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FROM THIS EPISODE

After losing 11 straight primaries and caucuses, Hillary Clinton defeated Barack Obama in Ohio and Texas. What was the role of popular culture? We hear what happened on Saturday Night Live. Did reporters respond to satire by changing their coverage? Have fictional TV shows and movies helped shape the environment for blacks and women to be viable presidential candidates? Also, Israelis are mourning eight students killed in a suicide bombing in Jerusalem, and worldwide arms dealer Victor Bout has been arrested in Thailand.  Will the so-called "merchant of death" be brought to the US or Russia?  


Photo: William Thomas Cain, Getty Images News

Producers:
Frances Anderton
Katie Cooper
Dan Konecky

Reporter's Notebook Notorious Arms Dealer Finally Caught 6 MIN, 35 SEC

Viktor Bout was arrested in Thailand yesterday in a sting operation set up by the US. Charged with conspiracy to provide support to a terrorist organization, the FARC rebels in Colombia, he could be tried here. But Russian officials may also ask for extradition of the Russian arms dealer. Bout has sold arms to the Taliban, tyrants in Africa and other human rights abusers around the world. He's also been a sub-contractor for the US military and principal contractors like KBR and FedEx. That's according to reporter Douglas Farah, co-author of Merchant of Death: Money, Guns, Planes and the Man Who Makes War Possible.

Guests:
Douglas Farah, IBI Consultants

Main Topic Saturday Night Live, Hillary Clinton, and Pop Culture and Politics 35 MIN, 57 SEC

Hillary Clinton's new momentum has political junkies fixated on the influence of popular culture on politics. Gushing videos by supporters of Barack Obama prevailed on YouTube until a satirical late-night TV comedy skit made Clinton seem victimized by reporters. In the MSNBC debate just before the Ohio and Texas primaries, Clinton made a rather awkward reference to the Saturday Night Live skit. Suggesting that she was getting tougher questions than Barack Obama, she asked if the reporters didn't want to get him a pillow. Did that influence news coverage of the campaign? How important was it for Clinton to laugh at herself with Jon Stewart? Have TV and movie portrayals of black and women presidents helped to make possible what used to happen only in fiction?

Guests:
James Poniewozik, Media Critic, Time magazine
Leslie Savan, Contributor, Guardian America
John Ridley, writer, director and novelist (@John_Ridley)
Robert Thompson, Syracuse University

Making News Hamas Backtracks from Claiming Responsibility in Student Deaths 6 MIN

The streets of Jerusalem were filled with thousands of mourners today today for eight students at a Jewish seminary killed yesterday by a gunman suspected of coming from East Jerusalem. Tim McGirk is Jerusalem Bureau Chief for Time magazine.

Guests:
Tim McGirk, Correspondent, Time magazine

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