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Historian Beeta Baghoolizadeh says 19th century Iranian slavery can appear softer alongside its American counterpart, but that’s not a fair comparison. She'll trace the country's history of slavery and its erasure from the national consciousness.

But first, Joshua Landis joins the show again for a discussion of the Russian airliner that crashed in Egypt and what may have caused it, and Turkey’s recent parliamentary elections.

Rebecca Cruise talks with energy analyst Andreas Goldthau, who says if Europe embraces technology like hydraulic fracturing, it’ll reduce the reliance on Russian oil and natural gas.

But first, Joshua Landis analyzes Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s surprise visit to Moscow this week to brief Russian President Vladimir Putin on both current and future military operations in Syria. 

A Rosneft oil rig drilling near Ugut, Russia.
Tatiana Bulyonkova / Flickr (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

The year-long drop in crude oil prices has caused economic anxiety across the globe, especially in so-called “petrostates” that rely heavily on oil and natural gas to drive their economies.

Rebecca Cruise and Suzette Grillot discuss Russia's air strikes on Syria, and what the country's motivation could be for trying to take on a greater role on the world stage.

Then, Suzette talks with filmmakers Paco de Onís and Pamela Yates. They use their documentaries to raise awareness and create social change.

President Obama talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin and U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry during the 70th United Nations General Assembly Sept. 28, 2015.
Pete Souza / The White House

This week Russia launched its first air strikes in Syria after the country’s parliament approved the use of military force to combat Islamic State militants. The move comes just days after Russian President Vladimir Putin and President Obama met at the UN General Assembly.

University of Oklahoma political scientist Paul Goode joins Rebecca Cruise to discuss Russian President Vladimir Putin’s trip to Italy this week.

Then we’ll hear Suzette’s conversation with journalist Barbara Slavin. They’ll discuss what the ongoing nuclear talks mean for U.S.-Iranian relations and the possibility for diplomacy.

Italian newspaper reporters speak to Russian President Vladimir Putin
Press Service of the President of Russia / Wikimedia Commons

Russia may have been excluded from this week’s G7 summit in Germany, but with EU sanctions against Russia up for renewal this month, Russian President Vladimir Putin used a visit to Italy on Wednesday as a platform to speak out.

Provided / World Neighbors

Kate Schecter’s passion for internationalism started almost before she could talk. Her dad was a journalist for Time Magazine, and she spent the first dozen years of her life overseas in Hong Kong, Japan, and Russia. Her childhood in Moscow coincided with the height of the Cold War.

“My parents made a decision to send all five kids to Soviet public schools,” Schecter told KGOU’s World Views. And we’re the first American children to go to Soviet Schools. And I learned Russian [laughs]. Very quickly.”

Joshua Landis and Suzette Grillot discuss this week’s nuclear negotiations with Iran, and the release of al-Qaeda prisoners in Yemen and air strikes led by a Saudi coalition.

Later, a conversation with the former director of the National Clandestine Service Michael Sulick. The 30-year CIA veteran argues information leaks by people like Chelsea Manning and Edward Snowden can cause far more problems than traditional spying ever did.

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.

Conditional Ceasefire Reached In Eastern Ukraine

Sep 5, 2014
Insurgents in Donetsk.
Andrew Butko / Wikimedia Commons

The Ukrainian Government announced Friday it signed a preliminary protocol to start a ceasefire with pro-Russian rebels.

Brokered by Russian President Vladimir Putin in Minsk, Belarus, the ceasefire went into effect at 6 p.m. local time (10 a.m. Central). Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko confirmed the agreement on Twitter:

Can NATO Find A Way To Contain Russia?

Sep 3, 2014

Ever since the Cold War ended, the armies of NATO and Russia have been moving warily toward each other while their political positions keep moving further apart.

Twelve Eastern European countries have joined NATO since the Soviet breakup, and NATO is now on the verge of creating a rapid-reaction force for the region. Russia has sent troops into two former Soviet republics, Ukraine and Georgia, that have relationships with NATO, but not membership.

There are new reports today that Russian troops are on the ground in eastern Ukraine. Moscow continues to deny that. And as President Obama heads to Estonia today, a top Russian official says his country will alter its military doctrine toward NATO in response to what it says is the alliance’s aggressive stance on what’s happening in eastern Ukraine.

Yesterday, NATO’s secretary general said the alliance will develop a quick response strike force of several thousand soldiers who could be on standby to respond to a crisis.

Suzette Grillot talks with University of Oklahoma political scientist Keith Gaddie about West Africa's worst Ebola outbreak in history, and Monday's anniversary of Britain's entry into World War I.

Later, a conversation about education and development in Africa with OU economist and international and area studies professor Moussa Blimpo.

Government of the United Kingdom / Wikimedia Commons

Monday marked 100 years since the British declared war on Germany, after the Germans ignored Belgium’s refusal to allow troops to pass through its borders to France.

Four years and 16 million lives later, World War I set the stage for the rest of the 20th century. A century later, University of Oklahoma political scientist Keith Gaddie says the hot points of global conflict in the 21st century can be traced to the consequences of “the Great War” in Europe and Asia.

Joshua Landis and Suzette Grillot focus on the aggression in the east of Ukraine, and the well as the historical importance of Ukraine in Russian history. They also discuss how the war in Syria has affected the country’s ancient history and cultural heritage.

And later, a conversation with Israeli scholar Zaki Shalom. He says the Arab Spring has shifted focus away from the Middle East’s more long-standing discord.

Russian President Vladimir Putin at the Annual Meeting 2009 of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, January 29, 2009.
World Economic Forum / Flickr Creative Commons

After hours of negotiations Thursday, top diplomats from the United States, Europe, and Russia agreed to halt any violence, intimidation or provocative actions in Ukraine.

University of Oklahoma historian Joshua Landis, a regular contributor to KGOU’s World Views, says a Ukrainian use of military force could provoke a Russian counterattack, but Putin still has his eye on Eastern provinces.

Rebecca Cruise explains why Russia's ouster from the Group of Eight industrialized nations is mostly symbolic with little consequence, and Joshua Landis discusses the implications of the murder convictions of more than 500 supporters of former Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi.

Later, a conversation with political scientist Fevzi Bilgin about allegations against Turkey’s prime minister, and political instability ahead of Sunday's local elections.

President Vladimir Putin opens an afternoon plenary session at Konstantinovsky Palace during the G20 Summit in Saint Petersburg, Russia, Sept. 6, 2013.
Pete Souza / The White House

Earlier this week, the Group of Eight industrialized nations said they would suspend participation until Russia “changes course.” The move by the G7 nations is aimed at isolating Moscow as punishment for its annexation of the Crimean Peninsula from Ukraine.

Rebecca Cruise, the Assistant Dean of the University of Oklahoma’s College of International Studies, says the statement is primarily symbolic, with few long-term effects.

Rebecca Cruise and Suzette Grillot focus on the dozens of nations involved in the search for Malaysia Airlines Flight 370, and why it's difficult for countries to cooperate during international tragedies.

Later, Cruise talks with Baylor University political scientist Serhiy Kudelia about the ouster of Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych, and what comes next in Ukraine.

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