Monday, June 5, 2017

London Terror Attacks

It was a somber weekend for our livelihood this past weekend.  It is very troubling to think that anyone could carry out such a gruesome and barbaric attack on society.  These attacks have been conducted in some of the most sick and twisted ways, which further instills a certain level of fear amongst western civilization.  The division between the Islamic religion and Americans continues to grow every day, expecially considering the ignorance of our current Commander in Chief.  The fact that we are taking steps backwards towards getting along is almost the worst part of this situation as a whole.  The divide only grows deeper in our society of different races and religions.

DENVER POST: http://www.denverpost.com/2017/06/04/london-terror-attack-arrests/

Sunday, June 4, 2017

British Police Arrest 12 as ISIS Claims London Terror Attack

This article talks about the attacks on London that happened this pat weekend. The British police arrested a dozen people in their investigation. The attackers used a van and knives killing seven people. although the attaches where all dead  after the attack investigators were looking if there was any accomplices. With the general election coming up there is high awareness on any other copycat attackers.          

Phillipines VS ISIS

Philippines VS ISIS

Several of the key terrorist groups in Indonesia, specifically in the southern area of the country, have pledged their allegiance to the so-called “Islamic State” (ISIS).  Because of fighters returning from fighting in the Middle East, there has been increasing conflict in the Philippines and in other Southeast Asian countries. For example in Marawi, a city of about 200,000 people, has been caught in the cross fire between the Philippine government and the terrorists.  Over this past week over a hundred people have been killed.  There have been similar incidents in Malaysia and Indonesia from increasing ISIS supporters. President Duterte, who has had a very questionable involvement in combating the drug trade in the Philippines, is considering to declare a state of emergency because of the terrorism in southern part of Philippines. It will be interesting to see how the Philippines will deal with the terrorism and ISIS presence in the country. Also, how the surrounding countries will choose to interfere with combating ISIS.



Emily Adams

London Terror Attacks


https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2017/jun/04/london-attacks-what-we-know-so-far-london-bridge-borough-market-vauxhall

After the recent tragedy in Manchester, England has been struck again with attacks now in London.  There have been a reported 7 deaths in addition to dozens of individuals injured.  Police are labeling these incidents as terror attacks.  Within minutes of being alerted, police arrived to the scene and killed the attackers who possessed knives and were wearing fake suicide vests.  British detectives are still investigating whether these attackers were part of a larger network.  In the meantime, this article presents the facts that are known as of right now.  England has been in international news a lot lately, and this only further contributes to the distress the country has been under.  It's heartbreaking to hear about these tragedies that have taken place so close to each other.

Ally Bockay

Ariana Grande Brings Message of Defiance to Concert for Manchester Victims

A few weeks ago, Ariana Grande held a concert in Manchester.  When the concert was over, before people left, a bomb detonated.  This attack was named one of terror.  In the attack, 22 people were killed and countless others were injured.  Following the attacks, Ariana Grande suspended the rest of her Dangerous Woman tour.  A few days later, Grande announced she would be holding an event, One Love Manchester, as a benefit to help the families of those who were lost or injured.  The concert served as a message that spirits were not broken and people would not hide in fear.  Ariana had a host of artists performing at the concert including Justin Bieber, Miley Cyrus, and Katy Perry, as well as a few surprise guests.  It was heartwarming to see so many people come together to stand up to terrorism and support lost lives. 

Facebook on Terrorism

Facebook made a statement about a plan to be more "aggressive" towards terrorists after the fatal attacks on London. They stated they wish Facebook to be a "hostile environment" for terrorists. Theresa May, Prime Minister of the UK, earlier had called for closer internet regulation to dismantle any ways of terrorist groups communicating through internet resources.

http://money.cnn.com/2017/06/04/technology/business/facebook-london-attack-reaction/index.html

