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Updated: 33 min 45 sec ago

Bipartisan Group Of Senators Push For Deal To End Government Shutdown

Sun, 01/21/2018 - 16:07

Bipartisan Group Of Senators Push For Deal To End Government ShutdownWASHINGTON ― A bipartisan group of centrist senators met Sunday to work out a potential compromise that would fund the government until Feb. 8, contingent on a promise to hold a vote on an immigration bill before then.


Jeanette Epps is not the only astronaut NASA has removed from their planned flights

Sun, 01/21/2018 - 13:59

Jeanette Epps is not the only astronaut NASA has removed from their planned flightsOn Jan. 18, NASA announced that astronaut Jeanette Epps would not fly, as expected, to the International Space Station in June. The mission would have been historic, since she would have become the first African-American crewmember on the orbiting outpost.  The space agency hasn't released any information about why Epps was benched from her planned mission, saying only that "these decisions are personnel matters for which NASA doesn’t provide information," according to NASA spokesperson Brandi Dean. Epps will now work in the Astronaut Office at Johnson Space Center and await another possible flight assignment. Epps' removal from her planned flight isn't without historic precedent. SEE ALSO: Astronaut expected to be the 1st African-American Space Station crewmember won't fly in 2018 after all NASA has benched astronauts before flights many times in its decades as a federal agency, and for many different reasons. "Flight assignments have been changed often in the past at various stages of training for a variety of reasons," Dean said via email. Specifically, quite a few astronauts have been removed from their missions for health reasons.  NASA astronaut Jeanette Epps.Image: NASANASA's Ken Mattingly was pulled from the Apollo 13 crew just a few days before their scheduled launch because he was exposed to German measles.  From the ground, Mattingly was part of the team that helped bring back the Apollo 13 crew to Earth after an oxygen tank exploded, putting the lives of the crew in serious danger and forcing them to abandon their planned moon landing.  Mattingly still earned a place in cinematic history, since he was portrayed by actor Gary Sinise in the movie Apollo 13. "Long before Jeanette Epps was pulled from her upcoming space station expedition, astronauts such as Ken Mattingly in 1970 and Don Thomas in 2002 were reassigned due to medical issues, while Mark Lee was pulled from a 2001 space station assembly shuttle mission for reasons NASA never disclosed," space historian and editor of collectSPACE.com Robert Pearlman said in an interview.  "To their crewmates' credit, despite the interruptions, the missions went on as planned (or in the case of Apollo 13, went awry but at no fault of Mattingly's replacement, Jack Swigert)." NASA also replaced Jeff Ashby in 1997 due to an illness in his family, and other astronauts have been removed due to other medical or personal issues. "NASA invests a lot of time, effort and money in training their astronaut crews, and stresses teamwork throughout, so the decision to remove an astronaut from a flight is never taken lightly," Pearlman said. Epps's 2018 mission was announced in 2017 and it immediately went viral.  News organizations profiled Epps and wrote about her expected upcoming flight, making the news of her reassignment all the more surprising.  She has not yet flown to space. Epps was chosen as part of NASA's 2009 astronaut class as one of 14 candidates.  Her path to NASA is different from many other astronauts, however.  Epps started off as a NASA fellow and then worked at Ford Motor Company before spending seven years at the Central Intelligence Agency.  Epps was inspired to become an astronaut after watching the first class of women become NASA astronauts decades ago. "It was about 1980, I was nine years old. My brother came home and he looked at my grades and my twin sisters' grades and he said, 'You know, you guys can probably become aerospace engineers or even astronauts,'" Epps said in a NASA video. "And this was at the time that Sally Ride [the first American woman to fly in space] and a group of women were selected to become astronauts — the first time in history. So, he made that comment and I said, 'Wow, that would be so cool.'" WATCH: Here's how Virgin's space program is different than SpaceX


Mattis heads to Asia to draw a contrast with assertive China

Sun, 01/21/2018 - 13:55

Mattis heads to Asia to draw a contrast with assertive ChinaUS Defense Secretary Jim Mattis on Sunday began a one-week trip to Asia, hoping to strengthen defense cooperation with Indonesia and Vietnam as regional Chinese military power looms ever larger. "We share the Pacific -- it's an ocean named for peace -- we would like to see it remain peaceful, so all the nations that use it and live here are prosperous," Mattis told reporters accompanying him on a military plane headed to the region. In Jakarta, where he is to arrive Monday evening, Mattis is to meet on Tuesday with President Joko Widodo and Defense Minister Ryamizard Ryacudu for talks on maritime cooperation.


