Sunday, October 22, 2017

Czech election: Billionaire Babis wins by large margin

Over the weekend, the Czech Republic held its election in which the ANO Party, headed by Andrej Babis, won 30% of the vote. Babis ran on an anti-establishment and anti-EU platform and one of his main focuses was to solve the migration problem occurring in Europe. Babis's views are considered "extreme" by many, especially the current PM who questioned why people would vote for Babis when the country is doing fine. This election continues this theme that the world, and not just the US, are experiencing a wave of these "Trump-like" candidates winning elections.

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-41708844

Eric Walliser

Trump plans to release classified JFK documents to the public

Trump said on Saturday that he plans to release government documents about JFK's assassination to the general public. Trump wants to make these documents available to the people so there is full transparency. Trump wants to make it look like there is nothing to hide nor hold back to the public. However, I believe actions like this will cause a slippery slope. Yes, I believe the general public should have some basic knowledge about these events but once you give them top-secret documents, where will it end? The public would want even more involvement and start a "Pandora box effect" on wanting to know more secrets. There is a reason why their is a clear distinction between the general public and government officials. Sometimes, less is more.

 http://www.cnn.com/2017/10/21/politics/trump-jfk-documents/index.html

Jacob Walls

Japan's Abe to push pacifist constitution reform after strong election win

Japan held an election today, and Shinzo Abe was victorious for the Liberal Democratic Party. A big push for him will be to amend the 9th Article Constitution, and he has a large majority of his party sitting within the parliament, but he still has to convince a divided public of the amendment. This change would be to a U.S chartered constitution, and would be largely symbolic for the Japanese people and the pacifist language that is in their government. The article states that there cannot be a military in Japan, unless it is for defense purposes.

The United States may not take too kindly to Japan changing its constitution, one that was chartered by the US, because it may be seen as a move to allow Japan to start to build its military for offensive purposes. While this may not be what Japan has in mind, it would be a huge statement to the rest of the world that they are making changes within their government, and it involves military. The United States may have to keep a closer eye on Japan if the votes get through to amend the Japanese Constitution.


Reuters: http://www.reuters.com/article/us-japan-election/japans-abe-to-push-pacifist-constitution-reform-after-strong-election-win-idUSKBN1CS0C3?feedType=RSS&feedName=topNews&utm_source=twitter&utm_medium=Social

Andrea Heiden

Japan PM Shinzo Abe promises to deal with North Korea threat

In this article courtesy of the BBC, the incumbent Prime Minister of Japan, Shinzo Abe has promised to take a strong stance against North Korea after declaring a win in the recent election. Most importantly however, are the results of the election in regards to the Diet, Japans lower legislative body. The current ruling coalition under Abe, the Liberal Democratic Party Coalition (LDP) won 312 of the 465 seats, meaning that they have the ability to put forth a revision to the Japanese constitution. In particular, Abe has advocated for a revision of Article 9, which renounces war, which would in effect formally recognize Japan's military, the Self-Defense Force. Although now with the ability to do such a thing, Abe and the LDP would also have to put the amendments up for a referendum vote, and the proposed amendments have many critics who would see editing the constitution as harmful to Japan.

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-41717219

Aric Laatz 

Tillerson: time for Iranian backed militias to leave Iraq

http://edition.cnn.com/2017/10/22/politics/rex-tillerson-iran-saudi-arabia-qatar/index.html

With the fight against ISIS looking like it is coming to an end, US Secretary of State Rex tillerson said that it was now time for the Iranian backed militias to leave Iraq. He said that now the fight is coming to an end the Iraqi people need to be allowed to regain control the areas that had previously been taken by ISIS.

