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  • iStock/Thinkstock(SYDNEY) -- Amateur surfer Charlie Frye is lucky to be alive after punching a shark in the face using a maneuver he once saw a surf champion use, he said.“I feel [like] there was a hand grabbing me, shaking me. I feel like I was going to be eaten alive, like I generally thought I was going to die, like I was eaten by a shark,” Frye, a 25-year-old British doctor living in Australia, told 9News in Australia.Frye and three of his doctor friends were surfing Monday off Avoca Beach, which is 90 miles north of Sydney."I thought it was a friend goofing around,” Frye, who was bitten on the shoulder, said. “I turned and I saw this shark come out of the water and breach its head.”In the life-or-death moment, the amateur surfer thought of Australian pro surfer Mick “White Lightning” Fanning, who famously fought off a shark attack at a 2015 surfing championship in South Africa by punching it in the face.“I felt something on my shoulder like a big thud,” Frye told 9News. “The shark's head come out of the water and I just punched the shark in the face.”At first, Frye didn’t realize his puncture wounds were bleeding. His friends then drove him to a hospital, which is where they all also worked, he said.If he ever meets Fanning, Frye said, he “owes him a beer.”
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  • iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- U.S. military investigators visited a remote area of northern Niger on Sunday that was the scene of a deadly Oct. 4 ISIS ambush that killed four American soldiers and four Nigerien soldiers.The U.S. military's investigation into the circumstances of the deadly ambush is expected to conclude in January."A joint U.S. Africa Command and Niger military investigation team returned to the village of Tongo Tongo, Niger on Nov. 12 in order to gain a clearer understanding of the Oct. 4 ambush, the attack site and the surrounding environment," said a statement from U.S. Africa Command (AFRICOM)."This mission allowed the investigation team to gather information and determine the facts related to the ambush that killed four U.S. soldiers and four Niger Force Soldiers," it added.On Oct. 4 a dozen U.S. Army advisers and the 30 Nigerien soldiers they were accompanying came under attack shortly after leaving Tongo Tongo.Staff Sgt. Bryan Black, Staff Sgt. Jeremiah Johnson, Staff Sgt. Dustin Wright and Sgt. La David Johnson were killed in the attack carried out by ISIS-Greater Sahara, a small ISIS affiliate.According to Africa Command the investigation team interviewed local villagers, carried out a physical examination of multiple areas of interest related to the attack "and retraced actions leading up to, during and after this ambush."Located close to the border with Mali, Tongo Tongo is located in an area that was already known as a hotbed of Islamic extremist groups even prior to the deadly ambush.AFRICOM said it "went to great lengths" to ensure the safety of investigators and to protect the operational security of the visit."Sufficient assets were available in the event we had to respond to an attack that threatened innocent civilians, our partner forces or our own personnel," said the AFRICOM statement.Media outlets that have visited Tongo Tongo since the attack have done so with heavy Nigerien escort and have on the scene for less than 10 minutes.The investigation into the ambush is being led by U.S. Army Major General Roger Cloutier, AFRICOM's chief of staff. A U.S. official said Cloutier was part of the team that visited Tongo Tongo on Sunday.Last week, the Pentagon announced that as part of his investigation "Cloutier's staff will travel to locations in the U.S., Africa and Europe.""AFRICOM is committed to carrying out a thorough and comprehensive investigation to ensure the families of the fallen understand what happened and how U.S. and Niger forces can learn from it," said the AFRICOM statement. "We will continue to pursue those who perpetrated this ambush.
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  • iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- While the world meets in Bonn, Germany, to hammer out the final details of the historic Paris climate accord and lay the path forward on combating climate change, there may be some confusion over who speaks for America.The Trump administration's official delegation is a smaller team smaller than in past years and is led by the State Department to work on the Paris Agreement - even though the president intends to withdraw from the accord.But there's another delegation from the U.S. at the summit — a group of elected officials, businesses, universities, and nonprofits, all of whom are committed to meeting America's promises under the agreement — even without the administration's help.The summit in Bonn is the annual Conference of the Parties to the 1992 United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, shortened to COP23. Delegations from around the world are negotiating crucial details of the agreement including timelines for reporting progress.Trump announced his intention to withdraw from the international climate deal in a Rose Garden speech in June, saying "I was elected to represent the citizens of Pittsburgh, not Paris".Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto is one of the attendees in Germany and has signed on to support the Paris deal.The State Department formally notified the UN in August that the U.S. intends to withdraw from the agreement. However, because of the agreement’s legal structure the earliest withdrawal can take place is November 2020 – right as Trump seeks re-election.State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert said last week that the department's position has not changed on the Paris agreement and will follow the president's direction on the subject."If we could get a more favorable deal for American businesses, American workers and taxpayers, then we will look at that. But we continue to go forward with the plan of pulling out of the Paris accords," Nauert said last Tuesday.But the White House said the delegation is not planning any negotiations on a better deal at COP23."We don't plan to talk about what those options could be," a White House official told reporters on a conference call. "I don't anticipate having delegations approach us and really try to get into that kind of discussion."The administration has yet to provide any details of what a "more