Court papers: Suspect vowed 'bombs will be heard' in streets
NEW YORK (AP) — Ahmad Khan Rahami vowed to martyr himself rather than be caught after setting off explosives in New York and New Jersey, and he'd hoped in a handwritten journal championing jihad that "the sounds of bombs will be heard in the streets," authorities said Tuesday as they filed federal charges against him.
Criminal complaints in Manhattan and New Jersey federal courts provided chilling descriptions of the motivations that authorities said drove the Afghan-born U.S. citizen to set off explosives in New York and New Jersey, including a bomb that injured more than two dozen people when it blew up on a busy Manhattan street.
Meanwhile, more details emerged Tuesday about Rahami's past, including the disclosure that the FBI had looked into him in 2014 but came up with nothing.
According to the court complaint, Rahami's journal included a passage that said: "You (USA Government) continue your (unintelligible) slaught(er)" against the mujahideen, or holy warriors, in Afghanistan and elsewhere.
"Death to your oppression," the journal ended.
UN suspends Syria aid convoys after 'savage' attack
BEIRUT (AP) — Volunteers were still dousing the fires from an overnight attack on an aid convoy that killed 20 civilians as the U.N. announced Tuesday it was suspending overland aid deliveries in Syria, jeopardizing food and medical security for millions of besieged and hard-to-reach civilians.
Confusion continued about who struck the convoy, but the White House insisted it was either Russia or Syria. White House deputy national security adviser Ben Rhodes said either way, the U.S. held Russia responsible, because it was Russia's job under the week-old cease-fire to prevent Syria's air force from striking in areas where humanitarian aid was being transported.
"All of our information indicates clearly that this was an airstrike," Rhodes said, rejecting the claim by Russia's Defense Ministry that a cargo fire caused the damage. Both Russia and Syria have denied carrying out the bombing.
Within one minute of the strike, the U.S. tracked a Russian-made Su-24 directly over the region of the attack, U.S. officials said. Even that revelation failed to definitively implicate Russia because both the Russian and Syrian air forces fly the Su-24, although the U.S. officials said there were strong indications that the jet was flown by the Russian military.
The officials spoke anonymously because they were not authorized to comment publicly on the incident.
10 Things to Know for Wednesday
Your daily look at late-breaking news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about Wednesday:
1. MAN CHARGED WITH PLANTING BOMBS IN NEW YORK, NEW JERSEY
Investigators say Ahmad Khan Rahami planted two bombs in Manhattan's Chelsea neighborhood, and two in New Jersey.
2. US HOLDS RUSSIA RESPONSIBLE FOR AIRSTRIKES THAT HIT AID CONVOY IN SYRIA
White House Deputy National Security Adviser Ben Rhodes says that since the Syrian rebels lack an air force, that means either Syria or Russia conducted the strikes.
UN says 30 more countries to ratify climate deal
STOCKHOLM (AP) — Thirty more countries are expected to formally join the Paris Agreement on climate change this week, greatly improving the pact's chances of coming into force just a year after it was negotiated in the French capital, the United Nations said Tuesday.
More than 170 world leaders have signed the deal, but it won't take effect until 55 countries accounting for at least 55 percent of global emissions have ratified or accepted it through their domestic procedures.
That was initially expected to take several years, but 28 countries accounting for 39 percent of emissions including the world's two biggest emitters, the United States and China, have already ratified the deal.
The 30 ratifications expected to be handed to U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon at a special event at U.N. headquarters in New York on Wednesday would bring the total to 58 countries — but many are small and their total emissions likely won't reach the required 55 percent.
Brazil, Mexico and Argentina are the largest emitters on the list announced late Tuesday by the United Nations. But the 30 countries will only bring the emissions total to 47 percent.
Trump skips swing-state cities; opts for rural town instead
KENANSVILLE, N.C. (AP) — Donald Trump is spending a lot of time in this critical presidential swing state, but he campaigned Tuesday evening far from cities like Charlotte and Raleigh where many candidates have courted moderate voters in recent years.
Instead, he zeroed in on this tiny, rural town of about 850 people to make his pitch to the disaffected, working-class white voters who have propelled his campaign. The strategy appears to be less about swaying undecideds and more about making sure supporters don't stay home on Election Day.
Registered Democrats outnumber registered Republicans 2-1 in Duplin County, but voters here have chosen the GOP presidential candidate in the past two elections by a wide margin. Among those lifelong Democrats is James Teachey, a 78-year-old retired farmer who said this year was the first time he donated to a presidential campaign: $40 to Trump.
"People are sick and tired of the way things are going in Washington and the way people are running it," he said. "I was born coming out of the Depression. We know what a dollar means, what leaving your door unlocked means. And all those things are gone."
Trump's business background is a big draw for his supporters here in Kenansville, where beyond the small downtown area's handful of restaurants, gas stations and a couple of grocery stores lie farms that are the area's major economic driver. Pork and poultry growers and processing plants employ thousands in Duplin County and have drawn Latino residents who now account for more than 20 percent of its population of 60,000.
