Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Linda Ronstadt: Trump Won Election on Hate; "He's Like Hitler--Mexicans Are the New Jews"

Singer Linda Ronstadt compared President Donald Trump's election to the rise of Nazis in Germany, the AlterNet website reports today (December 31, 2019).

The Grammy-winning singer drew parallels between Adolf Hitler's rise and Trump's gathering of authoritarian power, as part of an interview for CNN Film's documentary, "Linda Ronstadt: The Sound of My Voice."

Ronstadt said: "Hitler rose to power -- there were a lot of chances to stop him, and they didn't speak out, and the industrial complex thought they could control him once they got him in office, and, of course, he was not controllable."

She added:"You find a common enemy for everybody to hate.  I was sure that Trump was going to get elected the day he announced , and I said, 'It's going to be like Hitler, and the Mexicans are the new Jews' -- and sure enough that's what he delivered, you know?"

Monday, December 30, 2019

UK Woman Is Guilty of Making Up Rape Claim; Said 12 Israelis Raped Her in Cyprus Hotel Room

A British woman has been found guilty of lying about being gang raped in her Cyprus hotel room by 12 Israeli youths six months ago, the Euro News website reports today (December 30, 2019).

A district court in the town of Paralimni, Cyprus ruled the woman, aged 19 at the time, had lied about being sexually abused by the teenagers.

She was found guilty of the charge of "public mischief" with sentencing scheduled for January 7.

Judge Michalis Papathanasiou said the defendant admitted to investigators that she had lied and apologized, saying she made the claims up because she was "ashamed" after finding out that some of the Israelis had videoed her having sex with a man on their mobile phones.

Sunday, December 29, 2019

Gunman Kills Two, Wounds One in Tex. Church; Gunman Is Shot Dead by Parishioner or Security

Two people were killed and one was seriously wounded today (December 29, 2019) after a gunman opened fire in a church near Fort Worth, Texas, and was shot dead by either a parishioner or a member of the church's security team, according to the WND website.

MedStar spokeswoman Macara Trusty said the ambulance service treated three people with gunshot wounds. Two people, including the shooter, died at a hospital, she said.

The third person wounded also suffered cardiac arrest while being transported, but was resuscitated by paramedics and is in critical condition.

The shooting took place at the West Freeway Church of Christ in White Settlement, which is near Fort Worth.

Saturday, December 28, 2019

Israel's Christian Population Grows to 177,000; More Than 75% of Israeli Christians Are Arabs

The Christian population of Israel is currently about 177,000 or 2% of the overall population, according to the Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS), the Jerusalem Post website reports today (December 28, 2019).

More than three-quarters (77.5%) of Christians living in Israel are Arabs, the CBS said.

The nation's most populous Christian cities are Nazareth (21,900 inhabitants), Haifa (16,100), Jerusalem (12,700), and Galilee city of Shfaram (10,300).

During the 2018-19 academic year, there were 6,200 Christian college students -- representing 2.3% of all students in Israeli higher education.

Friday, December 27, 2019

Poll: Support for Trump Conviction Highest Ever; Some 55% of People Asked Now Favor Conviction

A new poll finds that public support for Donald Trump's removal from office is the highest it has ever been, the Independent website reports today (December 27, 2019).

Fifty-five percent of those asked said they were in favor of the U.S. president's conviction by the Senate, a figure which has shot up from 48 percent the week before.

Meanwhile, the number of people against Trump's removal has dropped to an all-time low, according to t he MSN poll.

On Christmas day, 40 percent were opposed to the Senate voting to convict the president, who has been impeached by the House of Representatives over his dealings with Ukraine and a subsequent attempt to obstruct congress.

Thursday, December 26, 2019

Pope Lauds Jesus' Love in Christmas Eve Mass; Jesus' "Unconditional" Love Includes All People

Pope Francis spoke about "unconditional" love even for "the worst of us" as he held midnight mass at the Vatican during   the traditional Christmas Eve celebration, the Euro News website reports today (December 26, 2019).

"Christmas reminds us that God continues to love us, even the worst of us," the Pontiff said.

"To me, to you, to each of us, He says today: 'I love you, for you are precious in my eyes.' God does not love you because you think and act the right way. He loves you, plain and simple. His love is unconditional; it does not depend on you," Pope Francis said.

"You may have mistaken ideas, you may have made a complete mess of things, but the Lord continues to love you."

Tuesday, December 24, 2019

Syrian Govt. Steps Up Attacks in Idlib Province; Kills 33 People in Nation's Last Opposition Area

Dozens of people have been killed in a wave of bombardment by the government in Idlib, Syria, the CNN website reports today (December 24, 2019).

