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FROM THIS EPISODE

Typhoid and hepatitis are the latest results of Syria's bloody violence as America's new Secretary of State, John Kerry, takes another shot at diplomacy. With the al-Assad regime getting help from American rivals, how much longer can the US refuse to help arm al-Assad's opposition? Also, Italian elections rock financial markets, and same-sex marriage divides the Republicans.

Banner image: A fighter from the Free Syrian Army's Tahrir al Sham brigade eats his breakfast as another fighter runs carrying yogurts for their comrades during heavy fighting in Mleha suburb of Damascus January 25, 2013. Photo by Goran Tomasevic/Reuters

Producers:
Christian Bordal
Anna Scott
Sonya Geis

Making News Italian Elections Rock Financial Markets 7 MIN, 23 SEC

Italy's most recently promised its Eurozone partners -- and the rest of the financial world -- to continue its regime of austerity measures. But in yesterday's general election, voters chose both the left and the right, coalitions that want to relieve -- or even reverse -- financial sacrifice. Alessandra Galloni is Bureau Chief in Italy for the Wall Street Journal.

Guests:
Alessandra Galloni, Wall Street Journal (@galloniwsj)

Main Topic Should the US Arm Syrian Rebels? 34 MIN, 28 SEC

After just three weeks as Secretary of State, John Kerry is trying to prevent Syria's "bloody stalemate" from disrupting the world's most volatile region. Russia, Hezbollah — and especially Iran — are aiding the Assad regime while America's refusal to arm opponents is seen as betrayal. Saudi Arabia is reportedly sending Croatian weapons to anti-government forces, who saved Kerry embarrassment by agreeing to show up at a meeting later this week. With 70,000 Syrians already dead and 850,000 turned into refugees, is there any hope of stopping the carnage any time soon?

Guests:
Abigail Fielding-Smith, Financial Times
Karen DeYoung, Washington Post (@karendeyoung1)
Michael Doran, Brookings Institution (@Doranimated)
Marc Lynch, George Washington University (@abuaardvark)

The Arab Uprising

Marc Lynch

Reporter's Notebook Republicans Weigh In against Prop 8 8 MIN, 28 SEC

Next month, the US Supreme Court will hear arguments on California's Proposition 8, which says marriage can only be between a man and a woman.  Thursday is the deadline for so-called "friend of the court" briefs, and today's New York Times reports that top Republicans have split with their party platform in support of overturning that law. When California voters passed Proposition 8 by a narrow margin in 2010, it had the support of the state Republican party, including Meg Whitman, Republican nominee for Governor two years later. But Whitman is among the GOP leaders now repudiating their party platform — and House Speaker John Boehner. Sheryl Gay Stolberg reports for the Times.

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