1 Air Force pilot dead, 1 hurt after ejecting in California
SUTTER, Calif. (AP) — One American pilot was killed and another injured when they ejected from a U-2 spy plane shortly before it crashed in Northern California on Tuesday morning, the U.S. Air Force said.
The plane crashed shortly after taking off from Beale Air Force Base on a training mission around 9 a.m., military officials said. They did not release the pilots' names or any information about the condition of the surviving airman.
The aircraft, assigned to the 1st Reconnaissance Squadron, crashed in the Sutter Buttes, a mountain range about 60 miles (97 kilometers) north of Sacramento.
Col. Larry Broadwell, the base commander, said the flight, including its flight path was routine before the crash. He pledged to support the family of the deceased pilot and said surveillance pilots will mourn the loss.
"These incidents, while extremely tragic and hard for us to overcome, they're incidents that we do overcome," Broadwell said. "I am confident that the U-2 squadrons here and the U-2 squadrons around the world are going to come off the mat stronger than they were before."
As Trump rises, Clinton struggles with traditional playbook
WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. (AP) — For months, Democrats argued that voters would get "serious" about the campaign once it reached the fall and would reject Donald Trump's no-holds-barred approach.
They're still waiting.
With fewer than 50 days left, polling shows a tightening national race and — most unnerving to Democrats — a Trump rise in key battleground states. But as Trump's provocative appeal gains traction, Hillary Clinton is sticking with the traditional playbook: Lots of attack ads, a focus on getting out the vote and intense preparation for next week's first general election debate.
Her approach underscores what's emerged as a central question of the 2016 campaign: Can Clinton's play-it-safe political strategy win against a chaos candidate?
Even President Barack Obama, who long dismissed the idea of a future Trump administration, has started ringing alarm bells, warning Democratic supporters to expect a tight race that Clinton could possibly lose. Recent polls suggest the Republican may have an edge in Iowa and Ohio and is likely in a close race with Clinton in Florida and North Carolina.
Could officer in fatal Oklahoma police shooting be charged?
CHICAGO (AP) — A familiar question that arose after other police shootings now looms over Oklahoma: Will the white officer seen on video fatally shooting an unarmed black man be charged with a crime?
Officer Betty Shelby shot Terence Crutcher on Friday just moments after the 40-year-old walked back to his SUV, holding his hands high over his head. Shelby's lawyer said Crutcher ignored officers' commands, kept touching his pocket and was reaching through one of the vehicle's windows when she fired. A fellow officer drew a stun gun to shock Crutcher.
Some answers to common questions about factors that could determine if the officer is charged:
Q: DOES IT MATTER WHAT THE OFFICER WAS THINKING?
UN chief rails against leaders with 'bloody hands' in Syria
UNITED NATIONS (AP) — U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon railed Tuesday against leaders who keep "feeding the war machine" in Syria as he bowed out of the world stage, while President Barack Obama said there was no military solution to the five-year conflict and described a globe in the throes of a contest between authoritarianism and democracy.
Both Ban and Obama were making their final speeches at the annual gathering of world leaders at the United Nations. They did so against a backdrop of mounting bloodshed and a failing cease-fire in Syria, escalating attacks around the world by Islamic extremists, and millions of people fleeing fighting and poverty.
The U.N. chief, whose 10-year period at the helm of the unwieldy world body ends Dec. 31, vented his pent-up frustration with uncharacteristic candor, telling the opening of the General Assembly's annual ministerial meeting that "powerful patrons" on both sides in the Syrian conflict — which he did not identify — "have blood on their hands."
"Present in this hall today are representatives of governments that have ignored, facilitated, funded, participated in or even planned and carried out atrocities inflicted by all sides of the Syria conflict against Syrian civilians," he said.
But Ban blamed the Syrian government for the most deaths. He said it was continuing to drop barrel bombs on neighborhoods and torture thousands of detainees. Syria's Foreign Ministry condemned Ban's address and contended that the U.N had failed to resolve any conflicts on his watch.
Obama says nations vow to take in twice as many refugees
UNITED NATIONS (AP) — World leaders gathered at the United Nations pledged Tuesday to take in 360,000 refugees next year, President Barack Obama said, roughly doubling the previous year's allowance in a bid to mitigate the worst refugee crisis since World War II.
The United States said 52 countries taking part in a U.S.-led summit were stepping up to accelerate resettlement and boost financial support for refugees. The White House did not release a full list of participating countries or a breakdown of their pledges, making Obama's boast of major headway impossible to confirm.
Obama, in an emotional event designed to invoke empathy for the plight of refugees, called it a "crisis of epic proportions" that tested both the international order and the world's humanity. He drew a parallel to the Holocaust, calling the U.S. move to turn away Jews fleeing Nazi Germany a stain on America's collective conscience.
"I believe history will judge us harshly if we do not rise to this moment," Obama said.
The commitments announced Tuesday fell far short of what aid groups say is needed to address the crisis. Some 65 million people around the world have fled their homes because of war or persecution or to seek a better life, including about 21.3 million considered refugees by the U.N. Refugee Agency. Millions of Palestinian refugees are registered with the U.N.