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The Daily Brief: Israel Blames Iran In Armed Drone Attack on Oil Tanker

Following the deadly drone attack off the Coast of Oman, Israel, the US, and UK all suspect Iranian involvement.

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המכללה האקדמית ספיר, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons

Summary:

  • Following the armed drone attack on an oil tanker off the coast of Oman, both the United States, the United Kingdom, and Israel suspect Iran for the strike which killed two. 
  • The Zodiac operated tanker was hit on Thursday, moving to the United States under the country’s naval escort, and killed one Romanian and one British national citizen.
  • After the United States responded to the distress call and ordered a forensic inspection, it was confirmed that multiple drones were involved, although no blame was formally stated.  
  • Israel’s foreign minister Yair Lapid claimed “Iranian terrorism” in response to the breach of international law, and stated on Friday how “Iran is not just a Israel problem… The World must not be silent.” 
  • The accusations come during high tensions between Iran and Israel, who both have blamed each other for similar incidents on ships within the same coast. 
  • Lapid also stated how he stressed to British Foriegn secretary the need for a “tough response” towards Iran.  
  • On top of investigations by the UK Maritime Time Operations naval authority, the United States Department stated they were “monitoring the situation closely,” while the UK government urgently tries to “establish the facts.” 
  • Iran has yet to formally respond to allegations or address the attack. 

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OTHER HEADLINES

30,000 Afghanis Are Forced to Flee Weekly as Taliban Strengthens Hold on Country

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TheMapLurker, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

  • As the Taliban tightens it’s hold on Afghanistan, up to 30,000 Afghanis flee the extremist groups’ harsh military agenda each week. 
  • In what the United Nations are calling a “humanitarian crisis,” it was reported that over 300,000 Afghans have been displaced in 2021, raising concerns from countless countries on the potential refugee crises. 
  • The Biden Administration has agreed to evacuate 2,500 Afghans following the pullout of troops and NATO forces earlier this year, stating their hope to “continue to relocate more [Afghans] over the course of the next few weeks.”
  • Still, many face displacement over the coming months as the rate of illegal crosses of the border jumped up to 40% after military pullout. 

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Billboard Depicting Macron as Hitler Deemed Blasphemy

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Kremlin.ru, CC BY 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

  • A billboard showing French President Emmanuel Macron dressed like Adolf Hitler was posted as a form of political satire. Macron has sued the French street advertiser, alleging that it was a public insult and blasphemous.
  • The billboard was posted as a response to France’s recent Covid-19 policies, which have sparked protests and outrage by thousands in France, with some even comparing Macron to a dictator.
  • This case is controversial due to cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad that were offensive and blasphemous to Muslims around the world, but deemed freedom of expression and therefore legal. Macron not allowing this billboard due to his personal offense is seen as hypocrisy by some.

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Olympics Update: Doping, Anger Frustrations, and China Leading in Golds

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Joshua Sadli from Melbourne, Australia, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

  • China currently has the most gold medals, and is tied with the USA for number of total medals.
  • Blessing Okagbare, a Nigerian sprinter, has been suspended temporarily from the Olympics for doping and using human growth hormones prior to competing.
  • Fares Elbakh, a Qatari weightlifter, won a gold medal and became Qatar’s first Olympic champion.
  • Simone Biles, American gymnast, has withdrawn from two more gymnastic tournaments due to mental health reasons. USA Gymnastics announced that “she will continue to be evaluated daily to determine whether to compete in the finals for floor exercise and balance beam.”
  • After losing his bronze medal matches, Novak Djokovic threw his racket into the stands and destroyed another racket by slamming it into the net. 

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Turkey Faces “Disaster Areas” as Wildfires Rage on

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Bureau of Land Management, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

  • Turkey continues to battle through wildfires, with animals, agricultural land, and houses burning for the past week. Hot weather has exacerbated the situation.
  • Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has declared many parts of Turkey a “disaster area”. Erdogan flew over disaster areas on a helicopter and stated that steps would be taken to ​​”heal our nation’s wounds, compensate for its losses, and improve its opportunities.”
  • Six people have died in total, including two firefighters. Tourists on the Mediterannean coast had to be evacuated as a precaution. Private boats and yachts were used to assist evacuations.

