NEmiss.News Sticks :& Stones addendum feat


EDITOR’S NOTE: This post is an addendum to the separately posted “Sticks and Stones: How think tank ‘experts’ are trying to dupe us into World War III”. This post contains reference sources and further information about the background and affiliations of the “think tank experts” who signed a letter urging Biden to support a Ukraine no-fly zone. You can read the letter in question by clicking here.

The think tanks of the signers and their funders are below the list of signers.

Experts asking Biden for a Ukraine no-fly zone-  their think tanks are underlined

  1. Anders Aslund, Senior Fellow, Stockholm Free World Forum – Atlantic Council.
  1. Stephen Blank- Senior Fellow, Foreign Policy Research Institute, Jamestown Foundation (no donor information found).
  1. Gen. (Ret.) Philip Breedlove, Former Supreme Allied Commander Europe – Atlantic Council, Center for a New American Security, Jamestown Foundation (no donor information found).
  1. Paula Dobriansky, Former Under Secretary of State for Global Affairs- Atlantic Council, Academy of Diplomacy, American Foreign Policy Council (no donor information found)

**Dobriansky is also on the advisory board of IDS, a defense contractor.**

  1. Eric S. Edelman, Former Under Secretary of Defense – Center for Strategic and Budgetary AssessmentsAcademy of Diplomacy.
  1. Evelyn Farkas, Former Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Russia, Ukraine, Eurasia – Council on Foreign RelationsAspen InstituteProject 2049 Institute.
  1. Daniel Fried, Former Assistant Secretary of State and U.S. Ambassador to Poland – Atlantic CouncilAcademy of Diplomacy.
  1. Andrew J. Futey, President, Ukrainian Congress Committee of America
  2. Melinda Haring – Atlantic Council,  Foreign Policy Research Institute.
  1. John Herbst, Former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine – Atlantic Council.
  1. LtG (Ret.) Ben Hodges, Former Commanding General, United States Army Europe – Center for European Policy Analysis.
  1. Glen Howard- President of the Jamestown Foundation (no donor information found).
  1. Donald Jensen, Johns Hopkins University- Institute of Modern Russia (no donor information found).
  1. Ian Kelly, Former U.S. Ambassador to Georgia and OSCE
  2. John Kornblum, Former Assistant Secretary of State and U.S. Ambassador to Germany – Center for Strategic and International Studies, Academy of Diplomacy.
  1. Shelby Magid- Atlantic Council.
  1. Robert McConnell – Co-Founder, U.S.-Ukraine Foundation (no donor information found).
  1. Claire Sechler Merkel – Senior Director, McCain Institute for International Leadership.
  1. David A. Merkel, Former Deputy Assistant Secretary of State and Director, National Security Council – Council on Foreign Relations, International Institute for Strategic Studies.
  1. Barry Pavel-  Atlantic Council.
  1. Herman Pirchner- President, American Foreign Policy Council (no donor information found).
  1. Michael Sawkiw, Jr., Director, Ukrainian National Information Service
  2. Leah Scheunemann- Atlantic Council.
  1. Benjamin L. Schmitt, Former European Energy Security Advisor, U.S. Department of State – Center for European Policy Analysis.
  1. William Taylor, Former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine – Academy of Diplomacy.
  1. Alexander Vershbow, Former U.S. Ambassador to Russia and NATO – Atlantic Council.
  1. Ian Brzezinski, Former Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense – Atlantic Council.
  1. Orest Deychakiwsky, Former Policy Adviser, U.S. Helsinki Commission
  2. Larry Diamond – Hoover Institution (no donor information found).
  1. Kurt Volker, Former U.S. Ambassador to NATO and Special Representative for Ukraine Negotiations – Atlantic CouncilMcCain Institute for International LeadershipAcademy of DiplomacyCenter for Transatlantic Relations (no donor information found)

**Volker also works for BGR group, a lobbying firm which represents major defense contractor Raytheon among others.**

Think tanks and their defense contractor donors

Here’s a list of the think tanks to which some of the individuals on this list belong (some belong to more than one). I’ve gone through their donor lists and picked out a few of the defense contractors (or associated individuals) that appear. Not all are weapons contractors, but all have lucrative dealings with the Pentagon. Their approximate monetary contribution is also supplied where possible. There are certainly many defense contractors and executives on these lists that I missed.

