Photo by US Army Staff Sergeant Aaron Allmon
FROM THIS EPISODE
A shrapnel-filled explosive device blew a hole in a commuter train this afternoon in St. Petersburg, Russia’s second largest city. At least 11 people were killed, and a second device was discovered on another train — unexploded. David Filipov, Moscow Bureau Chief for the Washington Post, has an update on what investigators have described as a possible terrorist attack.
President Trump wants the Pentagon to "fight to win," and battlefield commanders now make decisions that used to come from the Obama White House. There's been increased action in Yemen, Syria and Iraq, and a dramatic rise in civilian casualties — providing fodder for Islamic State propaganda. What's missing is diplomacy and political planning for what to do when the wars are over. But even Trump's critics say Obama didn't have any "endgames" either. We hear about America's increased involvement in murky wars where victory might be possible… but not sustainable.
Ben Hubbard, New York Times (@NYTBen)
Peter Mansoor, Ohio State University (@osuhistorydept)
Richard Schmierer, Middle East Policy Council
Katherine Zimmerman, American Enterprise Institute (@KatieZimmerman)
Hassan Hassan, Tahrir Institute for Middle East Policy (@hxhassan)
Hassan Hassan and Michael Weiss
Photo by Master Steve Rapport
Several Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee made clear today why they won't vote to confirm the President's nomination of Appellate Judge Neil Gorsuch to the US Supreme Court. Al Franken of Minnesota voiced concern that confirming Gorsuch "would guarantee 40 more years of 5-4 decisions favoring corporations over workers and consumers, preventing Americans from getting access to the courts, favoring dark money in our elections and giving states a permission slip to target people with almost surgical precision." But, Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, Republican Majority Leader, says Gorsuch will be confirmed, "one way or another." Thomas Mann, senior fellow at the Brookings Institution and a resident scholar at UC Berkeley, discusses possible changes in the US Supreme Court… and in the US Senate.
More From To the Point
Restoring public confidence in our institutions Are President Trump and allies in Congress eroding public trust in democratic government? Even a former Republican governor warns that attacks on Special Counsel Robert Mueller have gone too far. A constitutional scholar and a former FBI agent see real threats to both federal law enforcement and national security.
Has the ‘Year of the Woman’ finally arrived? Women’s Rights are still not guaranteed by the Constitution, despite generations of effort. Will #MeToo, #TimesUp and backlash against President Trump make this a year of liberation? More women are running for office than ever before. And black women are especially energized. We’ll hear how times may be changing for women--in culture and at the ballot box.
The shutdown highlights a broken system “To the Point” goes beyond the current blame game and explains the political calculations behind government shutdowns. You need to know, because the next one may be just weeks away. You’ll get the history of a self-defeating strategy the mainstream media don’t have time to tell you. On our Talking Point: the continuing Trump Campaign wears out the best of reporters.
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