A member of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant urges Syrians in the city of Aleppo to fight against the Assad regime. This week, the militants apologized for beheading a commander from another anti-Assad group.
Earlier this week anti-American protests in Iran marked 34 years since the storming of the Embassy in Tehran, and the start of the 18-month hostage crisis. Suzette Grillot talks about the anniversary with Joshua Landis, who also provides a brief update on Saudi Arabia's frustration with the U.S. over Syria.
Later, a conversation with Boston University modern European historian Jonathan Zatlin. He says parts of Europe's debt crisis can be explained by religious tension between the Protestant North and the Catholic South.
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry speaks with U.S. Ambassador to Israel Daniel Shapiro, U.S. Special Envoy for Israeli-Palestinian Negotiations Martin Indyk, and Deputy Special Envoy Frank Lowenstein about Middle East peace negotiations before departing Ben Gurion International Airport in Tel Aviv, Israel, en route to Geneva, Switzerland, on November 8, 2013.
Credit U.S. Department of State / Flickr Creative Commons
Listen to Suzette Grillot's conversation with "World Views" contributor Joshua Landis.
Four world powers are dispatching their top diplomats to Geneva on Friday to add their weight to negotiations aimed at putting initial limits on Iran's ability to make atomic weapons.
The meeting comes shortly after the 34th anniversary of the start of the Iran hostage crisis, and the end of diplomatic relations between the United States and the Islamic Republic.
Joshua Landis, the Director of the Center for Middle East Studies at the University of Oklahoma, says the election of Hassan Rouhani earlier this year marks a crossroads as the moderate leader tries to promote understanding with the United States.
Listen to the October 18, 2013 episode, with Suzette Grillot's conversation with NPR correspondent Kelly McEvers.
Kelly McEvers spent three years based in Baghdad and Beirut covering the Middle East for NPR. She started her assignment with instructions not to miss a day in Iraq as the 2011 U.S. troop withdrawal deadline approached.
“Then in late 2010, a guy set himself on fire in Tunisia, and everything changed,” McEvers told KGOU’s World Views host Suzette Grillot. “I was swept up with millions of other people in this thing called the Arab Spring.”
Participants during an October 2, 2013 panel discussion about Syria, Egypt, and the Arab Spring. Left-to-right: NPR correspondent Kelly McEvers, Egyptian scholar Samer Shehata, Syria expert Joshua Landis, and KGOU's "World Views" host Suzette Grillot
NPR assigned correspondent Kelly McEvers to Iraq in 2010 with instructions not to miss a day ahead of the expected troop withdrawal by the end of 2011.
“Then in late 2010, a young man in Tunisia set himself on fire, and literally changed everything,” McEvers says. “At first I was watching it on TV in Baghdad, sitting there thinking, ‘Do we really have to stay in Baghdad? C’mon, you know? Put me in coach!’ asking to be sent out on the stories.”
Men chat Thursday in front of badly damaged buildings in the central city of Homs. Many Syrians are critical of the Nobel Peace Prize that was announced Friday for the group that is in Syria to dismantle its chemical weapons program.
Credit Yazan Homsy / Reuters/Landov
Members of a chemical weapons investigation team take samples outside Damascus on Aug. 29.
Originally published on Tue September 17, 2013 9:57 am
Throughout the Syrian war, President Obama has insisted that President Bashar Assad must go. But now, the U.S. may want, or even need, Assad to remain in power for a while longer so he can oversee the dismantling of his chemical weapons stockpile.
"For the sake of the Syrian people, the time has come for President Assad to step aside," Obama said back on Aug. 18, 2011, in his first explicit call for Assad's ouster, something the U.S. president went on to repeat on multiple occasions.
The Syrian regime calls a new deal on its chemical weapons a victory, in a reaction that came one day after the U.S. and Russia announced the plan. On Saturday, live coverage of the the deal drew the attention of a Damascus flower shop owner.
Originally published on Sun September 15, 2013 11:06 am
One day after the United States and Russia announced a deal to rid Syria of its chemical weapons, the first official reaction has emerged from the Syrian regime, which calls it a "victory." Syria's rebels are criticizing the plan, saying it doesn't punish President Bashar Assad.
Earlier this week President Obama asked congressional leaders to postpone a vote on legislation that would authorize the use of force against Syria. Joshua Landis provides an update on what's next in the volatile region.
Later, journalist Erielle Reshef joins Suzette Grillot for a conversation about covering the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Before returning to her home state last year to anchor and report for KOCO-TV, the Oklahoma City native spent several years working for the Israeli Broadcasting Authority.