C4K6RRTWMAAvy5Z

–ON THE AGENDA—–

 

BID TO HAVE STORMY CASE DELAYED IN CALIFORNIA COURT
POLITICO
reports there is “hearing on Friday in Los Angeles on a bid by the president and Cohen to delay a lawsuit filed by Stormy Daniels, the adult-film actress who claims to have had a sexual encounter with Trump about a decade ago.”

From POLITICO.

 

—–BREAKING—–

 

RUSSIAN MEDIA REPORTS TRUMP WHITE HOUSE INVITE TO PUTIN

Horror of horrors Reuters reports, “U.S. President Donald Trump invited his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin to the United States during a phone call, and said he would be glad to see Putin in the White House, RIA Novosti reported on Friday, citing the Russian Foreign Ministry.” Reuters adds, “The news agency quoted Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov as saying Trump returned to the subject of an invitation a couple of times during a call last month and that Russia was now expecting Trump to formalize the invitation.” In other words, they are tugging on the leash they have our fake Russian bullshit president on whilst cooing, “Bitch, come here.” Horror!

From Reuters.

 

COMEBACK: RUSSIAN AMBASSADOR AT THE WHITE HOUSE, AGAIN!

CNN reports, “The White House said Thursday that new national security adviser John Bolton met with Russian ambassador to the US Anatoly Antonov.” CNN adds, “This was the first meeting between the two in their current roles. Bolton officially stepped into the role of White House national security adviser earlier this month after President Donald Trump announced his appointment in March.” Of course they show up to meet their boy and cheer him on as he works to capture the National Security Council. Meanwhile their failed bid to do just that, former Trump National Security Advisor Michael Flynn, who took a plea deal from Robert Mueller of one count of lying to the FBI over his contact with the Russian Ambassador, “hopped an Amtrak train to Manhattan for what conservative organizers billed as an invitation-only ‘no holds barred’ foreign policy speech,” POLITICO reports. His was a “private appearance at an event hosted by the London Center for Policy Research,” which is what exactly? POLITICO adds, “A photo posted on Instagram by the London Center’s vice president, Anthony Shaffer, shows Flynn in conversation with Shaffer as the two sit in green leather armchairs beneath an oil portrait of Ulysses S. Grant hanging on a wood-paneled wall. Flynn appeared as part of the center’s ‘Chairman’s Circle Lecture Series,’ to which admission costs $10,000, according to a document Shaffer also posted. Other speakers in the series include former secretary of state Henry Kissinger, former Sen. Joe Lieberman, former CIA Director James Woolsey and former national security adviser Robert ‘Bud’ McFarlane.”

From CNN and POLITICO.

 

HEAR THAT WHIMPER? THAT’S THE COMEY MEMOS DROPPING

POLITICO reports, “Former FBI Director James Comey documented a conversation with President Donald Trump last year in which he said the president recalled Vladimir Putin telling him that Russia has ‘some of the most beautiful hookers in the world. Per Comey’s memo, dated Feb. 8, 2017 but revealed publicly for the first time Thursday, Trump made the comment in the context of denying salacious allegations leveled against him in a dossier compiled by a former British spy, which had become public just weeks earlier.” POLITICO notes, “The memos, about 15 pages in all, track closely with Comey’s testimony to Congress last year about his interactions with Trump,” which might explain why the hooker quote from Putin is the revelatory item in them. POLITICO adds, “The documents fill out a more detailed picture of what Comey thought and observed during his time with Trump. The then-FBI director describes feeling pressured by the president to pull back from the FBI’s investigation of his campaign’s contacts with Russia. They describe conversations about former national security adviser Michael Flynn and Comey’s first encounter with Trump.” The AP adds, “The memos reveal that days before Flynn’s firing, then-White House chief of staff Reince Priebus asked Comey if Flynn’s communications were being monitored under a secret surveillance warrant.” In response, “Comey said he ‘paused for a few seconds and then said that I would answer here, but that this illustrated the kind of question that had to be asked and answered through established channels.’ Comey’s response is redacted on the unclassified memos.” In complaining about Flynn’s “judgement issues” as the AP notes, one has to wonder what the hell was Flynn doing then serving as the president’s National Security Advisor? Lastly before the memos’ release, “Comey told CNN’s Jake Tapper on Thursday that he felt it necessary to prompt a special counsel because he thought leadership at the Justice Department ‘would not be aggressive enough’ and specifically cited a lack of confidence in Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein as part of his reasoning,” the network reports.

