Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Myanmar's Aung San Suu Kyi Addresses The Plight Of The Rohingya





New York Times: Aung San Suu Kyi, a Much-Changed Icon, Evades Rohingya Accusations

NAYPYIDAW, Myanmar — Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, the Nobel Peace Prize laureate and de facto leader of Myanmar, stood before a room of government officials and foreign dignitaries on Tuesday to at last, after weeks of international urging, address the plight of the country’s Rohingya ethnic minority.

But those who expected Ms. Aung San Suu Kyi to eloquently acknowledge a people’s oppression were disappointed.

In her speech, delivered in crisp English and often directly inviting foreign listeners to “join us” in addressing Myanmar’s problems, she steadfastly refused to criticize the Myanmar military, which has been accused of a vast campaign of killing, rape and village burning.

“The security forces have been instructed to adhere strictly to the code of conduct in carrying out security operations, to exercise all due restraint and to take full measures to avoid collateral damage and the harming of innocent civilians,” she said.

Read more ....

WNU Editor: She knows what is happening .... and her refusal to acknowledge the ethnic cleansing that is occurring in her country says volumes on who and what she is. In the meantime .... the Rohingya exodus continues .... UN scaling up assistance as number of Rohingya refugees grows to over 400,000 (United Nations News Center).

On a side note, Aung San Suu Kyi is an honorary citizen of Canada .... time to revoke her honor .... Protesters call for Canada to revoke Aung San Suu Kyi’s honorary citizenship (Globe and Mail).

More News On Myanmar's Aung San Suu Kyi Addressing The Plight Of The Rohingya

Myanmar's Suu Kyi condemns abuses in Rakhine but silent on army role -- Reuters
Aung San Suu Kyi sidesteps atrocity allegations in first address on Rohingya crisis -- Washington Post
Myanmar’s leader avoids plight of Rohingya in 1st speech since violence -- ABC News
Aung San Suu Kyi breaks silence on Rohingya, sparks storm of criticism -- CNN International
Suu Kyi rejects criticism over Rohingya, UN chief urges army pullback -- Yahoo News
Rohingya Crisis: Myanmar Leader Aung San Suu Kyi Speaks, Defies Calls for Quick Action -- Newsweek
As villages burn and Rohingya flee, Aung San Suu Kyi tells the world “solid evidence” is needed -- Quartz
Reactions to Myanmar leader Aung San Suu Kyi's speech -- Washington Post
Rohingya crisis: Are Suu Kyi's Rohingya claims correct? -- BBC News
The west wanted Aung San Suu Kyi to be a saint. It's no surprise she is not -- The Guardian

Poll: Half Of Americans Do Not Trust President Trump On North Korea

(Click on Image to Enlarge)

NPR: NPR/Ipsos Poll: Half Of Americans Don't Trust Trump On North Korea

A narrow majority of Americans don't trust President Trump to handle the conflict with North Korea, according to a new NPR/Ipsos poll.

The findings come as the president and his diplomatic team prepare for the United Nations General Assembly in New York this week, where North Korea's renegade nuclear program will be a major focus.

The survey found 51 percent of Americans distrust the president's ability to contain the North Korean government in Pyongyang, including 40 percent who have strong concerns.

Read more ....

Update: Poll: Majority doesn't trust Trump to handle North Korea (The Hill).

WNU Editor: This poll was done before North Korea fired missiles over Japan last week and President Trump's speech at the UN today.

President Trump's United Nations Speech -- News Roundup



Daily Mail: 'Rocket Man is on a suicide mission': Trump tells United Nations he will 'totally destroy' Kim Jong-Un if he threatens America - then turns up the heat on Iran

* Donald Trump addressed United Nations General Assembly for first time
* Turns his fire on Kim Jong-Un's North Korea and uses his derisive nickname for dictator saying 'Rocket Man is on a suicide mission
* North Korean delegation WALKS OUT before speech
* Tells other countries they must stop aiding Kim's nuclear build-up but thanks China for backing sanctions against North Korea
* Also attacks Iran for 'culture of death' and says it must respect sovereign rights of its people
* Attacked Venezuela for 'starving' its people and said of its hard-left government: 'This corrupt regime destroyed a prosperous nati* on.'
Said parts of the world are 'going to hell'

President Donald Trump began his first speech to the UN Tuesday with a vow to 'totally destroy' North Korea's Kim Jong-un if his regime threatens the United States, as he talked up the 'vast military power' of the United States.

'Rocket man is on a suicide mission for himself and for his regime,' Trump warned gathered world leaders, picking up a derisive term from one of his tweets over the weekend.

Trump began his remarks at the United Nations with a brash statement of U.S. military might as he defended his 'America first' agenda to a group of world leaders.

Read more ....

