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  • Iran Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei calls Trump a 'clown,' defends Iran's military

    Golocal247.com news

    Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei called President Donald Trump a "clown" as he led Friday prayers in Tehran for the first time since 2012.

    Fri, 17 Jan 2020 11:35:05 -0500
  • ICE ups ante in standoff with NYC: 'This is not a request'

    Golocal247.com news

    Federal authorities are turning to a new tactic in the escalating conflict over New York City's so-called sanctuary policies, issuing four “immigration subpoenas” to the city for information about inmates wanted for deportation. “This is not a request — it's a demand,” Henry Lucero, a senior U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement official, told The Associated Press. Mayor Bill de Blasio's administration said Saturday the city would review the subpoenas.

    Sat, 18 Jan 2020 19:23:51 -0500
  • Off-duty Hong Kong police officer arrested for supporting protests

    Golocal247.com news

    An off-duty Hong Kong police officer was arrested along with seven other people on Friday as they tried to put pro-democracy posters on a footbridge, police said. It's the first known case of a police officer being apprehended for supporting the massive demonstrations that have led to more than 6,500 arrests in the past seven months. The officer, 31, and the seven other people aged 14 to 61, were arrested at 3:00 am on Friday in Tuen Mun, a district in northwest Hong Kong.

    Fri, 17 Jan 2020 13:41:25 -0500
  • An ISIS preacher captured in Iraq was apparently so overweight that police had to take him away in the back of a pickup truck

    Golocal247.com news

    Shifa al-Nima was captured in the Mansour neighborhood of Mosul by the Nineveh police command, according to Iraqi police.

    Fri, 17 Jan 2020 09:36:48 -0500
  • Los Angeles teachers are suing Delta after a plane dumped jet fuel on them, allegedly leaving them dizzy and nauseous

    Golocal247.com news

    Teachers at an elementary school outside of Los Angeles, California are suing Delta after a plane dropped fuel on area schools, causing 60 injuries.

    Fri, 17 Jan 2020 21:31:19 -0500
  • Revealed: The Secrets Behind Russia's Crazy 100-Megaton Nuclear Torpedo

    Golocal247.com news

    From fiction to reality.

    Sat, 18 Jan 2020 00:00:00 -0500
  • The Hole in the Impeachment Case

    Golocal247.com news

    Thought experiment No. 1: Suppose Bob Mueller’s probe actually proves that Donald Trump is under Vladimir Putin’s thumb. Fill in the rest of the blanks with your favorite corruption fantasy: The Kremlin has video of the mogul-turned-president debauching himself in a Moscow hotel; the Kremlin has a bulging file of real-estate transfers through which Trump laundered racketeering proceeds for Putin’s favored mobsters and oligarchs; or Trump is recorded cutting a deal to drop Obama-era sanctions against Putin’s regime if Russian spies hack Democratic accounts.Thought experiment No. 2: Adam Schiff is not a demagogue. (Remember, this is fantasy.) At the very first televised hearing, when he alleged that President Trump told Ukrainian president Zelensky, “I want you to make up dirt on my political opponent . . . lots of it,” Schiff was not defrauding the public. Instead, impeachment’s Inspector Clouseau can actually prove that Trump was asking a foreign government to manufacture out of whole cloth evidence that Vice President Biden and his son were cashing in on the former’s political influence (as opposed to asking that Ukraine look into an arrangement so objectively sleazy that the Obama administration itself agitated over what to do about it).What do these two scenarios have in common, besides being fictional? Answer: If either of them were real, we’d already be talking about President Pence’s upcoming State of the Union address.This is the point that gets lost in all the endless chatter over impeachment strategy and procedure. Everything that is happening owes to the fact that we do not have an offense sufficiently grave for invocation of the Constitution’s nuclear option. If we had one, the machinations and the posturing would be unnecessary — even ridiculous.Why are we talking about how Chairman Schiff, Speaker Pelosi, and House Democrats rushed through the impeachment inquiry without making a real effort to interview key witnesses?Why was the Democrats’ impeachment gambit driven by the election calendar rather than the nature of the president’s offense? Why were the timing of hearings and the unreasonable limits imposed on Republicans’ ability to call witnesses dictated by the frantic rush to get done before Christmas recess -- to the point that Democrats cynically vacated a subpoena they’d served on a relevant administration witness, fearing a few weeks of court battles that they might lose?Why did Democrats grope from week to week in a struggle over what to call the misconduct they accused the president of committing – campaign finance, extortion, quid pro quo, bribery? How did they end up with an amorphous “abuse of power” case? How did they conclude that an administration that goes to court rather than instantly surrendering potentially privileged information commits obstruction?Why such tedious recriminations over adoption of Senate procedures that were approved by a 100–0 vote the last time there was an impeachment trial? Why all the kvetching over whether witnesses will be called when those procedures provide for the calling of witnesses in the likely event that 51 senators — after hearing nearly two weeks of presentation and argument from both sides -- want to hear from one or two of them?Why, with Election Day only ten months away, would Speaker Pelosi stoke an impeachment vote that could be perilous for many of her members, on the insistence that Trump was such a clear and present danger she could brook no delay, but then . . . sit on the impeachment articles for a month, accomplishing nothing in the interim except to undermine the presidential bids of several Senate Democrats, who will be trapped in Washington when they should be out campaigning with Iowa’s caucuses just two weeks away?None of this would have happened if there had been a truly impeachable offense.Adam Schiff is a smart guy. He did not idly dream up a “make up dirt” parody. He framed it because he knows that’s the kind of misconduct you would need to prove to warrant impeachment and removal of a president. In fact, Schiff could never prove that, but he figured parody is good enough for 2020 campaign purposes — and that’s what this exercise is all about.If collusion with Russia had been fact rather than farce, Trump would never have made it to an impeachment trial. He’d have had to resign, Prior to November 8, 2016, Republicans were not the ones in need of convincing that Russia was a dangerous geopolitical threat. If it had been real collusion that brought Democrats around to that conclusion, the votes to impeach and remove would have been overwhelming.And the timing would have been irrelevant. If Americans had been seized by a truly impeachable offense, it would not matter whether Election Day was two years, two months, or two weeks away. The public and the political class would not tolerate an agent of the Kremlin in the Oval Office.If there were such egregious misconduct that the public was convinced of the need to remove Trump, such that two-thirds of the Senate would ignore partisan ties and do just that, there would be no partisan stunts. Democratic leaders would have worked cooperatively with their GOP counterparts, as was done in prior impeachments. They would have told the president: “Sure, you can have your lawyers here, and call whatever witnesses you want.” There would be a bipartisan sense that the president had done profound wrong. There would be a sense of history, not contest. Congressional leaders would want to be remembered as statesmen, not apparatchiks.If there were a real impeachable offense, there would be no fretting about witnesses at the trial. Senate leaders would be contemplating that, after hearing the case extensively presented by both sides, there might well be enough votes to convict without witnesses. But if there were an appetite for witnesses, witnesses would be called . . . as they were in Watergate. And just as in Watergate, if the president withheld vital evidence of appalling lawlessness, the public would not be broadly indifferent to administration stonewalling.If there were an obviously impeachable offense, the garrisons of Fort Knox could not have stopped Nancy Pelosi from personally marching impeachment articles into the Senate the second the House had adopted them -- in what would have been an overwhelming bipartisan vote (of the kind that Pelosi, not long ago, said would be imperative for a legitimate impeachment effort).The Framers expected presidents to abuse their powers from time to time. And not just presidents. Our Constitution’s theory of the human condition, and thus of governance, is that power is apt to corrupt anyone. It needs to be divided, and the peer components need to be incentivized to check each other. The operating assumption is that, otherwise, one component would accumulate too much power and inevitably fall prey to the tyrannical temptation. But as Madison observed, men are not angels. Separation of powers arms us against inevitable abuse, it does not prevent abuse from happening. Abuse is a given: Congress uses lawmaking power to encroach on the other branches’ prerogatives; judges legislate from the bench, presidents leverage their awesome powers for political advantage. The expectation is not that government officials will never overreach; it is that when one branch does overreach, the others will bring it into line.That is the norm: corrective action or inaction, political pressure, naming and shaming, power of the purse, and so on. We expect to criticize, inveigh, even censure. We don’t leap from abuse to expulsion. We don’t expect routinely to expel members of Congress or impeach presidents and judges. That is reserved for historically extraordinary wrongs.On Ukraine, nothing of consequence came of President Trump’s bull-in-a-china-shop excesses. Sure, they ought to be a 2020 campaign issue. Democrats, instead, would have us exaggerate them into historically extraordinary wrongs. For that, you need gamesmanship. If there were real impeachable misconduct, there would be no time or place for games.

