FROM David Filipov
What the Russian oligarchs list means for US-Russia relations The Treasury Department has issued a list of high-powered Russians who have flourished under President Vladimir Putin. The idea was to name and shame those who might be benefiting from Putin's presidency. Releasing the list was required under a law Congress passed in August to punish Russia for interfering in the 2016 elections. But today, a Treasury spokesman said the list was just cribbed from a Forbes’ ranking of the “200 richest businessmen in Russia 2017.”
Putin denies Russian involvement in hacking of US election In a reversal, Russian president Vladimir Putin conceded today in Moscow that Russian hackers might have meddled in the American election. Putin did not, however, admit any government involvement, referring instead to what he called "patriotically minded," private Russian hackers. "They are like artists," Putin said. David Filipov, Moscow bureau chief for the Washington Post , says Putin is positing himself as the reasonable minded counter to President Trump.
Tillerson meets with Putin amid rising tensions over Syria In Moscow today, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson had a long, private meeting with Vladimir Putin. Later he met the press with Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov. David Filipov, Moscow bureau chief for the Washington Post , says that Tillerson’s public attitude has been positive, even though they disagree on several issues -- including Syria.
Mixed messages from America's new hard line on Syria Last week, President Trump stunned the world by striking Syria with 59 Tomahawk missiles in retaliation for Bashar al-Assad's use of chemical weapons against his own people. Since then, American diplomats have made contradictory statements in the aftermath of the attack. Was it a "one-off" or is regime change the goal? And why has President Trump retaliated against Syria's use of chemical weapons — but not conventional weapons, which are just as deadly? America's G-7 allies are meeting in Italy to find a consensus for dealing with Syria -- and with Russia — the next stop for America's Secretary of State. Is it too soon for the "political solution" all sides claim to prefer, or will force be used in attempting to remove the Assad regime from power?
Explosion on St. Petersburg subway kills estimated 10 people A shrapnel-filled explosive device blew a hole in a commuter train this afternoon in St. Petersburg, Russia’s second largest city. At least 11 people were killed, and a second device was discovered on another train — unexploded. David Filipov, Moscow Bureau Chief for the Washington Post , has an update on what investigators have described as a possible terrorist attack.
Putin tells Russians he sees a "friend" in Trump In a speech to the nation today, Russian President Vladimir Putin called again for new relations with the United States. "We aren't and never have been looking for enemies," he said, "We need friends," adding that cooperation with the US meets the interests of the whole world. But David Filipov, Moscow Bureau Chief for the Washington Post , says that behind Putin's words it's not all sweetness and light.
The Trump agenda: where's the beef? President Trump says big things are happening. After celebrating a House bill on health care, he doesn’t yet have Senate agreement. With James Comey’s public testimony scheduled tomorrow, the President today tweeted his selection of a new FBI Director. Is the Chief Executive all style and no substance? Later, terror attacks in Iran and conflicting claims about who’s behind them.
What is Trump's plan for Middle East peace? On his first foreign tour, President Trump has promised "peace" between Israel and the Palestinians. Are there any details for re-starting talks that have been stalled for the past three years?
Janesville and the American Dream Janesville, Wisconsin is the hometown of Republican House Speaker Paul Ryan. But he couldn’t prevent the closing of the General Motors factory after 100 years. On this Memorial Day rebroadcast of To the Point, we hear what’s happened to what once was a model of American middle-class unity.
Human Rights in the era of Donald Trump President Trump’s UN Ambassador, Nikki Haley, said today the US might pull out of the United Nations’ Human Rights Council. Serious violators of human rights are members of the Council itself–and a US resignation could make things worse. Later on today’s show, now that he’s into his second term, comedian turned US Senator Al Franken is telling jokes again.