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  • Trump, Cuomo and the mystery of the missing masks

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    Earlier this month, Cuomo said that people were stealing face masks and other equipment needed to fight the coronavirus from area hospitals. On Monday, the New York governor dismissed a similar claim by the president.

    Mon, 30 Mar 2020 15:08:39 -0400
  • Suspected SARS virus and flu samples found in luggage: FBI report describes China's 'biosecurity risk'

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    An FBI report about China’s involvement with scientific research in the U.S. has raised alarms. While the report refers broadly to foreign researchers, all three cases cited involve Chinese nationals.

    Mon, 30 Mar 2020 10:45:26 -0400
  • Are pot and guns essential in a pandemic?

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    As states and cities shut down all nonessential businesses to stop the spread of coronavirus, pot shops and gun stores are staying open in some places. Are they really essential?

    Mon, 30 Mar 2020 15:44:57 -0400
  • Lindsey Graham Calls on IG Horowitz to Testify in Further FISA Hearings after Scathing New Report

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    Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham (R., S.C.) plans to call DOJ inspector general Michael Horowitz to testify before congress regarding his office’s audit of the FBI’s FISA application process, which was released Tuesday and revealed potentially systematic abuses of the transparency measures required of the Bureau when agents interact with the FISA court.“I have just been briefed on Inspector General Horowitz’s audit of FISA applications involving American citizens. This random audit shows discrepancies regarding verification of the information under the Woods Procedures,” Graham said in a press release. “I intend to have Inspector General Horowitz come to the Committee to explain his findings and receive his recommendations about how to change the program.”Horowitz’s latest report revealed that the FBI included “apparent errors or inadequately supported facts” in all 29 FISA surveillance applications filed between 2014 and 2019 and reviewed as part of the audit.The Woods Procedure dictates that the Justice Department verify the accuracy of and provide evidentiary support for all facts stated in its FISA application. The FBI is required to share with the FISA Court all relevant information compiled in a Woods file when applying for a surveillance warrant.Four of the 29 applications lacked Woods files entirely, while the other 25 had “an average of about 20 issues per application reviewed, with a high of approximately 65 issues in one application and less than 5 issues in another application.”“FBI and NSD officials we interviewed indicated to us that there were no efforts by the FBI to use existing FBI and NSD oversight mechanisms to perform comprehensive, strategic assessments of the efficacy of the Woods Procedures or FISA accuracy, to include identifying the need for enhancements to training and improvements in the process, or increased accountability measures,” the report states.Horowitz recommended that the FBI begin to “systematically and regularly examine” its Woods reviews to uncover abuse, beginning with a “physical inventory to ensure that Woods Files exist for every FISA application submitted to the FISC in all pending investigations.”In a statement after the audit’s release, the DOJ said that it is “committed to putting the Inspector General’s recommendations into practice and to implementing reforms that will ensure all FISA applications are complete and accurate.”> DOJ statement on today’s report from IG Horowitz identifying concerns with the FBI’s handling of procedures related to FISA applications. pic.twitter.com/DAiB61IoSk> > -- KerriKupecDOJ (@KerriKupecDOJ) March 31, 2020The findings are the latest in a growing trail of FBI abuses involving the FISA Court. Horowitz appeared in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee in December after finding “basic and fundamental errors” in the FBI’s Crossfire Hurricane investigation of the 2016 Trump campaign, and blamed the FBI chain of command for lacking oversight in the FISA applications used to surveil Trump-campaign adviser Carter Page.“The circumstances reflect a failure, as we outline in the report, not just by those who prepared the applications, but also by the managers and supervisors in the Crossfire Hurricane chain of command, including FBI senior officials who were briefed as the investigation progressed,” Horowitz said in his statement to Graham and the other senators.Later in the hearing, Senator Josh Hawley (R., Mo.) said Horowitz’s findings showed how the “the FBI effectively meddled in an ongoing presidential campaign,” while other Republicans acknowledged that they had not realized FISA abuse was a serious threat.“As a national security hawk, I’ve argued with Mike Lee in the four-and-a-half or five years that I’ve been in the Senate that stuff just like this couldn’t possibly happen at the FBI and at the Department of Justice,” Senator Ben Sasse (R., Neb.) said. “ . . . Mike Lee has warned me for four-and-a-half years the potential for abuse in this space is terrible and I constantly defended the integrity and the professionalism of the bureau and of the department that you couldn’t have something like this happen.”Senator Thom Tillis (R., N.C.) echoed Sasse in recognizing Mike Lee’s past criticisms of FISA.“Because we’ve now seen the abuses we were warned about, you can smirk again, you were right,” Tillis told the Utah Republican.

