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Episodes

Australia’s Leadership Change

9/17/2018
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The top leadership job in Australia is like a revolving door: since 2007, not a single Prime Minister has been able to serve a full term. But why is this? Join us for a discussion on how the Australian political system, parties, and public all contribute to one of the toughest jobs in the Western... The post Australia’s Leadership Change appeared first on Matters of State - International Relations Podcast.

Duration:00:34:57

Ambassador Reuben Brigety on the African Union

9/10/2018
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Established in 2001, the African Union (AU) represents all African countries in the pursuit of economic development, human rights and security, and good governance. Africa is the youngest continent in the world with a booming population and several emerging economies, representing both immense potential and a serious challenge. In this episode, guest speaker Ambassador Reuben... The post Ambassador Reuben Brigety on the African Union appeared first on Matters of State - International...

Duration:00:25:22

Afghanistan, Poppy, and Saffron

8/27/2018
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Afghanistan is the world’s largest supplier of heroin and opium. The Afghan government, United Nations, and other international stakeholders have tried endlessly to prevent Afghan farmers from growing poppy, the plant used to produce heroin, but farmers often find themselves in a situation where they are threatened with violence, or left with little means for... The post Afghanistan, Poppy, and Saffron appeared first on Matters of State - International Relations Podcast.

Duration:00:26:32

Sinking States

8/20/2018
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The U.S. Department of Defense calls climate change a threat multiplier, but for some countries it is an imminent and existential threat. Small Island Developing States (SIDS) are particularly at risk, facing the possibility of their nations literally go under in the next few decades. Join us as we discuss who’s to blame, the future for... The post Sinking States appeared first on Matters of State - International Relations Podcast.

Duration:00:21:22

Sand Mafias

8/13/2018
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Organized criminal groups that deal in sand are perpetrating violence and undermining governments around the world. Sand is the world’s second most consumed natural resource and a critical component of the world’s construction and manufacturing industries. Some governments have attempted to regulate excessive sand dredging, which has led to the rise of black market “sand mafias.”... The post Sand Mafias appeared first on Matters of State - International Relations Podcast.

Duration:00:17:21

Spotlight: Urumqi

8/6/2018
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Positioned in China’s resource-rich northwestern region, the city of Urumqi is gaining strategic importance as China seeks to diversify its energy resources. However, ethnic and cultural tensions between the Chinese government and Uighur minority population continue to threaten the region’s stability. A Unique City Urumqi is the capital of the Xinjiang province, which borders eight countries... The post Spotlight: Urumqi appeared first on Matters of State - International Relations Podcast.

Duration:00:26:20

Space Traffic Management

7/30/2018
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Space is becoming more crowded. A growing number of governments are launching satellites each year, and companies like SpaceX and OneWeb plan to send thousands of satellites into orbit over the next several years. But as the number of satellites increases, does the world have a plan for manage space traffic? In this episode, guest... The post Space Traffic Management appeared first on Matters of State - International Relations Podcast.

Duration:00:41:13

Spotlight: Cyprus

7/18/2018
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The island nation of Cyprus can be summed up in one word: divided. Since gaining independence from Great Britain in 1960, tensions between the ethnically Greek and Turkish sides of the island escalated to a Greek coup d’Etat attempt and invasion by Turkey in 1974. This conflict has resulted in the island being split, monitored,... The post Spotlight: Cyprus appeared first on Matters of State - International Relations Podcast.

Duration:00:29:44

Landmines and Unexploded Ordnance

7/10/2018
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Special guest Jamie Franklin, Executive Director of Mines Advisory Group America, joins us for a discussion on the post-war effects of land mines and campaigns to eliminate them. The use of landmines is said to have first been used during the American Civil War in the 1800s and more widely during the Second World War. With... The post Landmines and Unexploded Ordnance appeared first on Matters of State - International Relations Podcast.

Duration:00:40:01

Unrecognized Countries

7/3/2018
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What makes a country a country? In this episode, we look at Transnistria, Taiwan, and Somaliland while exploring competing definitions of statehood. Differing Metrics of State Sovereignty The 1648 Treaty of Westphalia, which marked an end to Europe’s 30 Years War, established the modern western concept of statehood, or the idea that the nation-state is the... The post Unrecognized Countries appeared first on Matters of State - International Relations Podcast.

