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None Of The Above

Institute for Global Affairs

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As the United States confronts an ever-changing set of international challenges, our foreign policy leaders continue to offer the same old answers. But what are the alternatives? In None Of The Above, the Eurasia Group Institute for Global Affairs' Mark Hannah asks leading global thinkers for new answers and new ideas to guide an America increasingly adrift in the world. www.noneoftheabovepodcast.org
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Party of One

Maffick Podcasts

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Conservative, Liberal, Centrist: You gotta screw one, marry one, murder one. Introducing Party of One. What's the real difference between a Republican and a Democrat? Still believe the game's red vs. blue in Washington? Here's something new for your ears. Party of One pushes past the political posturing and ramped-up rhetoric of division, to uncover a much scarier reality: It's business that's booming, and we're the ones losing. And the stakes couldn't be higher. Tune in for conversations wi ...
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In the aftermath of 9/11, America’s political leaders lept to action based on, what turned out to be, a series of misplaced and untested assumptions. From conflations between the Taliban and Al Qaeda to misguided theories about nation building, these assumptions drove two decades of policy failure in Afghanistan. Critical missteps came with a human…
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Haiti has been in a state of political uncertainty since its president, Jovenel Moïse, was assassinated two years ago. Ariel Henry assumed power with the backing of the US – but not of most Haitians – and promptly suspended elections. Competing gangs jockeyed for political power, and have seized control of the capital city Port-au-Prince. The propo…
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From the Crimean War of 1853 to Russia’s war inUkraine, journalists, reporters, and the media have shaped the public’s understanding of war. But do the stories we read and the photos we see provide an impartial picture of the wars they document? As the Institute for Global Affairs’ Mark Hannah explained in his 2022 Foreign Policy piece, certain asp…
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Many have argued that NATO, the transatlantic alliance forged at the dawn of the Cold War, is merely a vestige of another era. But Russia’s invasion of Ukraine thrust NATO back into the spotlight, and reignited debates about the value and strategic imperatives of America’s alliances. With a distinguished career of over three decades in the United S…
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In December 2023, South Africa brought human rights law into the fold of the Israel-Hamas war when it filed a genocide case against Israel in the World Court. South Africa’s unprecedented move sparked conversation surrounding the line between collateral damage and indiscriminate bombing campaigns. In this extended cut of a recent episode of None of…
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The Houthis continue to attack commercial vessels in the Red Sea amid Israel’s assault in Gaza. This Yemen-based political and military organization says its disruption of international shipping is a response to Western support for Israel. It likely also hopes its attacks will revitalize flailing domestic support within war-torn Yemen. The United S…
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Last month the International Court of Justice ordered Israel to take measures to prevent acts of genocide, and protect the human rights of Gazans. Almost everything about the case has generated controversy, from South Africa’s invocation of the Genocide Convention to the court’s decision not to order a ceasefire. In this episode of None Of The Abov…
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Next month will mark two years since Russia invaded Ukraine after amassing over 100,000 troops at the border. As we look ahead, we ask: What has victory in Ukraine come to symbolize for the Biden administration’s foreign policy? Are Ukraine and its partners making full use of diplomacy to bring an end to the war? And how might the 2024 Presidential…
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It’s always difficult to gather and verify information in times of armed conflict. But recently that task has gotten much harder. From Russia’s invasion of Ukraine to Israel’s ground invasion of Gaza, journalists and consumers alike are inundated with intentionally misleading images, information, and narratives. The media ecosystem has become incre…
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Instability in the Democratic Republic of the Congo has been making headlines in Western newspapers for months. Since the fall of Mobuto Sese Seko’s 30 year dictatorship in 1997, the cobalt rich Congo has dealt with civil war, insurgencies from bordering nations, and government corruption. But before Mobuto, there was another charismatic leader. Pa…
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The United States military is one of the most advanced and best funded militaries in the world. But critics argue this has helped make US foreign policy overly reliant on the use of military force. Over the past several decades, the US has grappled with blowback and retaliation, a ballooning defense budget, and a decline in traditional diplomacy. F…
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Today marks one month since the Palestinian militant organization Hamas launched a brutal terrorist attack on Southern Israel. Before October 7th, the Biden administration’s foreign policy had largely centered on Europe and Asia. Issues of Palestinian self-determination and self rule appeared to be something the administration (and Israel) were eag…
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With the 2024 presidential election on the horizon, the Biden administration’s foreign policy decisions will face increasing scrutiny. Some think foreign policy decisions should be exempt from regular public debate. To gain a better understanding of the concerns and priorities of voting age Americans, we at the Eurasia Group Foundation compiled our…
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The United Nations, founded in the aftermath of history’s most destructive war, is the world’s premier forum for international diplomacy. But is the UN a vestige of a bygone era? This year’s session of the UN General Assembly, which today closes general debate, has been the site of much frustration over the war in Ukraine, the stalled progress of t…
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Yesterday’s anniversary of the 2001 terrorist attacks on the United States has us turning to the legacy of America’s post-9/11 wars. As veterans reflect on their time in Iraq and Afghanistan, and as the country contemplates the impact of these wars on the morale of the US military and America’s standing in the world, literature offers a powerful wa…
