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Published: Wednesday, October 07, 2015 @ 9:08 AM
Updated: Wednesday, October 07, 2015 @ 9:14 AM
Terrorists drive nice trucks, U.S. counter-terrorism officials have noticed.
Countless news videos and social media posts show Islamic State (ISIS) terrorists driving around in what appear to be new Toyota trucks.
The U.S. has asked Toyota to explain how hundreds, if not thousands, of the ubiquitous white pickups ended up in enemy hands.
ABC News tells us “Toyota Hilux pickups, an overseas model similar to the Toyota Tacoma, and Toyota Land Cruisers have become fixtures in videos of the ISIS campaign in Iraq, Syria and Libya, with their truck beds loaded with heavy weapons and cabs jammed with terrorists.”
The videos must make for effective propaganda. Thousands of Americans and Europeans are trying to travel to the Middle East to join ISIS.
Toyota says it does not know how ISIS obtained the vehicles, but is trying to assist the Terror Financing unit of the U.S. Treasury Department in its investigation.
One possibility is that they were captured or stolen.
Videos released this summer show ISIS insurgents using former U.S. militarized vehicles to parade bodies of their enemies around.
It is believed about 2,300 militarized Humvees were lost by Iraqi forces during one battle this year.
It’s not just trucks. The Iraqi military loses a lot of weapons too. Reuters reports ISIS captured at least 40 M1A1 main battle tanks, 74,000 machine guns, and as many as 52 M198 howitzer mobile gun systems.
A U.S. general says “ISIS has captured thousands of American-supplied vehicles. So both sides travel in the same vehicles and use the same weapons.”
Published: Sunday, January 21, 2018 @ 2:27 PM
— The flag-bearer from Tonga who walked shirtless in the opening ceremony of the 2016 Olympics will need to pack some warm shirts for the South Korean games.
Saying that “a miracle happened,” Pita Taufatofua qualified for the Pyeongchang Olympics in cross-country skiing Saturday, The Wall Street Journal reported. Taufatofua had failed in two previous attempts to qualify for the Winter Olympics, but on Saturday, he met the standards in five races to qualify, ESPN reported.
“I gave it absolutely everything,” he told the Journal. “I died at the end.”
Taufatofua qualified in taekwondo at the Rio de Janeiro Games, ESPN reported. He was eliminated in his first bout.
Published: Monday, January 15, 2018 @ 2:16 PM
— A phone app that claimed it was an effective digital contraceptive is now under fire after dozens of women who said they used the app became pregnant.
Natural Cycles was certified as a birth control method in the European Union last year.
It would help woman keep track of body temperature to predict when women could become pregnant when not using traditional forms of birth control, the Evening Standard reported. It was promoted as an alternative to birth control pills and researchers believed in the results after they found it was up to 99 percent effective, the newspaper reported last year.
Now a Swedish hospital is casting doubts on the method after it has reported dozens of unwanted pregnancies from users over the past few months, The Daily Mail reported.
The app is popular in Europe where users went from 5,000 in 2016 to 125,000 in 2017.
And while there have been reports of unplanned pregnancies, the company markets Natural Cycles told the Daily Mail, “No contraception is 100 percent and unwanted pregnancies is an unfortunate risk with any contraception.”
Company officials said that the number that the hospital was reporting, 37 unplanned pregnancies out of 668 users, is within the 93 percent risk communicated to consumers, the Daily Mail reported.
Published: Saturday, January 20, 2018 @ 11:34 PM
— A 12-year-old boy from Michigan who vomited during dinner one night, went to an urgent care facility the next night and had a flu test come back negative tragically died the very next morning.
Michael Messenger’s family can’t believe how quickly their world was turned upside-down, losing a son and a brother who had been so full of life in just a matter of days.
The timeline of Messenger’s symptoms, evaluation and death has his mother Jessica Decent-Doll urging other parents not to wait if they see signs of flu.
“Don’t wait, it’s all I can say. This flu or whatever is going around this year is unbelievably dangerous,” she told the Times Herald.
12-year-old Michael Messenger died last week after having flu-like symptoms for a few days. https://t.co/ILoR9h5vva— USA TODAY (@USATODAY) January 17, 2018
Messenger vomited during dinner Jan. 9, was taken to an urgent care the next evening where he was cleared for flu and administered anti-nausea medication and was found unresponsive at home in bed the morning of Jan. 11.
An hour and a half later, he was declared dead at a hospital.
Decent-Doll said her son’s vital signs were deemed normal at the urgent care center and that the family was advised to give him fluids.
DEADLY FLU WARNINGS: The death of 12-year-old Michael Messenger of Clay Township, Michigan, of flu-like symptoms after a rapid flu test at an urgent care came back negative is raising new questions about the epidemic. @GioBenitez reports. pic.twitter.com/tpJdY2Qpbg— World News Tonight (@ABCWorldNews) January 19, 2018
By 9:15 a.m. Thursday, it was clear Messenger’s life was in grave danger.
“I ran upstairs, and I sat with him, and I tried to get him to respond to me, but there was no response, nothing,” Decent-Doll said. “It’s indescribable, it really is.”
The grieving mother said that her son had just gotten a flu shot in December and that he “never stopped, ever. He loved science. He loved his family.”
Kristen Ervinck started a GoFundMe to help the grieving family:
"Mikey was so full of life and so energetic he lit up the room with his smile," it read.
Michael Messenger's funeral was Thursday. His family is still waiting for the results of his autopsy.
Published: Friday, January 19, 2018 @ 8:46 AM
COLUMBIA COUNTY, Ore. — An Oregon man is behind bars after sheriff’s deputies said he put his wife’s hand in hot frying oil.
Jeremiah Crothers is also accused of nearly suffocating his baby son, KATU reported.
Police said Crothers covered his 7-month-old son’s mouth and nose until the baby’s legs turned blue, Oregon Live reported.
According to police, Crothers’ wife hit her husband in the head with a frying pan to get him to let go of their child, KATU reported.
Later, police said, Crothers complained that his wife didn’t season the chicken she was preparing for dinner and then grabbed her hand and put it in the oil she was using to fry the chicken, KATU reported.
When police arrived, they said Crothers was not there, but they saw what they said were burns on the victim and the baby had signs of strangulation and a bruise on his head, Oregon Live reported. Crothers was arrested the next day in St. Helens. Crothers has been charged with attempted murder, strangulation, assault, coercion and attempted assault.
A judge set bail at $217,750.