Donald Trump Inauguration Day schedule: What you need to know

(CNN)Welcome to Inauguration Day where Donald J. Trump will be sworn in as the 45th President of the United States. Here’s exactly what’s on his schedule:

All times EST
8:30 a.m. President-choose Trump will go to a church service with his household. Vice President-elect Mike Pence and his household will likewise sign up with the future very first household in addition to Cabinet designees, other member of the family and pals.
      Where? Saint John’s Church, throughout the street from the White House.
      1:00 p.m. President Trump, Vice-President Pence, Melania Trump and Karen Pence will go to a joint congressional inaugural committee luncheon.
      Where? The United States Capitol
      2:30 p.m. The President and Vice-President will go to a military evaluation.
      Where? United States Capitol on the East Front
      3 p.m. Trump and Pence, together with their households will participate in the inaugural parade in stands simply beyond the White House.
      7 p.m. President Trump, Vice-President Pence, Melania Trump and Karen Pence will go to the Liberty and Freedom Ball.
      Where? The Washington Convention Center off Mount Vernon Ave.
      After the Freedom Ball they will participate in the Military Ball.
      Where? National Building Museum

    Read more: http://www.cnn.com/2017/01/20/politics/donald-trump-inauguration-schedule/index.html

    Categories CNN

    Trump sings praises of American exceptionalism in elaborate July 4 salute

    President Trump speaks during an Independence Day celebration in front of the Lincoln Memorial, Thursday, July 4, 2019, in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

    With the Lincoln Memorial in the background and flanked on both sides by camouflaged Bradley fighting vehicles, President Trump used his “Salute to America” speech Thursday evening to praise the men and women of the Armed Forces and American exceptionalism.

    Despite concerns that he would use the Fourth of July event as a glorified campaign rally, Trump stuck mainly to the script during his speech – praising the spirit that “runs through the veins of every American patriot” and attempting to strike a more unifying  and conciliatory tone than he is generally known to take.

    “Today, we come together as one nation with this very special Salute to America,” a smiling Trump said. “We celebrate our history, our people, and the heroes who proudly defend our flag — the brave men and women of the United States military.”

    ‘SALUTE TO AMERICA’ CRITICS FUELED BY ‘HATE FOR PRESIDENT TRUMP’: KAYLEIGH MCENANY

    From George Washington leading the Continental Army to the Apollo 11 moon landing, Trump rattled off a list of American accomplishments and inventions in the name of freedom, while surreptitiously sneaking in a boast about his administration’s accomplishments.

    “Americans love our freedom and no one will ever take it away from us,” Trump said to chants of “U-S-A.” “Our nation is stronger today than it ever was before, it is stronger now stronger than ever.”

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    ‘Daddy won,’ Alec Baldwin’s Trump boasts in first ‘SNL’ since end of Mueller probe

    Daddy won, Alec Baldwins Trump boasts in first SNL since end of Mueller probe
    Alec Baldwin as Donald Trump on “Saturday Night Live” (YouTube)

    “Saturday Night Live” built the cold open of its newest episode around the report that Special Counsel Robert Mueller recently submitted following his two-year-long Russia investigation. Alec Baldwin returned to play President Trump alongside Robert De Niro as Mueller.

    The sketch showed Mueller reading the almost 400-page report, Attorney General William Barr, played by Aidy Bryant, summarizing it and Trump live-tweeting his reactions.

     

    “I am reading zero pages,” Baldwin’s Trump said. “But Sean Hannity has read it and he’s so excited, he texted me an eggplant.”

    DONALD TRUMP SLAMS ‘SNL’ AFTER RERUN EPISODE, FLOATS THE IDEA OF AN FCC INVESTIGATION INTO THE SHOW

     

    “On the charge of obstruction of justice, we have not drawn a definitive conclusion,” De Niro’s Mueller said, to which Bryant’s Barr replied, “But I have, and my conclusion is Trump clean as a whistle.”

