WASHINGTON — The White House announced Friday that President Donald Trump will take a five-nation trip to the Asia Pacific region in November as the U.S. seeks to curb North Korea’s growing nuclear threat.
The White House said Trump will travel to Japan, South Korea, China, Vietnam and the Philippines from Nov. 3-14, a trip that will also include a stop in Hawaii. It will be Trump’s first visit to the region as president, and it comes as North Korea moves closer to its goal of having a nuclear-tipped missile that could strike the U.S.
The White House said Trump’s visit would “strengthen the international resolve to confront the North Korean threat and ensure the complete, verifiable, and irreversible denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.”
Trump has offered fiery rhetoric and a tough stance against the North’s nuclear weapons program, declaring in a speech to the United Nations General Assembly last week that the U.S. would “totally destroy” North Korea if provoked. North Korea responded with pledges to take the “highest-level” action against the United States and warned that it might conduct the “most powerful” atmospheric hydrogen bomb test in the Pacific Ocean.
Trump is also expected to discuss trade and economic ties to the region and will attend the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in Vietnam and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations summit in the Philippines.
Even as Washington and Beijing grapple with that security crisis in North Korea, Trump has pressed China for more balanced trade with America.
Trump has been openly critical of China’s large trade surpluses with the United States and last month ordered an investigation into whether Beijing improperly pressures companies to hand over their technology in exchange for market access.
His trip to China will come weeks after Chinese leader Xi Jinping is expected to receive a second five-year term as the leader of China’s communist party. Trump has sought to forge a personal relationship with Xi, hosting the Chinese president at his Mar-a-Lago resort in April.
WASHINGTON — Nearly 300 species of fish, mussels and other sea critters hitchhiked across the Pacific Ocean on debris from the 2011 Japanese tsunami, washing ashore alive in the United States, researchers reported.
It is the largest and longest marine migration ever documented, outside experts and the researchers said. The scientists and colleagues combed the beaches of Hawaii, Alaska, Washington, Oregon, California and British Columbia and tracked the species to their Japanese origins. Their arrival could be a problem if the critters take root, pushing out native species, the study authors said in Thursday’s journal Science.
“It’s a bit of what we call ecological roulette,” said lead author James Carlton, a marine sciences professor at Williams College, in Williamstown, Mass.
It will be years before scientists know if the 289 Japanese species thrive in their new homes and crowd out natives. The researchers roughly estimated that a million creatures traveled 4,800 miles across the Pacific Ocean to reach the U.S. West Coast, including hundreds of thousands of mussels.
Invasive species are a major problem worldwide with plants and animals thriving in areas where they don’t naturally live.
Marine invasions in the past have hurt native farmed shellfish, eroded local ecosystems, caused economic losses and spread disease-carrying spec-ies, said Bella Galil, a marine biologist with the Steinhardt Museum of Natural History in Tel Aviv, Israel, who wasn’t part of the study.
A magnitude 9 earthquake off the coast of Japan triggered a tsunami on March 11, 2011, that swept boats, docks, buoys and other man-made materials into the Pacific.
The debris drifted east with an armada of living creatures, some that gave birth to new generations while at sea.
“The diversity was somewhat jaw-dropping,” Carlton said. “Mollusks, sea anemones, corals, crabs, just a wide variety of species, really a cross-section of Japanese fauna.”
The researchers collected and analyzed the debris that had reached the West Coast and Hawaii over the last five years, with new pieces arriving Wednesday in Washington state.
The debris flowed across the North Pacific current, as other objects do from time to time, before it moved north with the Alaska current or south with the California current. Most hit the coasts of Oregon and Washington.
Last year, a small boat from Japan reached Oregon with 20 good-sized fish inside, a kind of yellowtail jack native to the western Pacific, Carlton said. Some of the fish are still alive in an Oregon aquarium.
Earlier, an entire fishing ship — the Sai sho-Maru — arrived intact with five of the same 6-inch fish swimming around inside.
Study co-author Gregory Ruiz, a Smithsonian marine ecologist, is especially interested in a Japanese parasite in the gills of mussels. Elsewhere in the world, these parasites have taken root and hurt oyster and mussel harvests, but they hadn’t been seen before on the West Coast.