    Sat, 18 Jan 2020 06:30:23 -0500
  • Spain's Balearic Islands crack down on alcohol-fuelled holidays

    Golocal247.com news

    Spain's Balearic Islands passed a bill Friday aimed at clamping down on alcohol-fuelled holidays in the Mediterranean archipelago which bans happy hours when drinks are offered a discount and open bars. "This is the first law adopted in Europe which restricts the sale and promotion of alcohol in certain touristic areas," the regional government of the Balearic Islands which have long been a magnet for young German and British tourists, who often drink heavily and enjoy rowdy late-night clubbing. The restrictions will apply to three areas with a reputation for excess: San Antoni on the island of Ibiza and El Arenal and Magaluf -- which has been nicknamed "Shagaluf" because of its reputation for drunken casual sex -- on Mallorca, the largest of the Balearic's four islands.

    Fri, 17 Jan 2020 12:07:42 -0500
  • 'You have not seen anything yet,' climate activist Greta says ahead of Davos

    Golocal247.com news

    Swedish activist Greta Thunberg marched with 10,000 protesters in the Swiss city of Lausanne on Friday and said "you have not seen anything yet" before some head to Davos next week to challenge the global financial elite to fight climate change. "So, we are now in a new year and we have entered a new decade and so far, during this decade, we have seen no sign whatsoever that real climate action is coming and that has to change,” Thunberg said in a speech in Lausanne. Hundreds will take trains over the weekend and then march to Klosters near Davos, the annual gathering of world political and business leaders that Thunberg is attending for the second year in a row and will take part in two panel events.

    Fri, 17 Jan 2020 11:10:54 -0500
  • Body of woman who was missing for almost 6 years found in car submerged in NJ river

    Golocal247.com news

    Vanessa Smallwood of Maple Shade, N.J., was 46 at the time of her disappearance. She was identified in a statement from New Jersey State Police.

    Sun, 19 Jan 2020 00:05:07 -0500
  • US seeks to deport Honduran mom, sick children to Guatemala

    Golocal247.com news

    The U.S. government says it will deport a Honduran mother and her two sick children, both of whom are currently hospitalized, to Guatemala as soon as it can get them medically cleared to travel, according to court documents and the family’s advocates. The family’s advocates accuse the U.S. of disregarding the health of the children, ages 1 and 6, to push forward a plan currently being challenged in court to send planeloads of families to different countries so that they can seek asylum elsewhere. Both children have been hospitalized in recent days in South Texas’ Rio Grande Valley.

