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Omarosa's exit highlights lack of diversity at Trump White House
Omarosa's exit highlights lack of diversity at Trump White HouseWithout Manigault-Newman, Trump appears to have no black senior advisers in public-facing White House roles. The departure of the former Apprentice contestant Omarosa Manigault-Newman from the White House this week has placed the lack of diversity in Donald Trump’s administration under renewed scrutiny. Manigault-Newman, the highest-ranking black person to work in the West Wing under Trump, abruptly left her post as a special assistant to the president on Wednesday.

US admits to running secret UFO programme 
US admits to running secret UFO programme The Pentagon ran a secretive five year program to investigate UFO sightings, spending $22 million before it was shut down due to cost, it has been revealed. For the first time, the Department of Defense has acknowledged the existence of the mysterious Advanced Aerospace Threat Identification Program run from an office in a quiet corner of its sprawling headquarters. There, between 2007 and 2012, a team of researchers working with experts in Nevada probed reports of alien life form and strange sightings over the US skies - a real life versions of the hit TV show The X Files. The enterprise was the passion project of Harry Reid, the retired Senate Majority leader. “I’m not embarrassed or ashamed or sorry I got this thing going,” Mr. Reid said in an interview with the New York Times who first reported the story. “I think it’s one of the good things I did in my congressional service. I’ve done something that no one has done before.” Stock image of a UFO However, although some of the unit's work remains classified, it is not thought any convincing evidence of extraterristrials was discovered. “If anyone says they have the answers now, they’re fooling themselves, Mr Reid said We do not know.” But, he added: “we have to start someplace.” Documents show how the unit, working with a Las Vegas aerospace company run by Mr Reid's long time friend Robert Bigelow, investigated sightings of aircraft moving at high speeds with no signs of propulsion or that hovered mysteriously. Officials with the program also studied videos of encounters between unknown objects and American military aircraft  including one released in August of a white oval object, about the size of a commercial plane, chased by two US Navy fighter jets from the aircraft carrier Nimitz off the coast of San Diego in 2004. Yet in 2012, the program was seemingly wound up to the frustration of many. Visitors to the International UFO Museum in Roswell, New Mexico examine a glass-encased alien prop used in the movie "Roswell" Thomas Crosson, a Pentagon spokesman said:“It was determined that there were other, higher priority issues that merited funding, and it was in the best interest of the DoD (Department of Defence) to make a change.” Some say the shadowy work continues despite the funding being cut off. Fornmer  military intelligence official, Luis Elizondo, who led the unit, claims he continued his research and continued to work from his office in teh Pentagon until October when he resigned in protest at what he descirbed as excessive secrecy and internal opposition. In his resignation letter to Defense Secretary James Mattis, he reportedly wrote: “Why aren’t we spending more time and effort on this issue?” U.F.O.s have been repeatedly investigated over the decades in the United States, including by the American military. In 1947, the Air Force began a series of studies that investigated more than 12,000 claimed U.F.O. sightings before it was officially ended in 1969.  The project, which included a study code-named Project Blue Book, started in 1952, concluded that most sightings involved stars, clouds, conventional aircraft or spy planes, although 701 remained unexplained. Robert C. Seamans Jr., the secretary of the Air Force at the time, said in a memorandum announcing the end of Project Blue Book that it “no longer can be justified either on the ground of national security or in the interest of science.”

British diplomat found dead in Lebanon
British diplomat found dead in LebanonA young British diplomat has been found murdered in the Lebanese capital Beirut after being strangled and reportedly sexually assaulted.  Rebecca Dykes, 30, from London, who had been working for the Department for International Development, was killed after leaving a bar with friends on Friday night. She had been out in the Gemmayzeh area of central Beirut for the leaving party of a colleague at the British embassy and had left just after midnight. She had been been drinking as she had an early flight to catch home early the next morning for the Christmas holidays.  She was abducted some time after and killed. Her body was found dumped on the Metn highway several miles away.  Police sources told the Telegraph the first autopsy revealed the cause of death as strangulation, however a second postmortem examination is to be carried out later.  They said they did not believe the attack to be politically motivated. One friend told the Telegraph: "It's horrific. We had no idea what happened to her until we got a call today to go to the police station to give statements." Miss Dykes had been working in Beirut as the programme and policy manager for the Department for International Development since January 2017. Beirut killing She had worked for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office since 2010, previously on Libya and Iraq.  She is thought to have grown up in Hong Kong, but attended Malvern St James Girls boarding school in Worcestershire before later studying anthropology at Manchester University and International Security and Global Governance from Birkbeck, University of London.  In a statement her family said: "We are devastated by the loss of our beloved Rebecca. We are doing all we can to understand what happened." Hugo Shorter, the British ambassador to Lebanon, said: "The whole embassy is deeply shocked, saddened by this news. My thoughts are with Becky’s family, friends and colleagues for their tragic loss.  "We're providing consular support to her family and working very closely with Lebanese authorities who are conducting police investigation." A spokesman for the Department for International Development where she worked said: "Our thoughts are with Becky's family and friends at this very upsetting time. "There is now a police investigation and the FCO (Foreign Office) is providing consular support to Becky's family and working with the local authorities." Such incidents are rare in Beirut, despite the fragile security situation in the country.

