Democracy ‘on the ballot’ as US midterms loom: Biden | US Midterm Elections 2022 News

US president warns nation’s system of governance is beneath risk from individuals who refuse to recognise outcomes.

With days to go earlier than polls shut in america essential midterm elections, President Joe Biden has warned that democracy itself is in danger – from lies and violence.

After weeks of reassuring discuss in regards to the nation’s economic system and the price of dwelling, Biden turned to a darker, extra pressing message on Wednesday, declaring that the US system of governance was beneath risk from former President Donald Trump’s election-denying lies and the violence Biden stated they’d impressed.

“Make no mistake, democracy is on the poll for all of us,” Biden stated in a speech as People vote in an election that can resolve whether or not Democrats or Republicans management the US Senate and Home of Representatives. All 435 seats within the Home are up for re-election together with a couple of third of Senate seats.

Most surveys predict Republicans are nearly sure to take management of the Home, with the Senate too near name. The Democrats at present management the Home with a slim majority whereas the Senate is evenly cut up. Greater than 27 million individuals have forged their votes already.

Biden, chatting with the Democratic Nationwide Committee at Washington, DC’s Union Station, stated threats by some Republican candidates to refuse to simply accept the outcomes from the November 8 elections in the event that they lose was a risk to democracy.

“This driving pressure is making an attempt to succeed the place they failed in 2020 to suppress the rights of voters and subvert the electoral system itself,” the president stated. “That’s the path to chaos in America. It’s unprecedented. It’s illegal. And it’s un-American.”

Hands of election workers and ballot papers during a recount in the US
Election employees in some areas of the US have spoken of elevated intimidation and harassment forward of the November 8 ballot [File: Gene J Puskar/AP Photo]

Trump didn’t settle for the end result of the 2020 election and his supporters launched an assault on the US Capitol on January 6 final 12 months as Congress was attributable to certify the outcomes.

Pointing particularly to final week’s hammer assault on Home Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s husband, Biden stated Trump’s false claims a couple of stolen election had “fuelled the harmful rise of political violence and voter intimidation over the previous two years”.

Bracing for confrontation

Election employees throughout the nation have questioned whether or not to return to work following elevated intimidation and harassment forward of November 8. At the least 5 individuals have been charged with federal crimes for harassing employees throughout early voting.

Studies of individuals watching poll packing containers in Arizona, generally armed or sporting ballistic vests, have additionally raised concern about voter intimidation. Election officers nationwide are bracing for confrontations at polling websites led by a flood of conspiracy theorists who’ve signed as much as work as partisan ballot watchers.

“There’s an alarming rise within the variety of individuals on this nation condoning political violence or just remaining silent,” Biden added. “In our bones we all know democracy is in danger, however we additionally know this: It’s in our energy to protect our democracy.”

Biden struck a extra optimistic word as he wound up his 20-minute speech.

“My fellow People, we’ll meet this second. We simply have to recollect who we’re. We’re america of America. There’s nothing past our capability if we do it collectively,” he stated.

Voter fraud is extraordinarily uncommon within the US, however surveys counsel a considerable variety of individuals are involved in regards to the concern. A Reuters/Ipsos ballot that concluded on Monday discovered 49 p.c of People suppose voter fraud is a widespread drawback – with 34 p.c of Democrats and 69 p.c of Republicans holding that view.

Some 44 p.c stated they’re involved the US election was rigged, together with 28 p.c of Democrats and 62 p.c of Republicans.

Regardless of that, 67 p.c of respondents stated they had been assured their very own ballots can be precisely counted, together with broad majorities of Democrats and Republicans.

Biden meets Griner, Whelan families at White House | Politics News

Households are pushing US to safe launch of WNBA star Brittney Griner and former US Marine Paul Whelan, held in Russia.

US President Joe Biden has met with the households of basketball star Brittney Griner and former marine Paul Whelan, amid ongoing efforts in Washington to safe two Americans’ launch from detention in Russia.

Biden sat down within the Oval Workplace on Friday with Cherelle Griner, the spouse of Griner, and Elizabeth Whelan, the ex-marine’s sister.

The conferences started shortly earlier than 5pm (21:00 GMT), the White Home mentioned.

Karine Jean-Pierre, the White Home press secretary, mentioned earlier this week that Biden hoped the face-to-face talks will present the households “that they continue to be entrance of thoughts” for the USA administration.

“Whereas I might like to say that the aim of this assembly is to tell the households that the Russians have accepted our supply and we’re bringing their loved-ones dwelling, that isn’t what we’re seeing in these negotiations right now,” Jean-Pierre instructed reporters.

Griner, a Ladies’s Nationwide Basketball Affiliation (WNBA) and two-time Olympic gold medallist, was sentenced to 9 years in jail final month over drug expenses.

She was arrested in February, days earlier than Russia launched a full-scale invasion of Ukraine, and her case has moved by way of the Russian courtroom system amid frayed relations between Moscow and Washington over the battle.

