Americans on Northern Ireland, No. 2

US on NI – Kelly Cullen

It’s Part 2 of the continuing series on American perspectives on the conflict in Northern Ireland.  This time it’s Kelly Cullen, a senior at Pitt and a marine reservist, who explains why he took such an interest in the Troubles + what he learned from studying it. 

Partly it’s a heritage thing for Kelly, having grown up in an Irish American family.  But his interest in Northern Ireland also grows out of his impending deployment to Iraq or Afghanistan, and his creative writing projects. 

Produced for The Politics Show


Guantánamo Uyghurs

The Guantanamo Uyghurs

The Five Uyghur Detainees released in 2006 to Albania
The Five Uyghur detainees released in 2006 to Albania

The countdown to Bush’s exit is on — and it has special meaning to a group of 17 Uyghur men who have been incarcerated in Guantánamo Bay detention facilities since 2001 –despite having been cleared of enemy combatant status as as early as 2003.  If soon to be-President Obama closes Guantánamo, the Uyghurs will finally be released — but the question then is, where will they go?

The Uyghurs are Turkic Muslims from the far West of China, but the US refuses to return them to China for fear of the abuse and execution they would face there.  China and the Uyghurs are locked in a long-standing low-level conflict, like that of China and the Tibetans. 

But even though it doesn’t want to give China the Uyghur detainees, the Bush administration won’t admit them to the US, and it hasn’t been able to persuade European, Canadian, or Australian governments to resettle them either.  If the Guantánamo system is finally closed in the coming weeks, the question of ‘what next’ for the detainees may prove just as Kafkaesque as their past seven years. 

Produced for RustBelt Radio

Election 08: A Ron Paul Convert

Claire Hagan on Ron Paul

Ron Paul Humor
Ron Paul Humor

The election is long over, but the 2008 presidential candidates – and their supporters — persist.  Republican Congressman Ron Paul didn’t make it on the ticket in November, but his appearances in the primary debates brought him a wide crop of new supporters – including Claire Hagan, a social worker in Baltimore. 

After watching him face off with the other Republican candidates last year, she found him to be the only real conservative on the stage and has been a Ron Paul convert since.   No matter his ‘out-there’ reputation, Claire believes in his program for cutting government agencies, pulling out of Iraq, and abiding closely to the Constitution.  She’ll even buy you a copy of his book if you show any degree of interest in him.

Produced for The Politics Show.