London Terrorist Had Twice Been Referred to Police Over His Extremist Views

It is being claimed that one of the three terrorists responsible for the London Bridge attack had been reported at least two other times to authorities for suspected radicalization. A friend of the suspect had called the police after becoming uncomfortable about radical YouTube videos changing him. A neighbor also accused the man of trying to convert her children to radical Islam, and once again had called the police. These prior incidents are being used to support claims the British Government did nothing despite the wealth of information that could have been used to stop Saturday's attack.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/06/04/london-terrorist-had-twice-referred-police-extremist-views/

While Trump Slams London Mayor, Other World Leaders Send Support

In response to the recent terrorist attacks in London, the President tweeted one message of solidarity towards London, but promptly began to twist the tragedy to support his own political goals. While other world leaders sent messages of condolences, solidarity, and support the POTUS criticized London's mayor, Sadiq Khan, for encouraging citizens to stay calm during this time of crisis. Trump took this opportunity to tweet about the weakness associated with political correctness and the necessity of a travel ban. The reaction of the POTUS has recieved criticism by the world community and further negatively portrays the United States. 

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/world-leaders-trump-london-response_us_59343a08e4b0c242ca251780?utm_hp_ref=international-news

Sarah Obrist

Cambodia’s Buddhist Monks Find a Second Calling: Political Correspondent


In her article, Julia Wallace describes how monks in Cambodia have taken to politics. Monks, such as the Venerable Luon Sovath, are using smartphones to discuss with people about their political views about the elections that had occurred. Luon Sovath is the most prominent member of a group of monks who have become citizen journalists, monitoring political events and human rights conditions in Cambodia on social media. Meas Nee, a political researcher in Cambodia, stated that in rural areas of the country, there was an increase in villagers’ willingness to chat about politics in public.



https://www.nytimes.com/2017/06/04/world/asia/cambodia-elections-buddhist-monks.html?rref=collection%2Fsectioncollection%2Fasia&_r=0

Rwanda’s gacaca courts are hailed as a post-genocide success. The reality is more complicated.

much ie Nuremberg, Rwanda's Gacaca courts were created to try the accomplices of the Rwandan genocide. so far, at least as it appears to most people, the courts have accomplished its goals and achieved stability after dark times. unfortunately, it turns out that the institution is far more political than it appears, the ruling party is currently targeting minority ethnic groups and forcing them to self-incriminate themselves, which lead to the party maintaining the control, making Rwanda an authoritarian regime.https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/monkey-cage/wp/2017/06/02/59162/?utm_term=.259acf7a989e

Hackers Hack the Email of UAE ambassador to the US, revealing interesting developments in the Middle East

Yesterday Morning, the Intercept reported that the Hotmail account of Yousef Al-Otaiba, the UAE Ambassador to the US was hacked. These emails were hacked by a group of Russian hackers tied to the same hackers that hacked the DNC emails in the 2016 Presidential Election in the US. However, more interesting, as the Intercept reports, is the contents of the emails. These emails show a surprising relationship building between a group called the FDD, or the Foundation of Defence for Democracies, who are pro-Israel and the UAE, a country who has never recognized Israel as a nation. However, these two countries have worked with each other against another country, Iran. The article points out that the emails, talked about the countries of Saudia Arabia and The UAE to pressure companies with ties to them and to Iran to cut expansion into Iran following the Iran Nuclear Deal that allowed them to do so. The emails also point out important conversations with some pointing the coup in Turkey to be the fault of the UAE and the FDD and conversations about taking control of the political climate in Qatar. You can read even more interesting topics within the email in the intercept article: 

https://theintercept.com/2017/06/03/hacked-emails-show-top-uae-diplomat-coordinating-with-pro-israel-neocon-think-tank-against-iran/


-Asfa Anwer

Trump Starts Taking Swings At Germany

MILITARY? NATO? TRADE DEFICIT? Under the control of Trump, we have seen our foreign relations start to erode with other foreign leaders (well I mean except Russia). Currently Trump is trying to call out Germany's chancellor Angela Merkel and Germany's trade policies. He seems uninformed when it comes to knowing about these policies. To the point where he accuses, under direction from his trade advisor, that Germany wants a weak Euro. When in actuality, that is not the case at all. Trump is worried about German trade policies, just as Obama was. But they are worried for different reasons. Trump still fails to have a comprehensive enough grasp on how foreign trade and policy works. Instead, he still seems to be thinking like a business in black and white. When in reality, foreign trade is not like that. There is a casual reasons for world leaders to be concerned with Germany, but they aren't necessarily the same reasons that Trump is concerned. In my opinion, Trump needs to really get an understanding on trade before he goes on Twitter and starts trying to bash all of these countries. He needs to understand the more pots he tries to piss in, the more trouble he is going to get the US in.
Kaitlyn Roybal

