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Doomed Palestinian village turns to Europe as last hope

Sun, 09/16/2018 - 12:49

KHAN AL-AHMAR, West Bank (AP) — For the anxious Palestinian residents of Khan al-Ahmar, there's little left to do but wait.

Top Brexiteer says British PM's plan is right 'for now'

Sun, 09/16/2018 - 12:43

Pro-Brexit figurehead Michael Gove insisted Sunday that Prime Minister Theresa May's blueprint for leaving the EU is right "for now" -- stressing that future PMs could alter it after Britain's departure. Environment Secretary Gove was among main voices advocating a Leave vote in the 2016 referendum on Britain's membership of the European Union. "A future prime minister could always choose to alter the relationship between Britain and the European Union.

Lula’s guy: Brazilian Left’s new candidate Haddad rallies voters who barely recognise him

Sun, 09/16/2018 - 12:35

As the new favourite to face far-Right candidate Jair Bolsonaro in the Brazilian election race, there is only one question on the lips of Fernando Haddad's supporter base: who is he? Last week, jailed former president Luiz Inácio "Lula" da Silva - the firm frontrunner - officially stepped down as the candidate for the centre-left Workers’ Party, calling in running mate Mr Haddad as his replacement.  Now, the Workers' Party’s strategy is to transfer as much of these votes as possible to Lula's understudy Mr Haddad, the former education minister and São Paulo mayor. Besides Mr Haddad’s professorial, technocratic demeanour – a far cry from Mr da Silva’s passionate fist-shaking and rabble-rousing – the stand-in candidate is virtually unknown outside of the large urban centres of Brazil’s southeast. Nevertheless, early indications show that Mr Haddad, who has seen his voting intentions triple in the last three weeks, is hotly tipped to challenge Mr Bolsonaro in a second-round runoff. Supporters of Brazilian former president Luiz Inacio Lula Da Silva holds a mask of his face Credit: NELSON ALMEIDA / AFP This week, Mr Haddad beings his campaign in the northeast of Brazil, the least developed region of the country and a traditional Workers’ Party stronghold. During his last visit, Mr Haddad was a stranger to the local electorate, referred to mostly as “Lula’s guy”, or mistakenly as Fernando “Andrade”.  This time, he will need to make a much greater impact. Brazil goes to the polls on October 7, leaving Mr Haddad little time to win over Mr da Silva's impressive support base. Polls released last week gave Mr Haddad 13 per cent of the vote, up from 4 per cent three weeks ago and tied in second place alongside fellow centre-Left candidate Ciro Gomes. Supporter of Brazil's Workers Party gather for a rally  Credit: DANIEL RAMALHO/AFP/Getty Images In contrast, before bowing out of the race, Mr da Silva was polling at 39 per cent. Had he not been barred from running, there is a considerable chance he would have been elected with an overall majority, despite the fact he is currently serving a 12-year prison sentence for corruption and money laundering. "Haddad is trying his best to present himself as Lula’s candidate, and this is why he has been growing in opinion polls", said José Alvaro Moisés, political scientist and one of the founders of the Workers’ Party.  "After two days’ campaigning, we’re already in second place", joked Mr Haddad at a press conference with foreign correspondents last week. "There are still 20 more days to go."

Texas set to eliminate Hillary Clinton from required state curriculum

Sun, 09/16/2018 - 11:57

The Texas Board of Education has voted to eliminate Hillary Clinton and other historical figures from the required curriculum in an effort to “streamline” lessons. The vote does not prevent educators from teaching about Ms Clinton, deaf-blind activist Helen Keller, and Republican Barry Goldwater who was the first Jewish presidential candidate, but it is no longer compulsory for the state’s 5.4 million public school students to learn about them. The final vote on the matter is set to take place in November after a period of public consultation.

FEMA Boss Defends Trump's Puerto Rico Death Toll Denial: 'Numbers Are All Over The Place'

Sun, 09/16/2018 - 11:15

The head of the Federal Emergency Management Agency on Sunday defended

FEMA Will Test an Emergency System That Lets President Trump Send You Text Alerts

Sun, 09/16/2018 - 10:44

The texts will be sent as "Presidential Alerts"

London Mayor Pushes For Second Brexit Vote

Sun, 09/16/2018 - 10:08

Alarmed by the possibility of a bad or "no-deal" Brexit, London Mayor Sadiq

Lewandowski: Manafort's plea deal unrelated to Trump

Sun, 09/16/2018 - 10:03

Paul Manafort takes a plea deal that includes cooperation with special counsel Mueller; Corey Lewandowski reacts on 'Fox & Friends.'

