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China angered at new U.S. defense act, to assess content

China angered at new U.S. defense act, to assess content China on Tuesday condemned measures targeting it in a new U.S. defense act, saying it exaggerated antagonism and that Beijing would take a close look at aspects that beef up the role of a U.S. panel that reviews foreign investment proposals. China's complaints about the act come as the world's two biggest economies engage in an increasingly bitter fight over trade, levying tariffs on each others' products. U.S. President Donald Trump signed a $716-billion defense policy act on Monday that authorizes military spending and waters down controls on U.S. government contracts with China's ZTE Corp and Huawei Technologies Co Ltd .


New Mexico family believed dead boy's spirit would lead attacks: prosecutors

New Mexico family believed dead boy's spirit would lead attacks: prosecutors A 3-year-old boy found buried at a New Mexico desert compound died in a ritual to "cast out demonic spirits," but his extended family believed he would "return as Jesus" to identify "corrupt" targets for them to attack, prosecutors said in court on Monday. Prosecutors' account of an exorcism-like ritual, allegations of weapons training for children and references to martyrdom and conspiracy were aimed at persuading a judge to deny bond for the five adults charged with child abuse in the case. Defense attorneys said prosecutors sought to criminalize their clients for being African-Americans of Muslim faith.


Firefighters gain on major California blazes as heat wave breaks

Firefighters gain on major California blazes as heat wave breaks A break in the brutal heat wave that has baked California for much of the summer gave firefighters a chance to attack a string of major wildfires across the state that have killed eight people and destroyed thousands of homes. The cooler temperatures, off triple digits across much of Northern California, came during a two-day tour of the area by two Trump administration officials, U.S. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke and U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue. The intensity of this year's fire season, one of California's worst in more than a decade, showed the need for clearing underbrush and removing dead trees, Zinke told KRCR-TV during the visit.


Trump signs defense policy bill with watered-down China measures

Trump signs defense policy bill with watered-down China measures U.S. President Donald Trump signed a $716 billion defense policy bill on Monday that authorizes military spending and includes watered-down controls on U.S. government contracts with China's ZTE Corp and Huawei Technologies Co Ltd [HWT.UL]. Trump signed the law at the U.S. Army's Fort Drum base in upstate New York on his way back to Washington after a 12-day working vacation at his golf club in New Jersey. The bill was named for one of Trump's political critics, the ailing U.S. Senator John McCain of Arizona, but he did not mention McCain's name.


Trump signs defense policy bill with watered-down China measures

Trump signs defense policy bill with watered-down China measures U.S. President Donald Trump signed a $716 billion defense policy bill on Monday that authorizes military spending and includes watered-down controls on U.S. government contracts with China's ZTE Corp and Huawei Technologies Co Ltd. Trump signed the law at the U.S. Army's Fort Drum base in upstate New York on his way back to Washington after a 12-day working vacation at his golf club in New Jersey. The bill was named for one of Trump's political critics, the ailing U.S. Senator John McCain of Arizona, but he did not mention McCain's name.


Boy at New Mexico compound died in ritual ceremony, prosecutors say

Boy at New Mexico compound died in ritual ceremony, prosecutors say Authorities found the remains at a ramshackle compound north of Taos where 11 other children were found alive but malnourished in a raid on the site 10 days ago. The prosecutor said during a court hearing for five adults arrested on charges of abusing the 11 children that they had been trained to use weapons and defend the compound in the event of an FBI raid. The adults, including three women who police said were the mothers of the 11 children, were charged with 11 counts of felony child abuse.


Former Transmar executive sentenced to three years prison for fraud

Former Transmar executive sentenced to three years prison for fraud Former Transmar Commodity Group Ltd chief executive Peter G. Johnson was sentenced to three years in prison on Monday after he pleaded guilty to defrauding banks in order to win a $400 million credit line for the now bankrupt New Jersey-based cocoa trading company, prosecutors said. Prosecutors had said in a court filing that federal guidelines would call for a sentence of more than 15 years.


