November 17th, 2016

MLK quote

169 House Dems join to tell Trump: Dump Bannon

A group of 169 [out of 188] House Democrats is demanding President-elect Donald Trump rescind Steve Bannon’s appointment as chief strategist and senior counselor.

“Bigotry, anti-Semitism and xenophobia should have no place in our society, and they certainly have no place in the White House,” Rep. David Cicilline (D-R.I.) said in a Wednesday statement.Collapse )

Source: The Hill

Voldemort doesn't have to listen to them, of course, and probably won't. But I'm glad to see them speaking out anyway. I just want to know what's wrong with the other 19 House Democrats who didn't sign on to this. (Actually, what I really want is to wake up from this nightmare, but that's not happening so I'll take what I can get.)
Buffy wig smile

Clapper has Resigned As Director Of National Intelligence

Saying that "It felt really good" to step down, U.S. Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, 75, says he has submitted his letter of resignation. Clapper revealed the news as he testified to the House Select Committee on Intelligence Thursday.

Clapper's resignation "was expected and does not today appear to indicate that Clapper is in any trouble or is being forced out," NPR National Security Editor Philip Ewing says. "He has told our Mary Louise Kelly (and others) that he keeps a calendar counting down the days until he is out of government service."

Clapper has nearly two months left on his term of office; he has sworn in as director of national intelligence (DNI) in August of 2010.

"Everybody needs to take a deep breath," a DNI spokesperson tells NPR. "Clapper is resigning effective January 20. He will finish out his term. This is not a move designed to register protest or a lack of confidence in the incoming administration."

Following a military career that ended with his retirement as an Air Force lieutenant general and the director of the Defense Intelligence Agency, Clapper initially retired from service in 1995. He was drawn back to the government after the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, working for a range of defense and intelligence agencies before becoming the director of national intelligence.


Russia Cuts Ties With International Criminal Court, Calling It ‘One-Sided’

MOSCOW — President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia instructed his government on Wednesday to withdraw from the treaty that created the International Criminal Court, while his government assailed the tribunal as “ineffective and one-sided.”

The action was largely symbolic, because Russia — like the United States — has not ratified the treaty and is not under the court’s jurisdiction. But it was another setback for the fairly young court, which handles cases of war crimes and crimes against humanity and is an emblem of the international order that is being shaken by populist revolts across the West.

“Essentially, this is just a gratuitous slap in the face, not a body blow,” said Kate Cronin-Furman, a human rights lawyer and political scientist at the Harvard Kennedy School, who predicted that the election of Donald J. Trump as president of the United States would lead to more harm for the court.

Collapse )

Philippines' Duterte says may follow Russia's withdrawal from 'useless' ICC

Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte on Thursday said he might follow Russia and withdraw from the International Criminal Court (ICC), citing criticism from Western nations for a rash of killings unleashed by his war on drugs.

Duterte described the ICC as "useless" and expressed frustration about the West's allegations of extrajudicial killings and its failure to understand his crackdown on narcotics. He also appeared to blame the United Nations for failing to prevent wars all over the world.

Collapse )

U.S. forces may have committed war crimes, says International Criminal Court

International prosecutor in The Hague says U.S. military may have committed war crimes in Afghanistan and elsewhere

The International Criminal Court in The Hague has said U.S. forces may have committed war crimes in several countries.

The prosecutor’s office said in a report released on Monday that there is a “reasonable basis to believe” that prisoners held by U.S. forces were tortured in Afghanistan and at CIA detention facilities in Poland, Lithuania and Romania in 2003 and 2004.

Collapse )


Trump supporter cites internment camps as precedent for Muslim registry on Fox News

One day after an adviser to President-elect Donald Trump said the administration is considering a registry for immigrants from Muslim countries, a former Navy SEAL and Trump supporter cited Japanese interment camps as precedent for the action.

Carl Higbie, the author of “Enemies, Foreign & Domestic: A SEAL’s Story,” told Fox News’ Megyn Kelly that the United States has taken similar actions in the past when discussing a possible Muslim registry.

“It is legal. They say it will hold constitutional muster. I know the ACLU is going to challenge it, but I think it will pass. We’ve done it with Iran back a while ago. We did it during World War II with Japanese. Call it what you will, maybe wrong,” Higbie said.

Collapse )


China Tells Trump That Climate Change Is No Hoax It Invented

China couldn’t have invented global warming as a hoax to harm U.S. competitiveness because it was Donald Trump’s Republican predecessors who started climate negotiations in the 1980s, China’s Vice Foreign Minister Liu Zhenmin said.

U.S. Presidents Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush supported the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change in initiating global warming talks even before China knew that negotiations to cut pollution were starting, Liu told reporters at United Nations talks on Wednesday in Marrakech, Morocco.

Ministers and government officials from almost 200 countries gathered in Marrakech this week are awaiting a decision by President-elect Trump on whether he’ll pull the U.S. out of the Paris Agreement to tackle climate change. The tycoon tweeted in 2012 that the concept of global warming “was created by and for the Chinese in order to make U.S. manufacturing non-competitive.” China’s envoy rejected that view.

“If you look at the history of climate change negotiations, actually it was initiated by the IPCC with the support of the Republicans during the Reagan and senior Bush administration during the late 1980s,” Liu told reporters during an hour-long briefing.


Reagan’s Legacy

While Reagan died in 2004, George Schulz, who served as his secretary of state, has become one of the most prominent Republicans voicing concern about climate change and urging action.

“The potential results are catastrophic,” said Schulz, 95, in an interview with Bloomberg in 2014. “So let’s take out an insurance policy.”

Increased U.S. efforts to curb emissions through investing in new cleaner technologies and manufacturing could actually boost U.S. competitiveness, Liu countered. “That’s why I hope the Republican’s administration will continue to support this process.”

A fortnight of discussions in Marrakech were thrust into the spotlight last week by Trump’s victory. The negotiating texts being drafted by delegates and officials in north African country were suddenly overshadowed by a uncertain political future cast by Trump’s shadow over the two-decade-old process.

Outgoing U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, who helped secure the Paris Agreement last year, said the majority of U.S. citizens back action on climate change and tried to assuage concern.

“No one has a right to make decisions for billions of people based solely on ideology,” he said. “Climate change shouldn’t be a partisan issue. It isn’t a partisan issue for our military. It isn’t a partisan issue for our intelligence community.”

China’s President Xi Jinping underlined the importance of cooperation between the two largest economies when he spoke to Trump on Monday, said Liu, who added China will continue its fight against climate change “whatever the circumstances.”

He added that richer nations should take more responsibility than poor countries for financing the fight against climate change, in line with the UN’s Framework Convention on Climate Change. “Of course we’re still expecting developed countries including the United States will continue to take the lead on mitigating climate change,” he said.