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Trump says he thinks 2020 election will end up at Supreme Court

23.09.2020 20:19

President Donald Trump said on Wednesday (Sept 23) he thinks the 2020 election will end up at the US Supreme Court, adding that is why it was important to have nine justices.

From: www.straitstimes.com

Trump won't commit to peaceful transfer of power

23.09.2020 20:00

President Donald Trump is declining to commit to a peaceful transfer of power if he loses the Nov. 3 presidential election. Trump told reporters Wednesday he'll "have to see what happens," adding that mail-in voting is "out of control." (Sept. 23)

From: rssfeeds.usatoday.com

Barr remains wary of security concerns in Oracle's TikTok deal

23.09.2020 19:33

September 24, 2020 7:33 AM
WASHINGTON (BLOOMBERG) - Attorney-General William Barr and other US national security officials haven't signed off on plans to let Oracle Corp and Walmart Inc take a stake in TikTok to avert President Donald Trump's threat to bar the social network from the US, according to a person familiar with the matter.

From: www.straitstimes.com

Trump won't commit to peaceful transfer of power if he loses

23.09.2020 19:24


President Donald Trump on Wednesday again declined to commit to a peaceful transfer of power if he loses the Nov. 3 presidential election. “We’re going to have to see what happens,” Trump said at a news conference, responding to a question about whether he’d commit to a peaceful transfer of power. Trump has been pressing a monthslong campaign against mail-in voting this November by tweeting and speaking out critically about the practice.

From: news.yahoo.com

Trump says may or may not approve stricter FDA guidelines for Covid-19 vaccine

23.09.2020 19:15

US President Donald Trump said on Wednesday (Sept 23) he may or may not approve potentially new, more stringent standards for emergency authorisation of a Covid-19 vaccine by the US Food and Drug Administration, saying such a move would appear political.

From: www.straitstimes.com

Biden slams Trump for 'politicizing' Justice Dept.

23.09.2020 18:36

Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden slammed President Donald Trump, accusing him of "politicizing" the Justice Dept. during a campaign event in Charlotte, North Carolina. (Sept. 23)

From: rssfeeds.usatoday.com

Trump: Election will 'end up in the Supreme Court'

23.09.2020 17:01

President Donald Trump predicted Wednesday the 2020 presidential election "will end up in the Supreme Court." And he suggested that's one of the reasons he is pushing so strongly to fill the vacant seat before the Nov. 3 election. (Sept. 23)

From: rssfeeds.usatoday.com

Ivanka, Pence bring law-and-order tour to city of Floyd

23.09.2020 16:35

Vice President Mike Pence and Ivanka Trump are bringing President Donald Trump's law-and-order message to Minneapolis, the city where George Floyd's death set off a worldwide protest movement

From: abcnews.go.com

Trump's son, Eric, cannot delay testimony in New York probe, judge rules

23.09.2020 15:33

A New York judge on Wednesday (Sept 23) ordered President Donald Trump's son Eric to make himself available by Oct 7 to be interviewed under oath for a state probe into financing for properties owned by his family's company.

From: www.straitstimes.com

He Killed 2 Marines in 2011. It Almost Derailed Peace Talks This Month.

