Marine officers could face charges after allegedly getting drugged and robbed in Colombia

Marine Col. Roger T. McDuffie

Three married US Marines could face charges after a February incident in Colombia in which they allegedly went out drinking with several women before getting drugged and robbed, the Miami Herald reported.

Col. Roger T. McDuffie, Maj. Andrew L. Mueller, and Maj. Mauricio Saenz may have fallen victim to a “burundanga poisoning” a type of crime where victims are slipped a drug so they can be robbed or kidnapped.

According to a Marine investigation, the men started the night of February 3 by going to two bars with a larger group of Marines.

After the rest of the group went back to their hotels, the three Marines in question went off on their own, apparently meeting four local women and eventually ending up a working-class section of Bogota that Pentagon personnel are not allowed to enter.

At some point during the evening, the three officers drank a highly intoxicating Colombian liquor called aguardiente and were slipped a drug called benzodiazepine.

Security cameras at the hotel filmed the officers walking the women through the lobby to their hotel rooms at 4:30 a.m., past other Marines who were gathering to catch a ride to the airport. They broke a 1 a.m. curfew in the process.

At least two of the Marines blacked out in their rooms while with two of the women, according to a report. Another officer withdrew money from his government travel card and brought two women to his room.

marines

Mueller’s work laptop and iPhone 6 were stolen, as were his personal iPad and iPhone. McDuffie’s work iPhone 6, as well as his personal iPhone, iPod, and cash, were also stolen.

This isn’t the first time US military personnel have gotten in trouble in Colombia.

In 2012, two Marines and 11 US Secret Service officers were caught paying at least two strippers to go back to their hotel rooms with them.

The three officers could face “appropriate administrative or judicial proceedings,” according to the Herald, which means they could be charged with conduct unbecoming an officer.

Read the full story at the Miami Herald.

SEE ALSO: Former U.S. Navy admiral sentenced to 18 months in bribery scandal

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'Criminal Minds' Season 13 Spoilers: Reid to Lose Two Dear Friends? – Christian Post

Two member of the Behavioral Analysis Unit may be quitting in the upcoming season of “Criminal Minds.”

Facebook/CriminalMindsReid may be saying goodbye to friends in the next season of “Criminal Minds.”

According to Deadline, Kirsten Vangsness and A.J. Cook, who play Garcia and Jareau, respectively, in the series, may not be returning for season 13. The actresses have reportedly not yet signed the contract since they are seeking for pay parity with their co-stars Joe Mantegna and Matthew Gray Gubler. The rest of the cast members, including Aisha Tyler, Paget Brewster, Adam Rodriguez and Damon Gupton, will all remain as series regulars.

If Vangsness and Cook will not be able to settle their problems with CBS and the showrunners, their characters will of course be removed from the storyline as well. Garcia and Jareau’s absence will affect Reid (Gubler) more than the other members of the squad. Among the agents, they are his closest confidantes. Garcia even sacrificed her job to aid Reid last season. Jareau, on the other hand, was a huge presence in Reid’s life when he was imprisoned.

Meanwhile, the new season is expected to reveal the fates of Rossi (Mantegna), Prentiss (Brewster) and Lewis (Tyler) after they were involved in an accident during last season’s finale.

Showrunner Erica Messer told TV Guide that the writers have yet to discuss about the said plot. She admitted, though, that she would not want to see a character dying in the series.

“Again, I certainly hope so. I love this group. If I’ve learned anything in all these 13 years it’s you can’t truly prepare for anything. [Laughs] So I can’t say yay or nay to that. I don’t have all the control there, but I certainly hope so. I love the whole gang. I certainly hope we know by June 5 when our writers’ room starts back up. We can’t really move forward until we know the answer to all those questions,” the EP shared.

“Criminal Minds” season 13 is rumored to return in September.

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California's 'toilet lawyer' has spent decades fighting for gay rights and against his critics – Los Angeles Times

The first case Bruce Nickerson took on as a young trial attorney seemed straightforward.

His client had been arrested when a San Jose police officer saw him engage in lewd conduct inside a booth at an adult bookstore. Prosecutors offered the man a plea deal that would have spared him from jail time and registering as a sex offender.

For most attorneys, the deal would have seemed like a gift. But Nickerson had a plan, and urged his client to take the case to trial.

The officer had leaned into the booth to observe the man touching himself. To be convicted of lewd conduct in California, Nickerson argued in court, a defendant would need to believe someone would not just witness the conduct, but be offended by it.

Last year, Nickerson won a major decision in Los Angeles County when a judge ruled that the Long Beach Police Department’s use of undercover stings was discriminatory. Statistics cited by Nickerson in court showed that city police had arrested at least two dozen men seeking gay sex during stings in 2013 and 2014. No women, or men seeking heterosexual encounters, were arrested in those stings.

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The Cleveland police officer who shot 12-year-old Tamir Rice has been fired

tamir rice

The Cleveland police officer who fatally shot 12-year-old Tamir Rice has been fired, city officials told media on Tuesday.

The officer, Timothy Loehmann, had been on the force for less than a year before the November 2014 shooting.

Loehmann’s partner Frank Garmback, who had been driving the police cruiser in the moments leading up to the shooting, has also been suspended without pay for 10 days.

The disciplinary action against both officers comes more than a year after Cleveland settled a wrongful death lawsuit with the Rice family for $6 million.

A grand jury declined in 2015 to indict both officers in Rice’s death.

Rice’s shooting, which was captured by security cameras outside a recreation center, prompted national outrage and protests over police use of force.

The footage shows Loehmann and Garmback’s police cruiser skidding to a halt near Rice, at which point Loehmann opens the car door and begins firing at Rice within seconds. Rice had been holding a toy gun with the orange safety tip cut off.

This story is developing…

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New law will divert most adolescent criminal cases to Family Court – SILive.com

The state’s new Raise the Age law will divert most youth criminal cases from Criminal Court, seen in this file photo of the Staten Island Courthouse, to Family Court to judges with access to social services and special training.

STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. — Until recently, New York and North Carolina were the only states which automatically processed 16- and 17-year-olds as adults in Criminal Court.

But last month, Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed the Raise the Age law, which changes the way New York will deal with those defendants, diverting most of them to Family Court to judges with access to social services and special training.

What that means, advocates say, is adolescents in the vast majority of cases won’t be saddled with a criminal record that could ultimately prevent them from accessing certain programs, jobs and public housing and lead them down the path to recidivism.

“It’s a huge step for us,” said Christopher Pisciotta, senior attorney-in-charge of the Legal Aid Society on Staten Island. “My problem is we’re still making judgment calls on the act, not the actor [in the criminal justice system]. Studies show they don’t have the maturation and judgment of an adult. It’s a lifetime burden for the acts of our youth.”

Anthony Katchen, a St. George-based criminal defense lawyer and former prosecutor, called Raise the Age “an extraordinarily important piece of legislation in how we treat young people engaged in crimes.”

“While our entire treatment of juveniles is flawed, at least with this legislation, courts will be empowered to treat these kids as kids and provide them with the services they need rather than simply incarcerate them, which, studies show, almost always will result in them continuing in criminal activities,” Katchen said.

In a press release issued after he signed the law, Cuomo said the initiative ensures “a more fair and equitable justice system.”

Even so, Pisciotta said the law needs to go farther.

“It’s a commendable first step,” he said. “We should be moving all the 16- and 17-year-olds into Family Court and let the Family Court provide appropriate accountability for their actions along with services and support so they can rejoin and contribute to society.”

HOW THE LAW WORKS

Starting in October, the system will work this way:

All misdemeanor cases, which comprise most of the charges against 16- and 17-year-olds, will be sent straight to Family Court instead of going through Criminal Court.

