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Somali-born lawmaker brands Trump 'fascist' after rally tauntDemocratic congresswoman Ilhan Omar branded Donald Trump a "fascist" on Thursday as the president sought to distance himself from mocking chants of "Send her back!" directed at the Somali-born lawmaker by his supporters. "We have said this president is racist, we have condemned his racist remarks," said Omar, one of two Muslim women in Congress. Omar received a very different reception when she returned home to Minnesota Thursday night and was greeted by crowds of supporters at the airport.


7/18/2019 10:07:11 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.


7/19/2019 12:07:33 PM

Navy warship sunk by German sub in WWII finally locatedA private dive team has located the last U.S. Navy warship to be sunk by a German submarine in World War II, just a few miles (kilometers) off the coast of Maine. The sinking of the USS Eagle PE-56 on April 23, 1945, was originally blamed on a boiler explosion. The patrol boat's precise location remained a mystery — until now.


7/18/2019 4:15:06 PM

Los Angeles police officer charged with multiple rapes after DNA links him to cold caseA LAPD officer is facing life in prison after an investigation into an accusation of rape led to the discovery of another victim.


7/18/2019 7:45:02 AM

Rand Paul Fires Back at Jon Stewart on Fox News: He’s ‘Not Using His Brain’A day after former Daily Show host Jon Stewart and 9/11 responder John Feal came on Fox News and eviscerated him and fellow GOP Sen. Mike Lee for blocking the reauthorization of the 9/11 victims' compensation fund in the Senate, Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) appeared on Fox to return fire.And not only did the Kentucky lawmaker toss a lot of insults Stewart’s way, but Paul also claimed he should be lauded as a hero for holding up additional funding for 9/11 victims.“I know Jon Stewart,” Paul told Fox News host Neil Cavuto on Thursday. “Jon Stewart is sometimes funny, sometimes informed. In this case, he’s not funny nor informed.”Asserting that he always asks for “pay-fors” in all funding bills, even ones for disasters, the libertarian senator said Stewart’s name-calling exposes him as a “left-winger” before accusing the 9/11 victims’ advocate of being “part of the left-wing mob that is not using his brain.”“It's really disgusting,” he continued. “He pretended for years when he was on his comedy show to be somebody that could see both sides and see through the B.S., now he is the B.S. The B.S. meter is through the roof when you see him calling people names and calling people an abomination when I'm asking for something reasonable.”Cavuto would go on to press Paul about his support for Trump’s massive tax cut, asking him if it was OK to not pay for the tax breaks but not 9/11 funding. Paul brushed that off by noting he wanted a “paygo provision” added but his colleagues voted it out. He then went on to accuse Stewart of “telling a lie” about his support for deficits.Moments later, after saying he was one of the few people in Congress who cares about balancing the budget, Paul then demanded that he be celebrated for his principled stand.“I'm trying to have a debate in our country about whether or not deficits matter and whether or not we should offset new spending,” he exclaimed. “I think I should be commended and loudly cheered for being one of the few fiscally responsible people up here.”Paul concluded: “And I think we ought to set the record straight. Because Jon Stewart can't just have a free pass to lie. He's a celebrity and thinks facts don't matter.”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.


7/18/2019 3:12:56 PM

The Navy's 6th Generation Fighter Could Put the F-35 in a MuseumNew much-longer range sensors and weapons, incorporating emerging iterations of AI, are expected to make warfare more disaggregated, and much less of a linear force on force type of engagement. Such a phenomenon, driven by new technology, underscores warfare reliance upon sensors and information networks. All of this, naturally, requires the expansive "embedded ISR" discussed by the paper. Network reliant warfare is of course potentially much more effective in improving targeting and reducing sensor-to-shooter time over long distances, yet it brings a significant need to organize and optimize the vast, yet crucial, flow of information.The Navy is currently analyzing air frames, targeting systems, AI-enabled sensors, new weapons and engine technologies to engineer a new 6th-Generation fighter to fly alongside the F-35 and ultimately replace the F/A-18.(This first appeared earlier in the year.)The Navy program, called Next-Generation Air Dominance, has moved beyond a purely conceptual phase and begun exploration of prototype systems and airframes as it pursues a new, carrier-launched 6th-Gen fighter to emerge in 2030 and beyond, service officials explained.“Some important areas of consideration include derivative and developmental air vehicle designs, advanced engines, propulsion, weapons, mission systems, electronic warfare and other emerging technologies,” Navy spokeswoman Lt. Lauren Chatmas told Warrior earlier this year.A formal Analysis of Alternatives, expected to complete this year, is weighing the advantages of leveraging nearer-term existing technologies such as new variants or upgrades to cutting edge weapons, sensors and stealth configurations - or allowing more time for leap-ahead developmental systems to emerge.


7/19/2019 1:47:00 AM

California city set to ban gendered words like 'manhole' and 'manpower'The City Council in Berkeley, Calif., votes to remove gender-specific words from its municipal code.


7/18/2019 1:54:05 PM

Ahead of U.S. deadline, Mexico minister has fulfilled migration enforcement pledgeMexican Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard said on Friday that Mexico has followed through on its commitment to the United States to reduce migration from Central America, as a deadline in a bilateral pact approaches. U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is scheduled to travel to Mexico City to discuss migration and trade with Ebrard on Sunday, a day before the end of a 45-day period in which the Mexican government pledged to significantly lower the number of people trying to cross the U.S. border illegally.


7/19/2019 2:18:25 PM

Ukraine's president says he backs prisoner swap with RussiaUkraine's president on Friday outlined the details of an impending prisoner swap with Russia, saying that Kiev is willing to release a jailed Russian journalist in exchange for a Ukrainian film director. President Volodymyr Zelenskiy's statement comes at the end of the week of shuttle diplomacy, with the Russian and Ukrainian human rights ombudswomen holding talks both in Moscow and in Kiev. The flurry of activity around imprisoned Russians and Ukrainians follows last week's first telephone call between Zelenskiy and Russian President Vladimir Putin.


7/19/2019 7:29:19 AM

North Korea slams Japan over its trade spat with SeoulNorth Korea's state media has slammed Japan for its recent trade restrictions against Seoul over wartime slavery disputes, accusing Tokyo of "destroying the trend of peace" on the Korean peninsula. After South Korea's high court ordered Japanese firms that used forced labour to compensate Korean victims, Tokyo earlier this month restricted the export of several chemicals to South Korea that are crucial to its world-leading chip and smartphone companies. South Korea's left-leaning President Moon Jae-in, who favours engagement with Pyongyang, has said Tokyo's actions are "politically motivated" and have caused an "unprecedented emergency" for Seoul's export-driven economy.


7/19/2019 11:04:48 PM

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