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German police to build Hitler training facility next to former concentration camp

A former Nazi concentration camp just miles from Adolf Hitler’s birthplace is set to become a police station after a number of potential candidates were turned down due to Nazi links.

It will be the first fully-operational training centre for officers based in the area since the wartime occupation.

An Austrian court judge in Linz, Austria, this month ruled the planning permission for the new building, located next to the home of Nazi dictator Adolf Hitler, was legal.

This would make the planned converted electricity pole between 32 and 50 metres tall the tallest in Europe.

Once the money is found, the area is expected to be turned into the Seewald Training Zone, which would replace the current trainees’ accommodation.

Germany has three other training grounds such as Hitler’s birth home across the country.

The Linz city hall declined to comment further on the case, telling the Press Association: “We cannot discuss the issue any further since our client (the justice department of Linz) has closed the file.”

Volker Kock, a spokesman for the Linz police, confirmed the new facility would be part of an expansion of their training centre.

He said: “The agency (which will run the training center) is negotiating to come up with money for the new construction.

“The Linz police will shortly approach various departments and state agencies to cover the funding.

“The Linz police has no plans to house barracks with approximately 130 officers.”

The current German police training area sits close to the former Nazi concentration camp of Leipzig in central Germany.

The London site of the former Nazi Gestapo headquarters will become a City College of London school.

Adolf Hitler was born at the home of his maternal grandparents, the Aryan family, on January 29 1889.

Located on Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, his birthplace is one of Germany’s poorest states.

Two years after the war, around 2,000 surviving Nazis moved back to this rural area to work as lab technicians and repairmen.

In April 1939, the family decided to sell the home.

The Nazi era ended three months later.

The village and its surrounding farmers have not changed much in decades.

Nobody would say where the “My Uncle Hitler” sign is, but the original house on the road has fallen into decay.

A slightly larger former site next to the old homestead now belongs to the Linz police station.

It was built in 2003 and contains a stable block for the school’s horses and weighs-room for school busses.

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Former Treasury Secretary Paulson Sees China ‘Significant’ Economic Competitor With U.S.

Former Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson warned Wednesday that the current relationship between the U.S. and China “may not be sustainable.”

Paulson spoke at a panel discussion in New York at which he told CNBC he was willing to bet that tensions between Washington and Beijing will continue to escalate for years to come. In short, “the likelihood of a bad outcome over the longer term is greater than the chance of a good outcome,” he said.

“We have the largest debtor/trader relationship in the world,” he said.

Paulson, in the first real public remarks from a former top U.S. official, is among the most vocal of those advising the Trump administration to ratchet up the stakes in the trade war with China and to punish Beijing for its expansive plans to steal technology and industrial secrets from U.S. competitors.

Just hours before he spoke, Trump threatened to impose another round of tariffs on Chinese products unless Beijing allows a U.S. investigation into intellectual property theft.

The simmering tensions were on full display during Paulson’s Wednesday appearance, a bit lighter on policy than his remarks about rising U.S. deficits and a looming economic “boom.”

He suggested that “we just need a little luck,” to ensure an amicable resolution to the row between the U.S. and China. He predicted a long, sour “relationship” with Beijing.

Paulson also applauded Trump for the way he is tackling the trade deficits and the issue of state-owned corporations, saying that the president deserves credit for tackling what had long been thought of as “nice little domestic issues.”

But Paulson, in his remarks, chastised the Trump administration for for allowing the trade war to develop and endangering the U.S. economy. “I’m afraid that it probably puts our economic health at some risk,” he said.

He said the hope for business leaders “comes and goes” every week, and suggested that the anger in trade circles has made it harder for American companies to do business in China.

Paulson said he had advised Trump at least twice on how to better manage relations with China, particularly when it comes to intellectual property and a Chinese initiative known as Made in China 2025, which is geared toward developing the country’s capabilities in research and development of high-tech products. He said the U.S. should be “banging the drum” and insisting that China realign its intellectual property practices.

“There’s good news here,” he said. “If you can win a negotiation without having a real trade war, that’s very good for U.S. businesses, U.S. companies and U.S. jobs.”

But he suggested that it was too soon to write off the idea of a complete trade war with China because Beijing is “quite capable of playing games and changing the game.” Paulson predicted that tensions would worsen, and said the U.S. would eventually lose control of its economy to China.

