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‘He will go down as the worst secretary of state’: Rex Tillerson quickly cementing his place in history

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Rex Tillerson during his confirmation hearing (Screenshot)

Less than a year into the job, many experts already call Rex Tillerson one of the worst secretaries of state of all time — if not the worst.

The former Exxon/Mobil CEO has little influence over President Donald Trump and other White House officials, and he has shrunk the State Department by forcing out longtime employees and neglecting to replace them, reported Vox.

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“Tillerson would be at or near the bottom of the list of secretaries of state, not just in the post-Second World War world but in the record of US secretaries of state,” said Paul Musgrave, a foreign policy scholar at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. “He took the job and made it smaller.”

His efforts at “reform” will likely weaken the State Department for a generation, according to George Washington University’s Elizabeth Saunders.

Tillerson has been rumored to be on his way out almost since the moment his wife talked him into taking the job, and Trump reportedly likes United Nations ambassador Nikki Haley as his replacement.

Jared Kusher, the president’s son-in-law, plays an unofficial but influential role in setting diplomatic policy, further eroding Tillerson’s authority.

“I think he really will go down as one of the worst secretaries of State we’ve had,” said Eliot Cohen, counselor to the State Department under President George W. Bush.

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Ilan Goldenberg, who specialized in Israel-Palestine issues for the State Department under President Barack Obama, said Tillerson has already cemented his place in history.

“He will go down as the worst secretary of state in history,” Goldenberg said.


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The Arab uprisings were weakened by online fakes

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The Arab uprisings a decade ago were supercharged by online calls to join the protests -- but the internet was soon flooded with misinformation, weakening the region's cyber-activists.

When Tunisian dictator Zine El Abidine Ben Ali fled the country in January 2011, rumours and uncertainty created "panic and hysteria", said ex-activist and entrepreneur Houeida Anouar.

"January 14 was a horrible night, so traumatic," she said. "We heard gunfire, and a neighbour shouted 'hide yourselves, they're raping women'."

As pro-regime media pumped out misinformation, the flood of bogus news also spread to the internet, a space activists had long seen as a refuge from censorship and propaganda.

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Dr. Fauci warns of post-Thanksgiving COVID-19 surge in US

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The United States is the worst-affected country, with 266,074 Covid-19 deaths, and President Donald Trump's administration has issued conflicting messages on mask-wearing, travel and the danger posed by the virus.

"There almost certainly is going to be an uptick because of what has happened with the travel," Fauci told CNN's "State of the Union."

Travel surrounding Thursday's Thanksgiving holiday made this the busiest week in US airports since the pandemic began.

"We may see a surge upon a surge" in two or three weeks, Fauci added. "We don't want to frighten people, but that's the reality."

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Sidney Powell’s new election lawsuit cites election experts she won’t even name: legal expert

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President Donald Trump's former election lawyer, Sidney Powell, has filed her lawsuit in Georgia suing Gov. Brian Kemp (R-GA) for what she says is a fraudulent election.

But lawyer Mike Dunford explained that it doesn't exactly work that way. Reading through Powell's court document "Emergency Motion for Declaratory, Emergency, and Permanent Injunctive Relief and Memorandum in Support Thereof."

"If you want emergency relief it is very helpful to be as clear and concise as humanly possible," he explained. "Pointing the court back to your 100+ page complaint with its 29 exhibits isn't how that is best done. To put it very mildly."

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