The Blackbird’s design reflected the fact that it was pushing the limits. The SR-71’s J58 engines could only start through use of two vehicle-mounted V8 starter engines, and the triethylborane used in the fuel would belch green flames during ignition. The J58s would switch to a partial ramjet mode at high speeds, such that the SR-71 actually became more fuel efficient when it went faster.
SANTIAGO, Chile (AP) — Pope Francis flew in to Chile's capital Monday night for a visit expected to be met with protests over sexual abuse by priests and confronted by many Chileans deeply skeptical about the Roman Catholic Church.
Turkey has warned the US it was “playing with fire” over plans to set up a 30,000-strong force to police its border with Syria, saying it had tanks ready at the frontier. The US announced plans on Sunday for a "border security force" - made up of Kurdish and Arab fighters - to prevent a resurgence by Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (Isil). The BSF will be tasked with securing the long sections of Syria's northern border with Turkey and eastern border with Iraq that are under the fighters' control, as well as parts of the Euphrates river valley, which effectively serves as the dividing line between them and Syrian pro-government forces. Ankara has repeatedly warned Washington over its support for the Syrian Kurdish People’s Defence Units (YPG), which it sees as terrorist group over its links to the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) waging a bloody insurgency in southern Turkey. Kurdish and Arab fighters will make up the 30,000-strong border force Credit: AFP But reacting to the news on Monday, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan could barely contain his rage. "A country we call an ally is insisting on forming a terror army on our borders," he said of the US in a speech in Ankara. "What can that terror army target but Turkey? Our mission is to strangle it before it's even born. "Don't stand between us and these herd of murderers. Otherwise, we won't be responsible for the unwanted incidents that may arise," he continued. He said that the Turkish army was ready to launch an operation against the YPG in the northern Syrian enclave Afrin in the coming days. The Turkish army had already positioned a convoy of tanks and was pounding the area yesterday with artillery from its positions inside Syria. The YPG was the backbone of the fight against Isil in Raqqa. Mr Erdogan tolerated the US’s backing of Kurdish groups during the operation to liberate the city, in the hope Washington would abandon them after the city was liberated. Fighters of Syrian Democratic Forces gesture the "V" sign in Raqqa, Syria Credit: Reuters But the latest plans hint at the US’s longer-term plans for their involvement in the region and will concern Turkey, which fears the move is a step towards Syrian Kurds achieving a breakaway state. The threat could bring the two Nato allies, who once worked together to support rebel groups opposed to President Bashar al-Assad’s government, into direct military confrontation. “The Kurdish people will rise up as a whole. It will be total warfare,” Saleh Muslim, former head of the YPG's political wing, said in a warning to Turkey.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Monday threatened to destroy a planned US-backed 30,000-strong border security force in northern Syria, describing it as an "army of terror". Turkey fears that the mooted new force will be comprised of the Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG) militia, whom Ankara accuses of being terrorists and have been a constant bone of contention in Turkey-US ties. The new upsurge of tensions between Ankara and Washington also comes as Erdogan has repeatedly threatened that Turkey could launch a cross-border operation to oust the YPG from the Kurdish-held town of Afrin in northern Syria.
Oscar Perez, a rogue helicopter pilot who vanished last year after dropping grenades on Venezuela's Supreme Court, said Monday he and his companions were surrounded and pinned down by police marksmen. "They are firing at us with grenade launchers. Perez, a former elite police officer, is seen with other men in one of the videos, some of them armed.
MANILA, Philippines (AP) — The Philippine securities commission has revoked the registration of an online news outfit known for its critical reporting on President Rodrigo Duterte, a move media watchdogs said is an act to muzzle the free press.
The larger context of the battle—the U.S. Navy being forced to take on the German Navy—would have had serious repercussions for the Pacific theater. Germany was, after all, considered the primary threat, with Japan second and Italy third. A more powerful German Navy (or weaker Royal Navy) would have had second order consequences for the Pacific, delaying the Solomons campaign, including the invasion of Guadalcanal, the Battle of the Coral Sea, and even the Battle of Midway.
Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte personally made a decision to let China conduct scientific research off the Philippines' Pacific coast, his spokesman said on Monday, despite concern among critics about threats to maritime sovereignty. Presidential spokesman Harry Roque said that as chief architect of foreign policy, Duterte allowed China to work with the University of the Philippines in Benham Rise, an area roughly the size of Greece and believed by some scientists to be rich in biodiversity and tuna.
Scientists on Monday announced the discovery of a crow-sized, bird-like dinosaur with colorful feathers from northeastern China that lived 161 million years ago during the Jurassic Period. Microscopic structures in the exquisitely preserved, nearly complete fossil unearthed in Hebei Province indicated that it boasted iridescent feathers, particularly on its head, neck and chest, with colors that shimmered and shifted in the light, like those of hummingbirds. The discovery "suggests a more colorful Jurassic World than we previously imagined," said evolutionary biologist Chad Eliason of the Field Museum in Chicago, one of the researchers in the study published in the journal Nature Communications.
