World Views
3:02 pm
Thu April 16, 2015

Ex-Washington Post Journalist Recounts Abu Ghraib, Close Call With Al-Qaeda Kidnappers

Jackie Spinner interviews a soldier in Iraq during her time as a Washington Post correspondent.
Provided Jackie Spinner

In 2003, the Associated Press issued its report on human rights abuses taking place at the U.S.-held Abu Ghraib prison. Jackie Spinner was at the prison a year later to report on the story for The Washington Post when she was nearly kidnapped by Al-Qaeda members.

“It was June 14, 2004. It’s a day I’ll never forget,” Spinner said.

The event inspired the title for her 2006 book about her experiences reporting in Iraq during the war, Tell Them I Didn’t Cry

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World Views
4:32 pm
Fri November 21, 2014

World Views: November 21, 2014

Joshua Landis compares what he calls the “Great Sorting Out” in the Middle East to historical conflicts in Eastern Europe that also stretched across ethnic and religious lines.

Then Joshua and Rebecca Cruise talk with Matthew Barber. He was one of the first bloggers to write about the capture of thousands of Yazidi  women and girls as the minority community of northern Iraq was wiped out this summer.

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World Views
4:18 pm
Fri November 21, 2014

Blogger Matthew Barber Describes Covering Yazidi Disappearance, Sinjar Siege

An Iraqi Yazidi girl with her family at the Newroz refugee camp in Syria, on August 15th.
Rachel Unkovic DFID - UK Department for International Development

In the Iraqi province of Kurdistan, women of the Yazidi ethnic minority are disappearing. At the most recent count, between 6,000 and 7,000 women and girls have been kidnapped, and many of those have been enslaved.

When Matthew Barber visited northern Iraq earlier this year, his goals were to conduct research and learn Kurdish. When he arrived he was faced with an enslavement crisis unfolding all around him and he knew that being an American academic gave him resources he could use to help.

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World Views
3:06 pm
Fri November 21, 2014

Landis: Iraq/Syria Situation Parallels 20th Century 'Great Sorting Out' In Europe

A refugee camp in Syria's northern city Aleppo, December 2013
IHH Humanitarian Relief Foundation Flickr

In recent years, millions have been killed or forced to flee their homes due to instability and violence across Iraq and Syria. Among these victims are many ethnic and religious minorities, including Christians and Yazidis.

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2:34 pm
Thu September 25, 2014

Islamic State Defector: 'If You Turn Against ISIS, They Will Kill You'

Fighters from the Islamic State group parade in their northern Syrian stronghold, Raqqa.
Uncredited AP/Raqqa Media Center

Originally published on Thu October 2, 2014 12:34 pm

When the Sunni extremists declared a caliphate in parts of Iraq and Syria, their ranks swelled to about 30,000 fighters, according to estimates by the CIA. The recent airstrikes carried out by the U.S.-led coalition might change the rush to join the self-declared Islamic State, also known as ISIS.

But for those who have already signed on, leaving the Islamic State is terrifying, says one young Syrian defector.

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World Views
1:44 pm
Fri September 12, 2014

President Obama's ISIS Plan: How Realistic Is It?

President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden meet with members of the National Security Council in the Situation Room of the White House hours before his national address, Sept. 10, 2014.
Pete Souza The White House

Syria, Russia, and Iran have condemned the plan to lead a broad coalition against the Islamic State President Obama outlined Wednesday night, stating that without a UN resolution U.S. action in Syria would be an act of aggression and in violation of international law.

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World Views
12:23 pm
Fri September 5, 2014

World Views: September 5, 2014

Suzette Grillot and Joshua Landis discuss the turmoil in Iraq caused by ISIS. Rebecca Cruise reports on state of Ukraine and its possible cease fire with Russia.

Later in the program, an interview with Boston College Near East Historian and political scientist Franck Salameh about the many dialects of Arabic and the future of teaching it.

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2:32 pm
Tue September 2, 2014

After Foley's Death, Former War Reporter Says It's Not Worth The Risk

Tom A. Peter is a freelance war reporter. (

Originally published on Wed September 3, 2014 3:09 pm

War reporting is dangerous. We were reminded of that today with the news that journalist Steven Sotloff has apparently been beheaded by an Islamic State militant.

The video of the beheading follows another, last month, of journalist James Foley being killed by a militant from the same group, also known as ISIS.

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World Views
4:30 pm
Fri August 22, 2014

World Views: August 22, 2014

Joshua Landis updates Suzette Grillot on the situation in Syria, and they talk about the rise of the Islamic State and this week’s murder of journalist James Foley.

Later, a conversation about the 100th anniversary of the Panama Canal with Noel Maurer, Raisa Banfield, and Julie Greene.

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World Views
11:06 am
Fri August 22, 2014

Obama Pursues Strategy Of Containment Despite Growing Violence In Iraq And Syria

President Obama talks with National Security Advisor Susan E. Rice during morning foreign policy briefings while vacationing in Martha's Vineyard - August 11, 2014.
Pete Souza The White House

The beheading of American journalist James Foley this week is the latest in a series of brutal attacks in Iraq and Syria perpetrated by the Islamic State (ISIS).

The killing comes in response to President Obama's decision to provide aerial and tactical support to Iraqi government forces and Kurdish Peshmerga as they attempt to retake areas seized by IS in recent weeks.

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