“With President Trump’s undeclared attack on Syria, a sovereign and independent nation, he has confirmed, once and for all, that he is just another foreign interventionist, no different from his predecessors Barack Obama and George W. Bush. That means, of course, another four years of war, bombings, assassinations, shootings, terrorism, war on terrorism, travel restrictions, walls, surveillance, incarceration, POW camps, torture, out of control federal spending and debt, and everything else that comes with an imperialist and interventionist national security state.” Continue reading

“The Trump administration’s justification for its airstrikes on Syria manages somehow to be even weaker than Obama’s Libya arguments. The time to push back is running out for Congress. If they can’t do it with a deeply, widely unpopular president who in his first three months in office has antagonized not just members of the opposition party but members of his own as well, they may never be able to.” Continue reading

“At least one of the strikes appears to have been a deliberate attack on a boatload of civilians attempting to cross the Euphrates River. The boat was carrying about 40 people, and NGOs say that at least seven bodies, six of them children, have been recovered so far, with more missing. The US has dropped leaflets in the area urging civilians to flee toward the Euphrates, but apparently dropped a second leaflet warning them not to try to cross the river or they’d be attacked. The biggest target in the Hanida strikes was an Internet cafe, with the US strikke destroying the site, killing 14 people within, including four children. The US is so far not offering any justification for any of the attacks in the area.” Continue reading

“It could cost about $60 million to replace the cruise missiles that the U.S. military rained on Syrian targets Thursday night. The missiles used on Thursday likely cost the U.S. military around $1 million, but the latest versions of the missile that would replace those could be more costly, depending on size of the order and other factors, said Loren Thompson, a consultant and chief operating officer of nonprofit Lexington Institute.” Continue reading

“70% of millennials in China and 46% of Mexican millennials own a home versus 35% of young adults in the U.S. Young people in China are benefiting from wage growth that is projected to outpace the rate of home price appreciation set last year. And the U.S. doesn’t just fall behind China — France (41%) also came out ahead. In the United Arab Emirates, only 26% of millennials own a home, and Australia does only slightly better at 28%. (The average millennial U.S. homeownership rate in a separate WalletHub study rested around 40%.)” Continue reading

“Week by week, country by country, the Pentagon is quietly seizing more control over warfighting decisions, sending hundreds more troops to war with little public debate and seeking greater authority to battle extremists across the Middle East and Africa. This week it was Somalia, where President Donald Trump gave the U.S. military more authority to conduct offensive airstrikes on al-Qaida-linked militants. Next week it could be Yemen, where military leaders want to provide more help for the United Arab Emirates’ battle against Iranian-backed rebels.” Continue reading

“A senior administration official told reporters on Friday that the president acted pursuant to his authority under Article 2 of the Constitution, which makes him commander in chief. And, the aide said, top officials including Vice President Mike Pence are in ‘constant contact with congressional leaders.’ On Thursday night, Trump laid out conventional U.S. rationales for unilateral military action in a way that suggests he does not see a need for formal authority from Congress.” Continue reading

“Four privacy-minded lawmakers have introduced legislation requiring law enforcement officials to obtain a warrant before searching phones belonging to US citizens, and prohibiting them from barring entry to Americans who decline to share their passwords at the border. ‘Americans’ Constitutional rights shouldn’t disappear at the border,’ Senator Ron Wyden said in statement to BuzzFeed News.” Continue reading

“Common red flags for passengers are ‘traveling to or from a known source city for drug trafficking, purchasing a ticket within 24 hours of travel, purchasing a ticket for a long flight with an immediate return, purchasing a one-way ticket, and traveling without checked luggage.’ DEA agents then detain and question travelers with large amounts of cash, and, if they determine the money is linked to drug activity, seize it, even if there is no hard evidence that it is connected to illegal activity. As the Inspector General notes, these agents ‘rely on their immediate, on-the-spot judgment.’ The passenger is then released, bereft of money but otherwise free to go.” Continue reading

“The full scope of the cash seizures—and the overwhelming amount of cases involving innocent people—have not been revealed until now. The inspector general found money seized and forfeited by the IRS was legally obtained in 91 percent of a sample of 278 structuring investigations it reviewed occurring between fiscal years 2012 and 2014. Altogether, those funds totalled $17.1 million and involved 231 cases.” Continue reading

“While the cancer is in remission, Charf is still struggling with the deadly disease – and is now being pursued by an equally deadly and persistent stalker, the Internal Revenue Service. A few weeks ago, the IRS sent Charf – who is now a mother – a notice claiming that the donations that had paid for her treatment were considered income, and demanding more than $15,000 in back taxes and more than $3,500 in penalties.” Continue reading

“The YPG is not your typical ethnic or sectarian faction. Its fighters are loyal to an imprisoned guerrilla leader who was once a communist but now espouses the same kind of secular, feminist, anarcho-libertarianism as Noam Chomsky or the activists of Occupy Wall Street. The Kurds are implementing these ideals in Rojava, and that has attracted a ragtag legion of leftist internationals, like Belden, who have come from nearly every continent to help the YPG beat ISIS and establish an anarchist collective amid the rubble of the war – a ‘stateless democracy’ equally opposed to Islamic fundamentalism and capitalist modernity. They call it the Rojava Revolution, and they want you.” Continue reading