themcglynn.com

23 Sep

News and Analyses, A Foreign Perspective

News and Analyses, A Foreign Perspective

English Online International Newspapers

Nearly all of these are English-edition daily newspapers. These sites have interesting editorials and essays, and many have links to other good news sources. We try to limit this list to those sites which are regularly updated, reliable, with a high percentage of “up” time.

Recommended:

Irish Examiner>>

France 24>>

Spiegel>>

View All>>

Bannon vows to set up ‘war rooms’ to boost anti-EU radical ri

FRANCE 24 with AP, AFP

US President Donald Trump’s former strategist Steve Bannon on Saturday said he would set up “war rooms” across Europe to help form a pan-continental right-wing movement ahead of European parliamentary elections in 2019.

Speaking at the congress of the Italian far-right Fratelli d’Italia party, Bannon called for people across Europe to join him in an anti-EU campaign against traditional political parties.

“We will provide and do pollings and data analytics and set up war rooms that people need to win elections,” Bannon told a crowd in Rome, watched on by dozens of journalists.

Bannon, Trump‘s former advisor who has said being called racist is a “badge of honour”, has visited various European countries in recent months in the hope of building a so-called populist revolt in European politics.

>> Read more: Will Europe’s nationalists welcome Bannon’s attempt to unite the right?

He has focused on touting plans for a Brussels-based foundation called “The Movement” and met leading anti-immigration politicians including Hungary’s Prime Minister Viktor Orban and Italy’s Interior Minister Matteo Salvini.

“After the November [US mid-term] elections, when President Trump defeats the cultural Marxist Democratic parties, and he is not impeached, I will be spending 80% of my time in Europe in preparation for the European Parliamentary elections,” Bannon said.

Austrian resistance

Bannon also heaped praise on European populist leaders, including Italian Interior Minister Matteo Salvini, who leads the right-wing, anti-migrant League party.

Salvini, who addressed the forum earlier Saturday, said the European elections in May would give right-wingers across the continent “a chance to send a force into government in Europe that’s not socialist” – even though conservatives have dominated the European Parliament for the past two decades.

Bannon’s increased visibility in Europe comes after he was pushed out of the White House and departed the right-wing Breitbart media empire, condemned by some commentators as spreading racist and misogynist views.

His European forays have not always been welcomed by the continent’s far-right parties.

Earlier this month the Austrian far-right Freedom Party, part of the country’s ruling coalition, said it was not keen on collaborating with Bannon.

“We want to forge alliances in Europe but we do it independently of the US, Russia or anyone else,” said party leader Harald Vilimsky.

“We want to grow, expand on our own and develop our programme and ideas on our own, but surely not under the leadership of someone active in the United States,” he added.

World Politics

United States

Christine Blasey Ford, who has accused supreme court nominee of sexual assault, has provisionally agreed to appear in public

Supreme court nominee Brett Kavanaugh is sworn in before the Senate judiciary committee on Capitol Hill on 4 September.

Supreme court nominee Brett Kavanaugh is sworn in before the Senate judiciary committee on Capitol Hill on 4 September. Photograph: Andrew Harnik/AP

Christine Blasey Ford, the woman who has accused supreme court nominee Brett Kavanaugh of sexual assault, has reportedly reached a tentative agreement to testify before the Senate judiciary committee on Thursday. Should the hearing proceed, it may prove a decisive moment in the confirmation of the conservative judge.

Multiple reports on Sunday indicated that Ford, a 51-year-old professor at Palo Alto University who alleges Kavanaugh assaulted her at a party in the early 1980s, had provisionally agreed to appear in public late next week. Kavanaugh, who has denied the allegations, is expected to appear.

The finer points of Ford’s appearance were reportedly being negotiated by lawyers for Ford and bipartisan committee representatives. Senate Republicans on the judiciary panel, all of whom are men, were seeking to hire a female attorney.

The committee’s Republican chairman, Chuck Grassley, has rejected an application from Ford’s lawyers for her to appear after Kavanaugh, which would give her the opportunity to rebut his comments.

The senator from Iowa also rejected Ford’s requests to call additional witnesses, including a Mark Judge, a high school friend of Kavanaugh who was allegedly present in the room at the high school party where the violent assault is alleged to have occurred. Judge has said he has no recollection of events described by Ford and does not wish to testify.

Every accuser deserves the right to be heard. But at the same time I think the accused deserves the right to be heard

Nikki Haley

On Sunday, a Fox News poll indicated a slump in support for Kavanaugh’s confirmation, with just 40% of voters approving his suitability for the highest court in the land. With the midterm elections less than two months away, the White House remains concerned Ford’s potential appearance could not only derail Kavanaugh but also damage the Republican party among female voters.

The outcome of Kavanaugh’s confirmation could determine the ideological balance of the court for years. Justice Anthony Kennedy, whose retirement prompted Donald Trump’s second nomination, was the swing vote on a number of key decisions.

Trump, himself accused by at least 16 women of sexual misconduct, has offered his full support to Kavanaugh. In a series of Twitter posts on Friday, he described the judge as a “fine man, with an impeccable reputation” and attacked Ford’s credibility, asking: “Why didn’t someone call the FBI 36 years ago?”

A number of senior female Republicans hit back. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley told CNN’s State of the Union on Sunday: “Every accuser always deserves the right to be heard. But at the same time I think the accused deserves the right to be heard.”

Haley added: “Accusers go through a lot of trauma. Some handle it one way, some handle it another. Regardless, it’s not something we want to do to blame the accuser or to try and second guess the accuser.”

I’m going to do everything I can to make sure she can tell her story free of intimidation

Mazie Hirono

Senator Susan Collins of Maine branded Trump’s tweets “completely inappropriate and wrong”.

“I was appalled by the president’s tweet,” she said. “We know that allegations of sexual assault are one of the most unreported crimes that exist.”

Nonetheless, Republican senators on the judiciary committee have indicated they support Kavanaugh. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina told Fox News Sunday he would view Ford’s appearance “from a prism of being reasonable and fair to Judge Kavanaugh”…………..

In an interview with the Washington Post, she said she was able to escape but remained traumatized by the incident into adulthood, describing it as a “rape attempt”.

According to a report in the Post on Saturday, Kavanaugh has been taking practice questions from White House aides. Citing anonymous sources, the paper reported that the judge grew frustrated by practice questions relating to his drinking habits and sexual experience, declining to answer some questions altogether.

Read Full Article>>

Conservative groups such as Pilf publish voters’ details online in what experts say amounts to ‘insidious modern-day intimidation’

With the midterm elections rapidly approaching, and with so much riding at both national and state level on voter turnout, the stakes could not be higher.

With the midterm elections rapidly approaching, and with so much riding at both national and state level on voter turnout, the stakes could not be higher. Photograph: Justin Lane/EPA

In June last year, Luis, a resident of Virginia, was astonished to discover that his name and personal details, including home address, had been posted on the internet by a group known as the Public Interest Legal Foundation (Pilf).

Luis’s data had been released by the group, along with hundreds of other names, as an appendix to Pilf’s two-part report called “Alien Invasion”. The front cover showed a UFO hovering ominously over a billboard on which the famous tourism slogan “Virginia is for lovers” had been photoshopped to read: “Virginia is for aliens”.

In lurid language, Pilf claimed that it had uncovered proof that “large numbers of ineligible aliens are registering to vote and casting ballots”. It warned its readers: “Your vote is at risk. New alien voters are being added to the rolls month after month, and swift changes must be made to ensure that only Americans are choosing American leaders.”

The only problem was that Luis, in common with dozens of other Virginians on the list posted by Pilf, was not in fact an “alien”. He was born in Los Angeles and has always enjoyed US citizenship, with full rights to vote since the age of 18.

He also happens to be a federal employee of the US immigration service. Yet here he was, his name attached to a report in which Pilf claimed to have discovered more than 5,000 non-citizens in Virginia who had cast 7,474 votes – every one a criminal act amounting to a felony.

The insinuation was deeply troubling to Luis. As a federal worker he could face intense scrutiny as a result of any suggestion of illegal activity (for the same reason he asked the Guardian to use only his first name).

