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FaviconTwo Delta Air Lines planes clip wings at Boston Logan International Airport 20 Jul 2019, 7:00 pm

Two Delta Air Lines planes clip wings at Boston Logan International AirportTwo Delta Air Lines planes touched wings at Boston Logan International Airport as a flight was arriving to its gate Friday night.




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FaviconPrivate Investigator Says He Shared Two Epstein Female Fixer Names with Feds 20 Jul 2019, 6:56 pm

Private Investigator Says He Shared Two Epstein Female Fixer Names with FedsPrivate investigator Michael Fisten first started digging into financier Jeffrey Epstein’s alleged sex trafficking crimes more than a decade ago when attorney Brad Edwards hired him. After Epstein signed a non-prosecution deal with federal prosecutors in 2008, Edwards had sued Epstein in civil court on behalf of a number of alleged victims who had been blindsided by the plea deal (which a judge later ruled to have violated the Crime Victims' Rights Act). Fisten was tasked with finding as much incriminating information on the financier as he could.Fisten, a 30-year law enforcement veteran, said he was shocked and disgusted by what he uncovered. In a wide-ranging interview with CNN, the P.I. said that he was able to identify two young women who have arranged access to girls for Epstein in recent years. He and Edwards have handed over the names and “associated information” over to federal authorities, he said, though he did not name the alleged fixers to CNN.Judge Who Denied Bail to Jeffrey Epstein Calls Him ‘Uncontrollable’ and a ‘Danger’Fisten also said that his investigations led to the discovery of countless lapses in security during the time Epstein was on work release from the Palm Beach county jail—in a cushy deal that allowed the convicted sex offender out of confinement 12 hours a day, six days a week. On Friday, the Palm Beach sheriff’s office announced that it had opened its own internal investigation into whether deputies, who often referred to Epstein as a “client” instead of an inmate in logs kept at the sheriff’s office, had broken with procedure. Fisten told CNN that he was angered that Epstein was allowed to go to a luxury office instead of remaining behind bars. Fisten said he was disgusted when he saw “lavish lunches being brought into the office and a parade of young females going in and out of the place.”The Palm Beach sheriff’s office now admits that Epstein was also allowed to go to his luxury mansion and spend time there unsupervised. Fisten tried to obtain the sheriff’s office logs that should have documented the names and ages of everyone who came into contact with Epstein during work release, but the logs “have inexplicably vanished,” he said to CNN. “We wanted to get those logs so we could see who the girls were,” Fisten said. “They’re missing. No one knows where they are.”Fisten also repeated previous claims that Epstein wielded his power to silence his accusers during and after his incarceration, even hiring his own private investigators who were paid to harass his victims. “They were former Miami cops,” Fisten told CNN. “He paid an extremely large retainer to them and all their job to do was to follow the girls around and intimidate them.”Fisten even ran into Epstein’s private investigators first hand. Once, when driving one of Epstein’s accusers home, he told CNN he saw one of Epstein’s detectives parked across from her house filming her comings and goings. Fisten said the father of another of Epstein’s accusers was “run off the road” by one of the former cops in Epstein’s employ.Of Epstein's alleged victims, Fisten noted, “Once these girls lost their braces and their pubescent look and started becoming 16-years old or 17-years old, they were too old for him.”“So then he started using them as recruiters to bring the younger girls.” Epstein was denied bail on Thursday as he faces federal sex trafficking charges in New York. Fisten says the victims finally feel that justice could be served. “They couldn’t be happier,” he told CNN. “It’s all they ever wanted.”Read more at The Daily Beast.Got a tip? Send it to The Daily Beast hereGet our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.




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FaviconSaudi Arabia says evacuated crew member of Iranian ship sent to Oman: SPA 20 Jul 2019, 5:33 pm

Saudi Arabia says evacuated crew member of Iranian ship sent to Oman: SPASaudi Arabia said on Saturday it had sent a crew member of an Iranian ship who was previously evacuated for medical reasons from a vessel off the Yemeni port of Hodeidah, to Oman. Iran and Saudi Arabia are arch-adversaries in the Middle East, backing opposite sides in several regional wars including in Yemen where a Saudi-led coalition has been battling the Iran-aligned Houthi movement for four years.




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FaviconHong Kong police seize explosives ahead of weekend protests 20 Jul 2019, 5:24 pm

Hong Kong police seize explosives ahead of weekend protestsPolice in Hong Kong discovered a stash of a powerful homemade explosive as the semi-autonomous Chinese city readied for another major pro-democracy protest on Sunday. Materials voicing opposition to an extradition bill that has sparked more than a month of demonstrations in Hong Kong were found at the site, local media said, but a police spokesman said no concrete link has been established and that the investigation is continuing. In a rally that aimed to counter the pro-democracy movement, thousands of people filled a park in central Hong Kong on Saturday to support the police, who have been accused of using rough tactics on protesters.




