Buhari's Dictatorial Past and the Rule of Law Today in Nigeria

CC™ Perspective - By John Campbell

In the immediate aftermath of the State Security Service’s invasion of an Abuja court room and its re-arrest of Nigerian journalist Omoyele Sowore, the Lagos newspaper the Punch announced that it will prefix President Muhammadu Buhari’s name with his military rank, Major General, and will refer to his administration as a “regime,” until “they purge themselves of their insufferable contempt for the rule of law.”

In its announcement, Punch draws parallels between Buhari’s government and his “ham-fisted military junta in 1984/85,” when he was military chief of state. For Punch the “regime’s actions and assaults on the courts, disobedience of court orders and arbitrary detention of citizens reflect the true character of the martial culture.” The Punch announcement also attacks the military and the police because they “fail to understand that peaceful agitation and the right to associate are fundamental rights.”

In addition to Sowore, Punch refers specifically to the detention of the leader of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria, Ibrahim el-Zakzaky, and his wife, and of former National Security Advisor Sambo Dasuki, all in violation of various court orders. It also refers to various governors that have sought to curtail media freedom and the right to demonstrate. Punch claims to be the largest circulation daily in Nigeria. In addition to the daily, it publishes Saturday PunchSunday PunchPunch Sports Extra, and digital platforms, of which the best known is

During the period of military rule, Punch was known for its democratic and human rights activism. The military closed it three times and imprisoned its editor and deputy editor. It remains to be seen how the Buhari government will respond. The newspaper is based in Lagos, and it and its readership has long been critical of northern Nigerian governance. Its criticism of Buhari is not surprising, but it is worth noting that Zakzaky and Dasuki are both northern Muslims. What is different this time is the parallelism between military rule and Buhari’s civilian administration. Buhari’s supporters are likely to find the Punch stance infuriating. Nigeria’s foreign friends will be hoping that the government takes no move to limit Punch’s freedom of expression. The SSS assault on a court room and the re-arrest of Sowore has already damaged the country’s international reputation.

Source: Council on Foreign Relations 


A new year and a brand new decade filled with great promises ahead.....

By Editor-in-Chief

Regardless of what 2019 may have brought for you, as you head into the New Year (and a New Decade as well), resolve to do one thing - promise yourself that this year will not be just another year, but in-fact, a year where all your dreams and aspirations will begin to manifest, yes, a New Year indeed and not just another year!

It is true that we have what we say and if you must change your life for the better, you must decide to begin to make positive confessions over your life and that of those around you, regardless of what others around you may say.

While I will promise not to preach in this article, it is important to note that the tongue is the most powerful organ in the body and it can either breathe life or death into your existence, as a function of how you use it. Make sure you always see your cup as not just half-full, but overflowing with the best of Heaven's best!

No one can stop you from accomplishing your dreams once you have made up your mind to succeed!

Do not listen to those who tell you something contrary to what you believe for yourself. They are merely agents of the devil and as we know too well, the devil is a liar! Not only is he a liar, he is also a loser and a defeated foe!

As we enter into this great year, as well as a brand new decade, strive to set realistic but exceptional goals for yourself and your family. You must also resolve to improve your spiritual and emotional intelligence.

To quote the General Overseer of the Mountain of Fire and Miracles Ministries, Dr. D.O. Olukoya, there are five large "universities" in the world where people are currently enrolled - University of Ignorance, University of Fear, University of Oppression, University of Confusion and the University of Failure.

I decree that you shall not be enrolled in any of the afore-mentioned "institutions" and that if you are currently enrolled in them, you shall be expelled by fire, in the name of Jesus!

I wish you all a Happy and Prosperous New Year and welcome you on this great journey with your irreversible enrollment in the University of Divine Prosperity and Abundance!

May God Bless you all!