Luis was also disturbed on behalf of hundreds of other people who also had their personal details – names, addresses and in some cases even home phone numbers – posted in the appendices of the Pilf reports. “I thought if my name is on the list, and I’m a US citizen, how many others were wrongly accused of being illegal ‘alien’ voters?”

Alien Invasion is one of the more startling examples of a growing rightwing push to pressurize election officials across the country to purge large numbers of people from the registered voter rolls. With the midterm elections rapidly approaching, and with so much riding at both national and state level on voter turnout, the stakes could not be higher.

Voting rights experts warn that hundreds of thousands of eligible voters could face hurdles as they try to get to polling stations in November. African American, Hispanic or other minority communities, as well as young voters, are especially vulnerable to purges as they more frequently experience the kind of bureaucratic hiccups that can lead them to them being mistakenly ruled ineligible.

They are promoting purges that prevent eligible voters from participating in our democracy

Chiraag Bains, Demos

A recent study by the Brennan Center for Justice found that since 2013, when the US supreme court drastically reduced federal controls against discriminatory behavior by largely southern states, there has been a dramatic uptick in voter purges. The numbers affected are breathtaking: between 2014 and 2016 alone, 16 million people nationwide were removed from register rolls.

The US Department of Justice, which has the task of protecting the voting rights of Americans, has increasingly switched its focus under Donald Trump from policing purges to encouraging them. The president has personally championed conspiracy theories about “alien” voters, claiming that 3m illegal votes were cast in the 2016 presidential election – conveniently, precisely the number by which his rival Hillary Clinton won the popular vote.

In June, the US supreme court lent its weight to the wave of purges sweeping the country when it ruled in favor of Ohio’s tough stance in which citizens can be thrown off voter lists simply for missing an election and then fail to respond to official correspondence. Should other states follow in Ohio’s footsteps, the Washington Post estimates that millions of legitimate American citizens who should be fully entitled to participate in the democratic process will be in peril of being cast adrift.

Pilf and its president, J Christian Adams, a former senior official in the DoJ, are at the forefront of the wave. Justin Levitt, one of the country’s foremost election experts who was a senior official in the civil rights division of the justice department and is now a professor of election law at Loyola in Los Angeles, said: “Pilf wants to sweep people off the lists in ways that are unreliable, and poor and transient people are more likely to get knocked off the rolls and then find it harder to get back on.”

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23 Sep

United States Wars, News and Casualties

United States Wars, News and Casualties

NYT: War Without End, Read Article>>

In the Vietnam era, stories like this and television reporting on the war contributed to the end of the Vietnam War in a time frame of much less than 17 years.

As deployment of the last 17 years only came to a sub set of young people, and TV and news rarely covered the searing violence of war, eschewing such content for minor content (Kardashians, Tweets, outrageous behavior), the daily violence and futility went “off stage”.

One is invited to read the daily post, “United States Wars, News and Casualties” and then watch the daily news on the U.S. TV Media.

The absence of U.S. War News is atrocious.

We need this daily report of our wars in our face………..Daily.

The McGlynn

Damn

The WarCriminals,Bush,Cheney,Rice,Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz, Powell and Blair from England.

How many Iraqis have died as a result of the invasion 15 years ago? Some credible estimates put the number at more than one million. You can read that sentence again.

The invasion of Iraq is often spoken of in our country as a “blunder,” or even a “colossal mistake.” It was a crime.

Those who perpetrated it are still at large. Some of them have even been rehabilitated thanks to the horrors of a mostly amnesiac citizenry.

We condemned children to death, some after many days of writhing in pain on bloodstained mats, without pain relievers. Some died quickly, wasted by missing arms and legs, crushed heads. As the fluids ran out of their bodies, they appeared like withered, spoiled fruits. They could have lived, certainly should have lived – and laughed and danced, and run and played- but instead they were brutally murdered. Yes, murdered!

The war ended for those children, but it has never ended for survivors who carry memories of them. Likewise, the effects of the U.S. bombings continue, immeasurably and indefensibly.

The McGlynn

Share
22 Sep

News and Analyses, A Foreign Perspective

News and Analyses, A Foreign Perspective

English Online International Newspapers

Nearly all of these are English-edition daily newspapers. These sites have interesting editorials and essays, and many have links to other good news sources. We try to limit this list to those sites which are regularly updated, reliable, with a high percentage of “up” time.

