The mystery of Epstein’s sweetheart deal
Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta held a press conference today in which he attempted to defend the outrageously lenient plea deal he negotiated when he was a U.S. attorney in Florida with the ultra-rich, well-connected financier Jeffrey Epstein.
The release of Justice Department’s Inspector General report on the Mueller investigation is being pushed back because investigators spent much of June interviewing Christopher Steele. Meanwhile, Yahoo News reporter Mike Isikoff is at it again. After writing an utterly discredited book on how the Steele Dossier was a Russian intelligence operation and doubling down on the equally discredited Russia collusion narrative, Isikoff has published an article saying that reports that former DNC staffer Seth Rich was killed by a hit squad working on behalf of Hillary Clinton was, you guessed it, a Russian propaganda operation. Isikoff makes pointed accusations, but the facts in his piece just don’t add up. Jim Kavanagh, the editor of thepolemicist.net, joins the show.
The US is promising to ramp up sanctions on Iran and is seeking to create a military coalition to protect commercial shipping off the coasts of Iran and Yemen. Under the plan, a coalition of nations would patrol the Persian Gulf and the Straits of Hormuz, near Iran, and the narrow Bab al-Mandeb that separates Yemen from Africa. This comes just days after the Pentagon sent an additional 2500 troops to the Middle East. Brian and John speak with Massoud Shadjareh. He is the founder of the Islamic Human Rights Commission.
At least ten Syrian soldiers were killed yesterday by an al-Qaeda affiliate supported by the US and Turkey in fighting outside Aleppo. In one case, fighters from the Turkestan Islamic Party captured a Syrian border guard near Lattakia, beheaded him, posted a photo of his severed head on his Facebook page using his cell phone, and then called his mother to mock him. Francis Boyle, a professor of international law at the University of Illinois College of Law and author of the book “Destroying World Order: US Imperialism in the Middle East Before and After September 11,” joins the show.
The governments of the UK and Canada are hosting an event supposedly about press freedom this week, but in a bizarre irony is refusing to allow RT and Sputnik to participate. Neil Clark, a journalist and broadcaster whose work has appeared in The Guardian, The Week, and Morning Star, joins Brian and John.
Wednesday’s weekly series, In the News, is where the hosts look at the most important ongoing developments of the week and put them into perspective. Sputnik news analysts Nicole Roussell and Walter Smolarek join the show.
Wednesday’s regular segment, Beyond Nuclear, is about nuclear issues, including weapons, energy, waste, and the future of nuclear technology in the United States. Kevin Kamps, the Radioactive Waste Watchdog at the organization Beyond Nuclear, and Sputnik news analyst and producer Nicole Roussell, join the show.