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Friday, July 27, 2007

On today's show: A Vanity Fair reporter exposes two C.I.A. psychologists who used their military training to create the torture tactics used at Guantánamo Bay. Also, a new documentary traces bad policy decisions in Washington to their disastrous effects on the ground in Iraq. Then, an Iraqi writer discusses his debut novel about life under Saddam Hussein. And on this week's Please Explain, we put aside Harry Potter to learn the truth about magic, witchcraft, and wizardry.

Rorschach and Awe

Vanity Fair writer Katherine Eban asked why psychologists were participating in military interrogations at Guantánamo Bay, and she uncovered the alarming story of two C.I.A. contractors who were, in secret, designing torture techniques. Learning how and why took her deep into a world that our military and intelligence agencies would ...

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No End in Sight

The Bush Administration's handling of the war in Iraq has been called into question right from the start. Filmmaker Charles Ferguson sought answers inside the White House, the Pentagon, and Baghdad’s Green Zone, interviewing retired Colonel Paul Hughes and other high-ranking officials to find out exactly how an initial military ...

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An Iraqi Rhapsody

When Sinan Antoon's debut novel, I'Jaam: An Iraqi Rhapsody, was published in Arabic in 2004, Lebanese poet and literary critic Abdo Wazin declared it one of the most important Arabic novels in recent memory. A fictional memoir of a young political prisoner in Saddam Hussein's Iraq, it is a haunting ...

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Please Explain: Magic, Witchcraft, and Wizardry

We'll find out whether the classes at Hogwarts are just hogwash when we discuss the history and practice of magic, witchcraft and wizardry. Send us your questions for Dr. Michael Bailey, Assistant Professor of History at Iowa State University and co-editor of the journal Magic, Ritual, ...

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