'Fear us, expect us': Hacker group Anonymous declares war on jihad

Hacker group Anonymous have posted a video declaring war on jihad websites to avenge the attack on the satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo.

The group made the announcement via YouTube, saying it was a message for "al-Qaeda, the Islamic State and other terrorists".

The hacktivists also posted a blog Pastebin declaring it is their "duty to react" to the deaths of those killed on Thursday. 

They say they will hunt down and close all social media accounts linked to any terrorist groups to avenge those killed.

The video shows a man dressed in the infamous Guy Fawkes mask worn by Anonymous saying the group will fight in memory of those who fought for freedom of expression.

"Against us you can do nothing. We are not physical, we are an idea, a cause, the voice of a free people," the video warns jihadists.

"We are Anonymous, we do not forgive, we will not forget, fear us, expect us murderer."

Anonymous is known for its high profile attacks on government, religious, and corporate websites.

Hacker group anonymous declares cyber-war on Jihadists after the Charlie Hebdo attack. Source: 1 NEWS


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New trial in Monsanto's $446m judgement over whether weed-killer caused cancer

A San Francisco judge said today she is considering tossing out the lion's share of the $446 million judgment against agribusiness giant Monsanto and ordering a new trial over whether the company's weed-killer caused a groundskeeper's cancer.

San Francisco Superior Court Judge Suzanne Bolanos didn't formally rule on any issues after a two-hour hearing to consider Monsanto's demand to toss out the entire jury verdict in the first of thousands of similar cases across the country to go to trial.

The San Francisco jury in August said Monsanto knew - or should have known - its best-selling Roundup weed-killer causes cancer and hit the company with $386 million in punitive damages, which are designed to punish companies who act recklessly.

The jury also awarded DeWayne Johnson $50.9 million in so-called "pain-and-suffering" damages and $9.2 million in actual damages.

But Bolanos issued a written tentative ruling ahead of the hearing saying she intended to strike down the punitive damages and schedule a new trial on that issue.

During the hearing, Bolanos also said she was troubled by the $50.9 million in "non-economic" pain-and-suffering damages the jury awarded. Johnson's lawyer argued for $1.5 million a year for the next 33 years.

But Monsanto's lawyers argued that Johnson is expected to live for two more years - an argument that appeared to resonate with Bolanos who mulled out loud about fashioning an order reducing the entire verdict to under $13.8 million.

Ultimately, Bolanos ordered lawyers to submit written arguments by Saturday and said she would rule after that.

Johnson and his lawyers left court without comment. So did Monsanto's legal team.

"Tentative rulings are common in California and it's rare for judges to reverse themselves," said David Levine, a professor at the University of California's Hastings Law School in San Francisco.

During the hearing, the judge said she was concerned with improper statements Johnson's lawyer Brent Wisner made during his closing arguments.

Despite the judge's order not to, Wisner compared Monsanto to tobacco companies and said company executives would be drinking champagne in their boardroom if the jury sided with the St. Louis-based company.

The judge admonished the jury to disregard those comments at the time, but wondered Wednesday if they entitled Monsanto to a new trial.

The San Francisco jury in August said Monsanto knew - or should have known – its best-selling Roundup weed-killer causes cancer. Source: Associated Press

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Donald Trump says Fed has 'gone crazy' after stocks' major drop

US President Donald Trump said the Federal Reserve "has gone crazy" after a major drop in stock prices today 

Mr Trump, who has been critical of the central bank's interest rate increases, told reporters after landing in Erie, Pennsylvania, that he thinks "the Fed is making a mistake".

He added, "I think the Fed has gone crazy." 

But he also called the drop "a correction we've been waiting for for a long time".

US stocks took their worst loss in eight months on Wednesday, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average sinking 831 points and the Nasdaq composite logging its biggest loss in more than two years. 

Mr Trump has often pointed to stock market records set during his time in office as a measure of his success. 

The US President said he thinks "the Fed is making a mistake" with interest rate increases. Source: 1 NEWS

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Hurricane Michael slams into Florida with 249km/h winds, kills at least one as it charges into southeast

Hurricane Michael slammed into the Florida Panhandle with terrifying winds of 249 km/h today, splintering homes and submerging neighbourhoods before continuing its destructive charge inland across the US Southeast.

It was the most powerful hurricane to hit the continental US in nearly 50 years and at least one death was reported during its passage.

Supercharged by abnormally warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico, the Category Four storm crashed ashore in the early afternoon Wednesday local time near Mexico Beach, a tourist town about midway along the Panhandle, a 320-kilometre stretch of white-sand beach resorts, fishing towns and military bases. 

