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Bibi Netanyahu may be out of a job. Alleged drug lords and contract killers thought they were using a secure messaging app but WOOPS, they were talking to the cops. And there’s no evidence it's aliens, but the USG doesn’t know WTF is flying around in our airspace. Support Rational Security! Don't forget to subscribe to Lawfare's Patreon to get acce…
 
Violence escalates in Afghanistan as U.S. troops withdraw. President Biden directs intelligence agencies to look for more evidence that a lab leak may have started the covid pandemic. And a ransomware attack targets the world’s largest beef processor. Plus, special guest Madiha Afzal of the Brookings Institution joins the gang. See acast.com/privac…
 
The prosecutor in the Trump criminal probe convenes a grand jury to hear evidence and weigh potential charges. The skyjacking of a commercial airliner over Belarus sparks international condemnation. And a former Saudi intelligence official could spill classified information in a U.S. court. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.…
 
President Biden says he will raise the cap on refugees admitted to the United States. A federal judge accuses the Justice Department and former Attorney General Bill Barr of misleading her and Congress about the advice he got on whether to charge former President Trump. And an oversight board decides Facebook was right to suspend Donald Trump, but …
 
Federal investigators search Rudy Giuliani’s New York apartment, in an escalation of a criminal investigation into the former president’s lawyer. Covid-19 ravages India, with a record-breaking number of daily infections reported, and the Biden administration pledges assistance. And two tech companies are facing off in a dispute over surveillance, p…
 
The Treasury Department says an associate of disgraced Trump ally Paul Manafort gave campaign data to “Russian Intelligence,” leading us to ask, why are we only hearing this now? A former senior Trump aide was up to even more shenanigans than we knew. And top intelligence officials testify about global threats. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and…
 
President Biden announces that all U.S. military forces will be out of Afghanistan by Sept. 11. A blackout at an Iranian nuclear facility is widely attributed to Israeli sabotage, complicating negotiations over a new nuclear deal. And we finally know the company that helped the FBI hack a notorious shooter’s phone. See acast.com/privacy for privacy…
 
Jordanian authorities mount arrests and detain a member of the royal family in what authorities called a threat to “security and stability” in the country, a key U.S. ally. An attack on the Capitol in Washington raises more questions about long-term security of that building. And the Biden administration seeks a way back to the negotiating table wi…
 
The debate heats up over “vaccine passports.” Google exposes a hacking operation that turns out to have been a government counterterrorism mission. And the World Health Organization's director says his agency needs to further investigate whether the coronavirus outbreak originated with a lab in China. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out i…
 
U.S. and Chinese officials clash during tense meetings in Alaska. The race to vaccinate the world is becoming a geopolitical problem. And Benjamin Netanyahu’s political future is uncertain after his party fails to win an outright majority in Israel’s parliamentary elections. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.…
 
The Biden administration is reviewing the policy on drone strikes. At the same time, it grapples with how to respond to aggressive cyber threats from Russia and China. And one year after much of the United States went into a virtual lockdown, the origins of the coronavirus remain unknown. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.…
 
A newly released intelligence report officially blames Saudi crown prince Mohammed bin Salman for the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi. FBI Director Chris Wray says domestic extremism is a “metastasizing” threat. And President Biden launches airstrikes in Syria. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.…
 
President Biden’s nominees for attorney general and CIA director mostly sail through their confirmation hearings. The administration kickstarts policy on Iran, with an eye towards salvaging a nuclear deal. And the Supreme Court rules that a New York grand jury can see Donald Trump’s tax returns. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out informa…
 
It's our 300th episode! The Senate acquits Donald Trump in his second impeachment trial. Rolling blackouts in Texas offer a glimpse of climate insecurity to come. And the Pentagon delayed promoting two female generals to four-star commands over fears of Trump’s reaction. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.…
 
