House Foreign Affairs to Trump on Iran strike: ‘You’re not a dictator’ – Business Insider

  • The House Foreign Affairs Committee on Sunday evening hit back at President Donald Trump after he tweeted that he was not required to give Congress notice before striking Iran.
  • Trump does not appear to have consulted with Congress before ordering the killing of Iran’s top military official, Maj. Gen. Qassem Soleimani, in an airstrike on Thursday.
  • Trump issued a tweet Sunday that he said served as official notice to Congress of any future plans to attack Iran.
  • But the House Foreign Affairs Committee responded that the power to declare war resided in Congress under the Constitution.
  • “You’re not a dictator,” the committee wrote.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

The House Foreign Affairs Committee on Sunday evening hit back at President Donald Trump after he tweeted that he was not required to give Congress notice before striking Iran.

Trump has been clashing with Congress over the killing of Iran’s top military official, Maj. Gen. Qassem Soleimani, in an airstrike on Thursday. It appears that Trump did not consult with Congress before taking an action that represents a major escalation and is widely expected to result in retaliation.

Some members of Congress have even questioned the legality of Trump’s actions, igniting a fierce debate about presidential power.

Trump then wrote a tweet on Sunday that he said should be viewed as official notice to Congress of any plans to attack Iran.

“These Media Posts will serve as notification to the United States Congress that should Iran strike any US person or target, the United States will quickly & fully strike back, & perhaps in a disproportionate manner,” he wrote.

“Such legal notice is not required, but is given nevertheless!”

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While Trump is not legally obligated to consult with Congress over a military action deemed an emergency, as noted by Insider’s political correspondent Sonam Sheth, only Congress has the constitutional authority to declare war.

The House Foreign Affairs Committee responded to Trump’s tweets on Sunday evening and advised Trump to “read the War Powers Act” adopted in 1973.

“This Media Post will serve as a reminder that war powers reside in the Congress under the United States Constitution,” the committee wrote in a post mocking Trump’s tweet. “And that you should read the War Powers Act. And that you’re not a dictator.”

Iran has vowed to seek “severe revenge” for Soleimani’s killing, and on Sunday withdrew its commitments from the 2015 nuclear deal. Experts say revenge may include cyberattacks, which could be devastating.

Meanwhile, Trump has threatened to hit dozens of Iranian sites if Iran strikes “Americans” or “American assets.”

“Let this serve as a WARNING that if Iran strikes any Americans, or American assets, we have targeted 52 Iranian sites (representing the 52 American hostages taken by Iran many years ago), some at a very high level & important to Iran & the Iranian culture, and those targets, and Iran itself, WILL BE HIT VERY FAST AND VERY HARD. The USA wants no more threats!” Trump wrote in a tweet.

But Trump’s threat to deliberately target “Iranian culture” sites could amount to war crimes under international law if carried out.

As Taiwan goes to the polls, Tsai says the choice is democracy or dictatorship – The Washington Post

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Thai protesters lace up for “Run Against Dictatorship” – Quartz

Thousands of runners will toe the start line at the crack of dawn this Sunday (Jan. 12) in Thailand’s capital for a six-kilometer race to demonstrate against the government.

Dubbed “Run Against Dictatorship,” the protest’s name in Thai is “Wing Lai Lung,” which literally means “run to oust the uncle.” It’s a subtle jab at the prime minister, Prayuth Chan-ocha, who goes by the nickname Uncle Tu and who has scoffed at the event, telling his opponents to “Run to catch up with me if you can.” A rival event by government supporters, dubbed “Walk to Cheer Uncle,” will be held concurrently on Sunday.

Prayuth, a retired general and former commander of the Royal Thai Army, seized power when he led a military coup in 2014. He ran the country with absolute power as the autocratic leader of the junta, and over the years has transformed himself from a uniform-wearing general to a suit-clad politician. He was formally elected prime minister last June, beating the billionaire leader of the pro-democracy Future Forward Party, Thanathorn Juangroongruangkit. Authorities have since disqualified Thanathorn from parliament and have moved to ban his party outright, leading to the biggest protest in years last month as thousands took to the streets against the government. Demonstrators chanted, “Long live democracy, dictatorship get out.”

Sunday’s run could be an even larger demonstration still, with some 10,000 people already registered for the event. “We want to show the government the discontent that citizens have with the administration,” student activist Tanawat Wongchai, who is part of a network young organizers of the run, told Reuters.

