*Trump Admits Passing Intel to Russia
President Trump admitted Tuesday morning that he did share highly classified information with two of Russia’s top diplomats during an Oval Office meeting last week. The extraordinary disclosure, which was first reported by The Washington Post, was initially denied by the White House. This morning, the 45th president of the United States contradicted his staff by admitting, via Twitter, that he shared information on terrorism with Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, and Ambassador Sergey Kislyak during their meeting. “As President I wanted to share with Russia (at an openly scheduled W.H. meeting) which I have the absolute right to do, facts pertaining to terrorism and airline flight safety,” he wrote. “Humanitarian reasons, plus I want Russia to greatly step up their fight against ISIS & terrorism.”
*In Computer Attacks, Clues Point to Frequent Culprit: North Korea:
Intelligence officials and private security experts say that new digital clues point to North Korean-linked hackers as likely suspects in the sweeping ransomware attacks that have crippled computer systems around the world. The indicators are far from conclusive, the researchers warned, and it could be weeks, if not months, before investigators are confident enough in their findings to officially point the finger at Pyongyang’s increasingly bold corps of digital hackers. The attackers based their weapon on vulnerabilities that were stolen from the National Security Agency and published last month. Security experts at Symantec, which in the past has accurately identified attacks mounted by the United States, Israel and North Korea, found early versions of the ransomware, called WannaCry, that used tools that were also deployed against Sony Pictures Entertainment, the Bangladesh central bank last year and Polish banks in February. American officials said Monday that they had seen the same similarities.
*Rod Rosenstein: ‘There’s No Place I’d Rather Be’
Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein has appeared to shrug off the furor surrounding his role in former FBI DirectorJames Comey’s dismissal. Speaking at an awards dinner in Baltimore late Monday, Rosenstein said he wasn’t worried about the situation damaging his reputation. “When I took the oath to preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States, there is nothing in that oath about my reputation,” he was quoted as saying by CNN. His comments came amid calls for his recusal from an investigation into theTrump campaign’s ties to Russia, as lawmakers have begun to publicly question Rosenstein’s judgment in light of Comey’s firing. President Trump cited a memo from Rosenstein as the basis for Comey’s abrupt dismissal, a claim that was later called into question by a Washington Post report that said Rosenstein nearly quit over the scandal. Rosenstein rejected those claims on Monday, however, saying he told a friend who suggested he should quit, “There’s no place I’d rather be.” “If you ask me, one of the main problems in Washington, D.C., is that everybody is so busy running around trying to protect their reputation instead of protecting the public, which is what they’re supposed to be doing,” Rosenstein said.
*Fox News: Hillary Clinton Was Worse
While Fox News lagged behind other cable news outlets in broadcasting reports that President Donald Trump had disclosed highly classified information to Russia’s foreign minister and ambassador to the United States, the network eventually hosted a series of guests who downplayed the reports. “If [National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster and Deputy National Security Adviser Dina Powell] thought what Trump was doing was a really, really bad idea, they probably would have spoke up,” Fox News White House correspondentJohn Roberts said on air. Guest Charles Krauthammerargued that Hillary Clinton had committed worse leaks. “The only implication here is that he’s unschooled,” Krauthammer said of Trump. “This is his first go-around with sensitive information and he might’ve slipped up. If he did, it’s not good. On the other hand, if it’s not deliberate, it’s not exactly a high crime and misdemeanor,” he said, implying that Clinton committed worse security infractions by using a private email server.
*Hackers Holding Stolen Upcoming Disney Film for Ransom:
Hackers are demanding a “huge sum” of bitcoins from Walt Disney Studios to prevent a stolen copy of an upcoming film from being released, the company’s chief executive said Monday. Walt Disney CEO Bob Iger said the movie studio is refusing to pay and working with federal investigators. Iger did not reveal the name of the film the hackers claim to have obtained, but the latest installment in the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise is due to open Friday, and Cars 3 is slated for release in mid-June. The hackers reportedly threatened to first release a five-minute clip of the film, followed by 20-minute chunks until the ransom is paid. No further details were given on the hacking group behind the ransom scheme. The incident comes just weeks after hackers released the new season of Netflix’s hit series Orange Is the New Black after a ransom was not paid.
*MORE MEXICAN HORROR – Veteran Mexican Journalist Assassinated
Award-winning Mexican journalist Javier Valdez was shot to death Monday in broad daylight on a busy street in Culiacan. Valdez, a well-known correspondent for Mexico City’s La Jornada and a co-founder of the weekly publication Riodoce, was a veteran crime reporter covering drug wars and cartels. His death makes him the latest of at least five Mexican journalists assassinated in 2017, in what press freedom organizations describe as an increasingly dangerous climate for Mexican reporters. In a statement on Twitter, Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto pledged to protect reporters. “I reiterate our commitment to freedom of expression and press, fundamental to our democracy,” Nieto said. The Valdez news came hours before gunmen in Autlan state attacked Sonia Córdova, an executive at the Semanario Costeno weekly magazine, and her son, Jonathan Rodríguez Córdova, a reporter at the publication. Reuters reports the younger Córdova died at the scene, and the mother was hospitalized with gunshot wounds.
