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Day in 10

Newspapers are breaking records to endorse Hillary | ‘Aleppo moments’ abound | Tragedy in Hoboken | and more

Person of the Day

Israeli leader Shimon Peres dies at 93

Shimon Peres, a former Israeli prime minister and Nobel Peace Prize winner passed away on Sept. 28 after a massive stroke landed him in the hospital two weeks earlier. Peres, 93, fought for an independent Israel in 1948.

He served as the prime minister twice from 1995-96 and 2007-14. In a career spanning more than 70 years, he was a member of 12 cabinets and ever hopeful of peace between countries. He negotiated the Israel-Jordan peace treaty in 1994 and also participated in negotiations for Israel-Palestine peace with Yitzhak Rabin, then prime minister of Israel and Yasser Arafat, the leader of Palestine.

Born in Poland in 1923, Peres moved to British-mandate Palestine in 1932. His career was marked by his reputation for vanity and back-room dealings. However, he suddenly became a beloved figure in his old age.

“For 60 years I was the most controversial figure in the country, and suddenly I’m the most popular man in the land. Truth be told, I don’t know when I was happier, then or now.”

Condolence messages poured in from across the world, with many world leaders flying in for the final services.

Many people came to pay their respect while his body lay in front of the parliament building in Jerusalem.

Quote of the Day

Gary Johnson had another ‘Aleppo moment’

The former New Mexico governor and Libertarian nominee for president Gary Johnson had what he referred to as an "Aleppo moment" at an MSNBC town hall on Sept. 28.

Johnson was asked to name a world leader whom he admired and respected – from anywhere in the world. He couldn't name a single one.

"I guess I'm having an Aleppo moment in the former president of Mexico."

Flashback to the time when earlier this month he actually said this when asked about what he thought about what's happening in Aleppo, Syria:

"And what is Aleppo?"

In this instance, his vice presidential nominee Bill Weld finally jumped in and helped him out and Johnson also tried to hash things later.

He also got endorsed by the Detroit News, the first time in the Conservative paper's 143 year history that they've done that.

But still no third podium at the debate for him.

He basically pulled a Palin.

Image of the Day

1 person has died in this massive Hoboken train crash

One person was killed and 108 people were injured when a New Jersey Transit train crashed into a train station in Hoboken, New Jersey on Sept. 29 during the morning rush hour. Commuters waiting at the station said the train never slowed down when it arrived at the station and slammed into a bumper block before going airborne and crashing through the platform.

The engineer was critically injured while the one casualty was struck by debris while standing on the platform. The train was coming in from Spring Valley, New York.

The first half of the train was crushed; the roof was smashed down to the seats. During the rescue operations, all people who were trapped were removed.

The historic station saw extensive damage too. The ceiling fell down in some places and the support beams were destroyed.

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie said the train's engineer is cooperating with the investigations and told people to not panic.

The National Transportation Safety Board launched an investigation into the cause of the crash and will examine the similarities between this crash and another that happened at the same station in 2011 when 34 people were injured.

Rail service had been suspended in and out of the station, but PATH train service to New York resumed at 3 P.M. EST while authorities opened helplines for tips and information.

Number of the Day

Finally the OPEC agrees to cut down oil production

For the first time in eight years, the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (aka OPEC) agreed to cut oil output, coming down to 32.5 million from 33 million barrels per day. There had been increasing pressure on the group of 14 oil producing countries to reduce production after their oil profits started falling a few years back. Frenemies Saudi Arabia and Iran cooperated on this decision and the Iranian oil minister called it a smart consensus:

“Opec made an exceptional decision."

The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries is made up of countries who, together, produce more than a third of the world's oil. With the U.S. increasing oil production and the recent increase in fracking operations, the market has been flooded, literally, with too much oil. OPEC countries' economies are heavily dependent on oil revenues, making this compromise a contentious one.

This agreement is really great news for Venezuela where the falling economy can get some relief.

