Today's Headlines and Commentary

Today’s Headlines and Commentary

By Hannah Kris
Monday, January 6, 2020, 4:32 PM

An airstrip used by both the United States and Kenyan militaries was attacked by Al-Shabab militants in the early Sunday morning, reports the Washington Post. Three Americans were killed and two were wounded in the attack.

Security forces supporting Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro blocked opposition leader Juan Guaido along with several of his allies from entering the Venezuelan National Assembly, preventing Guaido from being elected as the Assembly leader, according to Politico.

The New York Times reports that frustration has mounted among Australian citizens regarding Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s response to fires blazing across Australia. Morrison has been criticized for taking a vacation during the crisis and for minimizing the connection between climate change and the fires.

John Bass, the U.S. ambassador to Afghanistan, will step down after two years of service in Kabul, according to the Times. Bass’s departure comes during the negotiation of a tentative peace agreement with the Taliban.

Former Trump national security adviser John Bolton released a statement announcing his willingness to testify in an impeachment trial of President Trump if the Senate issues a subpoena for his testimony.

President Trump threatened on Twitter to target Iranian cultural sites and to impose sanctions on Iraq if either Iran or Iraq retaliates for the assassination of Qassem Soleimani, reports the New York Times. The targeting of Iranian cultural sites could be considered a war crime.

Iran announced that it would no longer abide by the restrictions on uranium enrichment imposed by the 2015 nuclear deal unless the United States lifted sanctions, the Washington Post writes. The Iranian government will still cooperate with the International Atomic Energy Agency’s monitoring of its nuclear program.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo voiced support for the presence of U.S. military troops in Iraq, claiming that the U.S. military was “supporting Iraqi sovereignty.” His announcement came before a nonbinding vote by the Iraqi parliament in favor of expelling American troops from Iraq, according to Politico.

ICYMI: This Weekend on Lawfare

In Water Wars, Sean Quirk analyzed new movements by the People’s Republic of China in the South China Sea.

John Bellinger wrote that attacks of Iranian cultural sites by the U.S. would violate the Hague Cultural Property Convention.

Rebecca Friedman Lissner examined Trump’s performance as president as he entered his fourth year in the position, arguing that he has failed to learn how to approach the role of commander-in-chief.

Fred Burton looked at the responsibility and ability of the United States government to protect American ambassadors abroad following the death of Qassem Soleimani.

Quinta Jurecic posted audio from two oral arguments before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit concerning a House subpoena for testimony by former White House Counsel Don McGahn and the Judiciary Committee’s effort to obtain grand jury material cited in the Mueller report

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