Hurricane Florence updates: 13 dead, including 10 in NC, as flooding continues

Sun, 09/16/2018 - 09:57

Ten deaths have been confirmed in North Carolina and three in South Carolina as a result of Florence, which has been downgraded to a tropical storm.

Flooding threatens the Carolinas as Florence is downgraded to a tropical depression

Sun, 09/16/2018 - 09:47

 A killer storm that left up to 13 people dead weakened to a tropical depression on Sunday, but authorities warned the devastation it caused -- including catastrophic flooding -- is far from over.

After Damascus raid, Israel says working to keep weapons from foes

Sun, 09/16/2018 - 09:41

Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Sunday his country is taking action to stop its foes from acquiring sophisticated arms, hours after Damascus said Israeli missiles targeted its airport. Israel has not officially confirmed or denied a report by Syrian state news agency SANA of an attack late Saturday on Damascus international airport. "Israel is constantly working to prevent our enemies from arming themselves with advanced weaponry," Netanyahu's office quoted him as saying at the start of his cabinet's weekly meeting.

Bird's-eye abstraction: Iceland viewed from above

Sun, 09/16/2018 - 09:14

Florian Ledoux captured these rare aerial views of the hills, water and craters of Iceland that look like abstract art compositions.

US swimmer dies from suspected shark attack: police

Sun, 09/16/2018 - 04:56

A swimmer has died from an apparent shark bite off the coast of Massachusetts in the northeastern United States, a police report on the rare incident said. The victim, in his mid-20s, "was bitten by what is believed to be a shark" while he swam at Newcomb Hollow Beach in the Cape Cod area, Wellfleet Police said in a statement Saturday. "The town beaches are closed to swimming for the next 24 hours," the police said.

Typhoon Mangkhut closes in on Hong Kong

Sun, 09/16/2018 - 04:04

Heavy rainfall and flooding hit Hong Kong, causing extensive damage, as "super typhoon" Mangkhut swirled by the city on Sunday. Rough cut (no reporter narration)

China tells Taiwan to halt all mainland spying, sabotage activities

Sun, 09/16/2018 - 03:34

China on Sunday accused Taiwan's spy agencies of stepping up efforts to steal intelligence with the aim of "infiltration" and "sabotage", and warned the island against further damaging already strained cross-strait ties. The relevant agencies in Taiwan must end such activities immediately, the official Xinhua news agency said, citing An Fengshan, a spokesman of China's policy-making Taiwan Affairs Office. On Saturday, state television kicked off the first in a series of programs detailing cases in which Chinese students studying in Taiwan are said to be targeted by domestic spies who lure them with money, love and friendship.

Before and after a storm, the supply stores are critical

Sun, 09/16/2018 - 01:30

MIAMI (AP) — Before and after a hurricane, Ace is the place. And Home Depot and Lowe's. And many other hardware and building supply outlets.

