April 19, 2016

New nuclear arms race is gearing up says disarmament activist. “So we’re on the precipice of a new arms race, not exactly like the old one with the Soviet Union, because it’s not going to be about huge numbers and…throw weights, …but a new kind of a nuclear arms race that’s about capabilities, about precision guidance, about dial-a-yield options down to very low yields to make them militarily usable in conflict.” http://www.democracynow.org/2016/4/14/a_new_nuclear_arms_race_builds

Former Thai official reportedly arrested for criticizing draft of new constitution. “Under the new law passed by (the) military appointed legislature, those who distort the contents of the draft constitution to the public could face up to 10 years in jail.” http://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/asiapacific/ex-thai-minister-summoned/2707182.html

U.S. troop level in Iraq reportedly rises to 4,000. “Most of the additional troops would probably be Army special forces, who have been used to advise and assist the Iraqis.” http://www.cbsnews.com/news/ash-carter-iraq-isis-mosul-iraqi-us-troops/

Nuclear waste leak reported at Hanford nuclear site. “Significantly more waste has leaked from the inner tank of double-shell waste storage Tank AY-102 as Hanford workers pumped radioactive sludge from the tank this weekend.” http://www.tri-cityherald.com/news/local/hanford/article72452207.html

Leaked IS recruitment documents show those joining are from diverse backgrounds, not well-versed in Islam. “Seventy percent said they had only a basic understanding of sharia.” http://www.nbcnews.com/storyline/isis-uncovered/isis-files-what-leaked-documents-reveal-about-terror-recruits-n557411

Supreme Court hears arguments over Obama administration’s executive action to halt deportations of some undocumented immigrants. “The case, brought by 26 Republican-led states and spearheaded by Texas Governor Greg Abbott, concerns two deportation protections that would shield roughly 5 million undocumented parents of American citizens and legal residents, as well as about 100,000 people brought to the U.S. as children.” http://www.commondreams.org/news/2016/04/18/supreme-court-divided-immigration-bill-challenged-politics-hate

More arrests on final day of D.C. anti-corruption protests, which were focused on voting rights. “Capitol Police say 1,240 people have been arrested in the last seven days.”  http://www.commondreams.org/news/2016/04/18/300-arrests-pro-democracy-forces-converge-final-day-spring-revolt

Wealthy Americans reportedly own 1/3 of the world’s super-yachts. “Owners based in the US own one in three of the world’s luxury super-yachts, defined as a vessel of 30 metres or more, and the yachts have an average value of $10m (£7m).”  http://www.theguardian.com/business/2016/apr/18/superyachts-almost-half-worlds-uk-us-owners

Brazilian opposition leader reportedly in Washington for talks with U.S. officials. “Sen. Nunes is meeting with the chairman and ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Bob Corker, R-Tenn., and Ben Cardin, D-Md.; Undersecretary of State and former Ambassador to Brazil Thomas Shannon; and attending a luncheon on Tuesday hosted by the Washington lobbying firm Albright Stonebridge Group, headed by former Clinton Secretary of State Madeleine Albright and former Bush 43 Commerce Secretary and Kellogg Company CEO Carlos Gutierrez.” https://theintercept.com/2016/04/18/after-vote-to-remove-brazils-president-key-opposition-figure-holds-meetings-in-washington/

Baton Rouge police officer accused of repeatedly punching 16 year-old during arrested. “The footage shows a group of officers gathering around Ja’Colby Davis, who is on the ground face down as a white officer pummels him.” http://www.rawstory.com/2016/04/baton-rouge-cops-under-investigation-after-video-catches-them-beating-16-year-old-boy/

Donald Rumsfeld complains on Twitter that he will probably not live long enough to see a flat income tax, critics pounce: “@RumsfeldOffice at 18, I am close to losing hope that I will live to see you prosecuted for war crimes. @RumsfeldOffice I’m losing hope that you will ever express remorse about destroying a country & killing a few hundred thousand people.” http://www.rawstory.com/2016/04/twitter-pummels-war-criminal-donald-rumsfeld-after-he-laments-that-lifes-too-short/

Hillary Clinton reportedly pledges her unconditional support to Israel. ““Protecting allies and partners like Israel is one of the most solemn duties of any Commander-in-Chief. Yet others in this race suggest we must remain ‘neutral’ in order to negotiate,” Clinton added, in a jab at her opponent Bernie Sanders.” https://www.salon.com/2016/04/18/hillary_clinton_goysplains_to_bernie_sanders_in_passover_article_accusing_him_of_betraying_his_people_by_criticizing_israel/

Government audit finds Veterans Affairs hospitals still fudging wait times. “The findings bolster recent claims by VA whistle-blowers that schedulers across the country are still falsifying wait times.” http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2016/04/18/va-hasnt-fixed-wait-time-problems-gao-finds/83045046/

Colorado school district to arm campus officers with semi-automatic rifles. “(Rich) Payne, (Director of Safety and Security for the Douglas County school district) declined to answer questions about how many rounds the rifles can fire or training and qualification for the officers who will use the guns.” http://www.thedenverchannel.com/news/local-news/douglas-county-school-district-purchased-10-long-rifles-for-security-director-of-security-says

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April 19, 2016

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