As Anti-War Sentiment Grows in US, Senate Passes War Powers Resolution

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Feb 13 2020 111 mins   1
On today's episode of Loud & Clear, Brian Becker and John Kiriakou are joined by Medea Benjamin, a well-known peace activist and the cofounder of the peace group Code Pink.

A bipartisan bill that would limit President Trump’s ability to wage war against Iran is likely to pass in the Senate. The resolution is sponsored by Virginia Democrat Tim Kaine, and in a procedural vote on Tuesday, gained the support of all Democrats and eight Republicans, including Senator Rand Paul, a Trump confidant. Kaine says that the measure is an important reassertion of Congress’s power to declare war, but still voted with the vast majority of senators to approve a higher military budget than President Trump asked for.

Troy Price, the chairman of the Iowa Democratic Party, resigned yesterday in the aftermath of the vote-counting debacle that shook the presidential caucus more than a week ago. And it wasn’t just the failure of a vote-counting app that forced Price out. The caucus was also rife with counting errors and inconsistencies that could still affect the outcome of the race. Dan Kovalik, a human rights and labor lawyer who is the author of the book “No More War: How the West Violates International Law by Using 'Humanitarian' Intervention to Advance Economic and Strategic Interests,” joins the show.

The New York Times today published a stridently anti-Sputnik article accusing the network of “agitprop,” or agitation propaganda, and saying that we are spreading that propaganda through our new sister station in Kansas City, Missouri. The Times specifically criticizes our colleagues Lee Stranahan of the morning show Fault Lines, and Sean Blackmon of the afternoon show By Any Means Necessary on completely spurious grounds. Brian and John speak with Mindia Gavasheli, editor-in-chief of Sputnik News’ bureau in Washington, D.C.

President Trump has conditionally approved a peace deal with the Taliban that would withdraw the last remaining troops in that country, in exchange for a Taliban promise to reduce violence over a test period of seven days to be held later in the month. If the Taliban do reduce hostilities, the US will begin to gradually withdraw troops, and the Taliban and Afghan government will begin negotiations over the future of the country. Kathy Kelly, co-coordinator of Voices for Creative Non-Violence, joins the show.

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson has implemented a minor cabinet change, replacing the Chancellor of the Exchequer, the Paymaster General, and the Northern Ireland Secretary. More interestingly, though, the head of the BBC warned that the government’s intention to slash the broadcaster’s budget would embolden what he called “democratic disruption” by Russian and Chinese media outlets and even, God forbid, by Fox News. Neil Clark, a journalist and broadcaster whose work has appeared in The Guardian, The Week, and Morning Star, joins Brian and John.

Thursday’s weekly series “Criminal Injustice” is about the most egregious conduct of our courts and prosecutors and how justice is denied to so many people in this country. Paul Wright, the founder and executive director of the Human Rights Defense Center and editor of Prison Legal News (PLN), and Kevin Gosztola, a writer for and co-host of the podcast Unauthorized Disclosure, join the show.

A regular Thursday segment deals with the ongoing militarization of space. As the US continues to withdraw from international arms treaties, will the weaponization and militarization of space bring the world closer to catastrophe? Brian and John speak with Prof. Karl Grossman, a full professor of journalism at the State University of New York, College at Old Westbury and the host of a nationally aired television program focused on environmental, energy, and space issues.