The GOP gets civil. ISIS gets bureaucratic. And spies get a newsflash.
It’s Friday, and here are the 5 things you need to know to Get Up to Speed and Out the Door.
Invasion of the body snatchers: What came over these guys last night? No name-calling. No moderator-bashing. No references to “hand size.” The debate on CNN was civil and substantive (albeit with a healthy dose of lies). Marco Rubio got back to basics. Ted Cruz finessed his pitch to become Diet Trump. And John Kasich stayed above the fray. All of which allowed Donald Trump to try on a new hat: party unifier. Now, it’s on to Tuesday’s winner-take-all in Florida and Ohio where Rubio and Kasich are fighting sudden death.
20 questions: The employment application form is pretty standard – name, work history, that sort of stuff. But then there’s this one: Are you willing to carry out a suicide attack? That’s ISIS for ya. Germany’s intelligence agency and a slew of news organizations got a hold of leaked documents, including a sort of job questionnaire for the most evil outfit in the world. It’s chilling stuff. One applicant wants to be dispatched on a suicide mission ASAP because the shrapnel in his head gives him headaches. The good news: The docs will help track those who joined ISIS and then returned home to do its bidding.
Dam you, Tehran: The U.S. says it’s ready to publicly point a wagging finger at Iranian hackers for a 2013 cyber attack on a New York dam. The intrusion at the Bowman Avenue Dam, around 30 miles north of NYC, wasn’t exactly sophisticated – the hackers only managed to get access to some back office systems. Still, it points to how open American infrastructure is to such attacks. And Iran, what is up? Hacking dams, firing off missiles. We thought we were in a honeymoon period, what with the millions in sanctions relief and all. Tsk, tsk.
Deadline: Thirty days. Pay up or else. That’s the hard deadline Abu Sayyaf has now set to spare the life of two Canadians, a Norwegian and a Filipinia it abducted last year from a resort. Norway and Canada say they’re aware of the jarring video but aren’t saying much else. Abu Sayyaf is an Islamist separatist group, linked – as so many of them seem to be – to al Qaeda.
RUSSIAN SPY RING
Not all cloak and dagger: Think working for a Russian spy ring is sexy? Guess again. Even the alleged spies get bored with it. We get our clues from court documents filed by the FBI in the case against Evgeny Buryakov. He and his Russian colleagues expected real life to be juust slightly less exciting than a Hollywood flick. You know, the whole 007 thing, flying around the world with fake passports. Turns out it wasn’t even like “The Americans.” Maybe a job satisfaction survey is in order.
People are talking about these. Read up. Join in.
Number of the Day: 1 in 3
The number of families who find it hard to afford diapers for their babies. The White House calls it the diaper gap and wants to do something about it.
Bella and her Brazilian jaguar buddy, Juma, bring you this morning’s awww moment.
Floppy disks are still a thing. Who knew?
More than pocket change
50 Cent just can’t stop posing with wads of cash. Even if it’s flashing fakes, as he told a judge. A man’s gotta rep to maintain.
A four-star stay
Man locked up for a misdemeanor sneaks a phone into his jail cell, takes a selfie, posts a TripAdvisor-style review. The Internet’s amused; cops aren’t.
The network: Our friends at CNNMoney continue their fascinating investigation into mapping out the network behind the massive Maria Duval scheme. Turns out, there’s some seriously shady characters. Here’s the latest chapter.
AND FINALLY …
Say yes to the dress
This little kid couldn’t help it. That wedding dress was just begging to be divebombed!
By Ed Payne