NEWS   WEDNESDAY, APRIL  12, 2017   NEWS

Dems Making Close Race In Kansas, In 1st Congressional Contest Under Trump
Democrats are making a close race of the first congressional election since President Trump’s White House win, in a Kansas district held by Republicans for more than two decades. The special House election Tuesday is for the seat former GOP Rep. Mike Pompeo vacated in January when appointed CIA director. Trump won 60 percent of the district's vote last fall. But Republicans are increasingly pouring time and money into the final days of the race -- including the president tweeting and making a get-out-the-vote call for GOP candidate state Treasurer Ron Estes. “Ron Estes is running TODAY for Congress in the Great State of Kansas,” Trump tweeted Tuesday morning. “A wonderful guy, I need his help on Healthcare & Tax Cuts (Reform).” Fox News
VOA VIEW: The liberal media got it wrong, again.

Spicer Clarifies Hitler Remarks As Pelosi Calls For His Firing
White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer attempted Tuesday to clarify his statement that Adolf Hitler "didn't even sink to using chemical weapons," as the top House Democrat called for his dismissal. Spicer was discussing last week's chemical weapons attack in Syria, which the administration is blaming on that country's President Bashar Assad. "We didn't use chemical weapons in World War II," said Spicer, adding that "someone as despicable as Hitler ... didn't even sink to using chemical weapons." After the briefing, Spicer emailed a statement to reporters: "In no way was I trying to lessen the horrendous nature of the Holocaust. I was trying to draw a distinction of the tactic of using airplanes to drop chemical weapons on population centers. Any attack on innocent people is reprehensible and inexcusable."
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., accused Spicer of "downplaying the horror of the Holocaust." Fox News
VOA VIEW: Pelosi is over doing nothing.

White House: Russia, Syrian Regime Trying To 'Confuse' The World Over Chemical Attacks
The White House said Tuesday the Syrian regime and Russia are trying to "confuse the world community about who is responsible for using chemical weapons against the Syrian people in this and earlier attacks." Senior administration officials stopped short of saying there was definitive proof of Russian collusion with Syria on the chemical attack last week, but the administration bluntly accused the Russian government of helping the Syrian regime cover-up chemical weapons still in the country.
"I think it's clear that the Russians are trying to cover up what happened there," one senior administration official said. CNN

Trump's Spending Spree On Security Is Crazy
Presidents should be encouraged to play golf. The more golf they play, the less time they have to mess with our lives. I'm sure liberals would gladly raise the money to buy Donald Trump a golden golf cart if it kept him out of the White House. In fact, he needs little encouragement. Trump has played his 16th round of golf since becoming President. For this we might be grateful, were it not for two complaints: cost and shameless hypocrisy. There's good reason to defend the role of golf in US politics. It's the presidential game. The sport is kind on the bones of older, powerful men; it's a chance to mix gentle leisure with one-on-one diplomacy. And the symbolism of a man or a woman whacking a ball across a luxurious green is 100% American: individualism, abundance, good humor. CNN

Xi Stresses China's North Korea Concerns In Talk With Trump
Chinese President Xi Jinping told President Donald Trump in a phone call Wednesday that Beijing is willing to work with Washington on ending North Korea's nuclear weapons program but wants a peaceful solution to the escalating conflict. Xi's comments came after Trump tweeted that China should do more on the issue Washington sees as an increasingly urgent threat, or the U.S. would go it alone. China's calls for calm come as tensions have risen with the deployment of a U.S. aircraft carrier to the area and the conducting of the biggest-ever U.S.-South Korea military exercises. Tampa Tribune
VOA VIEW: China should be concerned - Trump is not Obama.

