Covid-19 is continuing to spread rapidly, with 34 states reporting record numbers of cases yesterday, the same day that the President announced the US withdrawal from the World Health Organization. Nearly 132,000 Americans already have died of the disease this year, and current projections from the Centers for Disease Control say that we should expect to see 200,000 to 250,000 dead by November 1. But Donald Trump and Education Secretary Betsy DeVos are unfazed by these numbers. Trump yesterday tweeted an untruth that schools across Europe already are open and are reporting no problems. It’s the middle of the summer. And DeVos said that she would withhold federal funding for all schools that do not open physically when the new school year starts.
Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador flew to Washington yesterday to meet with President Trump. It’s his first foreign trip since winning in a landslide two years ago. Meanwhile, in Mexico, nearly six years after 43 college students disappeared in a rural area of the country, investigators have identified the remains of one of the missing, known as the Ayotzinapa 43. Juan José Gutiérrez, the executive director of the Full Rights for Immigrants Coalition, joins the show.
President Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden have agreed to hold three presidential debates in the fall, one less than Trump had sought. The New York Times’s Thomas Friedman suggests that Biden not debate unless Trump agrees to release his 2016-2018 tax returns and agrees to a real-time truth tracker. For his part, Biden has kept a low profile, making it difficult for Republicans to attack him. And all national polls show Biden winning in a landslide if the election were held today. Brian and John speak with Lee Camp, a writer, comedian, activist, journalist, and host of the television show “Redacted Tonight,” which you can see on RT America. His latest book is called “Bullet Points & Punch Lines,” and you can find it, and more of his work, at leecamp.com.
Deputy Secretary of State Stephen Biegun arrived in Seoul South Korea yesterday for talks on stalled nuclear diplomacy hours after North Korea said Kim Jong Un had “no intention of sitting face to face with the United States.” President Trump had said earlier in the day that he was willing to have yet another summit with the North Korean leader. But Biegun reiterated the US position that North Korea must give up all of its nuclear weapons, something North Korea has always maintained it would not do unilaterally without concurrent sanctions relief. Gregory Elich, a member of the Solidarity Committee for Democracy and Peace in Korea and an author of many articles and books, whose work is at gregoryelich.org, joins the show.
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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