WBEZ | Iraq http://www.wbez.org/tags/iraq Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en Remembering the Persian Gulf War http://www.wbez.org/programs/worldview/2016-01-20/remembering-persian-gulf-war-114544 <p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/Gulf-War-2.jpg" style="height: 423px; width: 620px;" title="President George Bush pauses during a White House press conference shortly after Congress empowered him to use force in the Persian Gulf on Jan. 12 1991. (AP Photo/Marcy Nighswander)​" /></div><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/242986529&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe></p><p><span style="font-size:24px;">Twenty five years since the Gulf War</span><br />This month marks the 25th anniversary of the congressional authorization of the first Gulf War. The Center for Strategic International Studies recently noted that for the U.S. it was the start of almost 25 continuous years of bombing and military engagement in Iraq. John Mearsheimer from the University of Chicago recently said that &ldquo;since 2001, the U.S. has had the midas touch in reverse&rdquo; when it comes to the Middle East. We talk with two veteran peace campaigners who make the case that first Gulf War was instrumental in a series of cascading events with negative repercussions for the U.S. and the world. We&rsquo;ll talk about how militarization, the media, and politics changed after the Gulf War.</p><p><strong>Guest:</strong> Jennifer Bing is the &nbsp;director of Chicago AFSC Middle East Program</p><p><strong>Guest:</strong> Kevin Martin is executive director of Peace Action</p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/WHM.jpg" title="Otto von Bismarck, the Chancellor of Germany. (AP Photo)" /></div><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/242986970&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe></p><p dir="ltr"><span style="font-size:24px;">World History Moment: Reunification of Germany</span><br />When most people think about German reunification, they remember the fall of the Berlin Wall. &nbsp;But Germany was actually unified before that,in 1871. &nbsp;Historian John Schmidt recalls what happened.</p><p><strong>Guest:</strong> John Schmidt is a historian and the author of &ldquo;On This Day in Chicago History.&rdquo;</p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/Global%20Notes%20.jpg" title="Fadoul is known as the James Brown of Morocco. (Photo: Habibi Funk Records)" /></div><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/242994102&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe></p><p dir="ltr"><span style="font-size:24px;"><span id="docs-internal-guid-a66cb6ec-620f-2009-178e-e707a9357c6c"><span style="font-family: Cambria; font-weight: 700; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">Global Notes: Fadoul, Morocco&rsquo;s &ldquo;godfather of soul&rdquo;</span></span></span><br />There seems to be no corner of the world that wasn&rsquo;t impacted &nbsp;by the music of the &ldquo;hardest working man in show business,&rdquo; &nbsp;James Brown. For this week&rsquo;s Global Notes, Radio M and Morning Shift host Tony Sarabia introduces us to Morocco&rsquo;s answer to the Godfather of Soul: Fadoul.</p><p dir="ltr"><strong>Guest:</strong> Tony Sarabia is the host of Morning Shift and Radio M</p></p> Wed, 20 Jan 2016 20:01:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/programs/worldview/2016-01-20/remembering-persian-gulf-war-114544 After Ramadi, A Look At What's Next In The Fight Against ISIS http://www.wbez.org/news/after-ramadi-look-whats-next-fight-against-isis-114308 <p><p>Months after Ramadi was seized by ISIS fighters, Iraqi Prime Minister Haider Abadi traveled to the city that&#39;s now largely in government control and announced that Iraq&#39;s troops will liberate more cities and push ISIS out entirely in 2016.</p><p>&quot;ISIS was defeated and hundreds of its criminal terrorists were killed&quot; in Ramadi, the prime minister said, according to&nbsp;<a href="http://www.iraqinews.com/features/we-are-coming-to-liberate-mosul-2016-will-see-the-end-of-isis-presence-says-abadi/">Iraqi News</a>. He added that &quot;2016 will be the year of the final victory and the end of ISIS presence in Iraq.&quot;</p><p>Ramadi&#39;s return to government control would continue a string of recent military successes against ISIS, but the group still holds Iraq&#39;s second-largest city, Mosul, along with Fallujah.</p><p>Retaking Ramadi, a city 60 miles west of Baghdad, would have both strategic and symbolic importance. When it fell without a major battle, U.S. officials questioned the Iraqi army&#39;s will to fight. Members of Iraq&#39;s military argued over who was at fault, with one soldier&nbsp;<a href="http://www.npr.org/sections/parallels/2015/06/23/416825931/iraqi-soldiers-generals-shift-the-blame-for-battlefield-defeats">telling NPR in June</a>&nbsp;that the government force was ordered to withdraw from the city with just 30 minutes&#39; notice.</p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/ramadi-soldiers-iraq_custom-8b584e0c19b9bd0bb3615d4bdc9bc7e09b65bb14-s800-c85.jpg" title="Iraqi soldiers walk inside a government complex recaptured from ISIS fighters in central Ramadi, Iraq, Monday. (STR/EPA /LANDOV)" /></div><p>On Monday in Ramadi, Iraqi troops reportedly captured an ISIS flag and raised their own banner over a government building. They&#39;re also dealing with booby-trapped buildings and streets, along with fighting on the outside of the city&#39;s center.</p><p>Ramadi is the capital of Anbar province. Many of its majority-Sunni residents fled the ISIS occupation and the fighting.