Admittedly, this is cherry picking. None of these think tanks are exclusively funded by defense contractors (though some come close). I’ve supplied links to the full donor lists so you can see for yourself (click on the names of the think tanks in blue). In the case of individuals, of course, I have no way of verifying if these names refer to the exact people that I think they do; it’s just a damn good bet.

I could not find donor information for the Jamestown Foundation, American Foreign Policy Council, and the Hoover Institution. Watchdog groups have singled out these organizations as being especially hawkish and secretive about their backers.

Here are a couple of links I found useful:

Top 100 Defense Contractors, 2020:

A useful tool for looking up government spending:


The Atlantic Council (AC)

$5OOK- $999,999: Saab.

$250K-$499,99: Airbus, Chevron, General Atomics, Palantir, Raytheon.

$100K-$249,999: Accenture, Burisma (Ukrainian oil company), Dell, Lockheed Martin.

50K-$99,999: General Dynamics, Northrup Grumman.

$25K-$49,999: BAE Systems, Boeing, Microsoft.


The Foreign Policy Research Institute (FPRI)

Under the individual donors, one Phebe Novakovic has pledged $15,000 a year to this think tank. This could well be the Phebe Novakovic who is currently CEO of General Dynamics.


Center for a New American Security

$500k and up: Northrop Grumman.

$250k- $499,999: Neal Blue (CEO of General Atomics).

$100k-$249,999: Amazon Web Services, Charles Koch Institute (always nice to see a Koch brother), Cisco Systems, Honeywell International, Inc., Huntington Ingalls Industries, Inc., Leidos Holdings, Inc., Leonardo DRS, Microsoft, Palantir, Raytheon.

$50k-$99,999: BAE, Bell Textron, Boeing, Booz Allen, Brighton Marine, Lockheed Martin.

$25k-$49,999: General Dynamics, L3Harris Technologies, Inc.


Council on Foreign Relations (CFR)

Top tier: Accenture, AT&T, Chevron, Cisco Systems, Exxon

Second tier: Dell

Third tier: Booz Allen, Lockheed Martin, Microsoft, Northrup Grumman, Palantir


International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS)

£100K and over: Airbus, BAE Systems, Boeing, Lockheed Martin, Raytheon.

£25K- £99,999: Booz Allen Hamilton, Northrop Grumman, Leonardo, Saab.

£1,000 to £24,999: General Atomics.


Project 2049 Institute (donors per Sludge)

Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, BAE Systems.


Aspen Institute

$1m or more: Accenture, Jacklyn and Miguel Bezos (mother and stepfather of Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon); Bill and Melinda Gates (of Microsoft); Lester Crown (likely the founder of General Dynamics); James Crown (likely Lester’s son).

$100k-500k: Cisco, Deloitte, Microsoft.

$50k-$100K: General Dynamics.


Academy of Diplomacy (AoD)

Black & Veatch, Gardaworld.


Center for European Policy Analysis (CEPA)

BAE Systems plc, Bell Textron, Inc., Daimler AG, General Atomics, General Dynamics, Leonardo US, Lockheed Martin, Microsoft.


Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS)

$500K or more: Northrop Grumman.

$200k-$499,999: BP, Chevron, General Atomics, Lockheed Martin.

$100k-$199,999: Boeing, General Dynamics, Huntington Ingalls, Microsoft, Raytheon.

$35k-$49,999: BAE Systems.


McCain Institute for International Leadership (MCIL)

$100k or more: Cisco Systems, Bill and Melinda Gates, General Electric.

$25k-$99,999: Amazon Web Services, Raytheon, Saab.


NEMiss.News Air Force JROTC Color Guard


On August 25, the New Albany High School Air Force JROTC accompanied the varsity volleyball team in their victory against Regents School of Oxford.

