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  • Exiting US governor signs laws limiting power of his successor

    Golocal247.com news

    The Republican governor of Wisconsin signed into law Friday a package of bills that limit the powers of his Democratic successor, who promised a court challenge. The measures were passed by Republicans during a lame-duck session of the Midwestern US state's legislature last week, in what they said was an effort to level the power balance with the Democrat who will take over the governor's office in January. Tony Evers defeated incumbent Governor Scott Walker in the November midterm elections -- a stinging loss for the GOP in a key swing state that helped Donald Trump win the presidency in 2016.

    Fri, 14 Dec 2018 18:48:35 -0500
  • Mueller says FBI not to blame for Flynn's false statements

    Golocal247.com news

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The special counsel's office is pushing back at the suggestion that the FBI acted improperly in its interview of former national security adviser Michael Flynn, saying he "chose to make false statements" and did not need a warning that it was against the law to do so.

    Sat, 15 Dec 2018 00:28:52 -0500
  • Egypt unearths tomb of ancient high priest 

    Golocal247.com news

    Egyptian archaeologists have discovered the tomb of a priest dating back more than 4,400 years in the pyramid complex of Saqqara south of the capital Cairo, authorities said Saturday. "Today we are announcing the last discovery of the year 2018, it's a new discovery, it's a private tomb," Antiquities Minister Khaled el-Enany told an audience of invited guests including reporters. "It is exceptionally well preserved, coloured, with sculpture inside. It belongs to a high official priest... (and) is more than 4,400 years old," he said. The tomb belongs to "Wahtye", a high priest who served during the fifth dynasty reign of King Neferirkare, the antiquities ministry said. A view of the newly-discovered tomb of 'Wahtye' Credit: Reuters His tomb is decorated with scenes showing the royal priest alongside his mother, wife and other members of his family, the ministry said in a statement. It also contains more than a dozen niches and 24 colourful statues of the cleric and members of his family, it said. In November archaeology officials announced the discovery in Saqqara of seven sarcophagi, some dating back more than 6,000 years, during excavation work started in April by the same archaeological mission. An external view of the site Credit: Anadolu Three of those tombs contained mummified cats and scarabs. The Saqqara necropolis south of Cairo is home to the famous Djoser pyramid, a more than 4,600-year-old construction which dominates the site and was Egypt's first stone monument. The tomb, built by the master architect Imhotep for the Pharoah Djoser, stood 62 metres tall originally and is considered the oldest building in the world built entirely of stone.

    Sat, 15 Dec 2018 12:47:24 -0500
  • Young girl’s death in Border Patrol custody leaves questions unanswered

    Golocal247.com news

    The Department of Homeland Security has opened an investigation into the death of a 7-year-old Guatemalan girl, Jackeline Caal, who reached the United States last week. She was apprehended with her father by Border Patrol agents in a group of more than 150 people at a remote area of the desert in New Mexico, renewing questions about the detention and treatment of migrants.

    Fri, 14 Dec 2018 22:01:27 -0500
  • EU's Tusk says no more Brexit negotiations

    Golocal247.com news

    By Gabriela Baczynska and Jan Strupczewski BRUSSELS (Reuters) - European Council President Donald Tusk said on Friday he had no mandate to reopen Brexit negotiations with Britain, while the head of the bloc's executive, Jean-Claude Juncker, said he "admired" Prime Minister Theresa May. Tusk and Juncker were speaking at a news conference after two days of talks at an EU summit that were dominated by the issue of Brexit and saw the other 27 national leaders of the bloc offer May only vague assurances over their Brexit deal. "I have no mandate to organize any further negotiations. ...

    Fri, 14 Dec 2018 11:25:41 -0500
  • Pacific Life Yanks Ads After Tucker Carlson's Dig That Immigrants Make U.S. 'Dirtier'

    Golocal247.com news

    Prominent insurance company Pacific Life has pulled its commercials from

    Fri, 14 Dec 2018 20:53:55 -0500
  • NASA's InSight lander snaps first selfie from Mars

    Golocal247.com news

    Want more proof of NASA's InSight lander arriving safely on Mars? The spacecraft captured a selfie while on the Red Planet.

