Germans want Donald Trump to pull US troops out of Germany, poll finds
Germans want Donald Trump to pull US troops out of Germany, poll finds Jon Stone • July 11, 2018 Soldiers listen in front of an U.S. Air Force F-22 Raptor fighter jet during a briefing in a hangar at the U.S. Spangdahlem Air base, Germany: REUTERS More Germans would actually welcome the withdrawal of American troops stationed in their country, a new poll has found – as Donald Trump threatens to pull the plug on military support. The finding comes on the first day of a Nato summit in which the US president is urging Europe to spend more on defence if it wants to continue to receive American military protection. But far from being seen as a threat, a YouGov poll for the dpa news agency found that more Germans would welcome the departure of the 35,000-strong American force than would oppose it. 42 per cent said they supported withdrawal while just 37 per cent wanted the soldiers to stay, with 21 per cent undecided. Last month the US media reported that the US government was in the process of assessing the cost of keeping troops in Germany ahead of a possible withdrawal, citing Pentagon sources. But the policy of actually pulling out of the country has not actually reached the negotiating table in his week’s Brussels summit and is not expected to be discussed as a possibility – for now. The cause of US withdrawal enjoys significant support from across the political spectrum in Germany but is particularly strong with the supporters of certain parties. The United States continues to devote more resources to the defence of Europe when the Continent’s economy, including Germany’s, are doing well and security challenges abound. This is no longer sustainable for us Donald Trump in letter to Angela Merkel Voters for the left-wing Die Linke are particularly in favour of withdrawal, with 67 per cent backing it, as are supporters of the far-right AfD, on 55 per cent. Greens also back withdrawal by 48 per cent. Less supportive of withdrawal are voters for the centre-right CDU, at 35 per cent, the SPD at 42 per cent, and the FDP at 37 per cent. The same poll also found significant opposition to militarism in general in the country. Just 15 per cent of all Germans agree with Angela Merkel that the country should increase its military spending to 2 per cent of GDP by 2024, with 36 per cent saying the country’s already spends too much on its military. Mr Trump warned Angela Merkel and other European leaders in leaked letters last month that there was “growing frustration in the United States that some allies have not stepped up as promised” on defence spending. Video: For more news videos visit Yahoo View . “The United States continues to devote more resources to the defence of Europe when the Continent’s economy, including Germany’s, are doing well and security challenges abound. This is no longer sustainable for us,” he said. US Representative to Nato Kay Bailey Hutchison has however struck a softer tone ahead of the Brussels meeting, stating ahead of the summit that “every one of our allies are already increasing defence spending”. US troops have been stationed in Germany since the Second World War and the country has the second largest military presence after Japan, which has also been home to US bases since the same conflict. There are between 30 and 40 US military bases in Germany, a significant reduction from the 200-300 that were located there until the end of the cold war.
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San Bernardino County prosecutor put on leave after social media posts
San Bernardino County prosecutor put on leave after social media posts Los Angeles Times 1 hr ago By Brittny Mejia, Los Angeles Times © Getty SAN BERNARDINO, CA – JANUARY 11: In this file photo from January 11, 2018, Deputy District Attorney Michael Selyem talks to the media outside the San Bernardino Superior Courthouse in San Bernardino, CA. Michael Selyem, the lead hard-core gang prosecutor in the San Bernardino County District Attorney’u2019s Office, is under internal investigation for a series of offensive posts on social media accounts that have now been deleted. (Photo by Jennifer Cappuccio Maher/Inland Valley Daily Bulletin via Getty Images) LOS ANGELES – A prosecutor in the San Bernardino County district attorney’s office has been placed on administrative leave after writing offensive social media comments.
The San Bernardino Sun first reported that the office’s lead gang prosecutor, Michael Selyem, was under investigation for rants targeting Democratic U.S. Rep. Maxine Waters, former first lady Michelle Obama, Mexican immigrants and the victim of a police shooting.
In a news conference Monday, San Bernardino County District Attorney Michael Ramos said he was offended by the comments.
