7:25 AM 10/27/2017 – News Review: Papers May Shed Light on JFK Assassination

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Expert: Robert Mueller to drop the hammer on Donald Trump within weeks
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A Half-Century Later, Papers May Shed Light on JFK Assassination – New York Times
 

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New York Times
A Half-Century Later, Papers May Shed Light on JFK Assassination
New York Times
As a new trove of documents about the killing of President John F. Kennedy is released, the New York Times correspondent Peter Baker walks us through who’s who in this historic American tragedy. By NATALIE RENEAU and PETER BAKER on Publish Date …
JFK files: Trump teases release as deadline arrivesCNN
What Could Be in the New Kennedy Assassination Records?NBCNews.com
The JFK Files: More Than 50 Years of Questions, ConspiraciesVoice of America
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette –The Guardian –Philly.com –New York Post
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Trump Administration To Declare Opioid Crisis A Public Health Emergency – NPR
 

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NPR
Trump Administration To Declare Opioid Crisis A Public Health Emergency
NPR
The Trump administration will declare a public health emergency to deal with the opioid epidemic Thursday, freeing up some resources for treatment. More than 140 Americans die every day from an opioid overdose, according to the Centers for Disease …
Exclusive: Trump to declare public health emergency for opioids, a partial measure to fight drug epidemicUSA TODAY
Trump will stop short of declaring national emergency on opioids: reportsThe Hill
The Note: For conspiracy-loving Trump, JFK files are a big momentABC News
Bloomberg –Quartz –Politico –cleveland.com
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Hurricane Maria caused largest-ever US blackout – The Hill
 

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Hurricane Maria caused largest-ever US blackout
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The blackout caused by Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands is the United States’ largest in history, according to a new report. Economic consulting firm Rhodium Group determined in a Thursday report that Maria caused 1.25 billion …
Puerto Rico Faces Possible Court Battle Over Agency ControlBloomberg
Whitefish Energy regrets Twitter spat with San Juan mayorBBC News
Powerless Puerto RicoNew York Times
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Puerto Rico residents fleeing to Florida after Hurricane Maria

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(CNN) Tens of thousands of Puerto Rico residents are fleeing to Florida after Hurricane Maria, leaving behind an island that is still struggling to …
Powerless Puerto Rico
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Puerto Rico’s Gov. Rosselló orders audit of Whitefish contract to fix power grid – USA TODAY
 

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Puerto Rico’s Gov. Rosselló orders audit of Whitefish contract to fix power grid
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Puerto Rico Gov. Ricardo Rosselló wants the inspector general of the Department of Homeland Security to look into a contract awarded to a small Montana firm to rebuild portions of the island’s hurricane-ravaged electric grid. Montana-based Whitefish 
PR gov. threatens ‘hell to pay’ as probes of Whitefish contract beginABC News
Whitefish’s No-Bid Puerto Rico Contract Spotlights Troubled FEMA GrantsBloomberg
Whitefish Energy regrets Twitter spat with San Juan mayorBBC News
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Stars and Stripes: From rage to peace: A SEALs view of Bergdahl
 

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Former Navy SEAL James Hatch, whose career as a commando ended when he was shot while searching for Bowe Bergdahl, said his feelings toward the Army sergeant have gone from “I would like to kill him” to thanking the soldier’s lead attorney for working so hard to defend him.

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Infighting plagues Senate Judiciary Committee’s Russia investigation – ABC News
 

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Infighting plagues Senate Judiciary Committee’s Russia investigation
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The committee is investigating improper political influence or bias in Justice Department (DOJ) or FBI activities during either the previous or the current administration [and] the removal of James Comey from his position as director of the FBI, one and more »

Palmer Report: Expert: Robert Mueller to drop the hammer on Donald Trump within weeks
 

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This week Donald Trump and the Republican Party have gone into all out panic mode, inventing one absurd phony scandal about Hillary Clinton and President Obama after another, in an attempt to distract from what they seem to think is coming. Now one respected national security expert says that Special Counsel Robert Mueller is mere weeks away from dropping the hammer on Trump and his co-conspirators.

Juliette Kayyem is a national security expert who regularly appears on cable news. This time around she appeared on Boston public radio (link) to discuss the Trump Russia scandal. Here’s what she had to say: I think it is safe to say that before Thanksgiving … somethings going to drop with Mueller. The pace is too much right now. Every 12 hours were now dealing with a piece of this story at a pace we havent seen.