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FaviconBosnia buries 86 victims of 1992-95 war recovered from grisly ravine 20 Jul 2019, 4:10 pm

Bosnia buries 86 victims of 1992-95 war recovered from grisly ravineThousands of relatives from Bosnia and across Europe gathered in the village of Hambarine for the burial of 86 Bosniak Muslims on Saturday, 27 years after they were killed and dumped in a ravine in one of the most gruesome incidents of the Bosnian war. The victims, mainly prisoners from the war-era detention camps for non-Serbs near the town of Prijedor, were told they were being released in a prison exchange but instead were driven to the Koricani Cliffs in central Bosnia, lined up by the edge of the ravine and shot by Bosnian Serb forces in August 1992. Jasna Elezovic, standing by five coffins draped in green cloth which held the remains of her father, brother, two cousins and uncle in the nearby Kamicani graveyard, said their bodies were found only last year.




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Favicon9-year-old girl dies after bounce house blown into power lines 20 Jul 2019, 1:57 pm

9-year-old girl dies after bounce house blown into power linesA 9-year-old Reno girl has died from injuries she suffered when strong winds blew an inflatable bounce house with three children inside into power lines last weekend.




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FaviconSen. Elizabeth Warren takes to Twitter to announce her preferred pronouns 20 Jul 2019, 5:38 am

Sen. Elizabeth Warren takes to Twitter to announce her preferred pronounsIs this Warren's attempt at appearing 'woke'? Reaction from journalist Chadwick Moore on 'Tucker Carlson Tonight.'




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FaviconHong Kong protesters use signals, Post-its to hone skills 20 Jul 2019, 5:24 am

Hong Kong protesters use signals, Post-its to hone skillsHong Kong's youth are no rookies when it comes to protests. Using a range of new tactics, they have helped rally hundreds of thousands of fellow Hong Kong residents to take to the streets over the past month. The Hong Kong-based web forum LIHKG and Telegram, the encrypted messaging app, have served as crucial organizing platforms for the largely leaderless protests.




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FaviconArmy Recruiters Signed Off On Hundreds of Recruits Who Hadn't Passed a Required Fitness Test 20 Jul 2019, 4:30 am

Army Recruiters Signed Off On Hundreds of Recruits Who Hadn't Passed a Required Fitness TestOver 300 soldiers were found to have enlisted after either failing a required fitness test, or never taking it at all, according to documents obtained by Army Times.In 2017, the Army was straining to meet its goal of 476,000 active-duty soldiers, meaning the service had to bring in 68,000 recruits. The Occupational Physical Assessment Test was new, and Army Times reports that recruiters implicated in the investigation — 297 of them — "figured the recruits would sort out their fitness levels at basic."According to the report obtained by Army Times, recruiters "perceived that they were under pressure by the mission increase and the requirement to fill training seats during a historically low period of accessions into the Army to ship recruits as quickly as possible."The investigators who looked into the issue also wrote in their report that many of the recruiters "did not fully grasp how to administer the OPAT or the significance of the testing requirements."The investigation involved 38 of the Army's recruiting battalions, excluding only New York City and Richmond, Virginia. Per Army Times, the worst offender was Dallas, Texas, passing through 38 untested recruits who never took the fitness test.Overall there were 318 soldiers who said they either never took the test, or that they failed it; 228 allegations were substantiated, and U.S. Army Recruiting Command spokeswoman Lisa Ferguson told Army Times that "appropriate action was taken in each case."




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Favicon'Clearly a racist act': After biracial boy dragged by school bus, school settles lawsuit 20 Jul 2019, 2:32 am

'Clearly a racist act': After biracial boy dragged by school bus, school settles lawsuitThe teen's mother sued the school district in May, alleging a bus driver intentionally closed the door on her 13-year-old biracial son's backpack.




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FaviconSlim chance of ever finding Chinese scholar's body 20 Jul 2019, 2:24 am

Slim chance of ever finding Chinese scholar's bodyBrendt Christensen, a former doctoral student in physics at the University of Illinois, abducted Yingying Zhang in 2017 from a bus stop. In filings before the trial began in June, prosecutors acknowledged they considered a plea deal with Christensen after his arrest in late 2017 in which they would abandon plans to seek the death penalty if he divulged what he did with the remains and where they could be found. State and federal officials conducted widespread searches for Zhang's remains for months to no avail, according to an FBI agent who testified at the trial.




