Today’s edition of quick hits:
* No one seems to believe North Korea: “It will take a couple of days for the U.S. to determine if North Korea’s claim it detonated a hydrogen bomb is a big lie or a big problem – but experts already think it’s more likely the event was just a blast from the past.”
* California: “Gov. Jerry Brown declared a state of emergency Wednesday in Porter Ranch, where thousands of residents have been evacuated due to a massive gas leak.”
* Oregon’s Malheur National Wildlife Refuge: “The anti-government activists who took over a federal wildlife refuge in Oregon are going to face federal charges when the siege is over, the local sheriff told NBC News on Wednesday.”
* Deportations: “The nation’s highest immigration court has temporarily halted the deportations of 12 Central American women and children [whom] the federal government detained last weekend as part of its first significant nationwide enforcement effort focused on these recently arrived immigrants.”
* Middle East fallout continues: “Qatar has recalled its ambassador from Iran to protest attacks on the Saudi Embassy in Tehran and Consulate in Mashhad, violence stemming from the Saudi execution of an opposition Shiite cleric.”
* Georgia: “Gov. Nathan Deal on Monday rescinded an order that sought to stop the resettlement of Syrian refugees in Georgia, clearing the way for new arrivals from the war-torn nation to receive food stamp benefits.”
* Turkey: “President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey marched across another line last week. Asked about his push for greatly enhanced executive powers, he told reporters that there was a precedent in ‘Hitler’s Germany.’”
* Alaska: “Credit ratings agency Standard and Poor’s on Tuesday dropped Alaska’s gold-plated credit rating and warned of more turmoil ahead unless lawmakers act to close the state’s massive budget gap.” For more on this, check out my piece from a month ago.
* Story worth watching: “House Republicans will start listening sessions Thursday to discuss a measure authorizing the use of military force against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS), The Hill has learned. The sessions will be held by House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Ed Royce (R-Calif.), whose panel would have jurisdiction over the authorization, according to a committee aide on background.”
* It’s always encouraging when American heroes receive recognition they deserve: “Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus announced today that the first ship of the next generation of fleet replenishment oilers (T-AO 205) will be named USNS John Lewis after the civil rights movement hero and current U.S. representative of Georgia’s Fifth Congressional District.”
Anything to add? Consider this an open thread.