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HeadlinesDecember 07, 2023

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More Palestinian Civilians Killed as Israel’s Assault on Gaza Enters Third Month

Dec 07, 2023

Israeli tanks have advanced into the center of the city of Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip as Israel’s assault on the besieged Palestinian territory enters its third month. On Wednesday, an Israeli strike on the Jabaliya refugee camp killed 22 family members of Moamen Al-Sharafi, a correspondent for Al Jazeera Arabic, including his parents and siblings. Palestinians in parts of southern Gaza that Israel has claimed are safe continue to come under fire. This is Amir Magnam, a 5-year-old boy injured Wednesday when an Israeli strike hit a school in eastern Khan Younis where his family was sheltering.

Amir Magnam: “I went into the classroom and went to play with my friend. Then suddenly I heard a sound going boom, and we ran. A rock fell on me, on my legs, and then I ran away.”

Reporter: “Who got injured?”

Amir Magnam: “Father. A big rock fell on father, hit him here on the leg. A big rock fell on me here on my leg.”

As Israeli Siege Continues, U.N. Warns 97% of Gazans Have “Inadequate” Food Supplies

Dec 07, 2023

Gaza’s Health Ministry says Israeli attacks have killed more than 16,200 people — more than 7,100 of them children. In a new report, the World Food Programme finds at least 97% of households in northern Gaza have “inadequate” supplies of food to meet their needs. A third of residents of southern Gaza reported high levels of “severe” or “very severe” hunger.

Reuters Investigation Reveals Israeli Tank Killed Journalist Issam Abdallah and Injured 6 Others

Dec 07, 2023

In Lebanon, a Reuters investigation has revealed an Israeli tank crew killed one of its journalists and wounded six other reporters on October 13 by firing two shells in quick succession from Israel while the journalists were live-streaming cross-border shelling. The attack killed Reuters videographer Issam Abdallah and injured six others, including Agence France-Presse reporter Christina Assi. Reuters has condemned the killing and is demanding that Israel explain its actions.

U.N. Chief António Guterres Invokes Article 99 in Rare Move to Force Debate on Gaza Ceasefire

Dec 07, 2023

United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres has invoked Article 99 of the U.N. Charter in a bid to force a debate at the Security Council on a resolution calling for a humanitarian ceasefire in Gaza. Guterres’s spokesperson Stéphane Dujarric announced the move on Wednesday.

Stéphane Dujarric: “The secretary-general urges the members of the Security Council to press to avert a humanitarian catastrophe, and he appeals for a humanitarian ceasefire to be declared.”

It’s the first time Guterres has invoked Article 99 since he became U.N. secretary-general seven years ago — and just the fourth time in U.N. history.

Doctors Without Borders Holds Vigil for Medical Workers Killed in Gaza

Dec 07, 2023

In New York City, medical workers with the French charity Médecins Sans Frontières, or Doctors Without Borders, held a candlelight vigil outside the United Nations headquarters Wednesday calling for a ceasefire in Gaza as they honored colleagues who’ve been killed by Israel’s assault on hospitals and clinics. Four MSF staff members are among the hundreds of medical workers who have been killed in Israel’s attacks since October. This is Dr. Africa Stewart, an obstetrician and chair of MSF’s board of directors.

Dr. Africa Stewart: “We speak out now because you cannot deliver humanitarian aid while you fear for your own life. I’m here for the mommies. I’m here to remind us how hard it is to run full speed when you’re pregnant, how debilitating it is to decide if you’re going to hold your toddler’s hand or a parent’s hand as you flee. Our colleagues are being killed at the bedside of our patients. This must stop. We need basic perinatal care, which includes water and food and electricity.”

Senate GOP Blocks $111 Billion Package with Military Funding for Ukraine, Taiwan and Israel

Dec 07, 2023

Members of the Senate blocked a procedural vote Wednesday on a $111 billion emergency supplemental bill to provide military aid to Ukraine, Taiwan and Israel. Every Republican voted against the package, after party leaders argued the bill didn’t go far enough toward further militarizing the U.S.-Mexico border. Vermont independent Senator Bernie Sanders also voted “no.”

Gunman Kills 3 People on University of Nevada, Las Vegas Campus

Dec 07, 2023

At the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, a gunman killed three people and wounded a fourth on Wednesday before he was fatally shot by police. The suspect has not been named but is reportedly a 67-year-old career professor with connections to colleges in Georgia and North Carolina. Las Vegas is the site of the worst mass shooting in modern U.S. history after a gunman killed 60 people at a 2017 music festival.

