*Port Authority Terror Suspect’s Wife Gets Grilled in Bangladesh:
Bangladeshi authorities on Tuesday were grilling the wife and other relatives of the alleged Port Authority bomber, officials said. Authorities from Bangladesh’s Counter Terrorism and Transnational Crime Department were interrogating 25-year-old Jannatul Ferdous Jui, the wife of 27-year-old suspect Akayed Ullah, following Monday’s ISIS-inspired terror attack. Details of the questioning in Dhaka were not immediately known, but officials said the couple has a 6-month-old son. Other relatives, including the wife’s parents, identified by local media as Julfiqar Haider and Mahfuza Akhter, were also being questioned. The caretaker of the home where Jui’s parents live,Rohima Islam, said that Jui and Ullah were wed in an arranged marriage last year. Immigration officials said that Mr. Ullah arrived in the United States from Bangladesh in 2011 on a family immigrant visa and has lived in Brooklyn ever since as a legal permanent resident. According to the terms of his visa, Mr. Ullah was the nephew of an American citizen and benefited from what the officials called “extended family chain migration.”
*California Fire Warning Extended as Massive Blaze Rages On:
Authorities in Southern California on Monday extended a fire warning for Los Angeles and Ventura counties, as meteorologists said dangerous winds may stoke the flames of several wildfires until at least Wednesday. The news came as the Thomas Fire, the largest of at least five fires scorching the region, closed in around Montecito in Santa Barbara County, sending people fleeing and covering residents in ash. The fire, which was only 20 percent contained as of Monday, has consumed 231,700 acres since it erupted last week and become the fifth-largest fire in state history. Officials in Santa Barbara County on Monday handed out masks to residents and urged people to stay indoors. “There’s so much ash it’s unbelievable,” a bakery manager in Montecito told the Associated Press. “Everything is white. The streets are covered, cars are covered, our parking lot is covered.”
*Third Court Finds Trump Transgender Military Ban Unconstitutional
A federal judge in Washington state ruled President Donald Trump’s transgender military ban unconstitutional Monday night. U.S. District Court Judge Marsha Pechman found that Trump’s ban violates equal protection and due process rights. Earlier Monday, White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said the Trump administration was exploring legal ways to enact the ban, despite reports the Pentagon is already preparing to accept transgender troops. Judge Pechman’s ruling is the third of its kind, after judges in Washington, D.C., and Baltimore also found the ban unconstitutional.
*SHOCK – San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee Dead at 65
San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee has died, his family announced in a statement. Lee, 65, passed away at around 1 a.m. at Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital. Several local news outlets described Lee’s overnight death as “unexpected,” and it was not yet clear early Tuesday what he died from. “Family, friends, and colleagues were at his side,” a statement said. “Our thoughts and prayers are with his wife Anita, his two daughters, Brianna and Tania, and his family.” As dictated by the city charter, Board of Supervisors President London Breed will now become the acting mayor. Lee was the first ever Asian-American mayor of San Francisco.
*DID YOU KNOW? Did you know that 11 members of the Carnegie Hall staff in NYC read LBN daily?
*LBN-BUSINESS INSIDER: ***In the era of online shopping, a European property company is making a nearly $16 billion bet that shoppers will find enduring appeal in New Jersey’s Garden State Plaza and shops in the World Trade Center. Unibail-Rodamco said on Tuesday that it had agreed to acquire the Westfield Corporation, the Australian owner of the Garden State Plaza and the shopping center at the World Trade Center in Lower Manhattan, for $15.7 billion. The transaction would combine two large operators of shopping malls and give Unibail-Rodamco access to a variety of well-known properties in the United States and Britain. The combined company would hold property valued at about $72.2 billion.
*LBN-MEDIA INSIDER: **Rather than give up on “Today” in the wake of veteran co-anchor Matt Lauer’s departure, viewers are flocking to it. For the second consecutive week, the first two hours of the NBC morning program surged ahead of the show’s main rival, “Good Morning America” – not only capturing its usual lead among people between 25 and 54, the demographic most coveted by advertisers — but among overall audiences as well. It’s the first time the venerable a.m. show has done so since late 2016, when it beat “GMA” among total viewers for the weeks of December 12, 2016, and December 19, 2016.
*LBN-HEALTH WATCH: Positivity, stubbornness and a conscientious work ethic could be key to living a longer life, a new study has found. Researchers examined the mental and physical health levels of a group of Italians between the ages of 90 and 101 and found that there were many common psychological traits between them. The study, which was published in International Psychogeriatrics concluded that the elderly participants had better overall mental well-being than their younger family members – they attributed this to their longevity.
*LBN-R.I.P.: ***Charles Robert Jenkins, an Army sergeant who became a Cold War enigma after he defected to North Korea in 1965 and was kept there for nearly 40 years, died on Monday in Japan. He was 77. His death was reported by the Kyodo News agency. The cause is not yet known, Kyodo said. ***Marshall R. Loeb, a business journalist who turned a floundering Money magazine into one of the nation’s most successful publications in the 1980s and then led a similar revival at Fortune, died on Saturday in Manhattan. He was 88. His daughter, Margaret Karen Loeb, said the cause was Parkinson’s disease. ***Bruce Brown, who molded the modern image of surfer as seeker and transformed the sport with his 1966 surfing documentary “The Endless Summer,” has died He was 80. Alex Mecl, general manager of Bruce Brown Films, said Brown died of natural causes in Santa Barbara, California on Sunday.
*LBN-VIDEO LINK: The Beatles Rooftop (Full Concert) — https://youtu.be/OpuBULPNr6w
*LBN-SITE OF THE DAY:
Pandora will change the way you discover and listen to music. Powered by the Music Genome Project, the most comprehensive music analysis ever undertaken, Pandora gives you personalized radio that plays what you love and continually evolves with your tastes.