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We here at the Eurasia Group Foundation are very curious about the extent to which US foreign policy reflects the interests of the American public. In today’s episode, we turn our attention to an important group: Black Americans. Black Americans make up 12 percent of the national population. They are over-represented in the rank and file of the US …
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Last week, the Biden administration agreed to share evidence with the International Criminal Court of Russian war crimes in Ukraine. President Biden insists Vladimir Putin has “clearly committed war crimes.” But however atrocious Russia’s tactics are, is there a version of this war – or any act of war – that is not? In this week’s episode of None O…
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As President Biden meets this week with America’s NATO allies at the Vilnius Summit, attention has turned to Sweden’s and Ukraine’s prospects for the Atlantic alliance. Europe is not the only continent where America’s military commitments are up for debate, however. On this episode of None Of The Above, we look further east to America’s alliance in…
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This week, Indian prime minister Narendra Modi traveled to the United States in his first official state visit as prime minister. Once denied entry into the United States for inciting communal violence in the Indian state of Gujarat, Modi is now being given one of the highest honors for foreign dignitaries by addressing a joint session of Congress.…
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Over the weekend, Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida hosted the annual G7 summit in Hiroshima. Nuclear proliferation, Russia’s war on Ukraine, and the rise of China dominated conversation between the leaders of the world’s most advanced democratic economies. Kishida hosting the summit is significant: Japan is reinventing its role on the global s…
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On April 15, violence erupted across Sudan between the Sudanese Army, led by Gen. Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, and a paramilitary group called the Rapid Support Forces, led by Lt. Gen. Mohamed Hamdan–known also as Hemedti. As the warring factions compete for control of resource-rich Sudan, regional leaders like Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Israel, as w…
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When TikTok CEO Shou Zi Chew testified before Congress, he was grilled on whether the popular short form video hosting app used by an estimated 150 million Americans has links to the Chinese government. The Biden administration and several members of Congress from both parties want to ban TikTok, which is owned by Chinese tech firm ByteDance, claim…
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We recently marked the one-year anniversary of Russia’s war in Ukraine. Many are wondering: how does this seemingly intractable conflict end? On Friday, the International Criminal Court issued a warrant for Vladimir Putin’s arrest. On Monday, Putin and Xi Jinping met to discuss China’s peace proposal for Ukraine. The United States and its allies in…
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President Biden traveled to Poland in February after his surprise visit to Kyiv to encourage NATO countries' continued support for Ukraine as the war enters its second year. “Democracies of the world will stand guard over freedom today, tomorrow and forever,” Biden said. The United States reiterated its commitment to defend countries throughout Eur…
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A year after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the war grinds on. Early Russian advances were successfully rolled back, but intense fighting continues in the east, where a renewed Russian offensive looms. The United States and many of its European allies remain resolute in their support for Ukraine. In a sign of their commitment, the United States and …
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After Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, observers anxiously watched China’s reactions as many feared a similar conflict would break out in the Taiwan Strait. In recent years, it appears China has been increasingly determined to enforce its One-China policy, first against Hong Kong and now against Taiwan. From afar, the United States is caught between d…
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Benjamin Netanyahu is expected to be sworn in as Israel’s 15th prime minister in the coming days. Israel’s government, which is expected to be the most right-wing in the country’s history, has raised questions about the role the United States should play, if any, in what could be a high consequence and volatile year for Israelis and Palestinians. B…
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In early December, just weeks after Benjamin Netanyahu and his Likud party won Israel’s parliamentary election (again), US Secretary of State Antony Blinken remarked that America’s commitment to Israel has “never been stronger.” The incoming governing coalition that Netenyahu is forming is expected to be the most right-wing in Israeli history. What…
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Last month, President Biden warned of “nuclear Armageddon” as tensions with Russia reached their highest point since the Cuban Missile Crisis. While the Biden administration appears to be working around the clock to prevent this kind of nuclear catastrophe, the American public has been largely kept in the dark about how the United States would resp…
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It’s Election Day in the U.S. Americans across the country head to the polls to cast their vote in this year’s midterm elections. Much is at stake for the Biden administration: Republicans are poised to take control of the House of Representatives, if not both houses of Congress. What are the issues motivating Americans to vote (or not)? A month af…
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Iran is in upheaval. The death of a young woman, Mahsa Amini, in the custody of Iran’s “morality police” has sparked an uprising throughout the country. Protesters have turned the current regime’s revolutionary iconography against it. Faced with what might be the biggest test to its legitimacy since 1979, the Iranian government has imposed a brutal…
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Brazilians head to the polls Sunday to elect their next president and other key legislators in Brazil’s general election. If neither presidential candidate – Brazil’s current right wing president Jair Bolsonaro or Brazil’s former left wing president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva – wins a majority of the vote, a runoff election will take place on Octobe…