London attack: 12 arrested in Barking after van and knife attack

This article talks about the London Terror Attack a few days ago. Previous reports have stated that only 3 perpetrators were involved in this attack, but now 12 total have been arrested in another terrible tragedy that the world has endured. Much of the article talks about the bravery that multiple citizens embraced in attempting to take down the assailants, as well as the policemen for taking down three of the assailants. This is the third attack in the past three months in the UK alone, and many of us may be wondering how much longer attacks like this will continue to occur until something drastic happens. It is going to be very difficult trying to pinpoint motives and justification for such horrific acts by those who have committed them. Terror on any level will not be tolerated, and much of the world has come together to remember those who have fallen in such dark times. Attacks elsewhere outside of the UK have been occurring frequently in the past few months, as the article also highlights. I'm hoping that someday there will be peace and we can rid the world of IS and all of the terrible horrors they bring to the fray of many lives worldwide.

http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-40148737
- Brett Johnson

After Britain Attack, Trump Unleashes a Twitter Storm

            After Saturday night’s terrorists attacks on London President Trump took to twitter to respond to this disaster.  Saying that the world needs to get more serious about fighting terrorism.  He also tweeted, “We must stop being politically correct and get down to the business of security for our people.”  He also criticized London’s Mayor Sadiq Khan attacking him for reassuring his people. Trump tweeted, “At least 7 dead and 48 wounded in terror attack and Mayor of London says there is “no reason to be alarmed!” Dan Scavino the president’s director of social Media posted a message also criticizing the mayor of London.  After this attack President Trump looks to find support for his travel ban on visitors from select Muslim countries.  Trump tweeted “We need the courts to give us back our rights. We need the Travel Ban as an extra level of safety.”  President Trump called Theresa May to give his condolences have the terror attack and also to praise the police and first responders.  Donald Trump’s son found an article written about the Mayor of London talking about terrorism in this article he says.  “You have to be kidding me.  Terror attacks are part of living in big city.”  The mayor of London was asked about this in an interview but he said he would not respond he had more important things to attend to. 


https://www.nytimes.com/2017/06/04/us/politics/britain-attack-trump-twitter-storm.html?rref=collection%2Fsectioncollection%2Fworld&action=click&contentCollection=world&region=rank&module=package&version=highlights&contentPlacement=1&pgtype=sectionfront

Mattis turns up the heat on North Korea, China

The secretary of defense has reaffirmed that the U.S. is committed to NATO. He has also labeled Korea as a clear and ever present danger because of their commitment to creating intercontinental nuclear weapons. China is currently not helping much because they continue to block sanctions on Korea. The one upside is that China will continue to work to avoid military conflict.When the secretary of defense was asked about using nuclear weapons on Korea he was clear that all possible other options would be explored first.https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/world/2017/06/03/mattis-criticizes-north-korea-and-china/102454666/

Saturday, June 3, 2017

7 dead, dozens hurt after blasts rock Kabul protester's funeral


This article published by CNN World on Saturday, June 3rd discusses the events that happened in Kabul, Afghanistan today. According to CNN, a suicide bomber killed seven and injured 119 people during a funeral. The same day, anti-government protesters were active, but as of now, the Taliban has denied any involvment in the funeral bombing. The funeral may have been an object of interest, because a lot of high-profile government officials as well as lawmakers were to attend this funeral. Following the suicide bombing as well as the protests, Afghans are increasingly concerned about their stafety. Yamamoto, a UN envoy to afghanistan urged members of the international community to "help put an end to the cycle of violence" in Afghanistan, as the Afghan government is overwhelmed with the task of restoring peace in their country.