    “Free at last, free at last!” Baldwin as Trump said.

    As for allegations of Trump-Russia collusion, De Nrio as Mueller said there were “several questionable instances involving the president’s team” and noted that 34 people were indicted during his investigation.

    “The pardons are already in the mail,” Baldwin’s Trump replied. “Russia, if you’re watching, go to bed. Daddy won.”

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    Later, Trump said, “If you shoot at the devil, you best not miss.”

    “Did somebody say ‘devil’?,” Rudy Giuliani, played by Kate McKinnon, responded, suddenly emerging.

    “I guess I was a legal genius the whole time,” Giuliani continued. “And all of my mind games worked. If you want to know what my mind games were, you have to ask the family of goblins who live in my head and holds open my eyes.”

    “P.S., can’t wait to see what the Southern District of New York has in store for Trump,” Mueller said.

    Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/

     

    Ocasio-Cortez says Trump ‘scared’ after he vows America will ‘never be a socialist country’

    Ocasio-Cortez says Trump scared after he vows America will never be a socialist country

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    Bernie Sanders acknowledges ‘economy is a disaster’ in Venezuela, as Omar accuses Trump of coup effort

    Bernie Sanders acknowledges economy is a disaster in Venezuela, as Omar accuses Trump of coup effort

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    Heres my special New Years wish for all women

    Heres my special New Years wish for all women
    On Jan. 1, 2017 frevelers celebrate the new year in New York’s Times Square. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer, File)

    With the arrival of 2019, many of us will make New Year’s resolutions and will begin the year with hopes, dreams and wishes. My wish for 2019? For women to stand up for each other – not tear each other down.

    In the United States, women are the majority of the population. Currently, the male population is about 163 million – or 49.4 percent of the country. The female population is just over 167 million – or 50.6 percent.

    Yet despite our being in the majority, we don’t hold anywhere near our share of political offices. In 2018, women made up just 23 percent of the U.S. Senate and 20 percent of the House. Those numbers rose slightly in the November midterm elections and will amount to 23 percent in the Senate and 24 percent in the House in 2019.

    Things are much worse in the corporate world. There were only 24 women on the list of corporate CEOs of Fortune 500 companies for 2018 – just 5 percent. The number was down from 32 female CEOs in 2017.

    Why do you think that is? I’ll tell you. Women don’t support each other like men do.

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    Just look at politics. Women didn’t even get the right to vote until the Constitution was amended in 1920. And then it wasn’t until 2016 when a major political party nominated a woman – Democrat Hillary Clinton – for president.

    In an interview with the New York Times, Clinton spoke about how misogyny is used as a tool to hold women back.

    But it’s not only the men doing this. In my opinion, women can be women’s worst enemy or obstacle. It is also why I believe we have never had a female president in the United States. We just don’t support each other in the numbers that we could.

    In the 2016 presidential election, turnout was lower than it was in 2008 or 2012, when there was no female at the top of either party’s ticket. Even President Trump tweeted about the Women’s March participants: “Why didn’t these people vote?” Good question

    We need to support each other, have each other’s backs and then I believe in the future we will have equal pay, equal treatment, equal representation in politics and more seats at the table of CEOs<br> 

    History suggests that the biggest obstacle to a woman being elected president it that she is not a man.

    But it goes farther than our gender. It is how we women treat each other. Let’s just look at our treatment of very powerful political women.

    In the 1990’s, Hillary Clinton was attacked for not having “stayed home and baked cookies and had teas,” choosing to pursue a career instead. She was attacked while first lady of Arkansas for not using her husband’s last name, but then eventually switched from Hillary Rodham to Hillary Clinton.

    When then-Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin was the vice presidential running mate of Republican presidential candidate Sen. John McCain in 2008 – the same year Clinton sought the Democratic presidential nomination in a contest with then-Sen. Barack Obama – frequent comments were made about “Mrs. Clinton is pantsuits; Ms. Palin is skirts.”

