September 17, 2014
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Obama condemns ‘barbaric murder’ of British aid worker

Obama condemns ‘barbaric murder’ of British aid worker

ShareIn a statement released by the White House, President Barack Obama said: “The United States strongly condemns the barbaric murder of UK citizen David Haines by the terrorist group ISIL…. Read more »

California man accused of feeding girlfriend her own dog

California man accused of feeding girlfriend her own dog

REDDING, CALIFORNIA (BNO NEWS) — A California man has been arrested after allegedly killing his estranged girlfriend’s dog and then secretly feeding it to her during a brief reconcile, police said on Friday. He is facing charges of domestic violence, …

Zeus, world’s tallest ever dog, dies in Michigan at age 5

Zeus, world’s tallest ever dog, dies in Michigan at age 5

OTSEGO, MICHIGAN (BNO NEWS) — Zeus, the Great Dane which was crowned the world’s tallest dog in recorded history by Guinness World Records, died of old age in the U.S. state of Michigan last week, his owner said on Thursday. He was five years old.

Kevin Doorlag told the Kalamazoo Gazette‎ that Zeus died last week of symptoms of old age, just two months before the Great Dane would have turned six. Due to their massive size, Great Danes have a relatively short life span, ranging between 7 and 10 years on average, though some have reached ages of up to 15 years.

Measuring an incredible 111.8 centimeters (44 inches) from foot to withers, Zeus was the same size as an average donkey, according to Kevin Lynch of Guinness World Records. When standing on hind legs, Zeus stretched to 7 feet 4 inches (193 centimeters) tall, towering over his owners Kevin and Denise.

The Great Dane was confirmed as the world’s tallest dog in recorded history in September 2012, breaking the previous record which belonged to pooch Giant George, which was 2.5 centimeters (1 inch) shorter than Zeus.

“We’ll really miss him,” Doorlag told the newspaper on Thursday, describing Zeus as a “wonderful dog.” He said that he and his wife would especially miss letting Zeus sit on their laps while the family would grill on their deck.

“Zeus was the gentlest giant you could ever wish to meet,” said Guinness World Records picture editor Michael Whitty. “He had such a mild temperament that even the family cat ran rings around him! A fabulously loving and friendly dog who wouldn’t hurt a fly and loved having his photo taken. He will be greatly missed by his lovely owners and will live on in Guinness World Records history as the Tallest Dog we ever measured.”

When he was measured in 2012, the humongous hound weighed 70.3 kilograms (155 pounds) and ate around 12 cups of food every day.

“Zeus has a very laid-back, gentle personality. He gets along very well with our other animals, and he gets along well with anybody that we meet. He’s very comfortable around people and is always very gentle,” Denise said in 2012. “Things cost more for a large dog. We go through a lot of dog food. We had to get a van, really, for transporting him because he’s very uncomfortable in a regular seat of cars.”

Denise added: “He really likes to sleep on our bed. If he’s thirsty, he comes out and we turn on the water faucet in the kitchen for him, that’s where he likes to get his drinks from. And he loves to play. When we take him outside he can play with the dogs, and he enjoys walking too. To be able to say we own the world’s tallest dog is very exciting. The kids are just so excited about it and it’s just so cool.”

(Copyright 2014 by BNO News B.V. All rights reserved. Info: sales@bnonews.com.)

American business jet missing after taking off in Dominican Republic

American business jet missing after taking off in Dominican Republic

SANTO DOMINGO, DOMINICAN REPUBLIC (BNO NEWS) — A search operation was launched Thursday after an American business jet took off from the Dominican Republic and failed to arrive at its destination, officials said. It was not immediately known how many people were on board.

The twin-engine Hawker Siddeley 125-600A aircraft departed Las Américas International Airport near the capital Santo Domingo at 10:42 p.m. local time on Wednesday and was en-route to Punta Cana International Airport in the country’s east, about 165 kilometers (102 miles) east of the capital.

The Dominican Civil Aviation Institute (IDAC) said a search was launched on Thursday afternoon after the aircraft failed to arrive at its destination. “There was a flight plan which was not completed and that prompted IDAC technicians in conjunction with other state and international agencies to begin a search,” a spokesperson said.

