Skip to main content

Middle East

Middle East

Juan Cole on the Middle East

Juan Cole
Peter B. Collins

The conversation between Juan Cole and Peter B. Collins concerned Iraq, Libya, Yemen, Syria, Iran, Israel, Palestine, the CIA and drones.

Juan Cole has testified before the U.S. Senate and knows Arabic and Persian. He blogs at Informed Comment and is a historian of South Asia. He has been a guest on PBS News Hour, ABC Nightly News, Nightline, the Today Show, Charlie Rose, Anderson Cooper 360, Countdown with Keith Olbermann, Rachel Maddow, the Colbert Report, Democracy Now! and many others. He lived in various parts of the Muslim world for nearly 10 years.
Source: Foreign Policy Roundup: U. Michigan’s Prof. Juan Cole

Cancer Alley Case Gets Surprising Support from EPA Administrator Jackson

Mossville, Louisiana sits in the shadow of 14 petrochemical refineries.  For decades, Mossville residents have complained about their health problems to industry, and to state and federal agencies. They reached past the U.S. regulators to take their case to the highest human rights court in the western hemisphere, Inter-American Commission on Human Rights. Now a candid comment from the highest U.S. environmental regulator appears to have boosted their petition. Living on Earth and Planet Harmony’s Ike Sriskandarajah reports.
Source: Obama Administration Divided Over Cancer Alley Case

Play Program or Download(below the fold)

The War in Libya

Jeremy Scahill

Scott Horton Interviews Jeremy Scahill

Jeremy Scahill discusses Yemen, President Saleh, Saudi Arabia, Iran, Al Qaeda, Obama, Bush, Ed Schultz, Libya.
Source: Scott Horton Interviews Jeremy Scahill

Congressman Dennis Kucinich

Scott Horton Interviews Rep. Dennis Kucinich

Rep. Dennis Kucinich discusses his attempt to provoke debate in Congress concerning the authority to declare war. He voted to defund the Libyan War.
Source: Scott Horton Interviews Rep. Dennis Kucinich

Glenn Greenwald

Scott Horton Interviews Glenn Greenwald

Glenn Greenwald talks about Obama and War Powers Act and the Libyan War. He also comments on WikiLeaks Julian Assange and journalism.
Source: Scott Horton Interviews Glenn Greenwald

Nick Turse

Scott Horton Interviews Nick Turse

Nick Turse discusses how JSOC, the Joint Special Operations Command became the president’s own private army. He also comments on why the precision airstrikes in Libya were probably guided by special operations forces on the ground.
Source: Scott Horton Interviews Nick Turse

Play Program or Download(before the fold)

Rage and rebellion across the Islamic world

I must confess that I have my own views of the Muslim world. Like most countries they want self-determination. That is the process by which a country determines its own statehood and forms its own allegiances and government. Self-determination is an idea that can't killed with bombs or bullets or autocratic leaders.

Robin Wright

Robin Wright talks with Charlie Rose about the Islamic world
Source: Robin Wright

Al McCoy


Al McCoy talks about how empires are maintained, why the U.S. empire is in decline, and what the consequences might be depending on how we respond to that decline. Al McCoy is a professor of history at the University of Wisconson–Madison, and author of 'Policing America's Empire: The United States, the Philippines and the Rise of the Surveillance State,'
Source: TomCast for April 24, 2011: SubordiNations

Robin Wright talked about the recent Middle East uprisings and she responded to telephone calls and electronic communications.
Source: Rock The Casbah

Play Program or Download(below the fold)

Libya: Here We Go Again

Monday 5 September 2011
by: Chris Hedges, Truthdig | Op-Ed

A rebel fighter loads ammunition into a canister next to gun mounted onto the back of a truck at a service station on the road between Misrata and Sirte, in Libya, Sept. 3, 2011. The rebels have formed a Supreme Security Committee of civilian officials and militia leaders, which will take control of all security matters in Tripoli. (Photo: Bryan Denton / The New York Times)

Here we go again. The cheering crowds. The deposed dictator. The encomiums to freedom and liberty. The American military as savior. You would think we would have learned in Afghanistan or Iraq. But I guess not. I am waiting for a trucked-in crowd to rejoice as a Gadhafi statue is toppled and Barack Obama lands on an aircraft carrier in a flight suit to announce “Mission Accomplished.” War, as long as you view it through the distorted lens of the corporate media, is not only entertaining, but allows us to confuse state power with personal power.It permits us to wallow in unchecked self-exaltation. We are a nation that loves to love itself.

The Turning Point of American Empire?

Paul Fitzgerald & Elizabeth Gould

Afghanistan experts Elizabeth Gould & Paul Fitzgerald talk to Peter B. Collins. They are the authors of the book "Crossing Zero: The AfPak War at the Turning Point of American Empire" This broadcast was made before the murder of Bin Laden and is one part of the Peter B. Collins podcast.
Source: Afghanistan Experts Gould & Fitzgerald; The Nation’s Blog on WikiLeaks and Bradley Manning by Peter B. Collins on April 1, 2011

Michael Schwartz

Weapons of Mass Disruption

Michael Schwartz, a sociology professor at Stony Brook University and author of 'War Without End: The Iraq War in Context' talks about the Egyptian revolution and the power of nonviolent disruption.
Source: Weapons of Mass Disruption, TomCast from

Music includes Earth Anthem, We'll Met Again, Taste of Honey, wasted life - stiff little fingers, filled with love, Young - Hollywood Undead, wright johnnie - hello vietnam, pete seeger - Talking Atom, Wings, Jeff Foxworthy- Married and Single, excerpt from grapes of wrath movie

Play Program or Download(below the fold)

King George III Won: Happy Fourth of July!

King George III Won: Happy Fourth of July!
By David Swanson

The Declaration of Independence is best remembered as a declaration of war, a war declared on the grounds that we wanted our own flag. The sheer stupidity and anachronism of the idea serves to discourage any thoughts about why Canada didn't need a bloody war, whether the U.S. war benefitted people outside the new aristocracy to whom power was transferred, what bothered Frederick Douglas so much about a day celebrating "independence," or what the Declaration of Independence actually said.

When you read the Declaration of Independence, it turns out to be an indictment of King George III for various abuses of power. And those abuses of power look fairly similar to abuses of power we happily permit U.S. presidents to engage in today, either as regards the people of this nation or the people of territories and nations that our military occupies today in a manner uncomfortably resembling Britain's rule over the 13 colonies.

Or perhaps I should say, a large portion of us take turns being happy or outraged depending on the political party with which the current president is identified.

The Elements Of A Successful Revolution

Shadi Hamid
Simon Schama

Shadi Hamid and Simon Schama comment on what makes a revolution more likely to succeed - or fail.
Source: The Elements Of A Successful Revolution

Anand Gopal

Scott Horton Interviews Anand Gopal 

Independent journalist Anand Gopal discusses why counterinsurgency strategy works better in theory than in practice. He explains how the "denying al-Qaeda sanctuary" justification for U.S. military deployments ignores the real reasons the 9/11 attacks succeeded.

Eric Margolis

Scott Horton Interviews Eric Margolis

Eric Margolis discusses Egypt’s fake revolution. He comments on the criminal charges against former Pakistani president Musharraf and reminds us of the still unsolved mystery of who really killed Benazir Bhutto.

Lester Brown

How Close are we to the Edge

As food prices rise, and civil unrest builds throughout the Middle East, Lester Brown wonders if these two could be connected.

Music includes Earth Anthem, Subterranean Homesick Blues, In A World Gone Mad..., brother can you spare a dime, Diamonds & Rust, climate change, We'll Meet Again

Play Program or Download(below the fold)

Living Through the Next Fifty Years

Mark Hertsgaard

Mark Hertsgaard talks with Terrence McNally. Mark Hertsgaard is a fellow of The Open Society Institute and The Nation's environment correspondent. He has covered climate change for twenty years and is the author of six books, including, most recently, HOT: Living Through the Next Fifty Years on Earth. Terrence McNally is a journalist and radio host.
Source: Q&A: Mark Hertsgaard, Author

Wendell Berry
Paul Epstein

From Living on Earth, the Costs of Coal

If the true costs of the full lifecycle of coal were taken into account, this form of energy would be extremely expensive.

Extraction, processing, transportation and combustion of coal create large tolls on the environment and human health. We hear from poet and farmer Wendell Berry who slept in the Kentucky governor’s office to protest mountaintop removal. Host Bruce Gellerman also talks with Dr. Paul Epstein from Harvard University’s Medical School about his new study measuring the true costs of coal.
Source: Costs of Coal

Juan Cole

The Corruption Game

Juan Cole, a professor of history and director of the Center for South Asian Studies at the University of Michigan, talks about U.S. government backing of corrupt dictatorships around the world.
Source: The Corruption Game

Bill McKibben

Pressure Cooking

Bill McKibben discusses the U.S. government's apathetic attitude toward global warming and that this forces the public to lead the fight against global warming.
Source: Pressure Cooking

Music includes Earth Anthem, La Rosita, Janis Joplin Me And Bobby Mcgee, Love Peace, Requiem For A Dream, Sweet Sir Galahad, Don't Let Me Down, We'll Meet Again

Play Program or Download(below the fold)

Palestine and Revolutions in the Arab World

Palestine and Revolutions in the Arab World
AMP al-Nakba Event
Saturday, May 14, 2011 from 6:00 PM - 10:00 PM
Folsom, CA


Dr. Mustapha Bargouthi
Physician, president of the Union of Palestinian Medical Relief Committees and world renowned speaker on Palestine

Dr. Hatem Bazian
Chairman of AMP and professor of ethnic and near eastern studies at the University of California at Berkeley

Alison Weir
Executive director of If Americans Knew, a nonprofit organization.

