More to ignore, Book 94.....

Ten Thousan Marbles

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Ten Thousan Marbles

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......At the very least, the terms of this order, combined with Cannon’s repeated insistence that she has the authority to override the government on issues of classification and privilege means she will decide, herself, issues that would go to the core of the crimes of which Trump is suspected. In Espionage Act trials,
juries get to decide whether something is National Defense Information, but Cannon has set this review up such that she can decide all those issues on her own, without a jury, before Trump is ever charged.

But it is really really easy to see how Cannon replaces Dearie with Paul Huck Jr, who is basically a Republican lobbyist, and with him starts to invent more harms she can then adjudicate. And at that point, Judge Cannon would use this Special Master review to make yet more false claims of abuse on the part of DOJ.
 

Ten Thousan Marbles

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Speaker Nancy Pelosi will travel to Armenia this weekend in a show of support for the country, which has been locked in a deadly fight with Azerbaijan, two people familiar with the visit told POLITICO.

Pelosi will make the journey accompanied by Rep. Jackie Speier (D-Calif.) after a stop in Berlin for the G-7 Speakers’ Summit. She’s expected to meet with Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan in Yerevan, the capital, as well as other government officials.....
 

Ten Thousan Marbles

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(Bloomberg) -- The newly named special master in the Donald Trump records seizure case wasted no time in scheduling a hearing for the former president’s attorneys and those from the Justice Department.


US District Court Judge Raymond J. Dearie, who was named Thursday by a judge in Florida to review all 11,000 seized by the FBI at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home last month, directed the attorneys to appear Tuesday in a courtroom of the Brooklyn Federal Courthouse at 2 p.m. for a preliminary conference. Dearie also invited the lawyers to submit proposed agenda items for the meeting by close of business on Monday.

US District Court Judge Aileen Cannon, in West Palm Beach, Florida, gave Dearie until Nov. 30 to complete the review of the documents for materials that potentially involve attorney-client confidentiality or the executive privilege afforded presidents. She also ordered Trump to pay the full cost of the review.

Both the Justice Department and Trump’s attorneys had agreed that Dearie would be a suitable candidate, one of the rare moments of consensus in a case otherwise rife with politics and dispute......
 

Ten Thousan Marbles

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.....Andrew Weissmann, a federal prosecutor, a former senior member of special counsel Robert Mueller's team and a special master himself, described Dearie as "compassionate" and "fair" and the "platonic ideal of what you want in a judge."

"If you asked both prosecutors and lawyers, they would say the same thing, that he is just so fair," Weissmann said. "It's unusual to have a judge where both sides just have enormous praise for somebody."

When Weissmann was starting out as a federal prosecutor in Brooklyn, the judge was late for a court appearance. "A few days later, I got in the mail a handwritten apology from him," Weissmann recalled. The defense lawyer got the same letter from the judge. "It was just remarkable because judges have a lot of power — they don't need to do that," Weissmann said......
 

Ten Thousan Marbles

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Federal DHS agents aided DeSantis' migrant stunt, attorneys allege

Joan McCarter

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis’ inhumane and depraved stunt keeps getting worse as more facts emerge. On Wednesday, DeSantis loaded 48 migrants—who are asylum-seekers mostly from Venezuela—onto planes in in San Antonio, Texas. They then flew them to Florida, then eventually on to Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts, where there are no refugee services. Officials there had no warning, but the community rallied in support of the incomers to the point where officials received so many donations and volunteers that they had to turn them away.

That’s the heartwarming part of the story. The part that makes this so much worse than we even knew before is emerging as the story comes from the migrants themselves through the immigration attorneys who have mobilized to help them. That includes the allegation that U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) agents assisted DeSantis in this stunt.

Here’s immigration attorney Rachel Self relating what she heard from her new clients.



According to the migrants, DHS agents met the migrants as they were boarding the plane. The agents gave them false addresses of homeless shelters from all over the country—from Tacoma, Washington, to Florida—and told them to use them as their contact addresses. “According to the paperwork provided to them, the migrants are required to check in with the ICE [Immigration and Customs Enforcement] office nearest to the fake address chosen for them by DHS, or be permanently removed from the United States,” Self said. Some are required to check in as early as Monday morning.

“It could not be clearer that this is an attempt to have these people ordered to be removed even if they try as hard as they can to comply with the instructions provided to them,” Self told a group of reporters.

