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Furor over Trump’s unrepentant support for Charlottesville’s white nationalist marchers continues to surge, with heads of all military branches distancing themselves from their Commander in Chief’s comments and two separate White House business councils summarily dissolved in a bid to avoid the spectacle of en masse CEO resignations. The American Prospect’s Robert Kuttner lands exclusive interview with Steve Bannon who mouths off on the alt-right, China, and North Korea policy, breaking with Presidential positions in several areas. -Suzanne Nossel, Executive Director

The most pressing threats and notable goings-on in free expression today


Trump Comments on Race Open Breach With CEOs, Military and GOP
Trump has been abandoned by top business executives, contradicted by military leaders, and shunned by high-profile Republicans. Top advisers described themselves as stunned, despondent, and numb; some said they didn’t think Trump’s presidency could recover, and others expressed doubts about his capacity to do the job.

Steve Bannon brands far right ‘losers’ and contradicts Trump in surprise interview
Bannon has claimed there was no military solution for North Korea, the far right was a “collection of clowns,” and the left’s focus on racism would allow him to “crush the Democrats.” The controversial and unsolicited remarks to Robert Kuttner of the American Prospect come at a time when Bannon faces an uncertain future at the White House.

Trump decries monument removals, ‘history ripped apart’
Trump’s new remarks came as the White house tried to manage his increasing isolation and the continued fallout from his combative comments on the violence in Charlottesville.He also tore into fellow Republicans who have criticized his statements on race and politics, fanning the controversy toward a national conflagration.

Facebook, Airbnb Go on Offense Against Neo-Nazis After Violence
Virtually all these services have rules on how users should behave, but in the past they’d mostly enforce these in response to bad behavior. After the violence in Charlottesville their approach has become more proactive, in anticipation of future events. These actions mark a shift in how companies view their responsibilities.

Fox News Host Eboni K. Williams on Receiving Death Threats After Segment Criticizing Trump
The co-host berated Trump on Monday in her “Eboni’s Docket” segment for failing to specify white nationalist groups in his condemnation of the violence at Charlottesville. Her personal website, which usually receives 10-15 emails after each segment, was inundated with over 150 emails, only three of which were anything other than “seething, scathing” takedowns.

Rural Muslims fight for safety, inclusion
Life as a Muslim in rural Oregon can mean invasive questions, awkward stares at the checkout counter, and limited community resources. Zakir Khan, a communications instructor at Linn-Benton Community College, is establishing a local chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations in an effort to help that underserved population.

The ACLU Needs to Rethink Free Speech
We must research how new threats to speech are connected to one another and to right-wing power. Acknowledging how criminal laws, voting laws, immigration laws, education laws, and laws governing corporations can also curb expression provides a more holistic picture of how speech rights are under attack right now.


Hong Kong democracy campaigners jailed over anti-China protests
Hong Kong’s democracy movement has suffered the latest setback after three of its influential young leaders were jailed for their roles in a protest as part of what is known as the umbrella movement. Alex Chow, Nathan Law, and Joshua Wong were sentenced to between six and eight months imprisonment each.

Journalist Known For Criticism Of Kazakh Government Goes On Trial
Investigators say Zhanbolat Mamai, chief editor of Sayasi Qalam-Tribuna (The Political Pen-Tribune) was involved in laundering money allegedly stolen by fugitive Kazakh tycoon Mukhtar Ablyazov, who is a vocal critic of the regime. Mamai denies any connection with Ablyazov and says the case against him is politically motivated.

Cambodia’s tax agency denies crackdown is political
Cambodian tax authorities denied having a political motive for a crackdown on delinquent taxpayers that prominently targets critical media and civil society organizations. Those singled out include a long-established English-language newspaper, The Cambodia Daily, Voice of America and Radio Free Asia, and local human rights groups.

Authors voice fury at Russian publisher cutting gay scene from novel
VE Schwab’s Shades of Magic series follows the magician Kell, who moves between four parallel versions of London, featuring diverse characters such as the gender-fluid pickpocket Lila to the bisexual prince Rhy. Schwab was horrified to learn that the publisher of the Russian translations excised a scene about the romantic relationship between two male characters.

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