    Tue, 31 Mar 2020 15:50:22 -0400
  • Stabbing of Asian-American 2-Year-Old and Her Family Was a Virus-Fueled Hate Crime: Feds

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    The vicious stabbing of an Asian-American family, including a 2-year-old girl, at a Sam’s Club in Texas earlier this month has been deemed a hate crime by the feds, as authorities continue to raise alarm bells about a potential surge in racially motivated crimes amid the coronavirus outbreak.Jose L. Gomez, 19, confessed to authorities that he attempted to murder three Asian-American family members, including the toddler and a 6-year-old, on March 14 at the Midland, Texas store, according to the Midland Police Department. Gomez, who stabbed the individuals and a Sam’s Club employee, is now facing several charges, including three counts of attempted capital murder and one count of aggravated assault. He is being held on several bonds totaling $1 million.“The suspect indicated that he stabbed the family because he thought the family was Chinese, and infecting people with coronavirus,” according to an FBI analysis report obtained by ABC News.Inside the Ugly Uber and Lyft Driver Freakout Over CoronavirusThe Texas incident was used in the report as one example of a recent surge in hate crimes and racially fueled violence targeting Asian-Americans as the coronavirus pandemic continues to sweep the United States. According to an arrest affidavit obtained by the Midland Reporter-Telegram, Gomez attempted to kill the Asian-American family of four inside the wholesale store at about 7:30 p.m. When a Sam’s Club employee and another patron intervened, Gomez allegedly stabbed the patron in the leg and fingers with a knife. At one point, the customer was able to knock the knife away from Gomez during the struggle before the teenager was finally subdued by Border Patrol Agent Bernie Ramiez, who was off-duty and just leaving the store after shopping for groceries, the affidavit states.Ramirez later told CBS7 that during the altercation, he saw the store employee had managed to put Gomez in a chokehold after he had stabbed multiple people.“My initial thought was it was just the shortage of items that they were fighting over,” Ramirez told the local outlet. “So I just started making my way over there to break it up.”The agent added, “I’ve got close to 19 years in law enforcement. It’s crazy and it’s sad the way certain individuals think, their mindset. It’s a sad deal.”When authorities arrived at the Sam’s Club, investigators immediately began to question Gomez. The teenager then admitted to trying to kill the family and assaulting the patron with a knife, the affidavit states. Ramirez did not immediately respond to The Daily Beast’s request for comment and a spokesperson for Midland Mayor Patrick Payton’s office declined to comment, stating that the case has now been turned over to the FBI. According to the intelligence report that was compiled by the FBI’s Houston office and distributed to local law enforcement agencies across the nation, federal officials believe hate crimes will only increase as COVID-19 continues to spread.‘We’re Scared’: Doctors in New Coronavirus Hotspots Brace for ‘Tsunami’ of Patients“The FBI assesses hate crime incidents against Asian Americans likely will surge across the United States, due to the spread of coronavirus disease... endangering Asian American communities,” the report states. “The FBI makes this assessment based on the assumption that a portion of the US public will associate COVID-19 with China and Asian American populations.”To date, more than 3,416 people have died and 174,467 individuals have been infected with the virus nationwide—a death toll that has eclipsed China’s official count and put much of the United States on lockdown.Since then, several political and media commentators, including President Donald Trump, have adopted the practice of calling the pandemic the “China virus” or the “Wuhan virus.”“It did come from China,” Trump said at a March 19 White House briefing. “It is a very accurate term.”Many experts and political figures believe that officials using racial terms for the virus has contributed to discrimination against members of the Asian-American community. “This is a global emergency that should be met with both urgency and also cultural awareness that COVID-19 is not isolated to a single ethnic population,” Jeffrey Caballero, executive director of the Association of Asian Pacific Community Health Organizations, said in a statement to The Daily Beast. “Xenophobic attacks and discrimination towards Asian American communities are unacceptable and will not make our families safer or healthier.”California Gov. Gavin Newsom reiterated the FBI’s report findings, stating he has seen a “huge increase” in assaults targeting the Asian-American community in his state. In New York, Attorney General Leticia James launched a hotline for victims of coronavirus-related bias crimes. Since the surge, even Trump tried to backtrack on his language, tweeting on March 23, “It is very important that we totally protect our Asian American community in the United States, and all around the world. They are amazing people, and the spreading of the Virus is NOT their fault in any way, shape, or form. They are working closely with us to get rid of it. WE WILL PREVAIL TOGETHER!”‘This Is a War’: Cuomo Pleads for Help From Doctors Across U.S. as Coronavirus Death Toll SurgesAccording to one New York City medical social worker, racism is also rampant in the health-care system as Asian-American doctors and nurses struggle to care for patients who don’t want to be touched. “I get yelled at down the street coming into work from people in their cars saying all these really nasty things and telling me I should be punished for bringing the virus here,” the social worker told The Daily Beast last week. “Inside the hospital, I have heard from several Asian-American doctors and nurses that some patients don’t want to be treated by them because they think they already have the virus. It’s like we are the virus or something.”“It’s scary and it’s dangerous. We’re already putting ourselves on the line to help others. Don’t make it harder for us than it is,” she added. Read more at The Daily Beast.Got a tip? Send it to The Daily Beast hereGet our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.

    Tue, 31 Mar 2020 15:03:24 -0400
  • 28 Texas spring breakers who just returned from Cabo have tested positive for the coronavirus

    Golocal247.com news

    The spring breakers reportedly got on a chartered plane with 70 people. It shows why spring break is such a problem during the coronavirus pandemic.

    Tue, 31 Mar 2020 17:28:50 -0400
  • Venezuela prosecutor's office summoned Guaido for 'attempted coup'

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    State prosecutors in Venezuela have summoned opposition leader Juan Guaido for an alleged "attempted coup d'etat" and attempted assassination, Attorney General Tarek William Saab announced Tuesday. In a statement broadcast on state television, Saab said Guaido had been summoned to appear before prosecutors next Thursday following an investigation last week into the seizure of a weapons cache in neighboring Colombia that he said was to be smuggled into Venezuela.

