BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) – Nearly 10,000 American troops overseas are getting a slice of American pie for Independence Day.
Chicago-based Pizza 4 Patriots is sending 5,500 pizzas to troops in Afghanistan and Kuwait to give them a taste of home on the 4th of July.
The pizzas were donated by Buffalo-based Rich Products and delivered by DHL Express.
Pizzas 4 Patriots was created in 2008 when retired Master Sergeant Mark Evans and his son Kent had the idea to deliver freshly frozen pizzas to U.S. troops serving abroad to show appreciation for their service.
Since then, the program has sent more than 155,000 pizzas to U.S. military personnel overseas.
As America celebrates the 4th of July, and the world commemorates the centennial of World War I, one U.S. state is in danger of losing a memorial to its veterans killed in action.
The city of Honolulu is considering demolishing its official memorial to the fallen of World War I and moving a portion of the memorial across the street to the site of a separate remembrance plaque. Ten thousand service members from the then-Hawaiian territories fought in the Great War; 101 were killed.
Descendants of those killed are fighting the city over the fate of the Waikiki War Memorial Natatorium. First opened in 1927, the salt water swimming pool fell into disrepair after years of neglect and was closed in 1979.
Despite being listed as a “national treasure” by the National Trust for Historic Preservation, and recognized by the World War I Centennial Commission and American Battle Monuments Commission as unique among our national war memorials, it is under threat by interests who want to tear it down to make way for a beach and who cite the high cost of repairing it.
#1 Independence Was Declared on the Fourth of July.
America’s independence was actually declared by the Continental Congress on July 2, 1776. The night of the second the Pennsylvania Evening Post published the statement:”This day the Continental Congress declared the United Colonies Free and Independent States.”
So what happened on the Glorious Fourth? The document justifying the act of Congress-you know it as Thomas Jefferson’s Declaration of Independence-was adopted on the fourth, as is indicated on the document itself, which is, one supposes, the cause for all the confusion.
As one scholar has observed, what has happened is that the document announcing the event has overshadowed the event itself.
On Saturday, Americans will observe Independence Day, an annual rite celebrating the ideals of liberty upon which our country was founded.
Two-hundred and thirty-nine years ago, our founders pledged their lives, fortunes and sacred honor to create a new nation unlike anything that had preceded it. Their new nation was built on the belief that God endowed every person with rights that no government can deny whilst claiming to rule with any color of legitimacy.
Unlike the solemn occasion of Memorial Day, which commemorates loss, Independence Day is defined by the joy and optimism about America that motivated the Founding Fathers to take the risks they did in order to declare independence. This is why it is celebrated with so many cheerful customs — picnics, baseball games, back yard barbecues, parades, fireworks and patriotic displays of the American flag.
Even so, many of Americans’ freedoms are under threat today. According to the Fraser Institute, the United States ranks 12th among countries in terms of its economic freedom, a decrease from past years that’s due in part to a decline in property rights and a rise in the costs imposed by government on businesses.
Another First Amendment right under attack is the freedom of speech. According to Reporters Without Borders, the U.S. now ranks 49th in the world in terms of freedom afforded to the press, an alarming decline from 20th place in 2010. Among the countries whose journalists enjoy more freedom are Namibia, El Salvador and Burkina Faso.
We have many challenges now, and we will have many more in the future. We will have the time where we will be asked to ante up, to protect what the founders have given us in trust. Do not doubt that we will, for we are Americans. In liberating strife, we shall stand for America the Beautiful. May God shed his grace on us in our task.
The French ISIS fanatic accused of beheading his boss before placing his head on a spike was radicalised by a man living in Britain, it has emerged.
Frederic Jean Salvi, who is also known as ‘Ali’ and is believed to be linked to terror attacks in Paris and Indonesia, is currently working and living in Leicester, it has been reported.