Thailand has seen “unending repression of fundamental rights and freedoms” since the 2014 coup, according to advocacy group Human Rights Watch. The government’s latest moves against Thanathorn and his party, which came a surprise third in last spring’s election by attracting the support of millions of young voters, have only served to reinforce people’s grievances over the increasingly repressive political climate.

The government hasn’t made it easy for the protest organizers. A press conference to launch the event at the Foreign Correspondents’ Club of Thailand last month was cancelled under pressure from local police, according to a statement from the club. “The police explained that the title of the event was objectionable, and that they considered it likely to create what they called a ‘mob,’ ” the club said. Plans to move the presser to a hotel similarly fell through, again under pressure from authorities, according to Tanawat. Organizers finally managed to hold the conference at Thammasat University.

Elsewhere in Thailand, attempts by other organizers to hold spin-off running protests have been barred in at least three provinces, according to local media.

Facebook’s Calibra Looks for Two Marketing Professionals

Facebook’s Calibra is on the hunt for two marketing specialists as the company continues development of its Libra stablecoin project.

The company is looking for a head of media, digital marketing and community and a head of brand for the Calibra digital wallet unit. The roles ask for applicants with a minimum of 15 years of experience in their respective fields, as well as upwards of ten years of leadership and people management experience.

Per the job ads, the proposed head of media will be engaged in building acquisition and cross-sell strategies, creation of customer segments and audiences that can be used in engagement programs, among other responsibilities. The head of brand is set to develop mobile-first creative campaigns with assets across the marketing mix to promote the company to over 2.5 billion worldwide.

Despite regulators’ skepticism

Calibra apparently continues its development and expanding the team of professionals working on the project despite the skepticism demonstrated by the world’s regulators. Last fall, David Marcus, the head of Calibra, addressed regulators’ fears that Facebook’s planned stablecoin could potentially disrupt central bank monetary policy and destabilize the global financial system.

Marcus previously claimed that the Anti-Money Laundering (AML) standards of Libra will be better than other payments networks. He stated that the network’s underlying blockchain technology will allow regulators to better trace transactions and identify suspicious activities, adding:

“The open ledger – the blockchain – enables regulators to look at what is happening themselves and identify where the risk is without relying on reports. The onus is on us to do that work and now that we have the governance structure in place, we can now demonstrate this improvement.”

Experts Share: What Are the Biggest Crypto and Blockchain Topics to Follow in 2020

Robert Schwertner, Influencer

I see exciting developments in applications in the fields of mobility, energy and real estate: The Austrian blockchain specialist Riddle&Code developed a “Car Wallet” for Mercedes Benz. It is planned that the Car Wallet will be installed in new models in 2020. This means that in the future, cars will be able to pay for their services themselves, such as parking fees, tolls, refueling/loading, insurance, etc. A revolution and an important milestone for autonomous driving. And cars built in 2020 will be on the road for the next 30 years, so it is obvious to build a car wallet already, who knows what the world will look like in 2050. So, it’s better to be prepared in time. Bravo Mercedes!

Rumors persist that Korea’s largest car manufacturer Hyundai will start its own blockchain in the first quarter of 2020. A courageous step! In Korea, the over-competitor Tada-Drive will also record more than 1 million trips in 2020. This will be the first time that a blockchain startup will put an internet giant Uber in trouble. Because why should we deliver 15% of the driving fee to an internet company when we can book directly with the driver. Makes the trip cheaper and the driver earns more. And it shows that blockchain is restoring social contacts as they belong. We don’t give our money to the company, but directly to the driver of a taxi. I think this is a very nice development, it pushes back the supremacy of the all-dominant internet companies. We can expect more attacks from blockchain ventures. What I think is missing in the mobility industry: a uniform blockchain standard. And that will still not come in 2020.

The Energy Web Foundation has developed a special energy blockchain, and Siemens is on board. British Petrol is testing this blockchain. And in Slovenia, they are already trading on blockchain energy, the project is called “” and has over 10,000 active users. Especially in the energy sector, we will see further major developments in 2020.

In the real estate sector, which is already known as in-mobile — i.e., less mobile — cryptocurrency can provide improved access. In 2020, I expect numerous new projects that offer smart hybrid solutions for buildings — e.g., new rent/ownership models, “apartment wallets” and simplified operating cost accounting. The potential for innovative solutions with blockchain is enormous. Blockchain solves a basic problem: the transfer of values via the internet. Real estate is particularly suitable here because complicated and expensive trustee payments make life difficult for users. Here, I have also supported projects with my consulting company CryptoRobby.