PROGRAM NOTES 11/03/17-
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This weeks show features stories from SPANISH NATIONAL RADIO, RADIO HAVANA CUBA, NHK WORLD RADIO JAPAN, and SPUTNIK RADIO.

From SPAIN- Alison Hughes provides an update on the political turmoil in Catalonia. After the regional parliament invoked independence from Spain, PM Rajoy activated Article 155 which allowed him to dissolve the Catalan government. President Puigdemont retreated to Belgium, while Madrid announced a local election to be held Dec 21. Barcelona mayor Ada Calou commented on the situation, calling the federal actions a coup. Spain's Attorney General has pressed charges of rebellion and sedition against 20 alleged leaders of the independence movement. An arrest warrant has been issued for President Puigdemont and most Euro leaders have spurned the independence movement.

From CUBA- At the UN General Assembly only the US and Israel voted against a resolution condemning the US economic blockade of Cuba. A Viewpoint on the release of around 1800 classified documents linked to the assassination of John F Kennedy- a number of the texts expose the US governments plans to justify an open military aggression to Cuba, using terrorist actions. US military forces are conducting a nuclear war drill called "Global Thunder" to prepare the US nuclear command center for possible war.

From JAPAN- South Korea and China will meet to discuss responses to North Korea and the THAAD missiles installed by the US in South Korea. Japanese President Abe met with the NATO leader agreeing that all nations should enforce sanctions against North Korea. A former North Korean diplomat suggested that the NATO bombing of Libya prompted North Korea to accelerate nuclear and missile developments as deterrents..

From RUSSIA- On his program Going Underground, Afshin Rattansi interviewed American journalist and historian Dr Gareth Porter. Gareth dismisses the alleged use of Sarin gas by Assad forces in Syria. He says that Trump's threats of attacking North Korea are the most worrying aspect of US foreign policy. He says that the US misses the days when Yeltsin was their lapdog, working to push NATO to the borders of Russia.

"The capacity to combine commitment with skepticism is essential to democracy."
--Mary Catherine Bateson