“We Americans have to prove that we are back”


March 2017: Chancellor Angela Merkel with the then US President Donald Trump – his successor wants to repair the disturbed relationship with Germany.

(Photo: AFP)

When Nicholas Burns rose to become one of America’s most influential diplomats, the US was at the zenith of its power. Washington strategists dreamed of democratizing the Muslim world at gunpoint. 20 years later, the US military has to defend democracy in its own country. Tens of thousands of soldiers secured Joe Biden’s inauguration.

The elected Donald Trump boycotted the ceremony, his supporters do not want to accept Biden. The peaceful transfer of power, a characteristic of democracy, has failed. Burns, who now teaches at Harvard University and was part of Biden’s foreign policy advisory team during the election campaign, warns: “We must try to unite our country and strengthen our democracy. That’s going to take time.”

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Donald Trump will not hear Lady Gaga sing

US President Donald Trump will leave Washington at dawn on Wednesday, hours before the inauguration of his Democratic successor Joe Biden. He will join Florida and his luxurious club in Mar-a-Lago, where he intends to settle.

→ LIVE. Joe Biden’s inauguration in the United States: follow the ceremony

After a helicopter departure from the gardens of the White House, he will fly from the Andrews military base (Maryland) for his last flight aboard Air Force One.

In Washington, transformed into an entrenched camp after the violence on the Capitol, preparations are continuing for the swearing in of Joe Biden, who will become, at noon, the 46th President of the United States.

His team distills, day after day, details on the organization of the ceremony. The « National Mall », the huge esplanade at the foot of the Capitol, will be closed to the public. A “Field of flags” will be installed there in the place where, traditionally, the supporters of the elected president gather by the hundreds of thousands. Only accredited persons will be allowed to enter the area.

Tom Hanks to host a special

Lady Gaga will sing the American national anthem. Then Jennifer Lopez will perform a “Musical performance”, specified the organizing committee of the event. Both had supported Joe Biden during his campaign, and Lady Gaga, whom Joe Biden calls her “Great friend”, had already occurred during its last big meeting.

After the ceremony, the new president would immediately go to Arlington National Cemetery with three of his predecessors: Barack Obama, Bill Clinton and George W. Bush, to lay a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and appeal for ‘unit.

In the evening, American comedian Tom Hanks will present a special show, broadcast on all major American channels, with other musical guests, including Justin Timberlake.

In 2009, Aretha Franklin had sung during the first inauguration ceremony of Barack Obama, as well as Bruce Springsteen, U2, Shakira or Stevie Wonder. Four years later for her re-election, Beyoncé sang the national anthem. In 2017, Donald Trump had to settle for lesser-known artists.

Mike Pence at the helm

Donald Trump is the first president to snub his successor’s swearing-in for more than 150 years. He still hasn’t congratulated Joe Biden.

On the other hand, Vice President Mike Pence has planned to participate in the ceremony. And while Donald Trump no longer shows himself, he appears more and more as the man in charge. On Thursday, he congratulated future Vice-President Kamala Harris by phone. It was their first exchange since their fall debate in the heart of the campaign.

The White House is emptying at high speed: many advisers have already left the scene, taking documents and souvenirs. The photos of Donald Trump traveling in the United States or around the world, hung on the walls of the famous West Wing (the west wing), are no longer there. On the large empty walls, only a few hooks remain, awaiting the photos of Joe Biden.

→ PODCAST. Biden government: a trompe-l’œil diversity? – “This is America”


Trump names rival Saudi Arabian militia in Yemen as terrorist

In this last week of Donald Trump’s mandate, Saudi Arabia will receive one more detail from the United States following the announcement by Mike Pompeo of his intention to designate the Houthis as an “international terrorist organization.” The Shiite rebels control Yemen’s capital, Sanaa, and the north of the country and since 2015 they face the international coalition led by Riyadh. “These designations will provide additional tools to deal with the terrorist activity of Ansar Alá, a deadly Iranian-backed militia in the Gulf region,” Pompeo declared to justify a move that set off alarms in humanitarian organizations, who fear it could complicate even more so the serious situation suffered by civilians after five years of war. The president of the Revolutionary Committee of the rebels, Mohammed Ali al Huthi, wrote on Twitter that the group “reserves the right to respond.”

In Pompeo’s opinion, this decision seeks to “advance efforts to achieve a peaceful, sovereign and united Yemen that is free from Iranian interference and at peace with its neighbors.” Given the doubts raised by humanitarian organizations, he said that Washington “plans to implement measures to reduce the impact on certain humanitarian activities and imports in Yemen.” The head of US diplomacy cited the missile attack on the Aden airport on December 30, in which 26 people were killed, as an example of the rebels’ threat.

The Yemeni government recognized by the international community and backed by Riyadh welcomed the move because the rebels “deserve to be classified as a terrorist organization not only for their terrorist acts, but for their ongoing efforts to prolong the conflict and cause the greatest disaster. humanitarian in the world ”.

Sectarian pulse

The Houthis are actually Zaidis, a confession derived from Shi’ism that literally translates as ‘supporters of God’, although they are known as Houthis because of the clan that has led the group since 2004. During former President Ali Abdullah Saleh’s tenure they fought several Wars against the central government and after the “Arab Spring” of 2011, they carried out a military coup that allowed them to control the capital and the northern provinces, bordering Saudi Arabia. Shiites are barely a third of the 24 million Yemenis, where the majority are Sunni, which serves to reproduce the scheme of sectarian struggle that occurs throughout the region with the Shiite part supported by Iran and the Sunni by Saudi Arabia, turning the country in turn into a board in which the two great powers settle accounts.

International organizations such as the Norwegian Refugee Committee (NRC) called for guarantees for the United States to ensure that “sanctions do not block the entry of food, fuel and medicine into the country, already mired in a crisis. large-scale humanitarian catastrophe ”and where 80 percent of the population needs help, according to United Nations data.


New record high on the Nasdaq

The New York Stock Exchange on Wall Street

The New York Stock Exchange is located on the famous street.

(Photo: dpa)

Frankfurt, New York The reaction of US investors to the change in the White House could hardly have been clearer: On the day of the transfer of power from Donald Trump to Joe Biden, the prices climbed to highs. Especially on the technology-heavy Nasdaq stock exchange, investors grabbed it on Wednesday. The Dow Jones Industrial also made it to another record high shortly before the end. With an increase of 0.83 percent to 31,188.38 points, the Dow went out of trading.

The Nasdaq 100 drove share purchases 2.31 percent up to 13,296.45 points. Like the very broad-based Nasdaq Composite, it reached a record high. Strong quarterly figures from the online video provider Netflix provided an additional boost. Shares shot up nearly 17 percent and also peaked. The S&P 500, which comprises 500 companies, also hit a record high by 1.39 percent to 3851.85 meters.

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Donald Trump, two impeachment procedures in four years

Donald Trump makes American history by becoming the first President of the United States to be indicted twice in Congress. A week before the end of its mandate, the House of Representatives voted, Wednesday, January 13, in favor of this « impeachment » by 232 votes against 197. Contrary to the act of impeachment in the Ukrainian affair, in December 2019, adopted without a single Republican vote, ten elected Republicans, including Liz Cheney, number three of the Grand Old Party in the House and daughter former Vice President Dick Cheney, voted in favor of committal.

→ REPORT. United States: Washington in shock after attack on Capitol Hill

The indictment article accuses the outgoing president of “ incitement to insurgency “Citing his words, Wednesday, January 6, during the meeting preceding the assault on Capitol Hill by his supporters, as well as his phone call on Saturday, January 2, to Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, asking him to” find The voices that would have allowed him to win.

Uncertainty over timing

Uncertainty remains over the rest of the procedure. Republican Majority Leader Mitch McConnell – in charge of the Senate agenda until Democrats take over, perhaps as early as January 20 – said the upper house could not get hold of it of the file before January 19, the day before Donald Trump’s departure. A vote on his conviction cannot therefore take place before the first days of the Biden presidency, a timetable that does not suit the Democrat.

The Senate would not be able to focus on implementing its ambitious program to fight the pandemic and support the economy. The rapid confirmation of appointments to the heads of the various departments and agencies of the federal government would also be compromised. Joe Biden suggested that the Senate find a way to split his time between conducting the trial, working on confirmations and voting on his proposals. The House of Representatives could wait for the installation of the new administration before transmitting the indictment to the Senate.

The two-thirds majority required for a conviction

Whatever the timing, Democrats will need the rallying of 17 Republican senators to achieve the two-thirds majority needed for a conviction. So far, only a small minority of elected Republican officials have distanced themselves from Donald Trump. “I have not made my final decision on my vote, I intend to listen to the legal arguments when they are presented to the Senate”, said Mitch McConnell, in a note to his Republican colleagues. If he gives a signal in favor of conviction, this influential strategist could prompt more Republican lawmakers to turn the page on Trump.

Support from the electoral base

The pressure could also come from the dozen or so large American companies that have suspended their donations and threaten to no longer fund the campaigns of Republicans who opposed the certification of Joe Biden’s victory. ” I felt betrayed “, Affirmed, Wednesday, January 13, Ken Langone, the billionaire founder of Home Depot and support of Donald Trump, on the CNBC channel.

Polls, like the debate in Congress, show, however, that the president still has significant support within his party and his constituency. « Three quarters of Trump voters still believe the election was stolen “, underlines a Republican consultant. In a video released by the White House, the president called on Americans to “The unit”, without mentioning his referral to trial, or acknowledging any responsibility for the violence of last week.

→ PODCAST. Trump’s future, the heirs of Trumpism – “This is America”


Trump prepares a wave of pardons on the last day. Is he on the list?

On the last day in office, January 19, 2017, President Barack Obama pardoned or commuted the sentence to a record 330 people (out of a total of 1927 over his two terms). In his last hours at the White House, Donald Trump, who has so far forgiven 94 people (had a personal or political connection with 84 of them), will be planning to issue more than 100 pardons. But you are being advised to leave one name off the list: yours.

According to the The Washington Post and CNN, Trump met on Sunday with daughter Ivanka and son-in-law Jared Kushner, along with other advisers, to decide the final list. In the past few days, the president has been considering the idea of ​​issuing preventive pardons on his behalf, that of his children and his closest allies. But several advisers have warned Trump that forgiving himself (something whose constitutionality divides the experts) would make him look guilty, especially now that he is being accused of inciting the Capitol invasion.. This could irritate Republican senators who are preparing to try impeachment.

Regarding the legality of a pardon in your name, there are constitutionalists who say it is not possible, since it violates the principle that no one can be the judge in your own case. However, there are those who say that presidential pardon is quite vague in the Constitution, remembering that the founding fathers discussed the hypothesis of self-forgiveness in the 18th century, having chosen not to include an explicit limitation on that presidential power.

There was only one president to receive a pardon in the US: a month after resigning, Richard Nixon obtained the pardon of his former vice president, Gerald Ford., covering all possible crimes committed during his administration, marked by the Watergate scandal.

Who could be on the list?

Regarding the first 94 pardons, the Lawfare blog (a collaboration of the institute of the same name with the Brookings Institution) concluded that “the clemency system is dominated by privileged access to the president and serves almost exclusively his personal and political goals and whims”. According to the same source, only nine of those who have already benefited were not directly linked to Trump or someone close to him and the vast majority were not recommended by the Department of Justice (as usual).

Many of those the president forgave were involved in the investigation by Special Prosecutor Robert Mueller, over the alleged conspiracy of his campaign with Russia. Among them were former campaign director Paul Manafort, friend and adviser Roger Stone and former national security adviser, Michael Flynn, who admitted to lying to the FBI. The son-in-law’s father, Charles Kushner, who served time for tax evasion and illegal campaign donations, was also pardoned.


Former US presidents lash out at Trump and Facebook and Twitter block his accounts

Former presidents and members of Congress denounced Trump and his supporters for inspiring and enabling the violent assault on the Capitol. Barack Obama said in a statement that history will remember the violence “Incited by a sitting president who has continued to lie baselessly about the outcome of a legal election”. But he also blamed “a political party and the accompanying media ecosystem” for playing on Trump’s falsehoods, saying Republican leaders may continue down a dark path or “choose reality.”

The ex-president Bill Clinton He said the “unprecedented assault” on the Capitol, the Constitution and the country had been in the making for a long time. Clinton noted that the party was ignited by Trump and his most ardent facilitators, including many in Congress, to overturn the results of an election he lost.