Recommended:

Irish Examiner>>

France 24>>

Spiegel>>

View All>>

Far-Right Populism How the Alternative for Germany Has Transformed the Country

Founded only five years ago, the Alternative for Germany has grown from a marginal party to a game-changer in federal and state politics — and become ever more radical. Is it a testament to the strength of German democracy, or a threat to it?

By DER SPIEGEL Staff

 

Photo Gallery: Rise of the Alternative for Germany

For three hours every month, they set up shop right next to the flower stand. There are only four people, a table and an umbrella from which a blue T-shirt hangs. It’s emblazoned with the party’s logo and the words, “Nobody’s perfect, but Brandenburgers come pretty damn close.” Here, at the weekly farmers market in Woltersdorf, a 40-minute drive by car from Berlin, Kathi Muxel, the district chair of the Alternative for Germany (AfD) party for the Oder-Spree region, says: “We’re the only ones who come here, even if there’s no upcoming election. People appreciate that.”

Several times a week, AfD adherents plant their umbrella somewhere in the area. Some take the day off from work, while others are self-employed and can set their own schedule. They wait for the people to show up — and they always do — and then they talk. They bring up their annoyance with expensive street lights in the town of Neuzelle, or the planned move of the recycling center in the Berlin suburb Erkner, or the “federal government’s dishonesty” when it spoke of a mob attack in Chemnitz. After all, they say, there were reports that no mob attacks actually took place at all.

Being ever-present, talking — and not to mention listening — was also part of the AfD strategy during federal elections last September. And it worked. The party scored 22.1 percent of the vote here in the eastern German state of Brandenburg, putting it only slightly behind Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservative Christian Democratic Union (CDU). It’s possible that Alexander Gauland, the candidate for the Oder-Spree electoral district, was responsible for some of that success. But what has been decisive is the proximity to ordinary voters that the AfD has cultivated. And it’s not only here that the far-right populists are firmly rooted, but in many other places around the country as well.

Political upheavals rarely happen overnight. They begin slowly, and then one morning you wake up and find yourself in another country. The small group that gathered on the evening of Feb. 6, 2013, in a Protestant community center in the town of Oberursel near Frankfurt, had no idea that by founding a new political party called the Alternative for Germany they would trigger something bigger. Who would have thought that a retired senior government official, a conservative newspaper columnist and a numbers-loving economics professor would changed the face of German politics?

Unprecedented Success

And who would have thought that the AfD of Alexander Gauland, Konrad Adam and Bernd Lucke would become a big-tent party of its own — at least in parts of eastern Germany — within just a few years? Or that it would win almost a hundred seats in the federal parliament with its pledge to “hunt down” Chancellor Angela Merkel? Or that its party leaders would one day march through the streets of Chemnitz alongside far-right extremists, like they did on Sept. 1, 2018?

The AfD stands for an unprecedented political success, but also for a history of radicalization. Like any new party, breaking taboos is the AfD’s lifeblood, but its shift to the right has continued unabated. And anyone who has stood in the party’s way has gotten steamrolled. First it hit Lucke, the well-behaved co-founder and former party head; he was overthrown by the much more politically shrewd Frauke Petry.

When Petry herself became too powerful, Alexander Gauland pushed her aside. His tweed jackets may lend him an air of amiability and scholarship, but in reality he has few inhibitions about sealing pacts with far-right extremists. In that regard, it’s no coincidence that Gauland is the only person from that founding meeting in Oberursel who still holds sway over the party today.

No other party leader stands as much for the AfD’s split personality as Gauland. A former senior official in the state government in Hesse, in western Germany, Gauland lives in a dignified Potsdam neighborhood filled with mansions. He can speak intelligently about Prussian history — and then, without missing a beat, claim that the Nazi era was but a “speck of bird shit” on German history.

“We’re a thorn in the side of a political system that has become outdated,” Gauland told the conservative Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung earlier this month. He wants to drive out anyone who played a role in what he calls the “Merkel System,” including people in the media, and he has called for a “peaceful revolution.”

But a revolution against what?

