The Week In The News: Iran Deal, Haspel's CIA Hearing, Halting At The Border
With Ray Suarez
Trump scraps nuclear deal. High stakes CIA hearing. Jeff Sessions calls for zero tolerance at the border. The news roundtable dives in.
Naftali Bendavid, Washington editor for the Wall Street Journal. (@NaftaliBendavid)
Emily Tamkin, staff writer for Foreign Policy covering diplomacy. (@emilyctamkin)
Jack Beatty, On Point news analyst. (@JackBeattyNPR)
From The Reading List:
Foreign Policy: “The Stars of North Korea Talks Revolve Around Moon” — “Now that there is a time and a place set for the summit meeting between North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and U.S. President Donald Trump, some question whether Kim would have ever come to the table had a different, more predictable president been in the White House. South Korea’s leader, President Moon Jae-in, went so far as to deflect credit to Washington, suggesting that Trump deserves the Nobel Peace Prize.
But Moon can’t be eclipsed so easily: While the historic talks — set, according to Trump, for June 12 — are partly due to Trump’s campaign of maximum pressure and maximal rhetoric, not to mention Kim’s quest for international recognition, the summit would likely never have happened if it hadn’t been for Moon’s behind-the-scenes efforts to finally bridge the North-South divide.”
CBS News: “After contentious hearing, Gina Haspel secures crucial committee votes” — “Earlier in the day, during one of the most contentious exchanges of the hearing, Sen. Kamala Harris, D-California, repeatedly asked Haspel for her personal views of the ‘enhanced interrogation techniques’ – which many call torture – that agency employed in the aftermath of 9/11.
‘It’s a ‘yes’ or ‘no’ answer. Do you believe the previous interrogation techniques were immoral?’ Harris asked. ‘I’m not asking do you believe they were illegal. I’m asking do you believe they were immoral,’ she said.
‘Senator, I believe that CIA did extraordinary work to prevent an attack on this country given the legal tools that were authorized to use,’ Haspel replied, in one instance. After a few follow-ups, Harris ultimately said she would move on, observing sharply that Haspel had not answered the question.
It was a line of questioning pursued by several Democratic senators, including Vice Chairman Mark Warner, D-Virginia, who said in his opening remarks, ‘What the committee must hear is your own view of the [Rendition, Detention and Interrogation] program today, given the benefit of time and hindsight.'”
President Trump pulled the U.S. out of the multilateral agreement meant to keep Iran from going nuclear, and set a date for a Singapore summit to convince North Korea to take itself off the list of nuclear nations, and the Secretary of State brought home three hostages from Pyonyang. Israel pounded Iranian military targets in Syria, the nominee for CIA director took the hot seat, and New York’s attorney general is out, yeah…him too.
This hour, On Point: The weekly news roundtable.
– Ray Suarez
Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.