Congress passes resolution honoring captain Phillips

first_imgThe US House of Representatives passed a resolution Wednesday morning honoring Captain Richard Phillips of Underhill, his crewmembers aboard the Maersk Alabama and the United States Navy personnel who secured his release.The resolution was authored US Representative Peter Welch and was cosponsored by 87 Members of Congress. It passed on a voice vote. Captain Phillips acted bravely and selflessly in the face of extraordinary danger, putting his own life at risk to protect his crewmembers. Like all Vermonters, I am tremendously relieved that Captain Phillips has returned home safely to his family in Underhill, Welch said. We owe an enormous debt of gratitude to the United States Navy for its quick, effective and heroic rescue of Captain Phillips.A similar resolution was expected to be introduced in the Senate Wednesday by Sens. Patrick Leahy and Bernie Sanders.Welch s comments on the floor of the House can be viewed by clicking here. Text of the resolution, H.Res. 339, is below:111th CONGRESS1st SessionH.RES. 339Expressing the sense of the United States House of Representatives regarding the hijacking of the Maersk Alabama, the kidnapping of Captain Richard Phillips by Somali pirates, the rescue of Captain Phillips by United States Navy SEALs and the crews of the USS Bainbridge, USS Boxer,  USS Halyburton and Patrol Squadron (VP) 8 and for other purposes.ResolutionExpressing the sense of the United States House of Representatives regarding the hijacking of the Maersk Alabama, the kidnapping of Captain Richard Phillips by Somali pirates, the rescue of Captain Phillips by United States Navy SEALs and the crews of the USS Bainbridge, USS Boxer,  USS Halyburton and Patrol Squadron (VP) 8 and for other purposes.Whereas on April 8, 2009, a group of armed Somali pirates hijacked the Norfolk, Virginia-based Maersk Alabama, a U.S. flagged cargo ship;Whereas this attack represents the first such attack on a U.S. flagged vessel in modern history;Whereas Captain Richard Phillips of Underhill, Vermont, commander of the Maersk Alabama, graduated from the Massachusetts Maritime Academy and has over 20 years of maritime experience;Whereas Captain Phillips and the crew of the Maersk Alabama were delivering a life-sustaining USAID shipment of over 8,000 metric tons of food aid to Kenya, Somalia, and Uganda when the ship came under pirate attack;Whereas the crew of the Maersk Alabama overpowered one of the pirate attackers, and Captain Phillips offered himself up in return for the safe release of his crew and ship;Whereas four pirates then fled with Captain Phillips to an 18-foot lifeboat;Whereas the United States Fifth Fleet immediately dispatched Maritime Patrol (P-3) Aircraft to locate and positively identify and monitor the Maersk Alabama to vector the closest U.S. Navy ship to the scene;Whereas the United States Navy destroyer USS Bainbridge, which had been patrolling the region due to increased pirate activities, arrived on the scene;Whereas the USS Bainbridge, under the command of U.S. Navy Commander Frank Castellano, monitored the conditions on the lifeboat and prevented the pirates from escaping;Whereas Commander Castellano served as the on-the-scene coordinator for the combined rescue efforts of the State Department, Federal Bureau of Investigation hostage negotiators, and the U.S. Navy;Whereas U.S. Navy SEALs quickly deployed to the scene;Whereas, while being held by pirates, Captain Phillips attempted a daring escape, diving into the ocean and trying to swim to safety before being recaptured;Whereas the pirates held Captain Phillips at gunpoint for 5 days;Whereas the Navy SEALs once again demonstrated their extraordinary bravery, skill, and professionalism in rescuing Captain Phillips;Whereas the USS Halyburton assisted the USS Bainbridge with the rescue operation, by skillfully ensuring that the pirates were blocked in their attempt to reach the Somali coast;Whereas the USS Boxer assisted in the rescue operation by standing by to provide immediate medical support, which was thankfully not needed in this operation.Resolved, that the United States House of Representatives—Commends the crew of the Maersk Alabama and Captain Phillips, who selflessly placed himself in harm s way to protect his crew;Recognizes the United States Navy, the crews of the USS Bainbridge, Boxer, Halyburton, and Patrol Squadron (VP) 8 for their role in the rescue;Congratulates the Navy SEALs on the scene for their decisive action that resulted in the rescue of Captain Phillips; andJoins all Americans in expressing great relief that the crew has returned home safely.last_img read more

