In the latest escalation of the war in Syria, Russia has begun launching airstrikes from an Iranian air base. The New York Times reports this marks the first time since World War II that a foreign military has operated from a base on Iranian soil. The move comes as fighting has intensified around Aleppo, Syria’s largest city. Earlier this month, rebels fighting the Syrian government began a new offensive to break an ongoing government-backed siege of the city.
The rebels have been led in part by an offshoot of the Nusra Front, which up until last month had been aligned with al-Qaeda. The International Committee of the Red Cross has described the fight for Aleppo as “beyond doubt one of the most devastating urban conflicts in modern times.” The United Nations is warning of a dire humanitarian crisis as millions are left without water or electricity.
For more on the humanitarian and medical crisis in Syria, Juan Gonzalez and Amy Goodman spoke with Dr. Zaher Sahloul, founder of the American Relief Coalition for Syria and senior adviser and former president of the Syrian American Medical Society. He has visited Aleppo five times since the war began.
Hillary Clinton has announced former Interior Secretary Ken Salazar as the head of her transition team. Salazar is a former U.S. senator from Colorado who now works at WilmerHale, one of the most influential lobbying firms in Washington. Some groups have criticized Salazar’s selection due to his vocal support of fracking, the Trans-Pacific Partnership and the Keystone XL pipeline. In addition to Ken Salazar, other leaders of the transition team include former Obama National Security Adviser Tom Donilon, Center for American Progress head Neera Tanden, former Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm and Maggie Williams, the director of Harvard’s Institute of Politics.
In New Jersey, lawmakers have recently introduced legislation that would require the state’s attorney general to review every death at the hands of law enforcement. One of the key backers of the New Jersey legislation has been Larry Hamm, chair of the People’s Organization for Progress in New Jersey. Amy and Juan recently spoke to Hamm and actor Danny Glover in Philadelphia at the Democratic National Convention.
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