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House inches toward 11th hour deal on aid for border crisis

House inches toward 11th hour deal on aid for border crisis “We’ve been going back and forth with mainly some minor things,” Rep. Lucille Roybal-Allard said.


Egypt: UN office tries to politicize Morsi's courtroom death

Egypt: UN office tries to politicize Morsi's courtroom death Egypt said Wednesday that the U.N. human rights office was trying to politicize the death of former Egyptian president Mohammed Morsi, who collapsed inside a Cairo courtroom during his trial this week. Morsi, Egypt's first democratically elected president who hailed from the now outlawed Muslim Brotherhood group, was buried under heavy security early on Tuesday, a day after his dramatic collapse and death inside a Cairo courtroom. Rupert Colville, spokesman for the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, called Tuesday for a "prompt, impartial, thorough and transparent investigation" into Morsi's death on Monday.


'Bachelorette' star Jed Wyatt was in a serious relationship during the show, his ex claims

'Bachelorette' star Jed Wyatt was in a serious relationship during the show, his ex claims Singer/songwriter Jed Wyatt is vying for Hannah Brown's love on "The Bachelorette," but it appears she's not the only woman who has his heart.


U.S. Navy says mine fragments suggest Iran behind Gulf tanker attack

U.S. Navy says mine fragments suggest Iran behind Gulf tanker attack The United States sought on Wednesday to bolster its case for isolating Iran over its nuclear and regional activities by displaying limpet mine fragments it said came from a damaged oil tanker and saying the ordnance looked Iranian in origin. Iran has denied involvement in explosive strikes on two tankers in the Gulf of Oman last week and four tankers off the United Arab Emirates on May 12, both near the Strait of Hormuz, a major conduit for global oil supplies.


Xiaomi Eyes $725 Million Expansion to Stave Off Huawei in China

Xiaomi Eyes $725 Million Expansion to Stave Off Huawei in China (Bloomberg) -- Xiaomi Corp. aims to spend an additional 5 billion yuan ($725 million) expanding its Chinese retail network over the next three years, anticipating a re-doubled effort by Huawei Technologies Co. to grow its domestic market share.The smartphone maker will spend the money on expanding distribution channels and on reward programs for its partners and sales employees, a person familiar with the matter said, citing an internal meeting convened by billionaire co-founder Lei Jun Tuesday. That spending comes on top of an existing budget for building up its retail operations. Chinese media outlet Caixin reported on the investment earlier.Huawei is said to be preparing for a drop in international smartphone shipments of 40% to 60% as the Trump administration bars its access to American components and software. That means Google will cut off popular apps like YouTube and stop providing updates for the Android system that powers all of Huawei’s devices abroad. It wants to grab as much as half of the smartphone market in China in 2019 to offset that decline overseas, people familiar with the matter have said, citing internal discussions about year-end goals. It hopes to get there also by investing in marketing and expanding distribution channels.Xiaomi aims to become the country’s top vendor but its priority is to at least become No. 3, the person said, asking not to be identified discussing internal goals. The company currently ranks fourth. It sees the roll-out of next-generation 5G mobile networks in coming years as a golden opportunity to boost sales on its home turf, the person added.Hong Kong-listed Xiaomi now commands about 12% of the Chinese smartphone market versus Huawei’s 34%, Canalys estimates. Its shipments slid 13% in the first quarter while its rivals’ soared 41%, the research outfit estimated.To contact Bloomberg News staff for this story: Gao Yuan in Beijing at ygao199@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Peter Elstrom at pelstrom@bloomberg.net, Edwin Chan, Colum MurphyFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.


As Hong Kong protests quiet down, what's next?

As Hong Kong protests quiet down, what's next? All but a handful of protesters in Hong Kong have gone home, but the crisis that brought hundreds of thousands into the streets to oppose an extradition bill is far from over. The way forward for both Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam and her opponents is uncertain because of the limits built into the city's "one country, two systems" arrangement with Beijing after Britain ceded control of the former colony in 1997. The public is wary of seeing Communist Party-ruled Beijing wield still greater influence that would imperil civil liberties such as independent courts and the freedom to speak out against the local government, privileges not enjoyed in the mainland.


Mars has a brand new crater, and it sure is pretty

Mars has a brand new crater, and it sure is pretty Mars, like any other rocky world, has its fair share of craters. These scars of ancient impacts give the dusty surface of the planet some serious personality, and sometimes it's easy to forget that new craters can happen right before our eyes. That's exactly what seems to have occurred, and a new image from NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter reveals a brand new impact site that might only be a few months old.The image, which was captured by the HiRISE camera built into the orbiter, shows a bold dark patch of material surrounding a circular crater on the Martian surface. Researchers believe it might have been created as recently as February 2019.The University of Arizona posted the photo, along with the following caption:> An impressionist painting? No, it's a new impact crater that has appeared on the surface of Mars, formed at most between September 2016 and February 2019. What makes this stand out is the darker material exposed beneath the reddish dust.The photo itself was captured in April and is only just now getting the attention it deserves. However, because the orbiter can't be looking at the entire planet at all times, it's unclear when exactly the crater formed, and researchers can only narrow it down to sometime between September 2016 and February 2019.This is yet another great reminder of the fantastic work NASA's Mars orbiter has been doing for years now. The spacecraft originally launched way back in 2005 and arrived at Mars in March of the following year. When it did, its primary mission was only scheduled to last for two years, but it has since put in over 13 years of faithful service for scientists. As long as it keeps producing images like this one, we hope it keeps going for a long time to come.


