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Archive for the tag “President Trump”

US. Office of Government Ethics – “Subject: The Role of Agency Leaders n Promoting an Ethical Culture” (05.10.2017)

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USA: “Puerto Rico governor sends letter to Congress asking for additional financial assistance following “unprecedented catastrophe” (07.10.2017)

US: Whistleblower Joel Clement, an executive with the Department of Interior, resigned Oct. 4. (04.10.2017)

Opinion: Burundian government support of Mayi-Mayi in Kivu Provnices; is it a ploy to keep Kabila in Power?

The instability in the Democratic Republic of Congo has been used by the other states in the Great Lakes Region. This has been done in the past by both Rwandan and Ugandan forces, even South Sudanese rebels has been on DRC territory at some point. Therefore, its a massive change that the Burundian support of rebels. Seems like it been used as propaganda tool by the Bujumbura government. That President Pierre Nkurunziza is using his CNDD-FDD youth militia the Imbonerakure, to create havoc at the neighbor country in collaboration with the Mai-Mai Yakutumba.

There is even an agreement flooding online between Mayi-Mayi Jejero Pelican and representative of the Burundian government Eltienne Ntakuratimana, who wrote an agreement on the 8th February 2017, where the Burundian counterparts would supply guns, ammunition and radios to the Mayi-Mayi group in response of taking out the Rwandan counterparts in the region.

So first after giving a short insight to who the Mayi-Mayi militia is, I will give one report on the Burundian enterprise in the Democratic Republic of Congo, before showing my thoughts on the manner. Where the different rumors are combined with critical thinking on the actors in the conflict of the Kivu’s. Who earns and what purpose. Take a look!

A tale of who the Mayi-Mayi or Mai-Mai is explained nicely here:

This inter-community power conflict is shaped by and shapes antagonistic identities, which are firmly rooted in specific worldviews. In the case of the Mai Mai Yakutumba, this worldview is constructed around the idea of “autochthony”, or the concept of being a “Son of the Soil”, the “original” inhabitant of a certain zone. In this perspective, which is shared by almost all Mai-Mai groups in the DRC, the self-styled autochthonous groups are threatened by the Rwandophone communities (Hutu and Tutsi), who are seen as “foreigners” trying to take over their land and power. Betweeen 1996 and 2003, “autochthonous” and Tutsi (often Banyamulenge)-led groups clashed on numerous occasions in southern South Kivu, and there were several ethnically targeted massacres on both sides. The resulting mutual distrust and dislike continue to feed Mai Mai movements like the Yakutumba group, which serves to many Babembe as a psychological safeguard to avoid that the Banyamulenge will extend their power in Fizi and will come to dominate the Babembe” (…) “It is in part this function as a safeguard that makes Yakutumba fairly popular among the Babembe, although many do not approve of armed struggle and are tired of the war. What also contributes to Yakutumba’s popularity is that he is perceived to symbolize and embody what are seen as typical Bembe characteristics and values, such as resistance against domination and repression, not only from other ethnic groups, but also from the central government. This self-imagery is in part the product of a tradition of Bembe resistance dating back to the colonial era, the Mulele rebellion in the 1960s and the Fizi-based rebellion of Laurent-Désiré Kabila under the Mobutu regime. The Mai Mai Yakutumba place themselves explicitly in this tradition, which implies a strong animosity towards Kinshasa. They consider the regime of Kabila jr. to be complicit with the Rwandophones and their plan to ‘balkanize’ the DRC, backed by resource-hungry imperialist powers” (Verweijen, 2011).

This shows the plans and added support of the group from Burundi would serve their purpose, as well as give them strength to create havoc in the Kivu’s. Since they want power and be different than the Armed Forces of the Democratic Republic of Congo (FARDC), also different from FDLR and ADF. Who all have been militias contributing to violence and weakening the control of these eastern states of the Republic. As well, being proof of the lacking control that the Central Government from Kinshasa has in the region. With all the eyes that we’re on M23 who has had armed insurgency and also tried to gain control of the area. It’s wouldn’t be the first try someone who has supported a group like Mayi-Mayi/Mai-Mai has done it in the Kivu’s, to show Kabila and his government, that they want to be a force to be recon with.

