TL;DR – TOP 10 STORIES FOR THE WEEK

  1. North Dakota Access Pipeline construction stalled
  2. Jill Stein’s recounts not doing anything significant
  3. Neo-McCarthyist nonsense spreading through U.S.
  4. Italian PM resigns after votes on constitution reform
  5. Merkel re-elected leader of Germany
  6. Turkish bombs kill or injure almost 200
  7. Syrian civil war continues
  8. South Korean president impeached
  9. Earthquake kills over 100 in Indonesia
  10. Eleven countries agree to scale back oil production, aligning with OPEC

Further information and more stories:

UNITED STATES

“Native Americans and their supporters expressed cautious optimism Monday after the US Army nixed plans for a controversial oil pipeline crossing in North Dakota… the decision marks a win for the months-long protest movement that stood its ground even as the freezing winter set in…” (AFP)

“John Herschel Glenn, Jr.—an astronaut, fighter pilot, and U.S. senator who is best known for being the first American to orbit the planet—died on Thursday at age 95.” (NG)

“A federal judge who ordered Michigan to begin its recount effectively ended it on Wednesday, tying his decision to a state court ruling that found Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein had no legal standing to request another look at ballots. The ruling seals Republican Donald Trump’s narrow electoral victory over Democrat Hillary Clinton in Michigan.” (WSJ)

The CIA appeared to “secretly” accuse Russia of influencing American elections, but it’s more likely that shoddy reporting from mainstream media invented headlines on the topic. The U.S. intelligence community has yet to produce evidence of Russian involvement in American politics.

Europe

“Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi has resigned after suffering a heavy defeat in a referendum over his plan to reform the constitution.” (BBC)

“Far-right candidate Norbert Hofer has lost Austria’s presidential election…. Although the post is ceremonial in Austria, the poll had been seen as a sign of how well populist candidates might do elsewhere in Europe.” (BBC)

“Chancellor Angela Merkel won a new term Tuesday as the leader of Germany’s main conservative party after stressing her determination to prevent a repeat of last year’s huge migrant influx….” (AP) The win was a surprise to some, considering that Merkel’s approval rating was at a 5-year low.

“A train carrying liquid petroleum gas has derailed and exploded in Bulgaria, killing at least five people. More than 20 people are being treated in hospital with burns and other injuries after the incident…” (BBC)

turkey

“Turkey’s ruling party is to submit a bill to parliament on Saturday expanding the powers of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, a move supporters believe will streamline the political system but opponents fear will lead to one-man rule.” (AFP)

“Two explosions near a football stadium in the heart of Turkey’s biggest city, Istanbul, have killed 29 people and injured 166… The explosions, believed to be a car bomb and a suicide bomb, targeted police officers, officials say.” (BBC)

syria

“Two hundred additional American special operations troops are headed to Syria to help Syrian Kurdish and Arabic forces fighting ISIS…. The troop increase will bring the total number of U.S. troops in Syria to 500.” (ABC)

“Syria’s army has suspended combat operations in eastern Aleppo…. The move is to allow for the evacuation of [about 8,000] civilians trapped in the battle zone. … Government forces have retaken 75% of east Aleppo in recent weeks – areas rebels had controlled for four years.” (BBC)

South korea

“Protesters demanding that South Korean President Park Geun-hye step down marched on Saturday for a seventh straight weekend, a day after parliament voted overwhelmingly to impeach her and put the fate of her presidency in the hands of a nine-judge court.” (Reuters)

indonesia

“Indonesian police on Saturday arrested four people suspected to be plotting a bomb attack on the capital.” (CNA)

“More than 100 people were killed early Wednesday and more were feared dead after a powerful earthquake struck the Indonesian island of Sumatra… [the quake] had a preliminary magnitude of 6.5, according to the United States Geological Survey.” (NYT)

Science, technology, & space

“Eleven countries agreed on Saturday to cut their oil output, teaming up with the OPEC cartel in an exceptional bid to end the world’s glut of crude and reverse a dramatic fall in income.” (AFP)

“NASA’s Cassini spacecraft grazed Saturn’s iconic rings Sunday, performing the first plunge of the long-lived mission’s next-to-last phase.” (SA)

“The tail of a 99-million-year-old dinosaur, including bones, soft tissue, and even feathers, has been found preserved in amber… this is the first time that scientists are able to clearly associate well-preserved feathers with a dinosaur, and in turn gain a better understanding of the evolution and structure of dinosaur feathers.” (NG)