Federal records from the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) showed that the aircraft, which was built in 1976, was registered to a company in the U.S. state of Delaware. The company’s website said it provides services that allow American aviators to register their aircraft at a mailing address in Delaware, indicating that the aircraft’s owner may be located elsewhere in the United States.

It remained unclear on Friday how many people were on board the aircraft, which can carry a maximum capacity of 10 to 16 people.

(Copyright 2014 by BNO News B.V. All rights reserved. Info: sales@bnonews.com.)

IN PICTURES: 9/11 commemoration ceremony in New York

IN PICTURES: 9/11 commemoration ceremony in New York

ShareNEW YORK CITY (BNO NEWS) — Commemoration ceremonies took place in New York City on Thursday to remember and honor the nearly 3,000 people who died on September 11, 2001,… Read more »

Woman dies from brain injury sustained in California earthquake

Woman dies from brain injury sustained in California earthquake

SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA (BNO NEWS) — An elderly woman who suffered a serious brain injury in last month’s earthquake that struck California’s wine country has died, sheriff’s officials said Wednesday, making her the first earthquake fatality on the …

RAW — Prepared remarks of Obama’s address to the nation

RAW — Prepared remarks of Obama’s address to the nation

WASHINGTON, D.C. (BNO NEWS) — U.S. President Barack Obama on Wednesday delivered the following remarks, as prepared for delivery, in an address to the nation, announcing that America’s air campaign against the Islamic State will be expanded from Iraq to Syria with the help of a “broad coalition.”

– START –

My fellow Americans – tonight, I want to speak to you about what the United States will do with our friends and allies to degrade and ultimately destroy the terrorist group known as ISIL.

As Commander-in-Chief, my highest priority is the security of the American people. Over the last several years, we have consistently taken the fight to terrorists who threaten our country. We took out Osama bin Laden and much of al Qaeda’s leadership in Afghanistan and Pakistan. We’ve targeted al Qaeda’s affiliate in Yemen, and recently eliminated the top commander of its affiliate in Somalia. We’ve done so while bringing more than 140,000 American troops home from Iraq, and drawing down our forces in Afghanistan, where our combat mission will end later this year. Thanks to our military and counterterrorism professionals, America is safer.

Still, we continue to face a terrorist threat. We cannot erase every trace of evil from the world, and small groups of killers have the capacity to do great harm. That was the case before 9/11, and that remains true today. That’s why we must remain vigilant as threats emerge. At this moment, the greatest threats come from the Middle East and North Africa, where radical groups exploit grievances for their own gain. And one of those groups is ISIL – which calls itself the “Islamic State.”

Now let’s make two things clear: ISIL is not “Islamic.” No religion condones the killing of innocents, and the vast majority of ISIL’s victims have been Muslim. And ISIL is certainly not a state. It was formerly al Qaeda’s affiliate in Iraq, and has taken advantage of sectarian strife and Syria’s civil war to gain territory on both sides of the Iraq-Syrian border. It is recognized by no government, nor the people it subjugates. ISIL is a terrorist organization, pure and simple. And it has no vision other than the slaughter of all who stand in its way.

In a region that has known so much bloodshed, these terrorists are unique in their brutality. They execute captured prisoners. They kill children. They enslave, rape, and force women into marriage. They threatened a religious minority with genocide. In acts of barbarism, they took the lives of two American journalists – Jim Foley and Steven Sotloff.

So ISIL poses a threat to the people of Iraq and Syria, and the broader Middle East – including American citizens, personnel and facilities. If left unchecked, these terrorists could pose a growing threat beyond that region – including to the United States. While we have not yet detected specific plotting against our homeland, ISIL leaders have threatened America and our allies. Our intelligence community believes that thousands of foreigners – including Europeans and some Americans – have joined them in Syria and Iraq. Trained and battle-hardened, these fighters could try to return to their home countries and carry out deadly attacks.

I know many Americans are concerned about these threats. Tonight, I want you to know that the United States of America is meeting them with strength and resolve. Last month, I ordered our military to take targeted action against ISIL to stop its advances. Since then, we have conducted more than 150 successful airstrikes in Iraq. These strikes have protected American personnel and facilities, killed ISIL fighters, destroyed weapons, and given space for Iraqi and Kurdish forces to reclaim key territory. These strikes have helped save the lives of thousands of innocent men, women and children.

