Photo courtesy of the Syrian Arab News Agency
FROM THIS EPISODE
The incoming administration announced another cabinet choice today: Doctor Ben Carson to be Secretary of Housing and Urban Development. He's a retired neurosurgeon and former candidate for President until he gave his support to Donald Trump. Here's an excerpt from Carson on Fox News late last month. Emily Badger, who covers urban policy for "The Upshot" at the New York Times, says the choice was a surprise to many – and for many a cause for concern.
Secretary of State John Kerry said last year that Syria's Assad regime helped create ISIS — to distract the US by aiding alternative enemies in the region. Defectors from his regime now claim Assad has even attacked his own facilities — using agents he sent to infiltrate both Al-Qaeda and ISIS. Donald Trump insists that, “Syria is fighting ISIS,” hinting at closer US relations with Syria -- and with Russia, Assad's ally in bombing so-called “moderate” rebels. We look at the possible consequences of changing American policies in the Middle East, where nothing ever is what it seems to be.
Roy Gutman, Pulitzer Prize-winning veteran foreign correspondent (@roygutman)
Joshua Landis, University of Oklahoma (@joshua_landis)
Suhayla Sibaai, Georgetown University (@SuhaylaAdelah)
Aaron David Miller, Wilson Center (@aarondmiller2)
A victory — or not victory — in Standing Rock, North Dakota.
Native American "water protectors" celebrate that the Army Corps of Engineers
has denied an easement for the $3.8 billion Dakota Access Pipeline
near Cannon Ball, North Dakota, December 4, 2016.
Yesterday the voices of the Cheyenne River Sioux tribe and other protesters at Standing Rock were raised in victory after the Army Corps of Engineers announced it would not permit completion of the Dakota Access pipeline. But last night, Energy Transfer Partners said it would resume construction anyway.
More From To the Point
Scott Pruitt and James Comey: In and out of the Trump Administration EPA Director Scott Pruitt is undergoing an ethics investigation, but his Obama-Era predecessor, Gina McCarthy, says the real scandal is that he “doesn’t know what he’s doing.” We’ll also tackle the backlash against fired FBI Director James Comey. Can his credibility survive angry public exchanges with President Trump?
The internet, privacy and data protection Mark Zuckerberg survived this week’s Congressional grilling. But Facebook still profits on free information: yours and mine. Three experts on big data explain how it works and lay out the risks as well as the benefits. Also, a veteran of Washington’s war games says President Trump is right to want U.S. troops out of Syria
Nuclear weapons in the 21st Century President Trump and Kim Jong Un have revived fears about weapons of mass destruction. But “tactical” nuclear weapons for use on the battlefield are still around, too. Is President Trump--like Barack Obama before him--relaying on a World War II technology ill-adapted to modern threats like cyber warfare? Would the use of low-level nukes inevitably escalate into an all-out atomic warfare? Also, Pulitzer Prize-winner Lawrence Wright on his new TV miniseries “The Looming Tower” about the FBI, the CIA and September 11th.
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