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HeadlinesJuly 03, 2024

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Hurricane Beryl Threatens Jamaica with Life-Threatening Winds and Waves

Jul 03, 2024

Residents of Jamaica are bracing for life-threatening winds and storm surge as Hurricane Beryl is set to make landfall Wednesday afternoon. The now-Category 4 storm has left a trail of devastation across the Caribbean, killing at least six people. Ahead of the storm’s arrival, Jamaican Prime Minister Andrew Holness called for stronger climate action from wealthier nations.

Prime Minister Andrew Holness: “Hurricane Beryl is the earliest Category 5 hurricane on record. It highlights the growing impact of climate change on global weather patterns, particularly on small island developing states like Jamaica. While our carbon emissions are minuscule, our region bears the brunt of the impacts of climate change. The hurricane further highlights the urgent need for global climate action and targeted support to enhance resilience against the escalating dangers of climate change.”

Only two other hurricanes have made landfall in Jamaica in the last 40 years. Later in the broadcast, we’ll get an update from Ralph Gonsalves, prime minister of St. Vincent and the Grenadines.

Israeli Strike Kills Prominent Gaza Doctor and 8 Members of His Family

Jul 03, 2024

Gaza’s Health Ministry says Israeli attacks have killed at least 28 Palestinians and wounded 125 others in the past 24 hours, after Israel’s military put a quarter-million Palestinians in the city of Khan Younis under evacuation orders. Among the dead is Dr. Hassan Hamdan, head of the burns and plastic surgery department at Nasser Hospital. He was killed along with eight members of his family after Israel struck their house in Deir al-Balah. Just hours earlier, the family had followed Israel’s evacuation order and fled north.

Meanwhile, hundreds of sick and injured patients fled the European Hospital on foot ahead of another ground invasion of Khan Younis by Israeli soldiers. This is Khan Younis resident Mahdi Abu Siraj.

Mahdi Abu Siraj: “There are no other hospitals. All the hospitals were destroyed. Half of them collapsed and went out of service, except the European Hospital. And now it seems that it will go out of service and there will no longer be hospitals. Whoever gets wounded will die.”

Sewage Floods Khan Younis After Israeli Assault Decimates Sanitation System

Jul 03, 2024

Palestinian health officials are warning of the spread of disease after Israel’s assault on Khan Younis destroyed water and sanitation infrastructure, flooding entire neighborhoods with sewage and dirty water. Resident Mohammed al-Bayouk said the disaster is threatening the health of his children.

Mohammed al-Bayouk: “When the Israeli army entered Khan Younis, they caused a lot of damage, and sewage flooded into homes. What you see here is nothing. The greater suffering is what our children endure at home in the stench of the sewage. … The smell has caused many diseases for our children and little ones. We cough. We suffer from the bad smell. Everything. Our children suffer from itching, bed bugs and other strange things. We can’t sleep at night because of the mosquitoes.”

12 U.S. Government Officials Who Quit over Gaza Assault Urge Ex-Colleagues to Speak Out

Jul 03, 2024

A dozen former Biden administration officials who resigned their posts to protest U.S. policy toward Gaza, Palestine and Israel have written an open letter calling on their former colleagues to amplify calls for peace. The 12 former U.S. government officials write, “This failed policy has not achieved its stated objectives — it has not made Israelis any safer, it has emboldened extremists while it has been devastating for the Palestinian people, ensuring a vicious cycle of poverty and hopelessness.”

This week, Maryam Hassanein, special assistant at the U.S. Interior Department, became the 12th person to quit over Biden’s support for the Gaza assault. At 24 years old, she’s the youngest such resignee. In 2020, Hassanein cast her first-ever vote for president of the United States — for Joe Biden. She spoke to Democracy Now! on Tuesday.

Maryam Hassanein: “I resigned, ultimately, because I felt it necessary to advocate for Palestinians, who are, at the hands of Israel, undergoing a genocide. And with the U.S.'s kind of funding and backing and support of Israel, I felt that being in the executive branch, especially being a Biden-Harris appointee, made me complicit, made me associated with something that I most definitely don't want to be associated with.”

Click here to see our interviews with other Biden administration officials who’ve resigned to protest U.S. support for the assault on Gaza.

New York Court Delays Trump Felony Sentencing Trial Until Sept. 18 

Jul 03, 2024

Here in New York, a Manhattan judge has postponed Donald Trump’s felony sentencing trial until September 18. Trump was convicted on 34 felony charges of attempting to unlawfully influence the 2016 presidential election by falsifying business records to cover up hush money payments made to adult film star Stormy Daniels. The delay gives Trump’s lawyers more time to persuade a judge the conviction should be thrown out following the Supreme Court’s landmark ruling that Trump has broad immunity from prosecution for official acts he committed as president.

