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Finnish biologist explains why Trump’s plan to stop forest fires with rakes is utter nonsense

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Many Finnish citizens have been mocking President Donald Trump for claiming that they stop forest fires in their country by raking leaves.

Over the weekend, Trump claimed that Finnish President Sauli Niinistö told him that raking was the key to his country’s success in preventing forest fires, although Niinistö has denied he ever told Trump anything about raking.

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“I was with the president of Finland and he said: ‘We have a much different — we’re a forest nation,'” Trump claimed. “He called it a forest nation, and they spent a lot of time on raking and cleaning and doing things. And they don’t have any problem.”

However, a Finnish biologist has written an email to Josh Marshall of Talking Points Memo that goes into great detail about why it’s nonsensical to say that Finland is able to contain forest fires through raking.

In fact, he says that if Finland does face the prospect of greater forest fires in the coming years, climate change will be a good reason why.

“Forest fires in Finland are much limited by the snowy winter (length varies acc. to year and region, but traditionally around 3 months, is shortening due to climate change),” he writes. “Snow and ice are solid water, forests cannot burn in wintertime.”

What’s more, the biologist says that raking the forests would do more harm than good when it comes to the overall health of the trees.

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“The continuously falling needles and twigs, when they decay, return important nutrients back to the forest trees,” he writes. “Removing them regularly would deprive the trees and other plants from the bulk of long-term nutrients, not to speak of the extremely complex mesh of nutrient chains of thousands of other forest organisms, from fungi and insects to birds and mammals.”

Read the biologist’s entire analysis here.


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2020 Election

WATCH: CNN uses video to bust Trump for lying and stealing credit for veterans program signed by Obama

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Reacting to Donald Trump's abrupt departure from his Saturday press conference after he was pressed by a CBS White House correspondent Paula Reid for lying and taking credit for a veterans bill signed into law by former President Barack Obama, CNN's Victor Blackwell shared clips of the former president announcing the signing in 2014 and Trump attempting to steal credit yesterday.

According to Blackwell, "One of President Trump's go-to lies is his role in passing Veterans Choice. You saw it at the end of the news conference when he walked away. Well that was when he was faced with a question why he said that he passed Choice and Accountability for the V.A."

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Nagasaki marks 75 years since atomic bombing

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The Japanese city of Nagasaki on Sunday commemorated the 75th anniversary of its destruction by a US atomic bomb, with its mayor and the head of the United Nations warning against a nuclear arms race.

Nagasaki was flattened in an atomic inferno three days after Hiroshima -- twin nuclear attacks that rang in the nuclear age and gave Japan the bleak distinction of being the only country to be struck by atomic weapons.

Survivors, their relatives and a handful of foreign dignitaries attended a remembrance ceremony in Nagasaki where they called for world peace.

Participants offered a silent prayer at 11:02 am (0202 GMT), the time the second and last nuclear weapon used in wartime was dropped over the city.

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Lebanon information minister resigns over Beirut blast

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Lebanon’s information minister Manal Abdel Samad on Sunday quit in the first government resignation since a deadly port blast killed more than 150 people and destroyed swathes of Beirut.

?After the enormous Beirut catastrophe, I announce my resignation from government,? she said in a statement carried by local media, apologising to the Lebanese public for failing them.

A number of MPs also submitted their resignations a day earlier due to the explosions.

On Saturday afternoon, thousands took to streets in downtown Beirut in anti-government protests that demand the overhaul of the political system, days after massive explosions.

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