James Brown

Pollution causes one in six deaths worldwide

https://www.pbs.org/newshour/show/pollution-causes-deaths-worldwide A new study has been published by environmental nonprofit Pure Earth shows that pollution is linked to 16 percent of deaths worldwide. One way the group measured this was to look at people who died of lung cancer and recognize which were affected by lung cancer because of pollution. This is a significant number of people affected by something that humans have caused. We're slowly killing ourselves. This study hopefully will be a eye-opener for people to realize that we cannot put taking care of the environment on the back burner. -Emily Migala

The Obama Administration’s Uranium One Scandal


The Obama Administration’s Uranium One Scandal

Hillary Clinton asserts that the Trump administration colluded with the Kremlin, in Russia, to rig the election in his favor. New evidence is coming about that shows that the Obama administration, and Hillary Clinton (secretary of state at the time) where involved with a Ponzi scheme with Russia well before Trump announced his candidacy for president.  Hillary Clinton’s right handed attack is always that “Trump colluded with Russia”, when in fact the Facebook-ad buy started in June 2015 (before Trump entered the race). This ad buy totaled $6,500, which ostracized hysteria on racism, guns and immigration. This is far from the amount that Bill Clinton received from the Kremlin for giving one speech, which earned him a $500,000 payday and a donation to the Clinton Foundation totaling $145 million dollars. This enriched the Clintons, but it also enriched the Russians, they would acquire billions of dollars in U.S uranium reserves and have the power to blackmail the Clintons (knowing that she would run). Obama’s actions are proven irreprehensible for the way he let Hillary Clinton get away with this catastrophic self-enriching scheme. The people that are hoping to prosecute President Trump for colluding with Russia are the same people that were involved in the plan to sell Russia, Uranium One.  Robert Mueller, head of the FBI is now the special counsel to investigate whether Trump colluded with Russia. Rod Rosenstein (appointed by Obama), who is President Trumps deputy attorney general, appointed Mueller to investigate Trump. This is a cover up for the Obama administration, and more importantly the reason why Hillary is quick to blame the Russians, it won’t look good if this is tied to her actions as secretary of state. The Clintons got rich off donations from foreign sources, yet is quick to blame President Trump collusion with the Russians with no evidence.

Mike Ziccarelli




Venezuela's Election

October 15, was the day that Venezuelans went to vote for their state governor. The voters are in the middle of an economic crisis, the democratic institutions are not what they are supposed to be and there have been accusations of "electoral fraud". The public suggest that what Maduro is doing would not be allowed in other democratic states. The United States has even mentioned that the election was not fair nor free. Since then many of people have protested the streets of Venezuela. The abundance of protesters has lead to believe that it will rise migration rates. A study was conducted and it found that those in the lower class were more likely to leave rather than stay. However, the study also showed that those in middle class and women would rather stay and protest. This article went on to explain that the migration/emigration of people can lead to one of two things. It can either put political/economic pressure on the government- or it can just give the government more power to keep running it the way that it is. From here on out, it is just a matter of waiting to see what will happen.

Azucena Ramirez
Article: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/monkey-cage/wp/2017/10/19/venezuelas-latest-elections-are-likely-to-trigger-a-regional-migration-crisis/?utm_term=.011e0cabd0f4

Shinzo Abe's Promise

The prime minister for Japan, Shinzo Abe, has promised to "deal" with North Korea. The article explained that polls have suggested that Abe will win the election- which is why he decided to make this remark. Japan has constantly claimed that they have a military for defense purposes only, however, based on Abe's comment it seems he would want to change the rule a little. The "dealing" with North Korea was something Shinzo used during his campaign- and now that the polls suggest that he will be taking the seat he wishes to accomplish what he promised. In the article he stated, "For that, strong diplomacy is required.". As he continued to mention that he is going to attempt to get more people on board with his decision.  If he is able to carry out what he is promising, there can be potential of the U.S. having some sort of part in Abe's plan to take care of North Korea.

