September 8 - The Use of Military Force for Humanitarian Ends; A Profile of Bashar Al Assad; AIPAC Rounds Up Votes for Obama; The Ghosts of Interventions Past

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Full Program

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Part 1

We begin with Daniel Serwer, a former mediator in the Bosnian war who participated in the Dayton peace talks, and discuss comparisons between the previous use of American military force based on humanitarian grounds and the current threat to bomb Syria because of the regime’s use of chemical weapons against its own people. daniel serwer

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Part 2

Then we get an analysis of who the Syrian dictator Bashar al Assad is, and how his so-called “reforms” that deviated from Ba’athist socialism towards neo-liberal crony capitalism, led to the rebellion that has now metastasized into a brutal civil war. An Iranian-Syrian scholar and political analyst whose uncle was close to the regime, Dr. Majid Rafizedeh joins us to discuss how the Western educated ophthalmologist who threatens to ignite the region unless he rules over Syria, continues to argue it is either him or the “terrorists”.

majid rafizedeh

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Part 3

Then we look into the uphill battle the president has to get the House to approve his war resolution which an overwhelming majority of Americans oppose. M.J. Rosenberg, a special correspondent for the Washington Spectator who worked as a senior House and Senate staffer for 15 years, joins us to discuss the role that AIPAC, the so-called Israel lobby is playing in rounding up votes for Obama.

mj rosenberg

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Part 4

Then finally long time staff writer for The New Yorker and a regular contributor to The New York Review of Books, Mark Danner, joins us to discuss the evolution of the R 2 P doctrine, the responsibility to protect, in international relations and how it could be applied to the Syrian situation as we await the U.N. report on the August 21 chemical weapons attack expected at the end of next week and while a group of Nobel Laureates, “the elders” call for a referral to the International Criminal Court.

mark danner