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Biden warns of a new pandemic and promises to end wars – UN speech

Joe Biden addressed the U.N. General Assembly for the first time as U.S. president. He declared that this is a decisive decade for the world, and promised to fulfill all of his country’s allied obligations.

Fighting the coronavirus

Biden began his remarks by mentioning the enormous global toll of the COVID-19 pandemic. The president noted that the U.S. has committed more than $15 billion to the global response to the coronavirus, sending more than 160 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine to other countries.

He pledged that on Sept. 22, at a U.S.-organized world summit on COVID-19, he would announce additional U.S. commitments to fight the coronavirus worldwide to advance it and take responsibility for concrete results in three key areas: save lives now, vaccinate the world and improve it.

The new pandemic

Biden called for efforts to prepare for the new pandemic that he said inevitably awaits the world.

“Will we work together to save lives, fight COVID-19, and take the necessary steps to prepare for the next pandemic as it comes, or will we fail to take advantage of all the tools at our disposal while new, more infectious, and dangerous options emerge?” – the U.S. president posed the question.

According to Biden, this choice must be made.


The U.S. is ushering in an era of “ruthless diplomacy” instead of “ruthless war” after the withdrawal of troops from Afghanistan, President Joe Biden said. Military force, he said, should be the last resort in the U.S. arsenal of methods.

“Instead of continuing to fight the wars of the past, we will focus our sights on directing resources toward the problems that are the keys to our collective future,” Biden said.

He specified that the world must focus on defeating the COVID pandemic, solving the climate crisis and shaping new rules in global trade, technology and countering threats from terrorism.

“We have ended the 20-year conflict in Afghanistan, and as we end this period of ruthless war, we are ushering in a new era of ruthless diplomacy – using the power of our aid to develop new ways to invest in inspiring people around the world, renewing and protecting democracy,” Biden added.

Climate change

During his speech, Biden called on world leaders to unite in the fight against climate change because “the climate crisis has no boundaries.”

“This year has also brought widespread death and destruction from a climate crisis that has no limits. The extreme weather events we have seen in all parts of the world – and you all know it and feel it – represent what the secretary-general rightly called a ‘code red for humanity,'” Biden told world leaders.

He recalled that scientists and experts tell the world that “we are fast approaching the point of no return, literally.

Fighting hunger around the world

During his speech, Biden announced that the United States will commit $10 billion to efforts to “end hunger and invest in food systems at home and abroad.”

“At a time when nearly one in three people around the world does not have access to adequate food, just last year the United States committed to bringing our partners together to address the urgent problem of malnutrition and ensure that we can sustainably feed the world for decades to come,” the U.S. president said.

A new cold war

Without mentioning any particular country, Biden said that the U.S. “will stand up for our allies and friends and resist attempts by stronger countries to dominate weaker ones.

At the same time, he stressed that the U.S. does not seek “a new Cold War or a world divided into hard blocks.”

“The United States is willing to work with any country that advocates peaceful solutions to common problems, even if we have serious disagreements in other areas, because we will all suffer the consequences of our failure,” the U.S. president said.

President Donald Trump bans most transgender people from military service

U.S. President Donald Trump releases an order banning most transgender troops from serving in the US military, but this new ban comes with some exceptions. How different is this ban is from the one that was announced by Trump last year?

Trump is scaling back so instead of saying that nobody who is transgender can serve in the military he’s saying that some can, there are a few exceptions. But that others cannot, specifically those exceptions are currently serving members of the military who were diagnosed with gender dysphoria after June of 2016. That is when the Obama administration’s policy on transgender people serving in the military came into effect.

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Police accuse three over toppled Confederate statue in Chapel Hill, North Carolina

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill police accused three people of violations related to the toppling of a statue of a Confederate soldier on campus, a university police spokesman said on Friday.

About 300 demonstrators gathered on Monday evening for a protest and march at the base of Silent Sam, a memorial erected in 1913 to soldiers of the pro-slavery Confederacy killed during the Civil War. Protesters pulled the statue down with rope, cheering as it lay face down in the mud, its head and back covered in dirt.

Each of the three people faces misdemeanor charges of riot and defacing of a public monument, university police spokesman Randy Young said in an emailed statement.

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What immunity does and doesn’t mean for Trump

Let me explain.

We’re talking about federal immunity, which can be one-off (proffer letter), a deal between the government and a witness (letter), or judge-granted (statutory). These gents presumably received letter immunity, which means prosecutors decided what they had to say about Cohen was worth not using it against them. It’s a strong variety of immunity, sometimes called “blanket immunity.” But it has limits.

You’re granted immunity with respect to what you disclose—and only what you disclose. Neither your testimony nor evidence that derives from it can be used against you, but you can still be prosecuted for unrelated charges, things you said nothing about. An immunized witness can even still face related charges if prosecutors can build a case independent of the information a witness provided on the condition of immunity, though it’s an ethically dodgy move.

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Tension between Trump, Sessions reaches pivotal point

The strained relationship between President TrumpDonald John TrumpAustralian prime minister Malcolm Turnbull ousted by party rivals CNN’s Cuomo clashes with Kellyanne Conway over Cohen hush-money payments Lawmaker who pushed to impeach Nixon: Trump ‘systematically’ abusing power MORE and Attorney General Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsLawmaker who pushed to impeach Nixon: Trump ‘systematically’ abusing power Corker: Sessions ‘owns’ Trump until he’s fired Grassley: Trump will tackle prison reform ‘soon after’ the midterms MORE may have finally reached its breaking point.

For more than a year, Trump has chided Sessions for his decision to recuse himself from the Russia investigation.

Sources close to the White House and Justice Department said they sensed the dynamic shift after former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen this week implicated the president in an illegal hush-money scheme shortly before the 2016 election.

DOJ officials have grown used to Trump’s attacks on Twitter, but Ian Prior, who until recently served as a spokesman under Sessions, said the highly public nature of the president’s latest barb prompted the attorney general to “stand up” for the rank-and-file employees he leads.

“The tweets are one thing, they’re kind of in their own universe,” Prior told The Hill. “When it’s an interview on national television questioning the effectiveness or integrity of the Department of Justice, it’s a different animal altogether.”

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