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FROM THIS EPISODE

Authorities in Kenya say the assault on Nairobi's Westgate shopping center is over after three days of terror for civilians who'd been going about routine business. Also, new opportunities — as well as potential pitfalls -- for US diplomacy in the Middle East. Will Syria's Assad use the chemical-weapons deal to stay in power? Is Iran serious about reducing its nuclear program? Will Israel run out of patience?

Banner image: Women carrying children run for safety as armed police hunt gunmen who went on a shooting spree in Westgate shopping centre in Nairobi September 21, 2013. Photo: Goran Tomasevic/Reuters

Producers:
Christian Bordal
Katie Cooper
Anna Scott

Main Topic New Diplomatic Opportunities for Syria and Iran 27 MIN, 31 SEC

President Obama's threat to bomb Syria for its use of chemical weapons was, in part, a warning to Iran about its nuclear program. It also helped reassure Israel about US willingness to use force in the Middle East. Now, just two weeks later and with the UN about to open a new session tomorrow, it's all about diplomacy. We hear about possible benefits and potential risks involving Syria, Iran and the alliance with Israel — with President Obama's foreign policy legacy on the line.

Guests:
Dennis Ross, Washington Institute for Near East Policy (@washinstitute)
Golnaz Esfandiari, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (@GEsfandiari)
Marc Lynch, George Washington University (@abuaardvark)

Statecraft

Dennis Ross

Making News Civilian Shoppers and the Bloodbath in Kenya 24 MIN, 9 SEC

Soldiers in Kenya say they've taken control of Nairobi's Westgate shopping center after three days of killings and hostage-taking. At least 62 are said to be dead and almost 200 injured, including 5 Americans. The attackers are from al-Shabab, an Islamist militant group from Somalia. We hear from Nairobi and look at the targeting of civilians elsewhere in Africa and other parts of the world.

Guests:
Sudarsan Raghavan, Washington Post (@africawriter)
Jeffrey Gettleman, New York Times (@gettleman)
Daniel Benjamin, Dartmouth College (@dartmouthdickey)

The Age of Sacred Terror

Daniel Benjamin

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