Like most people, Pod Save America cohost Tommy Vietor thought foreign policy was boring and complicated until he got the education of a lifetime working for President Obama’s National Security Council. It was a crash course that taught him two things: anyone can understand these issues, and we all have an obligation to try.
That’s why he started Pod Save the World—a weekly podcast that breaks down international news and foreign policy developments, but doesn’t feel like homework. Each week, he and former deputy national security advisor and co-host Ben Rhodes walk you through the latest developments with a variety of experts and take you behind the scenes of big decisions with the people who were there. Count on hearing stories from the White House Situation Room, funny anecdotes, and maybe a few F bombs along the way. New episodes every Wednesday.
First, Trump’s trip to India, his new and unqualified Director of National Intelligence, and should Democrats attend AIPAC? Then updates on Sudan and South Sudan, the coronavirus, a fragile peace agreement in Afghanistan, and John Bolton. Finally, Tommy and Ben discuss attacks on Bernie Sanders’ views on Cuba, former leftist leaders in Latin America, and criticism of the CIA, before reflecting on the death of former Egypt President Hosni Mubarak, and the nine years since the Arab Spring began. Then Politico’s Natasha Bertrand joins to explain why new intel chief Richard Grenell has become an issue in Wikileaks founder Julian Assange’s extradition case.
Mike Bloomberg’s foreign policy record and platform. How some 2020 candidates failed a foreign policy quiz. The humanitarian crisis in northwest Syria. The latest on the coronavirus and how Senator Tom Cotton is spreading disinformation. The Koch brothers funding foreign policy think tanks…for good? Mike Pompeo speaks at the Munich Security Summit and headlines about Afghanistan, Iran and John Bolton. Then Ben talks with Paris Climate Accords architect Christiana Figueres.
Tommy and Ben tell some stories about the New Hampshire primary in 2008, walk through a report on a decades-long CIA/German effort to crack encrypted communications, talk through several major data breaches, and explain why the QAnon conspiracy theory is a national security issue. Then they cover: good news from Sudan, North Korea’s nukes, a dustup between the US and the Philippines, the Wall Street Journal’s attempt to Swift Boat Mayor Pete, and Bernie Sander’s foreign policy doctrine and how the 2020 candidates differ.
Brexit, updates on the Coronavirus, why Trump made Venezuela a focus of his State of the Union speech, the list of countries subject to Trump’s muslim ban gets bigger, Israeli Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu’s allies attack Jared Kushner, and Trump’s inexcusable land mine policy decision.
First, Tommy and Ben talk about Trump’s plan to help Israeli Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu win reelection and how it essentially means the death of the middle east peace process. Then, public health expert Abdul El-Sayed joins to discuss the risk from the coronavirus and the public health infrastructure in the US and China.