From POLITICO, the AP and CNN.

 

ROSENSTEIN TELLS TRUMP HE’S NOT A TARGET OF COHEN INVESTIGATION

CBS News reports, “Deputy attorney general Rod Rosenstein has informed President Trump he is not a target in the investigation into his longtime personal attorney Michael Cohen”. CBS News adds, “Rosenstein conveyed the message to top White House officials, among them White House counsel Don McGahn”. Bloomberg reports, “After the meeting, Trump told some of his closest advisers that it’s not the right time to remove either man since he’s not a target of the probes.” That “either man” also refers to Mueller.

From CBS News and Bloomberg.

 

COHEN DROPS LIBEL LAWSUITS AGAINST BUZZFEED, FUSION GPS

POLITICO reports, “Embattled attorney Michael Cohen has dropped a pair of much-touted libel suits against BuzzFeed and the private investigation firm Fusion GPS over publication of the so-called dossier detailing alleged ties between President Donald Trump and Russia. Cohen abandoned the suits late Wednesday as he continues to fight to recover documents and electronic files seized from his home, office and hotel room last week by federal authorities”. POLITICO notes, “The dossier claims that Cohen met with Russian operatives somewhere in Europe, including Prague, to attend a meeting to ‘clean up the mess’ created by public disclosures of other Trump associates’ reported ties to Russia. Cohen denied the Prague meeting occurred. In statements, both BuzzFeed and Fusion GPS said the suit was without merit.”
From POLITICO.

 

GIULIANI, 2 OTHER LAWYERS JOIN THE TRUMP TRAINWRECK LEGAL TEAM

The Wall Street Journal reports, “President Donald Trump, stepping up his efforts to bring the Russia investigation to a conclusion, has hired longtime ally and former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani as part of the legal team representing him in the probe.” POLITICO adds, “The hiring of the former New York mayor, along with the husband-wife law partners Jane Serene Raskin and Marty Raskin, came just hours after a federal judge raised doubts about the scope of the order used to appoint special counsel Robert Mueller to look into possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia, and shortly before the Justice Department delivered to Congress copies of former FBI Director James Comey’s memos documenting his interactions with the president last year.” Giuliani “replaces John Dowd,” POLITICO notes, adding, “His former law firm, Bracewell & Giuliani, advised the controversial data-mining outfit Cambridge Analytica on its obligations under U.S. campaign law.” The Washington Times adds, “Former FBI Director James Comey said Thursday that he launched an investigation into possible leaks from the FBI after former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani appeared to predict a bombshell that would rock Hillary Clinton’s 2016 campaign. Less than two weeks before the 2016 election, Comey revealed the FBI was reopening the investigation into Clinton’s email server after finding a new cache of emails on a laptop belonging to Anthony Weiner, the husband of Clinton aide Huma Abedin.” Remember: sometimes you hire a lawyer based on whom they know, not what they know.

From The Wall Street Journal, POLITICO and The Washington Times.

