Background Briefing with Ian Masters-logo

Background Briefing with Ian Masters

News & Politics Podcasts

Background Briefing goes far beyond the headlines and deep under the radar to bring forward truths unheard elsewhere in American media. Background Briefing features international and national news, expert guests, policymakers, and critics offering analysis and insight on national security, foreign and domestic policy, political, cultural, and social issues.


United States


Background Briefing goes far beyond the headlines and deep under the radar to bring forward truths unheard elsewhere in American media. Background Briefing features international and national news, expert guests, policymakers, and critics offering analysis and insight on national security, foreign and domestic policy, political, cultural, and social issues.




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March 30, 2023 - David Satter | Will Bunch | Dr. Sumit Ganguly

An American Journalist Charged with Spying Who Was Arrested in Russia For the Crime of Reporting | More Chemical Spills into Rivers as Plan B for Big Oil is the Manufacture of Plastics | How Far-Right Religious Nationalism Has Captured the World's Biggest Democracy


March 29, 2023 - Laura Thornton | Lane Windham | Guadalupe Correa-Cabrera

Biden's Second Summit for Democracy and the Need For a Plan to Combat the Growth of Autocracies | Starbucks CEO in the Hot Seat Before Bernie Sanders' Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee | Immigrants Burned Alive in Mexico as Guards Refuse to Open Locked Gates


March 28, 2023 - Jonathan Metzl | Jon Hoffman | Barbara Walter

A Majority of Americans Want Their Kids to Come Home From School Alive So It is Time For Them to Stand Up and Be Counted | As MBS Plays America Off Against China, the Abraham Accords Are Stalled With Turmoil in Israel | Is Trump About to Start a Civil War or Fade Away as His Act Gets Stale?


March 27, 2023 - Avraham Burg | Dr. Tatsiana Kulakevich | Seth Hettena

Netanyahu Postpones Power Grab in the Face of Massive Demonstrations and a National Strike | Putin Threatens Nukes in Response to Ukraine Getting 14 British Tanks with Depleted Uranium Ammunition | New Revelations of a CIA Coverup of Saudi Hijacker's Activities in US Before 9/11


March 26, 2023 - Jennifer Mercieca | David Andelman | Michael Kazin

Trump's First 2024 Presidential Rally Shouts Out to the Far Right, Militias and Insurrectionists That He is Their Fuhrer and They Are Coming After You | The Massive Protest in France to Protect a Social Safety Net Americans Could Only Dream Of | How Foreign Wars Test the Moral Convictions of American Leftists


March 23, 2023 - David Carroll | James Bamford

Beating up on TikTok While Ignoring the Data Mining Business Model of Big Tech Based on Surveillance Capitalism | Netanyahu's Unreported Collusion to Elect Trump in 2016


March 22, 2023 - Mark Hannah | Deak Baker | Matthew Dallek

Xi Fails to Deliver a Viable Peace Plan Leaving Putin to Pursue His War While Appearing to be Open to Peace Talks | The Fed Raises Interest Rates for the Ninth Time to Just Under 5% | The Roots of the Radical Right's Capture of the Republican Party


March 21, 2023 - George Beebe | Michael D'Antonio | Jane McAlevey

Could China Deliver a Peace Deal to End the War in Ukraine? | On the Day Trump Said He Would Be Arrested, Where are the Indictments? | Reinvigorating the Labor Movement as Strikes and Union Negotiations Gain National Attention


March 20, 2023 - H. W. Brands | Gary Sick

An Historian Who First Learned of the 1980 October Surprise Which Helped Elect Reagan and End Carter's Presidency | A Carter White House Insider on the Second Act of Treason by Republicans Which Deserves More Than an Apology to Jimmy Carter


March 19, 2023 - Rachel Denber | Stephen Wertheim | Dr. Ariel Cohen

What An Arrest Warrant For Putin Means and What it Will Achieve | Our Historical Memory Lapse on the 20th Anniversary of the U.S. Invasion of Iraq | A Conservative Scholar's Critique of Tucker Carlson's Pro-Russia Talking Points


March 16, 2023 - David Cay Johnston | Cleo Paskal | Paul Pillar

The Under-reported Role of Crypto in the Silicon Valley Bank Crash | Mass Hysteria Got Us Into the Iraq War 20 Years Ago and is on Display Today Over China | An Update From Taiwan, the Flashpoint For a Possible War With China


March 15, 2023 - John Pike | Dr. Ushma Upadhyay | Dennis Kelleher

Russian and American Military Aircraft Clash Over the Black Sea | A Zealous Anti-Abortion Judge in Texas is Poised to Ban an Abortion Drug Nationwide | Fallout From the Failure of the SVB Bank is Spreading to Europe


March 13, 2023 - Ian Haney López | Bonnie Glaser | Juan Cole

Hatred and Division Intensifies in the US as the Phony War Against the Woke, Drag Queens and Trans Kids Accelerates | China's Reaction to the AUKUS Deal on Display Yesterday With Biden Beside the PMs of Australia and the UK | What China's Diplomatic Initiative in the Middle East Portends for the Region


March 13, 2023 - Graham Fuller | Robert Hockett | James Henry

China Brings Diplomacy to the Middle East Where the US Has Wasted Trillions on Endless Wars | Trump and the Fed Chair's Role in the Collapse of the Silicon Valley Bank | Are There More Shoes to Drop Following the SVB Failure?


March 12, 2023 - Jennifer Taub | Katheryn Russ Russ | Lincoln Mitchell

An "Invitation" to Trump to Testify Before a Manhattan Grand Jury Will Likely be Followed by the First Indictment of a President in US History | The Dire Consequences of Defaulting on Our Debt | Demonstrations in Georgia, Destabilization in Moldova and Russian Pressure on Belarus


March 9, 2023 - Ben Jacobs | Annelle Sheline | Max Bergmann

More Damning Texts and Emails Show That Fox News Considers Telling the Truth Bad For Business | The Saudi War Against Yemen Could be Coming to an End | The Threadbare State Of NATO's Military Readiness


March 8, 2023 - Richard Parker | Amanda Marcotte | Anders Åslund

The Fed Chair is asked if he is OK With Putting 2 Million Americans Out of Work by Raising Interest Rates to Curb Inflation | How Best to Respond to Increasingly Extreme GOP Trolling | Another Thinly-Soured Article on Who Blew Up the Nord Stream Pipelines


March 7, 2023 - Carol Anderson | Jessica Melugin | Mitchell Plitnick

Environmental Protestors in Georgia Are Charged With Domestic Terrorism for Exercising Their First Amendment Rights | Why in the Land of the Free Are we Afraid of Being Turned Into Communists by TikTok Videos | Will the Biden Administration Make a Stand Against Netanyahu's Assault on Israeli Democracy?


March 6, 2023 - Aaron Rupar | Aram Shabanian | Mark FitzPatrick

Trump's Bizarre Fact-Free Speech to CPAC Where He Out-Polled DeSantis for the Nomination 3 to 1 | The Russian Strategy to Draw Ukraine's Main Force Into the Bakhmut Battle is Not Working | An Assessment of Reports That Russia Will Supply Uranium to Iran in Exchange For Drones and Missiles


March 5, 2023 - Stephen Walt | Betsey Stevenson | John Mill Ackerman

Can Germany Persuade its Biggest Trading Partner China to to Bring Russia to the Peace Table? | 200 Economists Urge Leaders of Congress to Raise the Debt Ceiling to Avoid a "Dangerous and Unnecessary" Economic Crisis | A Different Perspective on Demonstrations in Mexico Against AMLO's Electoral Reforms