Airstrikes and artillery fire have killed at least 33 people since December 20.

The Syrian army -- with support from Russian air power -- has stepped up its attacks on the northwestern province, the country's last major bastion of opposition and home of more than three million Syrians.

The government claims that it is targeting terrorists in Idlib.

Monday, December 23, 2019

Rudi Giuliani: "I'm More of a Jew Than Soros Is;" He Doesn't Go to Synagogue,He's Enemy of Israel

President Donald Trump's personal lawyer and former mayor of New York, Rudy Giuliani, today (December 23, 2019) claimed that he is "more of a Jew" than George Soros, a Jewish billionaire and Holocaust survivor, according to the USA Today website.

In an interview published by New York Magazine, Giuliani portrayed Soros, who is also a prominent  Democrat donor, as someone who pulled strings in Ukraine, including with ousted former Ambassador Marie Yovanovitch.

"Soros is hardly a Jew. I'm more of a Jew than Soros is... He doesn't belong to a synagogue, he doesn't support Israel, he's an enemy of Israel... He's a horrible human being," Giuliani continued.

The former New York mayor was raised Roman Catholic.

Sunday, December 22, 2019

US Has Highest % of Kids in Single-Parent Homes; US Percent Is Three Times Above World Average

According to a new study, the U.S. has the world's largest percentage of children living in a single-parent home, the CBN (Christian Broadcast Network) website reports today (December 22, 2019).

The Pew Research Center conducted a study of 130 countries, revealing that 23% of children under the age of 18 live with one parent and no other adult in the U.S.

The percentage for the U.S. is three times higher than the rate of children around the world, which is only 7%.

The study explored how living conditions vary by religion and found that American children from Christian and religiously independent families were likely to live in this type of classification.

Saturday, December 21, 2019

Pope Slams "Rigidity" as Cause of Cath. Decline; Urges Cath.Clerics to Embrace Pastoral Reforms

Pope Francis warned today (December 21, 2019) that "rigidity" in living out the Christian faith is creating a "minefield" of hatred and misunderstanding in a world where Christianity is increasingly irrelevant, according to the AP News website.

Francis called for Vatican clergy to instead embrace change during his annual Christmas greetings to the cardinals, bishops, and priests who work in the Holy See.

His message appeared aimed at conservative and traditionalist Catholics, who have increased opposition to his progressive-minded papacy.

Francis urged the Catholic hierarchy to embrace the necessary pastoral reforms and outlook that will make the church attractive, so that it can fulfill its mission to spread the faith.

Friday, December 20, 2019

Christianity Today Editor Says Trump Must Go; Trump's Bid to Bribe Ukraine Pres. Is Immoral

Mark Galli, editor-in-chief of the influential evangelical magazine Christianity Today, says that President Trump should be removed from office because he is morally unable to lead, the Religion News website reports today (December 20, 2019).

In an editorial on Trump's impeachment published December 19, Galli argued that even though Democrats have "had it out" for Trump since his election, the case for the president's impeachment -- which the House of Representatives voted to approve on December 18 -- was convincing.

Trump, he said, was morally unable to lead.

"The facts in this instance are unambiguous: The president of the United States attempted to use his political power to coerce a foreign leader to harass and discredit one of the president's political opponents," he wrote. "That is not only a violation of the Constitution; more importantly, it is profoundly immoral."

Thursday, December 19, 2019

Iran Pres. Urges Muslim States to Counter US; Wants Closer Financial Ties of Islamic Nations

President Hassan Rohani of Iran today (December 19, 2019) used an Islamic conference in Malaysia to urge Muslim nations to deepen cooperation in order to counter U.S. "hegemony," according to the Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty website.

Speaking at the opening ceremony of the event in Kuala Lumpur, Rohani reiterated Iran's view that the U.S. is using economic sanctions as the "main tools of domineering hegemony and bullying " of other nations.

Hundreds of delegates are attending the three-day gathering --including leaders from Turkey and host Malaysia -- but the meeting has been snubbed by Iran's regional foe, Saudi Arabia, and other members of the Organization of Islamic Conference (OIC).

The Muslim world needs to be saved "from the domination of the United States dollar, and the American financial regime," Rohani told the Kuala Lumpur conference, urging deeper financial and trade cooperation between Islamic countries.