    Fri, 14 Dec 2018 14:06:50 -0500
  • Prada Pulls $550 Keychains After Blackface Comparisons

    Golocal247.com news

    The keychain was compared to Little Sambo online

    Fri, 14 Dec 2018 17:34:04 -0500
  • Man who sexually assaulted woman on flight while she slept is jailed for nine years

    Golocal247.com news

    Prabhu Ramamoorthy, 34, was also sitting next to his wife on the overnight flight in January. Ramamoorthy had molested the victim while unbuttoning her blouse and unzipping her trousers as she slept. US attorney Matthew Schneider said: “Everyone has the right to be secure and safe when they travel on aeroplanes.

    Fri, 14 Dec 2018 05:16:00 -0500
  • Palestinians slam Australia's move on Jerusalem

    Golocal247.com news

    The Palestinian leadership on Saturday described as "irresponsible" Australia's recognition of west Jerusalem as Israel's capital, saying it violated international law. The country became one of just a few to follow US President Donald Trump's lead and recognise the contested city as Israel's capital, saying. Australia said it would open a defence and trade office in the west of the holy city and Prime Minister Scott Morrison also committed to recognising a future state of Palestine with east Jerusalem as its capital.

    Sat, 15 Dec 2018 05:48:26 -0500
  • As sentencing looms, Flynn is upbeat, has adoring fans

    Golocal247.com news

    PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Days away from being sentenced in the Russia probe, former national security adviser Michael Flynn is not exactly hiding his face in shame.

    Sat, 15 Dec 2018 00:31:20 -0500
  • Fresno Police Chief Dyer says injuries Arambula caused to daughter were beyond spanking

    Golocal247.com news

    Fresno Police Chief Jerry Dyer is publicly contradicting Assemblyman Joaquin Arambula's version of events that led to the lawmaker's recent child abuse arrest.

    Fri, 14 Dec 2018 14:28:33 -0500
  • The Gifts AD's Market Department Is Giving This Year

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    Fri, 14 Dec 2018 15:50:54 -0500
  • Turkey will enter Syria's Manbij if U.S. doesn't remove YPG fighters, Erdogan says

    Golocal247.com news

    Turkish forces will enter the Syrian town of Manbij if the United States does not remove YPG Kurdish fighters, and it will also target Kurdish-controlled areas further east, President Tayyip Erdogan said on Friday. Erdogan said this week that Turkey would launch a new operation within days against the U.S.-backed Syrian Kurdish YPG militia which controls swathes of Syria's northern border region, in what will be Turkey's third military campaign in Syria in two years.

    Fri, 14 Dec 2018 09:44:30 -0500
  • 6 Sandy Hook Survivors On Healing, Faith And Forgiveness, 6 Years Later

    Golocal247.com news

    Dec. 14, 2018, marks six years since the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary

    Fri, 14 Dec 2018 12:51:24 -0500
  • Thousands of Ohio schoolkids plead with GM CEO Mary Barra to keep Chevy Cruze plant open

    About 20 school districts in Ohio near GM's Lordstown plant launched a letter-writing campaign to GM CEO Mary Barra asking her to save the factory.

    Fri, 14 Dec 2018 11:12:02 -0500
  • The easiest way to keep your dog’s paws safe in cold winter weather

    Winter weather can be so, so dangerous for your pupper's paws. When it gets very cold out, the snow or even the cold pavement can give your dog frostbite on its paws in a matter of minutes. Your dog's paws absolutely need protection, but not all pups are willing to leave those little booties on their feet. There's another option called Musher's Secret Pet Paw Protection Wax, and we can't recommend it highly enough. Here's what you need to know from the Amazon page: * Protects paws from sand, hot pavement, ice and salt with all natural 100-percent wax-based cream * Perfect for mushing, hunting, walking or before any outdoor activity * Easy-to-apply formula contains vitamin E to moisturize and help heal wounds and keep paws healthy * Available in pack of 7-ounces * Measures 3-4/5-inch length by 3-4/5-inch width 3-4/5 height

    Fri, 14 Dec 2018 16:58:22 -0500
  • Montana man pleads guilty to killing 2, putting them in acid

    Golocal247.com news

    MISSOULA, Mont. (AP) — A Montana man pleaded guilty Friday to stabbing two people to death, including a teenage girl, dismembering their bodies and then trying to dissolve them in tubs filled with acid in the basement of a home.