In January, Harvard professors Steven Levitsky and Daniel Ziblatt published a book titled, “How Democracies Die.” In it, they write that in the decades since the end of the Cold War, liberal systems haven’t been overthrown through force and military coups alone. More than anything else, democracy has been undermined non-violently through the election of anti-democratic politicians.

Read Full Article>>

 

World Politics

England

Ben Jennings on Theresa May and the Tory conference – cartoon

 

Theresa May Guardian Opinion cartoon

A party committed to defending the economic interests of rich elites could never win by saying so. After the advent of working-class suffrage, Conservatives had to have an offer for everyone. There would be room at the top for those who laboured hard, they promised. We will keep out the foreigners and harshly punish the criminals. We will be uncompromising in our defence of the union. We will be defiant against external foes. But a mainstay of Tory propaganda was always this: we are a bulwark against chaos, the custodians of economic security. Scare-mongering about Labour’s chilling threat to the economy was even deployed against Tony Blair, a man who posed no serious threat to Thatcher’s consensus: the Tories’ 1997 slogan was “Britain’s booming – don’t let Labour ruin it”. So look now as the Tories prepare the biggest economic shock imposed by a British government in modern history. How can they ever deliver their finger-wagging lectures on economic credibility ever again?

Much media commentary speaks of Theresa May shaking with shock and anger yesterday, and yet the Salzburg rout should not have come as a surprise to anyone paying any attention. Chequers died on arrival months ago: the EU had already dismissed it, and May has been flaunting a corpse for months. What a farce that this was even considered a possibility. The Tory party could not negotiate a deal with itself, let alone 27 foreign states. An administration that, since it incinerated its parliamentary majority, has looked more like the grand finale of a Quentin Tarantino film than a functioning government, believed it could outmanoeuvre a bloc representing 440 million people. And now instead it defiantly marches towards a “no deal” scenario, like a drunk swaggering towards a cliff edge, promising to jump unless his impossible demands are met.

The fear-mongering of the dire official Remain campaign has immunised much of the population from grappling with the reality of no deal. Only when it hits will it be understood. What could it mean? The supposed party of home ownership presiding over the biggest house-price crash in history? A surge in food prices? Recession and unemployment? Even the milder predictions would mean economic and social dislocation. To repeat: how can a party prepared to administer such a shock convincingly oversee a campaign of fear against Labour’s proposals for economic transformation at the next election?

The Tories are the party of big business, yet their former foreign secretary spits out “fuck business”, while their Brexit secretary accuses of businesses of blaming Brexit “rather than take responsibility for their own decisions”. The party of the union – whose former leader, Andrew Bonar Law, once threatened to back armed insurrection in Ulster – has dramatically boosted the likelihood of a united Ireland. The party of Anglicanism even vociferously denounces the archbishop of Canterbury.

The Tories do not seem to understand what they have done. Labour’s commitment to scrap the status quo, in normal times, could have been plausibly portrayed as a frightening risk, an unnerving gamble. But the Tories have sacrificed the rhetoric of conservatism in favour of revolutionary zeal. And in doing so, they have normalised radicalism in British politics. Of course, the Tory project would cause upheaval but protect the interests of its vested interests with a programme of deregulation and tax cuts. They are a reactionary, not a revolutionary party. But they have abandoned their traditional trump card: the promise of stability and order in the face of chaos. And in doing so, they may prove to be midwives of the very socialism that chills them to their bones.

Owen Jones is a Guardian columnist

United States

Memos reveal deputy attorney general spoke to colleagues about making secret tapes of president, according to New York Times

Rod Rosenstein with Jeff Sessions. At least one colleague to whom Rosenstein mentioned wearing a ‘wire’ to record Trump thought Rosenstein was speaking sarcastically, the Times reported.

Rod Rosenstein with Jeff Sessions. At least one colleague to whom Rosenstein mentioned wearing a ‘wire’ to record Trump thought Rosenstein was speaking sarcastically, the Times reported. Photograph: AFP/Getty Images

Deputy attorney general Rod Rosenstein deemed “inaccurate” a report that he spoke with colleagues last year about the possibility of removing Donald Trump from office under the 25th amendment and about making secret recordings of the president.

