Mark McNamee of Frontier Strategy Group rejoins the podcast to talk about the rise of populism and nationalism, Trump's foreign policy, spheres of influence, what happens when nationalists from different countries collide, whether Russian meddling in foreign elections might come back to haunt them, the possible "reverse Trump effect" boomeranging against right wing populists in Europe, the French elections, Theresa May's decision to call snap elections in Britain, and more. Recorded literally as the polls were closing in France, so we didn't know who won yet, but our analysis totally holds up anyway.
It's been a terrible few days for PR, whether it's Pepsi's ill-conceived ad, United's "re-accommodation," or Sean Spicer's accidental Holocaust denial, and much more! Ethan Cheng joins to discuss who was the absolute worst. There's not a lot of international affairs on this episode, but it was quite fun to record.
In theory, Trump's presidency could have been a useful course correction to some American foreign policy excesses. As to what's actually happened? Hmm. Michael Davies is back to talk it over.
Chiara Monti guests once again to talk about migration in Europe.
Joe, Roni, and Ethan prepare for Inauguration Day.
Note: This podcast was recorded before the President-Elect declared NATO "obsolete."
Daesh/ISIS/ISIL/Islamic State/the self-described Islamic State/whatever you want to call them (and it matters what you call them!) is losing territory, but the loss of a territorial foothold in Iraq and Syria might not mean the end of the group, or its ideology. Part 1 examines the current dynamics facing the group and what might happen in the coming months. (Part 2 will focus more on the group's ideology and why it has endured.) David Millar guests.
Christy Dehus joins the podcast to discuss the upcoming elections in the Democratic Republic of Congo; whether and when they will happen; who the candidates are; and the consequences of Dodd-Frank on DRC's mining sector.
Why victory is so hard to achieve, Part 2. Michael Davies guests again.
The United States has been in Afghanistan for a decade and a half. Syria and Iraq are beset by conflict. Whatever happened to victory? Part of it is about them, part of it is about us, and part of it is what you mean by victory. Researcher Michael Davies, author of "What we need to do is admit that we are unable to win our wars," guests and explains.
The Rwanda genocide is over, but the conflict isn't... it's just moved next door. The spillover takes down Zaire, and much of the continent becomes embroiled in the resulting war. What to take away from all of this? Here's an hour-long stream-of-consciousness history of the Second Congo War.
Is it acceptable to find humor in a despotic regime? Julia Gronnevet and Daniel Hernandez return to talk it over.
As a frozen conflict settles in in Ukraine, Kiev no longer controls all its own territory. But Mark McNamee, analyst with the Frontier Strategy Group, suggests that it's Russia's weakness that has been exposed. Military power is Russia's largest remaining means of influence, McNamee argues, while the Donbass uprising was largely economic, not ethnic, in nature. So what's next for both countries? Listen to find out.
The thing they call the Arab Spring started so promisingly, but today multiple countries are in chaos or under iron-fisted dictatorial rule. What happened? Why? Are revolutions good? Are they worth it? Maybe it's too soon to tell. Julia Gronnevet and Daniel Hernandez were both journalists at United Nations Headquarters in New York at the time, and they join the podcast to recall their memories.
The Rwanda Genocide is often seen as a clarion call for international intervention in the face of evil. In fact, before, during, and after the genocide, there was extensive international intervention and much of it did more harm than good. Where the international community failed, Paul Kagame succeeded. This show considers Kagame's remarkable story and the unique factors that made the Rwanda genocide unfold the way it did.
Namibia suffered a brutal colonial history and has extensive extractive natural resources. Many countries with these characteristics turned out to be basket cases, but Namibia is highly stable and relatively prosperous. Why? The answer may lie in the sort of colonial history and extractive resources. Mark Gardiner and Stephanie Quinn, Ph.D candidates with Stanford University, are here to help out.
Today, the liberal international order of sovereign states faces challenges: from above, with transnational issues like terrorism, climate change, organized crime networks, and migration; from below, with internal state collapse; and from revisionism from Russia, China, and others. How fundamental are these challenges? Laura Daniels, who works for a Washington, DC think tank, joins to discuss. Merry Christmas!
For more of Laura's work, read her recent piece on the United States, Russia, and Syria.