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The Weekly National News Roundup | Shlomo Rudman

Biden Fighting with China, Russia – Joe Biden’s young presidency is already mired deep in several diplomatic crises, most notably with China and Russia. Biden earlier this week said that Russian President Vladimir Putin was a “killer” who would “pay the price” for meddling in US elections. Putin responded by saying “it takes one to know one” and challenged Biden to a live debate over the issues. The White House responded by saying that President Biden is too busy to engage in a debate with the Russian leader. And on Thursday, top Biden aides, including Secretary of State Antony Blinken, met with Chinese officials at a summit in Alaska, in a meeting that did not go well. Blinken attacked China for their record on human rights, particularly in Hong Kong and with regard to Uighur Muslims who have been placed in concentration camps, prompting Chinese diplomat Yang Jiechi to lecture Blinken and national security adviser Jake Sullivan on what he said was US hypocrisy. “Many people within the United States actually have little confidence in the democracy of the United States,” said Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi. “We believe that it is important for the United States to change its own image and to stop advancing its own democracy in the rest of the world.”

House Passes Bill to Give Illegal Immigrants Citizenship – The House of Representatives passed a bill this week to provide a path to citizenship for millions of illegal immigrants. The bill calls for temporary status to be given to illegals after they fulfill certain requirements, like passing a background check and paying taxes, after which they would be eligible to become citizens several years down the road. The bill is unlikely to pass in the Senate, where Democrats hold a razor-thin majority and will probably not be able to gain support for the bill from enough moderate Democrats. Republicans have pointed out that the ongoing crisis at the southern border, with hundreds of thousands of illegal migrants streaming through, makes the passage of such a bill ridiculous.

North Korea Rejects Talks with US – North Korea said it will not engage in any talks with the United States unless it withdraws its “hostile” policies aimed at the dictatorship of Kim Jong Un. “What has been heard from the U.S. since the emergence of the new regime is only a lunatic theory of ‘threat from North Korea’ and groundless rhetoric about ‘complete denuclearization,’” North Korean Foreign Minister Choe Sun Hui said, calling the offer for talks a “time-delaying trick.” The United States has attempted to begin a dialogue with North Korea going back to President Trump’s administration, but so far all attempts have been futile

Surplus Vaccines Going to Canada, Mexico – The White House announced this week that surplus AstraZeneca vaccines will be sent to Canada and Mexico to assist them in boosting their Covid vaccine efforts. “Our first priority remains vaccinating the U.S. population, but the reality is the pandemic knows no borders,” Press Secretary Jen Psaki told reporters. “Ensuring our neighbors can contain the virus is mission-critical to ending the pandemic.” Under the plan, which is not yet finalized, 2.5 million vaccines would be shipped to Mexico and 1.5 million to Canada.

Burns, Haaland, Becerra Confirmed – The Senate this week confirmed former diplomate William Burns to lead the CIA, Deb Haaland to be Secretary of the Interior, and Xavier Becerra to lead the Health and Human Services agency. Haaland is now the first Native American to become a member of a presidential Cabinet. She faced some stiff opposition for her radical climate stances. Becerra, who Republicans argue is not qualified for the position he is now in, also came under fire from Republicans for actions he took as the Attorney General of California, when he filed politically-motivated lawsuits against religious groups.

 

 

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