5 tropical cyclones are in the Atlantic at the same time for only the second time in history

first_imgFor the second time in history there are five active tropical cyclones at the same time.The only other time there were five active tropical cyclones — hurricane, tropical storm and/or tropical depression — in the Atlantic was in 1971.The five systems are Hurricane Paulette, Tropical Storm Sally, Tropical Storm Teddy, Tropical Storm Vicky, and Tropical Depression Rene.Hurricane Paulette is currently moving away from Bermuda, hurricane conditions are still impacting the island. Strong winds, storm surge and very heavy rainfall will likely continue all the way through the afternoon.Tropical Depression Rene, which had once been a tropical storm this past weekend, will continue to weaken as it tracks through the central Atlantic Ocean. This storm is not expected to impact any land and is also forecast to dissipate within the next two days.Tropical Storm Sally is currently heading northwest through the Gulf of Mexico. Mandatory evacuations are already underway for low-lying areas along the Gulf Coast.Tropical Storm Teddy is currently in the central Atlantic, well over 1,000 miles east of the Lesser Antilles. Teddy is expected to strengthen to a hurricane over the next few days. If this occurs, Teddy will be the eighth hurricane of this year’s Atlantic Hurricane Season, behind Sally. Sally is forecast to become a hurricane later in the day Monday, according to the NHC.By the end of the week Teddy is forecast to become a major hurricane (Category 3 or higher) as it approaches Bermuda. It is too early to tell at this time whether it will directly hit Bermuda, but given the current track it will be something to watch in the coming days.Tropical Storm Vicky is currently over the eastern Atlantic, just a few hundred miles west of the Cabo Verde Islands. Vicky is the earliest 20th Atlantic named storm on record, breaking the previous record set by Tammy on October 5, 2005.Vicky is expected to encounter unfavorable conditions in the next couple of days, which will limit its growth and intensification by Tuesday.“The cyclone is expected to degenerate into a remnant low by Tuesday night, and then dissipate over water on Friday, if not sooner,” the NHC said in their forecast discussion.last_img read more

Friendship with Emery will survive derby outcome, says Pochettino

first_img“I called Unai who was in Spartak Moscow and said, ‘Thank you very much for recommending me’. I chose to stay at Espanyol at the time,” said the Argentinian. “I am loyal.”“You need to ask him (why he recommended me), I didn’t ask why. You need to say thank you and be grateful when a colleague — and after someone who became a very good friend (does that).“It’s not usual that a manager recommends another manager when he leaves the club.”Pocchetino will have his work cut out on Sunday. Tottenham have not won away at Arsenal since 2010 and that 3-2 win remains Spurs’ only win at the Gunners in their last 25 meetings. Share on: WhatsApp London, United Kingdom | AFP | Tottenham Hotspur manager Mauricio Pochettino is not going to let the north London derby clash on Sunday affect his friendship with Arsenal boss Unai Emery.The two old friends will meet for the first time in the Premier League with third-placed Spurs three points better off than the Gunners.Pochettino is especially touched by the memory of Emery, who at 47 is a year older then the Tottenham boss, recommending he replace him at Valencia when the latter left for Spartak Moscow in 2012.Pochettino declined the offer, preferring to remain at the less prestigious La Liga outfit Espanyol, and insists that their roles at the head of such big rivals will not affect their friendship.“The opposite I think,” said Pochettino “Of course we are in different clubs and it is a derby we are going to play.“In the moment we are going to compete, we are going to try to find the way to beat each other but before and after the game (we are) always very good friends.”Pochettino, who has garnered much praise for the style his young team play although they are yet to win any silverware in his four years in charge, says he is still moved by Emery’s generous gesture.last_img read more

