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Magnolia Mornings: December 22, 2023

Magnolia Mornings: December 22, 2023

By: Magnolia Tribune - December 22, 2023
Magnolia morning

Important state and national stories, market and business news, sports and entertainment, delivered in quick-hit fashion to start your day informed.

In Mississippi

James, a Petal native, promoted to Lt. General

(Photo from U.S. Army National Guard/Spc. Amber Milsap)

Maj. Gen. Thomas L. James of Petal has been promoted to the rank of lieutenant general, according to the Mississippi National Guard.

James began his service in the Mississippi National Guard in 1982, serving with the 114th Support Group (Area) as a combat medic and operating room technician. He served in Company A, 2nd Battalion, 20th Special Forces Group (Airborne), as an Operational Detachment A – Team medic and later as the A-Team executive officer.

James also earned his commission as an active-duty aviator through the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps program and is the deputy commanding general of United States Space Command.

National News & Foreign Policy

1. Sentiment toward Hamas shifting for Gazans as war continues

(Photo from X)

According to a report from the Wall Street Journal, “quiet criticism” of the terrorist group Hamas is spreading among Gazans after the Israeli offensive in the Gaza Strip continues after the October 7th attack that stunned Israel.

The WSJ report that Gazans are “blaming the militants for having provoked Israel’s wrath and for their inability to shield the population from a devastating war and a humanitarian crisis that deepens by the day.”

“A survey by the Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research, a Ramallah-based think tank, found that one in five Gazans polled blamed Hamas for their suffering in the war,” WSJ reported. Read more here.

2. Guiliani, once “America’s Mayor,” files for bankruptcy

Former New York City Mayor Rudy Guiliani has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. The move comes after a federal jury ordered Guiliani to pay $148 million in a defamation case related to the 2020 presidential election.

Guiliani, a confidant and attorney for former President Donald Trump during the election challenges that followed the 2020 election, was previously best known as “America’s Mayor” for his leadership after the 9/11 terrorist attack in New York City.

The election lawsuit that led to Guiliani’s bankruptcy filing was for his actions in Georgia. Former Georgia election workers Ruby Freeman and Shaye Moss claimed Guiliani defamed them and made false accusations that they had committed election fraud while counting ballots.

Sports & Entertainment

Ole Miss, Southern Miss to meet on Coast court

The 11-0 Ole Miss Rebels and the 6-5 Southern Miss Golden Eagles will meet on the hardwood ahead of Christmas in a contest set on the Mississippi Gulf Coast.

The two basketball squads will face off at the Coast Coliseum on Saturday, December 23rd in a renewal of the series.

Ole Miss is currently ranked No. 25 after entering the Top 25 for the first time since 2019.

Tipoff is set for 1:00 pm in Biloxi. Tickets are available at the Coast Coliseum.

Markets & Business

1. Last sale of drilling rights in Gulf of Mexico until 2025 sees companies offer $382 million

Chevron, Hess and BP were among the companies who bid on Gulf of Mexico oil leases this week covering more than 300 parcels and 2,700 square miles.

The AP reported that the companies offered $382 million for drilling rights in the Gulf of Mexico on Wednesday, the last of such sales until 2025.

The U.S. Department of Interior Bureau of Ocean Energy Management’s online auction was originally to be held in September but was delayed “by a court battle after the administration reduced the area available for leases from 73 million acres (30 million hectares) to 67 million acres (27 million hectares) as part of a plan to protect the endangered Rice’s whale,” the AP reported.

A federal judge in Louisiana ordered the sale to occur, and after an appeal by environmental groups, the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals allowed the sale to continue.

2. C Spire announces promotions

Suzy Hays (left) and Brad Carpenter (right) (Photo from C Spire)

C Spire has promoted two longtime executives. Suzy Hays has been named president of the company while Brad Carpenter was announced as chief operating officer.

In her new role, the company says Hays will provide direct collaborative guidance and lead revenue and profit generation efforts of C Spire’s three operating units – Wireless, Home and Business. Hays has been with the company for more than 30 years and has served in several management and executive roles. She has led the three individual units at one time or another and most recently served as executive vice president, responsible for Home and Business. For many years she served as chief marketing officer and led the transition from Cellular South to the C Spire brand in 2011 when the company began its diversification into non-wireless services.

Carpenter – who previously served as chief information officer – will be responsible for effectively utilizing and deploying C Spire’s full stack of telecom and technology assets to do good and generate the highest return. He brings more than two decades of technology management leadership to the company’s network and IT teams. Carpenter also serves on the board of trustees for the Base Camp Coding Academy (BCCA), a nonprofit vocational education training program that delivers fast-paced, focused computer programming to under-advantaged youth in north Mississippi.

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This article was produced by Magnolia Tribune staff.