5:33 PM 1/9/2018 – How to help the family of the fallen Pierce County sheriff’s deputy – Seattle Times – Mike Nova’s Shared NewsLinks 

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фсб зарубежные операции – Google Search
5 reasons to worry Trump is undermining the Justice Department’s independence – Vox
The Decline of Anti-Trumpism – The New York Times – New York Times
Is Trump mentally fit? Don’t count on his physical to tell you – Politico
Everything hits the fan
David Cameron thought Barack Obama was a narcissist, says ex … – Telegraph.co.uk
“Fire and Fury” sparks talk about Trump’s mental fitness
Trump likely to be interviewed over Russia probe – ANI News
The Decline of Anti-Trumpism – The New York Times
Mueller Conveys Interest in Questioning Trump: Source
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EXCLUSIVE: Huma Abedin backed up her emails to Anthony Weiner’s laptop after leaving the State Department even … – Daily Mail
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How to help the family of the fallen Pierce County sheriff’s deputy – Seattle Times

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Seattle Times
How to help the family of the fallen Pierce County sheriff’s deputy
Seattle Times
During a light rain, Pierce County Sheriff Paul Pastor greets people who gathered at the South Hill precinct to honor slain deputy Daniel McCartney on Monday. (Dean Rutz / The Seattle Times). All donations will go directly to the deputy’s wife and 

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фсб зарубежные операции – Google Search

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Story image for фсб зарубежные операции from Российская Газета

Александр Бортников: Разрушение России для некоторых до …

Российская ГазетаDec 19, 2017
Разговор Директора ФСБ России А. Бортникова с главным редактором “Российской газеты” В. Фрониным состоялся накануне Дня работников …. В середине 1920-х годов в результате длившихся несколько лет операций “Синдикат-2” и “Трест” чекисты пресекли подрывную деятельность …
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Washington Post: Связь Лаборатории Касперского с ФСБ …

Рамблер/новостиDec 13, 2017
Несмотря на то, что американские фирмы в области кибербезопасности иногда оказывают техническую помощь ФБР в уголовных расследованиях, связь между «Лабораторией Касперского» и ФСБ удивляет многих зарубежных экспертов. Сообщается, что ФСБ использовала информацию, …
Story image for фсб зарубежные операции from Федеральное агентство новостей No.1

Путин отметил профессионализм ФСБ, которая «переигрывает …

Федеральное агентство новостей No.1Dec 20, 2017
По словам главы государства, на сегодняшний день ФСБ «переигрывает» многие зарубежныеспецслужбы. «Знаю, какую … Именно такие качества, как утверждает Путин, демонстрировали российские спецслужбы, обеспечивая проведение антитеррористической операции в Сирии.
Работники ФСБ переигрывают зарубежные спецслужбы — Путин
International<a href=”http://KrasNews.com” rel=”nofollow”>KrasNews.com</a> – Красноярские новостиDec 20, 2017

5 reasons to worry Trump is undermining the Justice Department’s independence – Vox

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5 reasons to worry Trump is undermining the Justice Department’s independence
Vox
The Trump administration installed its own appointees to several important US attorney posts without getting the Senate’s approval, and has recently sidelined several career officials in the FBI or DOJ who Trump dislikes. On top of that, two Republican 
Russian are tiresome fallback when attention turns to ClintonSTLtoday.com

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The Decline of Anti-Trumpism – The New York Times – New York Times

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The Decline of Anti-Trumpism – The New York Times
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Let me start with three inconvenient observations, based on dozens of conversations around Washington over the past year: First, people who go into the White House to have a meeting with President Trump usually leave pleasantly surprised. They find 

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Is Trump mentally fit? Don’t count on his physical to tell you – Politico

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Is Trump mentally fit? Don’t count on his physical to tell you
Politico
If President Donald Trump were any other 71-year-old covered by Medicare and having his annual wellness visit he’d be checked on his cognitive functions and possible safety risks. But when the president goes for his physical exam Friday, the 
Donald Trump is addicted to cable TV! Which is fine!CNN
How does Trump’s schedule compare with other presidents?BBC News
Donald Trump poised for medical check amid allegations over his fitness for officeCNBC
Bloomberg
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Everything hits the fan

mikenova shared this story from Palmer Report.

Right now Donald Trump is missing the good old days of last week, when it was only Steve Bannon who had gone rogue against him. It’s difficult to figure out how much of this is a snowball effect and how much of it may be happenstance, but at this rate Trump’s entire world is caving in on him from within. Now everyone from Ivanka Trump to Brad Parscale to Sebastian Gorka on down is suddenly finding ways to play for the other team, whether because they’re trying to distance themselves or because they’re all simply very rapidly losing what they barely ever had to begin with.

It would have been devastating enough if the story was simply that Bannon was accusing Trump and his son of a “treasonous” plot with the Russians. That’s profoundly ugly, and unprecedented in the modern presidency. Since when does a former White House Chief Strategist fire back with accusations of literal treason? But then came Brad Parscale’s bizarre tweet in which he repeatedly insisted that nothing happened in the campaign without the approval of Jared Kushner and Eric Trump (wait, a minute, Eric?). Was Parscale trying to help these two by making them look powerful, or trying to throw them under the bus by assigning the Russia plot decision-making to them? It quickly got worse.

Sebastian Gorka, Trump’s former resident White House white supremacist and goatee model, seemed to try to defend Trump against Michael Wolff’s book, but instead ended up confirming that Trump was lying about Wolff being given insider access. Stephen Miller went on CNN and offered up such a demented defense of Trump complete with getting kicked off the air and kicked out of the building that he had to have known he was hurting Trump in the process. Then Lindsey Graham, Trump’s inexplicable new puppet, went on The View and wandered totally off script by defending Robert Mueller.

After everything else had hit the fan from within for Donald Trump, last night Ivanka Trump jumped on Twitter and appeared to endorse Oprah for President. Why on earth would she endorse her own father’s potential 2020 competitor? Then again, at this point we all know Donald Trump won’t still be in office by 2020 to run for reelection anyway.

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David Cameron thought Barack Obama was a narcissist, says ex … – Telegraph.co.uk

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Telegraph.co.uk
David Cameron thought Barack Obama was a narcissist, says ex …
Telegraph.co.uk
The man who served as David Cameron’s director of strategy said the former prime minister thought Barack Obama was one of the most narcissistic, self-absorbed people with whom he had ever dealt. Steve Hilton, who was once one of Mr Cameron’s most 
Cameron didn’t have ‘bromance’ with Obama and thought he was a …The Independent
David Cameron thought Barack Obama was a self-absorbed narcissist, former strategist claimsRT

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“Fire and Fury” sparks talk about Trump’s mental fitness

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January 8, 2018, 6:33 PM | “Fire and Fury” author Michael Wolff says members of the president’s inner circle are concerned about his unpredictablity and temper. But as CBS News chief White House correspondent Major Garrett reports, this isn’t the first …

Trump likely to be interviewed over Russia probe – ANI News

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Trump likely to be interviewed over Russia probe
ANI News
The intelligence community believes that the Russian government was engaged in electoral interference during the 2016 US presidential election. A January 2017 assessment by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence stated that Russian 

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The Decline of Anti-Trumpism – The New York Times

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I sometimes wonder if the Invisible White House has learned to use the Potemkin White House to deke us while it changes the country.

I mention these inconvenient observations because the anti-Trump movement, of which I’m a proud member, seems to be getting dumber. It seems to be settling into a smug, fairy tale version of reality that filters out discordant information. More anti-Trumpers seem to be telling themselves a “Madness of King George” narrative: Trump is a semiliterate madman surrounded by sycophants who are morally, intellectually and psychologically inferior to people like us.

I’d like to think it’s possible to be fervently anti-Trump while also not reducing everything to a fairy tale.

The anti-Trump movement suffers from insularity. Most of the people who detest Trump don’t know anybody who works with him or supports him. And if they do have friends and family members who admire Trump, they’ve learned not to talk about this subject. So they get most of their information about Trumpism from others who also detest Trumpism, which is always a recipe for epistemic closure.

The movement also suffers from lowbrowism. Fox News pioneered modern lowbrowism. The modern lowbrow (think Sean Hannity or Dinesh D’Souza) ignores normal journalistic or intellectual standards. He creates a style of communication that doesn’t make you think more; it makes you think and notice less. He offers a steady diet of affirmation, focuses on simple topics that require little background information, and gets viewers addicted to daily doses of righteous contempt and delicious vindication.

We anti-Trumpers have our lowbrowism, too, mostly on late-night TV. But anti-Trump lowbrowism burst into full bloom with the Wolff book.

Wolff doesn’t pretend to adhere to normal journalistic standards. He happily admits that he’s just tossing out rumors that are too good to check. As Charlie Warzel wrote on BuzzFeed, “For Wolff’s book, the truth seems almost a secondary concern to what really matters: engagement.”

The ultimate test of the lowbrow is not whether it challenges you, teaches you or captures the contours of reality; it’s whether you feel an urge to share it on social media.

In every war, nations come to resemble their enemies, so I suppose it’s normal that the anti-Trump movement would come to resemble the pro-Trump movement. But it’s not good. I’ve noticed a lot of young people look at the monotonous daily hysteria of we anti-Trumpers and they find it silly.

This isn’t just a struggle over a president. It’s a struggle over what rules we’re going to play by after Trump. Are we all going to descend permanently into the Trump standard of acceptable behavior?

Or, are we going to restore the distinction between excellence and mediocrity, truth and a lie? Are we going to insist on the difference between a genuine expert and an ill-informed blow hard? Are we going to restore the distinction between those institutions like the Congressional Budget Office that operate by professional standards and speak with legitimate authority, and the propaganda mills that don’t?

There’s a hierarchy of excellence in every sphere. There’s a huge difference between William F. Buckley and Sean Hannity, between the reporters at this newspaper and a rumor-spreader. Part of this struggle is to maintain those distinctions, not to contribute to their evisceration.

Continue reading the main story

Mueller Conveys Interest in Questioning Trump: Source

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Special counsel Robert Mueller’s team of investigators has expressed interest in speaking with President Donald Trump as part of a probe into potential coordination between Russia and the Trump campaign, a person familiar with the matter said Monday.

The prospect of an interview with the president has come up in recent discussions between Mueller’s team and Trump lawyers, but no details have been worked out, including the scope of questions that the president would agree to answer if an interview were to actually take place, according to the person. The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity to discuss the ongoing investigation.

When or even if an interview would occur was not immediately clear, nor were the terms for the interview or whether Trump’s lawyers would seek to narrow the range of questions or topics that prosecutors would cover. Trump’s lawyers have previously stated their determination to cooperate with Mueller’s requests.

It’s not surprising that investigators would ultimately seek to interview the president given his role in several episodes under scrutiny by Mueller. Any interview of Trump would be a likely indication that the investigation was in its final stages — investigators typically look to interview main subjects in their inquiries near the end of a probe.

Flynn Pleads Guilty to Making False Statements to FBI

[NATL] Flynn Pleads Guilty to Making False Statements to FBI

Former national security adviser Michael Flynn has pleaded guilty to a count of making false statements to the FBI. He is the fourth person charged in special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russia’s involvement in the 2016 presidential election.

(Published Friday, Dec. 1, 2017)

Mueller for months has led a team of prosecutors and agents investigating whether Russia and Trump’s Republican campaign coordinated to sway the 2016 election, and whether Trump has worked to obstruct an FBI investigation into his aides, including by firing the FBI director, James Comey.

Comey has said that several months before he was dismissed, Trump told him he hoped he would end an investigation into his former national security adviser, Michael Flynn.

Mueller’s team recently concluded a series of interviews with many current and former White House aides, including former chief of staff Reince Priebus and the president’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner.

Four people have been charged so far, including Flynn, who pleaded guilty in December to lying to the FBI about his conversations with the Russian ambassador. Former campaign chairman Paul Manafort was indicted on charges tied to foreign lobbying work.

Peter Carr, a spokesman for Mueller, declined to comment, as did Trump lawyers John Dowd and Jay Sekulow.

Trump did not rule out the possibility of being questioned by Mueller when asked about it at a news conference Saturday. He said there had been “no collusion” and “no crime.”

‘Late Night’: O’Donnell Says She’s Getting a Mueller Tattoo

[NATL] 'Late Night': Rosie O'Donnell Says She's Getting a Bob Mueller Tattoo

After the recent indictments in the Russia investigation, Rosie O’Donnell tells special counsel Robert Mueller to “keep doing what you’re doing” and jokes that she’ll be getting a Mueller tattoo right above her heart.

(Published Friday, Nov. 3, 2017)

“But we have been very open,” Trump said. “We could have done it two ways. We could have been very closed and it would have taken years. But you know, it’s sort of like, when you’ve done nothing wrong, let’s be open and get it over with.”

A White House spokesman pointed to a statement from White House lawyer Ty Cobb saying the White House doesn’t publicly discuss its conversations with Mueller but was continuing to cooperate “in order to facilitate the earliest possible resolution.”

Associated Press writer Chad Day contributed to this report.

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Mueller indicates he will likely seek interview with Trump

Chicago Tribune2 hours ago
Special counsel Robert Mueller has raised the likelihood with President Donald Trump’s legal team that his office will seek an interview with the president, triggering a discussion among his attorneys about how to avoid a sit-down encounter or set limits on such a session, according to two people familiar …
In Defense of Robert Mueller
OpinionBloomberg10 hours ago
Initial talks underway about Trump interview in Mueller Russia probe
Highly Cited<a href=”http://NBCNews.com” rel=”nofollow”>NBCNews.com</a>10 hours ago
Possible Trump interview in Mueller probe
In-DepthFox News1 hour ago
Will Trump Testify?
OpinionU.S. News & World Report5 hours ago
Today’s Headlines and Commentary

mikenova shared this story from Lawfare – Hard National Security Choices.

Over the past week, the White House aggressively responded to concerns about President Donald Trumps mental competency raised by the book Fire and Fury, prompting former chief strategist Stephen Bannon to walk back comments attributed to him in the book, the New York Times . Quotes in the controversial tell-all raised questions about Trumps ability to execute the functions of his office and the applicability of the 25th Amendment, which, among other things, allows for the transfer of the presidents power to the vice president if the vice president and a majority of the presidents cabinet or a congressionally created body determine he is unable to perform his duties. Officials such as CIA Director Mike Pompeo expressed full faith in the president over the weekend. Politico  on the 25th Amendment and its unlikely application.

Special Counsel Robert Mueller may seek to interview Trump, spurring discussions among Trumps lawyers about how a sit-down interview could be avoided or kept within strict limits, the Washington Post . Muellers team could conduct the interview quite soon, possibly within the next several weeks. Trumps legal team is said to be reluctant to allow their client to sit for such an interview and has explored alternatives, such as providing written replies to questions

For the first time in two years, North and South Korea are set to have an official face-to-face meeting and will discuss a potential North Korean delegation to the Winter Olympics, the Wall Street Journal . The Olympics are slated to begin in South Korea next month. At the talks, set for Tuesday morning KST, several issues including family reunification may be discussed. However, South Korean officials said that they cannot predict the conversations direction. North Korea has not given a statement about the talks. A spokesperson for the State Department said the U.S. does not expect the South Korean government to go off freelancing in the meeting. The Trump administration suspects that Pyongyang may try to use the talks to drive a wedge between the United States and South Korea.

Trump must decide this week if he will continue to extend sanctions relief to Iran or risk placing the United States in breach of the 2015 Iran nuclear agreement, the Journal . Recent protests in Iran, in addition to Trumps noted position against the 2015 deal, have introduced further uncertainty to his next move. Some advisers have said it appears Trump will continue sanctions relief, but they also acknowledged his final decision remains unclear. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said that Trump will introduce more sanctions, unrelated to the nuclear deal, in the near future.

National security adviser H.R. McMaster claimed that the Russian government is pursuing a sophisticated influence campaign to meddle in the Mexican presidential election,  Reuters. The statement came from a previously unreported video clip of a speech at the Jamestown Foundation. Some analysts believe Russia supports the current frontrunner, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, the left-wing former mayor of Mexico City, while some Mexican commentators noted that there has been no proof of Russian involvement.

Over 200,000 Salvadorans have been told they must leave the United States or face deportation, following a decision by the Trump administration to end the Temporary Protected Status that made it legal for them to live and work in the United States, the Times . The administration said that the improved conditions in El Salvador meant that the individuals no longer fit into the framework of the program.

The supreme allied commander of NATO and Russias top general plan to meet later this month in Azerbaijan as the United States pursues a variety of high-level Russian contact early in 2018, BuzzFeed News . Other planned conversations between top officials will cover the Ukraine crisis, the U.S.-Russia relationship, and the Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces Treaty. The Obama administration forbade meetings between the top commanders of NATO and Russia in an effort to diplomatically isolate Moscow following the annexation of Crimea. Some officials now say more can be gained through increased engagement.

The Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps claims it has quelled the anti-government protests that recently spread throughout Iran, but some signs of resistance, such as the burning of government documents, have continued on social media, the Journal . These documents include bills from state-owned companies and identification cards for Basij, the IRGCs volunteer militia. Although some have continued to call for protests, the intensity has recently fallen and the level of unrest has been hard to measure. Iranian officials say that the leaders of the protests remain in custody.

China is rapidly expanding its facial recognition capability and integrating the technology to monitor the activitiesboth criminal and socialof its citizens, the Post . The Chinese government hopes to make the system, broad in its scope and goals, omnipresent, fully networked, always working and fully controllable by 2020.

The first pretrial hearing by a military commissions judge outside of Guantánamo is set to take place at the military commissions headquarters in Alexandria, VA, the Miami Herald . It will be a closed national security hearing in the case against alleged Al Qaeda commander Abd al Hadi al Iraqi. Neither the public nor the captive is permitted to attend or view the session. Hadi is in poor health and has recently undergone emergency spinal surgeries. It is unclear whether he will be able to attend the next public hearing in Guantánamo, scheduled to begin Jan. 29.

 

ICYMI: Last weekend on Lawfare

Benjamin Wittes  the Lawfare Podcast, the second of his conversation with Middle East policy expert and vocal Trump supporter Michael Doran.

Dan Geer  on what the Spectre and Meltdown vulnerabilities force technologists and policy makers to evaluate what they choose to prioritize.

Charlie Winter and Jade Parker  how the Islamic States cyber and propaganda tactics have shifted as the group has lost control of territory.

Paul Rosenzweig  that elections are a cybersecurity issue.

 

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

 

The Biggest Question on the Trump/Russia Story – TPM (blog)

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TPM (blog)
The Biggest Question on the Trump/Russia Story
TPM (blog)
A week ago I said we were at the end of the beginning of the Trump/Russia story. The big question of whether there was collusion between Russia and the Trump campaign has been answered for anyone who has their eyes open. They did. The question is how 

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The Biggest Question on the Trump/Russia Story Talking Points Memo

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A week ago I said we were at the end of the beginning of the Trump/Russia story. The big question of whether there was collusion between Russia and the Trump campaign has been answered for anyone who has their eyes open. They did. The question is how far it went and what was involved. But there’s another question, related but distinct, which is in my mind perhaps the biggest question or mystery about the whole story.

We know that for years before the 2016 presidential campaign Donald Trump had extensive and deep financial ties to Russia and other countries of the former Soviet Union. This basic point isn’t even disputed. As far back as 2008, Trump’s son notoriously boasted to an investor conference that “we see a lot of money pouring in from Russia.” But of course it’s more specific than that. Russians, Russian emigres and people from other countries of the former Soviet Union made up a wildly disproportionate number of the buyers of units in Trump’s luxury apartment buildings. Russian or Ukrainian or emigre money were major funders of his major building projects. Trump Soho is the most notorious example. But it’s far from the only one.

Then there are the various business partners: Felix Sater, Russian immigrant, convicted felon and mob associate who was one of the Trump’s top partners in the decade and a half before his presidential run; Michael Cohen, Trump’s American born ‘lawyer’ with deep family ties to Ukraine who was also a conduit for millions, perhaps hundreds of millions of dollars out of the countries of the former Soviet Union. You probably known him better as Trump’s bully lawyer on TV. That’s not why he works in the Trump Organization, or did.

My aim for now is not to be exhaustive. We’ve already discussed Trump’s money ties to Russia extensively here in the Editors’ Blog going back more than 18 months. Suffice it to say that we know Trump’s operations were heavily dependent on Russian money and that he had close connections to the Russian and Ukrainian criminal underworld. Whether his operations met the specific legal qualifications of money laundering there’s no question that a major part of Trump’s business model was allowing wealthy Russians and oligarchs to get money out of Russia, either to protect it from capricious authoritarian governments at home or to cleanse it of its origins in criminal activity.

All this and more we know.

The question is how does this relate and connect to what happened during the 2016 campaign – Russia’s interference campaign, Trump’s extreme policy friendliness to Russia and whatever level of collusion bound the two together.

One answer to this is straightforward: Trump was already in business with Russia and Vladimir Putin and that was the basis of the 2016 alliance and the conspiracy to work together to subvert the 2016 election. Perhaps it was even the reason Trump ran for President. Or maybe Russia essentially owned Trump because of compromising information they had on him. In other words, in either case, Trump and Putin or others in Russia had an understanding going in about how it would all go down.

