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Bombshell

Winston Churchill once said, "To jaw-jaw is always better than to war-war." Brad Carson, a former senior defense official and congressman, hosts 'Jaw-Jaw' -- an interview series on the world's greatest geopolitical challenges. Each season focuses on a different challenge and features interviews with the top thinkers and leaders working on that challenge. Our first season is on China. This podcast is brought to you by War on the Rocks (https://warontherocks.com).
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Now displaying: Page 1
Aug 12, 2019

The great Meg Guliford joins Erin and Radha for this week's episode of Bombshell, while Loren enjoys a much deserved vacay. The ladies take a tour of world hotspots with a discussion of North Korean missile tests, the Kashmir crack down, and ongoing protests in Hong Kong. Radha schools us all on currency manipulation before we turn to Director of National Intelligence drama. The show wouldn't be complete without an exploration of domestic terrorism and white supremacist violence — alongside a heartfelt celebration of Toni Morrison

 

Links

North Korea

Kashmir

Hong Kong

DNI

Terrorism

Trade

Pop Culture

 

Produced by Tre Hester

Jul 30, 2019

This week on Bombshell Loren and Erin hold down the fort and ask the brilliant Elsa Kania to explain the new Chinese defense white paper. Britain has a new PM, Pakistan’s visited the US, and there are ongoing protests in Moscow and Hong Kong. Meanwhile, we might have a budget deal? And the president keeps trying to sell weapons to Saudi Arabia. Erin finally saw Capt. Marvel and we collectively wish cast a real Mara Jade adventure.

 

Links

China

Imran Khan

Russia Protests

Hong Kong protests

Budget Deal

Hyten Confirmation

 

Produced by Tre Hester

Jul 16, 2019

Erin, Radha and Loren reunite with author and general badass Nada Bakos to talk about her new book, The Targeter. Foreign relations are pretty lit these days: possible Russian funding of far-right politics in Italy, tiny steps of progress in Afghan govt-Taliban negotiations, and an unexpected political agreement in post-coup Sudan.  The music hasn’t stopped in the latest round of DOD musical chairs and the UK ambassador to the US was defenestrated by tweet. All in all stranger than fiction - so do read more fiction!

Links

Sudan

Italy/Russia

Iran Tanker

Afghanistan

 

Produced by Tre Hester

Jul 2, 2019

Erin, Radha and Loren return after some technical difficulties to rehash the G20, a newsy leader summit full of the president reversing the well-honed positions of his staff. Radha explains how China and the US are talking trade again, with a re-opening of US exports to Huawei and a gentle ask that China remake itself utterly.  White House mayhem reminds us all that we almost went to war with Iran and we have no leaders anywhere at the Department of Defense. And do you have summer reading material to distract yourself from the world? Bombshell can help with its summer reading list.  

 

Links

G20

Iran

Trade

 

Produced by Tre Hester

Jun 4, 2019

Bombshell welcomes back Amanda Sloat to dish on all the drama across the pond - Brexit, the selection of the new Tory leader, and Trump’s visit, which was surely not (short)waisted [sic]. Foreign relations are a-twitter with elections in the European Union and Israel (yes, again). And Kim Jong Un thumbed his nose at the world to show that he of course does not murder his failed negotiators – he just imprisons them. The Trump administration has launched another salvo in a trade war with Mexico the same week it noticed USMC-A to Congress, proving that we do indeed contain multitudes. And did you happen to hear about what’s going on with the USS John S. McCain? Also, Radha watched Good Omens and you should too. 

Links

Trade – Mexico

Trade - China

EU Election

NK Executions

Brexit

Israeli Elections

USS McCain

 

Produced by Tre Hester

 

May 21, 2019

This week the ladies dive into the recent Iran drama with Ariane Tabatabai. Next, they revisit some recent election results before turning to whirlwind trade developments, as talks with China fall apart and new restrictions are levied against Huawei. White House Mayhem never disappoints, and the ladies sound off on the moral and strategic bankruptcy of pardoning war criminals. Pop-culture brings us home.