The New York Times first reported the conversations on Friday, citing anonymous justice department sources and internal memos made after the alleged conversations.

Rosenstein oversees special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation of Russian election interference and links between Trump aides and Moscow. He was motivated, the Times said, by “frustration”, “surprise” and “anger” that Trump had used a memo he wrote criticizing James Comey to justify firing the FBI director.

At least one colleague to whom Rosenstein mentioned wearing a “wire” to record Trump thought Rosenstein was speaking sarcastically, the Times reported. Potential replacements for Comey were being interviewed at the time and top justice department figures were in frequent contact with the White House.

In a statement, Rosenstein called the story “inaccurate and factually incorrect” and said the anonymous sources behind it were “advancing their own personal agenda”.

“But let me be clear about this,” Rosenstein said. “Based on my personal dealings with the president, there is no basis to invoke the 25th amendment.”

The 25th amendment, ratified in 1967 after the assassination of John F Kennedy, provides that if the vice-president and the majority of the cabinet determine the president is “unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office”, the vice-president becomes president.

An anonymous senior administration official wrote in a New York Times editorial earlier this month that there had been internal discussions about invoking the 25th amendment, prompting the vice-president, Mike Pence, to deny it.

“No, never,” he told CNN. “Why would we?”

The memos describing conversations with Rosenstein would be among the most sensitive documents held by the justice department. The Times cited anonymous sources including people briefed “on memos written by FBI officials, including Andrew G McCabe”, the former FBI deputy director.

In a statement from his lawyer Michael R Bromwich on Friday, McCabe acknowledged that he kept memos “to memorialize significant discussions he had with high-level officials”. He said he had turned the memos over to the special counsel’s office and “a set of those memos remained at the FBI”.

McCabe was fired by Trump in March, days before he was due to retire.

The motivation of whoever released the memos was equally opaque. Rosenstein is the direct supervisor of Mueller. Analysts have speculated that the removal of Rosenstein could be more damaging to the Russia investigation than removing Mueller himself.

Rosenstein must approve major new directions in the investigation and review the budget. He would receive a report written by Mueller at the conclusion of his investigation.

Trump has expressed displeasure with Rosenstein, calling him “weak” and accusing him last year of being a Democrat. Rosenstein is a Republican who was nominated by George W Bush to his former post as US attorney in Maryland.

On Friday the president’s son, Donald Trump Jr, tweeted: “Shocked!!! Absolutely Shocked!!! Ohhh, who are we kidding at this point? No one is shocked that these guys would do anything in their power to undermine [Donald Trump].”

Senate minority leader Chuck Schumer said on Friday that the story about Rosenstein must not be used for the “corrupt purpose” of firing him. Other top administration officials have been quoted as criticizing Trump without being fired, Schumer noted.

Read Full Article>>

Senate Republicans threaten Monday vote after reportedly planning to move hearing to Wednesday and have Christine Blasey Ford testify first

Demonstrators hold signs outside St Anselm College in Manchester, New Hampshire, where Susan Collins, one of the few possible Republican no votes on Kavanaugh, was scheduled to speak.

Demonstrators hold signs outside St Anselm College in Manchester, New Hampshire, where Susan Collins, one of the few possible Republican no votes on Kavanaugh, was scheduled to speak. Photograph: Elise Amendola/AP

Donald Trump has cast doubt on the woman who accused his supreme court pick Brett Kavanaugh of sexual assault, and blamed opponents for trying to “destroy” his nominee.

Trump commented as the issue of when a judiciary committee hearing on the allegations might be held remained at issue.

Lawyers for Christine Blasey Ford, who has accused Kavanaugh of sexually assaulting her at a party when they were teenagers, had reportedly requested the hearing take place on Thursday. Kavanaugh, who categorically denies the allegations, said he “looks forward” to testifying as soon as possible.

CNN reported that Republicans were prepared to hold it on Wednesday but later a statement from committee chair Chuck Grassley set a 10pm Friday deadline for hearing from Ford’s lawyer, after which he said the committee would proceed to a Monday vote.

CNN’s anonymous sources suggested that in any hearing, Ford would testify first and that Republicans were not willing to subpoena any outside witnesses, as Ford requested. Ford had reportedly requested to testify second.

