This is literally how he got started auditing. Then they wonder why there’s so many auditors
Man: “Get out of my car!” Lady cop: “Don’t tell me what to do!” What a child, sheesh. I wonder what she would’ve done if he had been more verbally aggressive.Let’s be honest, they were going to find a reason to search the car no matter what. They weren’t traffic cops trying to give out seat belt tickets.His last comments said it all. “They are narc cops, they don’t pull people over for seatbelts.” “The pulled me over because I am a white man in a black neighborhood.” This is EXACTLY what these fishing expeditions are all about. To quote my cop friends “We are like sharks, constantly circling, lokking for a reason to pull people over.”If an officer accuses you of something and then doesn’t show up in court, you better not be liable for any lost revenue / court costs. I would be pissed.The police really need more accountability. They shouldn’t have any type of immunity. They should be held to a higher standard, not lowerThe officer says “relax” to the man surrounded by several people with (I assume loaded) guns and other weapons. I can only wonder how relaxed the officer would have been if the situation were reversed.The “word” of cops has been taken for truth far too long! It is outrageous that the officer searched his vehicle without his consent and “after” he repeatedly said “NOT” to.Cops telling people to “stay calm” after or while stripping them of their rights always gets me on this channel lol… The audacity!They should get a F, for not turning over all footage when requested. To use their logic… Why not just comply with the request “if you have nothing to hide.”Quote from a cop who wishes to remain anonymous, “every traffic stop is a fishing expedition“. Educating us & protecting us is NOT what cops do!“Officer safety”. The magic words that allow the cops to order, detain, search, escalate, abuse, assault, humiliate and retaliate.I think you missed another point about officer safety justifying the search: once they removed him from his car, whatever might have been there was no longer a factor as he couldn’t reach it. By taking him out, maybe even closing the door, they assured their safety from anything that could have been there. Thus, the search, while perhaps legal by the letter of the law, exposes their likely intent to find more “dirt” on him and NOT about officer safety. The search reveals the stop to be almost certainly pretextual to try to find more serious crimes. Legal, yes, but not community-endearing.The Courts allowing officers to search because they “believe” something, is in direct contradiction to the 4th Amendment. “You need a warrant, unless you decide for yourself that you don’t…then, no problem.” Makes zero sense.Why were there so many officers present for a “seatbelt” violation? This was a pretextual stop for being in the “wrong neighborhood”Police Departments MUST be overseen by citizen review boards. Additionally, all body cam videos need to be uploaded within 24-hours and archived by such boards in addition to the departments’ evidence database so they cannot go “missing” or be tampered with. I find it highly “suspicious” (one of cops’ favorite words) that the female cop’s body cam footage is one of the two missing from the FOIA request.I love the inherent conflict between “people leaning over to the passenger side of their car” being a valid excuse for cops to suspect someone is hiding something and the fact that the glovebox, where most people keep their cars information, requires you to lean over to the passenger seat.Should have received all 4 body cams, such bullshit to have a system to retrieve information and information can be denied when it contains the victim and may contain information that would put liability against officers or a department. We seriously need further protections and extensions to laws and systems to gain access to information, especially when it directly contains information relating to ourselves and interactions with law enforcement.A lot of the time, it seems like ATA gives the police “outs” all the time. The idea that the female officer could use some obscure rule, when I’m almost certain she wasn’t thinking of it, gives off the idea to me that these officers can use videos similar to their cases to find loopholes and whatnot.The supreme court really screwed us with this rule of cops being able to order citizens out of their vehicles for no reason!So let me get this straight, when you are pulled over, if you act like a helpful, normal member of society and try to get your insurance out of your glove department while waiting for the cop, YOU CAN BE SHOT OR SEARCHED because of something far less likely going through the cops heads? … WHAT?!?“Why are you acting like this? Why are you using the law to defend your rights?” This is really what they want to say.Pisses me off how these officers are telling him to relax while they blatantly violate his rights.She was already searching the car when he said he didn’t consent to it. True, he did eventually admit to getting his phone, but I believe he would still have a very strong case against the search.Auditor: “Do you know the 4th amendment” Cop: “Yeah I do” Auditor: “What is it” Cop who clearly doesn’t know: “I don’t have to explain myself to you”Ah yes search the vehicle for “police safety” whilst he’s not in the vehicle and has already been searched and has 4 police officers surrounding him. Yes he lent over but he told them he was putting his phone up“Just stay calm” sheesh they are so calm and borderline respectful towards him. Yet, I understand where he’s coming from. Hell, if you walk up to a cop car you’ll have 3 or 5 cops wondering why you’re around their vehicles. They were illegally in his vehicle and they wonder why he was irate. I swear it obviously doesn’t take much intelligence to become a cop.When he said “leaned over” he was quoting what the cop previously said.Your rights are neutered when you’re in a car. It’s crazy how much leeway courts have given law enforcement over the years.Every one of those cops are corrupt. They gaslit him and they told him to remain calm. And how did that one cop not know how to read an expiration date?Officer: “I’m going to search this vehicle whether or not I get permission.”4th amendment: “you can’t do that.”Supreme Court: “you CAN do that if you don’t feel safe (hint hint)”Officer” “I don’t feel safe so I’m going to search this vehicle without permission.” 