President Trump’s impeachment trial begins in the Senate as a prosecutor in Georgia investigates efforts to overturn the election. President Biden sets out to “revitalize” national security and foreign policy in his administration. And the U.S. is (cautiously) rejoining world bodies it left under Donald Trump. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and …
 
The storming of the Capitol on January 6 has exposed the long-simmering threat of domestic extremism in the United States. How will the Biden administration combat it? Protests break out across Russia as a prominent dissident returns home. And can we just skip impeachment and get to the 14th Amendment? See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out …
 
The House impeaches President Trump—again—for his role in stoking an attack on the Capitol. President-elect Biden announces more national security appointments, including his nominee to lead the CIA. And Mike Pompeo breaks some diplomatic furniture on the way out the door. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.…
 
A normally procedural session of Congress dissolves as protestors descend on Washington and occupy the Capitol. A new crackdown on pro-democracy forces in Hong Kong will complicate the incoming Biden administration’s approach to China. And how will a (barely) Democrat-controlled Senate affect Biden’s national security agenda? See acast.com/privacy …
 
President Trump issues another round of pardons, raising expectations that his family members and maybe Trump himself will be next. As 2020 comes to a merciful close, we’ll take a look back at the big national security stories that didn’t get enough attention. And we’ll talk about what we’ve got our eyes on for 2021, besides a triumphant return to …
 
Attorney General Bill Barr exits the stage. Did he leave before Trump could fire him? A massive computer hack attributed to Russian intelligence may have exposed dozens of companies and government agencies. And in the face of that and other Russian threats, how is a Biden administration likely to change U.S. policy towards Moscow? See acast.com/pri…
 
President-elect Biden continues building his Cabinet, but his pick for defense secretary leaves some supporters cold. Administration officials drag their feet on the transition as Trump’s lawyers mount increasingly absurd and dangerous efforts to overturn the election. And the White House tries to rally support for a controversial weapons sale to t…
 
A top Iranian nuclear scientist is assassinated. Everyone gets pardons this Christmas! And the attorney general takes steps to ensure the investigation of the Russia probe continues in the Biden administration. Plus, the gang welcomes special guest Noah Efron of "The Promised Podcast." See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.…
 
We're off this week for Thanksgiving, but we're bringing you back four years ago to reflect on the day after the 2016 election. What national security themes drove Donald Trump's supporters? What challenges did we anticipate Trump would face in forming a government? And what did we get right? See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out informatio…
 
President Trump fires the country’s top election security official because he won’t go along with his lies about a stolen election. Promising news about coronavirus vaccines raises important questions about who should get it first, and where. And President Trump prepares to draw down troops in Afghanistan and Iraq. See acast.com/privacy for privacy…
 
Joe Biden is elected president, but Donald Trump refuses to concede, and the transition to a new administration is rocky. Attorney General Bill Barr authorizes federal prosecutors to investigate potential voter fraud. And the gang takes questions from our live audience! See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.…
 
President Trump falsely declares victory and asserts the election was fraudulent. What havoc could he raise as states continue to count ballots? Some of the most dreaded threats of foreign interference didn’t materialize, but other danger may lie ahead. And Trump may be defeated, but Trumpism may be alive and kicking. See acast.com/privacy for priv…
 
Americans head to the polls in the face of a virus and potential disruptions at polling places and beyond. Whoever wins next Tuesday, the period between Election Day and the inauguration is bound to be rocky. And we’ll take a big picture look at the national security challenges that the next president will face, whoever he is. See acast.com/privacy…
 
Rudy Giuliani finds himself at the center of a misbegotten effort to interfere in the 2020 election. American diplomats and intelligence officers complain they’re being left in the cold after mysterious attacks. And the Trump administration sends an unusual envoy to Syria to discuss U.S. hostages. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out infor…
 
A Justice Department investigation into whether Obama-era officials improperly requested the identities of individuals from intelligence reports ends with a whimper. An investigation into the shooting of a protestor in Portland raises questions about the federal government’s use of force. And CyberCommand takes down a Russian botnet. See acast.com/…
 