Last week Salvi was accused of helping to radicalise Yassin Salhi, 35, who allegedly murdered his boss Herve Cornara before attempting to drive his van into a gas factory in Lyon.
According to the Daily Mirror, Salvi was not born a Muslim, but converted inside jail while serving time for drug trafficking in the early 2000s.
After his release in 2004 he began attending a mosque in Pontarlier, France, which was where Salhi also went to pray.
Salvi was kicked out of the mosque shortly afterwards for allegedly attempting to radicalise a group of eight men, one of whom was attacker Salhi.
He then disappeared, before emerging in Indonesia in 2010 where he was wanted in connection with a car full of explosives found in the capital Jakarta. The bomb failed to detonate, and Salvi again vanished.
French security officials also suspected him of bombing the Indonesian Embassy in Paris in 2012, but he was never arrested.
Speaking outside his semi-detached home in Leicester yesterday, where he is believed to live with his wife and five children, Salvi said: ‘The British authorities know where I am and have no problem with it.
‘They’ve been to see me a few times. It’s always the same two officers – I think they are Special Branch.
‘They came this week to ask if I knew anything about what happened in Lyon. I told them no.’
He later said: ‘I don’t want to talk to the media. Everything I have to say has already been said. I don’t have time for all of this.’
Russia will consider new selective retaliatory measures against some specific Western countries, the nation’s security chief said Friday, pointing at Finland as a possible target.
The tough statement appears to herald a new round in spiraling Russia-West confrontation over Ukraine. It followed a session of Russia’s Security Council chaired by President Vladimir Putin, who vowed to firmly resist Western pressure and ordered to draft a new response.
Russia may, for example, revise favourable conditions for Finnish timber traders in response to Helsinki’s refusal to issue a visa to the Russian lower house speaker, the council’s secretary, Nikolai Patrushev said. He added in televised remarks that Russia wouldn’t necessarily make the move, but wants to consider this and other retaliatory measures.
Richard Trumka has a message for state and local AFL-CIO leaders tempted to endorse Bernie Sanders: Don’t.
In a memo this week to state, central and area divisions of the labor federation, and obtained by POLITICO, the AFL-CIO chief reminded the groups that its bylaws don’t permit them to “endorse a presidential candidate” or “introduce, consider, debate, or pass resolutions or statements that indicate a preference for one candidate over another.” Even “‘personal’ statements” of candidate preference are verboten, Trumka said.
The memo comes amid signs of a growing split between national union leaders — mindful of the fact that Clinton remains the undisputed favorite for the nomination — and local officials and rank and file, who are increasingly drawn to the Democratic Party’s growing progressive wing, for whom Sanders is the latest standard-bearer.
The South Carolina and Vermont AFL-CIOs have passed resolutions supporting Sanders, and some local AFL-CIO leaders in Iowa want to introduce a resolution at their August convention backing the independent senator from Vermont. More than a thousand labor supporters, including several local AFL-CIO-affiliated leaders, have signed on to “Labor for Bernie,” a group calling on national union leaders to give Sanders a shot at an endorsement.
Greece’s finance minister accused creditors of trying to “terrorize” Greeks into accepting austerity, warning Europe stood to lose as much as Athens if the country is forced from the euro after a referendum on Sunday on bailout terms.
After a week in which Greece defaulted, shuttered its banks and began rationing cash, Greeks vote on Sunday on whether to accept or reject tough conditions sought by international creditors to extend a lending lifeline that has kept the debt-stricken country afloat.
The left-wing government is urging a “No” vote, saying Greece’s European partners are bluffing when they warn that would mean a Greek departure from Europe’s single currency, with unforeseeable consequences for Greece, Europe and the global economy.
Happy Fourth of July, everybody. Like many of you, Michelle, Sasha, Malia, and I are going to spend the day outdoors, grilling burgers and dogs, and watching the fireworks with our family and friends. It’s also Malia’s birthday, which always makes the Fourth extra fun for us.