Tillerson, Lavrov Open Tense Meeting In Moscow
U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson says he aims to clear up "sharp differences" with Russia as he opens a tense meeting with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov. Tillerson and Lavrov are meeting in Moscow amid rising tensions over Syria. Lavrov says Russia has lots of questions about the "very ambiguous" and "contradictory" ideas coming from the U.S. He says through a translator that it's important for Russia to understand the "real intentions" of the Trump administration. Tillerson says he wants to understand why U.S.-Russia differences exist. He says both countries have agreed that their lines of communications must stay open. Lavrov is also subtly mocking Tillerson for the fact that top U.S. State Department positions are unfilled. He says that makes it hard to have clarity about U.S. positions. Tampa Tribune

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Investors Grow Skittish About French Election
Investors are growing more cautious about France and the euro ahead of an unpredictable presidential election in the eurozone's second-biggest economy. The difference between the 10-year bond yields of France and Germany has risen to its widest in six weeks, an expression of investor concern, as they flock more to the perceived safety of German debt than France's. The same has been happening in other European countries' markets, which is possibly a sign of concern about the euro's future if an anti-euro candidate wins in the French elections. Far-left candidate Jean-Luc Melenchon has risen in the polls just 11 days before the vote. He promises to heavily tax the rich and pull France out of NATO and trade pacts. Charlotte Observer

Trump Tweets: ‘North Korea Is Looking For Trouble’
In two tweets on Tuesday, President Donald Trump addressed China and North Korea: -- “I explained to the President of China that a trade deal with the U.S. will be far better for them if they solve the North Korean problem!” Trump sent that tweet shortly after 8 a.m., followed by another: -- “North Korea is looking for trouble. If China decides to help, that would be great. If not, we will solve the problem without them! U.S.A.” The Trump administration has sent the USS Carl Vinson aircraft carrier and battle group to waters off the Korean Peninsula, and in response, the North Korean regime issued a statement late Monday, saying, “We will hold the U.S. wholly accountable for the catastrophic consequences to be entailed by its outrageous actions.” CNS News
VOA VIEW: China is in a dilemma.

Obama In 2015: ‘Assad Gave Up His Chemical Weapons…Those Have Been Eliminated’
The Obama administration’s assertions about the surrender and destruction of President Bashar al-Assad’s stockpile of chemical weapons are back under the microscope following last week’s toxic gas attack on a town in northwestern Syria. In 2015, President Obama said he had not gone ahead with promised military action against the regime after a deadly sarin gas attack near Damascus in 2013, “because Assad gave up his chemical weapons.” “And I don’t think that there are a lot of folks in the region who are disappointed that Assad is no longer in possession of one of the biggest stockpiles of chemical weapons of any country on Earth,” he said. “Those have been eliminated.” The April 4 attack in Khan Sheikhun, which cost the lives of more than 80 people and may again have involved sarin gas, triggered the first direct U.S. military action ever against the regime that has ruled Syria for 47 years. CNS News
VOA VIEW: Obama and his people are unmasked liars.

Lawyers Working At Guantanamo Sue Pentagon Over Cancer Risk
Four lawyers who work at the Guantanamo Bay prison on Tuesday sued the U.S. Department of Defense, claiming it has exposed them to elevated risks of cancer and other health problems by forcing them to work in contaminated areas. The complaint said the U.S. Navy has not properly investigated whether environmental hazards at the Camp Justice complex were linked to nine cancer cases since its 2008 opening. By insisting that the complex is safe despite the known presence of "carcinogenic substances" such as formaldehyde and mercury, the Navy has left lawyers with the "untenable" choice between preserving their health and defending their clients, the complaint said. Reuters

Trump Hotel, Chef Settle Suit Over Canceled Washington Restaurant
U.S. President Donald Trump's family business has reached a settlement with a second celebrity chef over a canceled deal for a restaurant at Trump's hotel in Washington, the two sides said. Trump had sued chef Geoffrey Zakarian in 2015 for $10 million after the restaurateur scrapped plans for a restaurant in the new Trump International Hotel a few blocks from the White House after Trump called Mexican immigrants to the United States rapists and criminals. "After an intense, two-year legal battle, we are pleased we were able to amicably resolve our differences and wish Geoffrey continued success," Donald Trump Jr., the Republican president's son and executive vice president of the Trump Organization, said in a joint statement with Zakarian issued on Monday. Reuters
VOA VIEW: What was the final deal?

