Background Briefing: February 22, 2023
The Spy Scandal Rocking the German Government and the Roll-up of Russian Spies Across Europe
We begin with the spy scandal rocking the German government and the roll-up of suspected Russian operatives in the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Austria, Poland and Slovenia which suggests there could have been an exodus of Russian spies along with the estimated million Russians who fled their country in protest to Putin’s war on Ukraine. Joining us from London is Greg Miller, a national security reporter for the Washington Post who was among the Post reporters awarded the 2018 Pulitzer Prize for Investigative Reporting for their groundbreaking stories on Russia’s interference in the 2016 election and the resulting investigations of the Trump campaign and administration. He was also part of the team awarded the 2014 Pulitzer Prize for Public Service for coverage of American surveillance programs revealed by Edward Snowden. He is coauthor of The Interrogators, and his latest book is The Apprentice: Trump, Russia and the Subversion of American Democracy. We discuss his article at The Washington Post, “In wake of Ukraine war, U.S. and allies are hunting down Russian spies.”
The Orwellian Tone and Stalinist Paranoia and Brutality in Putin’s Speech to the Nation
Then we look into Putin’s speech to the nation yesterday and analyze its Orwellian tone along with its Stalinist paranoia and brutality and speak with Marci Shore, a professor of history at Yale University who teaches the intellectual history of twentieth and twenty-first century Central and Eastern Europe. She is the author of Caviar and Ashes: A Warsaw Generation’s Life and Death in Marxism, 1918-1968, The Taste of Ashes: The Afterlife of Totalitarianism in Eastern Europe, and The Ukrainian Night: An Intimate History of Revolution. Her forthcoming book is Eyeglasses Floating in Space: Central European Encounters That Came about While Searching for Truth.
Biden’s Meeting With the Bucharest 9 Who Expressed Unanimous Solidarity With Ukraine
Then finally we look into Biden’s meeting with the Bucharest 9 who expressed unanimous solidarity with Ukraine and go to Paris to speak with David Salvo, senior fellow and managing director of the Alliance for Securing Democracy at The German Marshall Fund. An expert in Russian affairs, his work analyzes the Kremlin’s authoritarian toolkit to undermine democracy at home and abroad. Previously, he was a foreign service officer in the US Department of State, serving most recently as the deputy secretary of state’s policy advisor for Europe, Eurasia, and international security issues. He also advised senior-level State Department negotiators on the protracted conflicts in the South Caucasus, worked on US policy toward NATO and the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, and served overseas in Russia and Bosnia and Herzegovina.