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The Daily Brief: Facebook Upholds Suspension of Former President Donald Trump’s Account

Story Headline: After the ban which was put into action following the January insurrection on the U.S. capital, an independent oversight board declared that it would continue to suspend his facebook account while waiting on Facebook’s decision for a clear and proportionate response.

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Facebook Upholds Suspension of Former President Donald Trumps Account
Gage Skidmore from Peoria, AZ, United States of America, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Summary:

  • The ban of former President Donald Trump’s Facebook and Instagram accounts as decided through an independent oversight board was moved to a continued suspension to be upheld for a conclusive time frame expected to be released in the coming weeks. 
  • The suspension was first put in place following the January 2020 insurrection on the United States Capitol, as Facebook found that Trump had “severely violated” the community standards after calling the rioters who breached the capital “great patriots,” calling it a day to remember “forever.” 
  • Although the decision was upheld by the board, it found that an indefinite suspension in response wasn’t  “clear” with a “published procedure,” urging Facebook to “apply and justify a defined penalty” instead of avoiding personal responsibilities and policies. 
  • The board also said that Facebook should “address widespread confusion about how decisions relating to influential users are made,” stating a list of recommendations including reviews on Facebook’s own part in electoral fraud which contributed to the January insurrection, contributing to deescalating potential future risks from equally influential users, and more. 
  • In a blog post, representative Nick Chegg, VP of Global Affairs and Communications, stated Facebook’s strong beliefs upholding their decisions as “necessary and right” and further declared their plans to determine “an action that is clear and proportionate” in fixing the “open ended nature of the suspension” while the accounts remain banned. 
  • A group of academics deemed The Real Facebook Oversight Board who formed together after the creation of Facebook’s current Oversight Board slammed the decision as being a “PR Stunt,” stating Trump’s actions should obviously lead to a ban from the website forever. Mark Zukerburg, CEO of Facebook, has also been met with heavy criticism for leaving the decision up to the Oversight Board. 
  • In response, Former President, Donald Trump stated his free speech rights had been violated, and the decision was “a total disgrace and an embarrassment to the country… These corrupt social media companies must pay a political price, and must never again be allowed to destroy and decimate our Electoral Process.”
  • Facebook remains as one of the social media websites undetermined in deciding how long the ban should last, unlike other sites such as Twitter, who have permanently suspended Trump’s accounts after the incidents early last year. 

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Sources

https://www.cnbc.com/2021/05/05/facebook-will-keep-trump-ban-in-place.html

https://about.fb.com/news/2021/05/facebook-oversight-board-decision-trump/amp/

https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2021/5/5/read-the-facebook-review-boards-trump-ban-recommendations

https://thehill.com/policy/technology/551804-facebook-to-continue-trumps-account-ban

Other Headlines

Abducted French Journalist Pleads For Help in a 21 Second Social Media Video

Karte Mali
Presse03, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons
  • French Journalist, Oliver Dubois, has been missing since April 8th after traveling to Gao, Mali.
  • In a 21 second social media video Dubois states “I’m Olivier Dubois. I’m French. I’m a journalist. I was kidnapped in Gao on April 8 by the JNIM (an al-Qaeda-linked group). I’m speaking to my family, my friends and the French authorities for them to do everything in their power to free me,”
  • This is the first instance of rebels taking French hostages since 2016 when French aid worker, Sophie Petronin, was abducted in Gao.
  • France denies paying direct randoms for any taken persons, however French citizens remain a major target for Malian kidnappings as they maintain the perception that France is willing to pay for safe release of abducted individuals.
  • Tweets:

The Pentagon Tracks Out of Control Rocket Headed Toward Earth’s Atmosphere 

The Pentagon DCA 08 2010 9854
Mariordo Camila Ferreira & Mario Duran, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons
  • The Chinese Long March 5B rocket is said to be out of control and heading toward Earth’s atmosphere around May 8th.
  • The US Pentagon says it will continue to track the rocket after concerns about landing debris.
  • Jonathan McDowell, an astrophysicist at the Astrophysics Center at Harvard University, said in regards to the rocket “I don’t think people should take precautions. The risk that there will be some damage or that it would hit someone is pretty small — not negligible, it could happen — but the risk that it will hit you is incredibly tiny. And so I would not lose one second of sleep over this on a personal threat basis, there are much bigger things to worry about.”
  • Tweets:

Hamas Leader Warns Israel over Evictions in East Jerusalem

Israeli police officers in Jerusalem on 28 July 2017 pic 2
Israel Police, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons
  • Hamas leader Mohammed Deif issued a rare public statement warning Israel of consequences if evacuations of Palestinians in Sheikh Jarrah continue.
  • In carrying out the evictions, Israeli police have used skunk water and physical aggression on protestors and residents. At least three Palestinians were arrested and left many injured.
  • Recently, Palestinians and Israeli forces have repeatedly clashed, with violent protests and demonstrations taking place over gatherings held during the month of Ramadan.

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Israel Opposition Leader Chosen to Form Coalition Government

Yair Lapid Israeli Minister of Finance in TASE
Yaniv Morozovsky, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons
  • President Reuven Rivlin of Israel has appointed opposition leader Yair Lapid to form a coalition government after Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was unable to do so by the deadline.
  • Prime Minister Netanyahu sought to gain support from the majority of parliament, but was faced with polarization that prevented compromise, an issue that Lapid is trying to fix by reaching even farther across the aisle to gain support from far right groups.
  • Prime Minister Netanyahu is currently undergoing corruption trials, but is likely to do everything in his power to prevent a coalition government from being approved, and thus keeping himself in power.

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All views expressed in this editorial are solely that of the author, and are not expressed on behalf of The Analyst, its affiliates, or staff.

Daily Brief

Credit Suisse Found Guilty for Involvement in Money Laundering Scheme

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800px Credit Suisse Zurich
  • Switzerland’s Federal Criminal Court found Credit Suisse, Switzerland’s second largest bank, guilty for its involvement in a money laundering scheme involving a Bulgarian drug trafficking gang.
  • The bank is being fined 21 million Swiss francs ($22 million) due to its poor monitoring and implementation of anti-money laundering rules. More than 12 million francs worth of assets are also being confiscated due to their connection with the criminal group.
  • Credit Suisse has denied any wrongdoings and stated that it has been “continuously testing its anti-money laundering framework and has been strengthening it over time, in accordance with evolving regulatory standards.”
  • This case originated from actions taken by a former employee in 2007 and 2008, and two other Bulgarian citizens’ actions in 2005 and 2009. Some of their sentences and fines were suspended due to the amount of time passed since the crimes took place.

All views expressed in this editorial are solely that of the author, and are not expressed on behalf of The Analyst, its affiliates, or staff.

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Daily Brief

Chlorine Gas Leak in Jordan Port City Kills Thirteen People

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Port Of Aqaba City
  • A gas leak in Aqaba, Jordan killed at least thirteen people and injured more than 250. A storage container carrying between 25 and 30 tonnes of chlorine gas fell as it was being exported to Djibouti, releasing the gas.
  • A video of the incident on state TV shows the container being dropped onto the deck of the ship and a yellow colored gas spreading through the air as people try to evacuate. The accident seems to be a result of the crane malfunctioning.
  • If chlorine is inhaled at high levels, it can cause life-threatening damage. A nearby beach in Aqaba was evacuated as a safety precaution, and residents who live in the nearest residential area, about 25 kilometers (15 miles) away, were advised to stay inside and close windows.
  • Jordan’s Prime Minister Bisher al-Khasawneh traveled to Aqaba and visited some of the injured at the hospital. He also formed a team led by the interior minister to investigate the incident.

All views expressed in this editorial are solely that of the author, and are not expressed on behalf of The Analyst, its affiliates, or staff.

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Daily Brief

Russian Missile Sets Ukraine Shopping Center on Fire

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781px Nevsky Centre Shopping Mall in Russia
  • A busy shopping center in Ukraine was set on fire by Russian missiles on Monday, killing at least thirteen people and injuring dozens. The total number of casualties is still unknown.
  • Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky stated that “The number of victims is impossible to imagine” and that there could have been up to 1,000 people in the mall.
  • The attack came during the G7 summit, where world leaders condemned recent atrocities and promised to support Ukraine “for as long as it takes” in a joint statement. President Zelensky spoke to the leaders at the summit and stated that he wants the war to end before winter.
  • NATO has decided to increase the number of troops in its rapid reaction force from 40,000 to 300,000, more than eightfold. NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg stated this move is part of the “biggest overhaul of collective defense and deterrence since the Cold War.”
  • The United States has announced that it will provide Ukraine with advanced medium and long-range air defense capabilities.