Xi firmly backs Pyongyang's effort to solve Korea Peninsula issues: Rodong Sinmun

Xi firmly backs Pyongyang's effort to solve Korea Peninsula issues: Rodong Sinmun Chinese President Xi Jinping said in an op-ed in North Korean state newspaper Rodong Sinmun on Wednesday that China supports North Korea's "correct direction" in politically resolving issues on the Korean Peninsula. The front-page op-ed is an honor rarely granted to foreign leaders and comes a day before Xi is set to visit Pyongyang on Thursday and Friday at the invitation of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, making him the first Chinese leader to visit in 14 years. The visit is a sorely needed show of support for Kim, whose campaign of diplomatic outreach and drive to rebuild the economy has suffered since the collapse of the Hanoi summit between North Korea's Kim and U.S. President Donald Trump in February.


Authorities Seize 16 Tons of Cocaine From a Ship Docked in Philadelphia, in One of the Largest Drug Busts in U.S. History

Authorities Seize 16 Tons of Cocaine From a Ship Docked in Philadelphia, in One of the Largest Drug Busts in U.S. History Federal officials estimate the street value at over $1 billion


Attorney Michael Avenatti faces November trial in New York

Attorney Michael Avenatti faces November trial in New York California attorney Michael Avenatti learned Tuesday that he faces a November trial date on charges he tried to extort millions of dollars from Nike. The Nov. 12 trial date was set by U.S. District Judge Paul G. Gardephe at a pretrial hearing in Manhattan. Avenatti participated by telephone.


Donald Trump pledges to begin deporting 'millions of illegal aliens' next week

Donald Trump pledges to begin deporting 'millions of illegal aliens' next week Donald Trump has vowed to begin removing millions of illegal immigrants from the United States starting next week. The pledge came as Mr Trump formally announced his bid for re-election to the White House in 2020. He said US Immigration and Customs Enforcement would "begin the process of removing the millions of illegal aliens who have illicitly found their way into the United States," adding: "They will be removed as fast as they come in." There are an estimated 12 million people in the United States illegally, mainly from Mexico and Central America. A White House official said the new crackdown would focus on more than one million of those who have already been issued final deportation orders by judges, but still remain in the US. The official said: "Countless illegal aliens not only violate our borders but then break the law all over again by skipping their court hearings and absconding from federal proceedings. "These runaway aliens lodge phony asylum claims only to be no-shows at court and are ordered removed in absentia. Enforcing these final judicial orders is a top priority." Apprehensions on the US-Mexico border It is unusual to make planned immigration raids public before they happen. But senior White House figures believe a series of mass arrests, and the threat of them, would also act as a deterrent to would-be illegal immigrants, in countries including El Salvador and Honduras, who may be considering attempts to reach the US border. The number of illegal immigrants from Central America crossing the US border has risen dramatically during Mr Trump's presidency. Funding for his plan to build a border wall has been blocked by Democrats. He recently secured the co-operation of Mexico by threatening to implement increasingly drastic tariffs on Mexican goods. The threat was dropped after Mexico agreed to dispatch its national guard to its border with Guatemala. Three weeks ago there were 4,200 illegal migrants arriving at the US border daily, and that has now dropped to 2,600 a day, according to a Mexican official. Mr Trump said: "Mexico, using their strong immigration laws, is doing a very good job of stopping people long before they get to our southern border." The president said Guatemala was getting ready to sign an agreement that would force illegal migrants to apply for asylum there, rather than trying to head on through Mexico to the US. Mr Trump said the "border crisis" would end quickly if Democrats would agree to "fix" the asylum system. Immigration was a central theme of Mr Trump's presidential campaign in 2016, and is expected to be again in 2020.


The Latest: Alex Jones sanctioned in Sandy Hook lawsuit

The Latest: Alex Jones sanctioned in Sandy Hook lawsuit A Connecticut judge has imposed sanctions on conspiracy theorist Alex Jones for an outburst on his web show against a lawyer for relatives of victims of the Sandy Hook School shooting. Judge Barbara Bellis on Tuesday ordered the Infowars host to pay some of the relatives' legal fees and prohibited him from filing motions to dismiss their defamation lawsuit against him. The families of several of the 20 children and six educators killed in the 2012 shooting are suing Jones, Infowars and others for promoting a theory that the massacre was a hoax.


