In our news wrap Wednesday, President Trump defended his decision to fire National Security Adviser John Bolton, citing differences over North Korea and Venezuela. Trump also said Bolton “wasn’t getting along” with other administration officials. Meanwhile, a court in Scotland has joined the battle over Brexit, ruling that Prime Minister Boris Johnson illegally suspended Parliament.
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This has been a day of remembrance, 18 years since the September 11 attacks left nearly 3,000 people dead. In New York City, crowds surrounded the memorial pools where the World Trade Center towers once stood.
In Washington, a huge American flag hung at the Pentagon during ceremonies including President Trump. Defense Secretary Mark Esper noted that many Americans have no memory of the attacks.
On this 18th anniversary of 9/11, service members who were not even born on that day now stand among our ranks. As each year passes, and the details of that tragic day fade, we must ensure the memories of the departed do not.
Vice President Pence joined ceremonies outside Shanksville, Pennsylvania, where one of the hijacked planes crashed. Bells rang to commemorate the passengers who fought the al-Qaida hijackers.
President Trump today defended his decision to fire National Security Adviser John Bolton. He cited their differences over North Korea and Venezuela, among other issues. The president spoke during a meeting in the Oval Office, and said Bolton had made some big mistakes.
He wanted to do things, not necessarily tougher than me. John's known as a tough guy. He's so tough, he got us into Iraq. That's tough. And — but he's somebody that I actually had a very good relationship with, but he wasn't getting along with people in the administration that I consider very important.
The president of Iran, Hassan Rouhani, welcomed the ouster of Bolton, who has advocated a hard line against Tehran. Rouhani called for Americans to — quote — "abandon warmongering."
A court in Scotland has joined the battle over Brexit. It ruled today that British Prime Minister Boris Johnson illegally suspended Parliament this week. The court found that he was trying to clear the way to leave the European Union, with or without a formal deal. The British Supreme Court will have the final say at a hearing next week.
Palestinians today condemned any Israeli move to annex the Jordan Valley. The region is seen as the heart of a future Palestinian state. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu pledged Tuesday to annex it if he wins reelection next week. The Palestinian Liberation Organization warned it would be a fatal mistake.
Annexing the Jordan Valley in any way or form means one thing. It the burying of any prospects of peace between Palestinians and Israelis.
Why such an administration and such a prime minister is willing to invest everything they have in order for our children and Israeli children to continue in conflict for another 100 years? Why?
Other Arab leaders also criticized Netanyahu's announcement.
Back in this country, President Trump said his administration will propose a ban on all e-cigarette flavors, except the flavor of tobacco itself. It's aimed at curbing underage vaping. The Food and Drug Administration has had the authority to ban vaping flavors since 2016, but had resisted taking that step.
A federal jury in Florida has convicted a Chinese woman of illegally entering the president's Mar-a-Lago estate. Yujing Zhang was arrested for trespassing and lying to Secret Service agents. She carried electronic gear, but wasn't charged with espionage. Zhang could get six years in prison.
California lawmakers gave final approval today to protections for workers at ride-sharing and on-demand delivery services. Uber, Lyft and others that rely on contractors strongly opposed the measure. Their workers will have to be treated more like employees when it comes to wages and benefits.
General Motors is recalling nearly 3.8 million pickup trucks and SUVs in the U.S. and Canada after reports of faulty brakes. The company says there have been 113 crashes and 13 injuries. The affected vehicles range from model years 2014 through 2018.
On Wall Street, stocks rallied after China exempted some U.S. products from tariffs. The Dow Jones industrial average gained 227 points to close at 27137. The Nasdaq rose 85 points, and the S&P 500 added 21.
Oil tycoon and philanthropist T. Boone Pickens died today at his home in Dallas. He made a name in the oil business, and then led bids to take over larger companies. Later, he pushed renewable energy and donated millions from his fortune.
T. Boone Pickens was 91 years old.
And there's hopeful news in the campaign to save a species. Scientists in Italy have created embryos of the nearly extinct northern white rhinoceros. They inseminated eggs from the last two females using frozen sperm collected from the last males before they died. The embryos will be carried by a surrogate mother from another rhino species.