NEWS   SUNDAY, APRIL  30, 2017   NEWS

Trump Says Trips To New York City Cost The US Too Much
President Donald Trump said Friday that he’s avoiding New York City because his trips are “too expensive” for the country. In an interview with Fox News, Trump said he feels “guilty” when he returns to Trump Tower because authorities close surrounding streets and "I hate to see the New Yorkers with streets closed." He says he goes to his clubs instead because they have "hundreds of acres" and streets stay open. Trump says he's always accused of "having fun" or playing golf at his clubs but says he's always working. Aside from photos on social media, the White House rarely acknowledges when Trump plays golf. Fox News
VOA VIEW: The truth hurts.

Environmental Protesters Return To Washington As Trump Passes Milestone
Protesters marched in Washington on a second consecutive Saturday to challenge President Donald Trump's stance on the environment and call on him to stand by policies to stop climate change championed by his predecessor. Thousands of people gathered for the afternoon march from the lawn of the U.S. Capitol to the White House, an event that coincides with the completion of Trump's first 100 days in office and the end of the traditional "honeymoon" period for a new president. The Peoples Climate March, which drew about 15,000 people, according to an estimate by a Reuters reporter, rivaled last weekend's March for Science in size. Protesters sounded many of the same themes at both events. Fox News
VOA VIEW: Losers who have nothing better to do.

From Gandhi To Guns: An Indian Woman Explores The NRA Convention
Guns are not a part of the culture of my homeland, except perhaps for the occasional Bollywood movie in which the bad guy meets his demise staring down the wrong end of a barrel. My childhood in India was steeped in ahimsa, the tenet of nonviolence toward all living things. The Indians may have succeeded in ousting the British, but we won with Gandhian-style civil disobedience, not a revolutionary war. I grew up not knowing a single gun owner, and even today India has one of the strictest gun laws on the planet. Few Indians buy and keep firearms at home, and gun violence is nowhere near the problem it is in the United States. An American is 12 times more likely than an Indian to be killed by a firearm, according to a recent study. CNN

Climate Protest Takes On Trump's Policies -- And The Heat -- In DC March
Protesters backing action on climate change are braving the sweltering heat Saturday in the nation's capital as part of the People's Climate March. The march began at 12:30 p.m. near the Capitol, and demonstrators planned to move to the White House and end up at the Washington Monument, according to the proposed route map. Michele Holmes, from New York's Harlem neighborhood, is one of those activists. She joined about 200 others who climbed into four buses traveling to Washington early Saturday to join in the march. CNN

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25 Years After Los Angeles Riots, Progress And Distrust Live Side By Side
Twenty-five years after the acquittal of four Los Angeles police officers in the beating of black motorist Rodney King and the deadly riots that followed the verdict, an undercurrent of distrust pulses through a city that says it worked hard at police reform. Long before the advent of the Black Lives Matter movement, the name Rodney King became synonymous with the use of excessive force in policing minority groups. King, then 25, was battered by a squad of white officers after a traffic stop in March 1991, an incident caught in graphic detail on a bystander's video. South Los Angeles, where the violence started and where almost half the residents are African-American, is still plagued by many of the economic problems that contributed to the unrest. The riots killed more than 50 people and caused some $1 billion in damage over six days. Reuters

Torrential Rains, Damaging Winds Lash U.S. Midsection
Heavy rains and damaging winds struck a broad swath of the U.S. heartland on Saturday, causing power outages for thousands of Oklahoma residents while triggering road closures and flash flood warnings in parts of the Midwest. The downpour, which began on Friday, was so intense the ground could not absorb the moisture, creating a high likelihood of flooding, said meteorologist Kenneth James of the Weather Prediction Center, which is part of the National Weather Service. In the town of Benton, Illinois, floodwaters were reaching the doors of some homes. In neighboring Indiana, parts of Interstate 64 in the southern part of the state were flooded near the town of Ferdinand. Reuters

Trump Says He's Brought 'Profound Change' To Washington
President Donald Trump on Saturday marked his 100th day in office by saying he had brought "profound change" to Washington and reaffirming that "my only allegiance" is to those he governs. On a threshold that Trump has both derided and tried to define, the president also said he is putting Americans first even as he learns on the job. "My only allegiance is to you, our wonderful citizens," Trump said in his weekly radio address. It was a preview of a day on which Trump was traveling to Pennsylvania to emphasize such priorities as American manufacturing, better trade deals for the U.S. and his underdog victory over Democrat Hillary Clinton in November. He also was promoting a still-to-be defined tax cut plan and the nation's strong economy, on which many of his political fortunes rest. Meanwhile, North Korea's missile launch Saturday signaled its continued defiance against the U.S., China and other nations, on which Trump tweeted: "Bad!" MSNBC
VOA VIEW: There is no question there has been a big change without Obama and Hillary.

