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Monday, December 09, 2019 {{ new Date().getDay() }}


Trump’s Dangerous Ignorance About North Korea Negotiations

Reprinted with permission from

It was bad enough that Trump falsely claimed that North Korea had promised to “denuclearize” ahead of the upcoming summit. But when asked about it later, White House legislative affairs director Marc Short didn’t even know what the word meant.

Trump started off his Sunday morning attacking Chuck Todd for correctly saying that North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un has given up little in exchange for the high-level meeting.

“Sleepy Eyes Chuck Todd of Fake News NBC just stated that we have given up so much in our negotiations with North Korea, and they have given up nothing,” Trump wrote. “Wow, we haven’t given up anything & they have agreed to denuclearization (so great for World), site closure, & no more testing!”

Todd later interviewed Short, and tried to figure out what Trump was talking about. “Denuclearization. What does that mean to the president, and what do you think that means to the North Koreans?” Todd asked. “Do you think you guys agree on what that word even means?”

“I think from our perspective, it means full denuclearization,” Short said. “No longer having nuclear weapons that can be used in warfare against any of our allies.”

Todd is correct that North Korea has not made anything approaching a pledge to give up nuclear weapons, a fact which Short seemed to concede in his response. But even Short doesn’t know what the term “denuclearization” means in the parlance of nuclear diplomacy.

“Full denuclearization” refers not only to the possession of “nuclear weapons that can be used in warfare against any of our allies,” but also to the means of producing fuel that can be used in nuclear weapons, such as nuclear reactors.

That definition was codified in the 1992 Joint Declaration Of South And North Korea On The Denuclearization Of The Korean Peninsula, which says that both sides “agree not to test, manufacture, produce, receive, possess, store, deploy, or use nuclear weapons; to use nuclear energy solely for peaceful purposes; and not to possess facilities for nuclear reprocessing and uranium enrichment.”

Kim Jong Un has made neither of those pledges. Trump and his team are going into this historic summit unaware of what they’re asking for, let alone what North Korea is offering.

Trump has given Kim a major political victory just by agreeing to meet with him. But it looks highly unlikely that the United States will get anything in return, beyond more lies from Trump.

Fund To Defend Andrew McCabe Raised $250k In Six Hours

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Andrew McCabe, the former Deputy Director of the FBI who Trump and Attorney General Jeff Sessions vindictively fired days before retirement to prevent him from earning full pension benefits, has rapidly turned into a martyr for Trump’s pattern of interference in law enforcement.

Nothing illustrates this better than what happened when a GoFundMe was set up on Thursday to help McCabe pay the legal expenses to contest his firing.

The campaign initially sought to raise $150,000. But in a matter of hours they blew past that number and had to up the goal to $250,000. As of 8:30 pm ET, the campaign had raised over $250,000.

“The support for Mr. McCabe has been overwhelming, humbling, and deeply appreciated,” says the campaign. “He and his family continue to deal with the very public and extended humiliation that the Administration, and the President personally, have inflicted on them over the past year.”

And the GoFundMe is not the only showing of support for McCabe. Some congressmen, like Minnesota Democrat Rep. Tim Walz, who happens to be the highest-ranking soldier in Congress, and Wisconsin Democratic Rep. Mark Pocan have offered McCabe a job to save his pension.

Trump has had it out for McCabe since taking office, demanding “loyalty” from him and at one point demanding to know whether he voted for him. For months, Trump scapegoated and baselessly smeared McCabe former FBI Director James Comey’s decision not to prosecute Hillary Clinton for her email server.

Throughout his presidency, Trump has been trying to make himself out a victim of supposed FBI “Deep State” spying abuse. But the charges are so baseless that even Sessions has rejected the call to appoint a special counsel to look into it.

“Andrew McCabe’s FBI career was long, distinguished, and unblemished,” the GoFundMe says. “He embraced the most daunting, difficult, and important challenges that the FBI and the country could assign to him over the past 21 years. He served the United States with courage and distinction in the days following the President’s summary dismissal of former Director James Comey, in one of the most tumultuous periods in the Bureau’s history.”

“His reward for that,” continues the page, “has been a termination that was completely unjustified, amidst repeated ad hominem attacks by the President of the United States.”

The American people know that McCabe was given a raw deal. And that is why they are stepping up for him.