90.9 WBUR - Boston's NPR news station
Top Stories:
PLEDGE NOW
The Pentagon's Air Tanker Deal
photo

When the American Air Force takes to the skies and needs fuel, its jets have fueled up, mid-air, forever, from American-made Boeing air tankers. You’ve seen the pictures: The long hose comes down, the jet tops up, and off it goes.

Last week, the gigantic contract to build the next generation of air tankers took off as well. It won’t be a Boeing tanker, but Europe’s Airbus topping up American military planes.

That’s a $40 billion dollar contract — maybe a hundred billion. Gone are jobs, profits, pride. Today we ask why.

This hour, On Point: American tax dollars for Europe’s Airbus for the U.S. military. Why?

Guests:

Richard Aboulafia, vice president of analysis at the Teal Group, an aerospace and defense consulting firm in Fairfax, Virginia.

James Wallace, reporter for the Seattle Post-Intelligencer covering the aerospace industry, including Boeing and Airbus.

Rep. Norm Dicks, Democratic congressman from Washington’s 6th District, which includes many Boeing employees. He is a member of the House Appropriations Committee and the Defense Subcommittee.

Rep. Duncan Hunter, Republican congressman from California, ranking member on the House Armed Services Committee, and a candidate for the Republican nomination for president until January.

Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
ONPOINT
TODAY
Mar 2, 2015
In this Tuesday, March 4, 2014 file photo, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, accompanied by his wife Sara, right, speaks before the screening of the television documentary "Israel: The Royal Tour" at Paramount Studios in Los Angeles. (AP)

On the eve of Israel Prime Minister Netanyahu’s controversial address to Congress, we look at the US-Israel falling out over Iran nuclear negotiations.

Mar 2, 2015
This image provided by NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center shows an artists rendering on how a gamma ray burst occurs with a massive star collapsing and creating a black hole and beaming out focused and deadly light and radiation bursts. Astronomers and space telescopes in April 2013 saw the biggest and brightest cosmic explosion ever witnessed, a large gamma ray burst. (AP)

A super-massive black hole, newly discovered, deep in space. We’ll peer into the realm of the black hole.

RECENT
SHOWS
Feb 27, 2015
This image released courtesy of the Lead Belly Estate shows folk and blues musician Huddie William Ledbetter, better known as Lead Belly. Huddie "Lead Belly" Ledbetter never had a hit record before he died of Lou Gehrig's disease in 1949. (AP)

Going back to Lead Belly. The blues legend is back. His influences, as big as ever.

 
Feb 27, 2015
Federal Communication Commission (FCC) ChairmanTom Wheeler, center, joins hands with FCC Commissioners Mignon Clyburn, left, and Jessica Rosenworcel, before the start of their open hearing in Washington, Thursday, Feb. 26, 2015.  (AP)

A US-Israel rift. A win for net neutrality. “American Sniper” verdict. Our weekly news roundtable goes behind the headlines.

On Point Blog
On Point Blog
Want To Listen To Lead Belly? Here’s Where To Start
Monday, Mar 2, 2015

Loved our show on Lead Belly, but unsure on where you should start to listen? Jeff Place of the Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage offers his best picks for a beginning Lead Belly listener.

More »
Comment
 
Our Week In The Web: February 27, 2015
Friday, Feb 27, 2015

We won’t lead you into a debate on the color of #TheDress (it’s blue and black, end of debate), but we do wonder about the blurring lines between so-called Internet culture and general popular culture. Also, it’s snowing in Boston. Still.

More »
Comment
 
Two Congressmen Weigh In On DHS Funding
Tuesday, Feb 24, 2015

Rep. Jim Jordan of Ohio and Rep. Chris Van Hollen of Maryland present their views on the ongoing Congressional budget fight over Department of Homeland Security funding. (Spoiler: They do not agree on a resolution of the crisis).

More »
1 Comment