Colin Kaepernick supports Jemele Hill and her tweet about Trump

Colin Kaepernick is on Jemele Hill‘s side.

The former NFL quarterback took to Twitter late Tuesday to show support for Jemele Hill and her tweet calling President Trump a “white supremacist.”

“We are with you @jemelehill,“ Kaepernick wrote.

ESPN big wigs were not as pleased with Hill’s tweet, in which she also wrote that Trump “has largely surrounded himself w/other white supremacists.”

ESPN big wigs were not pleased with Jemele Hill’s tweet.

ESPN big wigs were not pleased with Jemele Hill’s tweet.

(Ilya S. Savenok/Getty Images)

“The comments on Twitter from Jemele Hill regarding the President do not represent the position of ESPN,” the network said. “We have addressed this with Jemele and she recognizes her actions were inappropriate.”

Regardless of ESPN’s disavowal, NBA Hall of Famer and basketball analyst for the TNT network added his own Twitter support for Hill onTuesday night.

The co-host of SportsCenter made the comments about Trump during a string of tweets regarding musician Kid Rock and his potential senate run in Michigan.

Hill has not been disciplined by ESPN yet, though the network has a history of seriously reprimanding employees who openly share their thoughts on politics.

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‘Homeless street drinkers eating pigeons’ reports investigated by police

Police are investigating reports of homeless people eating urban pigeons after traders reported seeing two men stuffing 14 birds into a rucksack in Exeter city centre.

The RSPCA has been informed and Police Community Support Officer (PCSO) Sarah Giles tweeted: “While doing the rounds I have had news of pigeons being captured for food. We will be looking into this.”

Last week, a trader described how she spotted a vagrant enticing pigeons with bird seed.

“His mate would [then] pounce on the pigeon and stuff it into the rucksack. They managed to get 14 in, even with them flapping about. It was in the space of around 20 minutes,” the bystander told the Daily Mail.

“I was horrified. I know there are too many pigeons and I’ve never been a fan, but how can you be so cruel to an animal? That to me was cruel.

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“If I was a bigger person I would have taken the rucksack off them, but it was two strapping blokes.

“It was all alcohol related, they sit on Sidwell Street drinking all hours of the day. There aren’t enough police around.”

PCSO Giles told the newspaper that a “particular group of street drinkers” were responsible.

“Many are alcoholics, and to keep a certain consumption level will drink continuously. They are not filling a pub, because it is a different sort of drinking.

“It turns into a group, then a bigger group, and now we’re eating pigeons, now we’re killing seagulls. It escalates.”

She added that geese and swans have reportedly been captured by the river, and last week shoppers in Sidwell Street watched as a woman – part of a group of street drinkers – stamped on the head of a seagull.

In a statement, Devon and Cornwall Police said: “This is being investigated as causing unnecessary suffering under the animal welfare act 2006.

“It is believed that street drinkers have been using bird seed to help them catch pigeons and put them in a rucksack. We can’t even begin to speculate on their motives.”

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Jimmy Carter calls on Trump to 'keep the peace…tell the truth'

ATLANTA — Former President Jimmy Carter offered a damning indictment of U.S. foreign policy and domestic affairs Tuesday, saying money in politics makes the nation more like an “oligarchy than a democracy” and casting President Donald Trump as a disappointment on the world stage.

Carter’s criticisms, offered at his annual presentation to backers of his post-presidency Carter Center in Atlanta, went beyond Trump, but he was particularly critical of the nation’s direction under the Republican president’s leadership.

The 39th president, a Democrat, offered this advice to the 45th: “Keep the peace, promote human rights and tell the truth.”

Carter, 92, did not mention explicitly Trump’s threatening exchanges this summer with North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un, but the former president said the U.S. should engage directly with the insular leader and discuss a peace treaty to replace the cease fire that ended the Korean War in 1953.

Trump lawyers recommended that Kushner step down in June

“I would send my top person to Pyongyang immediately, if I didn’t go myself,” Carter said, noting that he’s been three times to the country, even as successive U.S. administrations have refused to deal with the regime.

The North Koreans, Carter said, want a treaty that guarantees the U.S. will not attack unless North Korea attacks the U.S. or an ally, particularly South Korea. “Until we talk to them and treat them with respect — as human beings, which they are — I don’t think we’re going to make any progress,” Carter said.

