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U.S., Iran send conflicting signals on their disputesTensions have risen since U.S. President Donald Trump last year abandoned the major powers' nuclear deal with Iran under which Tehran agreed to curtail its nuclear program in return for the lifting of global sanctions crippling its economy. Washington has since reimposed draconian sanctions to throttle Iran's oil trade in a "maximum pressure" policy to force Tehran to agree stricter limits on its nuclear capacity, curb its ballistic missile program and end support for proxy forces in a regional power struggle with U.S.-backed Gulf Arabs.


7/16/2019 8:11:17 AM

Off-duty New Jersey police lieutenant in custody after fatal shooting at ex-wife's homeAn off-duty Newark police lieutenant surrendered to police after a shooting at his ex-wife's home. Newark has since suspended him without pay.


7/15/2019 12:56:34 PM

What If America Lost a Carrier in a War with Iran?The Navy simply lacks enough ships and aircraft to meet the increasing demands of its global mission. The recent oil tanker attacks in the Gulf of Oman reinforce the need to reestablish a highly visible U.S. naval deterrent in the Middle East. For eight months last year, no aircraft carrier strike group plied the region, the longest such interruption this millennium. With the United States needing a more robust posture against Iran and confronting renewed challenges in Asia and Europe, several immediate measures and concerted longer-term efforts are critical to ensure America has the carriers it needs.The requirement to maintain carrier presence in the Middle East is a critical part of a broader national security strategy, in which U.S. global security interests necessitate a worldwide force presence. Indeed, the Navy's mission demands remain as high as those of the Cold War, calling on ships to be everywhere seemingly at once, but today's fleet is less than half the size it was 30 years ago.During the Obama administration, a “rebalance” supposedly allowed the Pentagon to focus on Asia and Europe while washing its hands of the Middle East. In reality, we never effectively rebalanced forces in the Indo-Pacific, and the situation on the ground forced us to remain deeply involved in the Middle East. Now with a growing Iranian threat, it would be imprudent to suddenly abandon the region, even as we face renewed challenges in the Pacific, Atlantic and Mediterranean.(This first appeared in June 2019.)


7/16/2019 3:41:00 PM

Serial killer linked to Arkansas woman's 1994 slayingAuthorities are investigating whether possibly the most prolific serial killer in U.S. history is behind the death of an Arkansas woman in 1994. Police in Pine Bluff are reviewing the case of Jolanda Jones's death after Samuel Little confessed to her killing, which had been determined to be drug-related. According to a police memo, when Little was in custody in Dallas, Texas, in October 2018, he indicated that he killed Jones, the Pine Bluff Commercial reported .


7/15/2019 12:52:19 PM

$800,000 spent in one day on Malaysia ex-PM's cards, court hearsCredit cards belonging to Malaysia's disgraced ex-leader Najib Razak were used to spend over $800,000 in one day at a luxury jeweller in Italy, a court has heard. The 2014 spending spree is the latest evidence of what critics say is the lavish lifestyle enjoyed by Najib after he and his cronies allegedly plundered state coffers. The claims played a major part in Najib's government losing power at elections last year.


7/16/2019 3:03:03 AM

Man 'shot polar bear and left its body outside his home for five months'A man has been charged with killing a polar bear and leaving the body to rot outside his home in Alaska for five months.Christopher Gordon, 35, allegedly shot the animal dead when it ventured into his front yard to try and eat some butchered whale meat.He then failed to report the polar bear carcass or attempt to “harvest” it for food between December 2018 and May this year.Gordon also allowed the bear to be covered with snow, which resulted in one of its legs being ripped off by a passing snowplough.Finally, on 22 May, he burned the carcass at the village dump in Kaktovik.He is now facing up to one year in prison and a $100,000 (£80,000) fine if convicted of the federal crime of “knowingly taking a polar bear in a manner unlawful under the Marine Mammal Protection Act”.Prosecutors say that the killing of the bear was not done in legal self defence and that he “left the harvestable remains to waste”.“Gordon allegedly left butchered whale meat outside in front of his yard of his residence for a substantial period of time, which attracted polar bear, as well as other animals to his front yard,” said federal prosecutor Ryan Tansey.“He then allegedly shot and killed the polar bear because it was trying to eat the improperly stored whale meat.”Gordon has also been charged with the state offence of wasteful taking of a marine animal.The investigation was carried out by the US Fish and Wildlife Service.Gordon declined to comment about the case and is scheduled to appear in court in Fairbanks in August.Kaktovik, with a population of just over 250, has experienced increasing encroachment by polar bears in recent years due to the disappearing Arctic sea ice.As a result it has become a popular tourist destination, with more than 2,000 people visiting the village during 2017.“These bears are getting used to people,” said council member Mike Gallagher. ”They’re domesticated.”Additional reporting by Associated Press


