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Middle East

The Takeaway

With 3 Leaders Dead, What's Ahead for Al-Qaida?

Monday, June 13, 2011

Somali officials confirmed Saturday that they shot and killed Fazul Abdullah Mohammed, the head of al-Qaida in East Africa, and one of the FBI's most wanted terrorists, at a checkpoint on Tuesday. Mohammed had a $5 million bounty on his head for his connections to bombings of embassies in Africa that lead to the deaths of more than 200 people. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton called the killing a "significant blow to al-Qaida." 

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The Leonard Lopate Show

Backstory: Saudi Arabia and the Arab Spring

Thursday, June 09, 2011

As countries across the Arab World have been protesting in the streets and overthrowing decades-old regimes, Saudi Arabia has been trying to prevent the spread of unrest within its own borders. On today’s first Backstory, New York Times United Nations Bureau Chief Neil MacFarquhar explains how the Saudi royal family has spent billions of dollars to try to keep its people happy – and how well their efforts have paid off. He’s also the author of The Media Relations Department of Hizbollah Wishes You a Happy Birthday.

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The Takeaway

Bob Graham: From Senator to Novelist

Wednesday, June 08, 2011

Bob Graham has accomplished a lot in his career. He served as governor, then senator of Florida, and on the 9/11 Congressional Inquiry Commission. Former Sen. Graham can now add “novelist” to his long list of achievements. His new book is called "Keys to the Kingdom: A Novel of Suspense." And while it’s fiction, some of the events and characters in the book bear a striking resemblance to former Graham’s real life. 

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The Leonard Lopate Show

Backstory: Update on the Protests across the Arab World

Thursday, June 02, 2011

Protests have turned violent across the Arab World. Foreign Policy managing editor Blake Hounshell gives us an update on the clashes between the police and protesters in Syria, Yemen, and Bahrain. Plus, we’ll take a look at the role that sectarianism is playing in those countries and in Egypt.

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The Brian Lehrer Show

Syrian Update

Thursday, June 02, 2011

Joshua Landis, director of the Center for Middle East Studies, Associate Professor at the University of Oklahoma, and author of the Syria Comment newsletter, discusses the latest news from Syria, a meeting in Turkey of the opposition groups, and the Syrian government's response.

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The Takeaway

Syria: Close to Civil War as Violent Protests Continue

Monday, May 30, 2011

Security forces in Syrian tanks opened fire on civilians and killed at least 9 people Sunday, fueling speculation that the country is engaging in even more brazen efforts to quell the rebellion against President Bashar al-Assad. Joshua Landis, director of the Center for Middle East Studies at the University of Oklahoma, analyzes the events in Syria. "This revolt has settled into a stalemate," says Landis, while the government maintains the upperhand as it continues to shoot at protesters.

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The Leonard Lopate Show

Food, Love, and War

Friday, May 27, 2011

Annia Ciezadlo gives an account of civilian life during wartime. She spent six years living in Baghdad and Beirut, where she broke bread with Shiites and Sunnis, warlords and refugees, matriarchs and mullahs. Day of Honey: A Memoir of Food, Love, and War is about the hunger for food and friendship in times of war, and she writes about food and the rituals of eating to show a side of the Middle East that most Americans never see.

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The Takeaway

Henry Kissinger Interview Part 3: Middle East

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Over three decades have passed since Henry Kissinger served as Secretary of State for the Richard Nixon, and then Gerald Ford, and his advice is still sought and respected by politicians and world leaders. In the third installment of our interview with him, he shares his thoughts on the Arab spring, Israel and Palestine, and how President Obama is handling all of this.

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The Takeaway

Middle East Reacts to Obama's Speech

Friday, May 20, 2011

Cairo bureau chief for The New York Times, David Kirkpatrick, gauges reaction from the Middle East to President Obama's speech. The American perception, according to Kirkpatrick is that the president has made some hard and explicit moves in the Middle East. However, the perception fromthe Arab world is quite different as there's a sentiment that the United States dithered on Egypt, waiting too long to call for Mubarak's ouster, and hasn't done anything effective on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

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The Takeaway

President Obama Tackles Israel and Palestine

Friday, May 20, 2011

In President Barack Obama's speech on the Middle East Thursday, he addressed the looming issue of peace between Israel and Palestine. President Obama said that the borders of "Israel and Palestine should be based on the 1967 lines." This statement drew immediate negative reaction from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who is scheduled to meet with President Obama today in Washington, D.C.

