17:17 GMT19 September 2020
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    Is NATO Still Relevant or Becoming a Tool to Seek Out New Enemies?

    The Critical Hour
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    On this episode of The Critical Hour, Dr. Wilmer Leon is joined by Dr. Gerald Horne, professor of history at the University of Houston and author of many books, including "Blows Against the Empire: US Imperialism in Crisis."

    US President Donald Trump is in London extolling the virtues of NATO and taking French President Emmanuel Macron to task for saying in an interview with the Economist on November 7 that NATO is becoming brain dead; Trump said that was insulting and a “very, very nasty statement”. In January, it was widely reported that Trump was threatening to pull the US out of NATO, and many on his staff were concerned that he would. Macron and Trump are at NATO meetings saying nice things about Russia. The French president's argument is that the real threat to Western Europe these days does not come from Moscow in the east, but from terrorists to the south. For example, Thierry de Montbrial, executive chairman of the French Institute of International Relations says, "We are in a totally different world. The shadow of the Soviet Union is no longer a risk of the same nature ... the principal risk is not an invasion into Baltic countries by Russia, it's terrorism, it's the danger we have on our southern flank for which NATO has no response." Macron also questioned whether Article 5, one of NATO's cornerstones – the mutual defense principle that an attack on one ally is an attack on all – was fit for its purpose.

    Trump commented Tuesday that he was in no rush to end the US trade war with China, suggesting that he could wait until after the 2020 US presidential election to strike a deal. This sent stock prices tumbling. “I have no deadline … In some ways I like the idea of waiting until after the election for the China deal … But they want to make a deal now, and we’ll see whether or not the deal’s going to be right, it’s got to be right.” What’s going on here? Trump’s comments "rattled European stock markets and sent the Dow Jones industrial average down 400 points by 10 a.m. His comments cast more uncertainty on an agreement he said he had made weeks ago with China’s top trade envoy, Vice Premier Liu He. They announced in mid-October that they had reached a so-called Phase 1 trade agreement that would allow Chinese purchases of American agricultural goods to resume while the United States would cancel additional tariffs scheduled for October 15. But completion of the Phase 1 deal has remained elusive," the New York Times reported Tuesday. So, was Phase I done or not?

    "Bloomberg News Editor-in-Chief John Micklethwait said in a note to editorial staff Sunday morning that the company will extend its policy of not investigating its owner, Michael Bloomberg, to all Democrats running for president in 2020," Axios reported on November 24. This development comes as Bloomberg surpasses Senator Kamala Harris (D-CA) in the polls, and Harris said Tuesday that she will get out of the race. Let’s unpack this knapsack.


    Dr. Gerald Horne — Professor of history at the University of Houston and author of many books, including "Blows Against the Empire: US Imperialism in Crisis."

    Medea Benjamin — Co-founder of human rights group Global Exchange and peace group Code Pink.  

    Dr. Jack Rasmus — Professor of economics and politics at St. Mary’s College in California.    

    Jackie Luqman — Co-Editor-in-Chief of Luqman Nation and the co-host of the Facebook livestream "Coffee, Current Events & Politics."

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

    Macron, Kamala Harris, Trump Administration, Bloomberg, NATO
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