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    News Round-Up: Monday, April 21, 2014

    Monday, April 21st, 2014

    Repercussions for the captain and crew of the sunken Sewol ferry continue; a massive drone strike allegedly takes out 30 al Qaeda militants in Yemen; and a teen survives a flight to Hawaii in an airplane’s wheel well. Meanwhile, the White House responds to the petition to deport Justin Bieber; Lindsay Lohan reveals shocking news; and the White House Easter Egg Roll is under way!

    -Veronica + Maura

    CRUCIAL

    Breaking News: Boston Marathon Updates: Kenyan Rita Jeptoo is the Women’s Champion; American Meb Keflezighi is the Men’s Champion.

    South Korean President: Actions of sunken ferry captain ‘akin to murder’: http://rtvote.com/1lvRxSM
    President Park Geun-hye of South Korea, said that some of the actions of the captain and crew of the sinking ferry Sewol to murder. Four arrests of crew members have already been made, although the captain of the ship, Lee Joon-seok, is defending his actions. He delayed the order to evacuate because he felt that people would drift too far away from the wreck to be rescued and might perish due to the frigid water temperature. Lee is being charged with the following: “abandoning his boat, negligence, causing bodily injury, not seeking rescue form other ships, and violating ‘seaman’s law’”. The death toll has climbed to 87, and 215 others are still missing. Most of the passengers were students and staff from a nearby high school on a field trip; they make up a majority of the dead and missing.

    Source: ‘Massive and unprecedented’ attack targets al Qaeda in Yemen: http://rtvote.com/1mrZQvX
    At least 30 members of the highly dangerous al-Qaeda sect in the Arabian Peninsula, or AQAP, have been killed in drone strikes in Yemen. A few of the dead are believed to be high-value targets and “foreign nationals”. The massive strikes that began on Saturday are a direct response to the video of the unnerving AQAP gathering in Yemen that surfaced last week. An official has said that the drone strikes were part of a joint operation between the United States and the Yemeni government. DNA analysis of the dead will confirm their identities, which will then help the Yemeni government determine if any of the dead are civilians or if the strikes managed to kill a top AQAP official.

    ‘Incredible’ – teen apparently survives flight to Hawaii in landing gear: http://rtvote.com/1jqYDkp
    A 16-year-old boy hopped a fence at the Mineta San Jose International Airport and stowed away in a Hawaiian Airlines Boeing 767 landing gear chamber. The FBI has been called in to investigate the seemingly unbelievable story. The boy, who had no form of identification on him, allegedly survived a 5 hour flight in the cramped compartment at a 38,000 foot altitude with limited oxygen and temperatures reaching -80 degrees Fahrenheit. However, the story has not just created awe. People are now seeing that there could be major security breaches at airports. Although footage of the boy was caught on a security camera, he still managed to get past all security personnel. There was also risk for the people on board: the wheel well is filled with cables and wires and other technology, and the stowaway could have easily damaged something inside the plane, putting those aboard the flight at risk.

    Biden in Ukraine to show support as tensions rise: http://rtvote.com/PnthmK
    On Monday, Vice President Joe Biden began a visit to Ukraine to show the United State’s continued support of Ukrainian independence. He will meet with the government leaders that took over after pro-Russian Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych was removed from office in February. Biden plans to announce new technological and economic reforms that could be implemented in the country. He will also discuss other means of United States support.

    CULTURAL

    Lindsay Lohan reveals shocking news: http://rtvote.com/1rfwOja

    The petition calling for Justin Bieber’s deportation gets a response: http://rtvote.com/1r9f0Ix

    Country singer Kevin Sharp passes away at 43: http://rtvote.com/1rfAJN6

    Mindy Kaling and Kate Middleton have similar tastes! http://rtvote.com/1gNAIuI

    Get the scoop on the 2014 White House Easter Egg Roll: http://rtvote.com/1msgDiw

    Veronica Barger
    Bio: Veronica is currently studying communications, law, economics, and government at American University in Washington, DC. Originally from New Jersey, she has held an interest in politics since the 2008 presidential election. Being a newly registered voter, she understands how important it is for young people to register to vote and have their voices heard. She looks to spread that message with Rock the Vote.

    Email the author at: blog(at)rockthevote.com



    News Round-Up: Wednesday, April 16, 2014

    Wednesday, April 16th, 2014

    A shipwreck in South Korea leaves nearly 300 missing; a large al Qaeda meeting video surfaces and unsettles United States intelligence; a cold case has been solved after over 40 years; and two backpacks wreak havoc at the Boston Marathon Commemorative Ceremonies. Meanwhile, Miley Cyrus lands in the hospital; Paul Walker’s brothers will help finish filming Fast & Furious 7; and Pharrell shares a “Happy” moment with Oprah despite some tears.