Thanksgiving is just four weeks away from today, so she’s talking about Mueller being weeks away from the kind of breakthrough that will turn the Trump Russia scandal on its head and shatter the Trump administration. Some have misinterpreted her words to mean that the Mueller investigation will be finished by Thanksgiving. But that’s not remotely possible, because Mueller’s plan is to bring indictments against nearly everyone involved in order to pressure them to flip on Trump.

So what we’re talking about by Thanksgiving is the kind of indictment or indictments, or deals cut with Trump co-conspirators, that will bust the scandal open and leave Donald Trump in an impossible position. It’s why Trump and the Republicans in Congress are suddenly scrambling in such buffoonish fashion to try to distract from what they know is coming. They know Trump will be taken down by this; they’re just trying to prop him up long enough try to ram through some toxic legislation in the meantime.

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Rod Rosenstein, who oversees Russia probe, thinks Americans are too savvy for Russian ads to work
 

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Deep State Intelligence Threatens Trump, Self-Government
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Amid a high-profile showdown with the intelligence community early in his term, President Donald Trump was repeatedly and viciously threatened even with prison and death. What kind of people can threaten the democratically elected President of the … 

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Despite the conspiracies, Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin are going backwards fast
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It is telling that his first official meeting with Putin did not occur until after he had been in the White House for six months, and then only as a bilateral in the margins of a multilateral summit. The delay was partly due to the political and more »

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trump and putin – Google News: Despite the conspiracies, Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin are going backwards fast – ABC Online
 

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ABC Online
Despite the conspiracies, Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin are going backwards fast
ABC Online
On the surface, Trump and Putin agree on much. They subscribe to a realist view of international relations, and reveal a certain authoritarian like-mindedness. They resent the establishment domestic in Trump’s case, international in Putin’s. The 
White House facing scrutiny for Russia sanctions delayCNN
Congress seeks answers as Trump drags his feet on Russian sanctionsMSNBC
Time’s up for Trump to implement new Russia sanctionsWashington Post
Shareblue Media
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Trump declares opioid crisis a public health emergency
 

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US President Donald Trump has declared the nation’s painkiller-addiction crisis a public health emergency.

Calling the epidemic “a national shame”, Mr Trump announced a plan to target the abuse of opioids, which kill more than 140 Americans each day.

The president has previously promised to declare a national emergency, which would have triggered federal funding to help states combat the drug scourge.

The move instead redirects grant money to be used in dealing with the crisis.

Mr Trump said on Thursday at the White House: “More people are dying from drug overdoses today than from gun homicides and motor vehicles combined.

“These overdoses are driven by a massive increase in addiction to prescription painkillers, heroin and other opioids.”

He added: “The United States is by far the largest consumer of these drugs using more opioid pills per person than any other country by far in the world.”

Mr Trump is signing a presidential memorandum directing his acting health secretary to declare a nationwide public health emergency and ordering all federal agencies to take measures to reduce the number of opioid deaths, according to senior White House officials.

The order will also ease some regulations to allow states more latitude in how they use federal funds to tackle the problem.

But the White House plans to fund the effort through the Public Health Emergency Fund, which reportedly only contains $57,000 (£43,000).

The Trump administration will then work with Congress to approve additional funding in a year-end spending package, senior officials said.

Other elements of the directive include:

  • Allow patients further access to “telemedicine” so they can receive prescriptions without seeing a doctor
  • Make grants available to those who have had trouble finding work due to addiction
  • The Department of Health and Human Services will hire more people to address the crisis, particularly in rural areas
  • Allows states to shift federal funds from HIV treatments to opioids, since the two are linked as drug users often share infected needles

Proponents suggest Mr Trump’s announcement is a critical step in raising awareness about the nationwide epidemic, while some critics argue the move does not go far enough.

“The lack of resources is concerning to us since the opioid epidemic presenting lots of challenges for states’ budgets,” Michael Fraser, executive director of the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials, told Politico.

“My hope is people will realise with no new money the ball is going to be in Congress’s court,” he added.


Taking the first step

Rajini Vaidyanathan, BBC News, Washington

Addiction to painkillers and heroin has blighted so many communities across the US – both urban and rural.

As I travelled the country reporting on last year’s election, I remember the hairdresser in Arkansas whose ex-husband died from medicines he’d been given for his bad back, the family in New Hampshire who’d lost a teenage daughter to an overdose and heard stories of doctors who’d become hooked on the very pills they’d prescribed.

President Trump has stopped short of declaring this crisis a national emergency, despite earlier indications he would.

Instead his public health emergency is more of a short-term measure which doesn’t allocate as much funding. Recovering addicts and charities I’ve talked to say more investment in round-the-clock rehab and treatment is what is needed to make a difference.