Florida man charged in 'stand your ground' shooting

Florida man charged in 'stand your ground' shooting The suspect, Michael Drejka of Clearwater, was taken into custody on Monday, the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office said in a statement. “We did our own investigation," said Bernie McCabe, the state attorney for Pinellas and Pasco Counties who filed the charges in explaining his decision to prosecute. The law, which removes legal responsibility to retreat from a dangerous situation, was cited as a factor in the fatal 2012 shooting of unarmed black teenager Trayvon Martin by a volunteer neighborhood watch captain who was eventually acquitted.


Got a story to tell (or sell)? Better back it up with a tape

Got a story to tell (or sell)? Better back it up with a tape Some years ago, I accidentally carried a tape recorder into an interview with a senior national-security official in a secure US government building. US presidents, of course, have been responsible for the most – and probably most consequential – secret recordings of unguarded political conversations.


Firefighters gain on major California blazes as heat wave breaks

Firefighters gain on major California blazes as heat wave breaks A break in the sizzling heat wave that has baked California for much of the summer gave firefighters a chance to attack a string of major wildfires burning across the state that have killed eight people and destroyed thousands of homes. The cooler temperatures came during a two-day tour of devastated neighborhoods by U.S. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke and U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue. Zinke told local KRCR-TV during the visit that the intensity of this year's fire season showed the need for clearing underbrush and removing dead trees.


Can fighting corruption help Arab states sell painful economic reforms?

Can fighting corruption help Arab states sell painful economic reforms? Across the Arab world, cash-strapped governments are flying the anti-corruption flag. Tunisia, in the midst of year-long anti-corruption campaign, passed a law in July requiring officials and members of Parliament to declare their assets.


The qualities of mediating a US-Iran settlement

The qualities of mediating a US-Iran settlement Since May, the United States and Iran have appeared on course for confrontation. President Trump pulled the US out of the 2015 nuclear deal with Tehran. Iran’s forces in Syria began to threaten Israel. In August, Mr. Trump imposed new sanctions on Iran and sought to reduce Iranian oil exports to zero. Iran then warned of a regional war if the US pushed too hard.


3 missing men at the Manafort trial

3 missing men at the Manafort trial The absence of three witnesses offers intriguing hints about potential ongoing investigations and additional prosecutions that could yet take place.


A nearly-cashless Zimbabwe tests the limits of mobile money

A nearly-cashless Zimbabwe tests the limits of mobile money Just go to Zimbabwe instead. Here, grocery store cash registers still yawn open when a payment is processed, as if by instinct, but where cash should be there are only empty plastic slots. Signs at gas stations, maternity hospitals, and even informal backyard bars implore customers to pay by EcoCash, a form of digital currency.


Trump attacks ‘wacky,’ ‘vicious,’ ‘not-smart’ former protégé Omarosa

Trump attacks ‘wacky,’ ‘vicious,’ ‘not-smart’ former protégé Omarosa President Trump said former White House aide Omarosa Manigault Newman was “vicious,” “not smart” and regularly missed meetings.


Trump adviser Stephen Miller's uncle: My nephew is 'an immigration hypocrite'

Trump adviser Stephen Miller's uncle: My nephew is 'an immigration hypocrite' Stephen Miller, the architect of some of Trump’s most controversial anti-immigration policies, has been assailed by critics who are quick to point out that Miller himself is a grandchild of refugees. Now Miller’s own uncle is joining the outcry.


Washington white nationalist rally sputters in sea of counterprotesters

Washington white nationalist rally sputters in sea of counterprotesters A large police presence kept the two sides separated in Lafayette Square, in front of the White House. After two hours and a few speeches, the "Unite the Right 2" rally ended early when it began to rain and two police vans took the demonstrators back to Virginia. Sunday's events, while tense at times, were a far cry from the street brawls that broke out in downtown Charlottesville a year ago, when a local woman was killed by a man who drove his car into a crowd of counterprotesters.