Melania Trump Wins Damages From Daily Mail Publisher
U.S. First Lady Melania Trump has accepted an apology and damages from the publisher of the Daily Mail newspaper for reporting rumors about her time as a model.
Trump sued the Daily Mail in Britain and Mail Online in the United States over the August 2016 article. The first lady's attorneys argued that the report damaged her ability to build businesses based on her status as a "successful businesswoman." In a joint statement Wednesday, the parties said the Mail retracted its false statements that Trump "provided services beyond simply modeling" and agreed to pay damages and costs. The amount was not specified. Charlotte Observer

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U.S. Not Among World’s Top 5 Executioners For First Time In 10 Years
For the first time in a decade, the United States does not rank among countries like China and Saudi Arabia as one of the world's top five executioners, a new report says — though advocates working to eliminate capital punishment fear the practice could "return with a vengeance" in 2017. With just 20 executions last year, the U.S. had its lowest use of the death penalty since 1991, according to a newly released Amnesty International report that maps out executions globally. It was one of 23 countries that carried out executions. MSNBC

FBI Reportedly Probed Ex-Trump Aide Carter Page During Campaign
The FBI reportedly secured a court order to conduct surveillance on one of Donald Trump aides during the 2016 presidential campaign because they believed he was a Russian agent. The FBI, along with the Justice Department, obtained a warrant from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court to monitor the activities of Trump foreign policy aide Carter Page because investigators believed he was acting as an agent for a foreign power, according to The Washington Post. In what the paper described as a lengthy declaration, the government said Page “engaged in clandestine intelligence activities on behalf of Moscow.” The application was submitted in July and the ensuing 90-day warrant has been renewed at least once, the paper reported. NY Post
VOA VIEW: Purported and reported campaign aide.

Why Don’t Supreme Court Justices Have An Ethics Code?
Now that Neil Gorsuch has been sworn in as the newest Supreme Court justice, he has something in common with President Trump, who selected him. Gorsuch, who had been a federal judge, now will have a special status when it comes to ethics, just like the President. Of the 4 million employees who work for the federal government, 11 of the highest-ranking ones are not bound by some of the ethics laws, rules and regulations which other public servants must follow: the president, the vice president, and the nine justices of the Supreme Court. But the oldest female member of Congress would like very much to change that, at least for the Supreme Court Justices. MSNBC

Hillary Clinton To Receive ‘Champion Of The Century’ Honor By Planned Parenthood
Hillary Clinton will be honored next month in New York City with a “Champion of the Century Award” by Planned Parenthood as it celebrates 100 years of operation.
The U.S. presidential election may have went to Donald Trump, but his Democratic Party challenger is still a “Champion of the Century” to Planned Parenthood CEO Cecile Richards. Mrs. Clinton will be honored by the abortion and health services provider on May 2 for “her 40 years of service to women and girls.” Television producer Shonda Rhimes will also share the limelight. Washington Times
VOA VIEW: Hillary received an award for being the biggest loser.

Delta Changes Gun Policy
Delta Air Lines has changed its policy for guns in checked bags. The Atlanta-based airline has a new requirement that guns checked as baggage be picked up at the baggage service office upon arrival. “Delta is committed to the safety of our customers and employees,” Delta said in a written statement. “Every day we look for ways to refine processes and procedures with the goal to improve safety and the overall travel experience.” News of the change comes in the wake of the shooting at the Fort Lauderdale airport in January. A Marietta woman was killed in the airport shooting. The shooting at the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport occurred at the airport’s baggage claim area at Terminal 2, where Delta operates, and showed the vulnerabilities of “soft target” areas outside security screening. Atlanta Journal

