World Views

Fridays 4-4:30 p.m., 6:30-7 p.m. and Saturdays 6-6:30 a.m.

World Views is hosted by Suzette Grillot, Dean of the College of International Studies at the University of Oklahoma, with regular analysis from Joshua Landis, director of the Center for Middle East Studies at OU, and Rebecca Cruise, the College's Assistant Dean and a security studies and a comparative politics expert. Each week's show focuses on specific global topics in a roundtable discussion, followed by in-depth interviews with experts and news makers.

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Joshua Landis and Suzette Grillot discuss several stories in the Middle East he’s been following this week, including President Obama’s visit to Saudi Arabia and the latest from Syria.

Then University of Oklahoma educational psychologist Janette Habashi joins Suzette to talk about her charity Child’s Cup Full, and her work providing musical instruments to refugee children in the West Bank.

President Obama meets with King Salman during a 2015 trip to Saudi Arabia.
Pete Souza / The White House

On Friday, France’s foreign minister described talks over Syria’s future as entering a “danger zone.” Opposition leaders have stepped away from the negotiating table in Geneva, accusing the regime led by Syrian president Bashar al-Assad of violating the cease-fire the U.S. and Russia painfully put together.

Representative of Assad’s regime might not even be at the negotiating table without Russia’s intervention. Airstrikes helped Syrian forces take back territory, put the rebels on their heel, and attack ISIS positions in the ancient city of Palmyra.

A girl in the West Bank plays with a handmade calendar created by Child's Cup Full
Child's Cup Full

University of Oklahoma human relations professor Janette Habashi grew up was born in Jerusalem, but left to pursue graduate work in England and the United States. But her native West Bank has never been far from her heart.

Cyrus Copeland, his mother Shahin, sister, and father Max Copeland in a family photo.
Provided / Cyrus Copeland

Four years ago, Cyrus Copeland sat in the living room with his mother when she asked him to fetch his father’s will from the library to answer a question about land rights.

He returned with a box he thought held the document, but he found something even more interesting – 35-year-old papers from the family’s time in Iran in 1979.

Rebecca Cruise and Suzette Grillot discuss the story that dominated international news this week - the so-called “Panama Papers” and the law firm at the center of the leak.

Then Cruise talks with University of Texas at Austin historian Toyin Falola, who dropped out of high school to join a post-colonial peasant rebellion in southwest Nigeria. It took the life of his grandfather, and became the driving force behind everything he does.

Toyin Falola at Sokoto State University in Nigeria, August 2014.
toyin falola / Flickr (CC BY-ND 2.0)

When Toyin Falola was a teenager, he dropped out of high school to join the first major peasant rebellion in post-colonial Africa. The two-year Agbekoya conflict in southwest Nigeria claimed the life of his grandfather, and by the time Falola entered college, the riots shaped everything.

A protester in Reykjavik on April 4, 2016 holds up a sign displaying her anger with Iceland's Prime Minister Sigmundur Davíð Gunnlaugsson announced he would take a leave of absence after being linked to the Panama Papers.
Art Bicnick / Flickr (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

The release of the so-called “Panama Papers” – more than 11 million documents and personal files detailing financial information and offshore accounts of prominent individuals – dominated the international news cycle this week. It’s raised questions about the role of technology and the expectation of privacy.

Suzette Grillot and Rebecca Cruise discuss two sides of international education. China has charged an education advocate in Tibet with inciting separatism, and a one-room basement library in Afghanistan is providing books to citizens once ruled by the Taliban.

Then contributor Joshua Landis talks with Jeffrey Mankoff from the Center for Strategic and International Studies. He argues the U.S. tried to outsource solving the Ukraine crisis onto German Chancellor Angela Merkel. They’ll also discuss Russia’s involvement in Syria.

Jeffrey Mankoff during an October 2014 Center for Strategic and International Studies forum on Russia's war, Ukraine's history, and the West's options.
Center for Strategic and International Studies / Flickr (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

Russia rapidly moved to the front of the world stage when President Vladimir Putin returned to power in 2012, setting off an adversarial relationship with the West not seen since Cold War tensions thawed in the 1980s.

The country’s ascendancy includes the 2014 invasion of Ukraine’s Crimea region, and a greater role in Syria on the side of the regime of Bashar al-Assad. Syria is fighting rebels opposed to Assad’s minority Alawite-led government as well as Islamic State, or ISIS, militants bent on establishing a caliphate in the Middle East.

Mateo Mohammad Farzaneh studies and teaches Iranian history at Northeastern Illinois University in Chicago. He's just written a book about the country’s early 20th century constitutional revolution.

But first, Rebecca Cruise and University of Oklahoma Latin American Studies professor Alan McPherson discuss President Obama’s historic trip to Cuba and Argentina.

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