Paulson, who served as U.S. Treasury secretary in the George W. Bush administration, joined the panel discussion after watching NBC’s coverage of the World Series. The major league baseball finals ended with a win for the Philadelphia Phillies over the Los Angeles Dodgers in a Game 6 that was interrupted during the top of the seventh inning by a foul ball that struck a group of cameramen.

The Phillies trailed the series in the seventh and final game with two outs, down 4-3 and all in favor of the Dodgers. But Carlos Santana launched a grand slam homer in the bottom of the inning to give the Phillies a 5-4 win.

They had lost Game 6 in Philadelphia and home-field advantage in the series when Los Angeles won the first two games of the finals.

Paulson said he was taken aback by the “boom-boom,” but said it was only just the beginning of the tense finish.

“That boom-boom was probably the most dramatic conclusion of any final game I’ve ever seen,” he said.

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Inexpensive internet access is good — in the U.K.

Screenshot by Adam Satariano/CNET

Free Internet is a big deal in much of the world.

In many countries, it’s not even possible to access the web without paying for a subscription. In the United States, however, all you need to subscribe to a broadband Internet service is a regular TV service. In other words, the world does have more Internet — and rich people have more Internet.

Now, the government of the United Kingdom is proposing a new plan to fix this situation. That’s a shame. But there’s no need to worry about what the U.K. might be doing to Internet access in the next decade.

What the U.K. is proposing is a social program that would give free, bundled internet access to households that are eligible for the National Health Service (NHS). The idea of providing this type of subsidized access in the U.K. is not a new one. It’s actually been tried in other countries with far less success. In fact, a similar British plan was almost entirely a waste of time.

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Well, at least you could get an hour of internet if you wanted it.

Pioneered in Britain in 2010, the “My Choice” project was supposed to get millions of people connected. The plan was so simple: people could sign up for an “Internet Share Pack” for just a few pounds (US$5, £4.50) a month. After that, they’d be able to access online resources through NHS sites and educational sites.

But it backfired in spectacular fashion.

The Guardian reported the plans’ dismal failure in May 2015, in a series of articles that detailed the confusing policy; the nearly worthless cost of the scheme; and the fact that many people simply never signed up at all. A working group was supposed to meet to propose changes to the scheme, but no one showed up.

Not many people ended up signing up for the program either. Research firm Kantar Worldpanel Consulting reported that the only way to qualify for the pack was if you lived in a slightly wealthier, generally English neighbourhood. The way the data gathered about households was used to calculate eligibility was also arbitrary, with total household income not counting government benefits such as housing. And it’s unclear if information gathered about children was legally secure, or if they had to be less than 13 years old to qualify.

And in the UK, it wasn’t even a policy that people were signing up for. People could sign up for it, but they had to sign up for a regular Internet service that they had to pay for in order to get the free internet access. Then, people got annoyed when they found they were barely getting any use out of the package — even though they were told it included easy access to doctors, leisure facilities and educational resources.

Google.org is making a major bet on AI and data. It’s also funding sci-fi projects that dream of a better world. See our story about:

In January 2015, most of the companies mentioned in the Guardian’s series of stories (like Freeserve, Sky, Tiscali and Virgin Media) stopped offering packages of basic internet access. The project was shut down by the NHS a few months later.

The internet in the U.K. remains a wildly unequal place. That’s why it’s so important that there is a well-connected Internet. The internet was the global internet before broadband became a thing. People in developing countries still can’t use the internet without going through a complicated and complicated process, and it still costs less money in many parts of the world to buy a smartphone than it does to afford an Internet service.

That’s not to say the U.K. plan is guaranteed to fail. On the contrary, it may end up working if it can implement an alternative version of the program that makes it easier for poorer people to access the Internet and provide education and health benefits. The overall goal of the program should be to end the divide between the haves and have-nots in the digital world. If you believe that, then it’s worth putting the costs of this social program aside and recognizing that the internet is a global common good that everyone deserves access to.

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Wireless carriers seek to offer customers free internet if they switch to 5G

Major cellphone carriers plan to offer their customers free internet for four years if they ditch their old, slower wireless connections.

The carriers want to use that in a new program to try to entice customers to buy devices that run their newer, faster 5G internet services.

