Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's highly anticipated comments, during a speech to his ruling party in Ankara, the Turkish capital, contradicted Saudi accounts that journalist Jamal Khashoggi was killed when an argument inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul escalated into a fistfight. Erdogan said the killing was a "planned" and "brutal" murder and called on Saudi Arabia to extradite 18 suspects to Turkey to face justice for the crime. He had promised to reveal the "naked truth" about Khashoggi's death but failed to do so. What happened?
US President Donald Trump declared himself a "nationalist" at a Texas rally last night. What in the world does this mean? Let's start with what nationalism means. Here's the definition, from Merriam-Webster: "a sense of national consciousness exalting one nation above all others and placing primary emphasis on promotion of its culture and interests as opposed to those of other nations or supranational groups." While patriotism, like nationalism, involves pride and belief in one's own country or values, it doesn't include the idea of promoting your values and culture as inherently superior to those of others. The roots of Adolf Hitler's rise were built around his emphasis on extreme nationalism. White nationalism, which reared its ugly head in Charlottesville, Virginia, last year, is organized under the principle that Caucasians are inherently superior, and in order for society to truly prosper, the agenda of whites need to be recognized as a first priority — at the necessary expense of anyone who isn't white.
The US Supreme Court has blocked a deposition of Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross in a case challenging the decision to reinstate a citizenship question on the 2020 census. The action is a partial victory for the Trump administration, which had argued such a deposition of a Cabinet official is "rarely if ever justified." It took five justices to grant the government's request. There was no recorded vote attached to Monday night's unsigned order. This is one of the first cases involving Justice Brett Kavanaugh and his view of the executive branch and presidential power. What does this say about the impact of the upcoming census? Challengers, led by New York's attorney general and groups such as the ACLU, charge that the Trump administration's real reason for adding the question was to reduce the representation of immigrant populations. A trial in the case is scheduled to start next month.
Daniel Lazare — Journalist and author of three books: The Frozen Republic, The Velvet Coup and America's Undeclared War.
Dr. Jack Rasmus — Professor of economics at Saint Mary's College of California and author of Central Bankers at the End of Their Ropes: Monetary Policy and the Coming Depression, who also writes at jackrasmus.com.
Leslie Proll — Civil rights lawyer, advisor to the NAACP on judicial nominations, former NAACP LDF Policy Director and former Alabama director of the US Department of Transportation.
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