Trump’s Trademark Continues Its March Across The Globe, Raising Eyebrows
For most of last year, Donald J. Trump’s application to register trademarks for his brand of home accessories languished in a government office in Lima, Peru. But since Mr. Trump was elected in November, the pace has picked up. A six-month-old request to register his brand of sheets, duvets, towels and other goods, now selling briskly at a home goods store in Lima, overcame a crucial hurdle in late December. So did a second application to protect Mr. Trump’s brand of flatware that was filed after the election. Peruvian officials say they are treating Mr. Trump’s trademark applications like anyone else’s and are acting on them now simply because his business representatives have answered outstanding questions. They insist that Peru’s president, who met Mr. Trump in the Oval Office in late February, has no influence over their decisions. NY Times

Megyn Kelly’s First NBC Interview Could Be With Putin
Will Megyn Kelly kick off her NBC career with a news-breaking interview with Vladimir Putin? NBC News chairman Andy Lack has been in Russia this week, trying to land an interview with the Russian president for the network. The big question is, if Lack succeeds, will the “biggest get on the planet” go to Kelly to debut her Sunday night news magazine show? Or would “Today’s” Matt Lauer or “Nightly News’?” Lester Holt pull rank and steal the scoop? NBC insiders say it is not yet clear. One told Page Six, “Andy Lack has been in Russia having meetings to land an interview with Putin,” adding that Lack was hoping to meet with the Russian strongman’s spokesman Dmitry Peskov. NY Post
VOA VIEW: NBC has lost authenticity and credibility.

Manafort Firm Received Ukraine Ledger Payout
Last August, a handwritten ledger surfaced in Ukraine with dollar amounts and dates next to the name of Paul Manafort, who was then Donald Trump's campaign chairman. Ukrainian investigators called it evidence of off-the-books payments from a pro-Russian political party — and part of a larger pattern of corruption under the country's former president. Manafort, who worked for the party as an international political consultant, has publicly questioned the ledger's authenticity. Now, financial records newly obtained by The Associated Press confirm that at least $1.2 million in payments listed in the ledger next to Manafort's name were actually received by his consulting firm in the United States. They include payments in 2007 and 2009, providing the first evidence that Manafort's firm received at least some money listed in the so-called Black Ledger. Houston Chronicle

Giddy Up! Automakers Raise Horsepower, Speed To New Heights
Fred Croatti often drives his silver Dodge Charger Hellcat to the grocery store, turning heads as he rumbles through the parking lot with a supercharged 6.2-Liter 707-horsepower engine. Although Croatti's car sounds like a NASCAR racer, the retired pilot from Port Orange, Florida, isn't looking for attention. He just loves the power. "The visceral effect of the air, the sound," he says. "All you've got to do is tickle the gas a little bit and the hairs on the back of your head stand up." At a time when mainstream and luxury cars look similar inside and out, buyers like Croatti are hungry for sound and speed, and car companies are happy to oblige. On Tuesday night, Fiat Chrysler's Dodge brand used explosions, burnouts and a small drag strip to ramp up horsepower even more. Ahead of the press days of the New York auto show, Dodge rolled out the 840-horsepower Demon Challenger, which FCA says is the fastest and most powerful production car made. Houston Chronicle

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Tom Carper Wants Review Of Trump Aide’s Tweet For Possible Violation Of Law
Sen. Tom Carper, Delaware Democrat, has asked the U.S. Office of Special Counsel to look into whether a top assistant to President Trump violated the law when the aide called for the defeat of a Republican congressman earlier this month. Dan Scavino, who runs the White House’s social media efforts, might have violated a law that prohibits federal employees from engaging in certain political activity when he publicly called for the defeat of Rep. Justin Amash earlier this month, Mr. Carper wrote in a letter released Tuesday. On April 1, Mr. Scavino had tweeted: “@realDonaldTrump is bringing auto plants & jobs back to Michigan. @justinamash is a big liability.#TrumpTrain, defeat him in primary.” Washington Times

