Turkish-American Lawyer Özge Güzelsu Was Appointed as Deputy General Counsel (Legislation) of the U.S. Secretary of Defense

There’s a new team in the E-ring starting on Wednesday, newly detailed by close-hold Pentagon planning documents reviewed by Katie Bo Williams, Defense One, deliver news about U.S. defense and national security. Turkish-American lawyer Özge Güzelsu is appointed as Deputy General Counsel (Legislation) of the U.S. Secretary of Defense. She was the member of the Senate Armed Services Committee democratic staff since 2011. Güzelsu graduated from Harvard University in Bachelor of Arts in Literature, History in 1998 and had Doctor of Jurisprudence in Law at Stanford University in 2002.

SNC's Dream Chaser Mission Delayed

Citing delays related to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC) has pushed back the time frame for the first mission using its Dream Chaser spaceplane. Formerly scheduled for late 2021, the company now expects the Dream Chaser to make its initial flight to the International Space Station (ISS) in 2022. The cargo mission will be the first of a minimum of six conducted under a Commercial Resupply Services 2 (CRS-2) contract with NASA.

President- Elect Joe Biden introduces " American Rescue" Package

President Elect Joe Biden announced the economic stimulus package that tackled the $ 1.9 trillion Covid-19. The American Rescue Plan includes measures that the vaccines will be widely distributed, and incentives aimed at keeping families and businesses afloat.
 
What is in the Rescue Plan?
 
  • -Direct payments of $1,400 to Americans, bringing the total relief to $2,000, including recent $600 payments
  • -Increasing the federal, per-week unemployment benefit to $400 and extension till  end of September 2021
  • -Increasing the federal minimum wage to $15 per hour
  • -Extending the eviction and foreclosure moratoriums until the end of September 2021
  • -$350 billion in state and local government aid
  • -$170 billion for K-12 schools and institutions of higher education
  • -$50 billion toward Covid-19 testing
  • -$20 billion for national vaccine program
  • -Making the Child Tax Credit fully refundable for the year and increasing the credit to $3,000 per child 
President Elect Joe Biden said “We have to act, and we have to act now. I know what I just described does not come cheaply, but failure to do so will cost us dearly,” 
 
Is Congress Ready to Approve the Biden's New Package?
 
U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Incoming Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer  said that Congress would get right to work on President-elect Biden’s stimulus package."The emergency relief framework announced by the incoming Biden-Harris administration tonight is the right approach,”said by Pelosi and Schumer said in a joint statement. Republican Senator Marco Rubio and Republican Senator Josh Hawley indicated to support the Biden's package however Democrat Joe Manchin has expressed his skepticism on the package after Biden's press conference.

NYC Mayor Blasio:"We won't let the pandemic spread again in the city."

New York is at the top of cities where most deaths due to the Coronavirus have happened and most cases recorded. Besides pandemics, New York also struggled with protests, increasing crime rates, and economic challenges in 2020. Previously referred to as "the city that never sleeps," New York is now almost transformed into a "ghost city." The City of New York faced a severe economic loss in 2020. Over eighty percent of the entertainment and service industries, as well as restaurants, which are the pillars of the city, have been incapacitated. Hundreds of thousands of people who work in the service industry have lost their jobs.


Mayor de Blasio has called upon New Yorkers who are not feeling well, not going to work, work from home if possible, and not using public transportation, like the buses and the subway.
 
Mayor Bill de Blasio said that the St. Patrick's Day Parade, which has been traditionally held in Manhattan in March every year since 1762, could be canceled.
He also stated that they plan to take specific measures related to the Broadway shows and that some plays could be canceled. The New York Auto Show, one of the leading exhibitions of the automotive sector, has been canceled.


"We won't let the pandemic spread again in the city."


New York Mayor Bill de Blasio said that all passengers arriving in New York from other countries would be required to fill a form once they have landed at the airport and that they would be monitored closely by the authorities.


Mayor de Blasio stated that the same procedures would be implemented against those arriving in the city with their own vehicles, by train, and by bus.,


De Blasio said that documents indicating that they are in quarantine will be mailed with return receipt requested from the 

New York City Police Commissioner's office to the hotels or homes of the people coming to New York from abroad and that their health status is going to be closely monitored by the Department of Health.

 

New Turkish Trade Center in Chicago

The Union of Chambers and Commodity Exchanges of Turkey (TOBB) has opened a trade center in the US city of Chicago with support from the Ministry of Commerce.

With this trade center, which has the privilege of being the first abroad trade center opened by TOBB as part of Turkey Trade Centers regulations, it is aimed to increase the trade volume between Turkey and the US.

The center, which will serve under the name of "Turkish Trade Center Chicago", will assist Turkish businessmen at every stage in the USA with a "one-stop office" principle.

Indicating that the US has become the third-largest country in terms of Turkey's export volume, Pekcan said: "Now it is time to maintain that achievement in a sustainable way. I think the timing of this center is quite appropriate."
Ruhsar Pekcan explained export from Turkey to the US has increased 13 percent in 2020 despite the Coronavirus pandemic and reach over 10 Billion USD in volume, highlighting the US as a significant market.

Pekcan indicated that Illinois, where Chicago is located, has the fifth most significant volume among US states and underlined Chicago's logistic advantages with its proximity to the most important fair centers and automotive facilities. 

Turkey's Chicago Consul General Engin Türesin also pointed out that the trade center is just 1 kilometer away from Chicago's O'Hare Airport.
The center, which has 8,800 square meters of warehouse space and 1,500 square meters of office space, has the capacity to serve 50 companies at the same time.

TOBB is planning to open its next trade centers in China, India, and Brazil.

Biden: "The Incidents are a Result of Trump's Attack on Democracy"

Joe Biden, the US President-Elect, has said that President Trump has provoked the Capitol Building incidents. He described the incident, during which Trump supporters stormed the Capitol Building, as an "attack on the supremacy of law."
Speaking in Wilmington, Delaware, Joe Biden described the incidents of yesterday as "One of the darkest days in U.S. history."

Appearing before the media to announce his Attorney General nomination, the President Elect Biden indicated that the people who stormed the Capitol Building could not be described as protestors. He used the term "domestic terrorist" to describe them.

"If they were black protestors, they would have been treated differently."

After the events that took place yesterday in the congress building, the criticism that the security forces were inadequate during the incident was brought up.
Joe Biden compared the intervention of security forces during George Floyd's protests with the intervention during the events yesterday and said it is clear that there was no equal practice of justice, "If they were black protestors, they would have been treated differently," he added.

Joe Biden said: "For the last four years, we have had a president who demonstrates that he disregards the rule of law, our democracy, the Constitution in everything he does.

President Elect Biden nominates Garland as the Attorney General.

Joe Biden declared that he nominated Merrick Garland, the Chief Judge of the Court of Appeals, as the Attorney General. Garland was former Democratic President Barack Obama's Supreme Court candidate, but his nomination was blocked by Republicans.

Following the election results from Georgia, Democrats, who now have the majority of seats in the House of Representatives, have also taken control of the Senate.

Joe Biden said he thinks Garland, whom he nominated as the Attorney General, could rapidly get Senate approval.In the case Garland gets Senate approval, it is said that he will assign a black Judge from Washington District, Ketanji Brown Jackson, as the Chief Judge of the Court of Appeals in Garland's place.
 
However, an official statement has not yet been made yet from Biden's transition team regarding this.

Overall Crime in New York City Reaches Record Low in 2020

New York City and its Police Department were buffeted by conflicting forces in 2020, as a historic low in overall index crime was accompanied by significant upticks in homicides, shootings, burglaries and car thefts. In calendar 2020, overall crime was lower than in 2019, dropping to a new benchmark of 95,552 reported incidents – representing 681 fewer victims than last year and 11,668 fewer victims than in 2014, the first year of Mayor Bill de Blasio’s administration.

At the same time, the NYPD in 2020 confronted a + 97% (1,531 v. 777) increase in shooting incidents and + 44% increase in the number of murders (462 v. 319) amid the challenges of an ongoing international health pandemic that has strained city residents and the police officers sworn to ensure public safety for everyone. Burglaries increased by 42% (15,463 v. 10,909) and car thefts increased by 67% (9.038 v. 5,422). Through it all, the NYPD has worked to mitigate violence as reflected in a 29% increase (4,253 v. 3,299) in annual gun arrests for 2020 compared with 2019 – including 2,057 gun arrests in the last four months of the year.

Unprecedented events of 2020 presented significant challenges for New York City and its police. From a diminished headcount beginning at the onset of COVID-19 to large-scale protests sparked by the murder of George Floyd in May, the NYPD’s resources were stretched further than at any time in recent memory. Yet the NYPD’s work continued. Investigators focused on concentrated areas of violence and used intelligence-based precision to attain justice for victims. The NYPD made an arrest in 32% of shooting incidents and established probable cause to arrest a suspect in an additional 6% of shooting incidents. On murders, NYPD detectives cleared 54% of homicides that occurred within calendar 2020. The clearance rate for this violent crime reflects the NYPD’s deep commitment to public service and will only continue to improve over time as investigations progress.

More broadly, the NYPD in 2020 continued to engage the people who live, work and serve throughout the city in its ongoing effort to ensure public safety that is fair, responsive and considerate to all New Yorkers. Buoyed by the resiliency of New Yorkers and officers throughout 2020, the NYPD’s undertaking to transform New York City policing to be safer and fairer for all concerned will continue in 2021, building on the fundamental changes and the strengthening of bonds between the police and the community that have developed over the last seven years.

“What New York City and our nation experienced in 2020 will resonate for a long, long time,” said Police Commissioner Dermot Shea. “The NYPD recognizes this as a time for asking and answering difficult questions, for reflection and action and for encouraging and serving New Yorkers. This will determine the way forward for all of us. Together, we will ensure the preservation of our collective public safety while also cultivating a culture that upholds the values and dignity of every New Yorker, in every neighborhood.”

* Reference:NYPD Press Release

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