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Saturn and Jupiter Reaching Opposition This Month

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Kevin Gill from Nashua, NH, United States, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

  • Earth will be positioned between Saturn and the Sun on August 1st and 2nd, making it appear more luminous in the night sky when seen with a telescope. This is defined as the planet’s opposition.
  • Saturn will appear especially bright for the rest of the month. On August 19th, Jupiter is expected to be the brightest planet in the sky, reaching its highest point at midnight.
  • This viewing will be best available to people in North America, and this occurrence happens roughly once a year. Saturn’s largest moon, Titan, is expected to also be visible.

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All views expressed in this editorial are solely that of the author, and are not expressed on behalf of The Analyst, its affiliates, or staff.

Daily Brief

Credit Suisse Found Guilty for Involvement in Money Laundering Scheme

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800px Credit Suisse Zurich
  • Switzerland’s Federal Criminal Court found Credit Suisse, Switzerland’s second largest bank, guilty for its involvement in a money laundering scheme involving a Bulgarian drug trafficking gang.
  • The bank is being fined 21 million Swiss francs ($22 million) due to its poor monitoring and implementation of anti-money laundering rules. More than 12 million francs worth of assets are also being confiscated due to their connection with the criminal group.
  • Credit Suisse has denied any wrongdoings and stated that it has been “continuously testing its anti-money laundering framework and has been strengthening it over time, in accordance with evolving regulatory standards.”
  • This case originated from actions taken by a former employee in 2007 and 2008, and two other Bulgarian citizens’ actions in 2005 and 2009. Some of their sentences and fines were suspended due to the amount of time passed since the crimes took place.

All views expressed in this editorial are solely that of the author, and are not expressed on behalf of The Analyst, its affiliates, or staff.

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Daily Brief

Chlorine Gas Leak in Jordan Port City Kills Thirteen People

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Port Of Aqaba City
  • A gas leak in Aqaba, Jordan killed at least thirteen people and injured more than 250. A storage container carrying between 25 and 30 tonnes of chlorine gas fell as it was being exported to Djibouti, releasing the gas.
  • A video of the incident on state TV shows the container being dropped onto the deck of the ship and a yellow colored gas spreading through the air as people try to evacuate. The accident seems to be a result of the crane malfunctioning.
  • If chlorine is inhaled at high levels, it can cause life-threatening damage. A nearby beach in Aqaba was evacuated as a safety precaution, and residents who live in the nearest residential area, about 25 kilometers (15 miles) away, were advised to stay inside and close windows.
  • Jordan’s Prime Minister Bisher al-Khasawneh traveled to Aqaba and visited some of the injured at the hospital. He also formed a team led by the interior minister to investigate the incident.

All views expressed in this editorial are solely that of the author, and are not expressed on behalf of The Analyst, its affiliates, or staff.

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Daily Brief

Russian Missile Sets Ukraine Shopping Center on Fire

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781px Nevsky Centre Shopping Mall in Russia
  • A busy shopping center in Ukraine was set on fire by Russian missiles on Monday, killing at least thirteen people and injuring dozens. The total number of casualties is still unknown.
  • Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky stated that “The number of victims is impossible to imagine” and that there could have been up to 1,000 people in the mall.
  • The attack came during the G7 summit, where world leaders condemned recent atrocities and promised to support Ukraine “for as long as it takes” in a joint statement. President Zelensky spoke to the leaders at the summit and stated that he wants the war to end before winter.
  • NATO has decided to increase the number of troops in its rapid reaction force from 40,000 to 300,000, more than eightfold. NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg stated this move is part of the “biggest overhaul of collective defense and deterrence since the Cold War.”
  • The United States has announced that it will provide Ukraine with advanced medium and long-range air defense capabilities.

