May 16 - Although His Family Suffered in the Cultural Revolution, China's Leader is Reviving Mao; The Extent of Saudi Influence in Washington; Arming a Government That Does Not Control Libya

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Full Program


Part 1

We begin with the media blackout in China of the 50th anniversary of Mao’s Cultural Revolution that is not being observed even though China’s leader Xi Xinping’s father was purged and Xi himself was sent down to the countryside for “re-education”. Scott Kennedy the Deputy Director of the Freeman Chair in China Studies at the Center for Strategic and International Studies and the author of “The Dragon’s Learning Curve: Global Governance and China” joins us to discuss the apparent paradox that in spite of what the Xi family suffered and the destruction of the Chinese economy, its culture and heritage wrought by Mao’s unleashing of the ideological madness of the Red Guards, China’s leader is bringing back Mao and whitewashing history.

Scott Kennedy

Part 2

Then we take a further look at the apparent lack of interest in the press as evidence grows from declassified documents from the 9/11 Commission, of Saudi Arabia’s possible involvement in 9/11 that little to no attention has been paid to in spite of the trauma of 9/11 and the trillions spent on security since. Ali Al-Ahmed, the founder and director of the Institute for Gulf Affairs joins us to discuss the powerful influence of Saudi money in Washington that has succeeded in portraying Saudi Arabia as an indispensable ally even though much of the instability in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iraq, Syria, Somalia and Nigeria can be traced to Saudi-financed sectarian hatred and extremist religious ideology.


Part 3

Then finally we speak with Ali Abdullatif Ahmida, a Professor of Political Science at the University of New England and author of “The Making of Modern Libya”. He joins us to discuss the decision to arm the UN-backed Libyan government following talks in Vienna even though Prime Minister Sarraj’s government in Tripoli does not control the west of the country which is under the control of General Haftar who is supported by Egypt and the United Arab Emirates. We assess the chances that the new government has of defeating the Islamic State which has a strong foothold in this chaotic county with over 1,500 competing militias.