TRNS News Notes is brought to you by Victoria Jones. Victoria Jones is the Chief White House correspondent and global analyst of the Washington DC based Talk Radio News Service, where her insight and analysis are made available to over 400 news talk radio stations around the country and internationally.

Happy Triskaidekaphobia Day! It’s Friday the 13th

 

News Now
  • US forces killed Jihadi John: Report
  • Trump goes nuts on Carson, Iowa – and YOU
  • Obama to Turkey for G-20 summit
  • Secret Service officer nabbed: Sexting bust
  • Republicans: Immigration brawl:
  • Democratic debate: Saturday night for fighting?
  • Baby taken from lesbian foster parents: Gov puzzled
  • Students march over loan debt
 
US Forces Killed Jihadi John: Monitoring Group (Reuters, BBC, AP, me)
• U.S. forces have carried out an air strike targeting the ISIS militant “Jihadi John,” with a “high degree of certainty” he was hit. Mohammed Emwazi, the Kuwaiti-born British militant, appeared in videos of the beheadings of Western hostages (wonder if they behead people in heaven – oh wait – he’s going to the other place. that’ll sort him – if he’s dead)
 
• “A car carrying four foreign ISIS leaders, including one British jihadi, was hit by U.S. air strikes right after the governorate building in Raqqa city,” Rami Abdulrahman, director of the UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, said today. All the sources are saying it
[the body] is of Jihadi John but I cannot confirm it personally.”
 
• A U.S. official told the BBC Emwazi had been “tracked carefully over a period of time.” Another senior military source said there was a “high degree of certainty” he had been killed, while another source said: “It was a great hit.” But British PM David Cameron said this morning, “We cannot yet be certain that the strike against Jihadi John was successful.”
 
• A drone was used in the attack, according a U.S. official quoted by AP. A formal statement from the Pentagon stopped short of asserting that Emwazi had definitely been killed, adding that it was assessing the operation. The UK govt said it was “working hand in glove with the Americans” to “hunt down those murdering hostages.”
 
• Emwazi first appeared in a video last year, when footage was posted online showing the murder of U.S. journalist James Foley. He was later pictured in the videos of the beheadings of U.S. journalist Steven Sotloff, British aid worker David Haines and UK taxi driver Alan Henning, as well as American aid worker Abdul-Rahman Kassig and Japanese journalese Kenji Goto

 

• Kurdish fighters have reportedly taken the center of SInjar in northern Iraq, a day after launching an offensive to retake it from ISIS. The Kurdish offensive is supported by U.S.-led coalition air strikes. When it captured Sinjar last year, ISIS killed or enslaved thousands of members of the Yazidi religious minority. Meanwhile, the U.S. has increased airstrikes on ISIS-held oilfields in Syria (TRNS, BBC)
 
Trump Goes Nuts on Carson, Iowa – and US (WaPo, NYT, me)
• An hour and 35 minutes. GOP front-runner Donald Trump in Iowa Thursday night vented about everything that’s wrong with this country and this election. He said he would “bomb the shit” out of areas controlled by ISIS that are rich with oil and claimed to know more about the group than U.S. military generals. And on and on. Then he laid into Ben Carson – he lost it. Totally
 
• As Trump ranted on, the applause came less often and less loud. As Trump skewered Carson in deeply personal language, a sense of discomfort settled on the crowd of roughly 1,500. Several people shook their heads or whispered to their neighbors (i mean, it was – awkward. this is iowa. people are really gentle. it’s not E 23th st)
 
• Carson wrote in his autobiog that as a young man he had a “pathological temper” that caused him to violently attack others – going after his mother with a hammer and trying to stab a friend, only to have the blade stopped and broken by the friend’s belt buckle. In recent days, these accounts have been challenged (because they’re weird and no one backs them up)
 
• Trump (see video) said he doesn’t believe Carson and demonstrated how – he said – a belt buckle could stop a blade. He asked if anyone in the audience had a knife to test his theory. “How stupid are the people of Iowa? How stupid are the people of this country to believe this crap?” (has he read How to Win Friends and Influence People? oh wait – he has his own book…)
 
• “He said that he’s ‘pathological’ and that he’s got, basically, pathological disease… I don’t want a person that’s got pathological disease.” Trump said he didn’t believe Carson’s story of divine intervention in a toilet. “It doesn’t happen like that. Don’t be fools.” “If you’re a child molester – a sick puppy – a child molester, there’s no cure for that… Pathological? There’s no cure.”
 
• Raw vid: Pretty stunning stuff – Donald Trump rants about Ben Carson’s “pathological disease,” the belt buckle attack, and “how stupid” can Iowans be? (AP, me)
 
Obama to Turkey for G-20 Summit (AP, NYT, Bloomberg, me)
• As he prepares for a nine day trip to Asia, President Obama has published two op-eds and a letter to online business owners who use eBay to promote his new TPP trade agreement with 11 other Pacific Rim nations. And today, he hosts former SecsState James Baker III and Madeleine Albright at the WH to talk up the merits
 
• Obama will meet the leaders of the G-20 in Antalya, Turkey, on Sunday and Monday. The G-20’s mandate is to foster economic and financial stability. The Turkish govt’s agenda for the 2015 presidency refers to “strengthening the global recovery” but for many leaders attending, the summit will be dominated by the war in Syria
 
• Obama will huddle with the leaders of Germany, the UK, Italy and France on the sidelines of the summit next week in hopes of making “incremental progress” in the fight against ISIS, the WH said Thursday, though no major breakthrough is expected. Obama would have “ample opportunity for discussion” with President Putin, though no “formal meeting” was planned
 
• Another pressing theme is the refugee crisis in Europe, which has been inundated by hundreds of thousands of migrants in recent months – many of them from Syria. European leaders have struggled to develop a coordinated response. Asian countries have also been affected, a fact Obama intends to highlight during his visit
 
• Obama’s visits to Malaysia and the Philippines are aimed at bolstering his campaign to realign U.S. engagement overseas towards Asia. Aside from attending a trio of economic summits, Obama’s key goal is to promote the TPP. He also hopes to rally support for a global climate deal that world leaders hope to finalize in Paris within weeks

• Aung San Suu Kyi’s NLD party officially clinched victory in Myanmar’s historic elections, with a large – and growing – majority – in parliament (BBC)

 
Secret Service Officer Nabbed: Underage Sexting Bust (CNN, Atlantic, Daily Beast, me)
• Robert Lee Moore, 37, a Secret Service officer assigned to the WH, was arrested after he was caught in a sting sending naked pictures of himself to someone he thought was a 14-year-old girl from Delaware, according to a criminal complaint unsealed Thursday. Moore turned himself into the Maryland State Police Barracks on Monday
 
• The complaint details a series of online chats between Moore and a female Delaware State detective posing as a 14-year-old girl from Delaware. Moore is alleged to have sent naked photos of himself to the undercover officer and requested to meet in person to have sex (oh boy – do they vet these people?)
 
• When he turned himself in, Moore waived his Miranda rights. In an interview with law enforcement, he said he sent some messages while on the job at the WH, and admitted sending messages to what he believed was an underaged girl and other underaged girls on a mobile messaging service (so – put it about a bit)
 
• Moore was charged with the attempted transfer of obscene material to a minor – sentence of up to 10 years. In one chat session, Moore said: “work sucks today,” and said that he was “sitting at box office style booth checking ID’s for entrance into a building.” (OMG – I might have walked right by this guy, going into the WH, while he was “at it”)
 
• According to the complaint, Moore admitted taking a photo “depicting exposed, erect penis” and sending it to the cop – thinking she was a girl. In one chat, he said, “I would take immense pleasure in pulling those shorts off your hips and down your cute little legs.” He also instructed her how to masturbate him (you may be eating breakfast – not including that bit)
 
• President Obama awarded the Medal of Honor on Thursday to Captain Florent Groberg, who rushed a suicide bomber in Afghanistan in 2012 and saved perhaps dozens of American and Afghan lives at a devastating cost to his own, Groberg has spent much of the last three years recovering from 33 surgeries – please watch Army video and read his story (TRNS, (NYT, Army)
 
Republicans: Immigration Brawl! (Politico, Politico, AP, me)
• Immigration is IT in the GOP 2016 race right now. Sen Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and Sen Marco Rubio (R-Fla) are squabbling. “They fought tooth and nail to try and jam this amnesty down the American people’s throats,” Cruz said on the Laura Ingraham Show Thursday, speaking about the Gang of Eight senators, of which Rubio was a member
 
• Rubio, in South Carolina, hit Cruz from the right: “Ted is a supporter of legalizing people that are in this country illegally. In fact, when the Senate bill was proposed, he proposed legalizing people that were here illegally.” Cruz aide shot back: “Laughably FALSE. No one fought harder to prevent Gang of 8’s amnesty bill than Ted Cruz.” (both are backpedaling madly)

• Ben Carson told a tele-town hall audience in Arizona Thursday that the U.S.-Mexico border can be secured in a year (sure, ben). Double fencing, he said. He said people here illegally could stay as guest workers if they have “pristine” records, register and pay back taxes – and could only work in certain industries (that include brain surgery?)

• President Obama Thursday ridiculed Donald Trump’s proposal to use a “deportation force” to expel millions of undocumented immigrants. “Imagine the images on the screen flashed around the world as we were dragging parents away from their children, and putting them in what, detention centers, and then systematically sending them out.” (Politico)


 
 

• Desperate Sen David Vitter (R-La) – running for governor – has enlisted Duck Dynasty star Willie Robertson for an awkward TV ad that indirectly addresses Vitter’s past prostitution scandal. It’s all about redemption – and Vitter implies that Louisiana is in need of redemption, too – you been hanging out with whores, Pelican State?

