US soil after he criticized Mohammed bin Salman for Jamal Khashoggi's killingAbdulrahman Almutairi used social media to criticize the Saudi government. It appears to have almost cost him his life.


Successor to slain Iran general will be murdered if he kills Americans: U.S. envoy

Successor to slain Iran general will be murdered if he kills Americans: U.S. envoyThe successor to the Iranian commander killed in a U.S. drone strike would suffer the same fate if he followed a similar path by killing Americans, the U.S. special representative for Iran said, according to the Asharq al-Awsat newspaper.


China Puts 13 Cities on Lockdown as Coronavirus Death Toll Climbs

China Puts 13 Cities on Lockdown as Coronavirus Death Toll ClimbsChina is striving to contain a deadly virus outbreak the World Health Organization has termed a domestic health emergency


German Defense Chief Warns Islamic State Could Resume ‘Terror’

German Defense Chief Warns Islamic State Could Resume ‘Terror’(Bloomberg) -- Germany’s defense minister warned that Islamic State fighters could return in force in the Middle East if an international coalition is unable to continue its work against the militant organization.Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, speaking in an interview at the World Economic Forum on Thursday, said that Germany aims to keep its forces in Iraq, but can only do so at the behest of the government in Baghdad.“We need to keep in mind that in Iraq, IS is not yet defeated,“ Kramp-Karrenbauer told Bloomberg Television in Davos, Switzerland. “If the pressure is reduced, then the danger is great that it resumes its regime of terror.”The concerns by a key U.S. ally underscore how the mission has been shaken since the killing of Iranian General Qassem Soleimani, which prompted the Iraqis to demand the departure of 5,000 American troops from the country. The self-declared caliphate was largely subdued by early last year in Syria and Iraq, where it once controlled territory the size of Iceland.Germany, which has some 120 troops in Iraq as part of an anti-ISIS campaign, suspended its operations amid the crisis. Thirty-two German troops were transferred to Jordan and three to Kuwait.Kramp-Karrenbauer, who visited German troops in the region last week, said that the European nation had made progress in training Iraqi forces to fend off the militants.The German defense chief, who is also Chancellor Angela Merkel’s presumptive heir as leader of her Christian Democratic Union, said that her country is doing more to take on global responsibility in the face of public skepticism about troop presence in places such as Iraq, Afghanistan and Mali.“What we have to continue to explain in domestic politics is why these missions serve our own interests,” Kramp-Karrenbauer said.To contact the reporters on this story: Patrick Donahue in Berlin at pdonahue1@bloomberg.net;Chad Thomas in Davos, Switzerland at cthomas16@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Ben Sills at bsills@bloomberg.net, Raymond ColittFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.


Spotted: America's Shadowy Stealth Spy Drone

Spotted: America's Shadowy Stealth Spy DroneDoes it have a new mission now?


Lebanon to seek up to $5bln in soft loans, prime minister rallies support

Lebanon to seek up to $5bln in soft loans, prime minister rallies supportLebanon's new government must reassure international donors it is serious about reforms to tackle a financial crisis as it looks initially to secure up to $5 billion in soft loans for basic goods, its finance minister said on Thursday. The government that took office on Tuesday faces an emergency in which banks have imposed controls, the Lebanese pound has weakened and protesters have turned to violence which a senior U.N. official described as "politically manipulated". "The entire international community has its eye on what this government will do," Finance Minister Ghazi Wazni said in televised comments.


Residents paint a picture of Epstein's life on "Pedophile Island"

Residents paint a picture of Epstein's life on "Pedophile Island"When Epstein was convicted and serving time for procuring an underage girl in Florida for sex, word of his 13 month sentence and his alleged crimes made their way to St. Thomas.


Chief Justice John Roberts drops 'pettifogging' bomb while reprimanding both sides in impeachment trial

Chief Justice John Roberts drops 'pettifogging' bomb while reprimanding both sides in impeachment trial"Those addressing the Senate should remember where they are," Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts said, admonishing participants in President Trump's impeachment trial to keep it civil.


Prosecutor: DNA match leads to Florida 'pillowcase rapist'

Prosecutor: DNA match leads to Florida 'pillowcase rapist'Prosecutors announced Thursday that a sophisticated DNA match has led to the cold case arrest of a Florida man believed to be the “pillowcase rapist" who terrorized greater Miami with a series of assaults on women in the 1980s. Robert Koehler, 60, was arrested over the weekend and was being held without bond Thursday in a Miami jail. The “pillowcase rapist” was so named because he used a pillowcase or other fabric to cover the faces of his terrified victims, usually after he had broken into an apartment or town home, according to investigators.


These gun enthusiasts at the Virginia rally carried more firepower than many US troops

These gun enthusiasts at the Virginia rally carried more firepower than many US troops"This sends a strong visual message," a man holding a .50 caliber rifle said. Attendees also came with an armored vehicle and a grenade launcher.


This App Is a Dangerous Invasion of Your Privacy—and the FBI Uses It

This App Is a Dangerous Invasion of Your Privacy—and the FBI Uses ItWhat if you could instantly identify every stranger you ever saw?


26 Coffee Makers for Every Type of Coffee Drinker

26 Coffee Makers for Every Type of Coffee Drinker


'End of the world': Wuhan a ghost town under quarantine

'End of the world': Wuhan a ghost town under quarantineWuhan residents called for help and shared worries of food shortages Thursday, with streets in the virus-hit central Chinese city left deserted after it was put on lockdown. After he bought some, the person behind him in the queue bought the remaining stock in the shop.


Russia, China, and Iran Would Love to Take Out a Nuclear Aircraft Carrier. Here's Why They Can't.

Russia, China, and Iran Would Love to Take Out a Nuclear Aircraft Carrier. Here's Why They Can't.The beasts are more survivable than they seem.


Militia ally of Iran's Soleimani shot dead in southwest Iran: IRNA

Militia ally of Iran's Soleimani shot dead in southwest Iran: IRNAGunmen in Iran shot dead a commander of the hardline Basij militia who was an ally of Qassem Soleimani, the senior Revolutionary Guards commander killed in a U.S. drone strike in Iraq, the official news agency IRNA reported on Wednesday. The Basij are under the command of the Guards, the most powerful and heavily armed security force in the Islamic Republic. IRNA said that Abdolhossein Mojaddami, a Basij commander in the city of Darkhovin in the southwestern province of Khuzestan, was shot on Tuesday in front of his home by two men riding a motorcycle.


Rep. Ilhan Omar launches 'Send her back to Congress!' reelection bid with big advantages

Rep. Ilhan Omar launches 'Send her back to Congress!' reelection bid with big advantagesRep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., is kicking off her reelection campaign Thursday night with a massive bank account and no challengers who pose a serious threat from either party. Her campaign slogan — “Send her back to Congress!” — gleefully evokes President Trump’s personal attacks on her.


Report: Kamala Harris is considering endorsing Joe Biden

Report: Kamala Harris is considering endorsing Joe BidenSen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) is seriously contemplating endorsing former Vice President Joe Biden, several Democratic officials with knowledge of the matter told The New York Times. Harris dropped out of the 2020 Democratic presidential race in December, and although she sparred with Biden during debates last summer — most famously when she criticized him for once opposing school busing — they are back on good terms and talk often, the officials said.She likely won't announce an endorsement until after President Trump's Senate impeachment trial is over, the Times reports, and she understands the importance of her decision, especially since two of her fellow female senators — Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts and Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota — are also still in the presidential race.Biden has said he "of course" would consider asking Harris to join his ticket if he is the Democratic nominee. By giving him an endorsement, it could secure her spot as his running mate — or, if he chooses someone else to be vice president, his administration's attorney general.More stories from theweek.com Democrats walked right into Mitch McConnell's trap Texas legalized hemp, and Austin just responded to the resulting chaos by effectively decriminalizing weed The Oprah's Book Club controversy, explained


4 killed in plane crash at Southern California airfield

4 killed in plane crash at Southern California airfieldFour people were killed Wednesday in the crash of a small airplane at a Southern California airfield, authorities said. The plane went down at Corona Municipal Airport, about 40 miles (64 kilometers) east of Los Angeles, police said. Four fatalities were confirmed, the Corona Fire Department said on Twitter.


'The new evidence raises deeply troubling questions': did Arkansas kill an innocent man?