And in a written statement, Ramos said: “The San Bernardino County District Attorney’s Office does not condone hate, discrimination or incitement of violence. Our community and the entire criminal justice system depends on having fair, ethical, and unbiased prosecutors.”
The Sun reported that Selyem, who joined the office 12 years ago, said of Waters: “Being a loud-mouthed c#nt in the ghetto you would think someone would have shot this bitch by now …”
The newspaper also reports that Selyem got into an online argument over the police shooting of a civilian, writing, “That s— bag got exactly what he deserved. … You reap what you sow. And by the way go f — yourself you liberal s— bag.”
“As the district attorney, I was really concerned with comments regarding officer-involved shootings, because we handle those cases, as you know, on a daily basis,” Ramos said at the news conference. “To make any comments … impacts the ability for us to ensure the integrity of this office.”
© Brian Cahn/Zuma Press/TNS Congresswoman Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) addresses the 2018 California Democrats State Convention on Feb. 24, 2018 in San Diego, Calif. The district attorney’s office received information June 28 regarding negative comments posted online by Selyem, according to Ramos. The district attorney said there were “more than several” complaints. Staff and managers spoke and then contacted human resources and “took immediate steps to start a personnel investigation.”
“This could end up being some form of disciplinary action, up to termination,” Ramos said. “We haven’t decided that yet. We’re following the rules and regulations of California.”
Ramos said there is no indication that Selyem had any type of bias regarding his cases, but “that’s not to say we won’t review them, especially if there’s a request to do so.”
While there is not a specific social media policy in place, Ramos said, there are policies regarding professional conduct as a prosecutor.
“You’re a prosecutor 24/7; it’s not an 8-to-5 job,” Ramos said. “The public looks at you as leaders in the community.”
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Plane crew comes to rescue of dog with oxygen mask for flight
Plane crew comes to rescue of dog with oxygen mask for flight MARK OSBORNE Plane crew comes to rescue of dog with oxygen mask for flight (ABC News) More Plane crew comes to rescue of dog with oxygen mask for flight originally appeared on abcnews.go.com Plane passengers rarely describe air travel as a breath of fresh air, but it was literally that for one family’s bulldog on a recent JetBlue flight. The French bulldog, named Darcy, was on a flight from Florida to Massachusetts on Thursday when she started showing signs of distress, according to his owner Michele Burt. The 3-year-old bulldog’s tongue began to turn blue and she was having difficulty breathing. “We all are affected by cabin pressure and oxygen fluctuations, human, canine and feline, etc., but the fact that the Attendants were responsive and attentive to the situation may have saved Darcy’s life,” Burt wrote on her Facebook page. Darcy, the French bulldog owned by Steven and Michele Burt of Westminster, Mass., receives oxygen on a JetBlue flight Thursday, July 5, 2018. (Steven and Michele Burt) More The crew came to the rescue with an oxygen mask for Darcy. The photos, which have since spread across social media, show the bulldog being treated for hypoxia. The photos are cute, but hypoxia, a lack of oxygen in the body, can be deadly. “I placed the mask over her face, and within a few minutes she became alert and after a short time she didn’t want the mask,” Michele said. “I believe [crew members] Renaud and Diane saved a life, some may reduce the value of the life because Darcy is a canine, I do not.” Darcy, the French bulldog owned by Steven and Michele Burt of Westminster, Mass., receives oxygen on a JetBlue flight Thursday, July 5, 2018. (Michele and Steven Burt) More Crew member Renaud Fenster, who spoke to “Good Morning America” on Monday, said he’d “never seen anything like this” in his 15 years working for an airline. “I was passing through the cabin to check up on a passenger, and I noticed [another] passenger, who had the dog out of her crate and the dog had an indication that it wasn’t looking too well. … And I believe the dog passed out,” Fenster told “GMA.” “The dog started panting very rapidly and uncontrollably, and so as a French bulldog owner myself, I knew the dog was overheating and needed some ice. I brought the dog some ice, and that didn’t do anything. “I decided that we needed to consider using oxygen to support the animal,” he continued. “So I called the captain, and I told him, ‘I think I need to use some oxygen,’ and he said, ‘Go ahead.’ And right then and there, placed the oxygen on the dog and the dog revived like nothing else.” One of JetBlue’s flight attendants poses with Darcy after the bulldog received oxygen on a JetBlue flight Thursday, July 5, 2018. (Michele and Steven Burt) More Michele thanked JetBlue for its attentiveness to Darcy and wanted to remind people “that good people are doing good things on a daily basis even if it is in small ways or big ways.” “We all want to make sure everyone has a safe and comfortable fight, including those with four legs,” JetBlue said in a statement to ABC News. “We’re thankful for our crew’s quick thinking and glad everyone involved was breathing easier when the plane landed in Worcester.” The owners snapped a photo of Renaud posing, smiling, with Darcy before getting off the flight. ABC News’ Rex Sakamoto contributed to this report.
