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The New Yorker Radio Hour

Helsinki Fallout

At the recent summit in Helsinki, Vladimir Putin proposed that, in exchange for letting Robert Mueller interrogate some G.R.U. agents who are linked to election hacking, the U.S. should turn over a group of officials and citizens to Moscow. The most senior of them was Michael McFaul, who served as the U.S. Ambassador to Russia during the Obama Administration—a time of chilly relations between the nations. McFaul and his family were subjected to treatment unthinkable for a diplomat: stalking, harassment, and surveillance.  The White House has said that it is no longer considering Putin’s overture, but McFaul tells David Remnick that Putin’s increasingly assertive behavior—and Trump’s reverential attitude towards Putin—has him concerned for his safety. Meanwhile, after Helsinki, bipartisan support is growing in the Senate for a bill that would impose severe sanctions on Russia to retaliate for election meddling. Senator Chris Van Hollen, a Democrat from Maryland, is a co-sponsor of the DETER Act, and he tells staff writer Susan Glasser that the daylight between congressional Republicans and the President is growing.  

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