Friday’s Mini-Report, 12.11.15

Today’s edition of quick hits:
 
* Holtzclaw found guilty: “Protesters chanting ‘We want life!,’ referring to a life sentence, could be heard inside an Oklahoma City courtroom, where Daniel Holtzclaw, a 29-year-old former Oklahoma City police officer who was charged with sexually assaulting and raping 13 black women, faced a judge.”
 
* Ramadi: “More than six months after falling to the Islamic State, the city center of Ramadi is under siege by Iraqi security forces and tribal fighters backed by American airpower. Commanders say that as few as 300 militants remain holed up inside, behind a defense of elaborate tunnels, booby-trapped buildings and roads laced with hidden bombs.”
 
* Paris: “With only hours left to produce a global climate accord, rifts emerged Friday between Western countries and China and its allies over how to share the burdens of reducing carbon pollution and helping vulnerable nations cope with the rising seas and extreme weather that comes with global warming.”
 
* Shutdown averted: “The House on Friday passed by voice vote a five-day continuing resolution to fund the government through Dec. 16, securing a little more time for congressional leaders and appropriators to finish negotiating an omnibus spending measure. President Barack Obama is expected to sign the five-day CR, which the Senate passed on Thursday.”
 
* Council on American-Islamic Relations follow-up: “An envelope containing a white powdery substance that was sent to a Muslim advocacy group in Washington will be taken to an FBI laboratory for testing.” The group’s spokesperson said initial testing “showed the substance was not harmful,” though the envelope also contained a “hate message.”
 
* Cuba: “The U.S. and Cuba took another step toward normalizing relations Friday by agreeing to test direct mail service between the two countries for the first time in more than 50 years.”
 
* A decade in the making: “A small group of Volkswagen engineers began working as early as 2005 on emissions cheating software after they were unable to find a technical solution to U.S. emissions controls as the automaker pushed into the North American market, the carmaker’s executives said Thursday.”
 
* Australia: “Tolerance of racial and cultural diversity is good. Tolerance of those who endanger the community by refusing to vaccinate their kids is not. An Australian primary school just learned that the hard way: A bout of chickenpox has swept Brunswick North West Primary School in Melbourne, infecting at least 80 of the school’s 320 students within the past two weeks, reports The Age.”
 
Anything to add? Consider this an open thread.
 
 

Friday's Mini-Report, 12.11.15