US prepped for strikes on Iran before approval was withdrawn

first_img(AP) — The United States abruptly called off preparations for a military strike against Iran over the downing of a U.S. surveillance drone, a U.S. official said, while Iran claimed Friday it had issued several warnings before shooting down the drone over what it said was Iranian territory.The Trump administration offered no immediate public account of the thinking behind the last-minute halt in U.S. preparations for retaliation, amid days of escalating tensions between the two countries. A U.S. official, who was not authorized to discuss the operation publicly and spoke on condition of anonymity, said the targets would have included radars and missile batteries.The swift reversal was a stark reminder of the serious risk of military conflict between U.S. and Iranian forces as the Trump administration combines a “maximum pressure” campaign of economic sanctions with a buildup of American forces in the region. As tensions mounted in recent weeks, there have been growing fears that either side could make a dire miscalculation that led to war.On Friday, the head of Iran’s Revolutionary Guard’s aerospace division told Iranian state television that Iran had warned a U.S. military surveillance drone several times before launching a missile at it.Gen. Amir Ali Hajizadeh made the comments standing in front of what Iranian authorities described as pieces of the U.S. Navy RQ-4A Global Hawk drone.Hajizadeh told state TV: “Unfortunately they did not answer.”He added Iran collected the debris from its territorial waters. The U.S. military says that the drone was in international airspace over the Strait of Hormuz when it was shot down.The New York Times separately reported that President Donald Trump had approved the strikes Thursday night, but then called them off. The newspaper cited anonymous senior administration officials.Asked earlier in the day about a U.S. response to the attack, Trump said, “You’ll soon find out.”According to the official who spoke to The Associated Press, the strikes were recommended by the Pentagon and were among the options presented to senior administration officials.It was unclear how far the preparations had gone, but no shots were fired or missiles launched, the official said.The military operation was called off around 7:30 p.m. Washington time, after Trump had spent most of Thursday discussing Iran strategy with top national security advisers and congressional leaders.The downing of the U.S. drone — a huge, unmanned aircraft — over the Strait of Hormuz prompted accusations from the U.S. and Iran about who was the aggressor. Iran insisted the drone violated Iranian airspace; Washington said it had been flying over international waters.Trump’s initial comments on the attack were succinct. He declared in a tweet that “Iran made a very big mistake!” But he also suggested that shooting down the drone — which has a wingspan wider than a Boeing 737 — was a foolish error rather than an intentional escalation, suggesting he may have been looking for some way to avoid a crisis.“I find it hard to believe it was intentional, if you want to know the truth,” Trump said at the White House. “I think that it could have been somebody who was loose and stupid that did it.”Trump, who has said he wants to avoid war and negotiate with Iran over its nuclear ambitions, cast the shootdown as “a new wrinkle … a new fly in the ointment.” Yet he also said “this country will not stand for it, that I can tell you.”He said the American drone was unarmed and unmanned and “clearly over international waters.” It would have “made a big, big difference” if someone had been inside, he said.But fears of open conflict shadowed much of the discourse in Washington. As the day wore on, Trump summoned his top national security advisers and congressional leaders to the White House for an hour-long briefing in the Situation Room. Attendees included Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, national security adviser John Bolton, CIA Director Gina Haspel, Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Joseph Dunford, acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan and Army Secretary Mark Esper, whom Trump has said he’ll nominate as Pentagon chief.Pompeo and Bolton have advocated hardline policies against Iran, but Rep. Adam Schiff, the chairman of the House intelligence committee, said “the president certainly was listening” when congressional leaders at the meeting urged him to be cautious and not escalate the already tense situation.On Capitol Hill, leaders urged caution, and some lawmakers insisted the White House must consult with Congress before taking any actions.House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said no specific options for a U.S. response were presented at the meeting. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said, “The administration is engaged in what I would call measured responses.” And late Thursday, House Republicans on the Foreign Affairs, intelligence and Armed Services committees issued a statement using the same word, saying, “There must be a measured response to these actions.”The Trump administration has been putting increasing economic pressure on Iran for more than a year. It reinstated punishing sanctions following Trump’s decision to pull the U.S. out of an international agreement intended to limit Iran’s nuclear program in exchange for relief from earlier sanctions.Citing Iranian threats, the U.S. recently sent an aircraft carrier to the Persian Gulf region and deployed additional troops alongside the tens of thousands already there. All this has raised fears that a miscalculation or further rise in tensions could push the U.S. and Iran into an open conflict 40 years after Tehran’s Islamic Revolution.The paramilitary Guard, which answers only to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, said it shot down the drone at 4:05 a.m. Thursday when it entered Iranian airspace near the Kouhmobarak district in southern Iran’s Hormozgan province. Kouhmobarak is about 1,200 kilometers (750 miles) southeast of Tehran.Taking issue with the U.S. version of where the attack occurred, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif tweeted that his country had retrieved sections of the military drone “in OUR territorial waters where it was shot down.” He said, “We don’t seek war but will zealously defend our skies, land & waters.”Air Force Lt. Gen. Joseph Guastella, commander of U.S. Central Command air forces in the region, disputed that contention, telling reporters that the aircraft was 34 kilometers (21 miles) from the nearest Iranian territory and flying at high altitude when struck by a surface-to-air missile. The U.S. military has not commented on the mission of the remotely piloted aircraft that can fly higher than 10 miles in altitude and stay in the air for over 24 hours at a time.“This attack is an attempt to disrupt our ability to monitor the area following recent threats to international shipping and free flow of commerce,” he said.Late Thursday, the Federal Aviation Administration barred American-registered aircraft from flying over parts of the Persian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman and several major airlines from around the world on Friday began rerouting their flights to avoid the area, including British Airways, Australia’s Qantas, Germany’s Lufthansa and the Dutch carrier KLM.Democratic leaders in particular urged the president to work with U.S. allies and stressed the need for caution to avoid any unintended escalation.Sen. Chuck Schumer of New York said he told Trump that conflicts have a way of escalating and “we’re worried that he and the administration may bumble into a war.”last_img read more

