National: Things You Need to Know for 9/22

Scottish First Minister Alex Salmond visits the polls as citizens vote for Scottish independence.

Chris Olszewski, Opinion Editor

Scots vote “No”, keep UK together

On September 18, the highest voter turnout in Scottish history, with 3.5 million voters casting ballots, voted no to independence, preserving the 307-year old union between Scotland and England. By the time all 32 districts in the country reported in, the “No” side came out on top with 55% of the vote. Alex Salmond, Scottish First Minister, conceded defeat at around 6:30 A.M. Edinburgh time Friday morning, saying he accepted “the democratic verdict of the people of Scotland”.

Crisis Meetings in Paris

Leaders from 25 different countries met in Paris in an effort to formulate a plan to take down ISIS. The 25 countries, along with Iraq, signed a statement stating their commitment to the new Iraqi government, including “appropriate military assistance”.  The U.S. government has ramped up airstrikes, and several other countries, such as France and Australia, are delivering arms and personnel to the Middle East.

Hurricane Odile strikes Baja California

Hurricane Odile made landfall over Mexico late Sunday night as a Category 3 storm, whipping through the area with 125 mph winds. The massive storm was up to 185 miles wide.  Mexican authorities prepared shelter for 30,000 people in the area, and the storm calmed down as it crossed into the U.S.  beginning late Monday. The now-tropical storm Odile has moved over Arizona, bringing more rain to an already flood-stricken state.

Manhunt in Pennsylvania

A multi-state manhunt is underway after Pennsylvania State Trooper Bryon Dickson was fatally shot outside his barracks late Friday night, while another state trooper was gravely injured. The shooter has yet to be apprehended, and multiple monetary rewards are being offered for their capture. Police have begun searching the Pennsylvania for the suspect, who is believed to be an excellent marksman.

Boeing and SpaceX Land NASA Contracts

Boeing and SpaceX have earned lucrative contracts with NASA, worth $4.2 billion and $2.6 billion respectively. The two companies will design and build spacecraft that will shuttle American astronauts to and from the International Space Station until Orion, the replacement for the space shuttle program, is ready for manned missions, ending the reliance on the Russians, who charge $70 million a seat. Each company will launch between two and six missions. Both companies have a history with NASA: Boeing has already received $100 million in funding from NASA, and SpaceX has used its Dragon spacecraft to deliver cargo to the ISS.