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  • Kurds agree to Russian-brokered plan to allow Assad into their territory

    Golocal247.com news

    The West’s Kurdish allies on Sunday night announced they had agreed to a Russian-brokered deal to allow the Assad regime into their territory in a bid to spare their cities from a Turkish assault after they were abandoned by Donald Trump.  Hours after the US said it was withdrawing all of its troops from northern Syria, the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) said it had reached an agreement to allow Bashar al-Assad’s troops into their territory.  “If we have to choose between compromises and the genocide of our people, we will surely choose life for our people,” said Mazloum Kobani Abdi, the commander of the SDF.  It was not immediately clear if the agreement with Assad would bring a halt to the Turkish offensive or if the Turkish military and its Syrian rebel allies would continue to advance.  But the deal appeared to strike a death knell for Kurdish hopes of maintaining autonomy from Damascus in their own semi-state in northeast Syria.  Read more | Syria crisis The announcement marked a stunning fall for the SDF, who just a week ago could count on the support of the US military in deterring Turkey from taking action.  That security came to an end last Sunday night when Mr Trump told Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Turkey’s president, the US would not interfere in a Turkish attack on northeast Syria. “The betrayal process is officially completed," an SDF official said of the US withdrawal.    Turkish warplanes thundered into Syrian airspace while Turkish-backed rebel forces advanced against the SDF on the ground and on Sunday night Kurdish commanders decided they had to strike a deal to prevent annihilation.  While the formal details of the agreement were not announced, Syrian regime forces appeared poised to enter many of the key Kurdish-held cities along the Turkish-Syrian border, including Kobani, Manbij and Qamishli.  Many of the areas hold vast symbolic importance for the Kurds, who have lost 11,000 men fighting against the Islamic State (Isil) in the last five years to free those cities from jihadist rule.   A woman sits in the back of a truck as they flee Ras-al-Ain The announcement came after Mark Esper, the US defence secretary, said he and Mr Trump had decided to withdraw all 1,000 US troops from northern Syria because the Turks “likely intend to expand their attack further south than originally planned”.  “We have American forces likely caught between two opposing advancing armies and it's a very untenable situation,” he said on Sunday morning.   While Mr Trump said last week he was removing around 50 US commandos from a 120km section of the Turkey-Syria border, hundreds of other American soldiers remained near Kurdish key cities like Kobani and Qamishli.  News of the US retreat sparked panic across northern Syria as civilians, who believed their towns might be spared from Turkish onslaught by the presence of American forces, started fleeing their homes. At least 200,000 people have been displaced so far, aid groups said, and the number is likely to rise. The town of Ras-al-Ain in flames The decision came as civilian casualties mounted and Islamic State prisoners took advantage of the chaos to mount a mass escape. Kurdish authorities said early on Sunday around 785 women and children escaped from a camp in Ain Issa when it came under attack from Turkish shelling. Isil inmates “attacked the camp guard and opened the gates” while Kurdish forces were under fire, authorities said.  Tooba Gondal, a notorious British Isil recruiter from Walthamstow, and her two children, may have been among those who fled and her whereabouts were unknown on Sunday night. Ms Gondal travelled to Syria to join Isil in 2015 and has been accused of grooming other young British women, including Shamima Begum, to follow her. There were unconfirmed reports last night that Ms Gondal had contacted family back in Britain to tell them she had escaped the camp.   The Telegraph understands at least three other British women, and reportedly three British orphans, were held in Ain Issa camp before the break-out. British Isil recruiter Tooba Gondal pictured inside Ain Issa camp The SDF warned the West the breakout may be the first of many and that the resurgent jihadists “will come knocking on your doors” if the Turkish offensive is not stopped. Mr Trump said on Sunday night that Turkey and the Kurds must not allow Isil prisoners to escape and blamed the terror risk on Europe for not taking them back. "The US has the worst of the ISIS prisoners. Turkey and the Kurds must not let them escape," he tweeted. "Europe should have taken them back after numerous requests. They should do it now. They will never come to, or be allowed in, the United States!" The SDF said Turkish-backed rebel fighters intercepted a car carrying Hevrin Khalaf, a Kurdish political leader with the Future Syria Party, and shot her to death along with her driver and an aide on Saturday. Video footage showed her black SUV riddled with bullet holes while Arabic-speaking Syrian fighters cheered. Turkey has said such fighters, known as the National Army, would be at the forefront of anti-Isil operations once the Kurds were defeated.  While US officials insisted America was opposed to the Turkish invasion, Mr Trump struck a laissez-faire note in a series of Sunday morning tweets. Plight of the Kurds | Timeline of Western involvement “The Kurds and Turkey have been fighting for many years,” he noted. “Others may want to come in and fight for one side or the other. Let them!” The US has yet to slap any sanctions on Turkey for the assault, despite White House warnings that it would target the Turkish economy if the offensive led to a humanitarian crisis or disrupted anti-Isil operations.  Both outcomes have already happened. At least 60 civilians have been killed in northern Syria and 18 civilians have died from Kurdish shelling in southern Turkey since last Wednesday, according to the Syrian Observatory.  France and Germany both announced they were halting arms sales to Turkey but the UK did not match their announcements. Britain approved military export licenses worth £583m to Turkey in 2017, including licenses for attack aircraft and helicopters.

    Sun, 13 Oct 2019 19:38:58 -0400
  • Ex-Fort Worth police officer Aaron Dean charged with murder after shooting Atatiana Jefferson in her home

    Golocal247.com news

    Fort Worth officer Aaron Dean was charged with murder Monday after fatally shooting Atatiana Jefferson while she played video games in her home.

    Mon, 14 Oct 2019 22:43:24 -0400
  • In Jamal Khashoggi's death, Saudi money is talking louder than murder

    Golocal247.com news

    Donald Trump praises Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, and Jared Kushner is among those flocking to the Saudi 'Davos in the Desert': Our view

    Mon, 14 Oct 2019 17:35:22 -0400
  • Climate change researchers recommend banning all frequent flyer reward programs to cut carbon emissions by targeting jet-setters

    Golocal247.com news

    A report commissioned by the Committee on Climate Change says that just 15% of the entire British population take 70% of all flights from the country.