    Sat, 18 Jan 2020 20:20:21 -0500
  • Kidnapped US teen rescued by police thanks to Snapchat

    Golocal247.com news

    A California teen who had been drugged and kidnapped was rescued by police this week after using Snapchat to alert her friends to her abduction. One man was arrested as he left the motel in San Jose, in northern California, where the girl was being held and two other suspects were taken into custody on Wednesday, police said in a statement.

    Fri, 17 Jan 2020 15:46:29 -0500
  • Trump threatened 25% tariffs on European cars if Britain, Germany and France didn't put Iran on notice

    Golocal247.com news

    The Trump administration warned European officials in three countries that if they didn't put Iran on notice about nuclear deal violations, the US government would slap a 25% tariff on all European cars.

    Fri, 17 Jan 2020 14:31:25 -0500
  • The TSA apologized after an agent pulled a Native American passenger's braid and said "giddyup!" during a pat down

    Golocal247.com news

    Tara Houska was going through security at the Minneapolis airport on Monday when she said an agent humiliated her by whipping her braids.

    Fri, 17 Jan 2020 12:43:20 -0500
  • What Can Iran Hope To Do Against America's Stealth Aircraft?

    Golocal247.com news

    Drones and more.

    Sat, 18 Jan 2020 10:40:00 -0500
  • Text messages show Devin Nunes' aide had extensive communications with Giuliani associate Lev Parnas about Trump's Ukraine efforts

    Golocal247.com news

    The messages provide key new evidence that Nunes' team was aware of and involved in Trump's efforts to pressure Ukraine to investigate Joe Biden.

    Sat, 18 Jan 2020 10:44:36 -0500
  • 'Stay the hell away from Richmond': Mother of Charlottesville victim Heather Heyer gives warning about Virginia gun rally as armed neo-Nazis are arrested

    Golocal247.com news

    The mother of a civil rights activist who died while demonstrating against the 2017 neo-nazi rally in Charlottesville, Virginia has a message for those planning to attend a major guns rights demonstration in the state on Monday: “To anybody planning violence: stay the hell away from Richmond.”Susan Bro, co-founder and president of the social justice foundation named after her daughter Heather Heyer, spoke to The Independent on Friday after the FBI arrested multiple suspected neo-Nazis who had discussed attending the demonstrations next week with firearms.

    Fri, 17 Jan 2020 12:23:00 -0500
  • Ten charred bodies found in vehicle in violence-plagued Mexican state

    Mexican prosecutors are investigating the discovery of a burned-out vehicle containing the charred bodies of 10 people in the southwestern state of Guerrero, authorities said late on Friday. Police made the grisly discovery on a country road in the municipality of Chilapa de Alvarez after locals saw the vehicle on fire and alerted authorities, state security spokesman Roberto Alvarez said in a statement published on Facebook.

    Sat, 18 Jan 2020 13:08:03 -0500
  • US court dismisses suit by youths over climate change

    Golocal247.com news

    A federal appeals court on Friday dismissed a lawsuit by 21 young people who claimed the U.S. government's climate policies and reliance on fossil fuels harms them, jeopardizes their future and violates their constitutional rights, potentially dealing a fatal blow to a long-running case that activists saw as an important front in the war against environmental degradation. The Oregon-based youth advocacy group Our Children's Trust filed the lawsuit in 2015 in Eugene on behalf of the youngsters. It sought an injunction ordering the government to implement a plan to phase out fossil fuel emissions and draw down atmospheric carbon dioxide emission.

    Fri, 17 Jan 2020 13:32:36 -0500
  • Was the Taal Volcano eruption large enough to influence the climate?