Meager Unite the Right 2 rally exposes limits of white supremacist movement

Meager Unite the Right 2 rally exposes limits of white supremacist movement The Charlottesville anniversary event drew a handful of white supremacists, who were far outnumbered by counterprotesters.


Parkland students bring the March for Our Lives summer tour to an end in Newtown

Parkland students bring the March for Our Lives summer tour to an end in Newtown The organizers of the Road to Change tour have visited over 50 cities in an effort to register and mobilize voters ahead of the 2018 midterm elections — and to build a coalition of youth in communities affected by gun violence.


Magnitude 6.4 earthquake hits Alaska's oil-producing North Slope

Magnitude 6.4 earthquake hits Alaska's oil-producing North Slope A magnitude 6.4 earthquake struck on Sunday near the native Alaskan village of Kaktovik and part of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge where the Trump administration plans to allow oil drilling, but no injuries or damage were reported. The temblor, which occurred just before 7 a.m. (1500 GMT), was the most powerful on record to hit Alaska's oil-producing North Slope, said Paul Huang, a seismologist and deputy director of the National Tsunami Warning Center in Palmer, Alaska. No tsunami alert was generated, though ground motion was felt as far away as Fairbanks, Alaska, nearly 400 miles (644 km) to the south.


Washington white nationalist rally sputters in sea of counterprotesters

Washington white nationalist rally sputters in sea of counterprotesters A large police presence kept the two sides separated in Lafayette Square, in front of the White House. After two hours and a few speeches, the "Unite the Right 2" rally ended early when it began to rain and two police vans took the demonstrators back to Virginia. Sunday's events, while tense at times, were a far cry from the street brawls that broke out in downtown Charlottesville a year ago, when a local woman was killed by a man who drove his car into a crowd of counterprotesters.


'Unite the Right' marchers a few – anti-fascists a many

'Unite the Right' marchers a few – anti-fascists a many White nationalists who marched on Washington and rallied at a park near the White House have left the area in white vans under a police escort. The demonstration led by the principal organizer of last year’s “Unite the Right” event in Charlottesville, Virginia, Jason Kessler, ended earlier than expected. Thousands of counterdemonstrators showed up to jeer and shout insults at the white nationalists as they made their way through Washington streets.


Charlottesville remembers Heather Heyer – Her mom revisits the site of her tragic death 1 year ago

Charlottesville remembers Heather Heyer – Her mom revisits the site of her tragic death 1 year ago The mother of a woman killed when a car plowed into a crowd of counterprotesters at a white nationalist rally last summer said Sunday there’s much healing to do a year after the violence in Charlottesville, Virginia. Heather Heyer’s mother, Susan Bro, visited the site of the attack on Sunday afternoon. The vigil was one in a series of largely peaceful community events held in Charlottesville over the weekend to mark the one-year anniversary of the rally, one of the largest gatherings of white nationalists and other far-right extremists in a decade.


Magnitude 6.5 earthquake hits Alaska, no initial reports of damage

Magnitude 6.5 earthquake hits Alaska, no initial reports of damage (Reuters) - A magnitude 6.5 earthquake struck 40 miles (64 km) southwest of Kaktovik in Alaska, the U.S. Geological Survey said on Sunday.


Smoke gets in your eyes: wildfires sting California park tourism

Smoke gets in your eyes: wildfires sting California park tourism For the past two weeks, a wildfire has forced much of Yosemite National Park in California to close, with smoke blanketing its famous rock formations and clouding the summer travel season for one of the largest tourism economies tied to a U.S. park. Steven Anker, 53, has seen business decrease by 80 percent at his Priest Station Café in nearby Groveland."People come to Yosemite to see the outdoors. Wildfires burning in the U.S. West have scorched 5.6 million acres (2.3 million hectares) this year, including parts of other national forests, the National Interagency Fire Center said on its website.


