Displaying items by tag: USA
On 27 September Florida’s governor told millions, ‘You must evacuate now’. By the 29th Hurricane Ian, the worst storm in US history, had devastated Florida with cars submerged, power lines downed, and rivers sweeping away homes. Storm surges of 18 feet are forcing water inland across 250 miles of coastline. At the time of writing a 140-mile wide system is crawling towards Orlando. 24 inches of rainfall is expected in the next 48 hours. The storm surge flooded Port Charlotte’s hospital emergency room, and fierce winds ripped away the intensive care roof. Pray for the evacuated 2.5 million people, the 30,000 search and rescue teams, the ambulance and medical teams, and the 7,000 National Guards ready to help once the weather clears. The hurricane knocked out Cuba’s entire electricity grid before reaching the USA.
Cheaply-made fentanyl is made and distributed in rainbow colours by Mexican drug cartels to appeal to young children and teens. It is fuelling an addiction among American youth. The Drug Enforcement Administration says it is the deadliest drug America faces today. As Americans move further from biblical values, the effects are showing throughout the culture. Children are dying from fentanyl on school campuses while suicide, depression and anxiety rates are higher than ever before. 154 Americans die from fentanyl every day. Parents need to warn their children that fentanyl-laced pills are out there; more importantly, the youth of America need Jesus. They turn to drugs to fill voids and need to hear that God is the only one who can fill our voids and make us whole again. This is a growing national problem that will not be fixed until there are serious efforts to prevent drugs crossing the border.
US / Mexico border concerns are unaddressed; Americans are complaining. Judges and commissioners of 26 Texas counties have signed declarations of needing ‘protection from the influx of violent Mexicans’. They want constitutional authority to protect themselves from Mexican ‘paramilitary, narco-terrorist organisations that profit from trafficking people and drugs into the US and exploit insecure borders for their power and profit, harming local communities’. The counties say the Texas constitution allows them to 'defend themselves against invasion.’ Both the Republican Party and the Texas Public Policy Foundation want Texas to declare an invasion by unprecedented illegal immigration. They argue that Mexican cartels and their extensive criminal networks across US cities are threatening the lives of Texans and Americans. Meanwhile Governor Abbott has directed officials to apprehend illegal border crossers and return them to ports of entry. He is the only Texas governor to build a wall on Texas soil.
The UK chancellor Nadhim Zahawi visited the USA for cost-of-living talks during what could be his final week in the job. The two candidates for PM have signalled they will offer more help when elected, though neither has given details. Mr Zahawi insists he has been working tirelessly to come up with proposals for either leadership candidate to bring in more support. The chancellor met banking chiefs in New York to discuss co-operating on financial services, before heading to Washington DC to discuss support for Ukraine, the global economic outlook, and energy security. He said that global pressures must be overcome through global efforts.
The women, children and elderly fleeing Ukraine are suffering the most, dealing with the trauma from Russia’s ongoing onslaught. In support of what churches in Ukraine and Poland are doing, the New York Jets donated $100,000 towards the work of ‘CityServe Krakow Housing Project’. Their goal is to expand refugee housing in Krakow, Poland. The money will provide safe homes for families which include a kitchen and laundry room, and food and vital necessities. CityServe said it is incredible that a secular organisation should partner with faith-based organisations to see the gospel spread in this war-torn region.
In recent years, the United States and South Korea have cancelled some of their regular drills and reduced others to computer simulations, to create space for diplomacy and allay Covid-19 concerns. But after North Korea dismissed South Korean president Yoon Suk Yeol's offer to exchange denuclearisation steps and economic benefits, the USA and South Korea began their biggest combined military training in years on 22 August, heightening their defence posture against the growing North Korean nuclear threat. The Ulchi Freedom Shield exercises, which will continue until 1 September, include aircraft, warships, tanks, and potentially tens of thousands of troops. They could draw anger from Pyongyang, which has pushed its weapons testing activity to a record pace this year while repeatedly threatening conflicts with Seoul and Washington amid a prolonged stalemate in diplomacy. Some say North Korea sees the exercises as rehearsals for an invasion.
While explosions rocked a Crimean ammunition depot, disrupting railway services and causing 2,000 people to be evacuated from a nearby village, the Russian defence minister claimed Ukrainian military operations were being planned by the Americans and British while NATO increased its troop deployment in eastern and central Europe ‘several times over’. Vladimir Putin also said the bloc of Australia, UK, and the USA had the potential to develop into ‘a political-military alliance’. Meanwhile Russia’s Black Sea fleet struggles to exercise effective sea control, with patrols generally limited to the waters within sight of the Crimean coast, according to British intelligence reports. The fleet continues to use long-range cruise missiles to support ground offensives, but is keeping a defensive posture. Britain is training 10,000 Ukrainian raw recruits in marksmanship, battlefield first aid, and urban warfare. Canada, the Netherlands, New Zealand, and Nordic nations are also providing training.
The FBI search warrant of former president Donald Trump's Florida home authorised confiscation of every record he ever saw, read or created during his four years as commander-in-chief, right down to scribbles on a napkin. Democrats are asking for a damage assessment from the intelligence community on the eleven sets of classified documents recovered in the raid, including one marked ‘SCI’, a classification for some of the most sensitive national security information that is normally viewed in a highly secured location. A Trump lawyer signed a statement in June saying ‘all classified documents at Mar-a-Lago had been turned over to federal investigators’. On 14 August Trump’s lawyer claimed all investigations into ‘him will be dropped if he says he won’t run to be elected president in 2024. Later Trump’s office released a new defence statement: ‘As we can all relate to, everyone ends up having to bring home their work from time to time. American presidents are no different.'
China sees the self-ruled island of Taiwan as a part of its territory and insists it be unified with them, by force if necessary. Taiwan has its own constitution, democratically elected leaders, and 300,000 troops; also, the USA is available to provide it with the means to defend itself. After Beijing recently conducted air and sea military drills with live ammunition around Taiwan, the US accused it of ‘provocative’ actions. Taiwan said China is using military exercises to disrupt regional stability, and responded by launching a two-day exercise, simulating a Chinese invasion, to show it is ready to defend the island from any attack. China is signalling to Taiwan that it is ready to invade, while Taipei is telling China ‘You can hurt us, but we will also hurt you.’ Beijing’s extended drills are disrupting air travel and trade in the Taiwan Strait, one of the world's busiest waterways. The aggression could spill into the South China Sea, where many countries which rely on China economically would have to contend with a more geopolitically belligerent Beijing.
Devastating flash floods have killed 37 people and hundreds are still missing in eastern Kentucky’s worst disaster for decades. The death toll will continue to rise. Hundreds of homes and businesses have been destroyed. People are sitting on their porches, hoping somebody is coming to save them. See In July, Sydney in Australia was hit with a month’s worth of rain in five days; people are still cleaning up three feet of swirling mud. Pakistan has 7,000+ glaciers, but rising global temperatures are causing them to melt rapidly, creating thousands of glacial lakes that might burst and release millions of cubic metres of water and debris, flooding villages in just a few hours. Worsening Indian monsoons cause Mumbai residents to commute on Venetian gondolas and inflatable dinghies. This year residents are being asked to tweet details about floods in their neighbourhoods. The data is then used to issue immediate geographically-specific flood alerts.