    In 2011 there was a near-obsession with whether or not House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi. D-Calif., had undergone plastic surgery

    And when Hillary Clinton was running for president against Donald Trump, former New York City Mayor and current Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani spoke at Mar-a-Lago, Trump’s Florida resort and said: “Hillary was also here …. And she actually fit through the door.”

    There were gasps and looks, but there was also laughter – and it wasn’t just the men who were chuckling.

    Recently, former first lady Michelle Obama said during an interview with Jimmy Fallon on “The Tonight Show” that as she left the White House after Trump’s inauguration, she thought “Bye, Felicia!” That was a comment that many felt she was using as a way to smugly dismiss incoming first lady Melania Trump.

    When Christine Blasey Ford accused then-Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh of sexual misconduct, a majority of women believed her – but 77 percent of Republican women did not.

    And it’s not just women who might not like or oppose another woman because they’re of a different political mindset.

    Just recently, outgoing Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., said of incoming House Democratic freshman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez in an interview:  “I’m a little confused why she’s the thing.”

    I too have been the victim of attacks. Comments directed against me include: “Shut your mouth unless you’re going to put another scoop of Haagen Dazs in it, fattie.” “Why don’t you stick a missile where the sun don’t shine and move to Iraq?” “You’re too old to wear your hair like that.”

    The list goes on and sadly, the attacks didn’t come from men. They came from women.

    This is nothing new. Even Psychology Today published an article headlined: “Why ARE some Women Nasty to Other Women?”

    Now I know some of you are thinking: things are changing; just look at the #MeToo movement or the fact that in the last midterm election, a record number of women ran, were nominated and won seats in Congress.

    That’s true and that’s encouraging, but it doesn’t go far enough.

    And I won’t go as far as former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, who said that “there is a special place in hell for women who don’t support other women.”

    But I will say that we need to stop judging each other’s appearance, stop being obstacles to each other’s successes. We need to support each other, have each other’s backs and then I believe in the future we will have equal pay, equal treatment, equal representation in politics and more seats at the table of CEOs

    It’s simple, ladies. If we are to hold up “half the sky” then we need to truly hold one another up. And that is my New Year’s wish for our gender. Happy 2019!

    CLICK HERE TO READ MORE BY LESLIE MARSHALL

    Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/

    Trump, the Saudis, and America’s disastrous ‘enemy of my enemy is my friend’ strategy – Trending Stuff

    Trump, the Saudis, and America’s disastrous ‘enemy of my enemy is my friend’ strategy – Trending Stuff

    (CNN)“He’s a son of a bitch, but he’s our son of a bitch.” President Franklin Delano Roosevelt is said to have been talking about Nicaraguan dictator Anastasio Somoza. It was 1939, and you can imagine him, cigarette and martini in hand, making the case for realpolitik in a world hurtling toward world war.

    The downside of this dangerous temptation has reared its head again with Saudi Arabia’s brutal murder of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi, throwing the Trump administration’s Middle East strategy into chaos. But it’s always been a risky business.

    Take Joseph Stalin, for starters. During the Second World War, after the bloody dissolution of the Hitler-Stalin pact, the Soviet Union was engaged in a bloody war on the eastern front as the allies focused on driving Adolf Hitler out of Western Europe. FDR was convinced he could charm the man who had already murdered millions of his own countrymen and joined naïve left-wingers in our country in calling the Soviet’s “man of steel” (a translation of “Stalin”) the decidedly more jovial “Uncle Joe.”

    The alliance worked when it came to killing Hitler and his Third Reich. But then came the Yalta Conference and a too-casual carving up of the continent, which left Eastern Europe under Soviet-controlled tyranny for the next 40 years. The Cold War was on.

