July 5 - The Qatar Standoff Is All About Shutting Down Al Jazeera; Poland's Authoritarian Leader Lures Trump For Photo-Op; North Korean Missile Test Calls Trump's Bluff

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Full Program


Part 1

We begin with growing tensions in the standoff between Qatar and its neighbors led by Saudi Arabia who issued an unrealistically harsh and humiliating set of demands to the tiny Gulf state under an ultimatum that has since past, and now they are dismissing Qatar’s response to their list of demands as the crisis deepens. Marwan Kraidy, the Anthony Shadid Chair of Global Media, Politics and Culture and Director for Advanced Research in Global Communications of the Annenberg School for Communication at the University of Pennsylvania, joins us. An expert on the Arab media, we discuss how much Egypt’s and Saudi Arabia’s demand to shut down Qatar-based Al Jazeera is at the heart of this dispute provoked by Saudi Arabia’s belligerent young Crown Prince who appears to have bitten off more than he can chew in Yemen and is now threatening war or at least regime change in Qatar.


Part 2

Then we assess the extent to which Donald Trump’s visit to Poland is based on his aversion to protests which are being planned in Hamburg and London, and his susceptibility to enticements by the authoritarian right wing Polish leader whose Law and Justice government will bus in adoring fans of Trump from the countryside to what they have promised the White House will be “a great patriotic picnic”. A former senior advisor with the State Department’s Policy Planning Staff, Charles Gati, a Senior Research Professor of European and Eurasian Studies at the Johns Hopkins School of Advance International Studies, joins us to look into what seems more like a mutually beneficial photo-op than a diplomatic engagement, particularly since Trump has refused to meet with anyone from Poland’s opposition.

Part 3

Then finally we examine the looming crisis following North Korea’s long-range missile test which has essentially called Trump’s bluff since he had warned that a test of a North Korean missile that could reach the U.S. “is not going to happen”. Now that it has happened, we will speak with a former State Department Senior Analyst, Stephen Noerper, Senior Director of the Korea Society, an associate of the Weatherhead Institute and Pacific Forum, and a professor at Columbia University. He joins us to discuss this crisis that, in the absence of diplomacy, could lead to devastating military consequences and civilian casualties.