Team named to target Costa Ballena success

first_img3 Dec 2015 Team named to target Costa Ballena success Six players from the England men’s A squad will bid to regain the trophy in the Costa Ballena International Quadrangular Tournament in Spain on January 20-22. They are: Ben Amor of Wiltshire (image © Leaderboard Photography), Will Enefer of Shropshire & Herefordshire, Scott Gregory of Hampshire, Josh Hilleard of Somerset, Will Whiteoak of Yorkshire and Andrew Wilson of Durham. The Costa Ballena competition is played on a round robin basis against teams from Finland, Germany and the hosts, Spain. England won the tournament in 2014 and were only beaten in a title decider on the final day last year. The players: Ben Amor, 20, (Marlborough) was in England’s winning Costa Ballena team in 2014. Last season he was runner up in the Darwin Salver and led the southern qualifiers for the Brabazon Trophy, where he went on to finish 15th. Will Enefer, 18, (Wrekin) represented England in the Boys’ Home Internationals.  He was runner-up in the German boys’ amateur and had eight top ten finishes in the 2015 season. Scott Gregory, 21, (Corhampton) was in last year’s Costa Ballena team. He was third on the England Golf men’s order of merit with results including fourth place in the European Amateur and second in the Lagonda Trophy. Josh Hilleard, 20, (Farrington Park) was fourth on the men’s order of merit after a season in which he was top qualifier at the English amateur and won both the Midlands amateur and North of England Youths. Will Whiteoak, 21, (Shipley) won the Tillman Trophy and led the northern qualifiers for the Brabazon Trophy, alongside a number of top 20 finishes.  Andrew Wilson, 21, (Wynyard) was runner-up in the North of England Youths and was 10th in the French amateur stroke play.last_img read more