Boeing may rebrand the 737 Max so people are willing to fly in it again

Boeing may rebrand the 737 Max so people are willing to fly in it again Boeing has a serious problem on its hands. After a pair of fatal crashes that claimed hundreds of lives, the company's 737 Max jetliner has been seriously tarnished. Nobody really wants to fly on the planes, even if Boeing can figure out how to keep them from killing people, and that means the hundreds of planes sitting around in storage right now may have a tough road ahead.Now, Boeing says it might have a plan for dealing with the complete loss of public trust in the 737 Max line, and it could be as simple as just changing its name. As Bloomberg reports, Boeing CFO Greg Smith noted the possibility of a name change in an interview during the Paris Air Show this week."I'd say we're being open-minded to all the input we get," Smith reportedly said. "We're committed to doing what we need to do to restore it. If that means changing the brand to restore it, then we'll address that. If it doesn't, we'll address whatever is a high priority."Boeing followed up the interview with an official statement in which it reiterated its desire to make the plane, you know, not crash. The company also said it had "no plans" to change the name of the 737 Max at the moment, but it's also worth noting that the planes are still grounded, so a name change probably wouldn't do them any good, yet.The first order of business for Boeing is obviously fixing whatever is wrong with its jets. Reports following the second fatal crash suggested that flight software which was designed to avoid a stall may have been to blame for sending both planes plummeting to the Earth, but details have been hard to come by in the months since those reports surfaced.It'll be interesting to see how Boeing handles things once its planes are inevitably cleared to fly once more. Will travelers simply forget the history of the Max line, or ignore it? If not, a name change might be one way to get butts in the seats again.


The Latest: Indiana AG's office plans vigorous defense

The Latest: Indiana AG's office plans vigorous defense The Indiana attorney general's office says it will vigorously defend him against a federal lawsuit by four women who say he drunkenly groped them during a party last year. The lawsuit filed Tuesday alleges sexual harassment by Republican state Attorney General Curtis Hill on a state lawmaker and three legislative staffers in March 2018 at an Indianapolis bar. Hill has denied wrongdoing and rebuffed calls from Republican Gov. Eric Holcomb to resign.


Venezuelan prosecutor: Opposition leader linked to crimes

Venezuelan prosecutor: Opposition leader linked to crimes Venezuela's chief prosecutor on Tuesday accused opposition leader Juan Guaidó of being the author of an alleged public corruption scheme stemming from a call for security forces to abandon President Nicolás Maduro. Attorney General Tarek William Saab said his office is investigating two diplomatic representatives of Guaidó accused of stealing money and falsifying hotel bills in February while helping Venezuelan soldiers desert into Colombia under Guaidó's leadership. Guaidó, the leader of the opposition-controlled National Assembly, launched a campaign in January to remove Maduro from power.


Google pledges $1 bn for housing crisis in Bay Area

Google pledges $1 bn for housing crisis in Bay Area Google on Tuesday pledged to commit more than $1 billion to help address the severe housing crisis in the region that includes its headquarters and Silicon Valley. Chief executive Sundar Pichai announced the initiative, saying the internet colossus wants to be "a good neighbor" in the area bursting with technology companies. The move comes with Silicon Valley firms under pressure over the spike in real estate prices, lack of affordable housing and growing homeless problem in the San Francisco Bay region.


As the trade war with China heats up this summer, who is feeling the chill?

As the trade war with China heats up this summer, who is feeling the chill? The number of visitors to the U.S. from China fell 5.7% to 3 million in 2018, the first decline In 15 years. So far, it’s not getting better in 2019.


Boeing's troubled 737 MAX gets huge vote of confidence from IAG

Boeing's troubled 737 MAX gets huge vote of confidence from IAG US aircraft giant Boeing got a welcome vote of confidence in its beleaguered 737 MAX plane on Tuesday when International Airlines Group, owner of British Airways, said it wanted to buy 200 of the planes. It was a coup for Boeing since up to now IAG has been a longtime client of Airbus for its single-aisle jets, used on some of its most popular routes. "We have every confidence in Boeing and expect that the aircraft will make a successful return to service in the coming months having received approval from the regulators," IAG's chief Willie Walsh said in a statement.


Police: Mom drives into Michigan river; 3 dead

Police: Mom drives into Michigan river; 3 dead Authorities say they've found the body of a woman and her 9-year-old twin daughters after she intentionally drove a car carrying them into a southwestern Michigan river. (June 18)


How to Grill Pineapple for Tacos, Salsa, Sundaes, and More

Reynolds Wrap will pay someone $5,000 a week to travel across America eating ribs

Reynolds Wrap will pay someone $5,000 a week to travel across America eating ribs Grill masters and backyard barbecue bosses, listen up


Ocasio-Cortez accuses Trump administration of creating ‘concentration camps on the southern border’

Ocasio-Cortez accuses Trump administration of creating ‘concentration camps on the southern border’ The freshman Democrat sharply criticized the Trump administration's handling of migrants seeking asylum in the United States with rhetoric that drew the ire of some Republicans.