</p><p>Discussing the status of the broader U.S. fight against ISIS, NPR&#39;s Alice Fordham reports on today&#39;s&nbsp;<a href="http://www.npr.org/programs/morning-edition/">Morning Edition</a>:</p><p><iframe frameborder="0" height="290" scrolling="no" src="http://www.npr.org/player/embed/461385104/461387013" title="NPR embedded audio player" width="100%"></iframe></p><blockquote><p>&quot;In the main area of ISIS&#39;s control this year &mdash; which is to say the parts of Iraq and Syria that they call their caliphate &mdash; they have lost some towns and some smaller cities, mainly on the edges of their territory.</p><p>&quot;Earlier in the year, we saw the fight to push them out of the Syrian town of&nbsp;<a href="http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2015/06/27/418075535/kurds-reportedly-retake-kobani-from-islamic-state-fighters">Kobani</a>, where Syrian Kurdish fighters worked with the U.S.-led coalition in a huge battle that left many ISIS fighters dead, although it did largely destroy the town. Those Kurdish forces are still pushing into ISIS turf, with U.S. support.</p><p>&quot;Then over the border in Iraq, in addition to Ramadi &mdash; which we have to remember ISIS only took in May this year &mdash; the extremists have been pushed out of several cities &mdash; Tikrit, Sinjar, Bayji &mdash; sometimes by security forces, sometimes by an array of ethnic or religious militias.&quot;</p></blockquote><p>The U.S. and its allies have also used airstrikes to attack ISIS and have targeted the group&#39;s finances, which rely on oil sales and other measures. In the face of that, Alice notes, ISIS is trying to emphasize its control &mdash; and to tap into grievances in Yemen and elsewhere to help it establish franchise groups.</p><p>And of course, ISIS has also claimed responsibility for high-profile terrorist attacks far beyond Iraq in recent months, from the downing of a Russian airliner in Egypt to the attacks in Paris.</p><p>Describing the fight to push ISIS out of Iraq, Alice notes that Iraq&#39;s security forces are trying to seize momentum and take the fight to ISIS strongholds in Fallujah and Mosul.</p><p>&quot;There are other military sources that say this might be a bit unrealistic,&quot; Alice says, &quot;based on the fact that Fallujah and Mosul are heavily populated,&quot; unlike Ramadi and other ISIS-controlled cities that have been retaken.</p><p>She says there&#39;s also a larger concern:</p><p>&quot;Analysts have also for a long time said that the problem of ISIS in Iraq and Syria won&#39;t be resolved until there&#39;s strong central governments in those places who can offer the people living under ISIS a better life than what they currently have. And right now that&#39;s still, on balance, not really the case.&quot;</p><p><em>&mdash; via <a href="http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2015/12/29/461385104/after-ramadi-a-look-at-whats-next-in-the-fight-against-isis?ft=nprml&amp;f=461385104">NPR News</a></em></p></p> Tue, 29 Dec 2015 11:46:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/news/after-ramadi-look-whats-next-fight-against-isis-114308 The Obama Administration’s Strategy In The Fight Against ISIS http://www.wbez.org/programs/here-and-now/2015-11-23/obama-administration%E2%80%99s-strategy-fight-against-isis-113892 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/1120_mcgurk-624x404.jpg" alt="" /><p><div id="attachment_96488"><hr /><img alt="US Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Iraq and Iran in the Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs Brett McGurk, testifies before the House Foreign Affairs Committee on &quot;Terrorist March in Iraq: The U.S. Response.&quot; on July 23, 2014 on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC. AFP PHOTO/Mandel NGAN (Photo credit should read MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)" src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/media.wbur.org/wordpress/11/files/2015/11/1120_mcgurk-624x404.jpg" style="height: 401px; width: 620px;" title="US Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Iraq and Iran in the Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs Brett McGurk, testifies before the House Foreign Affairs Committee on “Terrorist March in Iraq: The U.S. Response.” on July 23, 2014. McGurk is also the Special Presidential Envoy to the Global Coalition to Counter ISIL. (Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images)" /><p>In an interview before the Paris attacks, President Barack Obama&nbsp;<a href="http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/president-obama-vows-completely-decapitate-isis-operations/story?id=35173579" target="_blank">said</a>&nbsp;ISIS had been contained, that the militants were losing ground. In Turkey on Monday, he&nbsp;<a href="https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2015/11/16/press-conference-president-obama-antalya-turkey" target="_blank">acknowledged</a>&nbsp;the terrorism ISIS claimed responsibility for, but continued to defend his strategy to combat the group.</p></div><p>&ldquo;As I outlined this fall at the United Nations,&rdquo; he said, &ldquo;we have a comprehensive strategy using all elements of our power, military, intelligence, economic, development and the strength of our communities.&rdquo;</p><p>But critics are firing back. Republican Senator John McCain&nbsp;<a href="http://www.npr.org/2015/11/17/456326738/sen-john-mccain-on-isis" target="_blank">told</a>&nbsp;NPR&rsquo;s&nbsp;<em>Morning Edition</em>&nbsp;this week that the White House really doesn&rsquo;t have a strategy to fight ISIS, and&nbsp;<a href="http://www.msnbc.com/andrea-mitchell-reports/watch/feinstein---i-ve-never-been-more-concerned--567674435736" target="_blank">on MSNBC</a>, Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein disagreed with Obama&rsquo;s assertion that ISIS has been contained.</p><p>&ldquo;I&rsquo;ve never been more concerned,&rdquo; Feinstein said. &ldquo;I read the intelligence faithfully. ISIL is not contained. ISIL is expanding. They just put out a video saying it is their intent to attack this country.&rdquo;</p><p><em>Here &amp; Now&#39;s </em>Indira Lakshmanan talks to&nbsp;Brett McGurk, Special Presidential Envoy to the<a href="http://www.state.gov/s/seci/" target="_blank">Global Coalition to Counter ISIL</a>, about the challenges of fighting ISIS and how the attacks in Paris and Beirut and the downing of the Russian plane over Egypt are affecting the U.S. and coalition strategy.</p><hr /><p><strong><span style="font-size:20px;">Interview Highlights</span></strong></p><p><strong>Explain what you&rsquo;ve noticed in your role as presidential envoy.</strong></p><p>&ldquo;What&rsquo;s going on within this jihadist community is the competition for the mantle of global jihad. It&rsquo;s a competition between al-Qaida senior leadership in Pakistan and ISIL, Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi. It&rsquo;s a dangerous phenomenon and we&rsquo;re not focused on only one and not the other, but the difference is that ISIL is focused on actually establishing its phony self-declared caliphate and establishing a state. I&rsquo;ve traveled to almost 30 capitals all around the world from Europe to the gulf region to Asia, and what we&rsquo;re finding in this phenomenon of foreign fighters &ndash; and 30,000 from a hundred countries all around the world, it&rsquo;s almost twice as many of the jihadist fighters that went into Afghanistan in the &rsquo;80s and those only came from a handful of countries &ndash; is that the attraction to be part of this phony self-declared caliphate is something that is a magnet and a draw. That is why ISIL in particular has been drawing so many young men and women from around the world and it&rsquo;s one reason why we are so focused on Iraq and Syria on retaking territory from ISIL and we&rsquo;ve had some real success in that regard. In Iraq we&rsquo;ve now retaken about 40 percent of territory that ISIL controlled, but that figure isn&rsquo;t as important as the actual strategic ground that we&rsquo;re taking back.&rdquo;</p><p><strong>Have you been asking other countries to do more on military side in the coalition?</strong></p><p>&ldquo;We are. I think if you look at the airstrikes statistics, we have a very broad air coalition both in Iraq and Syria. The French were one of the first countries to strike with us back in September in Iraq, they also were one of the earliest Western partners to join the air campaign in Syria. The Australians are also doing airstrikes with us in Syria. But we&rsquo;re obviously always asking about a little bit more in the air, a little bit more intelligence collection of information, but right now we&rsquo;re also focused on not only special forces on the ground but also the training of Iraqi security forces, of Iraqi police, of indigenous forces such as the Iraqi Kurdish Peshmerga.&rdquo;</p><p><strong>What are the&nbsp;most important elements of counter ISIL strategy?</strong></p><p>&ldquo;Number one, we&rsquo;re looking to degrade and suffocate and destroy them in their core. And their core is in Iraq and Syria, and we&rsquo;re doing that by working with indigenous forces on the ground combined with an air campaign to degrade their networks and take out their leaders, and to take out their command control platforms and their supply lines. We&rsquo;ve been doing that consistently week to week, it took a long time to set up the conditions by which we could get our special forces into Syria and work effectively with forces on the ground there. It took us a while to work with the Peshmerga to get them in place to begin to do an operation like they did last week to retake Sinjar. All of that is going on. Anytime we see their leaders, we&rsquo;re able to quite effectively take out their leaders. The military is very connected with the economic &ndash; this is the most well funded terrorist organization in history.</p><p>So for example, their number one financier was a terrorist name Abu Sayyaf, we did a Special Forces raid into Syria, about six months ago, we collected more information off of that site than any Special Forces raid in history, and from there we&rsquo;ve been working with the coalition partners and with the Iraqis to really cut into their finances. And based on all intelligence we started about two weeks ago, on the military side, a concerted campaign to take out their ability to get resources out of the ground, in oil trade, and actually move it by trucks. This is all a fusion of economics, intelligence, and military.&rdquo;</p><p><strong>On the videos where ISIS threatens to attack Washington and New York</strong></p><p>&ldquo;We take any threat very seriously. FBI Director James Comey and the Attorney General spoke yesterday about the fact that we have no actual direct intelligence on threats now, but this is something we take extremely seriously. This is why we are at war against this barbaric terrorist organization, and we&rsquo;re working across all multiple lines of efforts from military to economic to diplomatic to suffocate it at its core and outside of the networks the feed it.