Press Releases: 07/23/15

Al Jazeera America (1)



NEW YORK, July 23, 2015 – This Sunday, July 26th at 6pm ET/3pm PT, Al Jazeera America’s debate program “Third Rail” with host Imran Garda will explore the Obama Administration’s controversial decision to reestablish diplomatic ties with Cuba.

“Did Fidel Castro Win?” is the question that will be debated in the first half of the hour-long show. Guests include former United States Chief of Mission in Havana Ambassador Vicki Huddleston, Cuban exile and co-founder of Cuban Democratic Directorate Orlando Gutierrez and Omar Lopez Montenegro, a Miami-based human rights activist who was detained and imprisoned numerous times by the Cuban government before moving to the U.S in 1992.

The Administration argues that the long established policy of isolating the Communist regime has been a failure and that a new approach that encourages and supports reform through engagement is the better way to proceed. But critics argue that agreeing to reestablish diplomatic ties with Cuba without getting concessions from the Castro government, particularly in the area of human rights, only emboldens the Communist regime to continue its repressive policies and will do nothing to make things better for most Cubans.

In the second part of the show, a panel will explore provocative topics including the announcement from Charlie Hebdo’s editor-in-chief that the paper will stop publishing cartoons of the prophet Muhammad, Donald Trump’s surprising surge to the top of the Republican field and whether Planned Parenthood should apologize after some of its employees were caught on tape haggling over the price of fetuses in a video sting.

This week’s panel includes California Democratic Women’s Caucus Chair Christine Pelosi, syndicated columnist and host of the syndicated TV show, “The Right Side Forum,” Armstrong Williams and World News Editor for The Daily Beast and author of books including, “Our Man in Charleston: Britain’s Secret Agent in the Civil War South,“ Christopher Dickey.

“Third Rail” host Imran Garda is a journalist, novelist and documentarian who joined Al Jazeera English in 2006 as a news anchor and co-host of “Inside Story” at Al Jazeera Media Network headquarters in Doha, Qatar. He also served as the host of “The Stream” in Washington, D.C. Born and raised in South Africa, Garda has reported from more than a dozen countries and most recently served as a senior anchor and producer for AJ+, Al Jazeera’s all-digital news channel based in San Francisco. He is the author of the 2014 novel, “The Thunder That Roars.”

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