'The new evidence raises deeply troubling questions': did Arkansas kill an innocent man?Revealed: two years after Ledell Lee was executed, damning evidence emerges that experts say could prove his innocenceThe day before Ledell Lee was executed on 20 April 2017, he talked to the BBC from death row. He said that while he could not prevent the state of Arkansas from killing him, he had a message for his executioners: “My dying words will always be, as it has been: ‘I am an innocent man’.”Almost two years after Lee was strapped to a gurney and injected with a lethal cocktail of drugs, it looks increasingly likely he was telling the truth: he went to his death an innocent man. New evidence has emerged that suggests Lee was not guilty of the brutal murder of a woman in 1993 for which his life was taken.The deceased inmate’s sister Patricia Young lodged a lawsuit on Thursday with the circuit court of Pulaski county, Arkansas, petitioning city authorities and the local police department in Jacksonville to release crime scene materials to her family.The ACLU and the Innocence Project, who are investigating the case on the family’s behalf, believe state-of-the-art forensic examination of the materials, including DNA testing and fingerprint analysis, could definitively prove Arkansas did indeed execute an innocent man.An 81-page filing in the lawsuit provides damning new evidence that key aspects of the prosecution case against Lee were deeply flawed. The complaint includes expert opinion from a number of world-leading specialists who find glaring errors in the way forensic science and other evidence was interpreted.The lawsuit also includes a bombshell affidavit from Lee’s post-conviction attorney who admits to having struggled with substance abuse and addiction throughout the years in which he represented him.Lawyers who prepared the filing, led by Cassandra Stubbs of the ACLU and the Innocence Project’s Nina Morrison, conclude: “It is now clear that the state’s forensic experts from trial misinterpreted the evidence in plain sight, and their flawed opinions were further distorted by the state in its zeal to convict [Lee] of the crime. The new evidence raises deeply troubling questions about the shaky evidentiary pillars on which the state executed Ledell Lee.”Innocence has always been the achilles heel of America’s death penalty: how to justify judicially killing prisoners who may have been wrongfully convicted. The question is far from academic: since 1973 no fewer than 167 death row inmates have been exonerated.The most harrowing question is whether innocent prisoners have been executed before the flawed nature of their convictions emerged. In recent years, there have been several cases that, with near certainty, suggest that innocent men have been put to death.They include Cameron Todd Willingham executed in Texas in 2004 for allegedly having caused a fire that killed his three young daughters. After the execution, further evidence emerged that conclusively showed that he could not have set the fire.The Columbia Human Rights Law Review carried out a groundbreaking investigation in which it concluded Carlos DeLuna was innocent when he was executed – also by Texas – in 1989. The six-year study discovered that the convicted prisoner had almost certainly been confused with another man, a violent criminal who shared the name Carlos.Now Ledell Lee looks as though he may be added to the grim rollcall of the wrongly executed. He relentlessly insisted he was not guilty from the moment he was arrested less than two hours after the brutally beaten body of Debra Reese was discovered in her home in Jacksonville on 9 February 1993.The difficulties with the case against Lee began almost immediately. He was picked up nowhere near the crime scene and was not in possession of any possessions that could be linked to the break-in at Reese’s home.The only evidence against him was inconclusive at best. There were two eyewitnesses, but they gave conflicting reports of the suspect’s identification.> In recent years, there have been several cases that, with near certainty, suggest innocent men have been put to deathThe crime scene was shocking, with blood splattered over the walls and floor. Yet when Lee was arrested on the same day detectives could find no blood on his clothes or body including under his fingernails and nothing was found in a forensic search of his house.Given the paucity of evidence, it is not surprising that it took two trials to find Lee guilty and sentence him to death. The first trial collapsed after the jury was unable to reach a verdict.The ACLU and Innocence Project took up Lee’s case very late in the day having been asked to get involved shortly before his scheduled execution date. What they discovered when they opened the case records astounded even these experienced death penalty lawyers.Very quickly they established there were major problems with the prosecution case against Lee. One area that especially concerned them was the inadequacy of Lee’s legal representation, both during the second trial in which defense attorneys inexplicably failed to call alibi witnesses that could have placed Lee elsewhere at the time of the murder, and in terms of the help he received at the appeal stage of his case.At one post-conviction hearing, a lawyer working for the state of Arkansas approached the judge and raised concerns about Lee’s attorney, Craig Lambert. “Your honor, I don’t do this lightly, but I’m going to ask that the court require him to submit to a drug test,” the counsel said. “He’s just not with us … His speech is slurred.”In an affidavit obtained since Lee’s execution, signed by Lambert in October, the lawyer admits: “I was struggling with substance abuse and addiction in those years. I attended inpatient rehab. Ledell’s case was massive and I wasn’t in the best place personally to do what was necessary.”Partly as a result of poor legal representation, terrible errors were made in Lee’s defense – both at trial and for years afterwards during the appeals process. The complaint goes into detail about these “deeply troubling” shortcomings.One of the key examples relates to the marks found on the victim’s cheek. The state’s experts mistakenly interpreted the marks as having come from a pattern on a rug in Reese’s bedroom where she had been beaten to death with a wooden tire club.In fact, the filing says, the pattern on the body’s cheek did not match that on the rug. Instead it was consistent with the murderer stomping on Reese’s face directly with his shoe.That is critically significant because the shoes that Lee was wearing that day, which the state used during the trial as evidence against him, were incompatible in the composition of their soles with the injury pattern on Reese’s face.To establish this point, an affidavit is provided by Michael Baden, former chief pathologist for New York who is recognized internationally as a leading forensic pathologist. He concludes: “The soles of Mr Lee’s sneakers have a much more closely spaced pattern than was transferred in the cheek imprint.”That inconsistency is just one of many that were uncovered when Baden and four other specialists were invited to review the case.Lee was executed in a flurry. When the state of Arkansas realized its supply of one of its three lethal drugs, the sedative midazolam, was about to expire at the end of 2017 with no hope of replacing it due to a global ban on medicines being sent to the US for use in executions, it went into overdrive.It announced plans to kill eight prisoners in 11 days.The declaration prompted revulsion from around the US and the world and accusations that the state was engaging in conveyor-belt executions. It was in that climate that attempts by the ACLU and the Innocence Project to have materials gathered at the crime scene of Reese’s murder released for DNA testing fell on deaf ears.Though the lawyers presented a strong argument that DNA testing could be crucial in casting doubt on Lee’s conviction and pointing towards the real killer, a federal district court denied the request on grounds that Lee had “simply delayed too long” in asking for the materials.It is too late now for Lee. But his lawyers hope that it is not too late to get to the bottom of the case posthumously.The city of Jacksonville is in possession of a rich array of crime scene materials including “Negroid” hairs collected from Reese’s bedroom and fingernail scrapings likely to contain DNA from the actual killer – Lee or otherwise.“This evidence can now be tested with state-of-the-art methods unavailable at trial, and compared to Mr Lee’s unique DNA profile,” the filing says.After a welter of legal challenges, Arkansas succeeded in killing four prisoners in one week, including the first double execution held in the US in a single day since 2001. The first of the four to die was Ledell Lee.Should Arkansas now agree belatedly to hand over the crime scene materials for testing, he may yet be proven to have been, just as he always said he was, an innocent man.


Brexit Bulletin: Law of the Land

Brexit Bulletin: Law of the LandDays to Brexit: 8(Bloomberg) -- Sign up here to get the Brexit Bulletin in your inbox every weekday.What’s Happening? The Withdrawal Agreement Bill received royal assent, making Brexit on Jan. 31 a matter of U.K. law.Seventeen words brought an end to the British side of this phase of the Brexit saga. In a statement to the House of Commons, Deputy Speaker Nigel Evans delivered the news to listening lawmakers: “Her Majesty has signified her royal assent to the following act: European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Act 2020.”Royal assent brings to a close the crisis that paralyzed U.K. politics after the country voted to leave the European Union in June 2016. Former Prime Minister Theresa May failed to get her version of the deal through the House of Commons after reaching an agreement with the EU in November 2018. Her successor, Boris Johnson, succeeded only after winning a large majority in last month’s general election.With the U.K. due to slip out of the EU at 11 p.m. London time next Friday, all that remains is for the European Parliament to rubber-stamp the deal. That was due to move a step closer on Thursday afternoon via a vote of the assembly’s constitutional affairs committee, a group of the parliament’s most influential members. The panel was expected to nod the deal through.The full EU parliament, which officially has a veto over the deal, will vote on Jan. 29. It will almost certainly follow the committee’s lead. The U.K. is scheduled to leave the EU two days later.Beyond BrexitClimate activist Greta Thunberg should go back to school and study economics, U.S. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin said at the World Economic Forum in Davos. These billionaires made their fortunes by trying to stop climate change. The £200 million ($262 million) London mansion bought by Cheung Cheung Kie earlier this month isn’t even his most valuable property.Brexit in BriefRule Makers | U.K. financiers are asking the government to revamp regulations to attract global business after Brexit. Watchdogs should have the power “to make the U.K. a better place to do business” through a new mandate to support London’s financial hub against rivals, according to the International Regulatory Strategy Group, a panel backed by the City of London.Diverging Views | Speaking at Davos on Thursday morning, U.K. Chancellor of the Exchequer Sajid Javid tried to reassure business over Britain’s post-Brexit ties with the EU. “We won’t diverge just for the sake of it,” he said. That’s despite telling the Financial Times last week that “there will not be alignment” with EU rules after Brexit.Off-Piste? | Did Javid speak out of turn at Davos when he said that talks for a U.K.-EU trade deal will take priority over any agreement with the U.S.? Today’s Bloomberg Westminster podcast discusses his motivations.Time Is Tight | The clock is ticking for the EU and the U.K. to hammer out a trade deal by the end of the year, according to Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte. “It’s an awfully short amount of time so I hope that coming next summer, June, July, that Boris Johnson will at least contemplate extending, if necessary, this transition phase,” Rutte said in a Bloomberg TV interview in Davos. “I’m Still Here” | Steve Bray, otherwise known as the “Stop Brexit Guy” was a fixture outside Westminster during the height of the U.K.’s Brexit tension, often disrupting live TV interviews. On Thursday he took his protest to Brussels, joining a small rally outside the European Parliament, the Brussels Times reports. “I came to Brussels just to visit this parliament,” the Times reported him as saying. “I’m still here because I still care.”Want to keep up with Brexit?You can follow us @Brexit on Twitter, and listen to Bloomberg Westminster every weekday. It’s live at midday on Bloomberg Radio and is available as a podcast too. Share the Brexit Bulletin: Colleagues, friends and family can sign up here. For full EU coverage, try the Brussels Edition.For even more: Subscribe to Bloomberg All Access for our unmatched global news coverage and two in-depth daily newsletters, The Bloomberg Open and The Bloomberg Close.To contact the authors of this story: Thomas Penny in London at tpenny@bloomberg.netIan Wishart in Brussels at iwishart@bloomberg.netTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Adam Blenford at ablenford@bloomberg.net, Chris KayFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.


