Friday, June 23, 2017

BBC News: Medina bombing: Saudi king pledges 'iron hand' for attackers

I saw this on the BBC News App and thought you should see it:

Medina bombing: Saudi king pledges 'iron hand' for attackers
King Salman pledges to respond to the three suicide attacks in Saudi Arabia on Monday, including one near Islam's second holiest site.
Disclaimer: The BBC is not responsible for the content of this email, and anything written in this email does not necessarily reflect the BBC's views or opinions. Please note that neither the email address nor name of the sender have been verified.
The king of Saudi Arabia has promised to strike with an "iron hand" against those responsible for a suicide attack near the Prophet's Mosque in Medina - one of Islam's most sacred sites.
Four security officers were killed in the attack, as worshippers gathered to break the day's fasting for Ramadan.
Two other attacks elsewhere in the kingdom killed only the bombers.
"We will strike with an iron hand those who target the minds and thoughts... of our dear youth," King Salman said.
The monarch was delivering a speech to mark Eid al-Fitr, the holiday that celebrates the end of Ramadan.
No group has claimed responsibility for the attacks but  so-called Islamic State has carried out similar bombings, targeting Shia Muslims and Saudi security forces.
Saudi Arabia's highest religious body denounced the three attacks. The Senior Council of Ulema said the bombers had "violated everything that is sacred".
Zeid Ra'ad al-Hussein, the UN high commissioner for human rights and a member of the Jordanian royal family, said: "This is one of the holiest sites in Islam, and for such an attack to take place there, during Ramadan, can be considered a direct attack on Muslims all across the world."
■   Why Islamic State chooses to bomb during Ramadan
■   Islamic State: The full story
The Sunni Muslim jihadist group has called for the overthrow of the Saudi monarchy and its supporters have previously carried out bombings in the Gulf state, targeting the Shia minority community and security forces.
IS also claimed, or was blamed for, a series of deadly attacks in the predominantly Muslim countries of Turkey, Bangladesh and Iraq during the holy month of Ramadan.
An interior ministry spokesman identified the assailant in the Jeddah attack as a 35-year-old Pakistani expatriate called Abdullah Qalzar Khan who, it said, had worked as a private driver in the city for 12 years.
Two security officers were wounded in the attack.
The second bombing took place near dusk outside a Shia mosque in the mainly Shia eastern city of Qatif.
A resident told the Reuters news agency that there were believed to be no casualties apart from the bomber, as worshippers had already left to break their daylight Ramadan fasts.
However, the interior ministry spokesman said the remains of three people had been found and were being identified, without providing any details.
Not long afterwards, another bomber struck near the Prophet's Mosque in Medina where thousands of worshippers had gathered for the Maghrib prayers.
The head of the Shura Council, the kingdom's main advisory body, said the attack was "unprecedented".
"This crime, which causes goose bumps, could not have been perpetrated by someone who had an atom of belief in his heart," Abdullah al-Sheikh said.
The grand sheikh of Cairo's al-Azhar University, the leading religious institute in the Sunni world, also stressed "the sanctity of the houses of God, especially the Prophet's Mosque".
Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince and Interior Minister, Mohammed bin Nayef bin Abdul Aziz, sought to reassure his fellow citizens.
"The security of the homeland is good, it is at its highest levels and thanks be to God it gets stronger every day," the official Saudi Press Agency quoted him as saying while visiting the security officers wounded in the Jeddah bombing.


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Thursday, June 22, 2017

New York Post: New York Times’ bloodbath could include reporter jobs

I thought you'd be interested in this story from the New York Post.

New York Times' bloodbath could include reporter jobs

Reporters at the New York Times could soon be "vulnerable" to the ax. If the ongoing round of voluntary buyouts being offered to editing staff do not get enough takers, the Gray Lady could begin another round, NYT Executive Editor Dean Baquet recently warned his top department editors.

http://nypost.com/2017/06/23/new-york-times-bloodbath-could-include-reporter-jobs/?utm_campaign=iosapp&utm_source=mail_app

For more from the New York Post, visit http://nypost.com.

Reporters at the New York Times could soon be "vulnerable" to the ax. If the ongoing round of voluntary buyouts being offered to editing staff do not get enough takers, the Gray Lady could begin another round, NYT Executive Editor Dean Baquet recently warned his top department editors.


"Up until now, the company had not indicated that layoffs would happen if targeted numbers weren't achieved," Grant Glickson, president of the NewsGuild told Media Ink.


As part of the NYT's ongoing restructuring of its editing ranks, 109 copy editors have had their jobs eliminated. There are estimated to be about 50 new jobs available in the restructured editing operation that the Times envisions for its digital- and video-oriented future.


When the downsizing was first revealed in late May, a memo from Baquet and Managing Editor Joe Kahn portrayed the cuts as a "streamlining" of the editing process and indicated that some of the savings would be used to hire up to 100 more journalists.


