NorCal wine country torched, former Empire player slain, U.S. men Cup-less, morning headlines

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ON INLANDER.COM

NEWS: Washington's auditor says the state needs to do a better job verifying self-reported incomes for Medicaid recipients, or risk losing $110 million by 2020.

NEWS: A South Korean lawmaker claims North Korean hackers stole a cache of classified military documents — reportedly containing U.S.-South Korean plans for a "decapitation" strike against North Korean leader Kim Jong-un —from the South. (via New York Times)

NEWS: Continuing his ongoing public feud with the National Football League, President Trump threatened the NFL and attacked African-American ESPN host Jemele Hill, who previously referred to Trump as a "white supremacist." (via New York Times)


IN OTHER NEWS

'Devastation' in NorCal wine country

Firefighters in Northern California's wine country continue battling to halt the march of wind-whipped, fast-moving wildfires that now cover 170,000 acres and have claimed at least 21 lives — with more than 500 people missing in Sonoma County alone — incinerated more than 2,000 structures, and forced thousands to evacuate. (San Francisco Chronicle)
• Santa Rosa blaze: How a sudden firestorm caused devastation in the Sonoma County city of 175,000. (San Jose Mercury-News)
Apocalyptic images from wine country reveal total destruction. (Washington Post)
• An updated list of Napa, Sonoma and Mendocino county wineries that have burned. (SFC)

Former Empire player killed downtown
Former Spokane Empire wide receiver Carl Sims, making a catch in a 2016 game, was shot and killed downtown on Sunday night. - YOUNG KWAK PHOTO
  • Young Kwak photo
  • Former Spokane Empire wide receiver Carl Sims, making a catch in a 2016 game, was shot and killed downtown on Sunday night.

Carl Sims, a wide receiver for the Indoor Football League's Spokane Empire for parts of the past two seasons, was shot and killed early Sunday morning in front of the Monterey Cafe. Sims, 31, was an IFL veteran who played in all nine of the league's seasons with eight different teams. (Spokesman-Review)

Spokane: No place for hate
Police charged two Spokane men, one with a "White Power" tattoo, with first-degree assault and malicious harassment yesterday; Jason Cooper, 32, and Donald Prichard, 36, are accused of punching a 66-year-old African-American man in the face and firing several rounds of bullets into his North Spokane house on Sunday night. (Spokesman-Review)

That's a Corker
Who's the most liberated man in D.C. these days? That would be Tennessee GOP Sen. Bob Corker, who's not running for re-election and is finally free to speak his mind on President Trump and — in his view — the White House's ongoing reign of error. (Boston Globe)
• Corker's 12 most damning quotes regarding Trump. (CNN)
• Trump's Twitter war with Corker is threatening his legislative agenda. (New York Times)
• The president is blaming Corker for the "failed" Iran nuclear deal. (New York Times)

Rexit: Just a matter of time
Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has reached the breaking point regarding his fraught relationship with President Trump, writes the New Yorker's Dexter Filkins.
• Trump, stung by news reports that Tillerson referred to him as a 'f—-ing moron," has proposed an IQ-test competition with his Secretary of State. (GQ, Washington Post)
• Filkins — who won a Pulitzer for his coverage of the war in Afghanistan — on rising tensions between Trump and Tillerson and the looming threat of war in North Korea. (NPR)

Would you want to go to Russia?
The U.S. men's national soccer team, which had qualified for the previous seven World Cups, won't be in Russia next June and July for an eighth, missing the globe's biggest tournament for the first time since 1986. Needing only a draw to qualify, the Americans were upended 2-1 at Trinidad and Tobago,  a tiny, twin-island nation of 1.3 million off the coast of Venezuela, and a last-place team the U.S. had beaten without drama four months ago. Sports Illustrated's Grant Wahl calls it the most embarrassing failure in U.S. soccer history.
• How the U.S. men missed the World Cup, minute by minute. (New York Times)
• The U.S. men failing to make the World Cup is a disaster for Fox Sports. (Sports Illustrated)
• With a 12th consecutive World Cup berth on the line, Lionel Messi's hat trick vs. Ecuador led 2014 runner-up Argentina to qualification. (Sports Illustrated)
World Cup 2018: 23 of the 32 teams have now qualified; who's in (Iceland, Panama), who's out (Chile, the Netherlands), and who still has to play their way in (Italy, Ireland).