Pete Souza: The President hands his handkerchief to Nechamia “Chemi” Peres who had become emotional while listening to one of the speakers at a memorial service for his father, former Israel President and Prime Minister Shimon Peres, at Mount Herzl in Jerusalem
No mincing words. Killing the #IranDeal is a vote for war with Iran. Listen Bibi & Schumer: War with Iran erases the single obstacle to the total conquest of the Middle East by ISIS Sunni Extremists. How do we know this? One word, Iraq. If we think it’s bad enough that Iraq today is overrun by ISIS that we toil at great expense to reclaim; it will be a Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade compared to what the region will look like if we get embroiled in war with Iran.
We will in effect be acting as ISIS’ turbocharged cavalry and bombardiers. I repeat. We will be fighting ISIS’ war for them by demolishing their arch Shia enemy. More than a decade ago, America’s dangerous stupidity in waging the Iraq War created the vacuum that led directly to the rise of our worst nightmare; ISIS/ISIL. Now we will be both their cannonballs and fodder.
But our tunnel vision predated GWB’s Mid-East blunder in the maniacal miscalculations we made in backing Saddam Hussein against Iran during the Iran/Iraq War all because our fee fees were hurt about the ouster of the Shah in 1979 (not to mention the horror we committed in 1953). As surely as there exists the law of gravity, we nuked ourselves in the foot each and every time we dabbled in the Middle East by creating cancerous power vacuums as we zoomed in and out detonating blowback ordnance on our own heels.
The NeoCon cabal, their Military Industrial Complex puppetmasters, plus their myopic Democratic Party bedfellows may satisfy their immediate greed, but America will be crippled and isolated permanently in its hubris.
Jack Jenkins: More Than 180 Evangelical Leaders Endorse Obama’s Carbon Reduction Plan
More than 180 evangelical Christian leaders signed a letter this week backing President Barack Obama’s plan to reduce carbon emissions from power plants, the latest effort in a growing faith-based environmental movement to curb the effects of climate change. On Thursday, theologically conservative faith leaders sent a letter to President Obama endorsing the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) proposed Clean Power Plan (CPP),
a sweeping, historic project unveiled in June and set to be officially released next week. Signers of the letter, which was posted on the Evangelical Environmental Network’s website, framed their support in explicitly moral terms. “We see overcoming the climate challenge as one of the great moral opportunities of our time, a chance to fulfill the Great Commandments to love God, our neighbors, and ourselves,” the letter read. “It is God’s love that calls all of us to take on this challenge. That is why we write to offer our support and encouragement for your efforts to overcome the climate challenge.”
The Texas trooper who arrested Sandra Bland after a confrontation that began with a traffic stop was once cautioned about “unprofessional conduct” in a 2014 incident while he was still a probationary trooper, according to documents released Friday. The Texas Department of Public Safety released Encinia’s personnel file in response to a Freedom of Information Act request from The Associated Press. Encinia had been with the department for a little over a year. For the most part, his file was unremarkable. He received “competent” ratings in all of the evaluations that were released.
However, in an evaluation that covered September and October 2014, his supervisor noted that Encinia “was given a written counseling for unprofessional conduct … for an incident occurring while at a school in Austin.” The documents provided no additional details and a Department of Public Safety official did not return a phone call seeking comment Friday night. The evaluation goes on to say, “In the future, Trooper Encinia should conduct himself at all times in a manner that will reflect well upon himself, the Department, and the State of Texas. This supervisor will ensure that this is done by meeting periodically with Trooper Encinia.”
AP: Suspected Jewish Extremists Burn Palestinian Child To Death
Suspected Jewish assailants set fire to a West Bank home on Friday and burned a sleeping Palestinian toddler to death in an attack that drew Palestinian rage and widespread Israeli condemnation. The attack, which threatens to set off another violent escalation, shines a light on the growing lawlessness of extremist Jewish settlers that Israel is either unable or unwilling to contain. The extremists have for years staged attacks against Palestinian property, as well as mosques, churches, dovish Israeli groups and even Israeli military bases.
The attacks, known as “price tags” because they exact a price for Israeli steps seen as favorable to the Palestinians, have stirred fear in Palestinians and frustration among critics who say Israel has not done enough to quell the assaults. “This is a direct consequence of decades of impunity given by the Israeli government to settler terrorism,” said Palestinian official Saeb Erekat. “This is the consequence of a culture of hate funded and incentivized by the Israeli government and the impunity granted by the international community.”