Whelan, a Marine veteran, was sentenced to 16 years in jail in 2020 on espionage expenses.

The US State Division has known as the detention of each US residents unjustified.

Earlier on Friday, a White Home Nationwide Safety Council spokesperson mentioned negotiations with Moscow to safe the 2 Individuals’ launch are ongoing.

“The president felt it was necessary to proceed the dialogue with the relations … We’ve got stayed in contact with them all through; we now have saved them knowledgeable all through,” John Kirby instructed reporters.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken mentioned in July that Washington made a “substantial proposal” to Moscow to free Griner and Whelan.

A number of US media shops reported round that point that the Biden administration provided a prisoner change involving a Russian arms seller detained within the US.

On Friday, Kirby instructed reporters that Russia has not responded to that supply, “however that doesn’t imply that we’re not nonetheless in negotiations or we’re not nonetheless attempting”.

Moscow mentioned final month that it was “prepared” to debate a prisoner swap cope with Washington.

In the meantime, Griner’s family, teammates and supporters have been calling on the US authorities to place its full weight behind the case to push for her launch.

Griner was accused of bringing vape canisters containing hashish oil into Russia, the place she was set to play for a basketball workforce in Yekaterinburg.

Regardless of the deteriorating ties between Washington and Moscow, Russia in April freed Trevor Reed, a former US marine. In change, the US launched Russian pilot Konstantin Yaroshenko, who was serving a 20-year sentence within the US over drug expenses.

Biden vows to end social media immunity over ‘spreading hate’ | Racism News

The White Home has repeatedly known as for revoking Part 230, a legislation that shields on-line firms from legal responsibility over content material posted by customers.

US President Joe Biden has known as on People to talk out towards racism, saying he would ask Congress to do extra to carry social media firms accountable for spreading hate.

“White supremacists is not going to have the final phrase,” Biden mentioned on Thursday on the United We Stand Summit of native leaders, specialists and survivors.

Biden mentioned the USA had lengthy skilled a “via line of hate” towards minority teams, one which had been given “an excessive amount of oxygen” by politics and the media lately.

The occasion additionally recognised communities that suffered hate-based assaults, together with mass shootings at a homosexual nightclub in Orlando in 2016 and at a Buffalo, New York, grocery store earlier this yr, by which 10 Black individuals have been gunned down by an avowed racist.

Hate crimes within the US hit a 12-year excessive in 2020, the final accessible knowledge, the FBI mentioned final yr.

‘Silence is complicity’

Members gave Biden a standing ovation when he mentioned he needed Congress to “maintain social media firms accountable for spreading hate”.

“I’m calling on Congress to do away with particular immunity for social media firms and impose a lot stronger transparency necessities on all of them,” Biden mentioned.

The White Home has repeatedly known as for revoking Part 230, a legislation that shields on-line firms from legal responsibility over content material posted by customers, and has additionally supported ramping up anti-trust and transparency enforcement on know-how firms.

The White Home occasion comes simply weeks after Biden warned in a speech in Philadelphia that “extremist” Republicans are a risk to democracy.

Biden addressed criticism that the speech was divisive on Thursday.

“Silence is complicity, we will’t stay silent,” Biden mentioned. “There are those who say we carry this up, we divide the nation. Bringing it up we silence it.”

A number of huge know-how firms additionally joined in. YouTube mentioned it was increasing its efforts to fight “violent extremism” by eradicating content material glorifying violent acts for the aim of inspiring others to commit hurt, fundraise, or recruit.

Microsoft mentioned it was increasing using synthetic intelligence and machine studying instruments to detect credible threats of violence, and use gaming to construct empathy.

Joe Biden’s COVID-19 symptoms ‘have improved’, his doctor says | Joe Biden News

White Home doctor says US president is taking antiviral remedy, as his very important indicators stay ‘completely regular’.

US President Joe Biden’s COVID-19 signs “have improved”, his physician has mentioned, as his pulse, blood strain and oxygen ranges stay “completely regular”.

In a memo (PDF) launched by the White home on, Biden doctor, Keven O’Connor, mentioned the US president was experiencing a runny nostril, fatigue and “an occasional non-productive, now ‘unfastened’ cough”.

O’Connor additionally mentioned that Biden had a slight fever on Thursday night, however it responded “favorably” to a generic ache aid remedy. “His temperature has remained regular since then,” the physician’s memo reads.

Biden, who examined constructive for COVID on Thursday, is constant to take the antiviral remedy Paxlovid, meant to decrease danger of hospitalisation and dying for these most susceptible.  At 79 years previous, the president falls into that class, based on the US Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention (CDC).

To take the Paxlovid, Biden has needed to cease taking two different medicines that decrease ldl cholesterol and blood strain. O’Connor mentioned Biden will cease taking these medicines through the course of Paxlovid remedy, often a five-day remedy, and “for a number of days after his final dose”. Throughout that point, the president will take “low dose aspirin as a substitute sort of blood thinner”.

On Friday, the White Home launched a photo of Biden – masked at his desk – making a cellphone name whereas taking a look at a paper be aware, with the caption: “President Biden continued working from the White Home this morning, together with talking by cellphone together with his nationwide safety crew.”

Biden and the White Home have careworn that the president is absolutely vaccinated and double-boosted for COVID, which lowers his danger of significant sickness. Officers have taken the chance to encourage others to get the vaccine.

“Get vaccinated,” White Home COVID-19 response coordinator Ashish Jha informed reporters on Thursday. “When you’ve got a breakthrough an infection, get handled; it’s the very best factor you are able to do to guard your self.”

The Biden administration has been urging People to get vaccinated and boosted amid a spike in COVID instances, pushed by extremely contagious Omicron subvariants referred to as BA.4 and BA.5.

“Staying updated in your COVID-19 vaccines gives the very best safety towards extreme outcomes,” CDC Director Rochelle Walensky mentioned earlier this month.

Regardless of the COVID prognosis, Biden has continued to hold out his duties as president. On Thursday, he signed into legislation the “Method Act”, which goals to fight the child system shortages that the US has been experiencing.

“I actually admire your inquiries and considerations,” Biden mentioned in a video message on Thursday. “However I’m doing properly, getting a whole lot of work executed, going to proceed to get it executed. And within the meantime, thanks in your concern and preserve the religion. It’s going to be OK.”

Lopez Obrador says he pleaded for Assange in letter to Biden | Julian Assange News

Mexico’s president says nation renewed earlier provide of asylum for Wikileaks founder, wished in US on a number of fees.

Mexico’s President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador has mentioned he gave a letter to his US counterpart Joe Biden in defence of Julian Assange after the UK authorised the Wikileaks founder’s extradition to the USA.

In response to a reporter’s query throughout a information convention on Monday, Lopez Obrador mentioned Mexico has renewed a earlier provide of asylum to Assange.

“I left a letter to the president about Assange, explaining that he didn’t commit any critical crime, didn’t trigger anybody’s loss of life, didn’t violate any human rights, and that he exercised his freedom, and that arresting him would imply a everlasting affront to freedom of expression,” Lopez Obrador mentioned.

“I additionally mentioned that Mexico is providing safety and asylum to Julian Assange,” he mentioned, including that he has not but heard again from Biden.

The event comes after the UK final month authorised Assange’s extradition to the US to face felony fees associated to WikiLeaks’ launch of confidential US army data and diplomatic cables.

UK House Secretary Priti Patel’s workplace mentioned British courts had concluded the extradition wouldn’t be incompatible with Assange’s human rights, and that he can be handled appropriately.

Assange supporters protest towards his extradition from the UK to the US [File: Alkis Konstantinidis/Reuters]

On July 1, Assange appealed his extradition to the US on the Excessive Courtroom in London.

The 51-year-old, who was born in Australia, is needed by US authorities on 18 counts, together with a spying cost, referring to WikiLeaks’ launch of huge troves of confidential US army data and diplomatic cables that Washington mentioned had put lives at risk.

The Australian authorities has been below mounting strain to intervene, however final month Prime Minister Anthony Albanese rejected calls for him to publicly demand that Washington drop its prosecution of Assange.

Final week, Lopez Obrador met with Biden in Washington, DC, throughout which the Mexican president mentioned he introduced up Assange’s case.

Lopez Obrador, sometimes called AMLO, lately mentioned the Statue of Liberty ought to be dismantled and returned to France if Assange is imprisoned within the US.

Assange’s supporters, in the meantime, say the Wikileaks founder is an anti-establishment hero who has been victimised as a result of he uncovered US wrongdoing in conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq. They argue that his prosecution is a politically motivated assault on journalism and free speech.

“The battle to avoid wasting Assange can also be the battle to avoid wasting press freedom and our First Modification rights,” DC Motion for Assange and the Assange Protection Committee, US-based teams, mentioned in a letter thanking Lopez Obrador for his assist final week.

“We agree with you that the prosecution of Mr Assange for publishing is a profound menace to journalism all over the world. We recognize your constant vocal assist for these necessary ideas, core tenets of a functioning democracy,” they mentioned.

Assange’s authorized troubles started in 2010 when Sweden sought his extradition from Britain over allegations of intercourse crimes. When he misplaced that case in 2012, he fled to the Ecuadorean embassy in London, the place he spent seven years.

When he was eliminated in April 2019, he was jailed for breaching British bail circumstances though the Swedish case towards him had been dropped. He has been preventing extradition to the US since June 2019 and stays in jail.

Iran vows ‘harsh response’ for US and allies stoking ‘insecurity’ | Joe Biden News

Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi’s remarks got here because the US and Israel pledged to make use of all means to disclaim Tehran nuclear weapons.

Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi stated Iran may have a “harsh and regrettable response” to any “mistake” dedicated by Washington or its allies.

The Iranian president spoke as US President Joe Biden and Israeli Prime Minister Yair Lapid signed a joint pledge on Thursday to disclaim Iran nuclear arms, a present of unity by allies lengthy divided over diplomacy with Tehran.

Raisi blamed the US and “its regional allies” for stoking instability within the area, state-run IRNA information company reported.

“The nice nation of Iran won’t settle for any insecurity or disaster within the area and Washington and its allies ought to know that any mistake might be met by a harsh and regrettable response from Iran,” Raisi stated throughout a speech, in accordance with the Reuters information company.

The joint pledge signed on Thursday commits the USA to “by no means to permit Iran to amass a nuclear weapon”, stating that it “is ready to make use of all parts of its nationwide energy to make sure that consequence”.

Washington and Israel have lengthy expressed considerations about Iran’s nuclear capabilities. Iran has insisted that it by no means had any ambition to make a nuclear bomb.

Israel, which has the area’s sole however undeclared nuclear arsenal, is staunchly against any take care of Iran on its nuclear programme, which Tehran says is for peaceable functions.

Lapid warned that “phrases” and “diplomacy” weren’t sufficient to thwart Iran’s alleged nuclear ambitions.

“The one factor that can cease Iran is realizing that in the event that they proceed to develop their nuclear programme, the free world will use drive,” he stated.

A landmark deal that imposed curbs on Iran’s suspect nuclear programme in alternate for sanctions reduction was torpedoed in 2018 by former US President Donald Trump.

Efforts to revive the accord have been stalled since March.

Al Jazeera’s Stefanie Dekker, reporting from West Jerusalem, stated Biden and Lapid additionally spoke about “integrating Israel into the area within the sense of normalising ties” with extra Arab states.

On Friday, the US president will journey to the occupied West Financial institution to satisfy Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, earlier than Air Power As soon as makes the primary publicly acknowledged direct flight from Israel to Saudi Arabia.

Biden stated the journey itself “represents vital progress”, following Israel launching diplomatic ties in 2020 with Riyadh’s Gulf neighbours the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain.

“Israel’s integration within the area, Israel’s peace with its neighbours, these are important targets,” Biden stated.

Mexican president to meet with Biden following recent tensions | US-Mexico Border News

The US-Mexico relationship — an easy tradeoff throughout the Trump administration, with Mexico tamping down on migration and america not urgent on different points — has turn out to be a variety of disagreements over commerce, international coverage, power and local weather change.

Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador is to go to Washington on Tuesday to satisfy with US President Joe Biden, a month after Lopez Obrador snubbed Biden’s invitation to the Summit of the Americas in Los Angeles.

Mexico’s chief had demanded that Biden invite to the summit the leaders of Cuba, Nicaragua and Venezuela — all international locations with anti-democratic regimes — and he has additionally known as US help for Ukraine “a crass error”.

On that, and different points, it’s clear Lopez Obrador is getting alongside a lot worse with Biden than with Donald Trump, who threatened Mexico, however wished just one factor from the US’s southern neighbour: to cease migrants from reaching the border.

“I feel it’s extra that the Biden administration has tried exhausting to re-institutionalise the connection and restore the connection that’s not centred solely on immigration and commerce. And I feel consequently, that results in points arising that AMLO is much less comfy speaking about,” mentioned Andrew Rudman, director of the Mexico Institute on the Wilson Middle, utilizing the Spanish acronym by which Mexicans check with the president.

US officers need Lopez Obrador to retreat on his reliance on fossil fuels and his marketing campaign to favour Mexico’s state-owned electrical energy utility on the expense of foreign-built crops powered by gasoline and renewable power.

Washington has filed a number of complaints beneath the US-Mexico-Canada free commerce settlement, pushing Mexico to implement environmental legal guidelines and guidelines guaranteeing commerce union rights.

Lopez Obrador additionally has angrily rejected any US criticism of the killings of journalists in Mexico or his personal efforts to weaken checks and balances in Mexico’s authorities. He’s additionally angered by US funding of civic and non-governmental teams in Mexico that he claims are a part of the opposition.

All of it provides as much as a witches’ brew in bilateral relations.

“On the finish of the day, the issue is that you’ve got the entire mismatch on this relationship,” mentioned Arturo Sarukhan, who served as Mexico’s ambassador to the US from 2006 to 2013.

The US “wants Mexico as a key companion on all the things from ‘close to shoring’ [manufacturing for the US market] … by way of competitiveness, by way of North American power safety, power independence, power effectivity,” Sarukhan mentioned. “The issue is you could have a Mexican president who doesn’t care about any of this stuff.”

What the Mexican president is keen on speaking about is inflation, which in June spiked to virtually 8 %. Inflation and the financial after-effects of the coronavirus pandemic are main an growing variety of Mexicans to to migrate — 22 of the 53 migrants who not too long ago died after being deserted by smugglers in a semi-trailer in Texas had been Mexican.

“We have now to search for a technique to act collectively, assist one another in controlling inflation,” Lopez Obrador mentioned on Friday. “That could be a matter I’m going to suggest. We have now a plan.”

