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Prosecutors: Arrested Coast Guard Officer Is A White Supremacist Terrorist

Reprinted with permission from Alternet.

Federal prosecutors alleged Wednesday that Lt. Christopher Hasson, a member of the Coast Guard arrested last week on drug and gun charges, was, in fact, a terrorist with a long list of major Democratic politicians and media personalities from MSNBC and CNN that he wanted to target.

“The defendant is a domestic terrorist bent on committing acts dangerous to human life,” prosecutors said in a new court filing.

The case was pointed out by Seamus Hughes with the Program on Extremism at George Washington University on Twitter.

According to the filing, Hasson had a large stash of guns and a list of people he wanted to kill, including MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough, CNN’s Don Lemon, Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY), House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), and many Democratic candidates for president. They also say he was an admirer of the white supremacist terrorist Anders Breivik.

Seamus Hughes

@SeamusHughes

He was an fan of Anders Breivik

View image on Twitter

Seamus Hughes

@SeamusHughes

When he was arrested this week in Silver Spring MD, he had a stash of guns and a list of people he wanted to kill. It was a who’s who of media personalities and elected officials. pic.twitter.com/Y8iEgqktlR

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An incident described in the filing also suggests that Hasson may have an affinity for President Donald Trump. Prosecutors say that after viewing a story about Scarborough calling Trump “the worst ever,” Hasson looked up information about Scarborough, including where his show “Morning Joe” was filmed and the commentator’s former address.

It also says that Hasson wrote a draft of a letter to an American neo-Nazi, describing himself as a “White Nationalist.” He allegedly said that he wanted to start a “white homeland” because  “Europe seems lost.” This letter, prosecutors say, was written in the months following the 2017 neo-Nazi march in Charlottesville, Virginia.

Obama Warns Of Threat That Climate Change Poses To National Security

By Christi Parsons, Tribune Washington Bureau (TNS)

NEW LONDON, Conn. — President Barack Obama warned Wednesday that climate change poses an “immediate risk to our national security” so significant that U.S. military forces will have to adjust how they train and operate.

In a speech to the graduating class of cadets at the Coast Guard Academy here, Obama noted the dangers of rising sea levels that threaten health and safety in coastal areas and pointed to volatile new storm systems, droughts, and wildfires that endanger the rest of the world.

“This is not just a problem for countries on the coast or for certain regions of the world,” he said. “Climate change constitutes a serious threat to global security, an immediate risk to our national security, and make no mistake: It will impact how our military defends our country.

“We need to act,” Obama said, “and we need to act now.”

The call to action comes as Obama pursues a global agreement to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The White House hopes to close an ambitious deal with sweeping goals at a December summit in Paris.

Crucial to that push is a good-faith display by the U.S. to cut its own emissions. Obama wants the country to cut greenhouse gases dramatically over the next decade.

In his address to the new class of Coast Guard officers, Obama made a sales pitch for his climate agenda: that national and global security depend on it.

It’s a strategy that he has employed recently in an effort to sell his trade and economic policies, as he argues that U.S. security depends in part on building new and strong commercial and financial ties to the rest of the world.

The argument is based on the world’s common problem of climate change and related security concerns.

Drought and famine have made basic resources like food and water scarce, leading to instability around the world, he said. Violent storms force people from their homes.

The stakes, Obama argued Wednesday, are high.

Denying climate change or refusing to deal with it undermines American readiness, he said.

“We cannot and must not ignore a peril that can affect generations,” Obama said, noting that some in Washington don’t believe in taking action to deal with climate change.

Scientists know it’s happening, Obama said, and “the Coast Guard knows it’s happening.”

Climate change poses a threat to the readiness of American forces, he said, ticking off floods at bases in Norfolk, Va., damage from thawing permafrost at military facilities in Alaska and the possibility of extensive droughts and wildfires threatening training areas in the West.

For its part, the Pentagon is assessing the vulnerability of more than 7,000 military bases, installations, and other facilities around the world as a result of climate change.

The departments of Defense and Homeland Security have been studying how to deal with the security implications of melting sea ice in the Arctic.

If the military is taking steps to deal with climate change, said one member of Congress, it should inspire others to do the same.