The Color Guard was composed of senior and new cadets. The flight was led by second-year cadet Kevin Hernandez.

As for the new cadets participating in their first Color Guard, their hard work paid off. Each cadet has spent numerous hours preparing for this moment to show their community what they have learned.

The cadets are listed from left to right: Joseph Milligan, John Davis, Kevin Hernandez, Christopher Gibbs, Dezmond Bailey, Gavin Smith, Casey Hernandez, Leah Harrell, and Micah Voves.


Melanie Shannon
New Albany Schools
“Preparing ALL for Success”




104 North Central Avenue, New Albany, MS

This remarkable home is available for sale for the first time in 21 years. It was built in 1915 by Elijah Hill, a successful North Mississippi contractor. He spared no effort or expense when building this home for his own family in downtown New Albany.

Matchless construction, flexible floor plan

Hill began with a total masonry construction and the finest heart pine lumber. Most rooms boast original heart pine floors, still beautiful after 106 years, with oak and maple floors elsewhere. Exterior walls are solid brick, a foot thick. There are stone thresholds and window sills, marble mantles on several fireplaces, ten foot ceilings and a large front porch. Hill’s result was a commodious and welcoming home. It is considered to be one of the area’s most substantially constructed dwellings, literally built to last for centuries.

Over the years, Hill’s house has had many lives. It served his family well for many years, was divided into apartments after WWII, housed a prestigious law firm for decades. Then, in 2000, it was restored to its original purpose as a single family home.

The home’s 4000+ square feet on three levels currently provide, on two floors, 3 bedrooms, 3 1/2 baths, a library, den, kitchen, dining room, office, upstairs den/kitchenette and storage/laundry room. The home’s flexible floor plan provides master bedrooms upstairs and downstairs, each with spacious baths and walk-in closets. It could easily provide 5 bedrooms or a care-taker/in-law apartment. There is ample space for work, hobbies, home gym – even a wine cellar.

Additionally, there is a finished basement of about 600 sq ft with a second office area, shower, toilet, sink and hundreds of feet of built in shelves. A cellar and an outside storage room add additional storage and potential. All windows are energy efficient double-glazed windows. The lot size is over 0.5 acre.

New Albany location and lifestyle

104 North Central Avenue is within safe and easy walking distance of the shopping, dining and outdoor venues in New Albany’s award winning downtown district. The Tanglefoot Trail is visited by cyclists from around the world; the Little Tallahatchie River and its Park-Along-the-River provide family fun and venues for festivals and live music. A commercial renovation underway near-by will eventually include a fitness center and other up-scale businesses.

New Albany is the birthplace of William Faulkner and home of the William Faulkner Literary Competition. The Union County Heritage Museum, recognized as one of the nation’s top small museums, offers the community myriad exhibits and frequent activities for all ages and interests. The town, which has been the recipient of several “Best Of” awards, also boasts good public schools, a top-rated community hospital, Northeast MS Community College, the BNA Bank Sportsplex, a dog park and family-friendly neighborhood park areas.

We have loved our home in New Albany for over 21 years. Its configuration has easily changed several times to adapt to the needs of our changing lives. It has never failed to serve us well. But now it is time for us to love something smaller, and to find the next generation who will appreciate the unique qualities of this house – those special people who will make it their home into the future.

104 North Central Avenue is well and firmly priced at $425,000.

If you are appreciative of the past and looking to the future, call for a private showing or more information about 104 North Central Avenue, New Albany, MS, contact:  J. Morris Realty, Frankie McMillin  662-266-4481

OPEN HOUSEThe house will be open to interested buyers from 2:00 pm to 4:00 pm on Sunday, August 15, 2021. Due to COVID-19, masks will be required to tour the house, and no refreshments will be served.



104 North Central Avenue, New Albany, MS






GOP’s Graham threatens to flee DC to block budget. Biden releases 1st Guantanamo inmate. Spyware targeted global dissidents, journalists. Havana Syndrome strikes in Vienna.


