18 years have passed, and Kabul and its US allies have failed to destroy the Taliban. Finally, it seems like serious peace talks are beginning, but war remains and any peace would likely include Talibani power in Afghanistan. This is a moment for the US to reflect on its true goals.Read More
ReConsider, by Xander and Erik, is a twice per month podcast in which we take on, in-depth, one pressing political issue facing western Democracies with a fresh, researched, and challenging perspective. We help listeners see the full context behind the issue and make up their own minds.
It's often taken as given that Trump is acting on Moscow's behalf in his foreign policy. In this episode we ask: what foreign policy would be in Russia's interest? And is Trump following that foreign policy, or a different one?
We explore such topics as Trump’s foreign policy in the Middle East, with NATO, in Ukraine, and even in trade. We’ll see how he does.Read More
What have been the long term consequences of US and allied drug policy? In this episode we look at both domestic demand (The “War on Drugs” and foreign supply (The “Drug War”) efforts, and the results that have come from them.
This is all in a response to questions from listener Russell Waldman; keep them coming, everyone!Read More
One of our beloved Patrons asked us: "what are the long-term consequences of the Iraq War?" Great question--we couldn't resist taking a crack at it.
In this episode we hear about the balance of the middle east changed, for Iraq, Iran, Saudi Arabia, ISIS, and global powers.Read More
India has just launched a military operation—an airstrike—for the first time in decades. And they’re both nuclear powers. We rarely get to stay on top of very current events, but this is such a significant incident—and something so easy to spin and sensationalize—that we wanted to get ahead of it. So get the full scoop of what happened, and the ramifications, right now from Xander.Read More
In this episode we do a big listener Q&A! We’ve gathered a few questions over the past few months and we decided to run with the juiciest ones. We’ll do this again, keep sending questions in! Here’s what we cover:
Sports in diplomacy
Sweden, immigration, and sexual crime
China's history is long. Like, really long. Its memory is, too. Want to understand how China sees the world today? You need to understand how it sees its place over the last 3600 years.
We're lucky enough to welcome Chris Stewart of The History of China Podcast to help us scratch the surface. But really, if you want to dive in, go check out his podcast: http://www.thehistoryofchina.wordpress.comRead More
Trade war’s on, baby. Why is it happening? What’s at stake? How does free trade even work?
Are tariffs against China The Art of the Deal, or the tantrums of a madman? Is China a trade cheater or is Trump just pandering to the base?
Time to get some context.Read More
Is the Chinese economy a powerhouse, or a house of cards ready to fall down? Is it going to overtake the US, or crash terribly and burn?
In this episode we'll talk about the incredible complexities inherent in understanding China's economy, some of the forces behind its miraculous growth, and the undeniable risks it faces.Read More
Trump just reimposed the sanctions on Iran that had been previously lifted by the nuclear deal--the deal is dead. Trump wants a new deal. Rouhani is under pressure and claiming he wants a fight. Is scrapping the deal a good idea or a bad idea? What does it mean for Iran and the Middle East?Read More
We're having a trade war! How exciting. So China is... our friend? Enemy? FRENEMY? They... want to take over Asia? Taiwan? The US? THE WORLD? Are they a fair trading partner or a cheater? A reasonable place or a dictatorship?
There are many conceptions and misconceptions about China. Let's start taking them on.Read More
Since we've been talking about economics for 6 months, a lot has happened throughout the world! And people have wanted to know about it. So today we're covering interesting events in South Africa, North Korea, Iran, and Turkey. All great opportunities to ReConsider.Read More
Erik and Xander podcast together for the 3rd time ever in Boston! We grab a map and go: no agenda, no plan. It's a ton of fun. You'll find out all there is to know about the world as of precisely March 22nd, 2018.Read More
Santa's workshop is underwater, and new shipping lanes emerge in an area once thought of as an insignificant edge on the global map. What happens when the Arctic starts getting wet in the summer? How does climate change affect the conflict between NATO and Russia, global shipping lanes, and habitation patterns?Read More
You've heard of the Fracking Revolution. You may also know that your fuel bill is a little lower than it was in the 2000s.
But man oh man, the picture is much bigger than that. The Middle East, Europe, Russia, and the foreign policy of the United States may be substantially different--for decades to come--than they would have been without the Revolution.
So yeah. Big deal.Read More
Join us as we pick a war out of a hat and chat about how--and whether--realism can explain how it came to be. Make sure to listen to the Realism Toolbox Talk first.Read More
Why do certain countries go to war, where others don't? How do the domestic policies and the personalities of leaders get involved?
In this episode you'll learn the most widely-used lens for understanding the causes behind international affairs: realism. In one hour you'll be able to view the international order with greater structure than ever before.Read More
Is Venezuela's government going to fall? Is North Korea going to fire nukes? Is the US going to fire nukes? Are Maduro and Kim just madmen? Is Trump?
Two brutal leftist dictatorial regimes, both hate the US, both entering crises and both facing substantial constraints about how they can try to navigate them. And the US, attempting to deal with the North Korean crisis, has its own constraints as well. In this episode you'll understand the forces that are pushing Venezuela into a domestic crisis and North Korea into conflict with the US. You'll learn what options are available to everyone and why they're limited. And you'll learn a little more about how to analyze the global stage beyond the rhetoric.Read More
AKA, "The Bromance of the Bad Hombres"
In this episode we interview Prof. Stephen Sestanovich, a Colombia professor, think tank big wig, and prolific writer. Formerly ambassador-at-large and special advisor to Madeleine Albright.
Prof. Stestanovich puts the Putin-Trump relationship in context by warming us up with understanding the evolving US/Russia Presidential relationship since the end of the Cold War. Strap in for this info-packed episode!Read More