But while today’s announcement is welcome, many will now be looking to Congress to take more action and secure more money to deal with this crisis.


Since 1999, the number of deaths involving opioids have quadrupled, reaching 33,000 deaths in 2015, according to the Presidential Commission on Combating Drug Addiction and the Opioid Crisis, citing data from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

The CDC first declared opioids, a class of pain medications as well as some street drugs, to be an “epidemic” in 2011.

Mr Trump first announced his intention to declare opioid abuse a “national emergency” in August.

“The opioid crisis is an emergency, and I’m saying officially right now: It is an emergency. It’s a national emergency,” he said at the time.

Experts had urged Mr Trump to use his presidential power under the Stafford Act to declare a national emergency, which would have given states access to money from the federal Disaster Relief Fund.

States would have had immediate access to funding, much like they would after a natural disaster.

But senior officials told reporters that declaring that sort of emergency was not a good fit for an ongoing crisis.

The announcement comes after Mr Trump’s pick for drug czar withdrew his nomination following a report that he helped neuter government attempts to tackle the opioid crisis.

Pennsylvania congressman Tom Marino pushed a bill that reportedly stripped a federal agency of the ability to freeze suspicious painkiller shipments.

Health Secretary Tom Price also resigned last month after it was revealed he was using expensive private planes for official business.

As a candidate, Mr Trump frequently pledged to tackle the drug crisis, and often campaigned in the hardest-hit states.


More on the US opioid crisis

Expert: Robert Mueller to drop the hammer on Donald Trump within weeks
 

mikenova shared this story from Palmer Report.

This week Donald Trump and the Republican Party have gone into all out panic mode, inventing one absurd phony scandal about Hillary Clinton and President Obama after another, in an attempt to distract from what they seem to think is coming. Now one respected national security expert says that Special Counsel Robert Mueller is mere weeks away from dropping the hammer on Trump and his co-conspirators.

Juliette Kayyem is a national security expert who regularly appears on cable news. This time around she appeared on Boston public radio (link) to discuss the Trump Russia scandal. Here’s what she had to say: “I think it is safe to say that before Thanksgiving … something’s going to drop with Mueller. The pace is too much right now. Every 12 hours we’re now dealing with a piece of this story at a pace we haven’t seen.”

Thanksgiving is just four weeks away from today, so she’s talking about Mueller being weeks away from the kind of breakthrough that will turn the Trump Russia scandal on its head and shatter the Trump administration. Some have misinterpreted her words to mean that the Mueller investigation will be finished by Thanksgiving. But that’s not remotely possible, because Mueller’s plan is to bring indictments against nearly everyone involved in order to pressure them to flip on Trump.

So what we’re talking about by Thanksgiving is the kind of indictment or indictments, or deals cut with Trump co-conspirators, that will bust the scandal open and leave Donald Trump in an impossible position. It’s why Trump and the Republicans in Congress are suddenly scrambling in such buffoonish fashion to try to distract from what they know is coming. They know Trump will be taken down by this; they’re just trying to prop him up long enough try to ram through some toxic legislation in the meantime.

 

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Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report

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Trump to Declare Opioid Crisis a ‘Public Health Emergency’

New York Times4 hours ago
The officials argued that a national emergency declaration was not necessary or helpful in the case of the opioid crisis, and that the powers …
Russian Facebook ads made no difference in the election
 

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The Kremlin knows a bargain when it sees it.

We are supposed to believe that it bought the American presidential election last year with $100,000 in Facebook ads and some other digital activity. Frankly, if American democracy can be purchased this cheap — a tiny fraction of the $7.2 million William Seward paid to buy Alaska from the Russians back in 1867 — it’s probably not worth having.

Caption Settings Dialog

Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.

The latest obsession in the Russian collusion story, the Kremlin’s digital activity has generated headlines and put Facebook and all of Silicon Valley on the defensive, although this looks to be one of the most overhyped stories of the year.

The Russians, as far as we know, bought more than $100,000 in Facebook ads between June 2015 and May 2017. A little more than half was spent after last November, when, obviously, Donald Trump had already won.

The scale here is singularly unimpressive. A serious House campaign might spend $100,000 on digital. In a presidential campaign, the amount is a rounding error. The Trump campaign spent around $90 million on digital in 2016. Hillary Clinton employed a considerable digital staff, and announced she was spending $30 million on digital the last month of the campaign alone.

If tens of thousands of dollars was decisive amid this tsunami of tens of millions, the Russian trolls working somewhere in St. Petersburg should strike out on their own and start a political consultancy or an internet publishing company. They are geniuses.