At impeachment trial, Democrats address Biden corruption allegations as Graham promises more developments

At impeachment trial, Democrats address Biden corruption allegations as Graham promises more developmentsSen. Lindsey Graham made it clear that he plans to make Hunter Biden a much bigger part of the impeachment debate in the coming days.


White Nationalists Arrested ahead of Richmond Rally Planned to Kill Gun-Rights Demonstrators to Spark Civil War

White Nationalists Arrested ahead of Richmond Rally Planned to Kill Gun-Rights Demonstrators to Spark Civil WarThree alleged members of a white supremacist group were plotting to murder demonstrators at Monday's gun rights rally at the Virginia Capitol before they were arrested by the FBI last week, according to court documents.The men were caught discussing their plans on a hidden camera set up in their Delaware apartment by FBI agents.“We can’t let Virginia go to waste, we just can’t,” said Patrik J. Mathews, one member of the hate group "the Base" that promotes violence against African-Americans and Jews.According to authorities, the 27-year-old former Canadian Armed Forces reservist also discussed creating "instability" in Virginia by killing people, derailing trains, poisoning water, and shutting down highways in order to "kick off the economic collapse" and possibly start a "full blown civil war."Mathews also discussed the possibility of "executing" police officers and stealing their belongings and remarked that, “We could essentially be like literally hunting people.”“Virginia will be our day,” said 33-year-old Brian M. Lemley Jr., adding, “I need to claim my first victim.”“Lemley discussed using a thermal imaging scope affixed to his rifle to conduct ambush attacks,” the court filings read.The two were arrested along with a third man, 19, last Thursday. They are charged with federal firearms violations and “transporting and harboring an alien,” referring to Mathews, who is a Canadian national. Four more members of The Base have also been arrested and charged in Georgia and Wisconsin.In a search of the apartment, prosecutors said that FBI agents found propaganda fliers for The Base, communications devices, empty rifle cases, "go bags" with "numerous Meals-Ready-to-Eat," knives, and materials for building an assault rifle.Tens of thousands of gun rights advocates rallied in Richmond on Monday to protest the state’s Democratic legislature's gun-control agenda. Critics raised fears beforehand that militant white supremacists could disrupt the rally, but the day ended peacefully with no violence.


Greta Thunberg fires back after Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin says she isn't qualified to lecture the US on climate change

Greta Thunberg fires back after Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin says she isn't qualified to lecture the US on climate change"Is she the chief economist or who is she? I'm confused," Mnuchin joked about the Swedish teenager's call for America to quit fossil fuels.


Rep. Ilhan Omar launches 'Send her back to Congress!' reelection bid with big advantages

Rep. Ilhan Omar launches 'Send her back to Congress!' reelection bid with big advantagesRep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., is kicking off her reelection campaign Thursday night with a massive bank account and no challengers who pose a serious threat from either party. Her campaign slogan — “Send her back to Congress!” — gleefully evokes President Trump’s personal attacks on her.


These 9 Dining Chairs Are Sculptural, Surprising, and Downright Sleek

These 9 Dining Chairs Are Sculptural, Surprising, and Downright Sleek


Merkel Party Chief Says Succession Team to Be Decided This Year

Merkel Party Chief Says Succession Team to Be Decided This Year(Bloomberg) -- Sign up here to receive the Davos Diary, a special daily newsletter that will run from Jan. 20-24.The chief of Germany’s Christian Democrats aims to assemble her team to succeed Chancellor Angela Merkel by the end of this year, a move to assert her authority amid growing leadership uncertainty in Europe’s largest nation.Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, who as CDU leader is Merkel’s presumptive heir, signaled in an interview on Thursday that she opposes a call by a key Bavarian ally for a cabinet reshuffle by the summer.“For 2021, the CDU needs a new team for the future, with new faces, and we’ll put that in place this year,” Kramp-Karrenbauer, 57, told Bloomberg Television at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. “For me, that’s a more important perspective than a short-term change.”Ever since Merkel stepped down as leader of the CDU at the end of 2018, the ruling coalition has been plagued by infighting as potential contenders jockey for positions to succeed her and Germany’s export-driven economy runs out of steam.Kramp-Karrenbauer herself has struggled to gain traction, garnering less than half the approval ratings of Merkel, who remains the country’s most popular politician.Read More:If Merkel Wants to Fix the German Economy, She Needs to Hurry UpMerkel Party Leader’s Ultimatum Contains Rebels, For NowMerkel Fends Off Another Hustle From Upstart Tipped for Her JobGermany Would Contribute to Any Libya Peace Force, CDU Head SaysAKK, as she’s known, will have to reinforce her position within the CDU if she wants to become the party’s candidate for the chancellorship in the next election, due in 2021 at the latest. Merkel has said she won’t run for a fifth term.Even after she fended off a leadership challenge in the CDU late last year, Kramp-Karrenbauer remains under scrutiny from the party’s conservative and business wings.One rival who has emerged is Bavarian Premier Markus Soeder, the chairman of the CDU’s sister party, the Christian Social Union. He made the call for Merkel to reshuffle the cabinet, an objective he hopes to deliver by the summer.While AKK initially said the idea could be discussed, on Thursday she pushed back on the proposal.“First we have to ensure that this government that we have now works as well and dynamically as possible. There’s room for improvement, we can do even better.”InvestmentsSuch improvements include streamlining investments and cutting red tape, she said.“The problem is that we are too slow and too complicated in the process. Not enough is invested as a result, and this is the construction site we need to work on,” she said.Germany’s economy expanded at 0.6% in 2019, its weakest growth in 6 years. But the government continues to generate large budget surpluses, prompting renewed calls for even larger spending growth and tax breaks. AKK said such surplus cash should be invested “sensibly” in infrastructure and the military.“If we look at our budget and our investment right now, we see that we have no problem with money,” she said. Surpluses “shouldn’t be tucked away for a rainy day,” but instead directed toward “investment in technologies of the future, in our infrastructure,” Kramp-Karrenbauer said.(Updates with quotes, context, detail throughout)To contact the reporters on this story: Patrick Donahue in Berlin at pdonahue1@bloomberg.net;Chad Thomas in Davos, Switzerland at cthomas16@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Ben Sills at bsills@bloomberg.net, Raymond Colitt, Andrew BlackmanFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.


'I am here': Holocaust survivors mark Auschwitz liberation

'I am here': Holocaust survivors mark Auschwitz liberationTheir faces lined by age and haunting memories, about 100 Holocaust survivors joined political leaders Thursday in Jerusalem to recall the liberation of the Auschwitz death camp 75 years ago. While many of the dignitaries at the sombre ceremony were born after World War II, with no personal memories of Nazi Germany's industrial-scale murder of Jews, for 81-year-old Yona Amit, the event was deeply personal. Just five years old when she and her family escaped Nazi-occupied Italy for Switzerland, she spoke of her remarkable survival, accompanied by her granddaughter at the Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial centre.


U.S.-Israeli woman jailed in Russia has not yet sought pardon: Kremlin

U.S.-Israeli woman jailed in Russia has not yet sought pardon: KremlinThe Kremlin said on Friday that the possible release of Naama Issachar, a U.S.-Israeli woman jailed in Russia on drug charges, was being held up because she had not yet formally asked to be granted a pardon. Israel has called on Russia to release Issachar, who was sentenced by a Russian court to seven-and-a-half years in jail for drug offences in October.


First stage of extradition hearing for top Huawei exec ends

First stage of extradition hearing for top Huawei exec endsA Canadian judge said Thursday she will announce her decision at a later date after ending the first phase of an extradition hearing that will decide whether a top executive of Chinese tech giant Huawei is sent to the United States. This week's hearings dealt with the question of whether the U.S. charges against Meng Wanzhou, the daughter of Huawei's founder, are crimes in Canada as well. Canada arrested Huawei's chief financial officer in December 2018 at Vancouver's airport at the request of the U.S. as she was changing flights.


