Monday, October 16, 2017

Miltary Family Labels Trump a "Fat, Fucking Liar"

The sister of a slain solider has lashed out at Donald Trump calling him a 'fat fucking liar' after he said that past presidents had never called families of fallen troops.

Delilia O'Malley revealed that former President George W. Bush had listened to her scream before hugging her after she was told her brother had been killed while serving in the Iraq War. 

Her anger at Trump was echoed by thousands of other Gold Star families who say they were insulted by Trump's comments. A number of ex-staffers who worked with past presidents have also since publicly slammed Trump for blatantly lying.

Trump made the controversial remarks when he was asked why he hadn't yet commented on the deaths of four elite US special forces soldiers in Niger who were killed in an ambush by ISIS.   Trump claimed he had written to the families and planned to call them at some point before saying that Obama and other past presidents had failed to phone the loved ones of slain soldiers.

"If you look at president Obama and other presidents - most of them didn't' make calls. A lot of them didn't make calls," he said.  "I like to call when it's appropriate, when I think I'm able to do it. They have made the ultimate sacrifice, so generally I would say that I like to call."

When asked during the press conference to back up his claims about Obama, Trump appeared to try and backpedal.  "I don't know if he did. I was told that he didn't often. A lot of presidents don't, they write letters. I do a combination of both. Sometimes it's a very difficult thing to do but I do a combination of both," he said.  "President Obama I think probably did sometimes and maybe sometimes he didn't. I don't know that's what I was told," Trump clumsily added.

Trump Press Secretary Sarah Sanders later attempted to buttress Trump's comments when responding to the criticism, saying that "the president wasn't criticizing predecessors, but stating a fact."

Alyssa Mastromonaco, who served as a deputy chief of staff under former Obama, was among those to immediately lash out at Trump.  "That's a fucking lie," she tweeted. "To say President Obama (or past presidents) didn't call the family members of soldiers [killed in action] – he's a deranged animal."

Ben Rhodes, Obama's foreign policy advisor, said: "This is an outrageous and disrespectful lie even by Trump standards."

Trump had previously taken his cues from rightwing media when criticizing Obama back in 2012, saying that Obama didn't really sign letters to the families of slain soldiers.  "Too busy playing golf? Barack Obama sends form letters with an electronic signature to the parents of fallen SEALs," Trump tweeted at the time.

At the time, the Obama White House hit back saying Obama personally signed every letter sent out to military families.

Ironically, Trump himself  was playing golf  over the weekend when the dead body of 25-year-old Johnson was returned to Dover Air Force Base from Niger.  Try lying your way out of that one, Mr. Trump.

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Can Things Get Any More Desparate In Venezuela?

Venezuelans have been told expired passports are valid for another two years because they have run out of paper and ink to print new ones.

President Maduro has signed an emergency decree to extend their validity because of chronic shortages at the national passport agency.

At least a million Venezuelans have been waiting months for new documents and cannot travel in the interim.  Demand for travel documents is at a record high as Venezuelans seek to escape from political crisis and deep recession.  Critics had claimed that  delays in replacing passports stemmed from Maduro's desire to keep people from leaving the beleaguered nation

Since global oil prices plunged in 2015, Venezuela hasn’t had the funds to import basic goods such as food and medicine, creating acute shortages and stirring anger toward Maduro.   Inflation is at about 700 per cent.

Adding to the overall misery are a drastic rise in violent crime – especially in the capital city of Caracas – rolling blackouts and widespread and often times bloody protests against the government.

There have been casualties and deaths on both sides of the protests and accusations from the international community of human rights abuses and political oppression.

Sunday, October 1, 2017

Blow Against Democracy in Spain

Police have been filmed violently tackling voters as they try to prevent a banned vote in Catalonia, Spain.  The footage appears to show people being thrown and a women being pulled by her hair.

One voter, JĂșlia Graell, told the BBC that "police started to kick people, young and old", adding: "Today, I have seen the worst actions that a government can do to the people of its own country."

Catalan emergency officials say over 800 people have been injured as police used force to try to block voting in Catalonia's independence referendum.  In Barcelona, police used batons and fired rubber bullets during pro-referendum protests.  TV footage showed riot police using batons to beat a group of firefighters who were protecting crowds in Girona.

Ahead of the vote, Spain's central government sent in large numbers of national police and paramilitary forces to prevent the vote from taking place.  Barcelona Mayor Ada Colau condemned  the excessive violence directed against what she called the region's "defenseless" population.

Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy refused to take any responsibility for the violence, saying instead that Catalonians were "fooled into taking part in an illegal vote."


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