The researchers note another huge factor in the debris flotilla: plastics.
Decades ago, most of the debris would have been wood and that would have degraded over the long ocean trip, but now most of the debris — buoys, boats, crates and pallets — is made of plastic and that survives, Carlton said. So the hitchhikers survive, too.
“It was the plastic debris that allowed new species to survive far longer than we ever thought they would,” Carlton said.
James Byers, a marine ecologist at the University of Georgia in Athens, who wasn’t part of the study, praised the authors for their detective work.
He said in an email that the migration was an odd mix of a natural trigger and human aspects because of the plastics.
“The fact that communities of organisms survived out in the open ocean for long time periods (years in some cases) is amazing,” Byers wrote.
HONOLULU (AP) — Seven finalists for the next chief of the Honolulu Police Department moved to the next round Thursday.
The beleaguered department needs a new chief to replace Louis Kealoha, who agreed to retire after receiving notice that he’s the target of a federal investigation. A federal grand jury is looking into allegations of civil rights abuses and corruption. Kealoha’s lawyers have denied any wrongdoing.
Finalists include Honolulu police Maj. Susan Ballard, a former Pennsylvania police major, a retired chief in Texas and Thomas Aiu, a retired U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration agent.
The finalists were announced after the police commission agreed that the top seven semifinalists will advance to the next round, which includes background checks, psychological evaluations and interviews with commission members.
Nine semifinalists were chosen based on how they performed on a written exam. This week, the consultants hired to help select the new chief put the semifinalists through a series of assessments.
The semifinalists conducted simulated news conferences and mock meetings with neighborhood board members, said Joe Hinish, a senior consultant with Pennsylvania-based firm EB Jacobs.
They were scored on their “ability to know what to release and what not to release” and how well they put the neighborhood board members at ease, Hinish said.
Volunteer assessors, including Hawaii’s former U.S. Attorney Florence Nakakuni, helped evaluate the semifinalists, Hinish said.
Commission member Loretta Sheehan expressed hesitation about deciding on finalists before seeing semifinalists’ performance reports. Hinish cautioned that doing so would reveal the semifinalists’ identities. The commission didn’t want to know their identities in an effort to remain neutral.
The commission, which needs four members to agree in order to take any action, is down to five members after Luella Costales resigned this week over diversity concerns.
There were no women on the panel that scored written exams, and all four members are from law enforcement backgrounds, Costales said.
The remaining commission members didn’t want to further delay the selection process.
The commission aims to name a new chief by the end of October.
Big Island parents upset over child’s delayed diagnosis
HILO (AP) — An infant thought to have eaten a slug or snail is the latest victim of rat lungworm disease in the state.
Eleven-month-old Kanehekili “Kane” Tauanuu is the 17th person in Hawaii this year to contract the disease.
Rat lungworm can occur when rat droppings containing larvae are eaten by snails or slugs. When a human eats those snails or slugs, the parasites travel to the brain, causing neurological symptoms.
The child’s parents, Santini and Dylan Tauanuu, said that their son is “slowly getting better each day.”
He is expected to remain in the hospital until he relearns how to crawl.
His parents are frustrated at how long it took to get a diagnosis. They said they had to demand rat lungworm testing, which is a common complaint among patients eventually diagnosed.
“It took nine days, two ER visits, one Urgent Care visit and two pediatric visits before they finally took a blood sample at the ER in Hilo,” Santini Tauanuu said. “I was turned away multiple times and told he just had a cold and was given Motrin for his high fevers. I almost got turned away again but I demanded the hospital draw blood samples and do tests.”
Dr. Jon Martell, Hilo Medical Center medical director for Acute Care, said that he couldn’t speak about specific cases, but, he said, pediatric symptoms are “practically indistinguishable” from common childhood illness symptoms such as fever, chills, lethargy, nausea and vomiting.
“Requests for rat lungworm testing need to be evaluated by physicians on a case-by-case basis,” Martell said.
Santini Tauanuu wants other parents to pay attention to what happened to her family.
“If they would have just listened to me the first time when I initially took him to the ER (Sept. 8), he would have gotten help a lot sooner,” she said.
State officials set rat traps near the family’s home and discovered snails under a neighbor’s tarp during its investigation, she said.
HONOLULU — A report by Honolulu Auditor Edwin Young criticized the city’s initiatives to combat homelessness, saying Mayor Kirk Caldwell and his administration are lacking benchmarks and mismanaging programs aimed at sheltering people.
The 75-page audit submitted to the City Council on Tuesday also pointed to “a disconnect between the homelessness priority for city leaders and the resources allocated” to the Department of Community Services, which oversees housing programs.
The audit praised the city’s investment of more than $7.5 million in general fund money to support three programs, but questioned whether that can continue using general funds.
Councilman Ernie Martin said that he was disappointed by the findings of the report because the administration and council have made homelessness a priority. Martin said that he is bothered by the lack of coordination between the city and state.
Suit seeks stronger rules for fuel tanks
HONOLULU — The Sierra Club of Hawaii is suing to compel the state to develop new rules for underground fuel storage tanks like those that leaked at the Navy’s Red Hill facility.
Director Marti Townsend said that existing rules don’t comply with state law and should be rewritten.
Deputy Attorney General Wade Hargrove said that the state Department of Health is already drafting stronger rules.
Senior Environmental Court Judge Jeffrey Crabtree said Wednesday he will aim to rule by late October on whether to dismiss the case.
The Navy has 20 giant storage tanks near Pearl Harbor. The 70-year-old tanks sit on an aquifer critical to Honolulu’s water supply.
The Navy in 2015 signed an agreement with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and state to upgrade and fix the tanks over 20 years.
Cemetery gets new office, visitor center
HONOLULU — The Department of Veterans Affairs is putting the finishing touches on a new administration office and visitor center for the Punchbowl cemetery.
The 7,462-square-foot building is on a hillside outside the main gate of the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific.
“Punchbowl is a unique location to start with,” said Jim Horton, director of the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific. “But this location and just the architecture of the new building really makes it a standout, and the community should be very proud.”
Joshua Mathis, resident engineer on the project, said that the two-story building is built on 123 concrete piers. The old offices were in a former caretaker’s quarters built in 1949.
Gene Maestas, a Punchbowl spokesman, said that the desire to provide more niche spaces for the cemetery’s columbarium was the main reason for the office relocation.
The new building is part of a nearly $30 million project started in 2015 to create the new columbarium, offices and a memorial wall.
Seven of Punchbowl’s 27 employees will work in the new building. It will be a hub for visitors, families and cemetery representatives, officials said.
Lawyer: Turkish man to plead guilty
HONOLULU — A Turkish man accused of causing a flight disturbance that prompted fighter jets to escort the plane to Honolulu is planning to plead guilty to interfering with a flight crew, his defense attorney said Wednesday.
Anil Uskanli is expected to enter the plea in federal court in Honolulu on Tuesday, said lawyer Richard Sing. A judge last week ruled that Uskanli is mentally competent for trial and must be held without bail because he poses a danger to the community.
Uskanli tried to get to the front of the plane during the American Airlines flight from Los Angeles to Honolulu in May, according to court documents. Crew members feared his laptop contained explosives.
A flight attendant blocked his path with a drink cart, and he was duct-taped to his seat until the plane landed. The Hawaii National Guard scrambled two fighter jets to escort the plane to Oahu.
Uskanli raised red flags at Los Angeles International Airport before the flight took off: He had purchased a ticket at an airline counter in the middle of the night with no luggage and had been arrested after opening a door to a restricted area of the airport.
Because Uskanli’s student visa has been revoked, he faces deportation to Turkey.
A federal judge ordered a mental competency evaluation after Sing requested it.
Army ends search for wreckage
HONOLULU — The Army has ended active efforts to locate remains and retrieve wreckage after a helicopter crashed off Oahu last month.
The 25th Infantry Division said Thursday that officials wrapped up the search after concluding it was unlikely to find additional remains. Investigators also determined they had gathered enough evidence for a thorough probe into the cause of the crash.
All five crew members aboard were killed when the UH-60 helicopter went down Aug. 15.
