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The U.S. election and the price of sitting out Syria

The U.S. election and the price of sitting out Syria
An injured Syrian woman rides to a hospital after an airstrike by regime forces in Aleppo on Tuesday.
October 16th, 2012
11:48 PM ET

This is part of a series on foreign policy issues Christiane Amanpour is analyzing in the-lead up to next week’s presidential debate on foreign affairs. 

By Christiane Amanpour, CNN & ABC

For the last 19 months Syria has fallen deeper and deeper into civil war. What started in March 2011 as another offshoot of the Arab Spring, the demand for freedom and reform, was met so brutally that ordinary Syrians decided that Assad had to go.

Left to fester, with the United Nations deadlocked over how to end the fighting, the death toll has reached 29,000 according to the Syrian opposition, and the most horrific massacres of women, children and old men have taken place. Extremists and foreign jihadists are joining the battle. With 1.2 million people displaced, the approaching winter poses as much of a threat as the relentless violence.

As worrisome as this is, recent history has shown us that when people are battling for survival, they end up taking help wherever it’s offered. When I covered the 1990s genocide in Bosnia, the people pleaded for years for the West to help. They did not. Instead the U.N. imposed a similar arms embargo that only ensured the superiority of the better-armed. So all sorts of foreign Mujaheddin came in. The parallels are eerily similar in Syria.

Will whoever wins the U.S. election make any changes to this policy of ‘Sitting Out Syria?’  FULL POST


Filed under:  Christiane Amanpour • Syria • U.S. Politics

Childhood stunting

October 16th, 2012
07:15 PM ET

By Samuel Burke & Mick Krever, CNN

Millions of children around the world are threatened with death, lowered I.Q. and deformities by a life-altering condition - one that can be avoided simply by eating enough nutrients.  It's called "stunting."

The vitamins and the nutrients that a child receives in the first two years of life will literally impact that child's entire future.

Stunting threatens 180 million children below the age of five all over the world.

To discuss this phenomenon CNN's  Christiane Amanpour was joined by the head of UNICEF, Anthony Lake, as well as Angelique Kidjo. She is a Grammy award-winning singer and songwriter, as well as UNICEF goodwill ambassador. She recently traveled to Kenya, where more than two million children suffer from stunting.

CNN’s Juliet Fuisz produced this piece for television.


Filed under:  Christiane Amanpour • Latest Episode

Angelique Kidjo gives impromptu concert in the newsroom

October 16th, 2012
04:56 PM ET

Singer and UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador Angelique Kidjo gave the CNN newsroom an impromptu concert after today's show on childhood stunting, which is caused by long-term insufficient nutrient intake and frequent infections.


Filed under:  Christiane Amanpour

America at a crossroads

October 16th, 2012
10:08 AM ET

Historian Simon Schama says the next president needs to address the role of government and social fairness.


Filed under:  Christiane Amanpour • Latest Episode