Tag: islamic state

Background Briefing: October 27, 2019


Investigating the Investigators is a Putin Tactic and the Hallmark of a Banana Republic

We begin with the unprecedented threat to the rule of law and separation of powers posed by Attorney General Barr’s move to investigate the investigators which has all the hallmarks of how “Banana Republic” despots use the law and state power to silence their opposition and is a mirror of Putin’s tactics of using the law to attack opposition politicians and critics of his kleptocracy by accusing them of the crimes he is committing. Sanford Levinson, the Centennial Chair on Law at the University of Texas Law School who is currently a visiting professor at Harvard Law School and is the author of “Our Undemocratic Constitution” and “Fault Lines in the Constitution: The Framers, Their Fights, and the Flaws the Affect Us Today”, joins us. We will discuss the extent to which the Constitution anticipated someone in the presidency like Donald Trump, a career criminal and very likely a traitor and how he could be protected by the chief law enforcement officer, Attorney General Barr who is turning the law against Trump’s critics. With Barr, following Trump’s orders, targeting the top intelligence officials who know the most about Trump’s ties to Putin and to Russian organized crime, it seems more than coincidental Barr is going after the former top intelligence officials Comey, Brennan and Clapper along with the core group in FBI counterintelligence who were going after the Russian mob, McCabe, Strzok, Lisa Page and Bruce Orr.


The Death of the Head of ISIS

Then with today’s announcement by the president that U.S. Special Forces has taken over the compound where the head of ISIS, Al-Baghdadi was hiding and as the Delta Force dogs closed in on him, the terrorist leader blew himself and three of his children up, which Trump described that “he died like a dog”, we speak with a leading expert on the region Nicholas Heras, a Fellow at the Center for a New American Security working in the Middle East Security Program who is the author of “From the Bottom Up: A Strategy for U.S. Military Support for Syria’s Armed Opposition”. He joins us to discuss the suspicious nature of Bagdhadi’s hideout so close to Turkey’s border in an area Turkey’s intelligence service, the MIT, is very active.


The Status of the Impeachment Inquiry

Then finally we speak with a former Federal Prosecutor and Associate Independent Counsel in the Whitewater Investigation, Kimberly Wehle, Professor of Law at the University of Baltimore School of Law and author of “How to Read the Constitution and Why”. She joins us to discuss the status of the impeachment inquiry and how it appears that Barr and Trump’s efforts at investigating the investigators may be more about politics than the law since the alternative narrative and reality they are trying to create will be used as a way to feed Trump’s base while competing with the impeachment trial on television and during the upcoming campaign.