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Robert O’Brien cut the National Security Council staff



Robert O'Brien cut the National Security Council staff

WASHINGTON – President Trump’s National Security Adviser Robert C. O’Brien dramatically cut the size of the National Security Council – reducing the number of employees by half in the number during the Obama era, The Post has learned.

Termination of employment is an attempt to streamline the foreign policy outfit that swelled under the Obama administration to nearly 240 staff – still up from 115 during Condoleezza Rice’s tenure as NSA George W. Bush in the early 2000s, a senior White House official said.

At the end of this summer, the NSC will consist of only 105 staff, the official said.

The change came when O’Brien – Trump’s fourth national security adviser – tried to remake the forum in his picture after replacing his fiery predecessor John Bolton, who was ousted last October after a major dispute with the president.

As part of these efforts, women now make up 50 percent of the NSC’s senior leadership for the first time in history, including members of the coronavirus task force Dr. Deborah Birx, who was brought to the NSC from the State Department by O’Brien in February.

Twelve of the 24 council directorates are now headed by women.

The employment reduction is not based on performance and will be done by returning staff on assignments from the state and defense departments and the FBI, an official said.

Trump reportedly instructed O’Brien to substantially reduce the size of the agency shortly after he arrived at the White House – O’Brien’s efforts were detailed in Washington Post opinion section.

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At that time, foreign policy operations were at the center of the impeachment investigation which was triggered by the complainant’s complaints related to the work of the agency.

“Under the previous administration, the NSC had more than doubled in size and duplicated many of the functions of the DoD, the State and the intelligence community,” O’Brien told The Post on Tuesday.

“Under President Trump, we have brought the NSC back to the right size and role as a coordinating body,” he continued.

“To make it happen, we need the best leaders, many of whom are women. “Our goal is to always find the best professionals for every job, and I am very proud of the team that we have gathered at NSC to continue President Trump’s agenda,” he said.

In 2016, Republicans in both houses of Congress introduced a bill that would cut the NSC staff to no more than 150 people – a law opposed by the Obama administration.

Created by President Harry Truman in 1947, the NSC is an interagency panel that advises and assists the president on national security and foreign policy.

White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany said the dramatic reduction in the NSC showed that Trump was changing Washington’s image.

“In business, President Trump always recognizes that some of our best leaders are women, and he brings that view to his Presidency,” he told The Post.

“On his watch, the NSC team was streamlined again and more capable than ever before, and many were related to strong women’s leadership,” he continued.

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Portuguese historical films will premiere on 29 December.



Portuguese historical films will premiere on 29 December.

Method Media Bermuda will present the documentary FABRIC: Portuguese History in Bermuda on Thursday, December 29 at the Underwater Research Institute of Bermuda.

A spokesperson said: “Method Media is proud to bring Bermuda Fabric: Portugal History to Bermuda for its 5th and 6th showing at the Bermuda Underwater Observatory. In November and December 2019, Cloth: A Portuguese Story in Bermuda had four sold-out screenings. Now that Bermuda has reopened after the pandemic, it’s time to bring the film back for at least two screenings.

“There are tickets For $ 20 – sessions at 15:30 and 18:00. Both screenings will be followed by a short Q&A session.

Director and producer Milton Raboso says, “FABRIC is a definitive account of the Portuguese community in Bermuda and its 151 years of history, but it also places Bermuda, Acors and Portugal in the world history and the events that have fueled those 151 years.

“It took more than 10 years to implement FABRIC. The film was supported by the Minister of Culture, the Government of the Azores and private donors.

Bermuda Media Method [MMB] Created in 2011 by producer Milton Raposo. MMB has created content for a wide range of clients: Bermuda’s new hospital renovation, reinsurance, travel campaigns, international sports and more. MMB pays special attention to artistic, cultural and historical content.

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Maestro de Braga is the first Portuguese in the National Symphony Orchestra of Cuba.



Maestro de Braga is the first Portuguese in the National Symphony Orchestra of Cuba.

Maestro Filipe Cunha, Artistic Director of the Philharmonic Orchestra of Braga, has been invited to conduct the Cuban National Symphony Orchestra, as announced today.

According to a statement sent by O MINHO, “he will be the first Portuguese conductor to conduct this orchestra in its entire history.”

In addition to this orchestra, the maestro will also work with the Lyceo Mozarteum de la Habana Symphony Orchestra.

The concerts will take place on 4 and 12 March 2023 at the National Theater of Cuba in Havana.

In the words of the maestro, quoted in the statement, “these will be very beautiful concerts with difficult but very complex pieces” and therefore he feels “very motivated”.

From the very beginning, Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 2 will be performed by an Italian pianist (Luigi Borzillo), whom the maestro wants to bring to Portugal later this year. In the same concert, Mendelshon’s First Symphony will be performed.

Then, at the second concert, in the company of the Mexican clarinetist Angel Zedillo, he will perform the Louis Sfora Concerto No. 2. In this concert, the maestro also conducts Tchaikovsky’s Fifth Symphony.

“This is an international recognition of my work. An invitation that I accept with humility and great responsibility. I was surprised to learn that I would be the first Portuguese member of the Cuban National Symphony Orchestra. This is a very great honor,” the maestro said in a statement.

“I take with me the name of the city of Braga and Portugal with all the responsibility that goes with it, and I hope to do a good job there, leaving a good image and putting on great concerts. These will be very special concerts because, in addition to performing pieces that I love, especially Rachmaninov and Tchaikovsky, I will be directing two wonderful soloists who are also my friends. It will be very beautiful,” concludes Filipe Cunha.

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