Vice Presidential Debate Between Gov. Mike Pence And Sen. Tim Kaine
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Mike Pence Calls North Korea’s Failed Missile Launch A "Provocation"

“This morning’s provocation from the North is just the latest reminder of the risks each one of you face every day in the defense of the freedom," he said. 

U.S. Vice President Mike Pence, accompanied by wife Karen Pence, said Sunday that North Korea’s “provocation” underscored the risks faced by American and South Korean service members, hours after the North conducted a failed missile launch shortly before Pence’s arrival.

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Pence landed in South Korea at the start of a 10-day trip to Asia and was quickly confronted with the stakes facing the United States as Pyongyang seeks to flex its muscles around the birth anniversary of the country’s late founder and advance the regime’s nuclear and missile capabilities.

While Pence was aboard Air Force Two flying over the Bering Sea, a North Korean missile exploded during launch on Sunday, U.S. and South Korean officials said, representing a high-profile failure that came as a powerful U.S. aircraft supercarrier approaches the Korean Peninsula.

After arriving in Seoul, the vice president placed a wreath at Seoul National Cemetery and then worshipped with military personnel at an Easter church service at the U.S. Army Garrison Yongsan. During a fellowship meal after the services, he said the tensions on the Korean peninsula had put into sharp focus the importance of the joint U.S.-South Korean mission.

“This morning’s provocation from the North is just the latest reminder of the risks each one of you face every day in the defense of the freedom of the people of South Korea and the defense of America in this part of the world,” said Pence, who was introduced by Army Gen. Vincent Brooks, commander of U.S. Forces Korea. “Your willingness to step forward, to serve, to stand firm without fear, inspires the nation and inspires the world.”

Pence told the military members that he had spoken twice with President Donald Trump during the day.

Pence said that under Trump’s leadership, “our resolve has never been stronger, our commitment to this historic alliance with the courageous people of South Korea has never been stronger and with your help and God’s help, freedom will ever prevail on this peninsula.”

Trump has suggested that the U.S. will take a tougher stance against North Korea, telling reporters last week: “North Korea is a problem. The problem will be taken care of.” He has repeatedly said if China, North Korea’s dominant trading partner, is unwilling to do more to pressure the North, the U.S. might take the matter into its own hands.

Along with the deployment of the Naval aircraft carrier and other vessels into waters off the Korean Peninsula, thousands of U.S. and South Korean troops, tanks and other weaponry were also deployed last month in their biggest-ever joint military exercises. That led North Korea to issue routine threats of attacks on its rivals if they show signs of aggression.

A White House foreign policy adviser told reporters aboard Air Force Two that the type of missile that North Korea tried to fire on Sunday was medium-range, and that it exploded about 4 to 5 seconds after it was launched.

According to the adviser, the test had been expected and the U.S. had good intelligence both before and after the launch. The adviser, who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss the administration’s initial understanding of the launch, said there was no expected response from the Trump administration because there was no need for the U.S. to reinforce the failure.

The official said that had it been a nuclear test, “other actions would have been taken by the U.S.”

North Korea has conducted five nuclear tests, including two last year. Recent satellite imagery suggests the country could conduct another underground nuclear test at any time.

Despite North Korea’s provocations, U.S. officials have said that the U.S. doesn’t intend to use military force against North Korea in response to either a nuclear test or a missile launch.

After a two-month policy review, officials settled on a policy dubbed “maximum pressure and engagement,” U.S. officials said Friday. The administration’s immediate emphasis, the officials said, will be on increasing pressure on Pyongyang with the help of Beijing.

The officials weren’t authorized to speak publicly on the results of the policy review and requested anonymity.

Pence will be tasked with explaining the policy in meetings with leaders in South Korea and Japan at the start of his trip, which will also include stops in Indonesia and Australia. He will also aim to reassure allies in South Korea and Japan that the U.S. will take appropriate steps to defend them against North Korean aggression.

Pence’s first trip to South Korea carries personal meaning as well. He noted to the soldiers that his late father, Edward, served in the U.S. Army during the Korean War and was awarded the Bronze Star on April 15, 1953 — 64 years to the day of the vice president’s departure for South Korea. Pence displays in his office his father’s Bronze Star and a photograph of his father receiving the honor.

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This article was originally published on Death & Taxes.

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Bryson Tiller Announces Deluxe Edition Of ‘Trapsoul’ Debut

Ahead of the release of his highly anticipated new album, Bryson Tiller is giving fans another chance to fall deeper in love with Trapsoul. The Grammy-nominated singer announced that he will be releasing a deluxe version of his debut album to streaming service this Friday (Sept. 25).

