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Middle East

Schoolbook

Parent Complains of Bias in Sixth-Grade Lesson

Monday, November 21, 2011

Sixth graders in New York City regularly study the Middle East, but it is up to individual schools to craft the lessons. At Public School 101 School in the Gardens in Queens, a parent has filed a complaint about a lesson, written by a teacher, that told sixth graders the countries surrounding Israel “seek to destroy Israel and the Jewish people. They do not want peace.”

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The Leonard Lopate Show

Underreported: The Exploitation of International Domestic Workers

Thursday, November 17, 2011

On this week’s Underreported, Human Rights Watch researcher Nisha Varia describes abuses of migrant domestic workers in Asia and the Middle East, and why Cambodian women are particularly vulnerable to mistreatment in Malaysia. Plus, a look at efforts to implement international labor standards for domestic workers.

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The Takeaway

Tensions in Syria After Arab League Suspends Membership

Monday, November 14, 2011

In Syria, tens of thousands of government supporters poured into the streets of Damascus and other cities on Sunday to protest the Arab League's decision to suspend Syria's membership. Angry supporters of Syrian President Bashar Assad also attacked several embassies. In response to the unrest, Syria called for an emergency Arab summit. 

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The Leonard Lopate Show

Jerusalem: The Biography

Tuesday, November 01, 2011

Simon Sebag Montefiore looks at how did the small, remote town of Jerusalem became the Holy City, the “center of the world,” and the key to peace in the Middle East. Jerusalem: The Biography tells the city’s story through the wars, love affairs, and revelations of the kings, empresses, prophets, poets, saints, conquerors and whores who created, destroyed, chronicled and believed in Jerusalem.

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The Takeaway

After Iraq Withdrawal, US Plans Troop Increase in Persian Gulf

Monday, October 31, 2011

The White House is planning to boost its military presence in the Middle East when the final troops leave Iraq at December's end. The new plan comes in light of the Iraqi government's refusal to allow American forces to remain in the country after the previously agreed-upon deadline, which goes into effect at year's end. The additional combat units would be stationed in Kuwait, and the U.S. views them as a hedge for stability in the event of a collapse in security in Iraq or a move of aggression by Iran.

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The Takeaway

Gilad Sharon on His Father's Legacy and Israel's Future

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Ariel Sharon served as Israel's prime minister from 2001 to 2006, but Sharon's long career in public service began with Israel’s War of Independence in 1948. Sharon suffered a stroke in 2006, leaving him in a coma-like state. While he is now immobilized, Ariel Sharon leaves a legacy that will no doubt affect his country for decades to come. 

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The Takeaway

Ariel Sharon: The Life of an Unconventional Leader

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Gilad Sharon, former Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon’s youngest son, joins The Takeaway this morning to talk about his new biography of his father. A controversial and polarizing figure, Ariel Sharon dedicated his life to protecting Israel, but how best to preserve his country’s borders became a lifelong question. Sharon lived a life of contradictions. As Minister of Defense in 1982, he was found to be indirectly responsible for the massacre of hundreds of Palestinians at the Sabra and Chatila refugee camps in Lebanon by Lebanese Christians. As prime minister, violence between Israelis and Palestinians skyrocketed. Yet his decision to relinquish control of Gaza to the Palestinians in 2005 may yet define his legacy.

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The Takeaway

The Foreign Policy Implications of Gadhafi's Death

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Col. Moammar Gadhafi was killed this morning in his birthplace of Sirte as forces of the National Transitional Council swept the city, according to the leader of the Tripoli military council. The reports have not been confirmed outside of the NTC. Martin Indyk, former U.S ambassador to Israel, and director of the Foreign Policy Institute at the Brookings Institution, comments on how Gadhafi's reported death will shake up international relations in the region.

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The Brian Lehrer Show

NPR's Deb Amos on Syria and the Arab Spring

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Having just wrapped up a reporting trip to Syria, Deborah Amos, who covers the Middle East for NPR, reflects on the trip and also on the latest news from Egypt after the revolution there.

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The Takeaway

Gilad Shalit and the Future of the Middle East

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Sgt. Gilad Shalit, the Israeli soldier who has been imprisoned by Hamas since 2006, was released on Tuesday in Egypt as part of a prisoner trade between Israel and Hamas. In exchange for Shalit's release, Israel freed 477 Palestinian prisoners, the first group of what will be more than 1,000. "I very much hope that this deal will advance peace," Shalit told Egyptian television before he was released. The deal is seen as a major political victory for Hamas, which Israel considers to be a terrorist organization. While Shalit may be on his way home, what the prisoner swap means for the future of the Palestinian leadership and the Middle East peace process is far from clear.