    Tue, 31 Mar 2020 11:16:54 -0400
  • One country is refusing to shut down to stop the coronavirus

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    “It is better to die on your feet than live on your knees!” Lukashenko, who hit the ice for a weekend hockey game, said.

    Tue, 31 Mar 2020 12:35:28 -0400
  • 'Sailors do not need to die,' warns captain of coronavirus-hit U.S. aircraft carrier

    Golocal247.com news

    The captain of the U.S. aircraft carrier Theodore Roosevelt, in a blunt letter, has called on Navy leadership for stronger measures to save the lives of his sailors and stop the spread of the coronavirus aboard the huge ship. The four-page letter, the contents of which were confirmed by U.S. officials to Reuters on Tuesday, described a bleak situation onboard the nuclear-powered carrier as more sailors test positive for the virus. Captain Brett Crozier, the ship's commanding officer, wrote that the carrier lacked enough quarantine and isolation facilities and warned the current strategy would slow but fail to eradicate the highly contagious respiratory virus.

    Tue, 31 Mar 2020 13:00:37 -0400
  • Trump says Democrats' push for expanded voting threatens Republicans

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    President Trump on Monday criticized attempts by Democrats in Congress to expand voting access for the presidential election in the fall, saying increased voter turnout would keep Republicans from getting elected.

    Mon, 30 Mar 2020 13:26:01 -0400
  • Coronavirus lockdowns are working, according to data from digital thermometer app

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    Three-quarters of Americans have been urged or ordered to stay at home, to the extent possible, to stop the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus, and those measures appear to be working, The New York Times reports, citing data from internet-connected thermometer company Kinsa. The thermometers and their app upload temperature readings to a centralized database, allowing Kinsa to track fevers across the country. It started mapping fevers to catch flu outbreaks in 2018, and it modified its software to look for "atypical" COVID-19 fevers earlier in March.Kinsa's million-plus thermometers have been recording up to 162,000 readings from around the U.S. each day since the coronavirus started spreading, the Times reports. Only strict social-distancing measures — closing bars and restaurants, asking people to shelter in place — led to a significant drop in fever readings, while declaring a state of emergency or limiting the size of public gatherings had little effect. Data from New York and Washington State's health departments have buttressed Kinsa's findings, showing drops in hospitalizations a few days after Kinsa spotted the falloff in fevers.The Kinsa readings certainly look "like a way to prove that social distancing works," Dr. William Schaffner at Vanderbilt University tells the Times. "But it does shows that it takes the most restrictive measures to make a real difference." Kinsa data appears to show that social distancing is also reducing transmission of the seasonal flu."People need to know their sacrifices are helping," Kinsa founder Inder Singh tells the Times. "I've had friends text or call and say: 'Inder, this seems overblown. I'm sitting at home by myself, I don't know anyone who's sick, why am I doing this?'" Read more about the fever mapping at The New York Times.More stories from theweek.com Washington Gov. Jay Inslee is what real coronavirus leadership looks like The case for cautious optimism about the pandemic The next 2 weeks are going to be 'tough' and 'painful,' Trump warns

    Tue, 31 Mar 2020 00:36:16 -0400
  • Coronavirus: Number of Louisiana patients on ventilators doubles in five days

    Golocal247.com news

    Louisiana's patients hospitalised for coronavirus and the number of patients on life-saving ventilators have doubled within the last five days, the state's governor has announced.The state also saw a one-day surge in more than 1,200 confirmed cases of Covid-19, a 30 per cent increase that brings the statewide total to more than 5,200.

    Tue, 31 Mar 2020 10:51:38 -0400
  • AOC Drifts Away from Activist Left, Toward a More Conventional Staff and Political Strategy

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    Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has taken steps recently to collaborate more with the Democratic establishment, taking a less contentious approach and allying with fellow Democratic members.After urging fellow progressives in 2018 to run for office with the support of the progressive group the Justice Democrats, which supported her, the New York Democrat has declined to endorse most of the candidates the group is backing to oust incumbent Democrats in 2020.Of the six candidates the group is backing this time around, Ocasio-Cortez has endorsed Jessica Cisneros in Texas and Marie Newman in Illinois, both of whom are running against conservative Democrats who oppose abortion and were subsequently supported by several other high-profile Democrats.The move comes as the Justice Democrats are recruiting progressive candidates to run against liberals and moderate Democrats."We don’t usually endorse so far out," Ocasio-Cortez's communications director, Lauren Hitt said of the congresswoman's lack of endorsements for the group of candidates, according to Politico.Meanwhile, Ocasio-Cortez, who shot to notoriety in 2018 when she ousted powerful Democratic congressman Joe Crowley, is also replacing some of her more radical, progressive top aides with more conventional political professionals, Politico reported.The freshman congresswoman has also struck a more conciliatory tone towards Democratic leadership in recent months, in February calling Pelosi the “mama bear of the Democratic Party.”She also criticized supporters of her progressive ally, 2020 presidential contender Bernie Sanders, for their antagonistic behavior online.“There’s so much emphasis on making outreach as conflict-based as possible,” she said. “And sometimes I even feel miscast and understood. Because it’s about what tools you use, and conflict is one tool but not the only tool.”Nevertheless, Ocasio-Cortez has largely maintained her status as a progressive standard-bearer. Earlier this year, she endorsed a group of progressive women running for Congress on Friday through her political action committee, Courage to Change.In January, she announced that she would not pay dues to the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, which works to elect Democrats to the House.

