Dateline: Events/Headlines – Week Of December 22, 2015 In News, Pop Culture History, Tech, Celebrity, Sports, Entertainment & Fascinating Facts
Lots From Syria - More than 1 million refugees and migrants came to the European Union this year, while almost 3,700 died or went missing in perilous journeys which reaped huge profit for smugglers, the International Organization for Migration said on Tuesday.
A demonstration at the Mall of America on Wednesday by Black Lives Matter protesters angered by the police killing of an unarmed black man in Minneapolis last month was swiftly broken up on one of the busiest shopping days of the year.
After police and mall security broke up the gathering, the protesters took a light rail train to the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport where they briefly shut down roadways to both terminals, an airport spokesman said.
Christmas Eve - Officials in tornado-ravaged areas were searching for missing people after a spring-like storm system swept across the southeast, killing at least seven people — including a 7-year-old boy. The storms — which the National Weather Service called a "particularly dangerous situation" for an area that spanned eastern Arkansas, northwest Mississippi, northeast Louisiana and western Tennessee — destroyed homes and caused power outages on Wednesday.
The death toll from a swath of tornadoes that roared through the Dallas area rose to 11 Sunday as authorities picked through rubble of hundreds of devastated homes and businesses.
The unrelenting violent weather Saturday followed a string of tornadoes and flash floods earlier last week that left at least 18 people dead in Alabama, Arkansas, Mississippi and Tennessee. Until the holiday season outbreak, only 10 people had died in tornadoes across the nation, the fewest number on record.
Iraqi troops have retaken the city of Ramadi from ISIS, the country's military said.
Troops have raised the Iraqi flag on top of the government compound in central Ramadi, military spokesman Brig. Gen. Yahya Rasoul said Monday.
Americans spent more on items like furniture during the holidays this year, with online shopping in particular seeing a big spike, according to a report released Monday.
Overall spending rose 7.9 percent from a year ago, according to the MasterCard SpendingPulse report, which tracks retail sales across cards, cash and checks from Black Friday to Christmas Eve. The uptick was driven by people sitting in the comfort of their homes or at work, with online shopping up 20 percent.
Hillary Clinton and President Barack Obama are this year's most admired public figures, according to a new poll, but they've got some notable company: Donald Trump. Gallup released Monday its annual survey of admired world figures and Clinton and Obama topped the list -- with 13% picking Clinton and 17% picking Obama. But Trump returned to the list for the first time since 2011, and with the support of 5% of respondents, the same number who picked Pope Francis.
Flooding in Midwest - Missouri is set to have "major to historic river flooding" through early next week. "Record crests expected on area rivers the next several days" says the National Weather Service.
A car carrying four on-duty Secret Service agents was involved in a head-on collision in New Hampshire that killed the driver of the other car.
Afluenza - The mother of Ethan Couch — the “affluenza” teenager whose disappearance sparked an international search this month — is back on U.S. soil. Tonya Couch arrived at Los Angeles International Airport, Her 18-year-old son, Ethan, remained in Mexico, where the pair was caught earlier this week. Ethan Couch garnered national attention after a 2013 drunken-driving incident that left four people dead. A psychologist testified for his defense, claiming that something called, “affluenza” contributed to the teen’s reckless decision-making. Couch, who had grown up with wealth and privilege, was sentenced to a drug- and alcohol-free probation, but again made headlines this month, after disappearing along with his mother.
The NFL, which spent years criticizing researchers who warned about the dangers of football-related head trauma, has backed out of one of the most ambitious studies yet on the relationship between football and brain disease, sources familiar with the project told Outside the Lines. The seven-year, $16 million initiative was to be funded out of a $30 million research grant the NFL gave the National Institutes of Health in 2012. The NFL has said repeatedly that it has no control over how that money is spent, but the league balked at this study, sources said, because the NIH awarded the project to a group led by Dr. Robert Stern, a prominent Boston University researcher who has been critical of the league.
Mavericks star Dirk Nowitzki knocked another legend down a spot on the all-time scoring list. Nowitzki moved past Shaquille O’Neal as the No. 6 scorer in NBA history during Wednesday night’s 119-118 overtime win against the Brooklyn Nets. Nowitzki entered the night needing 10 points to pass O'Neal, who finished his career with 28,596 points. He wound up scoring 22 points!
A bombshell report released Saturday night placed Peyton Manning in the middle of a drug doping ring and could serve as a stain to the future Hall of Famer’s pristine legacy, even as he denies the allegations. An Indianapolis anti-aging clinic shipped human growth hormone to the quarterback’s home in 2011 as he was recovering from neck surgery, an explosive Al Jazeera documentary will reveal Sunday.
Passing - Dave Henderson: Former MLB Outfielder and Seattle Mariners Broadcaster Dies at Age 57.
