FROM Christie Thompson
Solitary Confinement and Prison Reform Some 88,000 inmates of state and federal prisons are in some form of solitary confinement, although it’s not called by its real name. But concern about abusive detention — even on death row — has reached all the way to the US Supreme Court. Writing about a case dealing with a different subject, Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy recently stunned court watchers by condemning solitary confinement . He noted that, as long ago as 1890, the Court acknowledged that solitary can lead to madness and suicide, and listed possible side effects including: anxiety panic, withdrawal, hallucinations and self-mutilation. The mental damage caused by isolation is well known, but often inmates are released directly from solitary into the general population outside. Some prison systems are trying to change their ways. We look at the practice of solitary confinement and the available alternatives.
White House flip flops: NATO, Syria and China In less than 100 days, President Trump has contradicted himself on a host of foreign policy issues — Syria, NATO, China and Vladimir Putin’s Russia. Is it a strength — or a weakness — for the United States when the world of power politics never knows what to expect?
Is Venezuela becoming a dictatorship? Venezuela may have the world's largest oil reserves, but it's a nation in trouble… economically and politically. Is a populist promise to rescue democracy turning out to be a prelude to dictatorship?
After Syria strike a new Trump doctrine emerges The President who promised an end to entanglements in the Middle East and snuggled up to Vladimir Putin has now outraged Russia with surprise missile attacks on Syria. That's raised questions about who's running the White House? We hear a variety of answers.
The US gets deeper into Middle East wars. What's the endgame? President Trump welcomed Egypt's President Abdul Fattah al-Sisi to the White House today… just one of the changes in America's approach to the Middle East since Barack Obama left office. We hear about that and the escalation of warfare as well as civilian casualties.