Known Issues wiki: LANDesk, MS ConfigMgr, Remote BIOS update, and more.

first_imgLANDesk* 8.8 SP2 console requires repeated deletion of two directories when provisioning Failure of collection-based power control in Microsoft* SCCM SP1Intel® MEBX, Web UI, and remote admin passwords are not automatically synchronizedTips on ME firmware updatesWrong IP address for Intel ME on Lenovo M58p using HypervisorIntel(R) AMT does not allow multiple simultaneous commandsNeed to set LANDesk* root certificate as trusted certificateIntel(R) SCS is only supported on English versions of Windows* Server 2008Usage of Locally Administered Address on Intel® Active Management Technology enabled systems Here’s a compilation of some of the issues that were added in the last few months to the Known Issues, Best Practices, and Workarounds wiki:last_img

Add child helpline number DCPCR tells Delhi Metro

first_imgNew Delhi: The Delhi Commission for Protection of Child Rights (DCPCR) has written to Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) to display the children helpline number 1098 in the metro premises which will help in curbing the problem of missing children.The letter accessed by Millennium Post was written by DCPCR chairperson Ramesh Negi which states the DMRC has put up notices on hoardings in the Delhi Metro premises, to make the general public aware about the helplines available to them. But the child helpline number is absent from the listed helplines available. Also Read – After eight years, businessman arrested for kidnap & murder”The commission request you to add the helpline number 1098 for the general public and add the announcement of the same in metro premises,” further reads the letter. Ramesh Negi told this newspaper that their main concern is to curb the cases of missing children for which they have approached different modes of transports. Explaining the need of the helpline number in Metro premises, Jyoti Duhan Rathee, DCPCR member said that in many cases children got separated from their parents during Metro journey. Through the helpline number, the family can trace their kids at the Metro stations. “The kids can also contact the helpline if they face any problem,” added Jyoti. According to Delhi Police data in just 74 days, around 1,177 cases of missing children registered in the city. Police sources told Millennium Post that up to March 15, as many as 585 kids were traced whereas 592 still missing.last_img read more