Wednesday, December 18, 2019

Trump OKs Plan for States to Buy Canada Drugs; Will Mean Lower Drug Prices for US Consumers

The Trump administration laid out a plan today (December 18, 2019) to fulfill the president's long-standing vow to lower prescription drug prices by allowing states, drug wholesalers, and pharmacies to import cheaper drugs from Canada, according to the Washington Post website.

Officials could not say when the plan might go into effect.

Curbing extremely high drug prices has been a top priority for President Trump ahead of the 2020 election, and he demanded advisers pursue options long opposed by many Republicans, including importing cheaper drugs from other countries and using some overseas prices as a benchmark for some drugs in Medicare.

Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar told reporters yesterday that while the administration is "moving as quickly as we possibly can," it still needs to collect public input and he could not predict a timetable for the plan's implementation.

Tuesday, December 17, 2019

Delaware Town Ends 90-Year Nativity Display; Says It Won't Have Rel. Display on Its Property

A tradition in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware for nine decades -- a nativity display on the town circle -- was banned by the town this month, as the town now prohibits such displays because of their religious nature, the CBN (Christian Broadcast Network) website reports today (December 17, 2019).

One day after the nativity display went up, the town ordered it removed, saying the religious display could not be on public property.

According to the First Liberty Institute -- a religious rights law firm -- the City of Rehoboth Beach's policy goes against long-standing U.S. Supreme Court opinions that even government-sponsored nativity displays are lawful in holiday displays when accompanied by secular and religious components, and that religious discrimination is unlawful.

First Liberty, on behalf of the local Knights of Columbus organization, sent a letter to the city urging officials to change their policy to align with the Supreme Court and allow the nativity display, but the city refused to do so.

Monday, December 16, 2019

Saudi Student in N. Mexico Nabbed with Gun; Also Kept a List of People He Planned to Kill

A Saudi student in New Mexico was arrested for illegal possession of a handgun and a hit list of people he planned to kill, the Clarion Project website reports today (December 16, 2019).

The list included professors at the University of New Mexico, where he was an engineering student.

Hassan Algahtani, 27, turned himself in to authorities on December 13.

Algahtani had a gun and wanted to buy more guns. He also had a list of people he wanted to kill.

Sunday, December 15, 2019

Pope Francis Celebrates 50 Years as a Priest; Ordained Priest Near Buenos Aires,Argentina

Pope Francis today (December 15, 2019) celebrated the 50th anniversary of his ordination to the priesthood without fanfare or ceremony, according to the America Magazine website.

He started his day as usual with more than an hour of private prayer and then celebrated morning Mass in the chapel of Santa Marta, the Vatican guesthouse where he lives, concelebrating this time with some 60 cardinals.

After breakfast, he began his busy work schedule with private and group audiences, even as congratulations and good wishes arrived from across the globe.

He was ordained a priest 50 years ago on December 13, 1969, by the emeritus archbishop of Cordoba, Ramon Jose Castellano, in the chapel of the Jesuit-run Colegio Maximo on the outskirts of Buenos Aires, Argentina.

Saturday, December 14, 2019

Trump to Reduce No. of Us Troops in Afghanistan; May Announce 4,000 Troop Reduction Next Week

A senior Trump administration official confirmed today (December 14, 2019) that President Donald Trump is preparing to announce a drawdown of about 4,000 troops from Afghanistan, according to the CNN website.

Although the timing of the announcement is not certain, it could  could come as early as next week, according to the official.

Trump previously indicated that he intended to withdraw several thousand troops from Afghanistan, where between 12,000 and 13,000 U.S. troops are currently serving in the 18-year war.

"We're going down to 8,600 and then we make a determination from there as to what happens," Trump said.

Friday, December 13, 2019

Millennials Now Leave Rel. and Don't Return; Four in Ten Millennials Are Rel. Unaffiliated

A new study by the Pew Research Center finds that millennials are leaving religion and not coming back, the Religion News website reports today (December 13, 2019).

Four in ten millennials now say they are religiously unaffiliated, according to the Pew Research Center.

In fact, millennials (those between the ages of 23 and 38) are now almost as likely to say they have no religion as they are to identify as Christian.

One finding in the study signals that even millennials who grew up religious may be increasingly unlikely to return to religion. Today, 74 percent of unaffiliated millennials have a nonreligious partner or spouse, while only 26 percent have a partner who is religious.

Thursday, December 12, 2019

US Recognizes Armenian Killings as Genocide; Agrees Turkey Killed 1.5M Armenians in WW I

The U.S. Senate today (December 12, 2019) unanimously passed a resolution recognizing the mass killing of Armenians in Turkey's Ottoman Empire a century ago as genocide, a move Armenia's prime minister hailed as a "victory of justice and truth," according to the Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty website.