- Helen Majer

http://www.cnn.com/2017/06/03/asia/afghanistan-unrest/index.html

Friday, June 2, 2017

Trump Appears Unlikely to Hinder Comey's Testimony About Russia Inquiry

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/06/02/us/politics/trump-comey-russia.html?_r=0

As the President, Trump has the ability to invoke "Executive Privilege", which would make him immune to subpoenas in relation to requests for information regarding the actions of the President and/or his staff in investigations. The article above, however, states that Trump is unlikely to invoke Executive Privilege when it comes to James Comey's testimony on the case involving Trump's former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn, and Flynn's relationship with Russia during the Trump transition. Despite the fact that the information Comey has can be damaging to the Trump team, Trump may not hinder Comey's testimony in the hopes that people will see that he has nothing to hide.

-Jason Keller

REMAINS OF EX-PRESIDENT MIXED UP

In 2010 the Polish president along with other cabinet members and military officials were traveling to Russia. They were traveling to Russia for a ceremony that marked the 70th anniversary of the Katyn massacre, in which more than 20,000 Polish officers were murdered by the Soviet Union's secret police, on its way the plane crashed in Smolensk in Western Russia killing all 96 people. The PiS party in Poland speculated it was brought down with a weapon, while some say it was Russian air traffic controllers at fault. In the end both Poland and Russia concluded that the crash was due to pilot's error. This was the worst disaster for Poland since World War 2.

Marek Pasionek who is the deputy prosecutor general said Thursday "people remains have been swapped, while nine other coffins contained various mixed-up remains. The ex-Polish president had the remains of two other people in his coffins, while a half of general's body was missing, another general contained 14 body parts that belonged to seven other people. General Potasinki's contained six body parts that belonged to four other people. This mix-up reflects poorly on Tusk's Polish government, and also this tragedy continues to darken Polish-Russian relations.




http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-40130300








ISIS Claims Responsibilty For Casino Incident

A casino in Malina, Phillipines has recently experienced a terrible mass-murder, suicide incident. Although police have said there is no link to ISIS, ISIS claims one of their militants carried out the attack that killed 37 individuals (half staff and half guests). The attack consisted of an individual shooting casino equipment and setting fire to the casino. It is reported the cause of deaths were suffocation from smoke. The suspect was then shot, but continued to a hotel room where he took his own life. Once again, we see a horrific attack carried out that killed many innocent. It seems like every week there is something new, but this is something no one wants to get used to. Now the question rises: Is this really ISIS? Or are they desperate for attention since they are falling out of the news, so they claim what they can for relevance.

Lucas Wittenkeller

http://www.cnn.com/2017/06/02/asia/manila-philippines-resort-world-victims/index.html

Putin says "Patriotic" hackers may have meddled in US Election

Russian President Vladimir Putin was quoted as saying that "patriotic" hackers may have meddled in the 2016 United States Election. Putin also states that these hackings were not state-backed. I find that to most likely be a lie. It seems clear that Putin is gradually moving towards accepting that the Russian Government played a part in meddling with the election. I think it's only a matter of time until it comes out that these Russian "Patriots" were state-backed.


Ben Goodell


http://www.cnn.com/2017/06/01/politics/russia-putin-hackers-election/index.html

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Deadly Bombing in Kabul Is One of the Afghan War's Worst Strikes


https://www.nytimes.com/2017/05/31/world/asia/kabul-explosion-afghanistan.html?hp&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&clickSource=story-heading&module=first-column-region&region=top-news&WT.nav=top-news&_r=0

On Wednesday, May 31st, a truck bomb went off in a central area is Kabul, near the presidential palace and foreign embassies.  President Ashraf Ghani's windows were shattered when the bomb went off.  He called this attack "a crime against humanity".  The main Taliban spokesman claims that they had nothing to do with the attack, but it is believed the Haqqani wing of the Taliban to blame for this.  Over the years, they have become known for committing large scale attacks like this.  More than 80 people were killed and at least 463 people were wounded, with numbers likely to rise, as explained by the deputy interior minister General Murad Ali Murad.  All of this occurs just as the U.S. was considering sending more troops into the area to help slow or stop the Taliban insurgency that has been happening.  Germany has also involved themselves, by sending troops into the area as part of the NATO force, and by considering accepting Afghan applications for asylum.  With much of the population in this area fasting for Ramadan, people continue to do their jobs or help others out in any way they can following this devastating attack.