4th amendment: “WTF?”I love how cops will say “we are recording too” and then when you try and get the footage they some how only give you half the footage.The problem here is that he lost his cool and never got it back. You make a lot of mistakes when you’re controlled by emotion. He was not thinking clearly.Mr. Disorderly- “I don’t talk to cops” Cop- “Cool, get out of the car” Mr. Disorderly then talks for literally the entire stop.Who trained these officers to tell an irritated person to calm down? When in the history of man has that ever worked? All that has ever achieved is to further irritate the person. Well, it’s Chicago and you’re not exactly dealing with the best and brightest.Police have been taught that it usually has the opposite effect when someone is being violated. They say “calm down” because They want their victim to give them a reason to be violent.@A Bike and Its Boy telling people what to do, when they didn’t ask you for it. Just like Karen. Bye FeliciaBeing that the individual was outside the vehicle when the search of his vehicle began, he would not have been in a position to obtain the weapon if he had one. This rendering the officers claim invalid as to officer safety. Have a great day 😊.I love how they kept distracting him with the same questions repeatedly to draw attention away from the officer who they were not going to interfere with while she was going through his stuff. If I learned anything from this, it’s to keep a stash of uncapped hypodermic needles on hand just to toss under the seat as a deterrent for any such actions. Let them learn on their own… 🤷🏾♂️ One thing he did wrong, which I do anytime I get stopped, roll up all the windows and lock the doors. She’s never should have been able to open that door to begin with.One of the most offensive things is that cop who keeps saying “Just relax” and “Relax. Relax”. If I were a judge, I’d lock him up with a Lexis/Nexis computer and would not let him out until he printed out for me the statues that say “failure to relax” is a cri’me. That cop wasn’t issuing lawful orders. That cop was just on an ego-trip. There’s no law against not relaxing. He was clearly way out of his rights and just trying to make the subject kow-tow by issuing UNlawful commands. (And after the cop gives up and says “I had no right under law to tell him to relax” then I’d give him a trial for abusing his authority and throw him in jail for the rest of his life. And that’s because I don’t believe in the death-penalty. There’s just no excuse for bossing people around gratuitously just because it makes someone feel superior.These guys tried soooooo hard to implicate him in admitting to “furtive movements 🙄” so that they can justify an unconstitutional search. DisgustingAudit the Audit gets an F on this one. A furtive movement is one that “attempts to avoid notice or attention”. Leaning isnt furtive, its obvious and everyone pulled over leans to retrieve their wallet or ID. If anything Audit the Audit suggested were in fact lawful, every single movement in a vehicle could be considered furtive and warrantless searches would be common place as the 4th would be moot. The problem with taking a sentence out of case law is that each case is decided on a totality of the circumstances. In this case the police only had “leaning over”. They couldnt cite a violent criminal history or history of gun possession. They couldnt claim location was a hot spot of criminal activity. They couldn’t claim there was a high risk to the nature of the stop. They had nothing and likely the two body cameras they didnt send footage for showed the police intended to pull the car over to conduct a search, just like the guy asserted.SO CORUPT! If a cop doesn’t show up for court they should never be allowed to be a cop because it shows they will use there power for bad and then simply not show up for accountability... One of the main reasons why the Supreme Court has shredded the 4th Amendment is to help cops and prosecutors wage their failed drug war against Americans. The war against drugs is actually a war waged by the government against its own citizens.In essence, a cop can just make up anything they want to make your life hard and they are covered by qualified immunityGet that incompetent “officer” out of his car. She falsely accused him of having expired car insurance 😵💫 She is clearly not capable of muchThe cops were trying to get him to say exactly where the insurance was so they could say he gave them implied consent to get in his car.If you’ve got nothing to hide, then why didn’t you show up to testify, officer?>> Same thing happened to me in Illinois. 44 in a 30 as I’m crossing the sign that says 45 mph. Cited for 44 in a 30 and they no showed after trying to get in the car. I yelled way worse than he did 😂>> You’re suggesting that the officer didn’t show up because he/she has something to hide? I guess that’s possible, but I’m thinking that this is a minor seat-belt citation, and it is not uncommon for law enforcement not to show up for such minor violations when there might be other priorities. Therefore, if you have the time and it’s not too inconvenient you should always contest a minor infraction – there’s a good likelihood the officer will not show up.