Earlier than departing for Washington on Monday, Lopez Obrador mentioned he deliberate to talk to Biden about controlling inflation, immigration and safety. He mentioned a bunch of enterprise leaders, together with Carlos Slim, Mexico’s wealthiest citizen, would accompany him.

White Home press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre mentioned on Friday that the Bidens are wanting ahead to welcoming Lopez-Obrador and his spouse on the White Home.

“They are going to talk about a broad and deep agenda, together with joint efforts on migration, meals safety and financial alternative, and so the president appears to be like ahead to having that dialog,” Jean-Pierre mentioned.

She sidestepped questions on Lopez Obrador’s repeated public criticism of the Biden administration, together with US efforts to extradite WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange from the UK for prosecution.

“We see AMLO, the president of Mexico, as a companion,” she mentioned, including that many conversations can be had. “And I’m going to go away it at that.”

The query is how exhausting the Biden administration is keen to push Mexico on something.

With Republicans like Texas Governor Greg Abbot relentlessly pointing on the migration situation, Mexico holds large leverage. It’s beneath no obligation to simply accept anybody returned at its border besides Mexican residents, nevertheless it has allowed the US to proceed to deport migrants of different nationalities beneath Title 42 well being rules.

Lopez Obrador badly desires the US to grant extra work visas to Mexicans and Central People. Whereas that is still a sensitive situation in US home politics, extra visas might assist tame clandestine border crossings.

Rising such visas “would appear to be a technique to resolve the labour scarcity we now have on this nation, and likewise cut back among the stress on Mexico and Central America”, Rudman mentioned. “So it looks like one thing that Lopez Obrador is for, and the Biden administration may be inclined to supply.”

Lopez Obrador seldom passes up an opportunity to annoy the US. He not too long ago mentioned the Statue of Liberty must be dismantled and returned to France if Assange is imprisoned within the US.

Nonetheless, there are some indicators that Mexico has tried to make up for the summit and different slights.

In late Could, Mexico began to crack down on lots of of meth and fentanyl labs which were sending to the US a gradual stream of these medicine, which have brought on the overdose deaths of tens of hundreds of People.

Mexico’s seizures of meth labs went from six in Could to 72 in June, and plenty of of these labs seem to have been working for years. And days earlier than Lopez Obrador left for Washington, authorities raided two giant warehouses within the northern metropolis of Culiacan, discovering a half ton of fentanyl and a half million fentanyl drugs.

Rudman is sceptical the Mexican military simply out of the blue discovered so many labs had been working. “How might Mexico not have identified?” Rudman asks.

The query stays of why Lopez Obrador received alongside so a lot better with Trump than he does with Biden. “I feel you may argue that AMLO and Trump ran comparable campaigns and gained for comparable causes,” mentioned Rudman.

Lopez Obrador’s programme of encouraging Mexican self-sufficiency in meals, power and different areas harkens again to a Trump-like nationalism. “It’s make Mexico nice once more,” Rudman mentioned.

Shireen Abu Akleh family’s letter to Joe Biden: Full text | Israel-Palestine conflict News

As Joe Biden prepares to embark on his first journey to Israel as US president, the household of Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh has despatched him a letter laying out an inventory of calls for to make sure accountability for her killing within the occupied West Financial institution in Could.

The letter on Friday berated Biden for what it known as efforts by his administration to “whitewash Shireen’s killing and perpetuate impunity” for Israeli forces who killed the journalist in Could.

The Biden administration infuriated Palestinian rights and press freedom advocates when it launched an announcement saying the bullet that killed Abu Akleh “probably” got here from an Israeli army place however dismissed the incident because the unintentional “results of tragic circumstances”.

Abu Akleh’s household known as on the US administration to retract that assertion, expressing “grief, outrage and sense of betrayal” with Biden.

Under is the complete textual content of the household’s letter.  (Hyperlinks, emphasis in unique)

Pricey Mr. President:

We, the household of Shireen Abu Akleh, write to specific our grief, outrage and sense of betrayal regarding your administration’s abject response to the extrajudicial killing of our sister and aunt by Israeli forces on Could 11, 2022, whereas on project within the occupied Palestinian metropolis of Jenin within the West Financial institution.

Shireen was a distinguished, beloved Palestinian journalist. She was a task mannequin and a mentor to aspiring Palestinian feminine journalists, and a trusted colleague of many within the native and worldwide media. She was additionally a United States citizen. Regardless of carrying a protecting helmet and blue bulletproof vest clearly marked as “PRESS,” Shireen was murdered by an Israeli-fired bullet to the pinnacle. Israeli forces continued to fireplace dwell rounds as bystanders– together with different members of the press–tried to render help. Then, as we and a whole lot of others gathered to start her funeral procession, Israeli forces attacked us, beating mourners and pallbearers, violently disrupting the dignified burial procession she deserved.

