01-28-2020  12:24 pm   •   PDX Weather    •   SEA weather  
MLK Breakfast 2020 Thank You
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4

NORTHWEST NEWS

PCC Cascade Expands its Food Pantry for Students

The majority of PCC students are food insecure, with up to 15% homeless

Controversial Washington Lawmaker Spreads Views Across West

Republican Rep. Matt Shea was suspended from the Republican caucus in the wake of a December report that found he was involved in anti-government activities and several lawmakers have called on him to resign, something he says he will not do

2020 Census Begins in Remote Toksook Bay, Alaska

Census takers begin counting remainder of 220 remote Alaska villages as part of national headcount

St. Andrew Parish Presents 2020 Martin Luther King, Jr. Awards

The awards are given to people whose service embodies the values of Dr. King, who used nonviolence, civil disobedience, and Christian teaching to advance the cause of civil rights in America

NEWS BRIEFS

Bills in Washington Legislature to Allow Sports Betting

The bills would allow owners of the 29 Indian casinos in the state to open Las Vegas-style sportsbooks ...

Labor Commissioner, Senator Announce Bill to Fully Enforce Housing Discrimination

A survey found that more than one in four prospective Portland renters were discriminated against because of race, national origin or...

Washington State Bill to Increase School Staff is Introduced in the Legislature

The bill includes recommendations from a workgroup of K–12 education stakeholders ...

Giant Sea-life Sculptures Wash Ashore at Oregon Zoo

Traveling art exhibit aims to raise plastics awareness for healthy oceans ...

States Sue Trump Administration Over New 3D-Printed Gun Rule

The administration’s latest rule allows 3D-printed gun files to be released on the internet ...

Heavy rain sends massive boulders crashing on Oregon highway

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Rockslides triggered by unrelenting rain have closed local roads and highways around Oregon, including a highway near Crater Lake National Park that was closed Tuesday after two boulders the size of a small living room crashed down, narrowly missing a passing car.The...

Carbon monoxide leak at vacation rental sends 25 to hospital

DONNELLY, Idaho (AP) — Authorities say 25 people were hospitalized for carbon monoxide poisoning while staying at a vacation rental home in an Idaho mountain town. Donnelly Rural Fire Protection Chief Juan Bonilla says firefighters were called to the vacation home in Donnelly about 6:30 a.m....

New Missouri coach Eli Drinkwitz predicts success

COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — Eli Drinkwitz was saying all the right things after being introduced as the new football coach at Missouri, laying out his vision for the once-proud program with unwavering confidence and bold proclamations.Then the former Appalachian State coach made a minor...

LSU's Burrow, Auburn's Brown named AP SEC players of year

LSU quarterback Joe Burrow is a unanimous selection as the offensive player of the year on The Associated Press All-Southeastern Conference football team.The top-ranked Tigers also have the SEC’s coach of the year in Ed Orgeron and the newcomer of the year in freshman cornerback Derek...

OPINION

Martin Luther King Day is an Opportunity for Service

Find out where you can volunteer and make a difference to the community ...

Looking to 2020 — Put Your Vote to WORK!

Ronald Reagan, who turned his back on organized labor and started America’s middle-class into a tailspin, has recently been voted by this administration’s NLRB into the Labor Hall of Fame ...

How Putting Purpose Into Your New Year’s Resolutions Can Bring Meaning and Results

Only 4% of people report following through on all of the resolutions they personally set ...

I Was Just Thinking… Mama in the Classroom

I wrote my first column in 1988 for a local newspaper about a beloved Dallas guidance counselor and teacher that most students called “Mama” ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Fresh anti-Semitic writings appear in Italian cities, towns

MILAN (AP) — Fresh anti-Semitic writings appeared in Italian cities and towns as the country marked the 7 5 th anniversary of the liberation of the Nazi death camp at Auschwitz, officials said Tuesday. The incidents included a racist placard tacked onto a Democratic Party bulletin board near...

Barr says there will be 'zero tolerance' on anti-Semitism

NEW YORK (AP) — Attorney General William Barr ordered federal prosecutors across the U.S. to step up their efforts to combat anti-Semitic hate crimes as he met with Jewish leaders in Brooklyn, New York, on Tuesday. Barr said he has been “extremely distressed by the upsurge in...

