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National
Why is North Korea threatening Guam? 
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Why is North Korea threatening Guam? 

Guam Residents React to North Korea Threat

Why is North Korea threatening Guam? 

Following a warning Tuesday by President Donald Trump to stop threatening the United States, North Korean officials said early Wednesday they were considering using intermediate-range ballistic missiles near Guam, home to strategic U.S. military installations.


North Korea’s military officials said they were “carefully examining the operational plan for making an enveloping fire at the areas around Guam with medium-to-long-range strategic ballistic rocket Hwasong-12,” according to a statement read by the state-run Korean Central News Agency (KCNA).
Why did the North Koreans say they would target Guam, a small island in the South Pacific?
In part, because on Monday night two US B-1 bombers flew from Guam over the Korean peninsula in joint exercises with Japan and South Korea, angering North Korean leaders.

Here’s a look at Guam and the U.S. military installations there.

Why is Guam strategic to the United States?
Guam is a U.S. territory. Everyone born on the island is an American citizen.

How did it become a U.S. territory?
The United States took control of Guam following the Spanish-American War of 1898. The U.S. kept the island until the Japanese attack on December 1941. Japan occupied the island until 1944 when the U.S. took it back. Since then, it has been a U.S. territory.

Where is Guam?
Guam is an island in the western Pacific Ocean. It is about 4,000 miles from Hawaii, and 2,100 miles from Pyongyang, North Korea.

Why is it important as far as the U.S. military is concerned? 
The Joint Region Marianas – the U.S. military command on the island – is made up of two major military installations – Anderson Air Force Base (36th Wing, Air Mobility Command) and Naval Base Guam.
From the Department of Defense:
Andersen Air Force Base (AFB), is located on the north end of Guam, approximately 15 miles from the capital, Agana (or Ha-gan-ya). Andersen AFB is in the village of Yigo (pronounced "Jeego). … The bulk of Andersen's duties since WWII have been as a Strategic Air Command (SAC) base, supporting activities in Korea and Vietnam.
Assignment tours are 24 months for unaccompanied or single service members and 36 months for accompanied service members.
There are 2,334 active duty service members on the base. Four hundred civilians work on the base along with 572 contractors.
Anderson Air Force Base hosts B-52 bombers, B-1B bombers and B-2 bombers in addition to fighter jets.
Naval Base Guam has approximately 6,300 active duty Navy members, and, according to the base’s website:
Naval Base Guam is the home of Commander Naval Forces Marianas, Commander Submarine Squadron 15, Coast Guard Sector Guam and Naval Special Warfare Unit One and supports 28 other tenant commands. It is the home base of three Los Angeles class submarines and to dozens of units operating in support of US Pacific Command, US Pacific Fleet, 7th Fleet and 5th Fleet.

How big is Guam?
The island of Guam is 30 miles long and 4 to 12 miles wide. It is the largest of the Mariana Islands and the largest island in Micronesia

Who lives there?
The indigenous people of the island are the Chamorro. About 40 percent of the population of Guam is Chamorro.

In light of the threat from North Korea, what type of protection does the island have?
In addition to fighter planes, bombers, ships, and submarines, Guam has a Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) system. THAAD is a defense system capable of shooting down an incoming ballistic missile.


 

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Why is North Korea threatening Guam? 

