Here are headlines floating around the new-sphere today…
McConnell Backs Investigation Into Russian Hacking. McCain Calls It ‘Warfare.’ Trump Denies – Mr. McConnell, a senator from Kentucky, backed an investigation on Monday into United States intelligence conclusions that Russia tried to get Mr. Trump elected through tampering and hacking. Mr. McConnell faced bipartisan pressure, led by Senator McCain, chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, Senator Lindsey Graham, Republican of South Carolina, and Senator Marco Rubio, Republican of Florida.
Trump takes aim at Pentagon’s ‘revolving door’ and Lockheed Martin’s $400 billion F-35 program – Just over a year after Northrop Grumman won the multi-billion dollar contract to build a next-generation stealth bomber, the company appointed Mark Welsh, who was serving as Air Force Chief of Staff at the time of the contract award, to its board. The appointment, announced Friday, is not unusual in Washington, where former high-ranking Pentagon officials often go to work for the defense industry after their military service. But it comes as President-elect Donald Trump is highlighting the potential conflicts of interests in the “revolving door” between the Pentagon and industry, as he vows to clean up Washington.
Syrian Military Says Rebels Driven From 98 Percent of Aleppo – Syria’s military said Monday it has regained control of 98 percent of eastern Aleppo, as government forces close in the last remaining sliver of a rebel enclave packed with fighters as well as tens of thousands of civilians.
Seahawks’ 38-10 loss at Packers: “Humbling…terrible…embarrassing” – In their hushed locker room, the Seahawks had far more adjectives than positives. Or points. Pete Carroll called it “miserable” and “terrible.”
Iran seals deal with Boeing to buy 80 planes worth $16.6B – Iran’s flag carrier finalized a major deal with U.S. plane maker Boeing Co. to buy $16.6 billion worth of passenger planes Sunday in one of the most tangible benefits yet for the Islamic Republic from last year’s landmark nuclear agreement.
Big crowd greets MLS champion Sounders on return to Seattle – The MLS Cup champion Seattle Sounders arrived home to a big crowd of fans in “rave green” following their dramatic victory over Toronto FC on penalty kicks. Hundreds of fans chanted and sang while they waited for the team to emerge from King County Airport after their plane landed Sunday afternoon. Defender Roman Torres, who scored the winning penalty kick, high-fived fans, who chanted “MVP! MVP!” as goalkeeper Stefan Frei hoisted the trophy high. Frei’s heroic saves in regulation and extra time – including on a looping header by Toronto’s Josy Altidore – kept the Sounders in the game and earned him most-valuable-player honors.
Wildlife underpasses in North Idaho see heavy animal traffic – The photograph captured the cougar midstroll, with its powerful shoulders bunched and its black-tipped tail raised. A motion-activated camera snapped the cougar’s photo last summer in a wildlife underpass on U.S. Highway 95. Biologists were thrilled to see the solitary predator using a safe route to cross the busy highway.
Colville offers grants for forest health projects – Individuals, non-profit organizations and local governments are invited by the Colville National Forest to submit applications for projects ranging from weed control to road and facilities improvements. Officials have $638,000 available for this year’s projects to improve the 1.1-million acre forest in northeastern Washington and boost the economies of Ferry, Pend Oreille and Stevens counties.