News Roundup 6/4/20

News Roundup 6/4/20

George Floyd Protests

  • The charges against Derek Chauvin have been upgraded to second-degree murder. The three other police officers who assisted in the murder have been charged. [Link]
  • Secretary of Defense Mark Esper says he does not support using the Insurrection Act. [Link]
  • Esper decided Wednesday afternoon to keep troops in the capital for another 24 hours. [Link]
  • As many as 3,000 protesters gathered outside the US embassy in Greece. Some of the protesters threw firebombs at the embassy. [Link]

US News

  • Rod Rosenstein says that he would not have signed the Carter Page FISA warrant if he knew the information the FBI hid. [Link]
  • The US will deploy about 45 soldiers to Colombia to aid in fighting the drug war. [Link]
  • Trump plans to block Chinese planes from flying to the US. [Link]
  • The US plans to restrict the activities of four Chinese media organizations operating in the US. [Link]

Afghanistan

  • The Bureau of Investigative Journalism looked at ten US airstrikes in Afghanistan. The finding found over 100 dead civilians, including 70 children. [Link]

Middle East

  • The US is softening its support for Israel’s annexation of the West Bank. [Link]
  • Iran signs a two-year contract to export energy to Iraq. The US has sanctioned the Iranian energy sector, however, Iraq has been given waivers to continue to import Iranian energy. [Link]

Africa

  • Libya’s warring parties are expected to begin talks. [Link]
  • The Libyan National Army has completely withdrawn from Tripoli. The Government of National Accord now controls the entire capital. The LNA started the assault on the capital over a year ago. [Link]
  • The CODECO militia killed 16 civilians in the Congo. [Link]
News Roundup 6/4/20

News Roundup 6/3/20

US News

  • A security guard was shot and killed by looters at a St. Louis pawn shop. [Link]
  • The Department of Justice gave the DEA the authority to carry out covert surveillance of the George Floyd protest movement. [Link]
  • One thousand six hundred soldiers are on standby in DC in case the government wants to deploy them against protesters. [Link]
  • Rep Adam Schiff is blocking an amendment in the House that would prevent warrantless spying on internet search histories. [Link]

Asia

  • Russian President Putin signed a new nuclear warfare document saying Russia could respond to a conventional attack with nuclear weapons. [Link]
  • The Pentagon has accepted a South Korean proposal for South Korea to pay the salary of South Koreans working for the US. [Link]
  • The President of the Philippines has reversed course and will now keep an agreement with the US that allows for American soldiers to be in the Philippines. [Link]

Afghanistan 

  • The Afghan government reports a significant drop in violence since a three-day ceasefire started last week. [Link]
  • Two people were killed in Afghanistan by a bomb planted at a mosque. The Taliban denied involvement. [Link]

Africa

  • The UN says warring parties in Libya have agreed to restart ceasefire talks. [Link]
  • Five civilians were killed in a Libyan park by mortar fire. [Link]
  • Twenty-five people were killed when militants attacked a market in Burkina Faso. [Link]
  • The Congo reports a new Ebola outbreak. [Link]
FPF #500 – Scott Horton on Star Wars and the George Floyd Murder

FPF #500 – Scott Horton on Star Wars and the George Floyd Murder

Scott Horton returns to Foreign Policy Focus for the 500th episode. Scott talks about the lessons and themes of Star Wars. He explains how the failures of the Jedi led to the fall of the Republic and the rise of the Empire. The saga is a warning to Americans about the dangers of empire and endless war. Scott also weighs in on the protests/riots and the destruction of police property.

Scott Horton is the host of the Scott Horton Show and the author of Fool’s Errand: Time to End the War in Afghanistan. He is the Editorial Director of Antiwar.com and the Managing Director of The Libertarian Institute.  

Links

News Roundup 6/4/20

News Roundup 6/2/20

George Floyd Protests

  • Police officers started a riot in Pittsburg. [Link]
  • A SUV attempted to ram a line of police officers. Two officers were injured. [Link]
  • Police used gas, arrests, and military helicopters to breakup protests in DC. Video from yesterday shows cops attacking journalists. [Link]
  • The Supreme Court will hear cases involving qualified immunity. [Link]
  • Senator Schatz introduces an amendment to the NDAA that would end the program that transfers military equipment to police. [Link]
  • A man was killed at a protest in Louisville. Details remain unclear, and the police claim they were fired on then returned fire. [Link] Every police officer involved had their body cam turned off. [Link]
  • Tom Cotton calls on Trump to use the Insurrection Act to deploy the military to US cities. [Link]
  • Trump threatened to use the military to restore order. He is reported to be considering invoking the Insurrection Act. [Link]
  • CNN reports 200-250 soldiers will be deployed to DC as early as Monday night. [Link]
  • In a call with governors, Trump said that Joint Chiefs head Gen. Mark Milley was in charge of the protests. [Link]

