January 24, 2019 (San Diego’s East County) - East County Magazine's World Watch helps you be an informed citizen on important issues globally and nationally. As part of our commitment to reflect all voices and views, we include links to a variety of news sources representing a broad spectrum of political, religious, and social views. Top world and U.S. headlines include:
- Let them speak: Most Americans want witnesses in Trump impeachment trial - Reuters/Ipsos poll (Reuters)
- Trump Administration Warned GOP Senators ‘Your Head Will Be On A Pike’ If They Vote Against Him, ‘CBS’ Reports (Inquisitr)
- Trump shows anxiety as Democrats lay out case against him in Senate impeachment trial (San Diego Union-Tribune)
Other national news
- 34 US service members diagnosed with traumatic brain injuries after Iranian missile strike (CNN)
- The great dismantling of America’s national parks is under way (Guardian)
- DOT proposes new rules for emotional support animals aboard planes (ABC News)
- More pizza, fewer vegetables: Trump administration further undercuts Obama school-lunch rules (Washington Post)
- Taal volcano eruption in Philippines poses deadly dilemma for people living in its shadow (CNN)
- UK's Harry and Meghan to drop titles and retire as working royals (Reuters)
- U.N. ties alleged phone hacking of Bezos to Post’s coverage of Saudi Arabia (Washington Post)
For excerpts and links to full stories, click “read more” and scroll down.
A bipartisan majority of Americans want to see new witnesses testify in the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump, and the public appears to be largely following the proceedings even after a bruising congressional inquiry that lasted several months, according to Reuters/Ipsos polling released Wednesday…Trump so far has blocked the Democrats’ requests for documents related to the administration’s activities in Ukraine last year. He has also urged officials like former national security adviser John Bolton and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo not to participate. Republicans in the Senate so far have backed up the president, rejecting requests for White House documents and interviews with administration officials. About 72% agreed that the trial “should allow witnesses with firsthand knowledge of the impeachment charges to testify,” including 84% of Democrats and 69% of Republicans. And 70% of the public, including 80% of Democrats and 73% of Republicans, said senators should “act as impartial jurors” during the trial.
According to a CBS News report, Republican senators have been handed an ominous warning from the Trump administration.
Trump shows anxiety as Democrats lay out case against him in Senate impeachment trial (San Diego Union-Tribune)
House Democrats faced off against Trump’s lawyers in his Senate impeachment trial, only the third in history for a president. President Trump on Wednesday hardened his opposition to allowing former national security advisor John Bolton to testify in his Senate impeachment trial, as House Democrats began their methodical arguments for removing the president from office for having abused his office to “cheat an election.” The president cited national security concerns in explaining why Bolton, who was ousted in September, shouldn’t be a Senate witness. But he added a note of apprehension about what his former advisor might tell senators: “I don’t know if we left on the best of terms. You don’t like people testifying when they didn’t leave on good terms.”
Other national news
Thirty-four US service members have been diagnosed with traumatic brain injuries following the Iranian missile attack on US forces in Iraq earlier this month, Pentagon spokesman Jonathan Hoffman said Friday. Seventeen service members who were injured have since returned to duty in Iraq, sixteen of whom were treated locally in the country. Nine service members are still being treated in Germany. An additional eight service members who had been flown to Germany have since been sent to the United States for additional treatment. Earlier this week President Donald Trump said he does not consider potential brain injuries to be as serious as physical combat wounds, downplaying the severity of the injuries suffered in Iraq.
Under this administration, nothing is sacred as we watch the nation’s crown jewels being recut for the rings of robber barons. For more than 100 years, professional management of our national parks has been respected under both Democratic and Republican administrations. ….This time is different and we should know, as Jon, one of this story’s authors, worked for the last 10 interior secretaries as a career NPS manager, and ultimately led the agency under Barack Obama, and Destry, Jon’s brother and co-author, has worked with the past 12 NPS directors as a conservation advocate.
The new rule could prohibit animals, other than dogs, from flying.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture has taken another whack at former first lady Michelle Obama’s signature achievement: Establishing stricter nutritional standards for school breakfasts and lunches. And on her birthday. On Friday, USDA Deputy Under Secretary Brandon Lipps proposed new rules for the Food and Nutrition Service that would allow schools to cut the amount of vegetables and fruits required at lunch and breakfasts while giving them license to sell more pizza, burgers and fries to students.
… t's a bleak prospect faced by many families in Batangas and Cavite who lost their homes and livelihoods when the Taal volcano -- one of the Philippines' most active -- began erupting last Sunday, spewing ash up to 14 kilometers (9 miles) into the air and generating volcanic lightning. Heavy charcoal-like ash rained down on towns and villages, blanketing everything. Houses and trees buckled under the weight of it. Affected areas had no power or fresh water.
Prince Harry and his wife Meghan will no longer be working members of Britain’s monarchy and they will pay their own way in life as they embark on an independent future, Buckingham Palace said on Saturday.
The announcement came in response to the alleged hacking of a phone belonging to Washington Post owner and Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos.