North America

Russia news: Putin tests hypersonic MISSILE it says is ‘invincible to Nato defence system’

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RUSSIAN authorities have released details of five devastating new weapons which Vladimir Putin, who yesterday was invited by the White House to Washington, says are “invincible” to Nato’s defences. Charlie Moloney Express Broadcast by Moscow’s defence ministry on Russian state media, the videos include footage of the Poseidon nuclear submarine; a hypersonic guided missile which can be fired into the earth’s atmosphere; and a fighter jet releasing a missile which ignites and accelerates into the distance. The accelerating missile is ... Read More »

Full speed ahead on the new US Navy frigate

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The U.S. Navy is, by its own admission, in trouble. Over the last several decades, its shipbuilding account has been underfunded and the Navy has too often mismanaged the money it did have. Jim Talent Defense News The Navy has focused too much on high-end ships and has neglected the importance of less expensive, smaller vessels that can perform important combat missions on their own for sustained periods on the high seas, even in… No one has more respect for ... Read More »

Building on Afghanistan’s Fleeting Ceasefire

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The end-of-Ramadan truce in Afghanistan was brief but encouraging, demonstrating that both Afghan government soldiers and the Taliban rank and file will respect ceasefire orders from above. ICG Both sides, alongside the U.S., should now seize the opportunity to edge closer to meaningful talks about peace. What’s new? The Afghan government, international forces, and Taliban insurgents all observed a temporary ceasefire during the Eid al-Fitr holiday. The truce was unprecedented in Afghanistan’s long war, brought a remarkable decline in violence ... Read More »

Why attorneys represent immigrants for free

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Scores of lawyers, paralegals and law students are volunteering to help immigrant families caught in the crosshairs of the Trump administration’s bid to drastically reduce the number of people without papers in the U.S. Eduardo Capulong The Conversation One of these movement’s highest priorities is assisting the more than 2,500 children separated from their parents in government custody. Mobilized by the American Bar Association, nonprofits like Lawyers for Good Government, the American Civil Liberties Union and the American Immigration Lawyers ... Read More »

The U.S. Needs a Russia Strategy Now More Than Ever

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The Real Lesson From the Helsinki Summit Michael McFaul Foreign Affairs U.S. President Donald Trump shocked the world earlier this week when, standing side by side with Russian President Vladimir Putin, he refused to accept the basic facts of the Kremlin’s interference in the… Trump appeared to back Putin over his own intelligence community, saying during a press conference in Helsinki, “I don’t see any reason why it would be” Russia that hacked into… In that one answer, Trump guaranteed ... Read More »

‘Politics of fear’: Obama gives Trump sharp rebuke in Mandela address

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Johannesburg: Former US President Barack Obama took aim at “strongman politics” in his highest-profile speech since leaving office, urging people around the world to respect human rights and other values now under threat in an impassioned address marking the 100th anniversary of anti-apartheid leader Nelson Mandela’s birth. AP WAtoday While not mentioning his successor by name, Obama’s speech in South Africa countered many of President Donald Trump’s policies, rallying people to keep alive the ideas that Mandela worked for including democracy, ... Read More »

I Came as a Journalist to Ask Important Questions

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If I hadn’t been forcibly ejected from the Trump-Putin press conference, here’s what I would have asked. Sam Husseini The Nation came to Helsinki to ask Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin questions about the threat of nuclear weapons and to distribute an open letter about the need for secure elections and true national security. Instead, I was dragged out of their press conference before it even began and into a Finnish jail. No charges were pressed against me. Here’s what I would ... Read More »

Five human rights we should enjoy – while we still can

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In case warnings of impending fascism have merit, here’s a bucket list of rights to tick off Van Badham The Guardian Fascism is a political philosophy. It exalts the supposed supremacy of a particular national identity or racial group above individual freedoms, social equality and the collective social good. And these ideas seem frightfully trendy right now. I’m not saying that today’s Poland, America, Russia, Turkey or Hungary are fascist countries. I’m saying fascism seeks to establish an authoritarian government headed by ... Read More »

