Tag Archives: Cracks

EU cracks show after Merkel’s tough Huawei stance snubbed: ‘Working more with China!’

Earlier this year, the German Bundesrat passed the IT-Security Law to gain greater control for cybersecurity in a blow to Chinese firm Huawei. It requires telecoms operators to notify the German government if they sign contracts for critical 5G components and gives them powers to block those proposals. Berlin became the last of the big EU economies to regulate the 5G sector over fears of alienating Beijing and its handling of 5G.

The German approach to Huawei largely followed the guidelines the EU laid out in its Toolbox and risk assessment report for cybersecurity of 5G networks which was designed to mitigate potential risks in the European 5G rollout.

And while most EU countries are following guidelines, not all of them appear to be falling in line.

French President Emmanuel Macron last year gave greater control to his cybersecurity agency ANSSI to block 5G contracts between operators and Huawei. 

But France’s major telecom operator, Orange, has announced that it will continue to cooperate with Huawei in Africa’s 5G rollout.

CEO Stephane Richard said: “We’re working more and more with Chinese vendors in Africa.

“They’ve invested in Africa while the European vendors have been hesitating.”

Orange says it will avoid using equipment from Chinese vendors including Huawei when developing Europe’s 5G networks, opting for suppliers such as Ericsson and Nokia instead.

Other countries have taken an even softer approach.

Spain has been cautious not to explicitly ban Huawei, as Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez is said to be “a strong advocate of Chinese technology companies opening projects and investments”.

READ MORE: Macron’s ‘new policy’ for Putin uncovered as trade with Russia soars after Brexit

Instead, it took a “neutral and independent” approach that is relying on bureaucratic procedures rather than political evaluations.

The decision whether or not to allow the Chinese company to enter the 5G market will depend solely on the level of risk assessed by experts.

The Spanish government will also draft a list of “safe” mobile technology suppliers for the future local 5G mobile network, to avoid issuing an explicit ban against Chinese giant Huawei.

Despite this, Telefonica Spain is reported to have selected Nokia and Ericsson for its standalone (SA) 5G network.

Other countries are even more hesitant to pass laws that would keep Huawei at bay, including Portugal, Luxembourg, and Austria.

Earlier this month, A1 Telekom Austria Group said it was open to considering Chinese vendors such as Huawei for upcoming 5G networks in several countries.

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A1 Telekom Austria Group’s parent company, America Movil, called Huawei an “excellent telecoms equipment provider” last year.

Telekom Austria has 25 million customers across Austria, Bulgaria, Croatia, Belarus, Slovenia, the Republic of Serbia and the Republic of North Macedonia.

The UK decided to limit Huawei’s position within the nation’s 5G networks in January 2020, citing fears over national security.

However, by July, it had increased these measures to a full phase-out of Huawei equipment by 2027. 

Huawei, which has its European headquarters in Germany, has received EU innovation funding on multiple occasions, which has sparked criticism in the European Parliament. 

The core issue with Huawei has been concerning its links with the Chinese government and fears that its equipment could be used for spying, a claim which the company has refuted numerous times.

It’s the reason why, in 2012, the US banned companies from using Huawei networking equipment and why the company was added to the US Department of Commerce’s Bureau of Industry and Security Entity List in May 2019.

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This post originally posted here Daily Express :: World Feed

G7 Leaders Offer United Front as Summit Ends, but Cracks Are Clear

BRUSSELS — President Biden and fellow Western leaders issued a confrontational declaration about Russian and Chinese government behavior on Sunday, castigating Beijing over its internal repression, vowing to investigate the pandemic’s origins, and excoriating Moscow for using nerve agents and cyberweapons.

Concluding the first in-person summit meeting since the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic, the leaders tried to present a unified front against a range of threats. But they disagreed about a crucial issues, from timelines for halting the burning of coal to committing tens or hundreds of billions of dollars in aid to challenge Beijing’s Belt and Road Initiative, China’s overseas investment and lending push.

Still, as they left Cornwall, where they had met at a resort overlooking rocky outcroppings in England’s far west, almost all the participants welcomed a new tone as they began to repair the breaches from four years of dealing with Mr. Biden’s predecessor, Donald J. Trump.

“It is great to have a U.S. president who’s part of the club and very willing to cooperate,’’ President Emmanuel Macron of France said after meeting Mr. Biden — praise that many Americans will welcome but those who embrace Mr. Trump’s “America First” worldview might consider a betrayal of U.S. interests.