He also dismissed Trump’s optimism that he can engineer Middle East peace. Trump has tasked his son-in-law, Jared Kushner, with handling the issue that has vexed U.S. administrations for generations, but the president notably backed off the long-held U.S. position calling for a two-state solution between Israel and the Palestinians.

Carter said he is “practically hopeless” that anything Trump comes up with would give “justice to the Palestinians.”

Mueller wants to talk to Spicer, Priebus and other WH aides

“I don’t think Trump or his family members are making any process in that respect,” he said. Carter criticized both Israeli and Palestinian leaders for a lack of flexibility, but he singled out Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netenyahu, a Trump ally, for having “no intention at all of having a two-state solution.”

Trump was a disappointment on the world stage, Carter said.

Trump was a disappointment on the world stage, Carter said.

(BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images)

The former president and his wife, Rosalynn, largely steer clear of partisan politics, long having yielded any active role in the Democratic Party. But they maintain their high-profile advocacy through the Carter Center, which focuses on human rights, public health and democratic elections.

Carter on Tuesday defended the center’s role in monitoring the August presidential elections in Kenya that the country’s Supreme Court later discarded. The court has ordered a new election.

The Carter Center’s monitoring team, led by former Secretary of State John Kerry, said days after the vote that the process of casting paper ballots was fair, but that the electronic tabulations were “unreliable.” Carter said Tuesday that international monitors were not allowed to observe the counting process.

House Intel Committee subpoenas FBI, DOJ over Trump dossier

The center also remains engaged in trying to end the Syrian civil war, Carter said. He noted that he and others from the center have engaged Russian President Vladimir Putin and others trying to broker peace.

Carter touted a program at his center that tracks social media usage in the war-torn nation. By identifying the locations of individual posters with known political and military affiliations, Carter said, analysts can discern which factions control various cities and provinces. Carter said the center shares that intelligence with the Pentagon, the State Department, various media outlets and foreign allies of the U.S.

Carter made no mention of ongoing inquiries into Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential campaign or potential ties between Russia and the Trump campaign.

At 92, Carter is second eldest living U.S. president and fourth longest-lived president in history. His birthday is Oct. 1. George H.W. Bush, the eldest living president, turned 93 on June 12, putting him 92 days into his 94th year. Ronald Reagan was 120 days beyond his 93rd birthday when he died in 2004. Gerald Ford died two years later, having lived 165 days beyond his 93rd birthday.

Carter already has the longest post-presidency, having been out of office for 36 years and almost 8 months.

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‘It’s an epidemic’: Phones, drugs & drones in UK prisons – Tories ‘buying magic wands’ to fix it

Speaking into the camera phone he has hidden inside his prison cell – the inmate brags that it is a smartphone, the size of a coke can – long gone, he says, are the days he was forced to insert tiny mobiles “up my a**e”.

Live-streaming himself smoking a joint inside Wandsworth Prison in London, the convicted drug dealer reveals just how flawed the system is.

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Getting a mobile phone into prison – easy.

Prisoners (‘lags’) have been running rings around the UK justice system with drugs and takeaways being delivered on drones; lags taking part in internet Q&As live-streamed from their cells and crime gangs operating from inside jails.

Earlier this week, RT revealed how prisoners are filming themselves playing Playstations right under the noses of prison staff.

However, officers are so short staffed as the Tory axe falls on public servants that the situation has become “critical”.

Business is booming inside prisons as lags give orders for crimes on the outside, organise the sale of drugs and make rap videos – all using smuggled mobile phones.

But the Tories have a master plan to fix it – which involves mobile-phone-detecting wands.

Assistant General Secretary of the Prison Officers Association, Glynn Travis, told RT UK there is now one phone in UK jails for every eight prisoners.

The union chief described the situation as an “epidemic” as he claimed the devices have a direct impact on attacks on prison staff.

Mobile phones in prison create real problems for staff,” Travis said.

Mobile phones help organised crime inside prison, they help get drugs into prison and attacks on officers happen as a result.

However, figures released by the Government in July revealed 13,000 phones and 7,000 sim cards were found in one year under their new detection programme.

The prison population in the UK is currently 85,000, making the number of prisoners having access to a phone significantly higher than originally feared.

The Government has come up with an ingenious plan to stop prisoners using mobile phones in jail – well, they think so. The Tories are going to stamp it out with legislation.

Laws will be introduced to end the use of mobile phones by inmates, the Ministry of Justice has insisted.

