Alec Baldwin won an Emmy Sunday for his biting impersonation of Donald Trump on "Saturday Night Live" and, taking a fresh jab, reminded the president that he never won himself. "I suppose I should say, 'At long last, Mr. President, here is your Emmy," Baldwin said from the award stage, referring to Trump's frequent complaints that…
According to a report from the Wall Street Journal, Microsoft founder and billionaire Bill Gates was admonished against flirting with a female staffer and accused of propositioning one dating back to 2008 when he was still CEO of the tech giant.
The report notes that Microsoft's then-General Counsel Brad Smith and then-Chief People Officer Lisa Brummel were forced to sit down with the executive and tell him his actions were inappropriate and needed to stop immediately.
According to the Journal's Emily Glazer, "Microsoft executives discovered emails between Mr. Gates and a midlevel female employee at the company while Mr. Gates was still an employee at Microsoft and chairman of the board, according to people familiar with the matter. In the messages, the then-married Mr. Gates was flirtatious and propositioned the female employee, the people said."
The report notes that the Microsoft board was notified about the emails that could have resulted in a massive lawsuit, but took no action because there was no physical interactions between Gates and the unnamed employee.
Glazer also reports, "Mr. Gates didn't deny the exchanges, told the executives in hindsight it wasn't a good idea and said that he would stop, the people said," while noting the executive was still married at the time.
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China said Monday its launch of a new spacecraft in August was merely a test to see whether the vehicle could be re-used, denying a Financial Times report that they had tested a rocket carrying a hypersonic missile, as the US expressed concern about hypersonic missile technology and its potential military applications by China and Russia.
China's Foreign Ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian said on Monday the August launch involved a spacecraft rather than a missile and was of "great significance for reducing the use-cost of spacecraft and could provide a convenient and affordable way to make a round trip for mankind's peaceful use of space".
The Chinese official comments came after the Financial Times reported on Saturday that China had launched in August a rocket carrying a hypersonic glide vehicle that flew through space, circling the globe before cruising down toward its target, which it missed by about two dozen miles.
Hypersonic missiles travel at more than five times the speed of sound in the upper atmosphere, or about 6,200 km per hour (3,850 mph). This is slower than an intercontinental ballistic missile, but the shape of a hypersonic glide vehicle allows it to maneuver toward a target or away from defenses.
Combining a glide vehicle with a missile that can launch it partially into orbit -- a so-called fractional orbital bombardment system (FOBS) -- could strip adversaries of reaction time and traditional defense mechanisms.
China's space program is run by its military and is closely tied to its agenda of building hypersonic missiles and other technologies that could alter the balance of power with the United States. Zhao's comments on the August test came days after China launched a second three-person crew to staff its space station on a six-month mission.
"China will work together with other countries in the world for the peaceful use of space and the benefit of mankind," Zhao said.
'We don't know how we can defend against that type of technology'
The US expressed concerns over the Chinese so-called "routine tests".
"We have concerns about what China is doing on hypersonic," US disarmament ambassador Robert Wood told reporters in Geneva on Monday after a report that Beijing had tested a nuclear-capable hypersonic missile.
"We just don't know how we can defend against that type of technology, neither does China or Russia," he said, referring to the difficulty of missile defense systems tracking such high-speed weapons that can maneuver and evade shields.
Alongside its space program, China's expansion into hypersonic missile technology and other advanced fields has raised concerns as Beijing becomes increasingly assertive over its claims to seas and islands in the South China and East China Seas, and to large chunks of territory along its disputed high-mountain border with India.
Japan to boost defenses against 'new threat'
Japan, one of China's chief regional rivals, said it would boost its defenses against what it interpreted as a new offensive Chinese weapon.
Chief Cabinet Secretary Hirokazu Matsuno on Monday called it a "new threat" that conventional equipment would have difficulty dealing with. He said Japan will step up its detection, tracking and shooting-down capability of "any aerial threat".
China appears to be rapidly pushing development of hypersonic nuclear weapons to gain strike capability that can break through missile defenses, Matsuno said.
He criticized China for increasing its defence spending, particularly for nuclear and missile capabilities, without explaining its intentions.
"China's rapidly expanding and increased military activity at sea and airspace has become a strong security concern for the region including Japan and the international society," Matsuno said.
(FRANCE 24 with AP, REUTERS)
A Fox News host backtracked on Monday after he said that the death of former Secretary of State Colin Powell raised "new concerns" about vaccines.
"The fact that Colin Powell died from a breakthrough COVID infection raises new concerns about how effective vaccines are long-term," Roberts wrote about an hour after Powell's family announced the death.
Roberts failed to mention that Powell had a compromised immune system due to his treatment for multiple myeloma.
After two hours of criticism on Twitter, Roberts deleted his initial tweet.
"I deleted my tweet about the tragic death of Colin Powell because many people interpreted it as anti-vax. It was not," he wrote. "Yes, Powell had myeloma, but I was still stunned to hear of his passing from COVID."
"His death is a loss for our community and our country. I plan to get a booster as soon as possible," he added.
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