Donald Trump shares image of Barack Obama scaling Trump Tower

Donald Trump shares image of Barack Obama scaling Trump TowerDonald Trump has tweeted a photoshopped image of Barack Obama scaling the walls of Trump Tower with suction cups and holding binoculars.The image, which was posted without a caption, appeared to be a reference to Mr Trump’s claims that Mr Obama and the FBI illegally spied on him.


Utah bans LGBTQ conversion therapy for minors

Utah bans LGBTQ conversion therapy for minors"It simply will save lives," said GOP State Representative Craig Hall, who originally sponsored the proposal.


A University of Minnesota student was arrested in China and sentenced to 6 months in prison for tweeting cartoons making fun of President Xi Jingping

A University of Minnesota student was arrested in China and sentenced to 6 months in prison for tweeting cartoons making fun of President Xi JingpingAccording to Chinese court documents obtained by Axios, 20-year-old Luo Daiqing was arrested after returning to Wuhan for summer break.


Michelle Carter, who urged her boyfriend to kill himself in 2014, was released from a Massachusetts jail today after serving an 11-month sentence — victim's family said it brought closure

Michelle Carter, who urged her boyfriend to kill himself in 2014, was released from a Massachusetts jail today after serving an 11-month sentence — victim's family said it brought closureMichelle Carter, who urged a Massachusetts teenager to kill himself, was released from jail Thursday. She was convicted of involuntary manslaughter following the death of her boyfriend Conor Roy III in 2014.


Smugglers tried to bring 3,700 invasive crabs through the Port of Cincinnati

Smugglers tried to bring 3,700 invasive crabs through the Port of CincinnatiMitten crabs are a delicacy in Asia and sell for about $50 each in the United States, officials say. They are considered an invasive species.


'The new evidence raises deeply troubling questions': did Arkansas kill an innocent man?

'The new evidence raises deeply troubling questions': did Arkansas kill an innocent man?Revealed: two years after Ledell Lee was executed, damning evidence emerges that experts say could prove his innocenceThe day before Ledell Lee was executed on 20 April 2017, he talked to the BBC from death row. He said that while he could not prevent the state of Arkansas from killing him, he had a message for his executioners: “My dying words will always be, as it has been: ‘I am an innocent man’.”Almost two years after Lee was strapped to a gurney and injected with a lethal cocktail of drugs, it looks increasingly likely he was telling the truth: he went to his death an innocent man. New evidence has emerged that suggests Lee was not guilty of the brutal murder of a woman in 1993 for which his life was taken.The deceased inmate’s sister Patricia Young lodged a lawsuit on Thursday with the circuit court of Pulaski county, Arkansas, petitioning city authorities and the local police department in Jacksonville to release crime scene materials to her family.The ACLU and the Innocence Project, who are investigating the case on the family’s behalf, believe state-of-the-art forensic examination of the materials, including DNA testing and fingerprint analysis, could definitively prove Arkansas did indeed execute an innocent man.An 81-page filing in the lawsuit provides damning new evidence that key aspects of the prosecution case against Lee were deeply flawed. The complaint includes expert opinion from a number of world-leading specialists who find glaring errors in the way forensic science and other evidence was interpreted.The lawsuit also includes a bombshell affidavit from Lee’s post-conviction attorney who admits to having struggled with substance abuse and addiction throughout the years in which he represented him.Lawyers who prepared the filing, led by Cassandra Stubbs of the ACLU and the Innocence Project’s Nina Morrison, conclude: “It is now clear that the state’s forensic experts from trial misinterpreted the evidence in plain sight, and their flawed opinions were further distorted by the state in its zeal to convict [Lee] of the crime. The new evidence raises deeply troubling questions about the shaky evidentiary pillars on which the state executed Ledell Lee.”Innocence has always been the achilles heel of America’s death penalty: how to justify judicially killing prisoners who may have been wrongfully convicted. The question is far from academic: since 1973 no fewer than 167 death row inmates have been exonerated.The most harrowing question is whether innocent prisoners have been executed before the flawed nature of their convictions emerged. In recent years, there have been several cases that, with near certainty, suggest that innocent men have been put to death.They include Cameron Todd Willingham executed in Texas in 2004 for allegedly having caused a fire that killed his three young daughters. After the execution, further evidence emerged that conclusively showed that he could not have set the fire.The Columbia Human Rights Law Review carried out a groundbreaking investigation in which it concluded Carlos DeLuna was innocent when he was executed – also by Texas – in 1989. The six-year study discovered that the convicted prisoner had almost certainly been confused with another man, a violent criminal who shared the name Carlos.Now Ledell Lee looks as though he may be added to the grim rollcall of the wrongly executed. He relentlessly insisted he was not guilty from the moment he was arrested less than two hours after the brutally beaten body of Debra Reese was discovered in her home in Jacksonville on 9 February 1993.The difficulties with the case against Lee began almost immediately. He was picked up nowhere near the crime scene and was not in possession of any possessions that could be linked to the break-in at Reese’s home.The only evidence against him was inconclusive at best. There were two eyewitnesses, but they gave conflicting reports of the suspect’s identification.> In recent years, there have been several cases that, with near certainty, suggest innocent men have been put to deathThe crime scene was shocking, with blood splattered over the walls and floor. Yet when Lee was arrested on the same day detectives could find no blood on his clothes or body including under his fingernails and nothing was found in a forensic search of his house.Given the paucity of evidence, it is not surprising that it took two trials to find Lee guilty and sentence him to death. The first trial collapsed after the jury was unable to reach a verdict.The ACLU and Innocence Project took up Lee’s case very late in the day having been asked to get involved shortly before his scheduled execution date. What they discovered when they opened the case records astounded even these experienced death penalty lawyers.Very quickly they established there were major problems with the prosecution case against Lee. One area that especially concerned them was the inadequacy of Lee’s legal representation, both during the second trial in which defense attorneys inexplicably failed to call alibi witnesses that could have placed Lee elsewhere at the time of the murder, and in terms of the help he received at the appeal stage of his case.At one post-conviction hearing, a lawyer working for the state of Arkansas approached the judge and raised concerns about Lee’s attorney, Craig Lambert. “Your honor, I don’t do this lightly, but I’m going to ask that the court require him to submit to a drug test,” the counsel said. “He’s just not with us … His speech is slurred.”In an affidavit obtained since Lee’s execution, signed by Lambert in October, the lawyer admits: “I was struggling with substance abuse and addiction in those years. I attended inpatient rehab. Ledell’s case was massive and I wasn’t in the best place personally to do what was necessary.”Partly as a result of poor legal representation, terrible errors were made in Lee’s defense – both at trial and for years afterwards during the appeals process. The complaint goes into detail about these “deeply troubling” shortcomings.One of the key examples relates to the marks found on the victim’s cheek. The state’s experts mistakenly interpreted the marks as having come from a pattern on a rug in Reese’s bedroom where she had been beaten to death with a wooden tire club.In fact, the filing says, the pattern on the body’s cheek did not match that on the rug. Instead it was consistent with the murderer stomping on Reese’s face directly with his shoe.That is critically significant because the shoes that Lee was wearing that day, which the state used during the trial as evidence against him, were incompatible in the composition of their soles with the injury pattern on Reese’s face.To establish this point, an affidavit is provided by Michael Baden, former chief pathologist for New York who is recognized internationally as a leading forensic pathologist. He concludes: “The soles of Mr Lee’s sneakers have a much more closely spaced pattern than was transferred in the cheek imprint.”That inconsistency is just one of many that were uncovered when Baden and four other specialists were invited to review the case.Lee was executed in a flurry. When the state of Arkansas realized its supply of one of its three lethal drugs, the sedative midazolam, was about to expire at the end of 2017 with no hope of replacing it due to a global ban on medicines being sent to the US for use in executions, it went into overdrive.It announced plans to kill eight prisoners in 11 days.The declaration prompted revulsion from around the US and the world and accusations that the state was engaging in conveyor-belt executions. It was in that climate that attempts by the ACLU and the Innocence Project to have materials gathered at the crime scene of Reese’s murder released for DNA testing fell on deaf ears.Though the lawyers presented a strong argument that DNA testing could be crucial in casting doubt on Lee’s conviction and pointing towards the real killer, a federal district court denied the request on grounds that Lee had “simply delayed too long” in asking for the materials.It is too late now for Lee. But his lawyers hope that it is not too late to get to the bottom of the case posthumously.The city of Jacksonville is in possession of a rich array of crime scene materials including “Negroid” hairs collected from Reese’s bedroom and fingernail scrapings likely to contain DNA from the actual killer – Lee or otherwise.“This evidence can now be tested with state-of-the-art methods unavailable at trial, and compared to Mr Lee’s unique DNA profile,” the filing says.After a welter of legal challenges, Arkansas succeeded in killing four prisoners in one week, including the first double execution held in the US in a single day since 2001. The first of the four to die was Ledell Lee.Should Arkansas now agree belatedly to hand over the crime scene materials for testing, he may yet be proven to have been, just as he always said he was, an innocent man.


