By Sofia Bonin
1. Russian Missile Crisis
This week, Russia secretly launched a missile that allegedly goes against a “landmark arms control treaty.” A 1978 treaty banned any Russian or American “intermediate range missiles” be tested on the shore. Many are watching with anticipation due to President Donald Trump’s relationship with Russia. His reaction to the Russian missile launch will be very telling of our nation’s relationship with President Putin for the next four years. Sources are doubting that the Senate will draw up a new arms control plan as Trump has spoken about making deals with Moscow regarding nuclear weapons.
2. Congress and Planned Parenthood
Currently, there is a rule that mandates states present federal funds to Planned Parenthood (along with other abortion providers). On Tuesday the House Rules Committee met and went through with sending legislation to the House that would undo all of this, therefore threatening Planned Parenthood’s federal funding in many states. This is a large concern especially in red states where political officials are more likely to oppose a woman’s right to abortion. Many fear that if states turn away federal funding, abortion clinics will close and in turn lead to the resurfacing of “coat hanger abortion” practices.
3. Etan Patz
On May 25, 1979, a 6 year old boy, Etan Patz, went missing on his walk to the bus stop- just two blocks away from his house. The case is so memorable and chilling as Etan was one of the first missing children to ever appear on the back of a milk carton. A jury convicted Pedro Hernandez of the murder. He was a store clerk in Patz’s neighborhood in New York. The disappearance and death of Etan Patz shaped parenting skills and law enforcement routine in regards to missing children. Hernandez told a prayer group that he had choked Etan to death after luring him into the store’s basement with a soda.
4. Michael Flynn Resigns
Michael Flynn, the former National Security Adviser, resigned this past Monday after being active for only a month. He cited “incomplete information” regarding his talks with the Russian Ambassador as his reason for resigning. Many are astonished by his resignation due to the speed at which it happened. In a public statement Flynn said:,“Unfortunately, because of the fast pace of events, I inadvertently briefed the vice-president elect and others with incomplete information regarding my phone calls with the Russian Ambassador.” In response, Trump, almost instantaneously, assigned Lt. General Joseph Keith Kellogg Jr. as National Security Adviser,causing many to question his motives.
5. U.S Army Plans to Spend $300 Million
Over the next six months, the U.S. Army plans to spend $300 million on advertisements and bonuses. This is being done in an effort to draw in 6,000 new soldiers. This will be the largest increase (in a year) since 1973. However, the legitimacy of this plan is being brought into question. Recruiting thousands of soldiers in such a short period of time could lead to a lowering of standards and in turn produce unprepared or unqualified soldiers. With Trump only being in office a month, many believe it is too early to be spending such a large sum of money on military efforts. The spending is being justified with the claim that the U.S. is facing rising threats worldwide.