DARE: Trump Announces Jamal Khashoggi Investigation but Says He Won’t Halt Saudi Arms Sales
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As evidence mounts in the possible murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi inside Saudi Arabia’s consulate in Turkey, members of Congress demand answers but President Trump says he won’t stop arms sales to the Kingdom. An author whose name appeared on a list of men in the media who were said to have committed acts of sexual misconduct and abuse files suit against the creator of the list. As part of its effort to cut election interference, Facebook identifies hundreds of pages and accounts run by Americans that are amplifying false information. USA Today, widely criticized for running an op-ed by President Trump without fact-checking it, a day later publishes detailed review of misrepresentations in the piece. -Dru Menaker, Chief Operating Officer
The most pressing threats and notable goings-on in free expression today
Trump Announces Jamal Khashoggi Investigation but Says He Won’t Halt Saudi Arms Sales
Trump has said US investigators are examining Jamal Khashoggi’s disappearance at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, but made clear that the U.S. would not forgo lucrative arms deals, regardless of the outcome. The announcement raised concerns of a cover-up implicating Saudi Arabia’s crown prince Mohammed bin Salman.
Stephen Elliott Sues Moira Donegan, Creator of Shitty Media Men List
Elliott is suing Donegan for libel and emotional distress, and is seeking at least $1.5 million in damages. According to the suit, Elliott also intends to sue other women who contributed to the spreadsheet (who he names as “Jane Does,”) thus exposing the identities of women who thought they had shared their experiences of sexual abuse in confidence.
Facebook Removes Hundreds of US Political Pages for “Inauthentic Activity”
With less than one month left before the midterm elections, Facebook has announced it has removed 559 politically oriented pages and 251 accounts, all of American origin, for consistently breaking its rules against “spam and coordinated inauthentic behavior.” The pages removed span the political spectrum.
Fact Check: President Trump’s Claims on Medicare, Democrats
An examination of the president’s claims in an October 10 op-ed by FactCheck.org, a partner of USA TODAY, showed several instances where he misrepresented the facts and made misleading statements about Medicare and health insurance, and makes sweeping, unsupported attacks on the “radical socialist plans of the Democrats.”
Made and Distributed in the USA: Online Disinformation
In 2016, before the presidential election, state-backed Russian operatives exploited Facebook and Twitter to sway voters in the United States with divisive messages. Now, weeks before the midterm elections, such influence campaigns are increasingly a domestic phenomenon fomented by Americans on the left and the right.
NEW YORK TIMES
What It Means if Saudi Arabia Murdered a Journalist in Turkey *PEN Case List
“If Khashoggi was killed, it will strengthen the sense that the crown prince is a rogue and not a reformer. He has locked up thousands of activists. His long arm has already reached abroad. Rights campaigner Loujain al-Hathloul was detained in Abu Dhabi and sent to jail in Saudi Arabia. A Saudi satirist in London claimed he was beaten by goons sent from Saudi Arabia.”
Singaporean Artist Jailed after Peaceful Protest
Performance artist Seelan Palay, sentenced under Singapore’s public order law, is serving a two-week jail sentence for what he and his supporters consider a peaceful one-man protest commemorating Singapore’s longest-held political prisoner, Chia Thye Poh. Human rights groups are calling for his release.
One Year of #MeToo: How the Movement Eludes Government Surveillance in China
In 2016 China passed a law allowing the government to monitor and control NGOs. On Weibo, any and all iterations of #MeToo, whether in dialect or using homonyms or emojis, are censored. Women’s rights groups avoid words such as “organizing” and “action.” Demonstrations such as the Women’s March are out of the question.
THE NEW YORKER
A Deadly Year for Journalists as Risk Shifts to the West
A Slovak journalist and his fiancée are killed in their home. A gunman storms a Maryland newsroom in a targeted attack. A writer walks into the Saudi Consulate in Turkey and never walks out. It’s been a deadly year for journalists, even in democratic countries where press freedom is seen as an essential part of civil society.
NEW YORK TIMES
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