Overnight Defense: Protests at Trump's NYC Veterans Day speech | House Dems release Pentagon official's deposition transcript | Lawmakers ask Trump to rescind Erdogan invite

Overnight Defense: Protests at Trump's NYC Veterans Day speech | House Dems release Pentagon official's deposition transcript | Lawmakers ask Trump to rescind Erdogan invite
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Happy Monday and welcome to Overnight Defense. I'm Rebecca Kheel, and here's your nightly guide to the latest developments at the Pentagon, on Capitol Hill and beyond. CLICK HERE to subscribe to the newsletter.

 

THE TOPLINE: President TrumpDonald John TrumpLawmakers release defense bill with parental leave-for-Space-Force deal House Democrats expected to unveil articles of impeachment Tuesday Houston police chief excoriates McConnell, Cornyn and Cruz on gun violence MORE on Monday hailed the legacy of the American armed forces in a Veterans Day speech that came against the backdrop of protests and political turmoil that has engulfed his presidency.

Trump's remarks at Madison Square Park in Manhattan were largely devoid of politics, but even in New York on Veterans Day the president could not entirely avoid the political headlines that have dogged him in Washington.

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Protesters spelled out the words "impeach" and "convict" in letters taped to the windows of a high-rise overlooking the park, and chants of "lock him up" were heard from the crowd. Public hearings in the House impeachment inquiry are scheduled to begin Wednesday. 

Demonstrators gathered near the site of Trump's speech to protest his presence and could be heard by attendees chanting and blowing whistles in the distance.

The speech: Trump delivered opening remarks and laid a wreath at the 100th annual Veterans Day Parade in New York City, becoming the first sitting president to address the annual event. The president's speech focused on the service of various military branches and the military accomplishments of his administration.

"This nation is forever in your debt, and we thank you all," Trump said in the speech. "You are the reason our hearts swell with pride, our foes tremble with fear, and our nation thrives in freedom." 

Trump cheered American special forces for carrying out the successful military raid that led to the death of elusive ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi weeks ago.

"Thanks to American warriors, al-Baghdadi is dead. His second in charge is dead. We have our eyes on No. 3. His reign of terror is over, and our enemies are running very, very scared," Trump said.

The president laid a wreath at the Eternal Light Memorial in the park at the conclusion of his remarks.

Flashback: Trump last year faced criticism for opting not to visit Arlington National Cemetery on Veterans Day, as most presidents have done in the past.

The president was in Paris for the official holiday last year to mark the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I, but he had no public events scheduled upon his return to Washington. He later acknowledged he should have made a trip to the cemetery to commemorate Veterans Day.

Vice President Pence spoke at Arlington on Monday. 

 

IMPEACHMENT LATEST: House Democrats released the transcript Monday of a top Defense official who oversees Ukraine as part of the House investigation into whether Trump pressed Ukraine to help his own reelection bid in 2020.

Democrats subpoenaed Laura Cooper, deputy assistant secretary of Defense for Russia, Ukraine and Eurasia, late last month to press her about any role the Pentagon may have played in withholding aid to Ukraine.

Cooper's testimony was primarily memorable for a GOP protest that delayed it.

A group of congressional Republicans protesting the closed-door depositions disrupted the scheduled hearing by storming the secure closed space in which the interview was set to be conducted.

House Dems, ex-Bolton aide don't want Mulvaney joining suit: House Democrats and former deputy national security adviser Charles Kupperman separately asked a federal judge Monday to block Trump's acting chief of staff from intervening in a lawsuit over subpoenas related to the House's impeachment inquiry.

Trump's top aide, Mick MulvaneyJohn (Mick) Michael MulvaneyDemocrats gear up for high-stakes Judiciary hearing Gaetz defends Ukraine call: Trump acted on 'sincere' concerns of corruption Judiciary Democrat says House should focus on Ukraine, avoid Mueller report in articles of impeachment MORE, had filed a motion in D.C. District Court on Friday seeking to join Kupperman's lawsuit over a subpoena in order to fight the House Intelligence Committee's efforts to compel his own testimony.

But Democrats argued that the original lawsuit is moot since they withdrew the subpoena directing Kupperman to testify.

The Democrats wrote in their filing that even if the case was not moot at this point, Mulvaney and Kupperman are in very different circumstances.