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It's A Free Country ®

5 Things We Learned From Obama's Mid-East Speech

Thursday, May 19, 2011

President Obama's speech on Middle East and North African policy at the State Department on Thursday wasn't earth-shattering. He tried to project consistency in the American approach to the domino-effect uprisings taking place all over the region. The President made an effort by using traditional metaphors insisting that the Arab spring is rooted in fundamental American values. Here are a few takeaways hidden in the pretty language:

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The Takeaway

President Obama to Address Muslim World

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Today President Obama will deliver his first major policy speech to the Muslim World since the beginning popular demonstrations and political revolutions began sweeping across the Middle East and Northern Africa. It's not his first speech on the region. In June, 2009, the president addressed the region from Cairo University, speaking in broad terms in order to reset the relationship with the region following the Bush administration. Today’s Arab world demands a different kind of speech than the one delivered during the commander in chief's first year in office. President Obama will be forced to address specific nations and outline concrete agendas.

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The Takeaway

Round Table: Obama Administration's Middle East Policies

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

On Thursday, President Obama plans to deliver an important speech regarding his Administration’s Middle East policy. For first time since demonstrations and political revolutions began sweeping across the Middle East and Northern Africa, President Obama will likely address specific countries, including Bahrain and Yemen. The Takeaway hosts a round table discussion with Arab-Americans, who share their expectations, and hopes for U.S. involvement in their home countries.

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The Takeaway

Kati Marton on Afghan War Policy

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Kati Marton has made a name for herself as an author and a journalist at ABC and public radio. As the wife of accomplished American Diplomat Richard Holbrooke, a special representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan until his death at the end of last year, she also has a unique perspective on the war in Afghanistan and how U.S. policy is playing in the Middle East. Marton explains how Holbrooke's influence has seeped into U.S. policy in Afghanistan the broader Middle East. 

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The Takeaway

Maryam Jameela: An Unlikely Jihadist

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

When we think of Jihadists, we tend to think of people like Faisal Shahzad, who attempted to bomb Times Square last spring. But it so happens that one of the most famous Jihadist thinkers is a 76-year-old white woman from Westchester, New York named Maryam Jameela. Born to a non-observant Jewish family, she converted to Islam in her twenties, emigrated to Pakistan, and became a prominent female voice for conservative Islam, writing over thirty books on the subject. 

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The Takeaway

This Week's Agenda: Debt Ceiling, Middle East, IMF

Monday, May 16, 2011

While Washington continues tp debate the debt ceiling, the United States is expected to reach the limit on its debt today. This means the government will no longer be able to borrow money. Charlie Herman, business and economics editor for The Takeaway and WNYC Radio, says it's just a mystery what will happen, because we're not seeing any deals on the table yet. There are questions about the future of the International Monetary Fund after its managing director, Dominique Strauss-Kahn was arrested in New York for allegedly sexually assaulting a Manhattan hotel maid.

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The Leonard Lopate Show

Update on Yemen

Thursday, May 12, 2011

While protests have continued across Syria for days, security forces in three cities across Yemen fired on protesters on Wednesday. In the capital city of Sana’a, there were reports that at least six had died and about 100 were wounded. Jeb Boone, a special correspondent for the Washington Post, joins us from Yemen to describe yesterday’s violence and what it means for the protest movement there.

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The Leonard Lopate Show

David E. Sanger on the Death of Osama bin Laden and the Arab World

Monday, May 02, 2011

David E. Sanger, the Chief Washington Correspondent for the New York Times, discusses what kind of impact the death of Osama bin Laden will have on the Arab World, a region where protests continue.

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The Leonard Lopate Show

The Culture and History of Syria

Friday, April 29, 2011

Brooke Allen describes her experiences traveling in Syria. The Other Side of the Mirror: An American Travels through Syria is an account of Syria's rich historical and archaeological treasures: the ancient cities of Aleppo and Damascus, the great Crusader castles, the Bronze Age ruins of Ebla and Mari, the Greco-Roman cities of Palmyra and Apamea, and it looks at Syria's people, culture, and history.

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The Brian Lehrer Show

Tweeting and Reporting the Revolution

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Alex Nunns, editor of the new book Tweets from Tahrir, and Rula Jebreal, author of the book Miral and an Italo-Palestinian journalist working in the Middle East, discuss new and old media in the recent political developments in the Middle East. They will both be on a panel Wednseday night as part of the Pen World Voices festival.

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