favorable deal" would look like or moved forward on any negotiations.A White House official said the administration'd position has not changed and they have no plans to discuss options that would lead to the U.S. remaining in the Paris deal. The official said administration officials are participating in events that aren't geared toward discussing the deal.Who is representing the U.S.?The highest level American official attending on behalf of the U.S. government is Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs Tom Shannon, who will arrive this week for negotiations. The Department's Director of Global Change Trigg Talley is the lead negotiator with a team of officials who have worked on climate issues for years, including as part of the original negotiations for the Paris agreement. The White House will be represented by George David Banks, special assistant to President Trump for international energy and environment.The official delegation has been criticized for focusing on the role of fossil fuels and coal at this climate change summit. Research shows that emissions from burning fossil fuel contribute to warming temperatures.Protesters from environmental advocacy groups disrupted a U.S. government event Monday with the U.S. Energy Association on "the critical role of fossil fuels," turning their backs to the panel and singing a rendition of "Proud to Be an American" for several minutes and then walking out."I think that this panel is only controversial if we choose to bury our heads in the sand and ignore the realities of the global energy system," Banks said at the beginning of the panel.Banks laughe
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  • Rekita Lee(JACKSONVILLE, Fla.) -- Rekita Lee got the surprise of a lifetime when her son, Tre’Vaughn Lee, a marine, surprised her when he came home from his deployment to Japan.She hadn’t seen him since August 2016 and wasn’t expecting to see him for the holidays, after a previously planned trip to visit him overseas in October didn’t pan out."Tre’Vaughn has always been my rock so it was just very, very, very emotional," the shocked mom told ABC News about the moment she laid eyes on him at her parents’ home in Jacksonville, Florida. "I literally thought I was going to have a heart attack. I couldn’t breathe. I couldn’t believe he’s here."To really cover his tracks, Tre’Vaughn Lee had made up a story that he was being sent on an important training missing to a new location that would help advance his Marine Corps career. He told his worried mom he wouldn’t have time for many phone calls while in this new location due to his rigorous schedule."He didn’t want to tell me many details because he didn’t want me to be nervous," she explained.Not even his grandparents knew he was coming home until he rang their doorbell before his mom arrived.“Her reaction was so much more than I thought,” said the proud Tre’Vaughn Lee. “I expected crying, but I didn’t expect the big scream.”His mom is over the moon to have him home for Thanksgiving and through December 4."I just really, really needed that. It’s been rough," she said. "Holiday time, I never do good around holiday time because I think it should be a happy time. I don’t complain too much because I am thankful for a lot, but I’ve also had a lot of roadblocks in my life.""He’s such an awesome kid," she added. "I could not be more proud of him."
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  • ABC News(NEW YORK) -- Long before he rose to the top of the military as a four-star general with global responsibilities, Volney Warner was a newly minted second lieutenant, responsible mainly for keeping his troops alive in the brutal early months of the Korean War."We were armed with hand-me-down World War II equipment, both weapons and uniforms," Warner told ABC News contributor Col. Steve Ganyard. "We spent a lot of time trading two cartons of cigarettes to try and get an additional A4 or A6 machine gun. And if we weren’t fighting for firepower, we were fighting for rations. It was a terrible way to fight a war."Outgunned and outmanned, Warner’s unit once grabbed a couple of abandoned Russian T-34 tanks out of a ditch to get some armor at the front of the infantry column, until Air Force tank-busters told them it was a bad idea.If another war breaks out on the Korean Peninsula, the U.S. military will have no need to scrounge enemy tanks. Now there are stealth bombers, F-35s and all manner of sophisticated weaponry giving a clear advantage to the U.S. and South Korea."Obviously, as the president has in fact announced, if a war starts we could win that war," Warner told Ganyard. "What we have to do that might be unacceptable to many other countries and many other people, but I think it goes without saying that we could win that war. The real question is whether we’re politically apt enough to go ahead and figure out how to not have that war."Many Americans may not realize it, but the Korean War isn’t officially over. The armistice signed in 1953, which established the demilitarized zone, was simply a ceasefire. The state of war is one reason North Korea justifies its continued pursuit of nuclear weapons. Warner sees an opportunity."I think the big thing that we have forgotten about the war is that it still exists," said Warner. "In my personal opinion, one of the best things that we can do on a political note would be to go ahead and talk to North Korea on that issue and try to formally end the war with North Korea."Warner won a Silver Star in Korea for leading a bayonet charge on a North Korean artillery unit. He went on to serve in Vietnam, then rose through the ranks to ultimately head the military’s global rapid response system, known then as REDCOM. But the hardship of his early service in Korea remains vivid."Thirty-four thousand names on a wall is a high price to pay," Warner says. "As a soldier, whether it is in Vietnam or anywhere else, when I see walls with names on them, I think about, 'Could there be a better solution?' and 'Do we have the capability in this country to come up with it?'"On Saturday, the Korean War Veterans Association will host the official Veterans Day commemoration at Arlington National Ceremony. It is a day for America to remember the sacrifice of all those who fell in battle and to reflect on the high cost of war.Among those who gave all nearly 70 years ago in Korea were 41 members of Warner’s West Point graduating class.
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