In our news wrap Wednesday, a bombshell has landed at the White House, in a book by John Bolton, former national security adviser. Multiple news outlets report that Bolton accuses President Trump of asking Chinese President Xi Jinping for reelection help by buying more U.S. farm products. Also, new numbers show New York state has cut coronavirus transmission rates to the lowest in the country.
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In the day's other news: A bombshell has landed at the White House, in a book by John Bolton, the former national security adviser.
According to news accounts, Bolton says President Trump asked China's President Xi Jinping for reelection help by buying more U.S. farm products. Bolton also reportedly accuses Mr. Trump of endorsing concentration camps for China's Muslim Uyghurs.
Beyond that, The Wall Street Journal quotes him as writing — and I quote — "I am hard-pressed to identify any significant Trump decision during my White House tenure that wasn't driven by reelection calculations."
The Justice Department filed suit yesterday to block publication of the book.
In the COVID-19 pandemic, new numbers today show New York state has cut infection rates to the lowest in the country. It had been the epicenter of the U.S. pandemic.
Meanwhile, the World Health Organization welcomed British findings that a steroid, dexamethasone, cuts death rates among critically ill patients. But it also counseled caution.
It's exceptionally important that this drug is used under medical supervision. This is not for mild cases. This is not for prophylaxis. This is a very, very powerful anti-inflammatory drug.
It can rescue patients who are in very serious condition, where their lungs and cardiovascular system around their lungs may be very inflamed.
Also today, travelers in China looked for ways out of Beijing, as officials canceled two-thirds of flights in and out of the city amid a new outbreak.
Separately, China says that India has agreed to peacefully end a border dispute in the Himalayas. The two sides clashed Monday in the Ladakh's region's Galwan Valley, as soldiers fought hand to hand on a narrow mountainous ridge.
A vigil was held in New Delhi today for the 20 Indian troops killed. China has announced what its causalities — has not announced what its casualties were.
The United States is targeting Syria's President Bashar al-Assad and his inner circle with new economic sanctions. It's aimed at punishing Syria for abusing human rights and refusing to negotiate peace after nine years of civil war. With Russia's help, Assad has recaptured nearly all the areas once held by rebels.
Back in this country, the U.S. Senate has approved the most far-reaching conservation measure in nearly half-a-century and sent it to the House. The Great American Outdoors Act includes nearly $3 billion a year for national parks and other efforts. We will take a closer look later in the program.
And on Wall Street, stocks mostly ran out of steam. The Dow Jones industrial average lost 170 points to close at 26119. The Nasdaq rose 14 points, but the S&P 500 slipped 11.