News Burst 10 August 2022
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News Burst 10 August 2022 – Featured News
- FBI agents raided Donald Trump’s residence in Mar-A-Lago, Florida on Monday, in a move the former US president called “political persecution.” While the Justice Department has not officially commented on the operation, several major US news outlets reported the raid may have been related to boxes of classified documents Trump took with him from the White House, citing “persons familiar” with the matter. “These are dark times for our Nation, as my beautiful home, Mar-A-Lago in Palm Beach, Florida, is currently under siege, raided, and occupied by a large group of FBI agents,” Trump said in a statement released around 7 pm Eastern Standard Time on Monday, adding that “nothing like this has ever happened to a President of the United States before.” According to Trump, the raid was “unannounced” and the agents “even broke into my safe.” He called the operation “not necessary or appropriate,” branding it a “weaponization” of the justice system by Democrats who “desperately” don’t want him to run for president in 2024.
- The administration of US President Joe Biden is “weaponizing” federal agencies against his political opponents and turning the country into a “banana republic,” Governor Ron DeSantis said on Tuesday, responding to the FBI raid on Donald Trump’s Florida residence. The night raid was “another escalation in the weaponization of federal agencies against the Regime’s political opponents,” DeSantis tweeted, contrasting the treatment to that of Hunter Biden, the son of the president, who is under investigation for alleged financial crimes. The governor claimed that the planned hiring of tens of thousands of additional agents by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) fit the pattern as well, blasting the US as a “banana republic.”
- U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres called for international inspectors to be given access to the Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant after Ukraine and Russia traded accusations over shelling of Europe’s largest atomic complex at the weekend.
- Hong Kong will shorten the COVID hotel quarantine period for all arrivals to three days from seven, taking another step to gradually unwind stringent pandemic rules that have isolated the Asian financial hub.
- On August 7, the US Senate passed the Inflation Reduction Act, which, according to the Democrats, should lower healthcare costs for Americans and reduce the federal budget deficit. The bill has been harshly criticized by Republicans, who claim that it will only deepen the recession in the country. On Monday, US President Joe Biden, during a visit to view flood damage in Kentucky, commented on the Inflation Reduction Act, which was recently passed in the Senate. While the US president apparently tried to praise the bill, the phrasing he used had an unintended effect on the public. “What we’re doing today, what we passed yesterday, helping to take care of everything from health care to God knows what else,” Biden said.
- Up to 100,000 tonnes of chemical weapons of Nazi Germany left after World War II could be resting at the bottom of the Baltic Sea ready to trigger an environmental disaster due to inevitable corrosion, Polish newspaper Gazeta Wyborcza reported on Tuesday. The newspaper said it was difficult to estimate the exact amount of mines, barrels and bombs piled up on the Baltic seabed, but gauged it at between 40,000 to 100,000 tonnes. According to Gazeta Wyborcza, the chemical weapons in question are mainly barrels of mustard gas, and aviation bombs and mines containing chemical warfare agents, mainly mustard and arsenic. A mustard gas bomb can pollute water in a radius of up to 70 meters (230 feet), killing flora and fauna, as follows from a study conducted by the Polish Academy of Sciences, cited by the newspaper. Nazi chemical weapons were buried in the Baltic Sea in the first years after World War II by the decision of a specially created Trilateral Commission, comprising of the United States, the United Kingdom and the Soviet Union.
- Billionaire hedge fund manager Ray Dalio’s huge popularity in China has not only drawn local investors flocking to his funds but also spawned home-grown challengers using his ‘All Weather’ strategy and brand to try to beat him at his own game. Now, the Connecticut-based hedge fund giant he founded, Bridgewater Associates, is pushing back.
- Biden signed into law the CHIPS and Science Act of 2022, which lawmakers approved in late July. The legislation provides $52.7 billion in funding to strengthen the United States’ semiconductor manufacturing and supply chains, as well as over $200 billion for scientific endeavors. The bill also serves to boost US competitiveness with China, which spends more than twice what the US does on science as a percentage of gross domestic product. The legislation, which aims to separate the US from Chinese semiconductor supply chains, will limit normal cooperation between the US and China in science and technology, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian said last month.
- Late last year, UK media reported that thousands of Afghans who had helped shore up Britain’s efforts in Afghanistan before the Taliban seized power there in mid-August 2021 are still living in the South Asian nation. The UK government is being sued by at least six Afghan translators who collaborated with the British army during their deployment in Afghanistan and were allegedly left behind during last year’s evacuation from the country, according to Sky News. The broadcaster cited one of the translators as saying that he’d lodged a legal challenge after his relocation application under the ARAP (Afghan Relocations and Assistance Policy) scheme was rejected. “I’m really afraid and I’m in hiding. I’m feeling so unhappy. I live like in a prison. My message to the British Army ‘we saved the lives of the British soldiers and now it’s time to save my life and my family’s life’,” the man, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, pointed out.
