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Australian senator claims ‘eco-terrorists’ caused bushfires

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The blazes in Australia have destroyed more than 1,000 homes and scorched well over 5.5 million hectares STATE GOVERNMENT OF VICTORIA/AFP / Handout

An Australian senator called on the nation’s spies to investigate whether eco-terrorists were responsible for the country’s unprecedented bushfire crisis.

Addressing parliament Tuesday Concetta Fierravanti-Wells — a senior member of the ruling conservative Liberal party and former government minister — echoed online conspiracy theories to claim it “defies logic” that hundreds of bushfires could have started at the same time.

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Head of the New South Wales Rural Fire Service Shane Fitzsimmons earlier said arsonists were not the main cause of the fires that tore through millions of hectares of south-eastern Australia in 2019.

“This season has been dominated by natural causes, mainly lightning,” he said in January.

Fierravanti-Wells claimed that the vast number of fires that started around the same time “not only gave the impression of the possibility of arsonist attack but also suggests a level of coordination.”

“Who are they? What was their motive and intent? Are they lone actors or part of a sinister collective conducting eco-terrorism?” she asked.

The bushfires have reignited Australia’s climate change debate, and the senator’s comments echo online disinformation about the cause of the flames.

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Fierravanti-Wells is the latest lawmaker from Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s party to blame arson for the bushfires.

The PM is likely to distance himself from the claims after public pressure forced him to acknowledge climate change is a driver of the fires.

Over months blazes scorched more than 10 million hectares in the country’s east and south, killing at least 33 people and an estimated billion animals while destroying more than 2,500 homes.

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The fires were exacerbated by prolonged drought and worsened by climate change in the country’s hottest and driest year on record.


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Michael Cohen says behind closed doors Trump is probably panicking: ‘He’s lost, he’s confused, he’s dazed’

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Speaking to MSNBC on Monday about the recent bombshell report about President Donald Trump's taxes, his former lawyer, Michael Cohen, explained that behind closed doors, Trump is likely panicking.

Sunday night, Cohen recalled a conversation in his book in which Trump got a $10 million refund from the IRS, which Trump mocked as "so stupid."

MSNBC host Katy Tur asked Cohen if Trump is inflating and deflating properties' size to either get more in loans or pay less in taxes. Cohen said that he anticipates it's something that the New York attorney general and the Manhattan district attorney are looking into. Complaints have already been filed against the Trump Organization for it.

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‘I hope you burn’: Man throws a racist fit after encountering interracial family’s Black Lives Matter sign

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While doing yard work last weekend, Malia and Jeff Zirkle of Washington state were accosted by a passerby who yelled, “Black lives don’t matter” and “I hope you burn," the Herald Net reports.

The couple shared surveillance video of the incident, which then went viral. The couple also has a Black Lives Matter sign visibly displayed on their front lawn.

“Eventually I realized that this is something that happens, and there are a lot of people who think it doesn’t happen,” said Malia Zirkle, whose father, according to the Herald Net, is half Black.

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Conservative says Trump’s tax revelations show another reason he’s so terrified to leave office

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Conservative Washington Post writer Max Boot noted that the recent revelations about President Donald Trump's taxes expose the real reason that he's terrified to leave office.

Writing Monday, Boot began by admitting that Hillary Clinton was right all along. It's one of many things she warned of in the 2016 election that went ignored by the Republican Party and the majority of voters in Rust Belt states.

"He managed to pay no federal income taxes at all in 10 of the previous 15 years — and only $750 in 2016 and 2017 — by claiming vast losses from his business empire," Boot said, citing the New York Times report. "That $750 figure is a killer because it’s a number that middle-class Americans can understand. As a just-released Biden campaign ad points out, that’s far less than the taxes paid by the average teacher, nurse or firefighter."

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