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Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Progressive Briefing for Friday, October 5

Over 300 arrested at Senate offices during #CancelKavanaugh sit in, who talked to the FBI in the Kavanaugh investigation, Virgin Atlantic flies first commercial plane on recycled waste carbon gas and more.

Image Credit: Zach D. Roberts/NationofChange

Over 300 arrested at Senate offices during #CancelKavanaugh sit in

Roughly 1,000 people were crammed into the atrium as the mic check was called for people from Alaska and Maine go and “order pizzas” at their Senators office – the rest were told to either go to the higher levels or stay on the bottom floor to start the sit-in. Chanting “No to Kavanaugh” over the megaphones of the police, one by one they were pulled from the floor and arrested. Over 300 in all were first given bracelets and then taken to the park across the street for processing

Who talked to the FBI in the Kavanaugh case – and who didn’t?

FBI special agents spoke with nine people as they investigated allegations of sexual misconduct against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, the White House said on Thursday.

Administration officials declined to detail who had spoken with investigators, but some of the people involved, or their lawyers, have talked on their own about whether or not they have given interviews to the FBI.

One person who evidently did not was Christine Blasey Ford, the first woman who accused Kavanaugh of sexual misconduct. Ford’s attorneys said on Wednesday that although she wanted to talk with investigators and had materials to give them, Ford had not spoken to the FBI.

Virgin Atlantic makes ‘aviation history’ after flying commercial plane on recycled waste carbon gas

On Wednesday, a Virgin Atlantic commercial flight was successfully flown using only waste carbon gas to become the first Boeing 747 powered by new sustainable aviation fuel. The plane flew from Orlando, Florida to London’s Gatwick airport and was marshaled by Richard Branson.

After the flight was complete, Branson celebrated the voyage calling in “aviation history.”

“I was so proud to marshal the 747 into Gatwick and thank our team and customers for being a part of making aviation history,” Branson said in a blog post. “There was rapturous applause from the passengers and the crew – I could tell everyone was as excited as I was by the enormous potential of this new technology.”

7 Russian GRU officers indicted for computer hacking and money laundering

Seven officers in the Russian Main Intelligence Directorate (GRU), a military intelligence agency of the General Staff of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation, have been indicted for computer hacking, wire fraud, aggravated identity theft, and money laundering related to Russia’s state-sponsored doping program. Three of the GRU officers have also been charged and accused of conspiring to gain unauthorized access into the computers of U.S. persons and entities involved in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.

Beginning in December 2014 and continuing until at least May 2018, GRU officers Aleksei Sergeyevich Morenets, Evgenii Mikhaylovich Serebriakov, Ivan Sergeyevich Yermakov, Artem Andreyevich Malyshev, Dmitriy Sergeyevich Badin, Oleg Mikhaylovich Sotnikov, and Alexey Valerevich Minin allegedly conducted persistent and sophisticated computer intrusions affecting U.S. persons, corporate entities, international organizations, and their respective employees located around the world, based on their strategic interest to the Russian government. In addition to hacking computers and stealing information, the GRU officers publicized portions of stolen information as part of an influence and disinformation campaign designed to undermine, retaliate against, and otherwise delegitimize the efforts of international anti-doping organizations and officials who had publicly exposed a Russian state-sponsored athlete doping program and to damage the reputations of more than 250 athletes around the world by falsely claiming that such athletes were using banned or performance-enhancing drugs.

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