Background Briefing with Ian Masters Russia Files

Aired 07/19/2017

James Goldgeier – Trump’s Second Meeting With Putin Without Notes and an Interpreter

July 19, 2017 began with the revelation that Donald Trump held an hour-long second meeting with Vladimir Putin at the G-20 meeting that the White House did not mention at which there was only a Russian interpreter and no notes were taken leaving the U.S. Government to rely on whatever…


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Aired 07/18/2017

James Kirchick – Why Have Republicans Sold Their Souls to Russia?

July 18, 2017 continued with an examination of the reasons why Trump and the Republicans have sold their souls to Russia following a recent poll that finds 48% of Republicans see nothing wrong with Donald Trump Junior’s meeting with Russian operatives offering help to elect Trump and damage his opponent. James…


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Aired 07/18/2017

Michael Carpenter – Why Does Trump Persist With Deals on Putin’s Terms?

Ian began July 18, 2017 with an attempt to understand why Donald Trump persisted in trying to make deals favorable to Russia on Putin’s terms, and spoke with Dr. Michael Carpenter, a former deputy assistant secretary of defense with responsibility for Russia who served as a foreign policy advisor to Vice President…


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Aired 07/17/2017

Alexander Klimburg – The Weaponization of Information and the Darkening Web

On July 17, 2017 Ian spoke with Alexander Klimburg, a program director at The Hague Center for Strategic Studies about his new book, “The Darkening Web: The War for Cyberspace”. He joined us to discuss the weaponization of information and the global struggle over the future of the Internet with democracies…


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Aired 07/16/2017

Peter Stone – An Investigation Into the Kushner-Run Trump Digital Operation

Then on July 16, 2107 Ian spoke with Peter Stone, a special correspondent for McClatchy DC Bureau about his latest article co-authored with Greg Gordon “Trump-Russia investigations probe Jared Kushner-run digital operation”. We investigated Kushner’s relationship with the right wing billionaire Mercers and Jared’s use of their social media data mining company…


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Aired 07/16/2017

Roger Morris – Is Donald Trump the Greatest Threat to US Security?

Ian began Background Briefin on July 16, 2017 with the unprecedented and alarming possibility that the greatest threat to our national security is the President of the United States, Donald Trump. Joining Ian was Roger Morris, who served on the National Security Council under presidents Johnson and Nixon and is the…


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Aired 07/13/2017

Lisa Graves – Why Did Sessions Settle a Massive Russian Fraud Case?

July 13, 2017 continued with further examination of what looks like a massive cover-up by the Trump Administration of a brazen Russian money laundering scheme that the Attorney General Jeff Sessions settled at a huge loss after Donald Trump had fired the U.S. Attorney prosecuting the case, using the firing…


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Aired 07/13/2017

Jenna McLaughlin – Is the Russian Lawyer Who Met With Trump Jr an Intelligence Officer?

July 13, 2017 began with questions surrounding Natalia Veselnitskaya, the Russian Attorney who met with Donald Trump Junior, who was the same attorney representing the accused in the civil forfeiture case involving the money laundering of $230 million stolen from the Russian treasury which ended up in Manhattan real estate. Jenna…


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Aired 07/12/2017

Rep. Brad Sherman – The Congressman Who Introduced an Article of Impeachment

July 12, 2017 began with the article of impeachment against President Donald Trump filed for the first time in the House of Representatives accusing Trump of “high crimes and misdemeanors” for obstructing justice by firing James Comey to stop the Russian investigation and pressuring him to drop the FBI investigation…


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Aired 07/11/2017

Asha Rangappa – Donald Junior’s Incriminating Chain of Emails

July 11, 2017 began with the release of an incriminating email chain between Donald Trump Junior and a British tabloid journalist representing a Russian pop singer whose father is a billionaire developer close to Putin. The emails were about setting up a June 2016 meeting in Trump Tower with a…


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Aired 07/10/2017

Bill Browder – Donald Jr. and Jared Meet With Russian Lawyer With Blood-Soaked Hands

On July 10, 2017 Ian looked into who Donald Trump Junior, Jared Kushner and Paul Manafort were meeting with in Trump Tower shortly after Trump became the Republican candidate for president. Bill Browder, who was the largest foreign investor in Russia until his lawyer Sergei Magnitsky was murdered for uncovering government…


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Aired 07/09/2017

James Henry – The Latest Revelations of Trump’s Involvement With Russians

Finally, on July 9, 2017, we got an update on the latest revelations coming from the many investigations into the Trump campaign’s possible collusion with Russians following a story in The New York Times that Trump’s son and son-in-law met with a Russian lawyer close to the Kremlin who led…


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Aired 07/09/2017

Robert Baer – America’s Two Separate Foreign Policies

Continuing on July 9, 2017 we examined the two separate foreign policies the U.S. appeared to have, one conducted by the Trump family and the other by a compromised, hamstrung and largely ignored defense, intelligence and diplomatic establishment that fringe ideologues inside the White House close to Trump like Stephen…


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Aired 07/0/2917

Charles Kupchan – The Meteoric Fall of the US Under Trump?

July 9, 2017 began with an examination of the meteoric fall of the U.S. under Donald Trump from the world power that dominated the G-20 to something of a joke on the world stage where the daughter of a president known for her clothing line sat in between the British…


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Aired 06/29/2017

Patrick Tucker – The Latest Global Cyber Attack

June 29, 2017 began with the latest round of global cyber-attacks and focused on the crippling assault on Ukraine’s infrastructure that was widely being blamed on Russia although Russian companies such as Rosneft had also suffered intrusions. Patrick Tucker, the technology editor of Defense One and author of “The Naked Future:…


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Aired 06/27/2017

Masha Gessen – A Critique of Oliver Stone’s Valentine to Putin

June 27, 2017 included a conversation with Masha Gessen, the author of “The Man Without a Face: The Unlikely Rise of Vladimir Putin” who is now a contributing writer for The New York Times where she has an article “How Putin Seduced Oliver Stone, and Trump”. We discussed her critique of the four,…


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Aired 06/25/2017

Scott Horton – Trump Now Blames Obama For Russia’s Election Meddling

Ian began June 25, 2017 with an update on the Trump/Russia story that continued to haunt a president who vents into the wee hours of the morning calling his friends who wake up to a diatribe of complaints from the beleaguered leader of the free world. Scott Horton, a professor at…


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Aired 05/21/2017

Kent Harrington – A Former CIA Official on Trump’s Loose Lips

On May 21, 2017 Ian looked at the scandal and intrigue still roiling back in Washington as reports emerged that Trump told the Russians in the Oval Office that he had just fired Comey who he called “a nut job” to relieve pressure on him from the Russia investigation, together…


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Aired 05/18/2017

John Dean – Watergate and Now Trumpgate?

May 18, 2017 began with Donald Trump’s childish and self-defeating criticism of the special counsel just appointed to investigate his ties to the Russians and Ian spoke with John Dean, the former Counsel to President Nixon and Associate Deputy Attorney General of the United States. The best-selling author of “Conservatives Without…


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Aired 05/17/2017

Malcolm Nance – A Special Prosecutor as Events Close in on Trump

May 17, 2017 began with the appointment by Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein of former FBI Director Robert Mueller as a special prosecutor to oversee the Russian investigation and examine the possibility that the memo that Congress is now demanding about Comey’s Oval Office meeting with Trump, at which the…


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