The top two offenses in the Mountain West Conference will be on the field today when the University of Hawaii football team faces Colorado State at Aloha Stadium in Honolulu.
The Rainbow Warriors (2-2, 0-1 Mountain West) average 480.2 yards of total offense per game, while the Rams (2-2, 0-2) are averaging 479.5.
“Creativity-wise, execution-wise, explosiveness — I don’t know if anybody’s better than Colorado State right now on offense in our conference,” UH coach Nick Rolovich said on the school’s athletics website.
The Rams’ Nick Stevens has passed for 1,227 yards, tied for 14th in the nation, with eight touchdowns. Michael Gallup has 31 receptions for 385 yards and a touchdown, while Dalyn Dawkins has run for 242 yards and two scores and Izzy Matthews has 195 yards on the ground. Dawkins and Matthews also each have a touchdown catch.
“Their offense is very diverse,” Rolovich said. “They know how to get the ball to their playmakers in various ways, so our defense is going to have an incredible challenge.”
Hawaii lost 28-21 in overtime at Wyoming last week.
“We’ve got to capitalize better in the goal line and make some corrections on the mental mistakes down there,” said Hawaii’s John Ursua, who earlier this week was named to the watch list for the Biletnikoff Award, presented annually to the nation’s top receiver.
Colorado State last played on Sept. 26, losing 43-21 to Alabama, ranked No. 1 in the nation by The Associated Press.
“The week off came at a good time for our football team,” Rams coach Mike Bobo said on the school’s site. “It was good to get the week off and get back to fundamentals last week. … The message to the team was that this is our ’Season No. 2’ as we start conference play. It’s one day at a time, one week at a time. Conference games are huge and important for us, and we have a tough task this week as we go on the road to play a very good football team.”
The University of Hawaii women’s volleyball team set a program record with 17 aces Friday in a 25-8, 25-9, 25-16 sweep of Cal State Fullerton in Fullerton, Calif.
The Rainbow Wahine (9-5, 3-0 Big West) opened their road schedule by winning their seventh straight match. McKenna Granato had six aces for UH, along with seven kills, and Emily Maglio had 14 kills without an error, finishing with a .778 hitting percentage.
The previous UH record for aces in a match was 16, in a five-set match against Stanford in 1982. The rally-scoring team record was 13, accomplished three times.
Hawaii’s Savanah Kahakai had 13 digs, and Norene Iosia finished with 28 assists.
Tyler Fezzey had seven kills for the Titans (4-12, 0-4), and Cady Francis had eight digs.
Hawaii will play on the road today against UC Riverside.
By MICHAEL MAROT, AP Sports Writer
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (AP) — Coach Archie Miller came to Indiana to win championships. His players expect it, too.
Shortly after Miller sat at a dais inside Assembly Hall and explained his definition of a successful season, the Hoosiers gave their presentation.
“We expect to win, bottom line,” senior guard Robert Johnson said Thursday. “I think we have the talent. I think we have enough experience to do what we set out to do.”
Miller wants his new team thinking that way.
Fans, on the other hand, are understandably wary.
They’ve heard every coach over the past 30 years, from Bob Knight through Tom Crean — five in all, promise a sixth national championship banner. None has delivered.
They’ve watched the Hoosiers go from NCAA Tournament regular to NCAA Tournament part-timer, rebuild after an NCAA scandal gutted the program and endure the embarrassment of a series of off-the-court problems.
The result: Indiana has been to one Final Four since 1993 and has become accustomed to the twists and turns normally reserved for programs in transition.
Athletic director Fred Glass is betting that the gritty coach can smooth out some of those rough patches and help the Hoosiers reclaim their spot in the national conversation.
It’s why Miller took the job in March, and it’s why he’s preaching patience for now.
“We have to become the best team we can be. We have to not only learn one another, we have to develop chemistry,” Miller said. “It’s just day to day and as we get to the games, we’ll see. The expectation level for us is to be ready every single day.”
While those sentences weren’t written for the movie “Hoosiers,” they demonstrate how masterful Miller has become at talking to Hoosiers’ fans in a language they understand.