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In early August, the FBI seized boxes of classified documents, some suspected to contain nuclear secrets, from former president Donald Trump’s residence at Mar-a-Lago. News of the FBI’s raid ignited a political firestorm but it also shed light on an obscure aspect of US foreign policymaking — America’s “nuclear secrecy regime.” From its WWII origin…
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Sub-Saharan Africa is one of the fastest growing regions in the world and home to some of the world’s most critical developing economies. But historically, US foreign policy has treated the continent as a monolith and a site for great power competition, ignoring the role of African nations in deciding their own future. This week, None of the Above …
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The fallout from Russia’s war in Ukraine has disrupted the global energy market and hiked the price of fuel nearly everywhere around the world. In Europe, which finds itself caught between efforts to cut itself off from Russian oil and Moscow’s firm grip on energy exports, the repercussions of today’s energy crisis are acute. While in the United St…
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The North Atlantic Treaty Organization was created at the dawn of the Cold War to stop the expansion of the Soviet Union. But in the 1990s, when NATO intervened in the Balkan wars, it assumed a new role for itself. Our guest this week was responsible, more than two decades ago, for explaining the NATO campaign in Kosovo to the international press. …
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General George Marshall occupies a central place in the pantheon of American heroes. He helped lead the Allies to victory in World War II, and as the secretary of state, he championed the plan to rebuild Europe which would be named for him: The Marshall Plan. But Marshall’s record as a statesman wasn’t perfect. Tapped by President Truman to negotia…
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From the Crimean War of 1853 to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine this year, journalists, reporters, and the media have shaped the public’s understanding of war. But do the stories we read and the photos we see provide an impartial picture of the wars they document? As the Eurasia Group Foundation’s Mark Hannah recently explained in Foreign Policy, cert…
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The Russian military withdrew from Bucha at the end of March, a suburb of Ukraine’s capital, Kyiv. Soon after, photos and stories revealed Russian atrocities, including the apparent intentional killing of civilians. This is sadly characteristic of the Russian way of war in other conflicts beyond Ukraine. Some, including President Biden, have accuse…
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In October 2021, the United States and Mexico put an end to the Mérida Initiative—a thirteen-year, $3 billion security assistance package central to a new “war on drugs.” Despite years of weapons sales, military training, and intelligence sharing, the initiative failed to reduce crime and drug trafficking. Instead, violence and homicides increased …
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Saturday marked the nineteenth anniversary of the beginning of the second Iraq War—a war Congress never formally declared. Instead, just like with America’s invasion of Afghanistan, Congress passed an Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF). Together, these AUMFs provide the legal basis for the ongoing war on terror and have been loosely int…
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It is day fourteen of Russia’s war on Ukraine. Ukrainian resistance and Russian logistical issues have together denied Moscow a quick victory, but the fighting continues—and intensifies. Meanwhile, despite several rounds of diplomatic talks, a peaceful settlement does not seem to be in sight. However, our guest this week, Russia expert Anatol Lieve…
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This episode contains explicit language. On Monday, Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered troops into eastern Ukraine. This follows months of tensions precipitated by Russia’s mobilization of its military on the Ukrainian border. Putin’s order came shortly after a gruff speech in which he accused Ukraine of rejecting its historical links to Russ…
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The 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics are underway and more than just athletic competition has drawn international attention. Amid calls for a complete boycott due to China’s crackdown on Hong Kong and its persecution of the Uyghurs and other vulnerable populations, the United States has issued a diplomatic boycott of the games. On this episode of None …
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Eight years after it annexed Crimea and instigated a civil war in Eastern Ukraine, Russia has mobilized 100,000 troops near the Ukrainian border. With the threat of a Russian invasion looming, negotiations between Washington and Moscow are at an impasse. Moscow’s demands, which call for a transformation of the US-backed security order in Europe, we…
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World War II is nostalgically remembered throughout American culture as the “good war”––a conflict where Americans idealistically banded together to free the world from tyranny. Of course there is more to this story, but is this simplified popular understanding dangerous? In this week’s episode of None Of The Above, the Eurasia Group Foundation’s M…
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Speaking at the United Nations Climate Conference this November, President Biden called climate change “the existential threat to human existence.” And in October, the Department of Defense issued its own warning, noting the effects of climate change are “exacerbating existing risks and creating new security challenges for U.S. interests.” But whil…
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President Joe Biden argues the contest between democracy and autocracy will be the defining challenge of the twenty-first century. Meanwhile, Freedom House observes democracy around the world has experienced its steepest drop in its fifteen-year decline. Seeking to reverse this trend, the United States is hoping to “set forth an affirmative agenda …
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As the United States competes for influence around the globe, and as authoritarianism gains ground in places like Brazil, what will US engagement in the region look like? US intervention and influence in the region is nothing new, especially in Brazil, which this week’s guest walks us through. Professor Riordan Roett takes us on his journey as a yo…
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