President Trump's United Nations Speech -- News Roundup

The Latest: Israeli PM praises Trump’s speech -- AP
Donald Trump at UN: US may 'have no choice but to totally destroy North Korea' – live -- The Guardian
UN General Assembly live updates: Trump delivers forceful but highly unusual speech at annual gathering -- Los Angeles Times
President Trump at the UN: Live updates -- CNN
At UN, Trump threatens ‘total destruction’ of North Korea -- AP
Bellicose Trump threatens to 'destroy' N.Korea in UN address -- AFP
Trump says if threatened, U.S. will 'totally destroy' North Korea -- Reuters
Trump: US would destroy North Korea if forced to defend itself -- BBC
In UN speech, Trump threatens to 'totally destroy North Korea' and calls Kim Jong Un 'Rocket Man' -- Washington Post
Trump On North Korea: ‘Rocket Man Is On A Suicide Mission’ -- CBS/AP
Trump Threatens to ‘Totally Destroy’ North Korea in First U.N. Speech -- NBC
Trump draws APPLAUSE at the UN for blasting Iran's 'murderous regime' and warning that Tehran's mullahs are still working on nuclear missiles -- Daily Mail
Donald Trump tells UN: 'I will always put America First' -- DW
Trump threatens to 'destroy North Korea' if necessary -- Al Jazeera
Trump Vows to Destroy North Korea if It Poses Threat to US -- Sputnik
Trump: If forced to defend, ‘we will have no choice but to totally destroy’ N. Korea -- RT
Trump vows to 'totally destroy North Korea' if threatened -- TASS
North Korea ambassador walks out of UN assembly in boycott of Trump's speech -- CNBC
Feinstein: Trump threats to North Korea at UN a 'severe disappointment' -- The Hill
Trump warns that major portions of the world ‘are going to hell’ -- Politico
Trump Calls for World Action Against North Korea, Iran, Venezuela -- VOA
Trump threatens Venezuela and warns Cuba to change -- Miami Herald
5 takeaways from President Trump's United Nations speech, from North Korea to 'America First' foreign policy -- USA Today

World News Briefs -- Spetember 19, 2017

U.S. President Donald Trump addresses the 72nd United Nations General Assembly at U.N. headquarters in New York, U.S., September 19, 2017. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton

Reuters: Trump says if threatened, U.S. will 'totally destroy' North Korea

UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump escalated his threats against North Korea over its nuclear challenge on Tuesday, threatening to “totally destroy” the country of 26 million people and mocking its leader, Kim Jong Un, as a “rocket man.”

In a hard-edged speech to the United Nations General Assembly, Trump offered a grim portrait of a world in peril, adopted a more confrontational approach to solving global challenges from Iran to Venezuela, and gave an unabashed defense of U.S. sovereignty.

Read more ....

MIDDLE EAST

Syrian army closes in on ISIL in Deir Az Zor.

US military closes outpost in southeastern Syria, ceding territory to Iranian proxies.

Strongest attacks on Syrian Army come from where opposition & US forces stationed – Russian MoD .

UN investigators: Perpetrators of crimes in Syria must face justice.

Iraqi forces 'attack last IS bastion on Syria border'.

Curfew imposed in Iraqi city before Kurdish independence vote.

Turkey summons German envoy for second time in two days.

Trump and Netanyahu ready united assault against Iran nuclear deal.

ASIA

North Korea foreign minister leaves Pyongyang to deliver U.N. speech.

Russia and China urge 'peaceful' solution with North Korea.

UN's Antonio Guterres warns against North Korea war.

North Korea 'guest workers' could undermine Kim regime, defector says.

Hundreds of North Korea defectors missing in South, Seoul says.

North Korean abductions: Anger in Japan over missing loved ones.

Rohingya refugees: Aung San Suu Kyi condemns all rights violations in Myanmar. Myanmar's leader orders probe of abuses, says some Rohingya can return. Under fire over Rohingya, Suu Kyi defends Myanmar actions.

Hong Kong leader demands end of independence talk, warns ties with Beijing at risk.

West Java police foils terrorist plot against Indonesian President Joko Widodo.

AFRICA

At least 25 dead in South Sudan oil state battle.

Locked in power struggle, Congo army, militia massacred hundred.

Ethiopia: 55,000 people displaced amid ethnic clashes.

Fuel shortage in Libya capital after fighters close pipeline.

Lesotho opposition: Political violence unleashes 'reign of terror'.

Kenya's chief justice condemns threats against judiciary.

Egypt mass trial sees hundreds imprisoned over 2013 protests.

Nigeria compares Myanmar crisis to Bosnia and Rwanda.

EUROPE

Catalan mayors exercise right to remain silent in referendum questioning.

Spanish police confiscate Catalan referendum material.

Brexit: UK reveals details of proposed new EU security deal.

Taking back control? Britain's May to make high-stakes Brexit speech.

Azerbaijan Laundromat: Merkel ally 'received cash from regime'.

Presidential phone-in: Macron flooded with 'unflattering' texts after cell number leaked online.

Norwegian sovereign wealth fund hits 'milestone' valuation.

AMERICAS

Hurricane Maria rolls over Dominica, on course to hit Puerto Rico,Virgin Islands.

Hurricane Maria: Storm grows in force to category 5 as Caribbean battered again – live.

FBI wiretapped Trump campaign chief Paul Manafort - reports.

Trump lawyer denies any ties to Russian election meddling.

Trump dinner with Latin American leaders puts Venezuela on table.

Bolivia governing party challenges Morales' term limit,

New tax hikes ignites violent street protests in Haiti.

The Latest: Brazil president’s claim on Amazon questioned.

TERRORISM/THE LONG WAR

US has launched ‘more than 100 strikes against AQAP’ so far this year.

'Grave fears' after Iraq moves more than 1,300 wives, children Of ISIS suspects.

German court convicts two Syrian fighters on terror charges.

ECONOMY/FINANCE/BUSINESS

Toys 'R' Us files for bankruptcy protection in US.

Report: 40 million people victims of modern slavery.

Report: Robots could replace millions of human workers by 2027.