The difference in tone was indeed striking: The last time the Group of 7 met in person, in Canada in 2018, its final communiqué never mentioned China and the United States dissented from all the commitments to confront the climate crisis. Then Mr. Trump withdrew American support from the gathering’s final statement.

This time, however, the session had distinctly Cold War overtones — a reflection of the deepening sense that a declining Russia and rising China are forming their own adversarial bloc to challenge the West.

The group’s final communiqué called on China to restore the freedoms guaranteed to Hong Kong when Britain was returned it to Chinese control, and condemned Mr. Putin’s “destabilizing behavior and malign activities,” including interfering with elections and a “systematic crackdown” on dissidents and the media.

It cast the West as the ideological rival of a growing number of autocracies, offering a democratic alternative that Mr. Biden conceded they had to prove would be more attractive around the world.

“Everyone at the table understood and understands both the seriousness and the challenges that we are up against and the responsibility of our proud democracies to step up and deliver to the rest of the world,” Mr. Biden said, returning to what has become the central doctrine of his foreign policy: A struggle between dissonant, often unruly democracies and brutally efficient but repressive autocrats.

Even before the meeting broke up, the Chinese Embassy in London, which had been almost trolling the pronouncements of the Group of 7 nations — the United States, Canada, Japan, Germany, Italy, France and the United Kingdom — delivered a bitter denunciation.

“The days when global decisions were dictated by a small group of countries are long gone,’’ the Chinese government said in a statement.

China is a member of the larger and more contentious Group of 20, whose member nations will meet in Italy in late October, which could be the first time in more than a decade for Mr. Biden to sit face to face with President Xi Jinping.

Even as Mr. Biden successfully pushed his counterparts in England to embrace a more aggressive posture against autocracies, the group failed to reach agreement on key parts of the president’s early foreign policy agenda.

It did not settle on a timeline to eliminate the use of coal for generating electric power, and climate activists said that signaled a lack of resolve to confront one of the world’s leading causes of global warming.

And while the leaders called on China to respect “fundamental freedoms, especially in relation to Xinjiang,” there was no agreement on banning Western participation in projects that benefited from forced labor.

Instead, the effort to confront Beijing’s human rights abuses ended with a vague declaration that the allies were setting up a working group to “identify areas for strengthened cooperation and collective efforts towards eradicating the use of all forms of forced labor in global supply chains.”

Mr. Biden’s national security adviser, Jake Sullivan, said on Air Force One on the way from London to Brussels on Sunday evening that the question was: “Can we turn the commitments on forced labor and ending overseas financing of coal into genuine outcomes by the end of this year.”

And to counter China’s Belt and Road development push, the G7 leaders pledged to set up yet another working group to design what they called Build Back Better for the World, playing off Mr. Biden’s campaign theme.

Mr. Biden’s aides argued that he had never expected to persuade the allies to adapt his entire agenda. But they said he had pushed them toward concrete agreements, starting with a 15 percent minimum corporate tax, to prevent corporations from seeking the cheapest tax haven to locate their headquarters and operations.

His aides also cited the commitment to provide upward of a billion doses of vaccines to the developing world by the end of 2022. Half would come from the United States, though Mr. Biden, in an aside to reporters on Sunday, said that vaccine distribution would be a “constant project for a long time” and that the U.S. could eventually donate another billion doses.

The leaders unanimously promised to cut their collective emissions in half by 2030, a striking contrast with the statement issued by the same group three years ago in Charlevoix, Canada, where the United States refused to sign onto the pledge to combat climate change.

That year, President Trump joined the overall summit agreement but angrily withdrew his support in a tweet from Air Force One as he left the summit, accusing Canada’s prime minister, Justin Trudeau, of being “very dishonest and weak.”

Speaking to reporters at a news conference before he visited the queen at Windsor Castle, Mr. Biden told reporters he was “satisfied” with how the joint statement addressed China.

“I think China has to start to act more responsibly in terms of international norms on human rights and transparency,” Mr. Biden said. “Transparency matters across the board.”

Mr. Sullivan said that G7 leaders had divergent views about the “the depth of the challenge” from China and how to calibrate cooperation with confrontation in dealing with Beijing. He said the discussion would spill into a meeting of NATO allies on Monday.

The strategy, Mr. Sullivan argued, is “don’t try to push towards confrontation or conflict, but be prepared to try to rally allies and partners toward what is going to be tough competition in the years ahead — and that’s in the security domain as it is in the economic and technological domains.”

