Tuesday, May 7, 2024

5/7 WAKE-UP CALL: Israel Strikes Rafah

Israel’s military said it began conducting targeted strikes against Hamas in Rafah. The militant group said earlier that it had accepted a cease-fire proposal that Israel said didn’t meet its requirements. Israel warned tens of thousands of Palestinians to evacuate the southern Gaza city ahead of the offensive, and said it was pressuring Hamas to release Israeli hostages.

The new proposal incorporated Hamas’s demands, including ceasing military operations and a withdrawal of Israeli forces before exchanging hostages in Gaza for Palestinian prisoners in Israel. The U.S. and Israel have called Hamas the obstacle to a deal for much of the past two weeks. Israel said it was sending a delegation to the mediators to try to reach an agreement.

➤BIDEN PUT HOLD ON AMMO:  Biden puts hold on ammo shipment to Israel . . . The Biden administration last week put a hold on a shipment of U.S.-made ammunition to Israel. It is the first time since the Oct. 7 attack that the U.S. has stopped a weapons shipment intended for the Israeli military. The incident raised serious concerns inside the Israeli government and sent officials scrambling to understand why the shipment was held, Israeli officials said. President Biden is facing sharp criticism among Americans who oppose his support of Israel.

🎓GRAD WOES AT COLUMBIA:  Columbia University canceled its main commencement ceremony but will still go ahead with smaller-scale graduations, the school said. The ceremony, scheduled for May 15, has previously taken place outdoors in an area where students set up a pro-Palestinian encampment that police took down last week. Columbia said that it couldn’t find another venue that could hold the 50,000-plus people who normally attend its graduation ceremony. Israel-Hamas war protests on campuses nationwide have prompted university administrators to rethink commencement plans in an effort to protect students and guests from potentially ugly and violent political disputes.

➤REPORT..BIDEN BACKERS ALSO SUPPORTING PROTESTORS:  Pro-Palestinian rioters are backed by some of Biden's biggest donors . . . President Joe Biden has been dogged for months by pro-Palestinian protesters calling him “Genocide Joe” — but some of the groups behind the demonstrations receive financial backing from philanthropists pushing hard for his reelection. The donors include some of the biggest names in Democratic circles: Soros, Rockefeller and Pritzker. Two of the organizers supporting the protests at Columbia University and on other campuses are Jewish Voice for Peace and IfNotNow. Both are supported by the Tides Foundation, which is seeded by Democratic megadonor George Soros and was previously supported by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. It in turn supports numerous small nonprofits that work for social change.

➤TRIAL JUDGE FINES TRUMP..AGAIN:  The judge in Donald Trump’s hush-money trial ruled the former president had violated his gag order for a 10th time and threatened to jail him. Trump was fined $1,000 for claiming in an interview that the jury was mostly Democrats and had been picked too quickly. The gag order bars Trump from attacking potential witnesses and jurors, in addition to prosecutors, court staffers and their families. The presumptive Republican presidential nominee is charged with trying to cover up a payment to porn star Stormy Daniels, who claimed to have had an affair with him, on the eve of the 2016 election. He has pleaded not guilty and denied the affair, accusing the Manhattan district attorney, a Democrat, of being politically motivated.

➤BOEING FACING MORE FAA SCRUTINY:   The FAA opened a new inquiry into Boeing after the jet maker said it might have missed some 787 Dreamliner inspections. Regulators said they were investigating whether Boeing completed the required checks and whether employees falsified records. It wasn’t immediately clear whether any 787 Dreamliners would be pulled out of service for inspections. Boeing was reinspecting all 787s in production and must craft a plan for in-service Dreamliners, the FAA said. Boeing’s 787 program chief said the company found no immediate problem for Dreamliners currently flying, according to an internal message last month. The agency has been scrutinizing Boeing’s production since the Jan. 5 midair blowout of a door plug on an Alaska Airlines 737 MAX jet. Separately, a new Boeing spacecraft is set to carry astronauts for the first time this week, a test of whether the much-delayed Starliner is ready to handle NASA missions.

➤HOSPITALS FACE CASH SHORTAGE: Hospitals in eight states are at risk of running out of cash after their owner filed for bankruptcy. Steward Health Care System, which operates 30 hospitals, filed for chapter 11 in one of the biggest such failures in decades. 

The move potentially pits its creditors against regulators, who raced to address concerns about safety. In one of Steward’s hospitals, bats prompted the evacuation of an ICU. At others, traveling nurses left after not being paid. Steward “has done everything in its power to operate successfully in a highly challenging healthcare environment,” its CEO said. A deep relationship with its landlord, Medical Properties Trust—which owns 10% of the company—has kept the hospital chain afloat.

➤BIDEN CENSOR CAMPAIGN PRESSURED SOCIAL MEDIA:  Biden pressure campaign to censor Facebook, YouTube, and Amazon revealed . . . YouTube, Facebook and Amazon were frustrated in early 2021 by the Biden administration’s “pressure” to censor and demote content related to COVID-19 vaccines and the origins of the coronavirus. The platforms ultimately removed and demoted posts and other content and collaborated with the White House on company censorship policy proposals. “The Biden White House censorship campaign was so intrusive that Big Tech felt the need to run policy proposals by them,” said House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Jordan, Ohio Republican.