    In the Middle East, many clear-eyed critics point to the 1953 US and British-led overthrow of Iranian Prime Minister Mohammed Mossadegh, who had taken control of the British oil interests. The coup put the Shah of Iran in power but also seeded the violent rise of the ayatollahs a generation later.
    Then, the welcoming of the Shah for cancer treatment in the United States spurred the seizure of the US embassy in Tehran and the more than 400-day hostage crisis that dogged the Carter administration. The crisis has been invoked to discredit the United States’ interventions and created the regional fault lines we’re still contending with today — including using the Saudis to counterbalance Iran.
    Throughout the Cold War, the US backed a rogues’ gallery of unsavory characters as a check on communist expansion. They often provided a preferable short-term alternative but the blowback often caused more problems than it solved. In Nicaragua, the brutal Somoza dictatorship dynasty fell to the communist Sandinista National Liberation Front party leaders, who committed crimes of their own (Nicaraguan President and Sandinista leader Daniel Ortega is currently orchestrating a bloody crackdown of his citizens).

    US backing of Cuba’s Batista created the conditions for the communist Castro regime. And these proxy wars often fueled anti-American sentiment, undercutting our vision of American exceptionalism with accusations of Yankee imperialism.

    The long-standing US support of apartheid South Africa — a dependably anti-communist Western colonial power — looks inexcusable today, especially the Reagan administration’s refusal to back sanctions in the 1980s. Luckily, Nelson Mandela proved to be far wiser and embraced the United States under Bill Clinton upon his release from prison, in an effort to mend the legacy of the apartheid.

    High up on the list of bad ideas in the rear-view mirror was the brief US embrace of Iraqi President Saddam Hussein. During the Iran-Iraq war, Hussein was literally the enemy of our enemy, coming just years after the hostage crisis in Iran. He was a brutal dictator but not an Islamist — a man that the US could do business with — literally.

    There’s a now-infamous photo of Donald Rumsfeld — the once and future defense secretary — deferentially shaking Hussein’s hand as an envoy of then-President Reagan. Rumsfeld, of course, presided over the Pentagon during the second, massively destabilizing war with Iraq and subsequent execution of Hussein. The rise of ISIS and ongoing regional chaos is one result.

    But perhaps the most brutally ironic example of this strategy was the US backing of the anti-Soviet Afghan rebels known as the mujahideen. The Carter administration directed the CIA to provide backing for the Muslim group they regarded as freedom fighters, especially after the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan.

    The book and movie, “Charlie Wilson’s War,” captured the idealism behind the intervention — but also the failure to follow through with funding to help solidify the post-state after the Soviets were repelled. Elements of the mujahideen became the Taliban, and one wealthy fighter was a Saudi billionaire’s son by the name of Osama bin Laden.

    This is more than just a cautionary tale. When past Presidents made deals with shadowy figures, they did so primarily with an eye towards the geopolitical chessboard, struggling between our ideals and realpolitik responsibilities. “Since its founding, America has tried to balance the realism of the world around it with the moralism of its founding ideals,” said Stuart Gottlieb, who teaches American foreign policy at Columbia.

    “But history shows that whenever it leaned too realist, by, for example, supporting friendly dictators, or too moralist, by undercutting allies based on their human rights record, there was usually some form of blowback that sent the country back in the other direction. It’s been a tough balancing act.”

    But with Donald Trump, it’s been a bit different. To be sure, his embrace of Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince, Mohammed Bin Salman, builds on decades of a close but complicated relationship between the kingdom and the United States. They have often been stalwart allies behind the scenes, despite the kingdom’s support of policies from the funding of Wahhabist madrassas to repressive treatment of women, which are not in line with US interests and values.

    But the Trump administration went all in with the Saudis, seeing them as the key to a larger realignment within the Middle East, where that country could serve as a check on Iran and create the outlines of a new alliance for stability involving Egypt and Israel. They cozied up with the Crown Prince despite brutal treatment of his rivals, isolation of Qatar and support of a cruel war in Yemen.

    But what’s different is that the Saudi Crown Prince is just one of many strongmen on the world stage that President Trump has hugged close. He seems to have an instinctive affinity for authoritarian figures, from his professed “love” for North Korean dictator Kim Jung Un to praise for the Philippines’ leader Rodrigo Duterte’s bloody, repressive drug war.
    The biggest difference with Donald Trump is that he’s been quick to condemn America’s past policies not from an idealistic human rights perspective but from a cold realism that is quick to call the United States morally equivalent to other countries, like Russia. No other US president would refuse to condemn Putin’s extra-judicial killings by saying, “You think our country’s so innocent?”

    This echoes a criticism of the United States often made by foreign dictators, who take issue with America’s sometimes-moralistic approach to foreign policy, seeing the US as hypocritical do-gooders — and therefore justifying their own brutality with the belief that everybody does it. In the process, claims of American exceptionalism are eroded in a sea of moral equivalence.

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    This ignores the many ways in which the US has been an exceptional world power, with all our imperfections. No other nation has fought foreign wars without seeking land other than to bury our dead, as is often said. That’s why the Faustian bargains we sometimes make, under the idea that “the enemy of my enemy is my friend,” do our nation reputational harm that often outweighs whatever short-term benefits they have provided. It obscures the truth that American patriotism is different from run-of-the-mill nationalism.

    As a country based on an idea rather than a tribal identity, our greatest strength comes from a deeper source. As political figures from Joe Biden to Bill Clinton have pointed out, “America’s greatest strength is not the example of our power, but the power of our example.”

    Read more: http://edition.cnn.com/

    Categories CNN

    Victims of Hurricane Michael are represented by climate deniers

    Victims of Hurricane Michael are represented by climate deniers
    Infrared image of Hurricane Michael Photograph: NASA/NOAA/UW-SSEC-CIMSS, William Straka III

    It is a wonder that a state like Florida, which will get pummeled by Michael, could vote for someone that denies climate change. Think of how backwards the situation is the Florida Department of Environmental Protection has reportedly been banned from using the terms climate change and global warming. This policy reportedly went into effect when Florida elected a science denier, Rick Scott, to governor.

    Rick Scott has been condemned by people in Florida for his backward stance. It is climate denial like his that has contributed to the suffering of residents in the state.

    Its not that my colleagues havent tried to help Governor Scott understand how his policies hurt his state. A few years ago, scientists met with him and urged him to take climate change seriously. He remained silent.

    It isnt that the local media hasnt tried. Major newspapers have called upon Rick Scott to take action on climate change. But to little avail. Maybe its because Rick Scott invests in companies that oppose climate change regulations?

    It isnt that his political opponents havent tried. Recently, Florida Democrats petitioned Rick Scott to acknowledge climate change.

    Fortunately, while Rick Scott is now running for Senate, hes being challenged by Democrat Bill Nelson. He understands science and believes in facts. Nelson writes,

    Climate change is real, and we must take action to protect ourselves. Denial of this scientific reality is simply not an option, especially in Florida.

    Rick Scott isnt the only politician from the state of Florida to reject science and diminish climate change. Senator Marco Rubio has as well.

    Florida voters could put an end to this nonsense. In the current race for state Governor to succeed Scott, Republican candidate Ron DeSantis is ignoring science. He recently claimed that climate change is not an issue for states to mitigate. Say what?

    Lets hope Ron DeSantis loses. His opponent is Andrew Gillum, who is clear as day when he says,

    Climate change is real, it is impacting Floridians directly, and we will not be silenced on the matter. When Im Governor, we will not just talk about climate change — we will put Floridians to work to make our state more energy independent and resilient and transform our state into the Solar Capital of the United States!