Military and Intelligence News Briefs -- September 19, 2017



Steve Mollman, Quartz: When North Korea will conduct its next missile and nuclear tests

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, like his US counterpart Donald Trump, seems to relish being unpredictable. When he’ll order the next missile launch or nuclear test, it seems, is anyone’s guess. But while the reasoning behind the timing of many tests does indeed seem unfathomable, in other cases it appears more clearly linked to happenings in the outside world. For instance, North Korea launched its second missile over Japan on Sept. 15, days after the United Nations Security Council imposed new sanctions against it. It’s possible Pyongyang will do the same after future economic punishments are leveled against it. North Korea has also been known to conduct tests following military drills held by the US and South Korea.

Read more ....

Military and Intelligence News Briefs -- September 19, 2017

Pyongyang Approaching 'Final Stage' of ICBM Development – S Korean MoD -- Sputnik

North Korea nearing final development stage of ICBM: ministry -- Korea Herald

North Korea's rocket fuel is an accident waiting to happen -- We Are The Mighty

Is North Korea Building Their First Nuclear Submarine? -- Sputnik International

Pentagon chief says he was asked about reintroducing tactical nuclear weapons in South Korea -- Washington Post

US, Japan, South Korea Stage Show-of-Force Following North Korean Missile Overflight of Japan -- The Diplomat

U.S., South Korea troops stage mock battle to retake village near North Korean border -- Reuters

US to send carrier strike group to South Korea for joint drills -- Nikkei Asia Review

China Claims to Have Arrested Japanese Spy -- Sputnik

‘Far-fetched vision’: India’s futuristic light combat aircraft overshadowed by predecessor -- Defense News

Vladimir Putin watches display of Russian firepower near EU border -- The Guardian

NATO leader: Russian military exercises appear to be preparation for 'big war' -- UPI

Zapad-2017: Large-scale Russia-Belarus military exercises -- Zapad

Zapad-2017 exercise puts Russian army’s "nervous system" to test -- Zapad

Airbus: Austria’s Eurofighter fraud allegations are ‘politically motivated’ -- Defense News

Germany Ordering Five Warships in Face of Russian Military Aggression -- Newsweek

Wrecked WWI German U-boat found off Belgian coast -- UPI

The US Military Can't Keep Track of Which Missions It's Fueling in Yemen War -- The Intercept

US Army tanks damaged in Poland after failing to pass under train station roof (PHOTOS) -- RT

US opens first permanent military base in Israel -- The Hill

American commandos face complicated mission in Mali -- Military Times

Senate backs massive increase in military spending -- Reuters

Senate passes $700B defense bill -- The Hill

US Senate Approves a $150 Billion Boost for Military Budget -- Sputnik

Senate Votes to Buy More Military Planes Than Pentagon Requested -- Bloomberg

Northrop Seeks More Missile Defense Business with Orbital ATK Buy -- DoD Buzz

Mattis: US to send 3,000 more troops to Afghanistan -- The Hill

Mattis to Review if Military Accidents Linked to Budget Caps -- US News and World Report/Reuters

Mattis: Unclear if budget cuts play role in military crashes -- Virginia-Pilot/AP

Raytheon receives $31.5M contract for TOW missiles -- UPI

4-star: Air Force fighter pilots will have to make more engagement decisions on their own -- Defense News

The Air Force faces a new era of intelligence gathering -- Defense News

Eyeing the future fighter, Pratt & Whitney hits milestone with new adaptive engine -- Defense News

From the Pacific to Europe: Where the next fight may happen -- Jeff Schogol, Marine Times

The Pentagon Press Corps Is Getting Frustrated



Politico: Pentagon reporters frustrated by Mattis

Trump's war on the press may be spilling over into the Defense Department, journalists fear.

Pentagon reporters are complaining of decreased access to Defense Secretary James Mattis, as well as a reduction in journalists allowed to travel on official trips, at a time when the Trump administration is dealing with national security challenges from the Middle East to North Korea.

Under Mattis, the Defense Department has become less transparent and publicly accountable than it has been in previous administrations, according to interviews with numerous reporters who cover the beat. The reporters requested anonymity, saying they feared that being quoted by name could lead to further loss of access.

Read more ....

Update: Pentagon reporters annoyed with decreased access to Mattis: report (The Hill)

WNU Editor: This blog has been covering the Pentagon for the past ten years, and during the Obama administration I was always astounded on the news and strategies that were made available to the public via through the news media. I could never understand why the administration was doing this (aside from the political reasons) .... because all it did was to give America's adversaries a heads up on what the U.S. was going to do. Case in point .... announcing the date for the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Afghanistan even though the war was (and is) raging in the countryside. As for the Trump administration .... especially the Pentagon .... they have adopted a different approach, and one that is more in line with the past. Is the press frustrated with this new policy .... quite clearly they are. My prediction .... I expect this frustration to only increase with time, because I doubt that Defense Secretary James Mattis and President Trump are going to bend on this one.

Japan's Response To North Korea -- News Roundup September 19, 2017

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and U.S. President Donald Trump pose for a photograph before attending dinner at Mar-a-Lago Club in Palm Beach, Florida, U.S., February 11, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria

Shinzo Abe, New York Times: Solidarity Against the North Korean Threat

TOKYO — The whole world confronts an unprecedented, grave and imminent threat from North Korea. On Sept. 3, the regime carried out a reprehensible nuclear test. Late last week, it launched a ballistic missile over my country, Japan, only two weeks after a similar missile launch. By repeatedly testing missiles — in violation of United Nations Security Council resolutions — Pyongyang has shown its reach now extends to the United States and Europe.