@Captain Ron I totally agree with you. Always contest the ticket to the magistrate and if you lose there appeal to see the judge. Most cops would rather be getting private overtime work for more pay, They can’t pass up the easy money and I don’t blame them one bit.Captain Ron. If it’s not important enough to show up to testify, then it’s not important enough to write the ticket! This was a pretextual stop, because, as he stated,he drove through a known drug trafficking area! She was searching for drugs, not a gun!i love how the cop hands the insurance to the lady bc she’s the one dealing with the power trip. so funny how they support each other. he couldn’t just check?If I were this guy, I’d have said two things (among others): 1. STOP CALLING ME BRO! 2. STOP TELLING ME TO RELAX!It’s funny how the vehicle paint states “we serve and protect” when the highest court of the land ruled they have no obligation to our safety.From what i have seen in my lifetime is most officers know the loop holes of the law way better then the actual law they are to followIt’s hard to stay calm when you think you are being violated I feel for the dudeWhen I’ve been pulled over I’ve HAD to reach over to get my license and registration, as I assume most people do. Who has all that stuff in a spot where they can just grab it without reaching?“I don’t answer questions…I don’t answer questions…Now let me go ahead and answer all your questions.” ….. There is NEVER a benefit to say ANYTHING to the police in ANY circumstance other than “Am I being detained”, “Am I free to go” or “I want my lawyer”. Anything else can ONLY hurt you.The guy is out of his vehicle, the windows are down and it’s broad daylight but yet she’s searching his car without good reason or his permission. It’s like they’re trying to distract him with questions but they wouldn’t stop what they were doing.>> I just couldn’t imagine being a police officer and then apparently being so dang scared of every single encounter they initiate.>> @Ash Williams they’re not scared, it’s their excuse for acting illegally and controlling people.>> “He leaned over therefore it’s reasonable to believe the cops life may be in danger” -the justice system We need to break the back of the justice system on these issues.I’m pretty convinced at this point, having had similar things happen to me (getting pulled over and searched for drugs when there were not drugs or even suspicion of any), that cops just do this to piss you off/get back at you for something you said/inconvenience you. They know you won’t be busted for anything, but they know how to ring you through the system to make your life at least miserable and inconvenienced. And then there is a record that you had an encounter with them, which makes you look more suspect each time you run into a cop. I’m not sure if there is a name for this phenomenon. I just call it ringing you through the system. This is how they attack you without actually attacking you.
.. I always love to listen to police calmly tell citizens to “relax bro” – AFTER they have stopped, harassed, illegally searched, belittled, frisked, and made the citizen leave the vehicle and put their hands on the top of the car. In what universe does this silly expression, “relax bro” not serve to further anger a justifiably outraged citizen?Reminds me of when I got charged with fleeing the scene of an accident, plus another half a dozen of bs charges and when I showed up to court. The state trooper never showed up and everything got dismissed.IMO this is fascism in America full stop. These cops operate without any regard for the law
>> It is Authoritarianism, not Fascism but all Fascism is Authoritarianism.
Isn’t that contempt of court when they don’t show up for court? I thought if you don’t show up a bench warrant goes out for your arrest? That would have been awesome to see those cops get arrestedThe “protective search” of the car is straight bs and should not be allowed or justified. Being allowed to remove the occupants of a vehicle for officer safety and doing a terry pat down should be sufficient. In that case any police officer can use the argument, as what you used in this video, that the person(s) leaned over to justify any search of a vehicle where other items (“evidence”) other than illegal weapons are found.I also believe they wrote the citation to jam him up and screw with him just for arguing. That citation is a straight up contempt of cop citation. Im sure like the driver in this video pointed out, those officers are not worried about seatbelt violations, though using any be traffic violation to create a legal reason for the stop.It seems like the police could just say “I saw you reach for something” and use that as articulable suspicion to be able to search the vehicle, regardless of whether the suspicion has any factual basis.He was out of the car when the search occurred. No way was this for officer protection. He could not reach for anything on the passenger side when he is outside and on the drivers side and controlled by two officers. They were looking for drugs or another reason to arrest him.We’ve given government so much power that there’s almost no way to know if you’re in the right or wrong. There’s the 4th amendment but all kinds of exceptions to it. The fact that he can lean over in his own car and that’s apparently suspicious, is insane.I do appreciate that the officers tried to calm him down and de-escalate after realizing they were completely in the wrong regarding the initial search. Though they SHOULD have apologized.Here’s a thought, maybe police should stop doing “hazardous roadside encounters” if they are soooooo afraid of everyone that moves, and clearly violates the 4th amendment. That why it protect the police and keeps our 4th amendments intact. Just a thought.So, all a cop has to do is “Claim” they saw someone lean or reach over and they can do a warrantless search. Nice to know we are safe from accusations. Even if the claim had been true, they could have asked him to step out for their safety. Confirmed he was unarmed and then proceeded with stop as normal. Instead you have 4 cops for a random for a traffic stop? Four? And one immediately opens the car and starts searching rather than a cursory visual inspection from outside that would be more than enough to verify if a weapon was present. This was intentional instigation. On top of that the woman couldn’t even read the insurance right, or was lying in order to enter and search the car again.Ugh, so much ambiguity built into the law to protect police corruption. “I smell weed” “You leaned over” All subjective, requires no evidence, and leaves the door wide open for them to do