By Sabreen Taha HEBRON, West Bank (Reuters) - At the peak of a searing summer, Palestinians living in parts of the Israeli-occupied West Bank are suffering from severe water shortages, prompting a war of words between Palestinian and Israeli officials over who is responsible. The Palestinians say Israel is preventing them from accessing adequate water at an affordable price, and point out that nearby Israeli settlements have plentiful water supplies. Israel says the Palestinians have been allocated double the amount they were due under an interim 1995 agreement, and have refused to discuss solutions to the current problem. For Palestinian Nidal Younis, the head of the Masafer Yatta village council near Hebron, in the south of the West Bank, getting hold of water has become prohibitively expensive. "The cost of a cubic meter for residents is 12 times higher than the normal price," he said, shaking his head. "When water is available, it normally costs four shekels (about $1) per cubic meter, but now it costs 50 shekels." Israeli settlements are scattered on hillsides all around Masafer Yatta, a low-stone village on dry, rocky land. The settlements, with gardens and greenery, receive water from the Israeli utility provider via dedicated pipelines. Younis said there was water in the ground near his village, home to around 1,600 people and many animals. But he said Israeli authorities prevented villagers from accessing the water by denying them permits to dig. Israel says unregulated digging of wells would do severe damage to the water table. The villagers have approached the Palestinian Water Authority, which said it had made appeals to the Israelis, but the requests were apparently unanswered. Israel's Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories, a branch of the military that administers Palestinian civil issues, said Israel provides 64 million cubic meters of water to the Palestinians annually, even though under the 1995 Oslo accords it is only obliged to provide 30 million. Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesman Emmanuel Nahshon said the Palestinians had consistently refused to meet to discuss water issues or work to resolve the long-standing problem. "The Palestinian allegations... are simply a lie," he said. "Under the Oslo accords we agreed to establish together a joint working committee on water. Unfortunately, the Palestinian side has refused systematically to participate." He added that the water needs in the West Bank, which the Palestinians want for a state together with East Jerusalem and Gaza, are greater than the infrastructure can handle. Mazen Ghuneim, head of the Palestinian Water Authority, said the Palestinians had halted water negotiations with Israel five years ago because Israel had not frozen settlement building. RURAL SHORTAGES The United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF), which is working with the Palestinian Authority and Italian aid agency GVC to provide water to impoverished areas, has warned that up to 35,000 Palestinians are at risk because of the shortages. Gregor von Medeazza, the head of UNICEF's water program, said Israel had prevented villagers from building water-retention facilities and that 33 such structures had been demolished this year because they were built without permits. Palestinians living furthest from urban areas have been the hardest hit, he said, often having to pay large sums to get private companies to truck water to their villages. Some Israeli settlers have grown concerned about the lack of water available for Palestinians. "Israel has not... made an effort to plan a long-term program for the next 10, 20, 30 years that will take into consideration population growth," said Yochai Damari, head of the Mount Hebron Regional Council, a settlement body. "Thank God Israel doesn't have a shortage of water -- there is desalinated water, there is water that is located elsewhere that needs to be drilled and extracted using pipelines and infrastructure that will provide water to the Arab community, and of course to the Jewish community." (Writing by Ori Lewis; editing by Luke Baker and Dominic Evans)
- The Independent
Lindell equates getting coronavirus vaccine to receiving ‘mark of the beast’ pledging allegiance to the devil
- Yahoo Acquired Video
Sacha Baron Cohen says Rudy Giuliani "turned out to be a comedy genius" in "Borat Subsequent Moviefilm." Golden Globe© Awards clips provided by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association and DCP Rights, LLC.
- The Independent
President’s warm tone towards Mexico has translated to substantial policy changes
Americans should be able to receive Johnson & Johnson's COVID-19 vaccine within the next 24 to 48 hours, its chief executive said on Monday after U.S. regulators approved the vaccine, making it the country's third available one for the novel coronavirus. The drugmaker was still on track to deliver 4 million vaccine doses this week, and 100 million doses by June, J&J CEO Alex Gorsky told NBC News' Today program in an interview. Shares of the pharmaceutical company were up 2.9% in premarket trading after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved its one-shot COVID-19 vaccine on Saturday.
