Next Steps for Syria, Russia and the US
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US–Russian diplomacy has ended America's threat of force against Syria, at least for the moment. But it requires Syria's Bashar al-Assad to declare and destroy his chemical weapons faster than that's ever been done before. If he refuses, what are America's options? Is Syria any closer to ending its increasingly brutal civil war? Also, rescues continue in Colorado's thousand-year flood. On Today's Talking Point, AMC's Breaking Bad has just two episodes left after five seasons of playing to a large and loyal audience. Is there any satisfying way to construct the last chapter?
Banner image: US Secretary of State John Kerry walks next to Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov (R) before delivering opening remarks to the media prior to their meeting to discuss the ongoing crisis in Syria, in Geneva September 12, 2013. Photo: Larry Downing/Reuters
Rescues Continue in Colorado's Thousand-Year Flood ()
Hundreds of people are still unaccounted for in Northeastern Colorado, where massive flooding has devastated communities from the mountains down onto the plains. Nathan Heffel, who reports for public radio station KUNC in Greeley, Colorado, updates the situation.
Is US-Russian Diplomacy Prolonging Syria's Civil War? ()
When the US was threatening force against Syria, fighting by both the government and the rebels dropped off. Now it's increasing again. And there's no guarantee that Bashar al-Assad will get rid of his chemical weapons according to the ambitious timetable set by the US and Russia. What if he doesn't? Will the US attack then, despite Russia's opposition? If Assad does meet the deadlines, will that mean peace for the Syrian people? We look at these and other questions about a short-term lull in what's really a long-term crisis.
- Stewart Patrick: Council on Foreign Relations, @StewartMPatrick
- Amr Al Azm: Shawnee State University, @alazmamr
- Nikolas Gvosdev: US Naval War College, @NavalWarCollege
- Page Fortna: Columbia University
Today's Talking Point
How to End a Modern Drama like AMC's 'Breaking Bad'? ()
Spoiler alert for those who've never watched Breaking Bad, the AMC TV series that started five seasons ago. Episode one: chemistry teacher Walter White discovers he has cancer with only two years left to live. To provide security for his wife and a son with cerebral palsy he begins making and selling methamphetamine. As he descends into the Albuquerque drug trade, segments explore the questionable morality of the anti-hero. With just two episodes remaining, here's the question: is there any way to write a satisfying ending? Matt Zoller Sietz is TV critic for New York magazine, editor in chief of RogerEbert.com and author of The Wes Anderson Collection.
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