Ruchi Soya lenders to vote on Patanjalis Rs 4350crore offer

first_imgNew Delhi: Lenders of debt-ridden Ruchi Soya will vote on April 30 to decide on Baba Ramdev-led Patanjali Ayurved’s revised Rs 4,350 crore bid for the edible oil firm, sources said. Patanjali, the lone player left in contention after the exit of Adani Wilmar, had last month increased its bid value by around Rs 200 crore to Rs 4,350 crore for the Madhya Pradesh-based Ruchi Soya. This excludes capital infusion of Rs 1,700 crore into the company. Sources said the Committee of Creditors (CoC) met on Friday to discuss the revised bid of Patanjali and decided to conduct the voting process on April 30. Ruchi Soya Industries owes around Rs 9,345 crore to financial creditors and another Rs 2,750 crore to operational creditors. In December 2017, the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) had referred Ruchi Soya for insolvency proceedings on the application of financial creditors Standard Chartered Bank and DBS Bank.last_img read more

Sensex tanks 487 pts as trade jitters take a toll

first_imgMumbai: Markets wilted under selling pressure for the sixth straight day Wednesday as investor sentiment remained grim amid US-China trade tensions and declining foreign fund inflows. The 30-share BSE Sensex plunged 487.50 points, or 1.27 per cent, to end at 37,789.13; while the broader NSE Nifty sank 138.45 points, or 1,20 per cent, to 11,359.45. According to traders, domestic equities tracked weakness in global markets, which have been rattled ever since US President Donald Trump on Sunday threatened to hike tariffs on USD 200 billion worth of Chinese goods this week. Also Read – Commercial vehicle sales to remain subdued in current fiscal: Icra The recent flare-up in tensions between the world’s two top economies has sent investors scurrying to safe-haven assets like bonds, gold and the Japanese yen. A depreciating rupee, mixed corporate earnings and caution ahead of the elections outcome added to the gloom, analysts added. Index heavyweight Reliance Industries was the biggest loser in the Sensex pack, skidding 3.35 per cent, followed by Bajaj Finance, Tata Motors, Bajaj Auto, SBI and Vedanta. Also Read – Ashok Leyland stock tanks over 5 pc as co plans to suspend production for up to 15 days HDFC twins, Sun Pharma, NTPC, Yes Bank and IndusInd Bank were among the other laggards. Only Asian Paints, HCL Tech and TCS ended in the green, rising up to 0.60 per cent. “The domestic markets have been on the decline for the last two days mainly due to the flare up in the US-China trade war. A lack of an agreement between the two economies could hurt global growth in the near term. “Q4FY19 earnings season so far has mainly been lackluster. Also, the ongoing general elections have kept major market participants cautious. FIIs, which have been supporting the market through their inflows, have turned sellers in the past few days. Expect markets to remain volatile until elections results (May 23rd),” said Hemang Jani, Head – Advisory, Sharekhan by BNP Paribas. All sectoral indices on BSE ended in the red, led by energy, realty, utilities, oil and gas, finance, bankex, healthcare, telecom and teck, which tumbled up to 2.51 per cent. The broader BSE smallcap and midcap indices too ended lower by up to 1.21 per cent. Foreign institutional investors (FIIs) sold shares worth a net Rs 645.08 crore on Tuesday, while domestic institutional investors (DIIs) purchased equities to the tune of Rs 818.84 crore, provisional data available with stock exchanges showed. Other Asian bourses ended significantly lower following weak Chinese trade data. The Shanghai Composite Index declined 1.12 per cent, Hang Seng 1.23 per cent, Nikkei 1.46 per cent and Kospi 0.41 per cent. European stocks were trading on a mixed note in early trade. The Indian rupee depreciated 19 paise to 69.59 against the US dollar intra-day. Global benchmark Brent crude was trading 0.41 per cent lower at USD 69.59 per barrel.last_img read more