“Our military takes the world as it is, not as ideologues would hope it to be,” said Representative Ted W. Lieu (D-CA), a veteran. “Our nonpartisan military is telling the American public that climate change is real, it is happening, and we must act.”

Obama urged the officers to embrace the challenge before them.

“You are part of the first generation of officers to begin your service in a world where the effects of climate change are so clearly upon us,” he told the graduating cadets. “Climate change will shape how every one of our services plan, operate, train, equip, and protect their infrastructure, today and for the long term.”

Photo: U.S. Department of Defense via Flickr

19 Migrants Come Ashore In Florida; 1 Dead, Another Sent To Hospital

By Carli Teproff, The Miami Herald

Nineteen people believed to be from Haiti were found on Hillsboro Beach, Fla., early Monday morning after the police department was alerted to the beach by nearby condo residents, officials said.

Hillsboro Beach Police Maj. Jay Szesnat said police arrived at about 2:15 a.m. and found 17 people on the shore and two still in the surf. One of the women in the surf was dead and the other was taken to North Broward Medical Center.

It was not clear how the migrants, some of whom were children, got there.

“There was no boat,” Szesnat said.

The migrants were turned over to Border Patrol, he said.

Meanwhile, the Coast Guard continued its search Monday after four men were found dead Sunday, floating in the water about 20 miles east of Hollywood, Fla.

“At this point there is no correlation,” said Coast Guard spokesman Jon-Paul Rios. “We are on search and recovery mode.”

The Coast Guard spent Sunday night searching for any other people or debris that could offer clues into the mysterious discovery.

Good Samaritans spotted the bodies of two men and alerted authorities. The Coast Guard later found the bodies of two other men within a two-mile area.

“Right now we are searching blindly,” he said.

Photo via WikiCommons

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Coast Guard Blasts Shell For Ignoring Risks Over Arctic Rig In 2012

By Maria L. La Ganga, Los Angeles Times

SEATTLE — A Coast Guard investigation into the 2012 grounding of the Kulluk, an offshore drilling rig operated by Royal Dutch Shell in the harsh Arctic, blasted the oil company for legal violations, poor management and taking undue risks, according to the final report released Thursday.

The Kulluk ran aground 15 months ago on New Year’s Eve after breaking free of its tow lines during severe weather and was beached for several days on a remote, rocky shore in southern Alaska.

Although the company has invested an estimated $5 billion in recent years in offshore oil exploration in the Alaskan Arctic, the Kulluk’s problems were among the difficulties that kept Shell from offshore drilling in 2013 and forced the company to abandon any renewed drilling efforts this year.

During a lengthy investigation and nine days of hearings, the Coast Guard found that Shell decided to tow the rig out of Alaskan waters and head for Seattle in questionable weather in part to avoid millions of dollars in tax liability.

On Dec. 22, 2012, the day the Kulluk’s troubled journey began, the chief of the vessel that towed the rig e-mailed the Kulluk’s tow master with serious misgivings: “To be blunt I believe that this length of tow, at this time of year, in this location, with our current routing guarantees an ass kicking.”

The 152-page report also detailed “a host of mechanical problems that had occurred on previous voyages,” faulted the company for its inadequate towing plans and criticized the route chosen.

“The investigation has revealed that the tow planners did not recognize the risks, nor adequately plan for a towing evolution of such a unique vessel during the height of winter in the Gulf of Alaska,” the report said.

Although the towing plan addressed possible individual problems, the report said, it “did not account for multiple and compounding events. An example of this compounding of events would be the failure of the towing equipment followed by a failure of vessel propulsion.”

Which is precisely what occurred when the Kulluk went aground.

Kelly op de Weegh, Shell’s spokeswoman, said in a brief written statement that company officials are reviewing the lengthy report, “appreciate the U.S. Coast Guard’s thorough investigation” and “will take the findings seriously.”

“Already,” she said, the company has “implemented lessons learned from our internal review of our 2012 operations. Those improvements will be measured against the findings in the USCG report as well as recommendations from the U.S. Department of Interior.”

Critics of offshore drilling in the Arctic pointed to the Coast Guard’s findings as evidence that such industrial activity should not occur in a remote region with harsh conditions and vulnerable wildlife — regardless of its deep oil reserves.

Photo: itmpa via Flickr