Hundreds of People Fell Sick on a Royal Caribbean Cruise
Hundreds of People Fell Sick on a Royal Caribbean CruiseSome passengers told local media they were happy to get off the ship

Vatican issues new rules for relics in saint-making process
Vatican issues new rules for relics in saint-making processVATICAN CITY (AP) — The Vatican's saint-making office has updated its rules governing the use of relics for would-be saints, issuing detailed new guidelines Saturday that govern how body parts and cremated remains are to be obtained, transferred and protected for eventual veneration.

Cake for 'joyful' pope on his 81st birthday
Cake for 'joyful' pope on his 81st birthdayPope Francis celebrated his 81st birthday Sunday with a hero cake and a message urging the world -- and children in particular -- to join in the holiday mood and be joyful. The Argentine pontiff thanked the crowds gathered in Saint Peter's Square for the Angelus prayer as they sang happy birthday, and was expected to slice into his birthday cake after lunch. The artist -- whose real name is Mauro Pallotta -- famously depicted Francis as Superman in 2014 and has since begun supporting Vatican charitable projects by selling T-shirts bearing the flying pope.

Somewhere in Las Vegas, there's a warehouse containing debris from UFOs
Somewhere in Las Vegas, there's a warehouse containing debris from UFOsLet's be clear: "U.F.O." is an acronym for "unidentified flying object." It doesn't necessarily mean aliens. But it also might mean aliens. Sorry, Miriam. SEE ALSO: That interstellar asteroid probably isn't aliens, but the hunt continues A Saturday report in the New York Times lays out the details of a secret, Defense Department-funded "Advanced Aerospace Threat Identification Program," formed to investigate UFO reports.  Among the more sensational details is the revelation that a number of buildings in Las Vegas were modified to house "metal alloys and other materials ... from unidentified aerial phenomena." It's a seemingly minor detail in a much larger story about a program that was established in 2007 under the guidance of then-Senate majority leader Harry Reid. The Nevada Democrat turned an interest in space phenomena into a DoD-funded $22 million investigation. Reid confirmed the existence of the program, as did Pentagon officials, though the latter claim that the program ended in 2012.  "It was determined that there were other, higher priority issues that merited funding, and it was in the best interest of the DoD to make a change," Pentagon spokesperson Thomas Crosson told the Times.  Still, the Pentagon's engagement here is a big surprise: This is one of the few times — if not the first — that an arm of the U.S. government confirmed the existence of a modern program designed to look into extraterrestrial events. The Las Vegas storage location(s) were constructed by Robert Bigelow, a friend of Reid's and a NASA contractor who is currently working with the aerospace and aeronautics research agency on human habitats for outer space. The Times writes: Although the Pentagon confirms that funding for the program came to an end in 2012, former military intelligence official and program administrator Luis Elizondo claims that research efforts continue. The Times unearthed a great deal more information about this program and its beginnings, supporters, and operations. Definitely give that story a look if you're interested in learning more. (This is about UFOs, folks: Are any of you not interested in learning more?) WATCH: Here's a breakdown of the beloved 'Star Wars' character, the porg

Third Sea Lion Attack in a Week Prompts Swimming Ban at San Francisco Park
Third Sea Lion Attack in a Week Prompts Swimming Ban at San Francisco Park"I haven’t had a single sea lion or wildlife attack like this."

End of days comes for Ohio man's 'zombie Nativity' scene
End of days comes for Ohio man's 'zombie Nativity' sceneCINCINNATI (AP) — A ghoulish holiday tradition outside of Cincinnati will soon come to a close after an Ohio man said he won't put up his "zombie Nativity" scene after this year.

Iowa justice blocks newspaper from reporting court records
Iowa justice blocks newspaper from reporting court recordsIOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — An Iowa Supreme Court justice has taken the unusual step of temporarily ordering the state's largest newspaper not to publish the contents of court records legally obtained by one of its reporters.

What Trump did this week: Twitter feuds – naturally – and a shock loss for Roy Moore
What Trump did this week: Twitter feuds – naturally – and a shock loss for Roy MooreEach week, Trump seems to make more news than most presidents do in a lifetime. Donald Trump lashed out at the press on Saturday after CNN had to correct a report about hacked material being emailed to his son. Pointing out that the network’s slogan was “THE MOST TRUSTED NAME IN NEWS”, Trump suggested an alternative tagline: “THE LEAST TRUSTED NAME IN NEWS”.

10 Cordless Drills for the Do-It-Yourselfer
10 Cordless Drills for the Do-It-YourselferCruising the tool aisle at a home center, not to mention countless avenues online, you’ll find an overwhelming array of cordless drills. CR is here to help narrow your choices—down to the 30-plus...

Alyssa Milano Educates Matt Damon After His Horrid Response On Sexual Misconduct
Alyssa Milano Educates Matt Damon After His Horrid Response On Sexual MisconductActress Alyssa Milano taught a master class on the problems of sexual misconduct Friday night.

Tips on Tipping This Holiday Season
Tips on Tipping This Holiday SeasonWho should you tip and how much should you give during the holidays? Those are questions consumers grapple with every year, and there’s no clear-cut answer. But there are guidelines, depending on...

Islamic State: What happened to all the foreign fighters?
Islamic State: What happened to all the foreign fighters?An estimated 40,000 people traveled from around the world to take up arms for the Islamic State group as it occupied territory in Syria and Iraq and declared a caliphate in 2014. How many have gone elsewhere to fight?" said Seth Jones, director of the International Security and Defense Policy Center at the Rand Corporation. International counterterror groups are putting huge efforts into answering those questions, working hard to name, count and track IS foreign fighters.

 



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