    Fri, 14 Dec 2018 17:06:23 -0500
  • Global pressure vital for Yemen accord: analysts

    Golocal247.com news

    A breakthrough accord between Yemen's warring sides is the most significant step towards ending the country's devastating conflict, but analysts warn its success depends on further international pressure. The United Nations on Thursday brokered a truce between Yemen's government, supported by a Saudi-led military coalition, and Iran-backed Huthi rebels. While the agreement signed in Sweden was welcomed by all involved, analysts say it is fraught with risks and needs to be reinforced by the international community.

    Fri, 14 Dec 2018 13:56:50 -0500
  • Now playing: Trump's latest defense — I never said 'to break the law'

    Golocal247.com news

    The president keeps revising his explanation of hush-money payments made to two women who claimed to have had extramarital affairs with him.

    Fri, 14 Dec 2018 15:10:27 -0500
  • Johnson & Johnson 'kept secret' that its Baby Powder contained asbestos 

    Golocal247.com news

    Johnson & Johnson knew that its talcum powder contained asbestos but failed to tell customers for over three decades, an investigation has found.  Shares in the company plunged  12 per cent following the release of the report by news agency Reuters, wiping £37bn ($47bn) off the company's value.  The investigation also found that the pharmaceutical company had employed a range of tactics to shape research into the problem and protect its Baby Powder brand. In one case, the company commissioned and paid for a study, told the researchers their desired results and then hired a ghostwriter to redraft the article presenting the findings. The investigation centres on a cache of documents released by Johnson & Johnson relating to the 11,700 plaintiffs claiming that the company’s talc caused their cancers. The documents show that from at least 1971 to the early 2000s, the company’s raw talc and finished powders sometimes tested positive for small amounts of asbestos, and that company executives, mine managers, scientists, doctors and lawyers fretted over the problem and how to address it while failing to disclose it to regulators or the public. A case in July, in which a judge ordered the company to pay $4.69bn in damages to 22 parties, was the first to succeed with a claim that the talc caused ovarian cancer.  Johnson and Johnson said it will appeal the recent verdicts against it and maintains that its talc is safe, adding that the recently divulged court papers show its commitment to ensuring its products are asbestos-free.  has been required to divulge in recent litigation shows the care the company takes to ensure its products are asbestos-free

    Fri, 14 Dec 2018 14:50:40 -0500
  • Obama-era rule leads to $150M in student loan forgiveness

    The U.S. Education Department said it will forgive $150 million in federal student loans as part of a 2016 rule that Secretary Betsy DeVos previously tried to block.

    Fri, 14 Dec 2018 17:13:18 -0500
  • Brazil take first step in program to join nuclear-powered sub club

    Golocal247.com news

    President Michel Temer and his right-wing successor, President-elect Jair Bolsonaro, both pressed the button that lowered into the sea the 1,700-ton submarine named Riachuelo at a Rio de Janeiro naval base. Temer's wife, Marcela, had christened the vessel, by smashing a champagne bottle against its hull. The submarines being built by the Brazilian Navy in partnership with France's defense company Naval Group, formerly known as DCNS, are a modified version of the Scorpene class diesel-powered submarine.

    Fri, 14 Dec 2018 12:52:09 -0500
  • Delaying Brexit Beyond March Is Easier Than You Might Think

    Golocal247.com news

    (Bloomberg) -- Prime Minister Theresa May is struggling to save her Brexit deal and the danger of the U.K. crashing out of the European Union is on the rise. How hard would it be to delay Britain’s departure date?

    Fri, 14 Dec 2018 06:25:52 -0500
  • You Can Now Build Your Own 2020 Jeep Gladiator without Any Regard to Price

    Golocal247.com news

    We don't know how much the new Jeep pickup costs, which makes the online configurator even more fun to play with.

    Fri, 14 Dec 2018 15:15:00 -0500
  • Rep. Stefanik: We know the Affordable Care Act is failing

    Golocal247.com news

    New York Republican Rep. Elise Stefanik reacts to the Texas court ruling that Obamacare is unconstitutional.

