Deborah Amos en Iran's Culture Wars: Who's Winning These Days? In Iran, hardline critics are waging a campaign against President Hassan Rouhani to limit his campaign pledge of opening Iran to more social and cultural freedoms.<p>The "culture wars" are as old as the Islamic revolution that swept conservative clerics to power more than three decades ago. The latest chapter comes as Rouhani is negotiating a nuclear deal with six world powers. Sat, 12 Apr 2014 13:04:00 +0000 Deborah Amos 38535 at Iran's Culture Wars: Who's Winning These Days? Iranians Begin To Feel The Heavy Burden Of Syria's War The Syrian civil war has been a major headache for President Obama. Critics at home and abroad, like Saudi Arabia, where the president was on Friday, have urged the U.S. to do more.<p>But the U.S. isn't the only country that's faced difficult choices over Syria. Iran and Syria have been close allies for decades. Fri, 28 Mar 2014 20:32:00 +0000 Deborah Amos 37577 at Iranians Begin To Feel The Heavy Burden Of Syria's War Viral Photo Of Syrian War Victims Comes To Times Square <p></p> Thu, 20 Mar 2014 20:28:00 +0000 Deborah Amos 37066 at A Syrian Refugee Camp With Girl Scouts And A Safeway Store On a sunny afternoon in the dusty, overcrowded Zaatari refugee camp in Jordan, a group of Syrian girls recites a familiar pledge and hope to change their future. Mon, 17 Mar 2014 20:30:00 +0000 Deborah Amos 36854 at A Syrian Refugee Camp With Girl Scouts And A Safeway Store Syrian Conflict Marches Into Fourth Year The Syrian uprising started three years ago this week with protests and eventually a military crackdown that led to all-out civil war. More than 130,000 people have died. Mon, 17 Mar 2014 09:02:00 +0000 Deborah Amos 36802 at Saudi Aid Boost To Syrian Rebels Puts Jordan At Risk For months, a military stalemate has defined the war in Syria. Now, a new strategy is emerging as Western allies and Gulf states step up support for rebels in southern Syria.<p>Along Jordan's northern border, Syrian rebels say they are unifying their fractious ranks, urged to unite by Western and Arab intelligence operatives who work in a covert command center in Jordan's capital.<p>Rebel sources confirm pledges of stepped-up deliveries of arms and intelligence sharing. Sun, 16 Mar 2014 14:58:00 +0000 Deborah Amos 36770 at Saudi Aid Boost To Syrian Rebels Puts Jordan At Risk 'Waiting For Godot' Strikes A Chord In Tehran At the National Theater in downtown Tehran, "Waiting for Godot" seems to have captured the mood of a country.<p>The Irish playwright, Samuel Beckett dramatized endless waiting in vain for someone named Godot. The play, translated into Farsi, got a standing ovation on the night I attended. The characters, in classic white suits, black top hats and black shoes, took endless bows as the audience whistled and clapped.<p>Iran is also waiting. It is waiting for the outcome of negotiations with six world powers over the country's nuclear program. Fri, 14 Mar 2014 07:27:00 +0000 Deborah Amos 36640 at 'Waiting For Godot' Strikes A Chord In Tehran Iranian Women Make A Push For Greater Opportunities Iran is starting to see a re-launch of activist groups following the election last year of President Hassan Rouhani. Social movements were scarce after the government crushed public protests known as the Green Movement following the 2009 elections. After the decisive vote for Rouhani, a surge of hope in Iran has attracted activists back to the political arena. Iranian women, in particular, are seizing the opportunity.<p>On a recent afternoon in north Tehran, two professional women huddle with an adviser to the Ministry of Mines and Trade. Wed, 05 Mar 2014 08:08:00 +0000 Deborah Amos 36003 at Iranian Women Make A Push For Greater Opportunities My (Brief) Detention By Iran's Morality Police On my third day in Tehran last week, I was detained by Iran's notorious "morals police." This volunteer corps, with a presence in nearly every city and town, polices infractions against Islamic values. These guardians patrol parks, recreation centers, shopping malls and cafes where young people gather.<p>My introduction to the morality squad began with shouts and threats and ended with fruit juice and a hug from a lady cop in a black chador that covered bleached blond hair and a snug red leather jacket.<p>She headed the women's detention room in the gender-segregated station. Mon, 03 Mar 2014 19:50:00 +0000 Deborah Amos 35894 at My (Brief) Detention By Iran's Morality Police What Comes Next In Syria? For eight days, the Syrian regime and an opposition delegation sat face-to-face, but were not on speaking terms in Room 16 of the Palais des Nations in the sprawling complex of United Nations headquarters in Geneva.<p>Round one demonstrated the bitter divide with no breakthrough on the core issues of a political transition or access to humanitarian aid.<p>So what comes next?<p>An agreement to continue the talks remains on hold. The opposition delegates pledged to return to the table in early February. Sat, 01 Feb 2014 16:26:00 +0000 Deborah Amos 33961 at What Comes Next In Syria? Is The U.S. Leaving A Leadership Void In The Middle East? Transcript <p>AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: <p>From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.<p>ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST: <p>And I'm Robert Siegel. In this part of the program, we're going to address a question that keeps bubbling up in news stories and commentary from the Middle East. Thu, 30 Jan 2014 23:32:00 +0000 Deborah Amos 33850 at On Different Frequencies, Two Sides Of Syrian Media Clash Transcript <p>AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: <p>The meeting between Syrian government and opposition leaders also brings competing entourages to Geneva. Pro-government reporters and opposition journalists are covering the same events, often in the same room, and it's not pretty. Mon, 27 Jan 2014 22:01:00 +0000 Deborah Amos 33610 at During Syrian Peace Talks, Rival Sides Wage A Media Battle Friday was the first day of negotiations at the Syrian peace conference. There were no direct talks, however. Instead, international envoy Lakhdar Brahimi shuttled between government and opposition delegations in separate rooms. Fri, 24 Jan 2014 23:04:00 +0000 Deborah Amos 33457 at Negotiations Begin At Syrian Peace Talks In Geneva After the formal opening of the Syria peace conference in the Swiss resort of Montreux, government and opposition representatives begin negotiations Friday at United Nations headquarters in Geneva. International envoy Lakhdar Brahimi is mediating the talks. Fri, 24 Jan 2014 10:57:00 +0000 Deborah Amos 33404 at Syrian Peace Talks Open With Bitterness And A Bit Of Hope Transcript <p>ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST: <p>This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Robert Siegel.<p>MELISSA BLOCK, HOST: <p>And I'm Melissa Block. The Syrian peace conference got off to a bitter start today with sharply opposing visions over a future role for Syria's President Bashar al-Assad. Wed, 22 Jan 2014 21:47:00 +0000 Deborah Amos 33296 at Peace Conference On Syria Opens In Switzerland Transcript <p>STEVE INSKEEP, HOST: <p>Let's go next to Switzerland, where the Syrian peace conference began this morning, with diplomats making public statements filled with accusations and acrimony - just how you'd want to start a peace conference. The civil war has gone on for almost three years now, killing well over 130,000 people and displacing some nine million others. Much of the fight hinges on whether Syrian President Bashar al-Assad should remain in power. Let's go now to NPR's Deborah Amos, who's covering the talks. Deborah's on the line. Wed, 22 Jan 2014 10:30:00 +0000 Deborah Amos 33248 at Table's Laid And Guests Are Ready: Syria Peace Talks Set To Begin Transcript <p>ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST: <p>From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.<p>MELISSA BLOCK, HOST: <p>And I'm Melissa Block. The Syrian peace conference begins tomorrow following a tumultuous 24 hours. Yesterday, at the last minute, the UN withdrew Iran's invitation after the Syrian opposition threatened to boycott the meeting. The aim of the talks: to end a three-year war that has claimed the lives of over 100,000 people.<p>But the war is no longer just about Syria. It's become a regional conflict, which makes finding a solution all the more complicated. Tue, 21 Jan 2014 22:40:00 +0000 Deborah Amos 33230 at Surprise Invitation Lands Syrian Peace Talks In Hot Water The long-anticipated Syrian peace conference is again in turmoil. The U.N. secretary-general's surprise decision to invite Iran to attend the conference prompted a boycott threat from Syria's exiled opposition. At issue is the fact that Iran has not publicly committed to the framework for the conference or pledged to withdraw its troops and allied militias from Syria. Under pressure from the opposition groups and the U.S., the U.N. has since withdrawn its invitation to Iran. Mon, 20 Jan 2014 22:25:00 +0000 Deborah Amos 33165 at Low Hopes, High Stakes For Syria Peace Conference In Geneva Can a meeting in Switzerland, known as Geneva-2, solve the crisis in Syria?<p>The expectations are low. The warring parties are reluctant. Some of the most important players, including powerful armed rebel groups, are not on the invitation list.<p>The superpower hosts, the U.S. and Russia, fully back the peace conference, set for Wednesday. They hope to kick-start a political process and end the armed conflict that has ravaged Syria and destabilized the region.<p>More than 40 countries have been invited, including the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council. Mon, 20 Jan 2014 12:30:00 +0000 Deborah Amos 33143 at Low Hopes, High Stakes For Syria Peace Conference In Geneva Foreign Fighters Flood Both Sides In Syrian War When peace talks open in Switzerland, one common concern between the West and Syria is expected to be the threat of Islamist extremists and the rise of al-Qaida-linked militias. Thousands of Sunni militants from around the world have joined the rebel groups in Syria, but there are other groups of militant foreign fighters who support the Syrian regime. Iraqi Shiites are being recruited in the thousands to bolster Syria's armed forces. Recruiting billboards and social media help portray the fight as an existential battle between Sunnis and Muslims. Fri, 17 Jan 2014 22:28:00 +0000 Deborah Amos 33030 at Battlefield In Northern Syria Evolves As Rebels Fight Rebels Transcript <p>RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST: <p>This is MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne.<p>STEVE INSKEEP, HOST: <p>And I'm Steve Inskeep. Good morning.<p>The warring parties in Syria are one week away from a peace conference. Rebels have been fighting the government of President Bashar al-Assad. Rebels have also been fighting rebels. Syria's political opposition is fractured over attending the peace conference at all, raising the prospect that Assad may come out on top.<p>NPR's Deborah Amos is following the run-up to these peace talks. She's on the line from Beirut. Thu, 16 Jan 2014 10:22:00 +0000 Deborah Amos 32880 at As Rebels Fight Rebels, Grim Reports From A Syrian City Reports from the Syrian city of Raqqa are dire. In the north-central provincial capital, "the atmosphere has gone from bad to worse," says one activist with a rare link to the Internet. He reports the city is "completely paralyzed," the hospital is abandoned, and there are bodies in the central square. There is no power or water for a city of more than half a million people. Even the critical bread ovens are shut.<p>The appalling description from Raqqa is just one scene from a new phase in the Syrian war. Wed, 08 Jan 2014 22:29:00 +0000 Deborah Amos 32392 at As Rebels Fight Rebels, Grim Reports From A Syrian City Syria's War Creates A Demand For Artificial Legs In a clinic in southern Turkey, Mohammed Ibrahim helps 23-year-old Syrian Mustapha Abu Bakr take his first steps since he lost his legs, holding on to a set of bars for balance.<p>"He can't express his feelings," Ibrahim says. "It's a new thing completely for him."<p>Ibrahim explains that patients who have lost a leg below the knee can walk out of the clinic without crutches after a day of practice. Thu, 26 Dec 2013 21:50:00 +0000 Deborah Amos 31646 at Syria's War Creates A Demand For Artificial Legs Escalating Violence In Syria Kills More Than 300 In 10 Days Transcript <p>ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST: <p>From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel. The civil war in Syria is unrelenting. More than 300 people killed in the past 10 days, according to opposition activists in a government air assault around the city of Aleppo. We're going to get an update and also consider the diplomatic possibilities in this part of the program and we'll start with the latest on the fighting.<p>Syrian air force helicopters have been dropping barrel bombs on the city. Tue, 24 Dec 2013 21:35:00 +0000 Deborah Amos 31546 at Rebel Leader: Nuns Were Led To Safety, Not Seized, In Syria <p></p> Fri, 20 Dec 2013 16:43:00 +0000 Deborah Amos 31319 at Rebel Leader: Nuns Were Led To Safety, Not Seized, In Syria 11,420 Children Dead In Syria's Civil War, So Far <p></p> Thu, 19 Dec 2013 10:02:00 +0000 Deborah Amos 31208 at 11,420 Children Dead In Syria's Civil War, So Far Fighting Escalates In Syria Ahead Of Peace Conference Transcript <p>AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: <p>From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.<p>MELISSA BLOCK, HOST: <p>And I'm Melissa Block. Activists in Syria say the most intense bombardment of that country's civil war is now in its fourth day. Government aircraft are dumping barrels packed with explosives on the city of Aleppo. Close to 200 people have been killed in the assault so far, according to the group Doctors Without Borders.<p>Government and rebel forces have stepped up their campaigns in recent days trying to gain ground in advance of an international peace conference. Wed, 18 Dec 2013 22:46:00 +0000 Deborah Amos 31193 at Radical Islamists In Northern Syria Spill Over Turkish Border Transcript <p>AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: <p>As we just heard, Turkish officials say they're clamping down on the radical Islamists who move through Turkey to join the rebellion in Syria. But in some frontier towns of southern Turkey, there's little sign of a crackdown.<p>NPR's Deborah Amos has that story.<p>DEBORAH AMOS, BYLINE: Usually, we begin a story like this in a Turkish border town, the places near Syria's northern frontier that are a hub for radicals who want to join al-Qaida linked groups. Thu, 12 Dec 2013 22:35:00 +0000 Deborah Amos 30779 at U.S. Suspends Aid To Some Syrian Rebels Transcript <p>MELISSA BLOCK, HOST: <p>The U.S. and Britain have suspended non-lethal aid to Western-backed rebel groups in northern Syria.A spokesman at the U.S. embassy in Turkey confirmed deliveries were halted after an Islamist rebel group seized U.S.-provided equipment from warehouses near the Turkish border.<p>It's the latest blow to the Free Syrian Army, which is increasingly overshadowed by more powerful Islamist militias. NPR's Deborah Amos is following the story from Beirut. Wed, 11 Dec 2013 21:46:00 +0000 Deborah Amos 30702 at American Dazzles Judges On 'Arabs Got Talent' Transcript <p>DAVID GREENE, HOST: <p>In the Arab world, TV watchers were buzzing this weekend about the finals of a popular contest show, "Arab's Got Talent." Runner up was the competition's dark horse contender, Jennifer Grout, a young American. She's not an Arab. She just loves Arabic music. And the presence of a Westerner in the running for this prize caused a bit of a stir. Mon, 09 Dec 2013 13:18:00 +0000 Deborah Amos 30494 at