Iraqi army launches operation in Ramadi

first_imgBaghdad – The Iraqi army launched a major operation Sunday on the crisis-hit city of Ramadi, swathes of which have for weeks been controlled by anti-government fighters, officials said.Troops were backed by helicopter cover and imposed a ban on movement within the city, military spokesman Mohammed al-Askari told state television.A police lieutenant colonel in Ramadi city, speaking on condition of anonymity, confirmed the operation had begun. “The Iraqi army launched a large operation with helicopter cover against Daash, Al-Qaeda and terrorists in Ramadi,” Askari said, according to Iraqiya TV, referring to terms frequently used by Iraqi security forces to describe militants.The police officer said those taking part in the operation included policemen, tribal fighters, and SWAT forces. He said helicopters were also firing on targets in the sprawling militant-held Malaab neighbourhood in the centre of the city.An AFP journalist confirmed seeing helicopters firing on targets in Malaab.last_img read more

Another Way To Measure The NFLs Fastest Teams And More Evidence It

Madden ratings are, of course, subjective at their core, which makes them a matter of fierce debate each year — as you would expect to be the case when fans’ favorite players are put on trial using an arbitrary scoring system. By contrast, 40 times are objective and allow for absolute comparisons (mostly), but the only publicly available versions come from a player’s rookie year, which doesn’t necessarily offer a snapshot of how fast a player is later in his career.In other words, there’s no perfect way to measure team speed. But there is a mild correlation, -0.31, between the Madden method and Barnwell’s process (the correlation is negative because Barnwell summed all the players’ 40 times, meaning higher is slower). And the two approaches share conclusions. Like Barnwell hinted at in his piece, speed isn’t necessarily associated with good offenses. I found a negative correlation between a team’s “Madden speed” and its offensive Simple Rating System (SRS) score from last season. (If you’re curious, defense had a very slight positive correlation with speed.)And here’s the twist: In terms of overall team quality (as measured by winning percentage, where the correlation to speed was a paltry -0.056, or SRS, where it was -0.082), how good a team was bore essentially no relationship to how fast its players were. For instance, while the league’s three fastest rosters — Kansas City, Philadelphia and Seattle — had good seasons in 2013, Nos. 4 and 5 on the speed list — Washington and Houston — each won fewer than 20 percent of their games.Looking at the whole league, it appears Al Davis’s all-consuming obsession with team speed was misguided. In 2013 at least, the speed of a roster was completely incidental to how well a team performed. Last week, Grantland’s Bill Barnwell put together a method to determine the fastest (and slowest) teams in the NFL, aggregating the combine and pro day 40-yard dash times for each team’s starting offensive skill players and secondary. It’s a clever way to address the nebulous question of “team speed,” but it made me wonder about alternative ways to quantify which teams are the fastest.My idea? Use the player “speed” ratings from EA Sports’ “Madden NFL 15” video game and compute the team average for every 2013 NFL roster, weighted by each individual player’s Approximate Value (Pro-Football-Reference’s attempt to generate a single numerical value representing the quality of any player’s season, regardless of position).By that method of computation, here were the fastest and slowest teams from a year ago: read more