    Mon, 30 Mar 2020 09:59:52 -0400
  • 12 Buildings That Show the Beauty of Deconstructed Architecture

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    Tue, 31 Mar 2020 18:59:05 -0400
  • Defense lawyer in death of 7 motorcyclists: Biker at fault

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    One of the motorcyclists in a crash that killed him and six fellow bikers on a north woods highway was drunk and actually was the one who hit a pickup and caused the accident, the lawyer for the truck driver charged with homicide said in a document made public Tuesday. A New Hampshire State Police account of the June 21 crash in the community of Randolph “was deeply flawed," the lawyer for truck driver Volodymyr Zhukovskyy, 24, of West Springfield, Massachusetts, said in a motion filed Friday that seeks a hearing to set him free on bail. State police initially determined that the flatbed trailer he was hauling was 1 1/2 feet over the center line at the time of impact, the motion said.

    Tue, 31 Mar 2020 13:33:50 -0400
  • FBI report describes China’s ‘biosecurity risk’

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    In late November 2018, just over a year before the first coronavirus case was identified in Wuhan, China, U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents at Detroit Metro Airport stopped a Chinese biologist with three vials labeled “Antibodies” in his luggage.

    Mon, 30 Mar 2020 11:43:33 -0400
  • 'Best they can get' or more 'politics than policy?' U.S. offers Venezuela a deal

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    A former senior U.S. government official says it's the "best" deal they can get, while an analyst said this is more about "politics than policy."

    Tue, 31 Mar 2020 17:00:00 -0400
  • Israel's ultra-Orthodox Jews in fight over virus rules

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    Israeli police with face masks and batons and backed by surveillance helicopters have stepped up patrols of ultra-Orthodox Jewish neighbourhoods that have become coronavirus hotspots. This week has seen tense altercations, and some rabbis have admitted that their communities, where prayer and scripture study are traditionally communal, are not observing new social distancing regulations. A few days ago in Bnei Brak, a city near Tel Aviv with a largely ultra-Orthodox population, hundreds of faithful crowded together to attend the funeral of prominent rabbi Tzi Shenkar.

    Tue, 31 Mar 2020 10:27:52 -0400
  • The White House projects that shutting down the US to stop the coronavirus could save 2 million lives

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    With shutdowns and social distancing, coronavirus deaths are projected to number between 100,000 and 240,000 people in the US.

    Tue, 31 Mar 2020 18:13:00 -0400
  • No scandal here: Mexico president defends meeting mother of drug lord 'El Chapo'

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    MEXICO CITY/BADIRAGUATO, Mexico (Reuters) - Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador on Monday defended his weekend handshake with the mother of drug lord Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman, calling her a "respectable old lady" and seeking to cast his critics as the principal menace to the country. In a 30-second video posted on Twitter on Sunday, Lopez Obrador could be seen approaching Maria Consuelo Loera's car, parked on a dirt road on the outskirts of Badiraguato, a mountainous municipality in the northwestern state of Sinaloa. Surrounded by onlookers, Lopez Obrador told Loera she need not get out of the car, they shook hands and after a brief exchange he told her he had "received her letter."

    Mon, 30 Mar 2020 14:15:10 -0400
  • Some doctors are telling patients to switch from contact lenses to glasses to lower their risk of contracting the coronavirus

    Golocal247.com news

    Evidence suggests the coronavirus can enter the body through the eyes, so some eye doctors say glasses are safer.

    Mon, 30 Mar 2020 12:23:00 -0400
  • New York governor: Virus is "more dangerous than we expected"

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    More than 75,000 people in New York state have been infected with COVID-19.

    Tue, 31 Mar 2020 04:17:20 -0400
  • Justice Department audit finds widespread flaws in FBI surveillance applications

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    The finding by Inspector General Michael Horowitz came after an earlier inquiry found numerous errors in court submissions seeking surveillance of a former Trump campaign adviser.

    Tue, 31 Mar 2020 10:56:56 -0400
  • Syria: Air defenses down missiles from Israeli warplanes

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    Tue, 31 Mar 2020 14:22:00 -0400
  • Meet Candy Sterling, a fierce drag queen at night and a corporate professional by day

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    This is Candy Sterling – a fierce drag queen who lights up the New York City nightlife while maintaining a professional day job. Get to know her both in and out of drag on this week's episode of Behind the Drag.

    Tue, 31 Mar 2020 14:26:09 -0400
  • 29 Best Closet Organization Ideas to Maximize Space and Style

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    Mon, 30 Mar 2020 19:06:00 -0400
  • Rep. Velazquez has presumed COVID-19 infection, was near Pelosi, other lawmakers last week

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    Rep. Nydia Velazquez spoke on the House floor Friday and stood near Speaker Nancy Pelosi during the signing of the $2 trillion stimulus bill.

