News Roundup 6/12/17

  • Trump confirms the US is committed to NATO’s mutual defense pact. The defense pact is known as Article 5 and requires all NATO countries to come to the defense of a NATO country that gets attacked. [Link] Trump Fyle
  • Trump says Qatar has a funded terrorism at a high level and he spoke with other Arab nations in ending Qatar’s support for terrorism. [Link] Tillerson says that Qatar has made progress in ending support for terrorism within Qatar. Tillerson called on Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Bahrain, and the UAE to end its blockade of Qatar. [Link] Trump Fyle
  • The US opposes a UN resolution that would allow a five country coalition to fight Islamists groups in the Sahel region of Africa. The US asserts the countries do not need US authority to fight the Islamist groups. [Link] Africa Fyle
  • Food aid is running out in Ethiopia. 7.8 million people in Ethiopia are dependent on food aid. [Link] Africa Fyle
  • The US claims to have taken out a major al-Shabaab target in Somalia. The US used the authority Trump granted the military in March to carry out the strike. [Link] Africa Fyle
  • Gaddafi’s son has been released from prison. Saif Gaddafi has been held in prison by a Libyan militia since 2011 for committing war crimes. The militia released Gaddafi after the government in Eastern Libya passed an amnesty law. [Link] Libya Fyle
  • Three American soldiers were killed, and two were wounded by a member of the Taliban that infiltrated the Afghani armed forces. [Link] Afghanistan Fyle
  • In Pakistan, a man has been sentenced to death for posting blasphemy about Mohammad on Facebook. [Link] Pakistan/India Fyle
  • Around 180.000 civilians remain in the 1.5 square miles still held by ISIS in Mosul. [Link] ISIS War Fyle
  • Videos show the US using white phosphorous in Mosul and Raqqa. The use of white phosphorous in populated areas is a war crime. [Link] ISIS War Fyle
  • US-backed SDF forces have seized a second district from the Islamic State in Raqqa. [Link] ISIS War Fyle
  • The US is crediting Russia with helping to ease tensions in Southern Syria. The US has carried out three airstrikes against Assad-allied troops near the US garrison at al-Tanf. [Link] Syria Fyle
  • Russia tells the US that it is unacceptable for the US to attack Assad-allied troops. [Link] Syria Fyle
  • Fighting broke out between Turkish-backed rebel groups in al-Bab. Turkey used the rebel groups to liberate the Syrian city from ISIS. [Link] Syria Fyle 
  • The US confirms it is aiding the Philippines government’s fight against an Islamic State allied rebel group. The US is providing surveillance, and US special operation forces are providing training. [Link]
  • 13 Philippino Marines died in a single day of fighting in Marawi. [Link]
  • A pair of brothers are responsible for the Islamist uprising in the Philippines. The Maute brothers lead a well-organized group of IS linked rebel groups. [Link]

Foreign Policy Focus #51, I look at the Qatar situation. Saudi’s split with Qatar has caused splits in the and the GCC and Sunni Arab states. Qatar seems to be open to moving closer to Iran, while Turkey splits from Saudi Arabia to support Qatar. Trump first took credit for the Qatar/Saudi split. After the split had become a geopolitical nightmare, Trump offered to help find peace between the two nations. Trump seems clueless on how Middle East affairs operate. I also look at Trump’s smart and hypocritical message to Iran. I update Iraq, Somalia, Ukraine, and Yemen. LISTEN HERE!!

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