Tag Archives: Trump&#39s

Trump's 'relentless attack' on FBI prompted memoir by former official: NPR

Trump's 'relentless attack' on FBI prompted memoir by former official: NPRFormer top FBI official Andrew McCabe decried the “relentless attack” he said U.S. President Donald Trump has launched against the agency, according to released excerpts of an interview with NPR’s Morning Edition, to be aired early Monday. “I think the FBI has been under a relentless attack in the last two years,” said McCabe, who is promoting his new memoir, “The Threat: How the FBI Protects America in the Age of Terrorism and Trump.” Trump’s attack is one of the reasons he wrote his book, he said in a wide-ranging interview that covered everything from his own firing, the probe into Russia’s alleged role in the 2016 presidential election, and FBI morale.



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Senate approves William Barr as Donald Trump's new attorney general

Senate approves William Barr as Donald Trump's new attorney generalThe US Senate has approved President Donald Trump’s attorney general nominee William Barr, putting the veteran Republican lawyer in charge of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s probe of any ties between Mr Trump’s campaign and Russia. The vote was 54-45, primarily on a party-line basis with most Republicans backing the 68-year-old and most Democrats opposed. Democrats had expressed concern over Mr Barr's nomination out of concern he might not fully make public Mr Mueller's findings. But with the Senate controlled by the Republicans, Mr Barr's confirmation was always assured. Previously attorney general from 1991 to 1993 under President George HW Bush, Mr Barr has won praise from lawmakers in both parties for his expertise and grasp of the workings of the Justice Department, which he will now head. He is the third man in barely two years to occupy that post, replacing acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker, who replaced Attorney General Jeff Sessions. Mr Trump ousted Mr Sessions last November after criticising him repeatedly. Mr Mueller is investigating meddling by Russia in the 2016 US presidential election and whether Moscow colluded with Mr Trump's campaign to try to tilt the election in Mr Trump's direction, as well as possible obstruction of justice. Mr Trump denies any collusion. The Kremlin denies any meddling. Before being nominated, Mr Barr wrote a 19-page legal memo, which he shared with Mr Trump's legal team and Justice Department officials. It called Mr Mueller's probe "fatally flawed." Mr Barr has said he will not let himself be bullied by Mr Trump and will protect the integrity of Mr Mueller's investigation and make public as many of its findings as he can. However, Mr Barr has not promised to release Mr Mueller's final report in its entirety. He has warned he may not be allowed to reveal the identities of people who escape prosecution. That stance troubles many Democrats, who say Mr Barr's expansive views of executive power might lead him to suppress parts of the report. Despite Democrats' opposition, many are still anxious to have Mr Barr installed quickly so that he can replace Mr Whitaker, whose tenure has been fraught with controversy since the president installed him in November. Critics have alleged Mr Whitaker's appointment was unlawful. Democrats fear Trump installed him to undermine Mr Mueller's probe because Mr Whitaker had criticised it when he was a conservative pundit. Mr Barr is widely expected to back many of Mr Trump's tough immigration policies. He will also be under the microscope for how he implements a new law that eases prison sentences for non-violent criminals, after he advocated for the opposite, tough-on-crime approach for decades.



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Trump's Afghan envoy intensifies peace efforts with Taliban

Trump's Afghan envoy intensifies peace efforts with TalibanWASHINGTON (AP) — The Trump administration's special envoy for Afghanistan is returning to the country after stops in Europe and the Middle East for an extended diplomatic tour aimed at pushing a U.S. peace initiative.



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Federal prosecutors subpoena Trump's inaugural committee

Federal prosecutors subpoena Trump's inaugural committeeNEW YORK (AP) — Federal prosecutors in New York issued a subpoena Monday seeking documents from Donald Trump's inaugural committee, furthering a federal inquiry into a fund that has faced mounting scrutiny into how it raised and spent its money.



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Nobel winner Murad, Guaido envoy invited to Trump's State of Union

Nobel winner Murad, Guaido envoy invited to Trump's State of UnionNobel Peace Prize winner Nadia Murad and Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido’s envoy to Washington are among the top guests invited to attend US President Donald Trump’s State of the Union address, lawmakers announced Monday. It’s an occasion for the Democrats, Republicans and independents of the 100-member Senate and 435-member House of Representatives to bring guests who symbolize policy goals and bring attention to the causes they hold dear. Murad, an Iraqi Yazidi woman who escaped the clutches of the Islamic State group to become a leading campaigner against sexual violence in war, and Carlos Vecchio, whom the US has recognized as Venezuela’s top diplomat in Washington, are among the high-profile guests this year.



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The Senate Just Rebuked Trump's Plan to Withdraw U.S. Troops From Syria and Afghanistan

The Senate Just Rebuked Trump's Plan to Withdraw U.S. Troops From Syria and AfghanistanIn a rebuke to President Donald Trump, the Senate has voted 68-23 to advance an amendment that would oppose withdrawal of U.S. troops from Syria and Afghanistan.