Sen. Lindsey Graham: “Hell yeah I would leave”

GOP Senator Lindsey Graham (SC) has threatened to leave Washington D.C block a reconciliation vote on the Democrats’ (still hypothetical) $3.5 trillion budget. If Graham and other Republicans were to make good on this threat, they would be following the lead of Democratic Texas lawmakers who recently left the state to block new voting restrictions. The US Senate requires a quorum of 51 senators to be present in order to conduct business. 

Graham is no stranger to grandstanding. However, it’s far from certain that all his Republican colleagues would be willing to die on this hill with him. The proposals in the budget so far would vastly improve the lives of millions of Republican voters. Notably, the proposals include making the new monthly child tax credits permanent and expanding Medicare to cover hearing, vision and dental care. Nor is it certain such a gesture would be necessary. Senate Democrats themselves remain divided on the price tag, scope and content of the budget proposals.

What’s more interesting is the double standard inherent in Graham’s pre-emptive threat. Since the Texas lawmakers departed the state, prominent Republicans, including Texas Governor Greg Abbott, have variously accused them of cowardice, obstruction and “running away from a fight”. Abbott has vowed to arrest the Democratic legislators as soon as they return to the state.

Click here for the full story (opens in new tab).


First Guantanamo prisoner repatriated under Biden

Many of the inmates still housed in the US’ most controversial detention center have been there since the George W. Bush administration. The inmates at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, are from countries all around the world and are suspected of taking part in terrorist activities. None of them have ever been convicted, and most haven’t even been formally charged. Some have been cleared for release or repatriation to their home countries since 2016, or longer.

That was the case for Abdul Latif Nassir, a now-59-year-old Moroccan national, who is now heading home in a first under the Biden administration. Nassir had been in Guantanamo since 2002 on suspicion of terrorist activities. In 2016, the Obama administration had cleared Nassir and other Guantanamo inmates for release or repatriation in 2016. But Obama’s successor Donald Trump quickly put those releases on hold. 

Like Obama, Biden vowed to close Guantanamo during his presidential campaign. Unlike Obama, Biden is not leaving it till the last minute to do anything about it. The White House says that Nassir’s release is a first step towards finally closing the facility. There are still 39 other inmates in Guantanamo, most of whom have long been cleared for release or repatriation.

Nassir will now return to Morocco, where local authorities will immediately arrest him. Nassir will then finally face the terrorism charges he was never able to defend himself against during his two decades in US custody.

Click here for the full story (opens in new tab).



Spyware from Israeli tech firm used to spy on 1000s of dissidents, journalists

A collaborative investigation by 17 international media groups has revealed the massive role that an Israeli spyware company has played in helping oppressive regimes crack down on dissidents and journalists. NSO Group first came into the media spotlight for its role in the 2018 murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi. In 2020, we learned that NSO had sold its Pegasus spyware to Saudi officials, who used it to target Khashoggi.

The new investigation has now revealed the extent of that involvement. Investigating journalists found that Pegasus had infected the cell phone of one woman close to Khasshoggi. The phone of another woman in Khashoggi’s circle was not affected, but did show multiple attempts to hack the phone.

How does it work?

The Pegasus software can infiltrate a target’s phone through text message. Often, the owner is unaware that anything is amiss. Once the program downloads, it can essentially take control of the phone. It can monitor texts, social media posts, access photos, files, and contacts. It can even activate the phone’s microphone or camera in real-time to spy on the owner and record conversations.

Who is at risk?

Using a leaked list of 50,000 cellphone numbers, the investigators were able to identify more than 1000 individuals in 50 countries who were targeted for surveillance by NSO’s clients. These include journalists, academics, dissidents, politicians, human rights advocates and prominent business executives. According to Washington Post reporter Craig Timberg, who collaborated in the investigation, many of the investigators themselves found that they and their family members were on the list.

What has NSO said?

Timberg says the investigating journalists have received numerous angry letters from NSO’s lawyers. The company has previously denied the allegations or any connection to the Khasshoggi murder.