The Government will push through legislation to force phone companies to block illegal prison phones.

And if that doesn’t work – they are also buying phone detecting wands.

Read more

Michael Adebowale © London News Pictures / Global Look Press

A Ministry of Justice spokeswoman, when confronted with the shocking footage from inside Wandsworth Prison, said the Government is acting.

This behaviour is completely unacceptable and we are taking immediate action,” A Prison Service spokesperson said.

We are clear that those who break the rules will be punished and can face extra time behind bars.

“We are taking decisive action to find and block mobile phones in prison, including a £2million investment in detection wands and legislation to block mobile phone signals.

The £2m investment package was announced in July and includes plans for 2,500 extra prison officers, but it does not set out plans for signal blockers.

Mr Travis called on the Tories to bring in the multi-million pound equipment, which he says is proven to have worked in other countries.

Investment in mobile phone signal blockers is ten years overdue,” Travis said.

This is a chronic problem so we would welcome investment to stop the epidemic. We have been arguing for this.

Travis said the Government has always fallen short of its promise to introduce blockers because of “cost” problems.

In 2013, the National Offender Management Service (NOMS) said phones cost between £400 and £1,000 in jail and have been used to “commission murder, plan escapes, import automatic firearms and arrange drug imports”.

Two years later, in 2015, the Serious Crime Act introduced the possibility of regulations giving the government – and ministers in Scotland – the power to force mobile phone operators to disconnect illicit phones and SIM cards.

The regulations are yet to be enacted.

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Jimmy Carter brands US ‘oligarchy’ & urges Trump to sign N. Korea peace treaty

Former US President Jimmy Carter said the US works more like an “oligarchy than a democracy,” while also lambasting Trump’s “hopeless” approach to solving the Israel-Palestine issue, and the increasing tension with North Korea.

The former president was speaking at a ‘Conversation with the Carters’ event at his Carter Center in Atlanta on Tuesday. He said money in politics is what makes the US more like an oligarchy – run by a small group of rich people – rather than a democracy, AP reports.

This isn’t the first time the 39th president has made such comments. In 2015, he referred to the “unlimited political bribery” that has “created a complete subversion of our political system as a payoff to major contributors.”

Carter was referring to the Supreme Court’s 2010 Citizens United ruling to allow corporations to give unlimited campaign donations to political candidates, which he has previously said was “the most stupid decision” the court had made.

North Korea

On escalating tensions between the US and North Korea, Carter said, “The first thing I would do is treat the North Koreans with respect.”

“I know what the North Koreans want,” he said. “What they want is a firm treaty guaranteeing North Korea that the US will not attack them or hurt them in any way, unless they attack one of their neighbors.” Carter said, “But the United States has refused to do that.”

Carter said he would send his top person to Pyongyang immediately, adding: “If I didn’t go myself.” The former president visited North Korea three times between 1994 and 2011.

“Until we’re willing to talk to them and treat them with respect as human beings, which they are, then I don’t think we’ll make any progress,” he said.

Middle East

Meanwhile, Carter said he doesn’t think that Trump can bring peace between Israel and Palestine.

“I don’t think Trump or his family members are making any progress in that respect,” he said, adding he is “practically hopeless” that Trump will do anything to give “justice to the Palestinians.”

Carter criticized both Israeli and Palestinian leaders for failing to be flexible, but said Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has “no intention at all of having a two-state solution.”

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Ex-senator who opposed smoking pot joins marijuana lobbying group

ALBANY — Alfonse D’Amato is going from Senator Pothole to Senator Pot.

The former Republican U.S. senator from New York has been hired as a senior adviser by the Marijuana Policy Project, a national pro-pot group that for the first time is starting an affiliate in the Empire State.

The MPP says it was founded in 1995 to advocate nationally for “sensible and compassionate” laws governing pot use.

In New York, the group will initially focus on promoting ways to strengthen the state’s existing medical marijuana program, though D’Amato didn’t rule out the idea that the group will be part of any future discussions about legalizing the recreational use of pot for adults.

New York growing its number of medical marijuana suppliers

In addition to D’Amato, the MPP also hired attorney and community organizer Landon Dais to serve as its New York political director.

Both D’Amato — who served in the Senate from 1981 to 1999 — and Dais said that after a slow start, New York’s medical marijuana program can be transformed into a national leader.