The Warriors Arent A SmallBall Team Anymore

PlayoffsWith Pachulia or McGee733852.1 Without Pachulia or McGee561933.9 ATTEMPTEDMADEPCT. It’s no secret that the Warriors’ shooting was down this season. After shooting 41.6 percent from 3 as a team last season, they put up 38.3 percent this season. A lot of that is tied to Curry reverting to merely great shooting from the heights of his MVP form, along with a down year from Green and the Warriors simply having fewer above-average shooters this season. But those downturns weren’t just random variance — they seemed to coincide with when Pachulia and McGee weren’t on the floor.Among all Golden State lineups that played at least 50 minutes, six shot 40 percent or better from 3. Five of them included Pachulia or McGee, and the sixth was a bench unit with David West playing center. The difference in the postseason has been even more stark: Of lineups that have played at least 15 minutes, only two are better than 35 percent: the starters at 51.7 percent, and a McGee lineup at 53.8.If we look at just the core four players — again, Curry, Durant, Thompson and Green — the effect appears to be even larger. When Pachulia was on the floor with those four during the regular season, they shot 43.7 percent from 3; when they played with any other player, they shot 39.1 percent. In the playoffs, that gap has increased to 51.7 percent when playing with Pachulia and 37.7 when playing with anyone else. For McGee, the regular season saw the core four shoot 49.5 percent from deep with him and 40.4 without him. In the playoffs, those numbers got further apart, at 53.8 percent and 43.1. The postseason sample sizes may not be huge, but the trend is consistent.So why do two players who don’t shoot 3s have such a profound effect on the Warriors’ outside shooting? Mostly it’s the screening. The Warriors set a massive number of screens away from the ball to free up shooters. Having dedicated screeners like Pachulia or McGee (or, last season, Bogut) helps keep things flowing; it helps doubly when the screeners care more about impeding the defender than they do about obeying the letter of the league’s illegal screen laws (Pachulia ranked third in the league this season in offensive fouls per minute). But that’s not the only way to affect shot quality.You’ll recognize the first play above, in which Pachulia uses first an extended leg and then his extended hindquarters to slow the defender long enough for Durant to get off a clean look.The effect is more subtle in the second play, where Pachulia runs a quick screen with Curry as they cross half court. Damian Lillard goes with Pachulia in the open court, because trying to chase Curry over a screen in semi-transition is pointless. Al-Farouq Aminu rotates to help because Pachulia-on-Lillard is too big a size mismatch to ignore, especially if Zaza is plodding toward the block. In turn, this leaves Green wide open for a 3.True, the Warriors could have created a similar shot with Iguodala on the court, but the thing that’s remarkable about this play is how natural it is. The space created isn’t a result of cutting or screening but simply standing where it makes sense to stand and letting the defense react. Having the true big on the court doesn’t just make getting the shot possible, it makes it simple.It could be that this is all arguing that drawing a distinction between Golden State’s best and second-best lineups isn’t particularly useful, that the Warriors are so talented that even their less-effective versions can overcome the Cavaliers. But if the series tightens up, and a moment comes when Golden State needs to summon its very best, don’t be surprised if the five guys on the court include the kind of center that past Warriors teams seemed intent on destroying. Because this season, that’s who’s brought out their best. 3-POINT SHOTS For lineups that include Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, Kevin Durant and Draymond GreenSource: nba.com Without Pachulia or McGee2277934.8 The Warriors’ core four shoot best with a true center The space between the Golden State Warriors team of last season and the one running through teams this postseason may seem to cover the 1,600 miles of I-40 that separate Oklahoma City from Oakland. But slotting former Thunder star Kevin Durant into a 73-win team suited to his precise talents has done more than simply stack talent on talent, emphasizing the Warriors’ zippy, speedy style. It has also fundamentally altered the best version of the best team in the league.A season ago, the Warriors’ final form was the Death Lineup, the unstoppable regiment that put Steph Curry and Klay Thompson on the floor with their sixth man Andre Iguodala, a shooter/defender in Harrison Barnes, and a 6-foot-7 Swiss Army knife center in Draymond Green. The Death Lineup played fast, moved the ball and rained fire from 3-point range. During the regular season, it outscored opponents by a colossal 47 points per 100 possessions (in 172 minutes), setting a totally absurd standard of play. The starting lineup, which had Andrew Bogut at center, outscored opponents by “only” 13.2 points per 100. For a variety of reasons, the league caught up to that version of the Warriors in the playoffs, but the thought coming into this season was that the soul of those Warriors would remain about the same — that they’d thrive most while running and gunning in the newly formed Megadeath Lineup, which replaced Barnes with Durant.Durant has delivered on the hype: The Warriors have trounced the league with him in the lineup (and, when they’ve had to, without him), and Durant’s personal stats are among the best in his career. He posted career bests in rebound rate and true shooting percentage this year, and he has played the sort of defense we only ever saw in flashes when he was with the Thunder. But what often goes unnoticed is the fact that the most successful lineups the Warriors run out are no longer groups of small-ball kneebreakers, but ones that feature traditional centers doing traditional center things.Golden State’s Megadeath Lineup has played well — if not as effectively as last year’s small-ball configuration — but it hasn’t been the team’s best lineup, in either the regular season or the playoffs. Instead, the Warriors seem to be at their best when their four best players are joined by a big, either starter Zaza Pachulia or backup center JaVale McGee. Despite his smaller role, McGee was part of one of the two five-man lineups that played at least 50 minutes in the regular season and outperformed the Megadeath Lineup.1The Megadeath Lineup posted a net rating of 23.9 in 224 minutes and was outperformed by lineups featuring the four core guys plus McGee (32.1 net rating in 126 minutes) and the starting lineup with Iguodala in place of Durant (36.3 net rating in 54 minutes).The same has more or less held true in the postseason, with the starters playing extremely well (32.6 net rating) and the lineup featuring McGee continuing to outpace the small-ball crew by about a point and a half (22.7 net rating vs. 21.1). This has little to do with the scoring or even defending contributions of Pachulia and McGee; rather, it’s that these two seem to improve the team’s play by bolstering the core element of the Warriors’ offense: 3-point shooting. Regular seasonWith Pachulia or McGee47521344.8% read more