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North Korea 'unlikely' to give up nukes, top US intelligence chief says despite Donald Trump's optimism

North Korea 'unlikely' to give up nukes, top US intelligence chief says despite Donald Trump's optimismNorth Korea is “unlikely” to give up its nuclear weapons program, America’s most senior intelligence chief has said, in stark contrast to Donald Trump’s optimistic comments on securing a breakthrough.  Dan Coats, the US director of national intelligence, said that North Korea’s leaders see keeping their nuclear arsenal as crucial to “regime survival”.  Mr Coats also warned there was evidence that Kim Jong-un’s regime was taking actions “inconsistent” with its declared support for denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula.  The remarks, which came during an appearance by six US intelligence chiefs before the Senate Intelligence Committee, jar with the US president’s public views on the stand-off.  Mr Trump has repeatedly played up the prospect of North Korea denuclearising since he met with Kim, the country’s leader, during a historic summit in Singapore in June 2018.  Donald Trump, the US president, and Kim Jong-un, the North Korean leader, shake hands during a summit in Singapore Credit: AP Photo/Susan Walsh The US president tweeted shortly after that meeting that “there is no longer a nuclear threat from North Korea”. On another occasion he joked that him and Kim “fell in love” with each other.  Mr Coats is a former Republican senator who serves in Mr Trump’s cabinet. The role he holds was created after the September 11 attacks and co-ordinates America’s 17 different intelligence agencies.  In his prepared opening remarks on North Korea for a hearing about worldwide threats, Mr Coats begun by playing up the areas of progress in the relationship.  He said: “The regime has halted its provocative behavior related to its WMD program. North Korea has not conducted any nuclear-capable missile or nuclear tests in more than a year and it has dismantled some of its nuclear infrastructure. Christopher Wray, FBI director, Gina Haspel, CIA director, Daniel Coats, director of National Intelligence, and General Robert Ashley, director of the Defense Intelligence Agency, [left to right], at the Senate Intelligence Committee Credit: SAUL LOEB / AFP "As well, Kim Jong-un continues to demonstrate openness to the denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula." But Mr Coats went on: “Having said that, we currently assess that North Korea will seek to retain its WMD capabilities and is unlikely to completely give up its nuclear weapons and production capabilities because its leaders ultimately view nuclear weapons as critical to regime survival. "Our assessment is bolstered by our observations of some activity that is inconsistent with full denuclearisation .” The assessment that North Korean leaders do not actually want to give up their nuclear weapons program challenges a central tenant of the Trump administration’s stance for talks.  Mr Trump has repeatedly talked up the chance of a breakthrough and has touted Kim’s support for denuclearisation – though at times has made clear he does not know where talks will end.  Critics have warned that the North Korean regime is not really willing to give up its weapons, despite its leadership’s public statements. Mr Trump and Kim are due to hold a second summit in late February. A location is yet to be announced. During their appearance on Capitol Hill, the intelligence chiefs made a number of stark comments that underlined the scale of threats facing America and other nations.  Mr Coats singled out the “big four”  – Russia, China, Iran and North Korea – as he warned a “toxic mix” of competitors, regional powers, failed states and non-state groups were threatening America. He said that more than a 1,000 Isil fighters remain in Syria and Iraq and that the terror group is plotting resurgence.  The remark comes as Mr Trump withdraws America’s 2,000 troops from Syria after declaring Isil had been defeated – a decision that triggered a fierce backlash from allies and the resignation of defence secretary Jim Mattis.  Mr Coats noted that China and Russia’s relationship is now closer than for “many decades”, an alliance that would have significant impacts on geopolitics if it continues to solidify.  He also warned that the 2020 US presidential election was viewed by adversaries as “an opportunity to advance their interest", raising the prospect of more foreign interference. He said protecting US elections was a “top priority”.



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Senate committee delays vote on Trump's attorney general pick

Senate committee delays vote on Trump's attorney general pickDelaying the committee’s vote will give Democrats more time to question Barr about how he would handle Mueller’s investigation into the Trump campaign’s possible ties to Russia during the 2016 presidential election. Barr criticized the investigation last year in a memo to the Justice Department but he told the committee in testimony two weeks ago that he would protect the probe from political interference and would allow Mueller to conclude his work. Trump has repeatedly criticized the investigation as a “witch hunt” and denies any collusion with Moscow.



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NATO chief says Trump's funding gripes having 'real results'

NATO chief says Trump's funding gripes having 'real results'NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said Sunday that US President Donald Trump’s regular complaints about the alliance had not undermined it — adding that his criticism on defense spending was having a positive impact. Trump has frequently blasted members of the 29-nation western security partnership for not paying more into their national defense budgets. Before taking office, he called NATO “obsolete” and recent media reports said he spoke to senior officials last year about pulling out.



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Trump's lawyer Giuliani: will he save or sink the president?

Trump's lawyer Giuliani: will he save or sink the president?Apparent admissions by Donald Trump’s lawyer that the president negotiated a Moscow property deal all through the 2016 election, and that aides may have colluded with Russia, have Washington asking: is Rudy Giuliani going to save Trump or get him impeached? Giuliani, who last year claimed that “truth isn’t truth” to explain why Trump shouldn’t testify to Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia meddling investigation, has confounded political and legal analysts. Reporters for Politico and Vanity Fair wrote Tuesday that Trump was “apoplectic” and that powerful figures in the White House were gunning for Giuliani’s dismissal.



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