Jeffrey Epstein, the 66-year-old billionaire hedge fund manager, has been charged with running a sex-trafficking operation that brought dozens of girls as young as 14 to his opulent Upper East Side home in New York City. He has a lot of friends in very high places. This story has the potential to become a major problem for people on both sides of establishment politics. Look at the list of people who flew on his private plane, nicknamed “The Lolita Express”: former US President Bill Clinton was a passenger more than 20 times; the UK's Prince Andrew flew on it. US President Donald Trump once praised Epstein as a nice guy who shares his affection for women, but on the slightly younger side. How big of a problem will this be going forward?
As Democratic presidential candidates try to differentiate themselves from the pack and some try to move to the left of center, they are engaging in revisionist history. How does this portend for the general election?
The New York Times reports: "Afghan Talks With Taliban Reflect a Changed Nation." Is this an accurate accounting of developments? "When the Taliban met Sunday for the first time with Afghan officials, the delegates they faced formed a moving tableau of a new Afghanistan that has taken shape since the movement was toppled 18 years ago," the Times says. First, is this as significant of a change in terms of makeup as the Times is reporting, and if so, from a policy, political and cultural perspective, is it as significant as professed?
Iran says it is fully prepared to enrich uranium "at any amount and any level." In a live news conference Monday, senior officials said Tehran would reduce its commitments to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action every 60 days unless world powers who agreed to the deal move to protect Iran from US sanctions. A spokesman for Iran's Atomic Energy Organization said that "in a few hours" the technical process will come to an end, and enrichment beyond the agreed limit will begin. Under the 2015 nuclear deal, Iran can enrich uranium below the purity needed for a nuclear weapon. Iran's energy spokesman says it's enriching uranium to fuel a power plant, and is prepared to do it "at any speed, any amount and any level."
Outgoing Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras on Monday suffered a huge defeat and handed over power to his successor, Kyriakos Mitsotakis. The landslide victory was met with a pledge to boost investments, cut taxes and create jobs. Mitsotakis will likely face an uphill battle squaring his promises with fiscal targets agreed with lenders. But how was the upset accomplished?
David Rosen — Author of "Sex, Sin & Subversion: The Transformation of 1950s New York’s Forbidden into America’s New Normal". He can be found at www.DavidRosenWrites.com.
Ray Baker — Political analyst and host of the podcast Public Agenda.
Dr. Marvin Weinbaum — Scholar-in-residence and director of the Middle East Institute's Center for Pakistan and Afghanistan Studies.
Daniel Lazare — Journalist and author of three books: "The Frozen Republic," "The Velvet Coup" and "America's Undeclared War."
John Kiriakou — Co-host of Loud and Clear on Radio Sputnik.
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