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HeadlinesNovember 02, 2022

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Russia Rejoins Grain Export Deal; Water and Power Restored in Kyiv Following Russian Attacks

Nov 02, 2022

Russia has announced it is rejoining a deal allowing for grain shipments from Ukraine’s ports. This comes just four days after Russia withdrew from the deal, sparking fears it could worsen the global hunger crisis. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said the renewed deal would prioritize grain shipments to Somalia, Djibouti, Sudan and other African nations. Russia said it rejoined the deal after Ukraine agreed not to use the sea corridor to attack Russian forces.

Water and power have been restored to much of Kyiv following a series of Russian attacks on Ukraine’s infrastructure, but scheduled blackouts are ongoing due to a shortage of electricity.

Meanwhile, Russia has expanded a mandatory evacuation order for Ukrainians living in parts of occupied Kherson ahead of what is expected to be a major battle. In other news about the Ukraine war, the founder of one of Russia’s largest banks has given up his Russian citizenship. In a statement on Instagram, the billionaire Oleg Tinkov called Russia a “fascist country” and denounced it for “killing innocent people daily.”

Benjamin Netanyahu Poised to Return to Israeli Leadership with Far-Right Alliance

Nov 02, 2022

Benjamin Netanyahu appears on the cusp of becoming Israel’s prime minister again, 16 months after being ousted from office. Exit polls in the Israeli election suggest Netanyahu’s Likud party and its far-right allies gained enough votes to form a parliamentary majority. If Netanyahu succeeds, a key member of his government will likely be Itamar Ben-Gvir, an ultranationalist lawmaker who openly supports the ethnic cleansing of Palestinians. In 2007, he was convicted of incitement to racism and supporting a terrorist organization. Netanyahu served as prime minister from 1996 to 1999 and then again from 2009 to 2021. He is currently on trial for corruption.

Jair Bolsonaro Refuses to Admit Defeat But Allows Presidential Transition to Move Ahead

Nov 02, 2022

In Brazil, defeated far-right President Jair Bolsonaro made his first public statements Tuesday, two days after he lost the presidential election to leftist former President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva. Bolsonaro neither conceded nor contested the election results, but after he spoke, his chief of staff said the transition to a new administration would start. Bolsonaro also urged his supporters to stop disruptive protests, though many continued to block streets and major highways on Tuesday night.

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North Korea Launches 23 Missiles, Warns U.S. & South Korea over War Games

Nov 02, 2022

South Korea is accusing North Korea of firing a missile into South Korean waters for the first time since the nations were divided in the 1950s. This came as North Korea launched a total of at least 23 missiles into the sea today. South Korea responded by firing three missiles into waters off North Korea. This all came as the United States and South Korea were carrying out large war exercises involving hundreds of warplanes and thousands of troops. On Tuesday, North Korea warned the U.S. and South Korea would pay “the most horrible price in history” if the war games continued.

U.S. Judge Limits Voter Intimidation by Far-Right Vigilantes; PA Says Undated Absentee Ballots Invalid

Nov 02, 2022

In Arizona, a federal judge imposed a restraining order on members of the far-right, Trump-supporting group Clean Elections USA, including barring the open carry of firearms and wearing of body armor close to ballot boxes. The move comes as armed individuals have been seen intimidating voters and taking photos or videos at ballot drop boxes and polling sites. The Justice Department said Tuesday that “vigilante ballot security efforts” in Arizona likely violate the Voting Rights Act.

In more voting news, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court sided with Republicans Tuesday and ruled mail-in ballots without a written date on their outer envelope could not be counted. The ACLU of Pennsylvania condemned the decision, saying, “No one should be disenfranchised for an irrelevant technicality.” Pennsylvania is home to two closely watched races: the Senate race between Democrat John Fetterman and Republican Mehmet Oz, and the Pennsylvania gubernatorial race between the state’s Democratic Attorney General Josh Shapiro and right-wing state Senator Doug Mastriano, a 2020 election denier.

Liz Cheney Stumps for Democrat Elissa Slotkin, Backs Tim Ryan Against Trump Supporter J.D. Vance

Nov 02, 2022

In Michigan, Republican Congressmember Liz Cheney campaigned for incumbent Democratic Congressmember Elissa Slotkin Tuesday. Cheney told the crowd she has never stumped for a Democrat before but that “we all must stand and defend the republic.” Earlier yesterday, Cheney said in an interview she supported Ohio Democrat Tim Ryan in his Senate race against Trump-supporting J.D. Vance. Cheney was largely shunned from the Republican Party after coming out against Trump, voting to impeach him and taking part in the House committee investigating the January 6 insurrection. She lost her August primary against the Trump-backed Harriet Hageman.

Abrams Makes Final Push in GA Gov. Race as Biden Speaks to Voters in Florida

Nov 02, 2022

Democrats in key states are making their final appeals to voters this week. In Georgia, gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams took aim at sitting Governor Brian Kemp as she spoke to supporters Tuesday.

Stacey Abrams: “This is a man who’s banned books. He’s banned children. He’s banned abortion. He’s banned background checks. He’s banned the truth. And it’s time for us to ban him from the governor’s office.”

Meanwhile, President Biden traveled to Florida yesterday and warned voters Republicans would cut Medicare and Social Security if they win the elections.

