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Biden Administration Embroiled in Internal Blame-Shifting amid Afghanistan Chaos

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Departments in the Biden Administration are investigating who’s to blame for the rushed and dangerous evacuation of American citizens and Afghans after the Taliban overtook Afghanistan this weekend.

What We Know:

  • On Monday, one day after the takeover, Afghans traveled to Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul in an attempt to flee the country, as the United States quickly sent troops to facilitate the safe evacuation of US Embassy employees. When military planes left the airport, Afghans clung to the aircrafts’ fuselage while it took off. It has been reported that at least two people died amid the chaos.
  • Military officials claimed that they urged the State Department to begin removing diplomatic personnel from the country for weeks. In response, the State Department said they operated based on intelligence assessments that suggested they could take more time doing so. However, intelligence officials state they reported a rapid Taliban takeover to the State Department for a while.
  • President Joe Biden made defiant comments about the overthrow on Monday. Biden stated that the Afghan security forces’ unwillingness to fight, previous administrations’ decisions, and failing to address the chaos on his watch was to blame for the situation. He also admitted that the Taliban takeover happened faster than he expected. Regardless, he stayed firm on his decision to end the war and made it clear he would not send troops back to Afghanistan.

“I know my decision will be criticized, but I would rather take all that criticism than pass this decision onto another president of the United States,” Biden said in his speech.

  • Officials believe Biden received bad advice from some of his military and intelligence advisers. One White House official referenced Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Mark Milley’s suggestion that Afghan forces could fight and defend themselves. Milley also stated that the Taliban takeover was not a foregone conclusion.
  • CNN reported that John Sopko, the special inspector general for Afghanistan reconstruction, repeatedly warned leaders about the Afghan military’s corruption. Furthermore, soldiers suffered from drug addiction and participated in theft. The military also held tens of thousands of “ghost soldiers” that they would add to payrolls so corrupt officers could collect salaries. Therefore, CNN writes the US should have seen that Afghanistan could not defend themselves from the Taliban on their own.

Despite the Afghan situation unfolding quicker than expected, the Biden Administration believes the withdrawal of American troops is not to blame.

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Entertainment

Former NFL Champ Nate Burleson joins CBS Mornings

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Former NFL player Nate Burleson has officially made his hosting debut on the newly branded morning talk show, CBS Mornings.

What We Know:

  • It was announced earlier this month that Burleson would replace Anthony Mason. Previously Mason joined Gayle King and Tony Doukoupil as host of the former CBS This Morning.  The show was rebranded in tandem to the relocation of their set to Times Square and Burleson joining the cast.
  • Since 2017, former NFL player Burleson has been the host of Good Morning Football on the NFL Network and has served as an analyst on The NFL Today on CBS. Burleson will continue his role on The NFL Today.

  • Burleson is the second former NFL player to join a network morning TV show, with Michael Strahan playing a major role as a co-host on ABC‘s Good Morning America.

Burleson credits Michael Strahan as the ‘blueprint’ for his career path, explaining, “He’s one of those individuals that I took a liking to once I retired because he rewrote the blueprint. I don’t want to say that he is the blueprint, because there has been plenty of players that have transitioned out of the game into TV. There have been African American men and women before him that have done the same thing, but he is a guy that has shown me the lay of the land, especially being a transplant from the West Coast to now New York.”

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Crime

Classes canceled at Howard University as US Government investigates ransomware cyberattack

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Howard University officials along with leading cyber experts are trying to assess what has been compromised in an active ransomware, cyberattack on the HBCU campus. Officials have deemed the attack criminal.

What We Know:

  • Monday, the university issued a statement to faculty and students that “the service disruption was caused by a ransomware cyberattack against the university.”
  • Classes have been canceled for Tuesday and Wednesday. Students have been notified that online and hybrid classes will remain canceled and only essential staff will be allowed on campus. All in-person undergraduate, graduate, professional, and clinical experiential courses will resume as scheduled on Wednesday.
  • A ransomware attack can be triggered by simple, everyday activity. Opening a unintended link inside of can lead to a cyberattack.  Computer, tablet and phone users are encouraged to change their passwords and security questions regularly.

Howard University is home to several notable high profile Black alumni such as Chadwick Boseman and Phylicia Rashad.

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Headlines

Polo G Reportedly Arrested in Los Angeles on Concealed Weapon Charge

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Polo G was arrested on in Los Angeles on Monday, TMZ reports.

What We Know:

According to the outlet, Polo G was arrested after police allegedly found a concealed firearm on the Hall of Fame rapper, which TMZ points out is a felony. The supposed discovery of the firearm occurred when a vehicle Polo G was a passenger in was stopped.

It’s currently unclear why the vehicle was pulled over in the first place but it was reported that a male juvenile was also detained during the stop.

Polo was similarly arrested while he was in Miami for his Hall of Fame album release party. The arrest, which took place back in June, resulted in the rapper getting hit with charges of of battery on a police officer, resisting arrest with violence, and criminal mischief. The rapper was also a passenger in a vehicle at the time of that arrest.

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