Tag: Afghanistan

Background Briefing: February 13, 2022


With Warnings War Could Break Out on Wednesday, Ukraine’s Other Problem is Its Economy

We will begin with warnings from the White House that a war over Ukraine could break out at any moment with U.S. intelligence reports suggesting it could happen as early as Wednesday. Joining us is Adam Tooze, a professor of history at Columbia University and the author of a number of books including Wages of Destruction, Crashed: How a Decade of Financial Crises Changed the World, and most recently, Shutdown: How Covid Shook the World’s Economy. He previously taught at the University of Cambridge as well as Yale, where he was Director of International Security Studies and has contributed to the National Intelligence Council and blogs at adamtooze.substack.com where his latest article is “Permanent crisis or Black Earth agro-giant? Alternative futures for Ukraine.” We discuss the current crisis but also the continuing one for Ukraine since Ukraine’s economic performance between 1990 and 2017 was not just worse than its European neighbors. It was the fifth worst in the entire world placing it amongst the four countries that delivered less growth for their citizens than Ukraine were the Democratic Republic of Congo, Burundi and Yemen.


23 Million Afghans Face Starvation While We Decide What to do With Their Money

Then we look into the deal the Biden administration is offering to the 23 million starving Afghans whose national currency reserves of $7 billion held in New York are to be split in half between paying the families of victims of 9/11 and setting up a trust fund to somehow get humanitarian aid to Afghanistan without dealing with the Taliban government. Joining us to discuss what he sees as the theft of savings from ordinary Afghans is Zack Kopplin, an Investigator for the Government Accountability Project and a columnist for The Guardian whose investigations have included opposing science denial legislation, revealing police and judicial misconduct, and uncovering corruption in Afghanistan.


Fox’s Propaganda is Undermining Our Military and National Security

Then finally we speak with Jen Senko, an award-winning documentary filmmaker, media activist, and author of the new book, (based on her documentary of the same name,) The Brainwashing of My Dad: How the Rise of the Right-Wing Media Changed a Father and Divided Our Nation—And How We Can Fight Back. She is the co-author with Mike Lofgren of an article at Common Dreams, “It’s Time the Pentagon Pulled the Plug on Fox News” and we discuss how Fox’s propaganda encouraging insurrection and opposition to vaccination is undermining our military and national security.