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Middle East Focus

News & Politics Podcasts

Weekly discussion of Middle East policy, arts, and culture, featuring experts from the Middle East Institute in Washington, D.C.

Weekly discussion of Middle East policy, arts, and culture, featuring experts from the Middle East Institute in Washington, D.C.

Location:

United States

Description:

Weekly discussion of Middle East policy, arts, and culture, featuring experts from the Middle East Institute in Washington, D.C.

Language:

English


Episodes

Tragedy in Beirut

8/6/2020
Paul Salem and Randa Slim join host Alistair Taylor to discuss the immediate aftermath of Tuesday’s massive explosion in Beirut, which killed over 150 people and left as many as 300,000 homeless. The blast caused extensive damage across the city, and compounds the stress of Lebanon’s preexisting political, economic, and health crises.

Duration:00:22:37

Lebanon Then and Now

8/5/2020
Beirut-based art and documentary photographers Chantale Fahmi, Vicky Mokbel, and Marwan Tahtah join guest host Kate Seelye to discuss their efforts to capture the aftermath of Lebanon’s long civil war as well as the street protests that erupted on October 17, 2019 in response to the corruption and political mismanagement that triggered Lebanon’s financial collapse. Their’s are among works on display in “Lebanon Then and Now: Photography from 2006 to 2020,” an interactive virtual exhibit...

Duration:00:30:30

The GERD Dispute and the Horn of Africa

7/30/2020
MEI's Mirette Mabrouk and Guled Ahmed join host Alistair Taylor to discuss the ongoing dispute between Egypt, Sudan, and Ethiopia over the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD), recent developments in Somaliland, and changing dynamics in the Horn of Africa.

Duration:00:32:09

The future of Oman and its new leader

7/23/2020
Jerry Feierstein, Karen Young, and Dania Thafer join host Alistair Taylor to discuss the political, economic, and foreign policy challenges facing the sultanate and its new ruler, Sultan Haitham bin Tariq, who ascended to the throne following the death of Sultan Qaboos, Oman’s long-time ruler, in early January.

Duration:00:33:26

Mid-year review: Key regional developments in 2020

7/17/2020
MEI’s Paul Salem and Randa Slim join host Alistair Taylor to discuss the main trends and developments across the region over the first half of 2020, and what to watch for in the months ahead.

Duration:00:32:21

A “Perfect Storm” of Challenges for Iran

7/10/2020
Alex Vatanka, Nazila Fathi, and Amin Mohseni join host Alistair Taylor to discuss the social, economic, and political challenges facing Iran, ranging from the COVID-19 and economic crises to the new Parliament and next year’s presidential election.

Duration:00:27:48

On the Knife’s Edge: Critical Infrastructure Security in the Middle East

7/1/2020
Scott Coleman, John Fleming, and Chris Kubecka join guest host Michael Sexton, Director of MEI's Cyber Program, to discuss critical infrastructure security in the MENA region. What is critical infrastructure security and what are the broader implications on cybersecurity in the Middle East?

Duration:00:27:16

The gendered impact of COVID-19

6/25/2020
Hafsa Halawa, Burcu Karakas, and Lina AbiRafeh join host Alistair Taylor to discuss the ways in which the coronavirus pandemic affects women and girls in the MENA region. While the virus has affected everyone, its gendered impact has been outsized and the fallout will likely exacerbate a host of existing issues affecting everything from health and education to politics and the economy.

Duration:00:22:32

Shocks and Rivalries in the Middle East and North Africa

6/18/2020
MEI Non-Resident Scholar Imad Mansour and William Thompson, Professor of Political Science Emeritus at Indiana University, join host Alistair Taylor to talk about their new book, "Shocks and Rivalries in the Middle East and North Africa" (Georgetown University Press), and discuss the network of rivalries, conflict dynamics, and conflict de-escalation in the MENA region.