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FaviconUS offers $7 mn to find Hezbollah agent as Pompeo visits Argentina 20 Jul 2019, 2:03 am

US offers $7 mn to find Hezbollah agent as Pompeo visits ArgentinaThe United States on Friday offered a $7 million reward to find a Hezbollah operative accused of masterminding a deadly 1994 attack on a Jewish center in Buenos Aires, as Secretary of State Mike Pompeo sought to unite Latin American nations against the militants. Pompeo visited to mark the 25th anniversary of Argentina's deadliest attack, lighting a candle at the site of the Argentine Israelite Mutual Association where a plaque lists the names of the 85 dead.




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FaviconWhy thousands demand Puerto Rican Governor Ricardo Rosselló resign 19 Jul 2019, 11:56 pm

Why thousands demand Puerto Rican Governor Ricardo Rosselló resignPuerto Rico Gov. Ricardo Rosselló faces calls to resign after private chats leaked, revealing the men mocking women and victims of Hurricane Maria.




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FaviconLawsuit: North Dakota officers used 'violence' on protester 19 Jul 2019, 11:38 pm

Lawsuit: North Dakota officers used 'violence' on protesterMarcus Mitchell, 24, filed the lawsuit Thursday against Morton County, the city of Bismarck and state Highway Patrol officers. Highway Patrol spokesman Wade Kadrmas declined comment, citing pending litigation. A Morton County official didn't immediately respond to the Bismarck Tribune's request for comment Thursday.




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FaviconU.S. intelligence chief creates election security position 19 Jul 2019, 11:07 pm

U.S. intelligence chief creates election security positionDirector of National Intelligence Dan Coats, who has drawn criticism from President Donald Trump for assessments that countered his policies, said on Friday he was creating a new position to focus solely on U.S. election security. "Election security is an enduring challenge and a top priority for the IC (international community)," Coats said in a statement. Coats said he had tapped Shelby Pierson, the DNI's crisis manager for election security during the 2018 congressional elections, for the job.




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FaviconBritish-flagged tanker seized by Iran in escalation of Gulf tensions as second ship also veers off course 19 Jul 2019, 10:37 pm

British-flagged tanker seized by Iran in escalation of Gulf tensions as second ship also veers off courseA British-flagged oil tanker was seized by Iran on Friday night, in a major escalation of tensions along one of the world's most vital oil shipping routes. The Stena Impero had been en route to Saudi Arabia but made an abrupt change of course and began moving towards the Iranian island of Qeshm, according to data relayed by maritime tracking services. The ship “went dark”, meaning its identification system was turned off, at 16:29 UK time and nothing has been heard from her or her 23 crew since. Northern Marine, a Clyde-based subsidiary of the ship's Swedish owner Stena AB, confirmed that a “hostile action” had preceded the vessel's change of course on Friday afternoon. They issued a statement saying it had been “approached by unidentified small crafts and a helicopter during transit of the Strait of Hormuz while the vessel was in international waters.” The ship turned suddenly into Iranian waters Credit: marinetraffic.com/PA Iran's Revolutionary Guards said in a statement that they stopped the tanker at the request of the maritime authority in the Iranian province of Hormozgan on suspicion it has "violated international maritime law", but did not elaborate.  There were also concerns about a second oil tanker, the British-operated, Liberian-flagged Mesdar, which turned sharply north towards Iran's coast, about 40 minutes after the Stena Impero's course shift. There was no immediate word from the Guards about the second tanker or from the operator of the second tanker on what had prompted the change in direction along the vital international oil shipping route. Tracking data showed the Stena Impero was in the same area where a United Arab Emirates-based vessel was detained on Sunday and where a British vessel, the British Heritage, was blocked by Iranian forces earlier this month. A Cobra meeting was held between officials from the Foreign Office, Ministry of Defence and other Government departments on Friday night to determine the UK's response. A Whitehall source told the Telegraph of the Stena Impero: "It does look like it has been hijacked. Ships don't follow that pattern. It turned right and straight into Iranian waters. It is really concerning that this has happened. "It looks on the face of it as though the Iranian Revolutionary Guard have boarded and taken a UK-flagged ship. It appears to be linked to events around the Grace 1 tanker." British authorities seized the Iranian Grace 1 supertanker off the coast of Gibraltar on July 4, on suspicion it was carrying crude to Syria in violation of European Union sanctions. The fate of the tanker has been at the centre of escalating tensions between the UK and Iran and seen as a pawn in the standoff between the Islamic Republic and the West. Jeremy Hunt, Foreign Secretary, had hinted last Saturday that the UK would release the ship if Iran promised its cargo would not go to the Syrian regime. He said talks between him and counterpart Mohammad Javad Zarif had been productive. However, a court in Gibraltar on Friday extended for 30 days the detention of the vessel, which was carrying two million barrels of oil. Revolutionary Guards have been threatening retaliation for its impounding and the move would likely have aggravated an already-tense situation. Tensions have been building for weeks in the Persian Gulf.  On 10 July, a British warship, the HMS Montrose, intervened to drive three Iranian military vessels that were attempting to divert the British Heritage.  Iran seized a Panama-flagged ship on Sunday, it alleges, for “smuggling oil to foreign countries". However, mystery has surrounded the capture as no country has come forward to claim the ship or its cargo. The vessel, however, was only carrying a very small amount and it had been thought Iran had seized it as merely a show of strength. The US then on Thursday claimed to have downed an Iranian drone that had been flying too close to one of its navy ships.  The USS Boxer, an amphibious assault craft, destroyed the drone after it came within 1,000 yards in the Strait of Hormuz, at the entrance to the Gulf However, Iran denied the claims and released footage on state TV to proof it was still in possession of the drone. The latest incidents will only increase fears for security along the Strait of Hormuz, through which almost one-fifth of the world's oil passes. Oil prices rose on Friday night in reaction to the news. After one of the worst performing weeks since May, oil started the day firmer but slipped as the US and Iran continued to trade brickbats. The later rise initially still left it well down on the previous week. Oil was down more than 8pc this week overall when markets in London closed.   Iran has threatened to close the Strait if it cannot export its oil. The Trump administration is trying to block Iran's exports as a way to pressure it to renegotiate the landmark 2015 nuclear deal it abandoned last year. The UK, which is understood to have seized the Grace 1 after a request from the US, is trying - alongside the EU - to keep the accord alive, believing it is the best chance to stop Tehran acquiring a nuclear weapon.




