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3 Found With Drones Near Nuclear Plant Are Questioned in France

November 6, 2014 by legitgov

3 Found With Drones Near Nuclear Plant Are Questioned in France 6 Nov 2014 Two men and a woman were being questioned by the police on Thursday after being arrested in possession of two drones near the Belleville-sur-Loire nuclear power plant in central France, news agencies reported. The arrests follow a wave of at least 14 illegal drone flights over French nuclear plants in recent weeks, which have raised concerns about the security of the country's main source of electricity...Law enforcement officials told Agence France-Presse that the three were suspected of having illegally flown two drones near the plant.

U.S. Muslim leaders say FBI pressuring people to become informants

November 6, 2014 by legitgov

U.S. Muslim leaders say FBI pressuring people to become informants 3 Nov 2014 Muslim leaders nationwide say the FBI is pressuring some Islamic community members and religious leaders to spy on fellow Muslims as part of a government effort to combat extremist recruiting in the U.S. The campaign has intensified in recent weeks, with mosques in California, Texas, Minnesota, Ohio, Florida and other states reporting unannounced visits by FBI agents, according to the Council on American-Islamic Relations, or CAIR, the nation's largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization. In a nationwide alert, the group urged mosque and community leaders to seek the advice of an attorney if they are approached by the FBI for questioning. They worried that the civil rights of numerous imams were being violated as the religious leaders were asked to meet with FBI agents, who then pressed them to inform on members of their congregations.

Fukushima disaster site 'like a science fiction film'

November 6, 2014 by legitgov

Fukushima disaster site 'like a science fiction film' --Science journalist Ranga Yogeshwar has gained extensive access to Japan's battered Fukushima power plant. He speaks to DW about exploring radiation-contaminated zones, and how the cleanup has progressed so far. 5 Nov 2014 ...You see empty supermarkets, beer machines with the beer inside still. You see a fuel station and you see grass coming out next to the fuel pumps, so this is something really spooky...You have closed areas called red zones, where presumably in the next decades nobody will be able to live...And you have lots of decontamination troops going in and ripping off the upper five centimeters of the soil and packing it in black plastic bags. This is like a science fiction film - you drive through valleys that are filled with these black plastic bags.

Obama Open to Striking Deals With GOP Congress, Such as TPP

November 6, 2014 by legitgov

Obama Open to Striking Deals With GOP Congress, Such as TPP 5 Nov 2014 President Barack Obama on Wednesday said he hoped to work constructively with newly ascendant Republicans in Congress, highlighting items for immediate action as well as longer-term areas where he hoped to strike deals with lawmakers. "Obviously, Republicans had a good night, and they deserve credit for running good campaigns," Mr. Obama said in his first public comments since Tuesday's election Koch purchases. In a conciliatory gesture, Mr. Obama on Wednesday highlighted areas where he hoped to work with Republicans, such as expanding trade [aka the *disastrous* TPP, as CLG predicted] and overhauling the corporate tax code. [No one is 'secretly celebrating' GOP control of Congress more than Barack Obama. If Obama actually wanted progressive legislation to pass, he would have hammered Harry Reid to change filibuster rules years ago. US media is salivating over the prospect of the passage of the worst 'treaty' in US history, Obama's Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP) -- negotiated in complete secrecy by and for corporations -- which turns over governance of the United States to corporations, whose authority cannot be challenged. With the GOP running Congress, Obama can also get the Keystone XL Pipeline built for (his actual buds) the Koch brothers, renew the PATRIOT Act in 2015 (even though he campaigned for its demise in his 2008 campaign, another lie) and start more wars for Exxon Mobil and Monsanto. Start reading. --LRP]

Obama to Seek Congressional Backing for Military Campaign Against ISIS

November 6, 2014 by legitgov

Obama to Seek Congressional Backing for Military Campaign Against ISIS 5 Nov 2014 President Obama said on Wednesday that he would seek specific authorization from Congress for the military campaign against the Islamic State, opening the door to a lengthy, potentially contentious debate over the nature and extent of American engagement imperialism in Iraq and Syria. Mr. Obama's announcement, at his post-election news conference, was not wholly unexpected. But it represented a significant shift from his earlier position that while he would welcome congressional backing, he had legal authority to take military action under existing statutes. Administration officials said Mr. Obama still believed he had that authority, but with the elections over, he concluded that the time was right to petition Congress for more explicit authority.

