President Barack Obama talks on the phone in the Oval Office with Secretary of State John Kerry regarding the situation in Turkey, July 15, 2016. Chief of Staff Denis McDonough and Avril Haines, Deputy National Security Advisor, listen. Photo by Pete Souza
Vladimir Putin’s Excellent Syrian Adventure was all fun and games so long as he was hitting Bashar al-Assad’s enemies (which rarely meant Daesh until that group downed a Russian airliner) and those enemies couldn’t fire back.
However, Russian pilots had the unfortunate habit of straying into Turkish airspace. This was understandable, as the air space in the war zone was rather tight. But the Turks warned Russia after the last incident that another violation of their airspace would bring about a response.
Today, a Russian jet again strayed into Turkish airspace. According to Turkey and the coalition command in Baghdad, Turkey warned the Russian plane ten times to leave its airspace. The Russians either didn’t hear the warnings, or ignored them, at which point Turkey downed the Russian jet. The pilots ejected, but didn’t survive. (The details of their deaths are still sketchy, but it seems that Syrian rebels shot them down.)
President Barack Obama speaks to the media during his closing press conference on day two of the G20 Turkey Leaders Summit
(L-R) Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi, Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel, U.S President Barack Obama, British Prime Minister David Cameron and French Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Development Laurent Fabius talk during a round table meeting on day two of the G20 Turkey Leaders Summit on November 16, 2015 in Antalya, Turkey
First Lady Michelle Obama greets Gloria Estefan in the Diplomatic Room of the White House during a Broadway at the White House event for high school students involved in performing arts programs
First Lady Michelle Obama speaks about last Friday’s attacks in Paris
First Lady Michelle Obama dances to Gloria Estefan’s “Conga” with actor Josh Segarra and choreographer Sergio Trujillo
President Barack Obama takes the stage to deliver remarks on housing and home ownership at Desert Vista High School in Phoenix, Ariz., Aug. 6, 2013. Photo by Pete Souza
All Times Eastern
12:30PM: Press Briefing by Press Secretary Josh Earnest
2:10PM: President Obama holds a video conference to commemorate the 50th Anniversary of the Voting Rights Act. Congressman John Lewis and Attorney General Loretta Lynch will join him. It will be live streamed at WhiteHouse.gov/VotingRightsAct
The U.S. has begun conducting air strikes over Syria from a base in southern Turkey wapo.st/1MP3RZR
Missy Ryan: U.S. Conducts First Islamic State Strike Launched From Turkish Soil
The United States has begun conducting airstrikes over Syria from a base in southern Turkey, the Pentagon said Wednesday, opening a new front in the Obama administration’s air war against the Islamic State. Capt. Jeff Davis, a Defense Department spokesman, told reporters at the Pentagon that a U.S. drone had hit an Islamic State target in Syria on Tuesday. He declined to say exactly where the strike took place or whether it was successful. The beginning of combat flights from Incirlik Air Base is a sign of deepening U.S.-Turkish cooperation against militants in Syria, where the expansion of the Islamic State poses a growing threat to Turkey and the West.
Christopher Ingraham: Americans Say Racism Is A Bigger Problem Today Than At Any Point In The Past 20 Years
Half of Americans — exactly 50 percent — say racism is a “big problem” in this country, according to a fascinating new Pew poll released today. That’s up an astonishing 17 points since the last time pollsters asked this question in 2010. And it represents the highest level of concern about racism in this country in at least 20 years. So what’s changed? In a word: Ferguson.
And of course, everything that’s followed since. The Pew numbers reflect some of this. Americans are divided on the extent of the racism problem in this country. 73 percent of blacks call it a big problem, compared to 44 percent of whites. Democrats (61 percent) are also considerably more likely to see a major problem than Republicans (41 percent).
Nearly one year after Michael Brown was shot dead by a police officer in Ferguson, Missouri, a new poll shows a growing number of people believe there’s much to be done before black lives will be valued as much as others. Fifty-nine percent of Americans now believe changes are needed to give African-Americans equal rights, according to a Pew Research Center poll released on Wednesday. That’s up from 46 percent in a Pew poll just last year, before Brown was killed by officer Darren Wilson on Aug. 9, setting off a series of demonstrations and fueling the Black Lives Matter movement.
The poll saw increases in the number of blacks, whites and Hispanics who felt more changes were needed. In 2014, only 39 percent of whites said more needed to be done. In 2015, that number jumped to 53 percent. For blacks, the numbers increased from 79 percent to 86 percent, and for Hispanics, 54 percent to 70 percent. The Pew poll comes after a year of heightened Black Lives Matter activism, including numerous rallies, die-ins and acts of civil disobedience.
President Barack Obama delivers remarks during the U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit at the U.S. Department of State in Washington, D.C., Aug. 6, 2014. Photo by Pete Souza
First Lady Michelle Obama and former First Lady Laura Bush participate in a symposium on advancement for women and girls in Africa, with U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit spouses at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C., Aug. 6, 2014. Photo by Amanda Lucidon
President Barack Obama walks with Gen. Martin Dempsey, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, on the South Lawn of the White House upon returning from the U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit at the U.S. Department of State in Washington, D.C., Aug. 6, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza
First Lady Michelle Obama watches a performance during a symposium program on advancement for women and girls in Africa, with U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit spouses at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C., Aug. 6, 2014. Seated with her, from left, are: Constancia Mangue de Obiang, First Lady of Equatorial Guinea; former First Lady Laura Bush; Sylvia Bongo Ondimba, First Lady of the Gabonese Republic; and Tina Tchen, Chief of Staff to the First Lady. Photo by Amanda Lucidon
President Barack Obama joins Jay Leno for a taping of the “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno” in Burbank, Calif., Aug. 6, 2013. Photo by Pete Souza
President Barack Obama autographs a banner following his remarks on the economy at Gelberg Signs in Washington, D.C., Aug. 6, 2010. Photo by Pete Souza)
“At the annual State of the Union address at the U.S. Capitol, Chuck Kennedy captured this poignant moment between the First Lady and U.S. Army Ranger Sgt. First Class Cory Remsburg. Cory first met the President in 2009 at a D-Day ceremony in Normandy. Four months later, Cory was badly injured in Afghanistan and in a coma for three months. In early 2010, shortly after Cory came out of his coma, the President happened to be visiting patients at Walter Reed Hospital. As he walked into one of the patient’s rooms, hanging on the wall was a photo I had taken of the President and Cory in Normandy. The President then realized that he had met this badly injured Army Ranger at Normandy. Two years later, we were visiting Arizona, where Cory had gone home to further recuperate. The President asked if Cory would be able to greet him backstage. Amazingly, Cory was able to salute the President and walk across the room aided by a walker to shake hands with the President.” (Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy)
February 4, 2014
“Members of Congress vie for the President’s attention following a meeting with the House Democratic Caucus in the East Room of the White House.” (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)
“The President talks with some of his national security advisors before a phone call with Russian President Vladimir Putin about the situation in Ukraine. I’m sure there will be people quick to comment about his wearing casual clothes and having his feet on his coffee table. Let’s keep perspective in mind: it was a Saturday, and a President is the President whether he’s wearing a suit on a weekday or casual clothes on a weekend. And a President, any President, isn’t disrespecting the office if he puts his feet on a table or a desk; he’s just being relaxed.” (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)