Meet The Man Pushing The Trump Administration to Pardon Combat Veterans

Derrick Miller walked out of the Fort Leavenworth military detention barracks last week a free man for the first time in nearly a decade.

Nine years ago as a Maryland National Guardsman on his third tour of duty, Miller shot and killed an unarmed Afghan during a battlefield interrogation. Miller said he shot the man in self-defense, after a scuffle over his weapon; prosecutors said Miller always planned to kill the man. He was charged with premeditated murder and sentenced to life in prison.

In the years since, his case was taken up by an organization called United American Patriots, which advocates for service members accused of crimes in war zones. Its director, David Gurfein, is a Marine veteran who served in Afghanistan and both Gulf Wars. In the one year since he took over the organization, it’s raised and spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on legal defense and public outreach, including to members of Congress.

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Businesses say China tariffs will push up prices

Business leaders at a trade event in Denver on Tuesday said the Trump Administration’s proposed 25% tariffs on a wide range of Chinese goods will mean higher costs that will have to be passed on to consumers if the tariffs take effect. (May 14)

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CrossTalk: Venezuela’s Crisis

Attempted forced regime change in Venezuela, brought to you by the Trump Administration. Washington’s gross interference in the internal affairs of this Latin American country is risky, illegal, and the possibility of large-scale violence is very real. One thing is certain – the people of Venezuela will suffer the most. CrossTalking with Eva Golinger, Vanessa Neumann, and Francisco Dominguez.

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Tijuana Residents Don’t Want The Migrant Caravan In Tijuana (HBO)

The desperate and seemingly unstoppable journey of about three thousand migrants from Central America heading towards the United States has finally reached Tijuana, the final stop before the U.S. border. But the goodwill that migrants encountered on their long journey north from people offering rides and meals is now greeted with a chillier reception.

Instead, those arriving in the border city earlier this week were greeted by hundreds of Tijuana residents protesting their presence with angry chants of “Mexico First!”

Protest organizers echoed language used by U.S. President Donald Trump. “Mexico has always opened its doors to Central Americans to legal and organized migration but not to the illegal invasion that’s currently taking place,” said organizer Jesus Eduardo Burgos Gomez.

At one point during the protest, a group of residents tried to rush one of the shelters housing migrants but Mexican police in riot gear held them back.

“There’s too many people,” said protester Josefina Arangure. “We won’t be able to control it. A lot of people are going to stay and get jobs, others are just going to commit crimes.”

Protesters say they’re worried that this new wave of asylum seekers will overwhelm a city that has already dealt with its share of refugees from previous migrant caravans and from Haitians fleeing the devastation of the 2016 earthquake.

While the vast majority of those in the caravan say their ultimate goal is to get to the United States, U.S. border inspectors under the Trump Administration have only been processing about 100 claims a day at the Tijuana crossing. In the meantime, another thousand Central American migrants are expected to arrive in the next few days.

“They’re coming here with an American dream that doesn’t exist,” said Aranguer. “So unfortunately these people are going to stay here.”

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Democrats use Russian meddling rhetoric just to overturn midterms – Daniel McAdams

Daniel McAdams, executive director at the Ron Paul Institute, talks to RT on Trump Administration raising the alarm over foreign interference in the midterms.

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Immigration Officials Have No Idea How To Fix Family Separation (HBO)

Immigration officials dodged a number of questions during a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing Tuesday focused on the family separation crisis at the border, but they all seemed to agree on one thing: The Trump Administration policy that resulted in the crisis was flawed.

One of the most telling moments of the three and a half hour hearing came when the five witnesses — representing the Department of Health and Human Services, Department of Justice, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement and the U.S. Border Patrol — were asked by Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) whether any thought the policy of separating children from their parents at the border had been a success. All remained silent.

The policy, enacted in May of this year, became a public relations and logistical nightmare for the Trump Administration as immigration officials scrambled to reunite migrant children with their parents in advance of a recent court-ordered deadline. Officials at Tuesday’s hearing were at times unable to provide updated or exact numbers for the children that have been reunited with their families, and unable to offer clear explanations on why some still remained in the U.S. government’s care.

Jonathan White, the assistant secretary for preparedness and response at the Department of Health and Human Services, said he even cautioned administration officials separating children from their families would be both harmful to the child and logistically burdensome for HHS.

