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‘Influence’ Shows Why if You’re Not Worried About the November Election, You Should Be 

‘Influence’ Shows Why if You’re Not Worried About the November Election, You Should Be 

A Canadian documentary, Influence, profiles the late Tim Bell, a state of the art political consultant, in the United Kingdom. His firm, Bell Pottinger, had a long history of advocacy for authoritarian clients from Syria’s Bashar Assad to South Africa’s Jacob Zuma. He was, in a phrase, a disinformation artist. Like Frank FIgliuzzi, Kent Harrington,...

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Inside Trump’s War on the Deep State Agencies

Inside Trump’s War on the Deep State Agencies

David Rohde, former New York Times reporter, is publishing a book about Trump’s conception of the “deep state.” In an interesting interview with Terry Gross of NPR, Rohde explains how President Trump has successfully politicized the intelligence community and turned his critics among the former spy chiefs into useful foils–even decoys–for his own ambitions. I...

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Counterterrorism: A Woman’s Game

Counterterrorism: A Woman’s Game

From The Interpreter, an Australian blog about international politics. two recently published books on counterterrorism, intelligence, and national security fly in the face of the notion that counterterrorism and national security is a man’s game and show that when it comes to gender and counterterrorism, there is much more than meets the eye. The first...

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‘Electronic Authoritarianism:’ How MBS Rose to Power in Saudi Arabia

‘Electronic Authoritarianism:’ How MBS Rose to Power in Saudi Arabia

A new biography of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (MBS), by Ben Hubbard, describes how he perfected “electronic authoritarianism.” From Fred Hiatt’s review in the The Washington Post the most fundamental change the headstrong crown prince has brought about, Hubbard shows, is to turn a “soft-gloved autocracy” that featured multiple centers of power, and...

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