Venezuela

  • Secretary of State Pompeo said the US is offering a reward for information leading to the arrest of additional Venezuelan officials. The US has offered a reward for Maduro and other senior members of the Venezuelan government. [Link]

Israel

  • An unarmed, autistic Palestinian man was chased down and murdered by Israeli police. [Link]
  • Israel’s Defense Minister is beginning to prepare for annexation of major areas of the West Bank. [Link]

Iran

  • An Iranian man who was acquitted of crimes in the US has been deported to Iran. [Link]

Yemen

  • Coronavirus is exacerbating the crisis in Yemen. [Link]
News Roundup 6/4/20

News Roundup 6/1/20

The Murder of George Floyd

  • The police officer who murdered George Floyd has been charged with manslaughter and murder. Derek Chauvin and three other officers were fired after they murdered Floyd. [Link]
  • Will Porter covers the protests, looting, and police brutality. [Link]
  • US governors are calling in the National Guard to control the unrest. [Link]
  • Trump says he is letting governors and mayors have responsibility for securing their cities. National Security Adviser Robert O’Brien said Trump could activate the military. [Link]
  • Justin Amash introduces a bill that strips police officers of qualified immunity. [Link]
  • Trump tweets the US is designating ANTIFA as a terrorist organization. [Link]
  • The Director of National Intelligence is looking for ways to improve contact tracing. A Minneapolis official said the city is using contact tracing on people who were arrested. [Link]

US News

  • Ted Cruz calls for a criminal investigation into Twitter because the company has allowed sanctioned Iranian officials to keep their accounts. [Link]
  • Trump announced he plans a $500 million weapons sale to Saudi Arabia. [Link]
  • Trump announces the US is terminating its relationship with the World Health Organization. [Link]

Afghanistan

  • The Islamic State claimed responsibility for an attack on a bus in Afghanistan. A journalist and a member of his crew were killed in the attack. [Link]
  • The Afghan government and the Taliban have released about 2,000 prisoners since the signing of the US-Taliban agreement. Both sides plan to continue to release detainees. [Link]

Israel

  • Israeli police chased down and shot an unarmed Palestinian man. [Link]

Africa

  • The US is considering sending a ‘training’ unit to Tunisia. The reported purpose of the deployment would be to combat Russian influence in Libya. [Link]
  • At least six people were killed by a roadside bomb in Somalia. [Link]
  • Fifteen people were killed by militants in Burkina Faso. [Link]
FPF #500 – Scott Horton on Star Wars and the George Floyd Murder

FPF #499 – Will Porter on Police Brutality and Looting

On FPF #499, Will Porter returns to the show to cover the ongoing protests, riots, and police brutality. The protests started after a police officer slowly murdered George Floyd, while three other helped and watched. The protesters demanded charges for the officers. Police responded to the protests by cracking down on the protests. Some of the protesters started looting and setting buildings on fire. Police have become even more violent, often directing their rage towards small, female peaceful protesters. Will and Kyle discuss the actions of everyone and the need for real criminal justice reform. 

News Roundup 6/4/20

News Roundup 5/29/20

US News

  • Trump signs an executive order condemning social media companies for choosing to censor some speech. [Link]
  • Twitter hid Trump’s tweet on the protests in Minneapolis for ‘glorifying violence.’ [Link]
  • The US limits the number of charter flights to Cuba. [Link]
  • The US is planning to send additional trainers to Colombia to help with cocoa eradication. [Link]
  • The US sailed a warship near islands in the South China Sea claimed by China. The maneuver added to mounting tensions between the US and China. [Link]
  • The State Department approved a $1.4 billion sale of Patriot Missiles to Kuwait. [Link]

Afghanistan

  • The three-day ceasefire in Afghanistan has expired, but violence is still down. The Taliban are still negotiating with the Afghan government on a prisoner release. [Link]

Africa

  • Militants in Somalia killed seven healthcare workers. [Link]
  • The family of a human trafficker in Libya killed 30 people because the trafficker was killed. [Link]
  • Armed men killed 27 people in Mali. [Link]
  • Amnesty International reports the Ethiopian military has executed at least 39 people. [Link]
  • A Sudanese military officer was killed in an attack by Etoipian militants. [Link]

 

FPF #500 – Scott Horton on Star Wars and the George Floyd Murder

Trump Doubles Down on Ineffective Sanctions

On FPF #498. I discuss Trump’s foreign policy strategy of using sanctions to deal with any international issue. Trump has sanctioned several countries, including Russia, China, Iraq, Lebanon, Zimbabwe, and Myanmar. For others – North Korea, Venezuela, and Iran – he has not limited the sanctions to individuals or industries, but rather imposes an economic war on the entire population of the country. Trump’s sanctions have actually harmed the president’s foreign policy, as the sanctions interfere with his ability to engage the countries diplomatically. 