first_imgBILL NEAL :10 Hello…Too Sweet Bar and Grill…“You stab-um we’ll slab-um!” Who! Yeah wait, hold on a minute.Yo Johnny tell Pacquiao he’s wanted on the phone, some dude named “Mayweather.” I don’t know where he’s at, he was over there shooting pool with Oscar De La Hoya. Ask Lou. Hey Lou…Lou…tell Pac that Floyd Mayweather’s on the phone…he says he’s got some thunder and lighting for him. Huh? Ok, ok I’ll tell him. Hey Bobby…Lou said Pac went running out the back door, said something about picking up “Victor Ortiz” and they ain’t never coming back !!! :09 Here’s what I want to know. Why are you acting all surprised? I told you three months ago that Cam Newton was going to be a superstar. But you wanted to listen to “them.” Don’t you see, “they” didn’t want him to succeed because his dad tried to get him paid under the table when he was in college. Look you can’t be the winner he was…on all levels… and not continue to be a winner. High School Champion, Jr. College National Champion, NCAA Division I Champion and MVP…c’mon man!!!:08 By now you’ve heard that Pitt, Syracuse and probably Connecticut are all jumping to the ACC Conference. That’s ok, it’s all about the money so there’s nothing we can do. But a long time friend and successful Coach Howard Bullard offered we may go to the NCAA Basketball Finals in New York at the Garden. I am not so sure about going down to North Carolina!!! But you can count on a great BB Tournament in the ACC and a much better football conference:07 Oh by the way the Pitt Football Team is joining the East Liberty-Garfield Football Conference…Let’s hope they can win there. I am not so sure. Those Garfield boys are tough.:06 Yes Little Billy the real Pittsburgh Steelers did stand up. And they will continue to stand tall and tough all the way to the Super Bowl, take it to the bank! And so that you know, Warren Sapp was rippin’ our legendary defense because Hines Ward won “Dancing With The Stars” and his fat ass got sent packin!!! But yes Little Billy it was the Seattle Seahawks afterall!:05 Listen, if you weren’t at Vince Neal’s birthday party all I can say is too bad…you missed it mmmmaaannn! It was all that. I mean a real old school showcase including a DJ that actually remembers that James Brown was the Godfather of Soul for a reason and not afraid to play “Atomic Dog” and “The Electric Slide” just because they’ve been played a million times. Play that funky music “Dee-Jay Hollywood.” Beautiful women, all the fellas, and the “free” food and drinks didn’t hurt either (oh shut up, you know some of ya’ll was there for the free stuff) and the shout-out of the week to my long time friend Barb from back in the day. Thanks for all you did! Speaking of food and I was, J.T.’s brought the ribs and fixins and it was top of the line. An in case you thought “The Kid” lost his step, me and my girl Coach Karen Hall got the party started. And to my “fast dance” partner…girl you got skills…if you can hang with me fast dancin’ you got skills…I am just saying. (Ya’ll know, ya’ll know I can roll, you seen it for years, fast dancin’ is my thing…man!!):04 By the way if you want to have fun listening to someone report football to you, Mike Ditka’s the man. No one does it better, hardcore, straight, to the point and with that “if you don’t like it so what” attitude. And yes, I will meet you outside in the parking lot…just say the word, “make my day!”:03 Big shout-out to one of my early mentors and long time community leaders Mr. Curt Hefflin. Don’t forget he was one of the front runners that helped open a lot of doors we walk through today. And while we’re at it let’s take a moment and remember the great ones, the legends that took no nonsense and put their lives on the line for us. •Nate Smith •Tim Stevens •Luther Sewell •Harvey Adams •Byrd Brown •Dr. Lloyd Bell •Bowie Hayden •Mrs. Alma Fox •Bob Pitts •Rev. Duane Darkins.:02 Pittsburgh, big week coming up. Summer ain’t over…Summer ain’t over!! So get ready here we come. •The Champions Labor Day Mixed Doubles Celebrity Tennis Tournament–Saturday, Sept. 24–Highland Park Tennis Courts Lower Level, Stanton Avenue–Registration 11:00 a.m., Tournament starts at 12 p.m.–1st, 2nd, 3rd Place Trophies, Free T-Shirt–All Talent Levels Welcome-$10 Donation Benefits Champions Toys for Tots–Spectators welcomed-co-assisted by the Highland Park Tennis Club- Donna Bey and Jim Qigley directors-Call The Champions for more information 412-628-4856.•Champions/End of Summer Car Cruise and Show–Sun. Sept. 25-Taco Bell Rt. 22. in Monroeville, Miracle Mile Shopping Center—Light Rain or Shine–2-7 p.m., (Steelers play late at Indy, 8 p.m. Kick-Off) – $100 for Best Car In Show, Trophies for Best Vett, Best Bike, Best Truck, Best SUV, Best Import, Best Classic and Best Road Car–If it rolls it’s welcome–Spectators encouraged-$5 Donation Benefits Champions Toys for Tots–Call the Champions for info 412-628-4856. And yes Richard Portis, The Diamond Models will be there!!•Coming up in a minute “The New Old School First Fridays” continues at the Club Health and Fitness Center in Monroeville (up the hill behind K-Mart in the Mall)–D.J. Mean Gee on the sounds – 8 p.m. Line Dancin get’s started, Par-Tay until 2 a.m.–Cash Bar, Cash Kitchen–Introducing The New Diamond Models–Prizes, Surprises, 50/50–Bring your party to our Par-Tay–Vendors on site, bring your credit cards and “extra money”–30 and over, ID required – $10 Donation Benefits Champions Toys for Tots–Call The Champions for information 412-628-4856.:01 At the Vince Neal Celebration I had the great pleasure of sitting with some of Pittsburgh’s greatest ever b-ballers, Jarrett “J.D.”…Jarrett “the Jewel” Durham, Terrence Taylor, Leroy Freeman and “Jumpin’ Joe” Barlow. All I have to do on that team is pass the ball and get out the way! (But don’t get it twisted, I can shoot the ball!).“DOUBLE OVERTIME”:00 We’ve got a beautiful new Target in our community, (not our hood…we need to stop with that hood stuff, we live in a community just like “they” do) Let’s all protect it, take care of it and let’s all be responsible for it and the rebuilding will keep coming. And that my people you can “Take To The Bank!”~ Game Over ~last_img read more