 

DOJ MAKES CRIMINAL REFERRAL AGAINST FORMER DEPUTY FBI DIRECTOR

CNN reports, “The Justice Department’s inspector general referred its findings on former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe to the US attorney’s office in Washington for possible criminal charges associated with lying to internal investigators”. CNN adds, “When exactly the referral was made to the US attorney’s office was not immediately clear, and prosecutors there may decline to prosecute.” CNN recalls, “Last week, the IG issued a report finding that McCabe ‘lacked candor’ on four occasions with internal investigators when discussing a Wall Street Journal article about the FBI’s Clinton Foundation investigation”. CNN notes, “McCabe’s attorney, Michael Bromwich, said he believes there will be no charges filed.”

From CNN.

 

MUELLER TIME: PITTSBURGH ORDER COPS TO BRING RIOT GEAR TO WORK

CNN reports, “Pittsburgh police ordered its detectives to bring riot gear to work Thursday in anticipation of protests should President Donald Trump fire Special Counsel Robert Mueller. Police Cmdr. Victor Joseph reportedly sent an email Wednesday, instructing Major Crimes detectives to bring full uniforms and riot gear to work ‘until further notice.’” Oh good, the state plans on going all Ferguson on our asses when we react negatively to full fascism. Well, did you think power would acquiesce so easily to humanity? It seldom if ever does.

From CNN.

 

CAMBRIDGE ANALYTICA WHISTLEBLOWER TO CONGRESS NEXT WEEK
CNN
reports, “The former Cambridge Analytica employee whose revelations about his former company’s use of Facebook data sparked global outrage will appear before Democrats on the House Intelligence and Judiciary committees next week. Claims made by Christopher Wylie, the former employee, raised questions about how the company handled data on millions of American Facebook users and led to Facebook suspending Cambridge Analytica from its platform while it investigates.” CNN notes, “The company was hired by Donald Trump’s presidential campaign during the 2016 election.” Wylie will “appear before the House Judiciary Committee on Tuesday and the House Intelligence Committee on Wednesday.”

From CNN.

 

PROSECUTORS SEEK 94-MONTH SENTENCE FOR RUSSIAN HACKER
The Washington Times
reports, “The Department of Justice has recommended a nearly eight-year prison sentence for Karim Baratov, a Canadian man who pleaded guilty to criminal hacking charges related to the 2014 Yahoo breach that compromised more than 500 million user accounts. Justice Department prosecutors asked a San Francisco federal court judge on Tuesday to impose a sentence of 94 months imprisonment on Baratov, a Canadian citizen born in Kazakhstan”.

From The Washington Times.

 

US + RUSSIAN MILITARY LEADERS MET IN BAKU, AGAIN!

Reuters reports, “Valery Gerasimov, the head of Russia’s military general staff, and NATO Supreme Allied Commander Curtis Scaparrotti will meet on Thursday in Azerbaijan to discuss Syria, the [Russian state-run] TASS news agency reported, citing the Russian defense ministry. Gerasimov has arrived in Baku ahead of talks that are also expected to touch on NATO and Russian military activity in Europe, TASS said.” Reuters reports, “The head of Russia’s military general staff and NATO’s supreme allied commander held a rare face-to-face meeting on Thursday to try to ease the worst East-West tensions since the Cold War.” Reuters adds, “NATO said the meeting ‘focused on issues related to military posture and exercises’ – defence parlance for how to avoid military accidents that might lead to war. ‘The two military leaders used the … channel to foster predictability and transparency.’ The Russian side said the pair also talked about the seven-year-long civil war in Syria, where Moscow and the West back opposing sides, and combating Islamic militants.”
From Russian state-run Tass and Reuters.

 

RUSSIA AGAINST ITS MAFIA STATE COLONY TRUMPISTAN ON TARIFFS

The AP reports, “Russia has joined the European Union, India and China in demanding compensation from the United States for its tariffs on foreign steel and aluminum. The World Trade Organization’s web site posted Thursday a filing from Russia that, like other countries, argues that the tariffs that took effect March 23 amount to a ‘safeguard’ measure aimed to protect U.S. domestic producers from surging imports.” Now isn’t that fun!? Recall the goal of active measures is to capture the state: foreign policy, defense and the economy. The AP adds, “Russia did not go so far as to appeal to the WTO’s dispute settlement process over the tariffs.” How kind!