Former Russian secret service chief accuses the West of a 'cover-up' over MH17

November 6, 2014 by legitgov

Former Russian secret service chief accuses the West of a 'cover-up' over MH17 --Retired secret service chief said Ukrainian forces shot down MH17 5 Nov 2014 Western secret services were today accused of a cover-up over the shooting down of flight MH17 by a retired chief in Vladimir Putin's military intelligence agency. Retired Lt. Gen. Nikolai Pushkarev - formerly a senior official Russia's secret service, GRU - implied that the aircraft was shot out of the sky by Ukrainian forces. [It was.] 'Western intelligence and the Americans are very well aware of all the details - who shot flight MH17 down, why and what for,' he alleged. They 'manipulate this information and this incident for their own benefit. This provocation was organised to lay blame on Russia and force it into sending troops to Ukraine, officially. But the Russian government did not succumb to this provocation'.

Fukushima crew removes 400 tons of spent nuclear fuel from crippled reactor

November 6, 2014 by legitgov

Fukushima crew removes 400 tons of spent nuclear fuel from crippled reactor 5 Nov 2014 The first of four sets of spent nuclear fuel rods has been removed from a damaged reactor building at Japan's Fukushima power plant, scoring a major success in an effort to dismantle the wrecked facility. The 1,331 spent fuel rod assemblies weighting some 400 tons have been recovered from the upper levels of the Reactor 4 building after a year-long operation, a spokeswoman for Fukushima operator TEPCO reported on Wednesday. The last 11 assemblies were removed on Tuesday. The recovered assemblies were placed in a storage pool at ground level of the plant, the company said.

Farmington, Conn. students boycott moldy, hair-laden food provided by NC-based Chartwells

November 6, 2014 by legitgov

Mega barf alert! Farmington, Conn. students boycott moldy, hair-laden food provided by NC-based Chartwells --Farmington Students Organize School Lunch Boycott 2 Nov 2014 Students are calling for a boycott of school lunches this week. Farmington High School students say the district's 'food' service provider, [outsourced Charlotte, NC-based] Chartwells, is not providing quality meals and its policies are too harsh if students don't have enough money in their accounts. Chartwells employees have recently begun throwing away food if students don't have enough money in their accounts to pay, said senior David Casella...Casella said he still plans to protest the food company. "We want to get to the root of the problems so the food is better, not having mold, and not having hair," he said.

Republicans expand majority in House

November 5, 2014 by legitgov

Republicans expand majority in House 5 Nov 2014 Republicans expanded their majority in the U.S. House of Representatives on Tuesday, padding their numbers with a new group of conservatives likely to press the party's assertive control of Congress's lower chamber. Drama on Election Day belonged to the Senate, where Republicans snatched control from Democrats. The outcome in the House has for months been merely a matter of degree, as Republicans have aimed to expand their 234-seat majority. After 1 a.m. Eastern time, Republicans were within striking distance of their goal of winning at least 12 seats and attaining or exceeding the party's largest majority of the post-World War II era.

Malloy declares himself winner in Connecticut gubernatorial race

November 5, 2014 by legitgov

Malloy declares himself winner in Connecticut gubernatorial race 5 Nov 2014 Gov. Dannel P. Malloy declared himself the winner just after 12:30 a.m. Wednesday, deciding not to wait for the official tally. "Let us move forward together," he told the cheering crowd in Hartford after the long wait...Malloy said he won because people wanted to boost to minimum wage and they appreciated the successful rollout of the Affordable Care Act..

Amnesty International accuses Israel of committing war crimes during Gaza war this summer

November 5, 2014 by legitgov

Amnesty International accuses Israel of committing war crimes during Gaza war this summer 5 Nov 2014 A leading human rights group has accused Israel of committing war crimes during this summer's war in Gaza. Amnesty International says Israel displayed "callous indifference" in attacks on family homes in the densely populated coastal strip that in some cases amounted to war crimes. The criticism came in a report released Wednesday. The 50-day war killed more than 2,100 Palestinians, most of them civilians, and 72 people on the Israeli side, all but six soldiers.