It doesn’t appear that much of the Russian material was explicitly advocating for Trump’s election, and some of it wasn’t even right-wing. One Russian Facebook page highlighted discrimination against Muslims. Another promoted anti-police videos for a Black Lives Matter audience. A pro-gay-rights page was called LGBT United.

Other pages were on the right and supportive of Trump. But much of the Russian Facebook activity was peddling online tripe indistinguishable from indigenous American online tripe — in fact, it was ripped off from content produced by Americans. If the Russians are going to decide our elections on social media, one assumes it will require at least a little originality.

One suspicion has been that the Trump campaign helped direct the Russian online effort. What we know about the Russian activity so far makes that doubtful. Why, if the Trump campaign was running its own digital campaign that was magnitudes larger, would it bother with a tiny Russian effort that wasn’t always focused on Trump or his message?

The Daily Beast ran a story last week with the headline “Trump Campaign Staffers Pushed Russian Propaganda Days Before the Election.” This referred to Kellyanne Conway and others associated with the Trump campaign retweeting posts from a Twitter account that masqueraded as a project of the Tennessee Republican Party, when it was really operated by Russian trolls. Conway tweeted a post from the account once, according to the story. And the report adduces no evidence that the Trump supporters knew the origin of the account.

It is outrageous that Russians meddled in our democracy at all, and if there are ways to lock them out of our social media going forward, we should do it. Let’s not pretend, though, that the Russian online activity was the key to the election. This is classic conspiracy thinking — that some small secret cabal is responsible for a world-historical outcome that had much more obvious causes (Hillary Clinton’s poor campaign, for one).

There may yet be truly damaging Russia revelations. Trump’s campaign manager during a decisive phase of the primary campaign, Paul Manafort, worked with shady characters from that part of the world. The notorious Don Trump Jr. meeting with Russians promising oppo on Clinton spoke of a willingness to cooperate with anyone who might be useful. The Trump family’s business dealings could always produce a nasty surprise.

But all the focus on Facebook serves, for now, as a substitute for a smoking gun in the absence of a real one.

Rich Lowry is editor of National Review. Twitter: @RichLowry.

(c) 2017, King Features Syndicate

Putin and the Russian Mafia – Google News: Ignatius: Russia’s worrisome push to rewrite cyberspace rules – The Daily Herald
 

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Business Recorder
Ignatius: Russia’s worrisome push to rewrite cyberspace rules
The Daily Herald
Russia’s bid to rewrite global rules through the U.N. was matched by a personal pitch on cybercooperation in July from President Vladimir Putin to President Trump at the G-20 summit in Hamburg. Putin vehemently denied to Trump that Russiahad 
David Ignatius: Russia’s worrisome push to control cyberspaceWinston-Salem Journalall 109 news articles »

 Putin and the Russian Mafia – Google News

Trump Investigations Report: 9:49 AM 10/26/2017 More than 2 months after declaring an opioid crisis, Trump appears to have decided how to proceed Mic
 

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More than 2 months after declaring an opioid crisis, Trump appears to have decided how to proceed Thursday October 26th, 2017 at 9:52 AM 1 Share Welcome to Mics daily read on Donald Trumps America. Want to receive this as a daily email in your inbox? Subscribe here. Every day, we bring you a different dispatch on Trumps … Continue reading“9:49 AM 10/26/2017 – More than 2 months after declaring an opioid crisis, Trump appears to have decided how to proceed – Mic”

 Trump Investigations Report

Donald Trump: Donald Trump Throws U.S. Generals Under The Bus In Regard To Niger Attack
 

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And that’s not presidential, experts say.

 Donald Trump

Trump Investigations Report: 11:06 AM 10/26/2017 The Recruitables: Why Trumps Team Was Easy Prey for Putin Politico
 

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Saved Stories Trump Investigations Saved Stories – Trump Investigations Donald Trump: Stephen Colbert Imagines The Outcome Had Obama Given Press Conferences Like Trump roger stone – Google News: Trump ally Roger Stone denies collusion with Russia – TRT World Donald Trump: Seth Meyers Slams GOP For Being Engulfed In A Civil War Of Its … Continue reading“11:06 AM 10/26/2017 – The Recruitables: Why Trump’s Team Was Easy Prey for Putin – Politico”

 Trump Investigations Report

11:25 AM 10/26/2017 The Recruitables: Why Trumps Team Was Easy Prey for Putin
 

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Google Avoids Spotlight During Russia Investigation – Newsmax
 