But this is not our fight alone. American power can make a decisive difference, but we cannot do for Iraqis what they must do for themselves, nor can we take the place of Arab partners in securing their region. That’s why I’ve insisted that additional U.S. action depended upon Iraqis forming an inclusive government, which they have now done in recent days. So tonight, with a new Iraqi government in place, and following consultations with allies abroad and Congress at home, I can announce that America will lead a broad coalition to roll back this terrorist threat.

Our objective is clear: we will degrade, and ultimately destroy, ISIL through a comprehensive and sustained counter-terrorism strategy.

First, we will conduct a systematic campaign of airstrikes against these terrorists. Working with the Iraqi government, we will expand our efforts beyond protecting our own people and humanitarian missions, so that we’re hitting ISIL targets as Iraqi forces go on offense. Moreover, I have made it clear that we will hunt down terrorists who threaten our country, wherever they are. That means I will not hesitate to take action against ISIL in Syria, as well as Iraq. This is a core principle of my presidency: if you threaten America, you will find no safe haven.

Second, we will increase our support to forces fighting these terrorists on the ground. In June, I deployed several hundred American service members to Iraq to assess how we can best support Iraqi Security Forces. Now that those teams have completed their work – and Iraq has formed a government – we will send an additional 475 service members to Iraq. As I have said before, these American forces will not have a combat mission – we will not get dragged into another ground war in Iraq. But they are needed to support Iraqi and Kurdish forces with training, intelligence and equipment. We will also support Iraq’s efforts to stand up National Guard Units to help Sunni communities secure their own freedom from ISIL control.

Across the border, in Syria, we have ramped up our military assistance to the Syrian opposition. Tonight, I again call on Congress to give us additional authorities and resources to train and equip these fighters. In the fight against ISIL, we cannot rely on an Assad regime that terrorizes its people; a regime that will never regain the legitimacy it has lost. Instead, we must strengthen the opposition as the best counterweight to extremists like ISIL, while pursuing the political solution necessary to solve Syria’s crisis once and for all.

Third, we will continue to draw on our substantial counterterrorism capabilities to prevent ISIL attacks. Working with our partners, we will redouble our efforts to cut off its funding; improve our intelligence; strengthen our defenses; counter its warped ideology; and stem the flow of foreign fighters into – and out of – the Middle East. And in two weeks, I will chair a meeting of the UN Security Council to further mobilize the international community around this effort.

Fourth, we will continue providing humanitarian assistance to innocent civilians who have been displaced by this terrorist organization. This includes Sunni and Shia Muslims who are at grave risk, as well as tens of thousands of Christians and other religious minorities. We cannot allow these communities to be driven from their ancient homelands.

This is our strategy. And in each of these four parts of our strategy, America will be joined by a broad coalition of partners. Already, allies are flying planes with us over Iraq; sending arms and assistance to Iraqi Security Forces and the Syrian opposition; sharing intelligence; and providing billions of dollars in humanitarian aid. Secretary Kerry was in Iraq today meeting with the new government and supporting their efforts to promote unity, and in the coming days he will travel across the Middle East and Europe to enlist more partners in this fight, especially Arab nations who can help mobilize Sunni communities in Iraq and Syria to drive these terrorists from their lands. This is American leadership at its best: we stand with people who fight for their own freedom; and we rally other nations on behalf of our common security and common humanity.

My Administration has also secured bipartisan support for this approach here at home. I have the authority to address the threat from ISIL. But I believe we are strongest as a nation when the President and Congress work together. So I welcome congressional support for this effort in order to show the world that Americans are united in confronting this danger.

Now, it will take time to eradicate a cancer like ISIL. And any time we take military action, there are risks involved – especially to the servicemen and women who carry out these missions. But I want the American people to understand how this effort will be different from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. It will not involve American combat troops fighting on foreign soil. This counter-terrorism campaign will be waged through a steady, relentless effort to take out ISIL wherever they exist, using our air power and our support for partner forces on the ground. This strategy of taking out terrorists who threaten us, while supporting partners on the front lines, is one that we have successfully pursued in Yemen and Somalia for years. And it is consistent with the approach I outlined earlier this year: to use force against anyone who threatens America’s core interests, but to mobilize partners wherever possible to address broader challenges to international order.

