The Tragedy of Iraq

In this edition of the Aidan Project, Aidan is joined by Iraq-born writer, Sami Ramadani, to discuss important questions regarding Iraq and the Middle East. What is happening now in Iraq? We are now 14 years on from the controversial invasion, yet Iraq is not at peace, not least because of an ongoing battle with ISIS. Sami provides a whistle-stop history of the struggle of the Iraqi people, from imperial oppression from the United Kingdom up to the occupation of US-led forces in 2003. Sami also discusses US foreign policy under the Trump administration, speculating on a potential showdown with Iran. Sami grew up in Baghdad, but departed as a political exile during Saddam Hussein’s reign. However, despite his objections to Saddam’s government, Sami argued against US-led sanctions and opposed the 2003 invasion and occupation. A semi-retired lecturer in sociology, Sami writes on Middle Eastern affairs and sits on the Stop the War Coalition’s steering committee. For more information on Sami, you can find him on Twitter (@SamiRamidani1) and the Guardian web site (https://www.theguardian.com/profile/samiramadani).

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The Fake News Agenda

In this edition of the Aidan Project, Aidan is joined by Gary Herman to discuss press freedom, fake news, citizen journalism and the future of a free press in a digital age. Also discussed on this show is Donald Trump’s scheduled autumn visit to the United Kingdom, why journalists often refrain from pressing public figures on evaded questions, ‘Stop Funding Hate’, the lack of trust of the public in the media, Facebook as a news source, Leveson, and much more. Gary is a member of the British National Union of Journalists and has been campaigning for press and broadcasting freedom for 37 years. Gary sits on the National Council of The Campaign for Press & Broadcasting Freedom (http://www.cpbf.org.uk/), which is funded by membership and trade unions. Established in 1979, the CPBF strives for a more accountable, freer and diverse media. Gary has a background in journalism and writing, beginning his career as a freelance journalist and author, specialising in film and popular music and authoring or co-authoring a number of books. If you would like to find out more information about Gary, you can visit http://www.keywordsassociates.com/.

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Project Extra: Folklore

In this bonus edition of the podcast, enjoy previously unreleased audio from The Aidan Project episode, ‘Pokemon Diplomacy and Transnational Culture’ with Jared Miracle. Jared is an author, educator, researcher, martial artist, chef, and much else besides. You can follow Jared on Facebook (facebook.com/jaredmiraclewriter) and Twitter (@DocKungFu).

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America’s Great War (Part One): Neutrality

This is part one of a two-part series focusing on the role and experience of the United States of America in the Great War of 1914-1918. In these episodes, Aidan is joined by Dr. Paul Dean, a former instructor at, and alumni of, Washington State University, who is an expert on World War One and author of ‘Courage: Roy Blanchard’s Journey in America’s Forgotten War’. In this episode, Aidan and Paul discuss the underlying tensions that led to war, the ambitions of the Central Powers and The Entente, and the tragically misplaced belief that it would be over quickly, before it became a desperate stalemate. This episode moves through the chronology of the war up until April 1917, all the while considering the US perspective; the view of the US public, and President Woodrow Wilson’s policy towards the conflict. This episode concludes on the eve of the momentous Declaration of War on Germany, which was handed down on April 6, 1917. Following German antagonism at sea and the infamous Zimmermann Telegram, the US moved away from the Monroe Doctrine and into the fight. Part two will be released on April 6, 2017, one hundred years to the day that the United States officially entered into the global catastrophe that was, at the time, thought to be the war to end all wars. For more information on Dr. Paul Dean, please visit his web site at www.paultdean.com.

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Western Downfall: Why Trump Won

On this edition of The Aidan Project Podcast, Aidan is joined on the line from New York City by philosopher, Dr. Benedict Beckeld. In this episode, Aidan and Dr. Beckeld discuss a number of important issues, most notably Dr. Beckeld’s explanation of Donald Trump’s electoral success. Dr. Beckeld argues that oikophobia – a repudiation of one’s own culture – led to the rise of Trump. The good news is that ‘Western Decline’ is cyclical; the bad news is that there is no immediate sign of a reversal. Also discussed on the show: the ‘Regressive Left’, immigration, Islam, free speech, race riots in Sweden, Brexit, Milo, atheism, bodybuilding, and much more. Dr. Beckeld was born in Sweden to Brazilian and Jewish parents, but emigrated with his family to New York City as a teenager. Dr. Beckeld’s philosophy has thus far focused primarily on matters of aesthetics, ethics, contemporary culture, political philosophy and the philosophy of history. For more information on Dr. Beckeld, you can find him online at www.benedictbeckeld.com and on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/benedictbeckeld

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