First-half latest: Everton 0 Chelsea 0 – Chelsea make steady start

first_imgChelsea made a steady start to a feisty FA Cup quarter-final lacking early chances.Everton played a high-tempo pressing game from the start, but Chelsea stayed solid defensively and Kenedy had the best opportunity.The Brazilian shot over after a fine run and clever interchange of passes with Pedro.Diego Costa, starting up front despite a hip injury which saw him come off in the Champions League defeat against Paris St-Germain, was booked early on following a tussle with Gareth Barry.Eden Hazard was left out of the squad but captain John Terry was included on the bench following injury.Everton: Robles; Coleman, Funes Mori, Jagielka, Baines; Cleverley, Barry; Lennon, McCarthy, Barkley; Lukaku.Subs: Howard, Stones, Niasse, Besic, Osman, Deulofeu, Kone.Chelsea: Courtois; Azpilicueta, Cahill, Ivanovic, Kenedy; Mikel, Matic; Willian, Fabregas, Pedro; Costa. Subs: Begovic, Baba, Terry, Loftus-Cheek, Oscar, Traore, Remy.Follow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebooklast_img read more

Sharks’ Tomas Hertl shines in Game 5 win over Golden Knights

first_imgSAN JOSE — This was the moment that had everyone inside SAP Center holding their breath.The Sharks, holding a two-goal lead in the third period of Game 5 against the Vegas Golden Knights, just saw Jon Marchessault score a power play goal to cut the difference to one. The Golden Knights are a team that knows how to capitalize on opportunities, and the Sharks knew their opponents would work to create more.Less than a minute later, William Karlsson picked up a loose puck in the neutral zone and …last_img

