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Carnival probes security personnel's response to brawl in South Pacific cruise

Yahoo Top Stories Feed - February 18, 2018 - 11:18pm

By Jonathan Barrett SYDNEY (Reuters) - Carnival Corp , the world's largest cruise operator, said on Monday it was investigating the response of its security personnel to a brawl that broke out on one of its South Pacific cruises that resulted in 23 passengers being removed. The American-British company said in a statement that it was investigating "all aspects including the security response" of the incident, which was captured on video and posted on social media. The 10-day cruise to the South Pacific returned to the Australian southern city of Melbourne on Saturday, a day after 23 people were removed in the New South Wales (NSW) town of Eden for what the company described as "disruptive and violent acts".


Man shot multiple times in drive-by shooting in southwest Houston

Yahoo Top Stories Feed - February 18, 2018 - 10:01pm

A man was shot several times Sunday night in a drive-by shooting in southwest Houston.


A Super Dangerous Snowboarding Event Just Debuted At The Winter Olympics

Yahoo Top Stories Feed - February 18, 2018 - 9:03pm

A new event debuted at the 2018 Winter Olympics, and it’s filled with all of the most spectacular parts of the Games.


Lebanon: Russia's New Outpost in the Middle East?

Yahoo Top Stories Feed - February 18, 2018 - 7:01pm

How would Israel or America respond?  Lebanon: Russia's New Outpost in the Middle East? After gaining naval and air bases in Syria, Russia may now be setting its sights on Lebanon. Russian prime minister Dmitry Medvedev has ordered Russia's Defense Ministry to seek a military cooperation agreement with Lebanon.


Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu Warns Iran to 'Not Test Israel’s Resolve'

Yahoo Top Stories Feed - February 18, 2018 - 6:52pm

Netanyahu said the nuclear deal with Iran has emboldened Tehran


These Are the 5 Best Glock Handguns on the Market

Yahoo Top Stories Feed - February 18, 2018 - 6:50pm

The Glock 17 handgun shook up the gun industry in a big way. Gaston Glock’s polymer pistol masterpiece, with its emphasis on ruggedness and reliability, swept the military and law-enforcement world and conquered the civilian market. Slowly, the company has introduced new handguns, all based on the original design, to compete in virtually every niche of the handgun market, from large-bore semiautomatics to discreet concealed carry.


Adam Rippon Turns Down NBC Contributor Gig

Yahoo Top Stories Feed - February 18, 2018 - 6:32pm

Fans will have to wait to see Adam Rippon appear regularly on the small screen.


Iran's Zarif says Israel's "myth of invincibility" has crumbled

Yahoo Top Stories Feed - February 18, 2018 - 1:32pm

Iran's foreign minister said on Sunday the shooting down of an Israeli jet after it bombed an Iranian site in Syria had shattered Israel's "so-called invincibility", reacting to a critical speech delivered earlier by Israel's premier. "Israel uses aggression as a policy against its neighbors," Mohammad Javad Zarif told the Munich Security Conference, accusing Israel of "mass reprisals against its neighbors and daily incursions into Syria, Lebanon." "Once the Syrians have the guts to down one of its planes it's as if a disaster has happened," Zarif said.


2 bears burned in California wildfire spotted in the wild

Yahoo Top Stories Feed - February 18, 2018 - 1:19pm

GOLETA, Calif. (AP) — Officials tracking two bears that were badly burned in the largest wildfire in California history say the animals are settling back into their home in the wild after receiving unusual treatment for their injured paws.


The Latest: Iran says 65 killed in airplane crash

Yahoo Top Stories Feed - February 18, 2018 - 12:44pm

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — The Latest on the crash of an Iranian passenger plane in southern Iran (all times local):


Syria forces ready for assault on rebel enclave

Yahoo Top Stories Feed - February 18, 2018 - 12:23pm

Syrian forces readied Sunday for a ground offensive against the rebel-held enclave of Eastern Ghouta outside Damascus, a monitor said, as residents of the capital braced for retaliatory shelling. President Bashar al-Assad has in recent days been sending reinforcements from across the country to the edge of Eastern Ghouta, besieged by regime troops since 2013. On Sunday, more than 260 rockets, heavy artillery fire, and air strikes slammed into several towns in Eastern Ghouta, he told AFP.