Throughout his 26-minute news conference, Miller demonstrated used terms like Indiana defenders and East Coast guards, assessed roles and leaders while discussing conditioning, spirit and, of course, defense.
“We’ve spent I’d say 75 percent to 25 percent defense to offense,” Miller said. “We’re having the base stuff put in. We’re not as sophisticated as we want to be. It’s an adjustment, it’s’ repetition after repetition, it’s technique after technique, it’s film after film. But sometimes it’s going to take games. They have to be in games. I don’t think we’re going to be, on Day 1, the Steel Curtain.”
Nobody could ask that much of the Pittsburgh native and obvious football fan.
The ex-Dayton coach and North Carolina State star begins his first official practice with credentials that have impressed his players. He won at Dayton as a head coach and at Arizona and Ohio State as an assistant, and what the players like is the knowledge he brings to the bench from his playing days.
All of that should help get things back on track.
But there is one thing Indiana fans won’t tolerate: Rules violations.
So less than 24 hours after an assistant on the staff of his older brother, Arizona coach Sean Miller, was suspended and relieved of all duties as part of the FBI corruption probe that has rocked the college basketball world, Miller added his voice.
He said he’s already met with Glass several times since the arrests were announced Tuesday and there is no indication that Indiana’s program was involved.
Miller also said he’s spoken briefly with his brother once, to offer support. Still, he was shocked by the allegations.
“I think everyone’s probably taken a step back and is a little reserved or guarded,” Miller said. “But as you look at your own players, you have to remind them to do things the right way and I have no reason to believe that they are not.”
The only more daunting issue heading into Friday’s practice is how long will it take Miller and the Hoosiers to get everything in sync?
Players insist they can finish the job quickly.
“Not only me but my team,” slimmed down forward De’Ron Davis said when asked if he expected to play a dominant role in the Big Ten this season. “All of us, the whole team, not just me individually want to have a big impact on the Big Ten, especially after last year.”
For more AP college basketball coverage: http://collegebasketball.ap.org and http://twitter.com/AP_Top25 .
By KEN ROBERTS, Associated Press
MADISON, Ill. (AP) — Tanner Gray has the NHRA buzzing in his rookie season. He’s young, he’s brash and he says what’s on his mind.
In fact, one driver said the 18-year-old Gray was a “cocky little puke.”
He’s also fast — and a winner.
Two weeks ago, Gray won the Countdown playoff opener at his home track in North Carolina for his fifth Pro Stock victory of the season. That gave him the points lead, though he dropped to third behind Bo Butner and Greg Anderson last week in Pennsylvania. The young star has a chance to get back on top Sunday with a victory in the NHRA Midwest Nationals at Gateway Motorsports Park.
“He’s an instant success story,” Anderson said Friday. “When he told the world he’s going to contend for the championship in the first year, a lot of people thought he was crazy. But he’s proved he was right. He’s got a great chance to win it.”
Tanner’s father, Shane, and grandfather, Johnny, are racers. In fact, the three of them raced together at the U.S. Nationals in Indiana over the Labor Day weekend.
Gray has been able to back up his talk with his performance on the track.
He was put in a car that was competitive from the beginning in the opener in Pomona, California. Although he qualified ninth and was eliminated in the second round at Pomona, he made a statement.
At Las Vegas, Gray became the youngest champion ever at 17 years, 11 months, 18 days. He also won at Topeka, Kansas; Sonoma, California; Brainerd, Minnesota; and Concord, North Carolina.
“Some people say he was put in a fast car,” said mother Amber. “Well he was put in a fast car but you have to have the ability to leave the starting line. He has proven himself to do that.”
The fact that Gray doesn’t have to answer to any sponsors has a lot to do with what comes out of his mouth. Most drivers choose their words carefully when talking to the media for fear of saying the wrong thing that might cause a team to lose a major sponsor.
But Gray fires away and is not afraid to say what’s on his mind.
“Everybody has their own opinions on things,” he said. “I really don’t care what people think about me. I’m going to go out there and try to drive to the best of my ability and do the best I can.
“That’s really the only reason I’m out here. If we were out here to please everybody, nobody would be any good.”