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Promises, Promises: What Trump Said He Would Do But Hasn’t
President Donald Trump has made little progress on some of his key campaign promises in his first 100 days as president. Of the 10 core goals for his presidency tracked by NBC News, Trump made progress on two, faltered on four, and did little or nothing on the rest. Trump's tangible progress is mostly confined to headline-grabbing executive orders that tackle parts of his promises from the campaign by undertaking regulatory or administrative reviews, or green lighting permits.
"I don't think there's any question that the president has done a significant amount on the issues that he put forward in the campaign," White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer told reporters ahead of the 100-day mark, touting "a record number" of executive orders. "We are very proud." MSNBC
VOA VIEW: The liberal media do not like the true changes.

Pence Christens New Attack Submarine, Urges Congress To Boost Defense Spending
Vice President Mike Pence marked the Trump administration’s 100th day Saturday by christening a new Virginia-class fast attack submarine and calling on Congress to meet President Trump’s request for an extra $30 billion for defense in a short-term spending bill. Mr. Pence christened the U.S.S. Indiana in a ceremony at the Huntington Ingalls Shipyard in Newport News, Virginia, with an audience of lawmakers, shipyard workers and Navy personnel. “Just next week, with President Trump’s leadership, and the strong support of the members of Congress gathered here today, Congress will pass a spending bill with long-overdue investments in our military readiness even before this fiscal year ends,” Mr. Pence said. “That’s what leadership looks like.” Washington Times

Two-Thirds Of White House Reporters Calls Donald Trump The Most Anti-Media President Ever
A majority of White House reporters believe President Trump has already established himself as the most openly anti-media president in U.S. history, according to a report from Politico. Published on Mr. Trump’s 100th day in office, the report released Saturday indicates White House journalists overwhelmingly agree the current administration is the worst ever with respect to its interactions with the press. Sixty-eight percent of respondents answered “true” when asked recently if Mr. Trump is the most openly anti-press president in history, Politico reported; about one-third, or 32 percent, responded “false.” Washington Times
VOA VIEW: It's about time that the liberal media is set aside.

Elite Boarding School Officials Resign Amid Sexual Abuse Claims
A prestigious Connecticut boarding school says two former headmasters have resigned as life trustees after a report that alleged teachers had sexually abused students. A spokeswoman for Choate Rosemary Hall says Charles Dey resigned from the position Thursday. He led the Wallingford private school from 1973 to 1991. Edward Shanahan resigned Friday. He was headmaster from 1991 to 2011. The spokeswoman says all former Choate headmasters receive the life trustee designation. The resignations come after Choate provided a report from outside investigators this month naming a dozen former faculty members accused of sexual misconduct while at the school. Famous alumni include John F. Kennedy, Michael Douglas and Ivanka Trump. School officials and the report said Choate officials didn't notify police, state child welfare officials or other schools of the allegations. CBS

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Russia Flaunts Arctic Expansion With New Military Bases
Russia has launched a push to show off its growing military presence in the Arctic in the past two months, even inviting foreign journalists on a rare tour of one of its bases in the region. The Alakurtti base, which ABC News and several other foreign media organizations were invited to see this week, is above the Arctic Circle, about 250 miles from the northern port Murmansk and on the border with Finland. A Soviet-era base, surrounded by forest and around 8 foot of snow in April, Alakurtti was presented to foreign journalists as an example of Russia’s wider military expansion back into the Arctic. ABC

For Trump In White House, Conflicts Of Interest Range Widely
When it comes to avoiding conflicts of interest in the White House, President Donald Trump has ripped up the playbook in his first 100 days. Most presidents have taken pains to avoid even any appearance that they might be exploiting their office for personal financial gain. Trump doesn't seem too worried. His company has doubled membership fees at his Palm Beach club, whose popularity has benefited from press coverage of his meetings there with political leaders. ABC
VOA VIEW: The liberal media hate facts.

Japan, Philippines Urge U.S., North Korea To Avoid Brink Of War
Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte joined China in pleading with the leaders of North Korea and the U.S. to tone down their nuclear brinksmanship, even as he agreed with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe that negotiations to end the standoff would be useless. “We have to caution everybody including those who’d give the advice to the two players because you have nuclear warheads to just show restraint,” Duterte said Saturday after wrapping up a meeting of leaders of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations in Manila. Abe, in London, said talks with North Korea shouldn’t be tried while the communist nation continues its “provocative acts.” He spoke as China’s official news agency, Xinhua, urged President Donald Trump to “tread cautiously” with the U.S. and North Korea locked in a “tit-for-tat” vicious cycle. Duterte compared the standoff to two countries playing with toys “and those toys are not to entertain.” Bloomberg

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Barron Trump Unites Social Media Users In First 100 Days Of Trump Presidency
On the 100th day of his presidency, President Donald Trump has already solidified his place in history as one of the more unconventional presidents, using social media unlike any of his Oval Office predecessors. But while the tweeter-in-chief takes to social media to provide his own running commentary on hot button topics facing the American public, data findings by SocialFlow, a publishing optimization platform, show it's the youngest Trump that has captured America's hearts and minds. SocialFlow compiled data after running an exhaustive search on major social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn, including content that ran through their own site to those platforms from over 300 major media companies. CBS

Ethics Rules Waivers For Trump's Team To Get Federal Scrutiny
The top federal ethics agency is conducting a review that will examine every waiver of conflict of interest rules President Donald Trump’s appointees have received.
The five-page memorandum from the U.S. Office of Government Ethics, posted online late Friday, seeks documentation of waivers granted to appointees ordinarily required to recuse themselves from matters in which they or family members have a financial interest. Issued by the agency’s director, Walter Shaub, it specifies that all agencies and appointees, “including White House officials,” must comply with the notice, which covers appointees in the administrations of Trump and former President Barack Obama. Bloomberg
VOA VIEW: Trump will do what is legal and right.

Tensions Rise Between Turkey, US Along Syrian Border
Tensions rose Saturday along the Turkish-Syrian border as both Turkey and the U.S. moved armored vehicles to the region and Turkey's leader once again demanded that the United States stop supporting the Syrian Kurdish militants there. The relocation of Turkish troops to an area near the border with Syria comes a day after U.S. troops were seen patrolling the tense border in Syria. Those patrols followed a Turkish airstrike against bases of Syrian Kurdish militia, Washington's main ally in combating Islamic State militants in Syria. More U.S. troops were seen Saturday in armored vehicles in Syria in Kurdish areas. Kurdish officials describe U.S. troop movement as "buffer" between them and Turkey. But Turkey views Syria's Kurdish People's Protection Units, known as YPG, as a terrorist organization and an extension of the Kurdish militants who have been waging a three-decade-long insurgency against Turkey. Las Vegas Sun

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GOP Health Plan For Pre-Existing Conditions Spawns Worries
From cancer to addiction, doctors and patient groups are warning that the latest Republican health care bill would gut hard-won protections for people with pre-existing medical conditions. Some GOP moderates who may seal the legislation's fate are echoing those concerns. In a strongly worded statement this week, the American Medical Association said the Republican protections "may be illusory." The American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network said the plan could take the nation back to a "patchwork system" that pushes costs on people with life-threatening conditions. Such stark messages may be connecting with lawmakers anxious about making the right decision on issues that touch every family. Rep. Patrick Meehan, R-Pa., said the rewritten bill "doesn't change the fundamental concerns I had at the outset ... making sure people with serious medical conditions could get affordable and adequate coverage." Count him among the GOP moderates who remain opposed. Las Vegas Sun

Pope Francis Preaches Unity, Tolerance And Non-Violence At Cairo Mass
Pope Francis preached a message promoting unity, tolerance and non-violence during a mass at a stadium in Egypt Saturday. The pope addressed the crowd of about 15,000 people at Cairo's Air Defense Stadium with the traditional Muslim greeting "As-Salaam Alaikum" or "Peace be upon you" as he stressed the fanaticism of charity and how it allows opposing sides to come together as one. "Any other type of fanaticism does not come from God, and is not pleasing to him," he said. "True faith is one that makes us more charitable, more merciful, more honest and more humane...it makes us see the other not as an enemy to be overcome but a brother or sister to be loved, served and helped." UPI

U.S. Attorney General Vows To 'Devastate' MS-13 Street Gang
U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions vowed Friday to "devastate" the MS-13 street gang, which has been blamed for a string of homicides in New York. Sessions, in a speech on Long Island with local police commissioners and sheriffs, said a crackdown on illegal immigration will help combat the gang, which has ties to El Salvador. He said the threat is similar to those by the Colombian cartels and the mafia. Long Island officials said the gang is responsible for 15 deaths in Suffolk County since early 2016, the most violent spat of killings linked on Long Island to MS-13 since the early 1990s. "The Justice Department has zero tolerance for gang violence," Sessions said. "If you are a gang member, know this: We will find you. We will devastate your networks. We will starve your revenue sources, deplete your ranks and seize your profits. We will not concede a single block or street corner to your vicious tactics." UPI

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US Growth Rate Hits Three-Year Low
GDP expanded at an annual rate of 0.7% in the first quarter - the slowest rate since the first quarter of 2014. It will be unwelcome news for President Donald Trump who, during his election campaign, made a pledge to raise growth to 4%. In a bid to fulfil that promise, on Wednesday the White House proposed slashing the rate of corporation tax. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin unveiled President Trump's tax blueprint, which aims to cut the business tax rate from 35% to 15%. BBC
VOA VIEW: These are Obama's final numbers.