On Russia, Mr. Biden told reporters he agreed with Mr. Putin’s assessment, in an NBC interview, that relations between Washington and Moscow were at a “low point,” and committed to being “very straightforward” with Mr. Putin during their planned meeting on Wednesday in Geneva.

Topping a list of concerns for that meeting are the SolarWinds cyberattack, a sophisticated effort by Russia’s most elite intelligence agency to undercut confidence in American computer networks by infiltrating the network-management software used by government agencies and most of corporate America. He is also expected to take up Russia’s willingness to harbor criminal groups that conduct ransomware attacks.

But Mr. Biden also raised areas for potential compromise, including providing food and humanitarian assistance to people in Syria. “Russia has engaged in activities which we believe are contrary to international norms, but they have also bitten off some real problems they’re going to have trouble chewing on,” he said.

Mr. Biden indicated openness to Mr. Putin’s proposal to extradite Russian cybercriminals to the United States, on the condition that the Biden administration agree to extradite criminals to Russia. But the last time Mr. Putin proposed that — to President Trump — it turned out he wanted the United States to send dissidents back and allow for the questioning of Michael D. McFaul, the American ambassador to Moscow under President Barack Obama.

On climate, energy experts said the inability of G7 nations, which together produce about a quarter of the world’s climate pollution, to agree on a specific end date on the use of coal weakens their ability to lean on China to curb its own coal use.

The Group of 7 did promise that their nations would end by 2022 international funding for coal projects that do not include technology to capture and store carbon dioxide emissions. They also promised an “overwhelmingly decarbonized” electricity sector by decade’s end. And they promised accelerated efforts to cut greenhouse gas emissions.

Even as Prime Minister Boris Johnson, the host of the meeting, hailed the summit’s results, he was battling a diplomatic flare-up over Northern Ireland, over which Britain and the European Union have been in a tense negotiations over post-Brexit trading rules.

British newspapers reported that France’s president suggested to Mr. Johnson in a meeting on Saturday that Northern Ireland was not part of the United Kingdom. On Sunday, the British foreign secretary, Dominic Raab, described Mr. Macron’s reported comments as “offensive.”

But Mr. Johnson himself tried to play down the dispute, declining at a news conference to discuss the exchange and insisting that Northern Ireland had occupied very little of the leaders’ time during the meeting.

“What I’m saying is that we will do whatever it takes to protect the territorial integrity of the U.K.,” Mr. Johnson said.

Mark Landler, Zolan Kanno-Youngs and Lisa Friedman contributed reporting.

Author: David E. Sanger and Michael D. Shear
This post originally appeared on NYT > U.S. News

Macron's fishing time bomb: Brexit exposes EU cracks as French fishermen growing angry

President of Generation Frexit, a campaign dedicated to removing France from the European Union in the same way as Brexit, Charles-Henris Gallois highlighted a key issue with France’s fishing industry. During an interview with Express.co.uk, he claimed French fishermen are being muscled out of their waters from other EU fishers and French President Emmanuel Macron must resolve the problem. He noted that prior to Brexit, other EU member states were utilising both Britain’s and French waters.

But since the UK’s departure from the bloc, fishermen from member states have settled in just fishing in French waters, much to the frustration of native fishermen, according to the campaigner.

Mr Gallois said: “I think that the French fishermen are angry because France has a big maritime zone and we would be basically unable to fish in our own zone.

“We are facing the same issue that you had in the UK.

“We have fishermen in other countries such as Belgium and Denmark and others that are a concern.

DON’T MISS: EU snubbed by Joe Biden ahead of G7 summit

“They are still coming to fish in French waters, they won’t go to the UK waters but they will go to French waters.

“It will be a total disaster for French waters, that is the main issue.

“If the French waters were only dedicated to French fishermen you wouldn’t have any issues.”

Mr Gallois insisted France would be better off if they had full control of their waters.

“I am sure that if we had independent waters in France we would be okay and we would be able to negotiate a clever deal with the UK.

“We could turn it into a win-win situation but that is never the case when the European Union is doing the negotiations.”

Mr Gallois has long remained an advocate of an independent France, separate from the European Union.

He has insisted that if French citizens grow more frustrated with fishing, Covid failures and EU reform, Mr Macron will have to deal with a Frexit movement similar to that of Brexit in the UK. 

This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: World Feed

Lewis Hamilton's cracks starting to show after Max Verstappen and Red Bull pressure

Lewis Hamilton’s words echoed around the streets of Baku on Sunday, as the seven-time world champion was gifted a golden opportunity to take back the lead of the championship in Azerbaijan.