Within the days and weeks since an Israeli soldier killed Shireen, not solely have we not been adequately consulted, knowledgeable, and supported by U.S. authorities officers, however your administration’s actions exhibit an obvious intent to undermine our efforts towards justice and accountability for Shireen’s dying. Investigations performed by the United Nations, the New York Instances, the Washington Publish, CNN, the Related Press, Bellingcat, and B’Tselem all concluded an Israeli soldier fired the shot that killed Shireen. All obtainable proof means that Shireen, a U.S. citizen, was the topic of an extrajudicial killing, but your administration has completely failed to fulfill the naked minimal expectation held by a grieving household—to make sure a immediate, thorough, credible, neutral, impartial, efficient and clear investigation that results in true justice and accountability for Shireen’s killing.

As an alternative, the USA has been skulking towards the erasure of any wrongdoing by Israeli forces. From the failure to right away guarantee an impartial and neutral investigation, to the rushed hand-off of the bullet that killed Shireen with out session not to mention permitting us to have a consultant current, which culminated within the July 4 assertion adopting the conclusions and speaking factors of the Israeli authorities, your administration’s engagement has served to whitewash Shireen’s killing and perpetuate impunity. Little info has been shared on who oversaw the American “summation” of investigations, who participated within the ballistics evaluation, or any particular particular person {qualifications} or findings resulting in the conclusions issued by your administration. It’s as if you happen to anticipate the world and us to now simply transfer on. Silence would have been higher.

You may have made clear that your administration is prepared to abdicate its duty regarding Israel’s extrajudicial killing of Shireen. The July 4 press assertion by Division of State Spokesperson Ned Worth introduced that Shireen’s killing was probably unintentional, but when pressed by reporters throughout the July 5 press briefing, Mr. Worth conceded that no one current was certified to succeed in a conclusion about intent. He additionally clarified that the USA authorities didn’t, the truth is, conduct its personal investigation, not to mention authorized evaluation, and that the Division of State was content material with merely “summarizing”—and adopting—Israeli authorities’ investigation. Nonetheless, your administration deemed it essential to incorporate and perpetuate the baseless and damaging conclusion that the killing was not intentional, seemingly selecting political expedience over precise accountability for a overseas authorities’s killing of a U.S. citizen.

We remind you that on Could 11, the day an Israeli soldier killed Shireen, Mr. Worth stood on the Division of State podium to strongly condemn her killing and name for “a direct and thorough investigation and full accountability.” Then, on July 5, that decision for full accountability was decreased to nothing greater than a contorted assertion that Israel “quickly can be able to contemplate steps to additional safeguard noncombatants.” We’re incredulous that such an expectation can be the top of your administration’s response to the killing of Shireen. Israeli forces have for lengthy recognized no bounds, perpetrating battle crimes and killing Palestinian civilians with impunity, together with these clearly identifiable as youngsters, medical personnel and journalists. Israeli officers and armed forces are enabled and empowered by unconditional U.S.-sourced weapons and monetary help after which supplied with close to absolute diplomatic assist to protect Israeli officers from any accountability.

Since Israeli forces killed our Shireen, lawmakers have pressed you to ship on the robust condemnation and name for “full accountability” regarding Shireen’s dying. On Could 19, 57 members of Congress despatched a letter to Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Federal Bureau of Investigation Director Christopher Wray to demand the State Division and the FBI launch an investigation into the killing of Shireen. On June 6, Sens. Jon Ossof and Mitt Romney despatched a letter to Secretary Blinken insisting that the administration guarantee a “full and clear investigation and accountability”. On June 23, Senator Chris Van Hollen and 23 of his Senate colleagues despatched you a letter demanding you make sure the direct involvement of the USA within the investigation of Shireen’s killing, stressing the significance of an impartial, thorough, and clear investigation.

Shireen Abu Akleh vigil
A girl lays flowers at a makeshift memorial for Shireen Abu Akleh throughout a vigil in Washington, DC Could 17 [File: Al Jazeera]

We reaffirm these calls for on behalf of our beloved Shireen as your administration’s actions thus far haven’t solely fallen woefully in need of “full accountability” however they quantity to specific acceptance for Shireen’s killing. Your administration’s actions can solely be seen as an try to erase the extrajudicial killing of Shireen and additional entrench the systemic impunity loved by Israeli forces and officers for unlawfully killing Palestinians.

We name on you to:

  1. Meet with us throughout your upcoming go to and listen to immediately from us about our considerations and calls for for justice.
  2. Present us with the entire info gathered by your administration thus far regarding Shireen’s killings, together with any proof reviewed and assessed by U.S. officers, the identities and {qualifications} of all people current throughout the newest overview of proof, any forensics stories or different info that has not been supplied to us or our authorized staff.
  3. Retract the Division of State’s July 4 press assertion, on condition that the Division’s personal account signifies that it’s not based mostly on any credible evaluation.
  4. Direct the Division of Justice, together with the Human Rights and Particular Prosecutions Bureau, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and another related U.S. places of work or companies to take motion on Shireen’s extrajudicial killing.
  5. Lastly, and it needs to be evidently, we anticipate the Biden administration assist our efforts to push for accountability and justice for Shireen, wherever they take us.