"While Kupperman seeks a declaration from this Court as to whether he should comply with his subpoena or follow the President's directive, Mulvaney seeks only a declaration that the House Defendants cannot compel him to comply with his subpoena or take any action against him if he does not," they wrote. "Unlike Kupperman, Mulvaney does not state that he would comply with his subpoena if this Court rejects the claimed absolute immunity."

Kupperman also argued in his filing that Mulvaney may have jeopardized his ability to claim immunity from the House's efforts to subpoena him when he essentially said in a press conference last month that the White House was seeking an investigation from Ukraine into former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenGabbard says she won't participate in next debate even if she qualifies House Democrats expected to unveil articles of impeachment Tuesday FBI head rejects claims of Ukrainian 2016 interference MORE in exchange for congressionally approved security funding.

"Mulvaney has publicly discussed the events at issue in the House's impeachment inquiry, including appearing to admit that there was a quid pro quo relationship between the President's decision to withhold appropriated financial assistance from Ukraine and a Ukrainian investigation into what happened to a Democratic server in 2016 (an admission he subsequently sought to disavow)," Kupperman's filing reads. "Plaintiff, in contrast, has never publicly disclosed information relating to any of his official duties, including the matters under investigation by the House." 

Coming up: This week marks the start of the public phase of the impeachment inquiry. 

The action will kick off Wednesday when William Taylor, the chargé d'affaires to Ukraine, and George Kent, a senior State Department official, testify in an open hearing before the House Intelligence Committee.

Keep up: The Hill has started a page to keep up with all the latest developments in the impeachment inquiry. Follow along here

 

ALSO THIS WEEK ... ERDOGAN'S VISIT: A bipartisan group of House lawmakers is asking Trump to rescind his White House invitation to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.

Erdoğan is scheduled to visit the White House on Wednesday. But the lawmakers expressed "deep concern" at the planned trip, citing Turkey's invasion of northern Syria.

"President Erdogan's decision to invade northern Syria on October 9 has had disastrous consequences for U.S. national security, has led to deep divisions in the NATO alliance, and caused a humanitarian crisis on the ground," they wrote in a letter to Trump publicly released Monday.

"Given this situation, we believe that now is a particularly inappropriate time for President Erdogan to visit the United States, and we urge you to rescind this invitation," the lawmakers added in the letter dated Nov. 8.

The letter was organized by House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Eliot EngelEliot Lance EngelHouse Democrats expected to unveil articles of impeachment Tuesday House approves two-state resolution in implicit rebuke of Trump House leaders: Trump administration asking South Korea to pay more for US troops 'a needless wedge' MORE (D-N.Y.). Two of the co-signers are Republicans: Reps. Gus Bilirakis (Fla.) and Peter King (N.Y.), who announced his retirement earlier Monday.