Sessions Orders Prosecutors To Crack Down On Illegal Immigration
Attorney General Jeff Sessions is urging prosecutors to crack down on immigration enforcement to stop gangs and cartels from turning U.S. cities into “war zones,” and he promised Customs and Border Protection agents more support for their efforts to combat illegal immigration. In Arizona, as he stood near the border with Mexico, Sessions talked about the “transnational gangs like MS-13 and international cartels flood our country with drugs and leave death and violence in their wake,” and “criminal organizations that turn cities and suburbs into war zones, that rape and kill innocent citizens, and who profit by smuggling poison and other human beings across our borders.” CBS
VOA VIEW: Good!

United Airlines Faces Backlash After Dragging Man From Plane
United Airlines is facing a turbulent public reaction over its treatment of a passenger who was physically dragged from a flight. A video of the incident showed a man identified as Kentucky physician David Dao, who was traveling on United Airlines flight 3411 from Chicago to Louisville, forcibly removed when the flight was oversold Sunday night. Passengers were chosen at random to be bumped from the flight, including Dao and his wife. He was shown screaming as officers pull him from his seat. CBS

Advertisers Are Running Away From Bill O’Reilly, But Viewers Are Running To Him
Advertisers are fleeing Bill O’Reilly’s “no spin zone” on Fox News Channel, but viewers are remaining loyal. “The O’Reilly Factor” averaged 3.71 million viewers over five nights last week, the Nielsen company said Tuesday. That’s up 12 percent from the 3.31 million viewers he averaged the week before and up 28 percent compared to the same week in 2016. O’Reilly’s show averaged just under 4 million viewers for the first three months of 2017, his biggest quarter ever in the show’s 20-year history.  “Controversy is a breeding ground for interest,” said Marc Berman, editor in chief of The Programming Insider. “So people who otherwise might not have seen his show recently are curious. People might want to see if he addresses the subject. If the ratings were not up, I would have been surprised.” Kansas City Star
VOA VIEW: Advertisers waste their money on liberal programs that don't have the audience or money to buy product.

Scott Issues State Of Emergency As Florida Wildfire Season Worsens
With thousands of acres across Florida ablaze and drought conditions intensifying, Gov. Rick Scott issued a state of emergency Tuesday. An unusually dry winter, that stands as the second warmest on record and is linked to a La Niña weather pattern, has spread drought conditions across much of the state. Wildfires have already consumed 250 percent more land in the first three months of this year than the same time last year, Scott said in making the announcement. “This may only get worse as we enter the hotter summer months and it is crucial that we take every action right now to be prepared,” Scott said in a statement. His declaration will make it easier to coordinate local and state agencies, he said. Miami Herald

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Tom Carper Wants Review Of Trump Aide’s Tweet For Possible Violation Of Law
Sen. Tom Carper, Delaware Democrat, has asked the U.S. Office of Special Counsel to look into whether a top assistant to President Trump violated the law when the aide called for the defeat of a Republican congressman earlier this month. Dan Scavino, who runs the White House’s social media efforts, might have violated a law that prohibits federal employees from engaging in certain political activity when he publicly called for the defeat of Rep. Justin Amash earlier this month, Mr. Carper wrote in a letter released Tuesday. On April 1, Mr. Scavino had tweeted: “@realDonaldTrump is bringing auto plants & jobs back to Michigan. @justinamash is a big liability.#TrumpTrain, defeat him in primary.” Washington Times

Sessions Orders Prosecutors To Crack Down On Illegal Immigration
Attorney General Jeff Sessions is urging prosecutors to crack down on immigration enforcement to stop gangs and cartels from turning U.S. cities into “war zones,” and he promised Customs and Border Protection agents more support for their efforts to combat illegal immigration. In Arizona, as he stood near the border with Mexico, Sessions talked about the “transnational gangs like MS-13 and international cartels flood our country with drugs and leave death and violence in their wake,” and “criminal organizations that turn cities and suburbs into war zones, that rape and kill innocent citizens, and who profit by smuggling poison and other human beings across our borders.” CBS
VOA VIEW: Good!

