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Cuba Picks a New Head of State as Trump Rolls Back Obama’s Cuba Policy

Cuba Picks A New Head of State As Trump Rolls Back Obama’s Cuba Policy
On today's episode of Loud & Clear, Brian Becker and Walter Smolarek are joined by Arnold August, a lecturer, journalist, and author of the book “Cuba and the US in the Age of Trump,” and Gloria La Riva, the director of the Cuba and Venezuela Solidarity Committee.

Miguel Diaz Canal has been elected by the National Assembly to be the new President of Cuba. As the country embarks on a historic leadership transition as Raul Castro steps down, what does the future hold for Cuba and its socialist system?

The weekly series "Criminal Injustice" continues, where the hosts discuss the most egregious conduct of our courts and prosecutors and how justice is denied to so many people in this country, including the murder by NYPD of Saheed Vassell, a man known by cops and the community to be mentally ill. Kevin Gosztola, a writer for and co-host of the podcast Unauthorized Disclosure, and Paul Wright, the founder and executive director of the Human Rights Defense Center and editor of Prison Legal News and Criminal Legal News, join the show.

Cancer is not only traumatic and deadly, but it can be incredibly expensive to treat. One organization, Value in Cancer Care Consortium, has been working on cutting those costs to make cancer treatment more readily available, and for one treatment, the researchers were able to confirm that just one-third of a drug for blood cancer was just as effective as the previously recommended dose. This would, of course, cut the treatment cost by a third-until Janssen and Pharmacyclics tripled their prices in response. Brian and Walter speak with Dr. Allen Lichter, an oncologist and chair of the board of directors of the Value in Cancer Care Consortium.

The Department of Health and Human Services is reportedly planning to issue regulations that will further restrict undocumented people's ability to access health care. The hosts take an in-depth look today and tomorrow at this latest attack on immigrants and the barriers to healthcare access that already existed. Leo Cuello, an attorney and the director of health policy for the National Health Law Program, joins the show.

Yesterday evening, Charles County, Maryland residents rallied at the town council building to protest fracking and a potential new fracked gas compressor station. Fracking is a problem nationwide that is hazardous to the environment and to people living nearby. Maryland anti-fracking organizer with Amp Creeks Council, who was a key organizer in the rally yesterday, joins Brian and Walter.

Puerto Rico suffered a huge blackout yesterday leaving the entire island without power, which has still not yet been fully restored. Months after Puerto Rico was hit with a devastating hurricane, critical infrastructure is still yet to be repaired. Camilo Punsoda, spokesperson for Juventud Trabajadora, the youth wing of the Working People's Party of Puerto Rico, joins the show.

The Syrian army has given ISIS a 48-hour deadline to vacate areas south of the capital Damascus, primarily the Palestinian refugee camp of Yarmouk, which has suffered under ISIS' brutal rule since the spring of 2015. Meanwhile, controversy continues to swirl over the alleged chemical weapons attack in Douma. Brian and Walter speak with Massoud Shadjareh, the founder of the Islamic Human Rights Commission.

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