The new vinegars: too good to splash on fish and chips

Sun, 09/16/2018 - 01:00

Pucker up, food lovers: we’re rediscovering our taste for tart. Since fermented foods are now recognised as being not only delicious but also good for the gut, vinegar has enjoyed a resurgence, emerging more flavourful and versatile than ever. Long relegated in Britain to being doused on fish and chips (dear old malt) or splashed in salad dressing (red or white wine, or balsamic), the condiment is now a feature ingredient in its own right. Chefs are making vinegars from scratch, infused with fruit, flowers and herbs, or, more bizarrely, wood ant and burnt toast. And for home cooks, supermarkets and specialist food shops now stock vinegars made from vintage grapes or perfumed with petals, and craft versions matured in oak barrels. Online food retailer Sous Chef reports a 23 per cent increase in sales of speciality vinegars in the past year, with balsamic growing by a whopping 75 per cent. Waitrose stocks 38 different varieties of the sharp stuff. The word “vinegar” comes from the Latin for “sour wine”; Roman legions valued its sharpness as a thirst quencher and drank it with water. Vinegar is sour because it is diluted acetic acid, created by the natural fermentation of wine or other forms of alcohol. This makes it a good preservative; the microorganisms that destroy food cannot survive in such an acidic environment. So, if you embalm ripe fruit, vegetables or herbs in vinegar, you freeze-frame the produce at its peak and imbue the vinegar with its flavour. Pasteurised or distilled vinegar has been heated to kill all the bacteria, but “live” varieties contain “the mother” – the cloud of live organisms that are good for gut health. Jars of different vinegars at Scully restaurant in east London For centuries, British cooks made good use of vinegar (think mushroom ketchup and piccalilli), according to food historian Angela Clutton, author of the forthcoming book The Vinegar Cupboard (Absolute Press, Feb 2019). So why did it fall out of favour? “Because it wasn’t very good,” Clutton admits. “We lost our craftsmen vinegar producers. Machine-made took over for speed and cost, so most of what was available was just not that great.” In the basement kitchen of Scully restaurant in London, chef-proprietor Ramael Scully has buckets of vinegars burbling away. In the restaurant, gleaming jars fill the shelves, made with tayberries, kumquats, blackberry leaves, gooseberries and more. There’s burnt toast vinegar on the go, made from charred sourdough and cider vinegar. What will he use this for? “I’ve no idea! That’s the exciting thing,” he says. But it will eventually add sparkle to one of his dishes. “I believe anything rich needs a bit of acidity,” Scully says. “Vinegar brings balance.” At Carters of Moseley in Birmingham, Brad Carter’s cooking is firmly anchored in British-grown ingredients, so lemons are out and vinegar is vital to brighten and add flavour. He anoints fresh rhubarb with rhubarb vinegar, the sour notes teasing out hidden sweetness, and brushes roasted meat with a vinegar paste to snip through the richness. “Every dish should have an element of acidity – that’s what elevates it,” Carter says. Great vinegars Vinegar features on the best drinks menus, too. Kate Hawkings, author of Aperitif (Quadrille, £16.99), says shrubs are the perfect antidote to sweet cocktails. “The sourness makes them more appetising, more grown up,” she says. Hawkings runs Bellita bar and restaurant in Bristol, where she serves shrubs – strawberry and black pepper, say, or pineapple and kaffir lime leaf – with a splash of soda, or spirits. “They cut the alcohol nicely,” she says. Thom Eagle, head chef and fermenter at The Picklery in east London, thinks the popularity of vinegar is a sign that British palates are finally learning to appreciate a sour element in food. “Mediterranean chefs add a squeeze of fresh lemon, and in far-eastern cooking there’s a tradition of balancing sweet and sour,” he says. “Here, people are only just realising that adding a dash of vinegar at the end of cooking is a way to round out the seasoning.” He suggests adding a splash of good vinegar at the start of cooking and finishing with a dash of a more complex vinegar, such as a sherry or red wine version. “It allows different aspects of the flavour to come through,” Eagle says. So next time your dinner tastes like it’s missing something, reach for the vinegar, not the salt: a dash of sour might be just what it needs. Ramael Scully’s crispy salt and vinegar potatoes with lime and cardamom yogurt SERVES Four INGREDIENTS 500g Maris Pipers, lightly scrubbed with skin left on 100ml white wine vinegar, plus 1 tbsp 200g Greek yogurt 1 tbsp olive oil Zest of 1 lime and juice of ½ 2 tsp ground cardamom 300g masa harina, plus a little extra for dusting 100g cornflour 700-800ml soda water 1 litre vegetable oil, for frying Grated lime zest, to serve METHOD Slice the potatoes into 1cm-thick medallions. Add to a medium-sized saucepan and cover with water. Add 100ml vinegar and a teaspoon of salt. Bring to boil, turn heat down and simmer for 10- 25 minutes, until al dente. Mix together the yogurt, olive oil, lime zest and juice, cardamom and some salt and pepper to create a thick paste. Leave paste in the fridge until needed. To make the batter, mix together the masa harina, cornflour and a teaspoon of salt. Make a well in the middle and add the soda water and tablespoon of vinegar. Mix to a very thick batter. Place in the fridge. Drain the potatoes gently and spread on a baking tray lined with a dry J-cloth. Preheat the vegetable oil to 180C in a large saucepan or frying pan. Cook the potatoes in batches, coating them first in a layer of masa harina, then dip into the batter, then submerge in the oil. Fry to golden brown (any longer and the batter will turn bitter). Remove with a slotted spoon, dry on kitchen paper and serve sprinkled with salt and lime zest, to dip in the yogurt.

Are we there yet? No bottom in sight for China stocks

Sun, 09/16/2018 - 00:34

Shanghai is the world's worst-performing major stock market this year despite respectable corporate earnings, a disconnect which is feeding growing talk that Chinese equities are now a screaming buy. Not so fast, say brokers and analysts, who warn shares have further to fall due to US-China trade squabbling, slowing Chinese economic growth, and a government crackdown on debt that is drying up liquidity. Despite China's still enviable economic growth of over six percent, the Shanghai Composite Index is down 19 percent this year and flirting with levels not seen since late 2014.

Humpback Whales Stun Onlookers With Incredible Triple Breach

Sat, 09/15/2018 - 22:22

Whale watchers off the coast of Nova Scotia, Canada, were treated to a rare