Today's Headlines and Commentary

Today’s Headlines and Commentary

By Vishnu Kannan
Wednesday, August 7, 2019, 3:46 PM

The Trump administration will invite representatives of major technology companies to the White House in order to discuss online extremism, the Washington Post reports. The announcement follows the mass shooting in El Paso last weekend, before which the alleged gunman is suspected of posting a racist, anti-immigrant manifesto on the anonymous message board website 8chan.

Trump ordered the State Department and the United States Agency for International Development to freeze the remaining money allocated for foreign aid, the New York Times writes. The order targets funding that Congress had already approved for foreign aid.

On Wednesday, Trump said that the U.S. was engaged in discussions with South Korea to convince the latter to pay a higher share of the costs of stationing U.S. troops in the region to defend against the threat from North Korea, according to Reuters. A South Korean foreign ministry official said that negotiations over the details of last year’s general agreement between the two countries have not yet begun.

In response to Monday’s protests in Hong Kong, in which widespread strikes and mass rallies, paralyzed the city, a senior Chinese government official said that Hong Kong was facing its most severe crisis since the former colony was officially returned to China in 1997, per the Times.

The Pakistani government condemned the Indian government’s move to revoke the special status of Indian-controlled Kashmir and will “go to any extent” to fight the change, according to Pakistan’s army chief of staff, CNN writes.

A Taliban car bomb detonated outside a Kabul police station, killing 14 people and injuring at least 145 others, according to the Times. The attack, formally claimed by a Taliban spokesperson, occurred against the backdrop of ongoing negotiations between the U.S. and the Taliban for a deal which will promise the withdrawal of U.S. and NATO troops from Afghanistan in return for assurances that the Taliban will prevent terrorist attacks from Afghanistan against the U.S. and its allies.

Former Homeland Security secretaries and intelligence officials launched U.S. CyberDome, a non-profit intended to help protect presidential campaigns from cyber foreign interference, the Hill writes.

ICYMI: Yesterday on Lawfare

Quinta Jurecic and Benjamin Wittes argued that the white supremacist violence of recent years has affirmed their theory: that the radicalization processes for violent Trumpism is akin to that of jihadist terrorism.

Paul Rosenzweig noted some preliminary observations on the utility of measuring cybersecurity.

Todd Carney wrote that the president’s decision not to impose a quota on uranium imports illustrates the White House’s power over trade policy.

Jurecic also shared former Special Agent Peter Strzok’s complaint in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia over his dismissal from the FBI and the release of his text messages with then-FBI employee Lisa Page.

Vishnu Kannan shared the Department of Justice’s amicus brief in Trump v. Mazars.

Jen Patja Howell shared the most recent episode of the Lawfare Podcast in which Margaret Taylor spoke with Mark Rozell about executive privilege, what is new in the Trump administration's handling of congressional demands for information, and what it all means for the separation of powers.

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