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Archive for October 8th, 2020

Ex-Secret Service Supervisor Blasts Trump for Putting Agents ‘Needlessly’ at Risk of COVID-19

By Steve Neavling

A former Secret Service supervisor assailed President Trump for putting the agents hired to protect him at an elevated risk of contacting the coronavirus. 

In a Washington Post Op-Ed, Joseph Petro, a 23-year special agent and senior executive with the Secret Service, said Trump’s jaunt in an SUV around Walter Reed National Military Medical Center over weekend was “a gratuitous and dangerous political exercise that needlessly exposed his Secret Service agents” and their families.

“It was an avoidable risk, and someone should have objected,” he wrote. 

Petro said that protecting agents was “aways our highest priority.”

But not under Trump, who Petro points out rarely wore a mask, even though it’s one of the most effective ways of curbing the spread of COVID-19.

“He has refused to wear a mask on nearly all occasions, and his staff and most attendees at his rallies follow his example,” Petro said. “The inevitable result has been the surge in positive cases among the president’s staff and other associates.”

Petro said Secret Service management must be committed to protecting its agents.

“The Secret Service cannot protect the president from himself, but its management has a solemn responsibility to protect those agents who put their lives on the line every day to protect him,” Petro said. “It should not be that hard to do.”

DOJ Indicts 2 Notoriously Brutal Members of ISIS on Charges of Torturing, Murdering Hostages

FBI Director Christopher Wray announces charges against ISIS members.

By Steve Neavling

Two British members of ISIS are now in FBI custody after the Justice Department charged them Wednesday in the torture and murder of four Americans captured in Syria. 

El Shafee Elsheikh, 32, and Alexanda Kotey, 36, who were part of a notoriously brutal group of hostage-takers known as the Beatles, face up to life in prison, each charged with eight counts, including conspiracy to murder U.S. citizens, hostage taking, hostage taking, and conspiracy to provide material support to terrorists. 

The charges stem from the deaths of four Americans in Syria: James Foley, Peter Kassig, Kayla Mueller, and Steven Sotlof. They also are accused of kidnapping and torturing more than 20 other hostages, some of whom were beheaded in propaganda videos. 

“The families of the victims have suffered the painful loss of their loved ones at the hands of brutal killers. And while their pain may never fully subside, today, with the announcement of this indictment, we’re beginning to bring them the justice they deserve,” FBI Director Christopher Wray said at a news conference

Attorney General William Barr said charges stem from years of “hard work in pursuit of justice for our citizens slain by ISIS.

“Our message to other terrorists around the world is this: If you harm Americans, you will face American arms on the battlefield or American law in our courtrooms,” Barr said. “Either way, you will be pursued to the ends of the earth until justice is done.”