Anton Abu Akleh

On behalf of the Abu Akleh Household

CC: Secretary of State Mr. Antony Blinken

US, China talk trade, supply chains as Biden weighs tariff cuts | Business and Economy

United States Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen and Chinese language Vice Premier Liu He mentioned financial points together with worldwide commerce and provide chains, because the Biden administration considers reducing tariffs on Chinese language items to tame hovering inflation.

In a digital assembly together with her Chinese language counterpart on Tuesday, Yellen “frankly” raised considerations about China’s “unfair, non-market” financial insurance policies and Russia’s struggle in opposition to Ukraine, the US Treasury Division stated in a press release.

The 2 sides additionally mentioned the worldwide financial outlook amid rising commodity costs and meals safety challenges in the course of the name, which the Treasury Division described as “candid and substantive” and a part of efforts to “preserve open traces of communication”.

“The feedback from Yellen don’t appear to go a lot past what US officers have stated beforehand,” James Laurenson, director of the Australia-China Relations Institute, informed Al Jazeera.

“The problem is what the US goes to do past simply repeating the identical accusations. Loads of commerce regulation students argue there’s appreciable scope for searching for redress on the WTO however the US appears unenthusiastic in direction of the establishment. However extra unilateral sanctions received’t change Chinese language insurance policies and nor will they win the US plaudits even from shut allies like Japan and Australia, who stay dedicated to the WTO and its processes.”

Following the decision, China’s Ministry of Commerce stated the “pragmatic and frank” talks touched on the macroeconomic scenario and the soundness of world provide chains.

China additionally expressed considerations about US tariffs and sanctions in opposition to Chinese language corporations, the ministry stated, including that either side had agreed to proceed dialogue.

“As the worldwide economic system faces grim challenges, there’s a nice significance to strengthen the communication and coordination of the macro insurance policies between China and america,” the ministry stated in a press release.

“Safeguarding the soundness of world industrial chains and provide chains will serve the advantages of China, the US and the entire world.”

The talks come as US President Joe Biden weighs the potential for easing tariffs on Chinese language imports as a part of efforts to regulate hovering costs, that are rising at their quickest price in additional than 40 years.

Biden’s cupboard is reportedly break up on whether or not to ease tariffs, a few of which have been inherited from former President Donald Trump, who took intention at what he considered as unfair Chinese language commerce practices.

Yellen has publicly pressed Biden to scale back some tariffs, arguing they make “no strategic sense” and are “paid by Individuals, not by the Chinese language”.

Biden-Xi virtual meeting
US President Joe Biden and China’s Xi Jinping are anticipated to carry talks within the subsequent few weeks [File: Susan Walsh/AP Photo]

Deborah Elms, founder and government director of the Asian Commerce Centre in Singapore, described it as a constructive that officers from the world’s two largest economies are persevering with to fulfill.

“There is no such thing as a strategy to handle tensions if communication is dealt with by way of the media moderately than in particular person, or through Zoom,” Elms informed Al Jazeera.

“The US administration line on China has been, and can proceed to be, that China practises unfair commerce. Subsequently, it’s not a shock to have Yellen repeat the assertion. The large query, in fact, is what may be performed about it. Having discussions is a helpful first step however will have to be adopted up with greater than random conversations between authorities officers.”

On the G7 summit in Germany final month, US nationwide safety adviser Jake Sullivan stated Biden and Chinese language President Xi Jinping have been anticipated to carry talks within the coming weeks.

Gary Ng, a senior economist at Natixis in Hong Kong, stated the US and China are unlikely to veer from their rising rivalry regardless of dialogue or reductions in tariffs.

“Whereas it’s doable to see a rollback of tariffs on some merchandise, the US stays involved concerning the function of presidency subsidies and the progress of attaining aggressive neutrality for its corporations in China,” Ng informed Al Jazeera.

“These are structural points on whether or not the US corporations are handled equally versus the Chinese language counterparts with spillover results not solely in market entry in China but additionally the competitors on the earth. The dialogue might increase short-term sentiment, however it’s on no account a U-turn of the strategic competitors between the US and China.”

Biden’s bluster: Strategy, vanity or gamble | Joe Biden

What’s up with Joe? He’s all bluster and bravado these days despite the fact that, as a great Catholic, he is aware of that vainglory is the worst of the seven sins!

Solely months after his humiliating withdrawal from Afghanistan, President Biden is elevating the stakes in opposition to each world nuclear powers, China and Russia, whereas boasting of America’s unmatched army superiority, as if nuclear wars are winnable. He seems to stroll away from main overseas coverage consensus on a whim, just for the White Home to kinda stroll it again.

In a serious departure from the decades-long “strategic ambiguity” in direction of Taiwan, Biden has declared this week from Japan that the US will in reality come to the island’s protection if attacked by China. However the White Home has insisted there was “no change of coverage”.