Links

News Roundup 6/4/20

News Roundup 5/28/20

US news

  • Trump will sign an executive order on social media soon. [Link]
  • Shippers and insurers say it may be impossible to comply with the Trump administration’s new guidance on how not to violate US sanctions. [Link]
  • Secretary of State Pompeo announces that Hong Kong is no longer sufficiently independent from mainland China. Pompeo triggered a law that now requires the US to place the same tariffs on Hong Kong as China. [Link] 

Venezuela

  • Venezuela reached a deal with the UN to buy food and medicine. Venezuelan owned gold in the Bank of England will be used for payment. [Link]

Afghanistan

  • Trump tweets it’s time to bring US troops home from Afghanistan. [Link]
  • Some fighting has resumed in Afghanistan after a three-day ceasefire expired. Fighting is still significantly down from before the ceasefire. [Link]

Middle East

  • A Turkish soldier was killed by a roadside bomb in Syria. [Link]
  • The US will end sanctions waivers that allowed ongoing construction at Iranian nuclear sites. [Link]

Congo

  • At least 40 people were killed by suspected Islamist militants in the Congo. The same militants recently killed 17 people in another attack. [Link]
News Roundup 6/4/20

News Roundup 5/27/20

US News

  • A Minneapolis police officer handcuffed a man and then put his knee on the back of his neck until he died. Four officers were fired after the murder. [Link]
  • Trump said he wants a full withdrawal from Afghanistan, but refused to set a target date. [Link]
  • The US is ahead of schedule laid out in the deal with the Taliban. The US has 8,600 troops in the country. The US had agreed to reduce troops to that level by mid-July. The pandemic is pushing the US to withdraw faster. [Link]

Middle East

  • Three US soldiers were wounded in Syria when they were ambushed by unidentified militants. [Link]
  • The Houthi killed seven Yemeni soldiers with a missile attack on a military base in Yemen. [Link]

Africa

  • The US military says Russia has deployed warplanes to Libya. Russia backed the Libyan National Army, which has recently lost territory to the Turkish-backed Government of National Accord. [Link]
  • Russia’s Foreign Minister told the Libyan National Army to work towards a ceasefire. [Link]
  • Islamist militants killed 17 people in the Congo. [Link]
FPF #500 – Scott Horton on Star Wars and the George Floyd Murder

Judge Rules Biden to Be Named in Ukrainian Criminal Probe

On FPF #497, I discuss the developing story of a Ukrainian judge ruling Joe Biden is to be named in a criminal probe from his time as Vice President. The criminal probe is looking into the firing of former-Ukrainian Prosecutor General Victor Shokin. Biden has publically bragged about leveraging a $1 billion IMF Loan to get Ukraine to fire Shokin. At the time of Shokin’s firing, he was investigating a Ukrainian gas company that had his son, Hunter Biden, on their board. 

Links

News Roundup 6/4/20

News Roundup 5/26/20

US News

  • New CDC estimate finds that less than .3 percent of people who contract coronavirus will die from it and up to 35 percent of people who get it will never show symptoms. [Link]
  • After the US announced it would leave the Open Skies Treaty, the other NATO members are working on a plan to preserve the agreement with Russia. [Link]
  • A Ukrainian judge rules Joe Biden should be named in a criminal probe. The case is looking into the firing of former-Prosecutor General Viktor Shokin. Biden publicly bragged about leveraging a $1 billion IMF loan to get Ukraine to fire the official. At the time, the prosecutor’s office was investigating a company that had Biden’s son sitting on the board. [Link]

Afghanistan

  • The first day of the ceasefire in Afghanistan held. The Afgan government announced it released 100 prisoners and would release a total of 2,000. [Link]
  • The Afghan government announces it will release 900 prisoners on Tuesday. [Link]

Middle East

  • Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu says he will not miss his ‘historic opportunity’ to annex parts of the West Bank. [Link]
  • The UN says Yemeni families are increasingly resorting to child labor and marrying as coronavirus exacerbates the world’s worst humanitarian crisis. The UN warns it may have to end aid programs to Yemen as it is running out of funding. [Link]

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