    Mon, 14 Oct 2019 07:20:55 -0400
  • Russia denies US news report it bombed 4 Syria hospitals in 12 hours

    Golocal247.com news

    Russia on Monday denied a US newspaper report that its warplanes bombed four hospitals in rebel-held territory in Syria over a period of 12 hours this year. The Russian defence ministry rubbished the claim in a report by The New York Times, saying "the alleged 'evidence' provided by the NYT is not worth even the paper it was printed on". The May strikes -- which the newspaper tied to Moscow through Russian radio recordings, plane spotter logs and accounts by witnesses -- are part of a larger pattern of medical facilities targeted by forces supporting Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in the country's devastating civil war.

    Mon, 14 Oct 2019 07:00:16 -0400
  • Japan storm victims felt worst had passed, then floods came

    Golocal247.com news

    After the worst of Typhoon Hagibis passed over this town north of Tokyo, Kazuo Saito made sure there was no water outside his house and went to bed. The storm, which made landfall in the Tokyo region late Saturday, had dumped record amounts of rain that caused rivers to overflow their banks, some of them damaged. It turned many neighborhoods in Kawagoe into swamps.

    Mon, 14 Oct 2019 21:06:40 -0400
  • With Hypersonic Missiles, Israel's F-35s Are Upping The Ante In Syria

    Golocal247.com news

    Iran has taken notice.

    Sun, 13 Oct 2019 18:20:42 -0400
  • Polls show a 17-point swing toward impeaching Trump

    Golocal247.com news

    As of three weeks ago, a majority of Americans, 51.1 percent, on average, opposed impeaching President Trump, with only 40 percent supporting it. But the results came before the Ukraine scandal snowballed. As of today, opposition to impeachment has plummeted 7 percentage points (to 44 percent) and support has climbed nearly 10 points (to 49.8 percent), according to FiveThirtyEight’s preliminary polling tracker.

    Mon, 14 Oct 2019 12:59:46 -0400
  • Anthony Scaramucci is desperately trying to recruit Mitt Romney for a 2020 run

    Golocal247.com news

    Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) is running for president again -- at least in Anthony Scaramucci's dreams.The famously short-lived White House communications director has since turned on the president who appointed him, and has publicly said he's trying to knock President Trump off the 2020 ticket. Now, it seems Scaramucci has decided on his dream candidate, and has launched a website and line of T-shirts to persuade him to run.Scaramucci started making his support for Romney known earlier this month, tweeting a poll that showed the 2012 GOP nominee beating the presumptive 2020 nominee in a hypothetical primary. He then revealed last week he'd launched Mitt2020.org, and on Sunday night, showed off that the site was offering "commit to Mitt" campaign T-shirts. They are being sold at $20.20 each to "test demand," and so far Scaramucci has seen an "overwhelming" response, he told ABC News.> You may be proud of your "Where's Hunter?" T-shirt...but we're really proud of ours...You see, we know where Mitt is...he's listening, he's hearing, he's seeing, he's reading and he's coming.... https://t.co/sCUTWW6IHA committomitt mitt2020 @MittRomney MittRomney pic.twitter.com/gpgTdL33UY> > -- Anthony Scaramucci (@Scaramucci) October 12, 2019While Romney hasn't even hinted at granting Scaramucci's wishes, the "Mitt Happens" shirt is sure to be a collector's item in a few years.

    Mon, 14 Oct 2019 12:02:37 -0400
  • UPDATE 3-Tens of thousands of Hong Kong protesters plead for U.S. help

    Golocal247.com news

    Tens of thousands of mostly young pro-democracy activists rallied in Hong Kong on Monday in the first legal protest since the introduction of colonial-era emergency laws and pleaded for help from the United States.

    Mon, 14 Oct 2019 06:00:54 -0400
  • Black Woman, 28, Shot and Killed by Police Officer in Her Texas Home While Watching Her 8-Year-Old Nephew

    Golocal247.com news

    The white officer responded to a report that the front door of her house had been left open

    Sun, 13 Oct 2019 12:41:09 -0400
  • View Photos of Our Sports Sedan Battle Between the Dodge Charger and Kia Stinger GT

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    Mon, 14 Oct 2019 07:59:00 -0400
  • Hunter Biden will resign from board of Chinese firm, says he won't serve on foreign boards if Joe Biden elected president

    Golocal247.com news

    In a statement, Hunter Biden said he would resign from a Chinese company's board and pledged not to join boards if Joe Biden were elected president.

    Sun, 13 Oct 2019 13:42:42 -0400
  • Saudi Arabia: We are undergoing an unprecedented transformation

    Golocal247.com news

    Jamal Khashoggi's death was an aberration that should not define us as a nation, writes Fahad Nazer, spokesperson for the Saudi Embassy.

    Mon, 14 Oct 2019 17:30:07 -0400
  • Warren, Buttigieg Dismiss O’Rourke’s Call to Strip Churches of Tax-Exempt Status If They Oppose Gay Marriage

    Golocal247.com news

    Democratic presidential candidates Elizabeth Warren and Pete Buttigieg have both distanced themselves from fellow candidate Beto O’Rourke's call to revoke the tax-exempt status afforded to religious institutions that oppose same-sex marriage.“There can be no reward, no benefit, no tax break for anyone … that denies the full human rights and the full civil rights of every single one of us.” O'Rourke said during CNN’s “Equality in America” town hall last Thursday night. “And so as president, we are going to make that a priority, and we are going to stop those who are infringing upon the human rights of our fellow Americans.”Despite widespread bipartisan criticism, O'Rourke reiterated his stance during a Sunday interview, telling NBC News that he would ensure that all institutions that “provide services in the public sphere,” would be forced to comply with certain non-discrimination standards if they wish to continue enjoying tax-exempt status.Asked by the Associated Press whether she agreed with O’Rourke’s assertions, Warren’s campaign replied by email, saying that “Elizabeth will stand shoulder to shoulder with the LGBTQ+ community,” but would refuse to eliminate the tax-exempt status of religious organizations as part of an anti-discrimination effort.“Religious institutions in America have long been free to determine their own beliefs and practices, and she does not think we should require them to conduct same-sex marriages in order to maintain their tax-exempt status,” campaign spokeswoman Saloni Sharma said in an email.Pete Buttigieg has also distanced himself from O’Rourke, saying Sunday that “going after the tax exemption of churches, Islamic centers or other religious facilities in this country” will “deepen the divisions that we’re already experiencing.”

