Trump openly embraces, amplifies QAnon conspiracy theories
Donald Trump is increasingly embracing and endorsing the QAnon conspiracy theory, even as the number of frightening real-world events linked to the movement rises. Using his Truth Social platform, Trump this week reposted an image of himself overlaid with the words “the Storm is Coming.” In QAnon lore, the storm refers to Trump’s final victory, when his opponents supposedly will be tried and possibly executed. It’s among dozens of recent Q-related posts from the Republican former president, who also ended a rally with a QAnon song. Experts who study QAnon say Trump may be trying to rally his most stalwart supporters as investigations into his conduct escalate.
Ukrainian president: Burial site contains torture victims
IZIUM, Ukraine (AP) — Investigators searching through a mass burial site in Ukraine have found evidence that some of the dead were tortured, including bodies with broken limbs and ropes around their necks. That’s according to Ukrainian President Volodymr Zelenskyy, who spoke Friday. The site near Izium was recently recaptured from Russian forces. It appears to be one of the largest of its kind discovered in Ukraine. Zelenskyy rushed out a video statement just hours after the exhumations began, apparently to underscore the gravity of the discovery.
Military intel chief says Putin can’t achieve Ukraine goal
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Pentagon’s intelligence chief says Russian forces have shown themselves incapable of achieving President Vladimir Putin’s initial objectives in Ukraine, as things stand now. Lt. Gen. Scott Berrier spoke on Friday to an intelligence and national security forum outside Washington. He said Putin is at a point where he will have to revise his initial aims in invading Ukraine. Berrier said what Putin decides next will determine how long the conflict continues. His comments followed Russian forces latest major setback, a Ukrainian offensive that drove Russians out of a large swath of northeast Ukraine. Putin on Friday vowed to keep pressing his offensive.
Surprise is key part of migrant travel from Florida, Texas
EDGARTOWN, Mass. (AP) — Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis took the playbook of a fellow Republican, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, to a new level by catching officials flat-footed in Martha’s Vineyard with two planeloads of Venezuelan migrants. An immigration attorney says the migrants had “no idea of where they were going or where they were.” Providing little or no information is part of the plan. On Friday, the migrants were being moved voluntarily to a military base on nearby Cape Cod. Before going to the wealthy Massachusetts island, a woman in San Antonio showered them with gifts and promised jobs and housing.
King stands vigil; Wait to see queen’s coffin hits 24 hours
LONDON (AP) — A surging tide of people — ranging from London retirees to former England soccer captain David Beckham — have lined up to file past Queen Elizabeth II’s coffin as it lies in state at Parliament. So many have shown up that authorities called a temporary halt Friday to others joining the miles-long queue. The waiting line reopened late Friday afternoon. Still the British government warned the waiting time to see the queen’s coffin had climbed to more than 24 hours. King Charles III on Friday visited Llandaff Cathedral in Wales for a prayer service in honor of his late mother. Later in the evening, Charles and his three siblings stood vigil around queen’s flag-draped coffin in London.
Breaches of voting machine data raise worries for midterms
ATLANTA (AP) — The revelation earlier this week that federal prosecutors are involved in investigations of suspected voting system breaches across the U.S. is fueling questions about the security of voting machines just two months before the midterm elections. Security breaches at election offices in Colorado, Georgia and Michigan have been sometimes aided by local officials who allowed unauthorized access to people who copied software and hard drive data, and in several cases shared it publicly. Security experts say the breaches by themselves have not necessarily increased threats to the November elections, but say they increase the possibility that rogue election workers could access election equipment to launch attacks.
Biden meets with families of Whelan, Griner at White House
WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden met with family members of WNBA star Brittney Griner and another American detained in Russia, Paul Whelan. The meetings Friday at the White House are the first face-to-face encounter between the president and the relatives of Griner and Whelan. Administration officials say the sessions are meant to underscore Biden’s commitment to bringing home Americans held overseas and to establish a personal connection, but are not an indication that negotiations with Russia for their release have reached a breakthrough. A national security spokesman told reporters Friday that the U.S. had made a serious offer to get the Americans home but the Russians had not responded to that offer.
Alaska braces for huge storm, flooding, power outages feared
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Residents on Alaska’s vast and sparsely populated western coast braced for what forecasters said could be one of the worst in recent history, accompanied by strong winds and high surf that could knock out power and cause flooding. The storm is the remnants of Typhoon Merbok. Warnings anticipate winds reaching hurricane-force speeds in places, water levels reaching up to 18 feet above normal high tide in some communities and widespread power outages and areas of flooding and erosion. The storm also is influencing weather patterns far from Alaska — a rare late-summer storm is expected to bring rain this weekend to drought-stricken parts of California.
Nakate: Leaders are missing the human face of climate change
NEW YORK (AP) — Vanessa Nakate’s climate activism over the past three years has propelled her to the world stage as UNICEF’s newest goodwill ambassador. Since 2019, she has worked to amplify the voices of African climate activists and spearheaded initiatives to stop deforestation and install solar panels on buildings in remote areas of her home country Uganda. But she says it’s not enough to save the planet or save people in the global south who greatly suffer the effects of the climate crisis. Nakate says global leaders need to do more to acknowledge the impact of climate change on those who are most often left out of the conversation.
‘The Phantom of the Opera’ to close on Broadway next year
NEW YORK (AP) — “The Phantom of the Opera” — Broadway’s longest-running show — is scheduled to close in February 2023, a victim of post-pandemic softening in theater attendance in New York. The musical — a fixture on Broadway since 1988, weathering recessions, war and cultural shifts — will play its final performance on Broadway in February. The first production opened in London in 1986 and since then the show has been seen by more than 145 million people in 183 cities. The closure was first reported by the New York Post. A spokesperson says the closing will come less than a month after its 35th anniversary.
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