News Wrap: Anonymous official’s book says Trump is unfit to lead

News Wrap: Anonymous official’s book says Trump is unfit to lead


In the day’s other news: A new book paints
President Trump as unfit to be commander in chief, and claims that senior officials considered
resigning last year in protest. The author is the same anonymous administration
official who wrote last year of internal resistance to the president. The Washington Post reports that the book
says — quote — “Mr. Trump stumbles, slurs, gets confused, is easily irritated, and has
trouble synthesizing information.” The White House has dismissed it all as lies. Former White House strategist Steve Bannon
testified today that one of the president’s longtime confidants, Roger Stone, was a — quote
— “access point” to WikiLeaks. The anti-secrecy group released e-mails that
damaged Hillary Clinton’s 2016 campaign. Bannon was subpoenaed to appear as a witness
in Stone’s federal criminal trial. Stone is charged with witness tampering and
with lying to Congress. In Iraq, the leading Shiite cleric, Grand
Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, appealed for the government to stop using violence against
protesters. But the day brought more chaos to the southern
city of Basra, where security forces fired tear gas to disperse crowds. New clashes also broke out in Baghdad. MAN (through translator): We call for reforms,
security, good living conditions for all citizens in Iraq. Corruption is rampant everywhere. The security forces are firing live ammunition. JUDY WOODRUFF: Elsewhere, Iraqi security officials
said that 17 rockets hit an air base that houses American troops near Mosul. There were no reports of casualties. Tensions spiked in Northeastern Syria today
when a Turkish military vehicle ran over and killed a protester. He was among a group who chased and pelted
a joint Turkish-Russian patrol with stones. The patrol was aimed at keeping Kurdish fighters
away from the Turkish-Syrian border. Brazil’s former President Luiz Inacio Lula
da Silva walked free out of prison today. The leftist leader’s supporters greeted him
outside. His release follows a Brazilian Supreme Court
ruling allowing inmates to remain free while they appeal their convictions. Da Silva, commonly known as Lula, is appealing
a corruption and money-laundering case that put him behind bars in 2018. U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo challenged
NATO nations today to spend more on their common defense, in the face of Russian and
Chinese challenges. He spoke in Berlin, Germany, helping to commemorate
tomorrow’s 30th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall. MIKE POMPEO, U.S. Secretary of State: As we
celebrate, as we take this victory lap, we must also recognize that freedom is never
guaranteed. We spoke to this. It doesn’t just happen. Today, authoritarianism is just a stone’s
throw away. It’s rising. And if — if we’re honest, it never really
went away completely. JUDY WOODRUFF: Pompeo also unveiled a statue
of President Ronald Reagan at the U.S. Embassy in Berlin. It overlooks the site of Reagan’s 1987 speech
demanding the Soviets tear down the wall. We will return to the anniversary after the
news summary. There was new unrest in Hong Kong today, after
a university student died of injuries that were suffered during an anti-government protest. He had fallen from a parking garage early
Monday when police fired tear gas. It was a rare fatality in the five months
of protests, but activists rallied to condemn police tactics and demand justice. Later, thousands of mourners gathered at the
garage to pay their respects. Back in this country, federal health officials
report a possible breakthrough in vaping-related illnesses that have sickened more than 2,000
people. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
says that a substance called vitamin E acetate turned up in the lung fluid of 29 patients. It is used in vaping products sold on the
black market. Researchers may need animal studies to prove
that the compound is actually causing lung damage. And in economic news, lingering trade tensions
caused China’s exports to the U.S. to fall 16 percent last month over the year before. Meanwhile, U.S. sales to China were down 14
percent. Stocks still managed modest gains on Wall
Street today. The Dow Jones industrial average inched six
points higher to close at 27681. The Nasdaq rose nearly 41 points, and the
S&P 500 added eight.

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