Felony cases will start in a new “youth part” of Criminal Court before judges trained in Family Court law.

Nonviolent cases will be transferred to Family Court unless prosecutors can show “extraordinary circumstances” why the case should not go there.

Violent felony cases, which comprise about 1 percent of the 20,000 criminal charges lodged annually against 16- and 17-year-olds throughout the city, could be sent to regular Criminal Court if the defendants used a weapon, seriously injured a victim or engaged in criminal sexual conduct.

Pisciotta said it’s his understanding adolescents charged with noncriminal violations or offenses against the state Vehicle and Traffic Law would still be processed in Criminal Court.

Raise the Age will also change how juveniles are detained as their cases proceed in court.

Starting in October of next year, defendants under 17 no longer will be housed on Rikers Island. Instead, they’ll be held in juvenile facilities.

A similar rule will go into effect one year later for 18-year-olds.

Katchen said it’s critical, for a number of reasons, to remove youngsters from lockups that also incarcerate adults.

“Throwing these kids into adult facilities before they’re even 17 in some cases really drives home a terrible message that we’ve given up on them, and I don’t think that promotes what our criminal justice system should aim for,” Katchen said. “These young people simply do not belong in a jail where access to rehabilitative programs is minimal.”

DETRACTORS

Still, the law has its detractors.

“Nobody is going to tell me a 16- or 17-year-old is a young adult who doesn’t know the consequences of his actions,” said Joseph Sorrentino, a Castleton Corners-based criminal defense lawyer and former prosecutor, who opposes Raise the Age.

Sorrentino said he fears savvy gangs could view the law as a “recruitment statute” to bolster their ranks with juveniles, realizing those youngsters wouldn’t be prosecuted as adults unless they committed the most serious crimes.

“They’re going to know if they commit something less than a violent felony they’re going to wind up in Family Court,” he said. “Are you now building into the system another level of leniency?”

Sorrentino said he believes sufficient options and safeguards are in place to prevent juveniles from being burdened for life with a criminal conviction.

Adjournments in contemplation of dismissal, known as ACDs, allow defendants to have their cases dismissed if they stay out of trouble with the law for a designated period, usually six months or a year.

Convictions, including felonies, won’t go on the records of defendants sentenced as youthful offenders, whose court files also are sealed. Those adolescent first-time offenders convicted of misdemeanors are, by statute, automatically adjudicated as youthful offenders, he said.

And certain charges can be knocked down to violations, sparing a defendant a criminal conviction.

If avoiding a criminal record is the goal, Sorrentino said legislators should look to New Jersey. Under the Garden State’s expungement system, all defendants – youths and adults – with the exception of those convicted of certain crimes, can have their arrests and convictions swept clean if they lead law-abiding lives for a requisite period and a judge approves of the expungement.

District Attorney Michael E. McMahon said his office will work to comply with all aspects of the legislation, while also striving to ensure residents’ safety.

“As district attorney, I have a deep understanding of the need to reintegrate young people into society so they can become productive members,” said McMahon. “However, as the chief law enforcement officer of Richmond County, I have the unique responsibility to ensure that all criminal activity is thoroughly investigated and that those responsible are dealt with firmly in a way that is consistent with the goals of public safety and the true administration of justice.

“We will continue to strenuously work to achieve the proper balance.”

‘KIDS MAKE MISTAKES’

Mark J. Fonte, a St. George-based criminal defense lawyer and former prosecutor, said Raise the Age is a good thing.

“Any parent knows that kids make mistakes and any diversion from a criminal proceeding is welcome,” he said.

But Fonte also worries about cases being transferred to other courts or parts in which the judges don’t have a background in criminal law.

“They often become rubber stamps for the prosecutor,” said Fonte. “I’m always leery when new court parts are created and staffed with inexperienced personnel. We’ll have to wait and see how the ‘youth part’ develops, who presides over it, and how the proceedings are conducted.”

In addition, Fonte expressed reservations about cases being tried in Family Court. Defendants, he said, are tried by a judge and not entitled to a jury in Family Court.

“I’m always skeptical when someone is deprived of their right to a jury of their peers, regardless of their age,” he said.

But Pisciotta maintains Family Court is the right place for 16- and 17-year-olds charged with crimes.

Family Court, he said, has more resources and the know-how to get kids back on the right track and reunite families.

“There is a need on Staten Island to get these adolescents out of our adult system and into Family Court where they’ll have appropriate services and accountability and not be burdened with a lifetime criminal record,” said Pisciotta.

Otherwise, he said, “We’re setting that youth up for a higher risk of recidivism.”

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The US is targeting a suspected drug trafficker tied to one of the Sinaloa cartel's main rivals

Mexico's top drug lord Joaquin

On Wednesday, the US Treasury named a suspected drug trafficker linked to one of the Sinaloa cartel’s biggest rivals as a Significant Foreign Narcotics Trafficker.

Jose Luis Ruelas Torres allegedly leads what the Treasury Department calls the Ruelas Torres drug-trafficking organization — “a family-based, independent opium and heroin production and distribution organization that smuggles multi-kilogram heroin quantities into the United States.”

According to the Treasury Department’s announcement, Ruelas Torres’ organization — consisting of him and immediate and extended family members — has been involved in making, importing, and distributing heroin from Sinaloa state in northwest Mexico to the US for more than 20 years.

Treasury blacklisted Ruelas Torres along with nine other Mexican men and a Mexican woman.

They are suspected of distributing drugs in cities including Los Angeles, Denver, Milwaukee, Columbus, and New York City. They are also suspected of smuggling laundered drug proceeds back to Mexico.

The Treasury said Reulas Torres and his organization were aligned with a Sinaloa-based drug trafficker named Fausto Isidro Meza Flores, known as “Chapito” or “Chapito Isidro.”

In 2013, the Treasury Department designated Meza Flores and associates as a drug-trafficking organization, alleging that it had been involved in distributing large quantities of meth, heroin, marijuana, and cocaine to the US since 2000.

el chapo home fixed

Other reports indicate that he has worked with the Beltran Leyva Organization (which was allied with the Sinaloa cartel but broke away in the late 2000s) since the late 1990s and acted as a trafficker and enforcer on the BLO’s behalf in Sinaloa state.

Meza Flores is also involved in the battle for succession that has wracked the powerful Sinaloa cartel since its leader, Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman, was arrested for the second time in January 2016.

Meza Flores and members of the BLO reportedly planned and led an assault on the community of La Tuna in Sinaloa state’s Badiraguato municipality last summer.

La Tuna is the birthplace of “El Chapo” Guzman and his mother, Consuelo Loera, still lives there. The raid killed several people and forced Loera from her home, which was then ransacked by the assailants.

The battle for control over the Sinaloa cartel has intensified in the months since Guzman was extradited to the US in January. Since that attack on Guzman’s mother’s home, his sons have faced two attacks: a weeklong kidnapping in August and what appears to have been a failed assassination attempt in early February.

SEE ALSO: Deadly violence continues to climb in Mexico, where an ascendant cartel is strengthening its grip on power

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NOW WATCH: El Chapo’s been extradited to the US — here’s a look at his dangerous life

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From state school to Queen's Counsel – Liverpool criminal lawyer "takes silk" – Liverpool Echo

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Liverpool Echo

From state school to Queen's Counsel – Liverpool criminal lawyer "takes silk"
Liverpool Echo
A state school educated barrister is the first criminal lawyer in Liverpool to be appointed Queen's Counsel in seven years. Former De La Salle School pupil David McLachlan, QC, has forged a reputation as one of the finest operators on the Northern Circuit.