Microsoft is testing a major change to Windows keyboards

Microsoft is testing a major change to Windows keyboards Microsoft is apparently considering adding a dedicated Office key to keyboards, and the move is absolutely brilliant if you think about it. Microsoft’s productivity suite is one of the company's biggest moneymakers, maybe the best collection of apps that has ever been made by the Redmond-based software company. Millions upon millions of people rely on Office apps to get through their work or school days, and you probably have it installed on at least one computer. While Google and Apple have alternatives for the Office suite of apps, Microsoft's still sets the bar in the industry when it comes to productivity. With that in mind, a dedicated Office button could help lock users in and keep people from exploring other options. As you can see in the following tweet, Microsoft is already testing the new key and running surveys about it: https://twitter.com/h0x0d/status/1140784669962584066 Placed next to one of the Alt keys in this concept photo, the key has the Office icon on it and works inside Microsoft’s apps. It’s unclear whether you can use the key to load specific Office apps, but the questions in the survey reveal you’ll be able to use it for various shortcuts while using Office apps. That means some shortcuts might change based on which app you're in, providing quick access to key features based on context. https://twitter.com/h0x0d/status/1140787208502173696 Adding a dedicated Office key to Windows 10 computers sounds like a great idea, especially on machines made for the workplace. Keyboards on Windows machines already include Windows keys — two of them, in fact — which means one could be sacrificed in favor of the Office key. Of course, this is just speculation at this point. That said, it’s unclear what value the key would deliver to Windows PC owners who aren’t Office users, but we’ll cross that bridge when we get there. For the moment, there’s nothing official from Microsoft to indicate that the Office key will be available on any future Windows PC, Surface-branded or otherwise.


Orlando Sentinel endorses 'not Donald Trump' for president ahead of reelection kickoff

Orlando Sentinel endorses 'not Donald Trump' for president ahead of reelection kickoff Hours before the president was due to formally announce the kickoff of his reelection campaign at a rally in Orlando, the Orlando Sentinel announced it will endorse anyone but him.


CORRECTED-UPDATE 1-Boeing 737 MAX boosted by IAG plan to order 200 jets

CORRECTED-UPDATE 1-Boeing 737 MAX boosted by IAG plan to order 200 jets Boeing's grounded 737 MAX jet received a boost on Tuesday after British Airways-owner IAG signed a letter of intent to order 200 of the planes and said it was confident that it would return to service in the coming months. Boeing said the deal had a value of more than $24 billion at list prices. IAG said the mix of 737-8 and 737-10 aircraft, to be delivered between 2023 and 2027, would be powered by CFM Leap engines and used across a number of its airlines including British Airways, Vueling and Level.


Incumbency is powerful. Is Trump poised for re-election?

Incumbency is powerful. Is Trump poised for re-election? Donald Trump is expected to launch his re-election campaign Tuesday, kicking off an age-old battle that most sitting US presidents wage for four more years of power. Can Democrats overcome Trump's dominant position and reclaim the White House? Here is a look at how the power of incumbency impacts presidential politics.


China earthquake kills 13, injures 199

China earthquake kills 13, injures 199 The toll from a strong 6.0-magnitude earthquake in southwest China rose to 13 dead and 199 injured on Tuesday as rescuers pulled bodies and survivors from wrecked buildings. More than 8,000 people were relocated as a large number of structures were damaged or collapsed after the quake struck late Monday near Yibin, in Sichuan province, according to the city government. Other images were of a woman being helped out of another collapsed structure.


How U.S. Allies in the Middle East are Responding to Rising Tensions with Iran

How U.S. Allies in the Middle East are Responding to Rising Tensions with Iran The impact of escalation is likely to be most acute in the Gulf region


War vet Sen. Duckworth on Trump draft deferments: ‘I'm sorry, but it's baloney’

War vet Sen. Duckworth on Trump draft deferments: ‘I'm sorry, but it's baloney’ He's stealing from the military,” Sen. Duckworth told the Yahoo News show “Through Her Eyes.” “He's sending troops to the border to sit around in the desert,” she added. Sen. Duckworth was not impressed. “He likes the idea of war. “He's been a warmonger for a very long time.


Popular new $46 true wireless earbuds are only $30 with this special coupon

Popular new $46 true wireless earbuds are only $30 with this special coupon Before you go and spend $159 on Apple's new AirPods 2 earbuds, there's a great new pair from a rival company that you should know about. The TaoTronics Bluetooth 5.0 True Wireless Earbuds offer a better design than AirPods, with silicone tips that isolate sound as well as better water-resistance thanks to the IPX7 rating. They're a bargain at $46, but the special coupon code WSCZS4YF slashes the price all the way down to $29.99! Definitely get a pair while they're down to their lowest price ever -- you'll be glad you did.Here are the highlights from the product page: * Extended playtime: true wireless ear buds that last over 3 hours on a full charge; 3350mAh case can recharge the ear buds up to 40 times to give you 120H of extra playtime, doubles as a power bank * User-friendly: remove ear buds from the charging Pod to auto turn on and connect to your last Device, Disconnects when returned; One touch control for streamlined user interface * Uninterrupted enjoyment: Bluetooth 5. 0 for no signal loss or music dropouts to retain high quality audio within 10M/ 33ft operational range; straightforward to pair with any Device * For all occasions: with a built-in mica in each ear bud, you can utilize both single/Twin mode; use a single ear bud for working or use the pair to enjoy music alone or Share with a loved one * Durable & Water-Resistant: IPX7 waterproof build that keeps up with you during strenuous workouts, lightweight And compact construction to survive every aspect of daily life