North Korea’s actions are an outright challenge to the international community. On Sept. 11, the United Nations Security Council unanimously adopted a resolution on a new round of strict sanctions that restrict member states from selling oil to the North, ban North Korean textile exports and ban member states from authorizing North Koreans to work abroad.

They are an important step, but the leadership in Pyongyang has consistently ignored previous resolutions. The international community must stay united and enforce the sanctions.

Read more ....

WNU Editor: The Japanese have given up on diplomacy .... I guess having missiles fired over your country kills any discussion that a compromise can be found. This crisis is also having political repercussions in Japan .... Japan PM Abe mulls snap election amid North Korea crisis (Gulf Times).

Japan's Response To North Korea -- News Roundup September 19, 2017

Abe in NYT: I support America's 'all options' stance on North Korea -- Politico
Japan deploys missile interceptor near North Korea flight path -- CTV News/AP
Abe leaves for NY to rally United Nations support against Pyongyang -- Hi Tech Beacon
North Korea's weapons testing stirs worries in Japan -- Toronto Star
Japan split over how to deal with North Korean missile launches -- CNN
Head of Japan's biggest bank warns: 'We need to worry about' North Korea -- CNBC
Japan's Tough Choices As North Korean Missiles Fly -- Kazu

U.S. Defense Secretary Mattis: 'No Need To Shoot-Down North Korean Missiles'



New York Times: Mattis Leaves the Door Open to Military Options in North Korea

WASHINGTON — The United States and its allies have not shot down any North Korean missiles because Pyongyang has yet to launch one that directly threatens American or Japanese territory, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said on Monday.

But he said that could change. North Korean missiles have been falling “in the middle of the ocean,” Mr. Mattis said. “Were they to be aimed at Guam, or U.S. territory,” he added, “that would elicit a different response.”

The defense secretary also said he believed that the United States had found military options to handle the nuclear crisis on the Korean Peninsula that would not put the South Korean capital, Seoul, at grave risk, though he refused to elaborate on what those might be.

Read more ....

WNU Editor: I did not expect (nor do I expect) US Defense Secretary to say that they will shoot down North Korean missiles .... why give the North Koreans a heads-up. But what I found interesting from yesterday's news was this admission .... Pentagon chief says he was asked about reintroducing tactical nuclear weapons in South Korea (Washington Post). The South Koreans are clearly worried.

More News On U.S. Defense Secretary Mattis' Remarks On North Korea

Mattis: No need yet to shoot down NKorean missiles -- AP
Mattis hints at military options on North Korea but offers no details -- Reuters
US considers shooting down NK missiles that don't pose a direct threat -- CNN
US to act on North Korea rockets that pose threat, says Jim Mattis -- Livemint/Bloomberg

We Are On The Verge Of A Robot Arms Race

Russian President Vladimir Putin, flanked by senior Russian officials, watches the Zapad-2017 war games in the Leningrad region, Russia September 18, 2017. Sputnik/Mikhail Klimentyev/Kremlin via REUTERS

Peter Apps, Reuters: The coming robot arms race

Russia’s latest “Zapad” military exercise is underway on NATO’S eastern border. Tens of thousands of soldiers are taking part in the massive four-yearly war games that are both a drill as well as a show of strength for the West. Next time around, in 2021, those troops might be sharing their battle space with a different type of force: self-driving drones, tanks, ships and submersibles.

Drone warfare is hardly new – the first lethal attack conducted by an American unmanned aerial vehicle took place in Afghanistan in October 2001. What is now changing fast, however, is the ability of such unmanned systems to operate without a guiding human hand.

That’s a truly revolutionary shift – and one every major nation wants to be lead. Critics have long feared countries might be more willing to go to war with unmanned systems. Now, some see a very real risk control might pass beyond human beings altogether.

Read more ....

WNU Editor: The Russian government has invested enormous resources in developing unmanned and robotic systems for their military. Will this be successful .... I do not know. But the successful use of drones by the U.S. to conduct warfare has made everyone aware on what is the potential of this technology, and this "robot arms race" is probably just starting.

China's Economic Boom Is Shaking Western Views Of The Country

Shanghai skyline

Spengler, Asia Times: Western contempt for China turns to panic

Economic boom continues with electronics industry domination and infrastructure growth through trillion-dollar Belt and Road Initiative.

Not since the British garrison at Singapore surrendered to Gen. Tomoyuki Yamashita in 1942 has Western opinion of an Asian power changed so fast. When China’s 2015 stock market bubble popped, prevailing Western opinion held that China’s economic boom would flame out in a debt crisis comparable to America’s subprime disaster of 2008 or the near collapse of Europe’s southern tier in 2013.

Now that China’s tradeable stock market has risen by 43% during 2017 in US dollar terms (with the MSCI-based ETF as a benchmark), Western opinion is melting up. Bridgewater, the world’s largest hedge fund, is raising money for a China investment vehicle. Bank of America now predicts Asian stocks will double in the present bull run. “Hedge Funds Used to Love Shorting China. Now, Not So Much,” declared a Bloomberg headline Sept. 12.

Read more ....

