CATHOLIC VALUES COLUMNIST
US On Alert For Possible Pre-election Terror Attack
Authorities are researching the validity of information they received on a possible terrorist attack from al-Qaeda. Possible targets include New York, Texas, and Virginia. According to a police spokesman, the information “lacks specificity” on the details of the attack. The FBI has been working with law enforcement agencies, especially in the targeted areas. The Port Authority of New York says that it already has a “high level of patrols,” since the city regularly handles security threats that come with its large events. Americans will vote next Tuesday, and according to recent polls Republican candidate Donald Trump has been gaining on Democrat Hilary Clinton.
Ohio Prison To House Haitian Illegal Immigrants
The US expects an increased amount of illegal immigrants from Haiti to cross the Mexican-American border, causing the Department of Homeland Security to enter negotiations with the Northeast Ohio Correctional Center about leasing space to house them. The Immigration and Customs Enforcement expects thousands of people to illegally cross the border, but the plan to house the illegal immigrants in Ohio has caused friction, especially since the jail is privately owned. Mike Brickner, senior policy directer of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Ohio, says that the decision “sends a horrible message about profiteering at the expense of individuals seeking asylum.” The large surge in illegal immigration is due to the Haitian earthquake that took place in 2010, devastating the country.
First Case of Drug-Resistant Fungal Infection In US
The fungus Candida auris, previously unseen in the US, has infected thirteen people. Seven of the cases occurred between May 2013 and August 2016, and four of the patients have died. The other six cases were reported in August and are still being investigated. Dr. Tom Chiller, chief of the CDC’s Mycotic Diseases Branch, said that the disease appears to have arrived “only in the past few years.” Some strains of the disease are resistant to many drugs, and cannot be treated by the three major classes of anti-fungal drugs. None of the US cases have been resistant to all three classes. All of the US cases have occurred in people with other serious health concerns. To control the threat, the CDC reminded health care facilities to follow disinfection protocols to avoid the spread of disease.
Germany Unveils World’s First Zero Emission Train
Germany has unveiled the world’s first zero emission train, which is set to go into service in 2017. The train runs on hydrogen power, and may eventually phase out diesel-powered models. Nicknamed the “hydrail,” it will transport passengers in Lower Saxony in northern Germany. The first route is only 60 miles, but four German states have made an agreement to buy up to 60 additional trains if the first one is a success. The French company Alstom unveiled the train, named Coradia iLint, at a railway industry trade fair in Berlin earlier this year. The energy comes from fuel cells located on the top of the train. They combine hydrogen with oxygen to produce electricity which is then stored in batteries. Each train can carry up to 300 passengers, and can run one full day on only one tank of hydrogen.
US Military Trainers Killed In Jordan
According to a US official, three US military trainers were shot at an air base in Jordan. One was killed at the location, while two others died in a hospital. All three trainers were in cars approaching the gate of a training center at an al-Jafr base at the time of the shooting. The Jordanian military said in a statement that the men were fired upon because they did not stop at the gate. A US defense official said that it isn’t possible to tell if the act was intentional or “some kind of misunderstanding.”
Iraqi Army Breaks Down at IS Control
The Iraqi army has fought its way into a suburb of Mosul, chipping away at the Islamic State’s grip on the city. Forces reached the eastern district al-Zahra and report that 90% of that area is now under their control. The UN says that conditions are getting worse for the 1.5 million civilians living in Mosul under IS control. More than 1,000 people were reportedly used as a human shield, and many young boys have been taken as child soldier recruits. Civilians are currently being evacuated. A US-backed offensive began on October 17 with government and Kurdish forces, including 200 Iranian Kurdish women. No civilians were inside al-Zahra at the time it was reclaimed.