    - Veronica + Maura

     CRUCIAL

    Rescuers search dark, cold sea for survivors of shipwreck off South Korea: http://rtvote.com/1t9Riha
    300 people are still missing after a ferry, charged with taking passengers to a South Korean resort, capsized and sank Wednesday. Rescue teams are still searching the Yellow Sea for potential survivors. Out of the 459 people on board, four people (three men and one woman) are known to be dead and 164 have been rescued. Most of the passengers were students and teachers from a high school in Seoul, who were on a four-day field trip to an island resort nearby. A loud bang was heard before the ship began to rapidly take on water. The crew told the passengers to put on lifejackets and jump into the ocean. Some survivors said they tried to help people get out, but were not able to in time. The cause of the accident remains a mystery.

    Unsettling video shows large al Qaeda meeting in Yemen: http://rtvote.com/1qJdDjo
    A video deemed authentic by the US government shows what has been considered the largest gathering of al Qaeda militants in years. What’s more, either the CIA or the Pentagon did not know the gathering was occurring or they could not get a drone there in time. US officials have yet to comment on their lack of action, but the video is being heavily analyzed by US intelligence. Nasir al-Wuhayshi, the leader of al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula and the group’s second in command leader worldwide, is depicted to be standing in the open greeting followers, completely unconcerned that he could be hit by a drone strike. He said in his speech: “We must eliminate the cross…. The bearer of the cross is America.” Experts say there is cause for worry, stating that the recent video means that a new round of plotting is at hand. The al Qaeda group in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) is the most dangerous sect of the terrorist organization.

    Case of missing South Dakota girls solved after 40 years: http://rtvote.com/1mcP4th
    Pamela Jackson and Cheryl Miller were on their way to a party in 1971 when they mysteriously disappeared without a trace. Authorities originally believed it was homicide, but were forced to drop the charges against the accused man due to false evidence. Since then, the case was considered a cold case. Last September, a car was found in a creek near the girls’ destinations. Inside were skeletal remains found in the cab of the car and Miller’s driver’s license, as well as personal items like notes and photographs. DNA analysis of the remains confirmed the identities of Jackson and Miller. There was no sign of alcohol, the keys were in the car’s ignition, the car was in gear, and a tire was damaged. 40 years later, the police are finally able to provide the families with a definitive answer: the girls’ deaths were an accident.

    Man with ‘hoax device’ frays nerves at Boston Marathon site: http://rtvote.com/1gANfSa
    Commemorative ceremonies for the one year anniversary of the Boston Marathon bombing had just ended when police found two backpacks and a suspicious person, forcing them to evacuate the area. The man was lurking with a backpack near the Boylston Street finish line and was “acting peculiarly”. The Boston Police Department called in the bomb squad and blew up both backpacks as a precaution. Police also arrested the man, the owner of only one of the bags, who said the bag contained a rice cooker. The contents of the other bag are unknown. The man was arrested and charged with possession of a hoax device, disturbing the peace, and disorderly conduct.

    Casual marijuana use linked to brain changes: http://rtvote.com/Qpuue1
    A study published in a neuroscience journal found that recreation marijuana use (as in, using a few times a week) is “enough to physically alter crucial brain structures”. Since there is little research on the effects of casual marijuana smoking, this study shed some light on the subject. Hans Breiter, the leader of the study, analyzed the brains of 20 light marijuana users and 20 nonsmokers. The brains of the smokers began to change in two major areas- the areas linked with emotion, motivation, and mental illnesses. The study parallels with the study of Staci Gruber, who focused on a batch of heavier marijuana smokers but found similar results. She said that the studies show that marijuana “is not quite the benign substance people thought it was.”

    CULTURAL

    Miley Cyrus lands in the hospital: http://rtvote.com/P5h4TE

    Paul Walker’s brothers to complete Fast & Furious 7 scenes: http://rtvote.com/1qJx0sP

    After a terminal brain cancer diagnosis, Valerie Harper says she is cancer-free! http://rtvote.com/1qJy3Ji

    Pharrell sheds tears with Oprah: watch the video! http://rtvote.com/1gGITfR

    Get the inside scoop on how Mila stays fit and healthy during her pregnancy: http://rtvote.com/1qJF0tD

    Veronica Barger
    Bio: Veronica is currently studying communications, law, economics, and government at American University in Washington, DC. Originally from New Jersey, she has held an interest in politics since the 2008 presidential election. Being a newly registered voter, she understands how important it is for young people to register to vote and have their voices heard. She looks to spread that message with Rock the Vote.

