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Author: Mary Chastain

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Mary Chastain

Mary is the resident libertarian. She covers stories in every vertical, but her favorite thing to do is take on the media. She saw its bias against the right when she was a socialist.

Mary loves the Chicago Cubs, Chicago Blackhawks, tennis, cats, Oxford comma, Diet Coke, and needlework.

New developments keep popping up with the terrorist attack in Orlando, FL, that left 49 dead and over 50 injured. This is what we know so far. Leslie wrote a post with the names of the victims and some stories about them. Our thoughts and prayers stay with them and their families during this hard time. We also wish a speedy recovery to the injured. Omar Mateen murdered those 49 people at Pulse, a popular gay club, as he pledged allegiance to the Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL). The terrorist group has taken advantage of this and used his image in their latest recruitment ad, but no evidence exists that that Mateen ever communicated with the group. Officials discovered that Mateen watched numerous ISIS beheadings online. One official told CNN that the terrorist "consumed a hell of a lot of jihadist propaganda." He even wrote on Facebook about his allegiance to ISIS during his attack:
“I pledge my alliance to (ISIS leader) abu bakr al Baghdadi..may Allah accept me,” Mateen wrote in one post early Sunday morning. “The real muslims will never accept the filthy ways of the west” …“You kill innocent women and children by doing us airstrikes..now taste the Islamic state vengeance.”

The Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL) has released a video called "Orlando Attack" that celebrates Omar Mateen and the murder of 49 people at Pulse in Orlando, FL. Mateen called 911 and pledged allegiance to the terrorist group before he opened fire at the popular gay club. ISIS praised the terrorist:
"One of Islamic State's lions, set out to restore the glory of the Ummah and avenge the death of Muslims. He shook the head of kufr America, terrorized it and shed its blood. He is Omar Mateen."

Sources have told NBC News that Omar Mateen's wife may face charges because she knew he wanted to carry out a terrorist attack and never told authorities. Noor Zahi Salman told the FBI that Mateen "assured her he was simply going to see friends, although she believed he was actually planning to unleash terror at the Pulse nightclub." She once drove him to the club, a one to two hour drive from their home in St. Lucie, "to scope it out." She also went with him to buy "ammunition and a holster." But now, though, officials have no evidence that she "ever called police to warn them that she believed Mateen was planning an attack."

Qatar has released a Dutch woman after holding her for three months because she had the nerve to be raped and report it. Blunt, but true. This is life for women who live under Sharia law. The woman only known as Laura reported her rape to officials, but they in turn arrested her for adultery because she had sex outside of marriage:
The woman, on a vacation with a friend, went out for drinks at a hotel bar in the Qatari capital in mid-March, lawyer Brian Lokollo previously told The Associated Press. While at the bar, she believes someone “messed with her drink” and her memory became hazy, Lokollo said. She later awoke alone, her clothes torn and the victim of a rape, he said. She was immediately detained after reporting the attack, Lokollo said. She previously appeared three times in court, he said.

Equality Florida's GoFundMe campaign has raised more than $3 million to help the victims and families from the pulse gay club massacre. Over 69,000 people have contributed, including a $100,000 donation from the company:
"We are beyond moved by the support from all corners of the world and all walks of life," Equality Florida wrote. "We do not know the total costs for the victims of this horrific hate crime, therefore are working to raise as much as possible and disperse the funds as fast as possible."

Russian government hackers have attacked the Democrat National Committee (DNC) and stole their research on presumptive GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump. The attack went on for over a year. DNC officials and security experts said the hackers read emails and chat traffic. They believe they did not gain access to donor's private information, leading them to call it "traditional espionage" and not "criminal hackers." From The Washington Post:
“It’s the job of every foreign intelligence service to collect intelligence against their adversaries,” said Shawn Henry, president of CrowdStrike, the cyber firm called in to handle the DNC breach and a former head of the FBI’s cyber division. He noted that it is extremely difficult for a civilian organization to protect itself from a skilled and determined state such as Russia. “We’re perceived as an adversary of Russia,” he said. “Their job when they wake up every day is to gather intelligence against the policies, practices and strategies of the U.S. government. There are a variety of ways. [Hacking] is one of the more valuable because it gives you a treasure trove of information.”

