As President Bush sends more troops to Iraq, he's also doubling America's air and sea power in the Persian Gulf. Is it "gunboat diplomacy" against Iran? What are the chances of a wider war in the Middle East? Plus, there's pressure on President Bush to take action on global warming, and Cuba's healthcare system has been called the envy of the world, but it's reported that a doctor from Spain has been called to treat Fidel Castro.
FROM THIS EPISODE
There's national and international pressure on the Bush Administration to take action on global warming. The White House says the President will address the issue in next week's State of the Union message, but he won't advocate limits on greenhouse-gas emissions. Andrew Revkin reports on the environment for the New York Times.
Iran is expanding its influence in Iraq, supporting Hamas and Hezbollah and threatening Israel's right to exist. This week, the President, Vice President and Secretaries of State and Defense have warned Iran to back off. At the same time the US is doubling its air and sea power in the Persian Gulf, a move one calls "gunboat diplomacy" aimed at Iran. What is the likelihood of a wider war in the Middle East? Would the President need the approval of Congress for strikes against Iran? If the US fails to attack Iran's nuclear installations, will Israel do the job? We hear from journalists, economists, political scientists and Middle East experts.
John Kifner, reporter for the New York Times
Ray Takeyh, Senior Fellow, Council on Foreign Relations
Efraim Inbar, Director, Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies
Angus McDowall, Tehran Correspondent for the Independent
Despite Cuba's economic troubles, its health system has been called "one of world's best public services" by the BBC, "a shining example" by the Kaiser Family Foundation, and "the envy of other nations" by former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan. So what's the significance that 80 year-old Fidel Castro, who's believed to be on the brink of death, is reportedly being diagnosed and treated by a Spanish doctor? UC Berkeley reserach economist Kamran Nayeri has studied Cuba's healthcare system. Journalist Ann Louise Bardach has covered Cuba for many years.
Ann Louise Bardach
More From To the Point
The Jewish State of Israel: Democracy or Apartheid? Israel’s recent “national unity” law calls the country “unique” to the Jewish people. But 21 percent of Israelis are Arabs. Do Jewish values conflict with pluralistic democracy? Jews in both countries are sharply divided over a question that goes to the founding of the “Jewish State.”
Is ‘socialism’ dividing the Democrats From Bernie Sanders to Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez,“socialism” is having a hot summer. Is it the future of the Democratic Party or an easy Republican target? Prominent liberals and conservatives describe the history--and possible future--of a term loaded with many meanings in America’s political history.
Cartoons, Comic Strips and Opinions Rob Rogers of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette is the latest editorial cartoonist to lose his job. Fired for harsh portrayals of President Trump. We’ll talk with him and look at another kind of cartooning: comic strips. Even when the kids don’t realize it, they’re political, too. They’re a highly sophisticated artform and a barometer of social change.
Cyberwar: Can the US Defend Against “The Perfect Weapon?” By hacking centrifuges, the US may have slowed Iran’s nuclear-weapons program. But a good offense is not the best defense. Threats to US elections, the power grid and even medical records are real and present. But they’re not getting the attention they deserve. That’s according to the New York Times’ David Sanger, in his book The Perfect Weapon.
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