Azucena Ramirez
News Article: 
http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-41717219 

"Niger is Trump's Benghazi"

Frederica Wilson, a Florida Democrat in the house of representatives, now referred to by Trump as the "wacky congresswoman" has said that Niger is Trump's Benghazi. All this unrest between Wilson and Trump stems from the condolence call to the widow of Sgt. La David Johnson. Wilson claims that Trump called and said Sgt. David knew what he had signed up for. Wilson advises Trump to investigate the attack in Niger very closely because Congress will. However, Wilson isn't the only one to call for a full investigation. Many senators have come forth voicing frustrations about the lack of details and urging for a full and accurate story.
Click here to read
- Genesis Thomas

If the System Can't Keep You in Power, Change the System.

Amid a series of unconvincing results in the recent British elections, the ruling Conservative party proposed voting boundary change to reduce the numbers of seats needed to claim victory. This has been argued as a highly tactical decision that would aid future Conservative campaigns and damage their opposition who are set to lose key constituencies should this radical reform to British elections be implemented.
http://news.sky.com/story/how-would-boundary-changes-affect-political-parties-11084635

People react to Venezuela's election results

The ruling socialist party in Venezuela has been declared the winner of last week's election.  The PSUV won 17/23 of the governorships there, and the voter turnout was 61%. President Nicolas Maduro believes that he won the election fair and square, but he ordered there to be a full audit believing that his party may even win some more chairs. The opposition believes that there were fraudulent acts in this election, especially because how Maduro has handled the humanitarian crisis for the past few months. The PSUV has stronger support in poorer regions of Venezuela, where the opposition needs to work on to grow more support.

Joseline Jimenez

http://www.aljazeera.com/news/2017/10/venezuela-mixed-reaction-online-election-results-171016072651287.html

Robert Mugabe rescinded from post as "Goodwill Ambassador"

The Washington Post is reporting that the World Health Organization (WHO) has gotten rid of Robert Mugabe as a “goodwill ambassador” to the organization after only recently appointing him.  Goodwill ambassadors are supposed to provide an example and be a role model for humanity and to demonstrate the organizations goals.  However, Mugabe, as president of Zimbabwe, as been a brutal dictator and has all but destroyed the health care system in the country in addition to other problems in the country.  Mugabe doesn’t even use Zimbabwe’s health care as he travels to other countries for operations and checkups because of how bad the system is. Because of this he as been removed from his post, which has been the source of a great deal of controversy ever since the appointment and as such many are celebrating the rescinding of this appointment. 

Summary by Alec Beutel

Spain Catalonia: Foreign minister denies 'coup' by Madrid

This article on BBC's website discusses the actions of the Spanish government in response to Catalonia's move for independence. Catalonia has an acting president and parliament, and has called Spain's attempt to reassert control over Catalonia a "coup". But, the Spanish foreign minister denies this claim, and is instead calling Catalonia's secession a coup. The government is planning to continue its attempt to stop Catalonia's separation from Spain.
http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-41713190
By: Mahreen Yahya

"Japan Ranks Low in Female Lawmakers. An Election Won't Change that" by Motoko Rich

In Japan, the rise in women in parliament has been slowly increasing, but Japan's ranking in the world is extremely low. In the article "Japan Ranks Low in Female Lawmakers. An Election Won't Change that" the author writes about how many women have been trying to take a stand. As well as what the Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe is trying to do to address this situation.

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/10/21/world/asia/japan-women-election-politics.html?rref=collection%2Fsectioncollection%2Fworld&action=click&contentCollection=world&region=stream&module=stream_unit&version=latest&contentPlacement=8&pgtype=sectionfront

-Ella Omi






After Raqqa's liberation, 'a tough fight still lies ahead' against ISIS

The city of Raqqa has been liberated from the ISIS presence there. While ISIS no longer has a large physical presence, this liberation has not fixed all the problems. Cleaning up the city in order to make it habitable for residents is going to take months possibly. This is an extensive process of de-mining the area, cleaning the streets so aid trucks can come in,  and getting running water and electricity working again throughout the city.
There is also a question on who will rule over the area. Kurdish forces defeated ISIS, but there is a good chance that locals will not accept them because most locals are Arab. Currently, a group called Raqqa Civilian Council is governing the area until March of next spring.
Another challenge going forward will be continuing to fight ISIS in their left over small areas of power around the Middle East.