Very few smart commentators aside. However, Gibert-Bécaud Njangwa, president of the association ONELOPE-Burundi (mobility) finds that the capture of Uvira by Yakutumba would destabilize peace and security in Bujumbura. He is not talking about a threat from some Burundian rebel group. But he suspects that behind Yakutumba is the invisible hand of the West: “It is very likely that Burundi is attacked by mercenaries from Congo Kinshasa so that the West can destabilize peace and security in the subregion. The Government of Burundi must be vigilant, if not the plan of destabilization is well conceived, planned, it can be executed from one moment to another” (…) “Another reading by the former communication commissioner of the Burundian opposition platform CNARED: “Uncontradicted evidence shows that Mai-Mai Yakutumba are working with Burundian intelligence, Imbonerakure militia in DRC, Interahamwe militiamen who are also allies of the Burundian regime. We have evidence that Mai-Mai Yakutumba are supplied with weapons from Bujumbura, we also know that elements of the regime are fighting alongside them. “(Ngendakumana, 2017).

If all of this isn’t bad enough, there are speculations that National pour le Renouveau et la Democratie (CNRD-Ubwiyunge) and Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR), who is Rwandan counterparts in the same region. CNRD-Ubwiyunge have been an armed militia who has tried to gain control. While the FDLR has been more trying to recoup strength to go back and take their motherland back again from the Rwandan Patriotic Front(RPF). Therefore, the troubles of the region, also transpires in the Kivu States. So, the problems and the power-struggle of Burundi is now reaching the mineral rich Kivu’s and Uvira.

There reports that both CNRD and FDLR has been fighting together with Mayi-Mayi this month and in the battles for Uvira this week. If that is likely or true, than it wouldn’t fit the pattern and the history of the Mayi-Mayi, but they are accepting foreign support from Burundi, so if they would use help of Rwandan supported groups. It would be more powerful and even stronger, in the region where the FARDC and MONUSCO is lacking manpower and resources. If they had enough and if they could, they would have been able to banish these groups long time ago, but the Kabila government is keeping them. Just like he is accepting insurgency from Kisoro, Uganda into Southern Kivu, since its from the friends that brought him into power.

There is even further conspiracy that Pierre Nkurunziza is working together with Joseph Kabila to make instability and insurgency, so that there is no need for another election and end of his term. Secondly, the support and the instability is made to make sure the FARDC could get support from French Government, which they can use to invade and control the Rwandan Government. That is only plausible, if the French wants to challenge Paul Kagame, since he has distanced himself from Paris during recent years. Thirdly, the Burundian government would use their relationship with Kabila and Paris to gain proper capital to their struggling economy. So the trade of arms to militias in Kivu Provinces, would enrich the weak Bujumbura government.

Sidebar: We can just wonder if even Emmanuel Macron would care about these places, since he is more into make-up, then international politics, just remember his ignorance towards the African continent earlier this year. Therefore, parts of me doubt it, but French involvement in regime change on the continent isn’t new, but would a risky project for the newly elected French President to pull-off. Even more seasoned leaders has struggled with doing so.

Sidebar II: It is more reasonable to use this insurgency to enforce the need for Kabila, just as the running battles in Kasai-Orientale, which has killed dozens and made massive amounts of mass-graves. So that his leadership could again regain peace, but this is different. Just like the sudden movement of M23 from camps in Kisoro in 2016 and early 2017, that just fitted the paradigm of using militias as pawns. The innocent lives in the Kivu Provinces to let Kabila government rule a little longer. The same could be possible yet again. This time instead of having either Rwandan or Ugandan supported militias, it would be the cash-strapped Burundian government, who would need the financial support and the trade with the groups. Clearly, it makes it more plausible, as the net of well-wishers are dwindling for Bujumbura as well.

We just have to wait and see, what is fact and what is fiction. What we do know is that that Bukavu and Uvira has seen violence and insurgency this last few days. That the DRC/RDC has seen militias growing in strength and if foreign states are interfering in the Kivu’s. Peace.