The plan comes as the five largest mobile networks are vying for dominance over 5G, an next-generation wireless service due to start rolling out starting next year, when regulators gave the networks the green light to do so. The big companies are already stocking stores with 5G phones and other gear designed to supercharge existing wireless networks. But one of the main attractions of buying phones and a device called a home hub is that they will be capable of running in the forthcoming 5G networks.

Yet the superfast 5G wireless networks are more than six years away, at the earliest.

They require much more spectrum — or airwaves — than traditional 4G networks. And so right now the rules are stacked against carriers using 5G to sell the next-generation internet service. For one thing, carriers are still figuring out which airwaves will be in demand and how much bandwidth they can actually offer. And even if they figure out the economics, they’re still bringing new devices to market — which is more of a problem in the U.S. and Europe.

The carriers are proposing a program that lets consumers still get 5G but not pay for data anymore. But they don’t tell customers what network service they’ll actually get when they buy a 5G device and without a contract.

The new 5G service would use the current 4G LTE network as a backup. That means the customer isn’t going to get super-fast 4G or 5G speeds, just the ability to stream video in one service, theoretically, and talk and text in the other. In Britain, carriers plan to offer free internet for four years. The program would offer free internet to consumers with 4G coverage or coverage similar to that of 3G or old-fashioned 2G.

The carriers would then tell customers if their old service has been converted to the faster 5G network and if the network they’re on is one of the ones that will be upgraded to 5G. Because it would work on the 4G network, those who don’t have LTE coverage would still get access to faster speeds when they move to 5G. A customer’s speeds could vary, depending on their location.

So the carriers would install both 5G and 4G equipment to their existing network equipment so customers don’t experience different network speeds or when they switch networks.

T-Mobile, the fourth largest wireless carrier in the U.S., plans to start the new service in 2019 with a “5G Essentials” plan that would include free internet access, but make other services, like mobile TV and mobile texting, available at a cost. The company has already been doing this in parts of the U.S. for a few years.

Another carrier is expected to launch its plans soon, but has not revealed its name. It is owned by Franco-American Orange SA and is now called 3 Group. Its 5G service will be based on existing 4G LTE equipment installed on the 4G network.

AT&T has unveiled plans to launch its 5G plans by the end of 2019, while Verizon plans to launch its 5G service by the end of 2020. Sprint, which is majority owned by Japan’s SoftBank, plans to launch a similar service by 2020.

The carriers have been testing this new service for several years in the U.S. while the broader industry has been waiting for a green light from the FCC. The FCC is expected to approve the new service, making it possible to offer the service at home to consumers who already own a smartphone and are not on contract.

The proposal would also let wireless providers resell their own 5G service, which could attract customers who would go with a new company over the older one. But that would require the FCC to further loosen the rules — something the FCC has not proposed doing in any other country.

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The Taliban Has Become A Successful Terrorist Organization

On Sunday November 18, four suicide bombers struck a public park in Kabul, Afghanistan, killing at least 25 people, including a young child. These events and events like them are part of a horrifying pattern of regular attacks by Taliban fighters. They also serve as a reminder of the enduring instability of Afghanistan, the country that endured the worst of America’s wars: the Soviets’ occupation and nine years of brutal Taliban rule that ended in their ouster by the U.S. and its allies.

Olivier Douliery, Pool/Getty Images President Donald Trump meets with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani during a bilateral meeting at the White House on Aug. 3, 2018.

The Taliban have managed to remain in power and survive by attracting new recruits and allies who come into their ranks by spreading fear and terrifying the population. But what makes them unique is their determination to carry out mass casualty attacks like the one on Sunday. Like their initial insurgency back in the 1990s, today’s Taliban leadership views terrorism as an effective, powerful weapon in their arsenal. The Taliban learned much about how to use terror attacks back then—successful terrorist attacks were a key part of the strategic thinking of mujahedeen who fought the Soviets—and they maintain expertise and capacity that has helped them in their next step toward gaining power. To understand the Taliban we need to dig a little deeper than a rudimentary understanding of the decade-long insurgency that left Afghanistan in shambles.

