Rocky Road

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Thursday, September 30, 2010

On today’s show: A look at how our cash-strapped era is changing American global leadership and our foreign policy. Then, Ann Jones talks about the impact of war on the least visible victims: women. Plus, Sigrid Nunez discusses her latest novel, Salvation City. Also, a look at the implications of Newtown Creek’s recent designation as a superfund site. And our latest Underreported segment examines why court records of Colombian paramilitary soldiers extradited to the United States have been sealed.

The Frugal Superpower

Foreign policy expert Michael Mandelbaum argues that the age of America’s expansive foreign policy is coming to an end. The country's soaring deficits, fueled by the huge costs of the financial crash and our government entitlement programs, will mean a scaled-back American international presence. In The Frugal Superpower: America's Global Leadership in a Cash-Strapped Era, he describes the policies the United States will have to discontinue, assesses the potential threats, and recommends a new kind of foreign policy.

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War Is Not Over When It's Over

Writer and photographer Ann Jones looks at the aftermath of wars and their impact on women. In 2007, the International Rescue Committee sent Jones to Africa, East Asia, and the Middle East, and she gave cameras to women to document how war had affected their lives. Her book War Is Not Over When It's Over: Women Speak Out from the Ruins of War, reveals the consequences of modern warfare for those most vulnerable.

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Sigrid Nunez on her Novel Salvation City

Sigrid Nunez talks about her latest novel, Salvation City. Set after a deadly flu pandemic in the United States, it tells the story of an orphaned teenager who finds refuge with an evangelical pastor and his wife in a small Indiana town.


Underreported Update: Newtown Creek Gets Superfund Status

On Monday, the Environmental Protection Agency named Newtown Creek, the polluted industrial waterway that runs between Brooklyn and Queens, a Superfund site. On today’s Underreported Update, Katie Schmid, director of the Newtown Creek Alliance, explains what the designation will mean for the creek and the people who live nearby, and why it’s taken so long for any cleanup effort to begin.

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Underreported: U.S. Extradites Colombian Paramilitaries and Seals their Case Records

Since 2006, the United States has extradited more than a dozen Colombian paramilitaries, only to seal the records of their court cases. On this week’s Underreported, Jennifer Janisch and Oriana Zill de Granados of PBS’s Wide Angle series, explain how they discovered that the cases, and what the use of judicial secrecy here in the U.S. means for their Colombian victims seeking justice.

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