But in a mid-June meeting with department heads, Baquet admitted that journalists could be targeted in a new round of layoffs once the editing ranks are culled.


"I just attended a department head meeting with Dean and the rest of the staff," Metro Editor Wendell Jamieson said in a June 15 memo to his own staff. "While much of the buyout discussions have focused on editors, the buyouts are also available to reporters. Dean made it clear that, should the Times find itself in a layoff situation, reporters will also be vulnerable." The memo eventually made its way to the NewsGuild, where it triggered a new uproar.


The NewsGuild blasted the decision by Times management to do away with copy editors — and potentially expand its layoffs to reporters. "This proves what we have suspected all along," said Glickson. "The Times 'restructuring' of the newsroom is really about the bottom line and not about making the editing process more efficient, as they claim."


The process is speeding along, however, despite the union's objections. Interviews for copy editors to apply for the new positions are expected to conclude June 27. They are being conducted by 14 top editors — Jamieson, Nancy Gauss, Steve Kenny, Marc Lacey, Patrick LaForge, Dean Murphy, Caroline Que, Carolyn Ryan, Karron Skog, Dick Stevenson, Archie Tse, Vivian Toy and Susan Wessling. The interview committee will meet June 28 and June 29 to decide who will be called back for a second interview.


The second interview process is expected to end by July 10.


The buyout window closes July 20 — so there will be a 10-day period in which copy editors who have essentially been job eliminated can then "volunteer" for a buyout.


Said one insider, "If you don't have a job after the interview process is complete, you really have no choice but to take the buyout."


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Iraqi officials had privately expressed the hope that the mosque could be captured early next week in time for Eid al-Fitr, the festival marking the end of the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan.

Iraqi officials had privately expressed the hope that the mosque could be captured early next week in time for Eid al-Fitr, the festival marking the end of the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan.

http://aje.io/ph8d


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On Wednesday, ISIL fighters blew up Nuri mosque as Iraqi forces advanced on the ancient religious compound in the embattled northern city.

On Wednesday, ISIL fighters blew up Nuri mosque as Iraqi forces advanced on the ancient religious compound in the embattled northern city.

http://aje.io/pneh


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Police Haul Off Protesters, Some With Disabilities, From Mitch McConnell's Office

I was reading this article on Huffington Post, and I thought you might be interested in reading it, too.

Police Haul Off Protesters, Some With Disabilities, From Mitch McConnell's Office

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/mitch-mcconnell-health-care-protest_us_594be412e4b0a3a837bdf1b7
A draft of the health care bill, released this morning, shows Republicans intend to dramatically cut back on Medicaid and other safety nets, then funnel that money to the richest Americans.

DOWNLOAD_HUFFPOST


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to acorn letters june 22 2017 McCoy Pol, cvusd book banning,+ Timber School etc

‘Politician’ McCoy wants to have it both ways

In response to Thousand Oaks Councilman Rob McCoy’s June 8 letter saying I was not accurate about his voting record, let me remind Mr. McCoy that on May 24, 2016, the council, including McCoy, voted 5-0 to approve the VCTC Transportation Investment and Expenditure Plan for placing the halfcent countywide transportation sales tax measure on the Nov. 8, 2016, general election ballot.
You can look it up yourself on the city’s website by simply clicking on the link for council minutes.
Why does Pastor McCoy deny the truth? Like a typical politician, he wants it both ways.
If he were truly against the tax measure, he would have voted against its placement on the ballot, not for it.
Since he campaigned against tax increases, that’s what his supporters would expect. Now he’s trying to squirm his way out of obvious hypocrisy.
Regarding his other response, that he will never cause the city to engage in a special election, I can only say that is a welcome flip-flop.
John Fonti
Thousand Oaks

School board: Please don’t turn to censorship

I’d like to congratulate the conservatives on the Conejo Valley school board for withdrawing a discussion of “The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian” from their agenda for the June 20 meeting. But I’d like to urge Mike Dunn, Sandee Everett and John Andersen to forget this censorship attempt completely and approve the book without further controversy during the board’s June 27 meeting.
It’s unclear what led them to back down temporarily from their thoughts of removing Sherman Alexie’s novel from the district’s curriculum—and it’s unclear what they’re cooking up for the future.
“Part-Time Indian,” based on Alexie’s own experiences, is the story of a bright boy who decides to leave the school on his Indian reservation in search of a better education from a nearby white school. He is forced to battle for acceptance in both communities, dealing with stereotypes in his new environment while being treated as an outcast in his old one.
The novel offers an unflinching look at life on a reservation— an existence unknown to most Americans despite our proximity.
Still, it’s a moving and witty book about the risks a person will take to better himself and escape the life to which he seemed predestined.
Introducing an audience to unfamiliar and poignant settings and events, celebrating the ambition to learn and to improve one’s circumstances: This is the stuff of great literature—in this case, a National Book Award-winning novel—and it’s precisely the sort of guided-learning experience that age-appropriate students of CVUSD should receive.
It’s ironic, then, that the conservative trustees want to shut our students off from what educational experts agree are the enormous benefits of reading “Part-Time Indian.”
Rejecting the guidance of local professionals who are far more qualified to make such choices, while imposing their own narrow values (based on language and events they’re taking out of context), does a disservice to our community.
After all, our children deserve the highest quality education— not a jaundiced worldview that derives from a censored course of study.
Jon Cummings
Westlake Village