Can names his demands at Liverpool

first_imgEmre Can has told Liverpool that he wants a release clause inserted into his any potential new deal at the club, claims the Daily MirrorThe German midfielder is out of contract at the end of the season and has yet to agree on any kind of renewal with head coach Jurgen Klopp having previously admitted that Can is likely holding out for a more lucrative deal.While it is understood that the 24-year-old remains open to the possibility of extending his stay at Liverpool, Can is adamant that he wants a release clause inserted into any new contract that he may sign.But, aside from Roberto Firmino, the Merseyside club have normally refrained from including such clauses into player’s contracts and would prefer to avoid allowing it due to the fear that Can’s teammates will then likely start to make similar demands.rb leipzig, bayern munichReport: Bayern are held by Leipzig George Patchias – September 14, 2019 Bayern Munich was held to another draw, this time by RB Leipzig.Bayern Munich finds themselves in the unfamiliar position of sitting third in the…Previously Can was of interest for Juventus with their CEO Giuseppe Marotta having admitted that the Serie A giants were interested in recruiting the Germany international for next season.But due to Can’s hesitance to make a final decision, it is believed that Juventus’ interest has cooled of late with Bayern Munich now rumoured to be interested in the Liverpool playerlast_img read more

Andre Silva Portugal were the better team

first_imgAndre Silva insists Portugal were the better side after scoring the only goal in their 1-0 victory against Italy on Monday night.The UEFA Nations League match between Portugal and Italy in Lisbon was decided by An Andre Silva second-half goal.Bruma played a vital role in the build-up of the goal as he squared the ball to Andre Silva, who beat Donnarumma with a shot into the left corner of the net in the 48th minute.“We were expecting a strong Italy performance, but we were up to it and did well to neutralise them,” Silva told RTP.Cristiano Ronaldo, JuventusSerie A Betting: Match-day 3 Stuart Heath – September 14, 2019 Considering there is a number of perfect starts so early in the Serie A season, as well as a few surprisingly not-so perfect ones….“I have some friends in the Italian national team, but there are no friends on the pitch. I have to focus only on getting the victory for Portugal.“I did think that overall we were the better team on the night and deserved the win.”Italy’s next match in the UEFA Nations League comes next month when they travel to Poland.last_img read more