With 25,339 murders in 2017, Mexico suffers record homicide tally

Sun, 01/21/2018 - 13:20

With 25,339 murders in 2017, Mexico suffers record homicide tallyThere were more than 25,000 murders across drug-ravaged Mexico in 2017, the highest annual tally since modern records began, government data showed. Investigators opened 25,339 murder probes last year, up nearly 25 percent from the 2016 tally, interior ministry data released on Saturday showed. Mexico has struggled with years of violence as the government has battled vicious drug cartels that have increasingly splintered into smaller, more bloodthirsty, gangs.


Inside Amazon Go, The Grocery Store Without Cashiers

Sun, 01/21/2018 - 12:48

Inside Amazon Go, The Grocery Store Without CashiersComing to Seattle -- after a year-long delay.


America hit hard by 2017-2018 flu season

Sun, 01/21/2018 - 12:25

America hit hard by 2017-2018 flu seasonDr. Fauci of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases shares insight.


Taliban lays claim to deadly attack on Kabul hotel

Sun, 01/21/2018 - 12:20

Taliban lays claim to deadly attack on Kabul hotelTaliban militants who killed at least 22 people at a luxury Kabul hotel went from room to room searching for foreigners, survivors and a security source said Monday as more details of the victims emerged. Insurgents armed with Kalashnikovs and suicide vests attacked the landmark Intercontinental Hotel overlooking the Afghan capital late Saturday in an assault that lasted more than 12 hours and prompted questions over how the attackers breached security. Officials have said that at least 14 foreigners were killed.


Women's March Activists Rally In Las Vegas, Vow To Bring Their 'Power To The Polls'

Sun, 01/21/2018 - 11:50

Women's March Activists Rally In Las Vegas, Vow To Bring Their 'Power To The Polls'Women’s March activists gathered in Las Vegas on Sunday to celebrate the one-year anniversary of the largest single-day protest in U.S. history and to launch a nationwide political action tour.


Leaders to meet with white separatist town official in Maine

Sun, 01/21/2018 - 11:44

Leaders to meet with white separatist town official in MainePORTLAND, Maine (AP) — Leaders in a Maine town said Sunday they will meet with their town manager, who has come under fire for espousing white separatist views.


Turkish troops enter Kurdish enclave in northern Syria

Sun, 01/21/2018 - 11:35

Turkish troops enter Kurdish enclave in northern SyriaHASSA, Turkey (AP) — Turkish troops and Syrian opposition forces attacked a Kurdish enclave in northern Syria on Sunday in their bid to oust from the area a U.S.-allied Kurdish militia, which responded with a hail of rockets on Turkish towns killing at least one refugee.


Sen. Tom Cotton: ‘I was not offended’ by Trump's 'cursing' at meeting

Sun, 01/21/2018 - 11:34

 ‘I was not offended’ by Trump's 'cursing' at meetingSen. Tom Cotton, R-Ark., said that President Trump’s language during a closed-door meeting 10 days ago did not offend him, and that Trump’s actual words have been grossly misrepresented. The Arkansas Republican offered this defense of the commander in chief while discussing immigration reform on NBC News’ “Meet the Press” with moderator Chuck Todd.


Turpin family home was 'littered with faeces and dead cats and dogs'