    Mon, 30 Mar 2020 15:28:00 -0400
  • U.S. Base Workers Set for Furlough in Blow to South Korea Alliance

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    (Bloomberg) -- The U.S. military is set to put almost half of its 8,500 South Korean civilian workers on furlough, as the two sides bicker over the Trump administration’s demands for a massive increase in troop funding.About 4,000 workers have been told not to report to American military bases in South Korea as of Wednesday, if the two countries can’t find some way to extend a cost-sharing deal that expired Dec. 31. A breakthrough seems unlikely with President Donald Trump asking for as much as a five-fold increase and South Korea showing no signs of paying anywhere near that much.The furloughs, which the Hankyoreh newspaper said would be the first of their kind, will put new pressure on an alliance that Trump has repeatedly criticized since taking office three years ago. The move comes as the U.S. military struggles to keep coronavirus outbreaks from disrupting operations in South Korea and elsewhere and the allies watch for fresh provocations from North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.The two sides have been deadlocked over what’s known as the Special Measures Agreement, with Trump initially demanding about $5 billion a year from South Korea to pay for U.S. security. South Korean President Moon Jae-in’s administration has indicated that it wouldn’t pay much more than the almost $1 billion it agreed to in a one-year stopgap deal in 2019.South Korea’s lead negotiator, Jeong Eun-bo, said in a statement Tuesday that the two sides were in the “final steps” of negotiations and expressed regret that the U.S. government went ahead with the furlough.“If the Trump administration persists in holding to this level of unreasonable demands it will seriously damage the reliability and credibility of our security alliance,” said Daniel Sneider, a lecturer in international policy at Stanford University who has written about how Japanese and Koreans view their shared history. “It feeds a strain of Korean nationalism that would want to effectively end the alliance and perhaps bring Korea, de facto, under the security umbrella of China.”In the short term, the furloughs of workers, who provide services ranging from security to manning food stations, could mean further disruptions to daily life on bases that serve some 28,000 U.S. service personnel in South Korea. In the longer term, the dispute could accelerate a realignment of an alliance that the U.S. relies on to check China, as well as North Korea.Trump has repeatedly insisted that the U.S. gets a raw deal from partners who host American troops around the world, and he’s focused particular ire on the South Korean agreement. Last month, U.S. Defense Secretary Mark Esper told his counterpart, Defense Minister Jeong Kyeong-doo, that “as a global economic powerhouse and an equal partner in the preservation of peace on the peninsula, South Korea can and should contribute more to its defense.”South Korea’s National Assembly must sign off on any deal and Trump’s demands have brought about a rare moment of unity from progressives and conservatives in the country who see them as unreasonable. With parliamentary elections set for April 15, siding with Washington could lead to defeat at the ballot box.Missiles Fly“We are currently trying our best to ensure our joint defense posture goes unhindered as well to protect our Korean workers,” South Korean Defense Ministry spokeswoman Choi Hyun-soo said. The USFK Korean Employees Union, which represents the workers, said in a statement last week that negotiations “cannot end with the way the U.S. government and President Trump wants.”Negotiators from the U.S. and South Korea met earlier this month in Los Angeles but a wide gap remains between the two sides, according to a State Department spokesman who asked not to be identified discussing private deliberations. The official said that South Korea will need to show more focus and flexibility to reach a deal, without specifying what the U.S. is asking or what South Korea is offering.While the U.S. and South Korea have been bargaining, North Korea has been busy testing new types of solid-fuel, nuclear-capable ballistic missiles designed to strike anywhere on the peninsula and evade U.S. interceptors. It has fired off at least nine in March alone, a record for a month.Kim warned on Dec. 31 that bigger provocations could soon come, saying he was no longer bound by a previous promise to halt testing of nuclear weapons and long-range ballistic missiles. On Monday, a top diplomat was quoted in a state media report issuing a new threat, saying Secretary of State Michael Pompeo’s pressure campaign against Pyongyang will result in North Korea looking “to repay the U.S. with actual horror and unrest for the sufferings it has inflicted upon our people.”North Korea Fires Missiles Off Its East Coast; 4th Volley This Month The negotiations in South Korea could affect other U.S. allies hosting troops, such as Japan, with Esper saying the Trump administration wants them to pay more, too. Japanese officials are watching the South Korea negotiations closely with the approach of talks set to begin later this year for a U.S-Japan cost-sharing deal.Daniel Pinkston, a lecturer in international relations at Troy University in Seoul and a former Korean linguist with the U.S. Air Force, said the difficulty in reaching a troop-funding deal “sends the wrong signal to allies, competitors, and challengers who must be questioning U.S. commitments and resolve.”“It increases the likelihood of miscalculation, arms-racing, WMD proliferation, and even armed conflict,” Pinkston said.(Updates with South Korean statement in fifth paragraph.)For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

    Tue, 31 Mar 2020 06:00:22 -0400
  • J&J just sped up the timeline for its coronavirus vaccine, and said it could be ready for emergency use early next year

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    The drugmaker said human testing will start no later than September on the potential coronavirus shot.