    Sat, 15 Dec 2018 13:42:06 -0500
  • Russian Orthodox church calls on UN for help in Ukraine

    Golocal247.com news

    MINSK, Belarus (AP) — The Russian Orthodox Church on Friday called on the United Nations, the leaders of Germany and France, the pope and other spiritual leaders to protect believers in Ukraine in the face of pressure on Moscow-affiliated clerics.

    Fri, 14 Dec 2018 09:05:12 -0500
  • 7 Incredible Suites at Europe’s Top Ski Resorts

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    Fri, 14 Dec 2018 16:30:07 -0500
  • Rebels hail Yemen ceasefire accord a 'success', despite skirmishes

    Golocal247.com news

    Huthi rebels on Saturday hailed a ceasefire accord for a vital Yemeni port agreed at UN-brokered peace talks in Sweden, although the deal's implementation remained fragile. The breakthrough agreement at the first round of negotiations since 2016 was a "success", said Daif Allah al-Shami, information minister for the rebels' unrecognised national salvation government. Reached Thursday between the Huthis and a delegation for the internationally recognised government, the accord called for an "immediate" ceasefire in Hodeida city and its lifeline port, a key gateway for aid and food imports in a country where 14 million people stand on the brink of famine.

    Sat, 15 Dec 2018 14:55:26 -0500
  • White House says probe of inauguration funding has 'nothing to do with the president'

    Golocal247.com news

    The White House is brushing off reports that federal prosecutors are investigating the over $100 million that was raised from donors for President Trump’s inauguration last year.

    Fri, 14 Dec 2018 11:39:44 -0500
  • Florida tale of infidelity and homicide ends with conviction

    Golocal247.com news

    TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — After a spellbinding five-day trial that featured tales of infidelity and a multimillion dollar insurance payout, a jury on Friday convicted a Florida woman of helping mastermind the killing of her husband nearly two decades ago.

    Fri, 14 Dec 2018 22:07:47 -0500
  • Rocco The Cheeky Parrot Keeps Using Amazon's Alexa To Order Snacks

    Golocal247.com news

    A mischievous parrot who was booted from an animal sanctuary for his foul

    Sat, 15 Dec 2018 20:31:25 -0500
  • Tony Blair sees another Brexit referendum as most likely outcome

    Less than four months before Britain is due to leave the EU, Prime Minister Theresa May called off a parliamentary vote on her deal with Brussels this week after admitting it would be heavily defeated. "Our present situation is unique in modern British politics," Blair said in a speech in London. "We will go back to the people." Addressing EU leaders in Brussels, Blair said they should offer to reform to make it more attractive for Britain to remain, including making changes to immigration rules, a key driver behind the vote to leave the bloc.

    Fri, 14 Dec 2018 09:40:41 -0500
  • Infiniti's Next Concept Car Previews a New All-Electric Crossover

    Golocal247.com news

    It will pay homage to the pioneering FX45 while looking to Infiniti’s electrified future.

    Fri, 14 Dec 2018 08:41:00 -0500
  • Buy a gift card, get a freebie at these restaurants, businesses

    Golocal247.com news

    This holiday season, when you purchase gift cards at many popular restaurant chains including Applebee's and the Cheesecake Factory, get a bonus.

    Fri, 14 Dec 2018 14:31:03 -0500
  • 2 women in custody in death of 4-month-old boy at NYC hotel

    NEW YORK (AP) — A 4-month-old boy died Saturday after he was found unconscious and unresponsive in the lobby of a New York City hotel. Police apprehended two women who were with him, and they're expected to face charges.

    Sat, 15 Dec 2018 16:22:10 -0500
  • What the New Court Ruling Striking Down the ACA Means for Your Health Insurance

    Golocal247.com news

    Just as the sign-up window for individual health insurance for 2019 is closing, a legal ruling is creating new uncertainty about the future of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and could potentially ...

