Syria

World Views
4:30 pm
Fri May 31, 2013

World Views: May 31, 2013

Listen to the entire May 31, 2013 episode

Suzette Grillot reports from Antalya, Turkey, where she speaks with Middle East expert Joshua Landis about Turkey’s booming economy and domestic anxieties.

Desmond Shawe-Taylor and Anna Somers Cocks join the program to discuss art appreciation in the 21st century. Shawe-Taylor is the Surveyor of The Queen’s Pictures, overseeing nearly 7,000 oil paintings and 3,000 miniatures from the British Royal Collection. Somers Cocks is the founding editor and CEO of The Art Newspaper.

World Views
11:52 am
Thu May 30, 2013

How Turkey Became The Nicest House In A Rough Neighborhood

The Golden Horn and Bosporus from the Suleiman Mosque, Istanbul.
Joshua Landis Facebook

Over the last decade, Turkey has averaged at least five percent growth of gross domestic product per year with a per capita income now more than $17,000, according to the country’s Ministry of Finance.

Those numbers are only expected to rise, even as a revolution continues to boil over next door in Syria, Iran faces severe economic sanctions, and economies in Greece and Cyprus melt down.

Joshua Landis, the Director of the Center for Middle East Studies at the University of Oklahoma, says after Turkey’s attempt to join the European Union failed, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan forged a new path, facing neither East nor West.

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World Views
3:46 pm
Fri May 24, 2013

As Syrian Conflict Intensifies, Turkey Fears Renewed Civil Violence

Turkish protesters chant slogans during a demonstration against the government of Syria's President Bashar al-Assad at Beyazit Square in Istanbul, on March 18, 2012
Credit FreedomHouse2 / Flickr

Listen to Suzette Grillot's conversation with Firat Demir.

After decades of fighting, the conflict between the Kurdish nationalist group the PKK and the Turkish government finally drew to a close with a ceasefire in March.

Peace in Turkey may be short-lived, though. Violence in neighboring Syria is steadily intensifying, forcing a reluctant Turkey to respond and possibly putting citizens at risk.

“Most people among the Kurdish population are very optimistic,” says Firat Demir, a University of Oklahoma economist. “The last thing now that a citizen of Turkey wants is to have another civil conflict after this 80-year-old bloody conflict that is ending.”

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The Two-Way
8:40 am
Mon May 6, 2013

UPDATE: White House Doubts Syrian Rebels Used Sarin

Carla del Ponte, a diplomat and prosecutor who now serves on the Independent International Commission of Inquiry for Syria.
Salvatore Di Nolfi EPA /LANDOV

Originally published on Mon May 6, 2013 1:07 pm

Update at 1:55 p.m. ET: White House Is "Highly Skeptical":

At the White House this afternoon, spokesman Jay Carney said the U.S. is "highly skeptical" of the comments made over the weekend by international prosecutor Carla del Ponte, who said there are "strong, concrete suspicions but not yet incontrovertible proof" that rebels in Syria have used sarin gas.

We've been covering del Ponte's comments, and the reaction to them, through the day. Scroll down to see an earlier update and our original post.

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World Views
4:30 pm
Fri May 3, 2013

World Views: May 3, 2013

Listen to the entire May 3, 2013 episode

On Tuesday President Obama reiterated that the U.S. has evidence chemical weapons have been used in Syria, and regular contributor and Syria expert Joshua Landis discusses "game changers" and crossing "red lines."

Universidad de Chile industrial engineering professor and Educación 2020 founder Mario Waissbluth joins the program for a conversation about socio-economic segregation in the South American country's schools.

World Views
3:17 pm
Fri May 3, 2013

Over 1,000 Militias Make Syria "Like L.A. Riots Gone Berserk"

Syrian refugees shout slogans against Assad at Boynuyogun refugee camp in Hatay province on the Turkish-Syrian border March 16, 2012.
Credit FreedomHouse / Flickr

U.S. and other diplomatic officials say discussions within the Obama administration in favor of providing arms to the Syrian rebels are gaining ground amid new indications that President Bashar Assad's regime may have launched additional chemical weapons attacks.

Joshua Landis, the Director of the Center for Middle East Studies at the University of Oklahoma, says eliminating Syria's air defenses would be the first step before inspectors could determine if the regime did indeed use chemical weapons.

"Once you've destroyed the Syrian military, you're in Iraq in a sense," Landis says. "We were criticized in Iraq because we only had 100,000 troops to protect an entire country."

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Middle East
4:10 pm
Wed May 1, 2013

Analysts Divided On U.S. Arming Syrian Rebels

Originally published on Wed May 1, 2013 6:48 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Audie Cornish.

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

I'm Melissa Block. And we begin this hour with the war in Syria and the possibility of U.S. involvement. Today, in Damascus, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad used the opportunity of May Day to make a rare public appearance. He visited a power plant and said, we hope that by this time next year, we will have overcome the crisis in our country.

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World Views
4:30 pm
Fri April 5, 2013

World Views: April 5, 2013

Listen to the entire April 5, 2013 episode

On Tuesday the U.N. General Assembly approved a treaty to regulate the global arms trade, and the panel explores what role the CIA is playing in Arab and Turkish military aid to Syria.

Ambassador Cynthia Schneider joins Suzette Grillot and Joshua Landis to discuss how culture influenced her diplomacy while representing the United States in the Netherlands between 1998 and 2001.

World Views
12:47 pm
Fri April 5, 2013

What the U.N. Arms Treaty Will (or Won't) Accomplish

Members of a combined Afghan and coalition security force collected a cache of weapons after clearing a known Haqqani network foreign fighter encampment site in Paktika province, Afghanistan - July 21, 2011.
Credit isafmedia / Flickr

The U.N. General Assembly overwhelmingly approved the first international treaty regulating the multi-billion dollar global arms trade Tuesday.

Iran, North Korea and Syria voted "no" on Tuesday, while Russia and China, both major arms exporters, abstained.

Suzette Grillot is the co-author of the 2009 book The International Arms Trade. She says Syria opposed the treaty because it does nothing to prevent weapons from flowing to non-state actors, like the Syrian opposition.

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