“Their biggest concern today is that many of them have dates to appear in San Antonio Monday morning. Tacoma, Washington Monday morning. Washington, D.C. Monday morning,” Self said. “Their biggest concern is compliance.” Tallahassee immigration attorney Elizabeth Ricci told the Orlando Sentinel Friday that DHS and ICE had to be involved. “ICE likely conspired with the governor’s office to pull off the stunt,” Ricci said. “It couldn’t have been done without their direct involvement.”

DHS officials haven’t responded to the allegation yet, and they ****ing need to.

The migrants were lured onto the planes thinking they were getting jobs and housing. Emmanuel, a 20-year-old Venezuelan migrant, told the San Antonio Report that he had been paid $200 in cash by a woman who identified herself as “Perla” to recruit fellow migrants to board the flights. He said Perla told him the migrants would be sent to “sanctuary states” where the government would help.

She told him an “anonymous benefactor” was funding the operation, including his payment. “Perla informed me that in those sanctuary states, the state has the benefits to help migrants,” Emmanuel told the Report. “I’ve just been the mediator because I like to help people.”

“A lot of people really come without plans, they want to come and just work and they have a hand that’ll provide them shelter,” he said. “I just saw it in that way, like a sweet way, doing it for good.”

Lawyers for Civil Rights, which is based in Boston, is providing free legal services to the migrants. The group also says that it is investigating claims by migrants that they were tricked or sent against their will into taking the flights by DeSantis, making it a possible violation of human trafficking laws.

DeSantis remains belligerent and monstrous and promises this will continue. He says he has people in Texas who are intercepting Venezuelans seeking refuge in Florida, where they likely have family they want to rejoin. “What we’re trying to do is profile, ‘OK, who do you think is trying to get to Florida?’ You’re trying to identify who’s most likely to come.” Are DeSantis’ “people” in Texas the DHS agents who allegedly helped him essentially kidnap these 48 people, including families with children?

The Department of Justice needs to be investigating this now. That was true before the allegations emerged that federal employees—agents of the DHS—were complicit in DeSantis’ monstrous stunt. Those allegations make a federal investigation imperative, and urgent.
 

Ten Thousan Marbles

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It just keeps getting crazier: Book says Trump wanted to trade Puerto Rico for Greenland!

Charles Jay

It just keeps getting crazier. Maybe Donald Trump’s get out of jail card is an insanity plea.

I’m also getting more incensed at the high-profile members of the Washington press corps who have held off on revealing damaging details about the Trump maladministration until they could cash in on a book deal.

This time the culprits are the husband-and-wife team of Peter Baker, chief White House correspondent for The New York Times, and Susan Glasser, a staff writer for The New Yorker. They have been hawking their forthcoming book, The Divider: Trump in the White House 2017-21 by releasing choice excerpts.

Remember how back in 2019 there were reports that Trump asked his lawyers to look into buying Greenland? Denmark’s female prime minister, Mette Frederiksen, rejected the proposed deal as “absurd,” and Trump called her remarks “nasty” and canceled a scheduled trip to wonderful Copenhagen.

Well now Baker and Glasser have revealed that the seed for this absurd proposal was actually planted in Trump’s head by billionaire Ronald Lauder, and then Trump spent months pestering his advisers, including National Security Adviser John Bolton, about whether the deal could be made.


Vanity Fair wrote:

According to Baker, “one mystified cabinet member was struck by the delusional nature of it,” while “other advisers tried to keep the idea from leaking out for fear that it would cause a diplomatic incident.”
At the time, Bolton was worried about China’s growing influence in the Arctic, and was reportedly interested in the idea of “an increased American presence in Greenland.” But he knew that a literal purchase of the country was not going to happen. However, Trump, who famously has the mind of a child, insisted it could get done.
And at one point, per Baker, the former president “suggested taking federal money from Puerto Rico” to fund the deal. He also “suggested outright trading Puerto Rico for Greenland.” While this is obviously a completely insane proposition, it’s not at all hard to picture the ex-president pitching the deal given that 1) he’s one of history’s biggest morons and 2) he spent his entire presidency sh--ting on Puerto Rico.

