President Bush went to the Asia-Pacific Summit to shore up America's influence in Asia. We hear about North Korea, China and America's complex relationship with its former Communist enemy, Vietnam. Will a Democratic Congress approve a free trade deal Republicans rejected? Plus, Iran invites Syria and Iraq to the bargaining table, and Russian spies, deadly poison, and tea in a London hotel--it’s not the new James Bond film, but a real-life drama unfolding in England. Sara Terry guest hosts.
FROM THIS EPISODE
British police have announced they are investigating the poisoning of a former Russian spy, who has been an outspoken critic of President Vladimir Putin. Scotland Yard said yesterday that the former spy, Alexander Litvinenko, had been placed under protective guard in a London hospital.
Michael Evans, Defense Editor for The Times of London
The Associated Press reports today that Iran has invited Iraq and Syria to a weekend summit in Tehran to address the region's growing security concerns over runaway violence in Iraq. The move is seen as an effort to undercut expected moves from Washington that would have included Syria and Iran in regional initiatives to curb the violence in Iraq.
The Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation Summit, which ended yesterday in Hanoi, with the region's leaders all decked for a photo op in traditional ao dai robes. The meeting marked only the second time a US President has visited Vietnam since the end of the war there 31 years ago. Vietnam hoped to dazzle regional leaders, while President Bush came with a wish list of his own. While Vietnam is booming economically, what about its political and human rights reforms? What is the state of relations between the US and Hanoi today? What progress did the President make towards liberalizing trade in the region? Does China now carry more weight in the region than the US? Sara Terry guest hosts.
Derek Mitchell, Senior Fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies
David Dapice, Professor of Economics at Tufts University
Greg Auberry, Representative of Catholic Relief Services in Vietnam
Andrew Lam, editor for New America Media