From the AP.

 

KREMLIN CONSIDERS NATIONALIZING RUSAL

The AP reports, “The Kremlin says a temporary nationalization of aluminum producer Rusal is being discussed after the company was hit by United States sanctions. President Vladimir Putin’s spokesman Dmitry Peskov says nationalization is ‘one of the viewpoints which is being actively discussed’ as the government mulls how to support Rusal.” Bloomberg looks at the options confronting the Kremlin in dealing with sanctions on Rusal. Hint: nothing pleasant, easy or guaranteed.

From the AP and Bloomberg.

 

RUSSIA NOT ROCKET MAN

Public broadcasting of Latvia reports, “Russia’s threatened plan to fire rockets over the Baltic Sea proved to be less SpaceX than waste of space for a second time when no projectiles were blasted into the wide blue yonder between April 17 and 19. Latvia has asked for clarification on why airspace was shut down for a second time over a busy civil aviation sector of international airspace close to Latvia’s sea border, for apparently no reason at all.” Public broadcasting of Latvia notes, “Russia’s navy pulled the same stunt from 4 to 6 April, when it also failed to get anything up despite asking for airspace to be closed to a height of 18 kilometers.”

From Public broadcasting of Latvia.

 

RUSSIA RELEASES FOOTAGE OF YULIA SKRIPAL’S LAST TRIP FROM MOSCOW

The AP reports, “Russian investigators say they have traced back the steps of a poisoned Russian spy’s daughter from her Moscow home to the airport before she flew to London, and found no traces of poison. Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia were poisoned in Britain with a military-grade nerve agent last month.” The AP adds, “Russia’s Investigative Committee late Wednesday released online CCTV footage from Moscow’s Sheremetyevo airport and said it had traced Skripal’s taxi cab ride and her movements around the airport. The investigators said they identified everyone on Skripal’s flight and said none of the passengers displayed any symptoms of poisoning. The footage released by the committee on its official YouTube account shows a woman who looks like Skripal get out of the taxi outside the terminal, go through security and board the plane.”

From the AP.

 

—–INDICTMENT ROCK CITY—–

 

MESSAGE IN A BOTTLE

Bloomberg reports, “Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s interest in former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort stemmed in part from his suspected role as a ‘back channel’ between the campaign and Russians intent on meddling in the election, a Justice Department lawyer told a judge.” Bloomberg notes, “The disclosure by U.S. prosecutors came Thursday during a hearing on whether Mueller exceeded his authority in indicting Manafort on charges of laundering millions of dollars while acting as an unregistered agent of the Ukrainian government. Manafort’s lawyers say those alleged crimes have nothing to do with Mueller’s central mission — to determine whether anyone in the Trump campaign had links to the Russian government.” Bloomberg adds, “Justice Department attorney Michael Dreeben said prosecutors were justified in investigating Manafort because he had served as Trump’s campaign chairman. ‘He had long-standing ties to Russia-backed politicians,’ Dreeben told Jackson. ‘Did they provide back channels to Russia? Investigators will naturally look at those things.’”

From Bloomberg.

 

—–KNOW YOUR ENEMY—–

 

