On today's episode of Loud & Clear, Brian Becker and John Kiriakou are joined by Mohammad Marandi, an expert on American studies and postcolonial literature who teaches at the University of Tehran.
The US military announced last night that Iran had briefly seized a Liberian-flagged oil tanker near the Straits of Hormuz. The ship was released five hours later. But today, Trump Administration officials say they have seized gas and oil from four Iranian tankers on their way to Venezuela. The Administration is also seeking the legal forfeiture of the ships and cargo in federal court. Tehran, however, is calling the reports fake news and is saying that no such seizures have taken place.
The Trump Administration is launching a historically unprecedented attack on the US postal service in order to prevent or to hamper voting by mail. The Postmaster General, a Trump appointee, has ordered that sorting machines be removed by postal facilities to slow the mail process, and that mailboxes be removed from street corners and other public places. Constitutional attorneys say that the president’s move is patently illegal and that the Constitution gives the states sole discretion over how to conduct elections, even presidential elections. Jim Kavanagh, the editor of thepolemicist.net, joins the show.
The governments of Israel and the United Arab Emirates came to a historic peace agreement yesterday, apparently brokered by the Trump Administration. Israel will open an embassy in Abu Dhabi and the UAE will open an embassy in Tel Aviv. At the same time, Israel will end its plans to annex Palestinian territory. Egypt and Bahrain cheered the move and congratulated both sides. Iran and Turkey called the deal “a stab in the back of Muslims,” and all Palestinian political factions denounced the tmove as a maneuver to normalize the Israeli occupation of Palestinian land. Brian and John speak with Tamara Nassar, associate editor of Electronic Intifada.
It’s Friday! So it’s time for the week’s worst and most misleading headlines. Brian and John speak with Steve Patt, an independent journalist whose critiques of the mainstream media have been a feature of his site Left I on the News and on twitter @leftiblog, and Sputnik producer Nicole Roussell.
Friday is Loud & Clear’s weekly hour-long segment The Week in Review, about the week in politics, policy, and international affairs. Today they focus on the selection of Kamala Harris to be Joe Biden’s running mate, the spread of the pandemic especially among children, stalled efforts by Congress to pass a stimulus package, the normalization of relations between Israel and the United Arab Emirates, and more. Sputnik News analysts and producers Walter Smolarek and Nicole Roussell join the show.