Category Archives: Ephemera

FEMA will stop distributing emergency food and water to Puerto Rico

Source: Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

“Four months after Puerto Rico was devastated by a pair of hurricanes, the Federal Emergency Management Agency said it will stop distributing food and water on the island beginning Wednesday, angering some who say Puerto Rico is far from recovered and in desperate need of more federal help, not less. FEMA said it will turn over all remaining supplies on the island to the Puerto Rican government and nonprofits for allocation, part of a transition from emergency response to recovery. The agency said that grocery stores and other businesses that sell supplies are now open and sufficiently stocked. Banks, ATMs and gas stations are also functional, agency officials said. The announcement angered many who said they believe FEMA has not provided a sufficient response to an island where about one-third of residents still lack power and, in rural areas, have difficulty obtaining clean water and food.” (01/31/18)

Report: Memo claims Rosenstein approved application to extend surveillance of Carter Page

Source: The Hill

“Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein approved an application last year to extend surveillance of former Trump campaign associate Carter Page, a secret Republican memo claims, The New York Times reported. According to the Times, which cited three people familiar with the memo, the FBI and Justice Department’s (DOJ) application was based partially on research by investigator Christopher Steele, who contributed to a dossier containing unverified claims about President Trump’s ties to Russia. The GOP memo alleges officials did not sufficiently explain their reasoning for extending the surveillance, it added. … Page served as Trump’s foreign policy adviser until September 2016. Congressional Republicans on Sunday pleaded their case for releasing the classified four-page memo, which was produced by staff for Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.), chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, based on classified documents provided by the DOJ and FBI. The memo is said to contain allegations that senior FBI officials abused a surveillance program to target the Trump campaign last year.” (01/29/18)

Syria: Turkey begins offensive against US-backed Kurdish forces

Source: The Hill

“Turkey’s military says it has begun attacking Kurdish-held positions in Syria‚Äôs Afrin region, including reportedly firing on positions held by a group that the U.S. has backed in the past. Reuters reports that the Turkish military fired on positions held by three Kurdish-majority groups including the YPG, a militia of Syrian Kurdish fighters that had been allied with coalition forces in the battle against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria. Turkey views the group as an extension of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party, which is considered by both Turkey and the U.S. to be a terrorist group. … A Turkish military leader told NATO leaders in Brussels this week that Turkey would not allow coalition forces to continue arming the YPG, according to Reuters.” (01/20/18)