what they want, regardless of actual observable facts.This is what everyone is overlooking, he was stopped in a black neighborhood . that means those cops are doing the same thing every day all day to that community. Every black person that interacts with these cops are not criminals….and just imagine is this was at night.Never in the history of “calm down/relax” has anyone ever calmed down nor relaxed 😂When I first saw this and saw plain clothes officers all ready to go I knew it was a prejudged stop. They knew what they were trying to do.Got to love it when officers assert their Authority and dominance to scare people into conforming. She could have easily said sorry and backed away but instead she wanted to justify her actions and fight with the person to assert dominance. What happened to the good old days when they told officers not to argue with people and just do their job???I bet the “stay calm, relax” guy knew what they were doing was wrong, but wasn’t brave enough to stop itLet’s get this straight as I hear this a lot from people being harassed by cops. They’ll say ‘In a hard working American with a job/ business. I pay my taxes’ etc. It does not matter if you are. It does not give your Rights any more juice than a unemployed homeless person.I get what you’re doing by clearly breaking down the letter of the law, and it is often helpful. But It would really lend your channel a lot more credibility and popularity if you would point out how some case law and even supreme court rulings clearly fly in the face of the spirit of the constitution and are outright tyrannical in nature. Any excuse to search a person’s vehicle without a warrant are plain examples of this. The idea that officers safety outweighs the safety of the citizenry is itself a crime. Do better man.Seems like the courts rule to give the impression of freedom’s while leaving enough loopholes so the police can act with impunity. You act like the police know the law, whereas I feel they know that they can do whatever and will find a law/create a reason to back them up later.The female officer searched his vehicle not on direct suspicion of a crime having been committed but instead trying to see if a crime has been committed. Shame on these cops and I hope the lawsuit is fat.All those exceptions… The biggest danger for the constritution is the supreme courtWhen he said “You want to see what I was leaning over to get… it was my phone!” he was only repeating the words the cop used, not admitting it himself. He follows it up with “it’s on me.” Meaning it was in his pocket and not on the passenger side, where they claim “he may be trying to hide something.”
“Because I’m white in a black neighborhood” this actually happened to me and the cop pretty much admitted to it outright during the stop. In 2016, my aunt was working for a company called Niantic and she convinced me and my mom to check out Pokemon Go. I kind of got into playing it for awhile😂 there was this website that showed where rare Pokemon spawns were and a rare Pokemon was spawning a few miles from my house in a city called Inkster. So I drove to the area and was trying to find the Pokemon. I was driving slowly down a rough street, where the stupid Pokemon should have been but it didn’t spawn so I drove around the block
As I was driving, I got pulled over. It was daytime, but the cop claimed he pulled me over because the license plate light on my SUV was out(which, it was my mom’s car and I didn’t even know she had one, my car didn’t. It isn’t a requirement to have) He asked me to step out of my vehicle and offered to show me what he was talking about and then asked if I minded if his partner “took a look around in the car”
I was naive, dumb and terrified. I thought if I said no they would suspect I was doing something wrong or hiding something so I said sure. We got to the back of the car by the license plate and I remembered the car was off so he couldn’t show me the light. He began asking me who I knew in this area, which house I was going to, I said I did know someone who lived like a half mile down but I wasn’t going to anyone’s house and explained that I was looking for a Pokemon and he said “Oh that explains why you were looking at your phone when you stopped on the street back there” He told me this was a bad neighborhood, that I didn’t “exactly look” like I “should be here” and he made it very clear that they thought I was here to buy drugs. As if that is the only reason I would possibly be in a predominantly black neighborhood 😤
Once they finished casually poking around in my car, they told me to start the car and they go “oh look at that, your license plate light is working again, you don’t need to worry about getting it fixed”. I was baffled. They lied to pull me over. When I was a teenager my boyfriend’s cars brake lights were shorting out apparently, we got pulled over and the cop just let us know that our brake light was out but when we went over the railroad tracks, it turned back on and that it was probably a wiring issue and gave us a fix it ticket. These cops were telling me I didn’t need to worry about the fact that the light was magically working again. It was all very weirdLove how AFTER violating this guys rights they keep saying ‘relax’ and ‘calm down’…99% off drivers have their insurance and registration in their glove box. So anyone who reaches for that stuff before the cop walks to the car gives the cops reasonable suspicion to search the car I guess>> Good point. It’s probably better to wait until the cop asks for the documents before reaching for them. Except that Philando Castile was shot and killed because he reached into his back pocket to get his wallet. And the cop who killed him was found not guilty by a jury.>> @Jon Stone ANNNND he only reached because the officer told him to give him ID… as a PASSENGER… who previously VOLUNTEERED that he was legally carrying a concealed weapon! If someone takes the initiative to tell you they’re carrying, and afterwards you request ID, it was 100% YOUR responsibility to instruct them how to provide it in such a manner to allay your fears of them drawing their weapon.
