Coming in December on FRONTLINE

December 1, 2017
by Patrice Taddonio Assistant Director of Audience Development

A still from "Putin's Revenge."

Just this morning, Michael Flynn, President Trump’s former national security adviser, pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about conversations with former Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak, the latest charge in special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation.

With revelations involving Russia’s role in the 2016 presidential election continuing to command the headlines, FRONTLINE will close out the year with an encore presentation of Putin’s Revenge — our two-part investigation into how Vladimir Putin came to see America as an enemy.

From filmmaker Michael Kirk and his team, Putin’s Revenge examines the Russian president’s grievances with American democracy, how U.S. intelligence came to believe he targeted the 2016 election, and the fallout during the Obama administration and now under President Trump.

When Putin’s Revenge aired this fall, The Wall Street Journal called it “a work of electric power.” If you missed this in-depth look at Putin’s rise, rule and motivations the first time around, catch up on Dec. 12 and 19.

Also this month, with the federal trial against ranchers Ammon and Cliven Bundy underway in Nevada, we’ll re-air American Patriot: Inside the Armed Uprising Against the Federal Government — our investigation of how the Bundys’ fight against the government invigorated armed militias and anti-government extremists.

Here’s a closer look at our December lineup – plus, a recommendation of a classic FRONTLINE documentary from our archives to watch over the holidays.

Dec. 5: American Patriot: Inside the Armed Uprising Against the Federal Government

FRONTLINE goes inside the battle between the Bundy family and the federal government, examining how a simmering fight over land in Nevada and Oregon became deadly, invigorated a wider armed militia movement, and continues to challenge law enforcement. Drawing on deep access to key people on all sides of the battle, the documentary investigates the standoffs that propelled the Bundy family into the national spotlight.

Dec. 12: Putin’s Revenge, Part 1

How did Vladimir Putin go from a low-ranking KGB agent to the long-serving president of a newly assertive Russia? And how did he come to see Hillary Clinton in particular as an enemy? Drawing on more than 50 in-depth interviews with heads of U.S. intelligence agencies, diplomats, Russian politicians, historians and journalists, the story unfolds in two parts starting Dec. 12.

Dec. 19: Putin’s Revenge, Part 2

The concluding hour of Putin’s Revenge delves into how the Obama administration struggled to confront Putin over Russian involvement in the 2016 election, the reaction in the Trump administration, and the implications for the future of American democracy. “The Russians aren’t going to stop,” former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper told FRONTLINE. “Their experience in our 2016 election is going to embolden them to interfere in the future, maybe more aggressively.”

One to Stream: From Jesus to Christ: The First Christians

This classic FRONTLINE series traces the life and death of Jesus of Nazareth, and the early rise of Christianity. Part one explores the message that helped Jesus’s ministry grow, and how it spread after his crucifixion. Part two explores the extraordinary and bloody events of the second and third centuries. Watch the full series online, any time.

Check your local PBS station for air times.

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