08-12-2020  1:40 pm   •   PDX and SEA Weather
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NORTHWEST NEWS

PHOTOS: Snapshots From Downtown Portland

View a slideshow of recent photos taken by The Skanner downtown Portland.

Prosecutor Won't Act on Low-level Portland Protest Arrests

At least several hundred people who have been arrested in the past few months will not face criminal prosecution.

Lawmakers Adjourn Special Session, Restrict Choke Holds

Sen. James Manning, D-Eugene, says choke holds are "a tool to take a life."

Seattle Police Chief to Resign Following Department Cuts

Carmen Best, the city’s first Black police chief, said in a letter to the department that her retirement will be effective Sept. 2.

NEWS BRIEFS

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Dozens of cats, dogs seized from Portland rescue facility

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Tear gas at Portland protests raises concern about pollution

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — The presence of U.S. agents has diminished in Portland, Oregon, but city officials are still cleaning up tear gas residue from the streets, dirt and possibly the storm drains after the chemical was used frequently by both police and federal officers during more than two...

LSU adds Missouri, Vanderbilt in revamped SEC schedule

Defending Southeastern Conference and national champion LSU will host Missouri and visit Vanderbilt in its expanded Southeastern Conference schedule, while Alabama will visit Mizzou and host Kentucky in league play revised by the coronavirus pandemic. The league on Friday released two additional...

Missouri's Drinkwitz takes side in mask-or-no-mask debate

COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — Eli Drinkwitz has been the head coach at Missouri for just over seven months. He has yet to lead the Tigers onto the football field, much less win a game, yet his role in the community already has forced him to take some important stands.First, it was supporting his new...

OPINION

Historians Offer Context, Caution on Lessons 1918 Flu Pandemic Holds for COVID

Scholars find parallels of inequitable suffering between pandemic of 1918 and pandemic of 2020 ...

US Reps Adams and DeFazio Call on Postmaster General to Resign

The legislators say Trump appointee Louis DeJoy is sabotaging the US Postal Service and could harm the election ...

Da 5 Bloods and America Abroad

Even before I returned to the United States from my combat tour in Vietnam, I had decided that we were fighting an unjust war. ...

Falling Behind: COVID, Climate Change, and Chaos

Multiple Crises, Multiple Obstacles ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Judge faces ethics charges over racist, demeaning comments

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — A Pittsburgh judge who allegedly referred to a Black juror as “Aunt Jemima” was accused of misconduct in office Wednesday by the state's entity that investigates and prosecutes judicial wrongdoing.The Judicial Conduct Board complaint alleges that...

Black victims of U-Michigan doc seek equity in settlements

NOVI, Mich. (AP) — Dwight Hicks left New Jersey as a teenager, seeking to take a step toward his NFL dreams by playing football at the University of Michigan.Hicks was willing to do whatever it took to compete in the 1970s and says the price paid included being sexually assaulted by the late...

Editorial Roundup: US

Excerpts from recent editorials in the United States and abroad:___Aug. 11The Los Angles Times on TikTok and WeChat:Even before President Trump signed an executive order that could soon smother social network TikTok, Microsoft emerged as a potential savior for the U.S.-based but Chinese-owned video...

ENTERTAINMENT

American hopes to charm Brits in soccer series 'Ted Lasso'

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Film Review: A teenage political experiment in ‘Boys State’

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Hank Williams Jr., Marty Stuart to join Country Hall of Fame

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Hank Williams Jr., Marty Stuart and songwriter Dean Dillon are the newest inductees to the Country Music Hall of Fame. Announced by the Country Music Association on Wednesday, Williams, who often is referred to as Hank Jr. or the nickname Bocephus, will join his...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

Stocks rebound on Wall Street, S&P 500 trades above record

The S&P 500 briefly traded above its record closing high Wednesday, nearly erasing the last of the historic...

Tear gas at Portland protests raises concern about pollution

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3 dead, 6 in hospital after train derails in Scotland

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China blasts US for Taiwan visit while virus spreads at home

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State Department rejects further probe of diplomat's remarks

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3 dead, 6 in hospital after train derails in Scotland

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By The Skanner News

WASHINGTON (AP) — Talks are under way between the Obama administration and top Egyptian officials on the possible immediate resignation of President Hosni Mubarak and the formation of a military-backed caretaker government that could prepare the country for free and fair elections later this year, U.S. officials say.

