04:14 GMT +310 December 2019
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    The Critical Hour

    Supreme Court Takes Up Obama-Era DACA Program as More Than 1 Million Dreamers Await Their Fate

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    On today’s episode of the critical hour with Dr. Wilmer Leon he is joined by attorney Mark Shmueli, who manages a solo practice dedicated exclusively to immigration law and Carlos Castaneda, attorney with The Law Offices of Thomas Esparza Jr.

    The US Supreme Court heard arguments Tuesday regarding the Trump administration's efforts to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, an Obama-era policy preventing the deportations of hundreds of thousands of undocumented immigrants who came to the US as children. A crucial question in the case involves whether the administration has offered the proper rationale for terminating DACA. While the court's more liberal members suggested that was not the case, Chief Justice John Roberts and Associate Justice Brett Kavanaugh, who could be the deciding votes, seemed to agree with some of the Trump administration's arguments. What’s the crux of the administration's claim, and what’s its likelihood of success?

    "Riots and looting intensified across Bolivia on Monday, less than 24 hours after Evo Morales and his vice president resigned, leaving behind a power vacuum that threatens to drag the country into further turmoil," Al Jazeera reported Tuesday. What’s going on in Bolivia and why?

    "Israeli security forces killed the senior leader in a targeted airstrike in the Gaza Strip early today, sparking retaliatory rocket fire from the enclave and raising fears of escalating reprisals," the Washington Post reported Tuesday. "Syrian state media, meanwhile, reported that an attack about the same time struck the house of a second Islamic Jihad leader in Damascus. The reports said that the leader, Akram al-Ajouri, was not injured but that his son and one other person were killed and 10 others were wounded. Israel declined to comment on the reports." How dramatic and destabilizing of an action is this?

    Afghan President Ashraf Ghani "says he has ordered the release of three Taliban fighters in an effort to persuade the insurgent group to free a kidnapped American and Australian professor," the Guardian reported Tuesday. "Timothy Weekes, an English teacher from Wagga Wagga in New South Wales, and Kevin King, from Pennsylvania, were abducted three years ago from outside American University of Afghanistan in Kabul by fighters in military uniform." How much behind-the-scenes negotiating has been going on to get to this point, and is there any indication that there’s been movement by the Trump administration to show progress in Afghanistan as the 2020 election looms?


    Attorney Mark Shmueli — Manages a solo practice dedicated exclusively to immigration law. Shmueli represents asylum seekers before the Asylum Office and Executive Office for Immigration Review and handles employment-based non-immigrant and immigrant visa petitions. He has authored articles on the immigration consequences of criminal convictions and the Violence Against Women Act for the Maryland Bar Journal and is a frequent lecturer at national and local conferences on immigration law.  

    Carlos Casteneda — Attorney with The Law Offices of Thomas Esparza Jr.    

    Yves Engler — Montreal-based writer and political activist. In addition to his 10 books, Engler's writings have appeared in the alternative media and in mainstream publications such as The Globe and Mail and Toronto Star.

    Nino Pagliccia — Activist and freelance writer based in Vancouver. He is a retired researcher from the University of British Columbia, Canada. He is a Venezuelan-Canadian who follows and writes about international relations with a focus on the Americas, and is also the editor of the book “Cuba Solidarity in Canada – Five Decades of People-to-People Foreign Relations.”

    Dr. Ajamu Baraka — Journalist, American political activist and former Green Party nominee for vice president of the United States in the 2016 election.

    Elisabeth Myers — Editor-in-chief of Inside Arabia    

    K.J. Noh — Peace activist and scholar on the geopolitics of the Asian continent who writes for CounterPunch and Dissident Voice. He is special correspondent for KPFA Flashpoints on the “Pivot to Asia,” the Koreas,and the Pacific.  

    We'd love to get your feedback at radio@sputniknews.com

    Israel, Syria, Central America, Bolivia, DACA, dreamers, Hong Kong
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