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Trump administration vows to take travel ban to the Supreme Court

Donald Trump

The 4th US Circuit Court of Appeals on Thursday largely upheld a nationwide block on President Donald Trump’s travel ban, arguing that it “drips with religious intolerance, animus, and discrimination.”

Just hours after the ruling, the Department of Justice announced it would seek a review of the case in the Supreme Court.

“The Department of Justice strongly disagrees with the decision of the divided court, which blocks the President’s efforts to strengthen this country’s national security,” Attorney General Jeff Sessions said in a statement.

“The President is not required to admit people from countries that sponsor or shelter terrorism, until he determines that they can be properly vetted and do not pose a security risk to the United States.”

The travel ban, signed March 6, was Trump’s second stab at an executive order halting travel from certain majority-Muslim countries.

In the majority opinion released Thursday afternoon, the 4th Circuit’s chief judge, Roger Gregory, wrote that although the president is granted broad power by Congress to deny entry to foreign visitors, “that power is not absolute.”

“It cannot go unchecked when, as here, the president wields it through an executive edict that stands to cause irreparable harm to individuals across this nation,” Gregory wrote.

The judges said they were “unconvinced” that the underlying purpose of the travel ban was to maintain national security and that it was instead done to implement Trump’s promise during his presidential campaign to bar Muslims from entering the US.

The ruling comes after a federal judge in Maryland issued an injunction in March also arguing that Trump’s order was a fulfillment of his pledge.

The Trump administration’s attorneys had argued before the Virginia-based 4th Circuit that comments Trump made while he was campaigning should not be considered when weighing his executive order.

“This is not a Muslim ban. Its text doesn’t have anything to do with religion,” Jeffrey Wall, the acting solicitor general, told the court earlier this month. “Its operation doesn’t have anything to do with religion.”

In its response to Thursday’s ruling, the White House said it was confident Trump’s order will be ultimately upheld by the courts.

“These clearly are very dangerous times and we need every available tool at our disposal to prevent terrorists from entering the United States and committing acts of bloodshed and violence,” Michael Short, senior assistant press secretary, said in a statement.

On January 27, Trump signed his original executive order, which barred people from Iraq, Iran, Syria, Yemen, Libya, Sudan, and Somalia and all Syrian refugees. The order triggered mass chaos and protests at airports across the country, as even visa holders and permanent residents were detained and denied entry by customs officials.

When courts blocked that order, Trump issued a revised one in March that removed Iraq from the list of countries, allowed some exceptions for the entry of visitors from the remaining majority-Muslim countries, and removed the shutdown on the admission of Syrian refugees.

SEE ALSO: The Trump administration defends its controversial travel ban in US appeals court

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NOW WATCH: FORMER CIA DIRECTOR: Why Trump’s new travel ban is worse than a ‘waste of time’

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The White House has a credibility crisis — and it's started to engulf one of its most independent voices

U.S. National Security Advisor H.R. McMaster speaks to reporters in the briefing room at the White House in Washington, U.S. May 16, 2017. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts

The White House’s credibility crisis continues to deepen, and experts say it may now reach one of the few remaining independent voices in the Trump administration: national security adviser H.R. McMaster.

After former national security adviser Michael Flynn was forced to resign in February when it emerged that he misled Vice President Mike Pence about contacts he’d had with Russian officials during the 2016 campaign, McMaster arrived to right the ship.

His selection was especially notable because many saw him as the antithesis to Flynn.

He was brought in as someone who was beyond reproach.

“He was brought in as someone who was beyond reproach, who wasn’t in [President Donald] Trump’s inner circle, had a stellar reputation, and was supposed to be distanced from Trump,” said Jon Michaels, a professor and expert on national security at UCLA Law.