    Mon, 30 Mar 2020 09:13:00 -0400
  • U.S. records 700 coronavirus deaths in a single day for first time

    Golocal247.com news

    The U.S. government raced to build hundreds of makeshift hospitals to ease the strain on overwhelmed healthcare systems as the United States marked 700 deaths in a single day from COVID-19 for the first time on Tuesday. Nearly half those deaths were in New York state, still the epicenter of the coronavirus pandemic, and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio pleaded for reinforcements from the Trump administration, saying the worst may still be weeks away. De Blasio, a Democrat, said he had asked the White House for an additional 1,000 nurses, 300 respiratory therapists and 150 doctors by April 5 but had yet to receive an answer from the Trump administration.

    Tue, 31 Mar 2020 17:01:27 -0400
  • India manhunt after Islamic gathering becomes virus hotspot

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    A large religious gathering in New Delhi has sparked a manhunt across India for suspected coronavirus cases after being linked to dozens of infections and several deaths. The gathering emerged as one of India's major virus hotspots after thousands flocked to an Islamic religious centre in the Nizamuddin West neighbourhood of Delhi. Some returned home to other states after the gathering, but many remained in the vicinity, saying they were trapped because public transport had been shut down due to the virus.

    Tue, 31 Mar 2020 09:08:30 -0400
  • Pandemic Puts the Screws to New York’s Mafia. In Italy, the Mobs Are Thriving.

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    ROME—The New York mafia is taking a hit from the novel coronavirus pandemic after many of its money-making outlets have been shuttered. Gambling halls, sporting events, and construction projects have long fed the Empire State gangs, but now that they are taking an “historic” blow, a law-enforcement source told the New York Post. “There’s never been a time when they weren’t making money through gambling,” the source said. The American mafia families are also losing out on the extortion racket after restaurants and other entities close their doors under New York City’s “shelter in place” order. A halt to non-essential construction jobs, which includes transportation and port entry, has also put a dent in the U.S. mob’s profits.But that is not the case in Italy, where authorities warn that the mafia will most certainly cash in on the pandemic. There is already concern that various criminal groups are involved in the construction of field hospitals and importation of medical supplies like masks and other equipment. They are also still dealing drugs, making loans, and controlling large swaths of the agricultural industry, which is one of the few sectors still in full operation to feed the 60 million locked-down Italians.Franco Gabrielli, head of the Public Security for Italy’s Central Anti-Crime Directorate, or DAC, told reporters this week that the “economic vocation” of the Italian mafia syndicates means that they will easily find a way to infiltrate all sectors still serving the locked-down public. But the real money will be made when the lockdown ends, Gabrielli says, noting that the current crisis will be “the bearer of a liquidity deficit, of a profound restructuring of the labor market, of the consequent influx of huge national and EU public funding.”Gabrielli said this week that the criminal groups will be able to easily recruit cash-strapped entrepreneurs who need loans to help restart the Italian economy. Those loans will be hard to secure from banks, which will take a huge hit during the economic downfall the pandemic has already caused in Italy.The DAC has already dispatched anti-mafia squads to carry out surveillance on known mobsters as they make plans. After the pandemic red zones open up, he says they will create “organized-crime red zones in areas with the highest density of economic and financial mafia contagion.”As in the years after World War II, when various organized-crime syndicates gained footing across the country, the post-pandemic world will be good for crime. “The mafia has been able to adapt itself punctually to any social, economic, geopolitical transformation,” Gabrielli says. “Criminal syndicates have adapted to new technological and communication platforms as well as to the new economy and different financial scenarios.”The New York gangs might soon be forced to go back to their old ways to keep up. They are already reportedly considering a return to the narcotics trade, which has been sidelined in recent years for more lucrative rackets, according to the New York Post’s police source. “There’s still deals being made,” the source said, referring to the New York City drug trade under lockdown as a whole, though it remained to be seen just how the mob could get back into the racket without risking their lives to the virus. For decades, anti-mafia fighters from Bobby Kennedy and Rudy Giuliani to Lt. Joseph Petrosino, who was killed by the Cosa Nostra Black Hand racket in 1909, tried to achieve exactly what the coronavirus pandemic has done in just a few short weeks. The Post’s police source summed it up, “This is doing what they couldn’t do.”Read more at The Daily Beast.Get our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.

    Mon, 30 Mar 2020 08:16:55 -0400
  • US warship captain seeks crew isolation as virus spreads

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    The captain of a U.S. Navy aircraft carrier facing a growing outbreak of the coronavirus is asking for permission to isolate the bulk of his roughly 5,000 crew members on shore, which would take the warship out of duty in an effort to save lives. In a memo to Navy leaders, the captain of the USS Theodore Roosevelt said that the spread of the disease is ongoing and accelerating and that removing all but 10% of the crew is a “necessary risk” in order to stop the spread of the virus. Navy leaders on Tuesday were scrambling to determine how to best respond to the extraordinary request as dozens of crew members tested positive.

    Tue, 31 Mar 2020 12:35:42 -0400
  • U.S. is swiftly deporting migrant children at the border

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    "Despite everything I experienced along the way, they deported me the next day," one indigenous teenager from Guatemala told CBS News.

    Mon, 30 Mar 2020 22:23:41 -0400
  • Coronavirus: Anger as migrants sprayed with disinfectant in India

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    Footage shared thousands of times shows a group of workers in India being sprayed with chemicals.

