University of MA professor emeritus Naseer Aruri discusses the Syrian conflict

03/02/12 Lisa Marzilli, Alvaro Montealegre
Last Call Friday | Listen to this entire show:

On today's Last Call we departed from our typical state/national focus to talk about the escalating violence in Syria.

It’s been hard to verify information coming out of Syria due to the restricted access of foreign journalists but some things are very clear; many people have already been killed and many are now without food, water or medicine. Today a Red Cross aid convoy seeking to deliver food and medical care in the rebel-stronghold of Baba Amr was turned back prompting UN Secretary Ban Ki-moon to demand that the Syrian regime allow humanitarian aid workers into the besieged neighborhood.

To give us some perspective on the situation in Syria we were joined by Naseer Aruri, noted Palestinian author and Professor Emeritus at the University of MA. We began by asking him if he saw the conflict as a government attempt to quash an Arab Spring type uprising like we witnessed last year in Tunisia, Egypt and Bahrain, a sectarian civil war or, as British Prime Minister David Cameron accused the Assad regime of today, a brutal crackdown by a dictator bent on "butchering his own people".

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