&rdquo;</p><p>&mdash; <em><a href="http://hereandnow.wbur.org/2015/11/20/us-strategy-isis" target="_blank">via Here &amp; Now</a></em></p></p> Mon, 23 Nov 2015 11:56:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/programs/here-and-now/2015-11-23/obama-administration%E2%80%99s-strategy-fight-against-isis-113892 U.S. will send special forces group to help fight ISIS in Syria http://www.wbez.org/us-will-send-special-forces-group-help-fight-isis-syria-113568 <p><div id="res453157819" previewtitle="The U.S. plans to send up to 50 members of its Special Operations Forces to Syria to help fight ISIS. They'll be entering a war zone with many combatants. Here, smoke rises from a building in the rebel-controlled area of Douma, east of Damascus, early Friday, after a reported shelling by Syria's government."><div data-crop-type="" style="text-align: center;"><img alt="The U.S. plans to send up to 50 members of its Special Operations Forces to Syria to help fight ISIS. They'll be entering a war zone with many combatants. Here, smoke rises from a building in the rebel-controlled area of Douma, east of Damascus, early Friday, after a reported shelling by Syria's government." src="http://media.npr.org/assets/img/2015/10/30/gettyimages-494910828_wide-f810eb6d5b13399721b490a0859591fbdf737d4a-s800-c85.jpg" style="height: 348px; width: 620px;" title="The U.S. plans to send up to 50 members of its Special Operations Forces to Syria to help fight ISIS. They'll be entering a war zone with many combatants. Here, smoke rises from a building in the rebel-controlled area of Douma, east of Damascus, early Friday, after a reported shelling by Syria's government." /></div><div><p>Giving new detail to an operation that has been hinted at in recent days, the White House says President Obama has authorized the deployment of a small number of U.S. Special Operations Forces troops &mdash; fewer than 50 &mdash; to help fight ISIS in Syria.</p><p>The U.S. personnel will be sent to northern Syria, &quot;where they will help coordinate local ground forces and Coalition efforts&quot; to fight ISIS,&quot; a senior administration official confirms to NPR&#39;s Scott Horsley.</p><p>There is no timeline for the withdrawal of the U.S. special operators from Syria.</p><p>&quot;This is not a short-term proposition,&quot; White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest said at a midday briefing. He later added, &quot;I would not describe it as permanent.&quot;</p></div></div><div id="res453160825"><div style="text-align: center;"><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/qgIgcyey9rk?rel=0" width="560"></iframe></div></div><p><strong>Update at 1:15 p.m. ET: On Obama&#39;s Earlier &#39;Boots On The Ground&#39; Statement</strong></p><p>When asked about President Obama&#39;s&nbsp;<a href="http://www.npr.org/2013/09/10/221186456/transcript-president-obamas-address-to-the-nation-on-syria">2013 statement on Syria</a>&nbsp;&ndash; in which he said &quot;I will not put American boots on the ground in Syria&quot; &ndash; Earnest says the earlier remarks were focused on President Bashar al-Assad and his regime&#39;s killing of civilians, rather than the threat of ISIS.</p><p>&quot;Our strategy all along,&quot; Earnest says, has been to train and supply forces within Syria to help them fight. He later said of the U.S. personnel being sent to Syria, &quot;They will not be in a combat mission.&quot;</p><p>He said the current move is being undertaken because forces in Syria have shown success when they work directly with U.S. personnel on an &quot;advise-and-assist&quot; basis.</p><p><strong>Update at 12:58 p.m. ET: More On Syrian Operation; Obama Spoke To Abadi</strong></p><p>&quot;The president does expect that they can have an impact,&quot; White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest said when asked about the possible effect of fewer than 50 people.</p><p>Earnest later reiterated that the U.S. believes the long-term solution to problems in Syria and to the threat of ISIS must also involve political, not just military, means.</p><p>Earnest began the briefing by saying President Obama spoke with Iraq&#39;s Prime Minister Haider Abadi; the two discussed Iraq&#39;s efforts to retake Ramadi as well as the broader counter-ISIS strategy, Earnest said.</p><p><strong>Update at 12:22 p.m. ET: White House Briefing</strong></p><p>Press Secretary Josh Earnest delivered a news briefing that was scheduled to start at 12:30; you can watch the video stream above.</p><p><em>Our original post continues:</em></p><p>&quot;The president does expect that they can have an impact,&quot; White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest said when asked about the possible effect of fewer than 50 people.</p><p>Earnest later reiterated that the U.S. believes the long-term solution to problems in Syria and to the threat of ISIS must also involve political, not just military, means.</p><p>Earnest began the briefing by saying President Obama spoke with Iraq&#39;s Prime Minister Haider Abadi; the two discussed Iraq&#39;s efforts to retake Ramadi as well as the broader counter-ISIS strategy, Earnest said.</p><p>The U.S. personnel will travel from Irbil, Iraq, where they&#39;re currently stationed, to work with the Syrian Arab Coalition, a group that has its sights set on Raqqa, the ISIS stronghold, a U.S. official tells NPR&#39;s Tom Bowman. While the group is likely too small to take Raqqa, it&#39;s seen as being capable of pressuring ISIS there.</p><p>In addition to the Special Forces group, Obama is ordering A-10 and F-15 jets to deploy to Turkey&#39;s Incirlik airbase. U.S. officials will also work with Iraq to establish a Special Operations Force task force, as well as help Jordan and Lebanon counter ISIS.</p><p>Saying that the U.S. is &quot;intensifying elements of our strategy that have been working, while also moving away from elements of our approach that have proven less effective,&quot; the senior administration official said the U.S. effort to fight ISIS has shown &quot;good progress in both Iraq and Syria when we have worked closely with effective partners on the ground who have proven capable of reclaiming territory from ISIL and going on offense.&quot;</p><p>When they arrive, the U.S. personnel will enter a region that&#39;s contested by a wide range of combatants, from extremist Islamic State fighters to government forces and rebel militias in Syria. Russia&#39;s military is conducting airstrikes there &mdash; and just days ago, Turkey&nbsp;<a href="http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2015/10/27/452192207/turkey-s-jets-fire-on-syrian-kurds-allied-with-u-s-against-isis">attacked a U.S.-allied Kurdish militia group</a>&nbsp;in Syria.</p><p>In one month of operations, Russia says it has carried out airstrikes on more than 1,600 targets. According to the state&nbsp;<a href="http://tass.ru/en/politics/832850">Tass news agency</a>, Russia&#39;s &quot;air group in Syria includes more than 50 warplanes, including Su-34 and Su-24M bombers; Su-25 assault aircraft; Su-30SM fighter jets as well as Mi-8 and Mi-24 helicopters.&quot;</p><p>The violence in Syria has devastated cities, towns and historic sites. It&#39;s also blamed for thousands of civilian deaths &mdash; and for sparking a refugee crisis, as people flee their homes for safety in Europe and elsewhere.</p><p>According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights:</p><p><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/AP_40910355343.jpg" style="height: 206px; width: 310px; margin-left: 10px; margin-right: 10px; float: right;" title="Defense Secretary Ash Carter testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Oct. 27, 2015, before the Senate Armed Services Committee. Carter said Tuesday that the U.S. is willing to step up unilateral attacks against Islamic State militants in Iraq or Syria, a signal that the U.S. would escalate American involvement beyond airstrikes by giving the go-ahead for U.S. special operations forces' raids on the ground. (AP Photo/Kevin Wolf)" />The new details about the U.S. plan come days after Defense Secretary Ashton Carter told Congress that the U.S. will step up its efforts to directly target the group that calls itself the Islamic State.</p><p>&quot;We won&#39;t hold back from supporting capable partners in opportunistic attacks against ISIL, or conducting such missions directly whether by strikes from the air or direct action on the ground,&quot; Carter told the Senate Armed Services Committee.</p><p>At that session, Carter &quot;used the term &#39;direct action on the ground&#39; to refer to operations&nbsp;<a href="http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2015/10/22/450871628/u-s-soldier-killed-during-hostage-rescue-mission-in-iraq">like the hostage rescue mission</a>&nbsp;that left one American soldier dead,&quot; as Eyder&nbsp;<a href="http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2015/10/27/452278494/pentagon-chief-says-u-s-plans-to-increase-tempo-of-air-attacks-against-isis">wrote for the<em> Two-Way</em></a>&nbsp;on Tuesday.</p><p>News of the special forces deployment also comes as the U.S. and more than 10 other nations are discussing the future of Syria and its president, Bashar Assad, at&nbsp;<a href="http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2015/10/30/453137427/diplomats-from-iran-u-s-and-other-nations-discuss-crisis-in-syria">an international meeting</a>&nbsp;in Vienna on Friday.</p><p>&mdash; <a href="http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2015/10/30/453148699/u-s-will-send-special-forces-group-to-fight-isis-in-syria?ft=nprml&amp;f=453148699" target="_blank"><em>via NPR</em></a></p></p> Fri, 30 Oct 2015 11:29:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/us-will-send-special-forces-group-help-fight-isis-syria-113568 This generation of military families faces the prospect of 20 years of deployments http://www.wbez.org/programs/takeaway/2015-10-20/generation-military-families-faces-prospect-20-years-deployments-113421 <p><p><img alt="" src="http://cdn1.pri.org/sites/default/files/styles/story_main/public/story/images/mil-families.jpg?itok=c0ETzYt7" style="height: 349px; width: 620px;" title="Friends and family watch as paratroopers with the 1st Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division, return home from Afghanistan at Pope Army Airfield in Fort Bragg, North Carolina November 5, 2014. (Chris Keane/Reuters)" /></p><div><p>Mason&nbsp;Bontrager&nbsp;joined the military right before 9/11. Since then, he has deployed five times &mdash; twice to Iraq and three times to Afghanistan.</p><p dir="ltr">With President Barack Obama recently announcing that he would suspend the drawdown of troops from the US, that means he may deploy once again.</p></div><p dir="ltr">His wife,&nbsp;Amy, says her family is part of a new generation of military families facing unprecedented circumstances. For many young military couples like the Bontragers, their entire marriage has come with the threat of war, and there appears to be no end in sight.</p><p dir="ltr">&ldquo;We&rsquo;re definitely facing this reality of what it looks like to raise children in this lifestyle,&rdquo; she says. &ldquo;We could be the first generation that&rsquo;s going to experience 20 years of deployment. What that&rsquo;s like to raise a family &mdash; we have nothing to compare it to. We&rsquo;re learning as we go, but we also rely heavily on the support of our country so that we can continue to serve this mission.