In May 2019, President Donald Trump made an emergency declaration in order to complete the sale of more than $8 million worth of weapons to Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Jordan — a declaration made despite vehement objections from Democrats in the U.S. House of Representatives. House Democrats have continued to speak out about the sale, including House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Eliot Engel, who, this week, stated that the U.S. State Department, under the Trump Administration, tried to “hide the truth” about the civilian casualties from Congress last year.
Engel, in his statement, was highly critical of R. Clarke Cooper, who serves as assistant secretary of state for political-military affairs and reports to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. Cooper is scheduled to appear before the House Foreign Affairs Committee in a hearing on Wednesday, September 16.
“The records we received today show just how hard the State Department wanted to hide the truth about last year’s phony emergency declaration,” Engel stated. “The picture is starting to come into focus: a top priority at Mike Pompeo’s State Department was to go around Congress to sell weapons, and his senior aides worked hard after the fact to obscure their indifference to civilian casualties.”
On July 10, according to Newsweek, Cooper sent a memo to the Office of the State Department Inspector General — and in that memo, Cooper recommended that the Office “consider removing” an annex on civilian casualties from a report. Cooper told Sandra Lewis, assistant inspector general for inspections at the State Department OIG, that following that recommendation would “allow that report to be finalized, briefed to Congress and released to the public.”
Cooper and Joshua Dorosin, deputy legal adviser for the State Department, recommended that parts of that report be redacted because of “potential executive privilege concerns.” But the State Department OIG, in response to that request, said that “citing ‘potential executive privilege concerns’ does not properly invoke a claim of privilege that would justify the withholding of information that is otherwise appropriately released to the Congress and/or the public.”
‘Highly unusual’: Bill Barr’s Russiagate prosecutor expands probe to include Clinton Foundation
John Durham, the U.S. attorney appointed by Attorney General Bill Barr to investigate the probe into Russian interference in the 2016 election, has reportedly expanded the scope of his investigation to look into past allegations of wrongdoing by the Clinton Foundation.
The New York Times reports that Durham "has sought documents and interviews about how federal law enforcement officials handled an investigation around the same time into allegations of political corruption at the Clinton Foundation."
Cops violated Breonna Taylor’s civil rights before they even knocked down her door: Legal expert
A legal expert explained that Breonna Taylor's civil rights were violated before Louisville police showed up at her apartment to serve a search warrant.
Civil rights attorney Maya Wiley told MSNBC's "Morning Joe" the system that let police off the hook in Taylor's killing was inherently rigged against people of color, because it shields officers from accountability when they make mistakes.
"Remember [this] started as a no-knock warrant, and because she had no criminal record, because there were real questions here, they actually changed it to a knock-and-announce [warrant], that tells you something," Wiley said. "It also tells us we need to know more because, as I said, there were indications the Postal Service inspector said they didn't think there were suspicious packages, so there is a need to understand more."
Trump made an ‘implicit threat of violence’ when he refused to say he’d leave peacefully: CNN’s Berman
CNN's John Berman on Thursday accused President Donald Trump of implicitly threatening the use of violence if he loses the 2020 presidential election.
While discussing Trump's refusal to commit to a peaceful transition of power should he lose the 2020 election, Berman said that this was the kind of thing he'd expect to hear from leaders in foreign countries without long traditions of upholding democracy.
"To be clear, the refusal to commit to a peaceful transfer in and of itself is an implicit threat of violence," he said.