Only it can’t be quite that simple. To me the sheer ubiquity of approaches to the Trump campaign – the significance of which the Trumpers constantly deny – actually tells us this. (I’m actually surprised the smarter ones haven’t made this point. It’s not exonerating. But it is complicating.) If Trump and Putin had an understanding going in – you do this and I’ll do that in return – do you really need operatives courting Trump’s doofus foreign policy advisor George Papadopoulos in London. Or having Trump’s oligarch friend’s publicist setting up a meeting with Don Jr. and a lawyer most known for working to overturn the sanctions tied to the Magnitskey Act? These are clearly overtures, dangles as intelligence professionals call them – almost all of which got a positive response. If the plan is set, you shouldn’t need so many of what amount to cold approaches like this.

On the other hand, Trump’s connections to Russia, Russian money and the machinations of Putin-aligned oligarchs runs so deep, it is simply not credible to imagine that these pre-existing relationships with Russia and Russian money is unrelated to what happened in 2016. Not remotely credible.

Now, you might be saying, these are two extreme, strawman-ish scenarios you’re outlining. Well, I agree. That’s my point. I’m setting forth the maximal theories on either side to make the point that I don’t think we know quite where on this spectrum this all fits or how we reconcile what seems like a deep and close relationship with what seem like introductions. We know a fair amount about what happened before the campaign. We know a decent amount about what happened during the campaign. But it’s not as easy or clear as many assume how you fit them together.

The most important question is what happened during the campaign – in legal terms, in democratic terms, in national security terms. But in many ways the biggest question, the most fascinating and hardest to figure is this one I just laid out: how does Trump’s heavy dependence on Russian money and employees with deep ties to Russia and Ukraine and the criminal underworlds in those countries connect to the very pro-Russia line he took during the campaign and his campaign’s willingness to work with and conspire with the Russian disruption campaign in 2016? Sure they must be related. But how? I don’t think we really know that yet.

My best guess is that people around Putin knew Trump was crooked and dependent on Russian money and that he was likely to be friendly and up for … well, up for anything. So they went to work trying to make friends and found willing partners. He was up for anything. But that isn’t so much an explanation based on specific facts as it is the simplest explanation, the cleanest theory that accounts for all the facts we know.

This requires a lot more sleuthing and explanation.

EXCLUSIVE: Huma Abedin backed up her emails to Anthony Weiner’s laptop after leaving the State Department even … – Daily Mail

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EXCLUSIVE: Huma Abedin backed up her emails to Anthony Weiner’s laptop after leaving the State Department even …
Daily Mail
Huma Abedin backed up copies of her emails with Hillary Clinton to her pervert husband Anthony Weiner’s laptop, DailyMail.com can disclose – conflicting with her account to the FBI and in court that she did not preserve the conversations. An 

Trump Administration Tells 200,000 Salvadorans To Leave Or Get Deported: Reports

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The move hurts U.S. interests to further an anti-immigration ideology, advocates say.

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Putin Happy With Return on Investment for Hacking 2016 Election …

NewsweekDec 14, 2017
For less than a half-million dollars, Russian President Vladimir Putin got what he most wanted out of the Kremlin’s campaign to influence the 2016 U.S. presidential election: a destabilized American democracy and Hillary Clinton out of his hair, U.S. officials say. The Kremlin views its influence campaign, …
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5:07 PM 1/9/2018 – Saved Stories: The White House struggles to silence talk of Trump’s mental fitness – Washington Post

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Saved Stories – None
Trump probably could not refuse Mueller subpoena to answer questions – NBCNews.com
How to help the family of the fallen Pierce County sheriff’s deputy – Seattle Times
Many conservatives think Jeff Sessions’s anti-pot memo is a step in precisely the wrong direction – Vox
Exclusive: behind the scenes of Intel’s huge CES keynote – The Verge
Netanyahu defends son after strip club recording airs on Israeli TV – CNN
Thousands of flying foxes are ‘boiled alive,’ freaking people out as they fall from the sky – Fox News
Brooklyn Assemblywoman Indicted on Fraud Charges – New York Times
White House confirms Trump to attend Davos gathering, synonymous with wealth and power – Washington Post
FBI director says Twitter is ‘on my radar’ after Trump criticism – ABC News
Fusion GPS Founder’s Senate Judiciary Testimony Released – NPR
Senator Releases Interview With Co-Founder of Firm That Commissioned Trump Dossier – TIME
Fusion GPS founder told Senate investigators the FBI had a source in Trump’s network – Washington Post
Ahmad Taibi: No deal for Palestine under Donald Trump – Aljazeera.com
The Orange Menaceand the Even More Dangerous Party That Stands With Him – The Nation.
White House: Jared And Ivanka Are Sacrificing Their Personal Lives For America
5 reasons to worry Trump is undermining the Justice Department’s independence – Vox
Is Trump mentally fit? Don’t count on his physical to tell you – Politico
The Decline of Anti-Trumpism – New York Times
Trump likely to be interviewed over Russia probe – ANI News
“Fire and Fury” sparks talk about Trump’s mental fitness
Trump tells farming convention the American dream is roaring back to life
David Cameron thought Barack Obama was a narcissist, says ex … – Telegraph.co.uk
Sebastian Gorka: Michael Wolff is “an oily creep” – The Rebel
Everything hits the fan

 

Saved Stories – None
The White House struggles to silence talk of Trump’s mental fitness – Washington Post
 


Washington Post
The White House struggles to silence talk of Trump’s mental fitness
Washington Post
The White House is struggling to contain the national discussion about President Trump’s mental acuity and fitness for the job, which has overshadowed the administration’s agenda for the past week. Trump publicly waded into the debate spawned by a new 
With nuclear codes in hands, why doesn’t the president get a thorough mental check?CNN
Is Trump mentally fit? Don’t count on his physical to tell youPolitico
The Debate About Trump’s Mental State, Long Whispered, Blows Wide OpenHuffPost
BBC News –The Hill –BuzzFeed News –Mic
all 362 news articles »
Trump probably could not refuse Mueller subpoena to answer questions – NBCNews.com
 


NBCNews.com
Trump probably could not refuse Mueller subpoena to answer questions
NBCNews.com
WASHINGTON If Robert Mueller seeks to question President Donald Trump, could the White House successfully refuse to make him available? Like anyone whose testimony is sought by grand jury subpoena in a criminal case, the president could cite his 
Mueller Positions for Trump Interview, as Lawyers Assess Risk of InvestigationNew York Times
A Trump Interview With Robert Mueller Would Follow Presidential TraditionNPR
‘I don’t think he fully appreciates the legal jeopardy he faces’: Mueller’s team is gearing up to interview TrumpBusiness Insider
BBC News –Charlotte Observer –Bloomberg –NBCNews.com
all 511 news articles »
How to help the family of the fallen Pierce County sheriff’s deputy – Seattle Times
 


Seattle Times
How to help the family of the fallen Pierce County sheriff’s deputy
Seattle Times
During a light rain, Pierce County Sheriff Paul Pastor greets people who gathered at the South Hill precinct to honor slain deputy Daniel McCartney on Monday. (Dean Rutz / The Seattle Times). All donations will go directly to the deputy’s wife and and more »

Many conservatives think Jeff Sessions’s anti-pot memo is a step in precisely the wrong direction – Vox
 


Vox
Many conservatives think Jeff Sessions’s anti-pot memo is a step in precisely the wrong direction
Vox
Libertarians and conservatives are pushing back against Sessions’s anti-marijuana guidance, and for legalization through legislation. By Jane Coastonjane.coaston@vox.com Jan 9, 2018, 9:10am EST. tweet · share. The small-business proceedings of a local 
Jeff Sessions in the wrong and out of step on weedThe Hill
Jeff Sessions Needs to Talk to a Cancer Patient about Medical CannabisNational Review
Attorney General Jeff Sessions Signals Greater Willingness to Use Death PenaltyWall Street Journal
U.S. News & World Report –Department of Justice –Department of Justice
all 115 news articles »
Exclusive: behind the scenes of Intel’s huge CES keynote – The Verge
 


The Verge
Exclusive: behind the scenes of Intel’s huge CES keynote
The Verge
The revelation of the Meltdown and Spectre security flaws put the company at the epicenter of a vulnerability story, then a processor slowdown story, and even a CEO stock malfeasance story. It’s not the lead up to the the main keynote of the Consumer 
Intel CEO Promises Fix for Serious Chip Security FlawTIME
Apple releases iOS 11.2.2 security update with Spectre mitigations for Safari9to5Mac
CES 2018: Intel announces ‘major breakthrough’ in quantum computing chipZDNet
ExtremeTech –Forbes –WIRED –Network World
all 413 news articles »
Netanyahu defends son after strip club recording airs on Israeli TV – CNN
 


CNN
Netanyahu defends son after strip club recording airs on Israeli TV
CNN
Jerusalem (CNN) Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has been forced to defend his elder son, Yair, and his own reputation, after a 2015 secret recording from outside a strip club featuring a conversation between Yair and two friends aired on 
Netanyahu’s Son Toured Strip Clubs in Government Armored Car, Report SaysBloomberg 
Netanyahu defends son taped illicitly outside strip clubReuters

Secret Tape Reveals Netanyahu’s Son Drunk Outside a Strip Club Bragging About Help for $20 Billion Gas DealNewsweek 
Netanyahu’s son caught drunk and bragging at strip club
 New York Post 
Forward
 –Fortune CBS NewsFox News
all 119 Fox NewsCBS News
all 114
 
news articles »
Thousands of flying foxes are ‘boiled alive,’ freaking people out as they fall from the sky – Fox News
 


Fox News
Thousands of flying foxes are ‘boiled alive,’ freaking people out as they fall from the sky
Fox News
Picture of bats lying on the ground in Australia. (Credit: Help Save the Wildlife and Bushlands in Campbelltown, Facebook). As the Northern Hemisphere starts to thaw from a record-breaking cold, the Southern Hemisphere is experiencing an exceptional
It’s so hot in Australia that bats’ brains are fryingWashington Post
Flying foxes fall from sky after being ‘boiled alive’ in heat waveNew York Post
Hundreds of flying foxes die in searing Australian heatThe Guardian
Aljazeera.com –Daily Telegraph –The Australian –Sky News
all 44 news articles »
Brooklyn Assemblywoman Indicted on Fraud Charges – New York Times
 