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Newsmax
Google Avoids Spotlight During Russia Investigation
Newsmax
Google has done its best to avoid getting involved in Congress’ ongoing investigation into Russia’s actions during the 2016 presidential election, Axios reports. Facebook and Twitter have been very public in their response to the reports that Russian …and more »

donald trump racketeering – Google News: Founder of opioid maker Insys indicted for fraud, racketeering – Financial Times
 

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CBS News
Founder of opioid maker Insys indicted for fraud, racketeering
Financial Times
The billionaire founder of Insys, which makes a controversial opioid-based drug, has been indicated on racketeering and fraud charges, sending shares in the group 4 per cent lower. John Kapoor, who stepped down as Insys chief executive in January, …
John Kapoor, Founder Of Insys, Indicted On Charges Of Bribing Doctors To Overprescribe OpioidsBenzingaall 11 news articles »

 donald trump racketeering – Google News

Lawfare – Hard National Security Choices: Today’s Headlines and Commentary
 

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On Wednesday, Wikileaks leader Julian Assange confirmed that the head of a data analytics firm working with Trumps campaign contacted Assange last year, the Daily Beast reports. Alexander Nix, the head of Cambridge Analytica, admitted that he sent an email to Assange seeking to assist Wikileaks in finding and releasing Clintons 33,000 missing emails. According to unnamed sources, Assange declined the request. This connection is the closest reported between Wikileaks and the Trump campaign during a time when Trump fervently admonished Clinton and publicly requested Russias help to recover Clintons lost emails.

Sen. Bob Corker, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee,  articulated his frustration with the Trump administration on Wednesday over the administration missing its Oct. 1 deadline to implement Russia sanctions, according to Politico. Trump signed the bipartisan sanctions bill in August, but his administration has yet to penalize certain Russian entities. Sens. John McCain and Ben Cardin have also expressed concern over the sanctions delay. Corker notably did not accuse the administration of purposeful delay, but intends to check into it.

Marine Gen. Joseph F. Dunford Jr., the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, arrived in Seoul on Thursday for his annual meeting with South Korean military officials, the Washington Post reports. Dunford will discuss, among other things, improving South Koreas ballistic missiles and upgrading their military networks. Defense Secretary James Mattis will head to Seoul next week following Dunfords departure.

Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahls sentencing proceedings continued yesterday with emotional testimony from James Hatch, a former Navy SEAL whose military service dog was killed in a mission to retrieve Bergdahl, according to the Washington Post. Hatchs testimony is part of an ongoing process to determine whether the consequences, often deadly, that followed Bergdahls abandonment of his post should factor into the sergeant’s punishment. Hatch, who suffered career-ending injuries during the mission, delivered the tattered harness of his deceased military dog as evidence in the sentencing proceedings.

In an interview with several U.S. publications, Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi urged the U.S. and Iran not to involve Iraq in growing conflicts over the nuclear deal and U.S. sanctions, the Wall Street Journal reports. Abadi reiterated his support for U.S. forces in Iraq fighting the Islamic State group, but that any attacks on coalition forces in Iraq, including those that U.S. officials believe are Iran proxies, would be considered an attack on Iraq, on the sovereignty of Iraq, the sovereignty of the state.

President Donald Trump admitted that he did not authorize the mission in Niger resulting in the deaths of four U.S. special forces members, according to the Hill. Trump stated that his generals had the authority, clarifying that he gave them authority to do whats right so that we win. On Monday, Gen. Dunford said that the soldiers were on a reconnaissance mission that did not require the presidents authority.

 

ICYMI, Yesterday on Lawfare

Ashley Deeks, Sabrina McCubbin and Cody Poplin considered what the U.S. could learn from Cold War anti-propaganda strategies.

Ian Hurd discussed why both liberal and realist theorists incorrectly interpret the international  laws of war.

The Lawfare Editors flagged the next Hoover Book Soiree with Susan Landau on Nov. 1.

Bobby Chesney and Steve Vladeck posted this weeks National Security Law podcast.

Garrett Hinck summarized the European Commissions privacy shield review.

Matthew Kahn posted the live stream of a House hearing on the risk that Kaspersky Labs products pose to the federal government.

Kahn also posted the Oct. 24 executive order to resume the U.S. refugee admissions program.

 

Email the Roundup Team noteworthy law and security-related articles to include, and follow us on Twitter and Facebook for additional commentary on these issues. Sign up to receive Lawfare in your inbox. Visit ourEvents Calendar to learn about upcoming national security events, and check out relevant job openings on ourJob Board.

 Lawfare – Hard National Security Choices


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