Reference:

Ngendakumana, Phillipe – ‘Et si les Maï-Maï Yakutumba prenaient Uvira, la ville de Bujumbura serait-elle menacée?’ (30.09.2017) link: http://www.ikiriho.org/2017/09/30/burundi-rdc-mai-mai-yakutumba-prenaient-uvira-la-ville-de-bujumbura-serait-elle-menacee-monusco/

Verweijen, Judith – ‘Guest Blog: Profile of Mai-Mai Yakutumba’ (01.08.2011) link: http://congosiasa.blogspot.no/2011/08/guest-blog-profile-of-mai-mai-yakutumba.html

U.S. Representative Ted Lieu draft bill: “Swamp Flyers Act” (28.09.2017)

The Republican’s plan of fixing the tax-code is by bailing out corporations and the wealthy!

Just like the leaflet dropped in April 2017 as a serious Tax Plan, which was one-page long. Clearly, the people in charge of the economy and financial state of the United States. Are more preoccupied with taking private jets and eating while in office than actually working. I can question that after months after the leaflet, there was a tiny amendment on the newly proposed tax-plan. Since it is just small expanded text. Now instead of one single page, its gone up to 9 pages. Not like a handbook into the codes, neither economic implications of the taxes. Like which groups gets benefits, who will pay more and what sort of “damage” will the tax-cuts made by Republican Party do.

This released Tax plan: “Unified Framework for Fixing Our Broken Tax Code”, that was released today. You should expect better work, especially from former businessmen and bankers who are running the Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross and Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin. Both of them has been bankers, but they still has no stats or proof of how these tax codes really affects society. It’s like selling house on only the paperwork and have no official showing of the house. When you get there it either be just a big lie or it be a shiny palace.

That the United States Government and Republican Party are delivering this sort ploy to trigger their wishes is insane. What is striking is words like these: “An additional top rate may apply to the highest-income taxpayers to ensure that the reformed tax code is at least as progressive as the existing tax code and does not shift the tax burden from high-income to lower- and middle-income taxpayers” (Republican Tax, 2017). This is like saying we will take away and make it simpler for the highest earners to pay less, while this will not burden the ones who earn less than us. So that the progressive though is that the highest earner will get a tax-cut and we promise it will not bother anyone.

But the framework are really showing its love for corporation and giving them tax-holidays from the last quarter of 2017: “The framework allows businesses to immediately write off (or “expense”) the cost of new investments in depreciable assets other than structures made after September 27, 2017, for at least five years. This policy represents an unprecedented level of expensing with respect to the duration and scope of eligible assets. The committees may continue to work to enhance unprecedented expensing for business investments, especially to provide relief for small businesses” (Republican Tax, 2017). So they can easily just tap lots of investments without showing them to the Internal Revenue Service, this means the investments would be easily invested and written-off, without considering the tax-record in general. This will be quickly profitable for big corporations and real-estate businesses. Who can easily invest and get profits within months. As they sell in the next year, as they are investing in 2017 and writing it off. While in 2018 selling it. Then they didn’t need to pay the tax for the investment done in 2017. This is double profit for the bigger businesses. It’s a match made in heaven for the multi-national corporations in the United States. The state will earn less and just make sure the investment will be even more short-term and be more buy-in and takeovers. Since they can earn lot’s on the investments, before dropping it or selling it the next year after writing it off.

The framework limits the maximum tax rate applied to the business income of small and family owned businesses conducted as sole proprietorships, partnerships and S corporations to 25%. The framework contemplates that the committees will adopt measures to prevent the recharacterization of personal income into business income to prevent wealthy individuals from avoiding the top personal tax rate” (Republican Party, 2017). Again, the proposed Tax is made to secure the wealthy, so they will get tax-cuts, this is not for the betterment of the state. It is to secure the wealthy and make sure their tax-rate is cut. Clearly, the treasury and commerce secretary are trying to help their friends and family on Wall Street and in the big business with a fancy tale of tax codes and cuts.

If you thought President Trump cared about Middle-America or even about the Working-Class, they we’re needed props and needed ballots for the election. But now that he got you in his pockets. He can get a payday, cut his taxes and make sure his friend on Wall Street gets their payday too! Peace.

Reference:

Republican Tax Plan – ‘UNIFIED FRAMEWORK FOR FIXING OUR BROKEN TAX CODE’ (September 2017)

Trump Administration planned from July 2017 to build a migrant tent-camp at Guantanamo, Cuba!

