2018-12-21

Headlines:

From Al Jazeera, Associated Press, BBC News, Reuters, The Globe and Mail, New York Times, and Wired

Migrants Seeking Asylum Must Wait in Mexico, Trump Administration Says – (The New York Times)
Mexico reluctantly agreed to accept the immigrants while their cases are considered in court. The move could substantially reduce the number of people trying to gain entry into the United States.

Trump says a shutdown could ‘last for a very long time’ – (Associated Press)
WASHINGTON (AP) — Facing a midnight deadline to avoid a partial government shutdown, President Donald Trump said Friday a closure could drag on “for a very long time” and he tried to lay blame on congressional Democrats if there’s no deal over his demand for …

Wall Street pares gains in volatile trade; investors turn to defensives – (Reuters)
Wall Street’s three main indexes gave up most of their earlier gains in volatile trading on Friday that traders blamed on the expiration of stock futures and options, with only the defensive sectors of the market staying consistently higher, highlighting conc…

Analysis: As advisers leave, Trump’s guardrails come off – (Associated Press)
WASHINGTON (AP) — Last year, during one particularly frenetic stretch in Donald Trump’s presidency, a top Republican senator said there were three men guarding the country from chaos: Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, White House chief of staff John Kelly and the…

Trump threatens ‘long’ gov’t shutdown over border wall dispute – (Al Jazeera English)
House passes temporary spending bill with over $5bn for border wall, an issue Senate Democrats say is a ‘non-starter’.

Britain says Reuters journalists jailed in Myanmar are innocent – (Reuters)
British Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt said on Friday that two Reuters journalists jailed in Myanmar on charges of breaking the country’s Official Secrets Act were innocent and that Britain had serious concerns about due process in the case.

Afghans, diplomats surprised by report of Trump plan to pull out troops – (Reuters)
Afghan officials and America’s Western partners reacted with unease on Friday to reports that the United States planned to withdraw more than 5,000 of its 14,000 troops from Afghanistan, after tentative steps toward peace talks.

Trump call with Turkish leader led to US pullout from Syria – (Associated Press)
WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw American troops from Syria was made hastily, without consulting his national security team or allies, and over strong objections from virtually everyone involved in the fight against the Islamic …

Science Says: A big space crash likely made Uranus lopsided – (Associated Press)
WASHINGTON (AP) — Uranus is a lopsided oddity, the only planet to spin on its side. Scientists now think they know how it got that way: It was pushed over by a rock at least twice as big as Earth. Detailed computer simulations show that an enormous rock crash…

AP-NORC Poll: Christmas carols favored over Billboard hits – (Associated Press)
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Mariah Carey’s “All I Want for Christmas Is You” is the highest-charting Billboard Hot 100 holiday hit in 60 years, but Americans still prefer hearing carols such as “Silent Night” and “Jingle Bells,” a new poll shows. With Christmas next w…

In Afghanistan, Alarm and a Sense of Betrayal Over U.S. Drawdown – (The New York Times)
President Trump’s decision to cut the American military presence there in half surprised Afghan officials and, they suspect, his own peace negotiators.

Glee in Russia Over Trump’s Foreign Policy Largess – (The New York Times)
“Trump is God’s gift that keeps on giving,” one analyst said. “Russia can just relax and watch and root for Trump, which Putin does at every TV appearance.”

Online clothing retailers hunt for better fit to cut costly returns – (Reuters)
Models testing fashion brands like Adidas, Benetton and Gap are finding that almost a third of the shoes and clothes they try on are bigger or smaller than the size on the label indicates, explaining why many clothes bought online are sent back.

Virtual wall grows as Trump border fight threatens shutdown – (Associated Press)
NEW YORK (AP) — Children torn from their parents, refugees turned away, tear gas fired on asylum-seekers, and a president who says he’s making good on promises to protect the nation’s borders. In a breathless 2018, they were just a handful of headlines on imm…

Turkey to delay Syria operation, Islamic State mounts attack in southeast – (Reuters)
Turkey will postpone a military operation against Syrian Kurdish fighters in northeast Syria, President Tayyip Erdogan said on Friday as he “cautiously” welcomed a U.S. decision to withdraw its troops in the area.

Family of slain Palestinian teen demands full investigation – (Al Jazeera English)
Qassem al-Abbassi, 17, was killed by Israeli forces while he was in a car with his friends in occupied West Bank.

Global stock indices edge lower as U.S. government shutdown looms – (Reuters)
World stock markets continued a week-long sell-off on Friday as the threat of a U.S. government shutdown and further hikes in U.S. borrowing costs compounded investor anxiety that global economic growth is slowing.