Far-right UK student jailed over Prince Harry online posts

Far-right UK student jailed over Prince Harry online posts A far-right university student who called Prince Harry a race traitor and created an image of him with a pistol to his head was on Tuesday jailed in Britain for more than four years. Michal Szewczuk, 19, posted the image, which also featured a blood-splattered swastika, on microblogging platform Gab in August last year, months after the prince married mixed-race actress Meghan Markle. Szewczuk, who was jailed for four years and three months, pleaded guilty to two counts of encouraging terrorism and five counts of possession of terrorist material, including the White Resistance Manual and an Al-Qaeda manual.


Oregon baker happy to get second chance after SCOTUS throws out wedding cake discrimination case

Oregon baker happy to get second chance after SCOTUS throws out wedding cake discrimination case The former owner of an Oregon bakery who refused to make a wedding cake for a gay couple says she's happy with the Supreme Court's decision to send the case back to the lower courts.


Venezuela's misery doesn't even spare the dead in Maracaibo

Venezuela's misery doesn't even spare the dead in Maracaibo Thieves have broken into some of the vaults and coffins in El Cuadrado cemetery since late last year, stealing ornaments and sometimes items from corpses as the country sinks to new depths of deprivation. "Starting eight months ago, they even took the gold teeth of the dead," said José Antonio Ferrer, who is in charge of the cemetery, where a prominent doctor, a university director and other local luminaries are buried. Much of Venezuela is in a state of decay and abandonment, brought on by shortages of things that people need the most: cash, food, water, medicine, power, gasoline.