New York Times
Brooklyn Assemblywoman Indicted on Fraud Charges
New York Times
ALBANY Federal prosecutors in Brooklyn announced an 11-count indictment against a Brooklyn assemblywoman on Tuesday, alleging a raft of fraud, witness tampering and other charges, just the latest allegation of corruption and bad behavior among 
New York Dem charged with stealing Sandy money from FEMAFox News
Brooklyn pol Pamela Harris charged with spending federal, state money on lavish trips and lingerieNew York Daily News
Brooklyn assemblywoman indicted on fraud, witness-tampering chargesNew York Post
WABC-TV –Washington Free Beacon –NBC New York –CBS New York
all 22 news articles »
White House confirms Trump to attend Davos gathering, synonymous with wealth and power – Washington Post
 


Washington Post
White House confirms Trump to attend Davos gathering, synonymous with wealth and power
Washington Post
President Trump will address the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, later this month, the White House said Tuesday. The surprise engagement, first reported by the New York Times, will place Trump among many of the world’s richest and most 
Trump Plans to Attend the World Economic Forum in DavosNew York Times
Trump to attend elite annual gathering in Davos, SwitzerlandPolitico
Trump to attend Davos economic forumThe Hill
USA TODAY –CBS News –Wall Street Journal –Reuters
all 36 news articles »
FBI director says Twitter is ‘on my radar’ after Trump criticism – ABC News
 


NBCNews.com
FBI director says Twitter is ‘on my radar’ after Trump criticism
ABC News
A month after President Donald Trump called the FBI dishonest and in tatters, director Christopher Wray said Tuesday he is honored to be representing the agents and employees of the bureau but he conceded he pays more attention to Twitter these
Blocked by passwords, FBI can’t unlock over half of devices seized as evidenceNBCNews.com
FBI chief calls unbreakable encryption ‘urgent public safety issue’Reuters
FBI locked out of 7775 encrypted devices in 2017, says directorZDNet
Financial Times
all 14 news articles »
Fusion GPS Founder’s Senate Judiciary Testimony Released – NPR
 


NPR
Fusion GPS Founder’s Senate Judiciary Testimony Released
NPR
Updated at 2:19 p.m. ET. The former British intelligence officer who authored the infamous Russia dossier wanted to show it to the FBI because he was concerned that then-presidential candidate Donald Trump was being “blackmailed.” Christopher Steele 
Democratic Senator Releases Transcript of Interview with Dossier FirmNew York Times
Senate Democrats just released full testimony on the Trump-Russia dossier. Here’s what’s in itCNBC
Feinstein releases transcript of interview with Fusion GPS co-founderPolitico
The Hill –CBS News –Los Angeles Times –Slate Magazine
all 47 news articles »
Senator Releases Interview With Co-Founder of Firm That Commissioned Trump Dossier – TIME
 


TIME
Senator Releases Interview With Co-Founder of Firm That Commissioned Trump Dossier
TIME
Ranking member Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) arrives for a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing concerning firearm accessory regulation and enforcing federal and state reporting to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) on Capitol and more »

Fusion GPS founder told Senate investigators the FBI had a source in Trump’s network – Washington Post
 


Washington Post
Fusion GPS founder told Senate investigators the FBI had a source in Trump’s network
Washington Post
The British ex-spy who authored a dossier of allegations against then-presidential candidate Donald Trump was told the FBI had someone inside Trump’s network providing agents with information, according to a newly released transcript of a congressional 
Fusion GPS Founder’s Senate Judiciary Testimony ReleasedNPR
Democratic Senator Releases Transcript of Interview with Dossier FirmNew York Times
Feinstein releases transcript of interview with Fusion GPS co-founderPolitico
Fox News –The Hill –CNBC –Bloomberg
all 93 news articles »
Ahmad Taibi: No deal for Palestine under Donald Trump – Aljazeera.com
 


Aljazeera.com
Ahmad Taibi: No deal for Palestine under Donald Trump
Aljazeera.com
Jerusalem – Ahmad Taibi, a prominent Arab member of Israel’s Parliament, said a solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict under US President Donald Trump would be impossible. Speaking to Al Jazeera from his office in the Knesset, Taibi said there is and more »

The Orange Menaceand the Even More Dangerous Party That Stands With Him – The Nation.
 


The Nation.
The Orange Menaceand the Even More Dangerous Party That Stands With Him
The Nation.
As he marks the end of his first year in office, Donald Trump, the self-proclaimed very stable genius, stands astride thepolitical world like a cartoon dybbuk, an orange menace of terrifying impulsiveness. With his tweet-spasms spewing venom onand more »

White House: Jared And Ivanka Are Sacrificing Their Personal Lives For America

“Its ridiculous for anyone to try and attack what they do for this nation.
5 reasons to worry Trump is undermining the Justice Department’s independence – Vox
 


Vox
5 reasons to worry Trump is undermining the Justice Department’s independence
Vox
The Trump administration installed its own appointees to several important US attorney posts without getting the Senate’s approval, and has recently sidelined several career officials in the FBI or DOJ who Trump dislikes. On top of that, two Republican 
Russian are tiresome fallback when attention turns to ClintonSTLtoday.comall 56 news articles »

Is Trump mentally fit? Don’t count on his physical to tell you – Politico
 


Politico
Is Trump mentally fit? Don’t count on his physical to tell you
Politico
If President Donald Trump were any other 71-year-old covered by Medicare and having his annual wellness visit he’d be checked on his cognitive functions and possible safety risks. But when the president goes for his physical exam Friday, the  
The White House struggles to silence talk of Trump’s mental fitnessWashington Post

Donald Trump is addicted to cable TV! Which is fine!CNN 
How does Trump’s schedule compare with other presidents?BBC News
Donald Trump poised for medical check amid allegations over his fitness for officeCNBC
Bloomberg
all 112 
President Trump has called himself smart six times beforeABC News
BBC NewsCNBCCNNMoneyNew York Magazine
all 2,394
 news articles »
The Decline of Anti-Trumpism – New York Times
 


New York Times
The Decline of Anti-Trumpism
New York Times
Let me start with three inconvenient observations, based on dozens of conversations around Washington over the past year: First, people who go into the White House to have a meeting with President Trump usually leave pleasantly surprised. They find 
Trumpism Will Survive Without BannonThe Daily Caller
Now Bannon stumps for Trumpism and the patriotism of Donald JrBusiness Day
Steve Bannon apologizes to Trump in statement, touts effort to preach ‘TrumpismGlobalnews.ca
CNNWND.comHuffPostNew York Magazine
all 2,839 2,398 news articles »
Trump likely to be interviewed over Russia probe – ANI News
 


ANI News
Trump likely to be interviewed over Russia probe
ANI News
The intelligence community believes that the Russian government was engaged in electoral interference during the 2016 US presidential election. A January 2017 assessment by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence stated that Russian and more »

“Fire and Fury” sparks talk about Trump’s mental fitness

January 8, 2018, 6:33 PM | “Fire and Fury” author Michael Wolff says members of the president’s inner circle are concerned about his unpredictablity and temper. But as CBS News chief White House correspondent Major Garrett reports, this isn’t the first …
Trump tells farming convention the American dream is roaring back to life

President Trump on Monday declared that the American dream is roaring back to life, arguing during a speech at a farming convention in Tennessee that the recent tax bill he signed into law will yield great benefits for the countrys farmers.
David Cameron thought Barack Obama was a narcissist, says ex … – Telegraph.co.uk
 


Telegraph.co.uk
David Cameron thought Barack Obama was a narcissist, says ex … narcissist, says ex-aide Steve Hilton 
Telegraph.co.uk
The man who served as David Cameron’s director of strategy said the former prime minister thought Barack Obama was one of the most narcissistic, narcissistic, self-absorbed people with whom he had ever dealt. Steve Hilton, who was once one of Mr Cameron’s most 
Cameron didn’t have ‘bromance’ with Obama and thought he was a The Independent
David Cameron thought Barack Obama was a self-absorbed narcissist, former strategist claimsRT
all 7 narcissist, claims former adviserThe Independent

all 5

news articles »

Sebastian Gorka: Michael Wolff is “an oily creep” – The Rebel
 


The Rebel
Sebastian Gorka: Michael Wolff is “an oily creep”
The Rebel
We take on Fake News, internet doctors, and the contentious Jake Tapper/Stephen Miller CNN interview. Sebastian Gorkajoins me from Stockholm to discuss Michael Wolff’s book, and why Dr. Gorka refused to speak to him. I go deep into Judicial Watch  and more »

Everything hits the fan

Right now Donald Trump is missing the good old days of last week, when it was only Steve Bannon who had gone rogue against him. It’s difficult to figure out how much of this is a snowball effect and how much of it may be happenstance, but at this rate Trump’s entire world is caving in on him from within. Now everyone from Ivanka Trump to Brad Parscale to Sebastian Gorka on down is suddenly finding ways to play for the other team, whether because they’re trying to distance themselves or because they’re all simply very rapidly losing what they barely ever had to begin with.It would have been devastating enough if the story was simply that Bannon was accusing Trump and his son of a “treasonous” plot with the Russians. That’s profoundly ugly, and unprecedented in the modern presidency. Since when does a former White House Chief Strategist fire back with accusations of literal treason? But then came Brad Parscale’s bizarre tweet in which he repeatedly insisted that nothing happened in the campaign without the approval of Jared Kushner and Eric Trump (wait, a minute, Eric?). Was Parscale trying to help these two by making them look powerful, or trying to throw them under the bus by assigning the Russia plot decision-making to them? It quickly got worse.

Sebastian Gorka, Trump’s former resident White House white supremacist and goatee model, seemed to try to defend Trump against Michael Wolff’s book, but instead ended up confirming that Trump was lying about Wolff being given insider access. Stephen Miller went on CNN and offered up such a demented defense of Trump complete with getting kicked off the air and kicked out of the building that he had to have known he was hurting Trump in the process. Then Lindsey Graham, Trump’s inexplicable new puppet, went on The View and wandered totally off script by defending Robert Mueller.

After everything else had hit the fan from within for Donald Trump, last night Ivanka Trump jumped on Twitter and appeared to endorse Oprah for President. Why on earth would she endorse her own father’s potential 2020 competitor? Then again, at this point we all know Donald Trump won’t still be in office by 2020 to run for reelection anyway.

The post Everything hits the fan appeared first on Palmer Report.


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9:34 AM 1/9/2018 – Mike Nova’s Shared NewsLinks: “Fire and Fury” sparks talk about Trump’s mental fitness

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Image result for LABRAT KNATS!

