Today's Headlines and Commentary

Today's Headlines and Commentary

By Gordon Ahl
Tuesday, November 5, 2019, 1:24 PM

The Trump administration sent official notification to the United Nations on Monday of its intention to withdraw from the Paris climate accord next fall, reports the Washington Post.

Following the release of two transcripts on Monday, House impeachment investigators signaled their plan to release two more deposition transcripts on Tuesday, according to the Wall Street Journal. The released transcripts will reportedly be from the depositions of the U.S. ambassador to the European Union, Gordon Sondland, and the former special envoy Kurt Volker. Both men testified in October.

The criminal trial of Roger Stone, a long-time adviser to President Trump, began on Tuesday in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia with the start of jury selection, reports Reuters. Stone faces charges of obstructing justice, witness tampering and lying to Congress, arising in part from former Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation.

The New York Times reports that about 200 Russian mercenaries, including skilled snipers, have arrived in Libya in the past six weeks to support the militia leader Khalifa Hifter in the nation’s ongoing civil war.

U.S. law enforcement officials believe that Russia is engaging in a coordinated campaign to coerce third-party countries to prevent Russians arrested on criminal hacking charges from facing extradition to the United States, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani announced that Iran’s Atomic Energy Organization would begin feeding gas into centrifuges at its Fordow uranium-enrichment facility, according to the Post.

A senior Turkish official claimed that Turkish forces had captured the sister of the now-deceased leader of the Islamic State, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, according to CNN.

Guatemalan President-elect Alejandro Giammattei said that he would break off all diplomatic relations with the government of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro when he takes office in January, reports Reuters.

ICYMI: Yesterday on Lawfare

Jacob Schulz discussed the French government’s attempt to try Islamic State foreign fighters in Iraqi courts.

Jeb Rubenfeld argued that, in moderating content, Facebook and Google are state actors—meaning their content moderation policies are unconstitutional.

Gordon Ahl posted a federal appellate court ruling that held that President Trump’s accounting firm must hand over eight years of tax returns to New York state prosecutors.

Ahl also shared the full transcripts of closed-door testimony from former Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch and Amb. Michael McKinley.

Ahl also posted an F.B.I. affidavit alleging that a white supremacist was planning to blow up a synagogue in Colorado.

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