October 15 - America's Longest War Gets Longer; Israeli and Palestinian Leaders AWOL as Intifada Brews; Russia's Deal with Israel Over Syria

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Part 1

We begin with America’s longest war getting longer following the president’s announcement that close to 10,000 U.S. troops will remain in Afghanistan longer than previously planned since recent Taliban offensives in Kunduz and across the country have exposed the many weaknesses of the Afghan army and police. The Obama Administration’s former Senior Adviser to the Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan, Vali Nasr, who is now the Dean of the Johns Hopkins University’s School of Advanced International Studies, joins us to discuss when and if the Afghan army will be able to defend the country and whether Pakistan is still acting as the spoiler destabilizing Afghanistan.

 

Part 2

Then we go to Israel to speak with the former Speaker of the Knesset, Avraham Burg, about the lack of political leadership on both the Palestinian and Israeli sides as events appear to be spiraling out of control in Jerusalem with many analysts warning that a third intifada is about to erupt. While Prime Minister Netanyahu’s right wing coalition continues to expand settlements but will not state what their endgame with the Palestinians is, we discuss why successive Israeli governments have been unable to reach a deal with the Palestinians who remain divided and despite their suffering, appear unwilling to compromise.

Part 3

Then finally we look into what arrangements Israel might have made with Russia in a recent meeting in Moscow between Putin and Netanyahu that preceded Russia’s deployment of warplanes and troops in Syria, which left the impression that Russia was more concerned about crossing a red line with Israel than it was with confronting the United States. Asher Kaufman, a Professor of Peace Studies at the University of Notre Dame and the author of “Contested Frontiers: Cartography, Sovereignty, and Conflict at the Syria, Lebanon, Israel Tri-Border Region”, joins us to discuss Israel’s possible strategy in Syria and its lack of strategy with the Palestinians as a third intifada brews.

 

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