John Bolton accuses White House of blocking access to Twitter account

Bolton’s account has been conspicuously silent since his resignation in September, until he tweeted he’d share a ‘backstory’

John Bolton, Donald Trump’s hardline former national security adviser, has accused the White House of blocking access to his personal Twitter account after he left the administration in September.

In a series of cryptic tweets on Friday, Bolton teased his 770,000 followers, telling them to “stay tuned” for a “backstory” following his two month absence.

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Scott Morrison can’t attack Australia’s political circus and pretend he isn’t its ringmaster | Katharine Murphy

The prime minister is relentlessly pursuing the politics of panic, but validating voter anxiety can only go so far

It’s possible I have Harold Bloom lodged in my head lately because he loomed large in my youth, and he died recently, but when I listen to Scott Morrison, increasingly I think of Bloom, and The Anxiety of Influence.

If you are too young or productively educated to have encountered Bloom, he is the literary critic who held that all writers have to confront the writers who came before them, in the process creating imaginative space for themselves. Bloom’s theory is more complex than my simple rendering, but that’s the primary idea.

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A 12-year-old girl, online sexual exploitation and lax financial rules

The Westpac scandal has brought the role of financial institutions in enabling child sexual abuse into sharp relief

On 25 October plainclothes police barged through the red door of a family home in a dense neighbourhood in Rizal, a province two hours away from Manila.

There they arrested a mother who was allegedly sexually exploiting her own 12-year-old daughter. The 45-year-old woman was clutching her phone. Police took it and then handcuffed her.

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No more orphans expected to be returned to UK from Syria

Home Office unhappy with Foreign Office for potentially opening door to more Isis returnees

No other British children are expected to be repatriated from Syria in the foreseeable future, despite the announcement from the foreign secretary on Thursday that a small number of orphans who had been caught up in the conflict with Islamic State had been brought home.

Home Office officials view the repatriation of the children, who cannot be named for legal reasons, as highly exceptional – and there is unhappiness with the Foreign Office for potentially opening the door to more Islamic State returnees.

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Christine Lagarde calls for more public investment in first ECB speech

President of the European Central Bank says US/China tariff war should be seen as an opportunity

Christine Lagarde has called for European governments to boost innovation and growth with higher rates of public investment, in her first major speech as president of the European Central Bank.

Speaking to an audience of bankers in Frankfurt, Lagarde said that rising trade barriers triggered by the US/China tariff war should be grasped by European governments as an opportunity to build a stronger internal market.

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Prince Andrew’s private secretary steps down after Newsnight interview

Amanda Thirsk, who orchestrated disastrous BBC interview, will run prince’s mentoring initiative

The aide who orchestrated Prince Andrew’s disastrous interview about his links to the convicted child sex offender Jeffrey Epstein is no longer his private secretary, it has emerged as organisations continue to sever ties with the beleaguered royal.

Amanda Thirsk, who was said to have played a key role in persuading him to agree to the BBC interview, has reportedly moved on to run his business mentoring initiative.

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Malta’s PM urged to step back from case of murdered journalist

Two members of government linked to man arrested over Daphne Caruana Galizia killing

A senior European monitor is calling for Malta’s prime minister to distance himself from the investigation into the killing of the prominent investigative journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia due to a potential conflict of interest.

Malta’s prime minister, Joseph Muscat, has the power to grant immunity from prosecution to a key witness who may have vital evidence about those who commissioned Caruana Galizia’s assassination two years ago.

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Reality of life in the Kafr Aqab district | Letter

To understand what’s happening in Kafr Aqab, you need to understand what’s happening to Palestinians living in East Jerusalem under Israeli military law, says Waed M Abbas

Not all of us are in Kafr Aqab because we are star-crossed lovers, but it is true that we live here because we are forced to (Love island: The walled enclave where residents of West Bank and Jerusalem can live together, 11 November). To understand what’s happening in Kafr Aqab, you need to understand what’s happening to Palestinians living in East Jerusalem under Israeli military law.

