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White House not ‘disappointed’ after Putin no-show at G8

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The White House insisted Thursday it was not disappointed that Russian President Vladimir Putin will skip the G8 summit and talks with President Barack Obama next week.

The Russian leader, returned as president after a four year break Monday, and was expected to have a first chance to meet on a president-to-president level with Obama at the Camp David summit in Maryland.

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But Putin said in a phone call with Obama Wednesday that he would not be able to attend as he was tied up with picking his cabinet and would send ex-president and current Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev instead.

“No we are not disappointed,” White House spokesman Jay Carney told reporters aboard Obama’s presidential aircraft.

“It is something we understood and understand,” he said, noting that Putin and Obama had already agreed to meet “in not much time at all” at the G20 summit in Mexico in June.

Carney also dismissed the idea that Putin had decided not to come because it is doubtful Obama will travel to the APEC summit in Vladivostock, Russia in September as it takes place less than two months before the US election.

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Putin told Obama in a telephone call he “unfortunately cannot take part in the May 18-19 G8 summit as on those days the formation of the Russian government will — evidently — still not be completed,” the Kremlin said.

“The American side received this information with understanding,” it added.

Putin’s visit to the United States was to come at a prickly time in ties with Washington, which is pressing ahead with a European missile shield despite Russian complaints and has also slammed Russia’s treatment of protestors.

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[Russian President Vladimir Putin, pictured in Red Square in Moscow on May 9. AFP Photo/Vladimir Rodionov]


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‘Vladimir Putin has something on Donald Trump’: Ambassador Sherman says the Kremlin must have kompromat

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Former Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman concluded on Monday that Russian Federation President Vladimir Putin must have "something" on President Donald Trump.

"The latest reporting from The New York Times indicates that the thousands of troops that we have there, that the president moved, are now trapped. They don’t have an actual way out since Turkey has cut off the roads and the exit routes that they might use and so now there is the question of will there be an airlift? How will we get the U.S. troops out?" MSNBC's Lawrence O'Donnell asked.

"We haven’t had to get troops out like this since the fall of Saigon," Sherman replied. "This is going to be very, very difficult."

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Mick Mulvaney implicated by Trump official who testified before Congress on Monday: report

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Acting White House chief of staff MicK Mulvaney was implicated by a former top National Security Council official during nine-hours of congressional testimony, The Wall Street Journal reported Monday.

The newspaper reported, "In her testimony, she detailed a July 10 meeting she attended with senior Ukrainian officials, then-National Security Adviser John Bolton, and other U.S. officials in which the U.S. ambassador to the European Union, Gordon Sondland, raised the issue of the investigations, the people said."

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Conservative pundit blasts Mattis for not speaking candidly about Trump: He ‘is not a moral hero — he is enabling the criminal to escape’

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When former Defense Secretary James Mattis announced his resignation in December 2018, many Never Trump conservatives lamented the departure of someone they saw as a voice of reason and sanity in the Trump Administration. Those Never Trumpers were anxious to hear what a post-White House Mattis had to say in an interview with NBC News’ Chuck Todd that aired on “Meet the Press” Sunday. But conservative Washington Post writer and Trump critic Jennifer Rubin, in her October 14 column, stresses that she wishes Mattis were speaking more “candidly” and frankly about his time in the White House and President Donald Trump’s foreign policy decisions.

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