Special Report Grapevine

Noble Cause: The National Institutes of Health does some great things -- like being part of the group that completed the human genome project in 2003, researching cures for cancer, and supporting almost 150 Nobel Prize winners. Some projects may not rise to that level --like the almost $3 million study into "The Striking interplay of gender and sexual orientation in obesity disparities."

In plain English -- why lesbian women are more likely to be obese compared to straight women while the opposite is true for men.  The study -- and the price tag -- are not sitting well with many. The Washington Free Beacon reports the study was started 2011 and scheduled to continue until 2016.

It's a Trap:  A speed trap in a small Florida town finally caught someone besides speeders. Two Florida police chiefs have been suspended after a group of police officers accused them of mandating a minimum of 12 traffic tickets during each 12-hour shift.  A small segment of highway that runs through Waldo, Florida requires drivers to speed up and slow down six times ranging from 35 to 65 miles an hour. The city's 2013 budget reveals about half of its $1 million dollars in revenue came from ticket-related court fines.

House of Responsibility: Finally, a fitting end for one historic house. The birthplace of Adolf Hitler in Austria will be turned into a Holocaust museum under a new government plan. In the past the building has been used as a library, bank, and most recently a workshop for the mentally handicapped. The final decision rests with Austria's interior ministry which is expected to approve the project before the end of the year

Steven Sotloff

A video purporting to show the beheading of 31 year old US journalist Steven Sotloff has been released online by ISIS. The video titled "A Second Message to America," also threatens the life of British captive David Haines.

Sotloff was kidnapped in 2013 near Aleppo after crossing the Syrian border from Turkey. His work has been featured in Time Magazine, The National Interest, Media Line, World Affairs, and Foreign Policy Magazine. 

Sotloff grew up in South Florida and attended the University of Central Florida with a major in journalism. 

Earlier this year a video was released by the terrorist organization ISIS titled "A Message to America," showing the brutal murder by beheading of US journalist James Foley. In the video ISIS delivers a message to President Obama, stating the president's next move would decide Sotloff's fate. Following the video the United States increased airstrikes against ISIS. 

The new video features Sotloff speaking into the camera, saying he is "paying the price" for U.S. intervention. It is important to note that as a prisoner his words may very well have been scripted. 

A spokesperson for the Sotloff family released a statement about the video and stated the family is "grieving privately."

Our hearts and our prayers go out his family and friends at this time. We are deeply saddened by this terrible news. 

RIP: Friend and Colleague Mike Majchrowitz

Our friend and colleague Mike Majchrowitz, Fox News Radio’s White House Correspondent, passed away after a long battle with cancer. He is survived by his wife and three children. 

Mike joined Fox in 2005 and traveled the world covering presidential trips and anchoring political coverage of elections, conventions, and debates for Fox News Radio.

“Mike was an original – a solidly tenacious reporter, a thoughtful anchor and a good man,”Mitch Davis, VP of Fox News Radio, said in a statement.  ”He earned the respect of his colleagues for many things, not the least of which was his kindness. From our earliest days he helped Fox News Radio grow into what we are now. His voice was unique, as was his courage. Throughout his struggle, he remained positive and was an inspiration to us all. We will miss him.”

We will all miss Mike and our thoughts and prayers are with his family at this time.

Race for 2016: The Biden Factor

FRIENDS AND ASSOCIATES OF VICE PRESIDENT JOE BIDEN SAY THEY ARE ALL BUT CERTAIN HE WON'T RUN AGAINST HILLARY CLINTON IF SHE DOES IN FACT DECIDE TO RUN IN 2016. 
 
POLLS SHOW THE FORMER SECRETARY OF STATE AS THE CLEAR FRONTRUNNER ON THE ROAD TO THE 2016 DEMOCRATIC NOMINATION, BUT PARTY ANGST ABOUT THE CLINTON JUGGERNAUT COULD PAVE THE WAY FOR AN ENTIRE FIELD OF ALTERNATES --INCLUDING MASSACHUSETTES SENATOR ELIZABETH WARREN, MARYLAND GOVERNOR MARTIN O'MALLEY, NEW YORK GOVERNOR ANDREW CUOMO, AND VICE PRESIDENT JOE BIDEN. 
 
TRADITIONALLY IN AMERICAN POLITICS IF THE PRESIDENT IS NOT RUNNING AND THE VICE PRESIDENT WANTS THE PARTY NOMINATION IT IS HIS FOR THE TAKING. FORMER VICE PRESIDENT CHENEY OPTED NOT TO RUN IN 2008 BUT STILL REMAINS A KEY FIGURE IN THE POLITICAL ARENA. 
 
AT SEVENTY ONE, BIDEN IS FIVE YEARS OLDER THAN HILLARY. HE HAS ALSO RUN FOR PRESIDENT TWICE BEFORE, FIRST IN 1988 WHEN HE DROPPED OUT FOLLOWING PLAGIARISM ALLEGATIONS AND AGAIN IN 2008 WHEN DESPITE NOTABLE ENDORESMENTS HE WITHDREW FROM THE RACE AFTER CAPTURING LESS THAN 1% OF THE VOTE IN THE IOWA CAUCUSES.  
 