See This Nuke? Meet the Most Destructive Nuclear Bomb Ever Made By Man

See This Nuke? Meet the Most Destructive Nuclear Bomb Ever Made By ManThank god the Soviets never deployed it.


French unions warn Macron pension strikes will drag on for months

French unions warn Macron pension strikes will drag on for monthsFrance's hardleft trade unions on Friday threatened industrial action for months to come, as they searched for a way to force President Emmanuel Macron to ditch the biggest overhaul of the country's pension system since World War Two. The unions have been locked in battle with Macron over the fate of France's generous pension benefits since early December. Macron wants to streamline the existing set-up of 42 different pension schemes, each with their own levels of contributions and benefits, into a single system that gives every pensioner the same rights for each euro contributed.


Girl's family: 'Impossible' to lean from cruise ship window

Girl's family: 'Impossible' to lean from cruise ship windowThe parents of an Indiana girl who fell to her death from the open window of a cruise ship docked in Puerto Rico contend it was “physically impossible” for the child’s grandfather to lean out of that 11th floor window, as the cruise line has alleged, just before the toddler slipped from his hands. The parents of Chloe Wiegand also accuse Royal Caribbean Cruises of releasing deceptive surveillance images, and allege in their preliminary response filed Wednesday in U.S. District Court in Miami that the cruise line lied in its recent motion seeking the dismissal of the family’s lawsuit. In its Jan. 8 filing, Royal Caribbean alleged that surveillance video shows the child’s 51-year-old grandfather, Salvatore Anello, leaning out of the open window for about eight seconds just moments before he lifted his granddaughter up to the window, from which she fell to her death on July 8.


NYT Ed Board Member Wrote Out ‘Full Draft’ of Biden Endorsement, but Scrapped It over His ‘Normal’ Message and Lack of ‘Urgency’

NYT Ed Board Member Wrote Out ‘Full Draft’ of Biden Endorsement, but Scrapped It over His ‘Normal’ Message and Lack of ‘Urgency’Kathleen Kingsbury, a deputy editorial page editor and member of The New York Times’s editorial board, revealed Thursday that she wrote a full 2,000-word endorsement of Joe Biden, only for the board to reject it because “it didn’t match the moment.”The Times broke new ground this cycle by conducting on-the-record interviews with nine of the top candidates and airing the interviews, which have historically been off-the-record, on their documentary show The Weekly on FX.Kingsbury explained to Times columnists on the The Argument podcast how the Times editorial board arrived at its first-ever dual endorsement of Senators Amy Klobuchar (D., Minn.) and Elizabeth Warren (D., Mass.), saying that “policy prescriptions” and the “messages” drove much of the thought-process. She also dismissed concerns about electability, calling the effort to predict which candidate would be most successful in the general election a “fool’s errand.”“What we realized is that the party needs to have that conversation amongst itself. It’s really not the role of the editorial board to determine the future of the Democratic Party,” Kingsbury said.But she revealed that, following heightened tensions with Iran after President Trump’s decision to kill Qasem Soleimani, she went ahead and drafted an endorsement of Biden, citing his opposition to the war in Afghanistan.“Right after we had the outbreak of conflict with Iran, I sat down and I wrote an entire endorsement of Joe Biden,” Klingsbury said. “I think that came from a desire on my part for the comfort of having someone who during his interviews, spoke so fluently about foreign policy, who’s been in the room in some of those more difficult decision-making [moments].”In August, Biden fabricated an Afghanistan-war story about how he resisted safety concerns to travel to “godforsaken country” and honor a war hero.“We can lose a vice president,” he recounted at a campaign event. “We can’t lose many more of these kids. Not a joke.”Klingsbury then explained why the Times ultimately did not pursue Biden’s endorsement, implying that Biden’s campaign hasn't meaningfully grappled with the conditions that gave rise to Trump's election.“Joe Biden’s message simply is ‘let’s go back to normal, whatever normal is, right?’ For a lot of Americans, ‘normal’ wasn’t working and I think that there needs to be some recognition that at least for some portion of the American public, the government and the economic systems were failing them,” she said.In an emailed statement to National Review, Kingsbury said she did not “have much to say beyond what I said on The Argument.” She declined to comment on whether the board wrote any other endorsement drafts, or when it decided to scrap Biden’s.“Once I had a draft in hand, I realized I should return to the wisdom of my board,” she explained ". . . [Biden’s] message and his proposed plans don’t feel like they match the urgency of the moment.”


DeVos compares abortion rights debate to slavery

DeVos compares abortion rights debate to slaveryDeVos, a Christian conservative, discussed the Trump administration's record of opposition to abortion, and said she was reminded of President Abraham Lincoln.


Wisconsin GOP dismiss nonpartisan redistricting plan

Wisconsin GOP dismiss nonpartisan redistricting planDemocratic Gov. Tony Evers's plan to create a nonpartisan redistricting commission to draw Wisconsin's electoral maps may put pressure on the Republicans who control the legislature to consider an alternative plan, but it won't force them to do anything differently next year, and GOP leaders made clear they won't change course.


The American Airlines flight attendant union is calling on US airlines to step up precautions for the deadly Wuhan coronavirus

The American Airlines flight attendant union is calling on US airlines to step up precautions for the deadly Wuhan coronavirusThe Wuhan coronavirus outbreak has sickened more than 630 people and killed 18. It has spread to at least 8 countries.


China Praised By Germany For Transparency in Combating Virus

China Praised By Germany For Transparency in Combating Virus(Bloomberg) -- China is doing a better job and the world community is more prepared in dealing with the new coronavirus than they were during the 2002 to 2003 SARS episode, Germany’s health minister said in an interview.“There’s a big difference to SARS. We have a much more transparent China,” Jens Spahn told Bloomberg TV on Friday on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum in Davos. “The action of China is much more effective in the first days already.”The World Health Organization on Thursday stopped short of calling the new SARS-like virus from central China a global health emergency.Chinese official have imposed travel restrictions on millions of people as Singapore reported a case of the new virus.Read More:WHO Says Coronavirus Remains Local Chinese Emergency for NowSingapore Reports Virus Case as China Limits Some TravelWuhan Virus Lockdown Casts Cloud Over Industry & Tech HubMapping the Outbreak of China’s CoronavirusGlobal health authorities are also better prepared today, said Spahn.“We learned a lot because of SARS. The WTO has reformed, developed permanent institutions of exchange,” the 39-year-old former under-secretary of finance said. “We know what do. That’s an important signal for people back home too.”G20 health ministers have been rehearsing for emergencies since SARS and Ebola, he added.“Our national health systems in Europe and in the U.S., by the way in many western countries -- we are able to deal with this. As soon as somebody is found with this infection, he’ll be put in an isolated station,” said Spahn.The virus is believed to have emerged last month in a seafood and wildlife market in Wuhan, spreading from infected animals to humans.To contact the reporters on this story: Arne Delfs in Berlin at adelfs@bloomberg.net;Francine Lacqua in Davos, Switzerland at flacqua@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Ben Sills at bsills@bloomberg.net, Raymond Colitt, Andrew BlackmanFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.


Ex-Maryland police officer has been charged with raping and attempting to transmit HIV to a woman he pulled over

Ex-Maryland police officer has been charged with raping and attempting to transmit HIV to a woman he pulled overA Maryland Grand Jury has indicted former police officer Martique Vanderpool on charges that he raped and attempted to expose a woman with HIV.


Schiff tells senators why Trump must be removed: He's guilty, self-serving, and 'chose Rudy Giuliani' over America

Schiff tells senators why Trump must be removed: He's guilty, self-serving, and 'chose Rudy Giuliani' over AmericaDonald Trump has been a public figure for 40 years, and House impeachment lead prosecutor Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) drew on America's familiarity with the president's personal brand in Thursday's nights closing arguments in Trump's impeachment trial. Schiff and his fellow House managers spent the day making their case that Trump is guilty of abuse of power, and Schiff addressed the elephant in the room: "Okay, he's guilty. Does he really need to be removed?"Yes, he said, and senators already know why."No one is really making the argument 'Donald Trump would never do such a thing!'" Schiff said. "Because of course we know that he would, and of course we know that he did," even if "we can't say it publicly." He continued:> And this is why he needs to be removed: Donald Trump chose Rudy Giuliani over his own intelligence agencies. He chose Rudy Giuliani over his own FBI director. He chose Rudy Giuliani over his own national security advisers. When all of them were telling him this Ukraine 2016 stuff is kooky, crazy Russian propaganda, he chose not to believe them, he chose to believe Rudy Giuliani. That makes him dangerous to us, to our country. ...> > Why would anyone in their right mind believe Rudy Giuliani over Christopher Wray? Because he wanted to, and because what Rudy was offering him was something that would help him personally, and what Christopher Wray was offering him was merely the truth. What Christopher Wray was offering him was merely the information he needed to protect his country and its elections. [Rep. Adam Schiff]Schiff gave some hypothetical examples. If Russia "starts blatantly interfering in our election again to help Donald Trump, can you have the least bit of confidence that Donald Trump will stand up to them and protect our national interest over his own personal interest?" he asked. "You know you can't! Which makes him dangerous to this country." And if China helps Trump, Schiff said, "you think he's gonna call them out on it? Or you think he's gonna give them a better trade deal?" The "sad truth," he told the senators, is "you know you can't count on him" to put his country before himself.The praise for Schiff's oratory was effusive, but not universal. "I think people on our side were absolutely offended by what he had to say," Sen. John Barrasso (R-Wyo.) told reporters afterward.More stories from theweek.com Democrats walked right into Mitch McConnell's trap Texas legalized hemp, and Austin just responded to the resulting chaos by effectively decriminalizing weed The Oprah's Book Club controversy, explained


