The impeachment trial of President Trump in the Senate has formally begun and those involved in the process have been sworn in. In addition, Lev Parnas, an indicted associate of presidential attorney Rudy Giuliani, has gone public claiming that Trump, Vice President Pence, Attorney General Barr, and Congressman Devon Nunes were all involved in the conspiracy to take down Biden and his son Hunter. Is this a Watergate-style scandal, as Democrats maintain, or is it business as usual in Washington?
The dispute between Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren is continuing as so-called “hot mic” audio is released of an exchange between those two Senators following this week’s debate. With Sanders rising in the polls, is the media and the Warren campaign pulling a last ditch maneuver ahead of the Iowa caucus? Dave Lindorff, an investigative reporter, a columnist for CounterPunch, and a contributor to Businessweek, The Nation, Extra! and Salon.com, whose writings are at ThisCantBeHappening.net, joins the show.
The Russian Duma has confirmed a new Prime Minister one day after the previous one, and his government, resigned. President Vladimir Putin, in his state of the union address, had proposed strengthening the Duma and the state council. Critics are saying that this is an effort by Putin to remain in power after he is no longer president. But that doesn’t seem to be the case. Instead, it’s an effort to pave the way for his exit from office. Brian and John speak with Gilbert Doctorow, an international relations and Russian affairs analyst, whose work is at GilbertDoctorow.com, including his latest article on this topic “Vladimir Putin Prepares His Succession.”
The Trump administration is reportedly considering deploying a range of unprecedented economic measures to further isolate Iran and entrench the US troop presence in Iraq. Meanwhile, the EU’s top diplomat had what he called “frank talks” about the JCPOA in Delhi with Iranian Foreign Minister Javid Zarif. Mohammad Marandi, an expert on American studies and postcolonial literature who teaches at the University of Tehran, joins 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.
The United States and China have agreed on what they are calling a Phase 1 trade deal. It includes a Chinese commitment to purchase $200 billion worth of US goods and services over two years, but it also preserves the majority of US tariffs on $360 billion of Chinese goods, and it more strongly protects US intellectual property. What does this mean for the long-term rivalry between the US and China? John Ross, Senior Fellow at Chongyang Institute, Renmin University of China, and an award-winning resident columnist with several Chinese media organizations, joins the show.
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.
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