Sun, 01/21/2018 - 11:31

Turpin family home was 'littered with faeces and dead cats and dogs'Former Texan neighbours of David and Louise Turpin, the American couple whose 13 children were discovered chained and malnourished last week, have described a previous home littered with faeces, dead animals and a makeshift classroom. Ricky Vinyard, a tree feller from Rio Vista also told how one Christmas eight bikes arrived but remained untouched outside until they bleached in the sun.  And that one of the daughters once ran away from home, only to be returned to her parents by another local resident. “It was waist-deep in filth. There were dead dogs and cats in there,” he told the Los Angeles Times. He described how he found two Chihuahuas that had survived by eating waste from a mound of soiled nappies in a trailer behind the property where the children slept. “There were no beds, just mattresses." Inside the four-bedroom, two-bathroom home he said that: "There wasn’t a place that wasn’t filthy. “Everything had locks on it: the closet had locks, the toy chest, the refrigerator.” The Turpin parents have pleaded not guilty to charges of turture Credit:  Damian Dovarganes/ Damian Dovarganes Source: AP The couple, David 56 and Louise, 49, claimed to home-school their children, and the faeces-littered living room included eight small desks, a chalkboard, alphabet and number signs stapled to the wall. The family lived in the rural neighbourhood, south of Dallas with eight children from approximately 2000 to 2004 before they abandoned the property and moved to Perris in California. There, last week, both were each charged with multiple counts of torture, child abuse, the abuse of dependent adults and false imprisonment relating to the children aged from two to 29. They pleaded not guilty to all counts and are being held in custody on $9 million bail each. (£6.5m) David Turpin was also charged with one count of a lewd act on a child by force. If convicted, they face up to 94 years to life in prison. Facebook photos showed the family visited Las Vegas and Disneyland The new revelations came as a California politician began drafting legislation to give greater oversight of home-schooled children, in a bid to prevent a repeat of the horrors. Jose Medina told The Telegraph: “What happened in the city of Perris was tragic, and it was horrific. And I would like to try to do everything I can to ensure that it doesn’t happen again.” The Turpins' 13 children, aged between two and 29, had all, except the eldest, been exclusively home-schooled - meaning that, under California law, there was no outside contact. “One of the reasons this went undetected was because the parents could keep the children hidden from the public,” said Mr Medina. “So I’m looking at what the state can do, so that kids can no longer be kept in captivity.”Two million children in the US are home-schooled, representing three per cent of all American youngsters, according to the Mike Smith, president of the Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA). The trend began in the 1970s, he told The Telegraph, but has increased in recent years. By contrast, in the UK only 30,000 children were educated at home in the 2016/17 academic year, out of over eight million. 


Manifestaciones masivas en la segunda Marcha de las Mujeres

Sun, 01/21/2018 - 10:29

Manifestaciones masivas en la segunda Marcha de las MujeresMiles de personas participan en la “Marcha de las mujeres, en Washington, EEUU. EFE


Bernie Sanders denounces 'outrageous' Trump ad as 'so sad for our country'

Sun, 01/21/2018 - 10:06

Bernie Sanders denounces 'outrageous' Trump ad as 'so sad for our country'Sen. Bernie Sanders condemned as “nonsense” a new ad from President Trump accusing Democrats of being “complicit” in murders in the United States by undocumented immigrants.


Paul Ryan Declines To Say If He'll Run For Another Term In Congress

Sun, 01/21/2018 - 10:02

Paul Ryan Declines To Say If He'll Run For Another Term In CongressHouse Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) said Sunday he wasn’t planning on leaving Congress any time soon, but he also didn’t disclose whether he will serve another term in the House of Representatives.


'Snow Tornado' Blows Through Picturesque Alpine Village

Sun, 01/21/2018 - 09:43

'Snow Tornado' Blows Through Picturesque Alpine VillageResidents of the snow-covered Austrian village of Stall witnessed what's called a 'gustnado.'


Canadian billionaire and his wife were murdered, private investigators say

Sun, 01/21/2018 - 09:34

Canadian billionaire and his wife were murdered, private investigators sayA billionaire and his wife found dead side-by-side were both murdered, a report by private investigators has said.


Away from the adoring crowds, an elusive George Weah is leading Liberia into the unknown

