Tag: drugs

Background Briefing: February 21, 2023


Putin Puts Russia on a Nuclear Hair Trigger While Blaming the U.S. For the War in Ukraine

We begin with Putin’s state of the nation address in which he announced Russia is pulling out of the only nuclear arms treaty it has with the United States and that Russian nuclear forces would now be on a hair trigger while blaming the U.S. for the war in Ukraine and warning his own people that the West was out to get them and destroy Russia. Joining us is Stephen Young, Senior Washington Representative in the global security program at the Union of Concerned Scientists, where he focuses on reducing the threat of nuclear war. Previously he was deputy director of the Coalition to Reduce Nuclear Dangers, a senior analyst at the British American Security Information Council and was a fellow in the State Department’s Bureau of Human Rights.


A Paranoid Russia Threatening Nuclear War While China is Poised to Deliver a Peace Plan or Deepen Its Alliance With Russia

Then we examine the darkening landscape ahead with a paranoid Russia threatening nuclear war and China poised to deliver a peace plan that will either be an attempt to calm nuclear tensions or another step in consolidating an anti-democratic alliance, deepening the divide of great power rivalry. Joining us is Andrew Michta, Dean of the College of International and Security Studies at The Marshall Center in Germany and a nonresident senior fellow at the Atlantic Council’s Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security. He previously worked in Poland as Director of the German Marshall Fund of the United States’ Warsaw Office and is the author of several books on European security and transatlantic relations including, The Limits of Alliance: The United States, NATO and the EU in North and Central Europe.


Mexico’s Equivalent of the Head of the FBI Convicted for Receiving Briefcases Full of Cartel Cash

Then finally we go to Mexico for a reaction to the conviction today in the U.S. of the head of Mexico’s equivalent of the FBI who routinely received briefcases stuffed with money from “El Chapo’s” Sinaloa cartel. Joining us is Ioan Grillo, a contributing writer at the New York Times specializing in crime and drugs. Based in Mexico City, he is the author of El Narco, a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Award, and Gangster Warlords, a New York Times Book Review Editor’s Choice and a Guardian Book of the Year. His latest book is Blood Gun Money: How America Arms Gangs and Cartels and he blogs at ioangrillo.substack.com where his latest article is “So, is Mexico a Narco State? Security chief Genaro García Luna is found guilty. He’s just the tip of the iceberg.”