➤EXPERTS WARN..BIDEN PLAN 'A SECURITY NIGHTMARE':  Experts warn Biden's plan to import Gaza refugees would be a national security nightmare . . . Experts who spoke to the Daily Caller News Foundation framed the reported plan as contrary to the country’s interests, warned of the risks of importing poorly-vetted foreign nationals with potential terror ties and encouraged the Biden administration to instead relocate these refugees to a nearby region within the Middle East. “This is an absurd plan that places woke ideology above the public safety and national security concerns of American citizens,” said Matt O’Brien, director of investigations for the Immigration Reform Law Institute. 

➤U-S SOLDIER DETAINED IN RUSSIA:  A U.S. soldier was detained in Russia last week, a U.S. Army spokesperson said in a statement. The soldier, Staff Sgt. Gordon Black (right), had been stationed in South Korea and traveled to Russia on his own and not on official business, according to four U.S. officials.  He had finished his deployment and was heading back to the U.S. when he made a side trip to Vladivostok, Russia, to visit a woman he was romantically involved with, officials said. They added that he had traveled there without permission from his superiors and is now being held in pre-trial confinement.

➤STARLINER SCRUBS LAUNCH:  Boeing’s CST-100 Starliner will have to wait at least another day for its first human spaceflight as teams scrubbed a Monday night launch attempt. With just over two hours on the countdown clock before a planned 10:34 p.m. liftoff, an issue with an oxygen relief valve led to the call while NASA astronauts Butch Wilmore and Suni Williams were strapped into the spacecraft atop a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station’s Space Launch Complex 41 awaiting the start of the Crew Flight Test (CFT) mission to the International Space Station. The problematic valve was located on the Centaur upper stage of the Atlas rocket. Ahead of the launch attempt, NASA had said a backup opportunity was available Tuesday night as well as Friday and Saturday, but that won’t be determined until after ULA investigates the problem.

👑MISS USA GIVES-UP CROWN:  Noelia Voigt has announced she is relinquishing her Miss USA crown to preserve her mental health.The beauty pageant contestant, who was awarded the prestigious title Sept. 29, 2023 in Reno Tahoe, announced her decision to step down Monday on Instagram. “My journey as Miss USA has been incredibly meaningful, representing Utah with pride, and later the USA at Miss Universe (held in November),” Voigt said in the lengthy statement posted to her account. “Sadly, I have made the very tough decision to resign from the title of Miss USA 2023.”  

“Never could I have imagined the journey that my childhood dream would take me on,” Voigt, 24, continued. “Constant and consistent hard work and dedication all lead me to where I am today, and I hope that the last seven years of competing in pageantry and sharing my journey with you all is something that inspires you to never give up on your dreams, whatever they may be. (USA Today)

⚾OHTANI HITS ANOTHER DINGER: Shohei Ohtani hit a home run for the third consecutive game and the Los Angeles Dodgers defeated the visiting Miami Marlins, 6-3, on Monday for their fifth straight win. 

Freddie Freeman, James Outman and Teoscar Hernandez also hit homers as the Dodgers improved to 4-0 on a six-game homestand. Los Angeles has 12 homers over its past three games and Ohtani has four in that span. Dodgers right-hander Walker Buehler made his first appearance since June 2022 after undergoing elbow surgery and he showed some rust. He gave up three runs on six hits over four innings with no walks and four strikeouts.


  • Dodgers Have Won 12 of 14
    Rays 8 White Sox 2
  • Phillies 6 Giants 1
  • Dodgers 6 Marlins 3
  • Rangers 4 Athletics 2
  • Mets 4 Cardinals 3
  • Tweins 3 Mariners 1
  • Padres 6 Cubs 3
  • Royals 3 Brewers 2
  • Pirates 4 Angels 1
  • Guardians 2 Tigers 1


  • Timberwolves 106 Nuggets 80
  • Knicks 121 Pacers 116
  • Bruins 5 Panthers 1

🌪4 STATES EXPERIENCE TORNADO WARNINGS: At least four tornadoes touched down in Oklahoma and a number of tornado warnings have been issued in Kansas, Nebraska, and Tennessee as millions faced severe weather risks from an outbreak of storms late Monday. Tornadoes were spotted in northeastern and central Oklahoma, including one in Barnsdall, Oklahoma, — a city about 40 miles north of Tulsa, Oklahoma. There were reports of damages and injuries in the communities of Barnsdall and Bartlesville, Oklahoma, and it was the second time in about a month that a tornado hit the area. Further east in the state, the Craig County Emergency Department posted on social media that the Welch Fire Department reported the roof had been blown off the old gymnasium at Welch School. The severe weather comes a week after a tornado outbreak killed four people in Oklahoma.


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