>> That’s why I keep my registration and insurance in my driver side visor
>> Truth is if your black than almost anything you do puts fear in the cops minds. And the most dangerous thing you can do is challenge a cop and hurt their ego.Not really sure how an “officer safety” search can be valid…ever. Once they removed him from the car and patted him down, any weapon he had in the vehicle is no longer accessible.Regardless of if they had reason to be suspicious of him, they still continue to blame him for the incident and tell him to calm down, rather than just admit their suspicions were wrong.People gotta remember that there is a law called deprivation of rights on the color of law. It is a federal crime for any person who can utilize the law to deprive you of your rights while under that color of law. A violation of your rises also a deprivation of your rights. This is punishd between one and 10 years and a federal prison. If a life is lost during the deprivation of rights then the death penalty can automatically be on the table at the federal level. You have to file these charge with the feder yourself. It is time we start filed these charges with every single deprivation of your rights. Also when I please have some breaks the law starting system the weapons related charges are also included. Because the more they broke the law there in Alanna protected by the law or at least should not be which means, their possession of firearms while committing crimes! It’s time we start holding them to a higher level. Nobody’s expecting them to be perfect and above reprieve. But knowledgeable of the law respectful and professional, hell yes!
However when the officer asked him to get out and he willingly complied, they lost all right to enter the vehicle. Since he’s now outside the vehicle, there’s no reasonable assumption for him to be able to reach the supposed weapon they thought he was hiding. Therefore they have mitigated officer safety by removing him from the vehicle instead.I believe the fact that not even one of the four officers showed up for the court date says about all we need to know about their case and how well it would stand up against questions in court.My lawyer is filling a motion to suppress as I type. I was never charged with the reason for the stop (Invalid plate). Because they were valid. The DMV even sent me a certified document agreeing with me. Pulled over in 2018 Document received in 2020 Motion filled in 2022 30 court dates 1 public defender quit because he didn’t want to file the motion! If I had money for a real lawyer this would be history. If you’re still reading this ..my charges are driving without a license and possession of paraphernalia (pot pipe) In my defense….you can’t get fruit from the poisonous tree. In the last 4 years I’ve learned a lot from videos and if I could do it again I’d ask for a supervisor and have them run my plates, then I could have caught the officer lying on the spot! I was on probation and a registered co-owner of the car. Yet the cop said no name was associated to the plates. And yet here I am 4 years later with the DMV ( a State entity) saying the plates were legal, trying to defend myself from the State. Morale of the story….if you want things done and you have a public defender…you must do them yourself. They won’t defend you, all they will do is represent you.Did u know that it even turned out that their reason for the stop “the seatbelt” wasn’t even valid and this was based on where the cop was at the junction as dpn passed him because there was no way he would have been able to see his seatbelt from the passenger side window as he passed the crossroad where the cop was stopped at the traffic lights to his right! THATS probably the reason they didn’t turn up in court, because they knew the stop was bullshit in the first place! 🤬🤬🤬🤬.. He’d been a black man he’d already be in handcuffs.. They really thought they could mess with him until he said Terry v Ohio. Their whole demeanor changed after that most holy of prayers>> Sad that you need to be a lawyer to keep cops off your rights. But still the best way should be to just remain silent and file a complaint/go to court later instead of resisting in any way beyond expressing your disagreement.@Shawn Moses Oh ok, but how is it exactly in the US? Where I live, if you win in court you get back all your expenses. Plus you can have an insurrance for legal expenses too, which covers all possible costs. But I figured thats not popular in the US…“Officer safety”, that is the most obscene excuses used to justify illegal searches and detainments by LEOs.Clearly an extremely controversial search of that man’s vehicle, over an alleged seatbelt violation. I’m a retired police officer and before I search someone’s vehicle, certain parameters need to have been met. What these officers did was uncalled for, unprofessional and likely illegal. The officers, based on the number of them and how they were dressed, seemed to have been on a fishing expedition that went horribly wrong for them.I guess all vehicles can be searched when drivers lean over to get their documents out of the glovebox.I didn’t know that driving while white was a thing. I guarantee this guy was not pulled over for a seatbelt violation. I also guarantee that the cops wish in retrospect that theyhad taken a pass on playing with this guy. He was a handful for sure.Almost all the cops I have come across, have that air of entitlement. As