Five killed in attack on church in Russia's Dagestan

Yahoo Top Stories Feed - February 18, 2018 - 12:04pm

A man in Russia's southern province of Dagestan shot into a crowd of people leaving a church on Sunday, killing five and injuring at least five others, Russian news agencies reported, citing the local health ministry. The attack occurred in the village of Kizlyar in the Muslim-majority republic of Dagestan, agencies said. The small republic in the Caucasus mountains borders Chechnya, where Moscow has led two wars against separatists and radical religious groups since the 1991 Soviet collapse and which has seen a large number of people join Islamic State. Russian news agencies said the attack occurred as churchgoers celebrated Maslenitsa, a Christian holiday marking the last day before Lent according to the eastern Orthodox calendar. The assailant was identified as a 22-year-old man local to the region, the TASS news agency said, citing the investigative committee. He was shot and killed by security services who were on duty nearby, TASS said, adding that a hunting rifle, bullets and a knife were discovered on his person. Initial reports suggested all five victims were women, TASS said, citing the local branch of the interior ministry. The injured include two members of local security services and two civilians, also women, the Interfax news agency said.  Islamic State claimed responsibility for a the shooting, according to the militant group's news agency Amaq, although it did not provide immediate evidence for the claim.


Parkland students slam Trump for tying shooting to Russia probe: 'He has already made it about himself'

Yahoo Top Stories Feed - February 18, 2018 - 12:01pm

Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School students Aly Sheehy and Giuliana Matamoros were astounded that Donald Trump would use their tragedy to push back against U.S. special counsel Robert Mueller's probe into possible collusion between Moscow and his 2016 campaign.


Bernie Sanders On AR-15s: They’re 'Not For Hunting. They’re For Killing Human Beings’

Yahoo Top Stories Feed - February 18, 2018 - 11:09am

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) has once again called for a ban on the sale of assault weapons in the wake of the Parkland, Florida, school shooting that left 17 dead last Wednesday.


Putin’s shock troops - how Russia's secret mercenary army came up against the US in Syria