    Golocal247.com news

    The Taal volcano roared to life last weekend for the first time in more than 40 years, sending a massive plume of volcanic ash towering over the Philippines.This was the first time that Taal has erupted since 1977, an event that marked the end of an active period for the volcano that had begun in 1965. Taal did show signs of unrest periodically throughout the 1990s, but it did not erupt during that period, according to the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology.The eruption, which began on Jan. 12, 2020, has forced more than 125,000 people to evacuate the Philippine province of Batangas, where the volcano is located. A state of calamity has been declared for the zone surrounding the volcano, according to The Associated Press. People watch as Taal Volcano erupts Sunday Jan. 12, 2020, in Tagaytay, Cavite province, outside Manila, Philippines (AP Photo/Aaron Favila) During the height of the eruption, a large plume of searing hot volcanic ash blossomed approximately 50,000 feet, about 9.5 miles, into the atmosphere, with some materials making it into the stratosphere, according to observations from NASA. The eruption was accompanied by incredible displays of volcanic lightning, which made for breathtaking video footage, fountains of scalding lava and more than 400 earthquakes.The aftermath of the eruption had the country's president, Rodrigo Duterte, using no uncertain terms to describe the impact on the surrounding communities."It is now a no man's land," Duterte declared, according to Al Jazeera. "It's like heaven and earth fell on it."The fallout downwind of the eruption has blanketed areas dozens of miles away from the volcano itself, including Metro Manila, located about 101 km (63 miles) north of the eruption."Ash fallout to the ground can pose significant disruption and damage to buildings, transportation, water and wastewater, power supply, communications equipment, agriculture, and primary production leading to potentially substantial societal impacts and costs, even at thicknesses of only a few millimeters or inches," the USGS explains on its volcano hazards website. "Additionally, fine-grained ash, when ingested can cause health impacts to humans and animals. "The deteriorating air quality due to the ash has caused at least six people to be sent to a hospital in Tagaytay City in Cavite due to respiratory ailments, The Associated Press reported. One death has also been reported after a vehicle crashed on a slippery, ash-covered road.The abundance of ash in the atmosphere surrounding Taal snarled air traffic, causing more than 600 flights across the region to be canceled. If the fine volcanic ash enters the engines of an airplane, it can have disastrous results, endangering the lives of all those aboard the flight."Volcanoes do affect the weather, and some major ones affect the climate if you define climate as anything beyond a year or two," Dr. Joel Myers, Founder, President and Chairman of AccuWeather, said.In extremely powerful volcanic eruptions, the ash and aerosols released in the eruption can pass through the troposphere, the lowest layer of Earth's atmosphere, and penetrate into the stratosphere, the second layer of the atmosphere. If enough of the ash and other pollutants released in the eruption make it into the stratosphere, they can influence the climate around the globe. The boundary between the troposphere and stratosphere is about 6 miles (10 km) above the ground, a little higher than where commercial jets typically fly."The most significant climate impacts from volcanic injections into the stratosphere come from the conversion of sulfur dioxide to sulfuric acid, which condenses rapidly in the stratosphere to form fine sulfate aerosols," the USGS explained.These aerosols high in the atmosphere reflect light from the sun back into space, resulting in a cooling effect in Earth's lower atmosphere."There is no question that very large volcanic eruptions can inject significant amounts of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere," scientists at the USGS say, but they also note that "the carbon dioxide released in contemporary volcanic eruptions has never caused detectable global warming of the atmosphere."Significant volcanic eruptions in the tropics can also have more of an influence on the global climate than those closer to the poles."Because of atmospheric circulation patterns, eruptions in the tropics can have an effect on the climate in both hemispheres while eruptions at mid or high latitudes only have an impact the hemisphere they are within," the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research explained. The time-series animation above shows the growth and spread of the volcanic plume from January 12-13, as observed by Japan's Himawari-8 satellite. (NOAA) The most powerful volcanic eruption in recorded history directly influenced temperatures around the globe for years and was responsible for what became known as the ‘Year Without a Summer.'"One of the most dramatic examples" of this phenomenon over the last few 100 years was the eruption of Mount Tambora in 1815, Myers said. That eruption "caused a few years of cold weather, some of it extraordinary," he explained. "This includes 1816, the Year Without a Summer, when frost occurred in New England in every month of the year - affecting crops and on one July day when snow flurries were reported in Long Island Sound."AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Dan Kottlowski said that scientists are also unsure that the Tambora eruption was the sole factor behind the Year Without a Summer. Kottlowski, who is also AccuWeather's chief hurricane expert, said, "There are potentially other factors that couldn't be measured at the time or weren't understood at the time that could've been contributing factors to the unusual weather in the Northeast that year. "A more recent example of a volcano having a direct correlation with a decrease in the global temperature took place in the early 1990s following the cataclysmic eruption of Mount Pinatubo in the Philippines.The eruption of Mount Pinatubo was more powerful than that of Mount St. Helens, sending an enormous plume of volcanic ash and aerosols as high as 28 miles (40 km)."Nearly 20 million tons of sulfur dioxide were injected into the stratosphere in Pinatubo's 1991 eruptions, and dispersal of this gas cloud around the world caused global temperatures to drop temporarily (1991 through 1993) by about 1°F (0.5°C)," according to the USGS.Pinatubo's eruption was orders of magnitude larger than that of Taal's eruption earlier this year, so any impacts on the global climate through the balance of 2020 and into 2021 from the eruption are likely to be minimal or negligible.However, if the early January eruption of Taal is followed up by a series of larger eruptions that disperse large quantities of aerosols into the stratosphere, then the probability of the volcano influencing the global climate would increase.Taal has spewed smaller ash and steam explosions throughout the week, and as of Friday, it was still under alert for a hazardous eruption, The Associated Press reported. Officials have warned that "life-threatening" subsequent eruptions remain a real possibility.

    Fri, 17 Jan 2020 14:56:04 -0500
  • Painting found in Italian museum wall is stolen Klimt

    Golocal247.com news

    A painting found stashed inside a wall at an Italian museum has been confirmed as the stolen "Portrait of a Lady" by Austria's Gustav Klimt, prosecutors said on Friday, two decades after the artwork went missing. The century-old painting was discovered concealed in an external wall by gardeners at the Ricci Oddi Gallery of Modern Art in Piacenza, northeast Italy, last month. "It is with no small emotion that I can tell you the work is authentic," prosecutor Ornella Chicca told reporters.

    Fri, 17 Jan 2020 16:51:06 -0500
  • Assessing Israel’s tactical laser breakthrough

    Golocal247.com news

    Israel's timeline to field laser capabilities for its military may prove challenging. It is important to understand the technology’s promise — as well as its limitations.

    Fri, 17 Jan 2020 13:50:39 -0500
  • Princess Cruises responds after 'Marriage Story' actress speaks out, sues alleging bedbugs

    Golocal247.com news

    A "Marriage Story" actress and her husband are suing Princess Cruises, alleging their room was infested with bedbugs.

    Fri, 17 Jan 2020 07:57:20 -0500
  • China Thinks It Can Nuke American Cities. Should We Worry?

    Golocal247.com news

    World War III is no joke...

    Sat, 18 Jan 2020 17:00:00 -0500
  • Impeachment: is Trump set to survive and win a second term?