Osama Abuirshaid
AMP board member and editor-in-chief of Al-Meezan newspaper

Seeing the Face of Disaster In the Middle East with Stephen Kinzer

Stephen Kinzer

American and European policies in the Middle East have produced a region immersed in violence, terror, anger and oppression.  The West needs to change policies that were shaped for the Cold WarKinzer offers ideas for a better approach to the world's most turbulent region.
Source: Facing Disaster In the Middle East: Do We Have Only Bad Options?

Toxic Lead Still in Brass Plumbing

Officials at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill tested water coming from new brass plumbing in some of the college’s brand new buildings and found it contains high levels of lead.
Source: Lead Surprisingly Still in Brass Plumbing

Music includes Earth Anthem, Baker Street, Brother Can You Spare A Dime, Crazy Rhythm, That's Amore, Duct Tape, Go Down Congress, We'll Meet Again

Mohandas K. Gandhi

"Whenever I despair, I remember that the way of truth and love has always won. There may be tyrants and murderers, and for a time, they may seem invincible, but in the end, they always fail. Think of it: always." -Mohandas K. Gandhi



What's Next for Egypt?

Sunday, March 20, 1:30 PM
at the
Unitarian Universalist Society,
2425 Sierra Blvd. , Sacramento 95825


Sacramento UNA-USA Presents

Professor Ayad Al-Qazzaz


Monday March 28, 7 p.m.

SMUD Headquarters Bldg.
6201 S Street, Main Floor,

Professor Al-Qazzaz, educated at the University of Baghdad and U-C Berkeley, teaches at CSUS on Middle East societies and cultures. He served on the Advisory Board of the Jour-nal of Military and Political Sociology and was past President of the Arab American Sacramento Chamber of Commerce. Currently he serves as President of the Middle East Cultural Association at CSUS. Dr. Al-Qazzaz is the author of several books and numerous articles for journals in the US and the Arab world. He has lectured widely in the US and England on Middle East affairs and currently produces a half-hour TV show on Access Sacramento, "Focus on the Middle East."

Achieving Liberation and Democracy in the Middle East

Achieving Liberation and Democracy in the Middle East.

Richard Becker discusses current developments, people's movements, historical overview of the Arab regimes, role of U.S. in suppressing democracy and human rights.

Wednesday, Mar 9, 7pm
909 12th St., Sacramento

Robert Fisk talks with Cindy Sheehan about the Middle East

From September 26, 2010, Cindy interviews British journalist, Robert Fisk, who has been living in the Middle East and reporting from there for decades. He is an English writer and journalist and has primarily been based in Beirut for more than 30 years. Fisk holds more British and International Journalism awards than any other foreign correspondent. Fisk has said that journalism must, "challenge authority, all authority, especially so when governments and politicians take us to war."
Source: Audio Archives of Cindy Sheehan's Soapbox

Scott Horton Interviews Scott Horton, the international human rights lawyer on October 26, 2010

The other Scott Horton is also a professor and contributing editor at Harper's magazine.  They discuss the maintenance of order and civility in Kyrgyzstan despite a rather chaotic election result, and the already infamous Frago 242 order (revealed by WikiLeaks) issued from high up the chain of command that demanded U.S. soldiers ignore the torture and human rights violations perpetrated by their Iraqi allies.  They touch on Donald Rumsfeld's ignorance of the obligation of soldiers to prevent inhumane treatment.
Source: Scott Horton Interviews The Other Scott Horton

Memorial in Honor of Fallen Egyptian Protesters + CELEBRATION!

From Sarah Moussa:


We're thrilled, elated, ecstatic - you name it! Thank you for your continued support of the Egyptian people - it's time to celebrate!

Of course, we want to celebrate both the lives of those that have fallen in the name of democracy as well as the great news from this morning.

We will still be holding a memorial + celebration today at 16th and J St in Sacramento at 5 PM. We'll be on every single live news coverage so PLEASE COME OUT and show your support!

Look forward to seeing you all there.


Candle-light Vigil and Rally in Solidarity with Fallen Egyptian Protesters

(SACRAMENTO) – The Sacramento Coalition for Egyptian Democracy, including community and interfaith leaders, will be hosting a candle-light vigil to honor the fallen Egyptian protesters and will rally to support their fight for democracy.