As always, we’ve invited some very special guests to our backyard barbecue — several hundred members of our military and their families. On this most American of holidays, we remember that all who serve here at home and overseas, represent what today is all about. And we remember that their families serve, too. We are so grateful for their service and for their sacrifice.[…]
As diplomats rush to reach an agreement to curb Iran’s nuclear program, the U.S. military is stockpiling conventional bombs so powerful that strategists say they could cripple Tehran’s most heavily fortified nuclear complexes, including one deep underground.
The bunker-busting bombs are America’s most destructive munitions short of atomic weapons. At 15 tons, each is 5 tons heavier than any other bomb in the U.S. arsenal.
In development for more than a decade, the latest iteration of the MOP — massive ordnance penetrator — was successfully tested on a deeply buried target this year at the White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico. The test followed upgrades to the bomb’s guidance system and electronics to stop jammers from sending it off course.
U.S. officials say the huge bombs, which have never been used in combat, are a crucial element in the White House deterrent strategy and contingency planning should diplomacy go awry and Iran seek to develop a nuclear bomb.
President Barack Obama has made it clear that he has no desire to order an attack, warning that U.S. airstrikes on Iran’s air defense network and nuclear facilities would spark a destabilizing new war in the Middle East, and would only delay Iran by several years should it choose to build a bomb.
On Friday, the social news site Reddit was on lockdown.
More than 100 subreddits on gaming, movies, science, etc. went dark for a few hours for the “Reddit Revolt,” a reaction to the news that Reddit’s communications director, Victoria Taylor, was let go on Thursday.
One of Taylor’s roles was coordinating the site’s wildly popular Ask Me Anything (AMA) series, where celebrities, political leaders, pop culture icons or simply people with interesting stories would answer questions from the Reddit community.
“IAmA,” a subforum within the AMA series that hosted President Obama in 2012 and astronaut Chris Hadfield, who was orbiting space during his online chat, was one of the first places on the site to shutdown in protest.
Taylor’s dismissal came as a shock to AMA moderators, who are volunteer users that help manage individual communities within Reddit. One moderator of IAmA shared that the news of Taylor leaving was like “a rug ripped out from underneath us.”
The U.S. military will send its first class of trained Syrian fighters back into Syria in the next several weeks in what promises to be a key test for the Obama administration’s effort to stand up an effective local force to combat the Islamic State, Pentagon officials said.
A U.S. military official said that American and allied forces are wrapping up training in Turkey for the first group of moderate opposition fighters, numbering fewer than 100. The men will be sent south into Syria by the end of the summer.
Before that occurs, military officials must finalize plans for reinserting the rebels into an active war zone.
But even as training concludes for this initial cohort of fighters, major questions remain about the effect the program will have on Syria’s crowded battlefield. The White House has not yet decided, for example, what sort of support it will provide to the rebels, especially if they come into conflict with forces loyal to Syrian President Bashar Assad.
Greek banks are preparing contingency plans for a possible “bail-in” of depositors amid fears the country is heading for financial collapse, bankers and businesspeople with knowledge of the measures said on Friday.
The plans, which call for a “haircut” of at least 30 per cent on deposits above €8,000, sketch out an increasingly likely scenario for at least one bank, the sources said.
A Greek bail-in could resemble the rescue plan agreed by Cyprus in 2013, when customers’ funds were seized to shore up the banks, with a haircut imposed on uninsured deposits over €100,000.
It would be implemented as part of a recapitalisation of Greek banks that would be agreed with the country’s creditors — the European Commission, International Monetary Fund and European Central Bank.
C.J. Pearson is a young black conservative whose videos challenging President Obama have caught fire on social media.
It appears that his conservative fans are not the only ones who have taken notice, as he found out to his chagrin. Pearson recently made an announcement that he is taking a break from politics because of threats to his family.
Here’s the Twitter profile of the ‘woman’ threatening C.J.: