Mandatory Inspections Proposed for 1,600 737s and Embraers

FAA to Propose Safety Fixes for Certain Boeing and Embraer Jets.
The U.S. agency’s proposal affects Boeing 737s, Embraer 170s and 190s.
On Monday, the Federal Aviation Administration will propose a mandatory inspection of the regional jets and if necessary, order replacement of suspect parts to prevent “potentially catastrophic failures,” of any of the 16-hundred jets in question.

Nov. 28, 2015 6:42 p.m. ET

The pair of proposed Federal Aviation Administration safety directives, related to certain Boeing Co. and Embraer SA jets and slated to be formally published Monday in the Federal Register, are unusual because they are each intended to counter a single defect that can result in such a serious problem.


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Most essential systems on commercial jets have backups, so a single-point failure or malfunction can’t cause a crash. In both of the documents, however, the FAA says a single defective component type has the potential to immediately end safe flight. The agency isn’t ordering immediate fixes, however, which means officials have determined the hazards aren’t imminent and don’t require emergency action.

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The FAA is moving to require U.S. operators of certain versions of the popular Boeing 737 model to check for possible corrosion of attachments for the horizontal stabilizer, part of the tail section.

According to the agency, because of a manufacturing mistake that left some parts without the necessary protective finish to guard against corrosion, certain bushings can crack. That can result in structural failure and possibly “departure of the horizontal stabilizer from the airplane,” according to the FAA, “which can lead to loss of continued safe flight.”

The proposed directive covers some 1,400 of the 737 models, beginning with the 737-600 version and a number of later variants.

The FAA document indicates the problem was discovered after production of the affected stabilizers and the agency wants airlines to detect and correct possible structural cracks.

A separate proposed mandate, applying to airliners manufactured by Brazil’s Embraer, the world’s third-largest plane maker behind Boeing and Airbus Group SE, covers a total of 197 twin-engine Embraer 170 and 190 regional jet models.

The FAA has determined that certain defective valves, prone to cracking, could “result in dual engine in-flight shutdown” on the affected aircraft. The agency envisions giving U.S. carriers three months to comply with some of the mandates.

Both manufacturers raised the safety issues previously in separate safety bulletins. Last year Brazilian air-safety regulators mandated some of the fixes, but didn’t include certain 170 models in their order.

Pending public comment, the FAA now wants to make all of the previous voluntary fixes mandatory for U.S. operators while expanding beyond Brazil’s directive.

Foreign airlines and regulators typically follow the FAA’s lead.

The agency’s proposals don’t mention any accidents or incidents stemming from the manufacturing defects.

Write to Andy Pasztor at

Plannedhood building Secured in Colorado Springs

Items That Gunman Brought Into Planned Parenthood Are Secured, Police Say
Concerns were raised that Robert Lewis Dear had carried potential explosives into Colorado Spring clinic, where three people were killed
A suspect, identified as Robert Lewis Dear, 57 years old, was taken into custody outside the Planned Parenthood center in Colorado Springs. Three people, including a law-enforcement officer, were shot and killed at the clinic.
Police on Saturday released a photo of Robert Lewis Dear, the suspect in Friday’s shooting.
Nine people who were wounded in the attack remained at local hospitals, authorities said Friday evening.

Updated Nov. 28, 2015 10:48 a.m. ET
Police said Saturday that they had secured potentially dangerous items brought into a Planned Parenthood clinic in Colorado Springs by a gunman who killed three people Friday during a five-hour standoff before surrendering.

The alleged gunman, Robert Lewis Dear, 57 years old, was being held without bail by the sheriff’s office in El Paso County, where Colorado Springs is located, according to jail booking records. He was set to appear in court for the first time Monday and hadn’t yet been formally charged in connection with the shooting.

Mr. Dear, described in jail records as 6 feet 4 inches tall and weighing 250 pounds, shot six law-enforcement officers as well as numerous other people while holed up in the Planned Parenthood clinic, authorities said.

One of the officers, from the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs, died of his injuries, as did two other people. The university identified the officer as Garrett Swasey, 44 years old. The names of the other two victims weren’t immediately released.

Officials who searched the scene for more victims said they had to proceed slowly because Mr. Dear had brought items with him into the building, raising concerns about potential explosives or other dangers. But on Saturday, Colorado Springs police said they had secured those items and they no longer posed a threat. They didn’t disclose what the items were.

“All I can say is, my heart’s broken,” Colorado Springs Police Chief Peter Carey told reporters. “This is a really, really tough situation for a lot of people in our community.”

President Barack Obama condemned the shooting Saturday, renewing his call for stricter gun-control regulations.

“The last thing Americans should have to do, over the holidays or any day, is comfort the families of people killed by gun violence,” he said in a statement.

“This is not normal. We can’t let it become normal,” he added. “If we truly care about this—if we’re going to offer up our thoughts and prayers again, for God knows how many times, with a truly clean conscience—then we have to do something about the easy accessibility of weapons of war on our streets.”

Police haven’t disclosed which firearm the alleged gunman used in the standoff, saying only that he was reported to have used a long gun.

The three officers were initially wounded after responding to reports around 11:38 a.m. local time of a man with a long gun at the Planned Parenthood site, said Lt. Catherine Buckley, a spokeswoman for Colorado Springs police.

Police said they hadn’t determined whether the gunman was targeting the Planned Parenthood clinic, which performs abortions as well as HIV testing and other services.

Abortion clinics have been targets of bombings in the past. In recent months, protesters have gathered outside clinics after undercover video from an antiabortion group showed a Planned Parenthood official discussing reimbursements for supplying fetal tissue for medical research.

Some neighbors said the Colorado Springs Planned Parenthood had been the site of recent protests.

—Dan Frosch and Byron Tau contributed to this article.

Opinion Page, World War Three

The Opinion Pages | OP-ED COLUMNIST

World War III
NOV. 26, 2015 249 COMMENTS

Roger Cohen
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“Mommy, please tell me again, how did World War I begin?”

“Sweetheart, I already told you, that was long ago. A century is a very long time.”

“But, Mommy, please.”

“Well, it’s complicated. Do you really, really want to know?”

“Yes, Mom.”

“It’s a sad story. The world was organized in one way, and that way collapsed, and in the process millions of people were killed.”

“Wow. How was it organized before?”

“There were things called empires. They controlled vast territories full of different peoples, and some of these peoples wanted to rule themselves rather than be governed by a faraway emperor.”


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“The Austro-Hungarian Empire was one of them. It had lots of grand palaces in its capital, Vienna, where people danced at fancy balls. It governed parts of a poor corner of Europe called the Balkans where its rule was disliked. One day in 1914, the heir to the Austro-Hungarian throne and his wife were assassinated in a Balkan city called Sarajevo by a young man, a Bosnian Serb, who wanted the freedom of the south Slavs from imperial rule.”

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“That’s sad, Mommy. Guess the music stopped. But so what?”

“The empire got really angry. It told Serbia to do a bunch of things or face war. The ruler in Vienna was confident because he had a close friend, a rising power called Germany. Serbia also had a good buddy, a country called Russia, which is big. Anyway, Serbia kind of dithered around, like you with homework, so Austria-Hungary went to war against it.”

“And then?”

“Then Germany declared war on Russia, whose friend was France, which didn’t like Germany for various reasons. Soon Germany attacked France through Belgium. That made Britain cross. It went to war against Germany. Another empire — a sickly one — called the Ottoman Empire, eventually joined the German and Austro-Hungarian side. Later the United States, a rising power, came in on the British and French team. After a few years, more than 16 million people were dead. The Austro-Hungarian, Ottoman, German and Russian empires had collapsed.”

“All because a couple was killed? Mom, that’s weird.”

“Sometimes little things get bigger, people lose patience and perspective, there’s a spark and you get a big mess.”

“Mom, it couldn’t happen again, right?’


“Are there any empires left today?”

“Some people call America an empire even if it doesn’t have an emperor. It is the most powerful country on earth, with soldiers all around the world and different peoples that rely on it for direction and protection. But America’s getting weaker.”

“So, Mommy, is it kind of like what you said about the world being organized one way, and then being organized in another way, and lots of people dying in the process?”

“Not exactly, sweetheart. Dying where?”

“In Syria. Mom, what’s Syria?”

“It’s a small country with different peoples and religions that came into being when the Ottoman Empire got so sickly it collapsed.”

“Why are people fighting there?”

“It’s complicated. Do you really, really want to know?”

“Yes, Mommy.”

“Well, there was this brutal, remote tyrant behaving like an emperor and some of the peoples in Syria rose up against him. The tyrant started shooting them. America and Britain and France, among other countries, didn’t like that, and they said they’d kind of support the rebels, but didn’t really.”

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This does not look like WWIII, but rather like 1984 by Orwell, with three alliances dominating the world, everyone with a different “Truth”…
“Mommy, what will Western Europe do?””Nothing, dear.”
Mommy is it true that ISIS would never have started in the Middle East if the America president who invaded a nation that NEVER EVEN invade…

Resume readingmain story:


“Because, like I said, America is sickly. It’s getting weaker.”

“O.K. Then what?”

“The tyrant had a big friend called Russia. He had another quite big friend called Iran. They both really did support him.”

“So he won?”

“Not quite. Many of the people who wanted to get rid of the tyrant were Sunni Muslims. They had the backing of Saudi Arabia, which is Sunni Central and hates Iran and has supported Sunni fanatics. Turkey, which was the successor to the Ottoman Empire and hates the Syrian tyrant, also got on the rebel team. But Turkey hates another people in Syria called the Kurds even more than the tyrant — so much it’s been ready in a sneaky way to help one group of Sunni crazies who slit throats, kill Kurds and shoot people in Western cities.”

“Mom, I’m confused.”

“Syria has broken up, like the Ottoman Empire. Russia is bombing some enemies of the Syrian tyrant. America is bombing the throat-slitters. So is France. Turkey shot down a Russian plane. Russia is angry. The Kurds want the state they didn’t get 100 years ago. Saudi Arabia is fighting a regionwide war against Iran. That war is most intense in Syria, where hundreds of thousands are dead.”

“All because some folks wanted to get rid of a bully?”

“Sometimes little things get bigger, there’s a spark and it’s a big mess.”

“Mom, what would World War III be like?”

“Don’t worry, darling, everything is different now.”


“Totally. We have life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Happy Thanksgiving, my love.”

You can follow me on Twitter or join me on Facebook.

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Rocket Kills 3 UN Peacekeepers in Latest Mali Attack

Mali attack: Rocket kills three at UN Kidal base at what is known as the world’s most dangerous peacekeeping assignment.

Some 10,000 soldiers from dozens of different nations are currently serving in Mali under the UN banner
Three people have been killed in a rocket attack on a UN peacekeepers’ base in northern Mali, the UN says.
Two UN peacekeepers from Guinea and a civilian contractor were killed in the attack in Kidal, officials said.
Eight days ago, gunmen attacked a hotel in the capital, Bamako, taking scores hostage. Nineteen people were killed.
The peacekeeping mission in Mali was approved in 2014 after France led a military campaign to drive out Islamist militants from the north.
The Minusma force comprises some 10,000 soldiers from dozens of different contributor countries – the majority from Mali’s west African neighbours.
The UN mission – criticised by some at the time of its approval because there is no peace deal to support – has suffered more casualties than any other in recent years, with 56 troops killed.

Islamist militants are suspected of being behind Saturday’s attack, in which 14 people were injured, several seriously, reports suggest.
“Our camp in Kidal was attacked early this morning by terrorists using rockets,” said an official from the Minusma force.
Militancy in Mali
October 2011: Ethnic Tuaregs launch rebellion after returning with arms from Libya
March 2012: Army coup over government’s handling of rebellion, a month later Tuareg and al-Qaeda-linked fighters seize control of north
June 2012: Islamist groups capture Timbuktu, Kidal and Gao from Tuaregs, start to destroy Muslim shrines and manuscripts and impose Sharia
January 2013: Islamist fighters capture a central town, raising fears they could reach Bamako. Mali requests French help
July 2013: UN force, now totalling about 12,000, takes over responsibility for securing the north after Islamists routed from towns
July 2014: France launches an operation in the Sahel to stem jihadist groups
Attacks continue in northern desert area, blamed on Tuareg and Islamist groups
2015: Terror attacks in the capital, Bamako, and central Mali
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The Government’s Clever Way of Preventing Our Vital Access


Tighter Lid on Records Threatens to Weaken Government Watchdogs

The grave of a boy in Ahuas, Honduras, in 2012. A Justice Department inquiry into the drug raid that reportedly killed him is one of several slowed by an impasse over access to records. Credit Rodrigo Abd/Associated Press

WASHINGTON — Justice Department watchdogs ran into an unexpected roadblock last year when they began examining the role of federal drug agents in the fatal shootings of unarmed civilians during raids in Honduras.

The Drug Enforcement Administration balked at turning over emails from senior officials tied to the raids, according to the department’s inspector general. It took nearly a year of wrangling before the D.E.A. was willing to turn over all its records in a case that the inspector general said raised “serious questions” about agents’ use of deadly force.

The continuing Honduran inquiry is one of at least 20 investigations across the government that have been slowed, stymied or sometimes closed because of a long-simmering dispute between the Obama administration and its own watchdogs over the shrinking access of inspectors general to confidential records, according to records and interviews.

Iraqi gear littered the ground near an Iraqi Army checkpoint east of Mosul on June 11, 2014, a day after militants overran the city.Pentagon Expands Inquiry Into Intelligence on ISIS Surge NOV. 21, 2015

D.E.A. Agents Kills Suspected Smuggler in Honduran Drug Raid JUNE 24, 2012
Honduran naval troops patrolled in the small town of Ahuas last week.Honduran Drug Raid Deaths Won’t Alter U.S. Policy MAY 31, 2012
Clara Wood Rivas, right, at the grave of her 14-year-old son, who was killed in a recent drug raid.Honduran Villages Caught in Drug War’s Cross-Fire MAY 23, 2012
The impasse has hampered investigations into an array of programs and abuse reports — from allegations of sexual assaults in the Peace Corps to the F.B.I.’s terrorism powers, officials said. And it has threatened to roll back more than three decades of policy giving the watchdogs unfettered access to “all records” in their investigations.

“The bottom line is that we’re no longer independent,” Michael E. Horowitz, the Justice Department inspector general, said in an interview.

The restrictions reflect a broader effort by the Obama administration to prevent unauthorized disclosures of sensitive information — at the expense, some watchdogs insist, of government oversight.

Justice Department lawyers concluded in a legal opinion this summer that some protected records, like grand jury transcripts, wiretap intercepts and financial credit reports, could be kept off limits to government investigators. The administration insists there is no intention of curtailing investigations, but both Democrats and Republicans in Congress have expressed alarm and are promising to restore full access to the watchdogs.

The new restrictions grew out of a five-year-old dispute within the Justice Department. After a series of scathing reports by Glenn Fine, then the Justice Department inspector general, on F.B.I. abuses in counterterrorism programs, F.B.I. lawyers began asserting in 2010 that he could no longer have access to certain confidential records because they were legally protected.

That led to a series of high-level Justice Department reviews, a new procedure for reviewing records requests and, ultimately, a formal opinion in July from the department’s Office of Legal Counsel. That opinion, which applies to federal agencies across the government, concluded that the 1978 law giving an inspector general access to “all records” in investigations did not necessarily mean all records when it came to material like wiretap intercepts and grand jury reports.

The inspector-general system was created in 1978 in the wake of Watergate as an independent check on government abuse, and it has grown to include watchdogs at 72 federal agencies. Their investigations have produced thousands of often searing public reports on everything from secret terrorism programs and disaster responses to boondoggles like a lavish government conference in Las Vegas in 2010 that featured a clown and a mind reader.

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Not surprisingly, tensions are common between the watchdogs and the officials they investigate. President Ronald Reagan, in fact, fired 15 inspectors general in 1981. But a number of scholars and investigators said the restrictions imposed by the Obama administration reflect a new level of acrimony.

“This is by far the most aggressive assault on the inspector general concept since the beginning,” said Paul Light, a New York University professor who has studied the system. “It’s the complete evisceration of the concept. You might as well fold them down. They’ve become defanged.”

While President Obama has boasted of running “the most transparent administration in history,” some watchdogs say the clampdown has scaled back scrutiny of government programs.

“This runs against transparency,” said the Peace Corps inspector general, Kathy Buller.

At the Peace Corps, her office began running into problems two years ago in an investigation into the agency’s handling of allegations of sexual assaults against overseas volunteers. Congress mandated a review after a volunteer in Benin was murdered in 2009; several dozen volunteers reported that the Peace Corps ignored or mishandled sexual abuse claims.

But Peace Corps lawyers initially refused to turn over abuse reports, citing privacy restrictions. Even after reaching an agreement opening up some material, Ms. Buller said investigators have been able to get records that are heavily redacted.

“It’s been incredibly frustrating,” she said. “We have spent so much time and energy arguing with the agency over this issue.”

The Peace Corps said in a statement, however, that it was committed to “rigorous oversight” and has cooperated fully with the inspector general.

Agencies facing investigations are now sometimes relying on the Justice Department’s opinion as justification for denying records — even records that are not specifically covered in the opinion, officials said.

At the Commerce Department, the inspector general this year shut down an internal audit of enforcement of international trade agreements because the department’s lawyers, citing the Justice Department’s guidance, refused to turn over business records that they said were “proprietary” and protected.

The Environmental Protection Agency’s inspector general has reported a series of struggles with the organization over its access to documents, including records the agency said were classified or covered by attorney-client privilege. And investigators at the Postal Service, a special Afghanistan reconstruction board, and other federal agencies have complained of tightened restrictions on investigative records as well.

Hopes of a quick end to the impasse have dimmed in recent days after the Obama administration volunteered to restore full access for the Justice Department’s inspector general — but not the other 71 watchdogs.

Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch, asked about the issue at a House hearing last week, said the proposal was intended to ensure, at least at the Justice Department, “that the inspector general would receive all the information he needed.”

Continue reading the main story

But watchdogs outside the Justice Department said they would be left dependent on the whims of agency officials in their investigations.

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How ironic that the establishment – one of the most invasive, spying, conniving gangs of thugs ever- finds itself unable to police its own…
Not that we needed any more proof of the insincerity of Obama’s 2008 claim that he wanted “transparency” in government. He’s prosecuted more…
Rodger Parsons
Accountability; without it there can be no just government; simply agencies doing as they wish and making the consequences of bad choices or…

“It’s no fix at all,” said Senator Charles E. Grassley, Republican of Iowa, who leads the Judiciary Committee.

In a rare show of bipartisanship, the administration has drawn scorn from Democrats and Republicans. The Obama administration’s stance has “blocked what was once a free flow of information” to the watchdogs, Senator Patrick J. Leahy of Vermont, the ranking Democrat on the Judiciary Committee, said at a hearing.

A Justice Department spokeswoman, Emily Pierce, said in a statement on Friday: “Justice Department leadership has issued policy guidance to ensure that our inspector general gets the documents he requests as quickly as possible, even when those documents are protected by other statutes protecting sensitive information. The department is unaware of any instance in which the inspector general has sought access to documents or information protected from disclosure by statute and did not receive them.”

Nowhere has the fallout over the dispute been felt more acutely than at the Justice Department, where the inspector general’s office said 14 investigations had been hindered by the restricted access.

These include investigations into the F.B.I.’s use of phone records collected by the National Security Agency, the government’s sharing of intelligence information before the 2013 Boston Marathon bombings, a notorious gun-tracing operation known as “Fast and Furious” and the deadly Honduran drug raids.

In the case of the Honduran raids, the inspector general has been trying to piece together the exact role of D.E.A. agents in participating in, or even leading, a series of controversial drug raids there beginning in 2011.

Details of what happened remain sketchy even today, but drug agents in a helicopter in 2012 reportedly killed four unarmed villagers in a boat, including a pregnant woman and a 14-year-old boy, during a raid on suspected drug smugglers in northeastern Honduras. They also shot down several private planes — suspected of carrying drugs — in possible violation of international law.

An investigation by the Honduran government cleared American agents of responsibility. But when the inspector general began examining the case last year, D.E.A. officials refused to turn over emails on the episodes from senior executives, the inspector general’s office said. Only after more than 11 months of back-and-forth negotiations were all the records turned over.

The D.E.A. refused to comment on the case, citing the investigation. A senior Justice Department official, speaking on the condition of anonymity because of the continuing review, said the refusal to turn over the records was the flawed result of “a culture within the D.E.A.” at the time — and not the result of the Justice Department’s new legal restrictions.

Mr. Horowitz, the inspector general, said the long delay was a significant setback to his investigation. He now hopes to complete the Honduran review early next year.

In the meantime, the watchdogs say they are looking to Congress to intervene in a dispute with the administration that has become increasingly messy.

“It’s essential to enshrine in the law that the inspector general has access to all agency records,” said Mr. Fine, who is now the Pentagon’s principal deputy inspector general. “The underlying principle is key: To be an effective inspector general, you need the right to receive timely access to all agency records.”

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3 Dead in Colorado Springs Planned Parenthood Shootout


Gunfire at clinic where abortions are performed

COLORADO SPRINGS — A gun battle erupted inside a Planned Parenthood center here on Friday when a man armed with an assault-style rifle opened fire and began shooting at officers as they rushed to the scene. The authorities reported that three people were killed, a police officer and two civilians, and nine were wounded before the suspect finally surrendered more than five hours after the first shots were fired.

A police official in Colorado Springs, who was not authorized to speak, identified the man in custody as Robert Lewis Dear, 59. No other information about him was available.

The police did not describe the gunman’s motives. For hours on Friday, officers traded gunfire with him inside the clinic before they were able to shout to the man and persuade him to give up, according to Lt. Catherine Buckley, a police spokeswoman.

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Officer Garrett Swasey, 44, was a six-year veteran of the force who worked at the city’s University of Colorado campus.Garrett Swasey, Officer Killed in Colorado, Is Recalled for Courage and Faith NOV. 28, 2015
“The perpetrator is in custody,” Mayor John Suthers said at an evening news conference. “There is a huge crime scene that has to be processed,” he said, “and we have to determine how many victims there are.”

The gunman injured at least 11 people, including five police officers, at a Planned Parenthood clinic in Colorado Springs.

Lieutenant Buckley said the gunman had brought several suspicious items to the clinic, and investigators were trying to determine whether they were explosives.

The shooting came at a time when Planned Parenthood has been criticized because of surreptitious videos made by anti-abortion groups of officials discussing using fetal organs for research. It transformed a shopping area near the clinic into chaos as snow fell and gunshots rang through the parking lot. Black-clad tactical officers stood guard with guns in hand, ambulances lined up and dozens of shoppers and employees were ordered to stay away from windows and lock their businesses’ doors.

The encounter could be heard in transfixing detail on the police scanner, with the authorities describing how they had driven a BearCat armored vehicle into the Planned Parenthood building, smashing through two sets of doors into the lobby and rescuing some of those inside.

“We’re exchanging gunfire,” one officer said on the radio, “We are trying to keep him pinned down.”

“Put gunfire through the walls,” came a reply. “Whatever, we got to stop this guy.”

The standoff, which began shortly after 11:30 a.m., was terrifying for the family members of those inside, such as Joan Motolinia, who said his sister called him from the center as the shots began.

“As soon as I heard the shots, she hung up on me,” he said. “And I didn’t want to call her back and risk her life.”

Officer Garrett Swasey, 44, was a six-year veteran of the force who worked at the city’s University of Colorado campus. Credit University of Colorado, Colorado Springs
The officer killed in the shooting was identified late Friday as Garrett Swasey, 44, a six-year member of the University of Colorado campus police force here. He was among scores of law-enforcement officers, medics and firefighters from the Colorado Springs Police Department, the university police, the El Paso County sheriff’s office, the F.B.I. and other agencies who raced to the scene.

Despite being at a heightened state of alert, F.B.I. officials in Washington appeared caught off guard in the hours after the shooting and said that they knew little about what occurred.

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At a news conference at Penrose Hospital in Colorado Springs, Fire Chief Christopher Riley said he had met with four officers wounded in the shooting and said they were all doing well, conscious and talking, “but obviously injured and shaken.” The conditions of others wounded were not immediately known, and some confusion remained hours after the shooting. One woman who had been inside the clinic said she was still trying to find her boyfriend, who had been with her.

The local authorities were visibly shaken as they stood in the snowy dark to announce that the suspect had been taken into custody and that the siege was over. Much remained unknown, including how many people had been inside the clinic and how the gunfire had erupted. Cathy Alderman, vice president of public affairs for Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains, said the group believed all of its staff members were safe, but was still working to confirm the status of its patients.

Officials from both law enforcement and Planned Parenthood said they did not know whether the group’s Colorado Springs center had been specifically targeted. But the attack carried echoes of other violent assaults on abortion providers, and it prompted the police in New York City to deploy units to Planned Parenthood clinics in the city.

In a statement, Vicki Cowart, president of Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains, said the group had strong safety measures and worked closely with local law enforcement.

“We don’t yet know the full circumstances and motives behind this criminal action, and we don’t yet know if Planned Parenthood was in fact the target of this attack,” she said. “We share the concerns of many Americans that extremists are creating a poisonous environment that feeds domestic terrorism in this country. We will never back away from providing care in a safe, supportive environment that millions of people rely on and trust.”

Since abortion became legal nationally, with the Supreme Court’s decision in Roe v. Wade in 1973, many abortion clinics and staff members across the country have been subjected to harassment including death and bomb threats, and hundreds of acts of violence including arson, bombings and assaults and eight murders, according to figures compiled by the Naral Pro-Choice America Foundation.

Planned Parenthood’s Colorado Springs center was one of many locations around the county that became the site of large anti-abortion protests over the summer after abortion opponents released surreptitious videos of Planned Parenthood officials discussing using fetal organs for research. On Aug. 22, the day of nationwide protests to defund Planned Parenthood, more than 300 people protested outside the clinic here, according to local news reports.

Colorado Springs is an area of fast growth about 60 miles south of Denver and home to an Army base and an Air Force base. Bryan Hawke, 35, a chiropractor who was holed up with six others in his one-story brick-fronted chiropractic office that is across the parking lot from Planned Parenthood, said the center is the scene of near-daily protests.

Continue reading the main story

“There are protests of varying sizes outside that building probably six days a week,” he said. Sometimes the protests attract as many as 200 people, but “most days there are a dozen people there,” he added.

Mr. Hawke’s receptionist first heard gunshots Friday morning and started shouting. “I heard them yelling at me to grab the keys,” he said. He quickly locked the door.


There’s nothing that those Islamist terrorists can do that some God fearing Christian terrorists can’t do better.
“…surreptitious videos of Planned Parenthood officials discussing using fetal organs for research…” No:”Heavily-edited videos created…
Since 2004, over 313,000 Americans killed by gun violence, yet, ISIS and Syrian refugees are the ones to be feared. America, you never…

Mr. Hawke spent the morning watching SWAT team members swarm the parking lot. They were clad in black, wearing helmets and shields. They spent time pulling people from their cars — people had been stranded in their vehicles when the shooting began.

Denise Speller, a manager at a Supercuts salon near the shooting scene, said she saw police cars streaming through the small shopping center and pull up by a nearby Chase bank as gunshots echoed across the parking lot. She said she saw one officer positioned by his cruiser apparently struck by a bullet.

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“We just saw him go down,” Ms. Speller said in a telephone interview.

Security concerns at the clinic were high enough that the clinic had a “security room” with a supply of bulletproof vests, but, according to an officer on the scanner, some of the vests were still in the room, and one may have been worn by the gunman.

With people sheltering inside the clinic, restaurants and stores, the police ordered residents to stay away from Centennial Boulevard and were checking on the safety of those in the area. “We have put officers and detectives in the different businesses at this point,” Lieutenant Buckley said.

Paul Lambert, the owner of Steins and Vines, a liquor store nearby, said he and an employee were told by the police to lock the door to the shop. Earlier Friday morning, Mr. Lambert said, some of his employees heard gunshots but did not know where they were coming from.

“They had us lock the doors and stay inside where it’s safe,” Mr. Lambert said in a telephone interview.

Looking out his front door, he said he was watching the police evacuate drivers from their cars into a nearby supermarket.

The police said on Twitter that people inside a shopping center and a grocery store nearby were told to shelter in place. The police closed Centennial Boulevard in both directions.

At Fusion Nails, in the shopping complex south of the Planned Parenthood center, Quan Hoang said he was working when he saw police cars swarming in the parking lot near a bank down the street. He stepped outside and heard three gunshots, and officers told the shop’s workers and customers to go inside, lock the doors and stay away from the windows.

About two hours after the first reports of gunshots, Mr. Hoang said three officers were still posted outside his front door, one of them brandishing a shotgun.

“It’s unreal,” Mr. Hoang said.

Julie Turkewitz reported from Colorado Springs, and Jack Healy from Steamboat Springs, Colo. Noel Black contributed reporting from Colorado Springs, Michael Schmidt from Washington, D.C., and Dave Philipps, Christine Hauser and Erik Eckholm from New York.

Putin Snubs Erdogan Overtures

Turkey proposed talks aimed at damage limitation after it shot down a Russian warplane on Tuesday
A Russian jet fighter is shot down over the Turkish-Syrian border on Tuesday.
By PAUL SONNE in Moscow and EMRE PEKER in Istanbul
Updated Nov. 27, 2015 3:52 p.m. ET
The standoff between Russia and Turkey intensified on Friday, as the Kremlin snubbed Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s calls for dialogue and reiterated demands that Turkey apologize after its forces downed a Russian Su-24 bomber on the Syrian border.

Russia’s unforgiving response to the Nov. 24 incident—the first time a North Atlantic Treaty Organization member has shot down a Russian warplane since 1952—has plunged relations between Moscow and Ankara into uncharted territory.

It also sets up an unprecedented conflict between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Mr. Erdogan, two strongmen known for their steely resolve, who despite years of partnership have now split on opposing sides of the Syrian conflict.

Mr. Putin is demanding Turkey apologize, as the Russian government presses ahead with plans to sanction Turkish trade and economic interests, suspend visa-free travel and stem the flow of Russian tourists who travel to Turkey’s beaches each year by the millions.

But so far Mr. Erdogan hasn’t budged. He described Turkey’s decision to shoot down the warplane as a necessary defense of Turkish borders and said Moscow had blown the incident out of proportion. Mr. Erdogan called for dialogue but hasn’t apologized.

“We have expressed our sadness over the incident,” Mr. Erdogan said Friday. “Turkey has not intentionally downed a Russian warplane. This incident consists of a reaction to a border violation, it’s an implementation of the engagement rules.”

Since the incident, the Turkish leader has attempted to call Mr. Putin and arrange a meeting with him during a climate-change summit in Paris next week, Turkish and Russian officials say. But he has received only silence from the Kremlin, an indication that Mr. Putin has no plans to back down.

Kremlin foreign-policy adviser Yuri Ushakov confirmed that Mr. Putin had received the requests in a briefing with journalists on Friday. Asked why Russia hadn’t responded, Mr. Ushakov suggested the Kremlin was waiting to see contrition from the Turkish leadership.

“We see a lack of readiness from the Turkish side to offer an elementary apology for the incident with the aircraft,” Mr. Yushakov said.

Meanwhile, Russian authorities are stepping up pressure on Turkey. Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov announced Friday that Russia had decided to cancel visa-free travel between the two countries starting Jan. 1.

“We believe that the Turkish government has crossed the line of what’s acceptable and risks putting Turkey in a difficult situation, both from the perspective of long-term national interests and from the perspective of its position in the region,” Mr. Lavrov said.

The Russian foreign minister has said the downing of the Su-24 looked like “a preplanned provocation.” On Friday, he described Mr. Erdogan’s explanation as inadequate.

Moscow and Ankara have continued to express opposing views of what transpired in the skies over the Turkey-Syria border on Tuesday.

Turkey says the Russian bomber violated its airspace and received multiple warnings for five minutes before being shot down in accordance with Turkish rules of engagement.

In a letter to the United Nations, Turkey’s permanent representative Halit Cevik said two military planes violated Turkish territory briefly on Tuesday for more than a mile each. Officials in Ankara maintain that while one of the warplanes heeded warnings and turned south, the other continued its breach and drew fire from Turkish F-16s while still inside Turkey.

NATO allies have corroborated Turkey’s account, with U.S. Col. Steve Warren in Baghdad confirming that he heard the 10 warnings over the open channels.

Turkey says its forces didn’t know the planes were Russian before shooting down the Su-24.

Russian officials, including the surviving member of the plane’s two-person crew, deny the Su-24 entered Turkish airspace or received any warning. On Friday, Russia accused the Turkish jet fighter that shot down the Su-24 of entering Syrian airspace to carry out the strike.

In a briefing, the head of the Russian Air Force, Col. Gen. Viktor Bondarev, said the Turkish jet fighter entered Syrian airspace for a period of 40 seconds and flew two kilometers into Syrian territory. He said the Russian Su-24 was located 5.5 kilometers south of the Turkish border when it was hit and hadn’t crossed into Turkish airspace.

After the jet was shot down, Russia announced plans to escalate its operations in Syria with a missile cruiser and an advanced S-400 air-defense system.

The gulf between Russia and Turkey’s assessments of the incident has left little room for Mr. Putin and Mr. Erdogan to find common ground without one side acquiescing.

“If normalization is dependent on an apology, that’s a dead-end street,” said Sinan Ulgen, a former Turkish diplomat and chairman of the Center for Economics and Foreign Policy Studies, an Istanbul-based think tank.

Russia and Turkey’s leaders have both cultivated an image of strong leadership, staking out tough positions that make it difficult for either of them to back down.

“The downing of the Russian plane and the reaction afterwards heralds a new and much more confrontational period for Russia and Turkey’s relationship,” Mr. Ulgen said. “There’s no going back, also because of the nature of the leadership on both sides.”

Before the incident, tensions between Russia and Turkey over the conflict in Syria had already been mounting.

Russia has come to the aid of a Shiite and Shiite-linked alliance of forces backing Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad. Turkey, where Sunni Islam predominates, has supported rebel factions fighting against the Syrian regime.

The groups Turkey backs include a population of ethnically Turkish people in northern Syria known as Turkmen. Before the shootdown, Turkey warned Russia not to strike them and brought up the issue at the U.N. Syrian rebels say the Russian Su-24 shot down Tuesday crashed in an area of Syria populated by Turkmen near the Turkish border.

The incident has triggered a broader war of words between Russia and Turkey over involvement in the Syrian conflict.

Russia has repeatedly accused Turkey of funding Islamic State through the illicit oil trade, an allegation Mr. Lavrov reiterated on Friday after a meeting in Moscow with Syria’s foreign minister. Mr. Erdogan has described those allegations as slander.

Turkey, meanwhile, has hit out at Russia for propping up Mr. Assad by targeting Syrian rebels, including those Ankara supports, instead of fighting Islamic State.

“Striking the opposition that has international legitimacy under the guise of fighting Daesh is playing with fire,” Mr. Erdogan said, referring to Islamic State with its Arabic acronym. “It’s also not like we’re blind to Russia’s cunning strengthening of its military position in Syria, using the plane incident as an excuse.”

Write to Paul Sonne at and Emre Peker at

Eight shot Near Colorado Abortion Clinic

8 Injured in Shooting Near Planned Parenthood Clinic in Colorado Springs

COLORADO SPRINGS — A gunman inside a Planned Parenthood center here was exchanging gunfire with police, the authorities said on Friday, after leaving at least four officers and an unknown number of other people wounded. People in the surrounding buildings, including the clinic, were told to shelter-in-place.

Lt. Catherine Buckley, a police spokeswoman, during a news conference, said the police were exchanging shots with the gunman, who was barricaded in a windowless office. He was described as white male in a trench coat with an assault rifle.

The encounter could be heard on the police scanner.

“We’re exchanging gunfire,” one officer said on the radio, “We are trying to keep him pinned down.”

“Put gunfire through the walls,” came a reply “Whatever, we got to stop this guy.”

Near the Planned Parenthood center, about 10 ambulances were lined up.

“We’re not sure of what the connection is to Planned Parenthood,” but that was the original address received, said Lieutenant Buckley said during a news conference.

Two different hospitals said they had received a total of six patients, though their conditions were unknown.

Denise Speller, a manager at a Supercuts salon near the shooting scene, said she saw police cars screaming through the small shopping center and pull up by a nearby Chase Bank as gunshots echoed across the parking lot. She said she saw one officer positioned by his cruiser apparently struck by a bullet.

“We just saw him go down,” Ms. Speller said in a telephone interview.

Security concerns at the clinic were high enough that the clinic has a “security room” with a supply of bulletproof vests, but, according to an officer on the scanner, some of the vests are still in the room, and one may have been worn by the gunman.

With people sheltering inside the clinic and other area restaurants and stores, the police ordered residents to stay away from Centennial Boulevard and were checking on the safety of those in the area. “We have put officers and detectives in the different businesses at this point.” Lieutenant Buckley said.

Continue reading the main story
Shooting Near Planned Parenthood
Authorities responded to an “active shooter” near a Planned Parenthood clinic in Colorado Springs. At least six people were injured, including three police officers, police said.

The gunman fired at passing cars from a parking lot, a local television station reported.
Fort Carson
10 Miles
Paul Lambert, the owner of Steins and Vines, a liquor store near the scene of the shooting, said he and an employee were told by the police to lock the door to the shop. Earlier Friday morning, Mr. Lambert said some of his employees heard gunshots but did not know where they were coming from.

“They had us lock the doors and stay inside where it’s safe,” Mr. Lambert said in a telephone interview.

Looking out his front door, he said he was watching the police evacuate drivers from their cars into a nearby King Soopers supermarket.

Police said on Twitter that people inside a nearby shopping center and a nearby grocery store were told to shelter-in-place. Police closed Centennial Boulevard in both directions.

Continue reading the main story
At Fusion Nails, in the shopping complex south of the Planned Parenthood center, Quan Hoang said he was working when he saw police cars swarming in the parking lot near a bank down the street. He stepped outside and heard three gunshots, and officers told the shop’s workers and customers to go inside, lock the doors and stay away from the windows.

About two hours after the first reports of gunshots, Mr. Hoang said three police officers were still posted outside his front door, one of them brandishing a shotgun.

“It’s unreal,” Mr. Hoang said.

A local news media reported that the gunman had been firing at passing cars from the parking lot of the clinic.

According to The Gazette, an officer said on his radio that the gunman shot out the back window of his cruiser as the officer tried to “get a look at him.” A dispatcher said the gunman wore a long coat with a hunting-type hat. The weather in Colorado Springs is cold and snowy.

Planned Parenthood clinic moved into the building a few years ago because it is surrounded by private property, which provided a buffer zone between patients and abortion protesters who demonstrated.

Vicki Cowart, the president and chief executive officer of Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains, said, “At this time, our concern is for the safety of our patients, staff and law enforcement.”

This blog is dedicated to bringing back the commitment of professional journalism. As a former network news editor, major market news director and anchor, BILL DEANE gives you the inside story often missed by media more interested in Hollywood gossip. OUR MISSING NEWS gets into the WHY of the day's significant events.