The migrants risking it all on the deadly Rio Grande

The migrants risking it all on the deadly Rio Grande The 19-year-old pregnant migrant wades towards the US shore, deep enough in the Rio Grande for waves to splash against her waist. Pushing through the river’s current, and mindful of an alligator lingering upriver, she guides her friend’s crying 10-year-old boy towards a US border-patrol rescue boat. As the boat carries them on the final leg of their journey to the United States from Honduras, the young woman waves back to a group on Mexico’s riverbank cheering her rescue.The day before, border-patrol agents at the Eagle Pass river crossing in South Texas had found the body of a man too decomposed to be easily identified. A couple of days earlier, a video of a man desperately trying to swim against the current before going limp and sinking circulated in Mexican news media. And in early May, border-patrol agents at Eagle Pass pulled the body of a 10-month-old baby from the Rio Grande after a raft carrying nine migrants overturned. Only five survived.“The sad moments are the deaths. Unfortunately, we’ve seen some of those,” says Bryan Kemmett, the border-patrol agent in charge of Eagle Pass, a town of 29,000 about an hour from the larger Del Rio. “The more troubling ones, the ones more recently, are the small infants. When you see the small infant and you hear the infant dying, you think about your own children.”Migrants have for years traversed the Rio Grande on makeshift rafts to cross illegally into the United States. But facing a surge of families from Central America, border-patrol agents are now pulling dozens of migrants, including young children, from the harsh current of the river almost every day. President Donald Trump’s repeated threats and attempts to limit immigration have not deterred migrants. The US Customs and Border Protection agency took more than 144,200 into custody in May, the highest monthly total in 13 years.Policies that separated migrant children from their parents, forced asylum seekers to wait in Mexico for their day in court and detained teenagers in camps likened to juvenile prisons have done little to stem the immigration flow. So far in the current federal fiscal year, which began on 1 October, border-patrol agents have rescued at least 315 migrants from a 209-mile stretch of the Rio Grande – up from 12 migrants the year before.Earlier this month, a 40-year-old migrant woman collapsed at the Eagle Pass station about 30 minutes after crossing the river. She was declared dead at a hospital, and the authorities were investigating the cause of her death.Migrants who are interviewed for this article at Eagle Pass say they are well aware of the risks. But they also say they were convinced by human smugglers and by other migrants that crossing the Rio Grande, which can take about five to 10 minutes, was the fastest and least complicated way to start their requests for asylum, given the Trump administration’s clampdown at legal ports of entry.“The whole world crosses through the river,” says Yevy Leiva, 28, who steered a raft across the Rio Grande with his son and two other migrants. Nine days later, he waits in a shelter in Del Rio, packed with scores of other migrants, for a bus to Dallas to stay with friends. Only migrants who show visible distress or who are travelling with a child are rescued by border-patrol agents. And while far more migrants trying to slip into the United States die on land – from dehydration or other dangers in the desert and brush – the number of deaths in the Rio Grande is rising at an alarming rate.Over the past two fiscal years, at least 11 people have drowned in the Del Rio sector of the Rio Grande. By comparison, the border patrol recovered the remains of four people from the river from fiscal 2015 to fiscal 2017.Randy Davis, the acting deputy chief patrol agent of the border patrol for the Del Rio sector, blames the deluge of migrants on the human smugglers who are increasingly exploiting this stretch of the Rio Grande as a comparatively untapped path into the United States.Since 1 October, border-patrol agents in the Del Rio sector have arrested nearly 18,000 migrant family members – compared with 1,387 during the first eight months of fiscal 2018. Agents in the sector have also rescued nearly three times as many migrants in the water than agents in other sectors along the border with Mexico, taken together.Some of them were infants who had to be flown to a hospital in San Antonio after they nearly drowned, Kemmett says. Davis says he expects to find more bodies. “There have been hundreds and hundreds of rescues,” Davis says. “I’m trying to keep them all straight in my mind. I would suspect there are other individuals out there that were never reported missing that we will eventually recover at some point in the future.”The US border patrol has issued warnings in Mexico about the dangers of crossing the Rio Grande, and Kemmett says migrants have been urged to at least wear life jackets before making the attempt. He says the river’s levels have risen about 3ft because of a water release from a nearby hydroelectric dam and excessive rainfall. While the Rio Grande is shallow in some areas, other parts dip without warning to a depth of 8ft. Debris ricochets along the riverbed, and the banks are littered with inflatable tubes and Styrofoam noodles that migrants use to stay afloat.The river levels are expected to rise again soon and the dam releases to irrigate crops in and around Eagle Pass and to provide electricity for the town. Underscoring the dangers to the migrants, an alligator hid among river weeds one afternoon last month, floating just high enough to show the spikes along its back.“They’re navigating the currents, they’re navigating the river itself, and now you have alligators,” says Kemmett, a 24-year veteran of the border patrol. “An alligator is not going to know the difference between a child and a chicken, or any other small animal.” Migrants often head to the Rio Grande with one change of clothes as well as their identification and other documents in a plastic bag. After crossing successfully, some change into the dry clothes before they are taken to a border-patrol facility to be processed.> They’re navigating the currents, they’re navigating the river itself, and now you have alligatorsWalking along the riverbank in Eagle Pass, Kemmett stops to examine a shirt left in the weeds near the water. It belonged to a baby. “We’re seeing a lot of families,” he says. “But within those families, we’re seeing more and more younger infants. Trying to cross the river with a 2-month-old strapped to your chest or your back is not easy.”“It’s not easy to begin with,” Kemmett says, “but now you’re trying to hold on to your child. And the desperation and the panic gets in there, and then they start to struggle.” Once they cross the Rio Grande and touch US soil, the migrants are taken into custody by the border patrol. They are processed in centres that were built to detain migrants before they were deported.But the sheer number of incoming migrants – many of whom are seeking asylum and are travelling with children who, by US law, cannot be detained for more than 20 days – has created an overwhelming backlog in cases and crowding at the border processing facilities. As a result, the vast majority of migrants who illegally enter the United States are told to report to court at a later date and are released. From there, the migrants search out relatives or other places to stay while their cases wind their way through immigration court.Last month, the Trump administration began flying migrants from overcrowded centres elsewhere in the Rio Grande Valley in Texas to Del Rio to be processed. But agents in Del Rio say the processing facility there was also overcapacity; earlier this month, the authorities there built a tent city to house migrants. Storage areas that had been used for border-patrol equipment in Del Rio “are now storing baby formula, diapers, additional extra space for blankets, heat blankets they can wrap up in”, Davis says. Most of the migrants who are caught by the border patrol come to the United States to escape poverty in their home nations, Kemmett says, and do not appear to be the criminals that Trump has warned of in his campaign to limit immigration. Agents in Del Rio say there is no sign that the surge of migrant families will decline.Kemmett says the border-patrol agents he oversees are becoming “battle fatigued”. He also questions why migrants would knowingly put their children in that type of danger in attempting the perilous journey to the United States.For some of the immigrants, it is the only way to protect their families. Barefoot and balancing his 8-year-old daughter on his shoulders, Angel Gabriel, 39, crosses the Rio Grande and into Eagle Pass on a hot afternoon.He steadies his 32-year-old wife as they walk into the river current; she tightly grips their barefoot 16-year-old son. Border-patrol agents meet the family in the middle of the river and bring them to land. As soon as agents finish patting down Gabriel to ensure he is not carrying weapons or drugs, he rushes to his family members and embraces them. All four of them weep.“Truly thankful,” Gabriel says through tears as he sits in a border-patrol van with his family. He says they left Honduras after being attacked. “Thankful to the power of the United States that they helped us get out,” Gabriel says. “I feel thankful that my family is OK.”A few hours earlier, a pregnant Honduran woman took her first steps on US soil. She had briefly reconsidered crossing the Rio Grande after seeing pictures on Facebook a day earlier of an alligator in the river. But turning her head, she revealed a bruised jaw – the evidence of what she said was an attack by her domestic partner in Honduras.The woman, who said she was to give birth in about a week, wanted to apply for asylum in the United States and hoped to create a good life for her soon-to-be-born son. “The life with my partner was a risk,” she said as she looked at the river. “So this is nothing compared to that.”© New York Times