 

Links

Elections

Trade

China

Mexico – Canada

Iran

Huawei

War Crimes

 

Produced by Tre Hester

May 7, 2019

This week Erin and Radha hold down the fort and return to some of Bombshell's greatest hits topics, starting with North Korean missile tests and a double feature from ISIS (a new video from Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi and the horrific attacks in Sri Lanka), and spinning some militias in Libya and new Iran sanctions for good measure.  With the continuing mayhem in Washington, they turn to the chaos in Venezuela, lack of data from Afghanistan, and of course the “clash of civilizations” on the horizon with China.  With Loren out, Erin has to skip Game of Thrones coverage and talk princess TV and tiaras with Radha.

 

Links

Libya

Al Baghdadi/Sri Lanka

Iran Sanctions

"Clash of Civilization"

Afghanistan

Sri Lanka

Venezuela

 

Produced by Tre Hester

Apr 23, 2019

This week, Loren, Radha, and Erin explore the world's many recent elections - in Israel, India, Indonesia, and Ukraine. They then return to Northern Ireland, not to talk about Brexit, but to unpack resurgent sectarian violence. The recent coup in Sudan rounds out a very sporty Keeping up Foreign Relations. Radha notes we're still waiting on a big trade summit with China before we dive headfirst into the Mueller report and speculate wildly on the ongoing counter-intelligence investigation(s). DoD remains opaque as ever, while DHS gets purged. Finally, a lively Pop Culture round-up to take our minds off all this mayhem.

 

Links

Trade

DHS: 

Sudan

Protests

Election

Northern Ireland

Mueller

Pop Culture

 

Produced by Tre Hester

Apr 9, 2019

The ladies of Bombshell take on proteins and Afghanistan policy all in one segment with special guest Frances Brown. Across the pond, Brexit is going nowhere fast and NATO is celebrating a grand birthday while the American president is questioning whether he wants to keep paying dues.  In It’s Aghast, 5G is fast, the future, and not so much fun for American competitiveness. And in White House mayhem, the Congress mustered up some war powers energy to get the US out of the military operations in Yemen that the administration claims we aren’t in, while the president visited the border just defenestrating his Homeland Security Secretary.

 

Links

Huawei/5G

Saudi Human Rights

Brexit

Afghanistan

Mexico Border

NATO

Yemen

 

Produced by Tre Hester 

Mar 26, 2019

Join Bombshell for a rousing discussion of the fathomless train wreck that is Brexit and the increasing lack of predictability of the upcoming Israeli elections. Believe it or not, China trade talks are not going as well as they might, as we discuss in "It's Aghast." In White House mayhem, President Trump issued a tremendous press release on the fourth or fifth defeat of ISIL with some bombast and a little general life advice, while recognizing the generally illegal Israeli annexation of the Golan Heights, crapping on his own North Korea policy, and putting out a DOA defense budget. We're all fine here, how are you?

 

Links

 

Produced by Tre Hester

Mar 12, 2019

Erin, Radha, and Loren made the trip to Duke University to join the Carlucci National Security Symposium at the Sanford School of Public Policy.  On the agenda for this special live show: topics we want presidential candidates to debate, big ideas we want to stop hearing about in foreign policy and what big issues that bridge the public and private sectors should we be worrying more about. It is unclear whether Erin has performed enough penance for visiting Duke in basketball season. 

 

Produced by Tre Hester

Feb 26, 2019

This week Dr. Tanvi Madan joins the ladies to explain the brewing crisis between India and Pakistan in Kashmir. Then Radha breaks down last week’s trade negotiations with China (what really is an MOU anyway and what happened to our leverage?). We revisit Venezuela as the Vice President prepares for a trip to the region and then discuss the humanitarian and policy implications of the “ISIS wives.” White House Mayhem lives up to its name with uncoordinated Syria policies, rogue nuclear reactor deals, and sad faces in Munich. We’re all enjoying the many escapes offered by Pop Culture.