United Airlines Faces Backlash After Dragging Man From Plane
United Airlines is facing a turbulent public reaction over its treatment of a passenger who was physically dragged from a flight. A video of the incident showed a man identified as Kentucky physician David Dao, who was traveling on United Airlines flight 3411 from Chicago to Louisville, forcibly removed when the flight was oversold Sunday night. Passengers were chosen at random to be bumped from the flight, including Dao and his wife. He was shown screaming as officers pull him from his seat. CBS

'Charging Bull' Sculptor Accuses NYC Of Violating His Rights
The sculptor of Wall Street's "Charging Bull" statue is accusing New York City of violating his legal rights by allowing the "Fearless Girl" statue to be installed facing the bronze beast, without his permission. Attorney Norman Siegel told The Associated Press that Arturo Di Modica will explain at a news conference Wednesday exactly how he's challenging city officials who issued a permit for the bronze girl to stay until February. Siegel said he's demanding that the city release documents showing what procedures were followed. Artist Kristen Visbal's figure was first placed on a traffic island near Wall Street on March 7, on the eve of International Women's Day, to make a point: There's a dearth of women on the boards of the largest U.S. corporations. Philadelphia Inquirer
VOA VIEW: A gender liberal issue.

IMF leader Lagarde Warns Against Trade Protectionism
The head of the International Monetary Fund says that after six years of disappointing growth, the world economy is finally gaining momentum. But she warns of a number of potential threats, ranging from political uncertainty in Europe to protectionism that could hinder global trade. IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde says that there is a critical need for more international cooperation, not less. Restricting trade flows would be a "self-inflicted wound" that would harm workers and consumers, she says. In the text of a speech to be delivered in Brussels on Wednesday, Lagarde did not single out any country for specific criticism on the issue of protectionism. But in his campaign, President Donald Trump vowed to impose punitive tariffs on goods from countries he believes harm American workers by flouting global trade rules. SF Gate

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Gold, Yen Climb To 5-Month Highs As Refuges Sought: Markets Wrap
Gold and the yen rallied to five-month highs while Treasury note yields approached the lowest levels of the year as investors sought out traditional havens from geopolitical risks. The U.S. equity market’s standard fear gauge rose to the highest since November. The yen strengthened versus all of its G-10 peers as tensions in Asia ratcheted higher, with North Korea warning of a nuclear strike if provoked and President Donald Trump saying on Twitter that the U.S. would “solve the problem” with or without China. U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said during a Group of Seven meeting in Italy that Russia must abandon its support of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s regime. Bloomberg

That Fingerprint Sensor On Your Phone Might Not Be As Safe As You Think
Fingerprint sensors have turned modern smartphones into miracles of convenience. A touch of a finger unlocks the phone — no password required. With services like Apple Pay or Android Pay, a fingerprint can buy a bag of groceries, a new laptop or even a $1 million vintage Aston Martin. And pressing a finger inside a banking app allows the user to pay bills or transfer thousands of dollars. While such wizardry is convenient, it has also left a gaping security hole. New findings published Monday by researchers at New York University and Michigan State University suggest that smartphones can easily be fooled by fake fingerprints digitally composed of many common features found in human prints. Seattle Times

Moscow To Tillerson: U.S. Strike On Syrian Air Base Must Not Be Repeated
Moscow believes that measures such as last week’s U.S. missile strike on a Syrian air base must not be repeated, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov told Secretary of State Rex Tillerson on Wednesday, Russian state media reported. President Trump ordered the strikes in retaliation for a chemical attack that killed at least 86 people that the U.S. blames on the government of Syrian President Bashar Assad. Tillerson was meeting with Lavrov on Wednesday, as the United States urges Russia to end its support for  Assad. USA Today
VOA VIEW: Syria's action will tell what Trump will do.