Boko Haram: You goofed by removing Ihejirika, Nnamdi Kanu carpets Jonathan

CC™ Introspective - By Chimaobi Nwaiwu

The leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra. IPOB, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, stated recently that the greatest mistake made by former President Goodluck Jonathan was the removal of the former Chief of Army Staff, Lt Gen Azubike Ihejirika. He is right. Boko Haram is a creation of the Northern establishment and they are the main benefactors of the terrorist group. 

Nazi Kanu alleged that the North formed Boko Haram insurgents to fight former President Olusegun Obasanjo and Dr Jonathan during their respective administrations.

While according to him Obasanjo summoned the courage to deal with the leadership of Boko Haram, before Jonathan took over, Jonathan had the opportunity of dealing with them but was deceived into removing Ihejirika. As proof of the Northern establishment backing of Boko Haram, there was a call in 2014 for General Ihejirika to be dragged before the International Criminal Court at the Hague

According to Kanu, when the North saw that Ihejirika was mercilessly dealing with the Boko Haram insurgents, their creation, they put pressure on Jonathan to remove him and Jonathan succumbed to their pressure and today, the terrorist have taken the fight against Jonathan to his village in Otueke, Bayelsa State.

“This is just the beginning, many more attacks will cone for him irrespective of Buhari’s assurance to him that there is no cause for alarm, that attack was their advanced party, the terrorist are in Army and Police uniforms, they are doing this in order to retain power and remain relevant”

Mazi Kanu also alleged that Abba Kariyi and El Rufai are being used to deal with Alhaji Bola Tinubu because he has shown interest to be President of Nigeria.

According to Kanu, the North used Tinubu to destroy Yoruba land, while giving him wrong impression that they love him, but he did not understand that they were just using him to run an errand and now they have suddenly in completing the errand they want him for they are gradually dumping him and throwing up El Rufai as the successor to Buhari.

The IPOB leader said that it is the responsibility of his group to liberate Biafrans and Nigerians who want to know the truth about the alleged deceptive Fulani cabal that is controlling Aso Rock, adding that IPOB will never abdicate the responsibility, neither will anybody or group divert its attention.

“Biafra will come and I am proclaiming today that Biafra is the kingdom we are looking for, God has abandoned Nigeria and is angry with the country because its present deceitful leaders who are only interested in empowering one ethnic group to the detriment of others.

They are using Islam to destroy Nigeria, they have taken over other parts on Nigeria, but we assure them that they will not find a foot in any part of Biafra land, let them continue to conquer where they are busy conquering but they will never set a foot in any Biafra land and succeed.

Biafra blessing goes with them, wherever Biafrans go, they will be established in the land of the living because of God's love and blessing for them, nobody can divide Biafra, not even the treacherous British government that hate Biafrans with passion and have been conniving with the enemies to try to pull us down.

“They are deceiving many people with one Nigeria, but I assure you that Nigeria can never be one because they are not made to be one, there is nothing binding Nigeria together except corruption, we have nothing in common, Biafrans are different people and can never be one with Nigeria.

“That is why since 1945, they have been fighting to drag us down, but thank God, they have not succeeded and will never succeed, there is no way we can agree on anything except on total liberation.


U.S. travel ban on Nigeria, ill conceived — Lai Mohammed

President Buhari has failed in his pledge to defeat Islamic terrorists
CC™ Nigeriaworld

The federal government says the speculated plan by the U.S. to add Nigeria to its existing list of visa  travel ban countries is ill conceived.

The Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, stated this on Monday in London during an interview session with the media.

The minister is in London to officially engage with international media and other think tank.

Mr Mohammed said although the report is speculative, but if it turns out to be true the government will respond comprehensively.

“On the issue of the travel ban our position is that it is still speculative because we are yet to be communicated. When we are communicated we will respond comprehensively.

“However, in our view it was not well thought out but based largely on negative narratives spread by naysayers.

“I know that we are working very well with our neighbours to ensure that terrorism is addressed. We are working with the international community including the EU and the U.S.

“Our advice to the U.S. is that it should have a rethink on the issue because any travel ban is bound to affect investment and growth in the country and those who will be affected are the most vulnerable people in Nigeria,” he said.