The resolution, pushed by New Jersey Democrat Senator Bob Menendez, recognizes the killing of an estimated 1.5 million Armenians from 1915-1923 by the Ottoman Empire.

"What happened from 1915-1923 was -- most assuredly -- genocide. There is no other word for it... There is no avoiding it," said Menendez following today's vote.

The House of Representatives overwhelmingly passed a similar resolution in late October.

Wednesday, December 11, 2019

Anti-Semitic Gunmen Hit Kosher Supermarket; Killed 3 Civilians,1 Police Officer in New Jersey

The two gunmen who entered a Jersey City, N.J. kosher supermarket yesterday and engaged in a deadly shootout with police deliberately chose the store as an anti-Semitic hate crime, the JTA (Jewish Telegraphic Agency) website reports today (December 11, 2019).

"We now believe the active shooters targeted the location they attacked," Jersey City mayor Steven Fulop said in a tweet today.

Six people were killed, including a police officer and three civilians, in gunfire yesterday afternoon that ended with an hour-long shootout at the JC Kosher Supermarket.

The officer had been shot earlier at a nearby cemetery trying to head off two suspects in homicide. Those two gunmen were killed in the supermarket shootout.

Tuesday, December 10, 2019

Americans Constantly Lied to about Afghan War; US Officials Reiterated Lies on Unwinnable War

The Washington Post has published more than 2,000 pages of secret notes of interviews with people who played a direct role in the Afghanistan War, describing the failures of the longest armed conflict in U.S. history, The Daily Beast website reports today (December 10, 2019).

The interviews from more than 400 people show that U.S. officials did not tell the truth about the war, making positive statements they knew were wrong and concealing evidence that the war wasn't winnable.

Douglas Lute, a three-star Army general, said in 2015: "What are we trying to do here? We didn't have the foggiest notion of what we were undertaking."

Some said it was normal to distort statistics to make it seem as if the U.S. was winning the war when that was far from the case.

Monday, December 9, 2019

Trump:Israel Never Had a Better Friend Than Me; Shifted U. S. Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem

President Donald Trump said on December 7 that Israel has "never had a better friend than me" in the White House, the CBN (Christian Broadcast Network) website reports today (December 9, 2019).

The president was speaking to thousands of people at the Israeli American Council National Summit in Florida.

The U.S. officially moved its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem last year, a move that angered many Palestinians and pleased Israelis.

"For over 20 years, every previous president promised to move the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem, and they never acted... But unlike other politicians, I kept my promises," Trump said.

Sunday, December 8, 2019

Marine Life Suffers as Oceans Losing Oxygen; Result of Global Warming, Nutrient Pollution

Many species of marine life are being threatened by global warming and nutrient pollution, according to a report released by a conservation group at the UN climate change conference in Madrid, the Euro News website reports today (December 8, 2019).

The study -- the biggest such survey ever undertaken -- found that 700 ocean sites are suffering from low oxygen levels compared to just 45 in the 1960s, the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) said.

"We are now seeing increasingly low levels of dissolved oxygen across large areas of the open ocean," said Dan Laffoley, a co-editor of the report and senior advisor in marine science at IUCN.

"This is perhaps the ultimate wake-up call from the uncontrolled experiment humanity is unleashing on the world's ocean as carbon emissions continue to increase."

Saturday, December 7, 2019

A Polyamorous 20-Year-Old Lives with Four Men; Is Pregnant, States All 5 Will Raise Baby Together

In a relationship that illustrates how our society is drastically changing, Tory Ojeda is a 20-year-old woman from Jacksonville, Florida, who is in a polyamorous relationship with four men, the Yahoo News website reports today (December 7, 2019).

She is now seven months pregnant with her first child with one of her partners, and the five plan to raise the baby together as a family.

Although Ojeda said she has received criticism from family members and friends about the unique nature of her relationships in the past, the five live together and have been dating for several years.

The five are all living together and the four men are taking turns sleeping with Ojeda in her bed to ensure everyone gets equal quality time with her.

Friday, December 6, 2019

Saudi King Apologizes for Killer of Three in Fla.; Saudi Officer Was at Pensacola NAS for Training

U.S. President Donald Trump said he received a condolence call from King Salman of Saudi Arabia over the shooting today (December 6, 2019) at Pensacola Naval Air Station (NAS), committed by a Saudi officer who was in Florida for training, according to the RT website.