Amber Gray thinks working with and for family can be problematic in a good way.
“It is a different environment. … But it’s always good to have the family and have the support out here,” she said.
“We are blessed that his grandfather is willing to spend the money to be out here.”
The money is being spent wisely because Gray might earn his team and his family a first national title.
One thing is for sure, Gray won’t be afraid to tell people what he thinks and how he feels. He’ll also let his car do most of the talking.
“I’m a pretty confident guy,” he said. “I’m very competitive. I tell people week in and week out, the only reason I come here is to win. It’s been a lot of fun so far. It’s definitely been a learning experience for me.”
By TRAVIS JOHNSON, Associated Press
STATE COLLEGE, Pa. (AP) — Although No. 4 Penn State needed a touchdown pass in the final seconds last week to keep its dream of a playoff berth alive, the down-to-the-wire game hasn’t shaken the Nittany Lions’ confidence.
“We consider ourselves the best offense in the country,” offensive lineman Ryan Bates said. “We know how special we can be with the offensive threats we have.”
The top two among them, running back Saquon Barkley and quarterback Trace McSorley, have been focal points for opposing coaches for a while now. It’s no different for Indiana coach Tom Allen whose Hoosiers (2-1, 0-1 Big Ten) will try to slow the Nittany Lions (4-0, 1-0 Big Ten) at Beaver Stadium on Saturday.
Allen has seen plenty of Barkley and McSorley in the past week and knows his banged-up defense will have to have a near perfect game plan to take away Penn State’s best options.
Barkley racked up 358 yards on 43 touches against Iowa and leads the country with 253 all-purpose yards per game.
“(Barkley’s) making runs that are impressive, and he can catch the ball out of the backfield,” Allen said. “and the quarterback is just, man, McSorley is just special. He’s just got that moxie that you want in a quarterback and that core confidence and that belief.”
It showed up when McSorley led a final two-minute drive ending with a dart over the middle to Juwan Johnson for the game-winning touchdown.
Even though he had his offense replicate the two-minute drive in practice, Penn State coach James Franklin would rather not have to watch another come-from-behind series in the waning moments.
He’s glad his team has the experience to bank on, however.
“We’ve just got to be a little bit better,” Franklin said. “We’ve got to be a little bit sharper. We’ve got to sustain blocks a little bit longer. That was probably the difference on Saturday.”
Penn State’s offensive line still may have some issues as starting right tackle Chasz Wright’s status is questionable. He missed the Iowa game with an unspecified injury.
Indiana has a much longer injury report and a bunch could miss another game after sitting out last week’s 52-17 win over Georgia Southern.
According to Allen, the Hoosiers could likely be without starting cornerbacks A’Shon Riggins and Rashard Fant who are both dealing with unspecified injuries. Defensive linemen Nate Hoff and Juan Harris, wideout Donavan Hale, running back Mike Majette, offensive lineman Simon Stepaniak and defensive back Marcelino Ball are all also questionable according to Allen.
Linebacker Kiante Walton had surgery on an unspecified injury earlier this week and will be out indefinitely.
THE OTHER BACK
While plenty of excitement swirls around Barkley, the Hoosiers are pretty hyped for their own talented back.
Freshman Morgan Ellison turned heads in camp and finally got the chance to do so in game when he ran for 186 yards and two touchdowns in his first career start.
“(He’s) playing the way — after fall camp — the way he convinced me he could play,” Allen said.
Penn State’s uniforms have seen minor tweaks and changes over the years but the Nittany Lions plaintive blue and white scheme, finished off with black cleats, has largely remained unaltered.
This weekend, they’ve been given an overhaul.
The Nittany Lions will wear uniforms that use elements from past editions including helmet numbers, sleeve and pants stripes and grey facemasks. Players are looking forward to one change in particular, an accessory worn only once, by the 1979 team in the Sugar Bowl.
“We’re pretty excited about the white cleats, definitely,” tight end Mike Gesicki said. “Just because obviously, you know, here at Penn State, we’re wearing black cleats every single day, every single game.”
For more AP college football coverage: http://collegefootball.ap.org and http://twitter.com/AP_Top25