Obama’s visit to strengthen United States ties to East Africa

first_imgAs US President Barack Obama makes an official visit to Kenya and Ethiopia next week, the two East African nations will have a chance to use the media spotlight to showcase the investment opportunities they offer. The US, in turn, could also gain from the trip. US President Barack Obama waves from the podium at a ceremony to mark the end of his visit to the West African nation of Ghana in 2009. Obama’s trip to Ethiopia and Kenya in late July will be his second official visit to African countries in eight years of presidency. (Image: White House)Scott Firsing, Monash UniversityOn Monday, after seeing off Nigerian President Muhammad Buhari, US President Barack Obama will make his way to Africa. He will become the first American president to make an official visit to each of the East African nations of Ethiopia and Kenya.All four countries – Nigeria, Kenya, Ethiopia and the US – could reap rewards from Obama’s historic trip. So too could the broader community of nations in the African Union.Beneficial economic partnershipsThere are many similarities between East African neighbours Kenya and Ethiopia, and their economic relations with the US. Both could benefit from the Africa Growth and Opportunity Act and have huge trade imbalances in favour of the US.In 2014, US-Kenyan trade was US$2.2-billion. American exports to Kenya made up US$1.64-billion of this. The Ethiopian numbers are similar. American exports to Ethiopia were US$1.67-billion in 2014 with US importing only around US$207-million worth of goods from Ethiopia.The US mostly exports aircraft, machinery and agricultural products to the two East African countries. In return, they export mainly coffee, tea and apparel. American investment into the countries focuses on commerce, light manufacturing and tourism.Both countries must use the media spotlight of Obama’s visit to showcase their investment opportunities. Ethiopia, for instance, can ride the momentum of recently being named the world’s best tourist destination by Europe’s key tourism body. Tourism contributed an estimated 4.5% to its GDP last year, which equates to nearly one million jobs and more than US$2-billion in revenue.Kenya can use the spotlight to show international investors it is one of the best African emerging economies to invest in. Its attractions are infrastructure development, a stable political and macroeconomic environment and a stronger services sector compared with other African economies that are largely focused on commodities.Ethiopia and Kenya have big plans for the future. Ethiopia has its growth and transformation plan, while the Kenyan government aims to become a newly industrialising, middle-income country by following its Vision 2030.Powering AfricaKenya and Ethiopia both need more electricity to expand their industries and to diversify into new ones for these plans to succeed. In addition to being beneficiaries of the US’s Feed the Future global food security initiative, both have benefited greatly from Power Africa launched during Obama’s South African visit in 2013.The Eastern Africa Power Pool, established in 2005 to foster interconnectivity between the power systems of the members countries of the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA), will soon turn Ethiopia – where it is based – into a renewable energy powerhouse. The country has an abundant amount of renewable energy resources from hydro to wind and solar. But it has minimal experience in such projects and is getting much-needed assistance from the US government as well as American companies.In Kenya, Power Africa provides financing, grants, technical assistance and investment promotion. The goal is to mobilise over US$1 billion in private investment for geothermal and wind projects.In total, around 600-million people – 70% of the population of sub-Saharan Africa – are without electricity. The US government has committed US$7-billion to combat this problem and has helped raise more than US$20-billion in private capital from more than 100 private sector partners.Promoting peace and stabilityEthiopia and Kenya both face challenges when it comes to domestic and regional peace and security and have been working with Washington to overcome the problem. They are long-term partners with the US military through the Africa contingency operations training and assistance programme, one of the most successful long-term American programmes on the continent. Ethiopia joined in 1998, Kenya in 2000.America’s security efforts focus on peacekeeping and preventing conflict, strengthening the security sector of its African partners, and countering terrorism and other international threats to the US. Ethiopia and Kenya support this by contributing to UN and AU peacekeeping missions.Ethiopia is continuously in the top five of countries that contribute to UN missions. It has 8141 personnel in UN missions, with Kenya contributing 956. The country also hosts the international peace training centre in Nairobi.Addis Ababa and Nairobi both allow the US military to operate from inside their borders. The Arba Minch Airport in Ethiopia hosts Reaper flights for the fight against al-Shabaab in Somalia. The US military also has a base in Manda Bay, Kenya, which serves as an all-purpose location. The Pentagon, specifically the US Navy, recently paid to upgrade the runway.The future of US-African Union relationsThe relationship between the US government and the AU continues to expand under the framework agreed in 2013. Last year, an amendment was signed to increase funding.Specifically, the partnership focuses on accelerating the implementation of policies and programmes set out in the AU’s strategic 2014-2017 plan. This includes growing areas of partnership in youth, vocational education and higher education.The AU also has bold plans for the future and has set out priorities for the continent for the next 50 years in agriculture, education, economics and health. The ambitious plan includes a continental free-trade agreement, a customs union and infrastructure for a full regional trade agreement between Africa and the US.Steps are being taken in the right direction. The AU recently formed an African centre for disease control modelled on America’s centre based in Atlanta.Nevertheless, the AU is terribly underfunded. The AU budget was approximately US$300-million in 2013 and US$425-million in 2014. On average, 33% is raised from AU member states and the rest is sourced from international and development partners such as the UN, European Union and US.Expect a large monetary donation announcement during Obama’s speech at AU headquarters in Addis Ababa, a building funded and built by the Chinese. The US wants to see improvements in the AU so that African nations can deliver regional peace and security. In the end, Africa also has to invest the necessary resources if the continent is going to rise as many predict it will.This article was originally published by The Conversation. Read the original article.last_img read more