The other co-signers are Democrats: Reps. Bill KeatingWilliam (Bill) Richard KeatingLawmakers spar over surveillance flight treaty with Russia Overnight Defense: Protests at Trump's NYC Veterans Day speech | House Dems release Pentagon official's deposition transcript | Lawmakers ask Trump to rescind Erdogan invite Bipartisan House members call on Trump to rescind Erdoğan invitation MORE (Mass.), Adriano EspaillatAdriano de Jesus Espaillat CabralDemocrats vow court victories won't slow impeachment timeline Overnight Defense: Protests at Trump's NYC Veterans Day speech | House Dems release Pentagon official's deposition transcript | Lawmakers ask Trump to rescind Erdogan invite Bipartisan House members call on Trump to rescind Erdoğan invitation MORE (N.Y.), Susan WildSusan WildOvernight Health Care: Democratic group to only endorse AG candidates who back abortion rights | Protect Our Care launches seven-figure ad buy to boost vulnerable Dems | California sues Juul Group launches seven-figure ad buy boosting vulnerable Democrats on drug prices Overnight Defense: Protests at Trump's NYC Veterans Day speech | House Dems release Pentagon official's deposition transcript | Lawmakers ask Trump to rescind Erdogan invite MORE (Pa.), Albio SiresAlbio B. SiresHouse passes resolution disapproving of Russia being included in future G7 summits House to vote on resolution opposing Russia's inclusion in G-7 Lawmakers spar over surveillance flight treaty with Russia MORE (N.J.), Ted DeutchTheodore (Ted) Eliot DeutchBipartisan lawmakers introduce amendment affirming US commitment to military aid to Israel Ethics sends memo to lawmakers on SCIF etiquette Pelosi signs bill making animal cruelty a federal crime MORE (Fla.), Colin Allred (Texas), Jim CostaJames (Jim) Manuel CostaChina, US officials: 'Phase one' trade deal could slide into next year Fresno congressman calls for Senate to take up gun legislation after deadly mass shooting at football party Overnight Defense: Protests at Trump's NYC Veterans Day speech | House Dems release Pentagon official's deposition transcript | Lawmakers ask Trump to rescind Erdogan invite MORE (Calif.), Gerry ConnollyGerald (Gerry) Edward ConnollyDemocrats debate scope of impeachment charges House Democrats rebuke State Department for 'reversal' on Israeli settlements Maloney wins House Oversight gavel MORE (Va.), Jamie RaskinJamin (Jamie) Ben RaskinDemocrats gear up for high-stakes Judiciary hearing Lawmakers to watch during Wednesday's impeachment hearing Pelosi faces tough choices on impeachment managers MORE (Md.), Brad ShermanBradley (Brad) James ShermanThe Hill's 12:30 Report — Presented by UANI — GOP, Democrats square off at final impeachment hearing Live coverage: Democrats, Republicans seek to win PR battle in final House impeachment hearing Mnuchin expresses concerns about proposed taxes on financial trades MORE (Calif.), Juan VargasJuan C. VargasLawmakers visit African migrants at US-Mexico border Overnight Defense: Protests at Trump's NYC Veterans Day speech | House Dems release Pentagon official's deposition transcript | Lawmakers ask Trump to rescind Erdogan invite Bipartisan House members call on Trump to rescind Erdoğan invitation MORE (Calif.), Jim McGovern (Mass.), Dina TitusAlice (Dina) Costandina TitusThe US needs to lead again on disability rights Krystal Ball: New Biden ad is everything that's wrong with Democrats Top Latina adviser quits Biden campaign MORE (Nev.) and Ilhan OmarIlhan OmarSanders, Omar to hit campaign trail in New Hampshire House approves two-state resolution in implicit rebuke of Trump Al Green calls for including Trump's 'racism' in impeachment articles MORE (Minn.), who came under fire for voting present on a Armenian genocide resolution and voting against a Turkey sanctions bill.

On Russian missile defense: Trump's national security adviser, Robert O'Brien, said in an interview Sunday that Trump would confront Erdoğan about Turkey's purchase of a Russian S-400 missile defense system during the visit.

"We're very upset about that," O'Brien said on CBS's "Face the Nation." 

"There's no place in NATO for significant Russian military purchases," O'Brien added. "That's a message that the president will deliver to him very clearly when he's here in Washington."

Under a law known as the Countering America's Adversaries Through Sanctions Act, the administration is required to impose sanctions on those who do business with the Russian defense industry, but Trump has yet to levy sanctions on Turkey for the S-400.

On Syria: Secretary of State Mike PompeoMichael (Mike) Richard PompeoHillicon Valley: Amazon alleges Trump interfered in Pentagon contract to hurt Bezos | Federal council warns Trump of cyber threats to infrastructure | China to remove foreign technology from government offices Trump, Russian foreign minister to meet Tuesday Impeachment, Ukraine, Syria and warheads color Washington visit by top Russian diplomat MORE said Monday that Trump will discuss Turkey's incursion into northeast Syria in the Erdoğan meeting and push for a political solution that protects "all of those in Syria, not just the Kurds."

"We will talk about what transpired there and how we can do our level best collectively to ensure the protection of all of those in Syria, not just the Kurds, but everyone in Syria," Pompeo said Monday, answering questions from cadets at The Citadel, a military college in South Carolina, following a speech commemorating Veterans Day.

The last time Erdogan was here: Fear of a repeat from Erdogan's 2017 trip – when his guards violently attacked protesters outside the Turkish ambassador's residence – are being raised after recent court documents revealed new details about the incident two years ago.

Included in a lawsuit against Turkey on behalf of the victims are State Department memos, written from the point of view of three U.S. security officers tasked with guarding Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu.