Yahoo Top Stories Feed - February 18, 2018 - 10:58am

It was one of Isil’s biggest cash cows, a strategic prize crucial to the Kremlin and Bashar Assad’s plans to re-establish his rule over Syria. But the assault on Conoco oilfield near Deir Ezzor earlier this month ended in disaster, sparking the first deadly combat between Americans and Russians since the Vietnam War and embarrassing Vladimir Putin just weeks before an election.  It also cast an unwelcome light on one of the worst kept secrets of Russia’s war in Syria - its increasing reliance on unacknowledged and illegal mercenaries. “These were shock troops, and they would take any position, fulfil any task,” said Alexander Averin, a veteran of the pro-Russian militias in east Ukraine and friend of one of the Russians who was killed. Mr Averin said Kirill Ananyev, 33, was a fellow member of the radical “national Bolshevik” political party Other Russia and had also fought in eastern Ukraine.  He said that Ananyev, whom he had known since 2001, had been working for a private military company when he was killed. He would not name the company, but other casualties have been linked to the secretive Wagner group. Kirill Ananyev, a Russian private military contractor in Syria who was killed in US airstrikes on 7 February Credit: Twitter Russian media have published the names of nine Russian fighters who were killed in the assault on February 7, and the foreign ministry finally admitted on Thursday that five Russian citizens had died.  Some media reports have put the number of Russian casualties in the hundreds, however, and relatives and a former member of parliament have called for answers.  “I want everyone to know about my husband, and not just about my husband, but about all the guys who died there so stupidly,” Yelena Matveyeva, whose husband Stanislav was killed, told the regional news site Znak.com. “They sent them like pigs to the slaughter!” The debacle unfolded on the evening of 7 February, when hundreds of mysterious fighters began charging toward a Syrian Democratic Forces position near the oilfield under cover of artillery, tank and rocket fire, according to the US military. In response, US special forces embedded with the mostly Kurdish SDF called in artillery fire and strikes from fighter jets and B-52 bombers that effectively destroyed the “battalion sized force” they were facing. Mr Averin told the Telegraph that 500 Russians were in Deir Ezzor at the time, and that many of them were now dead and wounded. After Stanislav Matveyev, who was believed to work for the Wagner group, was killed, his wife spoke out against the Kremlin denials of Russian casualties Credit: Twitter It is not entirely clear whether the Russian high command authorised the attack, and some believe that Wagner mercenaries were working for local pro-Assad businessman to take the lucrative site. According to a Syrian government contract seen by Fontanka and AP, a Russian company linked to the Wagner group was to receive 25 percent of profits from oil and gas fields its contractors could capture. Others have suggested the Kremlin allowed the preventable defeat, which also saw Syrian troops killed, to happen as a warning to an increasingly independent Mr Assad as well as Iran, his other major backer.  “You need to be in line with our policies in Syria or you'll get bombed,” was Moscow's message to them, said Yury Barmin of the Russian International Affairs Council, a think-tank close to the Kremlin.  A US drone destroys a pro-regime tank near Deir Ezzor days after the airstrikes that killed numerous Russians Credit: CNN Ostensibly designed to support a long-time ally and defeat the Islamic State, Mr Putin's bombing campaign in Syria was supposed to be a television war, providing footage of impressive Russian airstrikes without any body bags to ruin the mood.  To assuage fears of a repeat of the disastrous Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, Mr Putin said it would be solely an air operation lasting no longer than Mr Assad's counter-offensive But Syrian forces reportedly proved ineffective even with the help of Russian advisors and special forces. Kremlin-linked contractors allowed Moscow to run a covert land operation while denying it had boots on the ground. “The big battles, the intense battles with casualties, that's all Russian mercenaries,” said Ruslan Leviev of the Conflict Intelligence Team, a research group who track Russian military activity abroad.  A Russian Tupolev Tu-22M3 bombs targets in the Deir Ezzor region in November Credit: TASS via Getty Images Some 3,000 Russians have fought for the Wagner group, the biggest of the private military companies, in Syria since 2015, according to documents seen by the independent news outlet Fontanka.  It said 73 of them had died before 7 February, exceeding the 46 official Russian military casualties. The US airstrikes against the Russian contractors have raised an alarming risk of direct great-power confrontation in Syria as external players vie to consolidate their interests following the defeat of Islamic State.  Within the last two weeks, al-Qaeda-affiliated rebels shot down a Russian jet, Kurdish fighters have downed a Turkish helicopter, Israel downed an Iranian drone and the Syrian army shot down an Israeli F-16. “Now that the fighting with ISIS is more or less over, every global player in the war is attempting to draw its own sphere of influence in Syria,” Sami Nadir, of the Levant Institute for Strategic Affairs, told the Telegraph. “They used to fight each other through their proxies, now they’re just going head-to-head.” Benjamin Netanyahu holds up what he said was a piece of an Iranian drone shot down in Israeli airspace at the Munich Security Conference on Sunday Credit: AFP PHOTO / MSC Munich Security Conference / LENNART PREISS America wants to limit Iran and keep the Kurds - its greatest ally against Isil - on side, while not agitating its Nato ally Turkey. Russia has been trying to keep a balance between its allies Turkey, Israel and Iran, to little avail. “The new phase in the Syrian conflict makes the anti-ISIS war look like a stroll in the park,” said Bilal Saab, an expert at the Washington-based Middle East Institute. “This has the potential to turn into a regional war.” Yet news of the contractors' deaths has remained largely unknown in Russia under a state television blackout: The website of the main state news programme published a report, only to delete it the same day. A Syrian pro-regime fighter wounded in the 7 February battle in Deir Ezzor Credit: AFP Photo/Getty Images “It's like the story with the Pskov paratroopers who died in Ukraine,” said Lev Gudkov, head of the independent Levada survey centre. “The information was blocked for a long time, then denied, and it spread only in close-knit circles, it didn't become a fact of public opinion, and I fear it will be the same picture here.” Nonetheless, Mr Putin, whose withdrawal announcement was welcomed by most Russians, finds himself in a bind: The Syria peace talks he sponsored in Sochi last month devolved into infighting and the conflict is edging toward what Mr Nadir called a “full-blown international crisis”. “The era of cooperation is over,” he said. “It’s a Cold War scenario.” The Wagner group | Russia's secret mercenaries in Syria


Teen Survivors Of Florida Shooting To March On Washington For Gun Law Reform

Yahoo Top Stories Feed - February 18, 2018 - 9:41am

A group of students who survived the Wednesday mass shooting at a Florida high school are organizing a nationwide march to demand lawmakers make ending gun violence a priority.


Israeli PM Netanyahu to Iran: Don't test Israel's resolve

Yahoo Top Stories Feed - February 18, 2018 - 9:30am

MUNICH (AP) — The nuclear deal with Iran has emboldened Tehran to become increasingly aggressive in the Middle East, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Sunday, warning that Iran should "not test Israel's resolve" as he showed off what he said was part of a downed Iranian drone.


Olympic Analyst Laments Hockey Player's 'Unfortunate' Domestic Abuse Incident

Yahoo Top Stories Feed - February 18, 2018 - 9:03am

NHL analyst Mike Milbury referred to one hockey player’s domestic abuse conviction as an “unfortunate incident,” as he offered commentary for NBC’s coverage of the men’s match between Team USA and the Olympics Athletes from Russia on Saturday.


Paul Ryan: Deficit increase is due to entitlement spending

Yahoo Top Stories Feed - February 18, 2018 - 9:01am

House Speaker Ryan talks need to reform health care, breaks down the budget deal that was passed on 'Sunday Morning Futures.'


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