President Trump tests positive for the coronavirus and the White House becomes a hot zone. Justice Department officials were “a driving force” behind an immigration policy that separated families at the border with Mexico. And two ISIS militants are charged in the murder of American hostages. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out informatio…
 
Trump tells a white nationalist group to “stand by” as he further tries to erode confidence in the November elections, this time from the presidential debate stage. Election officials are bracing for a wave of litigation and shenanigans when Americans head for the polls. And new information about Trump’s taxes reveal he’s massively in debt, adding …
 
A top member of the Mueller team says the special counsel “could have done more” to hold Trump accountable. A career government official accuses the White House of improperly trying to stop John Bolton from publishing his memoir. And the CIA is clamping down on intelligence about Russia, according to a new report. See acast.com/privacy for privacy …
 
A Trump-aligned political organization is accused of running a troll farm. The No. 2 on the team investigating the origins of the Russia probe quits, reportedly over concerns that the investigation is being politicized. And Israel signs an historic accord with two Arab states, as a fight over weapons sales to the UAE looms. See acast.com/privacy fo…
 
Multiple news organizations report that Trump has disparaged combat veterans, calling them “losers” and “suckers.” A senior Homeland Security official says he was told to stand down on the threat of Russian election interference. And the legal battle continues over whether a former White House counsel must testify before Congress. See acast.com/pri…
 
The Senate Intelligence Committee issues its long-awaited—and very long—report on Russian electoral interference in 2016 and the counterintelligence risks in the Trump campaign. The GAO determines that the leadership is serving illegally. And Belarussians have taken to the streets in protest against another stolen election by long-time strongman Al…
 
Russia wants to “denigrate” Joe Biden and China would prefer Trump lose in November, viewing him as “unpredictable,” the nation’s top election security official says. An investigation by The New York Times raises questions about whether intelligence officials are softening their views on Russia to avoid upsetting Trump. And Biden picks Kamala Harri…
 
The Homeland Security Department compiles “intelligence reports” on protestors and journalists—including the tweets of our own Ben Wittes. Massive explosions in Beirut compound that country’s political and economic crises. And officials are increasingly warning about foreign interference in November’s election. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and…
 
Attorney General Bill Barr testifies before Congress—about a lot. State and federal officials negotiate how to remove federal forces from Portland amid continuing protests. And Secretary of State Mike Pompeo faces his own day on the Hill after a blistering report on State Department dysfunction. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out informa…
 
Federal officers descend on protestors in Portland, over the objections of state and local officials. Why did Trump choose this city, and what does he hope to gain from this expanding campaign of federal authority? And the U.S. hits back at Chinese spies, indicting two hackers and shuttering a consulate in Houston. See acast.com/privacy for privacy…
 
The Trump administration issues new restrictions on immigration in response to the coronavirus pandemic. A major witness in the impeachment hearings retires amid concerns the White House might try to block his military promotion. And progressives mount an effort to shape the future of national security—sometimes to the dismay of the Biden campaign.…
 
Trump’s aides say they never briefed him about a Russian plot to kill U.S. forces in Afghanistan. Former aides say the president has been “delusional” in his dealing with foreign leaders. And as the coronavirus continues spreading, some federal workers are being furloughed. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.…
 
Bill Barr's Justice Department is accused of politicizing law enforcement across an astonishing array of subject matters. A federal appeals court orders the judge in the Michael Flynn case to dismiss charges against the former national security advisor—at Barr’s request. And Israel is getting ready to annex Israeli settlements in the West Bank. See…
 
John Bolton is finally publishing his tell-all book, and the White House is fighting back. A CIA investigation blames “woefully lax” computer security for the biggest leak in the agency’s history. And experts weigh in on how to change U.S. national security to prepare for the next pandemic. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.…
 
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