Somewhat ominously, Timberg says NSO CEO Shalev Hulio recently called Timberg on his cellphone, quite out of the blue. In the conversation, Timberg says that Hulio once again denied the accuracy of the reports. However, Hulio also expressed concern at the allegation that his company’s spyware was being used to target journalists, and promised to investigate the matter himself.

Click here for the full story (opens in new tab).


Havana Syndrome strikes again – in Vienna

In Vienna, Austria, up to two dozen members of US diplomatic staff have reported “Havana Syndrome” attacks since the beginning of the Biden administration. Vienna is currently hosting talks among representatives from several countries to reinstate the Iranian nuclear deal.

Regular readers are already aware of recent reports of the mysterious Havana Syndrome which has afflicted numerous members of the US government, mostly those working abroad. The first reports of the syndrome emerged among US diplomatic staff in 2016. Since then, diplomatic staff working in various other countries have reported similar symptoms. Last year, some White House staffers suffered attacks in the D.C. area. Two members of Trump’s National Security Council also reported attacks on the grounds of the White House itself.

Symptoms vary, but in the moment of the attacks, victims report sudden powerful headaches, dizziness and a sensation of piercing “directional noise”. After effects include vertigo, memory problems, and “cognitive fog”. Studies by US scientists claim to have identified long-term brain damage among sufferers.

No one knows what causes the attacks, but some theories suggest a high-powered directed microwave weapon of some sort, perhaps some type of surveillance equipment. However, many scientists have criticized these conclusions and believe that some form of mass hysteria is a more likely explanation.

Click here for the full story (opens in new tab).

NEMiss.News Museum Moments review of Knight's Gambit


Events are lining up for the annual Faulkner Literary Fest which begins in July and continues through the summer with events and activities focusing on all things literary.

Dr. Kate Stewart at Museum Moments

Dr. Kate Stewart, Ph.D. will review one of Faulkner’s more obscure books, Knight’s Gambit, at the Union County Heritage Museum on Thursday, July 15, at noon.

Knight’s Gambit is a 1949 short story collection including six of Faulkner’s stories about attorney Gavin Stevens, who also takes a leading part in his novel Intruder in the Dust. One of the stories is also called Knight’s Gambit.

The first five stories were published in magazines and when the sixth came out they were all combined into one publication that some consider a novel.

A light lunch will be provided to attendees of Museum Moments by the Museum Guild beginning at 11:30.  The event is free thanks to the museum’s Community Partners.

Stewart, a Faulkner Scholar, is an English Professor at the University of Arkansas at Monticello.  “The Cotton Plant native is a regular and much-enjoyed speaker during the fest in New Albany.  Her presentations have a lot of depth and she also has a great sense of humor,” said Jill Smith, museum director.

Writing for Children workshop and Faulkner Literary Competition

“We are happy to be presenting Museum Moments and the Writing for Children workshop on July 29, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.  – cost $30,  as part of the  community’s annual emphasis on writing,” Smith said.

As the deadline nears for the annual William Faulkner Writing completion, there will be more opportunities to participate in related activities.

The competition honors Nobel Prize-winning author William Faulkner who was born on Sept. 25, 1897, on Jefferson Street in New Albany. Some of his other honors include the 1955 and 1963 Pulitzer Prizes for Fiction and the 1951 and 1955 National Book Awards.

Union Countians decided to begin honoring the author each year beginning on the centennial of his birth.

The writing competition was added and thanks to the donation of former Union County resident Eric Saul, now living in Tennessee, the contest includes the categories of Novel, One-Act Play, Poetry, Adult Short Story and Student Short Story.

The deadline for novel entries is only three days away: July 15. The winner receives $2,000 and second place gets an honorable mention certificate.

The one-act play, poetry and adult short story deadlines are all July 31.

The one-act play winner receives $600 with $300 and $200 for second and third place winners, respectively. The winning play is often presented by New Albany Community Theatre the following year during the celebration.