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News

  • The dishwasher that was fired from her job for missing work to attend church was awarded $21 million by a jury in Miami Monday. Marie Jean Pierre had been a dishwasher for 10 years at the Conrad Miami when she was fired in 2016 for “unexcused absences” according to Sun Sentinel. According to WTVJ, her boss fired her after she missed six Sundays to attend church.  >> Read more trending news But when Pierre started at the hotel in 2006 -- it was then managed under Hilton Worldwide and in 2017 became Park Hotels and Resorts -- she told her employer that she could not work on Sundays because of her religious beliefs. In 2015, her kitchen manager George Colon assigned her to work Sunday despite the 2006 request. Despite co-workers swapping with Pierre so she could attend church, Colon eventually insisted that she work on Sunday. He later fired Pierre, according to The Miami Herald. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission issued Pierre a “right to sue” notice according to The Herald, and she then filed a lawsuit.  The 60-year-old mother of six sued Hilton Worldwide claiming it had violated the 1964 Civil Rights Act. Title VII of the act outlaws discrimination that prohibits discrimination by covered employers on the basis of race, color, religion, sex or national origin. The federal jury in Miami ruled in Pierre’s favor Monday, granting her $36,000 for lost wages and $500,000 for emotional anguish. Despite the jury granting her $21 million in punitive damages, The Sun-Sentinel reported Wednesday that punitive damages are capped in federal court and Pierre will likely receive around $500,000. Hilton Worldwide responded following the verdict.  “We are very disappointed by the jury’s verdict, and don’t believe that it is supported by the facts of this case or the law. We intend to appeal, and demonstrate that the Conrad Miami was and remains a welcoming place for all guests and employees,” a spokeswoman told The Sun-Sentinel.  Park Hotels and Resorts, formerly known as Hilton Worldwide is based in Tysons, Virginia.
  • A grand Washington ritual became a potential casualty of the partial government shutdown as House Speaker Nancy Pelosi asked President Donald Trump to postpone his Jan. 29 State of the Union speech. She cited concerns about whether the hobbled government can provide adequate security, but Republicans cast her move as a ploy to deny Trump the stage. In a letter to Trump, Pelosi said that with both the Secret Service and the Homeland Security Department entangled in the shutdown, the president should speak to Congress another time or he should deliver the address in writing. Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen denied anyone's safety is compromised, saying Wednesday that both agencies 'are fully prepared to support and secure the State of the Union.' Trump did not immediately respond to the request and the White House, thrown off guard by the move, had yet to offer any official response hours later. But GOP allies accused Pelosi of playing politics, with Republican Rep. Steve Scalise tweeting that Democrats are 'only interested in obstructing @realDonaldTrump, not governing.' Pelosi, who issued the customary invitation to Trump weeks ago, hit the president in a vulnerable place, as he delights in taking his message to the public and has been preparing for the address for weeks. The uncertainty surrounding the speech also underscored the unraveling of ceremonial norms and niceties in Trump's Washington, with the shutdown in its fourth week, the White House and Democrats in a stalemate and the impasse draining the finances of hundreds of thousands of federal employees. Pelosi left unclear what would happen if Trump insisted on coming despite the welcome mat being pulled away. It takes a joint resolution of the House and Congress to extend the official invitation and set the stage. 'We'll have to have a security evaluation, but that would mean diverting resources,' she told reporters when asked how she would respond if Trump still intended to come. 'I don't know how that could happen.' Pressure on Trump intensified on the 26th day of the shutdown, as lawmakers from both parties scrambled for solutions. At the White House, Trump met a bipartisan group of lawmakers, as well as a group of Republican senators, but progress appeared elusive. While his own advisers said the shutdown was proving a greater drag on the economy than expected, Trump showed no signs of backing off a fight that he views as vital for his core supporters. On Wednesday, Trump signed legislation into law affirming that the roughly 800,000 federal workers who have been going without pay will ultimately be compensated for their lost wages. That was the practice in the past. As he weighs a response to Pelosi, Trump could not go forward with a State of the Union address in Congress without her blessing. Donald Ritchie, former historian of the Senate, said that anytime a president comes to speak, it must be at the request of Congress. Trump could opt to deliver a speech somewhere else, like the Oval Office, but it would not have