In this news-only episode, we cover the irresistible story of the week: Trump, Russia, and the Media. It’s especially irresistible for us because we’ve had two of the protagonists on as guests. I make the bold prediction that Shane Harris’s stories on Russia collusion and the Trump campaign will be seen as the moment when the media OCD fascination with Russia collusion finally jumped the shark. Though in this case, the shark had already consumed at least one Pulitzer-prize winning journalist, Eric Lichtblau. (And for the record, CNN, I am not advocating that more journalists should be eaten by sharks, and I refuse to accept the blame when they are.)
Unfortunately, journalists chasing nonstories can’t devote any attention to some very real stories involving government and IT. So we do it for them. Stephen Heifetz reports on the CFIUS logjam that is blocking close to a dozen transactions because the administration has not filled the subcabinet positions that could sort through the filings with a coherent policy in mind.
In other cyberwar logjam news, the UN Government Group of Experts (GGE) has failed to produce a consensus report following up on earlier reports endorsing some application of the law of war to cyberattacks. Brian Egan explains what that means for the UN, the Trump administration, and the future of international cooperation on cyber norms.