Buttigieg thanks staffers of color for voicing grievances

OTTUMWA, Iowa (AP) — Democratic presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg on Tuesday thanked his staffers of color for feeling able to voice their grievances following a news report that said some had expressed frustrations with the campaign.“That may not be something that’s...

ENTERTAINMENT

Yiyun Li and Leslie Jamison among PEN award nominees

NEW YORK (AP) — Fiction by Yiyun Li and essays by Leslie Jamison and Eve Babitz are among the finalists for honors presented by PEN America, the literary and human rights organization.On Tuesday, PEN announced nominees in categories ranging from science and poetry to translation and debut...

Grandson’s pitch coaxes Redford out of retirement, briefly

PARK CITY, Utah (AP) — Midway through the film festival he founded more than four decades ago, Robert Redford hopped out of a car and hollered to his grandson. The 28-year-old Dylan Redford was later that evening to premiere at Sundance a film he co-directed. “OK, Dylan. This is your...

'Palm Springs' sets a Sundance record in .5M sale

PARK CITY, Utah (AP) — The “Groundhog Day”-esque comedy “Palm Springs,” by Andy Samberg and the Lonely Island, has set an acquisition record at the Sundance Film Festival by 69 cents. The indie distributor Neon and the streaming service Hulu bought “Palm...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

Bloomberg creates a parallel presidential race. Can he win?

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — When the leading Democratic presidential candidates marked Martin Luther King Jr....

Budget deficit to break jumi trillion despite strong economy

WASHINGTON (AP) — An annual congressional report says the U.S. budget deficit is likely to burst through...

Sandy Hook denier charged with having victim's dad's ID info

SORRENTO, Fla. (AP) — A Florida man who repeatedly harassed parents of shooting victims at Sandy Hook...

Warren offers infectious-disease plan amid China outbreak

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Democratic presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren has announced a plan to prevent,...

Remains of 2 US troops recovered from Afghanistan crash site

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. forces on Tuesday recovered the remains of two American service members killed in...

Netanyahu to push West Bank annexation plan on Sunday

WASHINGTON (AP) — Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's spokesman says the Israeli leader will ask his...

McMenamins
Joe Sterling and Holly Yan CNN

(CNN) -- Bombers killed at least seven people at a pro-regime Syrian satellite channel Wednesday, the government said, as world diplomats were making another try at ending the violence raging across the country.

"Terrorists planted explosive devices" in the headquarters of al-Ikhbaria, located near Damascus, killing three journalists and four security guards, the state-run Syrian Arab News Agency reported. The attackers also ransacked and destroyed studios, the news outlet said.

"The massacre won't go unpunished," Information Minister Amre al-Zoubi said.

The regime of President Bashar al-Assad has accused foreign media of conspiring against the country and said al-Ikhbaria works to counter the "sinister campaign." But observers say al-Ikhbaria is a mouthpiece for the government's propaganda, refusing to acknowledge the regime's brutal violence on dissidents seeking freedom.

The bombing comes a day after al-Assad said his restive country is in a "state of war" and as U.N. and Arab League envoy Kofi Annan scheduled a meeting of top diplomats Saturday in Geneva, Switzerland, to tackle the conflict.

After more than 15 months, unrest in the Arab nation shows no sign of receding. Internationally, tension was jacked up after Syria shot down a Turkish jet last week, an act deplored by NATO and many Western nations. At least 35 people were killed in nationwide violence on Wednesday, the opposition Local Coordination Committees of Syria said.

The diplomats want to address an environment in which, according to a U.N. report published Wednesday, new rebel groups are emerging and fighters are making strides and gaining potency.

"The situation on the ground has dramatically changed in the last three months as the hostilities by anti-government armed groups each day take on more clearly the contours of an insurrection," said the report, issued by the Independent Commission of Inquiry on the Syrian Arab Republic.

"As a result of the estimated flow of new weapons and ammunitions, both to the government forces and to the anti-government armed groups, the situation risks becoming more aggravated in the coming months. The international community must not fail to implement a concerted effort to put an end to the violence."

The United Nations and other entities tracking the conflict in Syria noted the increasing clout of anti-government forces in past months.

The report cites this trend, saying rebel "operations in some locations are improving in efficiency and organization."

The fighters are expanding across Syria and fighting government forces on several fronts. The groups are engaging with government forces in "direct combat" and are attacking military and security facilities, the report said.