On the 7th July 2017 the United States Navy published a Modification Notice on the U.S. land on Cuba, the famous Guantanamo. Again, a new administration has plans to use this land and the parts of island to good use. Seemingly for other purposes than keeping non-trialed terrorist suspects. They are planning to immigrants and asylum seekers put on the Cuban. People who are fleeing camps and war-zones already to be transported to another facility under United States jurisdiction.

The Navy is planning this:

The Naval Facilities Engineering Command Southeast (NAVFAC SE) has been tasked to develop, solicit, and award a single-award, firm fixed-price (FFP), design-bid-build (DBB) contract for the construction of a contingency mass migration complex (Leeward South) for 13,000 migrants and 5,000 support forces, at Naval Station Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. The estimated price range for the entire project is between $25,000,000.00 and $100,000,000.00” (…) “The scope of this project is for the construction of a contingency mass migration complex (Leeward South) for 13,000 migrants and 5,000 support forces. Provide site shaping for tents, concrete pads for camp headquarters, galleys and dumpsters, perimeter and service roads, and Mass Notification System. Supporting facilities include utility systems (electrical, water, and sanitary sewer), exterior lighting, information systems to include fiber optic cable service, expansion of the waste, vehicle parking area, storm drainage, and removal of two family housing trailer units. Measures in accordance with the Department of Defense (DoD) Minimum Antiterrorism for Buildings standards will be provided. Facilities will be designed to a minimum life of 50 years in accordance with DoDs Unified Facilities Code (UFC 1-200-02) including energy efficiencies, building envelope and integrated building systems performance. Sustainability/Energy measures will be provided” (NECO Synopsis Database – ‘Subject: Y–Contingency Mass Migration Complex, Naval Station Guantanamo Bay, Cuba’ – 07.07.2017).

So the Trump Administration together with the Navy, the other agencies really has a plan of moving immigrants and asylum-seekers to Guantanamo. To make sure their stay in the United States will be in tents, instead of trying to get them integrated into society. The ones who are worried about the public business into building of the camp and the price of installation.

That the United States can plan to move and create a temporary space for people in camps on the outside of their territory, to scare more from not coming and also making it worse for their moral obligations to facilitate for their refugees. Just like Americans has said it is problematic with the state of camps in Italy, Greece and Turkey. This one will not make it better, especially when it is a created affair and professional enterprises creating it. As the tenders and government procurement of the camp are clearly planned affairs on how the refugees will leave.

That the United States are planning a tent-camp not far from the Florida coastline in Cuba, is extremely bad and offensive. Especially, since many of the refugees are leaving from places that the Americans has attacked with military operations, where the United States has supported drones, where U.S. Soldiers has killed and created turmoil in the nations. Therefore, as moral obligations to where they sent troops and made a fuzz, they should accept that people are fleeing these wars and conflicts for a safe-haven in the Untied States.

Therefore, that the Navy and the United States government plans a tent-camp on territory of Guantanamo, Cuba for 13,000 migrants and 5,000 support personnel. This means they planning a small-town size of tents and needed necessities for them. Instead of taking care of them through more friendly neighborhood, they are now planning to drop them off in tents. Hope they get tired of the meager lifestyle to go home. Even if it means leaving peace and going back into war-zones and dictatorships.

The moral fall of the United States is clearly there. They could have used other means, used other types of facilitation for migrants. Instead of making provisions without creating a permanent tent-camp for them. Usually, they are put-up because the need for it.

Why I find it strange that UNHCR from 2007 says: “Family tents may be useful and appropriate,

for example, when local materials are either not available at all or are only seasonally available or for refugees of nomadic background. The life-span of an erected canvas tent depends on the manufacturing, length of storage before deployment, as well as the climate and the care given by its occupants. Where tents are used for long durations, provisions for repair materials should be considered. Larger or communal tents may serve as transit accommodation while more appropriate shelter is constructed” (…) “In general, tents are difficult to heat as walls and roof do not provide sufficient insulation. Therefore, tents are not suitable as cold climate shelters, but if there is

no choice, they can save lives and bridge the time until more suitable shelters are established” (UNHCR P: 221-222 – ‘ Handbook for Emergencies – Third Edition’ February 2007).

