- Gentlemen, start your drones: Judge’s ruling opens door for commercial use
- Soldier who hid, bragged about not saluting flag to be punished — in secret
- ‘Maverick’ of the seas: ‘Top Gun’ school for U.S. ship officers to launch
- Putin declares Sochi Paralympics open amid Ukrainian protest
- ‘In Jesus name, we pray’ sparks ire at Ohio council meeting
- Navy’s first laser weapon ready for prime time; drone killer to deploy this summer
- Billionaire backer: Rick Santorum ‘needs to be heard’ in 2016
- Obamacare fallout: 49 percent pessimistic; 45 percent ‘scared’
- DHS accused of holding U.S. citizen at airport, using emails to pry into her sex life
- Seattle socialist: Minimum-wage discussion skewed by ‘right-wing’ GAO analysis
The Wrap: From Lois Lerner’s incriminating emails to eagle-killing wind farms, the week that was
Emails released to the public by a House committee show that the IRS specifically targeted tea party groups, and thousands of motorcyclists descended upon the nation's capital to pay tribute to the the victims of 9/11.
On the international stage, Russia President Vladimir Putin took to American press to chastise President Obama, and Coptic Christians were forced to pay a tax to the Muslim Brotherhood because of their faith.
Here's a recap of the week that was from The Washington Times.
• Emails show IRS’ Lois Lerner specifically targeted tea party
Lois G. Lerner, the woman at the center of the Internal Revenue Service scandal over special scrutiny of conservative groups, specifically targeted tea party applications and directed that they be held up in 2011 in order to come up with an agency policy, according to several of Ms. Lerner’s emails released by a House committee Thursday.
In one 2011 email, Ms. Lerner specifically calls the tea party applications for tax-exempt status problematic, which seems to counter Democrats’ arguments that tea party groups weren’t targeted.
“Tea Party Matter very dangerous,” Ms. Lerner wrote in the 2011 email, saying that those applications could end up being the “vehicle to go to court” to get more clarity on a 2010 Supreme Court ruling on campaign finance rules.
• Pledge of Allegiance skipped, Muslim poem read at Boston school on 9/11
The principal of Concord Carlisle High School in Boston issued an apology Wednesday after a Muslim poem was recited over the intercom on the 12th anniversary of 9/11, and the Pledge of Allegiance was not.
According to principal Peter Badalament, a “small number” of people were outraged at the poem, which was meant to promote “cross-cultural understanding,” Boston.com reported. Apparently, the Pledge of Allegiance was not read because of some confusion.
• Obamacare has been amended or delayed 19 times: study
President Obama has already signed 14 laws that amend, rescind or otherwise change parts of his health care law, and he’s taken five independent steps to delay the Affordable Care Act on his own, according to a new report from the Congressional Research Service, released Wednesday.
The release comes as congressional Republicans are pushing for a halt or outright repeal of the whole law, and as Mr. Obama and his allies decry that as a waste of time and an effort to undermine his signature political achievement. CRS, in the report to Sen.
Tom Coburn, said all sides have already agreed to 14 laws that changed parts of Obamacare, though they were usually minor changes or clarifications.
• Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood to Coptic Christians: Convert to Islam, or pay ‘jizya’ tax
The Muslim Brotherhood and its supporters have began forcing the roughly 15,000 Christian Copts of Dalga village in Egypt to pay a jizya tax as indicated in Koran 9:29, author and translator Raymond Ibrahim reported on Sunday.
Jizya is the money, or tribute, “that conquered non-Muslims historically had to pay to their Islamic overlords ‘with willing submission and while feeling themselves subdued’ to safeguard their existence,” Mr. Ibrahim explained.
• Muslim rally vastly outnumbered by bikers, counterprotesters
A few dozen demonstrators attending a rally on the Mall once billed as the Million Muslim March were vastly outnumbered Wednesday by a Christian group objecting to their event and a counterprotest consisting of motorcycle riders honoring Sept. 11 victims.
The noon rally, called the Million American March Against Fear took place between 13th and 14th streets in Northwest and was sponsored by the American Muslim Political Action Committee.
Speakers — among them author and Princeton University professor Cornel West — struck mainstream themes, calling for social justice for Muslims while promoting peace and condemning violence. Attendees also held a moment of silence to honor Sept. 11 victims.
• Colorado voters deal blow to gun control with stunning recall of 2 Democrats
DENVER — A Rocky Mountain earthquake in the form of Tuesday’s successful recall drives targeting two prominent Democrats who advocate gun control has shifted the state and national political landscape going into the 2014 elections.
The shocking defeat Tuesday night of two state lawmakers in Colorado’s first-ever legislative recall election despite a 7-1 spending advantage by gun control proponents represented a double blow for Democrats. It could hobble the party’s political dominance in the state and reshape the political debate over gun laws nationally in the 2014 midterm elections.
Senate President John Morse and state Sen. Angela Giron lost their seats despite massive outside help from gun control forces, led by New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg.
• Eagle slaughter: Wind farms kill 67 eagles in 5 years
WASHINGTON — Wind energy facilities have killed at least 67 golden and bald eagles in the last five years, but the figure could be much higher, according to a new scientific study by government biologists.
The research represents one of the first tallies of eagle deaths attributed to the nation’s growing wind energy industry, which has been a pillar of President Barack Obama’s plans to reduce the pollution blamed for global warming. Wind power releases no air pollution.
• As Syria talks with Russia, Obama’s ‘red line’ starts to fade
President Obama’s “red line” vow of action against Syria turned a lighter shade of pink Thursday, with Secretary of State John F. Kerry saying a U.S. military strike “might” be necessary if talks led by Russia fail to compel Syria to turn over its chemical weapons.
As negotiators met in Switzerland on the unfolding crisis, Mr. Kerry appeared to concede the diplomatic reins to the Russians, who are insisting that the U.S. withdraw its threat of missile strikes before the regime of Syrian President Bashar Assad agrees to give up its chemical weapons stockpile.
• Putin sends message to America: You are not exceptional
Russian President Vladimir Putin's barely subtle message to America — that we are hardly exceptional — as relayed in an op-ed on The New York Times' website has sparked some serious fire, including a reaction from a senator who said the piece nearly made him vomit.
Mr. Putin wrote the Wednesday op-ed in response to President Obama's address to the nation on Syria, during which he said America's motivation to act on behalf of ailing nations is "what makes us exceptional."
• New popemobile? Pope Francis gets 1984 Renault 4 with a stick shift
VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis now has his own mini popemobile after getting a good deal on a used car that he plans to drive himself. Vatican spokesman, the Rev. Ciro Benedettini, says Francis accepted the 1984 Renault 4, donated for free by a priest in northern Italy who used it to visit poor parishioners.
The four-door car, in papal white, is manual shift and has a new engine. Benedettini told The AP on Wednesday: “The pope intends to drive it.”
• James Woods on Obama: He’s the ‘gift from hell’
It’s a safe bet there’s no love lost between Hollywood actor James Woods and President Obama — the former has taken to Twitter several times over the last few months to trash the policies and politics of the latter.
The latest came this week, in response to a report from British press that revealed the National Security Agency commonly provides Israel with intelligence data — without first stripping out private and personal information on American citizens. The Guardian in London reported the item, the latest in its coverage of document leaks from Edward Snowden.
Mr. Woods unleashed his views of the matter — and of Mr. Obama’s role in allowing the practice to occur — on Twitter.
He wrote: “Report: Data on Americans shared with Israel … Obama: the gift from hell that keeps on giving.”
© Copyright 2014 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
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