Like Secretary of Defense James Mattis, McMaster was revered by his troops while serving in the army and earned a great deal of respect from soldiers. He is an expert on military strategy, counterinsurgency, and history, and is not known for being a ‘yes’ man. “Put simply: McMaster isn’t a political guy, unlike other officers who are trying to jockey for position and move up their careers,” Business Insider’s Paul Szoldra wrote after Trump chose him.

McMaster has historically “been willing to risk an awful lot to speak truth to power,” said Claire Finkelstein, a professor and Director at the Center for Ethics and the Rule of Law at the University of Pennsylvania Law School.

But the former Army Lieutenant General has come under fire in recent days, as the White House was hit with a flurry of news stories that raised more questions about the Trump camp’s ties to Russia.

Now, experts are beginning to question if McMaster’s role has become dangerously politicized, and whether that could pose a threat to the US’ national security.

Typically an apolitical position

Donald Trump H.R. McMaster

When The Washington Post broke an explosive report in which intelligence officials alleged that Trump shared highly-classified information with Russian officials during an Oval Office meeting, McMaster went in front of cameras to call the story false as reported and to defend the president’s actions as “wholly appropriate.”

His defense came as intelligence officials expressed deep concerns about Trump’s handling of sensitive information, as well as the risks it posed to Israel, the source of the intel and a key US ally.

Though the national security adviser is a political appointee — in that he is chosen by the president — the role has historically been relatively apolitical when compared to that of other White House staff. This is because the national security adviser has “enormous influence” over issues of war and peace, and presidents of both parties have tried to keep political concerns away from that area, according to Robert Deitz, a former top lawyer for the National Security Agency and the CIA.

Experts say there is some justification for McMaster speaking out in this case, because he was brought out to address a national security concern.

“The Trump-Russia controversy touches international politics in a way that others do not. … If you’re talking about whether Russia influenced the US elections, if you’re talking about the US president meeting with Russian officials and giving them classified information — that is hardcore foreign policy stuff, and McMaster has, or at least had, very high credibility in that area,” Deitz said. “So it seems logical that he would be pushed out to lead that parade.”

Did it assuage concerns our allies may have had about sharing intelligence? Probably not.

But choosing him as a spokesperson may have done more harm than good.

In this case, McMaster’s “going before the press didn’t do anything to limit” fallout from revelations that Trump disclosed code-word information to the Russians, Michaels said.

“At the end of the day, are we now all saying, ‘Oh, OK, everything’s all hunky-dory because McMaster stood up there’? Did it assuage concerns our allies may have had about sharing intelligence? Probably not.”

Deitz concluded that Trump doesn’t have many alternatives to McMaster.

“If you look at people in this White House and compare them to people in the Obama or Bush White House,” he said, “there are not that many people who have terribly high credibility.”

Michaels echoed that assessment and highlighted the unique circumstances the Trump administration faces.

“Almost everything right now feels new and different,” he said. “The fact that McMaster has to go out and talk about what the president may or may not have said about [former FBI director] Comey … all of this stuff feels weird and unusual, and I doubt many national security advisers have been called in to do this particular type of rebuttal or contextualization.”

Donald Trump H.R. McMaster“There are only so many people in the White House who are taken credibly at this point, and McMaster is one of them,” he added. “So it’s a trade off.”

If anything, experts say McMaster’s selection as the White House’s point man following the Post’s report likely diminished his credibility and the credibility of the US in the process, and it also appeared to politicize a national security issue.

Glenn Carle, a former CIA operative and national security expert, compared McMaster’s selection to former President Bill Clinton’s decision to have female Cabinet members speak out on his behalf during the Monica Lewinsky scandal.

“A lot of the women involved resented that and thought it was inappropriate, and Clinton was widely criticized for politicizing them because they were females,” Carle said. “Here, McMaster was politicized because he’s a general.”

And while the credibility of White House operatives like Kellyanne Conway and press secretary Sean Spicer has taken a hit since Trump assumed office, the risks of McMaster losing credibility are significantly greater given his position as the chief national security consultant.

