On August 7, Billy Graham’s daughter, Anne, seemed to endorse a prediction that the coming eclipse will herald Judgement Day. In a blog post, Graham shared a YouTube video by pastor Steve Cioccolanti who suggested that the end of the world is near. In the 56-minute-long video, Cioccolanti drew on Hebrew scriptures and eclipses from biblical…
GOP's Madison Cawthorn asks 'what's the biggest lie a politician's ever told?' – and it doesn't go well for him
U.S. Rep. Madison Cawthorn (R-NC) is getting blasted after attacking President Joe Biden.
"What's the biggest lie a politician has ever told?" Cawthorn asked. "Biden said that the $3.5 TRILLION spending bill will cost zero dollars."
It did not go well for him, with many pointing to his own well-documented and debunked lies.
Congressman Eric Swalwell (D-CA) was among those reminding Americans that Cawthorn lied when he claimed his tragic auto accident "derailed" his naval career.
Lying about getting into the Naval Academy. Next. https://t.co/UJjEDJIED1— Rep. Eric Swalwell (@Rep. Eric Swalwell) 1635387175.0
An investigation by his hometown newspaper, citing a 2017 sworn deposition reveals "Cawthorn admitted his application to the academy had already been rejected before the crash."
But on his campaign website Cawthorn claimed, "Madison's plans were derailed … after he nearly died in a tragic automobile accident that left him partially paralyzed and in a wheelchair."
Others slammed Cawthorn and some shared more of Cawthorn's lies and allegations of sexual misconduct against him:
@CawthornforNC 1.Accident derailed plans to go to the US Naval Academy. He was rejected b4 the accident. 2.Accepte… https://t.co/QPS9kcZj7r— Gretchen Marie 🌊🌊 (@Gretchen Marie 🌊🌊) 1635388539.0
@CawthornforNC Please tell me that the Naval Academy Honor Roll ManBoy whose entire LinkedIn profile is made up did… https://t.co/8nKq2jxJFm— PoliticOhMyGawd (@PoliticOhMyGawd) 1635382937.0
@RepSwalwell @DevinCow Actually, I think lying about training for the Paralympics might edge the Naval Academy lie.— Michael Yanochko (@Michael Yanochko) 1635390002.0
African countries will use next week's COP summit to demand rich nations honour and then deepen their pledges to fund the fight against climate change, a top negotiator said Thursday.
The UN meeting in Scotland hosts a two-day summit of world leaders from Monday, with organisers warning that the chances of averting runaway climate change are dwindling.
For wealthy economies, the big focus will be on cuts in carbon emissions to try to restrict global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius (2.7 degrees Fahrenheit) above pre-industrial levels.
This is the safer of two goals set down by the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) for preventing worse drought, floods, storms and rising seas.
But for African countries, the biggest issue is money -- funds to help struggling economies curb their emissions and also adapt to the wrenching impact of climate change.
"We have been waiting for more than 10 years for the promise of $100 billion per year," Tanguy Gahouma-Bekale, chair of the African Group of countries at the climate talks, told AFP.
It was in 2009 that rich countries first pledged to muster $100 billion annually, from all sources, to help poorer nations, a target that would be achieved by 2020.
The promise was made to help stave off a fiasco at the 2009 Copenhagen climate summit and was enshrined in the 2015 Paris Agreement -- the negotiating basis for the coming talks in Glasgow.
But the 2020 goal was missed and Britain's COP president, Alok Sharma, has admitted it is unlikely to be achieved before 2023.
"The position of the African group is that we can come back on track and find a solution to close this gap," said Gahouma-Bekale, an adviser to the Gabon government.
"We need now to go to the target that we committed in the Paris agreement this year, not in two years."
Wealthier countries are grappling with how to revamp their energy systems to reduce fossil-fuel emissions, but African nations face different challenges, said Gahouma-Bekale.
"Africa is not going to accept to limit its economic development to accompany the fight against climate change -- that is why we are asking for support," he said.
"Africa is not at all responsible for the situation, but is one of the most vulnerable continents.
"We must also ensure the fight against poverty, we must ensure jobs for young people and we must ensure energy for all.
"The African continent has a population that is almost half disconnected from the electricity grid.
"So rather than looking for an energy transition, we need to look at how we are going to match our energy supply with demand," he added.
That would require much more funding than the $100 billion a year currently pledged, he warned.
"Now that promise has become obsolete, it's no longer relevant. We think that maybe we need 10 times more."
He also demanded better accounting of how the money was being delivered.
"Today we have no methodology, no table on how to track this money," he said.
Official figures show that between 70 and 80 percent of the $100 billion target had been delivered, "but a lot of countries didn't see the money on the ground", he claimed.
"So where goes this money?"
Many developing countries are also angry at the logistics of the conference in Glasgow, despite British government promises to offer free coronavirus vaccines to any delegates in need.
"The cost to find accommodation is very high, so African delegates may be one hour" from Glasgow, Gahouma-Bekale said.
"We have also a lot of challenges due to quarantine, to vaccines."
Given the scarcity of vaccines in Africa, many delegates will instead have to isolate on arrival and undergo costly tests.
"But we try to come here, we try to do all the visa, all the accommodation to travel to here because it's a fight for the future, for our children," he vowed.
"And we will be here until the end of this COP."
© 2021 AFP
Colombian coca growers have taken hostage about 180 soldiers who were eradicating crops of the cocaine-yielding plant near the Venezuelan border, a military official said Thursday.
General Omar Sepulveda told reporters six platoons under his command were "kidnapped" Tuesday in the municipality of Tibu in the northeast by communities resisting the destruction of the illegal plantations they rely on to make a living.
The soldiers were surrounded by farmers armed with sticks and machetes, Sepulveda said.
The troops are being held in a rural school.
In a video shown to AFP by the military, a group of soldiers in camouflage gear and armed with rifles are seen huddled together, with civilians keeping an eye on them.
A spokesman for the community, who identified himself as "Junior" told W Radio the kidnappers were willing to negotiate over the troop's release.
He said the coca growers had detained the soldiers in protest as they felt the government had not fulfilled a promise to help them replace coca leaf plantations with legal crops.
The office of Colombia's human rights ombudsman said on Twitter it was sending a delegation to Tibu to try and secure the soldiers' release.
Tibu is in the Catatumbo region known for being the world's largest area of drug cultivation, with more than 40,000 hectares of coca plantations, according to UN data.
Holdouts from the disbanded FARC rebel group, an active guerrilla group called the National Liberation Army (ELN), and other armed bands fight over drug trafficking revenues along the long and porous border with Venezuela.
President Ivan Duque, in office since 2018, has redoubled efforts to clamp down on the drug trade, with soldiers destroying coca plantations that are the only way of making a living for thousands of peasants and migrant laborers.
Clashes with coca growers are frequent.
With a record number of 1,010 tons in 2020, Colombia remains the world's largest cocaine exporter, and the United States its largest consumer.
Its economy hammered by the coronavirus outbreak, some 42 percent of Colombia's population now live in poverty, and more than 16 percent is unemployed.
© 2021 AFP
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