Afghanistan experienced a violent decade that immediately followed the Soviet withdrawal in 1989. The Soviets lost 528 out of 7,000 troops after the first two years of war. Many Afghans lost their lives, having been told from the start that the Russians were imposing their rules on Afghans and would treat them like prisoners. During the Soviet withdrawal, 150,000 refugees fled to neighboring Pakistan in a matter of weeks. “Human tragedy and colonial violence prefigured the creation of the Taliban,” writes journalist Barbara Demick in her book Resistance, Resistance, Resistance: The Memoirs of Donald John Ashcroft, the first U.S. attorney general. In the countryside, food became scarce, the Taliban took advantage of this, forcing people to sell crops for cash, a situation that was not unlike what we see today with the ongoing food crisis caused by drought.

THE ADVANTAGE OF MEMORY

The U.S. military and economic support in response to the turmoil in the wake of the Soviet withdrawal was geared toward pacifying the country, not bringing relief. The result was a generation of angry men and women, who reacted to the Soviet invasion with uprisings. The group that came to be known as the Jirga (congregation of women) proved to be the most influential force of the time. The Jirga was a forum for Afghans to speak their minds, discuss their grievances, and complain that their grievances were being ignored. The leaders of the Taliban emerged from a young generation of men and women who studied at jihadist seminaries in Pakistan and began preparing to rise up against their government.

The Taliban had been more or less integrated into the Afghan political economy of the 1990s. They operated outside the government, their religious freedom the result of a three-decade American war. The United States supported the early years of their rise to power by arming and training their forces. The Taliban won the first elections in Afghanistan in 1996, but soon their appetite for power began to diminish. They feared that rising oil prices might put the country into a slump and they would lose control over their people. In fact, even before the oil price spike in 1997, they began to choose the softer path of letting Afghans vote, rather than holding elections or imposing their will.

Though they were able to find some protection within the Afghan government, the Taliban at one point withdrew from power because it was losing confidence in the ability of the Afghan government to protect it. Afghanistan suffers from severe institutional weaknesses: governments are generally weak, and poor governance keeps many people poor. At this point the United States came in as the principal power broker, backing an interim government that was a change from the government of the days following the Soviet withdrawal. The United States used the world’s resources in an effort to bring stability and development to the country, which is still reeling from the effects of the Soviet invasion and occupation.

Some of our ideas about the Taliban were formed during that period. They are, in our view, ideological extremists. We conceived of them as fighters, not people. The Taliban are not just armed and well-trained fighters, but organizations of people who operate with their own special objectives and philosophies. They also have institutionalized violent ideologies that they continue to use to carry out their attacks. While this all sounds rather dire, it is important to

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The Most Powerful Scandal of the Century? Get Out While You Can.

Watch Harris Rip Kavanaugh For Criminal History Neglect

California Sen. Kamala Harris ripped Sen. Al Franken Tuesday night for acknowledging that “we understand that if you are black,” in referring to each other, “we understand how you can try to pick the worst possible attributes in that person.” With excerpts from her book—Dubious Achievement: Uncovering Racial Injustice in the Criminal Justice System—currently being widely circulated across social media, Harris discusses sexual assault, systemic racism, and how political correctness can only be read in black terms.

While Harris says that while she is no “rapist,” she does not disavow the idea that men and women are not equal. So rather than simply standing by Franken’s anecdote as an act of political correctness run amok, Harris taps into the underlying truth of having to have one’s priorities aligned with the politicians we vote into office. “More than putting up with overt racism in our politics, we have to stop believing the innuendo that we have to understand a black person’s facial expressions and would not just do well by calling us beautiful,” Harris notes in one passage.

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Cory Booker Says Biden May Have Been High When He Banged on about Legalizing Marijuana

Senator Cory Booker says Vice President Joe Biden just might have been high when he recently made comments about legalizing marijuana.

“Well he’s clearly a very intelligent guy, and is a public servant, but you know we’ve heard those words before—’He’s a theocrat’—what else is new,” said the New Jersey Democrat when asked about Biden’s remarks at the Reuters Cybersecurity Summit Wednesday.

“But I think it’s interesting that when you think about the attacks that this administration has gotten from the left—over Brexit, over Brett Kavanaugh, over so many other issues—it’s really odd to see a Democratic figure declare his support for legalizing marijuana right in the midst of the most hostile moment that there’s been for the president that this administration has gotten.”