“The (state) Health Department and the governor’s office have come a long way in making the utilization of medical marijuana easier, better, more professional,” D’Amato said. “That’s a work in progress.”

D’Amato said the MPP will push for Gov. Cuomo to sign into law a bill making medical marijuana available to veterans suffering from post traumatic stress disorder. D’Amato said the group will also seek to educate the public and medical community on the value of medical marijuana.

New research suggests that medical marijuana can treat herpes

“I’m happy to see we have really moved in the right direction in New York,” D’Amato said.

The former senator-turned lobbyist and consultant said the state should also start discussing whether to legalize pot for adults.

While he hasn’t yet taken a stand on the issue, D’Amato said “if we want to be realistic, you’ve got to look at the nation, what is taking place around us. It’s been implemented in (seven) states.”

Not Released (NR)

D’Amato has joined the Marijuana Policy Project, a national pro-pot group.

(SEASTOCK/Getty Images/iStockphoto)

Voters in Massachusetts, Maine and Nevada last November approved measures to legalize the recreational use of pot in their states. It’s also being discussed in New Jersey.

Here’s how medical marijuana can help with psoriasis

“The conversation and the discussion about adult use and the legalization of adult use is taking place and will be taking place,” he said. “There is no doubt that that is something that will come more and more to the forefront as time goes on.”

As for New York, “It’s not something we’re promoting but it’s something that’s taking place around the country and we can’t be naïve to it,” he said.

D’Amato’s linkage to a marijuana group is a change for a man who for most of his life was against the use of pot.

He said he began evolving on the issue during a discussion with radio personality Howard Stern in 2009. “I think I’m a conservative, but I don’t think I’m a right wing kook,” he said.

Can medical marijuana heal wounds?

D’Amato also knocked U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions, with whom he served in the Senate, for wanting the federal government to crack down on states that have legalized recreational- and even medicinal- marijuana.

“It’s a ridiculous position,” he said. “I say how can you on the one hand be for states’ rights and on the other hand say the states that have legalized the use of marijuana, that you’re not going to recognize that. You can’t be a states’ rights person only when you like what the states are doing and not what the feds are doing. It’s one or the other.”

State Conservative Party Chairman Michael Long, who backed D’Amato during his three terms in the Senate, said “I hope the former senator doesn’t partake in a move that would open the door for legalization of marijuana.”

But he said he wasn’t particularly surprised D’Amato hooked up with the Marijuana Policy Project.

N.Y. medical marijuana patients get more ways to consume cannabis

“He’s a lobbyist now, certainly a person who opens the door for a lot of people,” Long said.

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Gunman in Texas mass shooting reportedly upset wife moved on

The mother of a woman who was shot dead by her estranged husband in a mass shooting in Texas said he was upset that she was moving on after she filed for divor.

Meredith Hight, 27, was hosting a cookout for her friends and colleagues at her home in Plano on Sunday when Spencer James Hight crashed the party and opened fire, killing a total of eight people, police said.

Meredith Hight filed for divorce in July and while her husband had moved out months ago, he collected his belongings from the home just days before the shooting, her mother Debbie Lane told WFAA.

“I think he saw our comfort, ease and happiness and her embracing new life and resented it to the maximum and responded the way he did,” Lane told the local news station.

Victim divorced husband before he killed eight at NFL party

Spencer Hight was killed by a responding officer. The eight victims have been identified as: Meredith Hight, 27, Anthony Michael Cross, 33, Olivia Nicole Diffner, 24, James Richard Dunlop, 29, Darryl William Hawkins, 22, Rion Christopher Morgan, 31, Myah Sade Bass, 28, Caleb Seth Richards, 25.

“We’ve never had a shooting of this magnitude; never had this many victims,” Plano Police Chief Gregory W. Rushin said. “It’s just a terrible event.”

Spencer Hight was the suspected shooter. He was killed by police at the scene. 

Spencer Hight was the suspected shooter. He was killed by police at the scene. 

(Facebook)

Within two months of filing for divorce, Meredith Hight hosted a party to watch football with her friends and colleagues in an attempt to “reclaim her life”, Lane said.

The mother told WFAA, “She was a cook, and a quite fine one, and she loved hosting friends and families. This was her first opportunity to do it after the divorce and he didn’t take it well.”