    Mon, 14 Oct 2019 16:12:53 -0400
  • The U.S. Army’s Robot Tanks Could Arrive Years Early

    Golocal247.com news

    The U.S. Army future robotic army is taking shape faster, and better, than some officials expected.

    Mon, 14 Oct 2019 15:50:00 -0400
  • Iran alleges foreign government behind 'treacherous' ship attack

    Golocal247.com news

    Iran said Monday a foreign government was behind what it alleges was a "treacherous" attack on a tanker off Saudi Arabia last week, as it released pictures of its damaged hull. Tehran says the Iranian-flagged Sabiti oil tanker was hit by two separate explosions off the Red Sea port of Jeddah on Friday. It is the first Iranian ship to have been targeted since a spate of attacks on vessels in the Gulf that Washington blamed on Tehran.

    Mon, 14 Oct 2019 12:00:58 -0400
  • South Korean pop star Sulli found dead at her home

    Golocal247.com news

    South Korean pop star and actress Sulli was found dead at her home south of Seoul on Monday, police said. The 25-year-old was found after her manager went to her home in Seongnam because she didn't answer phone calls for hours, said Kim Seong-tae, an official from the Seongnam Sujeong Police Department. "The investigation is ongoing and we won't make presumptions about the cause of death," said Kim, adding that security camera footage at Sulli's home showed no signs of an intrusion.

    Mon, 14 Oct 2019 07:34:00 -0400
  • Police officer stabbed in the neck in latest Hong Kong clashes

    Golocal247.com news

    A Hong Kong police officer was stabbed in the neck on Sunday in one of the worst acts of violence against the authorities during the 19th straight weekend of civil unrest in the global financial hub. Graphic footage emerged of the policeman being stabbed in the neck from behind with a sharp object as his team retreated towards Kwun Tong metro station.  The police confirmed that two people had been arrested at the scene and the officer had been transferred to hospital “in a conscious state” and was stable.  A police source said that the officer had sustained a 3cm cut to his neck, and while it was still hard to confirm the extent of his injuries, that the attack was “one of the worst” when seen “in terms of malice, in terms of an attempt to kill the officer.”  Flash mob-style protests had initially peacefully in multiple locations with small groups of a few hundred people chanting “Free Hong Kong” slogans but soon developed into chaotic clashes with the riot police as more radical black-clad activists trashed shops and erected barricades on busy roads.     Anti-government protesters in Tai Po, Hong Kong Credit: Ammar Awad/Reuters Dozens were reportedly injured, numerous arrests were made and tear gas was deployed to disperse protesters, although the police said “minimum force” was used. As night fell, about 20 Molotov cocktails were thrown at a police station in Mongkok in Kowloon.  Earlier in the day, protesters played a game of cat-and-mouse with riot officers in Mongkok’s busy shopping district – blocking roads with metal railings and bamboo sticks, only to disappear into a warren of side streets when police vans arrived to clear the way. The Telegraph witnessed at least two rough arrests and an injured officer on the ground on the main thoroughfare of Nathan Road. One bystander claimed that a young man had been detained simply for being alone in the wrong place at the wrong time.  Crowds of residents surrounded the police, hurling insults and accusing them of being “mafia,” jeering as the vans pulled away and giving officers the finger. Video footage of an officer being floored by a protester’s flying kick during another attempted arrest in the area went viral. Elsewhere, the ongoing anti-government protests, which began in opposition to a controversial extradition bill but have now widened into an appeal for universal suffrage and greater democracy, played out more peacefully.  Alan Fung, 62, is taking part in a 48-hour sit-in outside the main police station on Hong Kong island Credit: Michael Zhang On Saturday night, pro-democracy demonstrators performed the exhausting feat of hauling a four-metre statue called “Lady Liberty” to the top of the Lion Rock, a 495-metre peak overlooking Kowloon’s skyscrapers. The statue, which has become one of the many symbols of the movement, was left watching over the city wearing a gas mask, protective goggles and a helmet, proclaiming the slogan "Liberate Hong Kong, revolution of our times". Meanwhile, as younger protesters tried to taunt and out-run the police, the older generation were staging their own rebellion.  About 100 “silver hair” protesters gathered for a 48-hour sit-in outside the main police headquarters in Wan Chai on Hong Kong island this weekend, chanting anti-government slogans and making protest banners. A masked old man took out a black marker pen and wrote insults against the police on the barriers surrounding the station before running away giggling.  About 100 older Hong Kong citizens are staging a "silver hair" rally this weekend Credit: Michael Zhang The group’s presence was a sign of the city’s continuing widespread anger over the government’s handling of the worst political crisis in decades. Although the summer’s mass rallies have largely been led by the young, support for their pro-democracy demands crosses generations.   “We want to say we are the silver haired coming together. We are old but we want to support the younger people. We can’t go to the frontlines but we are in the back to support them,” said Mr Yip, 73, who had come with his 70-year-old wife and two small picnic stools. “I support democracy, I hate the government now.”  Alan Fung, 62, was one of about a dozen pensioners who had braved the humidity as they huddled through the night under a bridge next to the station.  He admitted that he had not got much sleep but said he wanted to camp outside to “protect the young people” and prevent more clashes in the area with the police. “We don’t want it to be dangerous for them again,” he said.  “If we are noisy the government will see that it’s not just the young people who support the campaign but we are too.”

    Sun, 13 Oct 2019 12:14:11 -0400
  • British paedophile who operated in Malaysia, Cambodia found dead in prison

    Golocal247.com news

    One of Britain's most prolific child sex offenders, Richard Huckle, has died three years into a life sentence for abusing Malaysian and Cambodian children, Britain's Ministry of Justice said on Monday, with media saying he had been stabbed to death. Huckle, 33, who abused children and babies during a nine year period, was sentenced to life in prison in 2016 after pleading guilty to 71 offences. Dubbed the country's worst paedophile by Britain's media, he was found stabbed to death in prison on Sunday after being attacked with a makeshift knife, the BBC reported.

