Rational Security 2.0: The 'Home Sick' Edition

By Jen Patja Howell
Wednesday, June 15, 2022, 12:01 PM

This week, Alan, Quinta, and Scott were joined by Lawfare executive editor Natalie Orpett to talk through some the week's big national security news, including: 

  • “First Act Break.” We are one week into the Jan. 6 committee’s public hearings. What have we learned that we didn’t know already? And how effective are they proving to be?
  • “Not Since the Sultans of Swing.” A dire situation is once again brewing over the straits of Taiwan, as China and the United States rattled sabers at the regional Shangri-La Dialogue as the former rejected the Taiwan Strait’s status as international waters. And they received an unlikely assist from Ukrainian President Volodmyr Zelensky, who sent in a video message calling for the region to defend Taiwan from possible Chinese aggression. Is Ukraine pushing China and the United States closer to a conflict over Taiwan? How should the international community respond?
  • “A Big Win for Big Sisters.” Last week, a mentally ill young man aborted plans to murder Brett Kavanaugh and surrendered to police just outside the Supreme Court justice’s home on the advice of his sister. Since then, Congress has gone from near unanimous support for stronger security measures for the Supreme Court to increasingly partisan loggerheads over how to provide it. What explains the strange trajectory of these debates? And what does it tell us?

For object lessons, Alan gave a strong endorsement to "Top Gun: Maverick" as the rare sequel that is better than the original material—and a tribute to Tom Cruise's apparent death wish. Quinta revisited Bill Stepien's last turn in the public eye: as a major player in the NJ-NY scandal Bridgegate. Scott embraced his spicy boi nature by passing along a home hot sauce recipe and asked listeners for their own recommendations. And Natalie recommended some companion listening for the Jan. 6 committee hearings: the podcast Will Be Wild and Lawfare's own The Aftermath.

Here are a few other articles the RatSec crew mentioned in the course of the episode: