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Female firefighter Danae Mines is first to muscle into FDNY beefcake calendar

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By Michael Y. Park

NEW YORK (Reuters) – The Fire Department of New York’s annual celebration of beefcake just added a slice of cheesecake.

For the first time, the FDNY Calendar of Heroes features a female firefighter – Miss March, Danae Mines of Engine Co. 60 in the South Bronx, who dons the red suspenders and shows off taut arms.

“I’d love to inspire other women to come to the job,” Mines said on Tuesday at a Times Square calendar signing with her fellow firefighter pinups, which was attended mostly by moms and giddy young women with boyfriends in tow.

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“Congratulations, baby! It’s your time to shine!” a male onlooker sang out to Mines.

Mines, an 11-year veteran who is one of only 41 female firefighters in the department, said she was originally discouraged from trying out for the calendar, although she did not disclose by who. Nevertheless, she joined more than 100 would-be models for calendar auditions and, while she felt nervous as the only woman in line, her fellow applicants welcomed her.

“The guys made me feel comfortable,” she said.

In the photo, Mines is dressed in a gray FDNY tank top with red suspenders, a fully loaded gear belt over olive work trousers, her arms crossed defiantly as one of New York’s Bravest.

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Profits from the sale of the calendar, which celebrates the 150th anniversary of the FDNY, go to the FDNY Foundation, which funds fire safety education for the public and supplements costs for training and equipment for firefighters.

“I’m proud of her,” said firefighter John Kilian, also known as Mr. December.

In another historic moment for women in the FDNY, Josephine Smith this year became the first daughter of a firefighter slain in the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks to join the force.

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(Editing by Barbara Goldberg and Bill Trott)


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The hammer will fall during the Trump impeachment hearings — only if you believe in magic

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Whether you want the hammer to come down on Donald Trump or finally get the chance to dismiss the whole impeachment inquiry as wrongheaded, the hammer may fall this week if you believe in magic.

Wednesday is Opening Day for the Democrats’ assault on the White House, a chance for House Intelligence Committee members led by Chairman Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) to put the Ukraine impeachment case against Trump in public view.

The idea among Democrats, of course, is that because people refuse to read, public hearings will take the testimony from former ambassadors and national security people out from the shadows and into the light, where all can hear directly from these witnesses, adjudge their independence and credibility and move toward a declaration of impeachment. Schiff said public hearings will show "the most important facts are largely not contested" related to Trump's use of "illicit" means to secure damaging information on his political rivals.

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Dutch police have arrested a man who threatened in a social media post to blow himself up over plans to sideline "Black Pete", a Christmas-time character provoking accusations of racist stereotyping.

The arrest is the latest controversy over the country's traditional Saint Nicholas side kick, portrayed in winter parades and by many Dutch children with a black face, thick red lips, woolly hair and a golden earring.

"A 49-year-old man from The Hague was arrested Monday afternoon after he threatened to blow himself up in support of the Saint Nicholas tradition," police said in a statement.

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Trump’s claim on halting Ukraine aid contradicted by Pentagon official Laura Cooper

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According to a new report from The Daily Beast, after the Pentagon's June announcement that it would give Ukraine $250 million in aid, Defense Department officials received a list of questions, seemingly originating from President Trump, seeking information about the aid.

“We got a question from my chain of command forwarded down from the chief of staff, I believe, from the Department of Defense, asking for a follow-up on a meeting with the President,” top Pentagon official Laura Cooper testified on Capitol Hill last month. “The way the email was phrased, it said follow-up from POTUS meeting, so follow-up from a meeting with the President. So, you know, I'm thinking that the questions were probably questions from the President. That's how I interpreted that subject line.”

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