Heard on Detroit Today with Stephen Henderson

Iran Sanctions, Saudi Oil Attack and Changes to Middle East College Programs in US

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Image credit: Jake Neher/WDET

There’s been a lot of news coming out of the Middle East and there’s news here in the US relating to the Middle East as well.

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There are allegations that a Saudi oil facility was attacked earlier this month, there’s an Afghan election coming up and Trump discussed Iran aggressively in his address at the UN climate summit yesterday. Plus, Education Secretary Betsy DeVos is going after some Near and Middle East college programs to reformat their curriculum to address what her department is calling “anti-Israel bias.” Detroit Today’s Stephen Henderson sits down with Saeed Khan, senior lecturer of Near and Middle East history and politics at Wayne State University. 

On the attack on a Saudi oil facility: “The fact that Saudi are self investigating,” is troubling, explains Khan. “I think it’s quite telling that there is still quite a bit of ambiguity regarding what the intel and the investigation have shown, to the point that the government of Japan is still not persuaded that Iran was involved in any way,” he says. At the same time, Khan also points out that “the British, the French and the Germans have said Iran is responsible in some way, shape or form.”

On the changes to Middle East college programs: “It seems as though the focus is on what is perceived to be an anti Israel bias, that of course is going to be in the eye of the beholder as to what then is the threshold of what is seen as criticism,” explains Khan.

Click on the audio player above to hear the full conversation.

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