23.09.2020 15:08


KABUL, Afghanistan -- He was a young Afghan police officer working alongside American forces in one of the hot spots of the war, with Taliban ambushes all around. Then he turned his weapon on two U.S. Marines, killing them both.Now, he is out of prison.His attack, in Helmand province in 2011, was a serious eruption in a phenomenon that within a year would redefine the American war in Afghanistan: insider killings, often by members of the Afghan security forces who, like the police officer, were not at the time part of the Taliban.But just this month, that officer, Mohammad Dawood, 31, reached the top of the Taliban's list of prisoners they wanted released as they negotiated the opening of peace talks with the Afghan government. And along with just five other men detained after killing Westerners, his fate became a sticking point that nearly derailed the whole process, officials say.While the Taliban made the men's release an ultimatum before they would go to the table, officials for the United States, France and Australia were quietly urging the Afghan government not to let them go -- even as they told the Afghan government to free thousands of other Taliban prisoners with Afghan blood on their hands in order to open the way for the talks.Only a last-minute deal to remand the six to a kind of house arrest in Qatar allowed the opening of peace talks on Sept. 12.Dawood, whose name had not been publicly released but whose identity was confirmed by American and Afghan officials, now stands as a symbol of the difficulty -- and tough choices -- involved in trying to make peace in the middle of a bitter war.Dawood's killings of Lt. Col. Benjamin Palmer and Sgt. Kevin Balduf in 2011 represent only a fraction of more than 40 years of violence. But the Taliban's willingness to go to the brink for him in negotiations, despite his acting only on his own behalf, according to his family and close friends, was a stark demonstration of how even isolated disputes can threaten the peace process."We are not happy about the release of some prisoners, and we know our allies Australia and France are not happy about the release of some," said Zalmay Khalilzad, the U.S. special envoy for Afghan peace. In all, the Afghan government freed 5,000 prisoners demanded by the Taliban. "But we understand that this difficult step was in the service of something even more important, which is to get the Afghan war to come to an end, and it was a necessary step."The Taliban have consistently made prisoner releases a priority -- most notably in the 2014 exchange of an American soldier held by the Taliban for five years, Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, for five senior Taliban figures who were being held at the Guantanamo Bay prison camp. That deal brought heavy criticism for the Obama administration, and during his campaign for the presidency in 2016, Donald Trump repeatedly called Bergdahl a traitor who should be executed.Both Khalilzad as well as Mutlaq al-Qahtani, the Qatari special envoy for the process, refused to discuss details of the arrangement regarding the six prisoners, including where in Qatar the men are being held and under what circumstances. Amrullah Saleh, Afghanistan's vice president, in a recent interview said the men would not be allowed to leave Qatar -- all the pages on their passports are crossed out except for the one with the Qatari visa.Stopping deadly insider attacks like the one by Dawood was once an urgent imperative for the Obama administration. By the end of President Barack Obama's first term, cultural tensions and increasing pressure from the Taliban had spilled over into violence as Afghan troops turned their guns on their Western allies, threatening to derail the war effort.By the height of the war, Americans were building outposts within outposts to defend themselves from the very people they were supposed to be training and fighting alongside.Insider attacks became a grim feature of the conflict. The deaths of Palmer, 43, and Balduf, 27, came during a flurry of such killings that peaked in 2012, accounting for 15% of coalition troops who were killed or wounded in Afghanistan that year.Of the four U.S. troops killed in combat in 2020, two were killed in an insider attack in February, marking the last U.S. troops to die from hostile fire before the peace agreement between the United States and the Taliban.But as was the case for many such attacks, Dawood was not a part of an insurgent group when he killed the two Marines, according to those close to him and to an Afghan official familiar with his case.Born in Naw Bahar, a small, staunchly anti-Taliban village in Baghlan province, Dawood was one of five brothers and the son of Mohammad Zahir, a poor wheat farmer. He studied at a madrassa in Kunduz and Baghlan, before studying in Pakistan and Iran, where like many Afghans he worked for a brief time.Safdar Mohseni, head of the Baghlan provincial council, said Dawood had most likely turned to the Taliban in prison, looking for support."He was a good person to me in every way -- psychologically, scientifically, religiously -- and was a patriot," said Saqi Mohammad Numani, a religious scholar who taught Dawood for several years. "Like Dawood, I have thousands of students who are not in favor of violence and terror, and Dawood was not in favor of violence."After returning from Iran, Dawood was engaged to be married, but because he was low on money, he joined the Afghan police. He trained in Kabul for six months in 2010 and graduated as a sergeant, according to a senior police official who served alongside him in southern Afghanistan.Not long after Dawood left police training in 2011, he was assigned to the Afghan National Civil Order Police's 5th Brigade, a new unit the U.S. military was training in Afghanistan's volatile Helmand province. As the Taliban began regaining ground, U.S. and NATO forces started a concerted effort to professionalize the police force to hold what districts the Afghan government still controlled.On May 12, 2011, Dawood walked from the Afghan portion of his base in Lashkar Gah, the provincial capital of Helmand, and entered the U.S. side, where his Marine advisers lived, slept and ate.A small group of Marines were outside eating dinner when Dawood lifted his assault rifle and began firing, killing Palmer and Balduf. Marines fired back, wounding Dawood.Cultural misunderstandings and disgust with Westerners were traced to many insider killings. When the attacks began in earnest in 2008, they took a deep toll on the U.S.-Afghan relationship, sowing doubt and distrust that was only exacerbated by the stress of training and combat.In a country rife with anti-Semitism, Dawood appeared to turn to that in an attempt to justify his actions. He told investigators he killed the Americans because he thought they were Jews and he did not want to live among them. He said no one had provoked him, though the senior Afghan official said that Dawood's fundamentalist education in Iran and Pakistan was probably a catalyst for this contempt.This article originally appeared in The New York Times.(C) 2020 The New York Times Company

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