WNU Editor: China is still vulnerable to tariffs being imposed on international trade for their economic growth. This is why the North Korean crisis .... and President Trump's threat to use tariffs to curtail Chinese trade as a leverage for Chinese cooperation .... has raised alarm bells in Beijing and in Wall Street. But as Spengler in the above analysis points out .... Trump adviser Steve Bannon was the last person (not including President Trump) who was focused on this issue, and it appears that his departure has taken this issue off the table. I recall reading a few weeks ago that President Trump was demanding from his economic advisers a list of tariffs that he could impose on Chinese goods. Since then .... there has been no news at all on this subject, and definitely no serious tariffs or economic measures against China from the White House to speak of. As an outside observer .... if I was a Chinese official and/or an American business executive with deep ties to China .... I should take comfort that the status-quo will be maintained, and China's growth fueled by U.S. investment and an imbalanced trade deficit will continue.

Ukraine's Elites Keep On Ruining Their Country


Kenneth Courtis, The Globalist: Ukraine: Something Is Happening Here…

After using the Russian invasion diligently for plenty of international support, Ukraine’s elites aren’t holding up their side of the bargain: They keep ruining their country.

Ukraine’s President, 51-year old Petro Poroshenko – or Porky, as he is known to all Ukrainians – is at single digits in the polls. With elections scheduled for 2019 that cannot sit well with the oligarch-turned-president.

But in their assessment of him, Ukrainians are simply echoing the disdain that, all smooth-talking rhetoric aside, he has shown them. Remember that he promised to divest himself of certain assets – presumably acquired “legally” once he was elected.

What has happened is the opposite. His group has acquired more state assets at below rock-bottom prices. His firms are already lined up at the trough to gobble up all kinds of stuff in the coming wave of privatizations that the IMF has instructed the county to carry out.

Read more ....

WNU Editor: Kenneth Courtis is spot on in his observations and analysis .... but as long-time readers of this blog know .... I have been saying the same thing for the past 2+ years.

Russian President Putin's Propects Of Winning Next Year's Presidential Elections Look Solid

Russian President Vladimir Putin. SPUTNIK/Mikhail Klimentyev/Kremlin/via Reuters

Yuliya Talmazan, NBC: Vladimir Putin’s Would-Be Replacements Are Playing the Long Game

When it comes to Russian politics, it seems that what's old is new again, and again, and again, and again.

Vladimir Putin has already spent almost 14 years as president — and boasts two other stints as the country's prime minister.

But when Russians cast their votes in the presidential election six months from Monday, polls suggest Putin will almost certainly be re-elected to a fourth term running the world's largest nation in terms of landmass.

And while the subsequent election in 2024 may seem far away, analysts say some of his opponents are under no illusions about their prospects at the ballot box this March.

Read more ....

WNU Editor: I have been saying the same thing for the past year .... Putin's support base is huge and they will vote for him to be President. I thought two years ago that Putin would be in trouble because of the economy and the impact of sanctions. But the Russian economy .... contrary to Western reports .... is booming. Everyone is working .... and more importantly .... the small and growing small business class that provides and produces much of the country's wealth have never had it this good. Where the opposition parties and candidates are going to successful will be on the local municipal levels.

Tweets For Today




Hillary Clinton To Contest Election Results?



NPR: Clinton Won't Rule Out Questioning 2016 Election, But Says No Clear Means To Do So

Hillary Clinton says she would not rule out questioning the legitimacy of the 2016 election if new information surfaces that the Russians interfered even more deeply than currently known. In an interview with Fresh Air's Terry Gross about her new memoir, What Happened, Clinton acknowledges that such a challenge would be unprecedented and that "I just don't think we have a mechanism" for it.

Russia is only one aspect of the tumultuous campaign that Clinton reflects on in What Happened, 10 months after losing her bid for the presidency. She also discusses her experiences as the first woman running for president as a part of a major political party and her view on the direction that the country is headed.

Read more ....

WNU Editor: She can't be serious?

More News On Reports That Hillary Clinton May Contest Last Year's Election Results

Hillary Clinton won't rule out questioning Trump's legitimacy, pending Russia probe -- Chicago Tribune/AP
Clinton won't rule out questioning legitimacy of election -- The Hill
Hillary Clinton says she might question whether Trump beat her fair and square if Russian interference is proven – after ... -- Daily Mail
Clinton leaves question mark over 2016 election legitimacy -- BBC
Clinton considers contesting election results -- Fox News
Hillary Clinton refuses to rule out challenging legitimacy of Trump's election win -- The Independent
Clinton won't rule out challenging legitimacy of 2016 election -- Politico
Hillary Clinton may question legitimacy of 2016 election if further Russian meddling uncovered -- The Telegraph

Picture Of The Day

People drink the first mugs of beer after the official opening of the 184th Oktoberfest, Munich's annual beer festival, on September 16, 2017. © AFP 2017/ DPA/Felix Hörhager

WNU Editor: Sighhh .... was there about 20 years ago with my father, mother, two uncles with their wives, and 2 cousins (my cousins are ex-paratroopers .... so you can imagine how they drink). Had a great time .... and if you have a chance, do make a visit if you are in Germany during this time of year. On my visit the highlight was when I took an accordion (yes .... I can play the accordion) from one of the musicians and played the song "Beer-Barrel Polka" .... thankfully .... cell phone cameras and the internet were in their infancy when I did that. The above picture is from this photo-gallery .... Let It Beer! Oktoberfest Fun Begins in Germany (Sputnik).

Former Trump Campaign Chairman Paul Manafort Wiretapped Under Secret Court Orders From 2014 Until This Year. Mueller's Prosecutors Told Manafort to Expect An Indictment



CNN: Exclusive: US government wiretapped former Trump campaign chairman

Washington (CNN)US investigators wiretapped former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort under secret court orders before and after the election, sources tell CNN, an extraordinary step involving a high-ranking campaign official now at the center of the Russia meddling probe.

