TDB Top 5 International Stories: Wednesday 29th March 2017

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5: Immigrant Communities in Fear as Trump Ups ICE Raids Targeting Sanctuary Cities
4: ‘Everything we built for 20 years, gone in a blink’ – life in the ruins of Aleppo
3: Trump moves to dismantle Obama’s climate legacy with executive order
2: DONALD TRUMP REWARDS FOSSIL FUEL INDUSTRY BY SIGNING CLIMATE DENIAL EXECUTIVE ORDER
1: US ‘probably’ involved in mass Iraqi civilian deaths

5: Immigrant Communities in Fear as Trump Ups ICE Raids Targeting Sanctuary Cities

Philadelphia City Councilmember Helen Gym and Austin City Councilmember Gregorio Casar talk about fear spreading in immigrant communities, as well as the growing resistance to federal immigration policy.

Democracy Now

4: ‘Everything we built for 20 years, gone in a blink’ – life in the ruins of Aleppo

A small group of boys play football, dodging tangled metal in the ruined ruined Umayyad mosque of Aleppo’s old city. When they were last able to come here, before the war, the vast courtyard’s patterned floor was beautifully polished, and the pile of bricks in a corner was a millennium-old minaret.

Now, the boys pick at the sandbags piled in its huge, fire-blackened arches. For them, this ancient place-of-worship-turned-fortress is a playground in a hellscape.

“It seems bigger now, maybe because I didn’t see it for such a long time,” says Yamin Saeed, a sweet-faced 14-year-old in a fake Armani jumper. Before the war, he and his friends were like children anywhere – they went to school, they loved Tom and Jerry – but the battle for Aleppo aged them overnight.

“I saw a human head once,” says Mohammed Sheni, who is also 14. “We were walking and then there was a rocket and people died. I’m trying to forget it, but you can’t forget something like that.”

The Guardian 

3: Trump moves to dismantle Obama’s climate legacy with executive order

Donald Trump launched an all-out assault on Barack Obama’s climate change legacy on Tuesday with a sweeping executive order that undermines America’s commitment to the Paris agreement.

Watched by coalminers at a ceremony at the Environmental Protection Agency in Washington, the president signed an order to trigger a review of the clean power plan, Obama’s flagship policy to curb carbon emissions, and rescind a moratorium on the sale of coalmining leases on federal lands.

But the move was swiftly condemned by environmentalists as a “dangerous” and “embarrassing” attempt to turn back the clock that would do little to revive the US coal industry while threatening cooperation with major polluters such as China and India.

The Guardian 

2: DONALD TRUMP REWARDS FOSSIL FUEL INDUSTRY BY SIGNING CLIMATE DENIAL EXECUTIVE ORDER

Trump’s executive order issued Tuesday doesn’t just knock over the centerpiece of Obama administration’s efforts to prevent the worst effects of climate change, the Clean Power Plan. It also includes a list of disastrous concessions that the fossil fuel industry and its front groups have worked for years to win.

It orders the Interior Department to end a moratorium on new coal mine leasing on federal land; directs agencies to reconsider rules limiting emissions from hydraulic fracturing; kills guidance requiring climate change be considered in environmental reviews for infrastructure projects; and calls for a re-calculating of the social cost of carbon, which puts a dollar value on what greenhouse gas emissions cost society. Trump’s order also demands federal agencies rethink any policy that stands in the way of energy development and cancels other Obama-era climate efforts such as his Climate Action Plan.

Fully dismantling the Clean Power Plan and writing a new rule will take years, and be rife with legal and regulatory roadblocks. Still, the order is the biggest Trump giveaway yet to an industry eager to postpone a day of reckoning on climate change.

It follows the State Department’s approval last week of a key permit for the Keystone XL Pipeline, which had been denied by the Obama administration over concerns about climate change. The week before that, Trump asked Congress to cut the EPA by nearly a third and also ordered a rollback of Obama’s fuel efficiency rules for vehicles. Thanks to another reversal from Trump, the Dakota Access Pipeline is now filled with oil and ready to run, according to court papers filed yesterday.

The Intercept

1: US ‘probably’ involved in mass Iraqi civilian deaths

The top US commander in Iraq on Tuesday acknowledged the likelihood that the US-led coalition played a role in blasts in Mosul that killed many civilians this month, but said an investigation was under way and ISIL may also be to blame.

“My initial assessment is that we probably had a role in these casualties… What I don’t know is were they [the civilians] gathered there by the enemy? We still have some assessments to do,” Lieutenant-General Steve Townsend told a Pentagon news briefing, speaking from Iraq.

“I would say this, that it sure looks like they were.”

Aljazeera

 

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