    Sat, 15 Dec 2018 09:20:40 -0500
  • Inside the threatened Kurdish proto-state that holds the keys to defeating Isil

    Golocal247.com news

    On one end of Qamishli’s main street flies the two-starred Syrian national flag. On the other, that of the Kurdish Democratic Union Party. “One flag represents our past oppression, the other our freedom,” says Mahmoud, who owns a clothing shop which sits between the two.   Before the civil war, it would have been unthinkable for the Kurdish minority to openly pledge allegiance to anything other than the President Bashar al-Assad's Syrian Arab Republic. But seven years into Syria's interminable conflict the Kurds appear to have carved out something of a proto-state in this corner of northeastern Syria, thanks in part to their efforts to flush out Isil. While they have been crushing the Caliphate to a tiny sliver of territory - taking the last town held by the Islamist on Friday morning - their separatist ambitions have largely been overlooked. Until now. Kurdish-held northern Syria The city of Qamishli has become the centre of the Kurds’ ambitious self-administration project. While a few government buildings and statues of President Assad remain, Qamishli and the surrounding areas are now firmly under the control of the Democratic Union Party (PYD). Mahmoud is a proud supporter of the PYD, but still he declines to give his full name to the Telegraph for fear of reprisal should the regime one day return. Assad has repeatedly promised to retake every inch of Syria, including the third currently in Kurdish hands. The prospect looked more likely than at any other time in the war this week after President Recep Tayyip Erdogan ordered Turkish troops and Ankara-backed Syrian rebels to ready for an assault on Syria’s Kurds. Turkey views the PYD’s military arm, the Popular Protection Units (YPG), as a terrorist organisation because of its links to an insurgent group inside Turkey, and has watched with growing concern at Kurdish expansionism on the other side of its border. In recent years, Turkish forces have already swept into Syria pushing the YPG out of territory west of the Euphrates river. But past offensives have stopped at its banks, partly to avoid direct confrontation with US troops that back the Kurds. "Turkey has lost enough time in terms of intervening to clean the terror swamp east of the Euphrates. We don't have the patience to wait one more day," Mr Erdogan warned on Friday. Men queue up to buy bread outside a bakery on the outskirts of Qamishli Credit: Sam Tarling The Kurds, who have so far relied on the US for support in their battles against Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (Isil), have threatened to abandon the fight if they are left to fend for themselves in the face of a Turkish onslaught. But Washington has sent mixed signals on whether it would be behind them in any fight against Nato ally Turkey. “We don’t rely on any government, we just have strategic alliances,” Salih Muslim, a prominent political player in Rojava who until recently co-chaired the PYD, told the Sunday Telegraph. “The Kurds have expected a move from Turkey for a while now and will not easily back down.” Whatever they might say, it is clear is that the Kurds cannot stave off Turkish aggression alone. In the absence of a reliable ally in the US, they may soon be forced to decide whether to risk their chances, or eek out an unfavourable deal with Assad to secure long-term survival. “We have to take Assad at his word,” Khalaf Dahowd, head of the foreign committee of the Democratic Change Movement, told the Sunday Telegraph from his office in Qamishli, refering to the president's pledge to take back all Syria's territory. “If he gets the chance to take Rojava he will,” said Mr Dahowd, using the Kurdish name for the area of self-rule which covers some 15,000 square miles. A convoy of American Special Forces and Syrian Democratic Forces fighters makes a stop during a patrol near the Turkish border in northern Syria Credit:  Sam Tarling “Even when he was at his weakest point, before Russia intervened and it looked like he was going to lose everything, Assad refused to work with the Kurds,” he said. “Now he is winning, and as the saying goes - the winner takes all.” Kurdish officials who were part of the first delegation to Damascus over the summer say the Syrian government was not prepared to make a single concession. Despite this, the Kurds - who are just about the only side in the multi-faceted war not to have had a full-scale military conflict with the regime - still hold out hope for a political solution. The Kurds, who number more than two million in Syria, have made great sacrifices for their “democratic experiment”, as they call their pseudo-state in the north. Islamic State losing its grip on Syria The YPG has suffered considerable losses in the battles against Isil in Raqqa and Deir Ezzor in the east. Officials estimate up to 8,000 fighters have been killed and 5,000 injured. Fierce battles are still ongoing for the last sliver of jihadist territory in Deir Ezzor. At least 5,000 IS fighters remain holed up in the pocket of territory, including some 2,000 foreign fighters, mostly Arabs and Europeans along with their families. The YPG has also made significant gains, including control of the country’s borders with Turkey and Iraq, its most lucrative oil fields and the freedom to once again speak their native language after decades of repression. “There are basic things we cannot give up; we need our democratic rights and our culture and language to be protected,” said Fawza al-Youssef, the co-chair of the executive body of the North Syria Federation. “But there are other things that are negotiable.” Mahmoud Mohammad Serhan, 59, a a retired trader who now keeps a farm, gets a cutthroat shave at a barber shop in Qamishli Credit:  Sam Tarling Relinquishing control of the borders and folding the YPG, into the national army, would be among the demands she says the self-administration would consider in return for a decentralisation of government. It would also be willing to do a deal on the oil fields in eastern Deir Ezzor province, which account for more than 80 per cent of the country’s pre-war production and currently lie within their control. “We aren’t saying all of this is rightfully ours, but the people here should benefit,” Ms Youssef said.  The next few days will prove pivotal for the Kurds as they face the greatest existential threat to their autonomy project since the war began. “We can’t go back to where were were before 2011, when we had nothing,” said Ms Youssef. “We have not fought this hard for it all to be destroyed.”

