Surveillance After The Marathon Bombing, The Kill Team and More

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Friday, April 26, 2013

Bob looks at the risks and promise of surveillance after the Boston marathon bombing, a new documentary looks at war crimes and whistleblowing in the theater of war and an Onion-like satire site tries to bring military humor to the civilian masses. 

Framing the Boston Bombing

The Boston bombing has become a Rorschach blot for the media, who have tied it to everything from immigration to welfare to national security. Bob talks to The Daily Beast's Peter Beinart about the media and the culture's desire to impose meaning on tragedy.

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Inspire, Al Qaeda's Magazine, and the Tsarnaev Brothers

This week Dzhokhar Tsarnaev told law enforcement agents that he and his brother learned how to make their homemade bombs from Inspire, the English-language magazine of Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula. Bob talks to JM Berger about the magazine, which has gone from being a late-night punchline to something much more terrifying.


Kelan Philip Cohran & The Hypnotic Brass Ensemble - Spin

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The Future of Surveillance

Surveillance camera images of Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev catalyzed not only the manhunt which caught them, but calls for more surveillance cameras around the country. It’s worth remembering that, right now, video surveillance is a blunt tool. Bob speaks with Christoph Bregler, an NYU computer science professor, about the ways that surveillance will soon be much more effective.

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Bob reads from a few of your letters and comments.


Jim James - All Is Forgiven

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The Kill Team

In a new documentary, The Kill Team, director Dan Krauss tells the story of the group of US soldiers convicted of murdering unarmed Afghan civilians. The documentary looks at the roles played by not one, but two soldier-whistleblowers. Krauss talks to Bob about the moral ambiguities of the story and the difficulty of doing the right thing in a war zone.

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Covering the Veteran Beat

NPR's Quil Lawrence spent a decade in Iraq and Afghanistan as a war correspondent. But now, he's covering a new beat - veterans from those wars as they transition back to civilian life. Bob talks to Quil about challenging his own assumptions and the conventional wisdom on the veteran beat.


The Duffel Blog

The Duffel Blog is an Onion-style satirical website written by current and former military members. Here's a sample headline:“Decorated War Hero, Airborne Ranger Emasculated By Wife at Local Mall.” Bob speaks with Paul Szoldra - an eight-year Marine veteran who served in Afghanistan - about founding the site.

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Hey Everybody, Let's Fix Twitter

Twitter: we all love it, but during recent breaking news stories, it's been an amplifier for rumors. Bob talks to OTM producer PJ Vogt about how Twitter could be better, and asks listeners for their suggestions. 

Head over to our blog with your suggestions

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