FROM Patrik Jonsson
Guns, Race and Trayvon Martin It's taken almost a month for the shooting death of 17-year-old, African American Trayvon Martin to become a national issue. After Florida prosecutors declined to prosecute Neighborhood Watch volunteer George Zimmerman, the story began to go viral on the Internet. It made the mainstream media — producing a demonstration this week in New York City and a rally last night in Sanford, Florida. Today President Obama weighed in , stressing that "all of us as Americans are going to take this with the seriousness it deserves, and we are going to get to the bottom of exactly what happened." We hear about America's expanding gun culture, "stand your ground" laws and the "rules" that black parents teach their sons about how to deal with authorities.
More US Soldiers Are on Their Way to Iraq President Bush has called for an increase in troops for Iraq , but US forces are already stretched thin. The so-called "surge" means an escalation of 21,500 troops. Soldiers of the Army's 3rd Division, which led the invasion of Baghdad, is the first to leave for its third tour. How is the increase likely to be accomplished? How do soldiers feel about leaving their families to face brutal combat? Are the troops worried that the war has lost the support of those back home? What about post-traumatic stress disorder? We hear from the Pentagon about the prospects for other American soldiers.
Is the threat from Russia missing from the Russia meddling probe? There's much being made about the Trump administration's possible ties with Russia. But the bottom line is Russia's effort to influence American democracy. Do the President and his aides care enough to take action before voters go back to the polls?
Who's to blame for the opioid crisis? Some of the lawyers who took on Big Tobacco are now going after Big Pharma. It’s all about the deadly epidemic of opioid use. Are the drug companies to blame? What about the users? Later, on today’s Talking Point: making sense of Britain’s upset election.
Venezuela spirals into economic and political chaos Venezuela, a country whose potential for prosperity is unmatched, finds itself on the verge of civil war. What sustains the repressive government? With time running out, guest host León Krauze looks at what the international community can do to pull the country from the edge of collapse.