They detail Turkish security officers attacking both civilians and U.S. security agents in multiple instances, sometimes simultaneously, over the course of the afternoon of May 16, 2017, including the attack near the ambassador's residence and then fighting outside the Turkish Embassy.

Two Diplomatic Security special agents, six U.S. Secret Service officers and one MPD officer sustained multiple injuries, with at least one taken to the hospital.

"I looked up from the fight I was involved," wrote one diplomatic security agent, "and saw a second fight taking place with another Turkish security personnel who was being flexi-cuffed and subdued for assaulting more U.S. police."

En route to the Turkish Embassy, U.S. security agents later described how seven Turkish security officials jumped out of the diplomatic convoy transporting Çavuşoğlu to attack a lone, female protester.

"I observed 7 Turkish 'Suit and tie' security personnel (one female and 6 males) dismount their passenger van in an all-out sprint running directly toward the single female protestor," the agent wrote. "[T]he female protestor eventually ran away and escaped being assaulted."

On Monday, Rep. Liz CheneyElizabeth (Liz) Lynn CheneyOvernight Defense — Presented by Boeing — Stopgap spending bill includes military pay raise | Schumer presses Pentagon to protect impeachment witnesses | US ends civil-nuclear waiver in Iran Cruz, Graham and Cheney call on Trump to end all nuclear waivers for Iran Pompeo: US ending sanctions waiver for site where Iran resumed uranium enrichment MORE (R-Wyo.) called on the State Department to bar entry into the United States for any individual who traveled with Erdoğan in 2017 and took part in the assaults.

In a letter sent to Pompeo on Monday, Cheney -- who has risen to become one of the most prominent GOP voices on foreign policy -- said the 2017 attack was not the first instance of such violence.

Cheney added that Erdogan's behavior in Turkey should not be brought to the United States.

"It is wrong and disturbing there, and it is an affront to American values and entirely unwelcome here. The Erdoğan regime's use of violence against innocent civilians anywhere is inhumane, uncivilized, and unacceptable," she continued. 

 

ON TAP

Defense officials, including deputy chief information officer for cybersecurity Jack Wilmer, will speak at CyberCon 2019 in Arlington starting at 7:30 a.m. https://bit.ly/36UxszO

Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Jim RischJames (Jim) Elroy RischHillicon Valley: FTC rules Cambridge Analytica engaged in 'deceptive practices' | NATO researchers warn social media failing to remove fake accounts | Sanders calls for breaking up Comcast, Verizon Bipartisan senators call on FERC to protect against Huawei threats Senate panel to vote on Turkey sanctions next week MORE (R-Idaho) will discuss China's growing influence in Europe at 3 p.m. at the Center for Strategic and International Studies. https://bit.ly/2O57QHN

 

The Hill Event: America's Veterans: The Next Mission: On Thursday, November 14th join The Hill for America's Veterans: The Next Mission. We will sit down with Sen. Todd YoungTodd Christopher YoungGOP senators unveil bill to expand 'opportunity zone' reporting requirements Statesmen seek bipartisan solutions to big challenges The Hill's 12:30 Report: Trump says he is fighting testimony to protect presidency MORE (R-Ind.), Sen. Jon TesterJonathan (Jon) TesterGOP braces for Democratic spending onslaught in battle for Senate Former rancher says failure to restore meat labeling law is costing rural America 'billions' Tester: Our forefathers would not have tolerated Trump asking Ukraine to investigate Biden MORE (D-Mont.) and retired Gen. George Casey to explore efforts to provide support to veterans and their families as they return home. We'll also be joined by Zack Giffin, co-host of Tiny House Nation. RSVP today!

 

ICYMI

-- The Hill: House to vote on bill to ensure citizenship for children of overseas service members

-- The Hill: Ukraine says it expects same amount of US aid in 2020 'if not larger'

-- The Hill: Joint chiefs chair: Fewer than 1,000 troops will remain in Syria

-- The Hill: Opinion: Be grateful for those who shoulder the burden -- today and always

-- Associated Press: US troops at Syria base say they'll keep pressure on IS

-- Bloomberg: Space war threats from China, Russia getting new U.S. assessment

-- Reuters: Iran adds to breaches of nuclear deal with enrichment push -IAEA report