Mike Nova’s Shared NewsLinks
Everything hits the fan
David Cameron thought Barack Obama was a narcissist, says ex … – Telegraph.co.uk
Trump likely to be interviewed over Russia probe – ANI News
The Decline of Anti-Trumpism – The New York Times
Mueller Conveys Interest in Questioning Trump: Source
mueller – Google Search
Today’s Headlines and Commentary
The Biggest Question on the Trump/Russia Story – TPM (blog)
The Biggest Question on the Trump/Russia Story Talking Points Memo
EXCLUSIVE: Huma Abedin backed up her emails to Anthony Weiner’s laptop after leaving the State Department even … – Daily Mail
Trump Administration Tells 200,000 Salvadorans To Leave Or Get Deported: Reports
LABRAT KNATS! – Google Search
LABRAT KNATS! – Google Search
LABRAT KNATS! – Google Search
LABRAT KNATS! – Google Search
Putin and elections 2016 – Google Search
Elton John- Daniel – YouTube
mccartney Ram On lyrics – YouTube
“The drip, drip, drip Effect
“The drip, drip, drip” Effect | Global Security News
Trump Tower fire: FDNY says fire on roof of Manhattan building ‘under control’
Paul McCartney – Ram On – Lyrics – YouTube
Paul McCartney – RAM (Full Album / DM Remastered 2016) – YouTube
Daniel McCartney – Wikipedia

 

Mike Nova’s Shared NewsLinks
Everything hits the fan
 

mikenova shared this story from Palmer Report.

Right now Donald Trump is missing the good old days of last week, when it was only Steve Bannon who had gone rogue against him. It’s difficult to figure out how much of this is a snowball effect and how much of it may be happenstance, but at this rate Trump’s entire world is caving in on him from within. Now everyone from Ivanka Trump to Brad Parscale to Sebastian Gorka on down is suddenly finding ways to play for the other team, whether because they’re trying to distance themselves or because they’re all simply very rapidly losing what they barely ever had to begin with.

It would have been devastating enough if the story was simply that Bannon was accusing Trump and his son of a “treasonous” plot with the Russians. That’s profoundly ugly, and unprecedented in the modern presidency. Since when does a former White House Chief Strategist fire back with accusations of literal treason? But then came Brad Parscale’s bizarre tweet in which he repeatedly insisted that nothing happened in the campaign without the approval of Jared Kushner and Eric Trump (wait, a minute, Eric?). Was Parscale trying to help these two by making them look powerful, or trying to throw them under the bus by assigning the Russia plot decision-making to them? It quickly got worse.

Sebastian Gorka, Trump’s former resident White House white supremacist and goatee model, seemed to try to defend Trump against Michael Wolff’s book, but instead ended up confirming that Trump was lying about Wolff being given insider access. Stephen Miller went on CNN and offered up such a demented defense of Trump complete with getting kicked off the air and kicked out of the building that he had to have known he was hurting Trump in the process. Then Lindsey Graham, Trump’s inexplicable new puppet, went on The View and wandered totally off script by defending Robert Mueller.

After everything else had hit the fan from within for Donald Trump, last night Ivanka Trump jumped on Twitter and appeared to endorse Oprah for President. Why on earth would she endorse her own father’s potential 2020 competitor? Then again, at this point we all know Donald Trump won’t still be in office by 2020 to run for reelection anyway.

The post Everything hits the fan appeared first on Palmer Report.

David Cameron thought Barack Obama was a narcissist, says ex … – Telegraph.co.uk
 

mikenova shared this story from trump narcissist – Google News.


Telegraph.co.uk
David Cameron thought Barack Obama was a narcissist, says ex …
Telegraph.co.uk
The man who served as David Cameron’s director of strategy said the former prime minister thought Barack Obama was one of the most narcissistic, self-absorbed people with whom he had ever dealt. Steve Hilton, who was once one of Mr Cameron’s most 
Cameron didn’t have ‘bromance’ with Obama and thought he was a …The Independent
David Cameron thought Barack Obama was a self-absorbed narcissist, former strategist claimsRTall 7 news articles »

“Fire and Fury” sparks talk about Trump’s mental fitness
 

mikenova shared this story from trump – BingNews.

January 8, 2018, 6:33 PM | “Fire and Fury” author Michael Wolff says members of the president’s inner circle are concerned about his unpredictablity and temper. But as CBS News chief White House correspondent Major Garrett reports, this isn’t the first …

Trump likely to be interviewed over Russia probe – ANI News
 

mikenova shared this story from trump russian candidate – Google News.


ANI News
Trump likely to be interviewed over Russia probe
ANI News
The intelligence community believes that the Russian government was engaged in electoral interference during the 2016 US presidential election. A January 2017 assessment by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence stated that Russian and more »

The Decline of Anti-Trumpism – The New York Times
 

mikenova shared this story .

I sometimes wonder if the Invisible White House has learned to use the Potemkin White House to deke us while it changes the country.

I mention these inconvenient observations because the anti-Trump movement, of which I’m a proud member, seems to be getting dumber. It seems to be settling into a smug, fairy tale version of reality that filters out discordant information. More anti-Trumpers seem to be telling themselves a “Madness of King George” narrative: Trump is a semiliterate madman surrounded by sycophants who are morally, intellectually and psychologically inferior to people like us.

I’d like to think it’s possible to be fervently anti-Trump while also not reducing everything to a fairy tale.

The anti-Trump movement suffers from insularity. Most of the people who detest Trump don’t know anybody who works with him or supports him. And if they do have friends and family members who admire Trump, they’ve learned not to talk about this subject. So they get most of their information about Trumpism from others who also detest Trumpism, which is always a recipe for epistemic closure.

The movement also suffers from lowbrowism. Fox News pioneered modern lowbrowism. The modern lowbrow (think Sean Hannity or Dinesh D’Souza) ignores normal journalistic or intellectual standards. He creates a style of communication that doesn’t make you think more; it makes you think and notice less. He offers a steady diet of affirmation, focuses on simple topics that require little background information, and gets viewers addicted to daily doses of righteous contempt and delicious vindication.

We anti-Trumpers have our lowbrowism, too, mostly on late-night TV. But anti-Trump lowbrowism burst into full bloom with the Wolff book.

Wolff doesn’t pretend to adhere to normal journalistic standards. He happily admits that he’s just tossing out rumors that are too good to check. As Charlie Warzel wrote on BuzzFeed, “For Wolff’s book, the truth seems almost a secondary concern to what really matters: engagement.”

The ultimate test of the lowbrow is not whether it challenges you, teaches you or captures the contours of reality; it’s whether you feel an urge to share it on social media.

In every war, nations come to resemble their enemies, so I suppose it’s normal that the anti-Trump movement would come to resemble the pro-Trump movement. But it’s not good. I’ve noticed a lot of young people look at the monotonous daily hysteria of we anti-Trumpers and they find it silly.

This isn’t just a struggle over a president. It’s a struggle over what rules we’re going to play by after Trump. Are we all going to descend permanently into the Trump standard of acceptable behavior?

Or, are we going to restore the distinction between excellence and mediocrity, truth and a lie? Are we going to insist on the difference between a genuine expert and an ill-informed blow hard? Are we going to restore the distinction between those institutions like the Congressional Budget Office that operate by professional standards and speak with legitimate authority, and the propaganda mills that don’t?

There’s a hierarchy of excellence in every sphere. There’s a huge difference between William F. Buckley and Sean Hannity, between the reporters at this newspaper and a rumor-spreader. Part of this struggle is to maintain those distinctions, not to contribute to their evisceration.

Continue reading the main story

Mueller Conveys Interest in Questioning Trump: Source
 

mikenova shared this story .

Special counsel Robert Mueller’s team of investigators has expressed interest in speaking with President Donald Trump as part of a probe into potential coordination between Russia and the Trump campaign, a person familiar with the matter said Monday.

The prospect of an interview with the president has come up in recent discussions between Mueller’s team and Trump lawyers, but no details have been worked out, including the scope of questions that the president would agree to answer if an interview were to actually take place, according to the person. The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity to discuss the ongoing investigation.

When or even if an interview would occur was not immediately clear, nor were the terms for the interview or whether Trump’s lawyers would seek to narrow the range of questions or topics that prosecutors would cover. Trump’s lawyers have previously stated their determination to cooperate with Mueller’s requests.

It’s not surprising that investigators would ultimately seek to interview the president given his role in several episodes under scrutiny by Mueller. Any interview of Trump would be a likely indication that the investigation was in its final stages — investigators typically look to interview main subjects in their inquiries near the end of a probe.

Flynn Pleads Guilty to Making False Statements to FBI

[NATL] Flynn Pleads Guilty to Making False Statements to FBI

Former national security adviser Michael Flynn has pleaded guilty to a count of making false statements to the FBI. He is the fourth person charged in special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russia’s involvement in the 2016 presidential election.

(Published Friday, Dec. 1, 2017)

Mueller for months has led a team of prosecutors and agents investigating whether Russia and Trump’s Republican campaign coordinated to sway the 2016 election, and whether Trump has worked to obstruct an FBI investigation into his aides, including by firing the FBI director, James Comey.

Comey has said that several months before he was dismissed, Trump told him he hoped he would end an investigation into his former national security adviser, Michael Flynn.

Mueller’s team recently concluded a series of interviews with many current and former White House aides, including former chief of staff Reince Priebus and the president’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner.

Four people have been charged so far, including Flynn, who pleaded guilty in December to lying to the FBI about his conversations with the Russian ambassador. Former campaign chairman Paul Manafort was indicted on charges tied to foreign lobbying work.

Peter Carr, a spokesman for Mueller, declined to comment, as did Trump lawyers John Dowd and Jay Sekulow.

Trump did not rule out the possibility of being questioned by Mueller when asked about it at a news conference Saturday. He said there had been “no collusion” and “no crime.”

‘Late Night’: O’Donnell Says She’s Getting a Mueller Tattoo

[NATL] 'Late Night': Rosie O'Donnell Says She's Getting a Bob Mueller Tattoo

After the recent indictments in the Russia investigation, Rosie O’Donnell tells special counsel Robert Mueller to “keep doing what you’re doing” and jokes that she’ll be getting a Mueller tattoo right above her heart.

(Published Friday, Nov. 3, 2017)

“But we have been very open,” Trump said. “We could have done it two ways. We could have been very closed and it would have taken years. But you know, it’s sort of like, when you’ve done nothing wrong, let’s be open and get it over with.”

A White House spokesman pointed to a statement from White House lawyer Ty Cobb saying the White House doesn’t publicly discuss its conversations with Mueller but was continuing to cooperate “in order to facilitate the earliest possible resolution.”

Associated Press writer Chad Day contributed to this report.

Copyright Associated Press
mueller – Google Search
 

mikenova shared this story from mueller – Google News.