Republicans Gain Four Governorships, Bucking Anti-Incumbency Fever

November 5, 2014 by legitgov

Republicans Gain Four Governorships, Bucking Anti-Incumbency Fever 5 Nov 2014 Republican gains in Congress were being matched in statehouses Tuesday as the GOP gained at least four governorships and prevailed in several other tight races, some of them in states expected to be presidential battlegrounds in two years. Millionaire venture capitalist Bruce Rauner ousted Democratic Gov. Pat Quinn in Illinois, according to NBC News projections, while former U.S. Rep. Asa Hutchinson won Arkansas for the Republicans by beating Democratic former U.S. Rep. Mike Ross. Hutchinson's win avenged his 2006 defeat to Democratic Gov. Mike Beebe, who was term-limited. Meanwhile, unsuccessful 2010 Republican nominee Charlie Baker beat Democratic state Attorney General Martha Coakley in the race to succeed Democrat Deval Patrick in Massachusetts, NBC News projected. And in Maryland, Republican real estate broker Larry Hogan defeated Democratic Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown in the race to succeed Democrat Martin O'Malley.

Australian Super Hornets have bombed 14 Isis targets in Iraq

November 5, 2014 by legitgov

Australian Super Hornets have bombed 14 Isis targets in Iraq --200 Australian special forces members prepare to move into Iraq 4 Nov 2014 Bombs dropped from Australian Super Hornet combat aircraft in Iraq have hit 14 targets, 11 of which were destroyed, defence officials have said. The Australian Defence Force provided the figures on Wednesday for operations conducted since the government gave the go-ahead for RAAF strikes against Islamic State (Isis) militants in early October. The chief of joint operations, Vice Admiral David Johnston, said he was hopeful the 200 Australian special forces members would move into Iraq within the next week, having been in the United Arab Emirates since September awaiting final clearance.

Republicans seize control of Senate in U.S. midterm elections

November 5, 2014 by legitgov

Republicans seize control of Senate in U.S. midterm elections 5 Nov 2014 Republicans rode a wave of voter discontent to sweeping midterm election wins on Tuesday, seizing control of the U.S. Senate in a punishing blow to President Barack Obama that will limit his political influence and curb his legislative agenda in his last two years in office. Republicans won in places where Democrats were favored, like a Senate race in North Carolina, pulled out victories where the going was tough, like a Senate battle in Kansas, and swept a number of governors' races in states where Democrats were favored...They also strengthened their grip on the House of Representatives and when the new Congress takes power in January, will be in charge of both chambers of Congress for the first time since elections in 2006.

Andrew Cuomo Is Re-elected New York Governor

November 5, 2014 by walden9

Andrew Cuomo Is Re-elected New York Governor 04 Nov 2014 This was the election in which Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo had every reason to think he would outdo his father...He had kept his promise to steady New York's teetering state government, restoring a sense of competent leadership in Albany after years of turmoil. He had cemented an image of himself as the Cuomo who got things done -- not just gave memorable speeches -- by recording high-profile victories legalizing same-sex marriage, capping property tax increases and tightening gun-control laws. He faced an unknown, underfinanced, socially conservative opponent.

Republicans Retake the Senate: G.O.P. Gains Control With at Least 7 New Senate Seats

November 5, 2014 by walden9

Republicans Retake the Senate: G.O.P. Gains Control With at Least 7 New Senate Seats 04 Nov 2014 Republicans wrested back control of the Senate on Tuesday by adding at least seven seats to their ranks, riding discontent and resentment about President Obama and his policies and consolidating Republican power on Capitol Hill...Republicans picked up the sixth seat they needed with a win in North Carolina, as Thom Tillis, the State House speaker, defeated the incumbent, Kay Hagan, a Democrat, according to projections by The Associated Press. In Iowa, the Republican Joni Ernst, a state senator, defeated Representative Bruce Braley to win the seat vacated by longtime Senator Tom Harkin, who is retiring at the end of this year.

