TDB Top 5 International Stories: Monday 31st October 2016





DONALD TRUMP YESTERDAY announced the “Reagan Alumni Advisory Council for Trump-Pence,” made up of 240 former Reagan advisors who support Trump for President.

The first quote in Trump’s press release, from Reagan’s attorney general Edwin Meese, begins like this: “Many of us remember 1980, a time when, as today, America suffered from high unemployment and even higher interest rates.”

In fact, the unemployment rate in October 1980 was 7.5 percent. The unemployment rate today is 5.0 percent.

Interest rates in 1980 were 15.3 percent. Today they are 3.3 percent.

The current unemployment rate is so low that conservatives are loudly demanding that the Federal Reserve raise interest rates to force unemployment higher. Current interest rates are the lowest they’ve been in at least 55 years.

The Intercept


4:  Native Americans Are Resisting the Dakota Pipeline With Tech and Media Savvy

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Activists and tribal members Kandi Mossett, Dean Dedman, and Dallas Goldtooth are racing to release new footage of the protests against Energy Transfer Partners, which is building a controversial four-state oil pipeline from North Dakota to Indiana. They can’t get solid reception at Highway 1806 in North Dakota, where they’re calling me from, so they’re deciding how to upload the content quickly. Phone reception begins to break up.

Police have just arrested 144 protestors–they call themselves water protectors–and over the phone I can hear Dallas describing how a private security agent brandished an AR-15. Dean shouts that they’re heading to find a strong internet connection, then hangs up. Meanwhile, I chat with Kandi to find out what’s been going on.

“I’m out there with my three year-old daughter, looking in the face of police in full riot gear, with mace in cans the size of small fire extinguishers, with their huge guns like something out of Rambo,” said Mossett, who’s been demonstrating along Highway 1806, the site of the standoff between water protectors and law enforcement.

Vice News


3: Turkey sacks 10,000 civil servants, shuts media outlets

Turkey has dismissed another 10,000 civil servants and closed 15 more media outlets over suspected links with “terrorist organisations” and US-based cleric Fethullah Gulen, blamed by Ankara for orchestrating a failed coup.

More than 100,000 people have already been sacked or suspended and 37,000 arrested since the July coup attempt, in an unprecedented crackdown the government says is necessary to root out all coup supporters from the state apparatus.

Thousands more academics, teachers, health workers, prison guards and forensics experts were among the latest to be removed from their posts through two new executive decrees issued late on Saturday.



2: Clinton and Trump camps duel over FBI director’s late email revelation 

Top officials for the Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton campaigns on Sunday dueled over the revelation that the FBI had found emails that are potentially new and related to its dormant investigation of Clinton’s use of a private email server.

John Podesta, Clinton’s campaign chairman, and Clinton’s running mate, Tim Kaine, assailed FBI director James Comey for defying convention by publicly resurrecting the specter of his agency’s investigation, without much detail and so close to election day. Campaign officials repeated the candidate’s call for more information about the content of the emails to be released.

Trailing in the polls with nine days to go until election day, the Trump campaign seized on the news as a lifeline. Campaign manager Kellyanne Conway told CNN on Sunday that Comey’s decision to write to congressional officials showed Clinton was “unfit to be president based on her constant flouting of the law”.

The Guardian

1: Electronic Frontier Foundation: Police Depts. Paid AT&T Millions to Scrutinize Our Texts & Chats

New details are emerging about how AT&T has been spying on Americans for profit with a secret plan called Project Hemisphere. The Daily Beast reports AT&T is keeping private call records and selling the information to authorities investigating everything from the war on drugs to Medicaid fraud. AT&T reportedly has been retaining every call, text message, Skype chat or other communication that has passed through its infrastructure. Some of the records date back to 1987. Sheriff’s and police departments each pay upward of $1 million a year for access to the call records. No warrants are needed, and AT&T requires governmental agencies to keep secret the source of the information. We speak with Adam Schwartz, a senior lawyer at the Electronic Frontier Foundation. His latest article is “AT&T requires police to hide Hemisphere phone spying.”

Democracy Now