Syria

NuDay Syria

Since last month’s terror attacks in Paris and last week’s mass shooting in San Bernardino, California, the issues of Syrian refugees and radical Islam has risen to the top of the national political  agenda. Presidential candidate Donald Trump in particular has singled out Muslims as potentially dangerous. President Obama recently called on Americans to respect Muslims and separate the vast majority of them from the relatively small number of Islamic radicals.

But are people in New Hampshire answering the president’s call? Nadia Alawa, the founder and president of NuDay Syria, a local nonprofit that focuses on empowerment and help with dignity to Syria's mothers and children, spoke with NHPR's Peter Biello. 

Syrian Revolution Memory Project / Flickr/CC

Following the Paris Attacks, many politicians including in New Hampshire, are calling for a pause on Syrian and Iraqi refugees coming to the U.S.  This has led to a huge conversation - about American values, where the real risks are, and what the next steps should be.

    

Guests:

Diocese of Manchester, NH

New Hampshire's Catholic bishop says the state can resettle refugees while keeping residents safe from potential terrorists. 

<>In a statement Friday, Bishop Peter Libasci said the Diocese of Manchester stands ready to help Syrians fleeing violence. He said while security concerns are understandable in the wake of recent attacks, including the mass killings in Paris, New Hampshire residents should learn more about the screening process for refugees and quote "to consider the stories of the persecution these poor souls have suffered."

FILE

Both of New Hampshire’s Congressional representatives voted Thursday in favor of a bill to add extra screening steps for refugees resettling the United States from Syria and Iraq.

Rep. Annie Kuster, a Democrat, was one of 47 members of her party who sided with 242 Republicans to pass the bill.

As many leading conservatives call for stopping Syrian refugees from entering the United States, several evangelical Christian organizations are pushing back.

Since last week's attacks in Paris, at least 30 governors in this country, mostly Republicans, have called for keeping Syrian refugees out of the U.S.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Governor Maggie Hassan is defending her call for the U.S. government to stop accepting refugees from Syria. 

Hassan is the only democratic among the 30 U.S governors opposing current U.S. policy on Syrian refugee resettlement.

She says calling for "a pause" in  Syrian refugee resettlement in light of the Paris attacks is consistent with she called the first job of government, protecting the people.

Primary 2016: Foreign Policy on the Campaign Trail

Oct 29, 2015
Allegra Boverman / NHPR

We're looking at what the candidates are saying about America’s role in the world: how to deal with terrorism and handle the numerous conflicts in the Middle East, what to do about fraught relations with Russia, China and North Korea, and how best to respond to the refugee crisis in Europe and conduct trade in the global area.

GUESTS:

rania effa / Flickr/CC

We’re sitting down with Karima Bennoune, international human rights rights, lawyer, and writer. Her recent book tells the stories Muslim educators, lawyers, artists, and writers who she says represent one of the best hopes for ending fundamentalist oppression worldwide.

GUEST:  

Syrian Refugee Crisis: N.H. Reacts

Sep 15, 2015
DFID - UK Department for International Development / Flickr/CC

As migrants from Syria and other countries pour into Europe, President Obama says the United States will take ten thousand. And so Americans are watching and considering our own capacity to take in refugees, and other ways to address the root problems that are driving so many people out their home countries.

GUESTS:

The White House announced Thursday that the U.S. is preparing to take in at least 10,000 Syrian refugees starting Oct. 1 (the start of the fiscal year). This year, the U.S. is on track to take in about 1,500 Syrian refugees, White House spokesman Josh Earnest said. He reiterated that the U.S. has provided $4 billion in humanitarian aid to Syrian refugees.

Karim Kadim / AP via NPR

A powerful group of radical Islamists has been overwhelming Iraqi cities and towns. The stunning onslaught has the capital Baghdad now girding for battle and the U.S. grappling with how best to deal with the threat. We’ll look at the situation there and at American options.

GUESTS:

What Happened To The "Arab Spring," And What's Next

May 13, 2014
Hossam el-Hamalawy / Flickr/CC

Three years after what was dubbed the “Arab Spring”, Egypt is preparing for its first election since a military coup last summer. The candidate presumed to win is Abdel Fattah El-Sisi, who led the coup against Islamist President Morsi last July.  Since then, he’s been the de facto leader of Egypt, and has engineered mass crackdowns on dissent. It’s not the type of reform many imagined, when the fabled Tahrir Square uprisings began – and now, Egyptians are wondering if their revolution has left them any better off than before.

poniblog / Flickr Creative Commons

U.S. ties with Russia have always been complicated, but recently they have heated up even more. Disputes over how to approach the war in Syria, Russia’s protection of NSA leaker Edward Snowden, as well as the recent tug of war over Ukraine have all contributed to this tension. We’re examining this fraught relationship and how it’s changed. 

GUESTS:

via KinanAzmeh.com

Clarinetist and composer Kinan Azmeh was born in Damascus, but now lives in New York, where he wakes up to bad news each day. One of his compositions, “A Sad Morning, Every Morning,” is dedicated to the victims of the Syrian conflict, now in its third year.

Kinan will be performing at the Hopkins Center at Dartmouth tonight along with Sally Pinkas, and the Apple Hill String Quartet in a program called “Playing for Peace.”

Also featured tonight will be works by Joseph Haydn and Mieczyslaw Weinberg and the world premiere of two compositions by the composer Kareem Roustom-- also born in Damascus. Roustom has not been back to Syria since 2008; Azmeh since July 2012 , but the people who are suffering in their war-torn homeland are never far from their hearts or their music. We spoke to Kinan Azmeh and Kareem Routsom from Dartmouth’s studio about homeland.