*Laugh Factory Hosts 38th Annual Free Christmas Dinner and Toy Giveaway With Top Comedians
On December 25th, the world-famous Laugh Factory comedy club on Sunset Boulevard will host its 38th Annual Free Christmas Dinner. “We are welcoming anyone who is away from home or is alone for the holiday or simply homeless, for a warm meal, a hug, and a laugh,” says Founder and CEO Jamie Masada. Top comedians including Tiffany Haddish, Dom Irrera, Kevin Nealon, Paul Rodriguez, Tim Allen, Tom Dreesen, Shawn Wayans, Dane Cook and many more celebrities will help serve guests, as well as perform live shows following each meal served throughout the day. Masada will be on hand, welcoming guests at the door and giving toys to each child who attends. “Spending the Holidays alone is no laughing matter,” says Masada. Jamie and his team at the Laugh Factory encourages everyone to get involved. “You might know someone who has fallen on difficult times or whose children could use a toy and a warm holiday” says Masada, “or perhaps there is someone who needs a ride or someone is bashful?” Last year, according to Masada, “2,500 people were served, and this year the Laugh Factory is preparing for even more in Hollywood.” The dinners will be taking place on Monday, December 25th at 1pm, 3pm, 5pm and 7pm. A live comedy show will follow each meal service. The Laugh Factory is located on 8001 Sunset Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90046. For more information visit http://www.LaughFactory.com
*LBN-COMMENTARY by M Zuhdi Jasser: If you ever had any doubt that CAIR is an Islamist insurgency led organization, take in this lead quotation from their legal (sharia) director of the NY chapter. Apparently only hours after a failed jihadi suicide bombing, CAIR wants to admonish Americans that when the truth comes out about this local Muslim (whose suicide belt failed, and now will be singing about his Salafi-Jihadi friends to authorities), he and his contacts are going to be the victims? This quote might as well be from the Muslim Brotherhood global leadership office.
*LBN-COMMENTARY by David Brooks: There was a striking moment in the focus group that consultant Frank Luntz recently held with a group of Roy Moore supporters in Alabama. One of the voters said that the women who are accusing Moore of harassment are being paid to do so. Luntz asked the group how many people thought the women are being paid. A bunch of hands shot up and voices called out that all of the women are being paid. That moment captures the radicalism of the current moment — the loss of faith in institutions, the tendency to see corrupt conspiracies, the desire for total change, the belief that sometimes you’ve got to hire the biggest jerk available to get that change, and you’ve got to be willing to ignore facts to justify it. That attitude is evident on the pro-Trump right, but also on the left. The woke activists, the angry Sanders socialists and social justice warriors are just as certain that the system is rigged, that rulers are corrupt and that the temple has to be torn down. The moderate left is being decimated across Europe and that will probably happen here. We’re living in an age of radicalism.
*LBN-COMMENTARY by Candida Moss: Last week, a number of news outlets proclaimed the discovery of a new extra-Biblical text detailing the relationship between Jesus and his brother James. At a conference of Biblical scholars held in Boston in mid-November, University of Texas-Austin scholars Brent Landau and Geoffrey Smith described how they had unearthed the first Greek copy of the unorthodox text the First Apocalypse of James, “an ancient Christian narrative in which Jesus reveals to his brother James information about the heavenly realm and about future events.” And who doesn’t want to know the secrets Jesus passed on to his family members? Sadly, what was significant about this discovery got lost in reporting. Whatever you might have heard, Landau and Smith did not discover (or claim to discover) a previously unknown text. Instead, they discovered the first Greek manuscript of a text previously known only from copies in Coptic that are presumed to have been translated from the Greek original. Having a copy of the text in the original language makes it easier for scholars to piece together the text’s history. Landau told The Daily Beast that the “probable” date of the fragments is the fifth or sixth century, which makes them “roughly contemporaneous” with the Coptic texts we already have.
*LBN-COMMENTARY by ZEPHYR TEACHOUT: Zero tolerance should go hand in hand with two other things: due process and proportionality. As citizens, we need a way to make sense of accusations that does not depend only on what we read or see in the news or on social media. Due process means a fair, full investigation, with a chance for the accused to respond. And proportionality means that while all forms of inappropriate sexual behavior should be addressed, the response should be based on the nature of the transgressions. Both were missing in the hasty call for Senator Franken’s resignation. Some might point out, rightly, that Congress doesn’t have good procedures for dealing with harassment accusations. I also lived in the legal environment that produced the Duke University lacrosse case, in which three students were falsely accused of rape by the prosecutor in the case, who was later disbarred for his conduct. The quick rush to public condemnation of the players, fueled by the media, ended up hurting the accuser and the accused. As citizens, we should all be willing to stay ambivalent while the facts are gathered and we collect our thoughts. While the choice to fire the television hosts Charlie Rose and Matt Lauer were the choices of private companies, condemning a sitting lawmaker is a public choice and one our representatives should make judiciously.
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*LBN – A DIFFERENT VIEW:..
*LBN-OVERHEARD: ***Her husband has been a stalwart friend of Prince Harry and Prince William for years, so, no surprise perhaps, that Meghan Markle has a new British best bud: Victoria “Posh Spice” Beckham. The former Spice Girl and Markle bonded over beauty tips after Beckham, who now runs a successful fashion house, gave the royal fiancée a list of exclusive salons for her to visit, according to a report in The Sun’s Bizarre showbiz column. The Sun says that, like many women before them, their love of “pricey facials and glamorous blow-dries has become the foundation for a growing friendship.”
LBN E-Lert Edited By Dan Gaylord