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The Takeaway

Top of the Hour: Israel and Palestinians Trade Prisoners, Morning Headlines

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Israeli Sgt. Gilad Shalit was released by Hamas today in exchange for 477 Palestinian prisoners held by Israel. Ethan Bronner, Jerusalem bureau chief for The New York Times, reports on the latest.

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The Takeaway

477 Palestinian Prisoners to Be Freed

Monday, October 17, 2011

Israel released the names of the 477 Palestinian prisoners it will free on Tuesday in exchange for captured soldier Gilad Shalit, who has been held by Hamas since 2006. Most of the prisoners were serving life sentences for violent crimes, including murder. About 200 of the prisoners will not be allowed to return home, and will be exiled to Qatar and Turkey. A poll by Israeli newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth found nearly 79 percent of Israelis support the swap.

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The Takeaway

Libya's National Transitional Council Claims Capture of Gaddafi's Son

Thursday, October 13, 2011

In Libya today there are conflicting reports over the capture of Moammar Gaddafi's son, Mutassim Gaddafi. Figures from the National Transitional Council told reporters they had captured Mutassim, in the family's hometown of Sirte, but a military commander denied their claims. If the news is true, it would be a major breakthrough for the National Transitional Council. Meanwhile, an Amnesty International report expresses concerns over the Transitional National Council's treatment of suspected Gaddafi loyalists whom the group has captured and attempted to torture into making confessions.

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The Takeaway

Yemeni President Will Not Step Down

Monday, October 10, 2011

Faced with intense opposition from both politicians and angry protesters who have spent months demanding his ouster, Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh raised eyebrows on Saturday with a vaguely worded pledge to step down "in the coming days." By the following day, it appeared his words were hollow when Yemeni officials announced that Saleh would stay in power until elections scheduled for next year.

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The Takeaway

Christians and Police Clash Violently in Egypt

Monday, October 10, 2011

In the worst incident of violence in Egypt since President Hosni Mubarak was ousted in February, 24 people died, and more than 200 were wounded after a protest in Cairo turned violent on Sunday. Christians protesting a recent attack against a Coptic church in Aswan province were attacked by police. Thousands filled the streets chanting, "the people want to bring down the field marshal," in reference to Field Marshal Mohamed Hussein Tantawi and the military council that has ruled Egypt since February.

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The Takeaway

What is America's Influence in the Middle East?

Monday, September 26, 2011

Yemen is the latest country in the Arab world to see violence between protesters and police lead to bloodshed and deaths. 18 protesters were killed over the weekend, as Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh announced a special election to transfer power. As revolution sweeps through the Middle East, we're looking at the influence the United States has on these areas.

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The Takeaway

Burhanuddin Rabbani, Leader of Afghan Peace Council, Assassinated

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

A suicide bomber in Afghanistan on Tuesday killed Burhanuddin Rabbani, former president of Afghanistan and leader of the High Peace Council. Rabbani was in the process of negotiating an end to the war with the Taliban. The assassination is a devastating blow to the Afghan peace process, and the future of security in the region.

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The Takeaway

Protests at UN Over Palestinian Statehood Bid

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Among the multitude of serious issues facing this week's meeting of the United Nations General Assembly and Security Council, none has been the focus of as much attention as the Palestinian bid for statehood. The Palestinians will ask for UN membership, something the General Assembly anticipated in Resolution 181 in 1947, which partitioned Palestine into Jewish and Arab states. Many groups are protesting outside the UN headquarters in New York in advance of the application.

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The Takeaway

Palestinians Take Case for Statehood to the United Nations

Monday, September 19, 2011

As the Palestinians appeal to the U.N. to become a state, we look at recent examples and ask what makes a state? And what are the implications of becoming one?

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The Takeaway

Arab Spring Realigns Power and Diplomacy in Middle East

Thursday, September 15, 2011

U.S. Assistant Secretary of State Jeffrey Feltman arrived in Libya on Wednesday to meet with leaders of the National Transition Council, saying that the U.S. has "an enduring commitment to support the Libyan people as they chart their country's future." French President Nicholas Sarkozy and British Prime Minister David Cameron also arrived on Thursday morning. Elsewhere in the region, diplomatic ties have broken down between Israel and its closest Arab allies, Turkey and Egypt, as the Palestinian Authority makes a bid for statehood before the United Nations.

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