King Salman "said that the Saudi people are greatly angered by the barbaric actions of the shooter, and that the person in no way, shape or form represents the feelings of the Saudi people who love the American people," Trump said in a tweet today.

The Saudi ruler also expressed condolences and extended his sympathies to the relatives and friends of the three people killed and seven injured in this morning's attack.

Officials have confirmed that the attacker was an officer from Saudi Arabia who was being trained at the NAS in Pensacola, Florida. He was killed in a shootout with sheriff's deputies, who were called to the scene of the attack.

Thursday, December 5, 2019

Pelosi: House Will Proceed to Impeach Trump; His Ukraine Deceit Defies Oath of Office,Const.

Saying she must act to stop Donald Trump from behaving like a king, Speaker of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) announced today (December 5, 2019) that the House would proceed with the articles of impeachment against Donald Trump, setting the stage for the fourth time in American history a president would face that judgment, according to The Daily Beast website.

"The president has engaged in abuse of power undermining our national security and jeopardizing the integrity of our elections," Pelosi said.

She added, "his actions are in defiance of the vision of our Founders, and the oath of office that he takes to preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States."

While the House of Representatives has been considering impeaching Trump for years because of his abuse of power, it was the more recent Ukraine incident in which Trump told the Ukrainian president that he would give Ukraine millions of dollars in foreign aid, but only if he could find some "dirt" on Joe Biden (Trump's chief rival for the 2020 U.S. presidential election) that convinced the House that Trump violated his oath of office and the U.S. Constitution; consequently, Trump needed to be impeached.

Wednesday, December 4, 2019

Over 100 Jewish Graves Vandalized in France; Defaced with Swastikas,Nazi Slogans in Alsace

More than 100 Jewish graves were defaced with swastikas and Nazi slogans in a cemetery in France this week, contributing further to a rising wave of anti-Semitism in the country and even in the continent, the Daily Caller website reports today (December 4, 2019).

The graveyard joins several others in the Alsace region that have been vandalized with anti-Semitic slogans, with some of the vandals referring to "Black Alsatian Wolves," a far-right group that operated in the region in the 1970s.

But France is not the only European country facing rising anti-Semitism.

Germany has recently warned Jewish men not to wear a kippah in public, and the UK Labor party has come under increased scrutiny for its anti-Semitic ties.

Tuesday, December 3, 2019

Harvard Grad Student Union Begins to Picket; Harsh Strike Expected to Continue Indefinitely

The Harvard Graduate Student Union (HGSU) -- comprised primarily of teaching assistants -- officially went on strike today (December 3, 2019) with about 100 members of the union picketing in Harvard Yard, according to The Crimson website.

The union and Harvard have been negotiating for a contract for more than a year, but remain deadlocked on several issues, including compensation, health benefits, and grievance procedures for discrimination and sexual harassment.

The strike is expected to continue indefinitely with picketing in Cambridge from 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Pickets on Harvard's Longwood campus in Boston -- where Harvard Medical School is located -- will run from 8:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. each day.

Beverley Brakeman, regional director of HGSU's parent union, United Automobile Workers (UAW), told the demonstrators the UAW supported its Harvard chapter "all the way." She also said "Shame on you" to Harvard President Bacow for failing to accept the union's views.

Monday, December 2, 2019

Amazon Trashes Xmas Ornaments on Auschwitz; Had Posted Images Relating to Jewish Holocaust

Amazon has removed Christmas ornaments from its website that depict the Auschwitz concentration camp after complaints on social media, the NBC News website reports today (December 2, 2019).

The Auschwitz Memorial, which preserves the site of the former German concentration and extinction camp in Poland, tweeted images yesterday of the items.

"Selling Christmas ornaments with images of Auschwitz does not seem appropriate," the memorial wrote.

Amazon told NBC News in a statement today that the products in question have been removed.

Sunday, December 1, 2019

Pope Slams Black Friday as a "Consumer Virus;" Calls on Faithful to Resist Fanatic Consumerism

Black Friday traditionally rings in the Christmas shopping season, but this year Pope Francis condemned the spending frenzy, calling it a "virus of consumerism," according to the Yahoo News website.

At a mass in Rome today (December 1, 2019), Pope Francis called on the faithful to "resist the blinding lights of consumerism, which will shine everywhere this month"  leading up to Christmas.

The pope added: "Consumerism is a virus that affects the faith at its root, because it makes you believe that life depends only on what you have..."

Black Friday and Cyber Monday are the biggest shopping days of the year in the U.S. and in a growing number of countries in Europe.