No qualms for India's hangman before first job of executing rapists

No qualms for India's hangman before first job of executing rapistsPawan Kumar feels zero sympathy for the four men he is due to hang next month for a 2012 gang rape and murder that appalled India. The group set to meet their demise before dawn on February 1 -- although it may be delayed -- were convicted for a brutal crime against Jyoti Singh, a 23-year-old student. Angry demonstrations by tens of thousands of people broke out across the vast South Asian nation, sparking soul-searching about the plight of Indian women and leading to heavier sentences for sex crimes.


Saudi crown prince's WhatsApp linked to Bezos phone hack

Saudi crown prince's WhatsApp linked to Bezos phone hackThe cellphone of Amazon founder and Washington Post owner Jeff Bezos was hacked in what appeared to be an attempt by Saudi Arabia's crown prince to "influence, if not silence" the newspaper's reporting on the kingdom, two U.N. human rights experts said Wednesday. The U.N. experts called for an “immediate investigation” by the United States into a report commissioned by Bezos that showed the billionaire technology mogul's phone was likely hacked after he received an MP4 video file sent from Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman's WhatsApp account after the two men exchanged phone numbers during a dinner in Los Angeles in 2018.


Tennessee governor announces plans for strictest anti-abortion laws in US

Tennessee governor announces plans for strictest anti-abortion laws in USTennessee Governor Bill Lee has announced his intention to enact some of the strictest abortion laws in the US.Sweeping new legislation will include banning women from undergoing an abortion once a fetal heartbeat has been detected.


The Attacks on Bernie Are Further Proof That ‘Victim’ Hillary Is Not Good at This

The Attacks on Bernie Are Further Proof That ‘Victim’ Hillary Is Not Good at ThisA Hillary Clinton hot take is in the headlines again: According to her, “nobody likes” presidential candidate Senator Bernie Sanders.Earlier this week, The Hollywood Reporter published an interview with Clinton, a promotional piece for the upcoming Hulu documentary about her political career, in which the former secretary of state was asked about a statement she’d made during the documentary.The interviewer, Lacey Rose, asked:> In the doc, you’re brutally honest on Sanders: “He was in Congress for years. He had one senator support him. Nobody likes him, nobody wants to work with him, he got nothing done. He was a career politician. It’s all just baloney and I feel so bad that people got sucked into it.” That assessment still hold?Hillary replied, simply: “Yes, it does.”Next, Rose asked Clinton whether or not she would support Sanders if he were to become the Democratic nominee. Clinton said: “I’m not going to go there yet” — and then proceeded to attack Sanders’s supporters for what she calls their “relentless attacks on lots of his competitors, particularly the women,” accusing Bernie himself of having “not only permitted” “this culture,” but also seeming “to really be very much supporting it.”Later, continuing the discussion about what Clinton sees as Bernie’s “pattern” of sexism, Clinton offered as evidence the fact that Sanders had told her that she was “unqualified” when they were both running for the Democratic nomination in 2016. (Note: This “unqualified” comment, made during an April 2016 debate, was in response to Clinton questioning Sanders’s own qualifications. It is more than worth noting that, in making this criticism, Sanders stuck to questioning her on her past policy only, pointing out blunders such as her vote in favor of the Iraq War.)So, what came of all of Clinton’s brutal attacks on Sanders? Did his supporters flee? Did people express their deepest sympathies that Clinton had to encounter him?Nope; far from it. In fact, ILikeBernie started trending on Twitter. Los Angeles Chargers running back Justin Jackson shared a screenshot showing that he’d just donated to Sanders, telling Clinton: “Every time you trash him, I will give more.” Bernie’s competitors for the nomination, Representative Tulsi Gabbard and billionaire Tom Steyer, weighed in to say that they also “like” him.The backlash was so bad, in fact, that Clinton took to her own Twitter account to backtrack, clarifying that she would, in fact, support whomever became the Democratic nominee.Personally, I am left thinking one thing: Hillary Clinton is not good at this.Despite the fact that Clinton has been in politics for decades, it seems that her political instincts are actually quite terrible. This is not the first time during the primary that Clinton has helped a candidate she’d intended to bring down.In October, Clinton made the absurd, baseless allegation that Tulsi Gabbard was being “groomed” by the Russians. (Note: She offered no proof.) When Gabbard responded harshly — which I can’t say I wouldn’t do if someone were making those accusations about me — a Clinton spokesman went after her for doing so, slamming her for her “[d]ivisive language filled with vitriol.”And what happened then? Well, first, Gabbard got a bump in the polls — a significant enough one, in fact, to earn her a spot at the November Democratic primary debate. This week, it’s also been announced that Gabbard is suing Clinton for defamation over the “Russian asset” remarks.Like I said: Hillary Clinton is not good at this. Now, I can’t help but notice a common theme when it comes to the way Clinton and her team seem to approach the political arena. All too often, they can’t resist the urge to make things about her.To Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders is bad because she and her buddies in Congress don’t “like” him. He’s sexist because he told her that she wasn’t “qualified.” After Tulsi Gabbard defended herself against Clinton’s brutal, objectively unfair attacks, Clinton’s spokesperson wasted no time aiming to get sympathy for Clinton over them -- pointing out how Clinton had had to endure Tulsi’s supposed “vitriol.”This is, unfortunately for Clinton, more of the exact same thing that we saw throughout her failed 2016 election campaign. The most obvious example, of course, would be that campaign slogan: “I’m With Her.” Rather than choose something that even so much as hinted to the American people what she would do for them, she chose instead to make the focus on them needing to be there for her. She was calling on voters to be there for her against sexism, there for her against the brutal attacks from that evil orange monster, Donald J. Trump. In fact, many people struggled to find any sort of message in Clinton’s campaign — except, of course, for the fact that Trump is mean to her, and that, in order to be a decent person, you had to help her deal with that by being with her, against Trump.Of course, I’m not saying that women in politics don’t face sexism. They do. In fact, women in anything have to face sexism — and if you don’t believe me, then I’d suggest you try asking one.What’s more, I’m also not denying the fact that Donald Trump has his own brand of self-absorption. He does, and that’s obvious — whether the septuagenarian is calling himself a “young, vibrant man” or talking about his “beautiful head of hair,” it’s really no secret that Donald Trump spends a decent amount of time thinking about how fond he is of, well, Donald Trump.Hillary’s self-obsession, however, is different. Unlike Trump, she is quite clearly particularly obsessed with feeling sorry for herself — and she wants, more than anything, for other people to feel sorry for her, too. She has a pattern of blatantly seeking sympathy even when it’s outright ridiculous for her to do so. Hillary Clinton had the backing of the entire DNC during her 2016 run, and yet, after she lost, all she could do was whine incessantly about how many people had wronged her throughout the process and made it so unfair. You know, like James Comey. Or the media. Or white women. Or Russia. Hell, at one point, she even had the nerve to call herself “a victim of . . . the assumption” that she “was going to win.”In her memoir — which is, in all honesty, nothing more than a glorified pity party on paper -- she whines that “[t]here are times when all I want to do is scream into a pillow.” Elsewhere, she complains about how hard it was for her to write the book (which, by the way, broke sales records and made her millions):“Literally, at times when I was writing it, I had to go lie down,” she said. “I just couldn’t bear to relive it.”Make no mistake: Hillary Clinton’s attempts to seek sympathy in recent years are endless. Worse, this “strategy” also isn’t new: When she was running against President Obama in 2008, her performance in one of the debates was so drenched in her woe-is-me-attitude that Politico published a piece declaring: “Hillary Clinton as the inevitable Democratic nominee didn’t work. Hillary Clinton as the front-runner didn’t work. So how about Hillary Clinton as the victim?”Yes: Hillary Clinton is consumed by feeling sorry for herself. What’s more, she has obviously been operating under the false notion that all she needs to do is get others to share in this obsession, and then that will translate into political support. She must feel this way; there’s no other reason she’d keep doing it.Here, though, is the problem: Expecting support simply because of the ways you say you’ve been wronged is just as bad as expecting support simply because you say you are, shall we say, “a very stable genius.”Actually? In some ways, it’s kind of worse.Now, it’s important to point out that Trump, unlike Clinton, has managed to pause his self-obsession long enough to communicate his vision for the country. Yes, he may change his mind at times — but he’s at least attempted to maintain his focus on what he wants to do for the country. You may disagree with what he says he wants to do (and I, for one, certainly have disagreed at times) but at least Trump talks about his message enough for people to have some understanding of what the hell it is.Even if he hadn’t been able to do this though, I think I’d still find his brand of self-obsession less obnoxious than Clinton’s. Trump may consistently be trying to paint himself as a rich, attractive, unparalleled savior of the world, but Clinton is consistently trying to paint herself as some kind of sick, flea-infested, three-legged street puppy — and, I’ve got to say, I have a pretty hard time feeling sorry for her.When we talk about Hillary Clinton, after all, we are hardly talking about someone who is struggling to make it in the world. We’re not talking about someone on the streets or in a shelter; we’re talking about an Ivy League-educated former secretary of state who is worth tens of millions of dollars. We are talking about someone who earns hundreds of thousands of dollars per speech. (In other words? For an hour of talking.) Given all that, I have to admit that I do find it kind of hard to spend any time feeling bad for such a rich, influential person -- especially while I’m sitting here in my rental apartment.Now, I certainly wouldn’t say that Trump necessarily handles any attacks “better” than Clinton does. He, after all, has a tendency to lash out and insult people, and he’s said a lot of things in response to criticism with which I’ve definitely had a problem. What’s more, he also certainly does his own fair share of complaining. (Have you ever hear him talk about the media?)The difference, though, is that he seems to aim to do so from a position of toughness. I’ve heard him call many things “unfair,” and yet I’ve never once felt as though he wanted me to feel sorry for him. If Trump loses this election, I don’t doubt that he will take as little responsibility for his own loss as Hillary Clinton did hers, but I also don’t anticipate him expecting an international pity party because of it.Maybe by that time, no matter who wins, Clinton will have finally decided to end her own pity party. I, at least, certainly would hope so. After all (as someone who had to ask a friend what I was looking at in an Instagram photo of the interior of a private jet yesterday), I’ve really have a pretty hard time feeling too bad for either one of them -- and I don’t think I’m alone.


