April 12 - Russia and Iran Frustrated With Assad as Trump Prepares to Bomb Him; Republican Lawmakers are Quitting in Droves; An Update on the Mueller Investigation

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Part 1

We begin with the looming probability that bombs and missiles will soon rain down on the House of Assad in Syria and speak with Dr. David Lesch, a professor of Middle East History at Trinity University and author of “Syria: The Fall of the House of Assad?” Since David knows Bashar al-Assad, he joins us to discuss what is likely going on inside the Assad family and how much the Russians are frustrated with the Syrian dictator’s uncompromising ruthlessness and refusal to make any kind of diplomatic settlement which would enable the Russians to withdraw their forces. We also look into the extent that the Iranians too are frustrated with their client Assad and how much Iran and Israel are on a collision course which could spark a wider war involving Syrian and Lebanon, a war that would dwarf whatever punitive display of military power Trump and the coalition he is forming are about to unleash on Assad.

Professor David Lesch

Part 2

Then with the Speaker of the House Paul Ryan walking away from the third most powerful office in the land, we will assess why it is that so many of Ryan’s predecessors have either been driven out, quit or been forced to resign as did John Boehner before him and before Boehner gave up, Dennis Hastert, Newt Gingrich, Tom Foley and Jim Wright left in ignominy or scandal. Gregory Wawro, Professor of Political Science at Columbia University and author of “Legislative Entrepreneurship in the U.S. House of Representatives” joins us to discuss how Republican lawmakers are quitting in droves as Republican leaders jockey to succeed Ryan, and the deep and possibly irreparable divide within the GOP that will last as long as the Koch Brothers-backed Freedom Caucus holds sway.

Part 3

Then finally we get an update on the status of the Mueller investigation just as concerted efforts are underway at the White House to undermine Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, discredit James Comey and possibly fire Robert Mueller. A former Federal Prosecutor and deputy assistant attorney general in the Justice Department Harry Litman, joins us to assess whether a bill by a bi-partisan group of lawmakers to protect Mueller could allow Mueller’s findings to emerge before Trump shuts down the inquiry and buries the report.

Harry Litman

 

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