Biden, a 1972 Catholic high school grad, mocked Fox News hosts on-air after declaring last week that he “hates to see what’s going on in Washington.”

“I’m getting so much feedback on the president,” he told Tucker Carlson during the interview. “I hate to see what’s going on in Washington. I think we need to legalize marijuana.”

President Donald Trump rejected that line of thinking in a Friday interview with Axios, citing how it would jeopardize the drug war.

“If you look at what’s happened with our country over the last 30 years with marijuana, it’s gone out of control,” Trump said. “It’s gone wild. It’s not that I love it, it’s that I hate the laws that are happening, because most people want it legalized. They want it taxed properly, and I want to treat it that way, and we’ll see what happens. But when you look at these arguments, it’s to me unfair for the person being murdered next to you, or the enemy that’s coming over the border.”

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Sen. Amy Klobuchar and Attorney General Keith Ellison square off in a lively debate

Facing off on issues like sexual harassment and healthcare, Sen. Amy Klobuchar hosted an evenly-matched debate with her rival, Attorney General Keith Ellison, at a hotel in Minneapolis on Tuesday night.

A moderator from KTSP-TV asked the crowd to raise their hand if they were familiar with the two candidates’ platforms and aligned closely with the party platforms. Klobuchar raised her hand, while Ellison gave his when pressed by the moderator to do so. After each candidate answered, the crowd showed its appreciation with applause.

Klobuchar stated that, as a woman, she believes “we’re held to a higher standard,” and that Minnesota needs a leader who will make policies that work for all Minnesotans.

She added that the “economy is no longer the dominant issue,” and talked about the importance of women’s healthcare, such as childbirth and pre-natal care.

Ellison reiterated that women want to work but don’t want to be burdened by child care and balancing family and work, and that it is important to find ways to include people from different backgrounds, such as working mothers.

Echoing past conversations at the debate, Ellison gave numerous examples of things he has done to empower women, such as signing an executive order with the goal of protecting women’s access to safe, healthy food at large food sellers.

Echoing Ellison’s remarks about women’s health, Klobuchar talked about expanding access to preventive care, including free, 24-hour cancer screenings, and making it easier for mothers to get back to work after delivering their babies.

Both candidates emphasized a need for greater community engagement, specifically bringing more people into the political process. Ellison stated, “We need to engage people to the left and right,” while Klobuchar joked, “We’re sitting right there, and you know what I think that’s doing?”

Klobuchar then attempted to appeal to her audience by saying, “I’m not a token here; I don’t just know everybody else’s name. I work here.”

After both candidates answered their questions, the audience gave them an enthusiastic cheer, and the moderators gave them each a B. Each candidate gave a pointed reply to the audience, and seemed to know which areas they should be focusing on the next several weeks until Election Day.

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Beto O’Rourke Runs Away With First Half of Democratic Debate, But Runs Into Tough Questions

In the Democratic presidential debate Tuesday night, Democratic voters reacted to a series of sharp exchanges between opponents, with some backing up front runner Beto O’Rourke, while others calling for leadership from U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris and U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders.

Former U.S. Rep. Beto O’Rourke, of El Paso, said in an interview with MSNBC Wednesday that for the first time in his life, he felt the “pressure” of being one of the frontrunners in the race.

Meanwhile, the nation’s Democrats got up close and personal with the three Democratic frontrunners in a televised debate that was sometimes highly charged and sometimes playful. Former U.S. Vice President Joe Biden did not attend, although he watched the debate remotely.

O’Rourke, who got a warm welcome from the audience, stole the show in the first half of the debate, drawing applause for standing up for children’s health care, criticizing Donald Trump’s zero-tolerance policy for immigration and his criticism of El Paso’s resilience in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey.

O’Rourke’s spirited showing in the debate came as he has fallen behind other Democrats in fundraising and public opinion polls.

But an upbeat O’Rourke exuded calm and confidence as he spoke on stage, in contrast to the sometimes painfully nervous responses that some of his rivals displayed during the debate.

O’Rourke’s performance put him in a good position to improve his standing in the race, a sentiment reiterated in an interview with MSNBC that aired after the debate.

“Tonight my momentum was strong,” O’Rourke said. “What I did tonight was remind people who I am. I walked up to the stage and talked about what I am and who I am.”

O’Rourke also showed his mild-mannered side by taking on others during the debate.