‘Not McMaster’s finest moment’

Experts say that McMaster is likely aware of the delicate situation he’s in.

McMaster’s loyalties are “naturally divided,” Finkelstein said. “He probably feels like he owes the president, as commander-in-chief, the greatest loyalty he can summon up under the circumstances. But I’m also guessing that standing in that room with the Russian foreign minister and ambassador, he felt that he himself was in a fairly compromised position.”

James Comey

There have been other instances where that internal discrepancy may have been evident. Shortly after news broke that Trump had reportedly called Comey a “real nut job,” and said firing him had taken “great pressure” off during the Oval Office meeting with Russian officials, McMaster appeared on ABC’s “This Week” on May 21. The White House has not disputed the report.

When host George Stephanopoulos asked McMaster about why Trump made comments about the FBI’s Russia probe to Kremlin officials, McMaster said Trump “feels as if he is hamstrung in his ability to work with Russia” because of media coverage around the topic.

“It’s very difficult to take a few lines, to take a paragraph out of what appear to be notes of that meeting, and to be able to see the full context of the conversation,” he added.

That interview was “not McMaster’s finest moment,” Finkelstein said, adding that it likely reflected his need “to act within the military chain of command, while also being aware that these actions and remarks by the president are extremely dangerous for the country.”

‘If the national security adviser is seen as a stooge or lackey …’

McMaster is still the most independent voice in the White House, experts say, but if he continues ceding ground to the political wing, it may affect the relationship between the administration and the military.

“The go-between on military matters are the joint chiefs and the national security adviser,” Michaels said. “If the national security adviser is seen as a stooge or lackey of an administration that the military may be wary of, it’s going to diminish [McMaster’s] capacity to be seen as a reliable person to call in the White House for critical issues.”

And that logic applies to foreign affairs, too.

“It’s not surprising when a politician or statesman presents a favorable interpretation of an issue for the administration,” Carle said. But when the national security adviser goes in front of cameras and says something that is “just not true, that harms the US’ ability to interact successfully and win the support of our foreign interlocutors.”

mcmaster

“Truly, your word is very important” when dealing with national security, Carle said, adding that credibility is among the chief concerns allies consider when deciding which and how much intelligence to share with another country.

The US’ national security apparatus relies not just on heads of state calling each other, Michaels said, but on networks of high-ranking bureaucrats like McMaster whose credibility is crucial to keeping things running.

“There’s no more critical moment for that than now,” he said, “given the lack of credibility and expertise of the commander-in-chief.”

And in the event that the US is thrust into a genuine national security crisis and McMaster comes out to talk to the public or to the US’ allies about it, Deitz said, “the question people are going to have in the back of their minds is, ‘Are we getting this straight or is this just a political job?'”

McMaster is still a very respected figure, Finkelstein said.

“But he will lose all efficacy as a protector of national security if he simultaneously loses that independent voice he was known to have.”

SEE ALSO: Experts: Trump is edging closer to ‘impeachment territory’

DON’T MISS: ‘Things keep getting worse for the White House’: Trump may hire a private attorney amid the Russia firestorm

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Kirsten Vangsness from 'Criminal Minds' Threatens to Leave Show if … – TMZ.com

‘Criminal Minds’ Kirsten VangsnessPay Me What I’m Worth …Or I’m Walkin’!!

5/27/2017 7:28 AM PDT

EXCLUSIVE

Kirsten Vangsness has pushed producers of “Criminal Minds” to the wall — pay her more or she’ll walk. Problem is … she seems super uncomfortable with her position.

We got the actress at the Brentwood Country Mart in L.A. … dishing on her battle with the TV show over getting paid closer to what the men make.

Kirsten says she gets it’s a popularity game and she’s fine with that, but everything still needs to be fair … or she’ll find another job.

It’s been reported Kirsten’s fellow actress on the show — A.J. Cook — has joined her in the battle for equal pay … or something close to it. 

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