    Tue, 31 Mar 2020 09:33:59 -0400
  • Cuomo: Rate of hospitalizations decreasing

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    New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said on Monday that the rate of hospitalizations because of the coronavirus pandemic is slowing in the state.

    Mon, 30 Mar 2020 15:24:07 -0400
  • McConnell: Impeachment 'diverted' attention from coronavirus concerns

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    The Senate leader also accused Democrats of wanting to "turn the President’s handling of all this into a political liability for him."

    Tue, 31 Mar 2020 13:11:00 -0400
  • Germany could issue thousands of people coronavirus 'immunity certificates' so they can leave the lockdown early

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    The tests could allow thousands of people to leave German states' coronavirus lockdowns early and return to work and other activities.

    Mon, 30 Mar 2020 07:45:00 -0400
  • New coronavirus death rate estimates show how sharply the risk rises with age

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    The fatality rate for people infected with the novel coronavirus is estimated to be less than 1%, according to a new study. It's 1.38% for those with COVID-19.

    Tue, 31 Mar 2020 17:21:59 -0400
  • China zeroes in on coronavirus patients with no symptoms as new infections rise

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    SHANGHAI/BEIJING (Reuters) - China will start releasing information from Wednesday on coronavirus patients who show no disease symptoms, ordering them into quarantine for 14 days, a health official said, after the mainland witnessed its first rise in infections in five days. As local infections peter out and new cases surface among travelers returning home, the existence of virus carriers with no symptoms is fuelling public concern that people could be spreading it without knowing they are ill. From April 1, the daily report of the National Health Commission will include details of such cases for the first time, Chang Jile, a commission official, told a briefing.

    Mon, 30 Mar 2020 20:54:20 -0400
  • India’s coronavirus emergency just beginning as lockdown threatens to turn into human tragedy

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    A week after Narendra Modi ordered the largest national lockdown the planet has ever seen and Delhi's Bhogal market is little quieter than usual. Rather than being confined to home to stop the spread of Covid-19, large groups of residents instead huddle together in the shade, drinking tea and playing cards. Street vendors continue to hawk fresh fruit and vegetables and the police watch as daily life in the capital's backstreets continues, apparently content to enforce movement restrictions only on the capital's major thoroughfares. The failure to abide by the prime minister's decree is due to necessity, rather than defiance, said Muhammad Asif, 21, a cycle-rickshaw driver scanning the crowd for customers. The three-week-long social distancing precautions ordered by Mr Modi are an unaffordable luxury for tens of millions of daily-wage labourers.

    Tue, 31 Mar 2020 15:08:51 -0400
  • No, America’s Response to Coronavirus Isn’t the Worst in the World

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    The coronavirus pandemic is already a catastrophe. How we fare in comparison to the rest of the world is hardly of paramount importance. Once the Chinese government hid the outbreak, failed to contain it, and then misled the world, there remained little possibility that any nation, much less an enormous and open society like the United States, was going to be spared its devastation.Yet, when the political media isn’t preoccupied with a gotcha du jour, pundits, partisans, and journalists have seemed downright giddy to let their minions know that the United States now has the most coronavirus cases in the world. It took a six-siren-emoji tweet from MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough to tell us that fact.Here is how the New York Times’ Paul Krugman framed the number:> America's response to the coronavirus is the worst in the world, which is shocking and has a lot to do with a leader who is completely unfit, temperamentally and intellectually, for the job 1/ pic.twitter.com/sGZuFUukgr> > -- Paul Krugman (@paulkrugman) March 29, 2020A Nobel Prize–winning economist surely understands that we don’t have enough data to definitively declare the United States the world leader in cases. Even if we did, it doesn’t necessarily follow that this is the fault of public policy. There are plenty of unexplained coronavirus disparities around the world.The Financial Times chart that that is circulated by Krugman and his fellow pundits, and sometimes cynically deployed as a means of attacking the administration’s response, is largely useless as a point of comparison. For one thing, a graph illustrating per capita cases in all the nations that the Financial Times chart includes looks different. A chart that combined all the cases in European nations — the continent has approximately the same population as the United States — would also look dramatically different. The known cases in Spain and Italy alone are nearly twice as many as the United States right now.Cross-country comparisons at a given point in time fail to account for many things, including density and time. Iceland is not like Italy, and New York is not like Alaska. And simply because nations such as Italy and Spain experienced outbreaks earlier and more deadly than nations such as Germany and Sweden does not mean the disparities are destined to last.Moreover, testing in the United States began slowly before being ratcheted up quickly (and criticism of that delay is a fair one). Thus, the curve reflects the reality of expanded testing as much as it reflects reality of the disease. And though I’m not a statistician, I do know that nations have varied criteria for testing, varied standards of testing, and varying effectiveness in the testing they do perform. Hundreds of thousands of Chinese coronavirus tests sent to European nations, for example, have turned out to faulty. The data are incomplete. Krugman’s claim lacks vital context.Speaking of China, accepting the veracity of numbers offered by the ChiCom government without any skepticism might be good enough for The New York Times and other outlets, but it shouldn’t be enough for anyone who values facts.It’s also worth mentioning that the timeline of these charts are also uncertain. It’s unlikely we know when the tenth or hundredth case was actually transmitted in China or Iran or even here -- and it’s possible that some people had died and some others had recovered before most people understood the magnitude of the future pandemic.All of this is worth keeping in mind when as we see journalists harping on the overall case number without context. If you want to continue to utilize this once-in-a-century pandemic as a cudgel against your political adversaries, have fun. But the most important gauges of success right now are flattening the curve so that hospitals aren’t overwhelmed with new patients, ramping up our testing capacity to get a better handle on the virus’s properties, and measuring the number of recoveries from coronavirus. Not owning Donald Trump.The United States has already dealt with coronavirus far better than the Chinese government. The fatality rate in the U.S., so far, is nowhere near that of Italy. Our dynamism is one of the reasons why an early high case count is a not a measure of either national success or failure. It’s not our nature to allow the state to close down borders, travel, or trade, or to stop interactions with the world — or with each other, for that matter. And yet, many of same people who incessantly and cynically warned of the coming Fourth Reich are now blaming the administration for not acting like a dictatorship. It’s difficult to keep up.