With protests in Cairo and other Egyptian cities expected to grow in size and intensity Friday, the administration fears they may erupt into more widespread violence unless the government takes tangible steps to address the protesters' main demand that Mubarak leave office quickly. Creation of an interim government is just one of several possibilities under discussion, the officials said late Thursday.

The officials spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss the sensitive diplomatic talks, which are continuing.

The officials stressed that the United States isn't seeking to impose a solution on Egypt but said the administration had made a judgment that Mubarak has to go soon if there is to be a peaceful resolution to the crisis.

"The president has said that now is the time to begin a peaceful, orderly and meaningful transition, with credible, inclusive negotiations," a White House spokesman, Tommy Vietor, said Thursday night. "We have discussed with the Egyptians a variety of different ways to move that process forward, but all of those decisions must be made by the Egyptian people."

White House and State Department officials would not discuss details of the discussions U.S. officials are having with the Egyptians. Vice President Joe Biden spoke with Egyptian Vice President Omar Suleiman on Thursday, a day after a similar conversation between Suleiman and Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton. Officials said neither Biden nor Clinton made a specific call for Mubarak to resign immediately but pressed for measures that would ease tensions on the streets and set the stage for democratic elections.

An administration official said there is no single plan being discussed with the Egyptians. Rather, the administration is pursuing different ideas with Egyptian figures on how to proceed quickly with a process that includes a broad range of voices and leads to free and fair elections — in essence, different ways to accomplish those goals.

Among those options is a proposal for Mubarak to resign immediately — which the embattled president has refused to do — and for Mubarak to cede power to a transitional government run by Suleiman.

But the official rejected the notion that the White House was trying to impose that idea and said it was not at all clear it would happen. The official spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss internal deliberations.

The discussions come amid escalating violence between pro- and anti-Mubarak forces.

The chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff said Friday the U.S. hasn't raised its military readiness or alert status. Adm. Mike Mullen also said there shouldn't be any rush to terminate military assistance.

Mullen also reinforced Obama's call for a "peaceful, nonviolent transition" and said that decision ultimately must be made by the Egyptian people and their government.

As for U.S. assistance to Egypt, which has averaged about $1.3 billion a year, Mullen said Congress shouldn't move too hastily to cancel the program. Mullen said on ABC's "Good Morning America" he would "caution against doing anything until we know what's really going on."

The United States on Thursday severely criticized what it called systematic attacks on journalists in Egypt and said they appeared to be an attempt to shut out reporting of even bigger anti-government demonstrations to come.

Clinton condemned "in the strongest terms" the pro-government mobs that beat, threatened and intimidated reporters in Cairo.

Attacks as well on peaceful demonstrators, human rights activists, foreigners and diplomats were "unacceptable under any circumstances," she said.

Clinton pointed the finger at Mubarak's government without explicitly blaming the 82-year-old president for the violence. Egypt's government must hold accountable those responsible for the attacks and "must demonstrate its willingness to ensure journalists' ability to report on these events to the people of Egypt and to the world," she said.

Foreign photographers reported attacks by Mubarak supporters near Cairo's Tahrir Square, the scene of vicious battles between Mubarak supporters and protesters demanding he step down after nearly 30 years in power.

The Egyptian government has accused media outlets of being sympathetic to protesters who want Mubarak to quit now rather than complete his term as he has pledged.

White House spokesman Robert Gibbs offered a strong denunciation of reported "systematic targeting" of journalists. He said, "I think we need to be clear that the world is watching the actions that are taking place right now in Egypt."

On Capitol Hill, the Senate approved a non-binding resolution late Thursday urging Mubarak to hand over power to a caretaker government and begin a peaceful transition to a democratic society.

The administration's call for an immediate transition from three decades of authoritarian rule in Egypt has coincided with American hopes that reforms in Jordan and Yemen could stave off similar revolt.

All three countries have experienced instability since protesters in Tunisia chased their leader from power last month.

Separately Thursday, a senior intelligence official said Obama was warned of instability in Egypt "at the end of last year."

CIA official Stephanie O'Sullivan would provide no further detail during an open Senate confirmation hearing to be the deputy director of national intelligence.

The chairwoman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., told The Associated Press that the events "should not have come upon us with the surprise that they did."

She said the Internet's use in organizing demonstrations in Tunisia and Egypt should have provided "much more warning," and that her committee would look into how intelligence agencies performed.

"Was someone looking at what was going on the Internet?" she said.

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