Trump and the War Hawks—Will US Strikes in Syria Ignite a Wider War?

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Apr 13 2018 116 mins   35
On today's episode of Loud & Clear, Brian Becker and John Kiriakou are joined by Mark Sleboda, an international Affairs and Security Analyst, and Ann Wright, a retired United States Army colonel and former U.S. State Department official in Afghanistan, who resigned in protest of the invasion of Iraq and became an anti-war activist.

The United Nations Security Council held an emergency session this morning at the request of Russia to try to head off a US, UK, and French attack on Syria. Meanwhile, Secretary of Defense James Mattis is trying to walk President Trump back from provocative statements he made threatening such an attack. And the British press is reporting that Prime Minister Theresa May is awaiting further instructions from the US.

House Speaker Paul Ryan announced his retirement this week, setting off a scrum to replace him in the Republican caucus. On the same day, though, Republican Rep. Dennis Ross announced his retirement, bringing the total number of Republican Congressmen retiring to 59--the most in history and nearly a quarter of all Republicans in the House. Jacqueline Luqman and Abdus Luqman, the co-editors-in-chief of Luqman Nation, join the show.

More than 900 Palestinians were wounded today and at least one was killed on the third Friday of uprisings in Gaza; the dead man was a journalist working with Chinese artist Ai Weiwei on a documentary. At least 34 Palestinians have been killed since March 30. They are protesting Israel’s occupation of Palestinian land and are demanding the right to return to their ancestral lands. Meanwhile, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu congratulated the Israeli Army for using force against the Palestinians. Brian and John speak with Richard Becker, an expert on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and author of the book “Palestine, Israel and the US Empire,” and Sputnik News analyst Walter Smolarek.

Former FBI Director James Comey is preparing for a nationwide media blitz in advance of his new memoir, which will be published on Wednesday. Pre-orders have already made it #1 on the New York Times bestsellers list. The book is a tell-all in which he compares President Trump to a mob boss. The President tweeted today that Comey is “an untruthful slimeball.” Jim Kavanagh, the editor of, joins the show.

Four men are being accused of carrying out a hate crime against a gay couple who were walking near the beach in Miami following a gay pride event. The four beat the couple and a good Samaritan who tried to intervene after shouting anti-gay slurs. Stratton Pollitzer, the deputy director of the LGBTQ rights organization Equality Florida, joins Brian and John.

A new treatment for Hepatitis C that costs $300 for a 12-week course has proven to be just as effective as two other treatments that cost $84,000 and $94,500. In clinical trials, 97 percent of Hepatitis C sufferers were cured. Tahir Amin, co-founder and co-executive director of I-MAK, an organization that works to increase global access to affordable life-saving medicines, joins the show.

The hosts continue the regular segment of the 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 blog Left I on the News, which you can find at, and Nicole Roussell, a producer of this show.