The Trump Administration has deployed an additional 750 ground troops and 250 paratroopers to Kuwait in response to demonstrations at the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad and in the aftermath of U.S. airstrikes that killed 25 people. Meanwhile, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo canceled his trip to central Asia and Cyprus to monitor the situation in Baghdad.
Democratic Presidential candidate Bernie Sanders announced that his campaign has raised a whopping $34.5 million in the fourth quarter of 2019 from 1.8 million donors. That’s an average donation of $18.53.Those figures soundly beat the $24.7 million raised by South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg and the $16.5 raised by entrepreneur Andrew Yang. Meanwhile, former HUD Secretary Julian Castro dropped out of the race this morning. The field is finally beginning to tighten in advance of the February 3 Iowa Caucus and the February 11 New Hampshire Primary. Ted Rall, an award winning journalist and editorial cartoonist whose work is at www.rall.com, joins the show.
Nils Melzer, the United Nations Special Rapporteur on torture said yesterday that the US government was guilty of torture over the detentions of Wikileaks cofounder Julian Assange and Army whistleblower Chelsea Manning. Assange is being held without charge in the maximum-security Belmarsh Prison outside of London, and Manning is being held without charge in a prison in Virginia, solely because she is refusing to testify against Assange before a grand jury. Melzer said, “The practice of coercive detention appears to be incompatible with the international human rights obligations of the United States.” Brian and John speak with independent journalist Diani Baretto.
Nearly three dozen journalists employed by Sputnik in Estonia resigned this week after being harassed and threatened with arrest by Estonian authorities. The Estonian government cited European Union sanctions as the reason for the threats. Jeremy Kuzmarov, a professor of American history whose latest book is “The Russians Are Coming, Again: The First Cold War as Tragedy, the Second as Farce,” joins the show.
Taiwan’s President Tsai Ing-Wen, in her new year’s speech yesterday, said that Taiwan would never accept a one country, two systems model of government, citing violence in Hong Kong and China’s increased assertiveness in its policy of reunification with the island. Meanwhile, 400 protestors were arrested in Hong Kong after their march turned violent. David Ewing, the chair of the San Francisco chapter of the US-China People’s Friendship Association, joins Brian and John.
Thursday’s weekly series “Criminal Injustice” is about the most egregious conduct of our courts and prosecutors and how justice is denied to so many people in this country. Paul Wright, the founder and executive director of the Human Rights Defense Center and editor of Prison Legal News (PLN), and Kevin Gosztola, a writer for Shadowproof.com and co-host of the podcast Unauthorized Disclosure, join the show.
A regular Thursday segment deals with the ongoing militarization of space. As the US continues to withdraw from international arms treaties, will the weaponization and militarization of space bring the world closer to catastrophe? Brian and John speak with Prof. Karl Grossman, a full professor of journalism at the State University of New York, College at Old Westbury and the host of a nationally aired television program focused on environmental, energy, and space issues, and with Bruce Gagnon, coordinator of the Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space and a contributor to Foreign Policy In Focus.
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