Trump threatens ‘very long’ government shutdown – (Reuters)
U.S. President Donald Trump on Friday threatened a “very long” government shutdown just hours ahead of a midnight deadline, calling on the Senate to pass spending legislation with his $5 billion demand for border wall funding and seeking to shift blame for a …

Pope: Church will ‘never again’ cover up clergy sex abuse – (Associated Press)
VATICAN CITY (AP) — Pope Francis demanded Friday that priests who have raped and molested children turn themselves in and vowed that the Catholic Church will “never again” cover up clergy sex abuse. Francis dedicated his annual Christmas speech to Vatican bur…

China calls US arrogant and selfish after hacking indictment – (Associated Press)
BEIJING (AP) — China called the U.S. arrogant and selfish on Friday after two Chinese citizens were charged with stealing American trade secrets and other sensitive information on behalf of Beijing’s main intelligence agency. Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua …

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From various sources

Pakistan’s army is behind an unprecedented clampdown on the media – (The Economist)
Publishers and producers receive detailed dos and don’ts from men in uniform

Report: German gov’t will ban Iran’s ‘terror’ Mahan Air – (The Jerusalem Post)
BILD reported that American politicians and security officials told the German government that American citizens are endangered at airports because of Mahan Air’s activities in the Federal Republic.

40 local, international artists take part in ArtBnB – (The Jerusalem Post)
The artists came together around this collaborative initiative of Hamifal, the Jerusalem Municipality Youth Authority, the Jerusalem Development Authority and Eden JDC.

ISIS attacks positions held by the U.S.-backed Syrian Democratic Forces – (The Jerusalem Post)

The rehabilitation of Bashar Asad, century’s most prolific mass murderer – (The Jerusalem Post)
As the Arab upheaval’s worst war winds down, the rehabilitation process of the century’s most prolific mass murderer is under way.

How U.S.-Turkey crisis influenced Trump’s decision to withdraw from Syria – (The Jerusalem Post)
Trump’s hurried exit from Syria, under pressure from a Turkish threat, will be interpreted by all sides as a strategic defeat, an abandonment and a debacle.

Volatility ravaged the stock market this year. Here’s what that was like for first-time investors. (NFLX, SFIX, EL, IRBT) – (Business Insider)
Volatility ravaged the stock market this year. Here’s what that was like for first-time investors. (NFLX, SFIX, EL, IRBT)

Volatility ravaged the stock market this year. Here’s what that was like for first-time investors. (NFLX, SFIX, EL, IRBT) – (Business Insider (UK))
Volatility ravaged the stock market this year. Here’s what that was like for first-time investors. (NFLX, SFIX, EL, IRBT)

Ex-government agent discusses using AI to battle Hezbollah rockets – (The Jerusalem Post)
Ex-government agent discusses using AI in battling Hezbollah rockets, targeting terrorists, Russia-China cyber challenges and Iran.

Monahan healthy again, having career year for Flames – (NHL News)
CALGARY — Sean Monahan isn’t taking his good health for granted while he’s building an NHL career-best season with the Calgary Flames.

45 Important World Stories That Happened In 2018 – (Buzzfeed)
So. Much. Happened. This. Year.

Pro Rata – (Axios)
U.S. GDP revised — Zynga’s big buy — Juul bonuses

The Fiancé Of A Woman Missing Since Thanksgiving Has Been Arrested – (Buzzfeed)
Patrick Frazee has been arrested over the disappearance of Kelsey Berreth, who was last seen in supermarket surveillance video on Thanksgiving Day.

Missing Colorado mom: Police arrest fiancé of Kelsey Berreth – (CBS News)
Police in Colorado have arrested Patrick Frazee, the fiancé of Colorado mother Kelsey Berreth, who went missing on Thanksgiving day. Police had earlier searched Frazee’s 35-acre property. CBSN has the latest.

Migrants Seeking Asylum Must Wait in Mexico, Trump Administration Says – (The New York Times)
Mexico reluctantly agreed to accept the immigrants while their cases are considered in court. The move could substantially reduce the number of people trying to gain entry into the United States.

Trump says a shutdown could ‘last for a very long time’ – (Associated Press)
WASHINGTON (AP) — Facing a midnight deadline to avoid a partial government shutdown, President Donald Trump said Friday a closure could drag on “for a very long time” and he tried to lay blame on congressional Democrats if there’s no deal over his demand for …

Palestinian Affairs: Mahmoud Abbas – the plot thickens – (The Jerusalem Post)
PA leader claims Israel, US and Hamas are out to undermine him, yet some Palestinians see him playing double game.

Police identify ‘persons of interest’ involved in Gatwick drone chaos – (Daily Mail)
Sussex Police assistant chief constable Steve Barry has said detectives have identified ‘persons of interest’ – but have not made any arrests as the manhunt continues.

No hurdle for Herald eviction, says Housing and Urban Affairs Ministry – (The Hindu)
Centre says HC order vindicates it

Is there something rotten on the island of Malta? 60 Minutes reports – (CBS News)
The leader of an European inquiry into the rule of law in Malta says the island nation’s political atmosphere is, “Rotten.” 60 Minutes reports, Sunday at 7:30 p.m. ET and 7 p.m. PT on CBS.

