1…………> The “Days Of Wine & Roses“: Ivanka In Jerusalem
“Remember this moment. This is history. President Trump, by recognizing history, you have made history,” Israel PM Netanyahu said. “The embassy of the most powerful nation on earth, the United States of America, our greatest ally, today its embassy opened here.”
“We are in Jerusalem, and we are here to stay,” Netanyahu added, to loud applause. “Thank you, president Trump, for having the courage to keep your promises.”
A visibly jubilant Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu sat next to Ivanka Trump and presidential adviser Jared Kushner during the ceremony, said that today was a “glorious day.”
The festive ceremony held despite violent protests by Palestinians which have already claimed nearly 40 lives, including a 14-year-old boy, and wounded hundreds more, 27 critically, included a congratulatory video message from President Trump, who didn’t attend the ceremony.
2…………> Shia Super-Power: Iran
Iran, a major military power in the Middle East with an estimated 534,000 active personnel in the army, navy, air force and the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), ranked No. 13 in the world out of 136 countries.
Iran’s population of 82 million offers a deep reservoir of manpower, a key factor in sustaining long wars of attrition such as the 1980-88 Iran-Iraq War.
Iran’s asymmetric strategy uses regional allies and proxies, known as the “axis of resistance,” as leverage to weaken, bog down, deter or fight Iran’s enemies away from its soil.
Will Quds Force and its Hezbollah allies start a new war against Israel following the Jerusalem embassy initiation? Don’t bet against it.
3…………> Gun Runner: Italy
An Italian national named Giovanni Zannoni, 35, a former member of the Italian military was convicted of weapons trafficking and was returned to his home country ICE officers.
In May 2017, Zannoni entered the United States under the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) with authorization to remain in the United States until August 2017. One day after his entry, Zannoni was arrested by HSI and charged in U.S. District Court-Eastern District of New York (EDNY) with weapons trafficking. On Sept. 22, 2017, Zannoni was convicted in EDNY of a violation of the Arms Export Control Act and sentenced to 11 months imprisonment. Additionally, he agreed to forfeit $436,673, gun parts, and night vision and thermal imaging devices. Zannoni was transferred to ICE custody in April 2018, while the agency finalized his return.
4…………> US Jerusalem Embassy: War Drums?
At least 41 people had died, and more than 1000 people had been injured in the fighting, about 450 of them by live bullets in the highest Palestinian death toll in a single day since a series of protests dubbed the Great March of Return began at the border with Israel on March 30 and since the 2014 Gaza war.
Senior White House adviser, and the US President’s daughter, Ivanka Trump, officially opened the relocated embassy.
“On behalf of the 45th President of the United States of America, we welcome you officially, and for the first time, to the embassy of the United States here in Jerusalem, the capital of Israel,” she said.
The protests intensified on the 70th anniversary of Israel’s founding, with loudspeakers on Gaza mosques urging Palestinians to join a “great march of return”, and black smoke from tires burned by demonstrators rose into the air at the border.
“Today is the big day when we will cross the fence and tell Israel and the world we will not accept being occupied forever,” said Gaza science teacher Ali, who declined to give his last name.
“Many may get martyred today, so many, but the world will hear our message. Occupation must end.”
Among the Palestinians killed on Monday were a 14-year-old boy and a man in a wheelchair.
The man in the wheelchair had been pictured on social media using a slingshot.
The latest casualties raised the Palestinian death toll to 84 since the protests began on March 30. No Israeli casualties have been reported.
Most countries say the status of Jerusalem — a sacred city to Jews, Muslims and Christians — should be determined in a final peace settlement and that moving their embassies now would prejudge any such deal.
5…………> AG Sessions Precedent: Immigration Ax
The fate of tens of thousands of illegal border crossers and immigration law violators court cases could be soon in the hands of Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who has intervened into the immigration system by reviewing, and rewriting, precedent-setting decisions affecting hundreds of thousands of pending immigration court backlog rulings, including all those who are arrested and put into the deportation process in future.
By taking cases from the Board of Immigration Appeals — the Department of Justice agency that serves as a quasi-appellate body for immigration court cases — and referring them to himself to issue a decision instead, he could make it impossible for cases to be resolved or paused by using attorney general power to set immigration precedents.
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