Apr 30, 2017

Trump invites Duterte to D.C.

Dave Lawler, author of World

Bullit Marquez / AP

President Trump spoke by phone yesterday with President Rodrigo Duterte of the Philippines. The White House said the call was "friendly," and Trump noted Duterte's efforts to "rid [the Philippines] of drugs."

The background: The war on drugs in the Philippines has seen some 7,000 killed by police and squads of vigilantes since Duterte took office last year, though he rejects claims that he controls the death squads. Duterte also once called Barack Obama a "son of a whore."

Why it matters: Strongmen like Duterte, Turkey's Erdogan and Egypt's el-Sisi were kept at arms length by the Obama administration but are being embraced by Trump. That makes European allies nervous, but the Trump administration argues that it strengthens alliances against foes like ISIS and North Korea.

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George Floyd protests: Unrest continues for 6th night across U.S.

A protest near the White House on Sunday night. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Most external lights at the White House were turned off late Sunday as the D.C. National Guard was deployed and authorities fired tear gas at hundreds of protesters nearby, per the New York Times.

What's happening: It's one of several tense, late-night standoffs between law enforcement and demonstrators in the United States.

Updated 7 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Journalists get caught in the crosshairs as protests unfold

A man waves a Black Lives Matter flag atop the CNN logo outside the CNN Center during a protest in response to the police killing of George Floyd, Atlanta, Georgia, May 29. Photo: Elijah Nouvelage/Getty Images

Dozens of journalists across the country tweeted videos Saturday night of themselves and their crews getting arrested, being shot at by police with rubber bullets, targeted with tear gas by authorities or assaulted by protesters.

Driving the news: The violence got so bad over the weekend that on Sunday the Cleveland police said the media was not allowed downtown unless "they are inside their place of business" — drawing ire from news outlets around the country, who argued that such access is a critical part of adequately covering protests.

Inside Trump's antifa tweet

President Trump at Cape Canaveral on May 30. Photo: Paul Hennessy/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

As recently as Saturday night, senior administration officials told me that the designation of a violent cohort of far-left activists, antifa, as a terrorist organization was not being seriously discussed at the White House. But that was Saturday.

Behind the scenes: The situation changed dramatically a few hours later, after prominent conservative allies of the president, such as his friend media commentator Dan Bongino, publicly urged a tough response against people associated with antifa (short for "anti-fascist").