Spotted: America's Shadowy Stealth Spy Drone

Spotted: America's Shadowy Stealth Spy DroneDoes it have a new mission now?


Residents left in Wuhan — which China quarantined to stop the coronavirus — are desperately stockpiling food and fuel, leaving empty shelves and prices skyrocketing

Residents left in Wuhan — which China quarantined to stop the coronavirus — are desperately stockpiling food and fuel, leaving empty shelves and prices skyrocketingChina shut off the city on Thursday. One person wrote on social media: "Right now people are fighting over supplies. Soon they may just be fighting."


REI’s January Sale Offers 50% off Cold-Weather Outdoor Gear

REI’s January Sale Offers 50% off Cold-Weather Outdoor Gear


One man arrested, two more sought in deadly Seattle rush-hour shootout

One man arrested, two more sought in deadly Seattle rush-hour shootoutThe arrest of Jamel Jackson, 21, who was himself wounded, came as Mayor Jenny Durkan and Police Chief Carmen Best pledged an all-out effort to curb gun violence in Seattle, which has long prided itself as one of the nation's safest large cities. "While we are better than many cities when it comes to gun violence, we are not immune to gun violence," Durkan told reporters a day after the shooting, which unfolded in the heart of a busy shopping district near Pike Place Market at the peak of Wednesday's evening rush hour. An altercation outside a fast-food restaurant escalated into gun violence among three men, Chief Best recounted at the news conference.


Report: Kamala Harris is considering endorsing Joe Biden

Report: Kamala Harris is considering endorsing Joe BidenSen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) is seriously contemplating endorsing former Vice President Joe Biden, several Democratic officials with knowledge of the matter told The New York Times. Harris dropped out of the 2020 Democratic presidential race in December, and although she sparred with Biden during debates last summer — most famously when she criticized him for once opposing school busing — they are back on good terms and talk often, the officials said.She likely won't announce an endorsement until after President Trump's Senate impeachment trial is over, the Times reports, and she understands the importance of her decision, especially since two of her fellow female senators — Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts and Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota — are also still in the presidential race.Biden has said he "of course" would consider asking Harris to join his ticket if he is the Democratic nominee. By giving him an endorsement, it could secure her spot as his running mate — or, if he chooses someone else to be vice president, his administration's attorney general.More stories from theweek.com Democrats walked right into Mitch McConnell's trap Texas legalized hemp, and Austin just responded to the resulting chaos by effectively decriminalizing weed The Oprah's Book Club controversy, explained


U.S., China Must Adjust for Stable World, Singapore Leader Says

U.S., China Must Adjust for Stable World, Singapore Leader Says(Bloomberg) -- Sign up here to receive the Davos Diary, a special daily newsletter that will run from Jan. 20-24.Both the U.S. and China must make adjustments if they are going to reach a lasting phase-two trade deal that benefits the rest of the world, Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said.Speaking in an interview with Bloomberg’s Editor-in-Chief John Micklethwait, Lee said “both sides have to make quite basic adjustments.” The U.S., he said, must decide whether to create rules that allow “the best man” to win or only let America come out on top.“America First means you do the best for the United States,” Lee said in Davos, Switzerland, while attending the World Economic Forum. “So do you do the best by prospering in the world and there are other countries who are doing well, or do your best by being a big country in a troubled world? And I’m not sure that the second is a very good answer.”The U.S.-China War Over Trade and Tariffs, Explained: QuickTakeChina, on the other hand, must decide whether they are going to be “constructive players” in world affairs and accept that “rules which were acceptable to other countries when they were smaller and less dominant now have to be revised and renegotiated,” Lee said.“It’s not so easy for them to concede and voluntarily step back from what they feel they can hold on to for a while longer,” he said. But if they make that adjustment, “there’s some possibility of working out a modus vivendi which will be stable and constructive for the world,” he said.Huawei ConcernsSingapore, a city-state heavily dependent on trade, had been one of the most outspoken countries in Asia calling for the U.S. and China to reach a trade deal. Lee has warned that Southeast Asian nations might one day be forced to choose if the world economy gets pulled apart into different blocs.The Trump administration has sought to convince countries around the world to avoid using equipment from Huawei Technologies Co., China’s biggest tech firm, for 5G networks, arguing it poses a national security threat. Singapore’s government so far has left the decision up to its telecommunications operators.How Huawei Landed at the Center of Global Tech Tussle: QuickTakeLee reiterated that Singapore hasn’t “banned Huawei” but will evaluate it based on operational requirements. Any system will have weaknesses, he said, and governments must try to keep them secure.“We have to make our own assessments, and the assessments have to be based on facts and risks,” Lee said. “And having made those assessments, well we may come to a conclusion which is different from what the Americans have come to, but it doesn’t mean that we’re not concerned about similar issues.”Lee added that differences of opinion on Huawei don’t necessarily signal a loss of U.S. influence. “If you ask us on security cooperations, certainly we are closer to the U.S. than to China,” Lee said. “But in terms of our trade, the Chinese are our biggest trading partner. In terms of our overall relationship, we have deep relationships with both.”March SummitPresident Donald Trump last November invited countries in the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations, or Asean, to a special summit in the U.S. after he skipped the bloc’s meeting in Bangkok. At the time, most leaders in the region snubbed the group’s meeting with Trump’s representative, National Security Adviser Robert O’Brien.Lee said he would join other Asean leaders for a meeting with Trump in Las Vegas on March 14.“I’m sure we’ll be discussing areas where we can cooperate and do more together,” Lee said. “I hope that Mr. Trump, amidst his many domestic preoccupations, will send a message that Asia is important to him and Southeast Asia has its part in the Americanscheme of things.”China has recently stepped up efforts to assert its territorial claims in the South China Sea, prompting fellow claimants like Vietnam, Malaysia and Indonesia to resist those advances in the energy-rich waters. The Asean bloc has been negotiating a legally binding code of conduct in the waters for more than two decades, and aim to complete it in the next few years.“It’s not an easy thing to do,” Lee said of the code of conduct. “We’re working at it and we’ve made some progress in the negotiating process, but I think it’s better to be talking and working toward this rather than abandoning this and actually coming to blows on the ground.”\--With assistance from Joyce Koh, Faris Mokhtar, Michelle Jamrisko and Ruth Pollard.To contact the reporters on this story: Iain Marlow in Hong Kong at imarlow1@bloomberg.net;Philip J. Heijmans in Singapore at pheijmans1@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Daniel Ten Kate at dtenkate@bloomberg.net, Nasreen SeriaFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.


4 killed in plane crash at Southern California airfield

4 killed in plane crash at Southern California airfieldFour people were killed Wednesday in the crash of a small airplane at a Southern California airfield, authorities said. The plane went down at Corona Municipal Airport, about 40 miles (64 kilometers) east of Los Angeles, police said. Four fatalities were confirmed, the Corona Fire Department said on Twitter.