Oil prices jumped up after the announcement - the first time in five months.

How much will each country actually produce will be decided in the next formal meeting in November.

Place of the Day

This 14-year-old shot up an elementary school in South Carolina

A 14-year-old boy in Townville, South Carolina shot a teacher and two young students at an elementary school before being arrested by a voluntary firefighter on Sept. 28. The teen's father was found shot dead at their home after the boy placed a phone call to his grandmother at 1:44 in the afternoon.

One of the injured students is still critical as of Thursday night, while the teacher and the other student were released from the hospital. He drove up to the school and immediately started shooting after getting out of the car. All his victims were out in the playground.

The motive for the shooting is unknown. What is known is that the boy was homeschooled. It is not known whether he may have shot his father with the same weapon and how the incidents are connected.

Firefighter Jamie Brock was hailed as a hero by the community. The school's teachers are also being commended for their actions since they quickly locked the doors and windows after seeing the boy walking toward the building.

Word of the Day

The House and the Senate vetoed President Obama’s veto (which apparently is a thing that can happen)

Finally, the House seems to be agreeing on things (but not the next SCOTUS justice) but they voted 348 to 77 to veto President Barack Obama's veto of a bill that allows families and victims to sue Saudi Arabia over the 9/11 attacks. Not a good move, said Obama who called it a "mistake" and warned of potentially huge downsides.

White House spokesman Josh Earnest remarked on the incident:

“The single most embarrassing thing the United States Senate has done possibly since 1983.”

The Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism (JASTA) bill allows families of victims of the 9/11 attacks to sue any member of the Saudi Arabia government suspected of playing a role in the attacks. Most of the hijackers – 15 of the 19 - were from Saudi Arabia, but the country was a key U.S. ally in the region and said it had nothing to do with the attacks.

This was the first time Obama's veto was overturned in his presidency. The downside of the bill is that it now leaves the U.S. open to getting sued in foreign courts.

Obama spoke about how the decision came at a difficult time, right before the elections and after the 15th anniversary of 9/11. He called it a "political vote."

"It's an example of why sometimes you have to do what's hard. And, frankly, I wish Congress here had done what's hard... If you're perceived as voting against 9/11 families right before an election, not surprisingly, that's a hard vote for people to take. But it would have been the right thing to do."

Saudi interest groups have lobbied against the bill and said they'd taken steps since 2001 to disrupt terrorist activities in their country. Experts say the country can still harm the U.S. by cutting off diplomatic ties and scaling back counterterrorism cooperation.

Video of the Day

Louisiana finally released body-cam footage of a police shooting of a 6-year-old autistic boy

A judge has released body cam footage from the police shooting of a 6-year-old autistic boy in Louisiana in September 2015. The two officers who fired multiple shots into the car said they didn't know the boy was inside. They've been indicted on second-degree murder charges.

The marshals pursued the car after they saw a man, Christopher Few, having an argument with his girlfriend before driving away. The officers claim Few rammed into their car after refusing to pull over and was backing the car toward them again when they fired. The body cam footage actually shows Few's car stationary and his hands raised.

While Few was critically wounded, his son, Jeremy Mardis was shot five times.

One of the charged officers has a history of excessive force -- he once broke a teenager's arms while breaking up a school bus fight. Both officers are awaiting separate murder trials later in the year.

Tweet of the Day

Another unarmed (and also mentally ill) black man has been killed by police

In another case of what could be excessive police force, cops in El Cajon, California first fired a Taser and then shot at Alfred Olango, an unarmed black man on Sept. 27. His death sparked off protests in the city with protestors demanding accountability for his death and asked the police to release video of the shooting.

Olango had been acting erratically and his sister had called 911 for help. He had been walking into traffic and endangering motorists. His sister told the police that he was mentally ill and unarmed. When officers finally got there, they found Olango to be uncooperative and he had his hands in his pocket. He kept pacing around and then an officer started preparing a Taser. That's when Olango quickly took out something from his pocket – which has now been identified as a vaping device – and held it like a gun. Both officers fired at the same time.

