Gunman Kills 12 People During Virginia Beach Rampage

Jun 03, 2019

New details emerged over the weekend in the mass shooting in Virginia Beach in which a gunman opened fire on a municipal building, killing 12 people. Four people remained in critical condition Sunday. The gunman, 40-year-old DeWayne Craddock, who also died from gunshot wounds, had worked at the site of the massacre for 15 years as an engineer. He emailed his resignation earlier that day, although authorities say he was in good standing at work. From 1996 to 2002, he was a member of the Virginia National Guard. Authorities say the gunman used two legally bought .45 caliber pistols and that they found two more firearms at his home. No motive has yet been found for the mass murder. On CBS’s “Face the Nation” Sunday, Democratic Virginia Senator Mark Warner called for congressional action on gun control.

Sen. Mark Warner: “This just doesn’t happen in other civilized nations at this level of violence. … I have felt that we ought to take steps against assault weapons. The suppressors, I’d like to hear what the legitimate reason is in terms of either self-defense or hunting.”

Friday’s rampage was the deadliest mass shooting in the U.S. so far this year.

DHS Watchdog Warns of “Dangerous Overcrowding” at El Paso Migrant Prison

Jun 03, 2019

Homeland Security’s internal watchdog warned of “dangerous overcrowding” at migrant prisons on the U.S. southern border. In a report released Thursday, inspectors said they saw 900 people jammed into facilities in El Paso, Texas, intended for a maximum capacity of 125 people. Some of the imprisoned migrants were forced to stand for days due to lack of space, while some had to stand on toilets to get breathing space. The report advised Customs and Border Protection to take “immediate steps” to remedy the situation. President Trump has sought to place blame for the increase in migrants on the Mexican government. On Thursday, he threatened to impose a 5% tariff on Mexican goods starting next week, until Mexico cracks down on Central American migrants heading for the U.S. border. The tariff would increase 5% every month until it hits 25%. Mexican officials are set to hold talks with the Trump administration this week.

El Salvadoran Transgender Migrant Dies in ICE Custody After Denial of Medical Care

Jun 03, 2019

In more news from the border, Johana Medina, a transgender asylum seeker from El Salvador, died while in Immigration and Customs Enforcement custody on Saturday, according to several LGBT groups and advocates who knew her. Medina had sought medical treatment for over two months for complications related to HIV/AIDS before finally being transferred to an El Paso hospital, but did not survive. Johana Medina is believed to be the second transgender migrant to die in ICE custody since Trump became president.

Judge Temporarily Keeps Missouri’s Sole Abortion Clinic Open

Jun 03, 2019

In Missouri, a judge granted a temporary restraining order to Planned Parenthood, allowing the state’s only abortion clinic to remain open after health department officials refused to renew its license. The fate of the clinic is still uncertain, however, and another hearing is scheduled for tomorrow.

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Military Forces in Sudan Raid Sit-in, Killing At Least 9 Protesters

Jun 03, 2019

In the Sudanese capital Khartoum, at least nine people have been reported killed after military forces raided an ongoing sit-in in front of the Defense Ministry Monday morning. Soldiers reportedly launched tear gas, followed by sound grenades, to disperse protesters, before opening live fire. Demonstrators from a range of civil society groups are demanding a civilian transitional government following the overthrow of President Omar al-Bashir in April, after a months-long popular uprising, and the military’s subsequent government takeover. Protesters moved to other parts of the city to continue their demonstration.

Last week, Sudanese authorities shut down Al Jazeera’s Khartoum bureau and banned the outlet’s reporters.

Protesters Set Fire Outside U.S. Embassy in Honduras

Jun 03, 2019

In Honduras, protesters set fire to the front of the U.S. Embassy in the capital Tegucigalpa Friday. No injuries were reported. The fire came amid massive protests against plans by President Juan Orlando Hernández to privatize healthcare, pensions and education. This is protester and activist Wilfredo Méndez.

Wilfredo Méndez: “Hopefully the U.S. congressmen and senators who are Democrats can present this message with force to the Trump administration, who is supporting this dictator, Juan Orlando Hernández. This is a clear expression of repudiation to a U.S. administration that has supported a dictatorship and turned its back on the Honduran people.”

Police Tear-Gas, Arrest Palestinian Protesters as Israeli Settlers Enter Al-Aqsa Mosque

Jun 03, 2019

In Jerusalem, hundreds of ultranationalist Jewish settlers entered the Al-Aqsa Mosque on Sunday flanked by heavily armed Israeli forces, provoking protests by Palestinians. Police arrested seven people, using tear gas, rubber bullets and pepper spray to disperse the protesters. It was the first time in three decades that Israel allowed Jews into the site during the final days of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, and came on Jerusalem Day—an Israeli commemoration of the 1967 occupation of East Jerusalem.