Seven people found shot to death in Texas home, shooter killed

Police received reports of the shooting at 8 p.m. Sunday and gunshots were still ringing out from the home on W. Spring Creek Parkway when officers arrived, the Plano Police Department said.

A responding officer said there were “bodies down in the backyard” and that the shooter was still active inside the home, police spokesman David Tilley toldABC News.

The officer approached the house from the back and opened fire, fatally striking the suspected shooter, police said.

Seven of the victims died at the scene. An additional two sustained serious injuries and were taken to the hospital, where one victim later died. The status of the remaining gunshot victim remains unclear.

Ex tearfully admits to strangling missing realtor ahead of Harvey

All of the victims were in their 20s and 30s, and some of them were Spencer Hight’s own friends.

FBMD01000ac00300005c22000087470000b74c0000e1500000d2620000ed970000f19e0000b1a800002db20000e92b0100

Meredith Lane, 27, was shot dead in the Plano attack.

(Facebook)

Lane said her daughter met Spencer Hight after she transferred from a school in Georgia to study math at the University of Texas at Dallas, WFAA reported.

The two, who were initially neighbors in an apartment complex, married in September 2011.

Parents of Texas teen who died during hike suing Boy Scouts

They appeared to be happily married, and Meredith Hight shared her relationship on social media, writing, “Pretty much what I live for” under a selfie she took with her husband in 2015, according to the Dallas Morning News.

When Spencer Hight lost his job at Texas Instruments, Meredith took on the mortgage of their home by herself before she grew exasperated that he wasn’t contributing, the Morning News reported.

After she filed for divorce, she told her mother that Spencer Hight had been violent to her on two occasions, according to Lane.

Lane also claimed Spencer Hight had a drinking problem.

And a few days before the mass shooting, Spencer Hight messaged a friend, who told the Morning News he kept asking, “How can the one person you’re supposed to love more than life itself end up being the one person you hate more than life itself?”

The victims (top left, going clockwise): Meredith Hight, 27, Anthony Michael Cross, 33, Olivia Nicole Diffner, 24, James Richard Dunlop, 29, Darryl William Hawkins, 22, Rion Christopher Morgan, 31, Myah Sade Bass, 28, Caleb Seth Richards, 25.

The victims (top left, going clockwise): Meredith Hight, 27, Anthony Michael Cross, 33, Olivia Nicole Diffner, 24, James Richard Dunlop, 29, Darryl William Hawkins, 22, Rion Christopher Morgan, 31, Myah Sade Bass, 28, Caleb Seth Richards, 25.

(fox4)

Family and friends mourned the loss of the victims and a makeshift memorial formed at the crime scene.

Rion Morgan’s sister wrote on Facebook that he attended the Hights’ wedding and visited his friend Spencer Hight a day before the shooting.

He worked at the University of Texas at Dallas, and a university spokesperson remembered him as an “exceptional employee and a warm, kind, generous colleague and friend.”

Darryl Hawkins never showed up for work on Monday, prompting friends to turn up at the Plano home, freshly taped off from the general public as a crime scene.

His family declined to comment but confirmed Hawkins was killed in the shooting.

The loved ones of another victim, Tony Cross, similarly showed up to the Spring Creek Parkway home Monday in search of answers.

“My nephew was killed in the Plano shooting last night. Please keep his family in your prayers. His name was Tony Cross,” Allen Richards wrote on Facebook earlier this week.

MANDATORY CREDIT; NO LICENSING EXCEPT BY AP COOPERATIVE MEMBERS

Onlookers watch police work the scene of the deadly shooting at a home in Plano on Sunday night. 

(Vernon Bryant/AP)

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Seoul detects radioactive gas from N. Korea nuke test

A radioactive gas, xenon-133, has been detected from the recent North Korean nuclear test, the South’s nuclear watchdog said, adding that it is still unclear whether it was from a hydrogen bomb test as Pyongyang claimed.

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South Korean and U.S. Marines take positions as amphibious assault vehicles of the South Korean Marine Corps fire smoke bombs during a U.S.-South Korea joint landing operation drill in Pohang, South Korea © Kim Hong-Ji

Traces of the xenon isotope were detected in the north-eastern part of the country on nine occasions, the South Korean Nuclear Safety and Security Commission said. The Commission’s mobile detectors also found traces of xenon off the country’s east coast four times.

“It was difficult to find out how powerful the nuclear test was with the amount of xenon detected, but we can say the xenon was from North Korea,” executive commissioner Choi Jongbae told a news conference in Seoul on Wednesday.