“We’ve got to remember this is a marathon, not a sprint. Got to be measured, how risky we go,” said Hamilton on his Mercedes team radio before the restart after a lengthy red-flag period.

Main title rival and race leader Max Verstappen had hit the wall. Race control had halted the session, and there was about to be a two-lap sprint race to finish the race, with Hamilton sitting second.

Peter Bonnington, Hamilton’s race engineer replied: “Copy Lewis” with team principal Toto Wolff adding: “Absolutely agree, Lewis.”

As the lights went out, Hamilton had a clean run on Red Bull’s Sergio Perez, who had inherited pole position after his team-mate’s crash, but then it all came undone for the seven-time world champion.

Toto Wolff labels Mercedes’ Azerbaijan GP ‘unacceptable’

‘Brake magic’ is understood to be a setting used by Mercedes behind the Safety Car to help heat the brakes by altering brake bias settings, along with various other things.

But this wasn’t Hamilton’s first rodeo, he has been in these positions before and performed the unimaginable.

The 2020 Turkish Grand Prix, where he outclassed the entire field by managing to wring out his tyres without damaging them, passing several cars through without pitting, and taking the lead from Sergio Perez to ultimately finish almost 30 seconds ahead, can’t be forgotten. It was a performance that secured him a seventh world title.

But this felt different, this felt like Hamilton let the pressure get to him and it boiled over. No-one is suggesting it’s a rookie mistake, but it was a sloppy one that cost him and the team dearly.

The heartbreaking message came across the radio. “I’m so sorry,” said the Briton. “Don’t sweat it, Lewis,” came the response, a sign that maybe Verstappen and Red Bull are starting to flap the otherwise unflappable reigning world champion.

Hamilton explained: “Just on the restart, I think when Checo [Perez] moved over towards me.

“I clicked a switch and it basically switches the brakes off, and I just went straight,” he said. “I had no idea that I’d even touched it.

“So very hard to take, but mostly just really sorry to the men and women in the team who have worked so hard for these points, but we will regroup and come back stronger I’m sure.”

Hamilton now finds himself in a precarious position in the aftermath of the Azerbaijan Grand Prix after the uncharacteristic mistake. With no points gained he finds himself still sat behind Verstappen in the standings, despite the Dutchman not even finishing the race.

The last time F1 had two consecutive races without a Mercedes on the podium was the final two races of 2013, the US and Brazillian Grands Prix.

Rarely do we see Hamilton make mistakes, and even more rarely do we not see Hamilton bounce back stronger. He’s one of the most successful drivers in Formula One history for a reason, and in this case, maybe his error has the power to turn him into something even better than he was before in his quest for an eighth world title.

This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Sport Feed

EU cracks show after China’s ‘friend’ Hungary breaks ranks to strike deal with Beijing

The European Parliament voted to suspend the ratification of the EU-China Comprehensive Agreement on Investment (CAI) earlier this year after relations between the two sides plunged. It came after the EU joined the US, UK, and Canada in placing sanctions on Chinese officials involved in alleged human rights violations in the region of Xinjiang. But Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi met with counterparts from Hungary, Ireland, Serbia and Poland this week and reportedly agreed to “reflect on problems in China-Europe relations”.

It came after Mr Wang praised Hungary’s “friendly attitude” towards China in a bilateral meeting in Guiyang in southwestern Guizhou province.

Beijing said “four goals” for the bilateral relationship were agreed on with Budapest during Wang’s meeting on Monday with Peter Szijjarto, Hungarian minister of foreign affairs and trade.

The four goals are said to relate to deepening strategic mutual trust, pursuing high-quality economic cooperation together, encouraging cultural and people-to-people exchange and co-defending international institutions and multilateralism.

After the meeting between the ministers, the Hungarian government also announced a deal was struck to produce the Chinese-developed Sinopharm vaccine locally too.

Hungary is the only EU country to vaccinate its citizens with the Chinese jab after domestic regulators approved its use, breaking with an EU consensus that any COVID-19 shot used inside the bloc would be authorised by the European Medicines Agency.

This week marked Mr Wang’s first meeting with his European counterparts since the stalling of the CAI.

Serbia is not a member of the EU, but the other three – Hungary, Ireland and Poland – are.

But Mr Wang insisted China was not trying to divide Europe.

READ MORE: Macron’s grip on UK: Boris Johnson’s £23billion nuclear plan ‘dependent’ on France 

He added: “The current difficulties between China and Europe is something China does not wish to see, and it does not serve the fundamental and long-term interests of both sides.