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FaviconEU plans to offer Boris Johnson no-deal Brexit extension: The Guardian 19 Jul 2019, 10:32 pm

EU plans to offer Boris Johnson no-deal Brexit extension: The Guardian"It will be described as a technical delay to save Boris from political embarrassment but then we will have time to find an agreement," a senior EU diplomat told the newspaper http://bit.ly/2xWScq9. Johnson could maintain the stance of being on course to leave EU without an agreement while keeping open the option of coming to a deal with the bloc, according to the proposal cited by the Guardian. EU leaders are discussing steps to be taken in the event Johnson presses ahead with exiting the European Union without a transition deal on Oct. 31, the newspaper said.




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FaviconEx-NRA Ad Firm: Um, Wayne LaPierre is Lying 19 Jul 2019, 10:16 pm

Ex-NRA Ad Firm: Um, Wayne LaPierre is LyingLucas Jackson/ReutersIn a new filing against the National Rifle Association, lawyers for ad agency Ackerman McQueen suggest that longtime NRA executive Wayne LaPierre is lying about a critical moment in the gun rights group’s recent leadership shake up. At issue is multi-million-dollar litigation between the NRA and its ex-ad firm. In court filings of its own, the NRA has alleged that Oliver North, the groups's former president, was ousted in part because he withheld information from the NRA about payments he took from Ackerman McQueen, which had served as the gun rights group’s primary ad contractor until just months ago. The NRA claims North kept the nature of his deal with Ackerman McQueen a secret from LaPierre and the gun group’s leadership. But in a July 16 filing that was reviewed by The Daily Beast, Ackerman McQueen alleges that LaPierre himself helped negotiate the deal between their firm and North. And they hint that they have documentation to prove it. In a statement, the NRA denied the suggestions. “The facts are clear – Mr. LaPierre and the NRA had no idea that Col. North was negotiating to become an employee of Ackerman McQueen,” said Andrew Arulanandam, managing director of NRA Public Affairs. “And to the extent Col. North was pushing a contrived narrative about Mr. LaPierre and the NRA, he was conflicted. He was an employee of Ackerman at the time he was allegedly scheming with the agency to unseat Mr. LaPierre.”  It’s a messy new chapter in the months-long legal battle between the NRA and the ad firm it used for more than three decades. And it comes as the gun group has jettisoned senior staff and faced revolts from grassroots activists and donors. “LaPierre negotiated the terms of the North Contract directly with Lt. Col. North and a detailed term sheet was sent to AMc [Ackerman McQueen] for completion of the formal agreement,” the filing reads. The NRA’s then-treasurer, Wilson “Woody” Phillips, also reviewed and approved North’s contract with the firm, according to the filing, and the NRA board’s audit committee green-lit the contract as well. “On at least two occasions, counsel for the NRA has reviewed the North Contract,” the filing adds. NRA Pulls the Plug on NRATVAckerman McQueen’s insistence that NRA officials were aware of the contract with North is directly at odds with the contention the NRA made in a suit it filed against the ad agency in April. North was ousted from the NRA that month during the group’s annual meeting and has since accused LaPierre of gross mismanagement and making highly questionable expenditures. The NRA, meanwhile, has alleged that North tried to oust LaPierre in a coup. And in a separate suit in May, it accused Ackerman McQueen of breach of contract by leaking information about both LaPierre and the NRA’s finances. Ackerman McQueen had been a central force behind the NRA’s evolution from a gun rights group to a conservative cultural institution. As part of that mission, the ad firm helped launch and manage NRATV, the NRA’s recently shuttered internet-video arm. The NRA has alleged in court that Ackerman McQueen had refused to share its analytics with the gun group. But In its July 16 filing, Ackerman McQueen claims that the opposite is true. “Two days before the lawsuit was filed, LaPierre was in AMc’s office and was in attendance for the presentation of the NRATV analytics,” it reads. “LaPierre walked out of the meeting.” A spokesperson for the NRA’s legal team did not immediately respond to a request for comment. The filing indicates that the fight between the NRA and Ackerman shows no signs of losing steam. Earlier this week, longtime NRA director of public affairs Jennifer Baker left the group. And a month ago, the group parted ways with its longtime top lobbyist, Chris Cox. 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.