Trump Blasts Brexit, Insults Meghan Markle, While London Mayor Protests His U.K. Visit

Jun 03, 2019

President Trump is in the U.K. for a state visit amid both public and political opposition. London Mayor Sadiq Khan blasted Trump and Britain’s red carpet welcome ahead of his trip, comparing Trump and other far-right heads of state to fascist leaders of the 20th century. In an op-ed for The Guardian, Mayor Khan took aim at Trump’s family separation policy, his defense of the 2017 white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, and the Muslim travel ban. Sadiq Khan is the first Muslim mayor of London.

In an interview with The Sunday Times ahead of his visit, Trump said Britain should refuse to pay the nearly $50 billion Brexit bill and “walk away” if they do not get what they want from the EU in the contentious deal. Trump also recently said former Foreign Minister Boris Johnson would make an “excellent” replacement for Prime Minister Theresa May, who is set to leave office at the end of the week after resigning over her failure to pass a Brexit deal in Parliament.

President Trump and first lady Melania were welcomed at Buckingham Palace by Queen Elizabeth and Prince Charles today. The Duchess of Sussex Meghan Markle was not present. Trump called Markle “nasty” during an interview with The Sun, after he learned she came out against his 2016 candidacy, calling him “misogynistic” and “divisive.” Trump denied making the comment about Markle, who is African-American, but Trump’s own re-election campaign put out a recording and transcript of the interview showing he did call her “nasty.”

Report: Disappearance and Murder of 1000s of Indigenous Women a “Canadian Genocide”

Jun 03, 2019

In Canada, a national inquiry found that the disappearance and murder of thousands of indigenous women and girls over decades amounts to a “Canadian genocide.” The report, which was obtained by CBC News ahead of its official release today, says that “We do know that thousands of Indigenous women, girls and 2SLGBTQQIA (two-spirit, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, questioning, intersex and asexual) have been lost to the Canadian genocide to date” and are the result of “state actions and inactions rooted in colonialism and colonial ideologies.”

U.S. Visa Applicants Must Now Submit 5 Years of Social Media Information

Jun 03, 2019

New State Department rules that went into effect on Friday will require all U.S. visa applicants to submit their social media information for the past five years. The information would give authorities access to applicants’ photos, locations, among other personal data often shared on social media platforms. When the Trump administration first proposed the new rules last year, the ACLU warned that “It will infringe on the rights of immigrants and US citizens by chilling freedom of speech and association, particularly because people will now have to wonder if what they say online will be misconstrued or misunderstood by a government official.”

Over 300 Boeing Planes May Have Faulty Wing Parts

Jun 03, 2019

The Federal Aviation Administration said Sunday that over 300 of Boeing’s 737 aircraft could have faulty parts on their wings. The issue would affect both MAX and NG—or Next Generation—jets, the MAX’s predecessor, and is due to a possible manufacturing flaw in their “leading edge slat tracks,” which guide the panels used on the wing during takeoffs and landings to provide additional lift. Boeing 737 MAX airplanes have been grounded worldwide following the fatal crash of an Ethiopian Airlines jet in March, less than five months after Indonesia’s Lion Air crash in October of last year. The two crashes killed everyone on board, a total of 346 people.

CA Rep. Duncan Hunter Says His Unit Probably Killed “Hundreds of Civilians” in Iraq

Jun 03, 2019

And California Congressmember Duncan Hunter is coming under fire after saying he and his unit probably killed “hundreds of civilians” while serving in Iraq in 2004. Hunter made the comments during an episode of the Barstool Sports podcast “Zero Blog Thirty” while defending Navy SEAL officer Edward Gallagher, who was released from custody Thursday as he awaits his trial for alleged war crimes.

Edward Gallagher is facing charges of shooting unarmed civilians and killing a wounded captive teenager by stabbing him with a knife, then staging a re-enlistment ceremony over the teenager’s dead body, which he then photographed and reportedly texted to a fellow Navy SEAL. During the interview, Hunter also acknowledged taking a photo with a dead combatant, and said “a lot of us have done the exact same thing.” This is Congressmember Hunter responding to a question about the killing of the captive teenager.

Rep. Duncan Hunter: “I frankly don’t care if he was killed. I just don’t care. And that’s my personal point of view. And as a congressman, that’s my prerogative to help a guy out like that. If—even if everything that the prosecutors say is true in this case, then, you know, Eddie Gallagher should still be given a break, I think.”

Edward Gallagher is due to stand trial on June 10 for his alleged war crimes. Separately, Duncan Hunter is facing charges related to the misuse of campaign funds and is set to face trial later this year.

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