“On the level of China-Europe relations, China’s cooperation with Hungary was never, and will never be, about dividing Europe.

“Instead, it is to boost mutual understanding and tolerance, to stand against moves that destroy China-Europe cooperation and to stand against conspiracies that divide the world.”

Hungary’s warming relations with China appear to be in contrast with the atmosphere between Beijing and the EU.

A statement by the Chinese foreign ministry quotes Hungarian Foreign Minister Szijjarto supporting the signing of the CAI, backing the Beijing narrative that China has never interfered with Europe and stating that Hungary welcomed Huawei.

It comes after many European countries were called on by the US to block the Chinese telecoms investment because of “security concerns”.

The EU has no blanket ban on Huawei being used within the bloc but individual members, including Poland, have issued domestic embargoes.

This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: World Feed

Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel cracks PSG joke as Blues set up Man City Champions League final

Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel cracks PSG joke as Blues set up Man City Champions League final

Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel cracks PSG joke as Blues set up Man City Champions League final (Image: GETTY)

Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel joked that he can’t be doing too well as a manager despite reaching back-to-back Champions League finals, because he has done so with different clubs rather than the same one. And after his side booked their spot in the Istanbul final later this month, Tuchel declared: “It’s not done yet.” 
Chelsea beat Real Madrid 2-0 in the second leg of their semi-final tie at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday night thanks to goals from Timo Werner and Mason Mount.

That gave them a 3-1 aggregate win and sees them reach a third Champions League final in the club’s history, their first since they won the competition for the first and only time back in 2012.

For Tuchel, it means back-to-back European Cup showpieces after his Paris Saint-Germain side lost to Bayern Munich in Lisbon last year.

Chelsea will take on Premier League champions elect Manchester City on May 29 in Turkey, after City beat PSG – now managed by ex-Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino – 2-0 (4-1 on aggregate) in their own semi-final on Tuesday.

City and Chelsea meet in a dress rehearsal at the Etihad this weekend in which Pep Guardiola’s side can secure their third league title in the past four years.

But despite only arriving in January, and also taking Chelsea to an FA Cup final, Tuchel laughed that he can’t be doing too well as a manager despite his incredible early success with the Blues, because otherwise he’d still be the PSG head coach.

Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel cracks PSG joke as Blues set up Man City Champions League final

Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel cracks PSG joke as Blues set up Man City Champions League final (Image: GETTY)

Tuchel was sacked by the French champions just before Christmas last year and then replaced the axed Frank Lampard at Chelsea a month later. He has become the first manager ever to reach back-to-back Champions League finals with two different clubs.

Told he must be doing something right, the German tactician smiled to BT Sport’s Des Kelly: “Or not because it’s not the same club! It depends who you ask.

“No I’m happy. I’m very, very happy that we achieved this. I’m in general very grateful that I have the opportunity to live my life in football and fill this passion as a professional.

“I’m more than grateful to do it on this level and to coach a team like this and to arrive now for the second time in a final, I’m very grateful. Very thankful. 

“We deserved to win. First half was difficult because they had a lot of ball possession, made us suffer. But we were dangerous with counter-attacks and never lost the hunger or desire to defend.

“Second half was an even better structure to defend. It was a fantastic performance. Second half, we could have scored so much earlier and so much more to be safe.

Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel cracks PSG joke as Blues set up Man City Champions League final

Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel cracks PSG joke as Blues set up Man City Champions League final (Image: GETTY)

“But no time for criticism now. It’s a fantastic achievement. A big congratulations to the team.”

On the nerves of the second half before Mount’s 85th minute goal made sure of Chelsea’s victory against the 13-time European champions, Tuchel added: “It can happen in any second of any football match, not only against Real Madrid.

“Against Real Madrid of course it’s always dangerous, they can turn nothing into gold. You’re always on the edge.

“Big, big congratulations because to hang in there, even if you have big chances and miss, miss and miss again, to never lose concentration and never lose focus or the positive energy on the pitch is huge. A huge performance and well deserved.”

And asked about the showdown with City, Tuchel continued: “The final? Ask me four days before. It’s too early. Hopefully not but there can be injured players and players out of form. We need to wait and see.

Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel cracks PSG joke as Blues set up Man City Champions League final

Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel cracks PSG joke as Blues set up Man City Champions League final (Image: GETTY)

“Hopefully we arrive with the whole squad and we arrive in a good moment and good atmosphere because it’s not done yet. It’s not done yet. We want to go all the way. We arrive in Istanbul to win.”