    Mon, 30 Mar 2020 16:02:37 -0400
  • Hospitals overflowing with bodies in US epicenter of virus

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    It has become a grim ritual outside New York City’s hospitals: workers in protective gear loading the bodies of coronavirus victims into refrigerated trailers. A surge in deaths in the epicenter of the crisis in the U.S. has overwhelmed the city’s permanent morgues and filled storage spaces in many hospitals to capacity. The Federal Emergency Management Agency is sending 85 refrigerated trucks to serve as temporary morgues, the city said.

    Tue, 31 Mar 2020 17:46:12 -0400
  • Police commander killed, 2 officers wounded in Phoenix shooting

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    Commander Greg Carnicle, a 31-year police veteran, died after being shot in the line of duty. Two officers were shot and are expected to recover.

    Mon, 30 Mar 2020 11:07:54 -0400
  • US working on plan to allow virus-hit ship to dock

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    US authorities were finalizing a plan on Tuesday to allow a coronavirus-stricken cruise ship, the Zaandam, to dock in Florida after its operator warned that more passengers may die if it is left out at sea. "Already four guests have passed away and I fear other lives are at risk," Orlando Ashford, president of Holland America Line, said in a column published in the South Florida Sun Sentinel newspaper. The Zaandam, which left Buenos Aires on March 7, was originally meant to dock in Fort Lauderdale on April 7 at the conclusion of a month-long cruise.

    Tue, 31 Mar 2020 21:22:50 -0400
  • With 2020 race all but halted over coronavirus, Biden quietly widens lead over Trump: Reuters/Ipsos poll

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    Democratic presidential front-runner Joe Biden has quietly expanded his lead over President Donald Trump among registered voters, even as the rapidly spreading coronavirus has all but sidelined the former vice president's campaign, according to a Reuters/Ipsos opinion poll released on Tuesday. The poll conducted on Monday and Tuesday of more than 1,100 American adults found that 46% of registered voters said they would support Biden if he were running against Trump in the Nov. 3 election, while 40% said they would vote for Trump.

    Tue, 31 Mar 2020 18:54:06 -0400
  • Boy, 5, found dead near hiking trail after mother said they got lost

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    After spending the night outdoors, the boy's mother left him to seek help on her own, authorities said.

    Tue, 31 Mar 2020 10:24:12 -0400
  • The coronavirus has thick spikes that seem to latch more easily onto human cells than other viruses, according to a 3D map of its structure

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    A study from the University of Minnesota analyzed the structure of the coronavirus and found it latched onto human cells more efficiently than SARS.

    Mon, 30 Mar 2020 16:48:00 -0400
  • Why Taiwan has become a problem for WHO

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    Taiwan is effectively locked out of the World Health Organization - and tensions are rising.

    Tue, 31 Mar 2020 01:23:24 -0400
  • Researchers record 1st-ever heat wave in East Antarctica

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    This January, East Antarctica — an area that previously seemed to be spared from climate warming — experienced its first recorded heat wave.The heat wave was recorded at the Casey Research Station between Jan. 23 and 26, marking the area's highest temperature ever at 48.6 degrees Fahrenheit, while minimum temperatures stayed above 32 degrees Fahrenheit, according to research in Global Change Biology.A rarity in Antarctica, heat waves are known as "three consecutive days with both extreme maximum and minimum temperatures," according to the research.Meanwhile, Denman Glacier — a large glacier in East Antarctica — appears to be rapidly retreating. Its position above the world's deepest known canyon may be causing it to melt faster than it can recover, according to a letter in Geophysical Research Letters, Live Science reports.As the glacier retreats, warm water fills the canyon, which could cause a feedback loop that returns all of the glacier's ice to the ocean, leading to about 5 feet of global sea level rise, reports Live Science. Researchers concluded the retreating of the glacier should be a "wake-up call" to scientists who believed melting in East Antarctica to be less of a threat than that of west Antarctica."Although it is too early for full reports, this warm summer will have impacted Antarctic biology in numerous ways," researchers wrote in their letter on Global Change Biology, noting disruption to ecosystem, community, and populations scales.More stories from theweek.com Washington Gov. Jay Inslee is what real coronavirus leadership looks like The case for cautious optimism about the pandemic The next 2 weeks are going to be 'tough' and 'painful,' Trump warns

    Tue, 31 Mar 2020 16:01:31 -0400
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