This Week’s Under-reported News Summary – April 19, 2023

Compiled by Bob Nixon

  • U.S., EU condemn Myanmar military airstrikes on Sagaing province
  • Watchdog group accuses right-wing legal activist of laundering $73M via nonprofits
  • IRS overhaul aims for 10-fold increase on audits for wealthy

• In the most violent attack since the 2021 coup, the Myanmar military launched air strikes hitting opposition-held Sagaing province killing more than 100 people, including 30 children. The army defended the attack as targeting “terrorists” from the rebel People’s Defense Forces. Graphic images of the attack, condemned by the United States and the European Union, showed buildings and roadways destroyed.

(“Myanmar’s Military Ups its Brutal Campaign Against Resistance Forces,” Foreign Policy, April 11, 2023; “Myanmar Airstrike Kills Dozens in Sagaing Region,” Washington Post, April 11, 2023)

• A watchdog group’s complaint filed with the Internal Revenue Service seeks to revoke the non-profit status of conservative groups affiliated with right-wing legal activist Leonard Leo, a one-time unpaid adviser recommending Supreme Court nominees to former President Donald Trump. The Campaign for Accountability’s complaint alleged Leo misused $73 million received from conservative groups to fund his for-profit political consulting business.

(“Rightwing Legal Activist Accused of Misusing $73 Million from Non-Profit Groups,” The Guardian, April 6, 2023; “Dark Money and Special Deals: How Leonard Leo and his Friends Benefited from Judicial Activism,” Politico, March 1, 2023)

• Internal Revenue Service and Treasury Department officials recently announced that they will use $80 billion in new funding from the Inflation Reduction Act to recover unpaid tax balances from wealthy earners and complex businesses, restore the level of audits conducted on those taxpayers from more than a decade ago and improve customer service for middle- and low-income tax filers.

(“IRS Overhaul Aims for 10-Fold Increase in Audits for the Wealthy,” Washington Post, April 6, 2023)

This week’s News Summary was narrated by Anna Manzo.

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