Newsletter: Today: Why Did Trump’s ‘Armada’ Sail in the Opposite Direction?

SUNDA STRAIT, INDONESIA - APRIL 14: In this handout provided by the U.S. Navy, the aircraft carrier
In this photo provided by the U.S. Navy, the aircraft carrier Carl Vinson transits the Sunda Strait on April 14, 2017, in Indonesia.
(U.S. Navy / U.S. Navy via Getty Images)

So, about those U.S. Navy warships bound for the Sea of Japan…. I’m Davan Maharaj, editor-in-chief of the Los Angeles Times. Here are some story lines I don’t want you to miss today.


Why Did Trump’s ‘Armada’ Sail in the Opposite Direction?

“We are sending an armada, very powerful” to the waters off the Korean peninsula, President Trump said a week ago. So where was the Carl Vinson carrier strike force, as the world worried that North Korea would conduct a sixth underground nuclear test? Heading in the opposite direction, for exercises in the Indian Ocean. Officials insist the administration’s repeated mentions of an order to rush the ships north wasn’t a deliberate attempt to mislead the American public or Kim Jong Un. (Mistakes were made, huh?) Now, they say, the force really is heading for the Sea of Japan.



More Politics

-- Trump has ordered a review of the H-1B visa program, which he says has undercut American workers. Though the president said his executive order will force tech companies to hire more U.S. employees, Silicon Valley leaders say their companies are not the problem.

-- A 23-year-old man has sued the Trump administration over his deportation to Mexico in February, saying he has permission to live and work in the United States as a “Dreamer.”


-- In Georgia, Republicans forced a run-off in the widely watched race for the House seat once occupied by Tom Price. Democratic candidate Jon Ossoff just missed the the 50%-plus-one-vote mark.

A Deadly Rampage in Downtown Fresno

On social media, he referred to white people as “devils.” His family members say he thought there was a war between blacks and whites, and that he did not seem well in recent days. Now a 39-year-old man is in custody after police say he fatally shot three white men with a .357 revolver in downtown Fresno and shouted “Allahu akbar” before surrendering. Authorities also have linked him to the killing of a white security guard last week. They don’t think this was an act of terrorism.

Will These New Words in the LAPD Manual Save Lives?

The change in the LAPD’s manual amounts to two sentences. Officials hope it amounts to fewer shootings by a police force that last year topped a list of big-city agencies with the highest number of lethal shootings by officers. Though the LAPD chief and the union representing the rank and file offered their support for the new policy handed down from the Police Commission, the ACLU says it doesn’t go far enough.

L.A. County Gets a New Electric Avenue

Power to the people? That was idea the L.A. County Board of Supervisors had in mind as it approved a new way for Southern California Edison customers to get their electricity. The new county-run utility, they say, will lower bills by as much as 5% and give consumers easier access to clean energy options. Here’s how this new utility player will work.

At College Libraries, Books Are Checking Out for Good


The days of browsing through a musty, dusty collection of books at a college library are quickly becoming a thing of the past, as more and more universities are getting rid of them in the digital age. In their place: study spaces with amenities such as couches, meeting rooms and exercise equipment. But some people are blowing their stacks over the shift from paper to pixels. “You walk into a space that used to be a library and it’s empty,” says one UC Santa Cruz professor. “It’s horrible. It’s like death.”


-- Lawyers say an Afghan family of five who was detained by immigration officials for two days at Los Angeles International Airport has been granted permanent residency status in the U.S.

-- An audit has found that the Department of Motor Vehicles isn’t making sure that people issued placards for disabled parking qualify for them.

-- Columnist Steve Lopez may be 60-something, but he’s still learning from his elders.

-- Hipster coffee is making its way to Watts and West Oakland.


-- Burgers, Spanx and Trump help Ewan McGregor tackle his two roles on the FX series “Fargo.”


-- Didn’t make it to Coachella? Headed there for the second weekend? Here are the 10 best performances our pop music staff caught.

-- Times theater critic Charles McNulty checks out “Groundhog Day: The Musical,” a Broadway reworking of the classic film.

-- Times classical music critic Mark Swed ponders the allure of Iceland’s music after an L.A. Phil festival.


Dudley Moore was a jazz musician and part of a TV comedy team with Peter Cook in England, but to American audiences he was best known as the star of the films “Arthur” and “10.” Though he would play a rich, lovable lush on screen, he was born on this date in 1935 in a humble British household.


-- The U.S. Supreme Court will hear a major religion case today and decide whether states must give church schools an equal right to receive certain kinds of public funds.

-- Police say the man who killed a Cleveland retiree and posted video of the crime on Facebook shot himself to death in Pennsylvania.

-- In a surprise move, British Prime Minister Theresa May is calling for an early election in an effort to strengthen her government’s position for “Brexit.”

-- Marwan Barghouti, a man seen as a possible Palestinian president but who is serving multiple life terms in prison, is leading more than 1,000 fellow inmates in a hunger strike.

-- The next flu medicine could come from the mucus of a frog native to southern India.


-- Anchor Bill O’Reilly’s future at Fox News looks uncertain amid growing signs he’s losing the support of his bosses after a string of sexual harassment claims against him.

-- Lesson learned? United Airlines CEO Oscar Munoz has vowed that the airline will learn and grow after the passenger-dragging fiasco.

-- Four years after the bombings that killed three, Adidas has apologized for an email praising customers who “survived” this year’s Boston Marathon.


-- Imprisoned former NFL star Aaron Hernandez has hanged himself in his cell and was pronounced dead at a hospital. He was serving a life sentence for a 2013 murder.

-- D’Angelo Russell got a clear message from Lakers’ leaders during his exit interview. They wanted to see him improve his consistency, his leadership and his body. (Is that all?)

-- What is Los Angeles’ favorite pro sports team? Survey says …


-- It’s possible that the Trump administration has executed an important diplomatic pivot on North Korea, from chest-beating belligerence to an opening for negotiations.

-- The relentless fighting over net neutrality rules needs to end, but how can it?


-- How much is Trumpism rooted in California’s politics? (Politico)

-- A brief history of doomsday fiction over the last 70 years. (The Economist)

-- The story of a former child actor’s quest to meet author J.D. Salinger in hopes of bringing “The Catcher in the Rye” to the big screen. (The Paris Review)


With his flowing blond mane and wraparound sunglasses, Duane “Dog” Chapman of “Dog the Bounty Hunter” fame and his wife, Beth, made a visit to the state Capitol. The occasion: a hearing before the Assembly Public Safety Committee about a bill that would transform the way judges award bail to criminal defendants. How does he feel about the proposal? Apprehensive.

Please send comments and ideas to Davan Maharaj.

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