if, we are cattle and they are the royalty, and has in good graces, let us “work” there… It’s not like it’s the other way around. No wonder, why a few just loose their marbles and end up blasting these people sometimes. I just hope, when that thing happens, none of the good ones get caught in that sh!t storm!I love how they say that they are recording… yet their recordings go missing or they are muted or they are not uploaded. When will these stupid ass LEOs start behaving smarter than a 5th grader???I have to disagree with the finding of the PD. They get an F for all the reasons stated in the video, but for also failing to ensure the capture or protection of the two officers’ worn bodycamera footage. These cameras are there for the purpose of keeping an honest, unbiased record of the events, so when 50% of those responding fail to produce/protect said video evidence, it is a clear dereliction of their duty, OR a gross indication of their department, one willing to do what it takes to avoid public scrutiny. Any organization whose success record is tied directly to the collection of evidence that also has such flagrant disregard for video footage collection which may in fact exonerate their behaviour, for the simple reason that it MAY catch them acting poorly, should more than likely have the entire leadership removed, the officers retrained, and the staff sacked or transferred.It always amazes me when out of control cops tell people to relax.How TF did you give the cops a C, after they purposely hid Incriminating evidence? There was a reason he only got 2 bodycam videos. There is always a reason… they always suppress the videos that makes cops look bad. Often it’s conversations between each other as they conspire to create a crime that didn’t exist. It is what they believe their job is.
A decade ago, the FBI sent Brewster Kahle, founder of the Internet Archive, a now-infamous type of subpoena known as a National Security Letter, demanding the name, address and activity record of a registered Internet Archive user. The letter came with an everlasting gag order, barring Kahle from discussing the order with anyone but his attorney — not even his wife could know.
Two months ago, when Zooming In did a story on Huawei and global 5G deployment, Huawei was poised to take control of much of the world’s cyber domain. We talked about the national security implications of that prospect. And we observed the U.S. efforts to raise awareness of that risk. Two months later, when we did another story on this topic, we realized the world knows Huawei a lot better through these efforts, but Huawei’s momentum has not stopped. In fact, Huawei and China are playing a grander game. They have a brilliant strategy that is working well with the very nature of a crony capitalism. Can this battle still be won by the free world? And what does it take to win? Let’s find out in this edition of Zooming In.
U.S. officials have told telecommunications executives around the world to steer clear of Huawei Technologies Co., calling the company a national-security threat, but that hasn’t prevented AT&T Inc. T 0.72%from using the Chinese company’s equipment in Mexico.
While AT&T has kept Chinese equipment out of its domestic networks, industry executives say the U.S. company uses Huawei’s gear to run a large part of the wireless network in Mexico, where the electronics giant is as welcome as any other supplier.
Huawei boxes sit atop cellphone towers across Mexico, where AT&T is the No. 3 provider in terms of wireless subscribers. The Dallas company inherited much of its Mexican gear through acquisitions, though executives say it also has used the Chinese supplier to upgrade its 4G network in recent years.
“We are the most significant vendor in this country,” Cesar Funes, a Huawei vice president in Mexico, said in an interview. “We respect, of course, headquarters’ discussions with their governments. We just continue supplying them what we are asked to supply.”
“When we upgraded our Mexico network to 4G LTE, we replaced Huawei in our data core network with equipment from the same suppliers we use in the United States, because it gave us consistency in design and scale in purchasing,” the spokesman said. “We expect to harmonize our networks in the same way when we upgrade to 5G in Mexico.”
Huawei competes with Sweden’s Ericsson AB and Nokia Corp. of Finland to equip cellphone network operators. Most large telecom companies keep two or more suppliers in the mix to maintain leverage in future negotiations.
.. Huawei is the world’s top telecom supplier, according to market analyst Dell’Oro Group. Its success abroad has alarmed American officials who fear that telecom executives won’t be able to avoid using Chinese producers, especially in countries with close economic ties to the U.S.
Today’s 4G networks are linked across borders, but future 5G networks could make national boundaries even less relevant. Mr. Strayer said newer cell-tower equipment will be more than “dumb” conduits for information, leaving a broader swath of cellphone networks vulnerable to potential snooping.
AT&T entered Mexico in late 2014 after the Mexican government enacted legislation to enhance competition in a famously concentrated telecom market. The Dallas company pieced together a wireless company by snapping up two smaller players, Iusacell and Nextel Mexico, inheriting a dense network of machinery bought from Huawei, among other suppliers.