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FaviconTrump says will not use U.S. debt ceiling to negotiate spending deal with Congress 19 Jul 2019, 9:32 pm

Trump says will not use U.S. debt ceiling to negotiate spending deal with CongressPresident Donald Trump said on Friday he could not imagine using the United States' debt ceiling as a tool to negotiate a spending deal with lawmakers in Congress, saying the government's credit rating was sacred. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has said she hopes for a vote on the debt limit before Congress takes its recess in August. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said on Thursday the Trump administration and congressional leaders had agreed on broad spending levels for the next two fiscal years but Pelosi would not confirm there was a deal.




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FaviconFox News Host to Geraldo Rivera: I Can Tell You to Go Back to Where You Came From 19 Jul 2019, 9:30 pm

Fox News Host to Geraldo Rivera: I Can Tell You to Go Back to Where You Came FromDefending Donald Trump’s repeated racist taunts at Democratic congresswomen of color, Fox News host Pete Hegseth told correspondent-at-large Geraldo Rivera on Friday morning that it would be perfectly fine for him to utilize the president’s “go back to where you came from” message on him.A day after Trump sorta disavowed the racist “send her back!” chant his rally crowd launched at Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN), Rivera appeared on Fox & Friends and said he was “glad the president has said” he didn’t like the chants. At the same time, Rivera noted that the president’s original tweets targeting the “Squad” tapped into an “old racist trope,” something the longtime Trump pal had criticized the president for days earlier.“Geraldo, but you, like many, have accused him of racism,” Hegseth replied. “But if you go back and look at that tweet, he’s not talking about race, he’s talking about whether or not you love this country and appreciate it. And if you don’t appreciate it and don’t love it, and don’t want to work to make it better, then maybe you could consider going somewhere else. There’s plenty of countries on Earth.”How the Ilhan Omar Marriage Smear Went From Fever Swamp to TrumpRivera, who is of Puerto Rican heritage, shot back at his colleague, yelling “what the hell” before pointing out that all four congresswomen—Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), Rashida Tlaib (D-MI), Ayanna Pressley (D-MA) and Omar—are citizens of the United States. Hegseth, meanwhile, said he would have no problem if someone personally told him he could love it or leave it.“Intolerable—you cannot say that,” Rivera responded.“You could totally say it,” Hegseth, an informal adviser to Trump, asserted.“You can’t say it to me,” Rivera fired back.“Well, I could say it to you,” the Fox & Friends host countered.Rivera went on to recount the number of “street fights” he had in his younger years because he’s Puerto Rican, claiming he routinely heard people telling him to go back to where he came from even though he was born in New York. Hegseth brushed that off while continuing to insist that Trump is not referencing race but instead the lawmakers’ “principles” and “lack of gratitude.”“A lot of people aren’t grateful to be here,” Rivera declared. “Gratitude is not a requirement of citizenship.”Read more at The Daily Beast.Got a tip? Send it to The Daily Beast hereGet our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.




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