Knowing how popular pickup trucks are with American buyers, it's perhaps a little surprising that Ford's best-known pickup in the rest of the world hasn't even been offered for sale in the US since 2011. It must feel a little odd that the maker of America's best-selling vehicle, the F-150 pickup truck, is actually entering one part of the lucrative US pickup market as something of an underdog as the Chevrolet Colorado and Toyota Tacoma are the clear front-runners in midsize trucks at the moment.
Airbus will have no other choice but to halt the A380 programe if Dubai's Emirates airline does not place another order, the European aerospace giant's sales director, John Leahy, told a news conference on Monday. Originally launched in 2007, the A380 is the world's largest passenger airliner. Orders from Emirates, the main customer of the superjumbo, have stalled over the past two years.
By Michael Holden LONDON (Reuters) - The leader of Britain's anti-European Union UKIP Party said he had split with his new girlfriend after a newspaper published derogatory comments she made about Prince Harry's fiancee Meghan Markle and black people. Henry Bolton, 54, who became the ailing UK Independence Party's fourth leader in a year when he was elected last September, said he had ended his relationship with model Jo Marney after the "appalling" text messages she sent to a friend were published. Marney, 25, who began dating Bolton just after Christmas, had described U.S. actress Markle, whose father is white and mother is African-American, as a "dumb little commoner" and said "her seed with (sic) taint our royal family", according to the texts printed in the Mail on Sunday newspaper.
The crater of a rumbling Philippine volcano was glowing bright red Monday, with vulcanologists warning it could erupt within days, sending thousands fleeing from their homes. Volcanic earthquakes and rockfalls have shaken the summit of Mayon over the last 24 hours, after a number of steam-driven eruptions, scientists said. More than 12,000 people have been ordered to leave a seven-kilometre (four-mile) evacuation zone, and there are warnings of destructive mudflows and toxic clouds. "It is dangerous for families to stay in that radius and inhale ash," Claudio Yucot, head of the region's office of civil defence, told AFP. "Because of continuous rains in past weeks, debris deposited in the slopes of Mayon could lead to lahar flows. If rain does not stop it could be hazardous." Clouds of ash engulf the volcano in Legazpi Credit: Reuters The volcano, a near-perfect cone, sits around 330 kilometres southwest of Manila. Steam-driven eruptions and rockfalls began over the weekend, and the crater began glowing on Sunday evening, in what the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) said was a sign of the growth of a new lava dome. The Mayon volcano's crater glows, as it is pictured from Daraga, Albay, the Philippines Credit: Reuters Experts fear a major eruption could trigger pyroclastic flows - superheated gas and volcanic debris that race down the slopes at high speeds, incinerating or vaporizing everything in their path. More extensive explosions of ash could drift toward nearby towns and cities, including Legazpi city, the provincial capital, about 9 miles (15 kilometers) away. An archive photo of the Mayon volcano when not at risk of eruption Credit: AFP Lava last flowed out of Mayon in 2014 when 63,000 people fled. "We think the lava now is more fluid than in 2014. This means the flow can reach further down (the slopes) at a faster rate," Phivolcs head Renato Solidum told AFP. "We see similarity with eruptions where the first phase of the activity started with lava flow and culminated in an explosive or hazardous part. That's what we are trying to monitor and help people avoid." At a glance | Deadliest volcanic eruptions The 2,460-metre (8,070-foot) Mayon, has a long history of deadly eruptions. Despite having erupted about 50 times in the last 500 years, the volcano is popular with climbers and tourists. Four foreign tourists and their local tour guide were killed when Mayon last erupted, in May 2013. The Mayon volcano during an eruption back in 2006 Credit: CHERYL RAVELO/Reuters In 1814 more than 1,200 people were killed when lava flows buried the town of Cagsawa. An explosion in August 2006 did not directly kill anyone, but four months later a typhoon unleashed an avalanche of volcanic mud from Mayon's slopes that claimed 1,000 lives.
By Steve Holland WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump insisted on Sunday "I'm not a racist" in response to reports that he had described immigrants from Haiti and African countries as coming from "shithole countries." Trump also said he was "ready, willing and able" to reach a deal to protect illegal immigrants brought to the United States as children from being deported but that he did not believe Democrats wanted an agreement. The debate over immigration policy became increasingly acrimonious after it was reported on Thursday that the Republican president used the word "shithole" to describe Haiti and African countries in a private meeting with lawmakers. The comments led to harsh recriminations from Democrats and Republicans alike, with some critics accusing Trump of racism, even as bipartisan talks continued in the U.S. Congress to seek a bipartisan compromise to salvage the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, or DACA.