http://abcnews.go.com/International/raqqas-liberation-tough-fight-lies-ahead-isis/story?id=50611364

Paige Dean

Trump plans to release classified JFK documents

President Trump has announced that he plans to release classified document about the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. These documents should give the general public much more detail about the event. Some are saying that they could prove conspiracy theories about the event.

http://www.cnn.com/2017/10/21/politics/trump-jfk-documents/index.html

Alex Pedersen

Tillerson Attends Saudi & Iraq Meeting

        Secretary of State Tillerson attended a landmark meeting involving Saudi Arabia and Iraq. The meeting can be considered as a step towards improving relations between the Sunni Monarchy and Shiite Iraq. Relations between Iraq and Saudi Arabia have been rather frosty since Saddam Hussein's invasion of Kuwait in Iraq. Even after the invasion of Iraq by the US relations had yet to be solved. This meeting can lead to improved relations between differing ideologies in the Middle East and further deterrence against Iran.

Richard Burgis

Link for Article is here:
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/wires/afp/article-5005571/Tillerson-attends-landmark-Saudi-Iraq-meeting.html

All 5 Former U.S. Presidents Team Up to Raise $31 Million for Hurricane Victims

Barack Obama, George W. Bush, Bill Clinton, George H.W. Bush, and Jimmy Carter, all 5 former U.S presidents made an appearance at a benefit concert in Texas. President Trump also made an "appearance" that night. The individuals behind this concert had already raised approximately 31 million dollars for the most recent hurricane disasters Harvey, Irma, and Maria. Former presidents (except George H.W. Bush) spoke out about politics, and hinted at Trump related allegations without actually saying his name. Their goal was to raise a level of comfort amongst the people and to get them to donate to their hurricane funds. Later, over 60,000 individuals donated to the presidents' funds, providing millions for those affected by such disasters in Texas, Florida, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands .
http://time.com/4992497/one-america-appeal-concert-presidents/?xid=homepage

- Giselle Gutierrez

To Get Hurricane Rebuilding Money in Texas, Contractors Must Promise They Won't Boycott Israel

In July, Texas Governor Greg Abbot signed a bill that allows that state to refuse to work with a business unless it refuses to boycott Israeli products at any time, including products made in Israel's illegal settlements in Palestine. This is a similar case to the one I discussed in my blog last week about the teacher in Kansas. Again the ACLU is getting involved to protect citizens' right to protest and highlighting in this case how inhumane it is to manipulate the hurricane relief process in this way. This is another example of governments targeting the BDS movement, aimed at non-violent protest of Israel through economic pressures.




https://theintercept.com/2017/10/19/to-get-hurricane-rebuilding-money-in-texas-contractors-must-promise-they-wont-boycott-israel/

Patrick Schaefer

Saturday, October 21, 2017

Children Sue over Climate Change

Article: http://www.cnn.com/2017/10/19/europe/portugal-children-climate-change/index.html

A group of Portuguese children ranging ages from 5 to 18 are suing various member states of the EU for a failure to act sufficiently on climate change.  The children cite worries over the increasing rate of heatwaves and forest fires in Portugal, and intend to ask the European Court of Human Rights to tell nations to enact (and enforce) stricter climate control policies and to stop mining fossil fuel reserves.  21 children are pursing a similar lawsuit against the Trump administration over his proposed actions to abandon the Paris Climate Accords, "unless there are significant changes to it".  This US lawsuit states that inaction over climate change is in violation of their constitutional rights. (Bonus Article: https://www.cnn.com/2017/04/29/politics/sutter-climate-kids-march-washington/index.html)