The poetry and adult short story winners also receive $600, $300 and $200 for first, second and third places.

The deadline for student short story entries is later, Aug. 31, and this category is only open to Mississippi high school students.

First prize is $250, second is $150 and third is $100.

For more detailed entry information, go to or call the Union County Heritage Museum at 662-538-0014.


DOJ to appeal UK judge’s block on Assange extradition. TX GOP returns to pass voter restrictions. Haitian president assassinated in his home.


Biden DOJ renews push for Assange extradition

Activists have speculated whether President Biden would continue efforts set in motion under former President Trump to have the UK extradite Wikileaks founder Julian Assange to face espionage charges in the US. Many of the charges stem from Wikileaks’ publication of classified documents in 2010, when Biden was VP under President Obama. The documents included US diplomatic cables which caused considerable international embarrassment for the US political establishment. Also included were documents pertaining to US war crimes in Iraq and Afghanistan, including the infamous “collateral murder” video.

Earlier this year, a British judge barred Assange’s extradition to the US on the grounds of his deteriorating mental health. The judge expressed concerns that Assange was a danger to himself, and that the prospects of extradition and incarceration in the US could push him to commit suicide.

Since Biden took office, the US Department of Justice has shown no signs of ending their pursuit of Assange. Now, Britain’s High Court has granted the DOJ permission to appeal the decision.

Meanwhile, Assange remains confined in London’s high-security Belmarsh Prison. Stella Moris, Assange’s fiancee and mother of two of his sons continues to campaign for his release.

Click here for the full story (opens in new tab).


TX GOP legislators return to pass voter restrictions

Texas Governor Greg Abbott has set a list of priorities for the returning state legislature. Among them is the passage of restrictive voting laws that narrowly missed passing when Democrats staged a walkout at the end of the last session.

Since the Democrats’ no-quorum strategy stymied the bill, the stakes in the matter have increased. A recent decision from the US Supreme Court raised the bar considerably for any challenges to restrictive voting laws. Specifically, the court’s decision deflated the power of the Voting Rights Act to challenge voting restrictions that disproportionately burden minorities.

However, prominent Republican legislators in Texas have already walked back two of the previous bill’s most controversial provisions. One of these was a ban on voting on Sunday morning, when many black constituents vote after leaving church. The second would have made it easier for election workers to overturn election results if there were accusations of voter fraud.

Click here for the full story (opens in new tab).



Haitian president assassinated in his home

At 1am local time this morning, unknown attackers entered the home of Haitian president Jovenel Moïse, 48, killing him and injuring his wife. Moïse has been in office since 2017 but has faced repeated protests and calls to step down. Political unrest in the country has been coming to a boil in recent weeks.

Haitian officials say the attackers were “foreigners who spoke English and Spanish”. They are assumed to be foreign since Haiti’s official languages are Creole and French. Some reports describe a group of men dressed in black, who may have been posing as US DEA agents.

Haiti’s interim PM Claude Joseph has declared a state of emergency. This order bans gatherings and allows members of the military to serve as enforcers. But Joseph’s authority to maintain order is somewhat tenuous as Moïse had appointed Ariel Henry to be prime minister this week. Henry has not been sworn in.

Years of unrest

The assassination is a culmination of years of political and social chaos in the country. Haiti never really recovered from the devastating 2010 earthquake. The island’s notoriously corrupt political class failed miserably in its efforts to resolve the resulting economic and social crises.

After coming to power in 2017 in a long overdue and hotly contested election, Moïse vowed to bring order and prosperity to the island. Moïse claimed his efforts had been thwarted by island’s powerful oligarchs who had plotted to overthrow him. Since January last year, Moïse had been ruling by decree after dissolving much of Parliament due to election delays.

In February of this year, Moïse announced the arrest of 20 people, including a judge and a police inspector general, for plotting to assassinate him. An appeals court later dismissed the accusations and released the conspirators.

Click here for the full story (opens in new tab).



Court overturns Cosby sex conviction. Northwest heatwave kills dozens, buckles roads. Afghan civilians say “no choice” but to fight Taliban themselves.