Sources have said radical Islamic group Abu Sayyaf have beheaded Canadian hostage Robert Hall since they did not receive an $8 million ransom. The group murdered Canadian John Ridsdel in April. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau condemned the executions:
"With the tragic loss of two Canadians, I want to reiterate that terrorist hostage-takings only fuel more violence and instability. Canada will not give into their fear-mongering tactics and despicable attitude toward the suffering of others," Trudeau said in a statement. "This is precisely why the government of Canada will not and cannot pay ransoms for hostages to terrorists groups."

The biggest supporters of Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro's programs have turned against him since they now suffer from the food shortages affecting the rest of the country. Party officials stressed to The London Times that Maduro's distribution system has "broken down and that conditions are ripe for civil war." He hoped the system would end the long lines "and black marketeers at state-subsidised supermarkets." Riots have exploded in these areas:
What is striking is that the riots — sometimes half a dozen a day in the capital — are in working-class slums far from the middle-class areas where support for the opposition has traditionally been strongest. The opposition, which controls congress, is trying to push through a referendum to remove Mr Maduro but that will take time and hungry people are more concerned about procuring food. To put an end to the vast queues and black marketeers the government recently started distributing food directly to local community councils. In an area of Antímano, one of the largest slums, a council spokeswoman said that the first delivery was supposed to arrive in April but only half of it arrived. To avoid riots — and accusations that it had stolen the missing food bags — the council did not give out any supplies. Last month none arrived. This month’s supply has still not come and now there is no food in the supermarkets either.

Omar Mateen's former coworker has told the media that the murderer regularly made homophobic and racist remarks, but was never fired because he was Muslim. Mateen murdered 49 people at a popular Orlando gay club on Saturday. Daniel Gilroy worked with Mateen at "G4S Security at the PGA Village complex in Port St. Lucie." He told Florida Today that he complained to the company about Mateen's numerous homophobic and racist comments. He claims they never did anything "because he was Muslim." Gilroy quit when Mateen did not stop sending him 20 to 30 text messages and 13 to 15 phone messages everyday:
"Everything he said was toxic," Gilroy told the paper, "and the company wouldn't do anything. This guy was unhinged and unstable. He talked of killing people."

Omar Mateen's father Seddique claimed his son's religion had nothing to do with him killing 50 people at a popular gay club in Orlando. But videos show that Seddique supports the Taliban in his native Afghanistan. Seddique hosted a show called the Durand Jirga Show on Payam-e-Afghan, "which broadcasts from California." He then posted some videos from the show on his YouTube Channel, but has not done that for over a year. The Washington Post found that the "phone number and post office box displayed on the show were traced back to the Mateen home in Florida." He also posted a video of him as Afghanistan's president on his Facebook page, Provisional Government of Afghanistan - Seddique Mateen. He posted this only hours before his son opened fire at Pulse:
"I order national army, national police and intelligence department to immediately imprison Karzai, Ashraf Ghani, Zalmay Khalilzad, Atmar, and Sayyaf. They are against our countrymen, and against our homeland," he says, while dressed in army fatigues.

Details continue to emerge about Omar Mateen, the man who murdered 50 people and injured over 50 more at Pulse, a popular gay club in Orlando, FL. NBC News has reported that Mateen called 911 right before he committed the massacre. Officials told reporter Pete Williams that Mateen told the operators he "pledged allegiance to Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi." One law enforcement agent told CNN that the FBI opened "two cases on Mateen in the past," but they could not find "evidence to charge him with anything." They placed him on their radar as a possible Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL) sympathizer:
In response to a question to whether the shooter may have had a connection to radical Islamic terrorism, FBI Assistant Special Agent in Charge Ronald Hopper said investigators are "looking into all angles right now." "We do have suggestions that that individual may have leanings toward that particular ideology but we can't say definitively," Hopper said.