Spains Nuclear Option

The Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy, is vowing to fire the Catalonia leader and have the government take over key Catalonia Government departments until the area can vote for new leaders.  The Spanish senate was going to invoke article 155 of the Constitution, which uses the Nuclear option and suspends regional autonomy.  Catalonia is expecting mass demonstrations, while the Vice President believes the citizens will fight for their rights and democracy.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/spain-ready-to-take-control-of-catalonia-to-stop-secession/2017/10/21/3f37306e-b358-11e7-9b93-b97043e57a22_story.html

Posted by David J. Bertolotti

Ambush Leaves 50 Troops Dead in Egypt

Egyptian security forces, tipped off to the location of a suspected militant hideout, were ambushed en route to their planned raid near Bahariya Oasis.  The militants fired rocket-propelled grenades (RPGs) and small-arms at the convoy, starting a firefight that ended with 53 soldiers and 15 militants dead.  The militants were suspected to be involved with an Islamist uprising in Sinai, but Bahariya oasis is over a hundred miles southwest of where previous clashes have occurred, and none of the rebellious organizations have claimed responsibility.

This is definitely a setback for Egypt directly, and an indirect setback for stability in Middle East and surrounding areas.  In our focus on the horrific fighting in Syria and Iraq sometimes blinds us to other struggles, especially in states that are regarded as more stable.

As always, here's the link:
http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-41703303

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

China's Xi lays out his vision as pivotal meeting begins (Kevin Conne)



China's government is coming together in Beijing and this is a major event for not only China, but the international community at large. It talks about in the article how this type of event only occurs approximately every five years. In addition, the main leader in China has also made a statement that the economy of China must be second to the government of China, and that the government will have first priority over the economy. While this sounds very bizarre from a Western way of thinking, it is also quite Chinese.  China has a tradition of not allowing itself to modernize and holding back the nation for the sake of tradition. China has a form of communism for its government. However, it has a form of free-market economy as its' economic system. Now if one were to look at Marxism, and him as being the father of communism, this makes no sense since communism is an economic system as well as a form of government, and the two are linked and cannot be separated.










http://www.cnn.com/2017/10/18/opinions/xi-address-opinion-brown/index.html

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Congress in Beijing and Trouble in Bikini Bottom


     Welcome to the Bikini Bottom world news headquarters, where Plankton's nefarious plan to prevent you from reading my blog post has been foiled once again by Mermaid Man and Barnacle boy. Grab a Krabby Pattie and get your bubbles ready, because here’s some news.

     The communist party of China holds a congressional meeting quinquennially--isn't that a tongue twister--and the latest is set to begin this Wednesday in Beijing. It's expected that President Xi Jinping will reassert and expand his powers as President, which is a big deal. To be more specific, the congress has an option to rewrite their constitution if it's deemed necessary, but it will most likely be rewritten to reflect the Ideology of Xi Jinping elevating "him to the status of previous Party giants Mao Zedong and Deng Xiaoping". While this has many implications, I don't feel like writing an in depth analysis on the subject and will therefore go over a part of the expected agenda for congress. Throughout the congressional meeting a five year plan will most likely be drawn up regarding the direction in which China wants to move, which will most likely result in further modernization, extensive reform and a continued role on the world stage. We here in Bikini Bottom fear the rapid expansion of the Peoples Republic of China into our sea and stand ready with our trusty spatulas and nets in hand for whatever may come our way. Thank you for reading the Bikini Times and may Patrick Star be with you.

Keep it classy,
    The magnificent twat otherwise known as the Rick to your Morty, T. R. Dixon.

Source:
  
          “China Communist Party Congress Set to Start in Beijing.” BBC News, BBC, 18 Oct. 2017, www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-china-41647872.

MI5's Mr. Parker on Terrorism


What do people say about you when your not around? They say that your amazing and literally the single greatest individual they know on this round earth because you read my blog posts, obviously. Anyways here's some news for you lovely cabbage sniffers.
In the past year alone, the United Kingdom has experienced five terror attacks and has deeply affected not just the general population, but the people assigned to prevent such acts. Mr. Parker, one of MI5's top officials, "said there was currently 'more terrorist activity coming at us, more quickly' and that it can also be "harder to to detect". He went on to elaborate that this is taking a toll on the "'personal and professional' level" for his staff and explained the difficulties with monitoring those deemed a potential risk to the states security attributing some of the cause to the rapid advance of technology and internet safe zones. This statement may put pressure on parliament to further restrict the freedoms on internet access and may also lead to a renewed support for brexit. stay tuned to watch as the world does what it's been doing for over a century, as it continues it's chaotic spiral bringing us ever closer to the void.

