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McConnell: Capitol mob ‘provoked’ by Trump and ‘other powerful people’

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Almost two weeks following the deadly Capitol riot, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said Tuesday that President Donald Trump and others “provoked” the violent mob.

“The mob was fed lies. They were provoked by the president and other powerful people,” McConnell said Tuesday on the Senate floor.

McConnell has mostly stood by throughout his presidency and his wife Elaine Chow served his administration as Transportation Secretary. Chao resigned after the riot.

The House of Representatives voted last week to impeach Trump for “incitement of insurrection” and as the Senate prepares to begin his trial. On Tuesday, McConnell mentioned that the House still needs to formally send the article of impeachment to the Senate.

With Trump’s term in office expiring at noon on Wednesday, the same time that President-elect Joe Biden is sworn in, Trump’s looming trial will be the first one for an ex-president. By the time the trial begins, however, McConnell will no longer be the majority leader and current Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) will have already assumed the role.

January 6 saw rioters violently storm the U.S. Capitol to prevent Congress from certifying the states’ Electoral College votes and Biden’s 2020 election win, resulting in five deaths.

RELATED: Prosecutors: ‘strong evidence’ shows Capitol rioters sought to ‘capture and assassinate’ officials

The riot happened after a rally in front of the White House opposing the certification, where President Trump, Donald Trump Jr., Rudy Giuliani, and others made spoke . At the rally, the speakers alleged widespread fraud cost the President the election.

Rioters stormed the Capitol after the event and Trump later spoke to supporters, encouraging peaceful protests and denouncing violence.

RELATED: Joe Scarborough calls for arrests of Trump, Giuliani, Trump Jr. for insurrection in fiery speech

You can follow Douglas Braff on Twitter @Douglas_P_Braff.

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Trump: Tanks to Ukraine could escalate to use of ‘NUKES’

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Former President Donald Trump stated bluntly on Truth Social,  “FIRST COME THE TANKS, THEN COME THE NUKES. Get this crazy war ended, NOW. So easy to do!”

Trump was referring to the escalation of war in Ukraine. He, like many other commentators and lawmakers, are warning that the decision to continue sending weapons – and now tanks – could potentially lead to the use of “nuclear weapons.”

It’s mission creep and it’s dangerous, they say.

Why? Because Russian President Valdimir Putin has indicated in two different speeches that he would use nuclear weapons to defend Russia, if needed. Those warnings are not just bluster but a very real possibility.

And the escalation of war is visible.

Russia launched 55 missiles strikes across Ukraine Thursday, leaving 11 dead. The strikes come one day after the United States and Germany agreed to send tanks to Ukraine in an effort to aide the country. 47 of the 55 missiles were shot down according to Ukraine’s Air Force command.

Eleven lives were lost and another 11 were injured additionally leaving 35 buildings damaged in the wake of the attacks. According to The New York Times, Denys Shmyhal, said in a post on Telegram. “The main goal is energy facilities, providing Ukrainians with light and heat,” he said.

Ukraine is now demanding that they need F-16 fighter jets. In a post on twitter Ukrainian lawmaker, Oleksiy Goncharenko said, “Missiles again over Ukraine. We need F16.”

The US has abstained from sending advanced jets in the chances that a volatile decision could foster more dangerous attacks like former President Trump’s post on Truth referred to. If the US did authorize the decision to lend Ukraine the F-16 jets Netherlands’ foreign minister, Wopke Hoekstra, would be willing to supply them. According to The New York Times, Hoekstra told Dutch lawmakers, “We are open-minded… There are no taboos.”

F-16 fighter jets are complex to work on, they are not the average aircraft that can be learned in a matter of weeks. It can take months for pilots to learn how to fly these birds. European and US officials have the concern that Ukrainian forces could potentially use the jets to fly into Russian airspace and launch attacks on Russian soil.

Western allies are trying to avoid such a provocation, because that could lead to nuclear warfare in reference to what Putin has said he would do to defend his country.

 

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