“There’s no question that separation of children from their parents entails significant potential for traumatic psychological injury to the child,” White said.

Another official, Matthew Albence, head of enforcement and removal operations for ICE, dismissed reports of unsanitary and unsafe conditions for children and migrant women at government facilities, describing the family residence centers as “more like a summer camp.”

“These individuals have 24-hour access to food, water. They have educational opportunities. They have recreational opportunities both structured and unstructured,” he said.

But while all of the officials acknowledged there were issues with the family separation policy, and challenges in reuniting families, none could offer a specific explanation for what went wrong in the process of implementing the policy, or any clear solutions to fix the problem going forward.

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Why Palestinians Are Willing To Risk Their Lives During Protests On The Gaza Border (HBO)

Hamas called for thousands to amass along the border with Israel to denounce the U.S. embassy’s move to Jerusalem — and demand an end to the blockade on Gaza.

Tens of thousands of Gazans answered that call today — and the Israelis responded with overwhelming force. But the more than 50 deaths today could be a reality check, and the body count in the morgue at Gaza City’s main hospital was higher than it’s been since the last war with Israel.

For many here, a decade-long Israeli blockade has made life so hellish, that they’re readily willing to risk their lives and the large turnout for these protests is a victory in itself.

Israel and the Trump Administration have already cut the militant group out of talks on a peace plan — a deal that will reportedly offer up four Jerusalem neighborhoods to the Palestinian Authority. But that means there’s nothing to lose if the violence escalates.

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Trump’s Transgender Military Ban Is Stressing Out Deployed Soldiers (HBO)

The Trump Administration’s newly-released guidelines on banning transgender people from serving in the military may not be in effect yet — but some transgender troops currently serving say the policy is already taking its toll on their community.
Blake Dremann​, an active duty Navy Lieutenant Commander who also leads an association of LGBT service members called SPARTA, told VICE News he’s already heard from other transgender military personnel who’ve been discriminated against.

“My superiors have been very supportive. But we have had service members who have experienced discrimination — typically along the lines of, they don’t agree that we’re able to serve. They don’t like the policy and they refuse to follow the regulations,” Dremann​ said.

The Trump Administration’s ban, which President Trump announced via tweet last summer, has yet to take effect because it’s been blocked in the courts, after a handful of LGBTQ rights organizations challenged the proposal last year.

But the Administration is still moving forward with crafting guidelines and policy around the ban, and on Friday the White House released a new, more specific memo endorsing a handful of recommendations from a Department of Defense panel convened to study the issue. The panel recommended — and Defense Secretary James Mattis signed on to — banning individuals who’ve undergone gender confirmation surgery in the past, or plan to in the future, from enlisting.

Dremann​ said he fielded texts all weekend from transgender people currently serving in the military, confused about what the new policy means for them.

“We’re expected to be tough-minded,” Dremann​ told VICE News. “And while it is going to add stress to their deployment, the expectation is that they will be able to deal with that.”

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Sessions Calls For Stricter Immigration Laws

The U.S. attorney general has reaffirmed the Trump Administration’s call for a border wall with Mexico and for a switch to a “merit-based” immigration system. (Jan. 26)

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Exiled Chinese Billionaire Uses YouTube To Wage A War On Corruption (HBO)

Guo Wengui sits in self-imposed exile in a $68 million apartment overlooking Central Park.

The billionaire Chinese property tycoon has been waging a media war against his homeland’s government. Guo says he’s trying to stamp out corruption and graft, but China accuses him of the very same thing.

Since January, Guo has taken to YouTube and Twitter making corruption allegations against top Chinese officials. Some of them have been disproven, some can’t be proven, but some have turned out to be accurate. Guo cites the retirement of China’s anti-corruption czar, Wang Qishan, as his most recent victory. Guo alleged Wang and his family made millions in mysterious business dealings. Wang did not respond to the allegations and was never investigated nor charged.

China issued an arrest warrant for Guo but does not have an extradition treaty with the U.S., which has shown no interest in detaining him. Guo, for his part, is hoping the U.S. will grant him asylum and says he can be of use to the Trump Administration. The White House hasn’t commented on Guo’s case but his position as a dissident who may have access to insider information may make him a useful bargaining chip.

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