As always, keep it classy,
 T. R. Dixon

Source:

          Corera, Gordon. “MI5 Boss Andrew Parker Warns of 'Intense' Terror Threat.” BBC News, BBC, 17 Oct. 2017, www.bbc.com/news/uk-41655488.

3/3 The Lower Courts Stand Against Trumps Latest Travel Ban

Good morning over stressed political Halloween junkies,

Today the Trump administrations latest attempt to implement a travel ban that would restrict the entry of peoples from Libya, Chad, Syria, Iran, Yemen, Somalia, Venezuela, and North Korea into the United States was block by the Derrick Watson, the US District Court Judge of Hawaii. He believed that this latest attempt "suffers from precisely the same maladies as its predecessor: it lacks sufficient findings that the entry of more than 150 million nationals from six specified countries would be 'detrimental to the interests of the United States" (Watson). The two countries left out are North Korea and Venezuela, which many believe were only included in order to refute the idea that his travel ban unfairly targeted countries with a Muslim majority. While opposition to this ruling is expected to appeal to the higher courts, it will be sometime before a decision in these courts is made, but props to Hawaii for kicking ass and upholding the law.

As always keep it classy,
T. R. Dixon


Sources:

          Zapotosky, Matt. “Federal Judge Blocks Trump's Third Travel Ban, Setting up Another Legal Showdown.” Chicagotribune.com, 17 Oct. 2017, www.chicagotribune.com/news/nationworld/politics/ct-trump-travel-ban-20171017-story.html. 

          “Trump's Latest Travel Ban Order Blocked.” BBC News, BBC, 17 Oct. 2017, www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-41659724.

President Putin's Chef

U.S. investigators believe to have found an organization designed to spread fake news in the U.S. during the 2016 elections. The man behind this organization is Yevgeny Prigozhin. He's a Russian businessman and member of the Kremlin's inner circle. This factory of fake news has been dubbed the "troll factory." The monthly budget for the troll factory in 2016 was $1 million.

http://www.cnn.com/2017/10/17/politics/russian-oligarch-putin-chef-troll-factory/index.html
Posted by: Spencer White

Monday, October 16, 2017

Death Toll in Somalia attacks at 300 and Rising.

Death Toll in 'Barbaric' Bombing in Somalia Rises to 300.
http://abcnews.go.com/International/death-toll-barbaric-attack-somalia-rises-300/story?id=50510079

This article talks about the two powerful truck bomb attacks that took place Somalia's capital, Mogadishu. The authorities are calling these two attacks, "the deadliest attacks in the country's history,"- as the death tole is at 300 and still rising. The government has accused an al- Quada of these attacks, however, al-Queda itself has yet to take credit for these attacks.


Marissa Laurie

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Canadian Family Freed From Taliban Terror

With the help of US intelligence, Pakistani forces were able to free the Boyle family after being held hostage for 5 years by Taliban affiliated Haqqani. Though there were questions of Joshua Boyle's past, as well as questions of him and his wife's intentions for being in Afghanistan originally, the Department of Justice says neither face arrest. They have returned to Canada where they hope to resume normal life as best as possible.   http://www.cnn.com/2017/10/14/asia/taliban-family-freed-canada-boyle-speaks/index.html
Kayla Leonardelli

SCOTUS Update- Divided court opens door for Alabama execution

The Supreme Court finally intervened and allowed the execution of Jeffrey Borden to go through. Jeffery Borden was charged and then convicted for killing his wife and her father on Christmas Eve in 1993. The state of Alabama sentenced Borden to death. However, Borden challenged his execution on the grounds that Alabama's three-drug protocol they use to execute inmates violates the 8th amendment on the basis of cruel or unusual punishment. Borden claims that the first drug in this protocol will sedate him but doesn't guarantee he won't feel excruciating pain from the other drugs. The Supreme Court gave this order October 5th. Even though the Supreme Court decided to let this execution go through, it will be interesting to see what happens when Borden appeals. The court was also divided on this issue and it will be interesting to see how (in this term) the Supreme Court will handle human rights cases.