    Email the author at: blog(at)rockthevote.com



    News Round-Up: October 7, 2013

    Monday, October 7th, 2013

    Al Qaeda operative Abu Anas al-Libi is captured by U.S. troops; bikers are charged with assault in SUV incident; Boehner won’t budge without negotiations; Indy winner Dario Franchitti suffers injuries from brutal crash; and police investigate a possible hate crime against a U.S. soldier. Meanwhile, Miley Cyrus spoofs the government shutdown, and Kate Moss reunites with Topshop.

    -Sandy + Maura

    CRUCIAL

    U.S. Said to Hold Qaeda Suspect On Navy Shiphttp://rtvote.com/1fUILe1

    A suspected Al Qaeda operative, Abu Anas al-Libi, was captured by American troops in Libya over the weekend. He is currently under military custody on a Navy ship rumored to be heading to New York for criminal prosecution. Abu Anas is likely to hold significant intelligence information on Al Qaeda.

    Biker who swung helmet in New York SUV attack ‘overreacted’ but didn’t beat driver, lawyer says,http://rtvote.com/18JYjuv

    On September 29, Alexian Lien accidentally bumped a biker and stopped his vehicle. Angry bikers soon surrounded his SUV, which also seated Lien’s wife and 2-year-old daughter. Lien plowed through three more bikers, which prompted the gang of motorcyclists to pursue and beat Lien. Reginald Chance, 37, is being charged with first-degree assault and gang assault after being caught on video smashing his helmet through Lien’s car window. Two other bikers were charged, and police wish to find and question two others.

    Boehner vows no deal on budget or debt limit without spending talks with Obamahttp://rtvote.com/18K4vmr

    It is Day 7 of the government shutdown, and we have ten days until a government debt default. President Obama has demanded Congress raise the debt ceiling without any conditions, but House Speaker John Boehner said in a statement Sunday that there would be no such action and no end to the government shutdown unless Obama and Senate Democrats negotiate with House Republicans. Boehner wants spending cuts through entitlement reform. Meanwhile, Treasury Secretary Jack Lew warns of the dangers that would result if the debt ceiling is not raised.

    Indy winner Dario Franchitti, 13 others hurt in Houston race wreckhttp://rtvote.com/1fd17pk

    Three-time Indy winner Dario Franchitti, 40, suffered a concussion and fractures to his spine and ankle after a serious crash on Sunday’s Grand Prix of Houston. Fellow driver Takuma Sato bumped Franchitti’s car, hurdling it into the protective fencing. 13 spectators were hurt; 3 of them were sent to the hospital but are listed in good condition.

    Police: Black man kills white soldier in possible hate crimehttp://rtvote.com/1e4c9tL

    Spc. Tevin A. Geike, a 20-year-old Caucasian soldier, died after being stabbed by an unidentified African-American man in his mid-20s. Geike was on his way to celebrate his upcoming discharge from the Army with two fellow soldiers when someone in a passing car directed racist comments toward them. The car stopped, and five black men engaged in a verbal confrontation with the three white soldiers. They returned to the car, but one of the black men fatally stabbed Geike before leaving. Investigators suspect this was a racially charged hate crime.

     

    PUNDITS

    E.J. Dionne, Jr. points to the government shutdown as the potential end of the tea party in “Shutdown: The tea party’s last stand”, http://rtvote.com/1fVcX8L

    Ruth Marcus voices concern over the potential consequences of the McCutcheon v. Federal Election Commission case in “Eroding the checks on campaign contributions”, http://rtvote.com/1fdsXSg

     

    CULTURAL

    Miley Cyrus Spoofs The Government Shutdown With A Remake Of “We Can’t Stop” On SNL,http://rtvote.com/1e4np9C

    Kate Moss Teams Up With Topshop Again, http://rtvote.com/1fVejjU

    Miley Cyrus on Today: Singer Addresses Nude Picture Controversy, Sinead O’Connor Feud, and More,http://rtvote.com/18Kyomv

    Charlize Theron Recovering After Neck Surgery: Doing “Fine,” Says Source, http://rtvote.com/18KyScn

    sandywu
    Bio:

    Email the author at: blog(at)rockthevote.com



    News Round-Up: Tuesday, August 6, 2013

    Tuesday, August 6th, 2013

    George W. Bush recovers from surgery; tensions increase as people are told to evacuate Yemen; and the Washington Post gets sold to Jeff Bezos of Amazon.com. Meanwhile, ‘Glee’ begins Season 5 production; Lohan appears on Chelsea Lately; and Rihanna may soon top a Madonna record.