- The Independent
Biden AG pick passes out of committee by bipartisan 15-7 vote
- Raleigh News and Observer
We get the Season 20 premiere of “The Voice” (plus a new NBC drama) while “Bachelor” women return to spill the tea on Raleigh native Matt James.
- Business Insider
The Trump administration didn't take any actions against Russia over the poisoning of Alexei Navalny, who is President Vladimir Putin's top critic.
A recent piece by NBC Asian America reporter Kimmy Yam has readers divided for how it framed the recent attacks Asians are facing in the U.S. According to Yam, the 2,800 hate incidents collected by watchdog Stop AAPI Hate over five months last year “weren't necessarily hate crimes” as they included “less severe, yet insidious, forms of discrimination.”
- The Daily Beast
Broward Sheriff’s OfficeThe FBI arrested a notorious white supremacist livestreamer in an early morning raid in Florida on Tuesday.FBI agents, working with Fort Lauderdale police and the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force, arrested Paul N. Miller, 32, on one charge of being a “convicted felon in possession of a firearm.” The FBI said in a press release that Miller was arrested without incident.Miller’s neighbors in Fort Lauderdale’s Riverside neighborhood reported hearing flashbangs during the raid, which took place around 5 a.m. ET, local TV station NBC 6 reported. One neighbor described seeing law enforcement officers carrying out a box that appeared to have “a shotgun on the front or an AK.”Biden Taps a War on Terror Veteran to Stop White SupremacistsMiller, who goes by the name “Gypsy Crusader” online, has amassed more than 40,000 followers on Telegram, a messaging app and social media network popular with far-right extremists. Many of Miller’s videos feature him dressing up as characters like the Joker or Nintendo’s Mario, then hurling racial abuse at strangers, including children, through the randomized chat app Omegle. Miller can be seen holding a gun in some of his videos.A grand jury indicted Miller on the firearms charge on Feb. 25, according to court records unsealed Tuesday. Miller is charged with illegally possessing a gun on Jan. 17, 2018. The indictment doesn’t describe the 2018 incident in which Miller allegedly had the firearm.Miller’s Tuesday arrest sent shockwaves through internet extremist circles. Miller had recently sold patches promoting his channel to his supporters, with his arrest raising fears among other extremists that the FBI could access his customer files and find out their own names and addresses.In messages captured by extremism researcher Hilary Sargent, Miller’s supporters worried about the possibility that they could soon become FBI targets themselves. If convicted, Miller faces up to 10 years in prison on the gun charge.Read more at The Daily Beast.Got a tip? Send it to The Daily Beast hereGet our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.
Former MLB executive says Albert Pujols was lying about his age when he signed a $240 million contract with the Angels
"Not one person in baseball believes Albert Pujols is the age he says he is," former Miami Marlins President David Samson.
Inside the life of controversial artist Kat Von D, from her tattoo empire to her fall from the beauty industry
Kat Von D rose to fame as a tattoo artist on "Miami Ink" and "LA Ink." She later founded a beauty brand - and faced a plethora of controversies.
