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The Weekly National News Roundup – By Shlomo Rudman

George H.W. Bush Laid To Rest – George Herbert Walker Bush, who served as the 41st President of the United States from 1988 to 1992, was buried Wednesday on the grounds of his presidential library in College Station, Texas, an area he called home for over 70 years. Preceding his burial, Bush was honored by the nation, with his casket lying in state in the Capitol building in Washington, D.C., and a memorial service attended by hundreds of dignitaries, including all living former US presidents, with eulogies delivered by lifelong friends as well as his son George W., who served as the nation’s 43rd president. Massive crowds lined the 70-mile route on which his body was taken by way of train to his final resting place.

Trump Names Sessions, Haley Replacements – On Friday, President Trump announced that Bill Barr, who served as Attorney General in the George H.W. Bush administration, was his choice to replace Jeff Sessions, who resigned last month at Trump’s request, as the nation’s top law enforcement official. President Trump, in announcing his pick for Attorney General, called Barr “a terrific man, a terrific person, a brilliant man”, and said Barr was his first choice for the job. Barr would be taking over the position from Acting AG Matt Whitaker, a highly controversial figure who has been leading the Justice Department and the Mueller probe since Sessions resigned.

President Trump also announced that State Department spokeswoman and former Fox News hostess Heather Nauert will be nominated to replace Nikki Haley as US Ambassador to the United Nations. Haley had recently announced that she would be stepping down from the position, with some speculating that she is positioning herself for a US Senate run. Trump called Nauert “very talented, very smart, very quick”, and an individual who would be respected by all at the United Nations. Nauert joined the administration in 2017 following her private sector job as a Fox News anchor. Her nomination will require approval from the US Senate.

US-China Trade War Truce – During a meeting at the G-20 summit in Argentina, President Trump and Chinese president Xi Jinping formally agreed to a 90-day ceasefire in the ongoing trade war between the two major world powers, in an effort to give negotiators time to hammer out a more permanent solution. The world leaders agreed not to place new tariffs and not to raise existing tariff rates. China has also agreed to label Fentanyl a lethal drug and prosecute those who distribute it. Investors worried this week about the truce holding up, as the US had Canadian authorities arrest and extradite Huawei chief financial officer Meng Wanzhou, for violating US sanctions on Iran. Huawei is a major Chinese technology company, and it is feared that the incident can topple the already tentative agreement.

Mueller: Flynn Shouldn’t Go To Jail – In a court filing released to the public, Special Counsel Robert Mueller recommended that former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn should not go to jail for his crimes, citing his substantial assistance relating to three ongoing investigations. Flynn had been in hot water for lying to the FBI about his contacts with then-Russian Ambassador to the United States Sergey Kislyak in 2017.

Military Commander Dead – Vice Admiral Scott Stearney, who commanded the Navy’s 5th fleet as well as the Naval Forces Central Command, was found dead in his home in Bahrain. An investigation by the Naval Criminal Investigative Service and the Bahraini Ministry of the Interior into the matter is ongoing, but no foul play is suspected. It is believed that Stearney took his own life. Rear Admiral Paul Schlise, who had been the deputy commander of the 5th Fleet, has taken over Stearney’sduties.

US Strikes Kill Prominent Taliban, ISIS Commanders – A US drone strike in Afghanistan killed top Taliban leader Mullah Abdul Manan and four other Taliban commanders who were with him. The strike killed Manan in the province in which he was the shadow governor, where he ran the Taliban’s narcotics smuggling operations. The Taliban said Manan’s death was a major loss for them, as Manan was a key person in their attempts to drive the Helmland province of Afghanistan away from the central government and into Taliban control.

A second US air strike killed ISIS militant Abu al-Umarayn, a tyrant who murdered several Western aid workers, and who was involved in the beheading of Peter Kassig, a former US Army Ranger who was serving as an aid worker in Syria. US Central Command confirmed the strike, saying al-Umarayn posed “an imminent threat to coalition forces” and noted his involvement in Kassig’s murder.

Economy Adds 155,000 Jobs – Numbers released by the Department of Labor showed the US economy adding 155,000 jobs last month. The numbers represent a slight slowing of the job market, as analysts had expected around 190,000 jobs to be added. The unemployment rate remained unchanged at 3.7%, with average hourly wages rising by 0.2%, with the year-over-year rise in hourly wages remaining at 3.1%. For what is now 98 straight months, employers have increased their payrolls. Even with the lower-than-expected numbers, the US economy is still adding an average of over 200,000 jobs per month for the year.

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