Welcome to our new series! After a brief introduction to the series, we launch into our first topic – the Syrian civil war, the deadliest conflict the 21st century has witnessed thus far. Nearly six years since the conflict began, more than 450,000 Syrians have been killed in the fighting, more than a million injured and over 12 million Syrians – half the country’s prewar population – have been displaced from their homes. So what’s really going on in Syria? What’s the basis of the conflict and who is supporting who – and why? To understand the Syrian war, we need to understand the history of Syria, the Sunni-Shia conflict, and the history of the two countries who represent that conflict – Iran and Saudi Arabia. And that’s what we’re going to do – go deep to understand the background and try to figure out how it plays a part in today’s tragedy.
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Theme music: Holy Deep by The Passion HiFi
Good history lesson for episode 1 on Islam, the history of Iran, and the overall idea of the series seems great, especially with the topic of the Syrian War.
Two issues though:
1. Looking at current events does require an explanation of historical background for each topic….but at this rate, how long will it take to get to the current situation in Syria in 2017? Is this length expected for each topic down the road? If so, this should be a disclaimer, as the intro to episode 1 literally brought up that this would be about current events.
2. There are waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay to many conspiracy theory pushers when it comes to current events…. even more than history! While dissecting each story, be careful not to pick up BS from sources that make things up, but use the veil of trying to “uncover” the official “fake news” story, to sell their own…. some current events may actually be reported as things actually are. Tread careful, boys!
Overall, great start. I have been studying history for 17 years and have looked at Islam and 20th century Iranian history, but episode 1 succinctly washed my brain up and injected a nice review soup sud. Any chance that this podcast also offers mugs?
I recommend this podcast along with the many other works done be these two young lads: World War 2 podcast, Napoleon, Alexander the Great, Julius/Augustus Caesar, A Cold War, and the Three Illusions.
Thanks Brian. We’ve recorded the first three episodes and they got us up to Bashar’s Presidency. I don’t think all future subjects will require this kind of background, but I think this one deserves it. Agree with you on the conspiracy theories. We’re going to make sure we are careful about our sources. Not everyone is going to like all of them or agree with all of them, but so be it. Mugs will be coming soon!
Thanks Brian. I agree, the hard part will be when we get to Syria and have to use news reports. Unfortunately, the death and destruction will be all too easy to cover and report. Then comes the “Spin” from all sides. Which begs the question, How far can a ruler go in keeping his/her country together? Where’s the line? How is it to be judged when the people fight back, killing government troops/police? Who had right on their side? Probably both sides, but what then is to be done? For me, I know that we are not going to change things, but the conversation needs to be had, the events need to be examined. Up until recently, the oppressed only had one thing on their side, numbers. But now, with the ability to send out a message, practically from anywhere, hopefully more information will come out. Of course, that also allows for more spin. The more things stay the same…
How can iTunes reject you guys, you are the best history podcasters in the world, really shady stuff! Btw, thanks for making this free, love your podcasts.
The best in the world?? That’s a wonderful compliment, Rafa, but we can’t accept it. We’re 4th best at most.
You guys are the kings of Infotainment. Sometimes it is two thirds info and one part entertainment, sometimes it’s the other way around. Great stuff as always. Love that you dig into the history that weaves itself through today’s news.
Thanks Jeff! It’s nice to know someone cares. Especially for Ray. He doesn’t have much to look forward to at his age.
Guys.. you knock me out!
I though you Life series was good but this is in it’s own class!
Cameron .. your comment about the number of Syrian displaced vs the population of Australia brought home the magnitude of the tragedy.
Ray … the selected inserts you provide give great pause for retrospection.
So where is the Patron site? I’m in for a few shekels / mo to support this effort!
Thanks Jan! I’ll get a patron page up soon. 🙂
Ray, Cam, you’ve done it again, excellent podcast and I’m thoroughly enjoying it. I listened to an excellent book a few years ago – Flat Earth News – essentially pointing out how the ‘art’ of news has now been lost to commercial requirements. Also, with the reduction in new teams / reporters etc. reporting agencies are now more likely to regurgitate news given to them without any form of critical analysis. I can’t help but think that this contributes to the explosion in Bullshit News. The book might be worth a look?
Thanks Paul! I’ll check that out!