GOP takes US Senate as Joni Ernst wins in Iowa

November 5, 2014 by legitgov

GOP takes US Senate as Joni Ernst wins in Iowa 4 Nov 2014 [No one is 'secretly celebrating' GOP control of the US Senate more than Barack Obama. If Obama actually wanted any progressive legislation to pass and Democrats to succeed, he would have hammered Harry Reid to change filibuster rules years ago. US media is salivating over the prospect of the passage of the worst 'treaty' in US history, Obama's Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP) -- negotiated in complete secrecy by and for corporations -- which turns over governance of the United States to corporations, whose authority cannot be challenged.]

Republicans close in on control of Senate in U.S. midterm elections

November 5, 2014 by legitgov

Republicans close in on control of Senate in U.S. midterm elections 4 Nov 2014 Republicans scored big victories on Tuesday and edged closer to taking control of the U.S. Senate in midterms elections that could tip the balance of power away from President Barack Obama for his remaining two years in office. Republican Senate candidates picked up Democratic seats in Montana, Colorado, West Virginia, South Dakota and Arkansas - giving them five out of the six gains they need to control the 100-member chamber.

GOP four seats away from Senate majority

November 5, 2014 by legitgov

GOP four seats away from Senate majority 4 Nov 2014 Republicans are moving closer to winning the Senate by picking up Democratic-held seats in West Virginia and Arkansas, according to CNN projections. They GOP now needs a net gain of four seats to claim the Senate for the first time since the administration of George W. Bush. Meanwhile in Florida, tension is building around the tightly contested governor's race. A 'judge' denied a request from Democrat Charlie Crist to extend voting in Broward County by two hours because of several breakdowns in voting systems according to a spokesperson for the Florida Secretary of State.

Pennsylvania Governor Election Results: Tom Wolf Defeats Incumbent Tom Corbett

November 5, 2014 by legitgov

Pennsylvania Governor Election Results: Tom Wolf Defeats Incumbent Tom Corbett 4 Nov 2014 Democrat Tom Wolf defeated incumbent Tom Corbett (R) in the 2014 Pennsylvania governor race. Corbett was first elected as governor of Pennsylvania in 2010. He struggled to keep support of GOP voters as his re-election race drew closer.

After midterms, GOP projected to hold the House of Representatives

November 5, 2014 by legitgov

After midterms, GOP projected to hold the House of Representatives 4 Nov 2014 When the dust settles after Tuesday's midterm elections, Republicans will maintain control of the House of Representatives in the next Congress, CBS News projects. Heading into Election Day, the GOP had a 233-seat majority, while Democrats held only 199 seats. After Tuesday, Republicans will hold at least 226 seats, while Democrats will hold at least 171.

McConnell holds Kentucky seat, Republicans make pick-up in W.Va., Fox News projects

November 5, 2014 by legitgov

McConnell holds Kentucky seat, Republicans make pick-up in W.Va., Fox News projects 4 Nov 2014 Republicans have notched two key Senate wins, with Fox News projecting Senate GOP Leader Mitch McConnell will win re-election to his Kentucky seat and Republican Shelley Moore Capito will beat Democrat Natalie Tennant for an open Senate seat in West Virginia -- marking the first GOP pick-up of the night. The West Virginia seat is being vacated by retiring Democrat Jay Rockefeller.

Voting at 2 Hartford Polling Places Extended to 8:30 p.m., due to Late Opening

November 4, 2014 by legitgov

Voting at 2 Hartford Polling Places Extended to 8:30 p.m., due to Late Opening 4 Nov 2014 A judge ordered extended voting at two Hartford polling places Tuesday evening after city election officials failed to deliver voter lists when polls opened. The judge ordered state and city election officials to keep polls open at Batchelder School and United Methodist Church until 8:30 p.m. People were denied their right to vote becaue they were not offered alternatives to vote in the absence of voter lists, Superior Court Judge Carl Schuman said, Schuman made the ruling after a hearing that took place when the state Democratic Party sought a court order to extend voting in all polling places in Hartford by an hour.

US mid-terms: Battle for the Senate as polls open

November 4, 2014 by legitgov

US mid-terms: Battle for the Senate as polls open 4 Nov 2014 Americans are voting in mid-term elections which will decide who controls the Senate and pave the way for the 2016 race for the White House. Polling booths opened in the eastern states at 06:00 local time (11:00 GMT). The Republicans, who already control the House of Representatives, need to gain just six seats to take the Senate. Meanwhile the Democrats are battling to stay ahead as President Barack Obama's approval ratings fall to the lowest they have been since he was elected.

