The Presidential Daily Brief


  1. no to white supremacy sign shutterstock 657670060

    Helicopter Crash Adds to Virginia White Supremacist Carnage

    Hundreds of “pro-white” demonstrators — challenged by anti-racism protesters — clashed Saturday in Charlottesville, Va., over plans to remove Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee’s statue, prompting Gov. Terry McAuliffe to declare a state of emergency. A car plowed into counter-demonstrators, killing one person and injuring 19, and police arrested the alleged 20-year-old driver on suspicion of second-degree murder. Later, a state helicopter patrolling the area crashed, killing two troopers inside.  President Donald Trump condemned the violence, but was criticized for attributing blame to “many sides.”

  2. Nuclear weapon

    Summoning ‘Fire and Fury’

    Need he say more? On Friday, President Trump warned North Korean leader Kim Jong Un that plans to strike his nation were “locked and loaded,” and boasted of America’s nuclear readiness. Two days earlier, he threatened the Hermit Kingdom with “fire and fury” in the face of further threats against the U.S., which Kim obliged by detailing plans to lob missiles at Guam. It’s at the point where members of Congress are questioning the president’s authority to strike first, treading untested legal territory at a time when many of the world’s inhabitants might consult clerics over lawyers.

  3. sen luther strange of alabama wikimedia commons

    In Alabama Senate Race, Trump’s Favorite Republican Lags

    He’s trying to out-Trump his fellow Republicans. Alabamians will vote Tuesday to fill Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ vacated U.S. Senate seat. Gubernatorially appointed incumbent Sen. Luther Strange snagged President Trump’s endorsement — days before polls showed him trailing Roy Moore, an ousted state supreme court chief who recently agreed that “America today is evil.” Trump’s nod could close the 8-point gap, but some say Strange might not make the September runoff, polling just a few points ahead of Rep. Mo Brooks, who’s said Democrats are waging “a war on whites.”

  4. philippines us soldiers torture filipino life magazine 05 22 1902 square wikimedia commons

    Will President McKinley’s War Rock Trump’s Asia Footing?

    It was America’s colony. As the Spanish-American War ended in 1898, President William McKinley stunned his Philippine allies by deciding to annex the archipelago — and precipitating a bloody conflict. The brutal, four-decades-long occupation has been largely forgotten by Americans and unmentioned by Filipinos. Until now, that is, as President Rodrigo Duterte tries to distract the world from his deadly anti-narcotics campaign. He’s harkening back to U.S. massacres, suggesting that one of Washington’s staunchest allies isn’t afraid to look elsewhere — even to China — for friends.

  5. police compshutterstock 43792036

    The Murky Future of Police Databases

    Is it a crime to share? Launched to serve intelligence agencies in 2004, Silicon Valley’s Palantir has branched into domestic law enforcement with its unique ability to store, analyze and classify huge amounts of data from disparate sources. Police in California are already sold: Departments covering much of the state’s population share information over the firm’s applications, accessed by nearly 5,500 users at some 25 agencies. Yet its opacity – in scope, access and pricing – now has legislators scrambling for oversight and cops wondering why critical data they’re withholding has popped up during basic searches.

  6. Pence’s Viaje, Bolt’s Painful Exit and White House Aide’s Shout-Down 

    The Week Ahead: The PGA Championships, with American Kevin Kisner holding a slim lead, conclude Sunday in Charlotte, N.C. Also today, Vice President Mike Pence begins a five-day tour of Latin America. And on Monday, British cybersecurity expert Marcus Hutchins, lauded for disabling the worldwide WannaCry ransomware attack, appears in a Milwaukee court on charges that he created the Kronos malware that steals bank account passwords.

    Know This: Greatest runner of all time Usain Bolt’s planned last run ended in an apparent leg injury and failure for his Jamaican relay team at London’s world track championships. A black journalists’ convention proved an unfriendly venue for White House aide Omarosa Manigault when questions about President Trump’s encouragement of police brutality devolved into a shouting match. And South American nations meeting for trade talks have condemned President Trump’s suggestion that the U.S. might intervene militarily in Venezuela.

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  1. gambia president yahya jammeh

    When Your Hometown Dictator Falls From Grace

    He was their despot. Yahya Jammeh ruled Gambia with an iron fist for 22 years before being forced out in January after a surprise election defeat. It was a turning point for Kanilai, the hometown village the dictator had showered with perks. While it’s no longer ground zero for suspected murders and human rights abuses, like torturing “witches” blamed for Jammeh’s aunt’s death, it’s one spot where his iconic billboards remain. Some locals admit missing the security their native son brought — as violence accompanying Senegalese peacekeeping troops drives home the village’s new distinction.

  2. solarshutterstock 603025976

    Enjoying Solar When the Sun Don’t Shine

    They’ve got the juice. Can they bottle it? At midday, Kauai’s Island Utility Cooperative generates 97 percent of its energy needs from renewable sources, more than double its 2016 capacity. But at night, fossil fuels keep the lights on, which is why Tesla chose the island to launch its most ambitious power storage project yet, installing 50,000 solar panels and 272 batteries in March. If the company can prove the fridge-sized power cells can dispense electricity on a public scale, it could provide a model for making solar work round-the-clock nationwide.

  3. shutterstock 327353597 syria

    Fighting Children’s Cancer in Syria

    They’re living metaphors for a country at war with itself. Syrians whose children are battling cancer have the option of staying at home, waiting for the violence to subside as the terminal illness progresses, or braving the horrors outside in a life-threatening attempt to seek treatment. And while the sick kids at the country’s foremost oncology center may become inured to nearby explosions, their parents know that just reaching the Damascus facility means traveling a road targeted by mortars or the threat of beheading by local militias as they spirit tiny patients across enemy lines.

  4. student on laptop in library shutterstock 420505687

    No Space Is Safe From the Youth Fiction Lynch Mob

    Would they have panned Lord of the Flies? The highly influential twitterati coalescing around young adult literature have reportedly intimidated authors of this genre such that few dare publicly defend another’s work, lest they become targets. The Black Witch, called a “condemnation of prejudice and injustice” in early reviews, became “dangerous” and “offensive” in a tweet by a bookstore employee/blogger because some characters expressed racist views. A viral assault ensued, calling out dissent as complicity, and leaving writers wondering if characters resembling real-life antagonists must be sanitized from their narratives.

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    The Rise of the H-Back

    They’re fullbacks, only fuller. Or loosely defined tight ends. The NFL’s newest offensive weapon, the H-back, is a handy and versatile threat that keeps the opposing team guessing. A cross between those two positions, H-backs can run, block and, increasingly, catch passes. Meanwhile, their mobility behind the line of scrimmage makes them tough for defenses to predict. That’s probably why teams are willing to pay millions to fill the spot, aided by colleges turning out leaner, more athletic fullbacks who promise to defy expectations as they take their positions.