The leader stepped to the podium of the United Nations General Assembly, as close to a literal world stage as exists, and issued a stringent defense of the principle of national sovereignty. “What is the state sovereignty, after all, that has been mentioned by our colleagues here? It is basically about freedom and the right to choose freely one's own future for every person, nation and state,” he said, attacking what he identified as the hypocrisy of those who seek to violate sovereignty in the name of stopping mass murder. “Aggressive foreign interference,” the leader continued, “has resulted in a brazen destruction of national institutions and the lifestyle itself. Instead of the triumph of democracy and progress, we got violence, poverty and social disaster.” The leader was not Donald Trump on Tuesday, but Vladimir Putin in 2015. Whatever nexus between Putin and Trump exists for Robert Mueller to discover, the evidence of their compatible visions … [Read more...] about Trump Uses Putin’s Arguments to Undermine the World
Here are the stories you shouldn’t miss today:TOP STORIESWhat Will Sondland Say?When Gordon Sondland enters the ornate House hearing room for televised testimony this morning, Republicans and Democrats will be looking for a make-or-break moment in the impeachment inquiry into President Trump — even as serious questions surround Sondland’s credibility. Advertisement The hotelier-turned-U.S. ambassador to the European Union has emerged as a pivotal link between the president and a shadow foreign policy led by Rudolph W. Giuliani, who was urging the Ukrainians to conduct investigations into former Vice President Joe Biden and his son as military aid to Ukraine was being held up.Sondland’s appearance follows more than 11 hours of firsthand testimony from White House aides who provided damaging new details about Trump’s efforts. Republicans largely responded by trying to discredit the witnesses rather than dispute their accounts.Meanwhile, more than $35 … [Read more...] about Newsletter: What will Sondland say?
Amnesty International USA has put up billboards in Florida to mark World Children’s Day, calling on the United States to stop “locking up” kids.The two billboards, located in Orlando and Miami, mark World Children's Day on Wednesday and feature messages drawing attention to the scores of migrant children currently and previously detained in the U.S., according to NBC News."We don't believe in locking up children. Do you?" the billboard in Orlando asks. The sign is located roughly 10 miles from Disney World.ADVERTISEMENT"You are now 7 miles away from where kids are locked up," the other billboard in Miami reads.That billboard is a short distance from a facility in Homestead, which currently sits empty but used to house detained immigrant children.In addition to the billboards, Amnesty International USA has featured messages on trucks and sidewalk pavements, NBC News notes.One sign reads: "Florida: Amusement parks. Beaches. Detained children.”NBC … [Read more...] about Florida billboards call on US to stop ‘locking up’ kids to mark World Children’s Day
Photo: Jeenah Moon/Bloomberg via Getty Images World leaders who are in trouble at home have a pretty standard playbook for how to use the United Nations General Assembly to turn the page: Show up strong and substantive and draw status and solidarity from other heads of state. I saw President Clinton deploy this strategy when I was at the U.N. in 1998 as a member of Secretary of State Madeleine Albright’s staff. As CNN flashed headlines about Monica Lewinsky, Clinton delivered a classic (and long) stemwinder about the equal humanity of Muslims, the global nature of anti-terrorism, and other lofty causes. Clinton was rewarded with a standing ovation from his fellow leaders. On Tuesday, President Donald Trump delivered a speech full of strong rhetoric on many of his usual themes — the value of nationalism, the dangers of socialism, the perfidiousness of Iran — and some new riffs, in which he attempted to lump humanitarian workers in with human traffickers (both are … [Read more...] about Trump’s Low-Energy U.N. Speech Said More Than He Realized
The Vietnam War was the greatest disaster in the history of American foreign policy. The conflict altered the direction of post-World War II American society and politics in profoundly significant ways. It shook the nation to its foundations, exacerbating already deep cleavages in American society between liberals and conservatives, young and old, black and white. It left the country baffled and ambivalent about its role in the world as defender of democratic institutions and ideas, and widened the credibility gap between the government and the people. Twenty years ago journalist Arnold Isaacs wrote that our misguided adventure in Southeast Asia “lingers in the national memory, brooding over our politics, our culture, and our long, unfinished debate over who we are and what we believe.” The war still looms large in the national consciousness, which explains in part why the Ken Burns-Lynn Novick documentary on the war, first aired in the fall of 2017, re-ignited the … [Read more...] about Vietnam: The Greatest Disaster in All of US Foreign Policy