    Mon, 14 Oct 2019 08:29:41 -0400
  • Rose McGowan attacks Hillary Clinton over ties to ‘monster’ Harvey Weinstein

    Golocal247.com news

    Rose McGowan has lashed out at Hillary Clinton over a report that Ronan Farrow’s investigation into Harvey Weinstein was a “concern” for the Clinton camp.The actor was one of the first to come forward with allegations of sexual misconduct against the disgraced producer, and a lead campaigner for the MeToo movement. Weinstein has denied all allegations of non-consensual sex.

    Sun, 13 Oct 2019 07:33:00 -0400
  • When police misconduct occurs, records often stay secret. One mom's fight to change that.

    Golocal247.com news

    A police officer is accused of playing with her dead son's body after he was shot. An angry California mother wants secret cop records to go public.

    Mon, 14 Oct 2019 20:27:02 -0400
  • Trump's latest conspiracy theory is that the Kurds released ISIS prisoners to pull the US back into Syria

    Golocal247.com news

    The Kurds bore the brunt of the US-led campaign against ISIS, and Trump is now suggesting without evidence that they released ISIS prisoners.

    Mon, 14 Oct 2019 12:17:32 -0400
  • Booker Scolds Buttigieg for Referring to Gun ‘Buybacks’ as ‘Confiscation’: ‘Doing the NRA’s Work for Them’

    Golocal247.com news

    Senator Cory Booker (D., N.J.) admonished fellow presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg on Monday for referring to a mandatory gun buyback proposal as "confiscation" on the grounds that doing so propagates a right-wing talking point."Calling buyback programs 'confiscation' is doing the NRA's work for them," wrote Booker on Twitter, "and they don't need our help."Buttigieg insisted on referring to buybacks as "confiscation" in an interview on the Snapchat show Good Luck America. Previously, the South Bend, Indiana Mayor shied away from such comparisons."As a policy, it’s had mixed results," said Buttigieg during an October 2 interview. "It’s a healthy debate to have, but we’ve got to do something now.”O'Rourke subsequently condemned Buttigieg's comments, saying Buttigieg was "afraid of doing the right thing" by supporting mandatory buybacks."[O'Rourke] needs to pick a fight in order to stay relevant," Buttigieg commented on Good Luck America.O'Rourke has previously pushed the issue of mandatory gun buybacks and outright confiscation, declaring at the third Democratic primary debate in September that he supports taking away certain semi-automatic rifles from their legal owners.“Hell, yes, we’re going to take your AR-15, your AK-47. We’re not going to allow it to be used against a fellow American anymore,” O'Rourke said at the time.Buttigieg is currently polling at five percent while O'Rourke stands at just 1.8 percent. The former Texas congressman has struggled to gain more than two percent of the vote, but has captured attention for radical policy proposals on gun rights and issues of church and state.During a CNN Townhall on October 11, O'Rourke called for institutions that don't support same sex marriage, such as churches, religious schools and charities, to be stripped of their tax-exempt status.

    Mon, 14 Oct 2019 14:05:06 -0400
  • Dropping Bombs: These Are the Best Bombers To Ever Fly

    Golocal247.com news

    What do you think? What does history tells us?

    Mon, 14 Oct 2019 13:00:00 -0400
  • British experts in Iran to upgrade Arak reactor: embassy

    Golocal247.com news

    A team of British experts arrived in Iran on Monday to begin work to upgrade the Arak heavy water nuclear reactor, the UK embassy in Tehran said. Iran removed the core of the Arak facility and filled part of it with cement as part of a 2015 deal that gave the country relief from sanctions in return for curbs on its nuclear programme. Located southwest of Tehran, the reactor is to be modernised with the help of foreign experts under the deal known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action.

    Mon, 14 Oct 2019 05:20:29 -0400
  • Some states celebrate indigenous people instead of Columbus

    Golocal247.com news

    A handful of states are celebrating their first Indigenous Peoples Day on Monday as part of a trend to move away from a day honoring Christopher Columbus. New Mexico, Vermont and Maine are among the latest to pass measures doing away with Columbus Day celebrations in deference to Native Americans. In all, around 10 states observe some version of Indigenous Peoples Day, along with more than 100 U.S. cities.

    Mon, 14 Oct 2019 20:04:04 -0400
  • Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez faces backlash over haircut

    Golocal247.com news

    This week, the Washington Times published a story saying that Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., had spent $80 on a haircut and $180 on color at a Washington, D.C., salon, a choice the newspaper presented as hypocritical, given she “regularly rails against the rich and complains about the cost of living inside the Beltway.”

    Mon, 14 Oct 2019 12:46:35 -0400
  • The Fastest Sedans in Lightning Lap History

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    Mon, 14 Oct 2019 14:07:00 -0400
  • Special Report: The hunt for Asia's El Chapo

    Golocal247.com news

    He is Asia’s most-wanted man. Tse Chi Lop, a Canadian national born in China, is suspected of leading a vast multinational drug trafficking syndicate formed out of an alliance of five of Asia’s triad groups, according to law enforcement officials. The syndicate, law enforcers believe, is funneling tonnes of methamphetamine, heroin and ketamine to at least a dozen countries from Japan in North Asia to New Zealand in the South Pacific.

    Mon, 14 Oct 2019 07:59:08 -0400
  • Disney Skyliner reopens with modified hours after stranding passengers last week

    Golocal247.com news

    Disney's Skyliner is back in action after the new aerial cable car system stranded passengers for hours the night of Oct. 5.