SCOTUS Blocks Transfer of Trump Tax Documents, Rules Lindsey Graham Must Testify in GA 2020 Probe

Nov 02, 2022

Chief Justice John Roberts temporarily blocked the Treasury Department from handing over Donald Trump’s tax records to the House Ways and Means Committee. The House committee has until November 10 to respond to Trump’s latest appeal. If Republicans take the House of Representatives in the midterms, it’s likely the demand for records will expire and will not be further pursued once the new Congress is seated.

Also on Tuesday, the Supreme Court refused to block a Georgia grand jury subpoena for Senator Lindsey Graham to testify about Trump’s efforts to overturn the 2020 presidential election results. Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis says Graham called Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger after the election and asked about “reexamining certain absentee ballots … to explore the possibility of a more favorable outcome for former President Donald Trump.”

Biden Admin Weighing Sending Haitian Asylum Seekers to Guantánamo Bay

Nov 02, 2022

NBC News is reporting the Biden administration is considering expanding operations at the U.S. military base and prison at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, to hold Haitians who are caught at sea trying to reach the United States. This comes as Haiti is facing a growing political and humanitarian crisis. In the 1990s, the United States used Guantánamo to hold as many as 12,000 Haitians who fled the country following the U.S.-backed 1991 coup.

Dozens of Migrants Missing After Two Shipwrecks Off Greek Coast

Nov 02, 2022

In the Mediterranean, the Greek Coast Guard says they have found 11 survivors after a boat carrying migrants capsized in rough waters off the Greek coast. Dozens of others remain missing. The survivors are nationals of Egypt, Afghanistan and Iran. A separate search and rescue operation continues for another shipwreck, which had a dozen people on board. Four Palestinians have been rescued, and one person was found dead.

Nobel Laureates Draw Attention to Egypt’s Jailing of Activists Ahead of COP27

Nov 02, 2022

Fifteen Nobel laureates have signed on to a letter to world leaders ahead of this month’s U.N. climate summit, asking them to “devote part of your agenda to the many thousands of political prisoners held in Egypt’a prisons — most urgently, the Egyptian-British writer and philosopher, Alaa Abd el-Fattah, now six months into a hunger strike and at risk of death.” The majority of the Nobel literature laureates since 1986 signed the letter.

Egypt Releases Detained Climate Activist Ajit Rajagopal Amid Crackdown on Protests

Nov 02, 2022

Egyptian authorities released Indian climate activist Ajit Rajagopal earlier this week, after detaining him as he undertook a “March for Our Planet” on foot from Cairo to Sharm el-Sheikh, where COP27 will be held. This is Rajagopal describing his detention.

Ajit Rajagopal: “I was kept there for hours and hours and the whole night. They have not informed me well what is the charge against me, what are they going to do, what should I — how can I help them in the process. Nothing was being informed. And even I didn’t get any food from them, as well, even water, as well.”

An Egyptian human rights group says at least 67 people have been arrested over the past week and a half as part of a crackdown ahead of the climate conference.

Just Stop Oil Activists Take Aim at U.K. Gov’t Buildings to Highlight Climate Crisis

Nov 02, 2022

In Britain, campaigners with the group Just Stop Oil blocked the gates to Downing Street, home to the office and residence of the prime minister, as some glued their hands to the street during an act of civil disobedience Tuesday. A day earlier, activists sprayed orange paint onto four buildings in Central London: the Bank of England, the Home Office, the MI5 domestic intelligence agency and the headquarters of News Corp. The protests capped a month of action aimed at disrupting daily life to demand immediate action on the climate crisis.

Protester: “It’s criminal inaction, criminal inaction on the climate crisis. The U.N. say you need to act. The IPCC say you need to act. The IMF, the World Bank all say you need to act. And yet the government does nothing. What does it do? It issues new fossil fuel licenses. It says we need to drain every last drop of oil out of the North Sea.”

Rapper Takeoff Killed in Houston Shooting

Nov 02, 2022

In Houston, Texas, 28-year-old rapper Takeoff was killed early Tuesday in a shooting outside of a bowling alley. His record label said he was the victim of a stray bullet. Takeoff, born Kirshnik Khari Ball, was one-third of Atlanta-based supergroup Migos, known for such hits as “Versace” and “Bad and Boujee.” There have been over 370 homicides in Houston in 2022; early data suggests over 80% of these involved guns.

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NYC Starbucks/Amazon Go Workers File Union Petition; NLRB Says Ithaca Starbucks Must Reopen

Nov 02, 2022

In labor news, workers at a Starbucks/Amazon Go store in New York City have filed a petition for a union election with Starbucks Workers United. Employees say they work two jobs but only get paid for one since they’re both acting as baristas for Starbucks and also stocking shelves and tracking inventory for Amazon’s convenience store. Meanwhile, unionized workers at the Starbucks Roastery in New York City are in the second week of a strike over unsafe and unsanitary working conditions, including a bed bug infestation and mold in the ice machines.

In related news, the National Labor Relations Board says Starbucks broke the law when it closed an Ithaca store in upstate New York as retaliation against unionizing workers. The NLRB says Starbucks should reopen the store and compensate workers for lost wages.

Investigation into 1921 Greenwood Race Massacre Uncovers Another 17 Bodies

Nov 02, 2022

In Tulsa, Oklahoma, investigators searching for victims of the 1921 Greenwood massacre have discovered another 17 bodies buried in a mass grave in a local cemetery. It is believed 300 African Americans were killed and 1,000 injured when a white mob descended upon and destroyed the Black neighborhood known as “Black Wall Street.” None of the white supremacists were ever arrested in connection with the violence, which included aerial bombardment with dynamite and incendiaries on the 35-block community.

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