Shannon McDonald

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

ISIS targets the young, then the old in twin bombings

http://www.cnn.com/2017/05/30/middleeast/baghdad-ice-cream-shop-bombing/index.html

Twin car bombings just hours apart have targeted two groups of people in Baghdad. Young families having a late-night Ramadan snack and older city residents collecting their pensions. ISIS has claimed responsibility for both attacks, which killed 21 people through its affiliate news agency Amaq. The first bomb, which killed 10 people and wounded 40 others, exploded at an ice cream shop in the heart of Baghdad in the early hours of Tuesday. Eyewitnesses described ice cream mixed with blood as the wounded and dead covered the ground. The second went off as elderly residents lined up outside the General Retirement Department waiting for their pensions to be handed out on Tuesday morning. Twelve people died, another 45 were wounded.

--Jessie Birchall




https://www.vox.com/energy-and-environment/2017/5/7/15554286/paris-climate-accord-exit-bannon



This article discussed The Paris Climate Accord international agreement and how members of Trump's administration do or do not agree with him that the U.S needs to pull out of this agreement. It is pretty unclear what trump is going to do at this point but, there are a lot of questions revolving around his team because it is split between supporters of the deal and climate deniers/nationalist who want out. I like that this article touches on how the Paris Deal does nothing to us because like we've discussed in class, it has no enforcement, it is not law. So, it makes no sense to withdraw. It is simply a matter of reputation that would cause Trump to withdraw or because climate deniers who want out have manipulated him to do so. It is going to be interesting to see which side wins him over and how Trump's decisions affects the globe when it comes to fighting climate change.

Thomas Semanic

Monday, May 29, 2017

North Korea Stages 3rd Missile Test in 3 Weeks

http://www.cnn.com/2017/05/28/asia/north-korea-fires-unidentified-projectile/index.html 

(I lost track of my days this weekend... I'm sorry I am posting this after Sunday!) Last week, North Korea launched its third missile test in three weeks.  The country has conducted 9 tests in 2017, launching a total of 12 missiles compared to 10 missile launches by this time of year in 2016.  This most recent missile launched 248 miles.  Despite the successes and failures of each of the missiles, the act of testing them this many times this year is further providing them with information that could eventually enable them to build a missile that could reach the U.S.  The prime minister of Japan -- in response to Japanese protests -- said that Tokyo would act "together with the United States" against North Korea.  It will be interesting to see the play of events and how each country will respond to North Korea's persistent missile launches.

Ally Bockay

Sunday, May 28, 2017

War of Words as Chinese jets intercept US surveillance plane

War of Words as Chinese jets intercept US surveillance plane

Recently this last week, the tensions in the South China Sea between the United States and China have increased. The U.S. accused Chinese fighter jets for intercepting a United States surveillance plane of flying in the South China Sea. China has rejected this interaction and included a U.S. warship for trespassing near a reef that the China has claimed in the Sea. The U.S. defends their actions, whereas the Chinese say that these actions “infringe on their sovereignty and security”.  Tensions continue between the two nations because the U.S. has satellite images showing anti-aircraft guns on an artificial island. And with the increasing conflict with North Korea, the United States and Chinese relations are stressed. Coming up this week there will be a major security summit in Singapore with the regional Asian countries, so it will be interesting how issues like the South China Sea and North Korea will be addressed and the Chinese response to them.