Goalscorer Mount meanwhile told the BT cameras after the final whistle: “I can’t put it into words, really, at the moment. But it was a great performance tonight, it was a tough, tough game.

“You know what they’re like, they’re going to come and they’re going to give it everything. I thought we were brilliant, we worked hard.

“We probably should have had about five. I should have had one about 20 minutes before I scored. The most important thing is that we won tonight. But it’s not over, there’s one more game left.

“We’ve got two massive cup finals and hopefully we can win.”

Speaking about this weekend’s league showdown with City, Mount added: “We’ve played them three times already this season, so it’s going to be a stunning game.”

Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel cracks PSG joke as Blues set up Man City Champions League final

Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel cracks PSG joke as Blues set up Man City Champions League final (Image: GETTY)

And captain Cesar Azpilicueta added: “Massive performance from the team. We knew we had a tough opponent and I think the team performed really well and could have scored more goals.
“Not only the guys that were lucky to play this game on the pitch, we have a fantastic squad and staff around.

“Everybody pushes hard in training, it creates the atmosphere to be together, to fight for every ball, to help each other from the stand.

“For me, this is massive to create a strong group. At the moment, we have plenty of things to fight for ahead of us.”

The Spanish defender said of the final, which will come a fortnight after they face Leicester in the FA Cup final at Wembley: “It’s a Champions League final against Manchester City, we know that.

“We have played them lots of times, but it’s a Champions League final. But we believe in ourselves. We know that we will have to work hard, but we’re ready for this.”

Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel cracks PSG joke as Blues set up Man City Champions League final

Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel cracks PSG joke as Blues set up Man City Champions League final (Image: GETTY)

While Werner, now Chelsea’s joint-top goalscorer this season, reflected: “Where we started under the new manager, we were 10th in the league, we are now in the cup final and the Champions League final.

“Everything, we are on the road to the top four, we can win the Champions League and we can win the FA Cup. Our team is incredible, what we did today.

“We didn’t have so much of the ball, like normally, but how we controlled the game and the rhythm against a team with world-class players in every position.

“We are young, but we’re not stupid to make mistakes and we were very, very good today.

“Maybe if you can say something to us today is the fact that we could decide the game earlier in the second-half.

“But in the end, it’s not easy to play against Real Madrid and we did very, very well.”

This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Sport Feed

N.R.A. Chief Takes the Stand, With Cracks in His Armor

Mr. LaPierre is seeking to use bankruptcy to help reincorporate the N.R.A. in the more gun-friendly state of Texas, and has already repaid the N.R.A. about $ 300,000 as he seeks to hold on to his job. Asked if he was disciplined for misspending the money, he said, “Yes, I was disciplined, I paid it back,” suggesting that at the N.R.A., discipline sometimes amounts to paying back money after you are caught.

Whether his bankruptcy gambit will work remains to be seen. To persuade Judge Hale that the N.R.A.’s petition should be rejected during a trial that started last week, lawyers for the attorney general, Letitia James, and for a major creditor — the N.R.A.’s former advertising firm, Ackerman McQueen — presented evidence that they said showed that Mr. LaPierre had sought bankruptcy protection in bad faith.

Proving that a filing was made in bad faith can be difficult because it means showing intent. But Monica Connell, an assistant attorney general, argued that Mr. LaPierre lacked the authority to take the N.R.A. into bankruptcy on his own and had used a “convoluted” ploy to get its board of directors to unwittingly grant the necessary authorization.

Rather than putting a bankruptcy resolution before the board, Ms. Connell said, Mr. LaPierre’s team asked the board to vote on a new employment contract for him. It looked like a reform measure, since it reduced his golden parachute.

But the contract contained an inconspicuous provision giving Mr. LaPierre authority “without limitation” to “reorganize or restructure the affairs of the Association for purposes of cost-minimization, regulatory compliance or otherwise.”

The new contract was first presented to a committee of the N.R.A. board in a closed session on Jan. 7. There weren’t enough copies to go around, and no one could leave with a copy. N.R.A. officials said board members had ample time for review.

By that time, Mr. LaPierre’s main outside counsel, the law firm of William A. Brewer III, had spent months planning the bankruptcy, racking up millions of dollars in legal fees. But no one told the board about that. After the committee emerged from its closed session, the board approved the contract, with little inkling that they had conferred bankruptcy authority on Mr. LaPierre.

Danny Hakim and Mary Williams Walsh