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The Week to Week News Quiz for 9/13/13: Special Syria Edition

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With the U.S. and Russia wrangling over Syria, it's time to see how closely you've been following the news with a special edition of our Week to Week news quiz.

Here are some random but real hints: Saddam partied hard, too; similar to Christians in one sense; them's tithing numbers; and they are all down-to-earth. Answers are at the bottom of the quiz.

1. What is the Ba'ath Party?
a. The largest of the anti-government rebel forces in Syria
b. The ruling party of Syrian President Bashir al-Assad
c. A three-day techno party held in the desert of Syria and Jordan
d. The Turkish organization helping Syrian refugees along the border

2. What are Alawites?
a. The name of the chemical weapons-tipped missiles the Russians sold to Syria
b. The name of Syrian President Assad's secret police
c. A branch of Shia Islam, comprising about 12 percent of Syria's population, including the ruling family
d. A common salt-water fish

3. Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu said the outcome of the Syrian situation will have an effect on what other nation?
a. North Korea
b. Iran
c. Iraq
d. Turkey

4. Who said, "Who cares how we avoided a war and got a dictator to give up his chemical weapons if we avoided a war and got a dictator to give up his chemical weapons"?
a. John Kerry
b. Jon Stewart
c. David Cameron
d. Barack Obama

5. What percentage of Syria's population is Christian?
a. 1 percent
b. Between 4 and 7 percent
c. 25 percent
d. About 10 percent

6. What is the name of the international standard that Syria is now promising to join?
a. The Coalition of the Willing
b. Chemical Weapons Test-ban Treaty
c. Chemical Weapons Convention
d. UN Treaty on Chemical Warfare

7. Why did Syrian rebels execute a 15-year-old boy?
a. He was accused of blasphemy
b. He was accused of murder
c. He was caught looting
d. He was wearing a pro-Assad t-shirt

8. What country offered a plan to have Syria put its chemical weapons under international control?
a. Germany
b. France
c. Russia
d. United Kingdom

9. In his speech to the nation Tuesday night, which one of the following did President Obama not invoke?
a. The use of chemical weapons in World War I
b. The Holocaust
c. Star Trek
d. The danger of dictators

10. How many Syrians have been displaced as a result of the civil war?
a. 200,000
b. 550,000
c. 1.5 million
d. 6 million

BONUS. And now, a non-Syria question. For what did a Middle Eastern prince pay $500,000?
a. Dinner with Warren Buffett
b. A parking space in Manhattan
c. A 15-minute conversation with actress Kirsten Stewart
d. A walk-on part in the season opener of NCIS

The news and the quizzes don't stop there! Join us Monday, Oct. 14 in San Francisco for our next live Week to Week political roundtable with a news quiz and a social hour at The Commonwealth Club.

ANSWERS: 1) b. 2) c. 3) b. 4) b. 5) d. 6) c. 7) a. 8) c. 9) c. 10) d. BONUS) c.

EXPLANATIONS OF THE HINTS: Saddam partied hard, too: Saddam Hussein headed a Ba'athist government in Iraq before he was overthrown by the United States; similar to Christians in one sense: Alawites and Christians are each about 10 percent of the Syrian population; them's tithing numbers: 10 percent is often cited as an amount of income for Christians to tithe to their church; and they are all down-to-earth: President Obama is a Trekkie, but he did not go there in his speech.