Sun, 01/21/2018 - 09:24

Away from the adoring crowds, an elusive George Weah is leading Liberia into the unknownAs the morning sun beat down on a small training stadium in Monrovia,the capital of Liberia, a steady trickle of black SUVs with tinted windows appeared in the heavy humid heat, meandering between the stands and the pitch before coming to a halt in precision formation. George Weah, the former World Footballer of the Year and president-elect, had already alighted in his bright red football kit. Then out stepped his team, the Weah All Stars, streaming onto the pitch to play their final game before the former AC Milan star's long-awaited inauguration. The invite-only match against the Armed Forces of Liberia, packed with diplomatic corp and press, was a relatively muted affair in comparison to the campaign trail, which attract the kinds of die-hard supporters who propelled the country's biggest star to power. Standing outside the gates of the ground, clinging to a Liberian flag, a ticketless Benjamin Karr, in his 20s, gave a taste of the kind of adoration and hope that has propped up the former footballer so far. “He’s going to bring healthcare, good education and infrastructure and development and we need it to come for our youth to work. He will do that because he loves the country and he loves the people,” he told The Telegraph. On the streets of the capital, Liberia is still in thrall of its superstar president-elect, voted in three weeks ago and due to finally be inaugurated on Monday in the first democratic transfer of power in the country since 1944. The party has continued since George Weah was elected president at the end of December Credit:  THIERRY GOUEGNON/ REUTERS Flag-sellers still line the streets as optimism runs high and Weah’s party’s headquarters have been a riot of colour and noise, more akin to a festival than a political base, for months. But behind the jubilation that a national icon is taking over, there are reasons to be cautious: Weah, 51, faces a tanking economy, a fraught coalition tarnished by the country’s dark history, and an increasingly sceptical press to whom he has given almost nothing away. For a man who has given his fair share of interviews since becoming the only African ever to have won the coveted Ballon d’Or football award and FIFA World Player of the Year, he has become surprisingly elusive. Journalists from around the world have arrived for the inauguration party and left with nothing - with the BBC, no less, among those to suffer abrupt cancellations from Weah's office. In rare but short comments to the gathering press pack before the game on Saturday, Weah remained tight-lipped: “I believe that with the help of the Liberian people I will be successful,” he declared, before taking his place up front. Some believe his phobia of the media could well be a fear of making statements that he finds himself unable to deliver on, leading to unwanted repercussions at home. George Weah faces trouble with his coalition, the economy and his political inexperince Credit:  THIERRY GOUEGNON/ REUTERS He is inheriting an economy that has suffered from shocks caused by a slump in global iron ore and rubber prices as well as the Ebola outbreak in 2014-15 which saw the death of over 4,000 Liberians. The Liberian dollar is depreciating rapidly in value against its US counterpart, which the country also uses, meaning life is getting increasingly expensive and the poorest are hardest hit.  And this is where Weah’s popularity is most concentrated. Supporters are convinced that he will bring jobs and reduce the cost of rice, the staple food, by half. Quite how he will bring about the desired changes is unclear. In The Telegraph’s many failed attempts to pin down Weah for an interview, one source within his camp said: “We have a strategy and we have tactics, and one of our tactics is to tell no one our strategy.” Another reason for Weah’s elusiveness could be a lack of confidence in his own leadership abilities. Unlike Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, a former World Bank economist and the first elected female head of state in Africa, who defeated Weah on two previous occasions before stepping down, he is not considered an intellectual. Nor is he a gifted orator, by his own admission, and close friends were surprised when he stated his intention to run for the presidency in 2005 - feeding the theory that he has been propelled to the top by others keen to profit from his poster-boy popularity is strong in certain camps. But perhaps the most immediate issue as Weah looks to name his cabinet on Monday, is the fragile coalition agreement that is unlikely to be a happy marriage. Weah’s own Congress for Democratic Change is joined by vice president Jewel Howard-Taylor’s National Patriotic Party, founded by her ex-husband Charles Taylor, who served as president from 1997 to 2003 after leading a rebellion against the government of Samuel Doe. Taylor is currently serving a 50-year prison sentence in HMP Frankland in County Durham for war crimes committed in Sierra Leone. No one has ever faced trial for the atrocities committed during Liberia’s own civil war which ended in 2003, and reconciliation is a word on the lips of many.  The Liberia People Democratic Party is the third partner in the coalition and headed by the former House of Representatives speaker, Alex Tyler, who is implicated in an ongoing bribery case involving British company Sable Mining. 15 curious things you didn't know about Liberia Whatever the outcome, Weah’s presidency is an anomaly in Liberia’s chequered history, not just because of his celebrity status. Politics in the country has traditionally been dominated by the minority Americo-Liberian elite who are descended from freed American slaves. Weah’s humble beginnings combined with his native ancestry could not be further from the norm. “He represents those who are down the drain. He’s their role model, and we have to let the people’s voice be heard,” one Monrovia resident Renee Murray told The Telegraph. Christian Grant, another one of the thousands of fanatical young Weah supporters, is also optimistic. “I think there will be a brand new Liberia and that’s our dream,” he said. “Things will improve and children will go to school. Job facility will flow. That’s what we expect our president to do and we know that he will do more than that for us.”


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