U.S. National Guard troops will begin arriving along the border with Mexico on August 1 to bolster security as the Obama administration tries to stem the flow of illegal immigrants, weapons and narcotics, officials said on July 19. About 300 Customs and Border Protection agents and officers also will be sent to the border region, along with additional helicopters and other surveillance equipment, they said. "The border is more resourced and more secure than it's ever been but the work continues and the challenge remains," said Alan Bersin, commissioner of the Customs and Border Protection agency. The Obama administration has pledged to send up to 1,200 National Guard troops to the area for a year and to seek US$600 million for, among other things, 1,000 new border patrol agents and unmanned aerial detection systems. Violence along the border has been escalating in recent years. Bersin said illegal crossings have begun to fall while seizures of weapons and drugs have risen. … [Read more...] about U.S. troops to arrive at Mexico border
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A machine gun-toting attacker wounded three people on a high-speed train in France on Friday before being overpowered by passengers who included an American soldier. Officials said the attacker was arrested after the shooting when the Amsterdam-to-Paris train stopped at Arras station in northern France. French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve said the French anti-terrorism prosecutor was investigating the incident and that the gunman's motives were not known. The wounded included the U.S. citizen and French actor Jean-Hugues Anglade, Cazeneuve said. Chris Norman, a 62-year-old British consultant, told reporters he had been sitting in the same carriage as the Americans when they heard a shot. "I looked up and saw a guy carrying an AK-47 or at least I assume it was some kind of machine-gun," he said. "It could have been a real carnage, there's no question about that." Alek Skarlatos, a 22-year-old member of the U.S. National Guard from Oregon, said his friend, who is also in … [Read more...] about U.S. soldier wounded helping to overpower gunman on train in France
Sandy, one of the biggest storms to hit the United States, pounded the east coast on Tuesday, flooding large parts of New York City, bringing transport to a halt and interrupting the presidential campaign. … [Read more...] about Floods across New York as Sandy slams into eastern U.S.
WASHINGTON - Two of China's top telecommunications companies may be selling subsidized gear in the United States, and legislation could be proposed to deal with any related national security threat, the head of the U.S. House of Representatives' Intelligence Committee said on Thursday. The committee is investigating what some U.S. officials suspect are close ties between the Chinese government and each of the firms, Huawei Technologies Co Ltd and ZTE Corp. The concern is whether any of their equipment or its software is designed to steal information or "establish the ability to do cyber attacks," panel chairman Mike Rogers said. Many believe that the gear is subsidized "so it can be multiple times cheaper than any local competitor," Rogers told a conference hosted by Bloomberg Government, a subscription web site. Closely held Huawei is the world's second-largest maker of telecommunications equipment after Sweden's Ericsson. ZTE, a Shenzhen, China-based crosstown rival, is the … [Read more...] about China telecom firms may be subsidized: U.S. lawmaker
OKLAHOMA CITY (Reuters) - Dozens of tornadoes tore through parts of Oklahoma, Kansas, Nebraska and Iowa overnight and one twister killed at least five people early on Sunday as storm sirens failed to sound in an Oklahoma town and caught people unaware. Storms skipped across what is often called "Tornado Alley" in the U.S. Central and Southern Plains and more were forecast. But casualties appeared limited because many of the twisters hit sparsely populated areas, and during daylight hours or evening when people were still awake. In Oklahoma, a twister struck the northwest city of Woodward early on Sunday after lightning apparently disabled its storm warning system, Mayor Roscoe Hill said. A total of 29 people were treated at Woodward Regional Hospital, according to chief executive officer Dave Wallace. Of these, five were in critical condition and transferred to other hospitals, while four were admitted to Woodward and are in good condition. Two children died - and one was missing … [Read more...] about At least five dead in Oklahoma as tornadoes pound U.S. Plains