Sam's Top 5 Things to Know for Thursday

1. Trump: Kim Jong Un made 'very wise' decision to back down

President Trump said yesterday that North Korea’s Kim Jong Un made a “very wise” decision in backing down on his threats of a missile attack on Guam. Trump tweeted yesterday morning, “Kim Jong Un of North Korea made a very wise and well reasoned decision. The alternative would have been both catastrophic and unacceptable!”

He commented a day after North Korean media reported the dictator had delayed a decision about whether to fire missiles toward Guam.

According to Reuters, North Korea’s state media arm KCNA reported that Kim made the comments during his first public appearance in nearly two weeks. In doing so, the North Korean leader also warned “that if the Yankees persist in their extremely dangerous reckless actions on the Korean peninsula and in its vicinity, testing the self-restraint of the DPRK, the latter will make an important decision as it already declared.”

But tensions eased after Trump had warned of “fire and fury” if North Korea continued to threaten the U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis also said any sign North Korea was attempting to fire a missile at the U.S. territory of Guam would amount to “game on,” and went on to say  “It could escalate into war very quickly. Yes, that’s called war, if they shoot at us.”

2. Trump disbands manufacturing council after 3M, Campbell Soup CEOs also resign

Star Tribune: President Donald Trump shut down two major business advisory councils yesterday, his hand forced by mounting criticism and the resignations of top corporate executives over his comments on last weekend's violence in Charlottesville, Va.

Among those to step down from Trump's manufacturing council was 3M CEO Inge Thulin, who said in a statement yesterday morning that the group was "no longer an effective vehicle" for the Maplewood-based company. Shortly thereafter, Trump said he was discontinuing both that group and his Strategy & Policy Forum.

"Rather than putting pressure on the businesspeople of the Manufacturing Council & Strategy & Policy Forum, I am ending both," Trump wrote in a tweet. "Thank you all!"

The members of at least one of the groups had already decided to dissolve it on their own earlier in the day. JP Morgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon, a member of the Strategy & Policy Forum, told employees in a note that his group decided to disband after Trump's news conference on Tuesday.

3. Candy ban at Anoka Halloween parade not set in stone

 Kare11: In Anoka, the Halloween capital of the world, there will be no candy at the parade this year. Some residents are upset, but the parade chair says they have good reasons. But a solution could be on the horizon.

Anoka Halloween Inc., the nonprofit board of volunteers behind the many Halloween events in town, has dealt with an unrelenting flood of largely negative social media comments since making the announcement. Offline, kids and parents around town have also been pretty bothered by the thought of a Halloween parade with no sweets.

Parade Chair Liz McFarland says the decision is all about safety. Despite rules prohibiting throwing candy from floats and other measures, she says the crowds are getting larger and the risks are getting bigger, too. McFarland says the mile and a half long route is tough to monitor and she says there have been several close calls, which have involved kids darting in front of, and beneath, floats in order to grab candy.

4. Changing direction in flight: Sun Country CEO outlines no-frills strategy for MSP airline

Star Tribune: Sun Country Airlines new CEO Jude Bricker told employees the carrier would cut costs, add fees and seats and look to expand its network beyond reliance on its hub at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport.

Jude Bricker, who was appointed its chief executive last month, outlined his vision for the Eagan-based carrier in a memo to staff Tuesday. He praised Sun Country’s strong reputation, but he stressed the need to cut costs, increase revenue through fees and expand beyond its hub at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport.

Bricker’s formula mirrors the model of ultralow cost carriers like Frontier and Spirit airlines, which charge passengers for things like carry-on luggage and in-flight beverages. Bricker’s memo to employees did not set a timetable for the changes. He stressed that Sun Country would protect its reputation of quality customer service, but he said changes are crucial for the airline to grow.

Under his plan, Sun Country will cut costs in a variety of ways and put more seats on airplanes, which provides more revenue opportunity but leaves less legroom for passengers.

5. FBI offering $30,000 reward for help in probe of Bloomington mosque explosion

Star Tribune: Calling the investigation its top priority, the FBI said Wednesday that it is offering a $30,000 reward for information leading to the conviction of anyone responsible for the bombing of a Bloomington mosque this month.

The FBI said an improvised explosive device caused the blast, which occurred inside the office of an imam at the center. No one was hurt in the explosion. The FBI is still asking those with any information on the explosion to call 1-800-CALL-FBI and thanked “the public for their cooperation and the critical information they have provided to our investigators.”


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