So, when the U.S. Government puts up a tents, that is not suitable for long-term solution. Because even the UNHCR says it is temporary, since the tents are not insulated. Therefore, Guantanamo tent-camp for the migrants coming to the US. Clearly, the US state will not build a proper place for the migrants, but the people fleeing should get proper shelter. Not be put in tents, but build more suitable shelters. Especially, when the US can build proper housing for the migrants. Since they are moving them from main-land US to the area controlled by US on Cuba. Peace.

Kid Rock’s Senate Race in 2018 in Michigan would be yet another celebrity into politics!

In a not to distant future the world has to all remember the legacy of men like reality star and real-estate supposed tycoon becoming President of the United States, that being Donald Trump winning the election in November 2016. That after a two year stint of campaigning and doing whatever he could become the Commander-in-Chief. That actually happen by all reach of margins off the electoral college and getting the position. So now in Michigan, there is seemingly a new type of race going to happen possibly between the Democrat Senator Debbie Stabenow and against Republican Robert James Ritchie aka Kid Rock.

There are some different reports on Kid Rock’s candidacy, let’s look at them:

At least since “Devil Without a Cause”—his breakthrough LP, from 1998, which sold more than eleven million copies in the U.S.—Kid Rock has self-styled as a patriotic iconoclast, a rebel cowboy on a rampage against anything effete, élite, or soft. He is particularly enraged by rules or customs that might be construed as infringements on personal freedom, such as the choice to meld rap and rock into a shouty, bullish pastiche. He did not invent the right-wing-outlaw archetype—he’s preceded, in music, by the rock guitarist and N.R.A. activist Ted Nugent, the country singer Hank Williams, Jr., and others—but he nonetheless revels in its actualization” (Petrusich, 2017).

If Rock is really preparing to run for Senate, it’s news to the Michigan Republican Party. The Michigan GOP has “not had any contact with him at all,” spokeswoman Sarah Anderson said Thursday, “so I can’t speak to the validity of it.” Although the state party does not endorse in Republican primaries, potential candidates typically talk to GOP leaders and activists around the state before launching campaigns. Rock caused an uproar Wednesday when he tweeted a mock image of a political lawn sign and said his website is “absolute YES” for real” (Gerstein, 2017).

He also responded to incumbent Michigan Sen. Debbie Stabenow, who’d tweeted, “I know we both share a love of music. I concede he’s better at playing guitar and I’ll keep doing what I do best: fighting for Michigan.” His take? “I concede she is better at playing politics than I am, so I’ll keep doing what I do best, which is being a voice for tax paying, hardworking AMERICANS,” said Rock, who hasn’t kept his Trump-supporting ideology under wraps” (…) “ The “Kid Rock for U.S. Senate” website diverts from the typical parameters associated with campaign-affiliated sites in a number of ways. For example, campaign sites must confirm that potential donors are U.S. citizens before completing any transactions” (Czachor, 2017).

Now that we see this, it wouldn’t be shocking in the state of affairs in the United States that Kid Rock would suddenly become a politician. There been certainly a dozen other public figures who became politicians in the United States, even Ronald Reagan was in commercials before becoming President. Therefore, the legacy of the American Democracy would not be destroyed, but would be more of a show. Since the President of the current day is a former reality star and that is showing in his persona.

That this would be a special election in Michigan and the state would certainly become galvanized by such a candidate. As the Democrats knows the volatile state after other election losses of late. Not that the Republicans are Teflon, since the scandals surrounding the President keeps them more hurt and less to show for in their time as majority. Especially considering the devastating legislation’s trough the Congress. This will not benefit a Republican candidate in Michigan and the rest of the Senate races, but a wild-card might help. Certainly, a Kid Rock would be a wild-card and would be something else. After a while, the public see what something does as President and they want to vote for safety instead.

Time will tell, if it is a PR Campaign, if it is real start of campaign as the settling with FEC to become candidate has to happen. Also where he disclose what needed to the state before becoming a candidate. Clearly, he needs also to connect with the Republican Party. If he is not planning to run as an independent. But then the musician turned candidate will work against the two biggest parties. Than, he can’t only run on his celebrity status, but has to show that he is a genuine candidate.

Time will tell if he is a real candidate, who will follow protocol and become a possible senator. If he decides to do so, then the Michigan race will be special for the Senate in 2018. Peace.