7/15/2019 4:29:39 AM

No More Social Media for You, Irked Judge Tells Roger Stone(Bloomberg) -- A federal judge who has warned Roger Stone to stop criticizing the criminal case against him on social media finally banned him from the platforms outright.Prosecutors had complained to U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson that the longtime Republican party operative and former adviser to President Donald Trump has been using social media to assail the government’s case, in violation of her February directive that he limit his comments to professing his innocence.Jackson read her new ruling from the bench, following a 45-minute recess from a contentious two-hour hearing.“I’ve twice given you the benefit of the doubt,” she told Stone, alluding to prior infractions, then added that he’d now forced his lawyers into contortions to contend he was in compliance with her prior order.Reprising a theme she raised in the case of former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort, Jackson said Stone’s behavior “had more to do with middle school than with a court of law” and banned him from posting on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram, and even from reposting or liking other people’s content on the platforms.Read More: Who Framed Roger Stone? His Instagram Account Demands an AnswerStone is accused of lying to Congress about his contacts with WikiLeaks over its publication of material damaging to Democrat Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign. He is also charged with obstruction and witness tampering.Stone’s was the last indictment brought by Special Counsel Robert Mueller. The case is now being prosecuted by the office of Washington U.S. Attorney Jessie Liu and is set for trial in November.Before issuing her final order, Jackson engaged in a prolonged sparring session with Stone counsel Bruce Rogow, who denied that his client had run afoul of the judge’s prior ruling, even as she peppered him with Instagram posts and other examples of Stone’s behavior she found questionable.“I don’t think any of these things pose a threat to a fair trial,” Rogow told her.Stopping short of asking the court to send the political provocateur to jail, prosecutor Jonathan Kravis raised the idea of Jackson barring him from using social media. “What we are most concerned about is protecting the integrity of the jury pool,” he said.Ultimately the judge did just that, scolding the defense for its effort to “ignore the exponential power” of social media and particularly what it means for Stone to take an item published by someone else and spread it “with his imprimatur.”‘Asking You Now’During an earlier portion of the Tuesday court hearing, Stone’s lawyers argued that the government can’t prove Russian agents hacked Democratic Party computers during the election, rendering 18 FBI search warrants based on that premise invalid and the evidence collected under them subject to exclusion.Defense attorney Robert Buschel told the judge the warrants weren’t obtained in good faith. He said they were based only on reports by a private cybersecurity firm and the U.S. intelligence community’s “high confidence” that the Russians were behind the theft of materials later published by WikiLeaks, not on factual certainty.Buschel called it “government doublespeak,” suggesting the theft was just as likely to have been carried out by agents of China or the U.K.That line of argument drew a pointed response from Jackson, who repeatedly asked Buschel to identify a single statement in any of the filings that he saw as knowingly false or reckless -- and what that had to do with the charges against Stone.“I’m asking you now,” Jackson said after a series of exchanges with the attorney. “I want you to read me a false sentence.”Russia ConnectionStone’s lawyers have sought to discredit the Russia connection by suggesting that metadata on the WikiLeaks documents came from a portable memory device connected to a computer from which they were downloaded and not through a trans-Atlantic computer connection.Even accepting that premise, Jackson asked, how would that invalidate the warrants?Buschel replied that lack of conclusive proof of Russian hacking rendered Stone’s allegedly false statements to the congressional committee probing the incursion “irrelevant.”Prosecutor Aaron Zelinsky defended the warrants, telling Jackson that Stone’s lawyers were “trying to backdoor a debunked conspiracy theory” about other potential hackers, relieving the Russians of culpability.“There is voluminous evidence that the Russians were responsible for hacking” the Democratic Party computers, Zelinsky told the judge. In any event, he said, Stone was charged with lying to Congress and other offenses, not with being involved in the hacking.The case is U.S. v. Stone, 19-cr-18, U.S. District Court, District of Columbia (Washington).(Updates with exchange about social media starting in eighth paragraph.)To contact the reporter on this story: Andrew Harris in Washington at aharris16@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: David Glovin at dglovin@bloomberg.net, Peter JeffreyFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.


7/16/2019 4:00:18 PM

A 3-year-old girl was asked to choose between her mom or dad as a border patrol agent tried to separate the familyA young girl named Sofi was asked by a Border Patrol agent if she wanted to go with her mom, or her dad, as they tried to separate the migrant family.


7/15/2019 3:26:42 PM

Utah Police Find New Evidence in MacKenzie Lueck CaseAyoola Ajayi made his first court appearance in connection to the murder of University of Utah student MacKenzie Lueck.


7/16/2019 3:55:40 PM

Anti-Semitism event at Justice Department turns into pro-Israel rallyAs the public grappled with President Trump’s latest insulting tweetstorm, widely condemned as racist, the Department of Justice held a Monday event billed as a summit on combating anti-Semitism.


7/15/2019 3:29:05 PM
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