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Rational Security: The ‘Fracket Fracas’ Edition

This week, Alan, Quinta, and Scott were once again joined by Congress maven Molly Reynolds to hash through some of the week’s big natsec news, including:

  • “Don’t Fear the Referr(als).” As its presumed end draws nigh with the new Congress, the Jan. 6 committee is racing to bring its work to a close. Yesterday it voted to make four sets of criminal referrals, including for former President Trump. It also released a 100-page draft executive summary for its forthcoming report. What more should we expect from the committee? And what impact will these steps have?
  • “The Grapes of Vlad.” The U.S. Congress sent a strong message of support to Ukraine this week by committing $45 billion in U.S. assistance, even more than requested by the Biden Administration. But there are few signs that Russia’s poor performance thus far is threatening Russian President Vladimir Putin’s control of the country, who seems to be settling in for a long-haul strategy of waiting out Western and Ukrainian resistance. What trajectory is this conflict on as it approaches the one-year mark? Where do we think it’s likely headed?
  • “Showdown at the O.K. Corral.” The Republican Party is set to take control of the House in January. But who will be leading them remains up in the air, as majority leader Kevin McCarty is still struggling to secure enough support from the far right wing of his party. His supporters are circling the wagon, most recently by publicly wearing “O.K.” pins signaling their support for “Only Kevin.” But can he get across the threshold? And at what cost? 

For object lessons, Alan recommended the overlooked spy drama “The Courier” for all his fellow Cumberbitches. Quinta passed along her favorite recipe for holiday cookies. Scott re-upped his (well-reviewed!) eggnog recipe and recommended another holiday classic: the Lion’s Tail. And Molly urged everyone suffering from World Cup withdrawal to check out NPR’s “The Last Cup.”