IAEA Action Team

Only a few days after international weapons inspectors arrived in Syria, they’ve begun destroying Syria’sstockpile of chemical weapons along with the equipment used to make it. The team is reportedly using blow torches and heavy trucks to crush weaponry, working as an active war rages on around them.

For a better sense of what weapons inspectors do, we spoke to Tim Trevan. He worked as a U.N. weapons inspector in Iraq in the early 90’s and is currently Executive Director of the International Council for the Life Sciences.

757Live via Flickr Creative Commons

The Constitution gives Congress the right to declare war and the President to wage it. Yet many presidents have taken military action, without involving lawmakers. President Obama’s recent decision to seek Congressional support for intervention in Syria has renewed debate over when and how we engage our military.  

Guests:

  • Buzz Scherr – Professor at UNH School of Law in Concord
  • Linda L. Fowler - Professor of Government and the Frank J. Reagan Chair in Policy Studies at Dartmouth College     
P. LeBlanc via Twitter

Phil Sands is Syria correspondent for The National, an English language daily newspaper based in Abu Dhabi.  He was living in Damascus when the uprising began in March of 2011, and has continued reporting on the escalation of the rebellion and civil war in the two years since. Earlier this year, Phil returned to the US with a pair of unlikely refugees – two dogs, saved from the war-torn streets of the Syrian capital. He sat down with Virginia Prescott this past February to talk about the puppies, which he called Mr. Brown and Mr. White.

New Hampshire Sen. Kelly Ayotte says she's skeptical of the credibility of Russian President Vladimir Putin and Syrian President Bashar Assad and the ability of the United Nations to execute a plan for Syria to relinquish its chemical weapons.

But Ayotte, commenting after President Barack Obama addressed the nation Tuesday night, said if the effort is successful, the world would be safer.

FreedomHouse via Flickr Creative Commons

President Obama says the United States has a moral responsibility to punish the Syrian government for its reported use of chemical weapons against civilians. And he’s asked Congress to approve military action.  We’ll look at the arguments for and against, and gauge reaction in the Granite State.

GUESTS:

Sen. Shaheen, Rep. Kuster Weigh In On Syria

Sep 2, 2013

New Hampshire’s congressional delegation is weighing in on possible military intervention in Syria.  This after President Barack Obama announced he would seek congressional approval for a military strike to punish the Assad regime for allegedly using chemical weapons. 

At an AFL-CIO Labor Day breakfast at St. George Greek Orthodox Cathedral  in Manchester, Senator Jeanne Shaheen stopped short of saying she supports military action against the Assad regime.   But she did note that she has been raising the issue of chemical weapons use in the conflict since February of 2012.

Photograph by Monique Jaques for Bloomberg Businessweek

Syria’s civil war is now in its third year. More than 70,000 people have been killed; more than 1.4 million people have fled their homes; lives and families have been shattered; landmarks decimated and the economy is crumbling. Among those seeking refuge in neighboring Jordan are innovators and diaspora entrepreneurs who may well be seeding the ideas and infrastructure of Syria’s future. Patrick Clark is a reporter for Bloomberg Business Week covering small business and entrepreneurship and wrote about a tech boot camp for Syrians working in Jordan with Sarah Topol.

This week, U.S. concerns over the civil war in Syria escalated with talk of chemical weapons and the real fear that the conflict could spill over in the broader Middle East including Israel.  Now there’s debate in Washington about how this country should respond what the so-called “red-line is” and whether the Americans public is willing to cross it. 

Guests

Nicole Tung, courtesy FreeJamesFoley.org.

It’s been 100 days since journalist and New Hampshire native James Foley was kidnapped in Syria, with no information about his condition, location, or even his kidnappers' identities.

Foley’s family is again appealing for help in finding him , using a website called FreeJamesFoley.org. His mother, Diane Foley, joins All Things Considered host Brady Carlson with more on those efforts.

Carlos Casas/Aga Khan Music Initiative

New Sounds From Arab Lands is five musicians from Syria, Tunisia and Lebanon respectively. They were brought together in collaboration with the Aga Khan music initiative, and are artists in a residency at Dartmouth College curated by ethnomusicologist and music professor Ted Levin. The group performs this evening at the Spaulding auditorium. We caught up with the group from a studio at Dartmouth College.

Emma LeBlanc

 

As the Syrian revolution grinds on, middle-class Damascus clings to the rituals of everyday life. Photographer Emma LeBlanc and Phil Sands capture the other story of the revolution. It is the story of a tension that has come to define this new Syria in transition, though the quiet, frightened, quotidian voices of the majority are those less often heard amidst the shouts for freedom and those for president Bashar. 

The freelance journalist James Foley of Rochester, New Hampshire was taken captive in northern Syria on Thanksgiving Day. Now, after weeks of silence, his family is speaking out.


The family of an international journalist from Rochester, New Hampshire says gunmen in Syria kidnapped him on Thanksgiving Day.

tiny cc via Flickr

Word of Mouth's weekend program includes some of our favorite stories from from the daily program.

Part 1: Syria/Chemical Dangers

FreedomHouse via Flickr Creative Commons

The conflict in Syria is reaching the one year mark, and a newly reformed Syrian coalition has just been officially recognized by Britain as the unifying voice of the opposition. Vice Magazine, a publication known for its willingness to cover sensitive subjects, recently devoted an entire issue to exploring Syria’s complex resistance.

We’ll sit down with a panel of local experts on Syria and the surrounding region.  As rebels and government forces to battle it out, defections are occurring almost daily, and civilians are fleeing to other countries, creating a refugee problem.   We’ll explore the background of this conflict…and the debate over what the U.S. response should be. 

Guests

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