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BOSTON WRONG: Marathon Bombing Evidence, As Seen On TV by Lara Turner
Potential jurors in the Boston Marathon Bombing trial have said they’ve seen a video of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev planting a bomb at the race. There’s just one problem: that video hasn’t been made public.
Syria’s President Speaks: A Conversation With Bashar al-Assad
On January 20, Foreign Affairs managing editor Jonathan Tepperman met with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in Damascus. Tepperman was, in turn, interviewed by Steve Inskeep of NPR about his visit. He found the embattled president cordial, relaxed and confident despite the violence tearing apart his nation. Among the claims made by Assad were that “the Syrian people are still with the unity of Syria; they still support the government,” that he is open to negations with “no conditions” and that allegations of weapons transfers to Hezbollah are “false.” He also said any political settlement with the opposition doesn’t include one that is “a puppet of Qatar or Saudi Arabia or any Western country, including the United States.”
Jeb Bush’s Secret Weapon
While the Democrats seem likely to re-boot their “War on Women” strategy in advance of 2016, insiders in Jeb Bush’s nascent presidential campaign are touting the possibility of Columba Bush as the nation’s first Hispanic First Lady. Coupled with Jeb’s willingness to oppose the anti-immigration wing of the GOP, it looks like the next Bush in line is preparing to make the same play for Hispanics his brother made, but his party couldn’t hold. However, many Republican believe “Jeb’s moderate tones on immigration reform are a conservative apostasy that will doom him, particularly in early-voting caucus and primary states like Iowa and South Carolina.”
The Netanyahu Disaster
Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu “believes he has just one job, and that is to stop Iran from getting hold of nuclear weapons,” according to Jeffrey Goldberg at The Atlantic. However, his moves are damaging the special relationship with the U.S., the one nation capable of forestalling a nuclear Iran. The growing backlash against his decision to accept a GOP invitation to speak before Congress illustrates Bibi’s “overall tone-deafness.” Goldberg believes that Bibi has permanently disabled his relationship with Obama, alienated Democrats—including Jewish Democrats—on Capitol Hill and “risks alienating the “the strong majority of American Jews” who voted twice for Obama.
Insurance Industry Adjusts to Earthquake Risk Caused by Fracking
Need some more evidence to link fracking to earthquakes? Well, look no further than the insurance industry, which is “now linking the controversial drilling procedure with seismic activity in establishing its rates.” The rates on policies are determined by seismic maps produced by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and are coming up in places previously not known for temblors— like Oklahoma and Texas. The premiums are being adjusted to account for a five-fold increase in earthquakes between 2010 and 2013 in the central and eastern parts of the United States. And more than 120 temblors rocked the Dallas area in the past six years … all of that activity is increasingly linked to a spike in fracking.
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