The government snooping continued into early this year, including a period when Manafort was known to talk to President Donald Trump.

Some of the intelligence collected includes communications that sparked concerns among investigators that Manafort had encouraged the Russians to help with the campaign, according to three sources familiar with the investigation. Two of these sources, however, cautioned that the evidence is not conclusive.

Read more ....

WNU Editor: So CNN now admits that the Trump campaign was wiretapped .... so much for all the denials and ridicule in the mainstream media. never-Trumpers, Democrats, etc., when President Trump made that claim at the beginning of this year.

More News On Reports That Former Trump Campaign Chairman Paul Manafort Was Wiretapped Under Secret Court Orders From 2014 Until This Year, And That He Is To Be Indicted.

The FBI 'secretly wiretapped ex-Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort before and after the election' - and prosecutors have 'told him they plan to indict him' in Russian election meddling probe -- Daily Mail
With a Picked Lock and a Threatened Indictment, Mueller's Inquiry Sets a Tone -- New York Times
Report: Mueller warned Manafort to expect an indictment -- The Hill
Trump Campaign Adviser Was Wiretapped Under Secret Court Orders: CNN -- US News and World Report/Reuters
Former Trump campaign chair Paul Manafort wiretapped by US investigators, report says -- FOX News
Former Trump Campaign Chief Reportedly Under Intermittent FBI Surveillance From 2014 Until This Year -- Slate
The New York Times and CNN Just Published Bombshells About the Trump-Russia Investigation -- Mother Jones
Manafort To Be Indicted? Was Trump Tower Wiretapped? First Thoughts on Two Big Scoops -- David French, NR
Making Sense of the Manafort FISA Report -- TPM

Monday, September 18, 2017

President Trump Envisions A Military Parade Down Pennsylvania Avenue On The Fourth Of July

The Bastille Day parade in Paris in July, which President Trump said gave him the idea of staging a display of American might. Credit Stephen Crowley/The New York Times

New York Times: Trump Envisions a Parade Showing Off American Military Might

WASHINGTON — President Trump said on Monday that he was looking into staging a display of American military might in a Fourth of July parade down Pennsylvania Avenue.

In remarks during a meeting with President Emmanuel Macron of France at the United Nations, Mr. Trump said he got the idea after watching the Bastille Day parade in Paris with Mr. Macron in July. During the parade, he could be seen gesticulating and whispering to Mr. Macron at the elaborate display of tanks, soldiers on horseback and military jets flying overhead.

“I came back and one of my early calls were, I think we are going to have to start looking at that ourselves,” the president told Mr. Macron. “We are actually thinking about Fourth of July, Pennsylvania Avenue, having a really great parade to show our military strength.”

Read more ....

WNU Editor: I have seen my share of military parades in Moscow .... exciting at the beginning .... but now as I grow older .... a nuisance. But I will admit that I am a minority on this issue .... the mass majority of Russians love them. As for a military parade down Pennsylvania Avenue .... I suspect that opinion will be the same .... most would favor such a display.



More News On President Trump Envisioning A Military Parade Down Pennsylvania Avenue On The Fourth Of July

Tanks and missiles on Pennsylvania Avenue! Trump says he may have a giant military parade next Fourth of July like Macron's show of strength on Bastille Day -- Daily Mail
Trump says he wants to have a military parade on July 4 -- CBS/AP
Trump eyes military parade for July 4 celebrations -- AFP
Trump praises Macron, considers July 4 military parade like one he saw in Paris -- Reuters
Trump considering holding DC military parade on July 4th -- The Hill
President Trump wants 4th of July parade to show off country's military might -- USA Today
Donald Trump considering military parade for Fourth of July -- The Guardian
Trump Says He Wants July 4th Military Parade in Washington -- Bloomberg
Trump Wants to Celebrate July 4th With a French, Bastille Twist (VIDEO) -- Sputnik International

White House Wants To Broaden The CIA's Authority On Drone Strikes

A U.S. Air Force MQ-9 Reaper drone sits armed with Hellfire missiles and a 500-pound bomb in a hanger at Kandahar Airfield, Afghanistan March 9, 2016. Josh Smith/Reuters file

NBC: Trump Administration Wants to Increase CIA Drone Strikes

WASHINGTON — When President Donald Trump visited CIA headquarters in the first weeks of his presidency, he toured the secure floor where agency officers direct drone strikes against suspected terrorists, current and former U.S. officials told NBC News.

Impressed by what he saw, Trump conveyed to incoming CIA Director Mike Pompeo and the assembled agency officers that he wanted them to take a more aggressive posture, according to two current U.S. officials and one former official briefed on the visit.

Soon afterward, multiple sources said, the CIA began carrying out drone strikes that might not have been authorized under the Obama administration, including in Syria, where the military has taken the lead on targeting militant leaders.

Read more ....

Update: Trump looks to broaden CIA's authority on drone strikes: Report -- Washington Examiner

Previous Post: CIA Wants To Expand Its Authority To Use Drone Strikes In Afghanistan And Other War Zones Despite Pentagon Concerns (September 16, 2017).

WNU Editor: Aside from a few in Congress and the media .... including the Pentagon who have already voiced their opposition .... I strongly doubt that many will oppose the CIA being given more authority on drone strikes. Is this a good idea .... I am not sure. In the past when the CIA conducted targeted assassinations/killings .... the blow-back was always severe. Will it be different this time because drones are being used .... hmmmmm .... as I said .... I have my doubts.