In the early going, U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris of California pointedly told Harris Gardner, the mayor of Compton, that U.S. Rep. Beto O’Rourke did not understand the way young African-American men were getting killed because the arrests were being made in smaller numbers.

In a heated exchange, Harris described federal law enforcement as the “epicenter of gun violence,” and also attacked O’Rourke for his position that the drug epidemic is not as acute a problem in his city of El Paso.

“You’re not hearing the men and women of the El Paso Police Department talking about gun violence,” Harris said. “They’re talking about drugs and they’re worried about safety, and so that’s exactly what I’m hearing.”

Harris’ barbs gave a nod to former U.S. Rep. Beto O’Rourke’s belief that law enforcement plays a significant role in curbing gun violence.

O’Rourke, speaking to Harris about shootings by young African-American men in Compton, gave an implicit rebuttal of her accusation that he had not spent enough time in El Paso seeing what he could do to help improve the situation.

“I have spent more time in the City of El Paso since I’ve been a congressman than you’ve been in the City of Compton,” O’Rourke said.

O’Rourke, of El Paso, raised more than $3 million in the past seven days. He is in the middle of a six-day, five-city tour in the West, and planned to continue his trip Wednesday. O’Rourke announced his campaign for president in his hometown of El Paso, near the Arizona border, on Sunday and is expected to visit other presidential primary states in January and February.

He’s the fifth candidate to jump into the race. But O’Rourke, 44, is the only one on the stage here in South Carolina to have a profile that reaches beyond just the Hispanic community in a state where Democrats need to win over many minority voters in 2020 to take the presidency.

In the debate, Harris avoided talking about Trump’s family separation policy on illegal immigration and on Wednesday attributed her comments at the debate to “inside baseball” issues that were not among the most pressing issues facing Americans.

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Embassy allies say ex-ambassador Gordon Sondland’s bid for California post shows ‘a lack of transparency’

Open this photo in gallery During an interview with Good Morning America, Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., talks about her residency requirement for a cabinet position, on Nov. 13, 2018, in Washington. Mark Wilson/Getty Images

Dozens of diplomats at the State Department are fuming over an attempt by former ambassador Gordon Sondland to buy his way into a post he already has held.

Before becoming part of President Trump’s inner circle at the White House, Sondland served as ambassador to the Czech Republic under President George W. Bush.

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According to these former colleagues, the Trump-Sondland connection included a meeting last year in Washington in which Sondland offered to help Trump’s transition team.

The effort by the former ambassador, who was fired last year, came as Trump was reviewing its approach to Trump’s choices for secretary of state and national security adviser.

“This story is illuminating,” said Daniel Riedl, a former deputy assistant secretary of state and veteran career officer. “Every time we heard a news story of Secretary [of State] Pompeo firing someone, our concern was it might be a guy from the transition who had been serving on staff since the first day. You never know where they have had a connection to an ambassador who was kicked out of office.”

Open this photo in gallery Gordon Sondland at his home in San Antonio on Aug. 14, 2017. Ben Carlson/The Washington Post

Sondland “used to be working on the transition,” former ambassador Michael Doyle said. “What’s interesting about the story is the lack of transparency on Sondland’s part as far as me and others are concerned.”

As a New York real estate developer, Sondland already had some connections to Trump. The president’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, purchased his penthouse atop One Riverside, a prime condominium tower in New York that Sondland had bought. Then, from the White House he serves as an adviser to the president.

Sondland arranged a meeting last year between White House officials and former State Department head John Kelly. The interest of Preet Bharara, an ex-prosecutor and current ex-district attorney in Manhattan, could not be determined.

Mr. Bharara sued Mr. Kelly, President Trump and New York Governor Andrew Cuomo last month in federal court in Manhattan over their firing of Mr. Bharara. In the filing, Mr. Bharara’s lawyers said the decision to fire Mr. Bharara came “without justification and without warning.”

The associates who spoke with The Globe and Mail say Sondland has used his relationships inside the Trump administration to secure an ambassadorship, a rare honor for someone living in San Antonio.

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“How is it that [Sondland] can get the White House to meet with you, but you can’t meet with [the former ambassador] in New York?” asked one associate who spoke on the condition of anonymity. “He’s a Texas guy. This is his hometown.”