Rudy Giuliani Disbarred in New York over Efforts to Overturn 2020 Election

Jul 03, 2024

Former President Trump’s ex-lawyer Rudy Giuliani has been stripped of his license to practice law in New York over his lies and false statements about the 2020 election and his efforts to overturn Joe Biden’s victory. On Tuesday, a panel of New York appellate court judges ruled that Giuliani “not only deliberately violated some of the most fundamental tenets of the legal profession, but he also actively contributed to the national strife that has followed the 2020 Presidential election, for which he is entirely unrepentant.” Giuliani already faces criminal charges for election interference in Arizona and Georgia; his law license remains under review in Washington, D.C.

Democrats Show Signs of Panic as Biden Blames Dismal Debate Performance on Exhaustion

Jul 03, 2024

President Biden is meeting with Democratic governors behind closed doors today as party leaders grow increasingly panicked about Biden’s dismal performance in last week’s presidential debate, where the president appeared halting, disjointed and frequently lost his train of thought. On Tuesday, Biden told donors at a campaign fundraiser in Virginia that he “almost fell asleep onstage” — something he blamed on exhaustion from international travel. His remarks came as The New York Times reported that aides and others who’ve encountered Biden behind closed doors notice that he has increasingly appeared confused or listless, or would lose the thread of conversations.

On Tuesday, California Congressmember and former Democratic Speaker Nancy Pelosi said both Biden and Trump should take mental fitness tests. And for the first time, a sitting Democratic member of Congress has called on Biden to step aside. Lloyd Doggett represents Texas’s 37th Congressional District in Austin. He spoke Tuesday evening with CNN’s Anderson Cooper.

Rep. Lloyd Doggett: “And I think we would be better off if we had a new candidate, who could present a new vision for our country. And we can do that if we have an open and fair democratic process over the next few weeks.”

121 Killed in Stampede at Overcrowded Religious Festival in Uttar Pradesh, India

Jul 03, 2024

In India, at least 121 people were killed at an overcrowded religious gathering in Uttar Pradesh state Tuesday, when a sudden surge of thousands of worshipers triggered a stampede. Event planners had sought permission for up to 80,000 people to attend, but an estimated quarter of a million showed up. 

Protesters in Kenya Condemn Police Brutality After William Ruto’s Bloody Crackdown on Dissent

Jul 03, 2024

Youth-led mass protests are continuing across Kenya, even after President William Ruto withdrew an unpopular tax bill in response to the unrest. Protesters took to the streets of the coastal city of Mombasa Tuesday denouncing police violence against demonstrators. They were met by armed forces who fired tear gas and charged at demonstrators.

Derrick Antonio: “Gen Zs are suffering because of lack of jobs, lack of jobs. There is no job in Kenya. People are trying, are starving. They are working hard, but there’s nothing they can get.”

Since protests began in mid-June, the Kenya National Human Rights Commission estimates at least 39 people have been killed. Most casualties happened when police opened fire at crowds that gathered at the Parliament complex in Nairobi last week. Over 360 people have been injured in what the commission described as “excessive and disproportionate” police force.

Indigenous Political Prisoner Leonard Peltier Denied Parole Again

Jul 03, 2024

Indigenous leader and political prisoner Leonard Peltier has again been denied parole and won’t be eligible for another full hearing until 2039 — when he would be 94 years old. Peltier, who is 79, has been behind bars for nearly half a century for a crime he says he did not commit. His health continues to deteriorate. His 1977 conviction for alleged involvement in killing two FBI agents in a shootout on the Pine Ridge Reservation was riddled with irregularities and prosecutorial misconduct. Supporters vow to continue to fight for his freedom.

Attorney Martin Stolar, Who Spent Decades Defending Social Justice Activists, Dies at 81

Jul 03, 2024

The civil rights and criminal defense attorney Martin R. Stolar has died. Over a legal career spanning more than half a century, Stolar represented anti-Vietnam war protesters, Black Panthers, Attica prisoners and members of Occupy Wall Street. In 2015, Martin Stolar spoke on Democracy Now! after he won acquittal for activists arrested during Flood Wall Street protests against the climate crisis.

Martin Stolar: “The court found all 10 defendants not guilty, releasing them and basically endorsing the position that they took, that climate change is a serious, urgent problem requiring attention, and basically complimenting the defendants for being out there and protesting. And then, because the police department made a mistake in the way they ordered people to leave the demonstration area, the judge said the order to leave was impermissible under the Constitution, and therefore he found all the defendants not guilty for violating an unlawful order.”

Martin Stolar was 81 years old. 

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