FROM Douglas Farah
Russian Arms Dealer Viktor Bout Sentenced to 25 Years Viktor Bout was captured in Thailand, to which he was lured by American agents posing as Colombian rebels. Today the international arms dealer received the minimum sentence of 25 years in federal prison from an American judge, who said Bout "might never have committed the charged crimes" if it hadn't been for the sting. Russia is loudly denouncing the trial, conviction and sentencing. Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov says Bout was deprived of his rights and should be returned to Russian soil. Douglas Farah, president of a national security consulting firm, is co-author of a book about Bout, Merchant of Death : Money, Guns, Planes and the Man Who Makes War Possible.
Viktor Bout, Merchant of Death, to Be Extradited to US Former Russian air force officer Viktor Bout was arrested in Thailand two years ago, allegedly talking to rebels from Colombia who turned out to be American agents. Today a Thai court has ordered his extradition to the United States, over angry objections from Russia. The US claims he was negotiating to sell illegal weapons to the rebels. His wife says he was interested in “tango lessons.” Douglas Farah is a senior fellow at the International Assessment and Strategy Center . His book about Bout is The Merchant of Death .
Notorious Arms Dealer Finally Caught Viktor Bout was arrested in Thailand yesterday in a sting operation set up by the US. Charged with conspiracy to provide support to a terrorist organization, the FARC rebels in Colombia, he could be tried here. But Russian officials may also ask for extradition of the Russian arms dealer. Bout has sold arms to the Taliban, tyrants in Africa and other human rights abusers around the world. He's also been a sub-contractor for the US military and principal contractors like KBR and FedEx . That's according to reporter Douglas Farah, co-author of Merchant of Death : Money, Guns, Planes and the Man Who Makes War Possible.
A World of Weapons The United States is the largest exporter of weapons worldwide—as well as the world’s prime target for illegal arms deals. The Justice Department is battling 108 countries — including Iran and China — with full-fledged procurement networks on the black-market. At the same time, sanctions are being dropped to recruit new allies in the war on terror, and the US arms industry wants in on new legal action. Should regulations be relaxed so they can compete with foreign suppliers? Is increased violence inevitable for years to come? We hear how the illegal arms trade works and about the National Counter-Proliferation Initiative , which is designed to combat it.
Replacing Obamacare: Now you see it… now you don’t As the Senate deliberates replacing Obmacare, health coverage for millions of people is at stake. There've been no public hearings, and a draft measure won't be made public. Is the House version so unpopular that that Senate is hiding a version that looks much the same?
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.
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.