Court overturns Cosby sex assault conviction

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court has overturned the 2018 sexual assault conviction against comedian Bill Cosby, now 83. The ruling allows for Cosby’s immediate release from prison, having served less than two years of his 10-year sentence. The conviction was for the 2004 drugging and assault of Andrea Constand, a Temple University athletic director. Philadelphia District Attorney Kevin Steele made the decision to charge Cosby in 2016, just days before the statute of limitations would have run out.

The Supreme Court’s decision in no way exonerates Cosby, nor does it cast any doubt on his guilt in the case. Rather, the ruling states that DA Steele should have adhered to his predecessor’s promise not to charge Cosby for the assault. This is despite there being no evidence that this promise was ever formalized or even written down.

The ruling contends that Cosby was relying on the decision of the previous DA not to prosecute him when he gave self-incriminating testimony in a civil case brought by Constand. Steele later used those statements against him in the criminal case.

Justice David Wecht said that overturning the conviction, and barring any further prosecution, “is the only remedy that comports with society’s reasonable expectations of its elected prosecutors and our criminal justice system”.

Neither Constand nor Steele’s office have yet issued a statement. It’s unclear what if any legal recourse they have to challenge the court’s decision.

Click here for the full story (opens in new tab).


West Coast heat wave kills dozens in US and Canada

A “heat dome” the Pacific northwest has killed dozens of people in the US and Canada this week. In Oregon and Washington state, temperatures have been over 100 degrees for several days in a row, as high as 116 in Portland. Across the border in British Columbia, temperatures reached 115 degrees, the highest since recordings began.

Hundreds in the area have also been hospitalized for heat-related illness. The area usually enjoys relatively mild summers and many homes do not have air conditioning. Local authorities have opened heat shelters in schools and large public venues to allow residents to escape the heat.

But people have not been the only casualties of the heatwave. The heat has also done damage to some infrastructure, buckling roads and melting electrical cables.

The entire west coast has been suffering severe drought conditions for weeks. The drought and heat dome have mutually intensified each other. Even as this particular heatwave begins to break, experts fear the country may be in for worse this summer. Predictions call for a particularly disastrous summer of heat and wildfires.



As US troops leave, Afghan civilians arm themselves against Taliban

Across Afghanistan, hundreds of civilians bearing outdated automatic rifles, pistols and grenade launchers are joining up to bolster the Afghan defense forces in their fight against the Taliban.

Many of the civilians are former mujahideen veterans, while others are young students. One such fighter, Dost Mohammad Salangi, 55, says, “If [the Taliban] impose war on us, oppress us and encroach on women and people’s property, even our seven-year-old children will be armed and will stand against them”.

One student who has joined up has said he and others like him have “no choice” now that foreign forces are leaving.

The departure of US troops has emboldened the Taliban, which has seized 50 of the country’s 370 administrative districts. The Taliban have signed a truce with the US, but not with the Afghan government. Deadly daily assaults on Afghan military positions have been escalating for weeks.

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani has appealed to the US for help. President Biden has pledged to end America’s longest and, arguably, most fruitless foreign war. Biden said he would support Afghanistan, but that the Afghans themselves must decide their own future.

Click here for the full story (opens in new tab).



NEMiss.News Class of 1960 celebrates


The New Albany High School Class of 1960 held what was nominally its 60-year reunion last weekend. (They had to skip it last year because of COVID-19.)

One of the main events of the weekend reunion was dinner Saturday night, June 26th, in the ballroom of The Rainey in downtown New Albany.

New Albany High School awarded a few more than 50 graduation diplomas in 1960. About 40 percent of the graduates attended the dinner at The Rainey; thus, they are a hardy bunch, celebrating enthusiastically in their late 70s.

NEMiss.News Class of 1960 photo

New Albany High School, Class of 1960.
(click to enlarge)

Could any of them have imagined in 1960 that they would one day be able to legally drink a glass of wine in downtown New Albany? Mississippi didn’t go wet at all until 1966, and then it was only by county or city option. New Albany did not go legally wet until just eight years ago.