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All about Trump

How U.S.-Turkey crisis influenced Trump’s decision to withdraw from Syria – (The Jerusalem Post)
Trump’s hurried exit from Syria, under pressure from a Turkish threat, will be interpreted by all sides as a strategic defeat, an abandonment and a debacle.

Migrants Seeking Asylum Must Wait in Mexico, Trump Administration Says – (The New York Times)
Mexico reluctantly agreed to accept the immigrants while their cases are considered in court. The move could substantially reduce the number of people trying to gain entry into the United States.

Trump says a shutdown could ‘last for a very long time’ – (Associated Press)
WASHINGTON (AP) — Facing a midnight deadline to avoid a partial government shutdown, President Donald Trump said Friday a closure could drag on “for a very long time” and he tried to lay blame on congressional Democrats if there’s no deal over his demand for …

Trump tariffs would make a ‘steel slat’ border wall much more expensive for taxpayers – (CNBC)
A White House effort to win support for a border wall describing the project as “border security” with “steel slats” only serves as reminder that the president’s steep tariffs on the metal would make any such project much more expensive. So far this year, th…

Analysis: As advisers leave, Trump’s guardrails come off – (Associated Press)
WASHINGTON (AP) — Last year, during one particularly frenetic stretch in Donald Trump’s presidency, a top Republican senator said there were three men guarding the country from chaos: Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, White House chief of staff John Kelly and the…

Democrats accuse Trump of throwing ‘temper tantrum’ over shutdown – live – (The Guardian (AU))
Trump, who said he would be ‘proud’ to shut down the government over border wall, blames Democrats as deadline looms. Follow the latest live

Trump threatens ‘long’ gov’t shutdown over border wall dispute – (Al Jazeera English)
House passes temporary spending bill with over $5bn for border wall, an issue Senate Democrats say is a ‘non-starter’.

Afghans, diplomats surprised by report of Trump plan to pull out troops – (Reuters)
Afghan officials and America’s Western partners reacted with unease on Friday to reports that the United States planned to withdraw more than 5,000 of its 14,000 troops from Afghanistan, after tentative steps toward peace talks.

Live updates as Trump and Congress face off in the final hours before a government shutdown – (Newsweek)
Both the House and Senate have passed short-term spending bills that would fund the government through February 8. But they differ in providing funding for a campaign trail promise made by then-candidate Trump

Trump call with Turkish leader led to US pullout from Syria – (Associated Press)
WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw American troops from Syria was made hastily, without consulting his national security team or allies, and over strong objections from virtually everyone involved in the fight against the Islamic …

GOP senators reject Trump proposal to go ‘nuclear’ on wall – (The Hill)
Senate Republicans quickly rejected President Trump’s push that they go “nuclear” and change Senate rules to eliminate the legislative filibuster in order to pass a funding bill with $5 billion for his wall on the Mexican border.

In Afghanistan, Alarm and a Sense of Betrayal Over U.S. Drawdown – (The New York Times)
President Trump’s decision to cut the American military presence there in half surprised Afghan officials and, they suspect, his own peace negotiators.

Mattis exit prompts speculation about future of Trump White House—”There’s going to be an Intervention” – (Newsweek)
Outgoing defense secretary was critical of Trump in resignation letter.

Glee in Russia Over Trump’s Foreign Policy Largess – (The New York Times)
“Trump is God’s gift that keeps on giving,” one analyst said. “Russia can just relax and watch and root for Trump, which Putin does at every TV appearance.”

Trump decided to withdraw troops from Syria without consulting advisers, allies | CBC News – (CBC News)
U.S. President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw American troops from Syria was made hastily, without consulting his national security team or allies and over strong objections from virtually everyone involved in the fight against ISIS, according to U.S. an…

Virtual wall grows as Trump border fight threatens shutdown – (Associated Press)
NEW YORK (AP) — Children torn from their parents, refugees turned away, tear gas fired on asylum-seekers, and a president who says he’s making good on promises to protect the nation’s borders. In a breathless 2018, they were just a handful of headlines on imm…

Haberman: Former Trump supporters ‘disgusted’ – CNN Video – (CNN)
CNN’s Maggie Haberman says many former Trump supporters are “disgusted” by details that emerged from Michael Cohen’s plea deal.

Fox News, Sarah Sanders Debate Over Trump Syria Decision – (The Huffington Post)
Brian Kilmeade said Trump is giving Russia a big win and “doing exactly what he criticized President Obama for doing.”

Trump reverses, says Dems to blame for shutdown – (The Hill)
President Trump on Friday said Democrats will be to blame if the government shuts down, a reversal from last week when he said he would be “proud” to trigger a shutdown if border-wall funding was not included in a year-end spending bill.

Thousands of ISIS prisoners ‘to be released after Trump pulls out US soldiers’ – (Mirror)
One anonymous source said the decision to release Syrian prisoners would be a ‘real disaster’ and ‘major threat to Europe’

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