Link: http://www.scotusblog.com/2017/10/divided-court-opens-door-alabama-execution/

Jacob Walls

California Wildfires

California wildfires have been raging for the better part of a week across the state. The fires within Sonoma county have caused "an estimated $2.019 billion in damages. Combined with Santa Rosa, 'estimates top $3 billion'". In a state where homelessness is already a primary issue, these fires have increased the amount of homelessness in these areas, as entire livelihoods were reduced to rubble and ash. This is but one of many natural disasters that has struck the United States within the span of only a few months leading to concerns around the budget and federal aid. It will be interesting to see in the coming weeks and months how key figures within the government respond these challenges, while preparing for the midterm elections.

 Keep it classy,
 T. R. Dixon



Source:
          Lyons, Vivian Ho and Jenna. “Live Updates: Northern Calif. Wildfires Cause Estimated $3 Billion Damage; Death Toll Still 40.” SFGate, 15 Oct. 2017, www.sfgate.com/bayarea/article/Live-updates-4-more-names-of-people-killed-in-12279908.php. 


Kansas Is Punishing a Teacher for Following Her Church's Guidance to Boycott Israel

A schoolteacher named Esther Koontz at Horace Mann Dual Language Magnet School in Wichita, Kansas, was denied payment as a contractor by the school because she refused to sign a statement saying she would not boycott Israel. She is a member of the Mennonite Church USA, who have encouraged their members to not associate with any companies that profit off of the Israeli occupation of Palestinian territories. In June, Kansas passed a law that prohibited state contracts with anyone who didn't agree to never boycott Israel. This mainly affected the Boycott, Divest, and Sanctions movement, which attempts to put nonviolent pressure on Israel to remove itself from Palestinian territories and treat its citizens as equals. The ACLU has taken up Koontz's case, claiming that her first amendment rights were violated.


https://theintercept.com/2017/10/13/kansas-israel-boycott-bds-mennonite-church/

Patrick Schaefer

MS-13 Leader captured

A leader of MS-13 was captured in Guatemala. The leader Ángel Gabriel Reyes Marroquín, also know as Blanco, has been linked to multiple massacres and murders in many countries. He was linked to a gun attack at a hospital two months ago and hes also linked to the death of two new york girls whom he killed with a machete. Reyes has been captured but he had escaped in the past time, hopefully they are able to keep him locked up this time around.

Sarah Renteria
Link: http://www.bbc.com/news/world-latin-america-41619802
 

Tillerson: Diplomacy will continue until the first bomb is dropped (Genesis Thomas)

On a report that CNN published Sunday, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said his continued efforts for diplomacy will continue until the first bomb is dropped. However, this is not a comforting message considering the disconnection between Tillerson and Trump on his actions for diplomacy. Tillerson claims that Trump doesn't want to go to war and that he is in full support of settling things with North Korea diplomatically. However, Trump tweeted that diplomacy will not work with North Korea and that Tillerson was wasting his time. These contradictory statements could possibly undermine Tillerson's efforts to settle things peacefully with North Korea, but Tillerson claims that Trump's tweets are simply to motivate action from North Korea. However, this does not calm the minds of the North Koreans and the North Korean State Media KCNA called the U.S. moves reckless and will force the North Koreans to take counteractions. They see Trump as a "war merchant and stranger of peace."
-Genesis Thomas