 

Democratic Debate: Saturday Night for Fighting? (Politico, me)
• The second Democratic presidential debate will be Saturday 14 November, live from Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa. The debate will last two hours and begins at 9 pm ET. CBS News says no opening statements. Candidates have 60 seconds to respond, 30 seconds for rebuttals and follow ups and 60 seconds for closing statements. It’s on CBS TV and on CBS radio
 
• CBS News’ John Dickerson told the Des Moines Register he plans to focus on the economy – especially wages and income inequality. Even health care, education and retirement issues will revolve on the axis of finance
 
• After Lincoln Chafee and Jim Webb (remember them?) dropped out shortly after the last debate, there were three left on the island: Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders and Martin O’Malley (clinging to the seaweed). Clinton will stand center stage, flanked by Sanders and O’Malley
 
• Four moderators (gawd help us). Dickerson takes the lead (good). Also CBS News congressional correspondent Nancy Cordes. And two local journalists: KCCI’s Kevin Cooney and the Des Moines Register’s Kathie Obradovich. Cooney is a bit of a local news legend
 
• The fifth GOP debate is scheduled for Tuesday 15 December in Las Vegas – CNN / Salem Radio. The next Democratic debate is Saturday 19 December in Manchester, New Hampshire – ABC News, the New Hampshire Democratic Party, WMUR-TV and the Union Leader – O’Malley complained that it was a day that everyone would be shopping for the holidays (yes, prob)

• This ad is part of Bloomingdale’s new holiday catalogue – OMFG . A woman is laughing, head tossed back, focused on something over her shoulder. A man stares at her, unsmiling. Caption: “Spike your best friend’s eggnog when they’re not looking” – MEGA backlash online. Prompt apology from Bloomies. DoJ data: date rape one of the most commonly reported crimes
 

 
Baby Taken From Lesbian Foster Parents: Utah Gov Puzzled (AP, KUTV, me)
• A Utah judge who ordered a baby to be taken from her lesbian foster parents and placed with a heterosexual couple for the child’s well-being should follow the law and not inject his personal beliefs into the decision, Gov Gary Herbert (R) said Thursday. Herbert said he was puzzled by the ruling. “We don’t want to have activism on the bench.”
 
• Utah state officials are challenging the decision. Lesbian couple April Hoagland and Becky Peirce say the judge cited research that children do better when they are raised by heterosexual couples. Judge Scott Johansen is precluded by judicial rules from discussing pending cases, Utah courts spox Nancy Volmer said
 
• The ruling came during a routine hearing for the couple.They’re part of a group of same sex married couples who were allowed to become foster parents in Utah after last summer’s SCOTUS ruling that made gay marriage legal across the country
 
• The couple told KUTV that they’re distraught. The ruling calls for the baby girl who they’ve been raising for three months to be taken away within a week. “We are shattered,” Hoagland said. “It hurts me really badly because I haven’t done anything wrong.”

• Ashley Sumner, spox for Child & Family Services, said that the judge’s decision was based on the couple being lesbians. The agency isn’t aware of any other issues with their performance as foster parents

 

• The Missouri state university system on Thursday named as interim president Michael Middleton, an African-American, who was an undergrad, law school student, law professor, then administrator at Mizzou. Asked whether he had ever felt marginalized because of his race, he said, “Every day, in all three capacities.” (NYT)
 
 
Students March Over Loan Debt (Reuters, AP, me)
• Students held rallies on college campuses across the U.S. on Thursday to protest ballooning student loan debt for higher education and rally for tuition-free public colleges and a minimum wage hike for campus workers
 
• The demonstrations, dubbed the Million Student March, were planned just two days after thousands of fast food workers took to the streets in a nationwide day of action pushing for a $15-an-hour minimum wage and union rights for the industry
 
• In June Democratic 2016er Sen Bernie Sanders (I-Vt) said in an interview with Katie Couric that Republicans in Congress would be forced to tackle the student debt problem if a million young people marched on Washington (he was ambitious. no reason to assume that)
 
• Saddled with debt that can sometimes run into hundreds of thousands of dollars, many college graduates struggle to make payments amid an ailing economy and job market
 

• “The student debt crisis is awful. Change starts when people demand it in the street. Not in the WH,” said Elan Axelbank, 20, a third year student at Northeastern University, who said he was a co-founder of the national action

 

• Rocking into the weekend with Phil “Philthy Animal” Taylor of Motorhead doing a brilliant, short drum set. RIP. 61. Ridiculously young. Slash tweeted: “one of the best drummers in Rock n Roll.” Ozzy Osbourne called it a “terrible, terrible loss.”

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___________________
Victoria Jones – Editor

TRNS’ Loree Lewis contributed to this report

 

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