All views expressed in this editorial are solely that of the author, and are not expressed on behalf of The Analyst, its affiliates, or staff.

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Daily Brief

World Watches as the United States Supreme Court Abolishes a Woman’s Right to an Abortion

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Defend Roe v Wade 0035 52061678896
  • The United States’ top justices voted to eliminate the constitutional right to an abortion, a law that had been in place for over 50 years.
  • The closely watched decision was heralded by some and derided by others, depending on their position on the controversial concept of a woman’s right to choose for her own body.
  • With the abolition of the constitutional right, it is expected that many states in the U.S. will implement near total bans of abortion rights, while other states such as California, Oregon and Washington have reaffirmed their commitment to preserve the right to an abortion.
  • Planned Parenthood, the advocacy face for abortion rights, is mobilizing around the country to bolster and increase services in those states that will preserve the right, and engage voters in those states that plan to abolish the right.

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All views expressed in this editorial are solely that of the author, and are not expressed on behalf of The Analyst, its affiliates, or staff.

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Daily Brief

The EU Approves Ukraine for Candidacy

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Munster Stadtweinhaus Beflaggung Ukraine und EU 2022 0219 scaled
  • The EU has finally approved the application of Ukraine to become a candidate country for admission to the 27- country organization. Ukraine will now join the official candidate list, which already includes Albania, the Republic of North Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia, and Turkey. 
  • The US is expected to provide an additional $450m in security assistance to Ukraine. Which includes four more High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems. 
  • The EU and Norway have agreed to cooperate and provide the EU’s 27 countries with gas from Western Europe’s biggest provider. The EU imports roughly ⅕ of its gas from Norway compared to the 40% it was receiving from Russia. Currently, Russia has been cutting gas supplies to countries refusing to pay for it in roubles. 
  • Melbourne is considering utilizing its largely vacant $200m Center for National Resilience building to house hundreds of refugees fleeing war-torn Ukraine and Afghanistan. The center will only be able to temporarily house about 500 refugees from Afghanistan and about 200 from Ukraine. 
  • Ukrainian Defense Minister Oleksii Reznikov thanked US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin after receiving and welcoming the High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems (HIMARS) from the United States. 
  • Nike joined other leading Western brands by formally making a full exit from Russia, three months after suspending its operations. Telecoms equipment maker Cisco is also planning to wind down business in Russia and Belarus as well.

All views expressed in this editorial are solely that of the author, and are not expressed on behalf of The Analyst, its affiliates, or staff.

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Daily Brief

US Supreme Court Expands Gun Carrying Rights Causing National Outrage 

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Open Carry of a 9mm Browning Hi Power in Eagle Colorado scaled
  • The US Supreme Court expanded gun carrying rights after a New York law denied the plaintiffs Robert Nash and Brandon Koch from carrying a concealed weapon in public, despite them having licenses for recreational gun ownership. 
  • The US court ruled that the New York law requiring residents to prove “proper cause” to carry a concealed weapon is unconstitutional. Justice Clarence Thomas, who represented the 6 justices who ruled in favor of the decision, stated that Americans have the right to carry “commonly used” firearms in public for personal defense. 
  • This decision comes amid an intense national debate over gun violence, and could possibly challenge the  outcome of similar regulations in other states, such as California and New Jersey, and affect a quarter of Americans by allowing more people to carry guns legally. 
  • Three liberal justices, Elena Kahan, Sonia Sotomayor, and Stephen Breyer, were against the majority decision, and Justice Breyer noted that “since the start of this year alone (2022), there have already been 277 reported mass shootings – an average of more than one per day.”
  • While the National Rifle Association (NRA) celebrated the judgment, President Biden stated that he was “deeply disappointed” by the court’s decision and that the ruling “contradicts both common sense and the Constitution, and should trouble us all.” 
  • New York Mayor Eric Adams also agreed with Biden and stated that he would review other ways to restrict gun access by restricting the application process for buying guns and looking into bans of firearms at specific locations. 

All views expressed in this editorial are solely that of the author, and are not expressed on behalf of The Analyst, its affiliates, or staff.

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