PROGRAM NOTES 02/16/18-
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This weeks show features stories from SPANISH NATIONAL RADIO, NHK WORLD RADIO JAPAN, RADIO HAVANA CUBA, and SPUTNIK RADIO.
From SPAIN- Alison Hughes begins with an update on the political situation in the Catalonia region of Spain, where the popular leaders are either in exile or in prison. Syrian forces shot down an Israeli jet that was returning from a bombing raid on Iran backed positions in Syria. Syrian forces carrying out an operation against Daesh fighters were attacked by US forces. The escalation of US attacks coincides with plans to maintain a permanent presence in the country. In The Independent, Patrick Cockburn interviewed a former Daesh fighter who explained that Turkey is recruiting and retraining Daesh troops to lead its invasion of the Kurdish enclave in northern Syria. US Secretary of State Tillerson urged Gulf states to support the rebuilding of Iraq, further ruined by the past three years of fighting Daesh forces.
From JAPAN- A North Korean art troupe performed in South Korea before and during the Olympics- their performances stressed that people in the two Koreas belonged to the same ethnic group and included a song about the wish for reunification. North Korean media reported that leader Kim Jong-un instructed a high-level delegation to take practical steps to improve inter-Korean ties and to hold a summit soon. Myanmar has rejected calls at the UN Security Council for the release of two Reuters journalists who investigated a massacre- US Ambassador Nikki Hailey shamed Myanmar for going after people reporting the truth.
From CUBA- A British court has ruled against withdrawing an arrest warrant for Julian Assange. Cuba rejected recent remarks by the Secretary General of the Organization of American States about the country's democratic electoral system. Argentina is allowing the US to build a new military base at its border with Brazil and Paraguay. The Palestinian teenager Ahed Tamimi continues to be denied bail by Israeli courts for slapping an Israeli soldier. Russian President Putin welcomed Palestinian President Abbas for talks about conflicts with Israel.
From RUSSIA- Afshin Rattansi talked about Julian Assange's court ruling and revelations that Sweden want to drop the case years ago. Afshin then presents a policy from Jeremy Corbyn for the state to take over deliberately empty properties for the use of the homeless, pushing Teresa May to call for the UK withdrawal from the European Union Court of Human Rights.
"I am I plus my surroundings and if I do not preserve the latter, I do not preserve myself."
--Jose Ortega Y Gasset, philosopher and essayist (1883-1955)