Earlier in September Pyongyang claimed that it had successfully tested a hydrogen bomb which can be mounted on an Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (ICBM).

Seoul started collecting radioactive nuclides and increased its radiation monitoring level following Pyongyang’s nuclear test, according to numerous reports from the Nuclear Safety and Security Commission. 

Xenon was first detected in the sample collected by “the stationery capturing equipment installed on land”, the commission’s report said September 8. However, at that time it wasn’t clear whether the xenon level was linked to the North’s test. 

The amount of the radioactive gas detected is some 0.43 milibecquerel per cubic meter, the commission said, as cited by Yonhap news agency. 

This amount would not have any effects on public health as South Korea’s radiation levels remain normal, the commission added.

Xenon, a colorless and odorless gas, occurs naturally and can be found in mineral springs, asteroids and the Earth’s atmosphere. It is often used in the manufacture of lighting. However, its isotope xenon-133 does not occur naturally. Small amounts of it is used in medicine for diagnostic inhalation only, according to medical websites.  

Exposure can cause nausea, convulsions and a potentially fatal coma, according to the Lantheus medical website. It has been known to cause cancer and adverse reproductive effects. 

The test aggravated the already tense situation on the Korean peninsula even further. In response to North Korea’s actions, South Korea and the US began discussions on the deployment of an aircraft carrier and strategic bombers in the region.

READ MORE: North Korea sanctions ‘nothing compared to what ultimately will have to happen’ – Trump

South Korea also immediately held live-fire naval drills involving guided-missile vessels and aimed at preparing to “hit back and bury” the enemy in the event of provocation. The drills involved the 2,500-ton Incheon-class frigate ‘Gangwon’, a 1,000-ton patrol ship, several 400-ton guided-missile vessels and 130-ton high-speed boats maneuvering in the Sea of Japan (also called the East Sea by South Korea).

In its harshest response yet to North Korea’s nuclear tests, US President Donald Trump vowed to use the “full range” of capabilities at his country’s disposal, and said the US might resort to using its nuclear arsenal against North Korea if it continues to threaten the US or its allies.

Russia has repeatedly said that that it is important to prevent escalation of the crisis on the Korean Peninsula, calling for a diplomatic solution.

North Korea is “extremely interested in direct dialogue with Washington,” Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov told RIA Novosti on Wednesday.

“I am not sure that the US administration has enough political will and determination to enter into such a dialogue,” he added.

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The $10 trillion resource North Korea can't tap

North Korea may not have proved petroleum reserves, but it’s estimated that the secluded belligerent nation sits on reserves of more than 200 minerals—including rare earth minerals—worth an estimated up to $ 10 trillion.

Of course, there are no official reports on how much North Korea’s mineral wealth really is, but according to rough estimates from earlier this decade, Pyongyang’s deposits of coal, iron ore, zinc, copper, graphite, gold, silver, magnesite, molybdenite, and many others, are worth between $ 6 trillion and $ 10 trillion, as per South Korean projections reported by Quartz.

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US President Donald Trump © Brendan Smialowski

Before the fall of the USSR, North Korea had prioritized mineral mining and trade with fellow communist partners. But the mining industry has been in decline since the early 1990s, due to decades of neglect and lack of funds for infrastructure development to support mining activities.

Now North Korea’s mining sector trade is under a full ban by the UN, as Pyongyang has stepped up both nuclear missile tests and belligerent rhetoric in recent months. The UN started banning trade in metals last year, but there have been reports that Kim Jong-Un’s regime has grown increasingly inventive in circumventing sanctions.

The UN introduced last month a full ban on coal, iron, and iron ore, after having banned trade in copper, nickel, silver, and zinc in November last year. China also implemented the coal import ban, cutting off an important economic lifeline of the regime. Coal trade has generated over one billion US dollars in revenue per year for North Korea, the US Department of Treasury said at the end of August, when it slapped sanctions on Russian and Chinese entities for supporting the regime.

On Monday, following North Korea’s latest nuclear test on September 2, the UN Security Council banned the supply, sale, or transfer of all condensates and natural gas liquids, and banned Pyongyang’s exports of textiles such as fabrics and apparel products. The latest sanctions, however, are not imposing a full oil embargo as the US called for in recent weeks. The sanctions instead are capping refined petroleum products and crude oil supply, after the US dropped its demand for full oil ban, to avoid China vetoing the UN resolution.