    Golocal247.com news

    As Democrats marched the articles to the Senate, the president basked in policy success. Many think re-election is comingIt was, the White House tweeted on Friday, “an incredible week” for Donald Trump. On that, no one could disagree. But what kind of incredible depended on which end of Pennsylvania Avenue you were standing.At the Capitol, the third impeachment trial of a US president got under way in hushed solemnity as senators contemplated the ultimate sanction, removing Trump from office. It was a day his most ardent critics had long awaited and some thought inevitable.Yet the White House, less than two miles away, might have been in a different cosmos. The president held a boisterous ceremony to sign a trade agreement with China, “the biggest deal anybody has ever seen”, and celebrated as Congress passed another deal with Canada and Mexico. He toasted stock market records, low unemployment and a sustained fall in illegal crossings at the southern border.It had the makings of an election year narrative of “promises made, promises kept” that Trump’s campaign hopes will resonate more than a Senate litigation of his dealings with Ukraine which, in any case, appears certain to lead to his acquittal.“He seems determined to check as many boxes as he can,” said Bill Galston, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution thinktank in Washington. “If you look at the three pillars of the distinct outlook he brought with him to the White House – getting tough on immigrants, leaning hard against unbalanced trade relationships and an ‘America first’ foreign policy – you’d have to say over recent months he’s gone three for three.”To be sure, there was plenty of bad news for Trump. Democrats from the House of Representatives marched funereally through the Capitol to transfer the articles of impeachment, for abuse of power and obstruction of Congress, to their Senate counterparts. The entrance of Chief Justice John Roberts injected sudden grandeur and gravity. Chuck Schumer, Democratic minority leader in the Senate, said: “When the chief justice walked in, you could feel the weight of the moment. I saw members on both sides of the aisle visibly gulp.”Moreover, as senators prepare to weigh evidence that Trump improperly pressured Ukraine to investigate a political rival, a federal watchdog concluded that he broke the law when he froze military aid to the country last year. And Lev Parnas, a close associate of Trump’s lawyer Rudy Giuliani, tossed in another hand grenade with a TV interview that directly implicated the president in efforts to pressure Ukraine. “President Trump knew exactly what was going on,” Parnas told MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow.For most viewers of that network, and millions of liberals across America, it was yet another nail in the coffin of a man who has long been beyond redemption and whose re-election is unthinkable.> I think there’s an element of genuine incomprehension. He thinks he’s the greatest president of all time> > Bill GalstonBut not the first time, there was a profound disconnection with Trumpworld, a place where the sun is always shining. Here, in meetings, ceremonies and rallies, the president basks in constant affirmation from fervent supporters and sycophantic staff. Such is the bubble of self-congratulation, it is perhaps not surprising Trump is baffled by the contempt and derision he glimpses outside it. He frequently asks bemusedly how a president with his record could be impeached.Galston said: “I think there’s an element of genuine incomprehension. He thinks he’s the greatest president of all time and his protestations of injured innocence I take seriously as a representation of his inner state.” ‘Clinton was more disciplined’On Wednesday, as dozens of reporters craned their necks beneath the crystal chandeliers of the ornate East Room, Trump stood with with Chinese vice-premier Liu He for the signing of the US-China phase one trade agreement. Before they put pen to paper, the president spent the best part of an hour giving shout-outs to his favourite officials and members of Congress. Senator Lindsey Graham, for example, was a “much better golfer than people would understand”.Amid the applause, adulation and levity, it was hard to believe the existential threat of impeachment was unfolding up the road. That was just one more laugh line. “Kevin McCarthy, as you know, left for the hoax,” Trump said of the Republican minority leader, prompting chuckles. Then he added darkly: “Well, we have to do that, otherwise it becomes a more serious hoax.”On Thursday, the paradox continued. Senators passed Trump’s United States-Mexico-Canada free trade agreement, or USMCA, with an 89-10 vote, then were sworn in as jurors for an impeachment trial certain to be far more divisive. Galston added: “To have the Senate vote with nearly 90 in favour of the trade deal and be split down the middle on impeachment on the same day is stunning.”But Galston, a former deputy assistant to Bill Clinton for domestic policy, recalled that the last impeachment had its own dichotomies. “As Clinton careened towards a Senate trial in late 1998, Democrats won a big victory in the midterm elections and Newt Gingrich, the speaker of the House, felt compelled to resign. Talk about a split screen. I’ve seen this movie before.“But President Clinton was more disciplined. When he had ceremonies at the White House he never talked about the other side of the screen. President Trump is obliterating the line.” ‘Not paying attention’In what would normally be a week of crisis, Trump was claiming other perceived victories. A caravan of about 2,000 Hondurans, reminiscent of those the president demonised in 2018, was on the move but looked unlikely to reach the US-Mexico border this time, in part because of new asylum agreements with Central American countries. The number of people crossing the border has fallen for seven months in a row.> A big bowl of cold oatmeal> > Van Jones on the Democratic debateTrump even seems to have got away with his biggest, most impulsive gamble in foreign policy, the assassination of Iran’s top general, Qassem Suleimani, as the threat of all war apparently receded. “Trump Wins His Standoff with Iran”, proclaimed a Washington Post headline above a column by Marc Thiessen, a fellow at the American Enterprise Institute and former chief speechwriter for George W Bush.The president’s final boost of the week may have come at the Democratic debate in Iowa where, in the eyes of some critics, no one claimed the mantle of Trump-slayer.“I came away feeling worried for the Democratic party,” political analyst Van Jones said on CNN, comparing it to “a big bowl of cold oatmeal” and warning: “There was nothing I saw tonight that would be able to take Donald Trump out, and I want to see a Democrat in the White House as soon as possible.”Trump has, in fact, failed to keep many promises: making Mexico pay for a border wall; growing the economy at 4% a year; repealing and replacing Barack Obama’s Affordable Care Act; passing a $1tn infrastructure bill. Even his China trade deal has been condemned as a surrender. None of that has stopped his campaign ads portraying him as a man of action and touting a list of achievements in contrast to “do nothing” Democrats obsessed with the arcane business of impeachment.Bill Whalen, a research fellow at the Hoover Institution thinktank at Stanford University in Palo Alto, California, said: “The trial does not feature Trump himself and could turn out to be intensely boring. A lot of viewers are not paying attention. It doesn’t affect their lives. That’s what I find when I travel.”And the president, who has already raised millions of donor dollars off impeachment, will try to turn it to his political advantage. Whalen added: “Since he first started running for president, he realised he could get very far by making it an ‘us versus them’ mentality. In a swaggering way, he makes himself a victim. He’s not suffering but he just makes you believe he’s being persecuted.”

