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FROM THIS EPISODE

The US and Russia have not gone back to the Cold War yet. But, after years of fighting in the Middle East, America's military establishment is gearing up to counter a greater threat to American security: "hybrid warfare" used by Vladimir Putin in Eastern Ukraine.

Also, the UN expects thousands of refugees to arrive daily in the Balkans. On today's Talking Point, "Laughing While Black" in California's Napa Valley. 

Photo: Army Chief of Staff Gen. Ray Odierno discusses the challenge Russia poses during a briefing at the Pentagon, August 12, 2015. 

Producers:
Christine Detz
Paul von Zielbauer
Benjamin Gottlieb

UN Expects Thousands of Refugees Arriving in the Balkans Daily 6 MIN, 30 SEC

Almost 300,000 people have already crossed the Mediterranean Sea, and the UN says there will be many more. Some 3000 refugees will be entering countries in the European Union through Macedonia alone, and the world body says they have a responsibility to share the burden. Joel Millman is spokesman for the International Organization for Migration.

Guests:
Joel Millman, International Organization for Migration (@MillmanIOM)

The US, Russia and "Hybrid Warfare" 33 MIN, 17 SEC

After years of counterinsurgency in the Middle East, the Pentagon says the biggest threat to US security is Russia. That's not just because of Russia's nuclear weapons, it's "hybrid warfare" of the sort Vladimir Putin is using in Eastern Ukraine. US troops are already training to combine counterinsurgency with conventional weapons, street-level fighting, cyber-warfare and propaganda. One very concrete example of that changing strategy took place in the Mojave Desert earlier this month in an exercise called Operation Dragon Spear. The goal is deterring Russia from moving on NATO members Latvia, Estonia and Lithuania -- or other members of the former Soviet Union. 

Guests:
Ryan Faith, Vice News (@Operation_Ryan)
Christopher Chivvis, RAND Corporation (@CChivvis)
Dmitri Trenin, Carnegie Moscow Center (@DmitriTrenin)
Michal Baranowski, German Marshall Fund (@M_Baranowski)

More:
Faith on Army Chief of Staff Ray Odierno's warning on Russia
Chivvis on West-Russia relations in light of the Ukraine crisis
Chivvis on how to reduce the chances of war in Europe
European Leadership Network on increasing likelihood of NATO-Russia military confrontation
AP on Polish President Duda seeking greater regional unity, NATO bases
Trenin on Ukraine crisis causing strategic mental shift in global order
Baranowski on Central Europe responses to the Russia-Ukraine crisis

Book Club Kicked off Train because of Race? 9 MIN, 59 SEC

California's Napa Valley is now being called one of those places where no black people are allowed to have fun. The Napa Valley Wine Train takes passengers 18 miles through California's wine Country, from Napa to St. Helena -- with wine tasting provided along the way. Last weekend, 11 members of a mostly African-American book club called Sistahs on the Reading Edge were escorted off the train by police officers after other passengers complained they were making too much noise. The women say they were asked to leave because they were "laughing while black." Danielle Belton is associate editor at The Root, an online magazine that covers black culture.


Napa Valley Wine Train
Photo: Drew Jacksich


Passengers on the Napa Valley Wine Train, 2011
Photo: Jim G

More:
Napa Valley Register on Wine Train apology

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