Friday April 20th, 2018
"It Is Not A Question of Who Is Right Or Wrong But What Is Right Or Wrong That Counts."
World & National
In Comey memos, Trump fixates on ‘hookers,’ frets over Flynn
In a series of startlingly candid conversations, President Donald Trump told former FBI Director James Comey that he had serious concerns about the judgment of a top adviser, asked about the possibility of jailing journalists and described a boast from Vladimir Putin about Russian prostitutes, according to Comey’s notes of the talks obtained by The Associated Press on Thursday night.
The 15 pages of documents contain new details about a series of interactions with Trump that Comey found so unnerving that he chose to document them in writing. Those seven encounters in the weeks and months before Comey’s May 2017 firing include a Trump Tower discussion about allegations involving Trump and prostitutes in Moscow; a White House dinner at which Comey says Trump asked him for his loyalty; and a private Oval Office discussion where the ex-FBI head says the president asked him to end an investigation into Michael Flynn, the former White House national security adviser.
The documents had been eagerly anticipated since their existence was first revealed last year, especially since Comey’s interactions with Trump are a critical part of special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into whether the president sought to obstruct justice. Late Thursday night, Trump tweeted that the memos “show clearly that there was NO COLLUSION and NO OBSTRUCTION.”
15 PAGES REVEALED...
Trump blasts OPEC, says cartel is keeping oil prices 'artificially very high' and that 'will not be accepted'
President Donald Trump blasted the oil-producing cartel OPEC on Twitter on Friday.
"Looks like OPEC is at it again," he wrote. "With record amounts of Oil all over the place, including the fully loaded ships at sea, Oil prices are artificially Very High! No good and will not be accepted!"
WTI oil prices hit a three-year high above $69 a barrel this week and were still trading above $68 on Friday. The international benchmark, Brent crude, was above $73 on Friday after also hitting its highest level since November 2014 this week.
‘Sanctuary county’ declared for Illinois gun owners; citizens ‘tired of being pushed around’
An overwhelming majority of board members in Effingham County, Illinois, decided to “flip the script” this week and declare itself a “sanctuary” for gun owners.
Effingham County State’s Attorney Bryan Kibler and board member David Campbell called a barrage of gun-control bills working their way through the Illinois House and Senate a clear signal that it’s time to “take a stand.”
The men joined “Fox & Friends First” on Thursday to discuss a new Second Amendment resolution that passed along an 8-1 vote.
DOJ watchdog sends McCabe findings to federal prosecutors for possible charges
The Justice Department's inspector general referred its findings on former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe to the US attorney's office in Washington for possible criminal charges associated with lying to internal investigators, according to a source familiar with the matter.
'I could well be a witness' for the prosecution against McCabe, Comey tells CNN
When exactly the referral was made to the US attorney's office was not immediately clear, and prosecutors there may decline to prosecute.
Last week, the IG issued a report finding that McCabe "lacked candor" on four occasions with internal investigators when discussing a Wall Street Journal article about the FBI's Clinton Foundation investigation, according to a copy of the report obtained by CNN.
Rudy Giuliani Joining Trump's Legal Team
A president who has had trouble recruiting new lawyers gets a close ally to come in and help.
Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani is joining President Donald Trump’s personal legal team to help with Special Counsel Bob Mueller’s probe into potential Russian meddling in the 2016 election, The Washington Post reported on Thursday.
Though talks had been ongoing, a formal announcement was delayed by a slew of foreign policy matters that took over much of the president’s time and agenda. A source familiar with the arrangement said that Trump had been preoccupied by North Korea and Syria, which limited his availability to speak with potential new members of his legal team.
Giuliani told the Post that he was joining the team “because I hope we can negotiate an end to this for the good of the country and because I have high regard for the president and for Bob Mueller.”
Dershowitz: Bringing on Giuliani a 'Very Wise Decision'
It was wise for President Donald Trump to bring former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani onto his personal legal team, Harvard Law professor Alan Dershowitz said Thursday night.
Giuliani "is one of the most effective and successful prosecutors in the history of the Southern District,” Dershowitz told Fox Business' "Kennedy." "I think it was probably a very wise decision for the president to bring Giuliani on board. He knows all the tricks. He knows all the tactics.”
Sanctions Are Hurting North Korea. Can They Make Kim Give In?
The isolated North is finding ways to cope with tough new penalties.
On a dark February night, the trucks unloaded their contraband near Hyesan, a North Korean town across a narrow river from China. As border guards looked the other way, workers used carts to pull the cargo of metal ore — tungsten, lead, zinc, copper and gold concentrates, all banned from export under United Nations sanctions — across the frozen river.
By sunrise, all that was left were tire tracks and footprints across the river’s frozen surface.
A North Korean witness told an acquaintance living in South Korea that ore, as well as other materials, was being smuggled into China at the crossing almost every night. He said smugglers also headed the other way, moving sugar, flour and 50-kilogram sacks of fertilizers into North Korea.
Prince Charles to be next Commonwealth head
The Prince of Wales will be the next head of the Commonwealth, the BBC understands.
The Queen had said it was her "sincere wish" that Prince Charles would succeed her in the role "one day".
The non-hereditary role would not have automatically passed to Prince Charles, with some suggestions it might rotate among the 53 leaders.
The BBC's diplomatic correspondent James Landale said a source had told the BBC that Commonwealth leaders had agreed the appointment.
Study Reveals US Vulnerable From Tech Reliance on China
A new study warns the U.S. government is dangerously vulnerable to Chinese espionage or a cyberattack because of its dependence on electronics and software made in China.
The risk will only grow as China seeks global technological dominance, according to the report for the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission.
The U.S. government's annual $90 billion in spending on information technology is devoted to Chinese products — providing back doors that could be exploited for cyberattacks, Jennifer Bisceglie, chief executive of Interos Solutions, which conducted the study, told The Washington Post.
U.S. strikes on Syria prove Trump is no Mr. Nice Guy
This was the week when America was being praised around the world for punishing Syria’s evil, despotic, regime that killed scores of men, women and children with its arsenal of lethal chemical weapons.
It was certainly President Trump’s finest hour in global leadership, hailed by our allies, several of whom joined in a retaliatory attack to destroy much of Bashar Assad’s chemical weapons facilities.
Russia, Mr. Assad’s accomplice in murder and mayhem, called the attacks an “act of aggression.” Iran, who has bankrolled terrorist plots throughout the region, labeled it a “war crime.” And Syria, whose government is accused of crimes against humanity, had the nerve to call the U.S. bombings “barbarous.”
The Democratic terror of a miracle in North Korea
Trying to spark a new romance, or even arrange a weekend tryst, is not always easy. It’s impossible with the help of spectators eager to throw things, not orange blossoms but sticks and stones with sharp edges. But that’s how Washington tries to conduct diplomacy, circa 2018.
A tryst is not exactly what Donald Trump is trying to arrange with Kim Jong-un, the Rocket Man-cum-summiteer, but the president is getting all the help he doesn’t need in dealing with the threat of nuclear mischief in Asia.
The Democrats are damning the president’s work with praise offered through gritted teeth. They’re particularly worried, so they say, that the president dispatched Mike Pompeo, the director of the CIA and prospective secretary of State, to work on the details of the summit without taking them into his confidence.