Trump pardons ranchers in case that inspired 2016 occupation
Trump pardons ranchers in case that inspired 2016 occupation Associated Press 10 mins ago By JILL COLVIN and ZEKE MILLER, Associated Press © The Associated Press President Donald Trump speaks with reporters before boarding Marine One on the South Lawn of the White House, Tuesday, July 10, 2018, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci) WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump has pardoned two ranchers whose case sparked the armed occupation of a national wildlife refuge in Oregon.
Dwight and Steven Hammond were convicted in 2012 of intentionally and maliciously setting fires on public lands. The arson crime carried a minimum prison sentence of five years, but a sympathetic federal judge, on his last day before retirement, decided the penalty was too stiff and gave the father and son much lighter prison terms.
Prosecutors won an appeal and the Hammonds were resentenced in October 2015 to serve the mandatory minimum.
The decision sparked a protest from Ammon Bundy and dozens of others, who occupied the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge near the Hammond ranch in southeastern Oregon from Jan. 2 to Feb. 11, 2016, complaining the Hammonds were victims of federal overreach.
The armed occupiers changed the refuge’s name to the Harney County Resource Center, reflecting their belief that the federal government has only a very limited right to own property within a state’s borders.
Bundy was arrested during a Jan. 26 traffic stop, effectively ending the protest. Another key occupier, Robert “LaVoy” Finicum, was fatally shot that day by Oregon State Police.
© Cem Ozdel/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images Members of the group occupying the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge headquarters are seen at the occupied refuge on the sixth day of the occupation of the federal building in Burns, Oregon on January 7, 2016. In a statement Tuesday, White House press secretary Sarah Sanders called that decision to resentence the Hammonds “unjust.”
“The Hammonds are devoted family men, respected contributors to their local community, and have widespread support from their neighbors, local law enforcement, and farmers and ranchers across the West,” she said. “Justice is overdue for Dwight and Steven Hammond, both of whom are entirely deserving of these Grants of Executive Clemency.”
The pardons are the latest in a growing list of clemency actions by Trump, who has been using his pardon power with increasingly frequency in recent months.
Trump has been especially pleased with news coverage of his actions, which included commuting the sentence of Alice Johnson, a woman serving a life sentence for drug offenses whose case had been championed by reality television star Kim Kardashian West.
He has repeatedly referenced emotional video of Johnson being freed from prison and running into her family members’ arms, and has said he’s considering thousands more cases — both famous and not.
But critics say the president could be ignoring valid claims for clemency as he works outside the typical pardon process, focusing on cases brought to his attention by friends, famous people and conservative media pundits.
Aides say that Trump has been especially drawn to cases in which he believes the prosecution may have been politically motivated — a situation that may remind him of his own position at the center of the ongoing special counsel investigation into Russian election meddling.
Many have also seen the president as sending a signal with his pardons to former aides and associates caught up in the probe, or lashing out at enemies like former FBI Director James Comey, who oversaw the prosecution of lifestyle guru Martha Stewart, whom Trump has said he is thinking of pardoning.