This Week on Between The Lines

Posted Dec. 7, 2011 for week ending Dec. 16, 2011



Listen to the entire program using these links, or to individual interviews via the links appearing prior to each segment description below.

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Increased Tension Between the West and Iran Risks Unintended Military Confrontation

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Interview with Robert Naiman, policy director of the group Just Foreign Policy, conducted by Scott Harris


A confluence of recent events has dramatically increased tensions between the Islamic Republic of Iran and western nations. The early November release of an International Atomic Energy Agency report presenting evidence that Iran had been developing a nuclear warhead over the past decade, while also working toward long-range missile capability, provoked calls for more severe economic sanctions. A massive explosion at an Iranian solid fuel missile testing site on Nov. 12, destroying the facility, has prompted speculation that this blast and another at a uranium conversion facility in Isafahan, could have been the result of a U.S. or Israeli covert sabotage operation. The Nov. 29 Iranian student invasion and trashing of the British embassy in Tehran moved relations between the two nations to the breaking point. The embassy incident was followed by reports on Dec. 4 that Iran had shot down a sophisticated U.S. stealth reconnaissance drone over Iranian airspace.  Story continues

Congress Votes to Empower President to Imprison Americans Indefinitely without Charge or Trial

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Interview with Chris Anders, senior legislative counsel with the American Civil Liberties Union, conducted by Scott Harris


It's been a little over 10 years since the 9/11 attack on the U.S., but new legislation now making its way through Congress has the imprint of similar bills that were hastily passed and signed into law in the fearful days following the nation’s most deadly terrorist assault. The House and Senate have recently voted to include a provision in the 2012 National Defense Authorization Act that mandates that all accused terrorists be indefinitely imprisoned in military rather than in the civilian court system. But most alarmingly, the measure also empowers the current, and all future presidents, to indefinitely imprison U.S. citizens suspected of engaging in terrorism without charge or trial.  Story continues

GOP House Majority Working to Weaken Key Provisions of Clean Air Act

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Interview with Henry Waxman, ranking Democrat on the House Energy and Commerce Committee, conducted by Melinda Tuhus


U.S. Rep. Henry Waxman, D-Calif., has served in the House for 36 years, and says he's never seen such assaults on public health and the environment as are happening this year in the Republican-controlled House of Representatives. Waxman, who chaired the House Energy and Commerce Committee from 2007 until 2011, is now the ranking Democrat on the panel. He says this year alone, Republicans have introduced 170 bills to weaken environmental laws, especially the Clean Air Act.  Story continues

This week’s summary of under-reported news

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Compiled by Bob Nixon

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