It was recently reported that the Donald Trump administration planned to add Belarus, Eritrea, Kyrgyzstan, Myanmar, Nigeria, Sudan and Tanzania to its existing list of U.S. visa travel ban countries.

Speaking on the border closure, the minister told Reuters that Nigeria took the hard decision because the neighbours, notably Benin Republic and Niger Republic, failed to respect the ECOWAS Treaty on Transit of Goods.

“Not only that they are sabotaging the economy of the country but also the security of the nation was being threatened.

“Under the guise of smuggling rice, a lot of small arms and light weapons are being smuggled into the country,” he said.

Mr Mohammed said the border drill had been positive and successful in terms of revenue, securing the nation and boosting the capacity of the farmers.

On the date to end the closure, he said the government was awaiting the outcome and recommendations of the committee that was set up to look into the issue.

The minister also said that measuring the successes recorded in the fight against terrorism in the North-East region must go beyond the military.

He said that the fight against insurgency in the region had been largely successful in the area of economy and social activities.

Specifically, he said Monday markets in Maiduguri and the popular Baga fish market which respectively contributed a lot to the economy of the state had remained open.

He added that schools had remained open in the state since the administration came into power while social activities had come back to live.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria (NAN)


Leah Sharibu Gives Birth To Baby Boy For Top Boko Haram Commander, Forced To Convert To Islam

Buhari has failed to deliver the dividends of true democracy
CC™ Breaking News

According to reports, Leah Sharibu, the only remaining girl of those kidnapped by terrorist group, Boko Haram from the girls boarding school in Dapchi, Yobe State in Northern Nigeria, but refused to renounce her Christian faith, was forced to accept Islam before being married to a top commander of the terror group.

It has also been reported that Leah has given birth to a baby boy for the terrorist.
Leah was delivered of the baby a few weeks ago following her forceful marriage according to a reliable source close to the terror group.
The source said Leah, who refused to renounce her Christian faith, was forced to accept Islam before being married to the said commander of the terrorist group.
Leah was among dozens of girls seized from a school in Adamawa State by Boko Haram fighters two years ago.
Nigeria's President Muhammadu Buhari has failed to deliver on his promise to ensure the release of Leah and there have been more brazen attacks on Christians, including the recent beheading of a Christian leader in Northern Nigeria by an ISIS affiliated terrorist group operating in the area. 
The general state of insecurity in the country recently led to the formation of a Western Nigeria community security outfit, geared towards helping the police and the military curtail the incessant rapes and killings of innocent Nigerians by terrorist groups, including the Fulani Herdsmen. 

Source: Nigerianwire


Video of the week - Beyoncè pays homage to Yoruba Goddess, Yemoja

CC™ Videorama

Beyoncè channels the Yoruba Goddess, Yemoja. Obinrin gidi elewa oyin. Yoruba deity, Yemoja — who is known as the goddess and protector of all living things in the sky, earth and water. Basically, in Yoruba mythology, Yemoja is the Beyoncé of all the goddesses.

Being the Queen of the entire world, Yemoja is usually depicted to appear wealthy and elaborate. Beyoncè nailed the very essence of Yemoja in the video.


The top 6 luxury sedans for 2020

CC™ Carmania


Al Qaeda-linked Ansaru attacks convoy of Emir killing 6 Nigerian soldiers while wounding 22 in brazen terrorist attack

