France’s Muslims Say New Separatism Law Targets Them (Alexandre Del Valle)

The French government is expected to soon unveil long-awaited anti-separatism legislation — with President Emmanuel Macron making a key speech on the subject next week. The details are still vague, but expectations are already strong and clashing — with the focus on France’s Muslim community, western Europe’s largest. Lisa Bryant reports for VOA from the French capital.

Camera: Lisa Bryant, Agencies

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Judge halts Trump administration order to remove WeChat from app stores

The WeChat app is seen among American flags

WASHINGTON — A U.S. judge early Sunday blocked the Trump administration from requiring Apple Inc and Alphabet Inc’s Google to remove Chinese-owned messaging app WeChat for downloads by late Sunday.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Laurel Beeler in San Francisco said in an order that WeChat users who filed a lawsuit “have shown serious questions going to the merits of the First Amendment claim, the balance of hardships tips in the plaintiffs’ favor.”

Her 22-page order added the prohibitions “burden substantially more speech than is necessary to serve the government’s significant interest in national security, especially given the lack of substitute channels for communication.”


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From Goldwater to Trump, the long history of ‘Law and Order’ politics

President Donald Trump is fond of blunt campaign slogans. In 2016, it was “Make America Great Again,” “Build the Wall,” “Lock her up!”

In 2020, it’s “Law and Order.”

With the presidential election barely two months away, President Trump appears to have settled on a defining theme for his campaign – one that has a deep and controversial history in American politics.

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Trump warns ‘shot’ Joe Biden won’t be able to stand up to foreign leaders

President Trump warned that former Vice President Joe Biden is “shot” and wouldn’t be able to stand up to the “world-class chess players” who lead other countries.

“Let’s face it, Joe’s shot,” Trump said during an interview Monday on “Fox & Friends.”

“You’re dealing with people that are very sharp. You’re dealing with world-class chess players in the leaders of these countries. I know them all. We do very well with all of them, [President Recep Tayyip] Erdogan of Turkey. You can’t have a guy that doesn’t know where he is. You can’t have a guy that’s afraid to leave his basement because he can’t speak any longer,” the president said.

Joe Biden (left) and Donald Trump


Coronavirus: how much is the world economy expected to shrink?

People on a street in Tokyo. March 18, 2020

he world economy is likely to face a long slog back from the coronavirus crisis.

Two reports this week predicted that global growth will struggle to bounce back from the lockdowns, travel restrictions and business closures meant to contain the pandemic.

IHS Markit said that it expects the world economy to shrink 5.5% this year, triple the damage it sustained in the 2008 financial crisis, and then struggle to regain traction.

“While growth in the hardest-hit economies may snap back briefly, the momentum will soon fade,’’ the London-based financial research firm warned.


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In China’s Crisis, Xi Sees a Crucible to Strengthen His Rule

China’s leader is using the country’s success — and the criticism against it — to urge the party and the people to weather tough days ahead.


Before an adulatory crowd of university professors and students, China’s leader, Xi Jinping, offered a strikingly bold message about the global coronavirus pandemic. Summoning images of sacrifice from Communist Party lore, he told them that the calamity was ripe with possibility for China.

“Great historical progress always happens after major disasters,” Mr. Xi said during a recent visit to Xi’an Jiaotong University. “Our nation was steeled and grew up through hardship and suffering.”



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We should be wary of our spooks’ complacency about Huawei

I might be feeling more confident about the government’s decision to give Huawei a limited role in building Britain’s 5G network, ‘on the advice of intelligence agencies’, were I not reminded of the effectiveness of British spooks by the recent appearances of Alexandre del Valle on French radio.

Del Valle is the author of numerous books on Islamism and the Middle East, a knowledge accrued over many decades, including a spell in the late 1990s working for France’s General Secretariat for Defence and National Security, an inter-ministerial body answering to the Prime Minister.

His latest book, The Project, explores how the Muslim Brotherhood has successfully spread across the West, and to promote the book he’s been giving a series of media interviews. One of them was a couple of days after Usman Khan’s murderous rampage across London Bridge. It was too soon to discuss that atrocity in detail but del Valle talked at length about how the French intelligence services despaired at Britain’s disastrous complacency towards Islamic extremism in the 1990s.

‘I remember talking to a member of MI5 when I was part of the intelligence-sharing network on terrorism,’ explained del Valle. ‘I was stupefied. Over the course of an … Read More

On Trump’s US Energy Dominance Doctrine

Zineb Riboua’s explanation highlights the importance of Trump’s US Energy Program in the shape of US’ domestic and foreign policy. She wrote :

President Donald J. Trump promised during his 2016 Campaign that he is eager to make the U.S. not only an Energy independent state but also a dominant one. Marking, therefore, the trait of his “Make America Great Again” slogan by promoting energy as a national security matter. U.S. presidents have always put in their political agendas a plan to make the United States energy-independent but couldn’t proceed entirely in establishing it for various reasons. As Ronald Reagan declared: “I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. The U.S. Geological Survey has told me that the proven potential for oil in Alaska alone is greater than the proven reserves in Saudi Arabia,”.

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