In a nutshell, it’s not easy. According to B’tselem, “Immediately after occupying the area in 1967, Israel unlawfully annexed thousands of hectares in and around Jerusalem. Ever since, it has instituted policies designed to drive Palestinians out of the city and to create a demographic and geographic reality that would frustrate any challenge to Israeli sovereignty there. The policies, which disrupt every aspect of life, include isolating East Jerusalem from the rest of the West Bank and deliberate underdevelopment and underservicing that result in overcrowding, poverty and substandard infrastructure.”

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Hong Kong is a de facto police state | Letter

Karen Yuen responds to letters about the Hong Kong government and allegations of police brutality

I am writing in response to the letter from Winky So, director general of the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office in London (22 November). Her claim that Hong Kong police have “carried out enforcement actions in strict accordance with the law” is simply ludicrous.

International and local media have documented numerous cases of police brutality that are in violation of Police General Orders – citizens being pepper-sprayed in the face because they did not move fast enough; protesters being beaten ferociously on the head with batons when they were already immobilised; officers verbally abusing protesters. The list goes on.

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Greta Thunberg, time traveller? Girl in photo from 1898 resembles activist

Girl in viral image looks similar to activist in both the intensity of her stare and braided hair, prompting Twitter jokes

Could Greta Thunberg be a time traveller sent from the future to save humanity from the unfolding climate crisis? A cadre of Twitter users seem to think so, after the photograph of a young Klondike goldminer bearing a striking resemblance to the Swedish activist was discovered this week.

The now viral 1898 image of three children operating a goldmine in Canada’s Yukon territory is part of a sprawling collection by the documentary photographer Eric Hegg. Near the end of the 19th century, the Swedish American captured some of the most iconic images of people hoping to make their fortunes in the rugged north.

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Merkel successor challenges party to back her or sack her

CDU leader Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer gets ovation after ultimatum at party conference

The embattled leader of Germany’s ruling Christian Democrats has challenged delegates at the party’s conference to back her vision or else “end it here and now”, amid deep divisions over the future direction of the party.

Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer told the CDU’s annual conference in Leipzig she was putting her future on the line in response to stinging criticism over her leadership style.

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Prince Andrew’s fall from grace brings uncertain times for the monarchy

After a difficult year, the last thing Britain’s royal family needed was the Duke of York’s self-inflicted crisis

The unprecedented banishment of Prince Andrew to the outer reaches of the royal firm, without a useful future role or official engagements, free – presumably – to spend more time with his golf clubs, comes at a critical time for the family.

After the calamities of the 1990s and the patient rebuilding of reputation that followed, all seemed set fair only 18 months ago. The Queen was still soldiering stoically on into her 90s, working on her red boxes of official papers every day as she had done for the previous seven decades and attending 293 engagements during the year. Prince Harry had just married Meghan Markle to popular acclaim, seemingly inaugurating a new era for the royal family. And the succession was secure to three generations, if they played their cards right.

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Sacha Baron Cohen: Facebook would have let Hitler buy ads for ‘final solution’

In wide-ranging speech, actor accuses tech giants of running the ‘greatest propaganda machine in history’

Sacha Baron Cohen has denounced tech giants Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Google as “the greatest propaganda machine in history” and culpable for a surge in “murderous attacks on religious and ethnic minorities”.

Baron Cohen was speaking on Thursday at Never Is Now, the Anti-Defamation League’s summit on antisemitism and hate in New York, where he was presented with the organisation’s international leadership award. He said that “hate crimes are surging, as are murderous attacks on religious and ethnic minorities” and that “all this hate and violence is being facilitated by a handful of internet companies that amount to the greatest propaganda machine in history”.

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Donald Trump on impeachment: ‘I want a trial’ – video

Donald Trump told Fox & Friends he wants to go on trial, which means he would like to be impeached. The president complained that Republicans couldn’t call witnesses during the House impeachment hearings, and suggested a trial would enable him to quiz the whistleblower and Adam Schiff, House intelligence committee chair 

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