Iran’s Former President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad Registers To Run In May Election
Iran’s former President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on Wednesday filed to run in the country’s May presidential election, contradicting a recommendation from the supreme leader to stay out of the race. Ahmadinejad’s decision will upend an election many believed would be won by moderate President Hassan Rouhani, who negotiated the nuclear deal with world powers. Though Rouhani has yet to formally register, many viewed him as a shoe-in following Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei’s recommendation in September for Ahmadinejad to stand down. But many hard-liners in Iran seek a tough-talking candidate to rally around who can stand up to U.S. President Donald Trump. Ahmadinejad’s candidacy also could expose the fissures inside Iranian politics that linger since his contested 2009 re-election, which brought massive unrest. USA Today

Trump Signs Off On Montenegro’s Upcoming Entry Into NATO
President Donald Trump has signed off on Montenegro's upcoming accession into NATO, helping pave the way for the military alliance's expansion in the Balkans. The White House says in a statement that Trump looks forward to welcoming Montenegro as the 29th member of the NATO alliance at next month's meeting in Brussels. The Senate in March voted overwhelmingly to ratify the tiny Balkan nation's entry into the alliance. Russia strongly opposes the expansion of the Western military alliance in a region it considers part of its strategic sphere of interest. Las Vegas Sun

Russia Knew Syrian Chemical Attack Was Coming
The United States has made a preliminary conclusion that Russia knew in advance of Syria's chemical weapons attack last week, but has no proof of Moscow's involvement. That's according to a senior U.S. official. The official said Monday that a drone operated by Russians was flying over a hospital as victims of the attack were rushing to get treatment. Hours after the drone left, a Russian-made fighter jet bombed the hospital in what American officials believe was an attempt to cover up the usage of chemical weapons. The official said the presence of the surveillance drone over the hospital couldn't have been a coincidence. Las Vegas Sun
VOA VIEW: Dumb move, if true.

Sessions Warns Of Increased Immigration Enforcement To Remove 'Filth'
Attorney General Jeff Sessions, appearing in Arizona for a tour Tuesday of the U.S.-Mexico border crossing, described a "Trump era" of increased enforcement of immigration laws to remove the "filth" of criminal activity. "For those that continue to seek improper and illegal entry into this country, be forewarned: This is a new era. This is the Trump era," Sessions said to immigration officials in Nogales, Ariz. Sessions toured rough terrain along the international border in Nogales, about roughly 70 miles south of Tucson. After the tour, he spoke about violent cartel and gang members those who smuggle people illegally into the United States, "We mean criminal organizations that turn cities and suburbs into warzones, that rape and kill innocent citizens," Sessions said in prepared remarks. "It is here, on this sliver of land, where we first take our stand against this filth." UPI News

Flame Retardants Used In Furniture May Increase Thyroid Cancer Risk
Flame retardants used in many home furnishings may boost the risk for thyroid cancer, researchers report. "Thyroid cancer is the fastest increasing cancer in the U.S., with most of the increase in new cases being papillary thyroid cancer," said study lead investigator Dr. Julie Ann Sosa. This is the most common type of thyroid cancer.
"Recent studies suggest that environmental factors may, in part, be responsible for this increase," added Sosa, a professor of surgery and medicine at Duke University School of Medicine in Durham, N.C. UPI News

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SRAELI PARLIAMENTARIANS LABEL SPICER'S COMMENTS 'IGNORANT AND UNACCEPTABLE'
Israeli lawmakers condemned remarks made by White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer on Tuesday, implying that Nazi dictator Adolf Hitler did not use chemical weapons during World War II. Transportation Minister Israel Katz (Likud) called Spicer’s statement “grave” and “outrageous” adding there is a “moral obligation that precedes diplomatic policy.” Israel “must demand that he apologize or resign,” Katz said. The Knesset Israel-US Relations Caucus Chairman MK Nachman Shai (Zionist Union) labeled Spicer's statement as ignorant and outrageous and called on US President Donald Trump to renounce from them. "The White House urgently needs a history teacher," said Shai. "Ignorance is not acceptable." Jerusalem Post