WASHINGTON ― Last week, a story by The Hill’s John Solomon set off another firestorm in the conservative media about the ongoing special counsel investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election.
A controversial member of Qatar's royal family claimed he was being held against his will in the UAE yesterday/Sun, eight months into a crisis between the Gulf states. Sheikh Abdullah bin Ali Al-Thani, a little-known royal, emerged as a key figure in the dispute between the Gulf states in the weeks after Riyadh and Abu Dhabi cut ties with Doha. He is seen by some as a potential challenger to the Qatari leadership. A video circulating online, also broadcast by Qatar-based Al-Jazeera television, shows the sheikh seated in an armchair warning that he was "afraid something could happen to me that will be blamed on Qatar". "I am now in Abu Dhabi, where I was a guest of (UAE crown prince) Sheikh Mohammed" bin Zayed al-Nahyan, said Sheikh Abdullah, "That is no longer the case. I am now detained," he said. "I want to make clear that the people of Qatar are innocent," the sheikh said. "Sheikh Mohammed bears full responsibility for anything that happens to me." The video could not be immediately authenticated, while Emirati officials were not immediately available for comment. Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Egypt and Bahrain severed diplomatic and trade ties with Qatar in June over allegations Doha supported Islamist extremists and had close ties to regional rival Iran. Doha denies the accusations. In response to the video, Qatar's foreign ministry spokeswoman, Lulwa al-Khater, said in a statement that Doha was monitoring the situation. "The state of Qatar observes the situation closely, and due to the total severance of ties with the UAE it is difficult to clearly establish the circumstances surrounding the situation," she said. "Despite that, the State of Qatar principally stands with the protection of rights for every individual and affirms the entitlement of his family to pursue all legal means for the protection of his rights."
The Trump administration is being forced to approve renewal requests for immigrants with Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival status, even though President Donald Trump has said that he would let the program expire unless Congress steps up and takes action. The Department of Homeland Security has been forced to continue approving the renewal of DACA status for individuals who apply as a result of a federal court which recently ruled on the issue. “Until further notice, and unless otherwise provided in this guidance, the DACA policy will be operated on the terms in place before it was rescinded on Sept. 5, 2017,” a notice from US Citizenship and Immigration Services, posted online, read.
A burning Iranian oil tanker exploded and sank Sunday after more than a week listing off the coast of China, as an Iranian official acknowledged there was “no hope” of missing sailors surviving the disaster. The collision and disaster of the Sanchi, which carried 30 Iranians and two Bangladeshis, had transfixed an Iran still reeling from days of protests and unrest that swept the country at the start of the year. Families of the sailors wept and screamed at the headquarters of the National Iranian Tanker Co. in Tehran, the private company that owns the Sanchi.
The new leader of South Africa's ruling African National Congress (ANC) party, Cyril Ramaphosa, has said the question of whether President Jacob Zuma should step down would be addressed "as time goes on". There has been widespread speculation that Ramaphosa and his allies are lobbying ANC members to oust Zuma as head of state in the coming weeks, but he made no mention of Zuma's future in a closely watched speech on Saturday. Ramaphosa won the race to succeed Zuma as ANC leader last month, narrowly defeating former cabinet minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, Zuma's ex-wife, in a bitter leadership contest that had threatened to split the 106-year-old ANC.
Terrifying images captured Saturday night at Trabzon airport on Turkey’s northeast coast showed a passenger plane teetering precariously on a steep slope, its nose pointing toward the waters of the Black Sea below, after the jet skidded off the runway as it was attempting to land.
Mutual fears between immigrants and their new communities are understandable, but must not prevent new arrivals from being welcomed and integrated, Pope Francis said on Sunday in a special Mass to mark the World Day of Migrants and Refugees. Francis, a keen defender of the rights of migrants, was addressing a congregation including migrants and refugees from some 50 countries, whose flags festooned the area around the altar in St. Peter's Basilica at the Vatican. "Local communities are sometimes afraid that the newly arrived will disturb the established order, will "steal" something they have long laboured to build up," he said, while "the newly arrived ... are afraid of confrontation, judgement, discrimination, failure." "Having doubts and fears is not a sin.
The photographer captured the amazing shots in the Vatnajokull National Park on the Breidamerkurjokull glacier tongue. Matej said: “One of the ice caves has been well known for few years already, but new ones appeared on east side of the glacier tongue this year.
King was a Baptist minister, activist, humanitarian, and civil rights leader who practiced peaceful, nonviolent civil disobedience to protest racial inequality. In 1964, King received the Nobel Peace Prize for combating racial inequality through nonviolent resistance.