The ex-president George Bush He noted that “this is how election results are disputed in a banana republic, not in our democratic republic.” The former president added that he was dismayed by the reckless behavior of some political leaders since the election without mentioning Trump or any other leader by name.

Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez called for the president’s removal. Former Barack Obama CIA director John Brennan declared on CNN that Trump should not end his term and certainly should be “removed from power.”

“Indefinite suspension”

Asimismo, Facebook and Instagram they will suspend indefinitely or at least for the next two weeks the accounts of Donald Trump. Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook, explained from his page that the blockade, which had been announced on Wednesday with an initial duration of 24 hours, was extended due to Trump’s use of the platform “to incite a violent insurrection against a government democratically elected ”.

, Twitter did it for 12hours after the president posted a video praising the assailants. Twitter has warned that if three tweets that violate its integrity policies are not removed, Donald Trump’s profile will be permanently blocked.


US Capitol Assault: Trump Condemns Raid, Promises “Orderly Transition,” But Will Not Go to Biden’s Inauguration

Violence never wins. Freedom wins. Let’s get back to work ». With those words, which will be remembered throughout history, the vice president, Mike Pence, resumed on Wednesday night the session in Congress that hours before had been interrupted by the assault of a “mob” of extremists enraged by Donald Trump. The extraordinary meeting, which lasted until dawn and will continue today, concluded the mission for which the legislators had been summoned: to certify the triumph of Joe Biden as president-elect.

Immediately, Donald Trump made a statement public through the Twitter page of his spokesman Dan Scavino after his account on the social network was censored. “Although I totally disagree with the outcome of the elections, and the facts support me, there will be an orderly transition on January 20”, got engaged. Almost 24 hours later came his sentence for the assault, although at no time did he assume any responsibility for the riots, despite the fact that he himself summoned the protesters from the most extreme right wing of the Republican Party, nor did he explicitly acknowledge Biden’s triumph. Now, he reiterates that “the fight to guarantee that only legal votes are counted will continue.” And he insists that he will return: “This represents the end of the best first presidential term in history”and “it’s just the beginning of the fight to make America great again.”

Trump already acknowledges his defeat. However, the still president of the United States has announced through a tweet that he will not attend the investiture ceremony of his successor, Joe Biden. “To all who have asked me, I will not go to the swearing-in on January 20,” he wrote.

A formality

The Senate and the House of Representatives validated the victory of the Democrat in the last elections of November 3, with 306 electoral votes, compared to 232 for the outgoing president. It was a mere formality, a procedure that would have gone practically unnoticed had it not been for the attack on the Capitol that cost four people their lives, left fifty detainees and forced the evacuation of both Chambers amid images of chaos and vandalism that they were described by Biden himself as “insurrection.”

The vote in Congress, this time, went smoothly. But the consternation and fear over what had happened could still be seen on the faces of the legislators. The gruesome scenes that shook one of the greatest symbols of American democracy made Republican parliamentarians change their minds who, encouraged by Trump, had raised objections to the result of the elections. One of the most symbolic voices was that of the senator Kelly Loeffer, who last night lost her seat in the decisive Georgia elections that have given Democrats control of both Houses.

“The events that took place forced me to reconsider. And I can’t in good faith object to certification, ”Loeffler said. Like her, the Republican caucus left Trump practically alone in his latest attempt to reverse his electoral defeat. Only six senators voted not to acknowledge the results, including Ted Cruz, Josh Hawley, Cindy Hyde-Smith, Elaine Marshall, John Kennedy and Tommy Tuberville. The move, however, was rejected by Pence, despite pressure from the outgoing president, whom he had quietly obeyed so far during these four years in office.

Trump announced in a laconic tweet on Friday that he will not attend the inauguration ceremony of his successor, Joe Biden.

“To all who have asked me, I will not go to the swearing-in on January 20,” he wrote.

“The voters, the courts … have spoken”

“The final vote totals are considered a sufficient statement of the people elected as president and vice president of the United States,” declared the ‘number two’ of the Government. Meanwhile, his words were equally endorsed by the Republican leader of the Senate, Mitch McConnell, closely aligned with Trump throughout his presidency. Voters, courts and states have spoken. If we invalidate them, our republic will be damaged forever. “ he said shortly before calling the Capitol raiders “unhinged” that it hadn’t been stormed since 1814, when the British burned it down during the War of 1812.