Buhari remains MIA on the security dividends of Democracy
CC™ Global News

In its first claimed operation since at least 2013, the al Qaeda-linked Jamaat al Ansar al Muslimeen fi Bilad al Sudan, better known as Ansaru, has officially returned to Nigeria’s jihadist scene.
It is reported that at least six Nigerian soldiers were killed after being ambushed along the Kaduna-Zaira highway in the country’s north. The soldiers were part of the convoy of the Emir of Potiskum of Nigeria’s Yobe State, who was believed to be the main target.
While Nigerian officials initially reported that six soldiers were killed by “gunmen in military uniforms,” other officials have been quoted by local media as saying that the “feared death toll was at least 30 [soldiers].” Additionally, several soldiers have been reported missing or kidnapped.
For its part, Ansaru claimed to have killed 22 Nigerian troops, including destroying several vehicles. However, no mention was made of any kidnapped soldiers or civilians. The jihadist group also did not mention the Emir of Potiskum as being the target.
The claim was made via al Qaeda’s Al Hijrah Media, which routinely publishes claims and translations from various groups within al Qaeda’s vast global network.
Prior to the statement from Al Hijrah, several Ansaru and al Qaeda-linked social media channels also claimed the ambush was perpetrated by Ansaru’s men.
Today’s attack claim comes after Ansaru announced its return in October by releasing a new photo of its men inside Nigeria.
While the photo itself offered little information, the release was meant to demonstrate Ansaru’s continued existence and presence inside Nigeria. This attempted resurgence has been hinted at in al Qaeda’s propaganda in the past.
For instance, in 2017, Al Risalah Magazine, a former publication released by al Qaeda-linked jihadists in Syria, published an article penned by Usama al Ansari. Ansari, who was described as Ansaru’s emir, heavily criticized Abubakar Shekau, offered a detailed history of the group, and spoke highly of al Qaeda’s men around the world in the piece.
That article was the first sign of life for the group in almost two years at the time.
Prior to the magazine article, the last Ansaru publications were in early 2015. In January and February of that year, two videos were released by the jihadist group with the aim of distancing itself from the actions of Abubakar Shekau and his Boko Haram.
In the videos and aforementioned magazine article, Ansaru’s leaders closely stuck to al Qaeda’s guidelines for jihad. This was not surprising as the history of the group is closely tied to al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM).
And in 2013, Khalid al Barnawi, the former leader of Ansaru, referred to Ayman al Zawahiri as “our good emir” and praised al Qaeda’s branches around the world.
After Boko Haram pledged allegiance to the Islamic State in March 2015, Ansaru has widely been regarded as al Qaeda’s franchise in Nigeria.
However, following fierce competition with Boko Haram, and later the Islamic State West Africa, and the arrest of Barnawi in 2016, Ansaru was severely weakened and largely relegated to a state of dormancy.
Today’s claim is meant to demonstrate that Ansaru has finally become operational after a long hiatus of dormancy and that it can be an alternative jihadist entity to join.
Though given the presence of both the Islamic State’s West African Province and Jamaat Ahl al Sunnah, led by ‘Boko Haram’s’ Abubakar Shekau, it remains to be seen how successful Ansaru’s resurgence will be.
This article originally appeared in FDD's Long War Journal with contribution from Caleb Weiss.


The Genesis GV 80: Exceptional SUV luxury with impressive design, performance and reliability

CC™ Carmania

The question though is will Hyundai botch the re-marketing/re-introduction of the Genesis line of luxury cars as it did in its original introduction? And let's not forget the complete marketing disaster that was the introduction of the EQUUS to the U.S. market.

I believe Genesis will topple both Mercedes-Benz and BMW eventually as it is becoming increasingly diffcult to dismiss the quality of their new cars namely the Genesis G90, the G80, the G70 and now the exceptional luxury SUV GV 80. The future also entails some pretty exciting designs and concepts as the luxury brand also looks to dabble into the electric car market, among other adjacencies.


We won’t allow any group undermine Nigeria's territorial integrity - Military

President Buhari (L) and COAS Buratai (R)
CC™ Nigeriaworld

The Nigeria military has vowed that it will not allow any individual or group to jeopardize the sovereignty and stability of Nigeria’s territorial integrity.

The military also told relevant stakeholders to join hands with the armed forces and intelligence agencies to ensure that Nigeria is secured and not to look for other methods likely to negate the national policy and Community Policing approved by the President Muhammadu Buhari – led administration. 

Briefing State House correspondents after a security meeting presided over by President Buhari before his departure to London.At the Presidential Villa, Abuja, the Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Sadiq Abubakar, said the whole essence of the meeting was to critically evaluate what the armed forces of Nigeria, as well as other security and intelligence agencies, were doing with regard to ensuring that the territorial integrity of Nigeria is not undermined by any individual or group of individuals.

