Background Briefing: August 22, 2023

Under the Leadership of Their Murderous Dictator, Saudi Border Guards Slaughter Ethiopian Refugees 

We begin with reports from Human Rights Watch at Saudi Arabia’s border with Yemen that uncovered brutal and barbaric military force being used against Ethiopian refugees, hundreds and perhaps thousands of whom are being shot and blown up by Saudi border guards almost as sport. Joining us to discuss the disregard for human rights that has trickled down from the country’s murderous leader Mohammad bin Salman to its soldiers is Jon Hoffman, a policy analyst in defense and foreign policy at the Cato Institute and a professor at George Mason University specializing in Middle East geopolitics and political Islam. He was recently awarded the “40 under 40” award from the Middle East Policy Council for his work on U.S. foreign policy and we discuss his article at Foreign Policy, “The Arab Gulf’s New Nationalism: Ambitious leaders in Riyadh and Abu Dhabi are restructuring national identity to solidify their rule.”


The US Government Warns Americans to Leave Belarus “Immediately”

Then we examine the warning from the State Department and the US Embassy in Minsk, Belarus for American citizens to “immediately” leave the country. Joining us is Dr. Tatsiana Kulakevich, a researcher on Eastern Europe born and raised in Belarus. She is a permanent instructor in Research Methods and Quantitative Analysis at the University of South Florida’s School of Interdisciplinary Global Studies and a research fellow and affiliated faculty at the University’s Institute on Russian, European and Eurasian Studies. Her research focuses on international political economy, migration, and protest politics.


The Co-Founder of CODEPINK Argues That The New York Times’s Criticism of Her and Her Husband is Propaganda and McCarthyism

Then finally we speak with Jodie Evans, co-founder and co-director of CODEPINK and has been a peace, environmental, women’s rights and social justice activist for over forty years. She served in the administration of Governor Jerry Brown and ran his presidential campaign. The co-editor of two books, Twilight of Empire: Responses to Occupation and Stop the Next War Now: Effective Responses to Violence and Terrorism, she has also produced several documentary films, including the Oscar-nominated “The Most Dangerous Man in America” and Howard Zinn’s “The People Speak.” She joins us to argue that the recent New York Times article criticizing her and her husband and Code Pink was propaganda and McCarthyism.