    Sat, 18 Jan 2020 07:22:44 -0500
  • Groom accused of sexually assaulting teenage waitress at wedding spared jail

    Golocal247.com news

    A man accused of sexually assaulting a woman at his own wedding reception pleaded guilty to misdemeanours after more serious charges against the New Jersey groom were dropped, keeping him out of prison.In a Pennsylvania court on Thursday, 32-year-old newlywed Matthew Aimers received six years of probation as part of a plea agreement on misdemeanour charges of simple assault, indecent exposure and disorderly conduct during his November 2018 reception. Charges of indecent assault, imprisonment of a minor and harassment were dropped.

    Fri, 17 Jan 2020 15:19:40 -0500
  • U.S. sanctions Iranian commander over Mahshahr killings

    Golocal247.com news

    The U.S. State Department said on Saturday it had imposed sanctions on a general of Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps who commanded units blamed for a massacre of protesters in November. The U.S. State Department has said previously it had received videos of the Revolutionary Guards opening fire without warning on protesters in Mahshahr county in southwest Iran.

    Sat, 18 Jan 2020 14:59:13 -0500
  • Town on edge in Colombia after 5 killed, 2 vehicles burned

    Golocal247.com news

    A remote town was on edge Friday after at least five people were found shot to death, highlighting Colombia's struggle to bring peace to rural areas where drug crops are abundant and illegal armed groups are active. The killings happened overnight in an isolated part of the Jamundi municipality in southwestern Colombia and also left two vehicles incinerated, officials said. It was the third massacre in Jamundi in the past year.

    Fri, 17 Jan 2020 12:45:38 -0500
  • A plane slid off the runway and more than 800 flights were canceled as winter weather hit the Midwest

    Golocal247.com news

    Authorities issued alerts for areas across the Northeast as blizzard conditions were forecasted to New York and New England over the weekend.

    Sat, 18 Jan 2020 13:49:11 -0500
  • Liberia souring on George Weah at two-year mark

    Golocal247.com news

    Dominic Kpadeh heaves a hammer over his head to crack a half-tonne rock in a northern suburb of Liberia's capital Monrovia, knowing his hard labour earns him far less than a year ago. Stories such as Kpadeh's are common in Liberia, where rampant inflation has left many people struggling and increasingly turning their anger on President George Weah. A former football icon whose goals for AC Milan and Paris St Germain dazzled fans, Weah came to power in January 2018, promising to invest in education and create jobs.

    Fri, 17 Jan 2020 21:25:38 -0500
  • Meghan and Harry will need taxpayer funded security 'for years to come'

    Golocal247.com news

    The Duke and Duchess of Sussex will need to be protected at taxpayers’ expense against the threat of terror attacks and kidnap for years to come, security experts have said. Police and former security chiefs fear the couple will continue to be at risk from organised terror groups, political fanatics and lone obsessives long after they separate from the Royal family. Talks are understood to be taking place at senior levels over the best way of providing protection for Meghan and Prince Harry as they divide their time between Britain and their new life in North America. But there are fears among some experts that palace and government officials may be underestimating both the potential threat and what is required to protect the couple against it. Dai Davies, who was Head of Royal Protection from 1994 to 1998 and former Chief Superintendent (Divisional Commander) Metropolitan Police Service, said: “We have to learn the lessons of history and act on them. Anyone in charge of security has to think the impossible and then think it again and I fear there is not enough of that going on by the experts currently in charge. “One thing you can be sure of is that terrorists and others who pose a threat are thinking about it all the time.” Mr Davies said the three main threats come from jihadist terrorists targeting Prince Harry, who also served in Afghanistan; lone ‘fixateds’ and royal obsessives; and right wing extremists with an hatred of Meghan as a woman of colour marrying into the royal family. Minister and senior police officers are thought to be determined to avoid the mistakes made over Diana, Princess of Wales, who in 1993 turned down publicly funded police protection except when she was with her sons William and Harry or staying at Kensington Palace. That left her relying on private security at other times, leading to her being in the hands of the Ritz Hotel’s head of security Herni Paul on the night she died when their car crashed in the Pont de l'Alma underpass as he tried to evade photographers following Diana. Her bodyguard, Trevor Rees-Jones was badly injured in the crash, on 31 August 1997. Ken Wharfe, who served as Diana's royal protection officer for six years, resigned from the position in 1993, has since said that if he and his team were working with the Princess in 1997, they may have been able to prevent her death.  Mr Davies, who said there have been far more plots against the Royals than publicly acknowledged, added: “We don't want the situation where Harry and Meghan are being followed, without protection, by paparazzi or people with a fixation and we need to be sure that protection is of the highest level.” But he added that the high cost of providing security may cause resentment among British taxpayers if the Sussexes begin to earn large sums of private income outside of any Royal duties they continue to carry out. “The question is whether the British public will wear the cost of security, even if it is miniscule in real terms, over a long period,” said Mr Davies, who was in charge of protection for the Queen and the Royal family throughout the UK and worldwide. Lord West of Spithead, who was a security minister from 2007 to 2010, said that Harry and Meghan would be expected to make a contribution towards the cost of their security should they start earning a large amount of private income. But he said there was no question that high levels of police protection would have to be provided by the British government into the future. “We have got an obligation to provide security for one of the Queen’s sons and his family and that’s a long term obligation,” he said. “It would be nice to work out an arrangement with the Canadians, but we can’t not provide that protection ourselves, regardless. Mike Penning MP, who was police minister from 2014 to 2016 and went on to serve as justice and Armed Forces minister, said: “It doesn’t matter who they are, if they are at risk we have a duty to protect them, it’s as simple as that. That requirement should be based on any risk assessment made by our intelligence services and by the Canadians.”