He disclosed that some of the equipment acquired by the armed forces for the Nigerian Air Force has started arriving, adding that two helicopter gun shoots arrived on the 15th of January.On the essence of the meeting, he said, “You recall that we had a meeting on the 30th December 2019 and today we held another one. The whole essence of the meeting is to critically evaluate what the armed forces of Nigeria, as well as other security and intelligence agencies, are doing with regard to ensuring that the territorial integrity of Nigeria is not undermined by any individual or group of individuals.

“We also looked at the emerging situations in some of our areas particularly acts of banditry in some of the North-Western states and other parts of the country and we have critically looked at everything and we are satisfied with the progress we are making.

“We are satisfied with the support the Federal Government is giving the armed forces and other security agencies in terms of procurement of platforms. A substantial number of this equipment is expected by the end of February.

“Some of the equipment we are acquiring have started arriving for the Nigerian Air Force, two helicopter gunshots have arrived on the 15th of January and we are now in the process of putting them together which will add to whatever we have.

“We are equally expecting other equipment like I said that is meant for the armed forces of Nigeria which we are hoping to get by the end of February. I am sure you are also familiar with the equipment acquisition by the Nigerian Police Force.

“I am sure you are also aware of the policy on Community Policing that was approved by Mr. President and it is going to be funded. The whole idea is to ensure that Nigeria is secured and Nigerians can go about pursuing their legitimate aspirations without any hindrance.”

On the message of the armed forces and other security agencies to Nigerians, Air Marshal Abubakar said, “What we want to do here is to reassure Nigerians that the armed forces of Nigeria and indeed security and intelligence agencies in Nigeria are going to continue to work round the clock to ensure that our country is secured and to ensure that nobody undermines the territorial integrity and national sovereignty of Nigeria.

“We are going to keep a very close watch on what is going on and with the equipment that we are getting, definitely, the challenges we are facing in some of the theaters of operation particularly the North East will be addressed adequately.“We are doing everything with the other sister countries in the Lake Chad Basin working together to ensure that the Boko Haram terrorism is brought substantially to an end as quickly as possible.

” I think our appeal is for all Nigerians and other stakeholders to join hands with the armed forces of Nigeria and other security and intelligence agencies to ensure that our country is secured rather than looking at other methods that are likely going to negate the national policy and community policing policy that the Federal Government has approved.

“What we expect is for all stakeholders, local government, state government, other stakeholders to join hands with us, let us work together to ensure that our country is secured.”

Editor's Rebuttal: For the record, the military under the current adminsitration of Muhammadu Buhari is essentially a state-sanctioned as well as institutionalized terrorrist organization. The Nigeria military has been found wanting in its basic task of maintaining the security and well being of Nigerians through the preservation of the nation's territorial integrity. Under Buhari and his service chiefs, the military has engaged in ethnic cleansing both directly and through acquiescence, against non-Fulani ethnic nationalities. I will be writing a piece very soon on the decision of South-West leaders to institute a community policing outfit known as "Amotekun". Amotekun was established in response to the desperate security crisis that has engulfed that region of the country from the terrorist activities of Fulani herdsmen, backed by Miyetti Allah, the Sultan of Sokoto, President Muhammadu Buhari and the Chief of Army Staff, General Buratai. Amotekun is here to stay and seeking to blackmail the Yoruba with the 2023 presidency is looking too far ahead, as Nigeria may have ceased to exist by then.


Buhari's government are ‘Islamic fundamentalists without bombs’, says Nigerian bishop

President Muhammadu Buhari
CC™ Nigeriaworld

'The only difference between the government and Boko Haram is Boko Haram is holding a bomb,' Bishop Matthew Hassan Kukah claimed.

The beheading of 10 Christians by Islamist militants in Nigeria has sparked a condemnation by a bishop who accuses the government of using different methods to achieve the same goal of Islamic dominance.

