News Roundup 11/25/16

  • Austraila says it will end its donations to the Clinton Foundation. Austraila donated $88 million to the foundation in the past ten years. Norway is also significantly cutting its donations to the Clinton Foundation. Norway donated $20 million annually and will now donate about a quarter of that. [Link]
  • The Tunisian president confirms that US spy drones are operating on the Libya/Tunisia border. The spy drone missions to watch for potential Islamic State fighters moving from Libya to Tunisia. [Link] Africa Fyle
  • China requires all residents of the Xinjiang Providence to surrender their passports. This will require millions to turn in their passports. [Link] China Fyle
  • 100 people are killed by an ISIS truck bomb in an Iraqi city South of Baghdad. The ISIS bomb targeted Shi’ite pilgrims celebrating a religious event. [Link] Iraq Fyle
  • The first US soldier has been killed in military operations in Syria. The soldier was killed by an IED in a town North of Raqqa. [Link] Syria Fyle
  • 32 civilians were killed by Syrian airstrikes in East Aleppo on Thursday. At least 188, including 27 children, have been killed by Syrian airstrikes in East Aleppo since the Syrian government began its latest offensive to retake the city from rebels. [Link] Syria Fyle

Listen to my interview with Kenn on the weekly Freedom File Show. We talk Trump appointments, Middle East, and Pipeline protests. [Link]

News Roundup 11/24/16

  • Trump selects Nikki Haley to be the US Ambassador to the UN. Haley is currently South Carolina’s Governer. [Link] Trump Fyle
  • A Federal judge blocks Obama’s overtime rule to allow for more time for litigation. The new rule would require employers to pay salaried workers time-and-a-half for overtime hours if the employee made less than $47,476 annually. [Link] Regulations Fyle
  • 69% of Americans have less than $1,000 in savings and 34% have no savings at all. [Link] US Economy Fyle
  • A bill in the Israel parliament aimed to silence the Muslim call to prayer is back on the table after it was amended to exclude the  Jewish Shabbat siren. The bill had been blocked by an Orthodox Jewish party when they feared the bill would also force them to silence their Jewish Shabbat siren. [Link] Israel Fyle
  • The Columbian government and FARC have agreed to sign a peace deal that will end a war that his killed over 220,000. FARC is a Colombian revolutionary group that has Marxist roots. The agreement will still need to be approved by the Colombian Congress. [Link]
  • Syrian rebels are preventing civilians from leaving Aleppo. About 100 families are looking to escape the war zone. [Link] Syria Fyle
  • The US has blown up a bridge that crosses the Tigris River in Mosul. The US has now blown up three of the five bridges that cross the river in Mosul. The move was aimed at limiting the movements of ISIS fighters. US officials warn this may also trap civilians looking to flee ISIS in the city. [Link] ISIS War Fyle

News Roundup 11/23/16

  • Trump will not pursue charges against Hillary Clinton. Trump said in the second debate that he would have a special prosecutor look into Hillary. [Link] Trump Fyle
  • Trump is backing off of his promise to use torture. Trump had a conversation with General Mattis who convinced him the practice does not work. [Link] Trump Fyle
  • The Dow Jones closes above 19,000 for the first time in history. The S&P 500 also set an all-time high, closing above 2200. [Link] US Economy Fyle
  • A 21-year-old woman may lose her arm after an explosion. The woman was protesting the pipeline in North Dakota. Protesters claim the explosion was caused by a police concussion grenade. Police claim the woman was injured by an exploding propane bomb made by protesters. [Link] Police Fyle
  • Hundreds of protesters in North Dakota were treated for hypothermia after police used water cannons to soak protesters. Temperatures were reported to be below 27 degrees while police were using water on the protesters. Police say they used the water to calm the aggressive protesters. [Link] Police Fyle
  • Police in Little Rock Arkansas have arrested over 200 people this year on misdemeanor possession of marijuana charges. This a four year high for Little Rock. People who are convicted of possession of marijuana face up to a year in jail and a $2,500 fine. [Link] War on Drugs Fyle
  • The FBI used one warrant to hack 8,000 computers in over 120 counties. In 2015, the FBI seized and operated the child pornography site, Playpen. The FBI hacked the computers by installing malware on the computers of users who visited the child pornography site.  At least 14 courts found that the warrant was not in accordance with the law. [Link] FBI Fyle
  • Capitalists markets are saving North Koreans from catastrophe. Defectors tell reporters that North Korea has about 400 marketplaces where citizens buy food, clothing, and illegal foreign goods. [Link] North Korea Fyle
  • Turkey’s President Erdogan says he is disillusioned with the US because of the support the US has given to Syrian Kurds and Obama’s failure to extradite Fethullah Gulen. Erdogan believes Fethullah Gulen is behind the attempted coup. [Link] Turkey Fyle
  • Syrian rebels have obtained shoulder-fired anti-aircraft missiles. The US had previously banned the distribution of these weapons to rebels but lifted that restriction in late September. [Link] Syria Fyle