All the sanctions leading to Monday’s strongest prohibitions so far have been designed to stifle North Korea’s trade in minerals and cut off money for the regime.

North Korea has staked mostly on coal mining, the cheapest and easiest to mine, compared to precious metals or rare earth metals mining, for which Pyongyang has neither the funds nor the infrastructure or know-how to develop.

Read more on Oilprice.com: 97-Year-Old Law May Be The Cause Of Higher Gas Prices

North Korea has sizeable deposits of some minerals. Its magnesite reserves are the second largest in the world behind China, and its tungsten deposits are likely the sixth-largest in the world, Lloyd R. Vasey, founder and senior adviser for policy at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), wrote in April this year. North Korea sits on sizeable deposits of more than 200 different minerals, and “all have the potential for the development of large-scale mines”, Vasey said.

Read more

U.S. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin. © Yuri Gripas

North Korea doesn’t have either the funds or the infrastructure to develop those resources. It’s also officially banned to export them.

Yet, “The Democratic People’s Republic of Korea is flouting sanctions through trade in prohibited goods, with evasion techniques that are increasing in scale, scope and sophistication,” a UN report of a panel of experts from February this year concluded.

“Diplomats, missions and trade representatives of the Democratic Peoples’ Republic of Korea systematically play key roles in prohibited sales, procurement, finance and logistics. In particular, designated entities are trading in banned minerals, showing the interconnection between trade of different types of prohibited materials,” the panel’s report reads.

According to UN experts—as of February this year—North Korea had adapted to the stricter sanctions “through various tactics, including identity fraud.”

“Their ability to conceal financial activity by using foreign nationals and entities allows them to continue to transact through top global financial centres,” according to the report.

Read more on Oilprice.com: Aramco Valuation Comes Under Scrutiny

According to a more recent investigation by ABC Four Corners, North Korea has business interests in Asia, the Middle East, and even Europe, contrary to the common perception that it is a very isolated country. Office 39—one of the departments of its Workers’ Party—is “the ultimate slush fund”, reportedly generating up to US$ 1.6 billion annually for Kim’s lavish lifestyle, while 70 percent of people are food insecure.

“North Korea is very sophisticated in concealing the fact that it is, indeed, North Korea doing business overseas. It’s good at hiding in plain sight,” Andrea Berger, Associate Fellow at the Royal United Services Institute (RUSI), told the program.

This article was originally published on Oilprice.com

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Clinton compares herself to Cersei in Game of Thrones

In her new book “What Happened”, Hillary Clinton compared the vitriol she faced on the campaign trail to Cersei Lannister’s walk of atonement in the hit TV series Game of Thrones.

In a passage contemplating the role sexism played in her failed presidential bid, Clinton wrote, “Crowds at Trump rallies called for my imprisonment more times than I can count.”

“They shouted, ‘Guilty! Guilty!’ like the religious zealots in Game of Thrones chanting, ‘Shame! Shame!’ while Cersei Lannister walked back to the Red Keep,” Clinton wrote.

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Hillary Clinton signs copies of her new book, “What Happened” at the Barnes & Noble bookstore on Union Square on Tuesday, September 12, 2017. (Jefferson Siegel/New York Daily News)

(Jefferson Siegel/New York Daily News)

In Season 5, Cersei was stripped and marched through the streets of King’s Landing as citizens jeered and threw garbage at her.

Actress Lena Headey told Entertainment Weekly there was a part of her that was “f—ing terrified” getting in the character’s mindset to film the emotional public shaming scene.

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Patrons fall in line to purchase Hillary Rodham Clinton’s new book “What Happened” at Barnes & Nobles located at 33 East 17th Street in Manhattan on Tuesday September 12, 2017. (Anthony DelMundo/New York Daily News)

(Anthony DelMundo/New York Daily News)

“I can’t even imagine people wanting your blood. Cersei has done wrong, but she doesn’t really deserve this,” Headey said.

In her memoir, Clinton said she was taken aback by the “flood of hatred” she faced in the run-up to election day, saying she was “one of the most admired public servants in America” after her tenure as Secretary of State.

She wrote, “Now people seemed to think I was evil…Was this all because I’m a woman? No. But I believe it was motivation for some of those chanters and some of that bile.” 

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Copyright text 2017 by Lazydude.

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