In the wake of the Christmas Day attack by Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP) and an attack by Boko Haram on Christmas Eve, Bishop Matthew Hassan Kukah of Sokoto told Catholic charity Aid to the Church in Need of his disgust with the authorities.

He said: “The only difference between the government and Boko Haram is Boko Haram is holding a bomb.” He added: “They are using the levers of power to secure the supremacy of Islam, which then gives more weight to the idea that it can be achieved by violence. With the situation in Nigeria, it is hard to see the moral basis they have to defeat Boko Haram.
“They have created the conditions to make it possible for Boko Haram to behave the way they are behaving.” On Boxing Day 2019, ISWAP released a video beheading 10 Christians and shooting one Muslim, saying they were avenging the death of Abu Bakr al-Baghadi, Daesh (ISIS)’s leader, and other senior Daesh members killed during a US raid in October. This followed a Christmas Eve attack by Boko Haram in which seven were killed.
The UN estimates that over 2.2 million have been displaced by Boko Haram’s actions – between 2013 and 2015, more than 11,000 people were killed by the group. Bishop Kukah said the Nigerian government, by packing key government positions with hardline Muslims, gives tacit approval to such groups.
“If the people in power don’t do enough to integrate Christians then they give oxygen to Islamism. If they have countries where everybody is Muslim in power then you give vent to the idea that Islam should be supreme.”
Bishop Kukah hit out against Western nations who he said are happy to mine the resources of Africa but not defend its people.
He said: “Western nations are not doing enough. They have shown that the resources of Africa are more important than the ordinary people. Clearly, the Western nations could have reduced the influence of Boko Haram by 80 or 90 percent – they have deliberately not done enough.”
Bishop Kukah said that the only thing preventing Nigeria from being engulfed in civil war was the peaceful tenets of Christianity. He said: “Christians have every reason to feel insecure and also there is a general feeling of their marginalisation from the political process. If the principles of our religion were different, there would be a civil war by now.
“It is the glory of our religion that this hasn’t happened. It is difficult to preach peace in this context. Any resolution depends on how Christians decide to react. They won’t use violence but what will they do?”


Eddie Murphy to receive Lifetime Achievement honor at Critics' Choice Awards

CC™ Entertainment News

The critics are paying the ultimate homage to Eddie Murphy.

The "Dolemite Is My Name" star will receive the Lifetime Achievement Award for his stellar movie career at the 25th Annual Critics Choice Awards on Jan. 12. Murphy is already nominated for the best actor award for his role as Rudy Ray Moore in Netflix’s "Dolemite."

Murphy will be feted for a career which places the "SNL" star on the short list of actors who have starred in multiple $100 million pictures over the past three decades, from "Beverly Hills Cop" (which just turned 35) to "Daddy Day Care." 
Some of Murphy's other hits include "48 Hours," "Trading Places," "Coming to America," "Harlem Nights," "Bowfinger," "The Nutty Professor" and the voice of Donkey in the "Shrek" franchise.
In 2007, Murphy won the Critics' Choice best actor for his portrayal of James “Thunder” Early in "Dreamgirls," a performance which earned him his first Academy Award nomination.
Murphy told USA TODAY before the release of "Dolemite" that his banner 2019 year is not a comeback, despite fans insistence.
"People are saying, 'You’re back! It’s a comeback!' " said Murphy. "I’m like, no, I’m not trying to do a comeback. I’ve just been enjoying sitting on the couch so much. A few years ago, I was like, 'I could sit on this couch and stay here watching 'Little Women: LA' and their exploits.' "
Murphy had a stellar return to "SNL" on Dec. 21 and will undertake his first comedy tour in three decades in 2020.
"Dolemite" director Craig Brewer has finished filming Murphy and Arsenio Hall in a sequel to 1988's "Coming to America," which is set for theaters in 2020.
Source: USA Today Entertainment 


Political blackmail as U.S. threatens to block Iraqi access to key bank account if American troops are forced to leave