&rdquo;</p><p dir="ltr">And that&rsquo;s just a hard reality of America&rsquo;s longest war: After more than a decade, servicemembers are being called to battle &mdash; again and again and again.</p><p dir="ltr">&ldquo;Deployments are challenging and it&rsquo;s hard, and each time he goes there are uncertainties,&rdquo; Amy says. &ldquo;We have to accept that mission because that&rsquo;s the mission that&rsquo;s been given to us by our commander-in-chief. This is new to millennials. In 2001, did we think we&rsquo;d still be at war? That probably wasn&rsquo;t even a thought. But this is our reality. We realize that the mission is much greater than us, and we stand ready to serve. That&rsquo;s what it means to be in the military today.&rdquo;</p><p dir="ltr">Over the course of nearly 10 years of marriage, the Bontragers have lived in five different locations. Though her husband has completed five tours of duty, he&rsquo;s not ready to quit &mdash; Amy says her husband is part of a group that feels it is their obligation to put in an end to the conflict, because they were the ones fighting in the beginning.</p><p dir="ltr">&ldquo;That&rsquo;s a conversation that happens in a lot of homes, and day-to-day it changes &mdash; do you stay in or do you get out?&rdquo; she says. &ldquo;But it goes back to that commitment, and you realize that, for some of these guys, they feel they&rsquo;re called to do this and this is what they&rsquo;re built for and they&rsquo;re trained for. It&rsquo;s hard &mdash; you look at these children and think this is a very different lifestyle that they are being brought up in when compared to other children in our country. But then you realize that it&rsquo;s something that&rsquo;s much greater than us.&rdquo;</p><p dir="ltr"><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/bluestar.JPG" style="height: 194px; width: 310px; margin-left: 10px; margin-right: 10px; float: right;" title="(Via BlueStarFam.org)" />Amy, who has a master&rsquo;s degree in philanthropy, has had to change jobs to meet the needs of her family. Now she&rsquo;s the program manager with<a href="https://www.bluestarfam.org/"> Blue Star Families</a>, an organization formed in April 2009 by a group of military spouses. The group works &ldquo;to create a platform where military family members can join with civilian communities and leaders to address the challenges of military life,&rdquo;&nbsp;<a href="http://bluestarfam.org/about">according to</a>&nbsp;a statement on the Blue Star website.</p><p dir="ltr">&ldquo;I&rsquo;m really excited that I&rsquo;ve been able to give back through the organization that I work with,&rdquo; Amy says. &ldquo;There&rsquo;s a lot of work to be done, and we do have support, but we&rsquo;re going to continue to need that support.&rdquo;</p><p dir="ltr">&mdash;<a href="http://www.pri.org/stories/2015-10-20/generation-military-families-faces-prospects-20-years-deployments"><em> via The Takeaway</em></a></p></p> Tue, 20 Oct 2015 10:07:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/takeaway/2015-10-20/generation-military-families-faces-prospect-20-years-deployments-113421 Bangkok Manhunt for Erawan Shrine Bombers http://www.wbez.org/programs/worldview/2015-08-19/bangkok-manhunt-erawan-shrine-bombers-112686 <p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/219977619&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe><strong><span style="font-size:24px;">Manhunt is on for Bangkok bombings suspects</span></strong></p><p>News is moving quickly on Monday&rsquo;s terrorist bombing at Bangkok&rsquo;s Erawan shrine. So far, the attack killed at least 22 people and wounded over 100. A suspect was identified through CCTV footage. Reports now say there may be two more bombing suspects. As Thai citizens tried to make sense of Monday&rsquo;s attack, yesterday, another bomb was thrown from a bridge in Bangkok. There were no injuries reported in the second incident, but police say the bombings were similar. Thailand&rsquo;s Police Chief stated he believed the bombs were part of a coordinated attack by a terrorist network. We&rsquo;ll get the latest from Pailin Wedel, an independent journalist, based in Bangkok.</p><p><strong>Guest:</strong> <a href="http://www.pailinwedel.com/">Pailin Wedel</a>&nbsp;is an independent journalist, based in Bangkok, Thailand<iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/219978523&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_artwork=false" width="942px"></iframe></p><p><strong><span style="font-size: 24px;">Iraq Prime Minister, Haider al-Abadi, cuts his cabinet</span></strong></p><p>Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi has cut his cabinet, culling it down from 33 to 22 members. &nbsp;Positions cut mean the elimination of certain ministries - including the one that governs human rights and humanitarian affairs. &nbsp;The prime minister says the cuts are meant to weed out corruption and provide better services. Iraqis have been protesting against what they say is mass corruption in the government. We&rsquo;ll talk about the changes with Laith Saud, a visiting assistant professor of religious studies at DePaul University.</p><p><strong>Guest:&nbsp;</strong>Laith Saud is a visiting assistant professor of religious studies at DePaul University</p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/219983865&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe><strong><span style="font-size:24px;">Global Notes: Controversy over Tango&#39;s African roots</span></strong></p><p>The documentary, &ldquo;Tango Negro: The African Roots of Tango&rdquo; details the African roots of Tango, the famed Argentinean music/dance genre. Music journalist and host of <em>Beat Latino</em>, Catalina Maria Johnson, will tell us about the film, &nbsp;play some Tango for us and talk about some of the racial and cultural controversies surrounding its origins. We&rsquo;ll also hear about some lesser known Afro Latin music such as Boogaloo (USA), Candombe (Uruguay) and Saya (Ecuador).