On his first trip to the Middle East since taking office, President Obama met with Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah today. What can each do for the other when it comes to Iran, Israeli-Palestinian peace talks and the price of oil? Also, Britain's expense account scandal claims a fourth minister on the eve of elections, and tomorrow it will be 20 years to the day since Chinese troops fired on unarmed civilians near Tiananmen Square. Will the Chinese people be allowed to remember?
FROM THIS EPISODE
"The government is collapsing before the country's eyes." Those are the words of Britain's Conservative Party leader David Cameron, taunting Prime Minister Gordon Brown in Parliament. Four members of Brown's Labor-Party cabinet have resigned in the past two days and it's all about the expense account scandal. Alistair Macdonald is British Politics and economy correspondent for the Wall Street Journal.
Alistair Macdonald, British Politics and Economy Correspondent, Wall Street Journal
As President Obama arrived in Saudi Arabia today, Al-Jazeera aired what purports to be a threatening new audiotape from Osama bin Laden. But King Abdullah met Air Force One in searing heat at the airport and the two exchanged kisses on both cheeks. The President is on his way to Cairo for tomorrow's speech to the Muslim world. He met with King Abdulla to "seek his majesty's counsel." Saudi Arabia is a major player in both the religion and politics of a troubled region, and it's key to stabilizing the price of oil. We hear about common interests and differences on Iraq, the Taliban, Iran's nuclear program and peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians.
Scott Wilson, Washington Post (@PostScottWilson)
Khaled Al-Maeena, Editor-in-Chief, Arab News
Walid Phares, Director of the Future of Terrorism Project, Foundation for the Defense of Democracies'
Steve Clemons, New America Foundation / The Atlantic (@SCClemons)
Rochdi Younsi, Director for the Middle East and Africa Practice, Eurasia Group
Tomorrow is the 20th anniversary of the bloody crackdown near Tiananmen Square, when Chinese troops gunned down unarmed civilians. No one knows how many died, and the government is still trying to prevent citizens from remembering what happened. Foreign journalists have been barred from the square, Internet sharing sites have been shut down and dissidents have been confined to their homes or required to leave Beijing. John Pomfret, former Beijing Bureau Chief for the Washington Post, is author of Chinese Lessons: Five Classmates and the Story of the New China.
John Pomfret, Reporter, Washington Post