Day: June 18, 2023

Background Briefing: June 18, 2023


Why Did Trump Steal Classified Documents? Maybe Because Putin Told Him To

We will begin with the big question not asked or answered in the frenzied focus of Trump’s indictments over the stolen classified documents and that is why did he do it? Widening the frame, we will look into the possibility that Trump did it because Putin told him to and that Putin has owned Trump and continues to act as his case officer having inherited him from the Soviet KGB as a “trusted contact.” Since it is difficult for the American people to broach the concept of a US president controlled by the Kremlin in what would be the greatest intelligence coup since the Germans put Lenin in a boxcar in 1917 and sent him to Russia, we will go over the record of collusion which Republicans and Barr and Durham have misdirected as “Russiagate” with Thom Hartmann, the host of the nationally and internationally syndicated talk show The Thom Hartmann Program, carried on SiriusXM and radio stations nationwide. A four-time recipient of the Project Censored Award, Hartmann is also a New York Times bestselling author of thirty-four books, translated into multiple languages, the latest of which is The Hidden History of American Democracy. We will discuss his article at “How Much Damage Has the Trump-Putin Collusion Inflicted on America?”


Analogies Between World War I and the War in Ukraine

Then we explore the analogies between World War I and the current war in Ukraine both in terms of how the aggressors thought they could pull off a quick victory and how the wars have dragged on with trench warfare and over the horizon the possibility of escalation in the case of poison gas by the Germans in 1915 and recent threats from Putin to use nuclear weapons. Joining us from the UK is Margaret MacMillan, an emeritus professor of international history at the University of Oxford. Her books include The War That Ended Peace: The Road to 1914, Nixon and Mao and War: How Conflict Shaped Us. We discuss her article at Foreign Affairs, “How Wars Don’t End: Ukraine, Russia, and the Lessons of World War I.”