    Mon, 14 Oct 2019 10:39:49 -0400
  • Trump's Botched Attempt to Hire Gowdy

    Golocal247.com news

    For 24 hours last week, Trey Gowdy, the former South Carolina congressman best known for leading congressional investigations of Hillary Clinton, was the new face of President Donald Trump's outside legal defense and a symbol of a streamlined effort to respond to a fast-moving impeachment inquiry.A day later, the arrangement fell apart, with lobbying rules prohibiting Gowdy from starting until January, possibly after the inquiry is over. Now, according to two people familiar with events, Gowdy is never expected to join the team. And Trump advisers are back to square one, searching for a different lawyer.How a celebrated announcement quickly ended in disarray offers a rare public glimpse into the internal posturing -- and undercutting of colleagues -- that has been playing out in the West Wing on a daily basis since House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced a formal impeachment inquiry last month. Even as the White House confronts a deepening threat to Trump's presidency, it has struggled to decide how to respond, and who should lead that response.This article is based on interviews with a half-dozen aides and other people close to Trump.The official story, circulated by senior administration aides to a handful of reporters, was that Gowdy, who retired from Congress last year, had agreed to reenter the fray Tuesday. Gowdy's name began circulating on Twitter as the new Trump defender, prompting a number of aides to the president to claim credit privately for the idea of bringing him on board.But by Wednesday evening, aides were distancing themselves from the bungled personnel maneuver, which was made public before all the usual procedural boxes had been checked. Several pointed fingers at Mick Mulvaney, the acting White House chief of staff, suggesting he had botched the rollout.For weeks, aides had been pushing Trump to add another lawyer to the outside team, and Mulvaney had suggested Gowdy, a former prosecutor. Trump needed another voice on television defending him, and Mulvaney wanted someone who understood how Congress works.Some White House officials checked whether Emmet T. Flood, the lawyer who oversaw the administration's response to the investigation by the special counsel, Robert Mueller, would get involved. He was not available.As Mulvaney pushed for Gowdy, a former House colleague and fellow South Carolinian, he swatted away questions from several aides about whether Gowdy would be curtailed in his role by lobbying regulations. Both men assured people that there would be no problem, according to the people briefed on what took place.Not everyone was on board with the idea. Among those generally concerned about someone working specifically on impeachment outside the White House Counsel's Office was the White House counsel himself, Pat Cipollone, according to three people involved in the discussions. Mulvaney and Cipollone have repeatedly been at odds since the impeachment inquiry began, with one disagreement about hiring an additional lawyer taking place in front of Trump, according to a person familiar with the discussion.Trump told the two aides to work it out on their own. A person close to Cipollone denied that there was concern about bringing aboard another outside lawyer.Before Gowdy could be added, however, Trump needed to meet with him. So the two sat down for lunch at the White House on Tuesday; Jared Kushner, Trump's son-in-law and senior adviser, joined them for part of the meal.It went pleasantly enough, people briefed on what took place said, despite Trump's skepticism of Gowdy, who has often tried to distance himself from the president. But by late in the day, Trump signed off on hiring Gowdy. Still, there were procedural issues to be dealt with before he could formally be announced, and some advisers to the president wanted to wait to make the move public. Those advisers were stunned to see the news emerge from the White House on Tuesday night.But for Mulvaney -- who has never been fully empowered in the Trump administration, with "acting" always part of his title -- it was a rare internal victory. And the announcement that a well-known fighter like Gowdy was joining the team hinted that the Trump operation was finally organizing around an impeachment strategy.On Wednesday, Trump's personal lawyers worked on a letter for Gowdy to sign to cement their agreement. Around 8 p.m. they released a statement announcing that Gowdy was formally on board."Trey's command of the law is well known, and his service on Capitol Hill will be a great asset as a member of our team," Trump's personal lawyer Jay Sekulow said in the statement.But within 30 minutes of that statement's going public, Gowdy alerted Trump's lawyers to a problem. His law firm, Nelson Mullins, had concerns that his work would involve lobbying activity. There was a discussion about whether Nelson Mullins could still be used, but a Trump adviser said that decision had been put off until January, when Gowdy's lobbying ban concludes."Trey Gowdy is a terrific guy," Trump told reporters on Thursday, on his way to a campaign rally in Minneapolis, breaking the news himself. "He can't start for another couple of months because of lobbying rules and regulations. So you'll have to ask about that."In the meantime, Trump's team is searching, again, for help.Without Gowdy, who lost his paid contributorship at Fox News after the announcement, and with another of Trump's lawyers, Rudy Giuliani, sidelined from appearing on television for the moment as he is drawn increasingly into the Ukraine matter at the heart of the impeachment inquiry, the president's team remains outgunned in the fight for public opinion.Even Trump -- who for the most part has been operating as a one-man war room, setting the tone of grievance from the top -- appears confused about which of his staff members is in charge.The president, at one point, asked Mulvaney who was leading the effort. Mulvaney, who often invokes Kushner's name around Trump to show that he has a good relationship with the family, passed the buck to Kushner.Kushner, who aides said had been spending many hours on impeachment as part of his broader portfolio of defending the president, has told some people he is running the inquiry response and played down that idea with others.This article originally appeared in The New York Times.(C) 2019 The New York Times Company

    Mon, 14 Oct 2019 09:36:41 -0400
  • States are cutting university budgets. Taxpayers aren't interested in funding campus kooks

    Golocal247.com news

    University campuses have abandoned their central mission in their pursuit of utopia. The American public has had enough.

    Mon, 14 Oct 2019 12:22:08 -0400
  • In 1986, a Russian Submarine with 27 Nuclear Missiles Sank (And Exploded)

    Golocal247.com news

    "Seawater combined with missile fuel to produce heat and toxic gases. Despite a crewman venting the tube, an explosion erupted in the silo, ejecting the missile and its warheads into the sea."

    Sun, 13 Oct 2019 15:00:00 -0400
  • Brexit on October 31 a 'priority' for British government: Queen

    Golocal247.com news

    British Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Monday set out his government's priorities at a parliamentary ceremony full of pomp and pageantry attended by the queen, with Brexit top of the agenda. Queen Elizabeth II announced in a speech to lawmakers a list of 26 new bills ranging from implementing a yet-to-be finalised EU divorce agreement to criminal sentencing and the environment. "My government's priority has always been to secure the United Kingdom's departure from the European Union on October 31," the 93-year-old monarch said from a gilded throne, delivering words written by government officials.

    Mon, 14 Oct 2019 07:30:39 -0400
  • The Latest: Fire department: LA blaze began under power line

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    Fire officials say a destructive fire that broke out on the edge of Los Angeles began beneath a high-voltage transmission tower. Capt. Erik Scott told The Associated Press on Monday that Los Angeles Fire Department arson investigators have only determined the origin of the fire, not its cause. The location was at the base of power lines owned by Southern California Edison.

    Mon, 14 Oct 2019 19:44:19 -0400
  • Russia's submarines are getting harder to find, and the Navy is sending more people to keep an eye on them

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    Russian naval activity around Europe is a growing concern, and the US Navy is reactivating command units to help manage its own forces in the region.