    Sat, 18 Jan 2020 14:30:00 -0500
  • Parnas: 'I'm scared,' speaking out because of William Barr

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    Rudy Giuliani associate Lev Parnas said he was giving media interviews about his role in President Trump’s attempts to convince Ukrainian officials to announce an investigation into former Vice President Joe Biden because he wanted to protect himself from Attorney General William Barr.

    Fri, 17 Jan 2020 06:21:54 -0500
  • Israel's F-35i 'Adir' Stealth Fighter Is a Beast (And Now A Second Squadron Is Ready)

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    Iran, you might want to read this.

    Sat, 18 Jan 2020 04:50:00 -0500
  • Impeachment week ahead: House, Trump to file written arguments before Senate trial resumes Tuesday

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    Here are the deadlines and what is expected to happen this weekend and next week in the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump.

    Sat, 18 Jan 2020 09:42:14 -0500
  • Discovery of unused disaster supplies angers Puerto Rico

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    People in a southern Puerto Rico city discovered a warehouse filled with water, cots and other unused emergency supplies, then set off a social media uproar Saturday when they broke in to retrieve goods as the area struggles to recover from a strong earthquake. With anger spreading in the U.S. territory after video of the event in Ponce appeared on Facebook, Gov. Wanda Vázquez quickly fired the director of the island's emergency management agency. The governor said she had ordered an investigation after learning the emergency supplies had been piled in the warehouse since Hurricane Maria battered Puerto Rico in September 2017.

    Sat, 18 Jan 2020 16:56:18 -0500
  • Taliban aim to sign deal with US by end of month: report

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    The Taliban are aiming to reach a withdrawal agreement with the US by the end of January and are prepared to "scale down" military operations ahead of signing the deal, according to their chief spokesman. The statement by Suhail Shaheen to Pakistani daily Dawn comes as the group and the US held discussions in Doha this week, after insurgent sources told AFP they had offered to initiate a brief ceasefire. "We have agreed to scale down military operations in days leading up to the signing of the peace agreement with the United States," Shaheen told Dawn in a report published Saturday.

    Sat, 18 Jan 2020 03:29:05 -0500
  • The most iconic tourist attraction in 26 countries around the world

    Golocal247.com news

    There's something powerful about finally seeing a famous landmark or natural wonder in person instead of on a postcard (or on Instagram).

    Sat, 18 Jan 2020 12:32:00 -0500
  • USS Abraham Lincoln shatters US Navy's record for longest post-Cold War carrier deployment with 10-month around-the-world tour

    Golocal247.com news

    The Lincoln broke a cruise record set nearly two decades earlier, sailed around the world, and sent warnings to both Russia and Iran.

    Fri, 17 Jan 2020 10:25:59 -0500
  • Remains of fallen US soldier returned to Fort Bragg

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    The remains of a paratrooper who was killed a week ago in Afghanistan have been returned to his family in the U.S. The family of Staff Sgt. Ian McLaughlin greeted his flag-draped casket at Pope Army Airfield at Fort Bragg on Saturday, The Fayetteville Observer reported. The 29-year-old from Newport News, Virginia, was killed Jan. 11 by an improvised explosive device in Afghanistan.

    Sat, 18 Jan 2020 19:08:32 -0500
  • Woman pleads guilty to killing husband by putting eye drops in his water

    Golocal247.com news

    A South Carolina woman pleaded guilty to fatally poisoning her husband by putting eye drops in his water for days. She was sentenced to 25 years in prison.

    Fri, 17 Jan 2020 07:23:22 -0500
  • Rain douses some Australian bush fires but flash floods now threaten wildlife

    Golocal247.com news

    Heavy rains in fire-ravaged eastern Australia have brought welcome relief for firefighters and farmers, but sparked flash floods that have led to fresh scrambles to save native animals.  As the rain hit on Thursday the New South Wales State Emergency Services department warned that the sudden heavy downpours in some areas would bring flash flooding, falling trees and landslides where the fires have wiped out vegetation.  On Friday, the warnings were realised when flash floods hit the Australia Reptile Park on the NSW east coast, and the state's koalas - having lost thousands of their number and huge swathes of their habitat - needed to be rescued again as floods thundered down fire-blasted hills empty of vegetation.  Park director Tim Faulkner told local media that the sudden floods on Friday morning were “incredible”.  “Just last week we were having daily meetings to discuss the imminent threat of bushfires,” he said. “Today, we've had the whole team out there, drenched, acting fast to secure the safety of our animals and defend the park from the onslaught of water… We haven't seen flooding like this at the park for over 15 years.” And while the rains have doused fires in some areas, blazes continue to rage across many other parts of the country where the weather stayed dry, including in other parts of New South Wales where 82 fires were still burning, with 30 out of control, and in the state of Victoria, to the south. Parts of the state’s Alpine region were evacuated again as erratic winds caused spot fires around a large blaze at Mount Buffalo.  The rain also completely missed Kangaroo Island, the nation's third biggest off the southern coast of the mainland, where fires have devastated the formerly wildlife-rich national park.  The authorities have warned the crisis could worsen again with Australia only halfway through its summer. The unprecedented fires, fuelled by climate change and a years-long drought, have already claimed 28 lives over the past five months. They have scorched massive tracts of pristine forests in eastern and southern Australia, decimated livestock on already barren farms and destroyed 2,000 homes. In areas where rain has arrived, there are new concerns that muddy ash will be swept into rivers and lakes, exacerbating an emerging crisis as fish die in vast numbers due to ash poisoning the waterways. The NSW Department of Primary Industries has received reports of “hundreds of thousands” of fish dead in the Macleay river since December 2019.