Baker and Glasser said that in an interview last year for their book, Trump treated acquiring Greenland just like any other real estate deal: “I said, ‘Why don’t we have that?’” Trump said. “You take a look at a map. I’m a real estate developer. I look at a corner, I say, ‘I’ve got to get that store for the building that I’m building,’ etc. It’s not that different.” He added, “I love maps. And I always said: ‘Look at the size of this. It’s massive. That should be part of the United States.’”

The book also says that Trump came up with the equally absurd idea of offering “a great deal” to King Abdullah II of Jordan — control of the West Bank — which was not Trump’s to give away. A shocked Abdullah reportedly told a friend that he thought he was “having a heart attack.”

Vanity Fair concludes their story by noting the reaction of White House Chief of Staff John Kelly to the strange ideas that kept popping into Trump’s head:

“Trump’s mercurial approach to the presidency so baffled…Kelly…that [he] secretly bought a copy of a best-selling book by a group of psychiatrists questioning Mr. Trump’s mental health. Mr. Kelly told others that the book was a helpful guide to a president he came to consider a pathological liar whose inflated ego was in fact the sign of a deeply insecure person.”

Strange as it seems, Denmark actually once did sell a colony to the U.S.. In 1917, the U.S. purchased the Danish West Indies, which are now known as the U.S. Virgin Islands.

And until the Puerto Rican people decide on their future status, they might actually be better off with Denmark than the U.S.

At least the Danish prime minister wouldn’t have shown up after Hurricane Maria in 2017 and thrown paper towels to people. Denmark’s health care system is better than ours, so Vieques island would probably have its own hospital by now. And Puerto Rico would have several voting members in the Danish parliament as Greenland and the Faroe Islands have now.
 

Ten Thousan Marbles

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Ukraine Update: Putin suffers diplomatic indignities as Central Asia engulfs in flames

kos

The consequences of Russia’s disastrous war in Ukraine has begun unleashing new conflicts around Russia’s former sphere of influence, starting with two new wars in Central Asia—between Azerbaijan and Armenia, and Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan. The latter three are members of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO), Russia’s supposed NATO analogue, yet it hasn’t stopped two of them from firing on each other, and Armenia from angrily dismissing the “alliance” as worthless.

CentralAsia.png

Central Asia

Russian dictator Vladimir Putin really thought he could shatter NATO. Instead, NATO grows as his own world falls apart. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is on her way to Armenia, in a bid to fill the Russian void with American leadership. And Russia’s stock has fallen so far, that Kazakhstan, a former Soviet republic, has turned to China for security guarantees—something Chinese leader Xi Jiapeng was happy to offer on his way to a meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) in Uzbekistan. The group, which includes India, Iran, Russia, China, Turkey, and several central Asian nations, has been billed as a counterweight to Western hegemony.

As a geographic block, the SCO is impressive, making up the bulk of the Asian continent, anchored by four of the world’s largest nations by land mass—Russia (1st), China (4th), India (7th), and Kazakhstan (9th). Economically, however, the block is less formidable, with just China (2nd) and India (6th) in the top 10.

SCO_MAP_10_July_2015_-_Including_two_new_permanent_members_Pakistan_and_India.png

Green: Shanghai Cooperation Organization members. Light green are observer status, though Iran is now a full member. (License: creativecommons.org/...)

Yet the organization does represent several emerging economies, and with Russia and China at the helm, certainly an
ideological counterbalance to Western institutions.

As such, Putin hoped the gathering would allow it to showcase diplomatic support for its efforts in Ukraine, and perhaps win some material support for the ongoing war. Instead, the gathering has exposed rifts between Russia and its closest supposed allies, and delivered multiple humiliations to the once high-flying Putin.

It started with China’s aforementioned visit to Kazakhstan on Wednesday, in which China warned Russia against interfering with Kazakhstan’s internal affairs.

“I would like to assure you that the government of China pays huge attention to relations with Kazakhstan,” he said, in remarks quoted in Russian in Tokayev’s office’s readout of the meeting.
“However the international situation changes, going forward we will also resolutely support Kazakhstan in the defense of its independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity; firmly support the reforms conducted by you to assure stability and development; [and] categorically come out against interference by any forces in the internal affairs of your country.

On Thursday, Putin was forced to bend the knee to China, acting like a wayward teen offering excuses as he was being put in his place:

"We highly appreciate the balanced position of our Chinese friends in connection with the Ukrainian crisis. We understand your questions and concerns in this regard. During today's meeting, of course, we will explain in detail our position on this issue, although we have spoken about this before.”