Kevin McCarthy Announces Retirement 2 Months After Ouster as House Speaker

Dec 07, 2023

Former Republican House Speaker Kevin McCarthy said Wednesday he will resign from Congress at the end of the year. McCarthy’s planned departure comes two months after he became the first House speaker in U.S. history to be removed by members of their own party. Under California law, a special election must be held in about four months’ time to decide who will represent McCarthy’s district in California’s Central Valley. His departure further shrinks Republicans’ slim majority in the House, after lawmakers voted last week to expel New York congressmember and serial fabulist George Santos.

Presidential Hopefuls Attack Transgender Youth in 4th Republican Debate

Dec 07, 2023

In Alabama, just four candidates took part in the fourth Republican presidential primary debate Wednesday evening. Donald Trump again skipped the debate, holding a fundraiser instead. Host Megyn Kelly set the stage for an unabated attack on transgender youth; here she questions former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, who opposes trans healthcare bans, citing parental rights.

Megyn Kelly: “The surgeries done on minors involve cutting off body parts at a time when these kids cannot even legally smoke a cigarette. Kids who go from puberty blockers to cross-sex hormones are at a much greater likelihood of winding up sterile. How is it that you think a parent should be able to OK these surgeries, never mind the sterilization of a child? And aren’t you way too out of step on this issue to be the Republican nominee?”

Chris Christie: “No, I’m not, because I — because Republicans believe in less government, not more, in less involvement with government, not more government involvement in people’s lives.”

Other candidates took host Megyn Kelly’s bait to attack trans rights and cite medical falsehoods, with businessman Vivek Ramaswamy calling “transgenderism” a “mental health disorder.” Florida Governor Ron DeSantis had this exchange with former Trump U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley.

Gov. Ron DeSantis: “If you’re somebody that’s going to be the president of the United States and you can’t stand up against child abuse, how are you going to be able to stand” —

Nikki Haley: “I never said that.”

Gov. Ron DeSantis: — “up for anything?”

Nikki Haley: “I” —

Gov. Ron DeSantis: “That is the truth.”

Nikki Haley: “I never said that.”

Gov. Ron DeSantis: “We have it — we have it on video.”

Nikki Haley: “I said — I said that if you have to be 18 to get a tattoo, you should have to be 18 to have anything done to change your gender.”

Gov. Ron DeSantis: “You said the law should stay out of it.”

Trump Says He Won’t Be a Dictator If Reelected, “Other Than Day One”

Dec 07, 2023

Front-runner Donald Trump appeared in a Fox News town hall Tuesday night, where he told host Sean Hannity he would not be a dictator if he becomes president again, “other than day one.” He also told Hannity his priorities would be to “close the border” and “drill, drill, drill.”

In related news, Georgia prosecutors have put former Vice President Mike Pence on their possible witness list in their sweeping 2020 election interference case.

Ex-President Alberto Fujimori Released from Peruvian Prison on “Humanitarian Grounds”

Dec 07, 2023

In Peru, former President Alberto Fujimori walked free from prison Wednesday after the Constitutional Court ordered his release on humanitarian grounds. The 85-year-old Fujimori had been serving a 25-year sentence since 2009 for the murder of 25 Peruvians during his rule in the 1990s. This is Gisela Ortiz, former culture minister of Peru and the sister of one of the victims of the 1992 Cantuta massacre, in which death squad members disappeared and murdered a university professor and nine students.

Gisela Ortiz: “As relatives of massacre victims, we demand for the law to be respected. Law is equal for everyone, even if your last name is Fujimori. The processes and paperwork must be followed. If he is entitled to a pardon, this will be proven, but we don’t want for our right to justice to be mocked, for years of hard work from relatives to be stomped on because everything is part of a political arrangement.”

Norman Lear, Prolific Activist and Producer Who Changed the Landscape of Television, Dies at 101

Dec 07, 2023

The legendary television producer and longtime political activist Norman Lear has died at the age of 101. In the 1970s, Norman Lear helped revolutionize TV sitcoms with a string of hit shows including “All in the Family,” “Sanford and Son,” “The Jeffersons,” “Good Times” and “Maude.” Lear’s social and political activism earned him a place on Richard Nixon’s enemies list and the scorn of the Christian right. In response, he founded People for the American Way, a progressive advocacy group, in 1980. This is Norman Lear speaking in a 2016 interview with Democracy Now!

Norman Lear: “I think it was H.L. Mencken who once said, 'Nobody ever lost money underestimating the intelligence of the American people.' To some degree, the establishment lives with that and makes its decisions on behalf of the American people with that in mind. I disagree. I think, you know, we are provably not the best educated, but we’re wise of heart, and we understand a lot more than we’re given credit for.”

Legendary Linguist, Professor and Public Intellectual Noam Chomsky Turns 95

Dec 07, 2023
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