    -Ally + Maura

    CRUCIAL

    George W. Bush has heart surgeryhttp://rtvote.com/16rSuzs
    Former President George W. Bush is recovering from surgery Tuesday morning, after doctors found blockage in an artery on Monday. A stent has been placed to ease the blockage. The event came as a shock since the President was physically active and often seen biking or golfing regularly.

    U.S. and Britain Withdraw Personnel from Yemen, http://rtvote.com/19KYFDW
    Amidst a security and travel threat around the Middle East, many government personnel have been removed from Yemen, where Al Qaeda leaders are allegedly planning an attack. Travelers have also been advised to leave the country and reschedule travel plans to the area.

    Turkish Court Gives 19 Life Sentenceshttp://rtvote.com/16rSGif
    In a ruling decided Monday, 19 Turks were sentenced to life in prison for plotting to overthrow the government. All 19 have pleaded innocence. The case represents a broader conflict between “the Islamist-rooted government and the secularist-dominated opposition.”

    Washington Post Staffers ‘Stunned’ By Sale To Amazon’s Jeff Bezos, Hopeful About Futurehttp://rtvote.com/16rSKys
    Staff and the public alike were shocked by the news on Monday that the Washington Post would be sold to Jeff Bezons, the owner of Amazon.com. The transition will be sentimental, as the Graham family has operated the Post for the past 80 years. However, Bezos’ $25 million net worth keeps staffers hopeful that he will maintain the paper’s integrity rather than “tinker the editorial product.”

    U.S., other envoys meet with detained Muslim Brotherhood official in Egypthttp://rtvote.com/16rSP5g
    U.S. government officials attempted, on Monday, to ease tensions between the interim Egyptian government and the ousted Muslim Brotherhood. While the U.S. aims to improve relations between the two groups, they also made clear that they would like to be distanced from Morsi. Meanwhile, Egyptians express anger over the lack of U.S. support during the crisis.

    CULTURAL

    Lindsay Lohan, Spectacular of ‘Chelsea Lately,’ Is Alive Again, http://rtvote.com/19KZtJ0

    Brawl outside Hamptons nightclub with Justin Bieber’s bodyguards stirs police probe, http://rtvote.com/19KZwV6

    Glee Starts Production on Season 5, http://rtvote.com/19KZBrP

    Kim Kardashian Makes First Post-Baby Appearance on Kris Jenner’s Talk Show, http://rtvote.com/16rTxzo

    Rihanna’s ‘Right Now’ Gives Her A Shot At Breaking Madonna’s Dance Chart Record, http://rtvote.com/19KZFYH

    Ally.f@rockthevote.com
    Bio: My name is Ally Filler and I am a Field Intern at RTV this summer! I recently graduated from McGill University where I studied Linguistics. In addition to marveling at the linguistic hotspot that is Montreal and eating many croissants, I assisted hundreds of American students in their quest to vote from abroad. I'm excited to be a part of such an amazing team here at Rock the Vote!

    Email the author at: blog(at)rockthevote.com



    News Round-Up: Thursday, June 6, 2013

    Thursday, June 6th, 2013

    The Obama Administration defends NSA’s collection of phone records; Tropical Storm Andrea brings rain to Florida’s west cost; search ends for Philly building collapse; Allen West deems Eric Holder a greater threat than Al-Qaeda; the U.S. condemns Syria’s siege of Qusair; Massachusetts residents sue the New York Post for false accusations; North and South Korea agree to talk about reopening a shared industrial zone; 10-year-old gets the ok to receive adult lung transplant; and the U.S. Senate is set to vote on student loan interest rates today. Meanwhile, Jefferson Airplane Drummer Joey Covington dies, and George R.R. Martin makes no apologies for GoT ‘Red Wedding.’

    Maura + Alexis

    CRUCIAL:

    US Government Collecting Huge Number of Phone Records, http://bit.ly/185X6QJ
    The Obama Administration defended the National Security Agency’s need to collect telephone records of U.S. citizens on Thursday, but the move is heavily criticized. No immediate on-the-record comment has been issued. According to Britain’s Guardian newspaper, the order was granted by the secret Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court on April 25 and will stand until July 19. The Associated Press cannot authenticate the order because of the classified status of the court documents.

