US Ambassador to the European Union Gordon Sondland testified before the House Intelligence Committee this morning that President Trump premised US aid to Ukraine on that country’s willingness to investigate Joe and Hunter Biden. When asked if there was a quid pro quo, Sondland responded, “Yes there was.” The testimony was notable. But was it anything new? Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense Laura Cooper and Undersecretary of State David Hale testified later in the afternoon.
With less than 11 weeks to go before the Democratic caucuses in Iowa, the top 10-ranked Democrats will square off in a debate tonight in Atlanta. Four Democrats are vying in the top tier--Joe Biden, Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders, and Pete Buttigieg. But the field was recently shaken up with the announcements that former New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg and former Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick would jump into the race. Neither will participate in tonight’s debate. Sputnik news analyst Walter Smolarek joins the show.
At least six people were reportedly killed yesterday in Bolivia after the military raided a fuel depot that had been blocked by supporters of exiled President Evo Morales. A New York Times reporter said he saw soldiers open fire on unarmed men outside the depot at El Alto, a majority Indigenous working class city outside the capital La Paz. Morales supporters had been able to keep the depot, which provides gasoline to La Paz, blocked for more than a week as part of the resistance to the military coup. Brian and John speak with Ben Norton, a journalist with Grayzone and co-host of the Moderate Rebels podcast.
An Israeli military spokesman, in an unusual move, publicly confirmed that Israel hit Iranian and Syrian targets in retaliation for a Syrian rocket attack on Israel a day earlier. Meanwhile, Blue and White Party leader Benny Gantz has told President Rivlin he is unable to form a government. Now Israel could see a weak right-wing coalition government with Benjamin Netanyahu as its leader or, yet again, new elections. Are these two developments related? Ambassador Peter Ford, the former UK Ambassador to Syria, joins the show.
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and opposition Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn attacked each other on Brexit, health care, and the economy last night in a televised debate that, according to the British press, probably did little to change the minds of many voters. This was the first-ever head-to-head debate held in advance of a British election. Steve Hedley, the senior assistant general secretary of the UK’s Rail, Maritime, and Transport Workers Union, joins Brian and John.
Wednesday’s weekly series, In the News, is where the hosts look at the most important ongoing developments of the week and put them into perspective. Sputnik news analysts Nicole Roussell and Walter Smolarek join the show.
Wednesday’s regular segment, Beyond Nuclear, is about nuclear issues, including weapons, energy, waste, and the future of nuclear technology in the United States. Kevin Kamps, the Radioactive Waste Watchdog at the organization Beyond Nuclear, and Sputnik news analyst and producer Nicole Roussell, join the show.
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