    Sat, 15 Dec 2018 11:11:19 -0500
  • Shamir Shah Creates a Serene Model Unit With Global References at the Kent

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    Fri, 14 Dec 2018 15:48:38 -0500
  • President Trump admits hiring Michael Cohen was a mistake

    Golocal247.com news

    President denies wrongdoing after his former personal attorney is sentenced to 3 years in prison; Kevin Corke reports from the White House.

    Fri, 14 Dec 2018 09:26:14 -0500
  • Trump team defends Saudi ties after Senate rebuke on Yemen

    Golocal247.com news

    Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Friday again defended US ties with Saudi Arabia on national security grounds after the Senate voted to end support to the kingdom's war in Yemen. In a rare rebuke of President Donald Trump, the Republican-controlled Senate voted Thursday to end US backing for the Saudi-led coalition whose campaign in Yemen has contributed to what the UN calls the world's worst humanitarian crisis. "We certainly have great respect for what the legislative branch does and we're in constant contact with members on Capitol Hill so we understand their concerns," Pompeo told reporters.

    Fri, 14 Dec 2018 16:22:42 -0500
  • China's Xi declares an 'overwhelming victory' over graft: state media

    Golocal247.com news

    Chinese President Xi Jinping has declared an "overwhelming victory" in his fight against graft within the ruling Chinese Communist Party, while still vowing that the campaign to weed out deep-seated corruption will continue, state media reported. Xi has pledged to wage war on graft until corruption of all kinds has been expunged at all levels of the Communist Party, from high-level "tigers" to low-level "flies".

    Sat, 15 Dec 2018 02:11:29 -0500
  • First new Mustang Shelby GT500 to be sold by Barrett-Jackson

    Golocal247.com news

    The buyer gets to pick the color and the options for their special muscle car

    Fri, 14 Dec 2018 11:41:43 -0500
  • Indiana State University group to honor Jamal Khashoggi

    Golocal247.com news

    TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (AP) — A journalism group at Indiana State University is taking steps to honor alumnus and slain Saudi columnist Jamal Khashoggi.

    Fri, 14 Dec 2018 19:30:06 -0500
  • The best Free Shipping Day deals on the internet: Amazon, Nordstrom, Walmart and more

    Score great deals and don't pay for shipping? Sign us up!

    Fri, 14 Dec 2018 12:45:26 -0500
  • Remains of sailor killed at Pearl Harbor identified

    Golocal247.com news

    NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Full military honors will be given to a Louisiana sailor whose remains have been identified more than 75 years after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor.