A BIDEN RUN MAY NOT BE APPEALING ON THE LEFT--ANXIOUS TO BREAK ANOTHER BARRIER.

Up In Flames: British Embassy Apologizes for Tweet

The British Embassy in Washington, DC is apologizing following a social media blunder over the weekend.

The Embassy tweeted out a photo of a cake featuring a tiny reproduction of the White House, complete with both British and American flags and surrounded by lit sparklers. The tweet read: "Commemorating the 200th anniversary of burning the White House. Only sparklers this time!"

As you may imagine, many Americans did not find the tweet amusing and thus they felt the need to issue the following apology about three hours later:

Some of the responses the tweet immediately garnered included: "WWHHAATT??? Is this suppose to be funny?" "I think this is in extremely POOR TASTE,"  "This means war," and "Good to know the US isn't the only country with a mentally deficient diplomatic corps that doesn't know how to tweet."

The tweet refers to August 24, 1814 when British troops set fire to the White House during the war of 1812 in retaliation for the American attack on the city of York in Ontario, Canada. President James Madison and first lady Dolley Madison escaped unharmed, but the White House was ransacked before the fire was set. 

Today, the United Kingdom and the United States enjoy what many coin a "special relationship." The phrase was coined to describe the close political, diplomatic, cultural, economic, military and historical relations between the two countries.

So what do you think? Was the tweet composed in poor taste or should it be written off as a harmless joke?

 

The War On Poverty

Bret Baier Accepts the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge

Bret was nominated by his friend Tripp Donnelly of RepEquity and he gladly accepted and plans to donate to the ALS Association. Bret now nominates James Rosen, Ed Henry and Chuck Todd--they have 24 hours. Tweet them @JamesRosenFNC, @edhenryTV and @chucktodd to encourage them to accept Bret's challenge!

For more information on how you can donate or challenge your friends visit here--

Ebola Fears Continue

An Ebola quarantine center in Liberia was raided over the weekend when a group of armed men went on a looting spree.

Officials say angry residents in the West Point slum broke into the clinic, stealing items including medical equipment, blood-stained sheets, and mattresses, all while claiming “there’s no Ebola” in Liberia.

As many as 20 Ebola patients also fled during the attack and there are now increasing fears of the spread of the deadly virus through one of the capitol’s largest slums.

According to the World Health Organization, Ebola has killed more than 1,000 people in West Africa so far-- making it the worst outbreak in history.  They also say the disease has been vastly underestimated and will require “extraordinary measures” in order to be contained.

Meanwhile, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration is warning the public against products sold over the internet claiming to treat or cure the Ebola virus.

The FDA has received numerous complaints from consumers regarding fraudulent drugs, dietary supplements, and other items geared towards the treatment of Ebola.   

“Individuals promoting these unapproved and fraudulent products must take immediate action to correct or remove these claims or face potential FDA action,” the agency said.

There are some experimental treatments in development, but the FDA warns they are in the early stages and not yet available for purchase. Currently, there is no known cure or treatment for the Ebola virus.

The World Health Organization also released a statement saying, “Recent intense media coverage of experimental medicines and vaccines is creating some unrealistic expectations, especially in an emotional climate of intense fear.”

Dr. Kent Brantly and Nancy Writebol, the two Americans currently being treated in the U.S. with Ebola, were given experimental treatments and both show signs of a slow recovery. While this is a positive sign, officials stress that Ebola is not a significant threat to the U.S. and consumers should be wary of people trying to take advantage.

Special Report Guest: Karwan Zebari

Tonight on Special Report Bret Baier sits down with Karwan Zebari, the acting director of Congressional and Academic Affairs of the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG), to discuss the latest coming out of Iraq. 
 
Zebari is the highest KRG official in Washington, DC and supervises all relations between the KRG and U.S. Congress. Zebari also develops academic initiatives and programs with universities and academic institutions nationwide on matters related to Kurdistan. He can provide insight on the situation on the ground--
 
If you have a question for Karwan Zebari please tweet us @BretBaier or post via Facebook at facebook.com/bretbaiersr using #AskBret . Your question might just end up on our air! 

 

GOP wins come at a price

Tea Partiers and conservative DC-based super PACs have targeted seven GOP senators in Republican-leaning states they hoped to replace in this year's primaries. All of the Republicans in the cross hairs have won their primaries. 

Tennesee Senator Lamar Alexander was the last, and Thursday's Tennessee primary marks the first time since 2008 that every GOP Senate incumbent has been re-nominated.

But the win of the "establishment" comes at a financial expense - the Senators who have been challenged have spent millions of dollars in this year's primaries - money they'd prefer to have now to spend running against Democrats.

We have the very latest for you tonight on Special Report with "Campaign Carl" Cameron.

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The Pentagon tells Fox News that US military forces attacked the extremist al-Shabab network in Somalia Monday--more tonight with Jennifer Griffin.

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