Taiwan should prepare for US withdrawal from first island chain: scholar

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Decision to suspend joint military exercises with South Korea signals a withdrawal to second island chain, says Taiwanese academic. Asia Times In contrast to accounts that the current US administration has signaled a shift toward increased support for Taiwan’s government, a Taiwanese academic said Sunday that the self-governed island can no longer count on Washington for its defense. The former head of the National Chung-Shan Institute of Science and Technology, Kung Chia-cheng, said at a conference on Sunday that the ... Read More »

Chomsky on the Trump NATO Ruse

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Recently NPR featured retired Lt. Gen. Ben Hodges who was the commanding general of NATO’s Allied Land Command in 2014. Daniel Falcone CounterPunch He remarked how he “was disappointed to see President Trump bring a wrecking ball to Brussels” after “publicly [humiliating] our most important allies.” He went on to explain, and I believe correctly that Trump “either doesn’t understand the concept of an alliance and allies or he doesn’t care” with the latter being the most accurate. I set ... Read More »

Can democracy vote itself out of existence?

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Look at the state of the world’s democratic nations, and it is easy to see why so many are concerned for the future of democracy. Manjeet Ramgotra The Conversation Leaders such as Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Vladimir Putin and Hungary’s Viktor Orbán have centralised political power by changing their countries’ constitutions, silencing dissent and controlling the media. Since 2016’s coup attempt in Turkey, Erdoğan’s government has used the subsequent state of emergency to incarcerate thousands without trial. Opposition politicians, judges, journalists ... Read More »

Europe’s dependence on the US was all part of the plan

NEW YORK, NY - DECEMBER 21:  The voting results are displayed on the floor of the United Nations General Assembly in which the United States declaration of Jerusalem as Israel's capital was declared "null and void" on December 21, 2017 in New York City. The vote, 128-9, at the United Nations concerned Washington's decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital and relocate its embassy there. The Trump administration has threatened to take action against any country that votes against the United States decision to move its embassy.  (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

Postwar US statesmen designed our world order as it is for a reason. They had lived through what happened without it. Claire Berlinski Politico As feared, the president of the United States arrived at last week’s NATO summit in a mood of preposterous spleen, profound contempt and shocking rudeness. He insisted on sharing before the cameras imaginary facts that hadn’t a thing to do with the summit agenda, and he refused to listen to anyone who tried, however gently, to ... Read More »

‘Shameful,’ ‘treasonous,’ ‘disgraceful’: Trump slammed from all sides for news conference with Putin

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Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., said Trump had “one of the most disgraceful performances by an American president in memory.” Dartunorro Clark nbc news President Donald Trump was swiftly rebuked by lawmakers, TV anchors and pundits across the political spectrum Monday after his joint news conference in Finland with Russian President Vladimir Putin. Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., who has criticized the president’s posture toward Russia in the past, called it “one of the most disgraceful performances by an American president in … ... Read More »

The mystery firm that became the NRA’s top election consultant

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Since 2014, the gun rights group has paid millions of dollars to a little known contractor for ads in key Senate races. Did it break campaign finance laws in the process? Mike Spies Politico Heading into the 2014 midterm elections, polls showed the Republican Party had an opportunity to retake control of the Senate. Such a change would severely limit President Barack Obama’s legislative agenda during his final two years in office, an outcome that was especially attractive to the ... Read More »

The problem with male feminists

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Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is a perfect example of the problem with men’s self-proclaimed feminism. Meghan Murphy AlJazeera Calling yourself a feminist is easy these days. All you have to do is declare it so. “If you stand for equality, then you’re a feminist,” actor Emma Watson insisted in 2015. “Sorry to tell you, you’re a feminist.” In recent years, anyone and everyone has been encouraged to take up the label – men included. Indeed, it is often men ... Read More »

Dani Garavelli: May’s trial by Trump almost excites sympathy

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You might have thought (hoped) Theresa May’s last joint press conference with Donald Trump in Washington, in January 2017, when the US President dished out put-down after put-down, would have marked the nadir in British-American relations; that things, as… The Scotsman But contemporary western politics is a bottomless hole; every time you convince yourself our representatives can go no lower, they slip further into the mire. And so, on Friday, just hours after Trump and May had broken bread together ... Read More »