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“I like acting like no one has me captured.” Why McCain fenced off Trump even in death

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It’s no longer news that late Senator John McCain does not want incumbent President Donald Trump anywhere near his burial rites.

The deep resentment goes way back and SlamReportsAfrica drives down memory lane to relieve what may have prompted the quarrel that lingered till McCain’s death.

New York Times provides some insight.

When Senator John McCain of Arizona returned to Washington with a fresh scar from brain surgery, it was widely seen as a dramatic effort to help Republicans overturn Obamacare.

President Trump had criticized Mr. McCain in the past and derided his military service, saying in 2015 of the former Vietnam prisoner of war, “I like people who weren’t captured.”

But in late July 2017, Mr. Trump welcomed him back to Washington. “So great that John McCain is coming back to vote. Brave – American hero! Thank you John,” he said.

Little did Mr. Trump know that the Arizona senator would help drive the stake through legislation that sought to realize the Republicans’ seven-year dream of finally dismantling Obamacare, handing the president an embarrassing legislative setback.

He was joined in his vote by two fellow Republicans, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska and Susan Collins of Maine, and 48 Democrats who defeated the slimmed-down repeal bill early Friday.

Read Also: Everybody would be very poor because of me if….Trump

Mr. McCain left his intentions secret until the end, then cast his vote in a dramatic fashion, walking to the middle of the floor, holding his arm out and then giving a thumbs-down.

Audible gasps and muffled applause could be heard on the Senate floor. Outside a crowd of opponents of the Republican plan roared. The Republican senator offered a short explanation of his vote.

McCain leaving the Capitol asked why he voted NO: “I thought it was the right thing to do.”

After the vote, his office released a statement that he still wanted to see a repeal of Obamacare, while saying that the proposed legislation did nothing to offer more affordable health care to Americans. He called for a new legislative effort, with input from Democrats and Republicans.

The turn of events was the latest in the tumultuous relationship between the president and the Arizona senator, who has also been a thorn in Mr. Trump’s side by pushing for an aggressive stance toward Russia and on other foreign policy issues. After Thursday night’s vote, President Trump criticized the three Republicans who voted against the health care bill in a late-night tweet.

“3 Republicans and 48 Democrats let the American people down. As I said from the beginning, let ObamaCare implode, then deal. Watch!”

On Twitter, defenders of Obamacare saw Mr. McCain’s vote as sweet retribution for Mr. Trump’s past disparagement of him.

McCain to Trump tonight: “I like acting like no one has me captured.”

The late Senator had taken great pride in the role he played in the course of America’s intervention in Vietnam. Military service, he believed, was the ultimate price to pay in defense of one’s country, and could hardly comprehend why an American leader would make light of it.

By fencing off Trump, McCain may have wished that the incumbent President earned no political capital from his demise.

Musings From Abroad

Russia’s African influence grows as envoy claims 1,890 ‘instructors’ in Central African Republic

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The Russian ambassador to the Central African Republic, Alexander Bikantov has revealed that the country’s military presence in the insurgency-plagued African country.

Bikantov said in an interview published on Friday that 1,890 “Russian instructors” were present in the country. He mentioned that a focus of operations for the Kremlin-linked Wagner Group mercenary outfit.

“Today, there are 1,890 Russian instructors in the C.A.R.. The government is interested in increasing their number. Relatively recently, Bangui sent the relevant application to the UN Security Council”. Bikantov was quoted by the state-owned news agency RIA.

Russia’s influence among African countries battling insurgency has been on the rise lately, with solidified ties with West African country, Mali and much more recently its neighbours Burkina Faso. Both countries, which are under military dictators have reportedly engaged Russian mercenaries – the Wagner Group in the bid to overcome the uprising in their territories.

There are however reports of likely cases of crimes against humility by the government of Mali in its fight against terrorism in connection with its engagement with the Wagner group.

Although it is mineral-rich, the Central African Republic is one of the poorest countries in the world.

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Musings From Abroad

Israel, Sudan advance talks normalise relations

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Following a transfer of power from the military to a civilian government in Khartoum, Israel, and Sudan have finalized a deal to normalise relations.

The Israeli foreign ministry made the revelation on Thursday, noting that the deal was agreed upon during a visit by Israeli Foreign Minister Eli Cohen to “move forward towards normalising relations between the two countries.”

The visit is the first by an Israeli official acknowledged by Sudanese authorities, though there had been a series of exchanges by officials in recent years.

According to a statement by the Israeli foreign ministry, “… the visit, which was made with the consent of the United States, the parties finalised the text of the agreement.”

“The signing ceremony is expected to take place after the transfer of power in Sudan to a civilian government that will be established as part of the ongoing transition process in the country,” it said.

“We definitely look forward to signing the agreement and then to having diplomatic representatives both in Israel and in Sudan,” Lior Haiat, spokesperson for the foreign ministry who took part in the delegation, Cohen told newsmen.

“We are (now) building a new reality with the Sudanese, in which the ‘Three No’s’ will become the ‘Three Yeses’,” he said. “Yes to negotiations between Israel and Sudan, yes to recognition of Israel, and yes to peace between the states and between the peoples.”

In January 2021 Sudan said its then-justice minister Nasredeen Abdulbari had signed the Abraham Accords during a visit by U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin.

A joint statement issued by the governments of Israel, Sudan, and the United States said that “The leaders agreed to the normalisation of relations between Sudan and Israel and to end the state of belligerence between their nations.”

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