Classified Israel Defense Report: 'Military Not Ready To Fight Syria'

Second Lebanon WarPhoto by Pierre Terdjman / Flash90)

Arutz Sheva: Classified report: IDF isn't prepared to fight Syria

Likud MK refuses to sign report because it criticizes PM Netanyahu.

A special report from the Knesset's Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee warns of several lacks in the IDF's preparedness for war with Syria Channel 2 reported Monday morning.

The report will soon be submitted to the Knesset.

As a result of the report, a political war broke out between Committee members, after some of the report's authors laid responsibility for the issues on the Israeli government and Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu.

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WNU Editor: If it is any consolation .... Syria isn't prepared to fight Israel.

U.S. Establishes Its First Permanent Military Base In Israel



The Times Of Israel: In first, US establishes permanent military base in Israel

Head of IDF's Aerial Defense Command lauds new air defense facility as a symbolic and operational achievement

For the first time in history, the United States on Monday established an official, permanent military base in Israel: an air defense base in the heart of the Negev desert.

Dozens of US Air Force soldiers will call home the new base, located inside the Israeli Air Force’s Mashabim Air Base, west of the towns of Dimona and Yerucham.

Read more ....

More News On The U.S. Establishing Its First Permanent Base In Israel

Israel and US open first American military base in Israel -- AP
Israel gets first joint US military base -- AFP
For first time, US military opens permanent base in Israel -- JNS.org
IDF, US Army celebrate inauguration of first American base in Israel -- The Jerusalem Post

Commentaries, Analysis, And Editorials -- September 18, 2017

A wide view of the General Assembly Hall as President of the 69th session of the Assembly. UN Photo/Amanda Voisard

Edouard Morton, SCMP: From North Korea to the Rohingya crisis to Trump’s debut speech: all you need to know about the UN General Assembly

The annual gathering of world leaders has brought with it some memorable moments, and this year is set to be no different

The UN will hold the 72nd session of its General Assembly from Monday amid a tense geopolitical landscape riddled by a multitude of crises – from North Korea’s nuclear threat to the plight of the Rohingya in Myanmar, Islamic terrorism and global warming.

With such a jam-packed agenda of issues to wrap your head around, here’s a rundown of the much anticipated meeting, and a look back at some of the most memorable moments from past events.

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Commentaries, Analysis, And Editorials -- September 18, 2017

Trump and the United Nations: Reform or Die? -- Zalmay Khalilzad, National Interest

Twitter Man vs. Rocket Man -- Susan B. Glasser, Politico

How North Korea evades UN sanctions -- Liu Zhen, SCMP

America May Push Iran Into Becoming the Next Nuclear Crisis -- Ted Galen Carpenter, National Interest

What's Controversial About a Kurdistan Referendum? -- Heather Murdock, VOA

Moment of glory? Kurdish referenda in Iraq, Syria explained -- Sami Moubayed, Asia Times

The Tragedy of Aung San Suu Kyi -- Syed Munir Khasru, Project Syndicate

Back on the Playground: Returning to Iraq, Eight Years Later -- Scott Cooper, War on the Rocks

Why are Afghan militants targeting aid workers? -- Masood Saifullah, DW

Libya’s Oil Recovery Over a Barrel -- Reed Blakemore & Elissa Miller, RCW

Merkel Can't Lead Germany, Much Less the Free World -- Alex Berezow, National Interest

Labor reform in France’s Macron economy -- John Lloyd, Reuters

The Austrian threat to EU unity -- Mike Scrafton, The Strategist

Russia Blends Cyber Attacks with Information War -- Stefan Meister, Cipher Brief

Facebook, Compromised: How Russia Manipulated U.S. Voters -- Sophia Porotsky, Global Security Review

World News Briefs -- September 18, 2017 (Evening Edition)

US President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping (R), pictured in July 2017, discussed "North Korea's continued defiance of the international community and its efforts to destabilize Northeast Asia"

AFP: Trump, Xi agree on 'maximizing pressure' on N. Korea: White House

US President Donald Trump and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping committed to "maximizing pressure on North Korea", the White House said Monday, amid an escalating crisis over Pyongyang's ballistic and nuclear weapons programs.

In a phone call the two men discussed "North Korea's continued defiance of the international community and its efforts to destabilize Northeast Asia," the White House said.

"The two leaders committed to maximizing pressure on North Korea through vigorous enforcement of United Nations Security Council resolutions."

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MIDDLE EAST

Syrian army sends more troops across Euphrates, near U.S.-backed forces.

Trump touts peace hopes at Netanyahu meeting.

Iraqi forces prepare for assault on Islamic State stronghold in Hawija.

Islamic State suicide bombers attack coalition base in Iraq.

Iraq top court rules to suspend Kurdish referendum. Iraqi Kurdish referendum must be suspended - Iraqi PM.

Turkey holds military drill on Iraqi border before Kurdish vote: army.

U.S. and Iran argue over inspections at nuclear watchdog meeting.

Hamas says it is ready to hold first elections since 2006.

Rare Abbas call to Hamas chief boosts reconciliation.

Snapchat blocks Al Jazeera in Saudi Arabia.

ASIA

Most of 3,000 extra US troops to Afghanistan on their way: Mattis.

Mattis: No need yet to shoot down NKorean missiles.

'Vicious' sanctions will only speed up nuclear programme: NKorea.

Rohingya refugees tell of new violence; call for Myanmar sanctions.

Rohingya 'extremists' trying to build stronghold - Myanmar army.