U.S. President Donald Trump
CC™ Global News

While a good chunk of Iraq's parliament wants American troops to begin a safe withdrawal from the country in the wake of heightened tensions between the U.S. and Iran, Washington is in turn threatening to block Baghdad's access to its central bank account held at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York in an effort to keep the forces in place, Iraqi officials told The Wall Street Journal.
Iraq, like many other countries, maintains government accounts at the New York Fed, which helps them manage national finances, including revenue from oil sales. If the government can't access those accounts, it'd reportedly due some significant damage to an already-struggling Iraqi economy. An official in Mahdi's office said the prime minister received a warning about the bank account during a phone call Wednesday.
The warning appears to have some members of the Iraqi government on edge, with officials stressing the need to maintain friendly ties with the U.S. despite pressure from pro-Iran militias. Some have pointed out that international pressure on Iraq's economy would hurt Baghdad's efforts to answer to its citizens, who have launched massive anti-government protests in recent months. "The U.S. Fed basically has a stranglehold on the entire [Iraqi] economy," said Shwan Taha, chairman of Iraqi investment bank Rabee Securities.
Others, like Mahdi adviser Abd al-Hassanein al-Hanein, think the U.S. is bluffing. "If the U.S. does that, it will lose Iraq forever," he said. Read more at The Wall Street Journal.

On "State TV" Fox & Friends' Steve Doocy wonders what would happen if the U.S. accidentally shot down a jet. Geraldo Rivera reminds him 'we did.'

CC™ Politico

What would happen if the United States accidentally shot down a jetliner like Iran apparently did this week? There's no need to speculate, as Fox News' Geraldo Rivera just pointed out.

The hosts of Fox & Friends on Friday discussed news that officials believe the Ukrainian passenger plane that crashed near Tehran earlier this week, killing 176 people, was mistakenly shot down by Iran. "Can you imagine if the United States of America accidentally shot down a jetliner," Steve Doocy asked.
"Well, you know Steve, we did in 1988," Geraldo Rivera noted, referring to Iran Air Flight 655, which in July of that year was mistakenly shot down by the USS Vincennes in the Persian Gulf, killing 290 people. As CNN notes, the USS Vincennes' captain was wrongly told the passenger jet might be an Iranian F-14, which the U.S. military believed to be equipped with Maverick missiles.
"If the unknown aircraft was carrying those Maverick missiles, the U.S. captain had less than five minutes to decide if his ship was in danger," and he gave the order to fire, CNN writes, citing the U.S. Navy report on the incident. After Iran sued the U.S. government, the suit was settled in 1996, and the U.S. paid $62 million.
"It was something that took us years to live down," Rivera noted.
Commentary: The US "paid a lot of money" after fighting Iran in international courts for eight years. Ultimately, and without apologizing or admitting responsibility, the US paid out about $62 million to victims' families -- or a little less than $250k per person killed.
Source: This Week


Confirmed: American businesses and consumers are paying 'approximately 100%' of Trump tariff costs

CC™ Business and Finance 

President Trump made over 100 claims about China and tariffs in 2019, stating that Beijing was paying “tremendous amounts of tariffs.”

However, new research from the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) found the opposite. 