Reference:

Czachor, Emily Mae – ‘Kid Rock for U.S. Senate? ‘It’s not a hoax,’ he says. ‘It’s a strategy.’ (14.07.2017) link: http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/la-et-entertainment-news-updates-july-kid-rock-1500056630-htmlstory.html

Gerstein, Michael – ‘Kid Rock amps up Senate tease with expletives’ (13.07.2017) link: http://www.detroitnews.com/story/news/politics/2017/07/13/kid-rock-senate-run-comments/103678072/

Petrusich, Amanda – ‘Kid Rock’s Senate Run Is a Terrifying New Normal’ (13.07.2017) link: http://www.newyorker.com/culture/culture-desk/kid-rocks-senate-run-is-a-terrifying-new-normal

Presidential Inauguration crowds investigation clears the State Officials of NAMA and NPS!

The White House Officials and Press Secretaries like Sean Spicer and even the President Donald J. Trump has claimed how big his crowd was. Even as the pictures of the event show otherwise. Not like the President will accept that and therefore has spend tax-payers dollars on investigating the National Park Service (NPS) and the NPS National Mall and Memorial Parks (NAMA), who we’re in charge of the inauguration and the state response to the matter. However, the allegations made by the White House of tampering was and is not verified of being hogwash. That the President and his august house is spending time on this and valuable time of state officials to determine the state of affairs. Proves how this administration has an ego problem. Here is the statements worth taking note from the new NPS report!

On January 21, 2017, the NAMA official allegedly asked staff during a meeting to “scrub” attendance records to remove information about the size of the crowd at the inauguration. We found no evidence to substantiate the allegation that the NAMA official asked staff to alter crowd size information. The official told us that during this meeting she asked the staff to make sure they did not include crowd size estimates in any reports. She told us that she did not say the word “scrub” during the meeting, and she denied telling the staff to alter any information” (…) “The official told us she also gave the staff this instruction because the press and the White House had expressed interest in the size of the crowd at the inauguration. She said that she asked a few staff members to review the reports to verify that no reference to crowd size was included. According to the official, the review revealed that no reports contained references to crowd size” (NPS, P: 2, 2017).

While at work on January 21, 2017, several NPS staff members were watching a live White House press conference on television. During the press conference, an NPS public affairs employee allegedly said that he disagreed with, and needed to “refute,” statements that White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer made about the inauguration. The complainant could provide no information beyond this initial complaint, but believed that based on the public affairs employee’s comments, either that employee or another public affairs employee may have disclosed information to the press about the phone conversation between President Trump and Reynolds. We found no evidence to substantiate this allegation. Both of the public affairs employees denied disclosing information to the press about the President’s phone call to Reynolds. In addition, Reynolds and NPS National Capital Region Director Bob Vogel told us that knowledge of the phone call was widespread throughout the NPS, since the initial call from the White House came in to the U.S. Park Police operations center. Reynolds stated that he did not consider his conversation with the President protected information. He also felt the news articles that reported on the phone call did not contain details that the two public affairs employees would have known” (NPS, P: 3, 2017).

Regarding the DOI employee’s photos, the public affairs employee said he saw emails that led him to believe that these photos were sent to the White House through the Office of the Secretary of the Interior. We interviewed the two employees whose photographs were submitted to the White House, and they described how they chose their photos and to whom they sent them. The NPS employee explained that he selected a number of photos, based on his professional judgment, that concentrated on the area of the National Mall where most of the crowd was standing. The DOI employee told us that upon receiving Reynolds’ request, she selected seven photos, based on what she thought were the best angles, and sent them to an employee of the Secretary. The Secretary’s employee told us she forwarded two or three of those photos to the White House” (NPS, P: 4, 2017).

If these words isn’t evident enough, there is no conspiracy of lacking morals or trying to make the inauguration of President Trump look small or portraying it wrongly by the State Officials. If it was otherwise, the report and investigation would have unravel that fact. Mere thought of it and that the White House had to create this confusion of reality, proves the little faith the President has in his own men and organizations. Who are all loyal to the Republic and its ideals. Clearly, the self obsessed President thinks different. Total vindication of all the claims from the White House. President Trump cannot now spend more time on the matter. But his ego will. Peace.

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