Quake devastates Turkey and Syria. Are parts of the world off-limits for aid?

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The death toll from the 7.8 magnitude earthquake that hit Turkey and Syria earlier this week has exceeded 20,000. Photo by Erhan Demirtas/NurPhoto via Reuters Connect.

A 7.8 earthquake struck Turkey and Syria this week, leaving at least 20,000 people dead and tens of thousands injured or stuck under rubble. 

It was particularly devastating because many buildings were not built to withstand this level of disaster, and it hit a region already torn apart by war. It left millions of Syrians, who are already displaced by the war and neglected by the Assad regime, suffering with little way to access help. 

The Syrian regime’s relationship with countries like the U.S. is frozen. So, even gaining access into rebel-held regions for non-governmental organizations may be difficult. 

How can the world help? And are geopolitical tensions forcing millions of people to suffer?

Special guest Kemal Kirişci, non-resident fellow at the Brookings Institution, weighs in on the conditions in Turkey and Syria on the ground, and how the ongoing war is affecting recovery efforts.

Plus, this week President Biden delivered his State of the Union, the annual speech given to a joint session of Congress at the beginning of the year.

Biden touted many of his accomplishments and avoided pointing fingers at “MAGA Republicans,” as he’s done in previous speeches. But the president did call out some Republicans for threatening Social Security and Medicare, which was met with boos and shouts from conservatives. 

Was Biden setting the stage for a 2024 presidential run? And did he break through to the American public?

Host David Greene discusses with Mo Elleithee, executive director of Georgetown University’s Institute of Politics and Public Service, and Sarah Isgur, senior editor at The Dispatch. 

And the Super Bowl this weekend is resurfacing calls for the Kansas City Chiefs to abandon some of their traditions that Native communities consider racist and offensive. Why are the Chiefs resistant to change?

Special guest Lawrence Brooks IV, race and culture reporter for KCUR, discusses his article, “As Kansas City Chiefs Head to the Super Bowl, Their Violent Traditions Alienate Even Some Local Fans” and why Kansas City fans haven’t abandoned their celebrations.




David Greene