Photos of the 2020 Ford Explorer

View Photos of the 2020 Lexus GX

Qatar sends technical experts to Israel, eyeing new Gaza power line

Qatar sends technical experts to Israel, eyeing new Gaza power line GAZA/JERUSALEM (Reuters) - A Qatari technical delegation held talks in Israel and the Gaza Strip this week about helping pay for a proposed new power line between them, officials on both sides said on Tuesday, marking a potential expansion of Doha's aid efforts for Palestinians. Qatar has in recent years funneled hundreds of millions of dollars into relief projects in Hamas-controlled Gaza, which it views as helping stave off privation and fighting with Israel. The intervention is approved by Israel but has gone largely unacknowledged by rightist Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who, along with U.S.-allied Arab leaders, has cold-shouldered Doha for its ties to Iran and Islamist groups like Hamas.


This Tank Could Stop a Chinese Invasion of Taiwan

This Tank Could Stop a Chinese Invasion of Taiwan The Trump administration’s plan to sell tanks, missiles and ground-launched air defenses to Taiwan embodies what might be called a strategic paradigm shift to empower the small island’s deterrence posture against an often-threatened Chinese invasion.While much existing discussion centers upon strengthening Taiwanese air, sea and undersea defenses, there also appears to be an unequivocal need for major land defenses. The existing air-sea emphasis is extremely important, yet there are certainly elements of this approach which invite further discussion about the need to provide Taiwan with a strong, armored ground force as well.The proposed $2 billion arms package includes 108 main battle tanks, 250 Stinger anti-air missiles, as well as 409 Javelins and 1,240 TOW anti-tank missiles.Drawing heavily upon a US Pacific presence along with Asian-theater allied support, a maritime-air Taiwan defense strategy has clearly had a deterrence impact in recent years. Part of this ability to keep a Chinese invasion at bay has naturally hinged upon a strong US posture ensuring defense of the island.


The Trump administration's dangerous fever dream about Iran

The Trump administration's dangerous fever dream about Iran The Iran debate in Washington is increasingly divorced from reality – and that should worry us The US national security adviser, John Bolton, is a long-time Iran hawk. Photograph: Alex Edelman/Rex/ShutterstockThe Trump administration is caught in a fever dream about Iran, and the fever is becoming dangerous.In the wake of attacks on oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman – which the US blames on Iran, though questions remain about the attack – the discourse on Iran being pushed by the administration and others is reaching fever pitch. Senator Tom Cotton has called for a “retaliatory military strike”. The New York Times columnist Bret Stephens says the US should threaten to sink Iran’s navy.This, of course, is not surprising to anyone who has watched the Iran debate in Washington. It’s divorced from reality.Everyone knows that Iran’s government is dangerous. It represses the Iranian people. It sponsors terrorism across the Middle East. The question is not whether Iran is bad – the question is what the best strategy is to deal with the threats.During the end of George W Bush’s administration and Barack Obama’s terms, the priority was stopping Iran’s nuclear program. After years of a carefully coordinated global sanctions campaign, the Obama administration secured a deal that stopped Iran’s nuclear program. The International Atomic Energy Agency and even the Trump administration certified that the deal was working. Before, during and after the deal, the US has countered Iranian terrorism and bolstered Israel’s defenses.None of it has been good enough for those trapped in the fever dream. The fever dream convinces policymakers to cozy up to regimes from Saudi Arabia to the United Arab Emirates that are themselves awful. It rationalizes support for a devastating war in Yemen. It causes the state department to fund, until recently, a group that attacked journalists and experts for not being anti-Iran. Locked in the fever dream’s grips for years, John Bolton in 2015 called for bombing Iran.All of this is in lieu of a realistic set of goals or a strategy for actually achieving them. It’s a fever dream, and only those with the fever seem to be able to make sense of the dream. US allies from Europe to Asia are frustrated with how much sway the fever dream has over US policy; they wonder what could possibly drive the US to abandon such a successful deal.It reminds one of the absurdity and recklessness of those who talked about bombing North Korea in 2017 – which could have started a nuclear war – and how completely they ignored the catastrophic consequences.Most worrying, it reminds one of the run-up to the war in Iraq in 2003 – how the Bush administration lied about Iraq’s possession of WMD and links to terrorism, and how Americans were told the invasion would be a “cakewalk” and that America would be greeted as a liberator. Reports of a rare, recent high-level meeting on Iran at the CIA before the latest round of warnings over Iran should concern those who remember the politicization of intelligence before the Iraq war.The result of it all is a heightened risk of conflict. And though the Trump administration claims it does not want war, the secretary of state, Mike Pompeo, reportedly said that the 2001 Authorization to Use Military Force (AUMF) – passed in order to fight those involved in 9/11 – could authorize a war with Iran (which the AUMF does not).America needs to have a real conversation about Iran. We need to make clear that Iran is not ten feet tall.We can’t let the fever dream drive US policy in the Middle East. Israel has the region’s strongest military, and with continued US support it can defend itself. America will continue to counter Iranian-sponsored terrorism. America does not need to blindly support countries such as Saudi Arabia and the UAE in the name of countering Iran. These governments repress their own people, stoke regional conflicts and have funded terrorism and radical indoctrination abroad. When the United States partners with Saudi Arabia by supporting a war in Yemen – supposedly to counter Iran – that creates a humanitarian disaster, America has lost sight of its interests.To develop an effective strategy, America needs to put itself in Iran’s shoes. After the US invaded two of Iran’s neighbors – Afghanistan and Iraq – tensions got even worse with Iran’s pursuit of a nuclear weapon and deadly fights between Iranians and American soldiers in Iraq. America believes Iran’s aggression has intensified while Iran believes America is surrounding Iran.Lost in the fever dream is the need for a dialogue with Tehran. A strategy of pressure alongside dialogue produced the nuclear deal. The US should talk to Iran about the future of Afghanistan and Iraq. And there is a broader dialogue to be had – alongside pressure – about regional security.Iran could do more to push a crisis to the brink as well. With Trump ripping up the nuclear deal, Iran is saying it will enrich uranium beyond the limits of the nuclear deal. If it was responsible for the oil tanker attack, more destabilizing acts could follow. That could lead to a vicious cycle that raises the chances of war.We need to wake up from the fever dream and have a real debate about Iran, develop a real strategy for Iran and start a real dialogue with Iran. * Michael H Fuchs is a senior fellow at the Center for American Progress, and a former deputy assistant secretary of state for east Asian and Pacific affairs