Even more forceful, Senator Mitt Romney and former Republican candidate for the White House, described what happened as an “insurrection incited by the president of the United States”, whose political future has been seriously damaged and around which the voices are growing that demand that he be brought to justice for inciting disorder. And all this despite the fact that this Thursday he tried to breathe tranquility by ensuring that “there will be an orderly transition on January 20”, the date on which Biden will take office.

With the Electoral College certification and the excellent results achieved in Georgia, the Democratic leader is walking steadily towards the presidency. The two seats won in that state by Democrat Raphael Warnock – who will be the first black senator to represent that traditionally conservative region – and Jon Ossoff – who at 33 will be the youngest legislator in the history of his party – assure Biden the majority in the Upper House. Not surprisingly, although they have 50 seats, the same as the Republicans, the Constitution stipulates that future Vice President Kamala Harris will be able to tie the tie.

Control over the Senate gives Biden full legislative powers since the Democrats, in addition to the White House, also dominate the House of Representatives. Such a situation had not been experienced since the first two years of the presidency of Barack Obama. The way seems clear for the Democratic leader, who emerges strengthened from an “unprecedented” political crisis and will now have the difficult task of closing the wounds and “Restore the soul” of a divided country after four years of Trump’s rule.


Moving to Florida: Why Trump’s Neighbors Want To Evict Him From Palm Beach

Vhe residents of the island of Palm Beach and the neighboring city of West Palm Beach receive the prominent residents with a cold shoulder at best. Neighbors have been mobilizing against Trump for weeks, contesting his right to live on the property that he himself had once converted into a “private club”. The county is questioning Trump’s lease of the nearby golf club. With the storming of the Capitol by his supporters, fueled by Trump, the anger about the future island resident Trump has increased. Of all people, Alex Berrios, 41, Vice President of the Democrats in West Palm Beach, can see something positive about the arrival of the elected president.


Historians concerned about Trump’s will to leave ‘gaping hole’ in archives

The outgoing president is accused of having wanted to destroy several documents, in defiance of the law which protects them.

Would Donald Trump try to hide compromising elements about him before leaving his post to Joe Biden? This is the question that arises following an article in the Guardian which collected testimonies which could lead one to believe. White House archivists have thus been able to see the president destroying documents which, however, are required by law to be kept and then published five years later. Historians report to the British daily that Donald Trump’s actions could leave a ” gaping hole In the archives.

“Many examples” of “destroyed or concealed” documents

Donald Trump’s contempt for official documents would not date from yesterday. From the start of his tenure, White House staff reportedly saw him ripping and throwing documents away. ” My manager came up to me and said: “You have to put them back together” Explains Solomon Lartey, a former employee of the archives of the official residence of the president. The papers in question were therefore reconstituted with scotch tape. ” They said to [Trump] to stop doing it. He didn’t want to stop He adds. From 2016 to mid-2018, at least ten documents had to suffer the same fate.

Another scenario: Donald Trump would have simply confiscated the notes of an interpreter following an interview with Vladimir Putin. Senior US executive officials were also reminded of the need not to conduct official activities privately, without leaving a trace. Over time, White House staff reportedly got into the habit of stepping up their efforts to scan documents.

« Not only has record keeping not been a priority Private jet ride to Washington, rioter on Capitol Hill asks for pardon from Donald Trump (video) ity, but we have plenty of examples that show some documents were concealed or destroyed “, Laments Richard Immerman of the” Society for Historians of American Foreign Relations “. ” Historians are likely to suffer from many more holes than the norm », He adds.

Donald Trump does not risk much with these differences, however. The law says that these documents cannot be destroyed without the advice of the national archivist, but it does not explicitly oblige him to take them into account in fine. In the meantime, this could significantly impact any legal cases that may arise against him in the future. Legal action has been taken to prevent the outgoing president from destroying emails and messages sent through private accounts. ” I think he probably cares what the archives might say about his criminal guilt Supposes Anne Weismann, a lawyer who deals with this case.