Story image for mueller from Chicago Tribune

Mueller indicates he will likely seek interview with Trump

Chicago Tribune2 hours ago
Special counsel Robert Mueller has raised the likelihood with President Donald Trump’s legal team that his office will seek an interview with the president, triggering a discussion among his attorneys about how to avoid a sit-down encounter or set limits on such a session, according to two people familiar …
In Defense of Robert Mueller
OpinionBloomberg10 hours ago
Initial talks underway about Trump interview in Mueller Russia probe
Highly Cited<a href=”http://NBCNews.com” rel=”nofollow”>NBCNews.com</a>10 hours ago
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Today’s Headlines and Commentary
 

mikenova shared this story from Lawfare – Hard National Security Choices.

Over the past week, the White House aggressively responded to concerns about President Donald Trumps mental competency raised by the book Fire and Fury, prompting former chief strategist Stephen Bannon to walk back comments attributed to him in the book, the New York Times . Quotes in the controversial tell-all raised questions about Trumps ability to execute the functions of his office and the applicability of the 25th Amendment, which, among other things, allows for the transfer of the presidents power to the vice president if the vice president and a majority of the presidents cabinet or a congressionally created body determine he is unable to perform his duties. Officials such as CIA Director Mike Pompeo expressed full faith in the president over the weekend. Politico  on the 25th Amendment and its unlikely application.

Special Counsel Robert Mueller may seek to interview Trump, spurring discussions among Trumps lawyers about how a sit-down interview could be avoided or kept within strict limits, the Washington Post . Muellers team could conduct the interview quite soon, possibly within the next several weeks. Trumps legal team is said to be reluctant to allow their client to sit for such an interview and has explored alternatives, such as providing written replies to questions

For the first time in two years, North and South Korea are set to have an official face-to-face meeting and will discuss a potential North Korean delegation to the Winter Olympics, the Wall Street Journal . The Olympics are slated to begin in South Korea next month. At the talks, set for Tuesday morning KST, several issues including family reunification may be discussed. However, South Korean officials said that they cannot predict the conversations direction. North Korea has not given a statement about the talks. A spokesperson for the State Department said the U.S. does not expect the South Korean government to go off freelancing in the meeting. The Trump administration suspects that Pyongyang may try to use the talks to drive a wedge between the United States and South Korea.

Trump must decide this week if he will continue to extend sanctions relief to Iran or risk placing the United States in breach of the 2015 Iran nuclear agreement, the Journal . Recent protests in Iran, in addition to Trumps noted position against the 2015 deal, have introduced further uncertainty to his next move. Some advisers have said it appears Trump will continue sanctions relief, but they also acknowledged his final decision remains unclear. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said that Trump will introduce more sanctions, unrelated to the nuclear deal, in the near future.

National security adviser H.R. McMaster claimed that the Russian government is pursuing a sophisticated influence campaign to meddle in the Mexican presidential election,  Reuters. The statement came from a previously unreported video clip of a speech at the Jamestown Foundation. Some analysts believe Russia supports the current frontrunner, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, the left-wing former mayor of Mexico City, while some Mexican commentators noted that there has been no proof of Russian involvement.

Over 200,000 Salvadorans have been told they must leave the United States or face deportation, following a decision by the Trump administration to end the Temporary Protected Status that made it legal for them to live and work in the United States, the Times . The administration said that the improved conditions in El Salvador meant that the individuals no longer fit into the framework of the program.

The supreme allied commander of NATO and Russias top general plan to meet later this month in Azerbaijan as the United States pursues a variety of high-level Russian contact early in 2018, BuzzFeed News . Other planned conversations between top officials will cover the Ukraine crisis, the U.S.-Russia relationship, and the Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces Treaty. The Obama administration forbade meetings between the top commanders of NATO and Russia in an effort to diplomatically isolate Moscow following the annexation of Crimea. Some officials now say more can be gained through increased engagement.

The Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps claims it has quelled the anti-government protests that recently spread throughout Iran, but some signs of resistance, such as the burning of government documents, have continued on social media, the Journal . These documents include bills from state-owned companies and identification cards for Basij, the IRGCs volunteer militia. Although some have continued to call for protests, the intensity has recently fallen and the level of unrest has been hard to measure. Iranian officials say that the leaders of the protests remain in custody.

China is rapidly expanding its facial recognition capability and integrating the technology to monitor the activitiesboth criminal and socialof its citizens, the Post . The Chinese government hopes to make the system, broad in its scope and goals, omnipresent, fully networked, always working and fully controllable by 2020.

The first pretrial hearing by a military commissions judge outside of Guantánamo is set to take place at the military commissions headquarters in Alexandria, VA, the Miami Herald . It will be a closed national security hearing in the case against alleged Al Qaeda commander Abd al Hadi al Iraqi. Neither the public nor the captive is permitted to attend or view the session. Hadi is in poor health and has recently undergone emergency spinal surgeries. It is unclear whether he will be able to attend the next public hearing in Guantánamo, scheduled to begin Jan. 29.

 

ICYMI: Last weekend on Lawfare

Benjamin Wittes  the Lawfare Podcast, the second of his conversation with Middle East policy expert and vocal Trump supporter Michael Doran.

Dan Geer  on what the Spectre and Meltdown vulnerabilities force technologists and policy makers to evaluate what they choose to prioritize.

Charlie Winter and Jade Parker  how the Islamic States cyber and propaganda tactics have shifted as the group has lost control of territory.

Paul Rosenzweig  that elections are a cybersecurity issue.

 

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

 

The Biggest Question on the Trump/Russia Story – TPM (blog)
 

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TPM (blog)
The Biggest Question on the Trump/Russia Story
TPM (blog)
A week ago I said we were at the end of the beginning of the Trump/Russia story. The big question of whether there was collusion between Russia and the Trump campaign has been answered for anyone who has their eyes open. They did. The question is how and more »

The Biggest Question on the Trump/Russia Story Talking Points Memo
 

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A week ago I said we were at the end of the beginning of the Trump/Russia story. The big question of whether there was collusion between Russia and the Trump campaign has been answered for anyone who has their eyes open. They did. The question is how far it went and what was involved. But there’s another question, related but distinct, which is in my mind perhaps the biggest question or mystery about the whole story.

We know that for years before the 2016 presidential campaign Donald Trump had extensive and deep financial ties to Russia and other countries of the former Soviet Union. This basic point isn’t even disputed. As far back as 2008, Trump’s son notoriously boasted to an investor conference that “we see a lot of money pouring in from Russia.” But of course it’s more specific than that. Russians, Russian emigres and people from other countries of the former Soviet Union made up a wildly disproportionate number of the buyers of units in Trump’s luxury apartment buildings. Russian or Ukrainian or emigre money were major funders of his major building projects. Trump Soho is the most notorious example. But it’s far from the only one.

Then there are the various business partners: Felix Sater, Russian immigrant, convicted felon and mob associate who was one of the Trump’s top partners in the decade and a half before his presidential run; Michael Cohen, Trump’s American born ‘lawyer’ with deep family ties to Ukraine who was also a conduit for millions, perhaps hundreds of millions of dollars out of the countries of the former Soviet Union. You probably known him better as Trump’s bully lawyer on TV. That’s not why he works in the Trump Organization, or did.

My aim for now is not to be exhaustive. We’ve already discussed Trump’s money ties to Russia extensively here in the Editors’ Blog going back more than 18 months. Suffice it to say that we know Trump’s operations were heavily dependent on Russian money and that he had close connections to the Russian and Ukrainian criminal underworld. Whether his operations met the specific legal qualifications of money laundering there’s no question that a major part of Trump’s business model was allowing wealthy Russians and oligarchs to get money out of Russia, either to protect it from capricious authoritarian governments at home or to cleanse it of its origins in criminal activity.

All this and more we know.

The question is how does this relate and connect to what happened during the 2016 campaign – Russia’s interference campaign, Trump’s extreme policy friendliness to Russia and whatever level of collusion bound the two together.

One answer to this is straightforward: Trump was already in business with Russia and Vladimir Putin and that was the basis of the 2016 alliance and the conspiracy to work together to subvert the 2016 election. Perhaps it was even the reason Trump ran for President. Or maybe Russia essentially owned Trump because of compromising information they had on him. In other words, in either case, Trump and Putin or others in Russia had an understanding going in about how it would all go down.

Only it can’t be quite that simple. To me the sheer ubiquity of approaches to the Trump campaign – the significance of which the Trumpers constantly deny – actually tells us this. (I’m actually surprised the smarter ones haven’t made this point. It’s not exonerating. But it is complicating.) If Trump and Putin had an understanding going in – you do this and I’ll do that in return – do you really need operatives courting Trump’s doofus foreign policy advisor George Papadopoulos in London. Or having Trump’s oligarch friend’s publicist setting up a meeting with Don Jr. and a lawyer most known for working to overturn the sanctions tied to the Magnitskey Act? These are clearly overtures, dangles as intelligence professionals call them – almost all of which got a positive response. If the plan is set, you shouldn’t need so many of what amount to cold approaches like this.

On the other hand, Trump’s connections to Russia, Russian money and the machinations of Putin-aligned oligarchs runs so deep, it is simply not credible to imagine that these pre-existing relationships with Russia and Russian money is unrelated to what happened in 2016. Not remotely credible.

Now, you might be saying, these are two extreme, strawman-ish scenarios you’re outlining. Well, I agree. That’s my point. I’m setting forth the maximal theories on either side to make the point that I don’t think we know quite where on this spectrum this all fits or how we reconcile what seems like a deep and close relationship with what seem like introductions. We know a fair amount about what happened before the campaign. We know a decent amount about what happened during the campaign. But it’s not as easy or clear as many assume how you fit them together.

The most important question is what happened during the campaign – in legal terms, in democratic terms, in national security terms. But in many ways the biggest question, the most fascinating and hardest to figure is this one I just laid out: how does Trump’s heavy dependence on Russian money and employees with deep ties to Russia and Ukraine and the criminal underworlds in those countries connect to the very pro-Russia line he took during the campaign and his campaign’s willingness to work with and conspire with the Russian disruption campaign in 2016? Sure they must be related. But how? I don’t think we really know that yet.

My best guess is that people around Putin knew Trump was crooked and dependent on Russian money and that he was likely to be friendly and up for … well, up for anything. So they went to work trying to make friends and found willing partners. He was up for anything. But that isn’t so much an explanation based on specific facts as it is the simplest explanation, the cleanest theory that accounts for all the facts we know.

This requires a lot more sleuthing and explanation.

