Cover Photo: Tasiilaq, Greenland
Welcome to America’s Newsletter from Tag The Flag, the best morning newsletter on the internet, bringing you nonpartisan news and every view of the Red, White, and Blue. Here’s what you need to know to start your day.
📌 BULLETIN BOARD
One Final Reminder: Don’t forget to watch yourself…
🦅 U.S. NEWS
President Trump Eyes a New Real-Estate Purchase: Greenland
President Trump has reportedly expressed interest in acquiring the northern island country of Greenland. What’s happening: A new report from the Wall Street Journal reveals that Trump has asked his advisers whether the U.S. can acquire Greenland, an autonomous Danish territory, during “meetings, dinners, and passing conversations” because of Greenland’s “abundant resources and geopolitical importance.” Why it matters: U.S. officials view Greenland as important to American national-security interests. As the polar ice caps melt, Russia and China are leading the race to control the lucrative and strategically important shipping lanes and natural resources of the High North. Not the first time: In 1946, the U.S. offered to buy Greenland from Denmark for $100 million, but the Danish government refused to sell. The State Department also inquired about purchasing Greenland and Iceland from Denmark in 1867. – WSJ / Fox News
Everyday gear is going bulletproof, and sales are booming
Retailers across the country say they have seen a growing demand for bullet-resistant products for children — as well as for doctors, teachers, flight attendants, and taxi drivers — giving rise to an industry of ballistic goods for everyday Americans. As a result, consumers are buying bulletproof backpacks, clipboards, even three-ring binder inserts, that they hope will protect them from gunfire. Big picture: analysts estimate the market for bulletproof consumer gear is in the tens of millions of dollars. School security, meanwhile, has ballooned into a $2.7 billion-a-year business. Sign of the times: for the first time, Office Max and Office Depot have included bulletproof backpacks among their back-to-school offerings, while online retailers are marketing bulletproof whiteboards, chair cushions and kids’ puffer vests that tap into a growing sense of fear and helplessness. – Washington Post
Judge rules Georgia must phase out paperless voting machines by 2020
A federal judge on Thursday ruled that the state of Georgia may not use direct-recording electronic (DRE) voting machines in any election after 2019, but stopped short of mandating that the state switch to paper ballots as had been requested. Background: The nonprofit organization Coalition for Good Governance, along with a group of Georgia citizens, had filed suit against the state to mandate that only paper ballots be used in future elections, citing election security concerns stemming from the use of outdated machines. Why it matters: The decision was made in the midst of a fiery debate at the national level over next steps around election security, with Republicans and Democrats disagreeing over what, if anything, the federal government should do heading into the 2020 cycle. – The Hill
🤝 PRESENTED BY: VINCERO WATCHES
Typically, finding a watch that is high-quality, good-looking, and precise, costs a pretty penny. Vincero Watches is here to change that. Vincero crafts bold timepieces that masterfully blend form and function into one affordable timepiece. Now, during their sitewide anniversary sale, there’s no better time to shop. Product Highlight – Bellwether Silver + White: A great occasion watch that impresses in every setting.
🌎 WORLD NEWS
Israeli official: Tlaib, Omar barred from entry
Israel said Thursday that it will bar two Democratic congresswomen from entering the country ahead of a planned visit over their support for a Palestinian-led boycott movement, a decision announced shortly after President Donald Trump tweeted that it would “show great weakness” to allow them in. Why it matters: The move to bar Reps. Rashida Tlaib of Michigan and Ilhan Omar of Minnesota from visiting the close American ally appeared to be unprecedented, and marked a deep foray by Israel into America’s bitterly polarized politics. It is also a sharp escalation of Israel’s campaign against the international boycott movement. – AP
North Korea Calls Off Further Talks With South, Launches More Projectiles
North Korea rejected further peace talks with Seoul Friday on the same day it launched at least two projectiles — the sixth such test in a month, according to South Korea’s military. Context: The statement from North Korea followed a speech on Thursday by South Korean President Moon Jae-in marking the 74th anniversary of Korean independence. In it, Moon vowed reunification of the Korean peninsula by 2045 — a subject that Pyongyang views as provocative. – NPR
Gibraltar releases Iranian tanker despite US efforts
The authorities in Gibraltar on Thursday released an Iranian oil tanker they impounded six weeks ago, defying a United States request hours earlier to seize the ship. They also released the ship’s crew from detention. What’s next: Iran gave no immediate signal on whether it would soon release a British tanker that it had seized in retaliation, but Iranian officials have previously hinted at the possibility of such a trade. An oil trader in Iran who had been briefed on the dispute said that the British ship would be released once the Iranian tanker had reached Greece. – New York Times
Global Stocks Follow U.S. Markets Higher
Stocks around the world staged a modest rebound Friday, lifted by hopes of a robust package of stimulus measures from the European Central Bank and strong retail sales data in the U.S. Background: U.S. stocks posted gains on Thursday after figures showed American consumer spending had remained strong in the face of global headwinds, countering manufacturing weakness. Be Smart: Trade headlines are keeping investors on edge. China called looming U.S. tariffs a violation of accords reached by Presidents Donald Trump and Xi Jinping, while Trump said Thursday that any deal with Beijing must be “on our terms.” On the horizon: With traders gunning for more rate cuts from the Federal Reserve, chair Jerome Powell may give a hint of his thinking when he speaks Aug. 23 at the annual central bankers retreat in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. – WSJ / Bloomberg
Earnhardt Jr. ‘safe’ after plane crash in Tennessee
Dale Earnhardt Jr. will take the weekend off from broadcasting to be with his wife and daughter after the three were in a plane crash landing Thursday near Bristol Motor Speedway. Details: The FAA said Earnhardt’s plane rolled off the end of a runway and caught fire after landing at Elizabethton Municipal Airport yesterday afternoon. Flashback: This incident comes 26 years after former driver and 1992 Cup champion Alan Kulwicki died in a plane crash while on his way to the spring race at Bristol from a promotional appearance in Knoxville, Tennessee. That crash at Tri-City Regional Airport in Blountville, Tennessee, killed a total of four people. – AP
Google And Discrimination Claims
In a memo that’s circulating through Google, a former employee who recently decided to leave described the racism they felt as a black person working at the company. “I never stopped feeling the burden of being black at Google,” they wrote in the memo. The former employee — who had their name redacted from the publicly released memo — also laid out three steps they think Google should take to improve its diversity and inclusion efforts. Meanwhile, Google-owned YouTube is being sued by LGBTQ content creators alleging the company discriminated against LGBTQ creators on the platform and restricted their reach and ability to make money. The class-action lawsuit accuses YouTube of unfairly applying its policies in a way that deems queer content as “shocking” and “sexually explicit” while letting hate speech thrive. – Business Insider / VICE
📅 ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY
1896: Gold discovered in the Yukon
While salmon fishing near the Klondike River in Canada’s Yukon Territory on August 16, 1896, George Carmack reportedly spots nuggets of gold in a creek bed. His lucky discovery sparks the last great gold rush in the American West.
Today I Learned: The first U.S. gold rush started in North Carolina in 1803 when a 12-year-old boy found a 17-pound gold nugget on his father’s farm. It supplied all the gold for the nation’s mints until 1829.