Midterm Elections 2014: Live Updates

November 4, 2014 by walden9

Midterm Elections 2014: Live Updates 04 Nov 2014 It’s Election Day 2014! With control of the U.S. Senate hanging in the balance, voters across the nation are headed to their polling places to cast ballots today...Up for grabs this year are 36 Senate seats. ABC News is working off a list of 16 states that we see potentially swinging to a different party. Democrats are hoping they can hold onto the upper chamber, but Republicans say they’re confident they can wrestle six seats away from Democratic hands, which would put them back in the majority. All 435 members of the U.S. House of Representatives are on the ballot, and Republicans are poised to keep their majority in that chamber. There are 36 gubernatorial races too as well as ballot measures in states across the country.

NATO asks US for more troops in Baltic states, Poland to counter 'Russia threat'

November 4, 2014 by legitgov

NATO asks US for more troops in Baltic states, Poland to counter 'Russia threat' 4 Nov 2014 The North Atlantic bloc has asked the Pentagon to send more troops to Eastern Europe to counter the perceived threat of Russia. There are currently 750 US soldiers in Poland and the Baltic states, but the organization believes that this is not enough. The alliance cites the current situation in Ukraine, as well as Russian military aircraft "incursions" into the airspace of the organization's allies.

Appeals court to weigh NSA phone data program

November 4, 2014 by legitgov

Appeals court to weigh NSA phone data program 3 Nov 2014 A federal appeals court will hear arguments Tuesday in a case challenging the NSA's vast phone data collection program -- the next act in the legal battle pitting the agency's antiterrorism efforts against the privacy rights of Americans. Privacy advocates head into the arguments with a lower court victory in hand: A judge in Washington ruled in their favor in December, calling the technology to gather and analyze the phone records "almost Orwellian."

US air force fires two more nuclear commanders, third officer disciplined amid leadership crisis

November 4, 2014 by legitgov

US air force fires two more nuclear commanders, third officer disciplined amid leadership crisis 3 Nov 2014 The US air force has fired two more nuclear commanders and disciplined a third, fresh evidence of leadership lapses in a nuclear missile corps that has suffered several recent setbacks including the removal of its top commander. The most senior officer to be relieved of command was Colonel Carl Jones, second in command of the 90th Missile Wing at FE Warren air force base, Wyoming, in charge of 150 of the air forces 450 Minuteman 3 nuclear intercontinental ballistic missiles...At the 91st Missile Wing at Minot Air Force Base, North Dakota, which also is responsible for 150 Minuteman 3 missiles, Lieutenant Colonel Jimmy "Keith" Brown was relieved of command "because of a loss of confidence in Brown's ability to lead his squadron", the air force said. [For the mysterious historical saga of Minot Air Force Base, see: Minot AFB Clandestine Nukes 'Oddities' By Lori Price (Updated).]

F-16s to fly over D.C. in calibration, training flights, NORAD says

November 4, 2014 by legitgov

F-16s to fly over D.C. in calibration, training flights, NORAD says 3 Nov 2014 Don't be surprised if you see two F-16s flying over the southeastern part of Washington, D.C., on Wednesday. NORAD said on Monday that it will be conducting calibration and training flights. The North American Aerospace Defense Command said the tests will be coordinated with the Federal Aviation Administration and the Department of Homeland Security.

House Dem calls for undiluted NSA reforms

November 3, 2014 by legitgov

House Dem calls for undiluted NSA reforms 3 Nov 2014 With an eye on the Senate's lame duck session, Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-N.Y.) is pressing the upper chamber to vote on a bill curbing National Security Agency (NSA) authority. "We have the first chance in more than a decade to finally place some real limits on the sweeping, unwarranted -- and at times unlawful -- government surveillance that many of us have fought against for the past several years," said Nadler, a member of the Judiciary Committee, which unanimously approved the House version of the bill in May. The full House passed the measure, the USA Freedom Act, later that month. Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) has introduced a version of the bill, but changes are expected before the lame-duck Senate considers it.

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