Passing - Legendary Harlem Globetrotters star Meadowlark Lemon, who was elected to the Basketball Hall of Fame in 2003. He was 83.
The Philadelphia Eagles have “released” head coach Chip Kelly, according to a statement the team.
New York Knicks forward Cleanthony Early was robbed and shot in the leg in Queens early Wednesday morning, according to multiple reports.
He was leaving CityScapes gentlemen's club on 58th Street in Maspeth, Queens, when he was surrounded by up to six men, shot in the knee and robbed of a gold necklace and the gold caps from his teeth,
Technology News -
Apple introduces a new feature with its most recent phones, called Live Photos, where the camera records a short clip before and after the photo you shoot, resulting in a Harry Potter-esque moving photo, capturing the emotion and vibrancy of the scene. And now, Facebook, the most popular mobile app in the US, is buying into Apple’s new standard.
SpaceX successfully launches a Falcon 9 rocket into orbit, deployed 11 satellites, and then brought the 15-story booster back to Earth for a soft, vertical landing just six miles from where it took off at Cape Canaveral, Florida. The landing - caught on video - is nothing short of spectacular.
A man from Russia is reportedly suing the creator of "Fallout 4," claiming he played the video game for three weeks straight and lost his job and wife as a result.
The 28-year-old from Krasnoyarsk in Siberia, who has not been named, wants $7,000 in compensation from Bethesda Game Studios, per the state news service RT.
In a statement released by his lawyers, the man said he didn't realize how addictive the popular action role-playing game would be.
AT&T has announced that it will stop offering new contracts to consumers next week. It had been the final holdout among the four national wireless carriers. Verizon and Sprint did away with contracts a few months ago, and T-Mobile killed off contracts in 2013.
Entertainment news -
Madonna's 15-year-old son has flown the coup so he could stay with his dad ... the teen refuses to come home, Madonna went to court, Guy Richie went to another court. Later, a judge ordered him back to mom.
50 Cent: Sues Rick Ross for Rapping Over 'In da Club.' Lawyers filed a lawsuit against Ross for unlawfully using 50 Cent's name and identity on a mixtape to promote Ross' new album, "Black Market."
After smashing the opening day box office record upon its Dec. 17 release, “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” went on to haul in $49.3 million in North America on Christmas Day — double the previous record set by 2009’s “Sherlock Holmes.” “The Force Awakens” has raked in $890.3 million internationally, including $440.4 million in the United States, and is set to overtake the domestic record of $500 million, currently held by “Jurassic World.”
Passing - Lemmy Kilmister: lead singer of Motörhead. He was 70.
Billy Cosby Indicted - Pennsylvania prosecutors announce they have filed charges against comedian Bill Cosby in an alleged sexual assault encounter with a woman 12 years ago. Cosby was charged with aggravated indecent assault, a first-degree felony, Montgomery County District Attorney-elect Kevin Steele said at a news conference. He will be arraigned later Wednesday afternoon.
The Los Angeles Police Department has arrested Mark Salling, known for his role as Noah “Puck” Puckerman on the hit TV series ‘Glee,’ on charges of possession of child pornography
Carrie Fisher Not Happy About Comments Made About Her Looks - Carrie Fisher has fired off a couple of tweets in response to the seemingly endless criticism she’s received regarding her looks in “Star Wars: The Force Awakens. “Please stop debating about whether or not I aged well,” she tweeted. “Unfortunately it hurts all of my feelings.”
Guns ‘n Roses with Slash - will be back in 2016 - Slash will reunite with Guns N' Roses and Axl Rose. The band will play Coachella on the weekends of April 15-17 and April 22-24, according. It's still unclear if original members Steven Adler, Izzy Stradlin and Duff McKagan, all of whom appeared on the group's 1986 album Appetite for Destruction, or subsequent members Matt Sorum and Dizzy Reed, will join the shows.
Passing - Wayne Rogers, who portrayed wisecracking Army surgeon "Trapper John" McIntyre in the first three seasons of TV's "M*A*S*H."He was 82.
New Years Eve - Mötley Crüe: Hair Metal Band Plays Final Live Show. The band played its last live show at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, the city in which it was formed in 1981.
Top movies -
Star Wars: The Force Awakens
Alvin And The Chipmunks The Road Chip
The Big Short
Point Break (2015)
The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 2
Top Music Albums -
Made in the A.M. - One Direction
Purpose - Justin Bieber
That’s Christmas To Me - Pentatonix
Beauty Behind The Madness - The Weeknd
Traveller - Chris Stapleton
A Head Full Of Dreams - Coldplay
Christmas - Michael Buble
1989 - Taylor Swift
Untamed - Cam
21 - Adele
The Voice: The Complete Season 9 Collection - Jordan Smith
This Thing Called Life - August Alsina
Blurryface - Twenty One PIlots
Pentatonix - Pentatonix