The deluxe edition will feature fan favorites “Just Another Interlude” and “Self Righteous,” Tiller tweeted on Tuesday (Sept. 22). “Before we get into my new album, I wanna celebrate with this special edition of my debut album, 'Trapsoul.' Featuring a few songs that didn’t quite make the cut.”

before we get into my new album, I wanna celebrate with this special edition of my debut album, Trapsoul. Featuring a few songs that didn’t quite make the cut. Y’all asked for these on All Platforms and they’ll finally be yours this Friday. thank you! pic.twitter.com/8MJ5rC5jYB

— tiller (@brysontiller) September 23, 2020

Released in 2015, Tiller’s debut album put him on the map, and earned a Billboard Music Awards nomination for Top R&B Album. The triple platinum release, lead single “Don’t” cracked the Top 20 on the Billboard singles charts becoming his highest charting solo effort to date.

Earlier in the month, Tiller released the music video for his song “Inhale” which samples Mary J. Blige’s “Not Gon' Cry.” The end of the video reveals that Tiller’s new album will drop sometime this fall.

Watch “Inhale” below.

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Da Brat Talks Coming Out, Going To Prison, Dating Allen Iverson And More

Da Brat sat down with Kandi Burruss for an episode of Speak On It where she reflected on her career, opened up about coming out as a lesbian, and more.

The Chicago native, who recently went public with girlfriend, Jessica Dupart, explained that while her sexuality may have been an open secret, she was scared to go public early in her career out of fear of disappointing her family, namely her grandmothers who have since passed on.

“I was nervous but I was like ‘f*ck it.’ I’m happy, I don’t care,’” she recalled of coming out. “I’m in love with this woman, she completes me, she makes me feel like I’ve never felt before.

“I got nothing but good responses,” continued Brat. “It made me feel so good that I did it. First of all, it was a weight lifted but I got nothing but positive responses then you got your troll motherf*ckers talking bout ‘we been knew.’”

After Brat got out of prison in 2010, Kandi approached her to be in a TV show about lesbians. “I thought about it but I just wasn’t ready [to come out],” she admitted.“I was still scared. I was like I’m not [about to] get on here with these gay b*tches and be looking all crazy. How can I pull it off and participate and not look gay? Now I don’t give a f*ck. This is my life. I’m happy, living in my truth, if anybody don’t like it oh well.”

As a youngster, Brat had several boyfriends. She says she didn’t realize that she was attracted to the opposite sex until she fell in love with woman at age 18. Throughout the year, she dated both women and men, one of whom was Allen Iverson. Dating the NBA star at the height of his career proved to be a struggle for Brat. The “last straw” was one of the women that Iverson was apparently sleeping with approaching them at a hotel.

“I’m like b*tch I know you see me sitting here with n*gga, you still gon’ say you’re looking for him? I must’ve mollywhopped that b*tch down the hallway,” she recalled. “I said ‘you know what? I can’t do this with you [Iverson],’ and I kind of like faded out answering the calls and just had to pull back, and then it eventually fizzled out.”

Further in the interview, Brat spoke about being revered by fellow inmates in prison while guards purposely mistreated her because she was a celebrity, and Mariah Carey coming to visit. During her three-year prison stint, Brat started penning an autobiography with the help of an inmate serving life but hasn’t been able to get the work back. The 46-year-old rapper and Dish Nation host hopes to release a biopic one day.

“I would love to like do a movie or docuseries, so people could see what the f*ck I been through, how I became the best of both girls: one side of the family was sanctified, the other side I got to wild out. So that’s how I’m like a tomboy on one side and a Christian on the other side.”

Watch the full interview below.

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Dr. Dre’s Estranged Wife Accused Of Embezzlement Amid Divorce

Dr. Dre and his estranged wife, Nicole Young, are embroiled in a contentious divorce battle, with both sides hurling allegations at each other. The latest round of accusations revolved around Nicole allegedly embezzling money from Record One, a company founded by Dre and Larry Chatman in 2015.

According to TMZ, the company was founded under an LLC of which Nicole is a trustee and signatory on the LLC’s checking account, and therefore had access to the company money. Chatman claims Nicole wrote herself a check for $353,571.85 last month,  plus an additional $30,000. Dre, whose birth name is Andre Young, and his business partner are giving Nicole a week to return the money or face a lawsuit.

In legal documents filed on Friday (Sept. 18), Nicole accuses her ex of hiding assets, kicking her out of their home, and years of physical, emotional, and financial abuse.

“Andre’s history with women provides context for the blatant disregard he had for the legal rights of Nicole, his wife and mother of their three children,” the complaint states before referencing Dre’s ex, Michel’le, and the Lifetime biopic that revealed the abuse she suffered. “Andre’s documented past is riddled with tales of dominating and physically abusing women, which he was forced to admit when a movie of his life was being released.”

Nicole alleges that she co-owns the trademark to Dre’s stage name. She also claims that he created an assets holding company to secretly transfer “valuable trademarks” that they allegedly co-owned. The documents allege that Dre threatened to file for divorce in late June leaving Nicole “no choice” but to “initiate divorce proceedings” two days later.

The mother of three was previously married to NBA player Sedale Threatt before marrying Dre in 1996. Dre and Nicole raised three children together, including her son from a previous relationship. Dre also fathered three children from previous relationships.

Nicole, who claims that she was coerced into signing a prenup, demanded a reported $2 million per month in temporary spousal support.

She is requesting a jury trial.

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