Tillerson and North Korea

Rex Tillerson said today that he wishes to continue to seek a diplomatic solution with North Korea, but will end once, in his words, "the first bomb drops". While this seems ominous, it is good to see that Tillerson wishes to try and reason with North Korea when it seems that we are growing closer and closer to conflict everyday. Tillerson's comments come after Donald Trump had inferred on Twitter that trying to find a diplomatic solution would be a waste of time for Tillerson. While Trump's comments could prove to be more true than false, it is still a good sign that Tillerson wishes to try and resolve this before something happens.

http://www.cnn.com/2017/10/15/politics/rex-tillerson-north-korea-cnntv/index.html

Eric Walliser

Kirkuk: Iraqi forces advance on Kurdish-held sites

In this article courtesy of the BBC, we get an update of the current situation unfolding in northern Iraq. A few weeks ago now, Kurds in the semi-autonomous Kirkuk province had voted in favor of independence, with leaders deciding to uphold the referendum in recent talks with the Iraqi government. The Iraqi government has responded by deploying forces to Kirkuk with the objective of securing oil fields and an airbase in the region. The United States has urged dialogue and restraint in the matter, as issues like this are a huge blow against the fight against ISIS. Both sides have expressed the desire not to fight, but also stating they are willing to if pushed to far. The Iraqi government has also accused Kurdistan of "deploying outside fighters" such as the those from the Turkey-based Kurdistan Workers Party, which has been interpreted as "akin to a declaration of war". Overall, the development in this standoff is pivotal in the continued stability in the region. If it comes to war, we may even see a resurgence in ISIS activity.

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-41631697

-Aric Laatz

Trump hostility set to deepen Iran power struggles

This article details the problematic repercussions that would ensue if the Trump administration does decide to withdraw from the 2015 nuclear deal with Iran. it goes on to explain that the consequences would not only impact the United States but go on to negatively impact other countries involved. Although no official decision has been made by the United States, this article illustrates the harsh reality and weight of that choice.

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-iran-nuclear-politics-analysis/trump-hostility-set-to-deepen-iran-power-struggles-idUSKBN1CK0RQ

No Deal. No Government.


To those unacustoemd to Britain's current political situation it would seem the country is a politically stable state. The reality, Sky News writes, is that the British establishment is close to collapse as a result of the ‘Brexit’ referendum of 2016. Sky News predicts that a 'no deal' outcome, with the European Union, could result in the collaspe of the Conservatives and new election in face of opposition to a 'no deal' outcome in Parliament leading, as many suggest, to elevation of Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn to the premiership of the United Kingdom. 


Iran’s president fires back at Trump on nuclear deal

The president of Iran spoke out against Donald Trump today, showing his disappointment for Trump's plans to pull of of the Iran deal that has been in the works for years. The plan entails that Iran does not advance nuclear capabilities, in exchange for a lift on other sanctions being placed on the country. Trump has previously said that Iran is a dictatorship that has had an awful history with bloodshed.

While Iran is upset with the United States, the Iranian president has said that he would continue to cooperate with the IAEA and the other countries that are part of the deal, but if other countries start to follow the suit of the United States, Iran said they would not hesitate to respond accordingly.

The negotiations and deals have global politics tense. Personally, I think that it is ridiculous for the United States to pull out of a deal like this, and think everyone involved thinks so as well. As the global hegemon, we should not be making rash and emotional decisions, especially in the deals that have taken years to procure and to finalize. The Iranian government has been cooperating and has given no indication to Trump that they would not follow through on their end of the deal. This is yet another example of the United States wanting to interfere in the sovereignty of another state, and hurting them because we do not like how they operate their country. I find it childish and not good politics, but I guess we will have to see how the rest of this plays out.

Washington Post: https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/middle_east/iran-blasts-trumps-moves-against-nuclear-deal-revolutionary-guard/2017/10/13/f5d6c5de-aeba-11e7-9b93-b97043e57a22_story.html?utm_term=.a09809c9b4fd

Andrea Heiden