Shortly before last Sunday’s election in Russia, Alina Polyakova spoke to Liza Osetinskaya, editor of The Bell and former editor in chief of Forbes Russia and independent Russian news agency RBC. They discussed the Kremlin’s approach to censorship and how the Putin regime reacted when RBC, under Osetinskaya’s leadership, began covering the Panama Papers.
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All of Washington is mad at Silicon Valley these days, as our news roundup reveals. Democrats and the media have moved on from blaming Hillary Clinton’s loss on Vladimir Putin; now they’re blaming Facebook and Cambridge Analytica.
In 1963, John Feerick became a witness to and a framer of our constitutional history. Within two years of graduating from law school, Feerick had written an influential law review article on presidential disability and succession, joined the ABA’s blue-ribbon commission to create a solution to those problems, and became a confidant and an adviser to the members of Congress who wrote the 25th amendment.
So there you are on the beach for spring break, drink in hand and headphones on. Time for some … National Security Law Podcast! We’re back with a special midweek episode because, well, we’ll never keep up with the news if we wait 'til next week. (And we are worried you’ll start listening to music–gasp!–if we leave you alone for too long!)
So here’s what’s on tap for today:
Rex Tillerson is out at the State Department, and Mike Pompeo will leave CIA to take his place. The British government blames Russia for a brazen poisoning plot—but President Trump is not so sure. And Republicans on the House Intelligence Committee wrap up their Russia probe. Plus, special guest Scott Anderson tells us about a document so transparent you can’t even see it. Tamara runs for a friend. And Shane is engaged in dangerous drinking.
Our interview this week is with Amb. Nathan Sales, the State Department’s counterterrorism coordinator. We cover a Trump administration diplomatic achievement in the field of technology and terrorism that has been surprisingly under covered (or maybe it’s not surprising at all, depending on how cynical you are about press coverage of the Trump administration).
Last week, former Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson addressed the Boston Conference on Cybersecurity in a speech titled "Cyberspace is the New Battlespace." The next day, Secretary Johnson sat down with Harvard Law professor and Lawfare co-founder Jack Goldsmith to discuss the themes his speech reflected on. They discussed the hacking and exfiltration of data, the vulnerabilities of the U.S. electoral infrastructure to cyberattacks, and the problem of fake news and disinformation—and what we might do to stem it.
Out on spring break but still listening to the podcast? We love it! Actually, your hosts are out on spring break too, but before they left town they sat down to record episode 63 on March 9. If things have gone crazy over the weekend, and you are surprised they aren’t discussing them here—well, that’s why!
This week’s show, at any rate, catches up on a number of ongoing sagas:
Long before the election of Donald Trump, Yascha Mounk predicted that democracy was in trouble. A leading voice on the crisis of democracy and the growth of populism, Mounk has now written a book that addresses how liberal societies might survive, called "The People vs. Democracy: Why Our Freedom Is in Danger and How to Save It." This week, Benjamin Wittes spoke with Mounk in the Jungle Studio to discuss the argument his book advances and its implications for the future of liberal democracy around the world.
Let the record reflect that I dissent from this episode's title, which was imposed upon me because I joined remotely from Maui.
Special Counsel Robert Mueller zeroes in on a mysterious Lebanese businessman. What do elections in Italy portend for democracy in Europe? And North Korea signals it’s willing to cut a deal with the United States.
Plus, special guest Shannon Togawa Mercer is contemplating the security implications of Barbra Streisand's cloned dogs. And Tamara shares a slide show of her trip to Riyadh.