    But its not just Florida; there are other states getting hit by Hurricane Michael that are also led by climate deniers. For instance, Georgia will be hit by Hurricane Michael. One of the senators there, David Perdue, congratulated President Trump when he pulled out of the Paris Climate Accord. Georgias other Senator, Johnny Isakson also denies the science. He too supported President Trumps reckless actions.

    At the congressional district level, the denial continues. Republican Representative Barry Loudermilk was pleased when President Trump walked away from the Paris Agreement. His opponent, Flynn Broady trusts and understands science, however. His position could not be any clearer as he writes,

    We have the technology and knowledge to develop and place into practice renewable energy sources, reduce carbon emissions, and move our energy needs away from carbon fuels. We owe it to the world to participate in the Paris Agreement and the Kyoto Protocol. As the leading industrial nation we must lead the effort.

    Climate deniers will try to say this article is gleeful about a hurricane. It is not. First of all, this hurricane and all hurricanes that hit land can cause death and destruction. I pray that people heed warnings and get out of the way. I hope people stay safe, regardless of their understanding of climate change and its effect on storms.

    Second, elections have consequences and if we as a society want to create a better world and reduce climate change, we have to vote for people who understand science, who believe in facts. Climate deniers are making these storms worse by stopping action on climate change. What the hell do we expect to happen when the deniers are writing the laws?

    Third, for those who say taking action on climate is too expensive, how about you add up the worldwide costs of climate inaction over the past decade. My response to you is, its too costly to do nothing.

    Fourth, what the hell happened to the Republican Party? The GOP formerly thought of itself as the party of intellectuals. How did you become a party where denying science is a litmus test? Where are the Republicans who actually understand climate change and care about it? If you can find one, tell me. Maybe Ill even write about them on this site.

    Finally, climate change is only starting. It will continue to get worse and worse. And that means storms will get worse, droughts will get deeper, flooding more severe, and the costs will go up. What we are seeing now and what weve seen over the past decade is just a small taste to come of what the future will bring if we dont take this problem seriously.

    Good luck Florida and Georgia. My thoughts are with you. See you on the other side.

    North Korea holds military parade without ICBMs – Trending Stuff

    North Korea holds military parade without ICBMs – Trending Stuff

    Pyongyang, North Korea (CNN)North Korea celebrated its national day with a series of massive spectacles glorifying 70 years of rule by the Kim dynasty Sunday, but held back on any mention of its nuclear weapons program — a possible signal of support for Pyongyang’s ongoing negotiations with the United States.

    An estimated 100,000 performers participated in Sunday night’s Games, a highly-choreographed propaganda spectacle in which participants act as human pixels, flipping colorful cards to reveal socialist messages that glorify North Korea.

    Unlike previous years, the Games also refrained from referencing the country’s nuclear weapons program during the performance.

    Experts speculated before the Sunday holiday that North Korean leader Kim Jong Un may choose not to showcase images of the country’s more advanced weaponry during the anniversary celebrations to avoid antagonizing US President Donald Trump.

    President Trump tweeted a thank you to North Korean leader Kim Jong Un Sunday night Washington time, noting the fact that Pyongyang chose not to showcase its long-range nuclear missiles in its morning military parade,

    But some North Korea analysts believe the country chose not to show off its long-range missiles because Pyongyang believes its program is complete, so it no longer needs to flaunt the weaponry.

    The day parade saw dozens of military vehicles and goose-stepping soldiers parade past Kim in the center of the capital, Pyongyang, as cheering crowds watched on.

    Kim reviewed the procession from a balcony in Kim Il Sung Square, alongside other senior officials, including Li Zhanshu, a special envoy sent by Chinese President Xi Jinping. Kim and Li locked hands and raised arms at the end of the event.

    The parade was split into two sections, civilian and military. The military portion featured thousands of soldiers wearing uniforms from different periods of North Korea’s history, dating back from 1948 through to the present day.

    The event was the first show of military might in North Korea since Kim and Trump met in Singapore in June.