</p><p><strong>Guest:</strong> <a href="http://catalinamariajohnson.com/">Catalina Maria Johnson</a> is a music journalist and the host of Beat Latino on Vocalo.</p><p><strong>Event:</strong>&nbsp;<a href="http://www.facets.org/cinematheque/films/aug2015/tango-negro.php">Tango Negro</a>&nbsp;plays at Facets Multimedia through 8/20/15</p></p> Wed, 19 Aug 2015 10:17:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/worldview/2015-08-19/bangkok-manhunt-erawan-shrine-bombers-112686 Inside Aleksandar Hemon's new book: 'The Making of Zombie Wars' http://www.wbez.org/programs/worldview/2015-08-12/inside-aleksandar-hemons-new-book-making-zombie-wars-112637 <p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/macmillan.jpg" title="(Photo: 'The Making of Zombie Wars'/Macmillan publishing)" /></div><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/218958965&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe></p><p style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><span style="font-size: 22px; background-color: rgb(255, 244, 244);">&#39;The Making of Zombie Wars&#39; by Aleksandar Hemon</span></p><div style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><p>Aleksandar Hemon&rsquo;s latest novel,&#39;The Making of Zombie Wars&#39;, is about an aspiring screenwriter named Josh Levin. Levin teaches ESL classes in Chicago and is writing a screenplay for an action movie called Zombie Wars, about a zombie apocalypse. It all takes place as the US heads to war in Iraq. Hemon joins us to discuss the novel.</p><p><strong>Guest:</strong>&nbsp;<em><span id="docs-internal-guid-f58230a0-2394-efe7-8011-f05a3505e701"><a href="http://twitter.com/sashahemon">Aleksandar Hemon</a> is the author of &#39;</span>The Making of Zombie Wars&#39;.</em></p><div>&nbsp;</div></div><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/218959343&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe></p><p style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><span style="font-size: 22px; background-color: rgb(255, 244, 244);">Drones and private contractors</span></p><div style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><p>A report issued by the UK-based Bureau of Investigative Journalism says that the Pentagon employs hundreds of private contractors to analyze highly classified video and pinpoint terror targets, to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars. The report, &ldquo;Reaping the rewards: How private sector is cashing in on Pentagon&rsquo;s &lsquo;insatiable demand&rsquo; for drone war intelligence,&rdquo; also found that these contractors work side-by-side with uniformed military personnel. We&rsquo;ll talk with TBIJ reporter, Abigail Fielding-Smith, about the report which she co-authored.</p><p><strong>Guest:<a href="http://twitter.com/AbbieFS">&nbsp;</a></strong><em><span id="docs-internal-guid-f58230a0-2396-f10b-f563-3dbb11ebdcbf"><a href="http://twitter.com/AbbieFS">Abigail Fielding-Smith</a> is a reporter at the bureau of investigative journalism.&nbsp;</span></em></p></div><p>&nbsp;</p></p> Wed, 12 Aug 2015 15:16:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/worldview/2015-08-12/inside-aleksandar-hemons-new-book-making-zombie-wars-112637 Worldview: Thousands of troops in Northern Iraq affected by infighting http://www.wbez.org/programs/worldview/2015-04-21/worldview-thousands-troops-northern-iraq-affected-infighting-111914 <p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/AP480961373483.jpg" style="height: 465px; width: 620px;" title="Kurdish security forces attack Islamic State extremists outside the oil-rich city of Kirkuk, 180 miles north of Baghdad, Iraq, Saturday, April 18, 2015.(AP Photo)" /></div><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/201913232&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe><span style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 23.9999980926514px; line-height: 22px; background-color: rgb(255, 244, 244);">Kurdish leader arrested and released</span></p><p><span id="docs-internal-guid-58a1a333-dd93-44fa-42b0-a7886a3ec8e3">Infighting is hampering the military forces fighting ISIS in Northern Iraq. Kurdish officials detained and then released Haider Shasho, a Yazidi resistance leader. The dispute has sidelined thousands of troops. With us from Kurdistan is Christine van den Toorn, director of the Institute for Regional and International Studies at The American University of Iraq-Sulaimani (AUIS). She&rsquo;s also founder of the research and analysis company called &lsquo;The Primary Source&rsquo;.</span></p><p><span id="docs-internal-guid-58a1a333-dd93-7c92-d807-ce475947f00f"><strong>Guest:</strong></span></p><p><em><span><a href="https://twitter.com/vandentoorn">Christine van den Toorn</a> is the </span> director of the Institute for Regional and International Studies at The American University of Iraq-Sulaimani (AUIS).