New diplomatic missions signal Chinese support for Myanmar amid Rohingya crisis.

China and India water 'dispute' after border stand-off.

Trump, South Korean leader vow to increase pressure on North Korea.

Pressure on Pyongyang will force it to abandon nuclear program — South Korean president.

S. Korea's direct investment in China plunges 44 pct amid THAAD row.

Japanese PM Abe set to call October election.

Wife of ousted Pakistan PM Nawaz Sharif wins by-election viewed as test for dynasty.

Burst fuel pipe disrupts New Zealand flights.

Malaysia nixes beer festival after Islamist protest.

AFRICA

Tunisia offers to mediate in Libya crisis.

Tunisia postpones first post-revolt municipal polls.

Togo ruling party calls rally to drown out opposition.

At least six killed as rival Somali troops clash in Mogadishu.

'Thousands of women raped and assaulted' in South Sudan.

Egypt guilty of kidnap, torture and abuse, says former detainee.

Libya trafficker's militia in deadly clash with security forces.

UN seeks $10 million as Nigeria cholera outbreak worsens.

UN gives top prize to Chibok girls negotiator.

Biafra separatists sponsored by Nigerian government's opponents: minister.

EUROPE

France opens door to post-2025 talks on Iran nuclear deal.

London subway attack: U.K. lowers threat level after second arrest.

Iceland sets snap election for Oct. 28: president.

Putin to watch parachute drop, part of war games that have rattled West.

Spanish police confiscate Catalan referendum material.

German election: Poll puts far-right AfD in third place.

Theresa May visits Canada for post-Brexit trade talks.

Portugal is upgraded out of junk status and its markets jump.

Deadly storm rips through Romania.

AMERICAS

‘Rapidly intensifying’ Hurricane Maria takes aim at Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands.

In first visit, Trump urges reform so U.N. can meet full potential.

Venezuela opposition blames Maduro for activist's jail death.

NAFTA talks moving at 'warp speed,' US trade rep says.

Trudeau: Canada could stop dealing with Boeing over dispute.

US may close Cuba embassy after 'attacks' on diplomats.

Adam Schiff: Social media and search engine companies need to testify before Congress on Russian ad buys.

Obama goes from White House to Wall Street in less than one year.

Chile-Bolivia relations at their worst since 1884.

Venezuela indicts alleged accomplice of June helicopter attack.

Peru's Kuczynski swears in new Cabinet, opposition signals support.

Hurricane Maria to become major storm near Caribbean islands.

Hurricane Otis brewing in Pacific.

TERRORISM/THE LONG WAR

Iraq set to expel 500 wives of IS jihadists.

Islamic State claims its ‘soldiers’ carried out London tube bombing.

British police made record-number of terrorism arrests over past year.

H.R. McMaster says White House is 'looking at' stricter travel ban after London terrorist attack.

ECONOMY/FINANCE/BUSINESS

Banks lead US stocks modestly higher in afternoon trading.

52% of the world does not have internet access.

Inside the new battle against Google.

Rolling Stone, iconic music magazine, looks for buyer.

Rocket and missile maker Orbital ATK sold for $7.8bn.

President Trump Visits The U.N. To Push For Reform



NBC: Trump Offers Support for U.N. Reform

President Donald Trump offered hope on Monday for the future of the United Nations — an organization he previously derided as inefficient.

Speaking at a session aimed at reforming the U.N., Trump said the body had "not reached its full potential" in recent years because of "bureaucracy and mismanagement." He went on to express faith and support for U.N. Secretary General António Guterres' "great reform vision" and commended him for ushering in much needed change in the deliberative body.

Though the U.N.'s budget and staff have increased, "we are not seeing the results in line with this investment," but Trump added that under the secretary general that's "changing fast."

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WNU Editor: The media is focused on this .... President Trump makes a plug for his tower during UN speech (USA Today) .... but President Trump is right that the UN needs to reform itself. Will such reforms happen .... I give it a 0.001% chance.

More News On President Trump Visiting The U.N. To Push For Reform

Trump Pushes UN: 'We Are Not Seeing the Results' -- New York Times
In first visit, Trump urges reform so UN can meet full potential -- Reuters
Trump takes on a new cause: 'Make the United Nations great' -- Politico
Trump calls for whistleblower protections as part of UN reforms -- CNN
What Does Trump Want Out of United Nations Reform? -- Newsweek
Here's What To Expect From Trump At The United Nations -- Zero Hedge

South Korean Defense Ministry: 'North Korea Nearing Final Development Stage Of ICBM'

KCNA/Reuters

Korea Herald: North Korea nearing final development stage of ICBM: ministry

North Korea is nearing the final stage of developing an intercontinental ballistic missile and is likely to continue test-launches and nuclear experiments to perfect the technology, Seoul’s Defense Ministry said Monday.

In a briefing to a parliamentary defense committee, the ministry also said that the North’s launch Friday of the intermediate-range Hwasong-12 rocket appears to be intended at demonstrating its capability to strike the US territory of Guam. In August, the communist regime had threatened to attack the Pacific island, some 3,400 kilometers from Pyongyang, with four Hwasong-12 missiles.

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WNU Editor: More than anyone else the South Koreans are watching everything what goes on in North Korea. This announcement from the South Korean defense ministry does not give a time frame on when will North Korea be able to perfect the technology, but it does give a heads-up that should alarm all of us.

Update: Yup .... Here's why a North Korean 'city-busting' thermonuclear ICBM changes the game (Alex Lockie, Business Insider).