    Though some of the artillery pieces on display featured anti-American slogans as in previous years, the theme of the parade appeared overwhelmingly focused on economic development and improving the lives of the North Korean people.

    Kim did not speak at the military parade. The country’s ceremonial head of state, Kim Yong Nam, addressed the audience, telling soldiers to prepare simultaneously to fight a war but also be ready to battle for economic development.

    “Compared to past parades they really pulled back on displaying missile systems,” said Dave Schmerler, a research associate at the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies.

    Kim has made 2018 a year of diplomacy, personally meeting with the leaders of China, South Korea and the United States for the first time since taking the reins of his country in 2011. Later this month, Kim will host South Korean President Moon Jae-in for a summit in Pyongyang, another event that could factor into the theme of Sunday’s festivities.

    Though it was the first celebration in recent years not to honor the country’s nuclear achievements, the emphasis on domestic livelihoods and economic growth align with Kim’s current policy priorities.

    “The big missiles weren’t out there. That is a clear sign of restraint on Kim Jong Un’s part,” said John Delury, a professor of International Relations at Yonsei University’s Graduate School of International Studies.

    “The symbolism of the event reinforces Kim Jong Un’s message that it’s the economy, stupid.”

    But negotiations between North Korea and the United States over Pyongyang’s nuclear weapons programs appear to have hit an impasse.

    A little more than a month after Trump and Kim’s historic summit in Singapore, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told US lawmakers Pyongyang had shown little indication that it was moving toward denuclearization. That was followed by Pompeo canceling a planned trip to North Korea in August, citing insufficient progress on the part of North Korea.

    In the run up to Sunday’s parade, both Washington and Pyongyang struck more of an upbeat note. South Korean officials who met with Kim last week said they were told by the young North Korean leader that he has “unwavering trust for President Trump.”

    Trump responded by tweeting a thank you to Kim and declaring “we will get it done together!”

    On Saturday, the US State Department said that Pompeo has received a letter from Kim for Trump, which the US President believes will be positive in tone.

    Experts, however, caution against reading too much into any sense of optimism.

    “The United States should not forget about North Korea’s arsenal simply because it’s kept out of sight,” said Adam Mount, director of the Defense Posture Project at the Federation of American Scientists.

    “Even as talks have ground to a halt, every indication is that research and development of nuclear capable systems is continuing.”

    North Korea analysts are closely watching this weekend’s festivities, as Pyongyang is known to use mass events like these to convey its policy priorities and future intentions to average North Koreans and the rest of the world.

    Journalists were invited to a concert Saturday night to kick off the celebration, an event dominated by songs and performances lionizing North Korea’s history. There was no mention of missiles or nuclear weapons.

    Kim’s bodyguards appeared to show up at the event, but there was no sign of the young leader himself. Footage from North Korean state television appeared to show Kim greeting the Russian delegation Saturday night.

    Sunday’s parade was kept under wraps until it was completed, with visiting journalists invited to the event prohibited from bringing phones or live broadcasting equipment to the procession.

    It’s unclear why North Korea chose to bar reporters from broadcasting live from the event, though the delay allows Pyongyang’s propaganda officials to better control the images coming from the parade. Experts also believe it could be a security measure.

    Read more: http://edition.cnn.com/

    Categories CNN

    I was arrested for what I believe in – Trending Stuff

    I was arrested for what I believe in – Trending Stuff

    (CNN)I got arrested last Tuesday, and it wasn’t a scene in a movie.

    The Senate Judiciary Committee has hearings before it votes on a president’s Supreme Court nominee, and this nominee, Brett Kavanaugh, has made statements — indeed, issuing an opinion — that led me and many others to believe he would overturn Roe v. Wade, which protects a woman’s rights over her own body.
    Sen. Kamala Harris put it best when she asked Kavanaugh, “Can you think of any laws that give the government the power to make decisions about the male body?” He could not. I can’t either. Can you?