News Roundup 11/22/16

  • The Intercept looks into the trial of Hamid Hayat, who was convicted of being a terrorist and sentenced to 24 years in prison. The prosecution’s star witness was an informant paid $230,000 by the FBI and who’s mother says he is a liar. [Link] Terrorism Fyle
  • A member of the Trump transition team explains the “Muslim database” Trump talked about during the campaign will be restarting a government program that ran from 2002-2011. The program registers men over the age of 16 who immigrate from countries that the president marks as “havens for terrorists.” Under Obama, the program was suspended, but he did not dismantle it. This program has never led to a terrorism conviction. [Link] Trump Fyle
  • Trump says he will issue an executive order on his first day in office to withdraw the US from the TPP. [Link] Trump Fyle
  • The IRS is looking to identify all Coinbase users from 2013-2015 who transacted in Bitcoin. Coinbase is the largest Bitcoin exchange in the US. [Link]
  • Japan is sending 350 troops to South Sudan. This is the first time since WWII that Japan has sent combat authorized troops overseas. [Link] Japan Fyle
  • Russia is deploying S-400 anti-aircraft missiles the Kaliningrad enclave. Russia claims this is a response to NATO threats and troops along the Russian border. [Link] Russia Fyle
  • The Islamic State affiliate group in Somalia seized the town Qandala. IS has been taking territory in Somalia since some members split from al-Shabaab last year. [Link] Africa Fyle
  • Another 10,000 Turkish people were removed from their jobs. Erdogan continues to purge the ranks of Turkey’s government of anyone who may be disloyal to him. Nine media outlets were also ordered to close. [Link] Turkey Fyle
  • An Islamic State suicide bomber kills at least 32 at a mosque in Kabul, Afghanistan. [Link] Afghanistan Fyle
  • The Islamic State has used chemical weapons at least 52 times in Iraq and Syria since 2014. [Link] ISIS War Fyle
  • A US airstrike near the ISIS capital Raqqa kills at least ten civilians. [Link] ISIS War Fyle

News Roundup 11/21/16

  • Tennesse Vally Authority CEO, Bill Johnson, was paid $6.45 million in the fiscal year 2016. Johnson the highest paid federal employee. [Link] Wasteful Spending Fyle
  • Former Congressman Aaron Schock has been indicted for using campaign funds for his lavish lifestyle and taking constituents money for tours around the capital. [Link]
  • Police departments across America are spending millions on services that spy on American’s social media accounts. [Link] Police Fyle
  • Police and pipeline protesters clashed in North Dakota last night. The protesters tried to start several fires. Police fired rubber bullets, used tear gas, and used a water cannon on the protesters. One arrest was reported by police, and seven protesters went to the hospital with head injuries. [Link] Police Fyle
  • Obama agrees to a deal with the EU to lock in sanctions against Russia. The sanctions agreement will make it more difficult for Trump to normalize relations with Russia. [Link] Foreign Policy Fyle
  • Reports of war crimes continue to surface from both sides of the war in Iraq. ISIS is forcing civilians out of their homes and using them as human shields. Iraqi government-backed militias are accused of recruiting child soldiers. [Link] ISIS War Fyle
  • The US coalition to retake Raqqa is falling apart. Many Kurdish fighters are leaving the Raqqa assault to contest Turkey in Afrin. Arab militants are also leaving the coalition because they feel the US is favoring Kurdish fighters. [Link] ISIS Fyle
  • Rockets fired by Syrian rebels kill eight children at a school in government-held Aleppo. [Link] Syria Fyle
  • No hospitals are remaining in the rebel-held area of Aleppo. Airstrikes in the past week have destroyed the last hospitals in the area. [Link] Syria Fyle
  • 20 people have been killed and 50 wounded in a tribal conflict in Libya. The conflict started when a pet monkey attacked a high school girl. [Link] Libya Fyle
  • The Islamic State is taking responsibility for an attack in Pakistan that left 4 Pakistani security force members dead. [Link] Pakistan/India Fyle
  • The Yemen ceasefire expired Monday morning and will not be renewed. Both sides of the conflict violated the ceasefire while it was in effect over the weekend.  [Link] US/Saudi War Against Yemen Fyle