It was unclear who would conduct the questioning if a hearing did go ahead. Chuck Grassley, the committee chair, told a radio station this week his committee would consider hiring a special counsel to question Ford, to avoid a scenario in which 11 Republican men questioned a woman alleging sexual assault.

“Republicans should show a little compassion, not to mention consideration that [Ford will] need to prepare for the hearing,” Dianne Feinstein, the ranking Democrat on the committee, said, calling the Republican offer “mean-spirited” and without “sympathy or empathy whatsoever”.

“Republican senators want to turn over their duty to ask questions to outside counsel, but Dr Ford can’t do that. Just because Republicans don’t need to prepare doesn’t mean Dr Ford should be rushed.”

The Rhode Island Democrat Sheldon Whitehouse, a member of the judiciary committee, stressed that senators should be the ones asking questions.

“I will not forfeit my ability to question Judge Kavanaugh and anyone else who comes before the committee with testimony, no matter how uncomfortable it may make the 11 men across the dais,” he said.

Negotiations went on behind closed doors as Trump incited a backlash on Twitter and among his own party with a string of tweets that questioned Ford’s account of what happened between her and Kavanaugh at a party in 1982, when she was 15 and Kavanaugh 17.

“I have no doubt that, if the attack on Dr Ford was as bad as she says, charges would have been immediately filed with local Law Enforcement Authorities by either her or her loving parents,” Trump said. “I ask that she bring those filings forward so that we can learn date, time, and place!”

Trump said he believed Kavanaugh to be “under assault by radical leftwing politicians”. Kavanaugh has an “impeccable reputation”, he said, and Democrats “don’t want to know the answers, they just want to destroy and delay”.

The Maine Republican senator Susan Collins, seen as a key vote on Kavanaugh’s nomination, said she was “appalled”.

“We know that allegations of sexual assault – I’m not saying that’s what happened in this case – but we know allegations of sexual assault are one of the most unreported crimes that exist,” she said. “So I thought that the president’s tweet was completely inappropriate and wrong.”

Late on Friday Trump posted another tweet: “Let her testify, or not, and TAKE THE VOTE!”

The full tweet again criticized Feinstein for not sooner revealing a letter she received, containing Ford’s allegations.

Within minutes, women, including leading feminist writers, began tweeting alongside the hashtag #WhyIDidn’tReport about bad experiences when reporting sexual violence to the authorities, especially as teens.

Read Full Article>>

Cue fireworks as ‘lord of misrule’ Donald Trump chairs UN security council>>

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22 Sep

United States Wars, News and Casualties

United States Wars, News and Casualties

NYT: War Without End, Read Article>>

In the Vietnam era, stories like this and television reporting on the war contributed to the end of the Vietnam War in a time frame of much less than 17 years.

As deployment of the last 17 years only came to a sub set of young people, and TV and news rarely covered the searing violence of war, eschewing such content for minor content (Kardashians, Tweets, outrageous behavior), the daily violence and futility went “off stage”.

One is invited to read the daily post, “United States Wars, News and Casualties” and then watch the daily news on the U.S. TV Media.

The absence of U.S. War News is atrocious.

We need this daily report of our wars in our face………..Daily.

The McGlynn

Damn The War Criminals,Bush,Cheney,Rice,Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz, Powell and Blair from England.

How many Iraqis have died as a result of the invasion 15 years ago? Some credible estimates put the number at more than one million. You can read that sentence again.

The invasion of Iraq is often spoken of in our country as a “blunder,” or even a “colossal mistake.” It was a crime.

Those who perpetrated it are still at large. Some of them have even been rehabilitated thanks to the horrors of a mostly amnesiac citizenry.

We condemned children to death, some after many days of writhing in pain on bloodstained mats, without pain relievers. Some died quickly, wasted by missing arms and legs, crushed heads. As the fluids ran out of their bodies, they appeared like withered, spoiled fruits. They could have lived, certainly should have lived – and laughed and danced, and run and played- but instead they were brutally murdered. Yes, murdered!

The war ended for those children, but it has never ended for survivors who carry memories of them. Likewise, the effects of the U.S. bombings continue, immeasurably and indefensibly.

The McGlynn

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