Literature choices should challenge values

Nothing in the books the school board is considering censoring is any more salacious or controversial than many passages and stories in the Bible.
One of the lessons in reading the Good Book or any great literature is that times change, people and cultures differ in many ways, and each of us has our own values, taught and encouraged at home and tested by individuals as they encounter experiences for which our education may or may not have prepared us.
Education ought to prepare young people for the myriad of humans and situations they will need to respond to as they go through life.
Studies demonstrate that reading literature creates empathy, and it is generally accepted that understanding people and places different from ourselves enriches our lives and helps us make appropriate decisions.
If folks want to control what their youngsters absorb, let them keep their children home if they are so frightened by the outside world, but let teachers and librarians determine what literature to offer kids in public schools, the place where we learn to get along with people whose values may differ from ours.
Nancy Tamarin
Thousand Oaks

Much work went into preserving Timber School

I was genuinely pleased to read that a new project for the Timber School site has been proposed, preserving much of the historic structure. This is certainly a positive turn for a property that has an important place in our city’s history.
The Acorn article rightly highlighted its importance to Thousand Oaks, serving various roles in the education of our community all the way back to 1889.
Years ago I had the honor to serve on the city’s planning commission, and in April 2003 I noticed that $1 million in the city’s capital budget was about to be approved to demolish this historic school and lay the groundwork for future development.
The leaders on our council took important steps in preserving this school’s history, eliminating the demolition budget item and eventually designating the building as a city landmark. In contrast to preventing redevelopment of the site, the goal was to ensure that any future development would preserve the current school’s historic nature.
We are now 14 years from those initial decisions, and sometimes it takes a long time to see a city’s vision come to fruition. Our leaders on the council and our city’s staff should be commended for seeing this through.
A city does have a need to renew itself but should do so while honoring its history.
Designating this historic site as a city landmark and supporting its adaptive reuse does exactly that. I look forward to seeing a revitalized Timber School project consistent with these important principles.
Mic Farris
Newbury Park

FAA rules create jet ‘freeway’ over Thousand Oaks

Have you noticed the frequency increase of jumbo jets over Thousand Oaks? It’s going to get worse, and our quiet neighborhood will fall in value with this noise.
There was a new initiative started in April by the Federal Aviation Administration. The new procedures will require all aircraft landing at LAX to start lining up at a new waypoint at a lower altitude of between 11,000 to 13,000 feet over Thousand Oaks, like a freeway of jets over T.O.
Please, what can we do as a community to halt this action by the FAA? What is the City Council doing about this new procedure? Does the City Council even know about the increased flights overhead?
Just go outside at 7 p.m. The frequency is about one jet every two minutes (not kidding). What can I do to help stop this?
Brian Baxter
Thousand Oaks

Immigration law not applied equally to all

Mr. Holmes (Letters, Acorn, June 15) has a lot of feelings on immigration policy but doesn’t consider all the facts.
In his letter, Mr. Holmes didn’t bother to look deeper into the story about the first person deported under Trump.
Had he, Mr. Holmes may have learned how the law that penalized this woman is selectively enforced.
The woman, Guadalupe García de Rayos, used a fake Social Security number to get a job in Arizona. She was charged with criminal impersonation.
But per the Phoenix New Times, thousands of college students get their fake IDs confiscated every year, but a clear majority face no consequences outside of a misdemeanor. In other words, identity fraud is fine if you’re underage and trying to sneak into a bar.
Begs the question, are all truly equal before the law?
García de Rayos was not a priority for deportation under the Obama administration because she was not considered a threat to public safety or national security— hardly the kind of “bad hombre” Trump said he’d have deported.
That said, I doubt Mr. Holmes cares about the biases in Arizona’s justice system given his views on immigration policy. In reading his letter, I sensed a lack of objectivity when he referred to García de Rayos as “an illegal.” People are not illegal, Mr. Holmes. Her very existence is not criminal.
My dad is a real family man because he taught me to respect people of all backgrounds. He taught me to not dehumanize people.
Mr. Holmes, I expect a selfproclaimed family man to share those values.
Kevin Holt
Thousand Oaks

Celebration of Life for Dan Del Campo to be held this Sunday

Celebration of Life for Dan Del Campo to be held this Sunday

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