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News Roundup 11/20/16

  • Top US officials send Obama a letter recommending he remove the head of the NSA, Adm. Michael S. Rogers, from his position. [Link] Spying Fyle
  • Turkey plans to purchase long-range missile defense systems from Russia. Turkey is planning to buy the S-400 system; Russia has deployed this system in Syria. [Link] Turkey Fyle  
  • Shia militias take the Tel Afar airport from ISIS. This cuts a key ISIS supply line between Iraq and Syria. The militias are now advancing on the city of Tel Afar, Iraq. [Link] ISIS War Fyle
  • The Iraqi army continues to make slow progress towards liberating Mosul. The Iraqi army recently took a neighborhood from ISIS that is about 5 miles from the center of the city. Iraqi forces’ progress is slowed by ISIS suicide bombers and snipers. [Link] ISIS War Fyle
  • The Iraqi Prime Minister announced that the Kurds would have to give back all territory they took from ISIS. This is setting up a conflict between the Kurds and the Iraqi government. The Kurds have taken several cities and villages from ISIS. The Kurds are currently working to build a border surrounding the territory they took from ISIS. [Link] Iraq Fyle
  • Two hospitals have been bombed in the rebel-held areas of Aleppo since the government started its new push to retake it this week. One of those hospitals was a children’s hospital. Hospitals in rebel-held Aleppo are starting to move underground to avoid airstrikes. [Link] Syria Fyle
  • At least 289 people have been killed since Syria started its new push to retake East Aleppo from Syrian rebels. The offensive began Tuesday. [Link] Syria Fyle
  • IS fighters in Sirte, Libya are nearly defeated. Six months after the offensive began to retake the city from IS, IS now only hold about a half of a square mile of the city. The offensive has been backed by US air support. [Link] Lybia Fyle
  • Pakistan shoots down an Indian drone that crossed over the Line of Control in Kashmir. Fighting between India and Pakistan has left four people dead in recent days on the Pakistani side of the Line of Control. [Link] India/Pakistan Fyle

News Roundup 11/19/16

  • Trump picks Mike Pompeo to head the CIA. Pompeo is an advocate for expanding the mass collection of metadata on US citizens. Pompeo supports executing Edward Snowden. Pompeo is a supporter of the Guantanamo Bay prison and has defended America’s torture program. [Link] Trump Fyle
  • Trump is looking at getting rid of the position of Director of National Intelligence. The position was created after 9/11 to oversee the 16 national intelligence agencies. It is a Cabinet-level position and is currently occupied by James Clapper. [Link] Trump Fyle
  • Trump’s pick for National Security Advisor, General Michael Flynn, owns a company that is registered with Congress as a lobbying organization. Flynn Intel Group has received tens of thousands of dollars from a Turkish client. General Flynn recently wrote an article urging the US to support the Turkish government. [Link] Trump Fyle
  • Donald Trump settles the three Trump University fraud lawsuits. Trump agrees to pay $25 million, and Trump will not acknowledge or admit any liability or wrongdoing. [Link] Trump Fyle
  • Massachusetts and California legalize the growing of hemp. It is still illegal under federal law to grow hemp. [Link] Regulations Fyle
  • Volkswagen plans to cut 30,000 jobs. This is roughly 5% of the total workforce of the company. The cuts will help to pay off fines and settlements from the emission cheating scandal. [Link] Regulations Fyle
  • A married couple spends two months in jail after police mistake baking soda for cocaine. [Link] War on Drugs Fyle
  • President Obama says he will not grant a pardon to Edward Snowden. Obama suggested he would be unable to do so because Snowden has not stood trial. However, The Constitution gives the president the power to grant a pardon any time after the crime has been committed. [Link] Whistleblower Fyle
  • During Obama Presidency, he approved $278 billion in weapons sales. This is more than double the amount of weapon sales Bush approved during his presidency. Saudi Arabia received the most weapons, $115 billion. [Link] Foreign Policy Fyle
  • People in Jerusalem are protesting the proposed ban on using loudspeakers for the call to prayer. To protest, people are going on rooftops and reciting the call to prayer. Churches in Nazareth are showing solidarity by broadcasting the night call to prayer. [Link] Israel Fyle
  • A missile fired by the Houthi into Saudi Arabia kills a Saudi soldier. Saudi Arabia announced the start of a 48-hour ceasefire. The ceasefire will begin Saturday morning. The Houthi have agreed to the ceasefire. [Link] US/Saudi War Against Yemen Fyle


News Roundup 11/18/16

  • The Director of National Intelligence, James Clapper, has submitted his letter of resignation. He will remain in office for 63 more days. [Link] Spying Fyle
  • Chelsea Manning formally petitions Obama to commute her prison sentence. Manning says she is suffering from several mental health symptoms and she has attempted suicide twice. [Link] Whistleblower Fyle
  • The Obama Administration added 527 new pages of rules and regulations today. The Federal Register is now 81,640 pages total. [Link] Regulations Fyle
  • Connecticut has a $1.3 billion budget deficit for 2016. The last projection for the budget deficit was $133 million. [Link]
  • Trump offers General Micheal Flynn the job of National Security Advisor. [Link] Newt Gingrich confirms he will not have an official role in Trumps Cabinet. [Link] Trump Fyle
  • A former Mexican mayor has been arrested for his involvement in a massacre. While he was mayor of Allende, members of a drug cartel worked with Allende police to kidnap and murder over 300 residents of Allende. [Link] War on Drugs Fyle
  • A car bomb in Fallajuha, Iraq kills at least 30. ISIS is claiming responsibility for the attack that occurred during a Sunni wedding. [Link] ISIS War Fyle
  • Trying to determine who is a civilian and who is fighting for ISIS is slowing progress to retake Mosul. [Link] ISIS War Fyle
  • Syrian Kurdish forces announce a withdraw from Manbij, Syria. The Kurdish forces liberated the city from ISIS 3 months ago. Kurdish forces controlling the city has upset the Turkish government. Turkey has demanded that the Kurds remain East of the Euphrates River. [Link] Syria Fyle