Chicago will sue Trump administration over sanctuary cities grant threat

  • Rahm Emanuel: police officers ‘will not be political pawns in a debate’
  • AG Sessions threatened to withhold funds over treatment of migrants

Chicago will sue the Trump administration on Monday, over threats to withhold public safety grant money from so-called sanctuary cities, mayor Rahm Emanuel announced on Sunday.

Related: Migrant deaths at US-Mexico border increase 17% this year, UN figures show

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NSW accused of ‘running scared’ after postponing review of water regulations

Greens’ Jeremy Buckingham says Coalition government frightened of public scrutiny following allegations of water theft in Murray-Darling basin

Water regulations due to be reviewed and updated on 1 September have been postponed for another year by the New South Wales government following the controversy over allegations of water theft in the Barwon-Darling region of the Murray-Darling basin.

The Greens MLC Jeremy Buckingham accused the NSW Coalition of running scared over the recent scrutiny of state water management following the Four Corners program.

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‘The big stigma is it’s the homeless person’s fault’

Invisible to most who pass them by, each person has a story about how they fell through society’s cracks and ended up homeless in the Byron Bay region

  • Photography by Drew Rogers
  • This is part of a series on Australian homelessness, No fixed address

Most Australians find it hard to look at a homeless person. They prefer to stare straight ahead and pretend that the hungry, damaged and lonely human being in their peripheral vision simply doesn’t exist. Apparently it’s just easier that way. If refusing to even make eye contact with a homeless person is hardwired in the masses, then talking to them and listening to their stories is out of the question.

No Fixed Abode, published by the Byron Bay Community Centre, gently addresses that callous disconnect by giving otherwise stifled, invisible Australians a face and a voice. By exploring the stories of people who’ve fallen through society’s cracks, readers can better understand some of the common trajectories of disenfranchisement – and what a truly horrible thing it is to be without a home.

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Homeless in Australia: the shifting numbers and definitions

Domestic violence and housing affordability are common reasons for homelessness, but how many people are homeless in Australia?

  • This is part of a new series on homelessness, No fixed address

Homelessness is difficult to quantify. There are different definitions, the statistics aren’t straightforward, and the nature of the issue itself makes it hard to measure.

But it is certainly on the rise. Determining how many people are homeless varies depending on how it’s defined and how it is counted. In Homelessness Week, we take a look at the available data.

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Code hints the next Apple TV will support 4K and HDR

There have been murmurs of a 4K Apple TV and even hints of 4K HDR videos on iTunes, but now we have evidence tying it all together. Remember that incredibly revealing HomePod firmware? Developer Guilherme Rambo has sifted through it to discover refer…

The Guardian view on sanctions: an essential tool | Editorial

Neither pure diplomacy nor outright war, sanctions are often better than both

Last week Donald Trump grudgingly signed what he described as a “flawed” Russian sanctions bill into law. While the president has his own reasons to be concerned by putative links to Moscow, the sanctions are broad enough to potentially damage billions of dollars worth of oil and gas projects in Russia. The episode is noteworthy in all sorts of ways but it is a reminder also that sanctions are a centrepiece of how power games play out today.

Globalisation hastened the use of sanctions as a tool of diplomacy. Before 1990, the UN imposed sanctions on just two states, Southern Rhodesia and South Africa. Since then, the UN has put more than a dozen sanction regimes in place. Economic measures have taken on increased importance because of the way international trade and finance work. As a result, more levers are handed to western powers than to emerging countries. The US uses economic sanctions more than any other country – 26 are administered by the US Treasury alone. This imbalance would be best addressed by acting within the largest possible multilateral framework.

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As Congress Tries to Criminalize BDS, the Democratic Socialists of America Endorse It

Some members of Congress are trying to criminalize support for the campaign to boycott, divest from, and sanction Israel for its occupation of Palestinian territories.

The U.S.’s new premiere left-wing organization, however, is moving the other way, undaunted by the threat of legislation against the BDS movement, as it is known.

The Democratic Socialists of America, which gathered this weekend in Chicago for its biennial convention, passed a resolution on Saturday to endorse the BDS movement. The vote in favor was so overwhelming, with so few dissenters — more than 90 percent supported the resolution — that no formal tally was taken. It marked the first time in the group’s 35-year history that it has taken a position on the issue.

“I expected it to pass, but it did surprise me how overwhelming the support was,” said Rawan Tayoon, a Palestinian DSA activist from Los Angeles. Tayoon helped draft the resolution as part of a group that began its work in the spring.

Another drafter, Benjamin Balthaser, a Jewish Voice for Peace-Chicago member, who joined the DSA last year, said it was especially important for people from the Jewish community to make their voices heard on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. “The Israeli government says it represents all Jews in the world,” Balthaser, who is Jewish, told The Intercept. “And I think it’s very important for the Jewish community to say, ‘We don’t feel represented by an apartheid government. We don’t feel represented by a military occupation.’”

Passing a pro-BDS resolution puts the group at odds with a national political figure whose avowedly democratic socialist presidential campaign helped DSA grow to 25,000 members over the past year: Vermont’s independent Sen. Bernie Sanders. Earlier this year, Sanders was asked by Al Jazeera’s Dena Takruri about whether he supported the BDS movement. While he offered implied criticism of unconditional military aid to Israel, he also told Takruri that he does not support the boycott movement.

“People will do what they want to do, but I think our job as a nation is to do everything humanly possible to bring Israel and the Palestinians and the entire Middle East to the degree that we can together. But no, I’m not a supporter of that,” Sanders said. “What must be done is that the United States of America is to have a Middle East policy which is even-handed, which does not simply supply endless amounts of money, of military support to Israel, but which treats both sides with respect and dignity and does our best to bring them to the table.”

Despite Sanders’s hesitancy, support for BDS in the U.S. is growing rapidly, particularly on college campuses and among faith organizations.

Top photo: Attendees react during the Democratic Socialists Convention at UIC in on Aug 4, 2017.

The post As Congress Tries to Criminalize BDS, the Democratic Socialists of America Endorse It appeared first on The Intercept.