the same ritualistic heft. Democratic leaders did not ask the Secret Service if the agency would be able to secure the State of the Union event before sending the letter, according to a senior Homeland Security official, who was not authorized to speak publicly. Pelosi's office said Congress is already familiar with the percentage of Secret Service and Homeland Security employees who have been furloughed and working without pay. The Secret Service starts preparing for events like these months in advance. Lawmakers struggled to find a way out of the shutdown Wednesday. Trump is demanding $5.7 billion to build a wall along the Mexican border that he says is needed on humanitarian and security grounds. But Pelosi is refusing money for the wall she views as ineffective and immoral and Democrats say they will discuss border security once the government has reopened. Some expressed little optimism. Sen. Lindsay Graham, a South Carolina Republican who has been working on bipartisan strategies, declared glumly: 'I am running out of ideas.' Trump met a bipartisan group of lawmakers Wednesday that included seven Democrats. Two people who attended the White House meeting agreed it was 'productive,' but could not say to what extent Trump was listening or moved by the conversation. The people, who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss the event candidly, said it seemed at some points as if people were talking past each other. Lawmakers talked about the shutdown's effect on their constituents and advocated for 'border security.' Trump and others on-and-off used the term 'wall.' It was not clear if progress had been made, by those accounts. Meanwhile a group of Republican senators headed to the White House later Wednesday. Many Republicans were unwilling to sign on to a letter led by Graham and Sen. Chris Coons, D-Del., to re-open the government for three weeks while talks continue. 'Does that help the president or does that hurt the president?' asked Sen. Mike Rounds, R-S.D., among those going to the White House. He has not signed the letter. 'If the president saw it as a way to be conciliatory, if he thought it would help, then perhaps it's a good idea,' he said. 'If it's just seen as a weakening of his position, then he probably wouldn't do it.' While Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, said she has signed, others said GOP support was lacking. 'They're a little short on the R side,' said Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., another leader of the effort. The House and Senate announced they are canceling next week's planned recess if shutdown continues, which seemed likely. Some Republicans expressed concerns over the impact of the shutdown and who was getting blamed. Said Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wisc.:'Right now, are you seeing any pressure on Democrats? I think Republicans are getting the lion's share of the pressure.' He added: 'The president accepted the blame so people are happy to give it to him.' ___ For AP's complete coverage of the U.S. government shutdown: https://apnews.com/GovernmentShutdown ___ Associated Press writers Chris Rugaber, Darlene Superville, Matthew Daly, Jonathan Lemire, Alan Fram, Colleen Long, Andrew Taylor, Laurie Kellman, Elana Schor and Ken Sweet contributed to this report
  • Of all the issues at stake as President Donald Trump and Democrats wrangle over his prized border wall, the latest snag is whether bargaining over the proposal should come before or after shuttered government agencies reopen. It sounds like one of those perplexing snits that frustrates Americans and prompts them to blame both parties for Washington's dysfunction. But it's actually a consequential dispute about who'll have leverage, now and later, as the partial shutdown enters its 27th day Thursday, setting a dubious record for duration. If Trump blinks first and temporarily halts the shutdown so negotiators can seek agreement, the White House and some Republicans worry there'll be no incentive pushing Democrats to cut a deal. With 800,000 federal employees back at work and getting paid, why would Democrats agree to provide billions in taxpayer money for a keystone of Trump's presidential campaign that they hate and that he promised repeatedly Mexico would finance? Yet Democrats fear that if they negotiate while the shutdown persists, it would encourage Trump to use such brinkmanship in the future. He'd think the pressure tactic had worked, and he'd have plenty of opportunities to do the same in the near future, they say. Later this year, Congress and Trump will have to renew the government's borrowing authority or face the first federal default, which many believe would batter the economy. By autumn, lawmakers will also need to approve a fresh round of spending bills for next year, providing opportunities for Trump to threaten a new shutdown for whatever issue he deems worth highlighting as his 2020 re-election campaign revs up. The Democrats' No. 2 Senate leader, Dick Durbin of Illinois, likened the situation to a family whose ornery uncle lives upstairs and threatens to turn off the electricity every time they talk about building an addition. 