    Fri, 14 Dec 2018 18:30:54 -0500
  • Our Plastic Addiction Has Reached A New Crisis Level

    Golocal247.com news

    This is not a good look. Humans are using more oil-based plastic than ever,

    Sat, 15 Dec 2018 05:45:12 -0500
  • What Is The Deadline for Christmas Shipping? Here’s Everything You Need to Know

    Golocal247.com news

    Deadlines for USPS, UPS, FedEX and Amazon

    Fri, 14 Dec 2018 15:33:22 -0500
  • Gandhi dynasty returns from the shadows as reluctant heir finds golden touch

    Golocal247.com news

    The Gandhi clan is back. Following a period in the doldrums under the bombastic rule of their arch-rival, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, a series of intriguing victories in state elections has put India's first family back in the political spotlight. Shock wins by Rahul Gandhi’s Congress Party in state elections this week germinated what many thought impossible just a few weeks ago - a palpable threat to Mr Modi and his Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party in next year's general elections. Long seen as an ineffectual leader and, by some, as a hopeless cause for the centre-Left's return to power, Mr Gandhi has surprised his critics with a shock turn-around. "The two most powerful warriors are patience and time," the youthful looking 48-year-old said, quoting Leo Tolstoy. The Gandhi dynasty boasts three prime ministers, starting with independent India's first, Jawaharlal Nehru, and later his daughter, Indira Gandhi. However, Nehru’s great-grandson Rahul has often been called out for lacking the gravitas, charisma or brinkmanship of his ancestors - all but ruling him out from governing the world's second most populous country. Rahul Gandhi, President of India's main opposition Congress party, has enjoyed a turnaround in his political fortunes   Credit: Anushree Fadnavis/Reuters But after years of being seen as a reluctant, lightweight spouting immature and petulant jibes at his rivals, he has forged a talent for riling his opponents, especially Mr Modi.     In the past year Mr Gandhi has gone on the offensive, making trips to several provinces to woo the vote from a wide strata of Indian society; from farmers and village chiefs, to CEOs and foreign policy thinktanks. Last week's unexpected victories, albeit close ones, in the state assembly polls of Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh were won in the religious, linguistic and demographic powerbase of the BJP. Mr Gandhi attributed his party’s triumphs to "farmers, party workers, shopkeepers and small businessmen" - the BJP’s bread-and-butter vote. The Congress party - whose high command also includes Sonia Gandhi, mother of Rahul and widow of the assassinated prime minister Rajiv Gandhi - is now a credible threat and is gearing up for two more state elections early next year, in the north-east states of Sikkhim and Arunachal Pradesh. The votes next year, culminating in a national poll for India's top job are now being framed as a "gladiatorial contest between PM Modi and Rahul Gandhi" by influential newspaper editorials. Mr Gandhi will face the incumbent Prime Minister Narendra Modi in next year's general elections Credit: Chandan Khanna/AFP The Gandhis will now be re-energised in attempts to form an alliance with various regional parties, who could hold the key to unseating Mr Modi in the election, which must be held before May 2019. Since the shock defeats last week, Mr Modi has been working on sweetners to buy off voters in an increasing sign of panic over his rising rival. After conceding that he would "respect the mandate of the people" he is said to be working on ways to waive big loans taken by farmers and possible minimum prices for crops to appease the rural vote. Mr Modi's blend of Hindu nationalism, technological focus, diplomatic dealings, and a strong - if slightly dubious - backstory of rising from lowly tea seller to the land’s highest office chimed with the masses four years ago, winning him a landslide election.  But it seems many of the 900 million-strong electorate may be focused on matters other than temples and tweets, such as the plunging rupee, agricultural loans and education.  Mr Gandhi’s direction for India would be markedly different in that his party’s ideology is strictly secular and is traditionally the choice of a broad mix of the urban middle class and liberals. "PM Modi was handed a huge opportunity. It is a sad thing that he refused to listen to the heartbeat of the country. The arrogance came in," said Mr Gandhi.

    Sat, 15 Dec 2018 13:04:24 -0500
  • Australia reaffirms Israel decision despite backlash

    Golocal247.com news

    Australia's conservative prime minister on Sunday stood by his decision to recognise west Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, despite criticism from neighbouring Muslim countries. Canberra became one of a handful of governments to follow US President Donald Trump's lead and recognise the contested city as Israel's capital, Prime Minister Scott Morrison had announced Saturday. Australia's Muslim-majority neighbour Malaysia said Sunday it "strongly opposes" the decision to recognise west Jerusalem.

    Sun, 16 Dec 2018 01:33:56 -0500
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