    Tropical Storm Andrea drenches Florida’s west coast, http://bit.ly/15DWflf
    Hurricane season is here, and our first storm has touched down on land – Tropical Storm Andrea. This morning, heavy rains and 60 mph winds reached the west coast of south Florida from the Keys to Tampa. According to forecasters, the system does not look like it will have enough time to reach hurricane strength before it reaches the coast north of Tampa. A tornado watch was in effect for central and south Florida until 11 a.m. but is no longer in effect.

    Search halts after 14th survivor found in Philly building collapse, http://cbsn.ws/19KDzDZ
    Rescue workers have ended their search in a Philly building collapse. Fourteen survivors have now been confirmed while 6 have been confirmed dead as a result of the collapse. While under demolition, the building collapsed onto a thrift store next-door Wednesday morning. It is still unsure how many people had been in the thrift store or walking on the sidewalk when the accident occurred.

    Allen West compares Eric Holder to Al Qaeda, http://politi.co/11im8Tq
    Former Representative Allen West has deemed Eric Holder a greater threat to the U.S. than Ayman al-Zawahiri, the leader of Al-Qaeda. In an email, West wrote that he trusts the U.S. military to protect us from Al-Qaeda but that he does not trust that we will be protected against President Obama and his Justice Department. West outright accused Holder of abusing his power as attorney general and trying to radically transform America. He cited scandals involving the IRS, AP, Fox News, and Benghazi as evidence.

    Syria conflict: US condemns siege of Qusair, http://bbc.in/17pxcXb
    The U.S. has condemned Syria’s siege of Qusair. The U.S. has also called upon allies Iran and Hezbollah to take out their fighters who have been assisting government troops. In the meantime, Golan Heights has been taken over by rebels from Syrian forces, and Israeli officials are scared that the civil war that was once confined to Syria’s borders may spill over into Israel.

    Mass. pair sues New York Post over Marathon bombing portrayal, http://b.globe.com/13bCekh
    A 16-year-old and a 24-year-old from Massachusetts have filed a defamation lawsuit against the New York Post Wednesday in Boston. They have accused the tabloid of falsely depicting them as the suspects of the Boston Marathon bombings. The newspaper produced a giant headline “Bag Men” with their picture behind it in an effort to bring attention to yet another story, but as these boys say, one that is not farther from the truth. They are accusing the New York Post of “libel negligent infliction of emotional distress and invasion of privacy.

    North and South Korea tentatively agree to talks on shuttered industrial zone, http://bit.ly/13mWi4P
    North and South Korea tentatively agreed Thursday to discuss reopening the shared manufacturing zone where Pyongyang stopped activity in April. The Kaesong Industrial Zone is a major symbol of cooperation and teamwork between the two rival countries. The venue and date for the talk will be set by the convenience of the south side.

    Sarah Murnaghan’s mother on adult lung transplant for her 10-year-old daughter: “Now we have hope. We have a lot of hope.”http://bit.ly/Zu7dc9
    A Federal judge in Philadelphia decided today to allow 10-year-old Sarah Murnaghan to receive an adult lung transplant. Usually, children under the age of 12 must wait for a pediatric lung, but due to the serious circumstances, a special exception was made for Sarah.

    Student loan fight set in Senate, http://politi.co/11iruxS
    The Senate is set to vote Thursday on two different bills to keep student loan interest rates low. If Congress does not take any action, interest rates on subsidized federal Stafford loans will double from 3.4 percent to 6.8 percent. With immigration on the agenda for next week, action needs to be taken soon with regard to student debt or nothing will get done.

    CULTURAL:

    Jefferson Airplane Drummer Joey Covington Dies in Car Crash, http://eonli.ne/15EbMSi

    Today Show: Man With Knife Cuts Himself on Program’s Rockefeller Plaza Set, http://eonli.ne/19LA0NP

    Justin Bieber Books Trip to Space on Virgin Galactic, Says Richard Branson, http://eonli.ne/19Loli0

    Paris Jackson’s Alleged Suicide Attempt: Teen Felt “Bullied” at School, Says Source, http://eonli.ne/15DMBz7

    George R.R. Martin Makes No Apologies For The ‘Red Wedding’ Massacre On ‘Game Of Thrones’ (VIDEO), http://huff.to/185IqRG

    alexis.m@rockthevote.com
    Bio: My name is Alexis Macdermott and I will be starting my third year at Duke University this fall. I am currently pursuing a major in psychology and a minor in economics. I am a native of Southwest Florida and am an avid runner and film enthusiast. I look forward to joining the Marketing and Communications team for the summer here at RTV!

    Email the author at: blog(at)rockthevote.com