Duration:00:25:57

Zoos in Conflict Zones

6/26/2018
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One of the many stories that go untold in conflict zones is the fate of zoos and their animals. There are concerns for the animals’ safety as well as for humans if predatory animals escape. In this episode, we explore just a few examples of efforts to safeguard zoos during war. World War II The Ueno... The post Zoos in Conflict Zones appeared first on Matters of State - International Relations Podcast.

Duration:00:18:51

The Nicaragua Canal

6/19/2018
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The Panama Canal’s opening in 1914 transformed global trade and fostered economic development in Panama. Today, Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega and Chinese financier Wang Jing are trying to emulate its success by constructing a canal through Nicaragua. The Next Great Canal? President Ortega and Wang are spearheading the Nicaragua Canal proposal. If completed, the $50-80 billion project... The post The Nicaragua Canal appeared first on Matters of State - International Relations Podcast.

Duration:00:24:07

Lost Nuclear Materials

6/12/2018
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As the world turns its focus toward nuclear proliferation issues in North Korea and Iran, the international community faces another critical threat: the loss or theft of nuclear materials. This episode explores security risks of lost or stolen nuclear materials, provides case studies to illustrate the threat, and details how countries are addressing this problem.... The post Lost Nuclear Materials appeared first on Matters of State - International Relations Podcast.

Duration:00:39:27

Conflict in South Sudan

6/5/2018
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South Sudan has been plagued by a brutal civil war that has killed thousands and displaced millions, with violence threatening to spill into neighboring countries, Meanwhile, the international community has failed to work with the competing factions to agree to a sustainable peace agreement, as there is little hope for any lasting peace in the... The post Conflict in South Sudan appeared first on Matters of State - International Relations Podcast.

Duration:00:51:15

Michael McFaul, former Ambassador to Russia

5/29/2018
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Michael McFaul, former Ambassador to Russia, joins us from Stanford for a conversation about his time serving during the Russian reset, what it’s like to be the target of a Russian disinformation campaign, and his new book, From Cold War to Hot Peace: An American Ambassador in Putin’s Russia. McFaul served for five years in the Obama administration,... The post Michael McFaul, former Ambassador to Russia appeared first on Matters of State - International Relations Podcast.

Duration:00:25:12

Tourism in North Korea

5/8/2018
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North Korea is notoriously isolated, but Daniel Wertz explains that the Hermit Kingdom in fact welcomes tourism – or at least tourist dollars. In this episode, our guest helps us understand what tourism looks like in North Korea and discusses the moral questions regarding tourism to the country. The post Tourism in North Korea appeared first on Matters of State - International Relations Podcast.

Duration:00:42:12

Spotlight: Mali

4/30/2018
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Following the death of three US soldiers in Nigeria, there has been a re-examination of the relationship between terrorism, Western intervention, and African nations. Given that Africa is seen as a strategic priority in preventing the spread of terrorism, we examine the history, current state, and future of Mali in this context. Throughout the show,... The post Spotlight: Mali appeared first on Matters of State - International Relations Podcast.

Duration:00:31:05

Spotlight: Belarus

4/16/2018
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Today’s episode will feature a spotlight on Belarus only recognized as a country since 1991. Sandwiched between Russia and the European Union, Belarus is known as “Europe’s Last Dictatorship.” Its president, Alexander Lukashenko has held this position since being the first “democratically” elected president in 1994. Since then, Belarus has faced a sensitive diplomatic environment,... The post Spotlight: Belarus appeared first on Matters of State - International Relations Podcast.

Duration:00:34:13

Human Rights and the Chocolate Industry

3/26/2018
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Nearly 70% of the world’s cocoa comes from western Africa, in countries such as Ghana and the Ivory Coast. In order to fill the global demand for chocolate, thousands of small cocoa farms often rely on slavery and child labor. Children ranging in ages from 5-16 are sent by their families with promises of education... The post Human Rights and the Chocolate Industry appeared first on Matters of State - International Relations Podcast.

Duration:00:30:06

Understanding National Debt

3/19/2018
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Managing national debt is a significant issue that every country in the world must face. While media outlets often report on national debt with forecasts of doom and gloom, it is important to understand that national debt is very complex, and the effects of which, both good and bad, are numerous and far-reaching. What is... The post Understanding National Debt appeared first on Matters of State - International Relations Podcast.

Duration:00:30:52