Riot police had to break up a huge clash between England and Russia fans only hours before the countries met at Euro 2016. The violence left a 51-year-old England supporter fighting for his life. Pictures show him on the "ground with blood pouring from a head wound while a French police officer tried to revive him." https://twitter.com/DailyMailUK/status/741721515239059456 The attacks occurred in France's port city of Marseille at 3PM local time. It took the police four years to disperse the crowd.

Gawker Media filed for bankruptcy protection due to the $140 million verdict to Hulk Hogan after they published a video of him having sex with his best friend's wife. I saw people celebrating the bankruptcy news, but this action allows Gawker to delay any payment to Hogan. The bankruptcy also allows the company "to continue operating and paying its staff" with a $22 million loan. The Chapter 11 bankruptcy claim actually puts Gawker under federal protection so they can reorganize and pay their debts:
Under Chapter 11, a debtor can restructure its finances through a plan of reorganization approved by the bankruptcy court. By reducing obligations and modifying payment terms, a Chapter 11 plan can help a debtor balance its income and expenses, regain profitability, and continue in operation. Under Chapter 11, a debtor also can sell some or all of its assets so it can downsize its business if necessary or pay down claims that it owes.
The company "listed estimated assets of $50 million to $100 million and liabilities of $100 million to $500 million." Gawker includes Deadspin and Jezebel.

Over 200 people attended WWII veteran Serina Vine's funeral after word spread on social media she did not have any living relatives. Vine passed away on May 21 at the Community Living Center in DC. Only a few people planned to attend the funeral, but that changed when Army Mj. Jaspen Boothe received a message on Facebook and retired Marine William Jones organized the funeral:
Army Maj. Jaspen Boothe, who addressed the crowd in a dress and combat boots, said she received a Facebook message Friday stating just four people had RSVP’d for the funeral. So she reached out to various organizations to tell them about the woman she described as homeless but not hopeless. She said Vine was her sister because both swore to defend the Constitution. “We are all a testament to what we do when we are called to honor our fellow brothers and sisters,” said Boothe. She is president of the nonprofit Final Salute Inc., which assists homeless female veterans. Boothe, who is now in the Army Reserve, said she was homeless for about a year in 2006.

White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest labeled the investigation into then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's emails as "criminal." From Fox News:
“That's why the president, when discussing this issue in each stage, has reiterated his commitment to this principle that any criminal investigation should be conducted independent of any sort of political interference,” Earnest said.
Fox News had asked Earnest if President Barack Obama's endorsement for Clinton for president "might apply pressure to investigators assigned" to her case.

President Barack Obama has endorsed Hillary Clinton for president after meeting with her opponent Sen. Bernie Sanders at the White House. https://twitter.com/HillaryClinton/status/740964361552941056 Clinton declared a victory in the Democratic primary on Tuesday after she won primaries in California, New Jersey, New Mexico, and South Dakota. The Associated Press announced she clinched after she captured the Puerto Rico primary, which propelled her to 2,383 delegates.

Anders Kompass, who worked as director of field operations at the UN human rights office, has resigned after the organization did not hold senior officials accountable for human rights abuses. The UN suspended Kompass after he leaked a report that said French troops sexually abused children in the Central African Republic. However, the UN never took action and Kompass decided "he could no longer work for an organisation with no accountability." From The Guardian:
“The complete impunity for those who have been found to have, in various degrees, abused their authority, together with the unwillingness of the hierarchy to express any regrets for the way they acted towards me sadly confirms that lack of accountability is entrenched in the United Nations. This makes it impossible for me to continue working there.”

Two gunmen allegedly dressed as Orthodox Jews killed four people at the Sarona Market in Tel Aviv, Israel, on Wednesday. The police managed to shoot and disarm the gunmen. Three people remain in critical condition while four others have serious injuries. Police have not confirmed if the gunmen dressed as Orthodox Jews as one eyewitness claimed. https://twitter.com/Conflicts/status/740643767129116672
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