Tara Culp-Ressler: Some Of The Videos Targeting Planned Parenthood May Be Illegal, Court Rules
An anti-abortion group that has so far released four inflammatory videos accusing Planned Parenthood of profiting from the sale of “aborted baby parts” will not be allowed to publish additional footage featuring a California company that facilitates fetal tissue donation, thanks to a temporary restraining order issued by the Los Angeles Superior Court. The court order issued this week blocks the Center for Medical Progress (CMP) from releasing video footage featuring employees who work at StemExpress, a biological company that partners with some Planned Parenthood clinics to help transfer fetal tissue donations to medical research facilities.
The unfolding controversy plaguing Planned Parenthood has been focused on this type of tissue donation, which CMP misleadingly characterizes as trafficking in baby parts. Planned Parenthood emphasizes that it’s simply helping patients who choose to donate fetal tissue, which can play a role in helping scientists develop treatments for degenerative diseases. The national women’s health organization has condemned CMP’s secret recordings for potentially violating the privacy of staff and patients at their clinics.
President Barack Obama meets with bicameral congressional leaders and the chairs and ranking members of congressional national security committees to consult with them about ongoing U.S. efforts to respond to the conflicts in Ukraine, Iraq, Gaza, Syria, and other issues, in the Cabinet Room of the White House. July 31, 2014. Photo by Pete Souza
All Times Eastern
10:00AM: President Barack Obama receives the Presidential Daily Briefing
1:00PM: Press Briefing by Press Secretary Josh Earnest and Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz
President Barack Obama greets four of the nine 2014 Kavli Prize laureates with representatives from the Kavli Foundation and other guests in the Oval Office. July 31, 2014 Photo by Pete Souza
Bradley Burston: I Live In Israel, In Iran’s Shadow. I Voted For Obama. I’m Glad I Did
I live in Israel. I live in the shadow of Iran. I hold American citizenship as well as Israeli. I pay taxes to both countries. I vote in the elections of each. In 2008 and 2012, I voted for Barack Obama. I’m glad I did. I’m glad not only because of landmark changes to America on his watch, not only because of moments of inspiration, of unexpected hope, of enfranchisement, of movement on issues long dismissed as immutable. I’m glad because I believe that no one but this president would have tried, and succeeded, to land a deal with Iran on nuclear weapons.
I believe that Barack Obama is making the best effort that anyone is, to keep my family safe from the possibility of an Iranian nuclear weapon. And what about Benjamin Netanyahu? Don’t I trust him? Don’t I trust him to keep us safe, to safeguard Israel’s vital interests, to keep war at bay? No. Not at all. Absolutely not. Barack Obama could have taken the easy way out, and ducked the most difficult foreign policy challenge of his presidency – a nuclear Iran. Instead, against all odds, against some of the most stringent pressures American politics can dish out, he has driven forward. Thank you, Mr. President, for this deal.
You doves think that a nuclear deal will empower reformers in Iran and turn it once more into the pro-American and pro-Israeli power it was under the shah. But sanctions relief may just give this regime a new lease on life. Iran’s people are perhaps the most pro-American and secular of those of any country I’ve been to in the Middle East. (On my last trip to Iran, I took two of my kids along, and Iranians bought them meals and ice cream, and served them illegal mojitos.) The public weariness with the regime’s corruption, oppression and economic failings is manifest. I would guess that after the supreme leader dies, Iran will begin a process of change like that in China after Mao died.
Look, even you admit that this is a flawed deal. So why risk it? As Rick Perry says, “No deal is better and safer than a bad deal.” We have a glimpse of what might happen. In 2003, Iran seemingly offered a comprehensive “grand bargain” to resolve relations with the United States, but George W. Bush’s administration dismissed it. Since then, Iran has gone from a tiny number of centrifuges to 19,000, getting within two months of “breakout” to a nuclear weapon. The point: Fulmination is not a substitute for policy, and a multilateral international agreement achieves far more protection than finger-wagging.
Michael McLaughlin: Officers Involved In Samuel DuBose Shooting Were Sued In Earlier Death Of Unarmed Black Man
Two University of Cincinnati police officers involved in a colleague’s recent fatal shooting of Samuel DuBose also were on hand for a 2010 struggle with a psychiatric patient who later died. Officers Eric Weibel and Phillip Kidd were among seven University of Cincinnati police officers and other officials named in a lawsuit alleging the wrongful death of Kelly Brinson, a 45-year-old mentally ill university hospital patient. Hospital staff summoned officers to help subdue Brinson, who became agitated when put in seclusion, according to court documents first reported by The Guardian. Kidd and Weibel gave written statements that they restrained Brinson, while another officer used a Taser stun gun on him.
