Day: February 6, 2022

Background Briefing: February 6, 2022


Finding a Path to Back Away From Brinkmanship Over Ukraine

We begin with the challenges of finding a peaceful way out of the brinkmanship in Ukraine before a major war in Europe erupts. With a political atmosphere in which the majority of Americans blame Putin for the current crisis but don’t want a war with Russia and the majority of the Russian people blame the U.S. who they see as the aggressor, we speak with Stephen Wertheim, a senior fellow in the American Statecraft Program at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace and the author of Tomorrow, the World: The Birth of U.S. Global Supremacy in World War II. He joins us to discuss his article at Foreign Policy, “With Putin, Biden Should Channel His Inner Realist” and whether Kyiv can be persuaded to accept the Minsk 2 agreement that will give Putin political leverage to permanently weaken Ukraine or the West will call Putin’s bluff and let him suffer the consequences of isolation and boycott as a result of the carnage and destruction a war will bring.


The Shadow Network Behind the Right Wing Takeover of America Underway

Then with the Federalists hosting former Vice President Pence on Friday who made news then was followed by Supreme Court Justice Gorsuch who spoke in secret to the same group that chose and funded him with dark money, we examine the shadow network behind the right wing takeover of America underway at school boards, election boards, state houses and in support of the “stop the steal” lie and the insurrectionists plotting a comeback. Joining us is Anne Nelson, who teaches journalism and public affairs at Columbia University whose latest book is Shadow Network: Media, Money, and the Secret Hub of the Radical Right, now out in an updated paperback version. 


The Sleazy Secrets and Unsportsmanlike Conduct of the NFL

Then finally, with the Superbowl a week away at a time when the sleazy secrets and unsportsmanlike conduct of the NFL are being exposed, we get an assessment from Robert Lipsyte, a long-time sports writer and the jock culture correspondent for TomDispatch, on whether this organization, rife with corruption, sexual harassment and racism, can be reformed like the NBA has. He was previously a correspondent for CBS Sunday Morning and for the NBC Nightly News as well as a columnist for the New York Times and Ombudsman for ESPN and his most recent book is his memoir, An Accidental Sportswriter.