After it ravaged the Panhandle, Michael barreled into south Georgia as a Category Three hurricane - the most powerful ever recorded for that part of the neighbouring state. It later weakened to a Category One hurricane, and there were reports it spawned possible tornadoes in central Georgia.

In north Florida, Michael battered the shoreline with sideways rain, powerful gusts and crashing waves, swamping streets and docks, flattening trees, shredding awnings and peeling away shingles. It set off transformer explosions and knocked out power to more than 388,000 homes and businesses.

A Panhandle man was killed by a tree that toppled on a home, Gadsden County Sheriff's Office spokeswoman Anglie Hightower said. But she added emergency crews trying to reach the home were hampered by downed trees and debris blocking roadways. The man wasn't immediately identified.

Damage in Panama City was extensive, with broken and uprooted trees and power lines down nearly everywhere. Roofs were peeled off and homes split open by fallen trees. Twisted street signs lay on the ground. Residents emerged in the early evening to assess damage when rains stopped, though skies were still overcast and windy.

Vance Beu, 29, was staying with his mother at her apartment, Spring Gate Apartments, a small complex of single-story wood frame apartment buildings. A pine tree punched a hole in their roof and he said the roar of the storm sounded like a jet engine as the winds accelerated. Their ears even popped as the barometric pressure dropped.

"It was terrifying, honestly. There was a lot of noise. We thought the windows were going to break at any time. We had the inside windows kind of barricaded in with mattresses," Mr Beu said.

Kaylee O'Brien was crying as she sorted through the remains of the apartment she shared with three roommates at Whispering Pines apartments, where the smell of broken pine trees was thick in the air. Four pine trees had crashed through the roof of her apartment, nearly hitting two people. Her one-year-old Siamese cat, Molly, was missing.

"We haven't seen her since the tree hit the den. She's my baby," Ms O'Brien said, her face wet with tears.

In Apalachicola, Sally Crown rode out the storm in her house. The worst damage - she thought - was in her yard. Multiple trees were down. But after the storm passed, she drove to check on the cafe she manages and saw breathtaking destruction.

"It's absolutely horrendous. Catastrophic," Ms Crown said. "There's flooding. Boats on the highway. A house on the highway. 

Houses that have been there forever are just shattered."

Governor Rick Scott announced soon after the powerful eye had swept inland that "aggressive" search and rescue efforts would get underway as conditions allowed. He urged people to stay off debris-littered roads.

"If you and your family made it through the storm safely, the worst thing you could do now is act foolishly," he said.

Michael was a meteorological brute that sprang quickly from a weekend tropical depression, going from a Category Two on Tuesday to a Category Four by the time it came ashore. It was the most powerful hurricane on record to hit the Panhandle.

More than 375,000 people up and down the Gulf Coast were urged to evacuate as Michael closed in. But the fast-moving, fast-strengthening storm didn't give people much time to prepare, and emergency authorities lamented that many ignored the warnings and seemed to think they could ride it out.


Limo service operator linked to crash which killed 20 people leaves court after posting $232,000 bond

A limousine service operator was charged today with criminally negligent homicide in a crash that killed 20 people, while police continued investigating what caused the wreck and whether anyone else will face charges.

Nauman Hussain, 28, showed little emotion as he was arraigned today in an Albany-area court, and he ignored shouted questions from reporters as he left after posting $231,900 bond.

A judge had entered a not guilty plea for him.

Earlier, his lawyer said that Hussain wasn't guilty and that police were rushing to judgment in investigating Sunday's stretch limo wreck.

But State Police Superintendent George Beach said Hussain hired a driver who shouldn't have been behind the wheel of such a car, and the vehicle shouldn't have been driven after state inspectors deemed it "unserviceable" last month.

Hussain's car was packed with luggage when he was stopped Thursday on a highway near Albany, Schoharie County District Attorney Susan Mallery said.

Hussain's lawyer, Lee Kindlon, said his client felt unsafe at home because he'd gotten threats.

The company, Prestige Limousine, has come under intense scrutiny since a 19-seater limo ran a stop sign and plowed into a parked SUV at the bottom of a long hill on Sunday.

The impact killed two pedestrians and 18 people in the limo, which was taking a group to a birthday bash.

Kindlon said his client handled only marketing duties and phone calls, while his father ran the company, though police called Hussain its operator.

Under New York law, criminally negligent homicide involves not perceiving a substantial, unjustifiable risk that leads to someone's death.

It's punishable by up to four years in prison.

Nauman Hussain, 28, entered a not guilty plea following Sunday’s stretch limo tragedy. Source: Associated Press