*DID YOU KNOW? Did you know that 84% of LBN daily readers in all 50 of the United States and 26 foreign countries find LBN “Unbiased, Unfiltered and Unafraid”?
*WHO READS LBN?
Former acting U.S. Attorney GeneralSally Yates
*Bill Cosby Says He Will Not Testify at His Criminal Trial
Bill Cosby will not testify at his trial next month in Pennsylvania on sexual-assault charges, he said in a radio interview that aired on Tuesday. Mr. Cosby told the radio host Michael Smerconish on SiriusXM radio that he planned to leave his defense to his legal team. “When you have to deal with examination, cross-examination, et cetera, et cetera, more than two sides to every story, sometimes it’s four or five,” he said in the radio interview. “And what people want to say and want you to say and how they maneuver, and, yes, I do have lawyers protect me — objection; sustained. But I just don’t want to sit there and have to figure out what I believe is a truthful answer to whether or not I’m opening a can of something that my lawyers are scrambling.”
*FACE THE FACTS – READ LBN:
*LBN-NOTICED: ***As the temperatures warmed up in Southern California this past weekend, E! News has exclusively learned that David Foster and Katharine McPhee met up at Nobu in Malibu Friday evening for a dinner date. According to a source, the pair arrived around 8:30 p.m. and was seated at a private, sea-front table in a corner. “David and Katharine were very intimate during their dinner,” our insider shared. “David was seen grabbing Katharine’s face and kissing her cheek several times. Katharine was doing the same to David’s face and they were acting as if they were a couple.” ***Angelina Jolie celebrated Mother’s Day evening on Sunday without her brood of six or estranged husband Brad Pitt. Jolie — who is in the process of divorcing Pitt — celebrated the holiday with a one-on-one dinner with her son Pax, 13. The duo were spotted at Tao Asian Bistro in Los Angeles, and we’re told Jolie was in a spiffy black cocktail dress. ***Hollywood power players mixed with art stars at the Venice Biennale, where Ari Emanuel hosted a dinner for Mark Bradford. At the Italian art fair, “the longest queues are at the American pavilion, where [Bradford is] generally seen as one of the key artists of the moment,” said one report. Another enthused, “Bradford is our Jackson Pollock.” Emanuel, the WME-IMG honcho who’s a Bradford collector, hosted the intimate dinner on the sweeping terrace of the Westin Europa & Regina. Guests included “The Matrix” producer and art collector Joel Silver, billionaire Henry Kravis, Emanuel’s art advisor and curator Jeffrey Deitch, Frieze co-director Matthew Slotover, and Christopher Bedford.
*LBN-INVESTIGATES: Missing People
· Every 40 seconds, a child goes missing in the U.S.
· When a child goes missing, the first 3 hours are the most crucial in finding the child safely. Approximately 76.2% of abducted children who are murdered are dead within three hours of the abduction
· It can take over 2 hours to get information about a missing child from a panicked parent.
· Every year, more than 800,000 children are missing in the United States.
· A person can be declared dead in absentia or “legally dead” after 7 years of being listed as missing. This time can be reduced in certain cases, such as in mass disasters (e.g., Sept 11, 2001) or major battles.
· Approximately 2,300 Americans are reported missing—every day. This includes both children and adults. This does not include Americans who have vanished in other countries, individuals who disappear and are never reported, or the homeless and their children.
· In the mid-1980s, milk cartons with photos of missing children on them made their debut. The first child to appear on one of those milk cartons was Etan Patz, a 6-year-old from New York who disappeared walking to the bus stop in May 1975. He has never been found. However, in 2012, a man named Pedro Hernandez confessed to killing him.
· Minorities, those who suffer from mental disorders, and substance abusers who go missing often receive little attention from authorities and little sympathy from the press or public.
· In most jurisdictions, missing persons cases receive low priority. Authorities are already working homicides, robberies, rapes, assaults, traffic issues, and crime prevention.
*LBN-VIDEO LINK: A REMARKABLE, REVEALING TV INTERVIEW:
“Without Notes” with M. Zuhdi Jasser M.D. – Episode 2: The American Dream —- https://youtu.be/xjCOe2TTw6U
, who has been in rare form at 35, announced on Monday
that he will not play in the French Open, which begins in two weeks
, and will instead focus on the grass-court and hardcourt events ahead, including Wimbledon and the United States Open. This will be the first year since Federer turned professional in 1998 that he will not play a tour event on clay.
will be back as host of the Oscars. The Academy said on Tuesday
that the late night host will reunite with producersMichael De Luca
and Jennifer Todd
for the 2018 show.