Democrats use Lindsey Graham's Clinton impeachment speech in Trump Senate trial

Democrats use Lindsey Graham's Clinton impeachment speech in Trump Senate trialLindsey Graham argued in 1999 that impeachment doesn't require a violation of law.


Residents paint a picture of Epstein's life on "Pedophile Island"

Residents paint a picture of Epstein's life on "Pedophile Island"When Epstein was convicted and serving time for procuring an underage girl in Florida for sex, word of his 13 month sentence and his alleged crimes made their way to St. Thomas.


Russia, China, and Iran Would Love to Take Out a Nuclear Aircraft Carrier. Here's Why They Can't.

Russia, China, and Iran Would Love to Take Out a Nuclear Aircraft Carrier. Here's Why They Can't.The beasts are more survivable than they seem.


26 Coffee Makers for Every Type of Coffee Drinker

26 Coffee Makers for Every Type of Coffee Drinker


The FBI reportedly stopped a Saudi plot to kidnap a YouTuber on US soil after he criticized Mohammed bin Salman for Jamal Khashoggi's killing

The FBI reportedly stopped a Saudi plot to kidnap a YouTuber on US soil after he criticized Mohammed bin Salman for Jamal Khashoggi's killingAbdulrahman Almutairi used social media to criticize the Saudi government. It appears to have almost cost him his life.


Insys founder Kapoor sentenced to 66 months in prison for opioid scheme

Insys founder Kapoor sentenced to 66 months in prison for opioid schemeJohn Kapoor, the founder of Insys Therapeutics Inc, on Thursday was sentenced to 66 months in prison for his role in a bribery and fraud scheme that contributed to the U.S. opioid crisis. Kapoor, 76, is now the highest-ranking pharmaceutical executive to be sentenced in a case linked to the opioid crisis. Forfeiture and restitution in Kapoor's case still needs to be determined.


Joe Biden won't testify in Trump's impeachment trial even it means John Bolton will

Joe Biden won't testify in Trump's impeachment trial even it means John Bolton willWhile President Trump's desire to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden and his son Hunter Biden launched his impeachment investigation and eventual trial in the first place, Biden is officially distancing himself from the whole thing.When asked Wednesday if he'd consider testifying in exchange for testimony from former National Security Adviser John Bolton, Biden said he wants "no part of that," per The Washington Post. It's "not an irrational question to ask," Biden conceded, but said "the reason I would not make the deal, the bottom line is, this is a constitutional issue. We're not going to turn it into a farce or political theater."Democrats, namely the House's impeachment managers, have continually pushed for the Senate to allow Bolton to testify in Trump's trial. Bolton has said he would be willing to do so, and even some Republicans have indicated their interest in hearing from him. Other Republicans have insisted they'd like to hear from Hunter Biden as well, with some saying Biden and Bolton's testimonies should be conducted in pairs.Biden's comments follow Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer's (D-N.Y.) assurance earlier in the day that a witness swap was "off the table," even regarding Hunter Biden.More stories from theweek.com Democrats walked right into Mitch McConnell's trap Watch highlights from Day 3 of Trump's impeachment trial, in which Democrats argue abuse of power GOP Sen. Marsha Blackburn questions patriotism of Purple Heart recipient Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman


Tennessee inmate chooses the electric chair for his scheduled execution

Tennessee inmate chooses the electric chair for his scheduled executionA Tennessee inmate has chosen the electric chair for his scheduled execution next month, opting like four other inmates in little more than a year for electrocution over the state's preferred execution method of lethal injection.


Iran uses violence, politics to try to push US out of Iraq

Iran uses violence, politics to try to push US out of IraqIran has long sought the withdrawal of American forces from neighboring Iraq, but the U.S. killing of an Iranian general and an Iraqi militia commander in Baghdad has added new impetus to the effort, stoking anti-American feelings that Tehran hopes to exploit to help realize the goal. The Jan. 3 killing has led Iraq's parliament to call for the ouster of U.S. troops, but there are many lingering questions over whether Iran will be able to capitalize on the sentiment. It is not clear whether the protesters will try to recreate a New Year's Eve attack on the U.S. Embassy compound in Baghdad by Iran-supported militias in the wake of U.S. airstrikes that killed 25 militiamen along the border with Syria.


China Puts 13 Cities on Lockdown as Coronavirus Death Toll Climbs

China Puts 13 Cities on Lockdown as Coronavirus Death Toll ClimbsChina is striving to contain a deadly virus outbreak the World Health Organization has termed a domestic health emergency


Brexit Bulletin: Law of the Land

Brexit Bulletin: Law of the LandDays to Brexit: 8(Bloomberg) -- Sign up here to get the Brexit Bulletin in your inbox every weekday.What’s Happening? The Withdrawal Agreement Bill received royal assent, making Brexit on Jan. 31 a matter of U.K. law.Seventeen words brought an end to the British side of this phase of the Brexit saga. In a statement to the House of Commons, Deputy Speaker Nigel Evans delivered the news to listening lawmakers: “Her Majesty has signified her royal assent to the following act: European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Act 2020.”Royal assent brings to a close the crisis that paralyzed U.K. politics after the country voted to leave the European Union in June 2016. Former Prime Minister Theresa May failed to get her version of the deal through the House of Commons after reaching an agreement with the EU in November 2018. Her successor, Boris Johnson, succeeded only after winning a large majority in last month’s general election.With the U.K. due to slip out of the EU at 11 p.m. London time next Friday, all that remains is for the European Parliament to rubber-stamp the deal. That was due to move a step closer on Thursday afternoon via a vote of the assembly’s constitutional affairs committee, a group of the parliament’s most influential members. The panel was expected to nod the deal through.The full EU parliament, which officially has a veto over the deal, will vote on Jan. 29. It will almost certainly follow the committee’s lead. The U.K. is scheduled to leave the EU two days later.Beyond BrexitClimate activist Greta Thunberg should go back to school and study economics, U.S. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin said at the World Economic Forum in Davos. These billionaires made their fortunes by trying to stop climate change. The £200 million ($262 million) London mansion bought by Cheung Cheung Kie earlier this month isn’t even his most valuable property.Brexit in BriefRule Makers | U.K. financiers are asking the government to revamp regulations to attract global business after Brexit. Watchdogs should have the power “to make the U.K. a better place to do business” through a new mandate to support London’s financial hub against rivals, according to the International Regulatory Strategy Group, a panel backed by the City of London.Diverging Views | Speaking at Davos on Thursday morning, U.K. Chancellor of the Exchequer Sajid Javid tried to reassure business over Britain’s post-Brexit ties with the EU. “We won’t diverge just for the sake of it,” he said. That’s despite telling the Financial Times last week that “there will not be alignment” with EU rules after Brexit.Off-Piste? | Did Javid speak out of turn at Davos when he said that talks for a U.K.-EU trade deal will take priority over any agreement with the U.S.? Today’s Bloomberg Westminster podcast discusses his motivations.Time Is Tight | The clock is ticking for the EU and the U.K. to hammer out a trade deal by the end of the year, according to Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte. “It’s an awfully short amount of time so I hope that coming next summer, June, July, that Boris Johnson will at least contemplate extending, if necessary, this transition phase,” Rutte said in a Bloomberg TV interview in Davos. “I’m Still Here” | Steve Bray, otherwise known as the “Stop Brexit Guy” was a fixture outside Westminster during the height of the U.K.’s Brexit tension, often disrupting live TV interviews. On Thursday he took his protest to Brussels, joining a small rally outside the European Parliament, the Brussels Times reports. “I came to Brussels just to visit this parliament,” the Times reported him as saying. “I’m still here because I still care.”Want to keep up with Brexit?You can follow us @Brexit on Twitter, and listen to Bloomberg Westminster every weekday. It’s live at midday on Bloomberg Radio and is available as a podcast too. Share the Brexit Bulletin: Colleagues, friends and family can sign up here. For full EU coverage, try the Brussels Edition.For even more: Subscribe to Bloomberg All Access for our unmatched global news coverage and two in-depth daily newsletters, The Bloomberg Open and The Bloomberg Close.To contact the authors of this story: Thomas Penny in London at tpenny@bloomberg.netIan Wishart in Brussels at iwishart@bloomberg.netTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Adam Blenford at ablenford@bloomberg.net, Chris KayFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.


Spirit Airlines passenger: Cabin crew didn't take my groping allegation seriously

Spirit Airlines passenger: Cabin crew didn't take my groping allegation seriouslyA Michigan college student says she was sexually assaulted on a Spirit Airlines flight, but that flight attendants treated her like an annoyance.


This is Cruise, GM, and Honda's Fully Autonomous Vehicle

This is Cruise, GM, and Honda's Fully Autonomous VehicleThe Cruise Origin shuttle is only the first step toward the complex world of autonomy, so don't expect it on roads anytime soon.


A spill at a California vineyard has sent 97,000 gallons of wine flowing into sewers and a local river

A spill at a California vineyard has sent 97,000 gallons of wine flowing into sewers and a local riverAt the Rodney Strong Winery, 97,000 gallons of Cabernet Sauvignon accidentally spilled, and some entered the nearby Russian River.