Daily Briefing

10 things you need to know today: August 24, 2014

Jon Terbush
A building is left damaged by a 6.0 magnitude quake in northern California Justin Sullivan / Getty Images
ADVERTISEMENT

1.

Magnitude 6.0 earthquake rocks northern California

A powerful earthquake with a preliminary magnitude of 6.0 struck the San Francisco Bay Area early Sunday, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. The quake's epicenter was near American Canyon, but the reverberations were felt as far south as Santa Cruz. At least 25,000 people were left without power, and the California Highway Patrol closed off one bridge to check for structural damage. It was the largest quake in the region since a 6.9 earthquake hit Loma Prieta in 1989.

2.

White House to reconsider arming local police

In the wake of the controversial police crackdown on protesters in Ferguson, Missouri, President Obama has ordered a thorough review of programs that send military-grade equipment to local police departments. The review will focus on three key points: Whether local police should have the equipment in the first place, how much training they should receive, and whether Washington is keeping adequate track of the gear and how it is used. The review could significantly alter a decade-old policy which critics contend has led to a dangerous, unnecessary militarization of local police.

3.

Israel levels two high-rise buildings in Gaza

Israeli airstrikes obliterated two high-rise buildings in Gaza over the weekend, injuring at least 22 civilians. One strike leveled a 12-story apartment building Saturday night, while a second strike took out a seven-story office building Sunday morning. Israel claimed part of the apartment building, which held 44 units, also housed a Hamas operations room.

4.

Thousands march to protest Eric Garner's death

An estimated 2,500 people converged on Staten Island Saturday for a peaceful demonstration protesting the death of Eric Garner, who died last month after being placed in a chokehold by a New York City police officer. Led by Rev. Al Sharpton, the protesters marched from the spot where Garner was apprehended to the office of Staten Island District Attorney Daniel Donovan, who has said he will present the case to a grand jury. "We are not here to tear down," Sharpton said. "We are here to build up."

5.

St. Louis police officer suspended for incendiary rant

A St. Louis County police officer has been suspended after a video of him making inflammatory comments came to light on YouTube. The video, believed to have been shot in 2012, shows officer Dan Page saying, among other things, "I'm into diversity. I kill everybody. I don't care." Page first gained notoriety last week for pushing CNN reporter Don Lemon during a demonstration in Ferguson, Missouri.

6.

Iceland lowers aviation alert as eruption threat wanes

One day after raising its aviation alert to the highest level amid fears of an imminent volcanic eruption, Iceland on Sunday reduced the alert from red to orange. The Civil Protection Department said there was still considerable seismic activity beneath the Bardarbunga volcano, but that it did not seem poised to blow.

7.

Iran claims to shoot down Israeli drone

Iran said Sunday that it had shot down an Israeli drone caught flying near its uranium enrichment facility in Natanz. "The downed aircraft was of the stealth, radar-evasive type and it intended to penetrate the off-limit nuclear area in Natanz," Iran's Revolutionary Guard said in a statement, adding that it took down the drone before it could reach the area. Israel declined to comment on the report.

8.

Tony Blair gave Kazakhstan's president PR advice

Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair offered Kazakhstan's longtime president Nursultan Nazarbayev some crisis management advice following a deadly police crackdown, according to The Telegraph. The paper obtained a letter from Blair in which he wrote that "tragic though they were," the deaths of 14 protesters "should not obscure the enormous progress" the country had made. Blair's advice came months after Kazakhstan's security forces killed 14 people and wounded dozens more when oil workers went on strike.

9.

Suge Knight shot multiple times at Hollywood party

Death Row Records co-founder Suge Knight was shot several times early Sunday when someone opened fire inside a Hollywood nightclub. Knight was shot six times, according to TMZ — initial reports said he was only struck twice — and is expected to make a full recovery.

10.

Chicago team wins U.S. title in Little League World Series

Chicago's Jackie Robinson West on Saturday secured their spot in the Little League World Series championship game with a 7-5 victory over Nevada. The team will on Sunday play South Korea, which defeated Japan in the international round of competition.