    Mon, 14 Oct 2019 13:51:23 -0400
  • China Built a Flying Saucer

    Golocal247.com news

    The UFO is still on the ground—for now.

    Mon, 14 Oct 2019 09:55:00 -0400
  • Pope canonizes British Catholic luminary John Henry Newman, four others

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    Pope Francis on Sunday declared five people saints, including Cardinal John Henry Newman, a leading 19th century Anglican who converted to Catholicism and became one of the most influential Christian figures of modern times. Underscoring Newman's luminary status in Christianity today, Prince Charles, who will become head of the Church of England when he becomes king, attended the canonization Mass in St. Peter's Square and said it was a cause for celebration by all Britons. "Whatever our own beliefs, and no matter what our own tradition may be, we can only be grateful to Newman for the gifts, rooted in his Catholic faith, which he shared with wider society," Charles said in an article in the Vatican newspaper.

    Sun, 13 Oct 2019 05:44:20 -0400
  • 'It's got to stop': Superintendent condemns teacher's racist rant in school parking lot

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    A teacher at Drexel Hill Middle School in Pennsylvania has been placed on administrative leave after she used racial slurs in a viral Facebook video.

    Mon, 14 Oct 2019 10:19:40 -0400
  • Portland antifa activist killed in hit and run, police say

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    City’s antifascist group says death of Sean D Kealiher, 23, was not ‘related to fascist activity’ and police did not specify a motiveThe Multnomah county medical examiner determined the cause of death to be homicide, caused by blunt force trauma. Photograph: Jonathan Bachman/ReutersA Portland antifascist activist was killed in the early hours of Saturday in an apparent hit-and-run near Cider Riot, a cidery and taproom popular with the city’s anarchist left that has been the scene of conflict with rightwing groups. According to the Portland police bureau, the car involved was fired upon and crashed into a nearby building. Its occupants fled the scene. Police said in a statement that the 23-year-old victim, Sean D Kealiher, was taken to a local hospital by associates. The Multnomah county medical examiner determined the cause of death to be homicide, caused by blunt force trauma. Police said homicide squad detectives would investigate and called on witnesses to come forward. Kealiher was a prominent participant in antifascist and anti-Trump protests in Portland, speaking and marching in opposition to events held by rightwing groups. His activities occasionally attracted the attention of rightwing bloggers and social media personalities. Rose City Antifa, the city’s longest-standing antifascist group, said in a tweet addressing Kealiher’s death that it “was not related to fascist activity”. Police did not specify a motive. Portland’s mayor, Ted Wheeler ,and the Oregon Democratic party, outside whose building the incident happened, expressed condolences on Twitter. Memorial tributes were laid at the site. Six men, including the Patriot Prayer leader Joey Gibson, are awaiting trial on charges arising from a violent incident at Cider Riot on 1 May. In an affidavit in support of Gibson’s arrest warrant, police officer Brad Kalbaugh described the group approaching Cider Riot “in an effort clearly designed to provoke a physical confrontation”. Multiple videos of that incident show punches, thrown drinks and pepper spray being exchanged. One of the men awaiting trial, Ian Kramer, is alleged to have struck a woman with a baton, fracturing her vertebra. More video appears to show members of the group planning violence ahead of the brawl. Gibson and the other men are charged with riot. Some face felony assault charges.Cider Riot’s owner, Abram Goldman-Armstrong, has commenced a $1m lawsuit against Gibson and several others. Goldman-Armstrong’s lawyer, Juan Chavez, says his client has been subject to “homophobic and antisemitic” harassment since the suit was filed.

    Sun, 13 Oct 2019 11:40:37 -0400
  • Deutsche Bank reportedly hired unqualified relatives of Beijing's political elite in a bid to win over China

    Deutsche Bank has been under a lot of scrutiny recently, mostly due to its role as the primary lender to President Trump. But it turns out the bank also has a questionable history in China, The New York Times, along with German newspaper Suddeutsche Zeitung, reports.Beginning nearly two decades ago, Deutsche Bank, while seeking to make inroads in China, conducted a campaign that involved enriching Beijing's elite in exchange for contracts. This included some lavish gifts for the country's former president and premier and millions of dollars paid to Chinese consultants. It also meant that the bank reportedly hired more than 100 relatives of the country's political elite, even if they were unqualified.For example, a man named Ma Weiji was considered "one of the worst candidates" for the job he applied for with the bank, but he was brought on anyway in 2007, likely because his parents were senior executives at state-owned companies, per a senior bank executive. Ma reportedly then secured meetings for Deutsche Bank with his parents' companies.In another instance, China's former propaganda minister's son was up for a gig. One Deutsche Bank employee wrote in an email that the son "cannot meet our standard," but -- you guessed it -- he was offered the job, anyway. The same goes for another candidate who was deemed unqualified, but happened to be the daughter of Li Zhanshu, who is now a top member of the Politburo Standing Committee. Read more at The New York Times.

    Mon, 14 Oct 2019 13:52:00 -0400
  • Meet the Massive Ordnance Penetrator: The Air Force's Newest Bunker Buster Bomb

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    Huge and very powerful.

    Sun, 13 Oct 2019 22:00:00 -0400
  • California becomes first state to ban fur

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    California has become the first U.S. state to ban the sale and manufacture of new fur products. On Saturday, Gov. Gavin Newsom signed a bill into law to prohibit residents from making or selling items such as clothing, shoes or handbags made of fur.

    Mon, 14 Oct 2019 10:20:17 -0400
  • Big changes to grueling Special Forces course draw scrutiny

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    The overnight land navigation test is just one hurdle in the grueling, monthslong course to join the Army's elite Special Forces, and using the light violates the rules. "We got a light!" barks an Army instructor from the front seat of his truck as he patrols the woods. For the nearly 200 candidates scrambling through Hoffman Forest at Camp Mackall, the struggle to become a Green Beret is real.