NASA launches probe to go deep into Sun's scorching atmosphere

NASA launches probe to go deep into Sun's scorching atmosphere The craft will endure extreme heat while zooming through the solar corona to study the Sun's outer atmosphere that gives rise to the solar winds. It is set to fly into the Sun's corona within 3.8 million miles (6.1 million km) of the solar surface, seven times closer than any other spacecraft. The corona gives rise to the solar wind, a continuous flow of charged particles that permeates the solar system and can cause havoc with communications technology on Earth.


FBI seeks motive after U.S. airline worker steals plane, crashes it

FBI seeks motive after U.S. airline worker steals plane, crashes it A Horizon Air ground service agent got into a Bombardier Q400 turboprop aircraft on Friday night in a maintenance area at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport and took off, Horizon sister carrier Alaska Airlines said. Relatives and co-workers identified the man as Richard Russell of Sumner, Washington, who also went by the name Beebo. "He was a faithful husband, a loving son, and a good friend," the Russell family said in a statement.


More than 100 large wildfires in U.S. as new blazes erupt

More than 100 large wildfires in U.S. as new blazes erupt (Reuters) - Six large new wildfires erupted in the United States, pushing the number of major active blazes nationwide to over 100, with more expected to break out sparked by lightning strikes on bone-dry terrain, authorities said on Saturday. More than 30,000 personnel, including firefighters from across the United States and nearly 140 from Australia and New Zealand, were battling the blazes that have consumed more than 1.6 million acres (648,000 hectares), according to the National Interagency Coordination Center. "We are expecting that there will be more fire-starts today," Jeremy Grams, lead forecaster with the National Weather Service's Storm Prediction Center in Oklahoma, said in an interview on Saturday.


FBI seeks motive after U.S. airline worker stole plane and crashed it

FBI seeks motive after U.S. airline worker stole plane and crashed it A Horizon Air ground service agent got into a Bombardier Q400 turboprop aircraft on Friday night in a maintenance area at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport and took off, Horizon sister carrier Alaska Airlines said. "There were some maneuvers that were done that were incredible maneuvers with the aircraft," Beck said. In partial recordings of the employee's conversations with air traffic controllers that were published online by Broadcastify.com, the man said he was sorry to disappoint people who cared about him and described himself as a "broken guy." "Got a few screws loose, I guess," he is heard saying in the recording.


Charlottesville on high alert on the anniversary of white supremacist violence

Charlottesville on high alert on the anniversary of white supremacist violence A group of anti-fascist activists rallied peacefully in downtown Charlottesville as the city marks the anniversary of last summer's white supremacist violence. Saturday marks a year since white nationalists marched through the University of Virginia campus with torches, clashing with a group of counterprotesters. The following day, a much larger gathering of white nationalists near a downtown park erupted into violence.


Mountain lion breaks into Colorado home, kills family cat

Mountain lion breaks into Colorado home, kills family cat A mountain lion crawled into a Colorado home and killed a family’s pet house cat and fled into a canyon after wildlife officers shot it with non-lethal bean bag rounds to force it outside, authorities said on Friday. The prowling cougar came through an unlocked screen door at a home in Boulder in the Colorado foothills late Thursday night while the occupants were not home, Jason Clay, spokesman for Colorado Parks and Wildlife, said in a statement. The residents, who were not named, discovered the mountain lion inside their residence when they arrived home, and called police who then summoned the wildlife agency, Clay said.


Fifth body found in crashed Alaska plane; no body recovery planned

Fifth body found in crashed Alaska plane; no body recovery planned A fifth body was found on Friday in the wreckage of an Alaska sightseeing plane that crashed near North America's tallest peak, leaving no doubt the pilot perished with his four Polish passengers on the steep mountainside, authorities said. The impact left the plane in two pieces, lodged in the crevasse of a hanging glacier nearly 11,000 feet high on a steep, avalanche-prone slope from which unstable ice blocks are protruding, Park Service officials said. “The tail and fuselage of the aircraft are just hanging on by a piece of metal,” Park Service spokeswoman Katherine Belcher said.