Brinson went into cardiac arrest and died days later, the Cincinnati Enquirer reported. The Hamilton County coroner ruled Brinson died from natural causes. His family settled the lawsuit for $638,000. Both officers also were involved in the July 19 traffic stop that led to the death of DuBose. Kidd gave statements to investigators that he saw DuBose, 43, drive away and drag Officer Ray Tensing before Tensing shot the motorist. Weibel wrote in a report that Tensing’s uniform looked like he’d been dragged. Footage from Tensing’s body camera, however, appeared to show that DuBose wasn’t driving away when the officer shot him, as Tensing and Kidd had claimed.
Zeba Blay: How White People Sound When They Argue About Racism
On July 27, the Black Girl Dangerous Twitter account shared some hilarious — but also painfully accurate — examples of what white people sound like when they dismiss the experiences of people of color. Mia McKenzie, creator of the Black Girl Dangerous organization was behind the series of tweets, prefaced by noting, “I’ve been saying publicly for like four years that IDGAF what you think about shit you don’t experience.” She then described a series of ridiculous scenarios in which people speak about or disagree with experiences that they have no first-hand knowledge of.
House Democratic Leaders Joe Crowley, D-N.Y., and Steny Hoyer, D-Md., present a birthday cake to President Barack Obama during a meeting with the House Democratic Caucus at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., July 31, 2013. Photo by Pete Souza
President Barack Obama meets with from left: Rob Nabors, Deputy Chief of Staff for Policy; Kathryn Ruemmler, Counsel to the President; Treasury Secretary Jack Lew, and Chief of Staff Denis McDonough in the Rose Garden of the White House, July 31, 2013. Photo by Pete Souza
President Barack Obama greets HUD staff following remarks at the Department of Housing and Urban Development in Washington, D.C., July 31, 2014. Photo by Pete Souza
For those saying “technically, it could happen.” Because you know, Black people are supermen and superwomen who can break our spines in two places, crush our larynx, break our leg, and cause a brain bleed all while handcuffed (arms behind our backs) and lying face down in a van. Miss me with that BS
Freddie Gray, while handcuffed, managed to inflict injuries that no human being can inflict on themselves.
BREAKING: All Credibility.
Leonard Pitts is going to start writing a series of columns to answer the question posed to him by a 55 year-old white woman from Austin, TX who said she was heartsick about the police violence against unarmed African Americans and wanted to know what she could do. Today he reports what Rev. Tony Lee said in response. “Protests,” Lee told me in a telephone interview, “are one way that pushes people’s feet to the fire. Whatever the issue is, it’s brought to the forefront. But…there’s still need for people to do legislative advocacy, dealing with policy, whether it’s from the national to the local, showing people how to be engaged and [affecting] the policies that have such direct impact.”
All over the world – police brutality against minorities stays consistent
There is no pleading ignorance about nooses. When you use a noose against a Black person, everyone knows what you mean. Everyone one knows the threat, violence, and racism it represents. Everyone knows that you are terrorizing Black people
The father of two of three students shot to death in Chapel Hill on Tuesday says the shooting was a “hate crime” based on the Muslim faith of the victims. Chapel Hill police said Wednesday morning that a dispute about parking in the neighborhood of rented condominiums near Meadowmont may have led Craig Stephen Hicks to shoot his neighbors, Deah Shaddy Barakat, 23, and his wife Yusor Mohammad Abu-Salha, 21, and Abu-Salha’s sister, Razan Mohammad Abu-Salha, 19, of Raleigh. But the women’s father, Dr. Mohammad Abu-Salha, who has a psychiatry practice in Clayton, said regardless of the precise trigger Tuesday night, Hicks’ underlying animosity toward Barakat and Abu-Salha was based on their religion and culture.
Abu-Salha said police told him Hicks shot the three inside their apartment. “It was execution style, a bullet in every head,” Abu-Salha said Wednesday morning. “This was not a dispute over a parking space; this was a hate crime. This man had picked on my daughter and her husband a couple of times before, and he talked with them with his gun in his belt. And they were uncomfortable with him, but they did not know he would go this far.” Abu-Salha said his daughter who lived next door to Hicks wore a Muslim head scarf and told her family a week ago that she had “a hateful neighbor.” “Honest to God, she said, ‘He hates us for what we are and how we look,’” he said.