    Fri, 17 Jan 2020 11:19:19 -0500
  • China Has Been Watching America, And Now Has Special Forces Of Its Own

    Golocal247.com news

    America heavily relies on its elite special forces.

    Sat, 18 Jan 2020 21:00:00 -0500
  • Migrant surge into Guatemala reaches 3,500, heads for Mexico

    Golocal247.com news

    GUATEMALA CITY/MEXICO CITY (Reuters) - More than 3,500 Central Americans had poured into Guatemala by Friday in U.S.-bound gatherings known as caravans, officials said, posing a headache for the leaders of Guatemala and Mexico amid fierce U.S. pressure to curb migration. President Donald Trump has repeatedly urged the region to prevent such groups of migrants reaching Mexico's border with the United States, and the latest exodus from Honduras that began on Wednesday has been accompanied by U.S. border agents.

    Fri, 17 Jan 2020 09:40:44 -0500
  • Joe Biden says 'you can keep' your private insurance 'if your employer doesn't take it away from you'

    Golocal247.com news

    Former Vice President Joe Biden is still promising "If you like your insurance, you can keep it" — with a twist.In his endorsement interview with The New York Times published Friday, Biden is asked about that phrase both he and former President Barack Obama have said in the past. And after accepting that he actually did say it, Biden promised that "if you like your plan, you can keep it," provided "your employer doesn't take it away from you."While the ObamaCare mantra of keeping the insurance you like ended up not exactly being true, Biden still modified it in a July 2019 primary debate to say under his presidency, "If you like your health care plan, your employer-based plan, you can keep it. If in fact you have private insurance, you can keep it." There's video proof of Biden saying that but, when confronted with it in his Times interview, Biden replied with "I didn't say that, by the way."The interview moved on, and Biden was asked about how if there was a public health insurance option, employers may stop offering insurance altogether.> The new Biden pitch: ‘If you like your private insurance, you can keep it, assuming your employer doesn’t take it away from you’ pic.twitter.com/65Xtvw2gNr> > — Andrew Perez (@andrewperezdc) January 17, 2020That all devolved into what Biden saying something that would look perfect on a campaign coffee mug as long as it fits: "If you like your plan, you can keep it, assuming — I should add the obvious — if your employer doesn't take it away from you. Okay?"More stories from theweek.com Mindhunter just got Netflixed Trump is getting the band back together French officials warn of violence from subgroups in protest movement

    Fri, 17 Jan 2020 14:35:00 -0500
  • Pakistan FM, after visits, says Iran wants to de-escalate

    Golocal247.com news

    Pakistan's foreign minister, who has shuttled between Washington and Tehran in the course of a week, voiced confidence Friday that Iran was seeking to lower tensions. Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi discussed Iran and Afghanistan's peace process Friday with US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, five days after seeing Iranian President Hassan Rouhani. "They don't want war, they don't want further bloodshed," Qureshi told reporters in Washington.

    Fri, 17 Jan 2020 17:31:26 -0500
  • A 15-year-old orphan who lives with his grandparents is being kicked out of their senior living community because he's too young

    Golocal247.com news

    Collin Clabaugh has been living with his grandparents in a 55-and-over gated community in Arizona since last year, when both of his parents died.

    Fri, 17 Jan 2020 15:51:45 -0500
  • A mysterious and deadly virus from China could have infected 35 times more people than official totals, scientists warn

    Golocal247.com news

    Airports in the US and parts of Asia have started screening travellers from Wuhan, central China, in the hope of stopping the disease from spreading.

    Sat, 18 Jan 2020 02:00:58 -0500
  • Zimbabwe gripped by drama of vice president's nasty divorce

    Golocal247.com news

    Black magic, drug addiction, attempted murder and a wrestling match over luxury cars and overseas properties. Zimbabwe is riveted by the explosive charges being made in the divorce of First Vice President Constantino Chiwenga and his wife Marry. A glimpse of the luxurious lives of Zimbabwe's ruling elite, as the rest of the country grapples with economic collapse, hyperinflation and hunger, is emerging in the divorce papers filed in court.

    Fri, 17 Jan 2020 07:15:58 -0500
  • MS-13 inmates sent to restricted unit after prison stabbing

    The federal Bureau of Prisons is moving some MS-13 gang members in its custody into more restricted housing at certain high-security facilities across the U.S. after a gang stabbing in a Virginia prison, two people familiar with the matter told The Associated Press on Saturday. A brawl broke out Wednesday at the prison known as USP Lee between the MS-13 leader and a fellow inmate associated with the Mexican Mafia, and the gang member was stabbed, the people said. The Bureau of Prisons said in a statement that the inmate was injured but survived the attack.

    Sat, 18 Jan 2020 16:59:13 -0500
  • Delta plane slides off taxiway amid winter storm; airlines issue travel advisories into weekend

    Golocal247.com news

    Airlines are issuing travel waivers on account of a winter storm headed for much of the northern U.S. this weekend.

    Fri, 17 Jan 2020 12:03:31 -0500
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