.. AT&T doubled down on Huawei over the next four years as it upgraded the infrastructure it acquired to support 4G service. A senior AT&T executive in 2016 told an industry publication that the supplier’s performance was “excellent.” The company has estimated the price of replacing the Huawei electronics it has in Mexico and found the cost prohibitive, according to a person familiar with the matter... The Chinese company, which also makes cellphones, has spent years raising its profile in Mexico. It had its brand name splashed across jerseys for the popular soccer team Club América—until the AT&T logo took its place. When AT&T’s Mexican headquarters moved into a glassy tower finished in 2016, Huawei moved into a satellite office a floor away to stay close to its client... AT&T has bet that a Mexican middle class can boost its future profits. The company invested more than $7 billion, including the $4.4 billion spent to acquire Nextel and Iusacell, over the past four years to improve its network there.
For the president, immigration is a proxy for many issues — national security, domestic security, cultural change, nationalism, even nostalgia. The president’s rhetoric inflames the left as much as it energizes his loyalists, which is exactly his purpose. Democrats oppose Trump’s policies and cry foul when he seeks to blame them. They also point out that Trump tried to use immigration during the closing weeks of last year’s midterm elections, only to see his party lose its majority in the House.
Immigration will continue to animate Trump’s core supporters and will likely be one of two pillars of his reelection campaign. The other is the economy, the issue he will look to as a bridge to other voters whose support he will need to win what looks to be an extremely competitive election. Here, too, the Democrats appear to be struggling to find their own voice on what should be a central part of a presidential campaign message.
.. The new Battleground Poll by the Tarrance Group and Lake Research Partners under the auspice of Georgetown University’s Institute of Politics and Public Service shows the president holding a clear advantage over Democrats in Congress on which party people trust to deal with the jobs and with the economy. Democrats need to narrow or reverse that margin.
As an insurance policy, Trump has already gone on the attack against the Democrats on the economy, playing the “socialism” card. He has seized on Democratic proposals for a Medicare-for-all health-care plan and a Green New Deal, both of which in their most expansive iterations would require a heavy dose of government intervention and regulation, warning of dire consequences to the economy.
Candidates like Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) have economic messages built around populist us vs. them themes, including attacks on big corporations and wealthy individuals. Their platforms contain the broad promise to rebalance the economic scales in favor of middle- and working-class Americans, in part through a variety of new taxes on those corporations and wealthy individuals. Warren in particular has offered a fresh list of detailed policies.
Most of the Democratic presidential candidates favor new taxes on the wealthy. But at this stage, most haven’t really said how they would pay for what they propose. The Democrats are often more focused on other issues than on the centrality of the economy in the lives of voters. Another sign of a lack of consensus in the party is the inability of House Democrats to agree on the outlines of a new budget.
The president has begun to set the themes for his reelection campaign. Democrats have vowed not to make the mistakes in 2016 of focusing too much on Trump’s fitness to be president. But they can’t ignore legitimate questions about how they would govern — or how they will credibly respond to the president’s attacks on his issues of choice.
WASHINGTON — President Trump on Saturday unleashed an extended assault on the F.B.I. and the special counsel’s investigation, knitting together a comprehensive alternative story in which he had been framed by disgraced “losers” at the bureau’s highest levels.
In a two-hour span starting at 7 a.m., the president made a series of false claims on Twitter about his adversaries and the events surrounding the inquiry. He was responding to a report in The New York Times that, after he fired James B. Comey as F.B.I. director in 2017, the bureau began investigating whether the president had acted on behalf of Russia.
In his tweets,
- the president accused Hillary Clinton, without evidence, of breaking the law by lying to the F.B.I. He claimed that
- Mr. Comey was corrupt and best friends with the special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III.
- He said Mr. Mueller was employing a team of Democrats — another misleading assertion — bent on taking him down.
Individually, the president’s claims were familiar. But as the special counsel’s inquiry edges ever closer to him, Democrats vow a blizzard of investigations of their own and the government shutdown reaches record lengths, Mr. Trump compiled all the threads of the conspiracy theory he has pushed for many months in an effort to discredit the investigation.
Mr. Trump accused the F.B.I. of opening “for no reason” and “with no proof” an investigation in 2017 into whether he had been working against American interests on behalf of Russia, painting his own actions toward Russia as actually “FAR tougher” than those of his predecessors.
The Times article, published Friday evening, reported that law enforcement officials became so alarmed by Mr. Trump’s behavior surrounding his firing of Mr. Comey that they took the explosive step of opening a counterintelligence investigation against him.
Naming several of the bureau’s now-departed top officials, including Mr. Comey and his deputy, Andrew G. McCabe, Mr. Trump said the F.B.I. had “tried to do a number on your President,” accusing the “losers” of essentially fabricating a case. “Part of the Witch Hunt,” he wrote — referring dismissively to the investigation now being overseen by Mr. Mueller.
At the time he was fired in May 2017, Mr. Comey had been leading the F.B.I.’s investigation into Russia’s attempts to influence the 2016 presidential election, and the officials believed that his removal, in hindering the inquiry, posed a possible threat to national security. Their decision to open the case was informed, in part, by two instances in which Mr. Trump tied the firing to the Russia investigation.
