January 10, 2020

Posted by orrinj at 5:37 PM


ISIS welcomes the death of Iran's Qaseem Soleimani and declare it an act of 'divine intervention' that will let them regroup in Iraq (RYAN FAHEY, 1/10/20, MAILONLINE)

ISIS has claimed the death of Iranian General Qassem Soleimani was an act of 'divine intervention' and that it will benefit their jihadist cause.  

Posted by orrinj at 5:33 PM


Intelligence officials are probing whether Russia is targeting Joe Biden (EMILY GOODIN, 1/10/20,DAILYMAIL.COM)

Russia's been using its state-run media to promote favorable and unfavorable information about American presidential candidates, according to an analysis by the Foreign Policy Research Institute's Foreign Influence Election 2020.

Biden received the most negative coverage by RT and Sputnik News through December, the analysis found. 

Russian media repeatedly referenced his role in the Ukraine as vice president and Hunters's work there. 

And their work could be boosted by the narrative being pushed by President Trump, his personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani, and other allies that has put the Bidens and the Ukraine into the public zeitgeist.  

'Biden is to 2020 what [Hillary] Clinton was to 2016,' Clint Watts, a former FBI agent who has been tracking Russia's foreign influence operations, told Bloomberg.

Posted by orrinj at 5:29 PM


Reports: US Military Tried but Failed to Kill Iranian Commander in Yemen (VOA News, January 10, 2020)

U.S. media are reporting that the United States tried but failed to kill a top Iranian commander in Yemen on the same day a U.S. drone strike killed Iranian commander Qassem Soleimani.

The information, first reported by The Washington Post, indicates the operation that killed Soleimani last week was intended to be broader in scope.

Isolationists/Realists always prefer dictatorship to democracy: it keeps the natives quiet.

Posted by orrinj at 3:41 PM


Trump privately admits he killed Soleimani "under pressure" from upcoming impeachment trial: report (IGOR DERYSH, JANUARY 10, 2020, Salon)

President Donald Trump privately told associates that his upcoming impeachment trial factored heavily into his decision to kill top Iranian General Qassem Soleimani, The Wall Street Journal reports.

"Trump, after the strike, told associates he was under pressure to deal with Gen. Soleimani from GOP senators he views as important supporters in his coming impeachment trial in the Senate," associates of the president told the outlet.

There's nothing surer to keep the Right on-sides than murdering minorities. 

Posted by orrinj at 3:39 PM


'Can you make this go away?' Bombshell report reveals new details about Trump's mistress payoff schemes (Tom Boggioni, 1/10/20, Raw Story)

In a deep dive into Donald Trump's usage of lawyers, go-betweens and loyalists to keep him out of legal and public relations trouble, the Wall Street Journal is reporting that the then-presidential candidate was actively involved in paying off a woman with whom he allegedly had an affair.

In particular, it reveals a conversation between the New York real estate developer and tabloid publisher David Pecker with whom he had a history of manipulating coverage -- and burying stories Trump didn't want to see the light of day.

Pointing out that "Mr. Pecker's celebrity gossip and personal-lifestyle empire--primarily the tabloid National Enquirer--promoted Mr. Trump's political aspirations for almost two decades, starting in 1999," the Journal reports, "Mr. Trump's reward to his fixers was what he offered all those in his service over the decades: exposure to his world, the chance to play a bit part in his story. These operatives were attracted to Mr. Trump's aura, to the force of the huge personality that led him to the presidency. But when they had fulfilled their missions, they were dispensable. Mr. Trump didn't believe he owed his fixers anything."

According to the report, Trump, along with "fixer" attorney Michael Cohen, who is now serving time, met with Pecker in "Mr. Trump's office in August 2015, and Mr. Pecker offered to use the Enquirer--in coordination with Mr. Cohen--to intercept harmful stories and ensure they never surfaced."

Posted by orrinj at 1:24 PM


U.S. Rejects Iraqi Demand to Withdraw Troops. Can We Do That? (JOSHUA KEATING, JAN 10, 2020, Slate)

In the wake of the U.S. killing of Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani, Iraq says it wants Americans gone once and for all. In a conversation with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Friday, Iraqi Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi asked the U.S. to send a delegation to set up a mechanism for withdrawing U.S. troops from his country. This came after a confusing and violent week in which the Iraqi Parliament voted to demand the withdrawal of U.S. forces, the U.S. sent and then disavowed a letter agreeing to do so, and Iran launched a missile strike against bases hosting U.S. troops.

The U.S. response to Mahdi's demand has been more or less "no." A State Department statement on Friday, after beginning dramatically, "America is a force for good in the Middle East," made clear that any future negotiations would be "dedicated to discussing how to best recommit to our strategic partnership--not to discuss troop withdrawal."

...that when a democratic people fight an occupying power it's not actually terrorism but freedom-fighting.

Posted by orrinj at 12:00 AM


Saudi-led attacks on civilians threaten fragile Yemen truce (Naseh Shaker January 10, 2020, Al Monitor)

Dozens of civilians have been killed or injured in recent attacks on al-Raqw market in Yemen's Saada province, with most victims being African migrants who had fled poverty in their own countries.

The latest attack occurred Dec. 24 when artillery shelling hit the market in Munabbeh district, killing at least 17 civilians and wounding 12, most of whom were Ethiopians, UN humanitarian coordinator for Yemen Lise Grande said in a statement.

Posted by orrinj at 12:00 AM


Justice Dept. winds down Clinton-related inquiry once championed by Trump. (Devlin Barrett and Matt Zapotosky, Jan. 9, 2020, Washington Post)

A Justice Department inquiry launched more than two years ago to mollify conservatives clamoring for more investigations of Hillary Clinton has effectively ended with no tangible results, and current and former law enforcement officials said they never expected the effort to produce much of anything.

John Huber, the U.S. attorney in Utah, was tapped in November 2017 by then-Attorney General Jeff Sessions to look into concerns raised by President Trump and his allies in Congress that the FBI had not fully pursued cases of possible corruption at the Clinton Foundation and during Clinton's time as secretary of state, when the U.S. government decided not to block the sale of a company called Uranium One.

As a part of his review, Huber examined documents and conferred with federal law enforcement officials in Little Rock who were handling a meandering probe into the Clinton Foundation, people familiar with the matter said.

Good thing Donald didn't go into oil; it's all dry holes.

Posted by orrinj at 12:00 AM


Sweden reaches new wind power record (The Local, 1/10/20)

For the first time ever, Swedish wind power produced more than a terawatt-hour of energy in one week. [...]

Sweden's net exports of electricity rose by around a half in 2019 compared to 2018. Net exports were equivalent to around 15 percent of Sweden's total electricity production.

The electricity was primarily exported to Norway and Finland, which were not able to produce enough electricity to cover their needs. 

Swedish electricity comes mostly from water, and nuclear power with wind power production raised by almost a fifth in 2019.

Posted by orrinj at 12:00 AM


Trump Wishes North Korea's Kim a Happy Birthday (Reuters, January 10, 2020)

U.S. President Donald Trump sent a happy birthday message to North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, South Korea's national security adviser Chung Eui-Yong said Friday.

Chung, who met Trump in Washington this week, told reporters that he was given a message to pass to North Korea and it was delivered Thursday.

"The day we met was Kim Jong Un's birthday, and President Trump remembered this and asked me to deliver the message," Chung said upon arrival back in South Korea.