- Italy Considers China's Belt & Road, with Giulio Pugliese
King's College's Giulio Pugliese and Senior Fellow Devin Stewart discuss the political climate in Italy, with the Northern League and the Five Star Movement representing various types of dissatisfaction with the status quo, and China's increasing interest in the nation via its Belt and Road Initiative. What could Italy get out of this relationship? What kinds of concerns do Italians have about Xi Jinping's China?
- Refining Strategic Autonomy: A Call for European Grand Strategy
Europe has come to realize that the United States is no longer the stalwart ally of the Cold War era. With the resurgence of China, the return of Russia, the retreat of the United States, and the rise of the rest, Europe needs to define its own grand strategy.
- The Rise and Fall (and Rise) of Chemical Weapons
"Chemical weapons have been used in almost every decade since their advent just over a century ago. They are not a specter, like nuclear weapons. We know their effects, and how numerous states have employed them, and how they might do so in the future. In fact, after a few decades of relative non-use, chemical-weapons attacks have again exploded onto the scene--as a weapon of war, terror, and as a tool of state assassination."
- Roadmap to Hell: Sex, Drugs and Guns on the Mafia Coast, with Barbie Latza Nadeau
Rome-based journalist Barbie Latza Nadeau tells the horrifying story of the thousands of Nigerian women and girls duped into being trafficked to Italy, where they are forced to become sex slaves, drug mules, or weapons smugglers. How can this be stopped? The Nigerian government turns a blind eye, Libya, the transit point, is a failed state, and Italy is overwhelmed by the sheer numbers of migrants--plus prostitution is legal there.
- Crime and Global Justice: The Dynamics of International Punishment, with Daniele Archibugi
Are we witnessing a new era of cosmopolitan justice or are the old principles of victors' justice still in play? Economic and political theorist Daniele Archibugi discusses his new book, "Crime and Global Justice," which examines the history of global criminal justice and presents five case studies: Augusto Pinochet, Slobodan Milošević, Radovan Karadžić, Saddam Hussein, and Omar al-Basheer.
- The Living Legacy of WWI: Chemical Weapons from the Great War to Syria, with Zach Dorfman
"What you stopped seeing after World War I was great power conflict involving chemical weapons, and what you started seeing was asymmetric conflicts or regional conflicts that involved chemical weapons. That actually disturbed me even more because what I started realizing was that as time went on the weaker you were, the more likely that another state would use chemical weapons against you or your people."
- The People vs. Democracy: Why Our Freedom Is in Danger and How to Save It, with Yascha Mounk
Harvard's Yascha Mounk argues that liberalism and democracy are coming apart, creating new forms of illiberal democracy (democracy without rights) and undemocratic liberalism (rights without democracy). Populist leaders are flourishing; indeed, Hungary is on the verge of descending into dictatorship, with shamefully little criticism from the Europe or the U.S. What are the causes of this phenomenon? What can we do about it?
- Anti-Pluralism: The Populist Threat to Liberal Democracy, with William A. Galston
Some unpleasant truths for liberals, from William Galston: The rise of anti-pluralist populist movements is caused by a combination of economic factors and migration; we need to take these concerns seriously, instead of feeling morally superior. In the U.S., this will require reintegrating our economy so that small towns and rural areas thrive again; breaking through government gridlock; and purging the "poison" of our immigration policies.
- Motorcycles & the Art of Politics in Thailand, with Claudio Sopranzetti
Anthropologist Sopranzetti's new book discusses the surprising role of motorcycle taxi drivers in a recent coup in Thailand, and their important place in everyday Thai life. In this fascinating interview, he also looks at the bigger picture: "there is a larger trend in East Asia of a certain Chinese model of authoritarianism that is not outside the rule of law, but in fact uses the rule of law to govern through other methods."
- To Fight Against This Age: On Fascism and Humanism, with Rob Riemen
No more euphemisms and denials, says Rob Riemen in this frightening and inspiring talk. Call it by its name: fascism. Neither technology, nor economic growth, nor political activism can fix this, he continues. We must create a new counterculture that replaces kitsch and conformism with truth, empathy, beauty, and justice.
- The Populist Explosion: How the Great Recession Transformed American and European Politics
How exactly should we define populism? What led to its current resurgence in Europe and the United States, on both the right and the left? And in particular, how can we explain the Trump phenomenon? For answers, don't miss this fascinating discussion with author and journalist John Judis.
- Freedom of Expression in Ethiopia, Kenya, and Beyond
Freelance journalist Ismail Einashe sees a dangerous backsliding of democracy and free media in sub-Saharan Africa, alongside an increase in Internet access and the influence of foreign media organizations. Two weeks into the new administration, are there parallels in the United States?
- A World History of Political Violence
Rachel Kleinfeld discusses with Devin Stewart her research--which took her to five continents over the past three years--and forthcoming book on how violence is perpetuated and curtailed in societies around the world. Kleinfeld discusses the role of political power, corruption, law enforcement, leadership, and grassroots movements.
- The State of the European Union: Challenges for the Future
Yes, says former EU Commission president José Manuel Barroso, the European Union is facing extraordinary challenges. But the EU also possesses extraordinary resilience and resources. Unlike many, Barroso is very optimistic about its future.
- Pope Francis Among the Wolves: The Inside Story of a Revolution
Francis is the first pope who wasn't born in a village, says Vatican expert Marco Politi, but in a mega-city with many social-economic levels and faiths. "This explains why when he speaks he doesn't speak only to Catholics, not only to Christians. He speaks beyond religious borders. He speaks to men and women as they are in contemporary society."
- Is the Eurozone Crisis Over?
Economist Martin Wolf lays out the three enormous problems Europe faces today: relations with Russia; a possible Brexit; and the migration crisis. He goes on to analyze Europe's economic situation, declaring that the 2008 crash resulted in well over a lost decade, and the economic and political repercussions will be felt for many more years to come.
- The Shifts and the Shocks: What We've Learned--and Have Still to Learn--From the Financial Crisis
Why did the 2008 financial crisis occur? What should it teach us about modern economies and economics? Martin Wolf does a masterly job of untangling this complex catastrophe and proposes how we can avoid repeating our past mistakes.
- Modern Europe's Roma: Still Denied Social Justice
Despite sustained EU efforts to develop a vigorous Roma inclusion policy, the vast majority of the 10–12 million strong European Roma remain severely marginalized, frequent targets of violence, and mired in entrenched poverty. How can we ensure that the EU does indeed become a fierce defender of human rights for all those who live within its borders?
- Mass Flourishing: How Grassroots Innovation Created Jobs, Challenge, and Change
"America has strayed pretty far from the pioneer spirit captured by Willa Cather and the movie 'Shane,'" says Nobel Prize-winner Edmund Phelps. What happened? Phelps argues that since the 1960s, there has been a resurgence of certain traditional and anti-modern values. This has resulted in "a new corporatism," which stifles innovation.
- Catastrophe 1914: Europe Goes to War
We should break free of the cliché that World War I was futile, argues Max Hastings. "Germany in 1914, as ruled by the Kaiser and his generals and ministers, represented a malign force whose triumph had to be frustrated."