The El Cajon Police Department's homicide unit is investigating the shooting while both officers have been placed on administrative leave. They've released reports of the incident, amidst demands to release the footage.

Olango was a Ugandan refugee and was distraught over the recent death of his best friend. A Facebook page for Olango says he was a head cook at Hooters and went to San Diego High School and San Diego Mesa College.

This comes at a time when there are already Black Lives Matter protests going on in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Controversy of the Day

Another conservative newspaper endorses Hillary Clinton

These are words nobody saw coming: the Arizona Republic, a conservative newspaper that has never endorsed a Democrat since it started in 1890, endorsed Hillary Clinton.

They broke with 126 years of tradition and said Clinton understands the challenges facing the country both domestically and internationally better than the Republican candidate, Donald Trump, in their editorial section.

"The 2016 Republican candidate is not conservative and he is not qualified."

They called out Trump for not releasing his tax returns and said he doesn't think carefully before taking any steps. He's also derogatory to women and racist, they said.

"Trump responds to criticism with the petulance of verbal spit wads. That’s beneath our national dignity."

Not everyone was happy with their endorsement, least of all their readers. They lost subscribers and even received death threats.

The director of the editorial board said anyone who actually read their editorial page wouldn't have been surprised since they had been criticizing Trump over the past year.

“We know we’re doing the right thing, We feel very good about this decision."

The Arizona Republic is not the first conservative paper to support Clinton. Earlier, the Dallas Morning News and the Cincinnati Enquirer had thrown in their lot with her. Even USA Today endorsed her:

"In the 34-year history of USA TODAY, the Editorial Board has never taken sides in the presidential race. ... This year, the choice isn’t between two capable major party nominees who happen to have significant ideological differences. This year, one of the candidates — Republican nominee Donald Trump — is, by unanimous consensus of the Editorial Board, unfit for the presidency."

Issue of the Day

The Sudanese government is being accused of murdering its own people

Human rights watchdog Amnesty International has accused the Sudanese government of carrying out at least 30 chemical attacks and using a "scorched earth" policy in Darfur during their ongoing civil war. The report estimates that around 250 people, mostly children, have died due to the gas attacks in the Jebel Marra area in central Darfur.

The last attack, according to the report, was on Sept. 9 and Amnesty released pictures of children and women covered with lesions.

The report also accuses president Omar Hassan al-Bashir's government of bombing villages, burning homes and raping women in a "scorched earth" policy of reducing the opposition to waste. Incidentally, he's already been indicted on charges of genocide by the International Criminal Court but the case was suspended because he had the support of China and Russia.

Sudan's foreign minister " target="_blank">Ibrahim Ghandour said the report was nonsensical.

“We don’t use chemical weapons in populated areas."

Another government official accused the Sudan Liberation Army-Abdul Wahid, an armed anti-government group of starting the fight and causing destruction in the area. The government merely reacted to the report, sans chemical weapons.

"The whole Darfur is quite in peace and the people are very happy."

Amnesty said the Sudanese government also made it very hard for peacekeepers to work and provide aid in the region. Journalists have been prohibited from entering the area since 2012, making it hard to verify these details. Chemical weapon experts who reviewed the evidence found it to be consistent with the use of agents like sulfur mustard, lewisite and nitrogen mustard.

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Newspapers are breaking records to endorse Hillary | ‘Aleppo moments’ abound | Tragedy in Hoboken | and more

Anugya Chitransh

Anugya is originally from New Delhi, India. She studied journalism at the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism in New York, graduating with a master's in international reporting. She plans to travel one day to all the places she reads about. She likes reading fiction, pop music, and going to the beach, but absolutely hates anyone mangling or shortening her name (which is quite common). She binge watches Korean dramas and anime series. She's a freelance writer and has produced content that has appeared in NBC, The Times of India, Time Out Delhi, and other publications.

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