CAPTURE THE STATE DEPARTMENT: WTF HAPPENED THAT T REX IS EXTINCT

The New Yorker has a long feature by Ronan Farrow on the final days of the T Rex at the State Department. In it, we begin to get our first glimpse at the nasty, condescending mess that was T Rex’s tenure at the State Department and an understanding of what the fuck happened that our diplomatic corps is now decimated. Farrow writes of the great downsizing (or if you prefer, downgrading): “The planned decimation of the workforce was more sweeping than that of the programs. More than thirteen hundred diplomats would get pink slips. Initially, it was announced that there would be no new classes of foreign-service officers—the so-called A 100 recruits who file off for training at a sort of Hogwarts for diplomats in the Virginia suburbs before becoming full-fledged officers. The State Department also abruptly suspended its participation in the Presidential Management Fellows program, a prestigious apprenticeship long used to draw talent to the profession.” All of this was announced more or less at the time it occurred both publicly by T Rex and through leaks to the media. The New Yorker adds, “There seemed to be just as little interest in filling the core leadership roles that had been left intact. Hundreds of senior positions sat empty. The building was being run almost entirely by deputies elevated to ‘acting’ assistant-secretary status, many of whom had decades less experience than their unceremoniously removed predecessors. When I asked Tillerson whether the unfilled posts were a source of anxiety, he puffed his chest and smirked. ‘I don’t have anxiety,’ he said. It was, however, ‘a point of concern. . . .  It’s not something I’m happy about.’” And so, “Tillerson blamed the White House,” which is where TRUMPISTAN WATCH long believed the marching orders emanated as the goal of active measures is to capture the state: foreign policy, defense and the economy and our fake Russian bullshit president is an active measure himself. Only Congress stopped the blood letting allegedly as, “only through a bizarre set of circumstances, in which Congress essentially went to war with both Tillerson and the budget, that the cuts were ultimately rendered less extensive.” Additionally, “Congress essentially tried to throw money at the Department.” But T Rex himself did not help as The New Yorker adds, “On one occasion, he refused to accept eighty million dollars in congressional funding earmarked for State to counter Russian propaganda, which raised eyebrows following the discovery of Russian efforts to interfere with the 2016 election. Tillerson’s relationships on the Hill frayed.” Supposedly, “Tillerson admitted, for the first time, that he had pushed back behind closed doors.

From The New Yorker.

 

KUSHNER COMPANIES SUBPOENAED BY THE FEDS OVER FALSE DOCUMENTS

The AP reports, “The Kushner Cos. has been subpoenaed by federal prosecutors for information related to an Associated Press report that the company filed dozens of false documents about its buildings in New York City. The real estate company issued a statement saying it has ‘nothing to hide and is cooperating fully with all legitimate requests for information, including this subpoena.’” The AP adds, “The statement Thursday acknowledged that the federal subpoena arrived last month, a day after the AP reported the Kushner Cos. routinely filed false paperwork with the city stating it had zero rent-regulated tenants in buildings across the city when, in fact, it had hundreds.”

From the AP.

 

INSIDE THE RIVALRIES OF RUSSIAN INTELLIGENCE

The Cipher Brief reports, “The Kremlin employs an array of often overlapping and competitive security and intelligence services to create multiple sources of intelligence, encourage risk-taking and keep a wary eye on each other. This has enabled Russian President Vladimir Putin to consolidate power by playing agencies off of each other to avoid uninvited power grabs. But these redundancies can also create inefficiencies that Russia can’t afford as its economy continues to falter.” The Cipher Brief adds, “Since the collapse of the Soviet Union, Russia broke the KGB largely into four services – the Federal Security Service (FSB), Foreign Intelligence Service (SVR), Federal Protection Service (FSO), and the Interior Ministry (MVD) – while cutting the GRU’s workforce significantly.” The GRU is Russia’s military intelligence. The Cipher Brief notes, “The most influential agency remains the FSB, whose remit includes everything from domestic security to external activities such as foreign collection, cyber operations, criminal cultivation and active measures such as information operations and even assassination.” The Cipher Brief adds, “The organizational structure of Russian intelligence services might resemble that of the West – dividing up responsibilities among multiple services – but the prevailing culture and authoritarian control over these services creates infighting for prestige and favor with Putin and his closest allies in the Kremlin’s Security Council and Presidential Administration.” The article includes commentary and brief analysis from various former CIA officials.

From The Cipher Brief.