EXCLUSIVE: Huma Abedin backed up her emails to Anthony Weiner’s laptop after leaving the State Department even … – Daily Mail
 

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EXCLUSIVE: Huma Abedin backed up her emails to Anthony Weiner’s laptop after leaving the State Department even …
Daily Mail
Huma Abedin backed up copies of her emails with Hillary Clinton to her pervert husband Anthony Weiner’s laptop, DailyMail.com can disclose – conflicting with her account to the FBI and in court that she did not preserve the conversations. An  

Trump Administration Tells 200,000 Salvadorans To Leave Or Get Deported: Reports
 

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The move hurts U.S. interests to further an anti-immigration ideology, advocates say.

LABRAT KNATS! – Google Search
 

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Putin Happy With Return on Investment for Hacking 2016 Election …

NewsweekDec 14, 2017
For less than a half-million dollars, Russian President Vladimir Putin got what he most wanted out of the Kremlin’s campaign to influence the 2016 U.S. presidential election: a destabilized American democracy and Hillary Clinton out of his hair, U.S. officials say. The Kremlin views its influence campaign, …

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“The drip, drip, drip Effect
 

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The drip, drip, drip Effect
“The drip, drip, drip” Effect | Global Security News
 

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 –

“The drip, drip, drip” Effect:

They will try, and will try, and will try until they find the suitable for them the “cost efficiency ratio” and the “cost effect” formula. They will try until they are. That’s the Asiatic historical nature of the Russian predatory ruling classes: to raid, to rob, to steal, to exploit, to enslave, in any which Mongol-Tatar way they can, and see the opportunity to, and their sneaky way to do it. They will definitely try until they are definitely stopped. 

October 28 Letter is not something that is outside the Russian meddling efforts but is a result of them because the October 28 Letter was the direct result of the Abedin-Weiner emails affair, which, it looks like to me, was engineered by the Russians on the highest levels (again, the telling style is implicated), with the witting or unwitting participation of the pro-Trump faction of the FBI (Was it the predominant mood in this organization at that particular time: the “post-Obama – pre-Clinton panic”?). That’s again, how it looks to me personally, and to many other observers. 

And the logic here is very simple and clear: If Anthony Weiner’s latest sexting episode was the FBI set up as a sting operation (with known or unknown to them political purposes), and if this “operation” lead to the October 28 Letter which changed the course of the elections, then Trump’s election is indeed the “coup d’état” performed by the panicking FBI. 

The role of J. Comey in all this might open some questions. My impression is that he personally is the ethical, maybe even very ethical and apolitical person, but he was in some ways deceived and manipulated by the upper echelons of the FBI leadership on which he relied upon in the day to day management. They just used him as the “ethical cover” or shield, and, possibly, run those “everyday affairs” as they saw fit. But this is my hypothesis, and it might not be necessarily correct. I think that the future historians will probably have the intense interest in these “matters”. 

Michael Novakhov

8:59 AM 1/8/2018

_____________________________________

Russia has been meddling in foreign elections for decades. Has it made a difference?

“We identified two waves of Russian meddling since the early 1990s. The first wave lasted until 2014 and targeted only post-Soviet countries. Since then, a second wave has expanded dramatically into established Western democracies.

However, an examination of both of these waves shows that Russia’s efforts have made little difference…

Of course, Russia may still have influenced the outcome. As FiveThirtyEight’s Harry Enten notes“the drip, drip, drip” of these email releases “makes it all but impossible to measure their effect precisely.” And Trump won by such a thin margin that even a small Russian impact could have tipped the election.

But there is far stronger evidence that other factors were more critical. For instance, public opinion shifted suddenly after Oct. 28, when FBI Director James B. Comey announced that he was reopening an investigation into Clinton’s use of a private email server while serving as secretary of state. And the closeness of the election mostly resulted from polarization between Democrats and Republicans that long predates Russian President Vladimir Putin or the rise of Trump. ”

_______________________

Trump Tower fire: FDNY says fire on roof of Manhattan building ‘under control’

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9:19 AM 1/9/2018 – Saved Stories: Trump likely to be interviewed over Russia probe – ANI News

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Saved Stories – None
Ahmad Taibi: No deal for Palestine under Donald Trump – Aljazeera.com
The Orange Menaceand the Even More Dangerous Party That Stands With Him – The Nation.
White House: Jared And Ivanka Are Sacrificing Their Personal Lives For America
5 reasons to worry Trump is undermining the Justice Department’s independence – Vox
Is Trump mentally fit? Don’t count on his physical to tell you – Politico
The Decline of Anti-Trumpism – New York Times
“Fire and Fury” sparks talk about Trump’s mental fitness
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Whitcomb: Fire and Ice; A City for the ‘Middle Class’? Demeaning the FBI; Bike-Friendly URI – GoLocal Worcester
Azov Regiment already has US weapons Bellingcat – UNIAN
Russia Rejects CIA Chief’s Assertion It’s Meddling In US Congressional Elections – RadioFreeEurope/RadioLiberty
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US Navy Destroyer Arrives in Ukraine Amid Rift With Russia – Newsweek
Vladimir Putin forms HIT SQUAD to ward off drone attacks – Daily Star
The Early Edition: January 9, 2018
A Trump Interview With Robert Mueller Would Follow Presidential Tradition – NPR
Fox News Host Howard Kurtz Defends Jake Tapper from Trump Attacks – Daily Beast

 

Saved Stories – None
Ahmad Taibi: No deal for Palestine under Donald Trump – Aljazeera.com


Aljazeera.com
Ahmad Taibi: No deal for Palestine under Donald Trump
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Jerusalem – Ahmad Taibi, a prominent Arab member of Israel’s Parliament, said a solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict under US President Donald Trump would be impossible. Speaking to Al Jazeera from his office in the Knesset, Taibi said there is 

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The Orange Menaceand the Even More Dangerous Party That Stands With Him – The Nation.


The Nation.
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The Trump administration installed its own appointees to several important US attorney posts without getting the Senate’s approval, and has recently sidelined several career officials in the FBI or DOJ who Trump dislikes. On top of that, two Republican 
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Trump likely to be interviewed over Russia probe – ANI News


ANI News
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ANI News
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“Fire and Fury” sparks talk about Trump’s mental fitness

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David Cameron thought Barack Obama was a narcissist, says ex … – Telegraph.co.uk


Telegraph.co.uk
David Cameron thought Barack Obama was a narcissist, says ex … narcissist, says ex-aide Steve Hilton 
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Everything hits the fan

Right now Donald Trump is missing the good old days of last week, when it was only Steve Bannon who had gone rogue against him. It’s difficult to figure out how much of this is a snowball effect and how much of it may be happenstance, but at this rate Trump’s entire world is caving in on him from within. Now everyone from Ivanka Trump to Brad Parscale to Sebastian Gorka on down is suddenly finding ways to play for the other team, whether because they’re trying to distance themselves or because they’re all simply very rapidly losing what they barely ever had to begin with.

It would have been devastating enough if the story was simply that Bannon was accusing Trump and his son of a “treasonous” plot with the Russians. That’s profoundly ugly, and unprecedented in the modern presidency. Since when does a former White House Chief Strategist fire back with accusations of literal treason? But then came Brad Parscale’s bizarre tweet in which he repeatedly insisted that nothing happened in the campaign without the approval of Jared Kushner and Eric Trump (wait, a minute, Eric?). Was Parscale trying to help these two by making them look powerful, or trying to throw them under the bus by assigning the Russia plot decision-making to them? It quickly got worse.

Sebastian Gorka, Trump’s former resident White House white supremacist and goatee model, seemed to try to defend Trump against Michael Wolff’s book, but instead ended up confirming that Trump was lying about Wolff being given insider access. Stephen Miller went on CNN and offered up such a demented defense of Trump complete with getting kicked off the air and kicked out of the building that he had to have known he was hurting Trump in the process. Then Lindsey Graham, Trump’s inexplicable new puppet, went on The View and wandered totally off script by defending Robert Mueller.

After everything else had hit the fan from within for Donald Trump, last night Ivanka Trump jumped on Twitter and appeared to endorse Oprah for President. Why on earth would she endorse her own father’s potential 2020 competitor? Then again, at this point we all know Donald Trump won’t still be in office by 2020 to run for reelection anyway.

The post Everything hits the fan appeared first on Palmer Report.

Daily briefing: May’s shambolic reshuffle, Google sued, BBC fallout – Financial Times


Financial Times
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It was the opposite of a show of power. Theresa May’s cabinet reshuffle and attempt to reinforce authority went awry. The accident-strewn revamp, being dubbed the night of the blunt knives, saw one senior minister refuse to move and another resign from 

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Azov Regiment already has US weapons Bellingcat – UNIAN


UNIAN
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Russia Rejects CIA Chief’s Assertion It’s Meddling In US Congressional Elections – RadioFreeEurope/RadioLiberty


RadioFreeEurope/RadioLiberty
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Russian officials on January 8 rejected an accusation by CIA Director Mike Pompeo that Russia is attempting to interfere inU.S. congressional elections this year and has been meddling in U.S. elections “for decades.” “I continue to be concerned, not 
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Russia’s most abundant resource, land, has proved more a bane than a boon throughout history. Though Russia is the world’s largest country by area, 75 percent of its territory is frozen most of the year, and marshlands make up most of the remainder  
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Mueller Conveys Interest in Questioning Trump: Source – NBC New York


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Amid Already Chaotic Week, Trump Faces New Questions On Potential Obstruction Of Justice – Kaplan Herald


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US Navy Destroyer Arrives in Ukraine Amid Rift With Russia – Newsweek


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Russian-armed forces in Ukraine’s eastern regions of Donetsk and Luhansk have also fought against Ukrainian government forces for over three years. The U.S., which has three military allies on the Black Sea basin, has pledged support for Ukraine and 

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The move, which involves development drone-zapping technology, comes amid fears that terrorists could unleash mayhem using sophisticated long-distance unmanned flying objects. Russian concerns have been heightened by jihadist attacks on its military 
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The Early Edition: January 9, 2018

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Before the start of business, Just Security provides a curated summary of up-to-the-minute developments at home and abroad. Heres todays news.

NORTH KOREA

North and South Korea began high-level face-to-face talks today at the truce village of Panmunjom, marking the first official talks in two years. According to South Koreas Unification Ministry, South Korea proposed reuniting families separated by the 1950-53 Korean War and expressed a desire to discuss the nuclear issue. Andrew Jeong reports at the Wall Street Journal.

The talks were proposed by South Korea after the North Korean leader Kim Jong-un said in his New Years address that he was considering sending a team to the Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea, next month. The BBC reports.

North Korea agreed today to send a delegation to next months Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, marking the first time North Korea has participated in the Winter Games in eight years and the move signifies a breakthrough in inter-Korean sports exchanges, however it was not immediately clear whether any conditions have been attached to North Koreas decision to attend. Choe Sang-Hun reports at the New York Times.

