He was a police officer too, according to reports. A man identified in local media as Jordanian ex-cop Anwar Abu Zaid, 28, opened fire at an Amman training center, causing multiple fatalities — including two Americans — before he was shot himself. A South African was also killed. Investigators are still trying to determine whether the shooting is connected to the suicide bombings in Amman that happened ten years ago today, and the incident is raising concerns about potential infiltration of American training programs by militants.
The Presidential Daily Brief
The people have spoken. After the country’s first open election in 25 years, the opposition National League for Democracy, fronted by activist Aung San Suu Kyi, says it’s confident of victory. So far, official results are only in for 28 seats, all but two for the NLD — but the ruling party has already admitted defeat. Myanmar’s constitution bars those with foreign children from being president, making Suu Kyi ineligible. Though her party will likely nominate someone else to the post, she insists she’ll be “above the president.”
They’re playing nice and mending fences. The two leaders famously don’t get along and have disagreed publicly about major initiatives like Iran’s nuclear deal. But this morning President Obama said he hoped to smooth over his disagreements with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu over Tehran, and Bibi called it an “opportunity to strengthen [their] friendship.” Many hope their first meeting in over a year will lead to warmer relations, with the administration downplaying personal misgivings in favor of national security. But one Israeli newspaper suggested it was like a bitter couple making final “arrangements before the divorce.”
It’s a juicing plot. The agency’s new report found that Russian Olympians and other prestigious athletes have been using illegal performance-enhancing drugs in what it described as a pervasive culture of steroid use. It cited the London Olympics as just one event that was ”sabotaged” by Russian authorities’ unwillingness to do anything about doping amongst its athletes — and it wants Russia banned entirely from track and field competitions and from the Rio Olympics, as well as lifetime bans on multiple coaches and athletes. Russia now has until the end of the week to respond.
They weren’t feeling very welcome. Asylum seekers on Christmas Island, a remote outpost 1,650 miles northwest of Perth, have ripped down fences and lit fires at the facility following news that an escaped Iranian detainee’s body had been found. Guards at the camp, where irregular migrants and New Zealanders with revoked visas are processed, have been evacuated for their security. Officials say they are working to resolve the “tense” situation, but rioters have reportedly armed themselves with bats and poles to thwart any attempts at retaking the compound.
They’re happy to watch prices slide. Riyadh is determined to maintain its global market share by continuing to pump enough oil to meet consumer demand. Saudi officials say this approach — which has seen the price per barrel plummet from $115 to $50 over the past year — will revive demand and restore $70-80 prices within a few years. Those with investments on hold owing to the glut won’t be thrilled, but it looks like OPEC’s December meeting will do little to grease the wheels of change.
Catalonia approves road map for independence. (CBS)
Russian activist arrested for setting fire to security agency’s door. (BBC)
Report: State-level ethics laws are full of loopholes. (USA Today)
Would proof of an onboard bomb strengthen Russia’s resolve? (NYT)
Conservatives claim election victory in Croatia. (DW)
World Bank: Climate change could push 100 million into poverty. (Newsweek)
Just hours after the University of Missouri system president announced his resignation, Chancellor R. Bowen Loftin also announced his pending departure after days of protests that included more than 30 African-American football players refusing to practice until Wolfe was replaced. Critics said he didn’t do enough to address racial discrimination at the school, where Black enrollment constituted 7 percent of 35,000 students last year. It’s not clear who will replace Wolfe or Bowen, who is sticking around until January 1st, but faculty and students alike say they want a role in the process.
They’re rolling their stockings down. A deeply conservative military junta ruled Myanmar until 2010, but today the state is opening up to tourism and democracy, holding its first general election in 25 years this weekend. The changes are ushering in modernity: Couples now show affection in public, an LGBT scene is emerging, some teens are becoming sexually active and women are challenging strict gender roles. An influx of foreigners and money to the cities — not to mention pop groups like Me N Ma Girls — are helping Myanmar’s traditional social conventions evolve.
That was fast. The video messaging app known for texts that disappear within seconds has experienced exponential growth over the past year, increasing its daily usage by three times in just six months. The new numbers could put the 4-year-old company within reach of major players like Facebook. Experts pin the growth on new features like Stories, a rolling compilation of snaps from the past day that friends can see. Combined with a focus on integrating major advertisers, the ephemeral novelty app now looks like it has real staying power.
It’s the picture of health. The world’s worst Ebola outbreak ravaged the West African nation for 19 long months, racking up 8,704 infections and 3,589 deaths. Sierra Leone had never reported a case of Ebola before 2014, and its infrastructure was poorly prepared to deal with the scourge. But an immense international effort has paid off, with the World Health Organization declaring over the weekend that Sierra Leone is free of the disease. Now all eyes turn to Guinea, where three new Ebola cases arose last month.
Baby, you’re a rich man. When amateur musician John McCaw paid $275 for the Gibson J-160E in the late 1960s he had no idea of its history. Lennon’s acoustic guitar, which had been used to record Beatles hits like “Love Me Do,” had been missing since 1963. Its whereabouts remained unknown for decades until McCaw realized what he had. Now an anonymous buyer has snapped up the six-string for one of the highest-ever rock memorabilia auction prices, and half the cash goes to Lennon’s Spirit Foundation.