 

RUSSIAN WAR ON TELEGRAM PROVING GROUND FOR GREATER CENSORSHIP

The Financial Times reports, “After Russia banned messaging app Telegram for not helping the security services access user data, the task for the Kremlin’s internet censors was simple: block access to the app and show their resolve in their wars on user privacy. Instead, they blocked nearly everything else.” The Financial Times adds, “Roskomnadzor, Russia’s communications watchdog, stopped access to more than 16m IP addresses this week from Amazon and Google’s decentralised ‘cloud’ hosting services, which Telegram uses to get around the ban. The move wreaked havoc across the Russian internet while leaving the renegade app largely unscathed.” Critically, the Financial Times notes, “The sweeping blockages failed to curb Telegram, but they have suggested that the Kremlin is nonetheless willing to go further than ever against foreign internet companies as President Vladimir Putin prepares to begin a new term next month. Privacy advocates speculate that the Kremlin is laying the groundwork for all-encompassing censorship like China’s.” Of course this controversy creates political opportunity for those on the inside as The Moscow Times reports, “President Vladimir Putin’s Internet adviser has recommended for Russia’s media regulator to apologize for wreaking havoc while trying to block the popular Telegram messaging service in the country.” The Moscow Times adds, “‘It would be reasonable for Roskomnadzor to apologize over this complicated story,’ Putin’s Internet adviser German Klimenko told the state-run NTV television channel Wednesday. ‘I hope Roskomnadzor will act more carefully from now on,’ he added.” Complicating matters too is the fact that, “The nationwide ban has failed to keep Russian decision-makers from using the popular app”. The issue also has the Kremlin in the hot seat as “Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov denied accusations that Roskomnadzor discredited itself with a failed attempt to squeeze Telegram out of Russia.”

From The Financial Times and The Moscow Times.

 

UNSOLD STEEL PILING UP AT RUSAL FACTOR IN SIBERIA

Reuters reports, “Russian aluminium giant Rusal (0486.HK) is stockpiling large quantities of aluminium at one of its plants in Siberia because U.S. sanctions imposed this month have prevented it from selling the metal to customers.” Reuters adds, “With the firm’s own storage space filling up with unsold aluminium, Rusal executives in Sayanogorsk, in southern Siberia, have had to rent out additional space to accommodate the surplus stock”. Reuters reports, “Oleg Deripaska, the company’s main shareholder who along with the company was included on a U.S. sanctions blacklist, visited Sayanogorsk this week for a closed-door meeting with staff.” Reuters adds, “While shipments have stalled, Rusal cannot readily reduce its production of aluminium because the electrolysis pots that are at the heart of the manufacturing process can be irreparably damaged if they are shut down.” Reuters notes, “Rio Tinto, which supplies bauxite to some of Rusal’s refineries and buys refined alumina, said it will declare force majeure on some contracts. Further besieging Rusal, creditors and bond-holders are trying to offload the firm’s liabilities because many financial market players believe that to handle Rusal debt could leave them too susceptible to U.S. sanctions.”

From Reuters.

 

CONSEQUENCES OF RUSAL SANCTIONS HIT SWEDISH SMELTER
Bloomberg
reports, “A Swedish aluminum smelter owned by Russian billionaire Oleg Deripaska’s United Co. Rusal must prepare for rocketing electricity bills after being suspended from the Nordic region’s biggest power market.” Bloomberg adds, “Kubikenborg Aluminum, about 235 miles north of Stockholm, was on Wednesday thrown out from Nord Pool AS’s Oslo market due to ‘failure to comply’ with clearing rules. Neither Nord Pool or Kubal’s direct supplier Kinect Energy AS would provide more details. Kubal chief executive officer Javier Navia said Wednesday it was an indirect consequence of U.S. sanctions against the Rusal and he was working with banks to resolve the issue.”

From Bloomberg.