My fellow Americans, we live in a time of great change. Tomorrow marks 13 years since our country was attacked. Next week marks 6 years since our economy suffered its worst setback since the Great Depression. Yet despite these shocks; through the pain we have felt and the grueling work required to bounce back – America is better positioned today to seize the future than any other nation on Earth.

Our technology companies and universities are unmatched; our manufacturing and auto industries are thriving. Energy independence is closer than it’s been in decades. For all the work that remains, our businesses are in the longest uninterrupted stretch of job creation in our history. Despite all the divisions and discord within our democracy, I see the grit and determination and common goodness of the American people every single day – and that makes me more confident than ever about our country’s future.

Abroad, American leadership is the one constant in an uncertain world. It is America that has the capacity and the will to mobilize the world against terrorists. It is America that has rallied the world against Russian aggression, and in support of the Ukrainian peoples’ right to determine their own destiny. It is America – our scientists, our doctors, our know-how – that can help contain and cure the outbreak of Ebola. It is America that helped remove and destroy Syria’s declared chemical weapons so they cannot pose a threat to the Syrian people – or the world – again. And it is America that is helping Muslim communities around the world not just in the fight against terrorism, but in the fight for opportunity, tolerance, and a more hopeful future.

America, our endless blessings bestow an enduring burden. But as Americans, we welcome our responsibility to lead. From Europe to Asia – from the far reaches of Africa to war-torn capitals of the Middle East – we stand for freedom, for justice, for dignity. These are values that have guided our nation since its founding. Tonight, I ask for your support in carrying that leadership forward. I do so as a Commander-in-Chief who could not be prouder of our men and women in uniform – pilots who bravely fly in the face of danger above the Middle East, and service-members who support our partners on the ground.

When we helped prevent the massacre of civilians trapped on a distant mountain, here’s what one of them said. “We owe our American friends our lives. Our children will always remember that there was someone who felt our struggle and made a long journey to protect innocent people.”

That is the difference we make in the world. And our own safety – our own security – depends upon our willingness to do what it takes to defend this nation, and uphold the values that we stand for – timeless ideals that will endure long after those who offer only hate and destruction have been vanquished from the Earth.

May God bless our troops, and may God bless the United States of America.

– END –

(Copyright 2014 by BNO News B.V. All rights reserved. Info: sales@bnonews.com.)

VIDEO: President Obama’s address to the nation on ISIS

VIDEO: President Obama’s address to the nation on ISIS

Share To read the transcript of the speech, click here.

RAW — Excerpt’s from U.S. President Barack Obama’s address to the nation

RAW — Excerpt’s from U.S. President Barack Obama’s address to the nation

WASHINGTON, D.C. (BNO NEWS) — The United States will lead “a broad coalition” to “degrade and destroy” the Islamic State, using American air forces to strike the al-Qaeda splinter group “wherever they exist” while supporting partner forces on the ground, U.S. President Barack Obama will announce Wednesday.

Below are two excerpts released by the White House ahead of Obama’s address to the nation at 9 p.m. EDT.

“So tonight, with a new Iraqi government in place, and following consultations with allies abroad and Congress at home, I can announce that America will lead a broad coalition to roll back this terrorist threat. Our objective is clear: we will degrade, and ultimately destroy, ISIL through a comprehensive and sustained counter-terrorism strategy.”

“But I want the American people to understand how this effort will be different from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. It will not involve American combat troops fighting on foreign soil. This counter-terrorism campaign will be waged through a steady, relentless effort to take out ISIL wherever they exist using our air power and our support for partner forces on the ground. This strategy of taking out terrorists who threaten us, while supporting partners on the front lines, is one that we have successfully pursued in Yemen and Somalia for years.”

(Copyright 2014 by BNO News B.V. All rights reserved. Info: sales@bnonews.com.)

URGENT — Obama: U.S. will lead broad coalition against ISIS ‘wherever they exist’

URGENT — Obama: U.S. will lead broad coalition against ISIS ‘wherever they exist’

WASHINGTON, D.C. (BNO NEWS) — The United States will lead “a broad coalition” to “degrade and destroy” the Islamic State, using American air forces to strike the al-Qaeda splinter group “wherever they exist” while supporting partner forces on the grou…