'You say to yourself, 'Am I going to encourage him to shut off the electricity every time there's a family discussion over an issue?'' Durbin said. 'You've got to tell the uncle upstairs, 'That's unacceptable.'' That same desire to maintain leverage is what's helped keep many Republicans on Trump's side. Underscoring that, Sen. Mike Rounds, R-S.D., said Republicans were divided over a proposal by Sens. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., and Chris Coons, D-Del., for a three-week respite from the shutdown while negotiators seek agreement on wall money. Trump has previously spurned the idea. To strike a deal temporarily reopening government, the commitment from Democrats 'would have to be pretty strong to get something done' on the wall, Rounds said. Otherwise, he added about Trump, 'If it's just seen as a weakening of his position, then he probably wouldn't do it.' Graham, who is close to Trump, has been among the most outspoken Republican advocates of temporarily halting the shutdown. 'If you open the government back for a defined period of time, you've lost nothing if you can't reach a deal,' Graham said in an interview. 'I haven't had one Democrat come up to me and say, 'Let's do a deal with the government shut down.' They're all saying, 'There's something we can do, but we just can't do it now. Why? Because if you do it now, they'll shut down the government next year for something else.' I share that sentiment.' Trump is demanding $5.7 billion to build more than 200 miles of his proposed Southwest border wall, and has refused to sign spending bills reopening government lacking that money. Democrats say they won't give him any wall funds but have been willing to provide $1.3 billion for other types of border security, like technology and some physical barriers. Polls this month show more Americans blaming Trump than Democrats for the shutdown, a comfort to Democrats and a concern for a growing number of Senate Republicans including some seeking re-election in 2020 from swing states like Colorado and Maine. But majorities of Republicans polled agree with Trump that there's an immigration crisis at the Mexican border and blame Democrats for the shutdown. That means GOP senators abandon Trump at their own peril. All this helps explain why Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., has refused to force a solution to the standoff. McConnell is known for brokering bipartisan agreements in the past. But ever since Trump walked away from a pre-Christmas deal to avert the shutdown that both parties thought the White House backed, McConnell has said it's up to Trump and congressional Democrats to craft a compromise. McConnell has ruled out sending legislation reopening the government to Trump for a certain veto. Some have mentioned that tactic as a way of letting vulnerable GOP senators demonstrate they want to end the shutdown, but many Republicans have no desire to defy Trump and risk retribution from the president's loyal legion of voters. 'The number of people ready to end the shutdown is a pretty good-sized number,' said Sen. Roy Blunt, R-Mo., a member of his party's Senate leadership. 'But the number of people willing to take actions that they know the president doesn't agree with and won't be successful is a much smaller number, if that number exists at all.
  • The Trump administration will roll out a new strategy for a more aggressive space-based missile defense system to protect against existing threats from North Korea and Iran and counter advanced weapon systems being developed by Russia and China. Details about the administration's Missile Defense Review — the first compiled since 2010 — are expected to be released during President Donald Trump's visit Thursday to the Pentagon with top members of his administration. The new review concludes that in order to adequately protect America, the Pentagon must expand defense technologies in space and use those systems to more quickly detect, track and ultimately defeat incoming missiles. Recognizing the potential concerns surrounding any perceived weaponization of space, the strategy pushes for studies. No testing is mandated, and no final decisions have been made. Specifically, the U.S. is looking at putting a layer of sensors in space to more quickly detect enemy missiles when they are launched, according to a senior administration official, who briefed reporters Wednesday. The U.S. sees space as a critical area for advanced, next-generation capabilities to stay ahead of the threats, said the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity to disclose details of the review before it was released. The administration also plans to study the idea of basing interceptors in space, so the U.S. can strike incoming enemy missiles during the first minutes of flight when the booster engines are still burning. Congress, which ordered this review, already has directed the Pentagon to push harder on this 'boost-phase' approach, but officials want to study the feasibility of the idea and explore ways it could be done. The new strategy is aimed at better defending the U.S. against potential adversaries, such as Russia and China, who have been developing and fielding a much more expansive range of advanced offensive missiles that could threaten America and its allies. The threat is not only coming from traditional cruise and ballistic missiles, but also from hypersonic weapons. For example, Russian President Vladimir Putin unveiled new strategic weapons he claims can't be intercepted. One is a hypersonic glide vehicle, which could fly 20 times faster than the speed of sound and make sharp maneuvers to avoid being detected by missile defense systems. 