 

—–DISINFO WARS—–

 

EX-HANNITY DIRECTOR MOVED TO RUSSIA TO WORK FOR TSARGRAD TV

AlterNet reports, “One of Sean Hannity’s former directors — who claims an instrumental role in developing Fox News — moved to Russia to help a sanctioned oligarch start up a right-wing TV network. Jack Hanick, whose now-deleted LinkedIn profile shows he began working for Fox News three months before its first broadcast aired in October 1996, left the network in August 2011 and helped launch the Orthodox Christian network Tsargrad TV three year later.” AlterNet notes, “The religious network’s founder, Konstantin Malofeev, is a Kremlin-connected oligarch who’s been under U.S. sanctions since 2014 for financing pro-Russian separatist rebels in Crimea.” AlterNet notes, “Despite the sanctions, Hannity’s former director Hanick — who has since been accepted into the Russian Orthodox Church with his family — to help launch the network.” AlterNet adds, “Hanick left Tsargrad TV — which has featured InfoWars conspiracy theorist Alex Jones and was the only Russian TV network to cover Trump adviser Carter Pages’ 2016 speech in Moscow — about three years ago but continued working as a consultant to the media company.”

From AlterNet.

 

RACIST RUSSIAN PROPAGANDA STILL IN CIRCULATION ON THE RIGHT

Media Matters for America reports, “Conservative and pro-Trump Facebook pages, most affiliated with fake news websites, are recycling memes created by the Russian troll companies like the Internet Research Agency (IRA), which the social network has banned from its platform. Media Matters found 24 posts dating back to December 2017 from 11 right-wing pages that contained memes bearing watermarks from Russian troll-run social media accounts. Ten of these posts have earned over 20,000 interactions, with the two most popular crossing 70,000. These 28 posts appear to be Russian propaganda because they contained watermarks of logos from Russian troll-run accounts like South United, most of which pushed racist and anti-immigrant propaganda.”

From Media Matters for America.

 

—–RADIO MOSCOW: STORIES FROM THEIR PRESS AND OURS—–

 

RARE LOOK AT ASSAD FAMILY PRIVATE LIFE IN KIDS’ STAY IN CRIMEA
Reuters
reports, “News that Russia hosted the teenage children of Bashar al-Assad at a lavishly-rebuilt Black Sea summer camp in Crimea last year has given a rare glimpse into the personal lives of the Syrian president’s family and his close relationship to Moscow. Nestled on the Crimean coast since 1925, the Artek Seaside camp served for decades as an elite summer holiday resort for children of those favoured by the Soviet Communist Party and foreign delegations invited from its satelite states.” How bucolic! Naturally, “Russia has given the camp a $180 million renovation since seizing the Crimea peninsula from Ukraine in 2014. Guests stay in newly-built dormitories by the sea,” because pensioners in Russia should just die already and stop being a burden on the next generation, which is also similarly worthless to the point of not even being worth exploiting. Reuters notes, “That Assad’s sons Hafez and Karim and daughter Zein had stayed there last year with a group of other Syrian children was made public only this week, when a Russian lawmaker on a delegation to Damascus said Assad had mentioned it.” Reuters reports, “Alexei Kasprzhak, the resort’s director, told Reuters he learned of the children’s identities only after they arrived last year. The three children were given no special treatment, joining the regular programme with the other Syrian children in their group, he said.” Meanwhile in Syria, Assad was busy killing other people’s children en masse. Not so bucolic!

From Reuters.

 

RESISTANCE ADVICE: BE FRUITFUL, MULTIPLY, FORCEFUL ABOUT HUMANITY

The AP reports, “Tiny Maile Pearl made Senate history Thursday without making a sound. The tightly wrapped 10-day-old baby, brought to the well of the chamber by her mother, Sen. Tammy Duckworth, became the first newborn to appear there, just one day after the Senate approved a new rule permitting it.” The AP adds, “The rule had passed without objection — but there had been plenty of grumbling about babies threatening the Senate’s cherished decorum. But when it actually happened, even stern Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell appeared to beam.”

From the AP.

 

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