All views expressed in this editorial are solely that of the author, and are not expressed on behalf of The Analyst, its affiliates, or staff.

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Daily Brief

World Watches as the United States Supreme Court Abolishes a Woman’s Right to an Abortion

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  • The United States’ top justices voted to eliminate the constitutional right to an abortion, a law that had been in place for over 50 years.
  • The closely watched decision was heralded by some and derided by others, depending on their position on the controversial concept of a woman’s right to choose for her own body.
  • With the abolition of the constitutional right, it is expected that many states in the U.S. will implement near total bans of abortion rights, while other states such as California, Oregon and Washington have reaffirmed their commitment to preserve the right to an abortion.
  • Planned Parenthood, the advocacy face for abortion rights, is mobilizing around the country to bolster and increase services in those states that will preserve the right, and engage voters in those states that plan to abolish the right.

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All views expressed in this editorial are solely that of the author, and are not expressed on behalf of The Analyst, its affiliates, or staff.

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Daily Brief

The EU Approves Ukraine for Candidacy

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Munster Stadtweinhaus Beflaggung Ukraine und EU 2022 0219 scaled
  • The EU has finally approved the application of Ukraine to become a candidate country for admission to the 27- country organization. Ukraine will now join the official candidate list, which already includes Albania, the Republic of North Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia, and Turkey. 
  • The US is expected to provide an additional $450m in security assistance to Ukraine. Which includes four more High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems. 
  • The EU and Norway have agreed to cooperate and provide the EU’s 27 countries with gas from Western Europe’s biggest provider. The EU imports roughly ⅕ of its gas from Norway compared to the 40% it was receiving from Russia. Currently, Russia has been cutting gas supplies to countries refusing to pay for it in roubles. 
  • Melbourne is considering utilizing its largely vacant $200m Center for National Resilience building to house hundreds of refugees fleeing war-torn Ukraine and Afghanistan. The center will only be able to temporarily house about 500 refugees from Afghanistan and about 200 from Ukraine. 
  • Ukrainian Defense Minister Oleksii Reznikov thanked US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin after receiving and welcoming the High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems (HIMARS) from the United States. 
  • Nike joined other leading Western brands by formally making a full exit from Russia, three months after suspending its operations. Telecoms equipment maker Cisco is also planning to wind down business in Russia and Belarus as well.

All views expressed in this editorial are solely that of the author, and are not expressed on behalf of The Analyst, its affiliates, or staff.

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Daily Brief

US Supreme Court Expands Gun Carrying Rights Causing National Outrage 

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Open Carry of a 9mm Browning Hi Power in Eagle Colorado scaled
  • The US Supreme Court expanded gun carrying rights after a New York law denied the plaintiffs Robert Nash and Brandon Koch from carrying a concealed weapon in public, despite them having licenses for recreational gun ownership. 
  • The US court ruled that the New York law requiring residents to prove “proper cause” to carry a concealed weapon is unconstitutional. Justice Clarence Thomas, who represented the 6 justices who ruled in favor of the decision, stated that Americans have the right to carry “commonly used” firearms in public for personal defense. 
  • This decision comes amid an intense national debate over gun violence, and could possibly challenge the  outcome of similar regulations in other states, such as California and New Jersey, and affect a quarter of Americans by allowing more people to carry guns legally. 
  • Three liberal justices, Elena Kahan, Sonia Sotomayor, and Stephen Breyer, were against the majority decision, and Justice Breyer noted that “since the start of this year alone (2022), there have already been 277 reported mass shootings – an average of more than one per day.”
  • While the National Rifle Association (NRA) celebrated the judgment, President Biden stated that he was “deeply disappointed” by the court’s decision and that the ruling “contradicts both common sense and the Constitution, and should trouble us all.” 
  • New York Mayor Eric Adams also agreed with Biden and stated that he would review other ways to restrict gun access by restricting the application process for buying guns and looking into bans of firearms at specific locations. 

All views expressed in this editorial are solely that of the author, and are not expressed on behalf of The Analyst, its affiliates, or staff.

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