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WATCH: Trump holds news conference from White House

Reprinted with permission from Alternet

When the White House announced President Donald Trump would hold a press conference in the Rose Garden on Friday, many political reporters held on to their seats. Trump's performances are often unpredictable whirlwind displays, filled with lies, distractions, and attacks.

Already this week, Trump had tweeted a video in which a supporter of his said: "The only good Democrat is a dead Democrat." And Twitter decided to obscure one of his tweets on Friday morning because he had written "When the looting starts, the shooting starts" — a clear threat of violence toward the protesters in Minneapolis.

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Reprinted with permission from TomDispatch.

There's a meme that appears now and then on Facebook and other social media: "Those who don't study history are doomed to repeat it. Yet those who do study history are doomed to stand by helplessly while everyone else repeats it."

That's funny. What's not is that the Trump administration and its coterie of China-bashers, led by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and aided by Arkansas Republican Senator Tom Cotton, have recently been dusting off the fake-intelligence playbook Vice President Dick Cheney used in 2002 and 2003 to justify war with Saddam Hussein's Iraq. At that time, the administration of President George W. Bush put enormous pressure on the U.S. intelligence community to ratify spurious allegations that Saddam Hussein was in league with al-Qaeda and that his regime had assembled an arsenal of nuclear, biological, and chemical weapons. Fantasy claims they may have been, but they did help to convince many skeptical conservatives and spooked liberals that a unilateral, illegal invasion of Iraq was urgently needed.

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