July 24, 2021 (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:
- The five largest burning wildfires in the U.S. (CBS News)
- Senate Republicans block debate on Biden’s infrastructure bill (USA Today)
- A Supreme Court Ruling That’s Right Out of the 19th Century (DC Report)
- Amid Voter Suppression Push, Texas To Prosecute Man Celebrated For Waiting In Long Line(Huffington Post)
- One Year Later, USPS Restores Service to Pre-DeJoy Levels (Government Executive)
- Pro-impeachment Republicans outpace GOP rivals in second-quarter fundraising (The Hill)
- Trump inaugural committee chair Thomas Barrack charged in illegal lobbying effort with UAE (USA Today)
- US extends Mexico, Canada border restrictions through Aug. 21 despite Canada's plan to allow fully vaccinated Americans(USA Today)
- Cuba sees biggest protests for decades as pandemic adds to woes (Reuters)
- Parts of Amazon Rainforest Now Emit More Carbon Dioxide Than They Absorb, Study Confirms (NPR)
- Iranian Intelligence Agents Planned To Kidnap A U.S. Journalist (NPR)
- At least 93 dead and more than 1,000 missing as flooding rages across Europe (Washington Post)
For excerpts and links to full stories, click “read more” and scroll down.
As wildfire seasons in many areas throughout the nation start earlier and last longer, 2021 is on track to be another devastating year for fires. As of Saturday, there are a total of 88 large wildfires burning in the U.S., and they have already destroyed 1,456,925 acres, according to the National Interagency Fire Center.
…But senators from both parties called the setback temporary, and another vote was expected as soon as Monday. That would give negotiators time to draft the legislation and score how much it would cost.
…The justices, exploiting a single incident, turned back the clock on farmworker rights nearly a half-century. In an under-reported 6-3 decision, the justices drop-kicked the California Agricultural Labor Relations Act of 1975 into the trash bin. That California law gave farmworkers access to labor organizers. The court decision assures farm owners that they once again reign over their employees like plantation owners in the antebellum South, just without bullwhips.
On Wednesday, Texas police arrested and charged Hervis Rogers, a 62-year-old Black man whose story of endurance despite voter suppression efforts went viral during the 2020 presidential primaries… Another attorney with the ACLU of Texas, Tommy Buser-Clancy, said Rogers potentially faces up to 40 years in prison.
One Year Later, USPS Restores Service to Pre-DeJoy Levels (Government Executive)
On-time mail delivery still falls short of its historical standard, with the Postal Service blaming employee absenteeism and other issues.
Republicans who voted earlier this year to impeach former President Trump are outpacing their primary challengers in the money race. Now, the 10 House Republicans who broke party lines in the chamber’s January impeachment vote are heading into the second half of 2021 flush with cash, financial reports filed on Thursday with the Federal Election Commission (FEC) show.
The chairman of former President Donald Trump's inaugural committee, Thomas Barrack, was charged in a conspiracy to illegally advance the interests of the United Arab Emirates and leverage his political connections to Trump to push that effort. Barrack, 74, of Santa Monica, California, was one of three charged in a seven-count indictment accusing the group of conspiring to act as agents of the UAE for two years ending in April 2018. The former Trump confidant also was charged with obstruction of justice for "making multiple false statements" during a 2019 interview with federal agents.
The United States has extended border restrictions on nonessential travel yet again as COVID-19 infections rise in every state.
Chanting "freedom" and calling for President Miguel Diaz-Canel to step down, thousands of Cubans joined street protests from Havana to Santiago on Sunday in the biggest anti-government demonstrations on the Communist-run island in decades. The protests erupted amid Cuba's worst economic crisis since the fall of the Soviet Union, its old ally, and a record surge in coronavirus infections, with people voicing anger over shortages of basic goods, curbs on civil liberties and the authorities' handling of the pandemic.
Portions of the Amazon rainforest are now releasing more carbon dioxide than they absorb, disrupting an important balancing act that signals a worsening of the climate crisis, according to a new study. Findings from the nearly decade-long research project, published Wednesday in the journal Nature, suggest that deforestation and fire, among other factors, have dramatically undercut the Amazon's ability to absorb heat-trapping carbon emissions from the atmosphere.
Federal prosecutors in New York charged five foreign agents backed by the Iranian government for their roles in a stranger-than-fiction plot to kidnap a U.S. citizen and journalist critical of the nation's regime.
In Germany, whole villages were cut off from rescuers, and helicopters were deployed to pluck stranded people off rooftops. Some houses were simply washed away as a tributary of the Rhine burst its banks.