'Developments in hypersonic propulsion will revolutionize warfare by providing the ability to strike targets more quickly, at greater distances, and with greater firepower,' Lt. Gen. Robert Ashley, director of the Defense Intelligence Agency, told Congress last year. 'China is also developing increasingly sophisticated ballistic missile warheads and hypersonic glide vehicles in an attempt to counter ballistic missile defense systems.' Current U.S. missile defense weapons are based on land and aboard ships. Trump and Vice President Mike Pence have both emphasized space-based capabilities as the next step of missile defense. Senior administration officials earlier signaled their interest in developing and deploying more effective means of detecting and tracking missiles with a constellation of satellites in space that can, for example, use advanced sensors to follow the full path of a hostile missile so that an anti-missile weapon can be directed into its flight path. Any expansion of the scope and cost of missile defenses would compete with other defense priorities, including the billions of extra dollars the Trump administration has committed to spending on a new generation of nuclear weapons. An expansion also would have important implications for American diplomacy, given long-standing Russian hostility to even the most rudimentary U.S. missile defenses and China's worry that longer-range U.S. missile defenses in Asia could undermine Chinese national security. Asked about the implications for Trump's efforts to improve relations with Russia and strike better trade relations with China, the administration official said that the U.S. defense capabilities are purely defensive and that the U.S. has been very upfront with Moscow and Beijing about its missile defense posture. The release of the strategy was postponed last year for unexplained reasons, though it came as Trump was trying to persuade North Korea to give up its nuclear weapons. While the U.S. continues to pursue peace with North Korea, Pyongyang has made threats of nuclear missile attacks against the U.S. and its allies in the past and has worked to improve its ballistic missile technology. It is still considered a serious threat to America. Iran, meanwhile, has continued to develop more sophisticated ballistic missiles, increasing their numbers and their capabilities. ___ Associated Press writer Robert Burns in Washington contributed to this report.
  •  Four people were arrested recently in Osage County, Oklahoma on accusations of trafficking marijuana, but they claimed it was a shipment of hemp. Plenty of people, including some law enforcement officers, don’t know the difference between the two. >> Read more trending news  Chip Paul, an author of State Question 788 that legalized medical marijuana in Oklahoma and the president of Oklahomans for Health, said hemp and marijuana are both cannabis plants and the difference is the level of THC, the chemical compound that produces a high, in each. Federal government regulations define hemp as having 0.3 percent THC. Marijuana naturally produces a higher level of THC. Hemp is grown mainly for industrial purposes and had its governing laws loosened recently by the federal government so more people could transport, work with and access it. Most notably, it is used in the making of cannabidiol, or CBD, oil. Marijuana is still heavily restricted, if not outright illegal, depending on which jurisdiction you are in. >> Trending: Giant, spinning ice disc in Maine river defies explanation, draws crowds Osage County District Attorney Mike Fischer said the alleged hemp confiscated in Pawhuska last week had clear signs under a microscope that it was in fact marijuana. He described hemp as the male version of the plant and marijuana as the female version. 'There were clear male and female differences we could see, and what I saw was clearly what for this story could be classified as female,' Fischer said.
  • Police are investigating a triple shooting in Newton County that left two women dead and a man injured Wednesday night. Channel 2's Matt Johnson confirmed it happened at the intersection of Clark Street and West Street in Covington.  Police confirmed the suspect is in custody. We're working to learn more information and will have the latest developments on Channel 2 Action News This Morning, starting at 4:30 a.m. TRENDING STORIES: Forsyth County man charged with plot to attack White House, FBI says High school football star arrested at school on murder charges 18-year-old college student identified as woman murdered, found in burning car