"Their increasing capacity to access and make use of available weapons has been demonstrated in recent weeks," the report said.

It said rebels haven't gotten "new or more sophisticated weaponry." But they are using improvised explosive devices "against army and security convoys, patrols and facilities such as military buildings and checkpoints."

"In at least one case, this has led to collateral damage among civilians and their properties. According to reliable sources, anti-government armed groups have also been using IEDs in assassinations, targeting government officials and individuals from the army and security forces."

The report said rebel forces "have effectively challenged" the regime's authority in Damascus, Homs, Hama, Idlib and Aleppo provinces

For example, it said, the government forces' control of the country's borders has been regularly undermined, and cross-border movements of refugees as well as of anti-government fighters appear to be more frequent and fluid.

Burhan Ghalioun, former president of the opposition Syrian National Council based in Turkey, said he slipped over the border into Syria on a brief visit to Idlib province, and described rebel resolve and bravery amid a moonscape of destruction.

"The spirits of the fighters are very, very high," he told CNN. "They are ready to die for their freedom. The major problem that the fighters are facing is the nonstop bombardment by planes and tanks. This is making the battle difficult as the rebels don't have heavy weapons. Many cities and towns are already liberated. I was driven around Idlib in a car with a banner saying 'The Free Syrian Army.'"

Many observers say the rebel fighting forces have been too autonomous and have lacked central command. Ghalioun said they are "very united" and "cooperating among themselves."

"Despite that, there is no serious arming; the rebels are gathering arms from the attacks and battles they do with the regime forces," he said. "They are so organized on the ground, they have formed committees to help each other; medical, social, political etc. I am simply amazed."

The Commission of Inquiry is probing the killings last month of more than 100 people in the Houla region -- where most of those slain in the massacre were reportedly women and children -- but has been limited because it hasn't gotten access to the country. It has had to conduct interviews with people by telephone or in the countries to which they fled.

So far, it said, it can't rule out, "with the available evidence," the possibility that perpetrators include pro-government militias, rebels, or foreign groups. But, it said, "forces loyal to the government may have been responsible for many of the deaths."

Many observers believe the Houla killings may have resulted from sectarian violence. Houla refers to three towns with a majority Sunni population. They are ringed by Shiite and Alawite villages. Most Syrians are Sunni and the opposition has a lot of support from them. The government is dominated by Alawites, an offshoot of Shiism.

"Where previously victims were targeted on the basis of their being pro- or anti-government, the (Commission of Inquiry) has recorded a growing number of incidents where victims appear to have been targeted because of their religious affiliation," the report said, describing conditions across Syria.

The commission said special envoy Kofi Annan's peace initiative "offers the best framework for a resolution of the conflict" and Annan's Saturday meeting of the Action Group for Syria will work on steps to implement his six-point peace initiative.

Annan said Wednesday he invited the top diplomats of the five permanent members of the Security Council -- China, France, Russia, the United Kingdom and the United States -- and Turkey. United Nations, European Union, and Arab League envoys also were invited.

The Action Group for Syria should "agree on guidelines and principles for a Syrian-led political transition that meets the legitimate aspirations of the Syrian people; and agree on actions that will make these objectives a reality on the ground," Annan said. "I look forward to a productive meeting this weekend, where we can all agree on concrete actions to end the cycle of violence and bring peace and stability to the Syrian people."

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, speaking in Helsinki, Finland, said if participants can meet on the basis of a road map to a political transition in Syria, "then a meeting makes a lot of sense" and "could be a turning point." A strong transition road map backed by Russia and China, which have blocked tough action against Syria, would be a strong message to the al-Assad regime, she said.

Annan wanted to invite Iran to the meeting, but the United States opposed that, noting Tehran's support for al-Assad's forces.

The United Nations estimates more than 10,000 people have been killed since the Syrian crisis began in March 2011. Opposition activists say the death toll has topped 15,000, mostly civilians. About 1.5 million Syrians "are in need of urgent humanitarian assistance," said Jean-Marie Guehenno, U.N.-Arab League deputy envoy to Syria.

CNN's Salma Abdelaziz, Rima Maktabi, Barbara Starr, and Jill Dougherty contributed to this report.

 

Calendar

Photo Gallery

Photos and slide shows of local events

Delta Founders Day 2020