“U.S. tariffs continue to be almost entirely borne by U.S. firms and consumers,” the NBER working paper stated. “Similarly, we also find that the substantial redirection of trade in response to the 2018 tariffs has accelerated.”
The Trump administration has placed tariffs on $550 billion worth of imports from China, and China has slapped tariffs on $185 billion worth of imports from the U.S. since the trade war between the two countries began in March 2018.
On August 3, 2019, Trump claimed that “our consumer is paying nothing” in regard to the tariffs, but NBER stated that “approximately 100% of these import taxes have been passed on to U.S. importers and consumers.”
American consumers and businesses paid at least $42 billion for the tariffs as of October 2019, according to an analysis from Tariffs Hurt the Heartland (THH). In October 2019, the trade war cost an additional $7.2 billion through tariffs, an $1 billion increase from October 2018. 
Trump has made several inaccurate claims about the tariffs on China: he’s said that the U.S. is taking in “billions” from China, that the money is being passed along to American farmers bearing the brunt of the retaliatory tariffs, and that the tariffs would boost blue-collar jobs in the U.S.
recent study from the Federal Reserve indicated that the tariffs have actually led to a loss of jobs, especially in manufacturing. 
“While the longer-term effects of the tariffs may differ from those that we estimate here, the results indicate that the tariffs, thus far, have not led to increased activity in the U.S. manufacturing sector,” the Fed study stated.
Steel is one of the industries hit hardest by tariffs, with foreign firms preemptively lowering prices and American firms struggling to compete with the market reaction. Detroit-based company U.S. Steel was forced to lay off 1,545 employees back in December 2019, partially due to struggles from Trump’s steel tariffs. 
“The data show that U.S. tariffs have caused foreign exporters of steel to substantially lower their prices into the U.S. market,” NBER’s paper stated. “Thus, foreign countries are bearing close to half the cost of the steel tariffs. Since China is only the 10th-largest steel supplier to the U.S. market, these costs have been largely borne by regions like the EU, South Korea, and Japan.”
Source: Adriana Belmonte - Associate Editor for Yahoo Finance.


Troubling reports of Iranian-Americans being questioned on their political allegiances upon entering US

CC™ News

More than 60 Iranians and Iranian-Americans have been detained at length and questioned at the US border with Canada, according to advocacy groups, as the crisis over the killing of Qassem Soleimani escalates.
The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) reported those who were detained had their passports confiscated and were questioned about their political views and allegiances.
“These reports are extremely troubling and potentially constitute illegal detentions of United States citizens,” Masih Fouladi, the executive director of CAIR-Washington, said in a statement.
The advocacy group has also claimed a source at US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) said a national order has been issued to report and detain anyone with Iranian heritage entering the country who is deemed “potentially suspicious”, regardless of their citizenship status.
CBP has denied any such directive is in place and insisted reports of Iranian-Americans being detained on social media were false.
“Social media posts that CBP is detaining Iranian-Americans and refusing their entry into the US because of their country of origin are false,” CBP wrote on Twitter.
“Reports that DHS/CBP has issued a related directive are also false.”
However, the National Iranian American Council also said it had spoken to Iranian-Americans who were detained for hours at borders and airports over the weekend and asked about their views on Iran.
The allegations come amid heightened tensions between the US and Iran after top Iranian general Soleimani was killed in a US airstrike order by Donald Trump last week.
His death marks a major escalation in tensions and has been followed by threats of further attacks by both countries.
On Sunday, Iran announced it would no longer respect restrictions on enrichment of uranium introduced under the 2015 international nuclear agreement.
Meanwhile, Iraqi MPs passed a non-binding resolution calling for foreign troops, including about 5,000 US soldiers, to leave its country in response to the attack.
Mr Trump has threatened severe sanctions and attacks on cultural sites if Iran retaliates against the US over the killing.
Pramila Jayapal, a Washington congresswoman, has said she is “deeply disturbed” by reports of Iranian-Americans being detained at the border, while Jay Inslee, the governor of Washington, has said his office is “closely tracking” the situation.
Mr Inslee later added that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) had told his office there was no order issued to detain or refuse entry to Iranian-Americans but his team was continuing to seek answers from officials.
One woman, who was allegedly detained and interrogated for more than 10 hours at the border crossing, said the majority of people who were held were American citizens.
“We kept asking why we were being detained and asked questions that had nothing to do with our reason for travelling and were told ‘I’m sorry this is just the wrong time for you guys,’” the woman told CAIR.
On Saturday, DHS updated its National Terrorism Advisory System to warn that Iran could retaliate against the US through cyberattacks or attacks by “homegrown violent extremists”.
However, the department acknowledged that it had “no information indicating a specific, credible threat” at this time.
CAIR Washington has said it believes everyone who was detained has now been released but the group will continue to monitor the situation.
Source: Independent