Alternately hosted by Matthew Duss and Robert Farley, Foreign Entanglements brings together interesting people with contrasting views on America’s role in international society.
On a special Olympics edition of Foreign Entanglements, Rob speaks with Nick about the 1980 US Olympic boycott, and how Reagan cleverly used the boycott against Carter. Rob explains why the Cold War-era Olympics were so much better than they are now. Rob and Nick next talk “Medalball,” where national teams try to game the medal system. Is China soon to be the dominant Olympic power? Given the impetus toward national glory, Rob wonders why some nations limit women’s participation. They chastely examine the free-for-all sex orgy known as the Olympic Village. Finally, Nick and Rob advocate for some recognition of the Israeli athletes slain during the 1972 Olympics.
On Foreign Entanglements, Matt and Jamie discuss the assassinations in Syria, and whether Obama should have done more. Matt points out that “safe zones” sound nice and easy, but they entail military intervention. Matt and Jamie discuss Assad’s relationship with Hezbollah, and how their fortunes have changed since 2006. Does the bombing in Bulgaria indicate a new phase of “shadow war” with Iran? And is it “within international norms” to assassinate Iranian scientists? Finally, Matt and Jamie debate the best way to change Iranian behavior.
On Foreign Entanglements, Rob speak with Commander Chris van Avery about the current tensions in the South China Sea. Why does America care what happens in Southeast Asia, anyway? Chris and Rob talk about how India and Japan have reacted to the developments, and Rob tries to figure out how the United States Navy matters for this scenario. Rob and Chris talk a bit about Air-Sea Battle (not the video game), and conclude by discussing the fate of the world’s most advanced fighter jet, the F-35.
On Foreign Entanglements, Matt and Zack discuss new evidence that Palestinian leader Yasir Arafat, who died in 2004, may have been poisoned. Why would Israel have assassinated Arafat at the same time it was preparing to withdraw from Gaza? And how might the renewed debate over Arafat’s death affect the Israeli-Palestinian conflict going forward? Matt brings up the recent talks on Iran’s nuclear program in Moscow, where Zack is skeptical that any progress was made. Should the US have intervened directly to support Iran’s Green Movement in 2009? Finally, they discuss what Mitt Romney has to gain by traveling to Israel during an election year.
On Foreign Entanglements, Rob and Bernard discuss the implications of the downing of a Turkish fighter jet by Syrian air defenses. Bernard sketches out a case for intervention in Syria, and Rob weighs the pros and cons. They compare the situation in Syria to foreign policy challenges in Iran, Libya, and the Balkans, and speculate on how an intervention might work in practice. Finally, Rob and Bernard discuss the enduring allure of air power.