Yankees emerge as key evidence in Paul Manafort trial

Yankees emerge as key evidence in Paul Manafort trial A package of baseball season tickets owned by President Trump’s former campaign manager Paul Manafort was a major topic of discussion on Friday at his trial for charges including money laundering, financial fraud and tax investigation.


California police chief's son charged in beating of Sikh man

California police chief's son charged in beating of Sikh man Tyrone McAllister, 18, whose parents assisted police in tracking him down following Monday's attack in the town of Manteca, about 75 miles east of San Francisco, was arraigned in San Joaquin County Superior Court and ordered held on $300,000 bond. Court records show a public defender was appointed to represent McAllister, and he was scheduled to return to court on Aug. 17. A video of the attack, which occurred in a park and was recorded by a security camera on a nearby house, was posted online by municipal authorities.


Monsanto ordered to pay $289 million in world's first Roundup cancer trial

Monsanto ordered to pay $289 million in world's first Roundup cancer trial The case of school groundskeeper Dewayne Johnson was the first lawsuit to go to trial alleging glyphosate causes cancer. Monsanto, a unit of Bayer AG following a $62.5 billion acquisition by the German conglomerate, faces more than 5,000 similar lawsuits across the United States. The jury at San Francisco's Superior Court of California deliberated for three days before finding that Monsanto had failed to warn Johnson and other consumers of the cancer risks posed by its weed killers.


Bank sped up Manafort loan approval as CEO sought Trump cabinet job: witness

Bank sped up Manafort loan approval as CEO sought Trump cabinet job: witness Dennis Raico, a former Federal Savings Bank executive testifying under immunity, said the bank's chief executive, Steve Calk, expressed interest in such posts as Treasury secretary or Housing and Urban Development secretary. Calk took a "personal interest" in Manafort's loan applications and expedited them, Raico said. One loan was approved a day after a July 27, 2016, call in which Calk let it be known to Manafort he wanted a role in the administration.


Mother of slain youth, Michael Brown, running for Ferguson City Council

Mother of slain youth, Michael Brown, running for Ferguson City Council Lezley McSpadden announced her candidacy at an emotionally charged rally surrounded by supporters, a day after the fourth anniversary of her son's death, which thrust the St. Louis suburb into the global spotlight as an emblem of troubled U.S. race relations. McSpadden, a onetime grocery store worker who founded and runs a charitable foundation in her son's name dedicated to various social causes, had previously hinted at her intention to seek a City Council seat at an event in April. "I learned to walk again, and this is one of my first steps, running for Ferguson City Council of 2019." McSpadden, who earned her high school diploma last year at age 37, said her three main focuses would be community policing, economic equality and healthcare access, especially for children.


Judge encouraged by U.S. plan to reunite separated immigrant families

Judge encouraged by U.S. plan to reunite separated immigrant families The reunification plan set forth in a Thursday night court filing described several processes to locate parents who had been removed from the country, determine their intentions for their children, and ensure that children remain safe. "There's no question the government has put in a great deal of thought into this," U.S. District Judge Dana Sabraw in San Diego said at a hearing. The plan provided that the government would resolve concerns about the children's safety and parentage.


Michael Brown's mom seeks reinvestigation, City Council seat

Michael Brown's mom seeks reinvestigation, City Council seat ST. LOUIS (AP) — The Missouri governor's office said Friday it doesn't have the authority to appoint a special prosecutor reinvestigate the 2014 fatal police shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, despite pressure from Brown's mother to do so.


St. Louis DA victory latest for Black Lives Matter movement

St. Louis DA victory latest for Black Lives Matter movement When LaShell Eikerenkoetter cast her vote for Wesley Bell in the St. Louis County Democratic primary on Tuesday, she took the spirit of Michael Brown with her to the ballot box.