While You Were Sleeping: 5 stories you might have missed, Jan 6


Fresh from Bannon feud, Trump meets Republican leaders to plot 2018 strategy

Following a tumultuous start to 2018, President Donald Trump will huddle with top Republicans on a two-day retreat beginning on Friday to lay out legislative priorities for the year and discuss a strategy for pivotal November congressional elections.

Two days after explosive comments by Trump's former chief strategist, Steve Bannon, put the White House on the defensive, the President will sit down at Camp David in Maryland with party leaders, including Republican establishment figures who Bannon has criticised in the past.

“We have a lot of things to work on, a lot of things to accomplish,” Trump told reporters as he left the White House.

Trump achieved the first major legislative victory of his presidency in December with a tax overhaul long sought by his party and its supporters. The President is eager for more victories, and the White House has targeted infrastructure policy and an overhaul of welfare programmes as top priorities.


Author Wolff questions Trump's credibility and thanks him for book sales

The author of a scathing new book about President Donald Trump said on Friday that the President's attempt to block its publication would not only help with sales but also would also confirm the book's key finding: Trump is unfit for office.

Speaking on the Today show, Michael Wolff, the author of Fire And Fury: Inside The Trump White House, called the administration's attempt to block the book "extraordinary" and dismissed the President's criticisms of him out of hand.

"My credibility is being questioned by a man who has less credibility than perhaps anyone who has ever walked on Earth at this point," Wolff said.


David Letterman lands Obama as first new talk show guest

Veteran former US talk show host David Letterman will return to television on Jan 12 in a new Netflix show where his first guest will be former US President Barack Obama, Netflix said on Friday.

Called “My Next Guest Needs No Introduction with David Letterman,” the six-episode series will also feature interviews with actor George Clooney, rapper Jay-Z, radio shock jock Howard Stern, comedian Tina Fey and Pakistani education activist and Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai, the streaming service said.

Letterman’s interview with Obama will mark the former president’s first television talk show appearance since he left office in January last year.


United plane forced to land after passenger smears bathrooms with faeces

United Airlines passengers found themselves in a fetid situation when their Chicago-to-Hong Kong flight made an unscheduled landing in Alaska after a man had smeared faeces all over some of the plane's bathrooms, airport officials said.

United Flight 895 was diverted to Anchorage, according to CBS affiliate KTVA, and police officials at Ted Stevens International Airport said the landing was due to a "passenger smearing faeces everywhere".

More specifically, officials said the man had dirtied "a couple" of lavatories on the plane, and had also tried to cram his shirt down a toilet.


Football: Chelsea complete signing of Barkley from Everton

England midfielder Ross Barkley will inherit the number eight shirt once worn by Chelsea’s record scorer Frank Lampard and hope for a similar career trajectory after joining the London club from Everton on Friday.

Premier League champions Chelsea confirmed that 24-year-old Barkley had signed a five-and-a-half-year contract, having initially turned down a move to Stamford Bridge in the close season.

No financial details were disclosed, although British media reported the transfer fee to be around 15 million pounds (S$27 million).