    Sun, 13 Oct 2019 09:02:38 -0400
  • A Relationship With Jeffrey Epstein That Bill Gates Now 'Regrets'

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    Jeffrey Epstein, the convicted sex offender who committed suicide in jail, managed to lure an astonishing array of rich, powerful and famous men into his orbit.There were billionaires (Leslie Wexner and Leon Black), politicians (Bill Clinton and Bill Richardson), Nobel laureates (Murray Gell-Mann and Frank Wilczek) and even royals (Prince Andrew).Few, though, compared in prestige and power to the world's second-richest person, a brilliant and intensely private luminary: Bill Gates. And unlike many others, Gates started the relationship after Epstein was convicted of sex crimes.Gates, the Microsoft co-founder, whose $100 billion-plus fortune has endowed the world's largest charitable organization, has done his best to minimize his connections to Epstein. "I didn't have any business relationship or friendship with him," he told The Wall Street Journal last month.In fact, beginning in 2011, Gates met with Epstein on numerous occasions -- including at least three times at Epstein's palatial Manhattan town house, and at least once staying late into the night, according to interviews with more than a dozen people familiar with the relationship, as well as documents reviewed by The New York Times.Employees of Gates' foundation also paid multiple visits to Epstein's mansion. And Epstein spoke with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and JPMorgan Chase about a proposed multibillion-dollar charitable fund -- an arrangement that had the potential to generate enormous fees for Epstein."His lifestyle is very different and kind of intriguing although it would not work for me," Gates emailed colleagues in 2011, after his first get-together with Epstein.Bridgitt Arnold, a spokeswoman for Gates, said he "was referring only to the unique decor of the Epstein residence -- and Epstein's habit of spontaneously bringing acquaintances in to meet Mr. Gates.""It was in no way meant to convey a sense of interest or approval," she said.Over and over, Epstein managed to cultivate close relationships with some of the world's most powerful men. He lured them with the whiff of money and the proximity to other powerful, famous or wealthy people -- so much so that many looked past his reputation for sexual misconduct. And the more people he drew into his circle, the easier it was for him to attract others.Gates and the $51 billion Gates Foundation have championed the well-being of young girls. By the time Gates and Epstein first met, Epstein had served jail time for soliciting prostitution from a minor and was required to register as a sex offender.Arnold said that "high-profile people" had introduced Gates and Epstein and that they had met multiple times to discuss philanthropy."Bill Gates regrets ever meeting with Epstein and recognizes it was an error in judgment to do so," Arnold said. "Gates recognizes that entertaining Epstein's ideas related to philanthropy gave Epstein an undeserved platform that was at odds with Gates' personal values and the values of his foundation."The First MeetingTwo members of Gates' inner circle -- Boris Nikolic and Melanie Walker -- were close to Epstein and at times functioned as intermediaries between the two men.Walker met Epstein in 1992, six months after graduating from the University of Texas. Epstein, who was an adviser to Wexner, the owner of Victoria's Secret, told Walker that he could land her an audition for a modeling job there, according to Walker. She later moved to New York and stayed in a Manhattan apartment building that Epstein owned. After she graduated from medical school, she said, Epstein hired her as a science adviser in 1998.Walker later met Steven Sinofsky, a senior executive at Microsoft who became president of its Windows division, and moved to Seattle to be with him. In 2006, she joined the Gates Foundation with the title of senior program officer.At the foundation, Walker met and befriended Nikolic, a native of what is now Croatia and a former fellow at Harvard Medical School who was the foundation's science adviser. Nikolic and Gates frequently traveled and socialized together.Walker, who had remained in close touch with Epstein, introduced him to Nikolic, and the men became friendly.Epstein and Gates first met face to face on the evening of Jan. 31, 2011, at Epstein's town house on the Upper East Side. They were joined by Dr. Eva Andersson-Dubin, a former Miss Sweden whom Epstein had once dated, and her 15-year-old daughter. (Andersson-Dubin's husband, hedge fund billionaire Glenn Dubin, was a friend and business associate of Epstein's. The Dubins declined to comment.)The gathering started at 8 p.m. and lasted several hours, according to Arnold, Gates' spokeswoman. Epstein subsequently boasted about the meeting in emails to friends and associates. "Bill's great," he wrote in one, reviewed by the Times.Gates, in turn, praised Epstein's charm and intelligence. Emailing colleagues the next day, he said: "A very attractive Swedish woman and her daughter dropped by and I ended up staying there quite late."Gates soon saw Epstein again. At a TED conference in Long Beach, California, attendees spotted the two men engaged in private conversation.Later that spring, on May 3, 2011, Gates again visited Epstein at his New York mansion, according to emails about the meeting and a photograph reviewed by the Times.The photo, taken in Epstein's marble-clad entrance hall, shows a beaming Epstein -- in blue-and-gold slippers and a fleece decorated with an American flag -- flanked by luminaries. On his right: James Staley, at the time a senior JPMorgan executive, and former Treasury Secretary Lawrence Summers. On his left: Nikolic and Gates, smiling and wearing gray slacks and a navy sweater.A Vast Charitable FundAround that time, the Gates Foundation and JPMorgan were teaming up to create the Global Health Investment Fund. Its goal was to provide "individual and institutional investors the opportunity to finance late-stage global health technologies that have the potential to save millions of lives in low-income countries."As the details of the fund were being hammered out, Staley told his JPMorgan colleagues that Epstein wanted to be brought into the discussions, according to two people familiar with the talks. Epstein was an important JPMorgan customer, holding millions of dollars in accounts at the bank and referring a procession of wealthy individuals to become clients of the company.Epstein pitched an idea for a separate charitable fund to JPMorgan officials, including Staley, and to Gates' adviser Nikolic. He envisioned a vast fund, seeded with the Gates Foundation's money, that would focus on health projects around the world, according to five people involved in or briefed on the talks, including current and former Gates Foundation and JPMorgan employees. In addition to the Gates money, Epstein planned to round up donations from his wealthy friends and, hopefully, from JPMorgan's richest clients.Epstein thought he could personally benefit. He circulated a four-page proposal that included a suggestion that he be paid 0.3% of whatever money he raised, according to one person who saw the proposal. If Epstein had raised $10 billion, for example, that would have amounted to $30 million in fees.Arnold said Gates and the foundation had been unaware that Epstein had been seeking any fee. She said Epstein "did propose to Bill Gates and then foundation officials ideas that he promised would unleash hundreds of billions for global health-related work."In late 2011, at Gates' instruction, the foundation sent a team to Epstein's town house to have a preliminary talk about philanthropic fundraising, according to three people who were there. Epstein told his guests that if they searched his name on the internet they might conclude he was a bad person but that what he had done -- soliciting prostitution from an underage girl -- was no worse than "stealing a bagel," two of the people said.Some of the Gates Foundation employees said they had been unaware of Epstein's criminal record and had been shocked to learn that the foundation was working with a sex offender. They worried that it could seriously damage the foundation's reputation.In early 2012, another Gates Foundation team met Epstein at his mansion. He claimed that he had access to trillions of dollars of his clients' money that he could put in the proposed charitable fund -- a figure so preposterous that it left his visitors doubting Epstein's credibility.Flying to FloridaGates and Epstein kept seeing each other. Arnold would not say how many times the two had met.In March 2013, Gates flew on Epstein's Gulfstream plane from Teterboro Airport in New Jersey to Palm Beach, Florida, according to a flight manifest. Arnold said Gates -- who has his own $40 million jet -- hadn't been aware it was Epstein's plane.Six months later, Nikolic and Gates were in New York for a meeting related to Schrodinger, a pharmaceutical software company in which Gates had a large investment. On that trip, Epstein and Gates met for dinner and discussed the Gates Foundation and philanthropy, Arnold said.In October 2014, Gates donated $2 million to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Media Lab. University officials described the gift in internal emails as having been "directed" by Epstein. Arnold said, "There was no intention, nor explicit ask, for the funding to be controlled in any manner by Epstein."Soon after, the relationship between Epstein and Gates appears to have cooled. The charitable fund that had been discussed with the Gates Foundation never materialized. Epstein complained to an acquaintance at the end of 2014 that Gates had stopped talking to him, according to a person familiar with the discussion.The relationship, however, wasn't entirely severed. At least two senior Gates Foundation officials maintained contacts with Epstein until late 2017, according to former foundation employees. Arnold said the foundation was not aware of any such contact."Over time, Gates and his team realized Epstein's capabilities and ideas were not legitimate and all contact with Epstein was discontinued," she said.Days before Epstein hanged himself in a Manhattan jail cell on Aug. 10, he amended his will and named Nikolic as a fallback executor in the event that one of the two primary executors was unable to serve. (Nikolic has declined in court proceedings to serve as executor.)Nikolic, who is now running a venture capital firm with Gates as one of his investors, said he was "shocked" to be named in Epstein's will. He said in a statement to the Times: "I deeply regret ever meeting Mr. Epstein."This article originally appeared in The New York Times.(C) 2019 The New York Times Company