The inter-Korean talks mark the first talks in more than two years, and the meeting has created optimism within the South Korean government that talks about sports could lead to discussions on broader issues, such as Pyongyangs nuclear weapons program. Yoonjung Seo and Anna Fifield report at the Washington Post.

The two Koreas intend to re-open a military hotline, the South Korean Vice Unification Minister Chun Hae-sung said today, James Griffiths reports at the CNN in rolling coverage of the talks.

South Korea said it would be prepared to temporarily lift some sanctions to allow the North Korean delegation to visit the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, the South Korean foreign ministry spokesperson Roh Kyu-deok said that Seoul would consider whether it would need to take prior steps with the U.N. Security Council and other countries to ensure the visit goes ahead. Christine Kim and Josh Smith report at Reuters.

The U.S. has been watching the inter-Korean talks closely and there have been debates within Washington about the impact the easing of tensions would have on the Trump administrations maximum pressure strategy and whether Kims overture was designed to drive a wedge between Washington and Seoul. Katrina Manson explains at the Financial Times.

South Korea hopes that a North Korean figure skating duo will compete in the Games, the signs that the duo will participate are positive, however translating their attendance into a broader diplomatic thaw poses a huge challenge. Anna Fifield provides an analysis at the Washington Post.

There have been debates within the Trump administration about conducting a targeted military strike against a North Korean facility despite the apparent ease in tensions on the Korean Peninsula, demonstrating the precariousness of the situation. While there may be relative calm over the next few months, mid-2018 could be a time of reckoning, Gerald F. Seib writes at the Wall Street Journal.

North Korea exacted concessions from South Korea without offering anything in return, demonstrating North Koreas we win and you lose approach to deals and South Koreas President Moon Jae-ins administration must avoid getting played by recognizing North Koreas traps, insist on a quid pro quo at every step and have a few tricks up its own sleeves. Nicholas Eberstadt writes at the New York Times.

The U.S. should carry out strikes to destroy North Koreas nuclear arsenal, the fear that North Korea would retaliate with conventional rocket artillery against Seoul should not deter the U.S. as South Koreas vulnerability is very largely self-inflicted through years of deliberate inaction, and the U.S. must pursue its national interests. Edward Luttwak writes at Foreign Policy.

TRUMP-RUSSIA

Special counsel Robert Mueller informed Trumps lawyers last month that he would probably seek to interview the president, according to two sources familiar with the discussion, no formal request has been made and no date has been set for an interview as part of Muellers investigation into ties into the Trump campaign and Russia, and whether Trump obstructed justice by firing the former F.B.I. Director James Comey. Matt Apuzzo and Michael S. Schmidt report at the New York Times.

Talks between Trumps lawyers and Mueller are in a preliminary stage, according to a source familiar with the matter, the prospect of interviewing the president suggests that Muellers probe has progressed and may be reaching a conclusion. Rebecca Ballhaus reports at the Wall Street Journal.

Muellers team could possibly interview Trump on a limited portion of questions within the next few weeks, according to an anonymous source close to the president, who added that Trump is comfortable about being interviewed. Carol D. Leonnig reports at the Washington Post.

Trumps lawyers have been preparing how to define the parameters of any interview with the president, according to sources with knowledge of the matter, and Trumps team have been looking at examples from previous administrations as a basis for limiting the Presidents exposure. Gloria Borger, Pamela Brown and Katelyn Polantz report at CNN.

Mueller could issue a grand jury subpoena to the president and, if this measure is taken, it seems that Trump would not be able to refuse to cooperate, Pete Williams provides an analysists at NBC News.

The founder of the opposition research firm Fusion G.P.S. has become a central figure in the Russia investigations, Glenn R. Simpson commissioned the controversial dossier compiled by former British Intelligence officer Christopher Steele which alleged connections between the Trump campaign and Russian officials he has appeared before congressional committees for questioning, and he has connections to Russian-American lobbyist Rinat Akhmetshin and Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya. Matt Flegenheimer profiles Simpson at the New York Times.

The U.S. District Judge Trevor McFadden should recuse himself from the legal case on the Steele dossier, lawyers for Fusion G.P.S. have argued, saying that Judge McFadden has many conflicts of interests, including the fact that he worked as a vetter on Trumps transition team. Josh Gerstein reports at POLITICO.

The efforts to uncover how the F.B.I. used the Steele dossier progressed last week, federal Judge Richard Leon rejected a request by Fusion G.P.S. for a preliminary injunction against a congressional subpoena for bank records about its clients and payments and the F.B.I and the Justice Department reached an agreement to turn over information it had subpoenaed to the House Intelligence Committee. The developments have come as a consequence of the House Intelligence Committees fight for transparency, the Wall Street Journal editorial board writes.

IRAN

It would be a misrepresentation [of events] and also an insult to Iranian people to say they only had economic demands, the Iranian President Hassan Rouhani was quoted by the Tasnim news agency as saying yesterday about the protests that have taken place across Iran, Rouhani also suggested that there was a generational element to the unrest and said that citizens should be allowed to criticize all Iranian officials. Bozorgmehr Sharafedin reports at Reuters.

The protests in Iran have prompted mass arrests and deaths in custody, prompting concerns about the abuse of human rights. Saeed Kamali Dehghan reports at the Guardian.

The unrest appears to be dying down but the economic grievances show no sign of disappearing, Jon Gambrell provides an analysis at the AP.

Trump faces several deadlines on the 2015 Iran nuclear deal from the end of this week, ahead of his decision on the deal, 52 U.S. national security experts have signed a letter calling on the president not to undermine the agreement. Reuters reports.

Iranian officials appear to have embarked on a coordinated effort to defend the 2015 nuclear deal, turning their attention to the deal from the protests that have taken place across the country due to the possibility of new U.S. sanctions being imposed on Iran. Zein Basravi reports at Al Jazeera 

Iran might re-consider its cooperation with the U.N.s International Atomic Energy Agency (I.A.E.A.) if the U.S. does not meet its commitments under the agreement, Irans nuclear chief Ali Akbar Salehi was quoted as telling the I.A.E.A. Director General in a phone call yesterday. Bozorgmehr Sharafedin reports at Reuters.

The nuclear deal constitutes the first genuine foreign policy test of this year and Trump has been placed in an awkward position that may lead to him keeping the deal alive, however it is not possible to predict what Trump will decide. Susan B. Glasser writes at POLITICO Magazine.

The protests in Iran show the importance of the nuclear deal, the agreement was supposed to deliver better economic conditions for the Iranian people and the raised expectations have made them intolerant of the lack of progress being made by the government, and Trump should also be aware that foolish moves by his administration could empower the most regressive forces and set back reforms. The New York Times editorial board writes.

SYRIA

The Syrian military today accused Israel of launching missiles at military outposts near the Syrian capital of Damascus, the Syrian army said in a statement that the attacks caused material damage. The Israeli military declined to comment, however the Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu today reiterated Israels long-standing policy that it would prevent the transfer of game-changing weapons to Hezbollah from Syrian territory, the AP reports.

A total of 126 people have been killed in the rebel-held Damascus enclave of Eastern Ghouta since Dec. 29, according to the U.K.-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, the area has been besieged by the Syrian government since 2013. Al Jazeera reports.

Rebels in Eastern Ghouta have been engaging in talks with Russia, saying that they have exacted few concessions so far, but face little choice and believe that Russia will have the final say on Syrias fate. Ellen Francis reports at Reuters.

Russia has been given the space to expand its role in Syria, Saudi Arabia, the U.N. and the U.S. have allowed Russia to take the initiative, partly due to Washingtons passivity. Colum Lynch writes at Foreign Policy.

U.S.-led airstrikes continue. U.S. and coalition forces carried out 58 airstrikes against Islamic State targets in Syria and Iraq between December 29, 2017 and January 4, 2018. [Central Command]

PAKISTAN

The Pentagon announced yesterday that it has frozen $900m in security assistance to Pakistan, the Pentagon spokesperson Lt. Col. Mike Andrews said in a statement that the amount has been suspended, not cancelled or reprogrammed. Ellen Mitchell reports at the Hill.

A Pakistan court has ordered the release of a radical anti-U.S. cleric amid increased tensions between U.S. and Pakistan. Riaz Khan and Munir Ahmed report at the AP.

The Trump administrations approach to Pakistan is misguided: Pakistans geography, the role of its military and proxies, and its importance in relation to the security situation in Afghanistan means that it has greater leverage over us than many imagine. Richard G. Olson writes at the New York Times.

OTHER DEVELOPMENTS

The Trump administration is expected to push an initiative that would call on U.S. diplomats and military attaches to play a bigger role in arms sales, an anonymous senior official said that the plan is expected to be launched as soon as next month. Mike Stone and Mike Spetalnick report at Reuters.

Vice President Mike Pence is scheduled to visit the Middle East at the end of this month, the trip includes visits to Egypt, Israel and Jordan. Jordan Fabian reports at the Hill.

The Trump administrations foreign policy is likely to get worse this year, 2017 was bad but a number of significant issues must be grappled with this year such as the Iran nuclear deal, N.A.F.T.A. renegotiation, the crisis on the Korean Peninsula that could lead to more damaging consequences. Hal Brands writes at Foreign Policy.

The Libyan city of Sirte has been struggling to rebuild itself since Islamic State militants were driven out by Libyan militias and the U.S. army in December 2016. Sudarsan Raghavan describes the situation in Sirte at the Washington Post.

A Trump Interview With Robert Mueller Would Follow Presidential Tradition – NPR


NPR
A Trump Interview With Robert Mueller Would Follow Presidential Tradition
NPR
If President Trump answers questions from Justice Department special counsel Robert Mueller, as reports indicate he may, Trump would follow the precedent set by many previous occupants of his office. NBC News reports the president’s lawyers are
Trump probably could not refuse Mueller subpoena to answer questionsNBCNews.com
Mueller Is Said to Likely Seek to Interview TrumpNew York Times
Russia probe: Trump lawyers ‘in talks over Mueller interview’BBC News
Omaha World-Herald –Fortune –NBCNews.com
all 480 news articles »
Fox News Host Howard Kurtz Defends Jake Tapper from Trump Attacks – Daily Beast


Daily Beast
Fox News Host Howard Kurtz Defends Jake Tapper from Trump Attacks
Daily Beast
The ‘MediaBuzz’ host called CNN’s Tapper an experienced journalist who was right to cut off his contentious interview with Stephen Miller. Matt Wilstein. 01.08.18 4:23 PM ET. Fox News/Screenshot. Jake Tapper got some strong support from an unlikely 

and more »


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