Putin’s body language speaks volumes:



He is not the alpha in that exchange, and everyone noticed.

As a cheap power play, Putin has been fond of keeping world leaders waiting. Here at the SCO summit,
every leader has decided to return the favor.



The Trump snub was at the famous Helsinki gathering, the one in which he sided with Putin against his own nation’s FBI, and which Sen. John McCain called “one of the most disgraceful performances by an American president in memory." The sniveling Trump, supposed master negotiator, groveled after Putin’s disrespectful snub.

Getting snubbed by the president of mighty Kyrgyzstan was just the start of the humiliation.



Look at those pathetic pictures, as Putin was also left hanging by Turkish president Tayyip Erdoğan (for the second time since Russia invaded Ukraine), Azerbaijani leader Ilham Aliyev, and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who was particularly in no mood to play:



Modi’s “era of war” was actually an extension of a 2014 speech in which he criticized colonialist-style mindsets: "Today we're seeing 18th-century-like expansionism. Encroaching into some countries, into seas and sometimes capturing others' territory." For the first time, Modi has publicly referred to Russia as an aggressor. And we also know that he and Xi have both made their displeasure privately known to Putin before. He really has no friends.

Not that either of those two countries are about to stop buying cheap, discounted Russian oil. Nor Turkey, though Putin admitted that despite Russian demands that all of their energy be purchased in rubles, Turkey would only pay 25% of it in rubles. Putin has no negotiating leverage.

Meanwhile, Putin got his chance to plead his Ukraine case to Xi, and it was all ridiculous bullshit.



Putin can’t actually believe that, can he? Xi’s intelligence agencies are providing their leader with real intelligence, he knows better. Same with Modi in India. Rumors are that China has been particularly alarmed at Russia’s nuclear saber rattling. Other rumors said that Xi smiled when Putin fed him this b.s. Regardless, if Putin wanted to show fellowship from his allies, he got the opposite—snubs, humiliations, and tough questions Putin dare not answer truthfully.
..............


As Mark Sumner wrote earlier today, there’s also interesting happenings in Kherson oblast, but War Mapper likes to play things conservatively before marking changes in his map.
 

Ten Thousan Marbles

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Justice Department asks appeals court to revive its criminal probe into classified Mar-a-Lago documents

The Justice Department on Friday asked an appeals court to put on hold parts of a judge’s order requiring a third-party review of the materials seized last month at Mar-a-Lago.

In its request with the 11th US Circuit Court of Appeals, the Justice Department said the lower court’s move to block criminal investigations from reviewing the seized documents marked as classified would cause irreparable harm, writing that the “criminal investigation is itself essential to the government’s effort to identify and mitigate potential national-security risks.”

The department sought the intervention after District Judge Aileen Cannon on Thursday rejected prosecutors’ request that they be allowed to restart their criminal investigation into the classified documents.

“The court’s order hamstrings that investigation and places the FBI and Department of Justice (DOJ) under a Damoclean threat of contempt should the court later disagree with how investigators disaggregated their previously integrated criminal-investigative and national-security activities,” the Justice Department wrote.

The Justice Department is also asking the appeals court to exclude the documents marked as classified from the so-called special master review Cannon has ordered. Noting that Cannon’s order would require those documents be provided to Trump’s lawyers, the prosecutors said there was “no basis for disclosing such sensitive information,” and that the order required them to make “disclosure of highly sensitive material to a special master and to Plaintiff’s counsel—potentially including witnesses to relevant events—in the midst of an investigation, where no charges have been brought.”

The Justice Department on Friday asked for the 11th Circuit to take action “as soon as practicable.”

The new filing with the 11th Circuit fast-tracks the dispute over the Mar-a-Lago search up to the appeals court and raises the possibility that the US Supreme Court will be asked to weigh in as well in the coming weeks.....
 

Ten Thousan Marbles

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Friday, Sep 16, 2022 · 8:49:47 PM EDT · kos
This meme...

Fc0WkybX0AEpXsE.jpeg


As Mark wrote in his previous piece, don’t go looking for these images. But as investigators exhumed mass graves of tortured and murdered Ukrainians, a skeletal hand was found with a Ukrainian-colored wristband. It’s a soul-crushing, grizzly image, but this meme transforms it into a symbol of defiance.
 

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