Federal agencies have been told to suspend pay raises for top Trump administration officials after an uproar from critics who said it was unseemly to reward top political appointees while hundreds of thousands of workers are going without pay during the partial government shutdown. Baltimore Sun
VOA VIEW: Nothing new
President Donald Trump's national security adviser sought to reassure allies Sunday that the United States would be methodical about withdrawing troops from Syria, promising that the pullout would not occur until the Islamic State was fully eradicated from the country. Baltimore Sun
VOA VIEW: Not a contradiction - liberal news propaganda.
For America’s top diplomat, it will be a mission like no other: seeking to build a coalition among U.S. allies against Iran, while also defending a potentially historic disengagement of Washington from the Middle East. Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo, starting this week, will swing through the region. LA Times
VOA VIEW: Liberal news propaganda.


Rewriting the narrative of the fatal shooting of a 7-year-old girl, authorities in Houston said Sunday that they had arrested an African American man and that their original description of the suspect as white with blue eyes had been wrong. That description had led activists to conclude that it was racially motivated. LA Times
VOA VIEW: A switch.
One South Carolina politician is not holding back when it comes to the government shutdown, President Donald Trump and Republican leadership in the U.S. Senate. U.S. representative James Clyburn believes Americans are being held hostage due to the wall. Miami Herald
VOA VIEW: Typical liberal rhetoric.
The “sonic attacks” that afflicted diplomats at the US embassy in Cuba could have just been the work of crickets, according to a report Sunday. The embassy in Havana cut its staff in half in 2017 after dozens of people complained of headaches, nausea and other ailments from hearing mysterious, penetrating high-pitched noises — believed to be an acoustic weapon — possibly from the Russians. New York Post
White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders sparred with “Fox News Sunday” anchor Chris Wallace when she defended President Trump’s claims that terrorists are pouring across the southern border. The commander-in-chief has said he needs $5.6 billion for the barrier because drugs, human traffickers and terrorists are crossing the Mexican border into the US. New York Post
VOA VIEW: Wallace is strange in his reporting.
Democrat Gavin Newsom will be sworn in as California’s 40th governor on Monday, cementing the dominance of his party’s progressive wing and ushering in a leftward shift that could give the most populous U.S. state an even greater role as a counterweight to the policies of Republican President Donald Trump. Rueters
China has the "good faith" to work with the United States to resolve trade frictions, the Foreign Ministry said on Monday, as the world's two largest economies resumed talks in a bid to end their trade dispute. Rueters
VOA VIEW: China is realizing it can not win a trade war with the US.


Mexico’s president flew to Tijuana on Sunday to champion his plan to grow the economy of the country’s northern border region by lowering taxes, increasing the minimum wage and pegging gasoline prices to those of neighboring U.S. communities. San Diego Tribune
Just over two weeks after the Trump administration announced a new policy that would force asylum seekers to wait in Mexico for their turns in U.S. immigration court, there is no sign yet at the border that it has been implemented. Though the Department of Homeland Security said on December 20th it would begin the new policy. San Diego Tribune
VOA VIEW: Time will tell.
Negotiations are underway on the site for a second summit between the U.S. and North Korea, President Donald Trump said on Sunday, although he didn’t specify when the meeting would take place. “We're negotiating a location,” Trump told reporters on the South Lawn of the White House before boarding a helicopter for a staff retreat at Camp David. “It will be announced probably in the not-too-distant future.”         USA Today
Soldiers in Gabon appeared on state television saying they have launched a coup to “restore democracy” in the West African country.  Soldiers in Gabon appeared on state television saying they have launched a coup to “restore democracy” in the West African country. Early Monday a soldier who identified himself as Lt. Obiang Ondo Kelly, commander of the Republican Guard, read out a statement saying the military has seized control of the government. He was flanked by two other soldiers holding weapons and all were dressed in camouflage uniforms and green berets. Government spokesperson Guy-Bertrand Mapangou told the BBC that four of the rebels were arrested since the announcement and a fifth is on the run. He said "everything is back to normal."        USA Today

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The administration now wants $5.7 billion for a “steel barrier” and $800 million “to address urgent humanitarian needs” at the border. Meanwhile, to avoid fallout from the budget impasse, national parks will dip into entrance fees to bolster operations, which critics said may be illegal. The administration has also signaled it would be willing to restore some version of an Obama-era program that allowed children in Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador to apply for refugee resettlement in the United States, according to an official with knowledge of the proposal. Washington Post
Teachers are set to strike on Jan. 10 in the nation's second-largest school district. Attorneys for the nation’s second-largest school district went to court Thursday, telling U.S. District Judge Ronald S.W. Lew that students with special needs would be denied education services that are guaranteed to them under U.S. law. Lew swiftly rejected the argument, saying Friday that the district was attempting to bring an unrelated issue into the contract dispute and that it had failed to show how the union, United Teachers Los Angeles, would be liable if special education laws were not followed. Washington Post
Police in Louisiana say officers have shot and killed a man who was suicidal and fired at one of them. New Orleans police Superintendent Michael Harrison tells news outlets that an officer was shot at on Friday night while responding to "what we believe was an attempted suicide.” The officer was struck twice in his protective vest. Harrison says that officer and three others then shot the man several times. Washington Times


Rep. Liz Cheney said it would be "devastating" for the U.S. to pull troops from Syria "precipitously," saying it could create an opening for Iran to "dominate" Syria. “I've been very hopeful as I've seen reports that we are now going to slow that down. We've got about 2,200 special operations forces there and they are conducting crucially important work in terms of air support, in terms of artillery support. ABC
VOA VIEW: It is clear that liberal media do not know what Trump knows.
President Donald Trump confirmed that a U.S. military strike last week killed Jamal al-Badawi, an al-Qaeda operative involved in the deadly 2000 attack on the USS Cole. Trump tweeted on Sunday that the U.S. military had “delivered justice for the heroes lost and wounded” in the attack. “Our GREAT MILITARY has delivered justice for the heroes lost and wounded in the cowardly attack on the USS Cole,” Trump tweeted.” ABC
The US president has heavily relied upon high-profile military men, but he has not got what he expected. Apparently, among President Trump's favourite movies is the Second World War epic Patton: Lust for Glory. General George Patton was a charismatic, no nonsense and hard-fighting kind of officer. He got results but he was also self-absorbed and controversial - twice striking soldiers suffering from combat stress. BBC
VOA VIEW: The liberal media are saying that the alleged love affair went sour - fools.
Theresa May warns of "uncharted territory" if MPs reject her agreement as she insists crunch vote will "definitely" go ahead next week.Theresa May has warned the UK faces "uncharted territory" if Parliament rejects her Brexit deal as she vowed to redouble her efforts to win MPs round. Next week's vote would "definitely" go ahead, she told the BBC, as she promised new safeguards for Northern Ireland and to look at giving MPs more say in shaping future EU negotiations. BBC
Large parts of the western U.S. were dealing with some miserable winter weather Sunday. But it was warmer than normal from the Rockies to the Appalachians. The bad news is that it will not last. Ileana Diaz reports. CBS

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White House press secretary Sarah Sanders on Sunday repeated a false claim put forth by her and other Trump administration officials. White House press secretary Sarah Sanders on Sunday repeated a false claim put forth by her and other Trump administration officials about the number of suspected terrorists apprehended at the southern border, one that is contradicted by the administration's own data on the topic. CBS
Apple iTunes and AirPlay 2 are coming to Samsung smart TVs. Apple announced a partnership with Samsung, one of its fiercest rivals, on Sunday morning. Soon, customers who owns select Samsung smart TVs will be able to access iTunes movie and TV content. AirPlay 2 support will let iPhone and iPad owners send content from their screens to the TVs, too. CNBC
In his battle with Congress over border wall funding, President Donald Trump has leaned heavily on Twitter to rally support among his followers. The strategy seems to be working. That doesn't bode well for a quick resolution to the standoff. So far, the strategy seems to be working. CNBC
VOA VIEW: The liberal media fails to tell the real facts - Trump needs to tweet.

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New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is defending her fellow new Democratic congresswoman, Michigan Rep. Rashida Tlaib, for using profanity in referring to President Donald Trump. "Republican hypocrisy at its finest: saying that Trump admitting to sexual assault on tape is just 'locker room talk,' but scandalizing themselves into faux-outrage when my sis says a curse word in a bar," Ocasio-Cortez wrote Saturday on Twitter. ." CNN
VOA VIEW: Cortez is given to much attention - idiot.
White House officials and congressional aides are returning to discussions Sunday to find a way to reopen the government after emerging from the first round of weekend talks without a breakthrough. President Donald Trump acknowledged Sunday that weekend shutdown talks led by his vice president would not break an impasse, as newly empowered House Democrats planned to step up the pressure on Trump and Republican lawmakers to reopen the government. FOX News
VOA VIEW: No $5B, no deal.
Downing Street insists new compromises can be won from Europe to ensure passage of PM’s planTheresa May is preparing to make another desperate plea to EU leaders to offer a concession on the Irish backstop as she attempts to win over Brexiters who have vowed to vote down the government’s deal. Guardian
President heads for Camp David as talks drag on in WashingtonStar-spangled shutdown: how nationalism warped US politics Donald Trump said on Sunday he may declare a national emergency over immigration, to allow him to build a wall on America’s southern border. Guardian
VOA VIEW: Smart move.
Senior Israeli officials have recently told the Post that they are aware of Washington's concerns and are working to address them. Jerusalem Post
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met US National Security Advisor John Bolton on Sunday and said that under the leadership of US President Donald Trump US-Israel relations were never better. Jerusalem Post
President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi inaugurated Egypt's largest church and mosque in the New Administrative Capital on Sunday, the eve of Coptic Christmas, in a message of tolerance in the predominantly Muslim country. Reuters
The post-election environment in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) is “calm but tense” as the country waits for the results of the presidential poll, the UN Human Rights office (OHCHR) said on Friday. UN News
The U.S. National Park Service announced Sunday that it will use reserved money from visitor fees to fund operations of parks affected by the ongoing partial government shutdown. Deputy director of the National Park Service, P. Daniel Smith, said the agency was taking the "extraordinary step" of using entrance, camping, parking and other fees collected from park visitors that would typically be used for future projects at parks to fund the most highly visited parks. UPI

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