Duterte Stands by China, Doubts Own Fishermen in Sea Collision

Duterte Stands by China, Doubts Own Fishermen in Sea Collision (Bloomberg) -- Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte is standing by China over a collision involving the two nations’ boats in the South China Sea, with his spokesman casting doubts on local fishermen’s accounts of the incident.In his first public statement about what he described as a “maritime incident,” Duterte said China’s side should be heard on the collision that resulted in a Philippine vessel carrying 22 fishermen sinking in disputed waters on June 9. The crew were rescued by a Vietnamese fishing boat and a Philippine Navy ship.“It is best investigated. I don’t issue a statement now because there’s no investigation and no result," Duterte said in speech at a Philippine Navy event on Monday night. "The only thing we can do is wait and give the other party the right to be heard.”The Philippines will not escalate tensions with China by sending military ships to the South China Sea following the collision, he added, reiterating his nation isn’t ready to go to war with Beijing.At a briefing Tuesday, Duterte’s spokesman Salvador Panelo said there are "circumstances that give doubt to the version" of the Filipino fishermen, including how most of them were asleep when the collision happened.“The President doesn’t want this to be blown into an international crisis,” Panelo said. “We are being careful because there will be repercussions if we make the wrong move.”‘Passive’ PolicyDuterte stuck to his pro-China stance despite calls from the opposition, led by Vice President Leni Robredo, to change his “passive” China policy by actively asserting the nation’s rights in the disputed waters. Robredo, in a Facebook post Sunday, also called on Duterte’s government to demand the Chinese fishermen’s trial in the Philippines.Duterte now has to convince the public that friendly ties with China is still the way to go, said Jay Batongbacal, director of the University of the Philippines’ Institute for Maritime Affairs and Law of the Sea.“Between the Philippine government and the Chinese government the friendship policy has been set, but this incident has happened and casts doubt on the sincerity and wisdom of it to the Filipino people,” Batongbacal said.The Philippines’ long-term position in the South China Sea dispute may be weakened if Duterte maintains his pro-Beijing stance after the incident, said Professor Jeffrey Ordaniel, a fellow at Hawaii-based foreign policy research institute Pacific Forum. “The Duterte administration’s China policy is unfortunately helping the Chinese pursue their maritime ambitions.”Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang described the incident as an “accidental collision" at briefing on Monday, adding that politicizing the collision “is not appropriate.” Beijing’s embassy in Manila earlier said the Chinese vessel’s captain tried to rescue the Philippine fishermen after bumping into their boat, but was afraid of being "besieged" by other Filipino fishing boats.The incident took place near Reed Bank, an area claimed by both Manila and Beijing where there’s a pending oil exploration plan by Philippines company PXP Energy Corp.\--With assistance from Dandan Li and Philip J. Heijmans.To contact the reporter on this story: Andreo Calonzo in Manila at acalonzo1@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Cecilia Yap at cyap19@bloomberg.net, Ruth Pollard, Caroline AlexanderFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.