 

Links

 

Kashmir

It's Aghast

KUFR

Venezuela 

ISIS women

White House Mayhem

Syria

Saudi Nuclear tech

Munich

Produced by Tre Hester

Feb 12, 2019

This week Paula Garcia Tufro joins the Radha, Loren, and Erin to discuss the brewing crisis in Venezuela. Then the ladies fashion an update on Brexit, explore uncharted waters in Iraq, and ask what is the point of a second North Korea summit when nothing has happened since the first! Radha unpacks recent trade negotiations with China before the group asks the unanswerable question: just how much money can you shove into OCO? Finally, Erin and Loren profess their undying love for Matthew Goode.

 

Links

Venezuela 

Keeping up Foreign Relations

Brexit

Iraq

North Korea

It's Aghast

China Trade      

White House Mayhem

Defense Budget

Fitzgerald

Produced by Tre Hester

Jan 29, 2019

It's our 2nd annual Manniversary episode! We dug deep to find the most smoldering hot takes from the men in the national security arena. Join us for a far-ranging discussion with Stan McChrystal, Jeffrey Lewis, and Clint Watts!

 

Links

Produced by Tre Hester

Jan 15, 2019

Bombshell returns in 2019 with a new set of Bombshell questions and a guest, Dana Stroul, to give our best shot at explaining US-Syria policy. Secretary Pompeo has finished a whirlwind tour (while his staff are unpaid) trying to do the same, and at least one of the parties to potential US-North Korea summit seems to be doing its homework (guess which). The team digs deep into the longest government shutdown in history and considers just what kind of emergency it would be if Trump used national emergency powers to build a wall. Plus, lots of pop culture for the new year.

Syria Policy

Keeping up Foreign Relations

North Korea

It's Aghast

Brexit

China

White House Mayhem

Shutdown

National Emergency

Produced by Tre Hester 

Jan 1, 2019

Loren and Erin travel to Kansas City for a special live recording at the National World War I Museum. Joined by John Ismay and Steve Leonard, they dig into the many aspects of the Forever Wars including some Civ-Mil 101, opportunities for oversight and accountability, and everyone's favorite GWOT film.

Links

Dec 21, 2018

This ONE TIME we huddled for an emergency podcast. Because the Secretary of Defense resigned in protest. That doesn’t happen everyday. At least we hope not. Enjoy!

 

 

Dec 18, 2018

This week Radha, Loren, and Erin sit down to try and figure out just what the hell happened in 2018. Storm clouds gather as the ladies discuss what NatSec stories we missed - and what we’ll still be talking about in 10 years. But Radha brings the sunshine as we discuss the most important events for the military services in 2018 (which sadly has not resulted in any Space Marines). We wrap up with a review of the Administration’s secret villains and heroes and put a bow on it with movie plot lines that best capture 2018. 

Links

"Jaw-Jaw," War on the Rocks
Keith Bradsher and Ailin Tang, "China's Economy Slows Sharply, in Challenge for Xi Jinping," War on the Rocks
Sophie Richardson, "China disappeared Interpol's chief. The world can't pretend it's business as usual." Washington Post
Heidi Blake, Tom Warren, Richard Holmes, Jason Leopold, Jane Bradley, Alex Campbell, "From Russia With Blood," BuzzFeed News
Alex Horton, "The Army kicked out dozens of immigrant recruits. Now it's allowing them back amid a legal battle." Washington Post
Gina Harkins, "The Military's Officer Promotion System May See Major Shake Up," Military.com
Lara Seligman, "Strong Economy Poses Recruitment Challenge for the U.S. Army," Foreign Policy
Paul Scharre, "A Million Mistakes a Second," Foreign Policy
Michael C. Horowitz, "The Algorithms of August," Foreign Policy
Zach Dorfman, "Botched CIA Communications System Helped Blow Cover of Chinese Agents," Foreign Policy
David E. Sanger, Nicole Perlroth, Glenn Thrush, Alan Rappeport, "Marriott Data Breach Is Traced to Chinese Hackers as U.S. Readies Crackdown on Beijing," New York Times
Emma Ashford and Trevor Thrall, "The Battle Inside the Political Parties for the Future of U.S. Foreign Policy," War on the Rocks
Katie Mettler, Callum Borchers, Nick Kirkpatrick, "'You're fired': A timeline of Team Trump departures," Washington Post
Walt Hickey and Gus Wezerek, "The Definitive Analysis Of 'Love Actually,' The Greatest Christmas Movie Of Our Time," FiveThirtyEight
Dec 4, 2018