- Pope Francis’s July 24-29 tour of Canada included a long-overdue apology to Native Canadians for the Catholic Church’s central role in abuses perpetrated at the country’s network of residential schools. The notorious boarding school system was funded and organized by Canada’s federal government and run by Catholic and Protestant churches. It oversaw the forceful and systematic assimilation, abuse, enslavement and even murder of Native Canadian boys and girls from the mid-19th to late 20th centuries. It was a particularly brutal and cruel, but by no means first or only, tool of oppression experienced by indigenous peoples during the European colonialists’ history in North America. “I am here because the first step of my penitential pilgrimage among you is that of again asking forgiveness, of telling you once more that I am deeply sorry. Sorry for the ways in which, regrettably, many Christians supported the colonizing mentality of the powers that oppressed the indigenous peoples. I am sorry. I ask for forgiveness, in particular, for the ways in which many members of the Church and of religious communities cooperated, not least through their indifference, in projects of cultural destruction and forced assimilation promoted by the governments of that time, which culminated in the system of residential schools,” Francis said at the former site of the Ermineskin Residential School in Maskwacis, Alberta on July 25.
- Over 200,000 people died when the first nuclear bombs were used by the US against Japan in the last month of the Second World War. An uncounted number also died from the bombs’ consequences, such as from cancer or acute radiation syndrome. The last bomb, the notorious ‘Fat Man’, was dropped by the US 77 years ago on August 9, 1945, on the Japanese city of Nagasaki. Nagasaki hosted several industrial plants supplying the imperial army, as well as 263,000 people, of whom only 9,000 were military, living in the densely populated quarters around the factories. The White House justified the bombing by arguing the need to end the war with Japan quickly and with fewer losses on the US side, but even nowadays it tends to avoid tough questions concerning the massive civilian casualties involved. The immense destruction and casualties had a lasting psychological effect on the public and the governments around the globe, prompting a shared posture that nukes, which have evolved to become many times more powerful than ‘Fat Man’, should be kept as a deterrence and not as actual means of waging war.
- Skyrocketing gas prices have forced Germany’s largest crematorium to switch to a 24/7 work schedule, its management has said. The head of Rhein-Taunus-Krematorium in Dachsenhausen, Karl-Heinz Konsgen, told Bild on Monday that his establishment has come up with a new way to “cope without gas during cremations.” The facility, which is located in the western state of Rhineland-Palatinate, found that heating up its eight furnaces every day had become too expensive due to a spike in gas prices caused by EU sanctions on Russia and fears that Moscow could cut its reduced supply altogether. “In addition to the price increase of 600%, the announcement of the alert phase of the gas emergency plan by the state economy minister is causing uncertainty for us,” Konsgen explained.
- The ‘Grand Duchy of Lithuania’ will destroy ‘Mongol’ Moscow if the ‘Mongols’ of China invade Taiwan, a ruling party MP from the small Baltic state has declared. Matas Maldeikis chairs the parliamentary committee for relations with Taiwan and has antagonized China before, by leading a delegation of lawmakers to the disputed island in 2021. “If the Mongols invade Taiwan, we will retaliate by destroying the small Mongol village called ‘Moscow,’” Maldeikis tweeted last week, as the Chinese military began exercises around the island. “The Grand Duchy of Lithuania stands with Taiwan!” he added, alongside a portrait of the 14th-century Lithuanian king Algirdas.
- Pfizer Inc on Monday agreed to pay $5.4 billion in cash for sickle cell disease drugmaker Global Blood Therapeutics (GBT.O), as it looks to capitalize on a surge in revenue from its COVID-19 vaccine and treatment. Pfizer will pay $68.50 per GBT share, which represents a 7.3% premium to its Friday closing price and a nearly 43% premium over Thursday’s closing price after Bloomberg reported that GBT had attracted takeover interest. The Wall Street Journal reported on Friday that Pfizer was in advanced talks to buy it. Pfizer Inc. and Global Blood Therapeutics, Inc. (GBT) today announced the companies have entered into a definitive agreement under which Pfizer will acquire GBT, a biopharmaceutical company dedicated to the discovery, development and delivery of life-changing treatments that provide hope to underserved patient communities, starting with sickle cell disease (SCD).
- A big molecular complex is called Sgr B2, very near the center of the Milky Way. In it is a cloud called GCM0.693-0.027, which is well suited to look for complex molecules. In fact, nitriles have been found in it before, but a new study turned to a pair of telescopes to look for more. Using the IRAM 30-meter and Yebes 40-meter radio telescopes in Spain, astronomers detected quite a few more of molecules in the cloud, including ones with such fun names as cyanic acid, cyanoallene, and cyanopropyne. They used radio telescopes because of the odd way these molecules emit light. These new observations add to the list of these types of molecules detected in space. These molecules may have formed in cold nebulae called molecular clouds. These can be gigantic, hundreds of light years across, like the Perseus Molecular Cloud and the Orion Molecular Cloud.Some of them have been found in the Taurus Molecular Cloud as well, which attests to their ubiquity; they seem to form easily in different clouds.
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News Burst 10 August 2022 – Bonus Video
Palm Beach, Florida
Donald Trump: “Last night, FBI agents broke into my home in Palm Beach, Florida, and broke the safe. This is an attack for my candidacy.” Many Americans showed up in front of the house to show solidarity with Donald Trump.
News Burst 10 August 2022 – Earthquakes
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