Duration:00:25:19

Syria’s economic crisis

6/11/2020
Sam Dagher, Danny Makki and Karam Shaar join guest host Charles Lister to discuss the recent deterioration of Syria’s economy and what it means for the country, the Assad regime, and the rest of the region moving forward. As aggressive new US economic sanctions targeting the regime are set to go into effect in a few days, 85% of Syrians are in poverty and the country faces a wheat supply crisis.

Duration:00:30:09

Conflict and COVID: The Middle East in 2025

6/5/2020
Steven Kenney and Ross Harrison join host Alistair Taylor to discuss their recent policy paper, “Conflict in the Middle East and COVID-19 — A View from 2025.” The COVID-19 crisis is disrupting the status quo on nearly everything, including regional conflict. How will that disruption worsen — or possibly improve — the trendlines of regional conflicts as we head toward 2025?

Duration:00:27:36

The Libyan Conflict at a Turning Point

5/29/2020
MEI’s Gonul Tol and Jonathan Winer join host Alistair Taylor to discuss the state of the conflict in Libya, where the internationally recognized Government of National Accord (GNA) forces supported by Turkey have made significant gains in recent weeks over Khalifa Haftar’s Libyan National Army (LNA) forces, which are backed by Russia, the UAE, Egypt, and France.

Duration:00:20:40

The role of entrepreneurship in Egypt’s economy

5/19/2020
Mirette Mabrouk and Dr. Sherif Kamel join host Alistair Taylor to discuss Egypt’s economy and the role of entrepreneurship. Like countries across the Middle East and North Africa, Egypt has been hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic and the economic fallout is likely to be severe.

Duration:00:32:13

Iraq's new government

5/15/2020
Hafsa Halawa, Shahla Al-Kli, and Yesar Al-Maleki join host Alistair Taylor to discuss the challenges facing Iraq’s new prime minister, Mustafa al-Kadhimi, from COVID-19 and the fall of oil prices, to long-standing issues in governance and foreign relations.

Duration:00:37:48

COVID-19 and Economic Migration

5/7/2020
Iulia Joja and Bob Hamilton join host Alistair Taylor to discuss the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on economic migration, with a focus on migration trends in the Western Black Sea and South Caucasus.

Duration:00:37:22

Protest movements in Algeria, Iraq, and Lebanon during COVID-19

4/30/2020
Vish Sakthivel, Hafsa Halawa, and Nour El-Achi join host Alistair Taylor to discuss the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on protest movements in Algeria, Iraq, and Lebanon. While each case is unique, all three movements are pushing for sweeping reforms of the corrupt political system, a change in the ruling elite, and improved state services.

Duration:00:33:14

Bonus: Supporting refugee communities during the pandemic

4/24/2020
Basma El Husseiny (Action for Hope) and Samar El Yassir (Anera) join guest host Lyne Sneige to discuss the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on refugee communities and the NGOs that work with them.

Duration:00:26:58

Gen. Joseph Votel on US military challenges in the Middle East

4/22/2020
MEI Distinguished Senior Fellow Joseph Votel, a retired four-star general in the Army and former commander of U.S. Central Command, joins host Alistair Taylor to discuss the challenges facing American forces in the Middle East today, from COVID-19 and ISIS to the turbulent situations in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Duration:00:20:09

Child soldiers in the Middle East

4/17/2020
MEI senior fellows Mick Mulroy and Eric Oehlerich join host Alistair Taylor to discuss child soldiering, a growing global problem that has a disproportionate impact on the Middle East and Africa. You can read their new report, “Begin with the children: Child soldier numbers doubled in the Middle East in 2019,” at www.mei.edu.

Duration:00:23:22

Surveillance, privacy & public health

4/10/2020
MEI’s Michael Sexton and Eliza Campbell join host Alistair Taylor to discuss the variety of new surveillance technologies deployed by governments in the region to track the spread of COVID-19, and the tension they are setting up between public health and privacy concerns in the long term.

Duration:00:24:12