The inquiry they opened had two aspects, including both the newly disclosed counterintelligence element and a criminal element that has long been publicly known: whether the firing constituted obstruction of justice.
When Mr. Mueller was appointed days later, he took over the joint inquiry as part of his larger investigation of Russia’s action in 2016 and whether anyone on the Trump campaign conspired with Moscow. It is not clear whether he is still pursuing the counterintelligence matter, and no public evidence has emerged that Mr. Trump himself secretly conspired with the Russian government or took directions from it.
Mr. Trump indicated on Saturday that he had not known of the existence of the counterintelligence investigation before the Times article, and he did not dispute the newspaper’s reporting.
But he made clear that he viewed any such inquiry as illegitimate from the start. He presented it, without evidence, as part of a vast, yearslong conspiracy to undo his presidency.
In the tweets, Mr. Trump defended his decision to fire Mr. Comey — “a total sleaze!” — at length, accusing the former director of overseeing a “rigged & botched” investigation of Mrs. Clinton, and leading the agency into “complete turmoil.” Democrats and Republicans alike wanted Mr. Comey removed, he said.
“My firing of James Comey was a great day for America,” Mr. Trump wrote. “He was a Crooked Cop.”
Human rights officials and activists have warned that the rule of law in Guatemala is under threat after a UN-backed special prosecutor was banned from re-entering the country – the latest in a series of clashes between the government and an international anti-corruption commission.
The country’s human rights ombudsman, Jordán Rodas, said in a statement on Tuesday that the government’s actions destabilize the rule of law, and expressed his dismay at “the arbitrary measures of the Government of the Republic that undermine democracy”.
Anti-corruption activists fear that the pioneering anti-corruption work of the UN-backed International Commission Against Impunity in Guatemala, Cicig, is now at risk.
Guatemala’s current president, Jimmy Morales, and his family are also the subject of multiple corruption investigations. On Friday, Morales announced he would not renew Cicig’s mandate, which ends in September 2019.
A staunch US ally, Guatemala was one of the handful of countries that backed Trump’s decision in December to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and moved its own embassy to the city just two days after the US relocated its diplomatic mission.
In the past, the US has been among Cicig’s strongest supporters, but it has not clearly condemned Morales’s recent attempts to derail the commission’s work. In May, Senator Marco Rubio placed a hold on $6m of US funding to Cicig, claiming the panel was being manipulated by radical elements.
Cicig’s success in bringing down corrupt officials, judges and lawyers has soared during the five-year tenure of the head commissioner, Iván Velásquez.
But on Tuesday, the government announced that Velásquez, currently in the US, would not be allowed back into the country, alleging that he was a threat to order and public security.
“The decision to declare Cicig commissioner Iván Velásquez as a threat to national security is an absurdity. The only threat to national security is the arbitrary and illegal action of a ruler accused of accepting illegal financing,” Iduvina Hernández, the director of the Association for the Study and Promotion of Security in Democracy in Guatemala, told the Guardian.
Morales, a former TV comedian, has been accused of illicit campaign financing during his 2015 run for president and is currently facing proceedings in congress that could strip him of his immunity from prosecution, though previous attempts to do so have failed.
Last year, Morales declared Velásquez persona non grata, but a successful constitutional court challenge filed by the ombudsman Rodas reversed the measure.
Oswaldo Samayoa, a constitutional lawyer and university professor, considers the ban of Velásquez to be a violation of the 2017 ruling.
“It’s a violation of the principle of constitutional legality. It involves the disobedience of the president and therefore a crime has been committed,” he told the Guardian.
The opposition congresswoman Sandra Morán shares the widespread view that Rodas and the constitutional court are the targets of legislative reform under consideration this week in congress. The reforms would transfer powers from the supreme court to congress that can facilitate the ousting of officials, including constitutional court judges.
“If they replace one judge, the balance of power shifts,” Morán told the Guardian. “It would mean that they would have total control.”
Guatemala has a long history of authoritarian rule, particularly during a 36-year armed conflict in which US-backed state forces carried out acts of genocide against the indigenous Mayan population. Despite a 1996 peace deal, the conditions that led to the conflict remain, and the country’s fraught peace has been plagued by organized crime, drug trafficking, violence and corruption.
The UN secretary general, António Guterres, asked Velásquez to continue at the helm of Cicig from outside Guatemala until there is more clarity on the situation, the UN said on Tuesday.
But Jorge Santos, the director of Udefegua, a national human rights group, warned that there is a danger that Morales could disregard, dissolve or otherwise attack the constitutional court.
“Right now in the country there’s a really major risk of a return to the old patterns that gave rise to the Guatemalan dictatorship,” he said.