Ike was still president and President Harry Truman had only been out of office for eight years when these folks graduated from high school. Truman was famously and enthusiastically fond of Bourbon whiskey, of which he consumed significant quantities daily. He referred to having a drink as “striking a blow for liberty.” Drinking killed Truman at the early age of 88.

Well, several “blows for liberty” were struck Saturday night as toasts were made and conviviality prevailed.

The NAHS Class of 1960 is an exceptionally sophisticated group by most standards. An uncommonly high percentage of them have been successful in the professions, military service, business, arts and letters, and philanthropy.

The class is particularly well known for its philanthropy, having donated a good deal of money to many deserving New Albany and Union County causes over the last six decades.

Class of 1960 Reunion, June 2021




NEMiss.News Class of 1960 reunion


The New Albany High School Class of 1960 will hold its reunion this weekend, meeting at several places in New Albany.

About 35 people have committed to attending events starting tonight and running through Sunday morning. What would have been the class 60-year reunion was not held last year because of the coronavirus pandemic.

The first event was tonight, Friday, June 25, a dinner meeting at the Union County Heritage Museum, with a social hour at 6:30 p.m.

There will be a mid-day gathering Saturday at a private home, and a dinner meeting Saturday night at The Rainey. The reunion will conclude with a service at a private chapel Sunday morning.

The Class of 1960 is distinguished by the fact that so many of its members have had successful careers in professions and business. The class is also notable for its many philanthropic donations to local institutions over several years.

The class maintains a webpage at: NAHS1960ClassRemembers.Com


A New Albany firefighter was injured during a call at an industrial building Monday.

Fire Chief Mark Whiteside said the New Albany Fire Department was dispatched to the old VIP and BenchCraft building just before noon Monday to reports of a transformer fire.

There were also reports of hearing a loud boom about the same time of the incident, he said.

“Crews arrived to find heavy black smoke coming from behind the building,” Whiteside said. “New Albany Light, Gas and Water crews were on scene as well and checked the scene for safety due to live electrical lines.”

When NLG&W gave the all clear, fire crews proceeded with extinguishing the fire.

“The fire was quickly extinguished, and while crews were working a firefighter from Station 1 received non-life-threatening injuries while stepping across a thick muddy ditch in full gear and carrying equipment to reach the fire,” Whiteside said.

“The fire fighter is being evaluated by medical personnel to determine the extent of the injury at this time,” the chief concluded.

NEMiss.News City Insurance selected



New Albany taxpayers and city employees will enjoy substantial savings under new health insurance coverage during the coming year.

The board of aldermen voted unanimously last month to accept an employee health insurance proposal for the coming year from the Affordable Employee Benefits Agency in Ecru.

Previously, for several decades, the Morgan-White Agency of Jackson had been the city’s health insurance agent.

As in the past, the primary health care coverage will be by Blue Cross.

This year Affordable Employee Benefits proposed to insure city workers for a total annual premium of $682,886, a savings of $47,864 compared to Morgan-White’s quote of $730,750.

However, the six-and-a-half percent total premium savings to taxpayers is only part of the story. City workers will enjoy additional benefits under the new plan, two of which are:

  • A $500 deductible instead of $750.
  • About 400 prescription drugs, mostly maintenance prescriptions, will be available to city employees and their insured dependents with a zero co-pay.

Because of these and other enhanced benefits, it is estimated that total annual out-of-pocket medical expenses for city workers will be nearly $100-thousand less under the Affordable Employee Benefit plan than they would have been under the Morgan-White proposal.

The health insurance quotes from Affordable Employee Benefits and Morgan-White drew extra scrutiny this year because health insurance is one of the larger city expenses, amounting to about ten percent of the total annual New Albany municipal budget.

Mayor Tim Kent said there was no opposition to accepting the bid from Affordable Employee Benefits. The board vote was 5-0.

Enrollment of city workers in the new health coverage has been completed. The new coverage became effective June 1.