This week Erin, Loren, and Radha read the G20 tea leaves, opine on continued chaos in Afghanistan, and remind you about all the White House mayhem from Saudi politics to a Moscow Trump Tower. Radha gets way too excited about USMCA (pronounced U-Smack-Ah) and all things trade before the ladies round some pop culture.

 

Keeping Up Foreign Relations

Afghanistan

Ukraine


It's Aghast
G20

USMCA

White House Mayhem
Yemen 


New START
Joe Gould, "US lawmakers tangle over nuclear arsenal, Russia treaties," Defense News

L'Affaire Russe

Border

Pop Culture

 
 
Nov 20, 2018

Erin, Radha, and Loren invited Dr. Lindsay Cohn of the U.S. Naval War College to join their posse and explain America's history of employing the military for domestic purposes.  In Keeping Up Foreign Relations, UK Prime Minister Theresa May is still negotiating the terms of her break up with the EU, and new revelations on the tragic killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi are giving us a collective heart attack.  A new entrant to White House mayhem, First Lady Melania Trump, flexes her muscle to oust the fifth Deputy National Security Advisor of the Trump administration, and we assess the assessment of the National Defense Strategy commission.  Finally, come what may, we commit to developing a holiday shopping list for you festive needs this season.

 

UPCOMING EVENT: The American Public and the War on Terror https://my.theworldwar.org/2307

(Tue, 4 Dec, Kansas City)

Border Deployment

Keeping up Foreign Relations

Saudi Arabia

White House Mayhem

Pop Culture

Nov 8, 2018

Loren, Erin, and Radha meet up in a special short episode to talk about the election aftermath. What will happen with the change in the house, who is on the Senate armed services committee, and what is oversight anyway?! Plus, a quick discussion on the defense budget and why data and statistics should be a year-round pastime!

 

Music by Future Teens

Produced by Tre Hester 

Oct 23, 2018

This week Tamara Cofman Wittes joins the Bombshell ladies to discuss the fallout of the Khashoggi assassination and the future of US-Saudi relations. We get further bogged down in Afghanistan and try to understand the migrant caravan moving north from Central America. Then Radha tries to cheer us up by explaining the intricacies of the Universal Postal Union. For icing on the cake, we dive deep into the INF treaty and wonder if the Defense Department really being asked to cut its budget.

 

Saudi

Keeping up Foreign Relations

Caravan

Afghanistan

It's Aghast 

White House Mayhem

INF Treaty

Budget

Pop-Culture

 

Music by Future Teens

Produced by Tre Hester

Oct 9, 2018

This week, Loren, Radha, and Erin are reunited to discuss such cheery topics as political assassinations and sexual violence (albeit in the form of Nobel Prizes awarded to combat it). Radha dives deep on NAFTA 2.0, and we work our way through the crazy Chinese hacked hardware story. Rounding out White House Mayhem, John Bolton is back and joins the president and vice president in making blustery foreign policy speeches. And Erin demands answers on Banksy's newest prank.

 

New WOTR podcast: Melanie Marlowe, Bryan McGrath, and Christopher Preble, "Net Assessment," War on the Rocks

 

KUFR

Nobel prize

Trade

WH Mayhem

Pop-Culture


Music by Future Teens

Produced by Tre Hester 

Sep 11, 2018

The Army and Navy Club in Washington, DC, hosted Loren and Radha this week for a live show. Lara Seligman of Foreign Policy and Valerie Insinna of Defense News joined the Bombshell crew to discuss defense journalism in the Trump administration, what it's like to cover a 17 year old war, and the most mayhem of mayhem weeks the White House has had in the last year. To listen to the audience Q&A for this episode, sign up for the War Hall at https://warontherocks.com/subscribe

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