    Sun, 13 Oct 2019 11:58:48 -0400
  • China’s Xi warns efforts to divide China will end with ‘crushed bodies and shattered bones'

    Golocal247.com news

    China’s president Xi Jinping has warned efforts to divide or destabilise China will end with “shattered bones,” as international pressure mounts over the government’s handling of protests in Hong Kong and a widespread crackdown on Muslim minority groups.  “Anyone attempting to split China in any part of the country will end in crushed bodies and shattered bones,” Mr Xi said, according to Chinese state broadcaster CCTV.  “And any external forces backing such attempts dividing China will be deemed by the Chinese people as pipe-dreaming!” he was quoted as saying to Nepal’s prime minister KP Sharma Oli during China’s first state visit to the South Asian country in two decades. Mr Xi’s comments come ahead of a potential flashpoint on Wednesday, when the Hong Kong government will reconvene its Legislative Council for a fall session. Embattled chief executive Carrie Lam is also scheduled to give a speech, and is expected to formally withdraw the extradition bill that sparked the protests. With violence escalating, foreign governments including the US and UK are putting more pressure on Beijing to act humanely and hold up its end of the Sino-British Joint Declaration – an agreement meant to protect freedoms in Hong Kong when the former colony was returned to China. China: Beijing celebrations mark 70 years of Communist rule in pictures American politicians have also introduced the Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act, which would mandate an annual review to determine whether Hong Kong remained sufficiently autonomous to justify unique treatment by the US. It would also sanction individuals over human rights violations and bar them from entering the country. The bill has drawn bipartisan support and is scheduled to be considered in the House this week, after sailing unanimously through earlier committees. Protesters first took to the streets over concerns that suspects extradited to China would not receive a fair trial, as Communist Party control contributes to a 99.9 per cent conviction rate.  Hong Kong protests | Read more But after a summer of unrest, a pledge Ms Lam made last month to officially axe the legislation wasn’t enough to appease protesters. Activists have expanded their demands to include Ms Lam’s resignation, an independent probe into police handling of the protests, democratic election reforms, and for all rioting charges to be dropped as the offence carries a maximum 10-year prison sentence.  Police have fired live rounds, sometimes as a warning, hitting at least two teenage protesters. Activists are also increasingly aggressive, hitting police officers with sticks, throwing petrol bombs and setting fire to road barricades. Over the weekend, the back of a police officer’s neck was also slashed. China is also battling foreign scrutiny in Xinjiang, a land-locked western province where millions of Muslim minorities have been locked up and tortured in “re-education camps.” Last week, the US Commerce Department also announced sanctions on 28 public security bureaus and companies in China implicated in human rights violations in Xinjiang.

    Mon, 14 Oct 2019 05:37:57 -0400
  • Putin aide: Turkish operation 'not exactly' compatible with Syria's territorial integrity

    Kremlin aide Yuri Ushakov said on Monday that Turkey's military incursion into northern Syria was "not exactly" compatible with Syria's territorial integrity. Ushakov, speaking in Riyadh during an official visit to Saudi Arabia by President Vladimir Putin, was commenting on Turkey's military operation which it launched last week.

    Mon, 14 Oct 2019 11:00:00 -0400
  • We found 85,000 cops who’ve been investigated for misconduct. Now you can read their records.

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    USA TODAY is leading a national effort to obtain and publish disciplinary and misconduct records for thousands of police officers.

    Mon, 14 Oct 2019 20:25:41 -0400
  • Son of sheriff who called immigrants ‘drunks’ at White House event arrested for public intoxication

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    The son of a Texas sheriff who used a White House press conference to describe immigrant offenders as “drunks” likely to repeatedly break the law has been arrested for public intoxication.Sergei Waybourn, 24, faces a count of indecent exposure as well as public drunkenness just days after his father, Tarrant County Sheriff Bill Waybourn, was criticised for the comments.

    Mon, 14 Oct 2019 08:04:35 -0400
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