TDB Top 5 International Stories: Thursday 27th April 2017


5: Donald Trump Broke a Lot of Campaign Promises, but He Kept His Word on Abortion

In the first 100 days of his presidency, Trump has cut funding and limited abortion access nationally and globally.

President Trump has changed his mind or failed to follow through on many campaign promises in his first 100 days in office, but there’s at least one pledge he’s kept: to limit access to abortion.

Early on in his campaign, Trump often switched on his stance on abortion and appeared uneducated about the issue. He seemed not to know the difference between “pro-life” and “pro-choice,” and later suggested that abortion “laws are set” and can’t be changed. But by September 2016, Trump had solidified his anti-abortion bona fides. He announced the creation of a “pro-life coalition” and promised to gut federal funding for abortion providers, among other sweeping federal changes.

Now, anti-abortion advocates—already thrilled with the support they’ve seen so far from Trump’s administration—are eager for what’s to come.

Vice News

4: Turkey suspends 9,000 police officers for ‘Gulen links’

Turkey has temporarily suspended more than 9,000 personnel from the country’s police force while they are investigated for suspected links to US-based cleric Fethullah Gulen, the country’s state-run news agency said.

Anadolu Agency said that police personnel were removed from duty on Wednesday, hours after Turkey launched nationwide operations, detaining more than a thousand people with alleged ties to Gulen’s movement which Turkey blames for orchestrating a failed coup in July.

The operation was launched in all of Turkey’s 81 provinces and targeted the network’s structure in the police force.

Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu described the arrests as an “important step” towards the government’s aim at “bringing down” the Gulen movement.


3: Chomsky on the GOP: Has Any Organization Ever Been So Committed to Destruction of Life on Earth?

As President Trump prepares to mark 100 days in office, we spend the hour with the world-renowned linguist and dissident Noam Chomsky. Amy Goodman spoke to him on Monday night at the First Parish Church in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The conversation addressed climate change, nuclear weapons, North Korea, Iran, the war in Syria and the Trump administration’s threat to prosecute WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange. Amy Goodman began by asking him about the Republican Party.

Democracy Now

2: Marine Le Pen Can Win, if She Campaigns “à la Trump,” Her Father Says

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JEAN-MARIE LE PEN, the founder of France’s far-right National Front, was expelled from the party two years ago by his daughter Marine — for spoiling her rebranding campaign by repeating his infamous claim that the gas chambers used to exterminate Europe’s Jews were merely “a detail in the history of the Second World War,” and saying nice things about Marshal Pétain, the wartime leader who collaborated with the Nazis.

Despite that dramatic falling out, the elder Le Pen voted for his daughter in the first round of France’s presidential election, along with 7,679,492 others, and proudly called her achievement in advancing to the May 7th run-off against Emmanuel Macron, the former economy minister, “the culmination of a 45-year political battle” for the party he started in 1972.

Now Jean-Marie Le Pen is eager to offer his daughter some advice, whether she wants it or not: to win, she needs to drop the facade of moderation and “campaign à la Trump,” by channeling the anger of disaffected working-class voters who have abandoned mainstream parties for the far-left as well as the far-right.

“I think that her campaign was too ‘cool,’” Le Pen told France Inter radio. “If I’d been in her place, I would have had a campaign like Trump’s,” he explained. “That’s to say, a wide-open campaign, very aggressive against those who are responsible for the decay of the country, whether right or left.”

The Intercept

1: US commander not confident North Korea will refrain from nuclear assault

The US admiral in charge of a potential conflict with North Korea has said his goal is to bring Kim Jong-un “to his senses, not to his knees”.

Tensions between the US and North Korea are white-hot ahead of an anticipated sixth nuclear test from Pyongyang and its accelerating long-range missile development. Donald Trump has invited the entire US Senate to the White House on Wednesday afternoon for a classified briefing on the situation.

Adm Harry Harris, the commander of US Pacific Command (Pacom), sounded dire notes before a congressional panel on Wednesday, testifying that he did not have confidence that North Korea would refrain from “something precipitous” should it succeed in miniaturizing a nuclear weapon to mount on a ballistic missile.

The Guardian