March 1 - Kushner's Deepening Troubles and Trump's Tariffs; The Author of "War in 140 Characters: How Social Media is Reshaping Conflict in the 21st Century"; Did the US Emphasis on Missile Defense Lead to Putin's New "Invincible" Nukes

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Part 1

We begin with the mounting troubles for Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner who has not only lost his security clearance but is using the White House for his private boardroom meetings with bankers who have loaned him over $500 million for his troubled real estate investmentsWilliam Cohan, a former senior Wall Street investment banker who is a special correspondent for Vanity Fair and writes a biweekly opinion column in the New York Times, joins us to discuss Kushner’s apparent lack of political judgment in recommending the firing of Comey and his disastrous business record which leaves one to ponder why he was given such an array of amazingly important responsibilities by Trump. We also assess how much Wall Street is rattled by Trump’s impetuous imposition of tariffs on steel and aluminum against the advice of every senior official except Wilbur Ross who made a fortune out of investing in distressed U.S. steel companies.

 

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Part 2

Then we speak with David Patrikarakos, a contributing editor at The Daily Beast and a contributing writer at Politico whose latest book, just out, is “War in 140 Characters: How Social Media Is Reshaping Conflict in the Twenty-First Century”. We discuss how narrative war is now far more important than physical war because of new technologies in social media that shape public perceptions in what David calls a “virtual mass enlistment”, regardless of what happens on the battlefield. We will examine how much Russia has perfected this new form of information and hybrid warfare and whether Americans will ever be able to rally around a clear and present danger or a challenge we all agree is real.

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Part 3

Then finally, in showcasing Russia latest strategic weapons in his annual state of the nation address today, Vladimir Putin bragged about Russia’s new hypersonic nuclear cruise missile and nuclear torpedo depicted on a giant video screen behind him in a simulated nuclear attack on Florida, claiming his new weapons are “invincible”. Theodore Postol, a professor of science, technology and national security policy at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology where he researches ballistic missile defense technologies and fraud in the U.S. missile defense program, joins us to discuss what will likely be described by our defense hawks as the “hypersonic gap” and how our emphasis on missile defense has led to Putin taking the steps he announced today.

 

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