*‘Powerless’ Revolutionizes Superhero Comic Books:
Imagine a world where everyone has superpowers. That’s the premise of popular new comic book, ‘Powerless.’ This latest release from Vault Comics features characters with a range of incredible powers, such as the ability to travel back in time 37 seconds to change recent events or being able to swap places with someone in the blink of an eye. “The whole thing takes the conventional superhero comic and turns everything on its head,” said producer Oliver Ridge, who found the material when it was pitched to him at pop culture convention, Wondercon. As a Hollywood moviemaker, he had been looking around the California event for material to adapt into film. But as a long time comic book fan, he decided instead that ‘Powerless’ had to be told in that format. Ridge’s company, Blood Moon Creative, is also behind upcoming movie, ‘The Neighbor,’ an acclaimed drama starring William Fichtner that has already won several film festival prizes, and the short film ‘Bluebird’ starring Eric Roberts. Comic book series ‘Powerless’ certainly has a great twist worthy of a hit film…A virus emerges that takes away the powers of anyone who is unfortunate to contract it, suddenly making the superhero-filled world largely ‘Powerless.’ Creator and writer David M. Booher got the idea for the story from his years spent working as a lawyer in the California justice system.
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*LBN-COMMENTARY by David Brooks: At certain timesDonald Trump has seemed like a budding authoritarian, a corrupt Nixon, a rabble-rousing populist or a big business corporatist. But as Trump has settled into his White House role, he has given a series of long interviews, and when you study the transcripts it becomes clear that fundamentally he is none of these things. At base, Trump is an infantalist. There are three tasks that most mature adults have sort of figured out by the time they hit 25. Trump has mastered none of them. Immaturity is becoming the dominant note of his presidency, lack of self-control his leitmotif. First, most adults have learned to sit still. But mentally, Trump is still a 7-year-old boy who is bouncing around the classroom. Trump’s answers in these interviews are not very long — 200 words at the high end — but he will typically flit through four or five topics before ending up with how unfair the press is to him.
*LBN-COMMENTARY by Dennis Prager: The number of foolish statements made by men and women who consider themselves feminists is essentially equal to the number of people who strongly identify as feminists. I write “strongly identify” because if asked, “Are you a feminist?” most women will say yes. They will do so for two reasons. One is that there is no social price paid for saying that one is a feminist, while there can be a huge price paid — on a college campus, for example — for saying that one is not a feminist. The other is that a great number of women define feminism as “belief in women’s equality.” And by that definition, who isn’t a feminist? I certainly am. Intelligence varies among these women and men as much as it does among members of any group of people; there are both brilliant individuals and dummies who say they are feminists. But the women today — I am not talking about suffragettes in the early 20th century — whose identities are wrapped up in being a feminist are nearly all dummies. That doesn’t mean they all lack brainpower. There are many people with a fine brain who are fools. Indeed, such individuals dominate our universities.
Are You A Brand? —– www.MichaelLevineMedia.com
*LBN-A DIFFERENT VIEW:….
*LBN-OVERHEARD: ***James Hewitt, the dashing, polo-playing army officer who was Princess Diana’s former lover and the man who has long been the subject of rumors concerning Prince Harry’s paternity, is fighting for his life at a hospital after suffering a stroke and heart attack. The 58-year-old former army officer was rushed into intensive care after an emergency operation relating to a pre-existing illness, according to a report in the Sunday Mirror this weekend. Doctors gave him “just a slim chance” of survival after he reportedly suffered a cardiac arrest just before the procedure. ***Former Real Housewives of New Jersey star Dina Manzo and her boyfriend, Dave Cantin, fell victim to a terrifying home invasion over the weekend. The reality star, 46, and the millionaire businessman, 37, were brutally beaten by two robbers in their Holmdel, New Jersey, townhome on Saturday. Although the pair have a home in both California and Holmdel, we’re told the the two flew into N.J. for the weekend to celebrate Teresa Giudice’s daughter, Audriana’sfirst communion. Dina is Audriana’s Godmother. ***Another Bachelor love story has come to an end. As news broke that Ben Higgins and Lauren Bushnell called it quits on their year-long engagement, multiple sources reveal that a break up was almost bound to happen. “No one is that surprised,” an insider close to the ABC series shares. “Lauren was pretty open among her friends that she was struggling. She would talk about how hard it was.” ***According to a police report, Hayley Hasselhoff – 24-year-old daughter of David Hasselhoff and star of Sharknado 4 – was arrested for DUI on Saturday.
LBN E-Lert Edited By Dan Gaylord
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