</em></p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/201913570&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe><span style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 23.9999980926514px; line-height: 22px; background-color: rgb(255, 244, 244);">Les Roberts on counting casualties from war and disease</span></p><p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-d96754c3-dd98-60da-65cd-0955355c888f">The Marjorie Kovler Center, the second torture survivors treatment center in the US, was founded in Chicago in 1987. &nbsp;They since have treated over 2000 torture survivors. Many view them as a moral beacon in our community. Thursday night, they&rsquo;ll award their Robert Kirshner Human Rights Award to Epidemiologist Les Roberts. He made lots of news during the 2003 Iraq war from his casualties study, the Lancet Report. It showed many more fatalities than other estimates. Supporters of the War hotly disputed his findings, even though Roberts used widely accepted methodologies. He was on our show several times during the 2003 Iraq war. Most recently, he&rsquo;s worked in Sierra Leone on the Ebola crisis.</span></p><p dir="ltr"><strong>Guest:</strong></p><p dir="ltr"><em><span id="docs-internal-guid-d96754c3-dd98-c6d2-f501-a5e22156830d">Les Roberts is an </span>epidemiologist and associate professor in the Forced Migration and Health Program at <a href="https://twitter.com/ColumbiaMSPH">Columbia University&#39;s Mailman School of Public Health.</a></em></p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/201914168&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe><span style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 23.9999980926514px; line-height: 22px; background-color: rgb(255, 244, 244);">Eco Heroes: Nancy Tuchman</span></p><p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-066ce5c3-dd9c-53a3-4219-45761e2ee319">Our regular </span>EcoHeroes segment features people who want to transform our environment and ecosystem.</p><p><span id="docs-internal-guid-066ce5c3-dd9c-53a3-4219-45761e2ee319">Today, we&rsquo;ll speak with Nancy Tuchman. After creating a biodiesel lab in Chicago, she decided to launch the Institute of Environmental Sustainability at Loyola University-Chicago. The initiative is an outgrowth of her belief in Loyola&rsquo;s Jesuit mission of social justice and service. Nancy will tell us about her life-long passion for environmental &nbsp;advocacy and why she believes her Institute could ignite environmental breakthroughs.</span></p><p><span><strong>Guest:</strong></span></p><p><em><span id="docs-internal-guid-066ce5c3-dd9c-a98c-4aa7-843aacc17514">Nancy Tuchman is a </span>professor of niology and a founding director of the <a href="https://twitter.com/GreenLoyola">Institute of Environmental Sustainability at Loyola University-Chicago.</a></em></p></p> Tue, 21 Apr 2015 14:54:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/worldview/2015-04-21/worldview-thousands-troops-northern-iraq-affected-infighting-111914 Conflict escalates in the Ukraine http://www.wbez.org/programs/worldview/2015-01-29/conflict-escalates-ukraine-111475 <p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/AP428413196430.jpg" style="height: 424px; width: 620px;" title="Ukrainian servicemen put their dogs under the jackets to keep them warm in Mariupol, Ukraine, Wednesday, Jan. 28, 2015. (AP/Evgeniy Maloletka)" /></div><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/188525020&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe></p><p><span style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 24px; line-height: 22px;">The latest on the crisis in Ukraine </span></p><p>The fighting in Eastern Ukraine heated up again this week. Now, EU foreign ministers are meeting in Brussels to discuss imposing further sanctions on Russia. NATO says hundreds of Russian tanks and armoured vehicles are in east Ukraine. We&rsquo;ll discuss the ongoing crisis in Ukraine with Andrew Weiss, vice president for studies at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. He served as a Russia and Ukraine expert in the Clinton White House.</p><p><strong>Guest:</strong> <em><a href="https://twitter.com/andrewsweiss">Andrew Weiss</a> is VP for studies at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace</em>.</p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/188525356&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe></p><p><span style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 24px; line-height: 22px;">Dominican nun from Illinois visits Iraq</span></p><p>Dominican nun Marcelline Koch was recently in Iraq with a group of U.S. nuns to monitor and document the current humanitarian crisis, especially for the religious minorities like the Yazadis and Christians. Sister Marcelline is back to tell us about the conditions these people live in, which she describes as a &ldquo;mortal sin.&rdquo;</p><p><strong>Guest:</strong> <em>Marcelline Koch is a <a href="https://twitter.com/Dominican_Order">Dominican</a> nun.</em></p></p> Thu, 29 Jan 2015 11:01:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/programs/worldview/2015-01-29/conflict-escalates-ukraine-111475 Israel's plan in East Jerusalem http://www.wbez.org/programs/worldview/2014-10-28/israels-plan-east-jerusalem-111001 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/AP422057322235.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, announced this week a settlement construction plan in East Jerusalem, despite international condemnation. Jeff Halper, director of the Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions, joins us to discuss the troubled Peace Process.</p><div class="storify"><iframe allowtransparency="true" frameborder="no" height="750" src="//storify.com/WBEZ/worldview-rebuilding-gaza/embed?header=false&amp;border=false" width="100%"></iframe><script src="//storify.com/WBEZ/worldview-rebuilding-gaza.js?header=false&border=false"></script><noscript>[<a href="//storify.com/WBEZ/worldview-rebuilding-gaza" target="_blank">View the story "Worldview: Israel's plan in East Jerusalem" on Storify</a>]</noscript></div></p> Tue, 28 Oct 2014 10:59:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/worldview/2014-10-28/israels-plan-east-jerusalem-111001