July 27, 2023

Donald Trump May Face 4 Indictments by Election Day. Here’s the Breakdown.

A federal indictment stemming from the January 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol is expected this week.

If you’re having trouble keeping track of the indictments — both current and future — against Donald Trump, you’re not alone. Trump has been indicted in New York state court for attempting to hide hush money payments to porn star Stormy Daniels, and in federal court for concealing classified national defense information at Mar-a-Lago. He faces hundreds of years in prison if convicted.

Additional indictments against Trump are reportedly forthcoming — one in federal court for his role in the January 6, 2021, insurrection, and another in Georgia state court for illegal interference in the 2020 presidential election.

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July 17, 2023

Julian Assange Is “Dangerously Close” to Extradition for Revealing US War Crimes

This is the first time a publisher has been charged under the Espionage Act for disclosing government secrets.

For nearly five years, publisher and journalist Julian Assange has fought extradition to the United States where he faces 175 years in prison for revealing evidence of U.S. war crimes.

Instead of protecting freedom of the press, to which he pledged allegiance at the White House Correspondents’ Dinner in April, Joe Biden is continuing Donald Trump’s prosecution of Assange under the infamous Espionage Act. James Ball is one of at least four journalists that the Department of Justice (DOJ) and FBI are pressuring to cooperate with the prosecution of Assange, Ball wrote in Rolling Stone.

Biden’s DOJ is apparently attempting to bolster its prosecution of Assange in the event he is extradited to the United States. Ball said that all three of the other journalists being pressured to provide a statement told him they have no intention of helping the prosecution.

Assange, who is in frail physical and mental health after years of confinement, is contesting the U.K. High Court’s rejection of his appeal. If he loses in the U.K., Assange’s last resort is to the European Court of Human Rights to litigate several violations of the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR).

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July 12, 2023

Israel Killed Civilians, Targeted Hospitals in Jenin With US Weapons and Support

Israel could not mount its military operations against Palestinians without $3.8 billion in annual U.S. military aid.

From July 3-4, Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) — using weapons funded by the United States — mounted the most violent military assault in the occupied West Bank in two decades.

In what Israel dubbed “Operation Home and Garden,” more than 1,000 ground troops invaded the Jenin refugee camp. Assisted by helicopter gunships and armed drones, the IOF killed 12 Palestinians — including six civilians (five of them children) — and wounded more than 120 others (including 14 children), according to the Palestinian Centre for Human Rights. The IOF partially destroyed 109 houses, extensively damaged the infrastructure, leveled the streets and created a power outage. About 4,000 Palestinians were forcibly displaced from their homes.

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July 2, 2023

Here’s What “Moore v. Harper” Means for Voting Rights Going Forward

The rejection of the “independent state legislature” doctrine means fights against gerrymanders and racist laws can proceed.

Chief Justice John Roberts has historically not decided cases in a way that protects voting rights. In 2013, he authored Shelby v. Holder, which drove a stake through the heart of the Voting Rights Act. And in 2021, he voted to further weaken the Act in Brnovich v. DNC. But this past month, Roberts surprisingly authored two new Supreme Court opinions that support the right to vote.

On June 8, the high court struck down a racist congressional district map in Allen v. Milligan, and on June 27, the court preserved judicial review of state legislative enactments in Moore v. Harper.

The Moore decision removes the threat of the GOP-favored “independent state legislature” doctrine to legal challenges of extreme gerrymandered congressional maps and racist voting laws.

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June 23, 2023

Biden’s Asylum Policy Continues Tradition of US Cruelty to Haitians

Biden has recycled some of Trump’s racist asylum policies.

As the repressive Trump-Biden Title 42 asylum policy ended on May 11, migrant rights advocates hoped that humane asylum rules would follow. Title 42, which allowed the U.S. government to expel asylum seekers with no due process, led to nearly 3 million expulsions since Donald Trump initiated the ill-conceived policy in 2020.

The Biden administration, however, “has made it a practice of recycling Trump-era policies” which will continue to harm asylum seekers, particularly those from Haiti, according to Guerline Jozef, co-founder and executive director of Haitian Bridge Alliance, a nonprofit that advocates for humane treatment of migrants.