Arkansas Execution: Judge Orders Post-Mortem
A judge has ordered a post-mortem exam on the body of a man executed by lethal injection who was reportedly in pain during his final moments. District Judge Kristine Baker's order came hours after Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson dismissed calls for an in-depth review. Kenneth Williams, the fourth prisoner executed in eight days, convulsed and groaned, witnesses said. His lawyers described his death on Thursday as "horrifying". In addition to the examination, Judge Baker also ordered the preservation of blood and tissue samples from Williams's body. BBC

Mark Zuckerberg's Surprise Visit To Ohio Family Boosts Rumor Of Political Run
An Ohio family said they learned just 20 minutes before dinner on Friday evening that a planned mystery guest would be the Facebook founder and billionaire Mark Zuckerberg.  “I knew we were having a mystery guest and that was about it,” Daniel Moore told a local newspaper, the Vindicator of Youngstown. “It was completely incredible.” The Vindicator reported that Zuckerberg dined with the Moore family in Newton Falls, about 55 miles south-east of Cleveland. The newspaper said Zuckerberg had asked his staff to find Democrats who voted for Donald Trump. Zuckerberg’s trek to Ohio is part of the Facebook founder’s plan to visit and meet people in all 50 states, part of a string of moves which has lead to widespread speculation about whether Zuckerberg intends to run for office himself. Guardian

Can Unions Rebuild The Labor Movement In The US South?
Seated around a table in the dimly lit auditorium of Atlanta-based nonprofit Project South last weekend, two dozen union activists of all ages and races were trying to solve a problem – one that has vexed the southern states for a generation. Longshoremen from South Carolina, nurses from Florida, campus workers from Tennessee, public workers employees from North Carolina, and fast-food workers had gathered to discuss one issue: how could these members of the Southern Workers Assembly help a fellow union attempt to unionize a company scattered at dozens of locations across the south? It’s a growing problem for unions, and one their opponents are determined to make sure doesn’t get any easier. Guardian
VOA VIEW: No!

'Are You Considering Defecting To North Korea?' Tourism Thrives As Tensions Soar In Korea's DMZ
Within seconds of arriving at the North Korean border, a US Army soldier leaps onto the tour bus and starts barking orders. "No drugs," he says, glowering at the group of mainly American tourists through his dark glasses. "No alcohol. No weapons of any kind, not even penknives. "And do not, under any circumstances, attempt to communicate with the North Korean soldiers you are about to see." He marches up and down the bus, checking passports and crossing names off a list, before spinning around to face a sea of tourists' faces. "Another thing," he adds, "and this is not a joke - are any of you considering defecting to North Korea?" When no one replies in the affirmative, the group is marched in single file into the Demilitiarised Zone (DMZ), a twisting snake of barbed wire fences, watchtowers and minefields that runs across the entire Korean peninsula. Telegraph

Trumps Behaving 'Like A Royal Family', Says German Foreign Minister
Germany’s foreign minister has accused Donald Trump and his relatives of behaving like members of a “royal family”. Speaking just days after Ivanka Trump and Angela Merkel shared a stage in Berlin, Sigmar Gabriel described the US president’s appointment of his daughter as a White House adviser as “nepotism”. “There are things that are strange to me, for example the visit of his daughter to Germany which was treated almost like a world event,” Mr Gabriel said on Saturday. “This mix of politics with family and business smacks of nepotism and would be unimaginable here.” Ms Trump’s appearance at an international women’s summit at the personal invitation of Mrs Merkel this week was hailed as a soft diplomacy coup for the German chancellor. Telegraph
VOA VIEW: Germany has proven not to be a friend of the US.

South Sudan: UN Urges All Sides To Cease Hostilities; Regional Force Starts To Arrive
Disturbed by the escalation of violence and subsequent suffering of civilians in South Sudan as a result of the recent government offensive, the United Nations today urged the Government and other warring parties to cease hostilities, uphold their responsibility to protect civilians. “The renewed upsurge in fighting represents a callous and blatant disregard of the pledges made during the 25 March 2017 IGAD [Intergovernmental Authority on Development] summit to implement a ceasefire and to facilitate humanitarian access,” said a statement issued overnight by Stéphane Dujarric, Spokesman for the UN Secretary-General. The statement also urged all sides to cooperate with the UN and other humanitarian actors to ensure safe access to all civilians in imminent danger along the West Bank of the River Nile. UN News

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