Arab Spring Topics

Democracy Now! is following the popular uprisings across the Middle East and North Africa.

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  • Play_syria
    Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has sent tanks into the country’s third city, Homs, escalating a military campaign to crush a seven-week-old popular uprising against his autocratic rule. According to the Syrian human rights organization Sawasiah, as many as 800 civilians have been killed since the uprising began. More than 10,000 people have been arrested. Today, we look at two cases. One of Syria’s most prominent human rights defenders,...
    May 09, 2011 | Story
  • Play_sharif
    In Egypt over the weekend, 12 people died and more than 180 were wounded during clashes between Muslims and Christians in Cairo. Egypt’s army has said that 190 people were detained after the fatal clashes and that they will face military trials. Saturday’s violence started after several hundred conservative Salafist Muslims gathered outside the Coptic Saint Mena Church in Cairo’s Imbaba district. They were reportedly protesting over...
    May 09, 2011 | Story
  • Adam_button
    As the Obama administration continues to engage in military operations abroad, we turn now to the making — and sustaining — of war from a historical perspective. How do politicians galvanize populations to support wars? Why do people continue fighting in unpopular conflicts even after nationalist fervor has waned? In his new book, the historian Adam Hochschild examines these questions and many others through the prism of one of the...
    May 10, 2011 | Story
  • Chomsky_button
    Speaking at the 25th anniversary celebration of the national media watch group Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting, world-renowned political dissident and linguist Noam Chomsky analyzes the U.S. response to the popular uprisings sweeping the Middle East and North Africa. "Across the [Middle East], an overwhelming majority of the population regards the United States as the main threat to their interests," Chomsky says. "The reason...
    May 11, 2011 | Story
  • Play_sharif
    People gathered at the Egyptian Journalists Syndicate in downtown Cairo this week to speak out against the military court system, which has been used to convict and jail more than 5,000 civilians since late January. Democracy Now! correspondent Sharif Abdel Kouddous sent this video report.
    May 12, 2011 | Web Exclusive
  • Yemen_button
    Tens of thousands of Yemenis have taken to the streets today for what organizers have called the "Friday of Decisiveness,” days after Yemeni forces opened fire on demonstrators. The death toll from weeks of protests has surpassed 160. The violence comes as Qatar has pulled out of international talks on a deal that would see Saleh voluntarily resign. We are joined on the phone by Iona Craig, a Times of London correspondent based in the Yemeni...
    May 13, 2011 | Story
  • Play_belafonte
    Legendary musician, actor, activist and humanitarian Harry Belafonte joins us for the hour to talk about his battle against racism, his mentor Paul Robeson, the power of music to push for political change, his close relationship with the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and the U.S. role in Haiti. A new documentary chronicles his life, called Sing Your Song. The son of Jamaican immigrants, Belafonte grew up on the streets of Harlem and Jamaica....
    May 16, 2011 | Story
  • Play_fadi_palestine
    Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has declared three days of mourning for the 14 Palestinians killed when Israeli troops opened fire on massive protests at Israel’s multiple borders on Sunday. In an unprecedented action, Palestinian refugees from Syria, Jordan and Lebanon, as well as residents of Gaza, tried to enter Israel. In addition to those killed, hundreds of people were wounded. As many as 300 people from Syria overwhelmed border...
    May 17, 2011 | Story
  • Play_sharif_military2
    Three months after the Egyptian military took the reins of power following the popular uprising that ousted former president Hosni Mubarak, the Supreme Council of Armed Forces is coming under growing criticism for its widespread use of military trials against civilians. On May 9, a press conference was organized at the Egyptian Journalists Syndicate in downtown Cairo for people to speak out against the military court system, which has been used...
    May 17, 2011 | Story
  • Play__scahill_button
    The United Arab Emirates has confirmed hiring a company headed by Erik Prince, the billionaire founder of the military firm Blackwater. According to the New York Times, the UAE secretly signed a $529 million contract with Prince’s new company, Reflex Responses, to put together an 800-member battalion of foreign mercenaries. The troops could be deployed if foreign guest workers stage revolts in labor camps, or if the UAE regime were challenged...
    May 18, 2011 | Story