“This latest episode in governmental efforts to ‘secure’ the border is another phase in a number of misguided policies that not only expose our nation’s failed immigration system, but also reveal the deep historical legacies of the U.S. government’s racist, imperialistic foreign policies,” Rutgers University Professor Leslie M. Alexander wrote in The Washington Post. “This pattern becomes particularly apparent when we consider that President Biden’s strategies overwhelmingly target Haitians.”

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June 14, 2023

The Voting Rights Act Dodged a Bullet — for Now

Five House seats may well shift to Democrats in the wake of “Allen v. Milligan.”

After leading the charge for years to eviscerate the Voting Rights Act (VRA), Chief Justice John Roberts did a stunning about-face and spearheaded its preservation in Allen v. Milligan.

The 5-4 majority opinion, written by Roberts, held that Alabama’s congressional map likely violates the Voting Rights Act’s prohibition against discriminatory voting practices. The court refused Alabama’s request to interpret the Voting Rights Act in a manner that would have made it much more difficult to challenge racist redistricting plans.

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June 12, 2023

Youth Are Suing Montana for Failing to Protect Their Future From Climate Chaos

The lawsuit is based on Montana’s state constitution, which enshrines the right to a clean and healthful environment.

In a case that could have far-reaching implications for the struggle against the climate crisis, the trial in a lawsuit brought by a group of youth plaintiffs will begin in Montana on June 12. Besides being the first such case about climate change to go to trial, Held v. Montana involves the specific impacts the climate crisis has on young people.

This trial is a bellwether for other cases throughout the United States. Mat dos Santos, general counsel for Our Children’s Trust, which represents the youth plaintiffs, said that the lawsuit “is not just about Montana. It’s really about the climate here in the United States and around the world.” If this suit is successful, it would be a “watershed moment” that could lead to a “cascade of legal victories around the country,” dos Santos added, and would likely have global implications.

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June 7, 2023

Supreme Court Weakened Legal Protections for Striking. Only Jackson Dissented.

Unions still have the right to strike, but eight Supreme Court members erected barriers to that fundamental right.

In a shameful decision last week, eight members of the U.S. Supreme Court weakened the right to strike. Only Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson stood up for the workers. In her 27-page dissent in Glacier Northwest, Inc. v. International Brotherhood of Teamsters, Jackson wrote, “The right to strike is fundamental to American labor law.” Indeed, it is the threat of a strike that gives workers leverage during contract negotiations with an employer. Jackson continued:

Workers are not indentured servants, bound to continue laboring until any planned work stoppage would be as painless as possible for their masters. They are employees whose collective and peaceful decision to withhold their labor is protected by the [National Labor Relations Act] even if economic injury results.

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May 25, 2023

“There Is No Safe Place in Gaza”: Palestinians Speak Out During Israeli Assault

In a vicious five-day assault, Israeli occupying forces killed 33 Palestinians in Gaza.

On May 18, thousands of Palestinians in Gaza joined the “Palestine Flag March” to protest Israel’s “Flag March” happening the same day. On “Flag Day,” tens of thousands of ultraright-wing Israeli settlers, who illegally live on stolen land, attacked Palestinians and journalists, chanting “Death to Arabs” and “Your village will be burned.”

“The Israeli Flag March means nothing, they walk in our streets, and the land denies their existence,” Gaza resident Amna al-Banna told Mondoweiss. “Raising the Israeli flag in Jerusalem will not make people ignore that it’s Palestinian land, and that Israel occupies it.”

On May 13, Israel and Palestinian Islamic Jihad had reached an Egyptian-brokered ceasefire agreement following a five-day Israeli military onslaught against the people of Gaza. Although Palestinians fired some rockets into Israel, the death toll was lopsided.

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May 14, 2023

SCOTUS Case May Slash Regulation of Everything From Workers’ Rights to Clean Air

Overruling “Chevron deference” could imperil our health, safety, labor, air, water, food and environmental protections.

In an ominous but unsurprising development, the Supreme Court has agreed to hear a case that may well imperil our health, safety, labor, clean air and water, food and environmental protections. On May 1, the court decided to reconsider its 40-year-old precedent in the current case of Loper Bright Enterprises v. Raimondo.

This right-wing court, which demonstrated its disregard for legal precedent when it overruled Roe v. Wade, may now overturn the well-settled “Chevron deference.” Doing so would be consistent with the conservative fealty to deregulation in order to protect corporate profits.

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