    So, very early Tuesday morning, I went to the Senate Office Building. Even in the dawn light, with the crickets chirping, it was already muggy. I was not the first one there. There were lots of women in suits and business attire, holding cups of coffee, chatting about why they thought Kavanaugh was a bad choice.

    At 8:30 Senate staffers came out and gave us tickets. The public is allowed into the hearings — after all it is our Supreme Court. Attendants counted out 23 people, lined us up and walked us in. We went through a metal detector, and then the staffer told us that from the time the gavel fell, we’d be allowed to listen for 20 minutes and would then be ushered out to allow the next group of people in.

    I knew other women in the line, from the Women’s March, Center for Popular Democracy, UltraViolet, Code Pink, Voter ProChoice. When we walked into the hearing room, it was packed to the rafters. We sat quietly, in the very back two rows.

    Almost as soon as the committee chairman, Sen. Chuck Grassley, began, Harris interrupted and asked for the hearing to be postponed because 42,000 relevant documents had been given to the committee only the night before. When she finished, Sen. Mazie Hirono spoke up and agreed. I thought, “Oh good, maybe I can go home. I don’t want to get arrested.” But Grassley wouldn’t listen and proceeded.

    I was the fourth person to stand and speak. My statement: “Senators, this President is an unindicted co-conspirator in federal crimes and should not be allowed to choose a judge that believes the President is above the law. Especially a judge that would take away women’s equal rights. Please, be a hero and vote no on Kavanaugh.” Well, that’s what I planned to say, but was pulled away by the Capitol Police before I could deliver all of it.

    The police took me and about 10 other women to the basement. They handcuffed us with big, white zip ties. They took our possessions. They put us in police vans. More and more people were being brought to the basement to be arrested. They were almost all women.

    We went to the police station, were searched, fingerprinted and photographed with our arresting officer. It was hot and took hours, but I felt happy in a way. One woman got out of a police van, with an older lady behind her. She looked at all of us and said, “This is my mom. She’s 75. She’s never been arrested, and she got arrested with me today.” A cheer went up.

    Eventually, I was charged with disorderly conduct, paid a $35 fine and was released into the parking lot of the police station. I went back to the line outside the Senate Office Building to talk to other women who were waiting to go in and protest. Later that evening I went to the NARAL rally to hear speeches by Rep. Barbara Lee and Sen. Jeff Merkley on why we must stop Kavanaugh.

    I walked home and stopped to take a selfie in front of the Supreme Court and tweeted it out with James Baldwin’s beautiful words, “I love America more than any other country in the world, and exactly for this reason, I insist on the right to criticize her perpetually.”

    Americans have used protest, and even gotten arrested, to uphold democratic principles for our nation’s entire history. I’d do it again, but I also look forward to the day when you don’t need to get arrested to defend settled law.

    Aside from the evidence that Kavanaugh may well overturn Roe, he would not respond yes or no to the question of whether a President can be subpoenaed. I couldn’t sit silently.
    The next day Sens. Cory Booker and Hirono released “committee confidential” emails from Supreme Court nominee Kavanaugh that revealed views on racial profiling and discrimination that concern me. During his Senate testimony on Thursday, Kavanaugh himself — in describing the argument of a religious group to aspects of the Affordable Care Act — referred to some forms of birth control as “abortion-inducing drugs.”

    I believe Kavanaugh is a terrible choice for Supreme Court.

    But all that aside, a president like President Trump, whose campaign is under scrutiny by a special prosecutor, has a conflict in choosing a justice able to vote in any related case that could come before the Supreme Court

    If you agree, now is the time to call your senators. If they are voting no on Kavanaugh’s nomination, thank them. If they have said they will vote yes, now would be the time to tell them you are opposed to Kavanaugh and if they vote for him, you will not vote for them again. The midterms are in 60 days; they are listening. Now’s our chance.

    Read more: http://edition.cnn.com/

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