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FROM THIS EPISODE

President Bush's plans to deploy a missile defense system in eastern Europe has unnerved Russia, causing President Putin to warn today that Moscow could take retaliatory steps. Is a new arms race likely? What effect will public opposition in Poland and the Czech Republic have on Bush’s deployment plans? What about complaints that the defensive shield is still an unproven technology?  Also, Islamist militants in Iraq say they'll release a video of three missing American soldiers, and the first-ever international war-crimes trial of an African head of state.

Sara Terry guest hosts.

Producers:
Karen Radziner
Katie Cooper
Dan Konecky
Frances Anderton

Main Topic US Missile-Defense System Inflames Tensions with Russia

George Bush is en route to this week's G8 Summit in Germany. The President is stopping in the Czech Republic today to talk about his proposed missile-defense shield, to be deployed outside Prague and in neighboring Poland. Bush says the plan is needed to protect America and its allies from possible future strikes by Iran. However, more than sixty percent of Czechs oppose the installation and European critics call the proposal proof that the US takes its eastern European allies for granted.  Russian President Vladimir Putin is almost literally up in arms over the proposal, warning today that Moscow could take retaliatory steps if the plan is put into place, including targeting sites in Europe. Is a new arms race in the offing? How necessary is the proposed system? How reliable is it? Should politics trump technology in finding a solution to the problem?

Guests:
Jiri Pehe, Chief Political Advisor to then-Czech President Havel
Radek Sikorski, Former Polish Defense Minister
Pavel Felgenhauer, Independent defense analyst
Peter Brookes, former Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense
Ivan Eland, Director of the Center on Peace and Liberty

Reporter's Notebook Paris Checks In

Paris checks in at the big house, and we don't mean the Hilton.

Guests:
Megan Garvey, Editor, Los Angeles Times' Metro Section

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