Emily Adams


Iran calls Trump's Saudi visit 'theatrical'

In response to Trump's recent trip to Saudi Arabia, the president of Iran has claimed that his prescence will not improve political conditions or eliminate terrorism. President Hassan Rouhani stated that "you can't solve terrorism just by giving your people's money to a superpower", when referring to the $110 billion military deal devised between the United States and Saudi Arabia. The Iranian government argues that the United States has been a promulgator of "Iranophobia" and "warmongering" policy. This sentiment was proven when Trump singled out Iran during a speech to Arab Muslim leaders by saying "from Lebanon to Iraq to Yemen, Iran funds, arms, and trains terrorists, militias, and other extremist groups that spread destruction and chaos across the region." The future relations between Iran and the United States are unknown in a time of such political unpredictability that is the "Trump era". 


Sarah Obrist 

Germany’s Merkel says Europe Must Take Destiny Into its Own Hands

After the G-7 meet in Sicily tempers haven’t subsided as president Trump takes to the world stage, and this brief article makes that perfectly clear as Angela Merkel expresses her displeasure post meeting. Expressing that the time has come for Europe to take their destiny into their own hand and that the EU can no longer completely rely on is allies, namely the U.S. and the U.K., in a move that further demonstrates increased tensions between the world leaders. And, while the Pairs Climate Agreement remains in limbo, awaiting support from president Trump, this article make clears that the directions on international relations is not.  

WSJ: https://www.wsj.com/articles/germanys-merkel-says-europe-must-stay-united-despite-differences-with-allies-1496002573
Nathaniel Dust

Bodies Of Civilians Dumped Near Besieged City In The Philippines

This article talks about the pile of executed civilians located outside from Marawi city. The article talks about how the civilians were executed and exactly why they were executed. The article then details why the city is under siege and the current climate that exist in the Philippines. The article then ends with how the Philippines president reacted to this situation and his response and give information on the situation. Clearly the events taking place in the Philippines are quite unnerving and I have little hope things will get better and if anything only get worse.      



Dan Worden 

Texas county still on "high alert" over Zika virus

This article published on May 26th by CBS news talks about a recent spike in babies born with Zika virus related birth defects in Cameron County, Texas. Last year, according to the CDC 64 babies in the US were born with Zika virus related birth defects, while this year in Cameron County, 15 women have already tested positive for the Zika virus. Zika is a virus that spreads via mosquitoes and through sexual intercourse and can cause birth defects, such as microcephaly. What is especially worrying about these numbers is that the mosquito season has not even begun yet - while we are still seeing an increased number of women testing positive with the virus. Texas county calls for health departments to raise awareness about the virus, its severity and how to protect oneself.  Since the beginning of last year, the CDC reported 5,223 Zika virus cases, which may only represent a fraction of actual infections as only a fifth of all infections causes symptoms. The biggest concern for CDC is travellers carrying the virus asymptomatically and spread it to the rest of the US.

  • Helen Majer
http://www.cbsnews.com/news/texas-tries-zika-education-with-state-on-high-alert-about-virus/

Iraqi forces advance on ISIS-held neighborhoods in western Mosul

Iraq forces are getting closer and closer to getting Mosul neighborhood back from ISIS control.  Soldiers have been being sent into Shifa neighborhood and also Jamhouri Hospital, and also counterterrorism forces are being sent to a neighborhood called Saha al Awla.  Wiith Old City under ISIS’s control. Israel believes that it will be a challenge to retake old city because of narrow streets.  They also believe that ISIS will use residents as human shields.  Special units are trying their best to evacuate as many residents as they can.  After Iraq forces take back the neighborhoods under ISIS control the Iraqi government will have liberated Mosul from all of ISIS’s control.  ISIS gained control of Mosul in 2014 which is Iraq’s second largest city. 

About 742,000 residents of Mosul have fled the city since the fighting stated hoping to avoid getting caught in the action.  The UN migration agency has seen the number of immigrates rising because of this.  These people lack clean water and medicine and do not have a lot of food.  The UN is not involved in areas of fighting but they have heard reports of families being used as traps.  As well as children being targeted by snipers.  In Mosul about 980 ISIS fighters has been killed and then 6,000 wounded.   

http://www.cnn.com/2017/05/27/middleeast/iraq-mosul-operation/index.html