Syria War: G7 Fails To Agree Sanctions On Russia After 'Chemical Attack'
G7 nations have failed to agree on a proposal by Britain for sanctions against Russia in the wake of a deadly chemical attack they say was carried out by Moscow's ally, Syria. Italy's foreign minister said the group did not want to back Russia into a corner and preferred dialogue. US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has moved on from the G7 meeting in Italy and has arrived in Moscow for talks. He insisted Syria's president could not play a part in the country's future. BBC

Trump Administration 'To Sell Nigeria Planes' For Boko Haram Fight
The Trump administration plans to sell military planes to Nigeria despite concerns over rights abuses and a botched air strike that killed scores of civilians in January, US media say. Up to a dozen A-29 Super Tucano aircraft would be sold to Nigeria to help fight Islamist militant group Boko Haram, unnamed US officials said.
The deal, which is not yet official, will require approval from Congress. Boko Haram's deadly insurgency has displaced more than two million people. BBC

Canada To Tackle Overbooking On Flights
Canada has said it is taking steps to tackle airline overbooking, following an incident involving United Airlines. Federal Transport Minister Marc Garneau said the government will put forward a passenger rights law this spring. It is expected to include compensation rules for those denied boarding due to factors within the carrier's control. Mr Garneau announced the plan last year, but restated it as footage of a US passenger being forcibly removed from a flight made global headlines. Guardian

Putin Hardens Moscow's Support Of Syria Regime Before Tillerson Visit
Vladimir Putin has deepened his support of the Syrian regime, claiming its opponents planned false-flag chemical weapon attacks to justify further US missile strikes. The Russian president’s predictions on Tuesday of an escalation in the Syrian war involving more use of chemical weapons came as US officials provided further details of what they insist was a sarin attack by Bashar al-Assad’s forces against civilians on 4 April, and accused Moscow of a cover-up and possible complicity. Guardian
VOA VIEW: Putin is being dum , or showing his power.

Donald Trump Warns That If China Doesn't Rein In North Korea, America Will 'Solve The Problem' As US Navy Strike Force Dispatched
Donald Trump has taken to Twitter to threaten North Korea, writing that the country is "looking for trouble", and that America may step in to "solve the problem". The messages came as Kim Jong-un's regime said it was “ready for war“, and the country's state media warned of a nuclear attack against the United States should America take any military action against them. Mr Trump is seeking to pressure China to rein in its rogue neighbour. He tweeted that he had told Xi Jinping, the country's president, who made a state visit to the US last week, that "a trade deal with the US will be far better" if Beijing solves the "North Korea problem". Telegraph

Soaring Trump Dollar Risks Global Trade War And China Currency Crisis, Warns Posen
The world's leading currency institute is bracing for a dramatic rise in the US dollar as the Federal Reserve rushes to tighten monetary policy, setting the stage for a protectionist showdown and a fresh debt crisis in emerging markets. Adam Posen, president of the Peterson Institute for International Economics, said investors have badly misjudged the confluence of forces at work in Washington. They wrongly assume that fiscal stimulus will come to little under Donald Trump, and are equally wrong that Janet Yellen Fed's will remain dovish as the US nears full employment. UN News

UN Calls For Urgent Access To Reach Some 400,000 Civilians Trapped In Syria’s Ghouta
Voicing concern over the impact of deteriorating security and humanitarian situation on the lives some 400,000 people trapped in eastern Ghouta in Syria, a United Nations spokesperson today underlined the need to ensure that humanitarians have unrestricted access to the affected areas. “There have been continued reports of heavy aerial bombardment and artillery shelling which have resulted in civilian deaths and injuries,” Stéphane Dujarric, the Spokesman for the Secretary-General, told the regular daily briefing at UN Headquarters in New York. UN News

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