- National Review
Senators Josh Hawley (R., Mo.) and Mike Lee (R., Utah) on Tuesday pressed FBI Director Christopher Wray on the procedures federal law enforcement officials have used to track down those who participated in the January 6 siege on the U.S. Capitol. “I’m anxious to see those who committed unlawful, violent acts on January 6 brought to justice,” Lee said during a Senate Judiciary Hearing on Tuesday. “I also believe that … with this circumstance, like every other circumstance, we have to make sure that the civil liberties of the American people are protected.” The Utah Republican explained that he had “heard a number of accounts” of people who were in Washington, D.C. on January 6 who never went near the Capitol but were “inexplicably” contacted by FBI agents who knew of their presence in the district that day “with no other explanation, perhaps, other than the use of geolocation data.” “Are you geolocating people, through the FBI, based on where they were on January 6?” Lee asked Wray. “I think there may be some instances in which geolocation has been an investigative tool, but I can’t speak to any specific situation,” Wray responded. “But what are you using to do that?” Lee asked. “What’s your basis for authority? Are you using national security letters?” Wray said, “I don’t believe in any instance we’re using national security letters for investigation of the Capitol—” Lee interrupted to ask the FBI director if he had gone to the FISA court, to which Wray responded he did not “remotely believe FISA is remotely implicated in our investigation.” The senator continued pressing Wray, asking if the FBI is “using warrants predicated on probable cause.” “We certainly have executed a number of warrants in the course of the investigation of January 6,” Wray said. “All of our investigative work in response to the Capitol [riot] has been under the legal authorities that we have in consultation with the [Department of Justice] and the prosecutors.” Later, Hawley continued Lee’s line of questioning regarding geolocation data, asking Wray if his position is that he doesn’t know “whether the bureau has scooped up geolocation data, metadata cell phone records from cell phone towers.” “Do you not know, or are you saying maybe it has or maybe it hasn’t? Tell me what you know about this,” Hawley said. “So when it comes to geolocation data specifically—again, not in a specific instance, but just even the use of geolocation data—I would not be surprised to learn—but I do not know for a fact—that we were using geolocation data under any situation with connection with the investigation of [January 6],” Wray said. “But again, we do use geolocation data under different authorities and specific instances.” The FBI, Department of Justice and local police in Washington, D.C. are investigating the origins and execution of the January rioting at the Capitol, with the probe resulting in hundreds of arrests so far. Republicans have expressed concern that the methods law enforcement has used to track down rioters could infringe upon personal liberty. Last month Bank of America sparked outcry after it said it would hand over banking information to the federal authorities for people suspected of having involvement in the riots. In the days after the riot, Bank of America handed over data to the FBI on thousands of customers who traveled to Washington, D.C. around January 6, Fox News reported.
CrossFit has publicly disavowed Georgia Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene over the Republican's previous support for QAnon and other conspiracy theories.
See the mother-daughter duo serve up a sweet message in their first shared fashion campaign.
- Business Insider
CNN's Chris Cuomo is facing backlash for refusing to cover his brother Gov. Andrew Cuomo's scandals after praising his pandemic response
The TV host said he "obviously" can't cover his brother's scandals because it presents a conflict of interest.
- Business Insider
10 hours in Cancún hurt Ted Cruz's job approval more than when he tried to flip the presidential election
New polling from Morning Consult shows Ted Cruz's job approval fell more after traveling to Mexico than when he objected to the election results.
- Associated Press
An SUV packed with 25 people pulled in front of an oncoming tractor-trailer on a two-lane highway cutting through farmland near the Mexican border early Tuesday, killing 13 and leaving bodies strewn across the roadway. When police arrived some of the passengers were trying to crawl out of the crumpled 1997 Ford Expedition, the front end of the rig still pushing into its left side and two empty trailers jackknifed behind it. Twelve people were found dead when first responders reached the highway, which winds through fields in the agricultural southeastern corner of California about 125 miles (201 kilometers) east of San Diego.
I received my first dose of the coronavirus vaccine in New York City and had to battle a flawed booking system
An Insider reporter struggled to book an appointment and had to wait in line for hours to get the first dose of the Moderna vaccine.
- Business Insider
Top US general in the Middle East says troops were evacuated at just the right moment before a ballistic missile attack so Iran wouldn't know they left
A US general says that he believes Iran "expected to destroy a number of US aircraft and to kill a number of US service members."
- USA TODAY Opinion
If Democrats are to hold the moral high ground on issues of gender equity, they cannot apply standards just to those on the opposite side of the aisle.