And that wasn’t his first time. Just a few weeks in the past, Biden advocated regime change in Russia, declaring in Poland that Russian President Vladimir Putin “can not stay in energy“, just for the White Home to stroll again his escalation, insisting there was no coverage change. However Biden refused to retract his assertion that expressed his “ethical outrage”, and as an alternative accused Putin of battle crimes, genocide and attempting to wipe out Ukraine.

All of which begs the query: Is that this a case of Biden being Biden; loose-tongued and missing in self-discipline, particularly as a jet-lagged 79-year-old man chatting with a overseas viewers? Or, has the US in reality adopted “strategic readability” close to Beijing on Taiwan and dedicated to “regime change” in Moscow after Putin’s invasion of Ukraine? The distinction can’t be overstated because the potential penalties of a worldwide showdown might imply worldwide loss of life and destruction.

The truth that Biden made the same assertion on Taiwan throughout a televised city corridor assembly in Baltimore final October; that he has taken a combative tone with China and Russia since taking workplace, and that he has lengthy held hawkish views on overseas coverage, together with when he served within the administration of President Barack Obama, alerts that he meant or has not less than thought of what he was saying. And, because the US commander-in-chief, it’s his views that truly matter in Washington relating to issues of battle, and which might result in additional escalation with each Moscow and Beijing.

For lengthy a Chilly Conflict liberal, who advocated standing as much as the Soviet Union, Biden has largely transitioned right into a liberal interventionist after the union’s collapse, advocating army interventions on behalf, or below the pretext of, humanitarian and democratic causes, particularly when it suited him. For instance, he voted in opposition to the Gulf Conflict in 1991 for worry of a backlash, however then voted in favour of the 2003 Gulf Conflict, which finally prompted much more of a backlash.

However he appears to have since realized his lesson from the various US failures within the Center East, altering his thoughts about deploying US troops to remake international locations or change governments. And but, as an alternative of leaning inwards in direction of isolationism or retreat from the world, Biden is now aiming upwards. He goals to desert the high-cost, low-yield forms of army interventions like those in Iraq and Afghanistan in favour of lower-cost, higher-yield world containment – which delivers status overseas and recognition at residence with out sacrificing American blood and treasure on the earth’s scorching spots.

Biden summarised this level in a important speech on the US withdrawal from Afghanistan final yr, when he stated: “Our true strategic rivals – China and Russia – would love nothing greater than the US to proceed to funnel billions of {dollars} in assets and a spotlight into stabilising Afghanistan indefinitely.”

Inside months of leaving Afghanistan, Putin handed Biden the pretext to up the ante by invading Ukraine, enabling him to revive, strengthen and increase the dwindling NATO alliance, below US management. China’s obvious complicity with Putin’s belligerent battle in Ukraine has additionally enabled Biden to strengthen US-Asia alliances in opposition to a possible Chinese language intervention in Taiwan.

For Biden, Russia and China pose one and the identical geopolitical problem whatever the variations between the standing of Ukraine – an impartial state – and that of Taiwan.

To revive US alliances with Europe and Asia, Biden has framed the US rivalry with Russia and China as a worldwide conflict between democracy and autocracy, all of the whereas enlisting the help of varied autocrats on America’s aspect. Not solely is he rehashing Chilly Conflict mantras, however Biden can be borrowing quite a lot of pages from President Ronald Reagan’s Nineteen Eighties playbook – the identical playbook he condemned again in 1987 as an utter failure. Like Reagan, who understood that People wanted to get better their pleasure with out making extra sacrifices after their humiliation in Vietnam, Biden hopes to revive the pleasure People misplaced in Afghanistan, with out additional sacrifices in faraway army entanglements. In direction of that finish, like Reagan, Biden is supporting US allies in Europe and increasing its army bases, whereas arming shoppers preventing proxy wars within the Center East and past.

Biden, like Reagan, is projecting toughness and growing the defence price range to a whopping $782bn, whereas avoiding any strikes which will result in a showdown with Russia or Iran. Simply as Reagan supported the mujahideen in opposition to the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan, Biden is supporting Ukraine in its battle in opposition to the Russian invaders – he’s serving to them battle in order that People wouldn’t have to. He even promised to defend People from the power and financial prices of the battle. However not like Reagan, who pursued diplomacy and arms management in his dealings with Moscow fairly efficiently, regardless of its invasion of Afghanistan, intervention in Poland and its huge army and nuclear buildup, Biden appears to have all however deserted diplomacy and arms management. And in contrast to Reagan, who solely waged a single 36-hour battle in opposition to the tiny island of Grenada throughout his whole eight-year presidency, Biden appears to be critically contemplating battle with China over a hypothetical invasion of Taiwan.

It’s a harmful recreation of brinkmanship. It might have labored previously for the likes of Reagan and John F Kennedy, however attending to the brink with out moving into battle is an completely reckless gamble when it entails nuclear states defending their nationwide safety. That’s why Biden should restrain his vainglory earlier than all of it will get uncontrolled, simply as he must tame different cardinal American sins, wrath and greed, in favour of corresponding virtues, humility, temperance, and diligence.