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War and Peace is a new podcast series from the International Crisis Group. Olga Oliker and Hugh Pope interview experts about all things Europe and its neighbourhood from Russia to Turkey and beyond. Their guests shed new light on everything that helps or hinders prospects for peace. A podcast member of the EuroPod production network. 

War & Peace EuroPod

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War and Peace is a new podcast series from the International Crisis Group. Olga Oliker and Hugh Pope interview experts about all things Europe and its neighbourhood from Russia to Turkey and beyond. Their guests shed new light on everything that helps or hinders prospects for peace. A podcast member of the EuroPod production network. 

    Episode 12: Of Nightclub Bouncers and Arms Control

    Episode 12: Of Nightclub Bouncers and Arms Control

    “Policies today are geared toward power, strength and pushing back. They are not geared toward talking to each other, and that is the prerequisite for arms control”. 
    For Ulrich Kuehn, our guest on War & Peace this week, we have entered an age of regression of predictability in the international military balance. States are gradually dismantling many of the treaties won in hard negotiations during and after the end of the Cold War, arguing that they have become obsolete.
    What does this mean for those countries who depend on cooperative mechanisms, but who have little say in what happens to them? And what are the implications for Europe? Does it have the political and military strength to be an autonomous arms control actor?
    Tune in now to find out more, including why it’s sometimes useful to think of deterrence in terms of how nightclubs view their bouncers. 

    • 26 min.
    Episode 11: A 2020 Peace Agenda for the EU

    Episode 11: A 2020 Peace Agenda for the EU

    As decades-old wars continue to escalate and new crises threaten peace and security around the world, European leadership is urgently needed to prevent and mitigate deadly conflict. 
    Crisis Group’s EU experts Giuseppe Famà and Lisa Musiol join Olga and Hugh in the studio this week to discuss the crises where Josep Borrell, the EU’s recently appointed Vice President and High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, can help the EU and its member states rise to the challenge.
    For more see Crisis Group’s recent briefing (https://www.crisisgroup.org/europe-central-asia/sb003-seven-priorities-new-eu-high-representative) and upcoming EU Watch List 2020.
    With special thanks to our producer, BulleMedia. Also available on the Europod (https://www.bullemedia.eu/europod) production network.

    • 32 min.
    Episode 10: Ground Reality in Nagorno-Karabakh

    Episode 10: Ground Reality in Nagorno-Karabakh

    The dispute over Nagorno-Karabakh is the longest-running conflict that accompanied the Soviet Union’s collapse in 1991. War over the territory broke out in 1992 between Armenians and Azerbaijanis. While a ceasefire in 1994 ended the fighting, decades of negotiations have failed to resolve the conflict. 
    Our guest this week is Olesya Vartanyan, Crisis Group’s Analyst for Europe’s Eastern Neighbourhood. She explains that grievances and tensions had existed long before the conflict erupted, and that recent calm only papers over years of stalemate that have entrenched positions and isolated Armenians and Azerbaijanis from one another.
    But could there be a way out of the current deadlock? Have a listen to find out. 
    For more information on this conflict, see our recent report: Digging out of Deadlock in Nagorno-Karabakh (https://www.crisisgroup.org/europe-central-asia/caucasus/nagorno-karabakh-azerbaijan/255-digging-out-deadlock-nagorno-karabakh) and our Visual Explainer (https://www.crisisgroup.org/content/nagorno-karabakh-conflict-visual-explainer), which maps developments since 2015. 

    • 21 min.
    Episode 9: Russia in 2020

    Episode 9: Russia in 2020

    2019 was a good year for Russia. The country rejoined the Council of Europe, the first case of sanctions being lightened since its 2014 annexation of Crimea. It confirmed the country’s commitment to the Paris climate agreement. It welcomed close to fifty African leaders to the inaugural Russia-Africa summit in Sochi. Moscow even made progress with Kyiv, although less as a result of Russian diplomacy than the efforts of Ukraine’s President Zelenskyy.
    Andrey Kortunov, Director General of the Russian International Affairs Council, joined Olga and Hugh to reflect on 2019 and discuss what 2020 might bring. They weigh in on everything from Syrian reconstruction to arms control to who President Putin might want to win the U.S. presidential election.

    • 27 min.
    Episode 8: Bridging the EU-Russia Divide

    Episode 8: Bridging the EU-Russia Divide

    Russia’s relationship with the European Union has been mired in tension and mistrust since Moscow's annexation of Crimea in 2014. But while relations at a political level are strained, in Russian society there is an appetite for more engagement. 
    Sabine Fischer is Team Leader for the Public Diplomacy EU and Russia Project, which seeks to build engagement between the EU and Russian civil society on bilateral and global issues and to strengthen mutual understanding where possible. She talks to Olga and Hugh about the project, Western perceptions of Russian foreign policy, how the new European Commission should engage Russia, and how the West can balance its rejection of the Crimea annexation with its broader policies toward Russia.

    • 25 min.
    Episode 7: Holding the EU Flag High

    Episode 7: Holding the EU Flag High

    The European Union has mobilized huge financial, political and security resources to stabilize the Balkans, often serving the flagship policy of offering EU membership to qualifying countries. The wars of the 1990s and the economic hardships that followed have been largely overcome, but enlargement has stalled and the region’s uncertainties continue. The logic of EU enlargement is in even greater trouble further east in Turkey. Here media freedoms have shrunk, relations have strained over Turkey’s incursion into north-east Syria and the two sides are struggling to find a common policy on helping almost four million Syrian refugees in the country. 
    Angelina Eichhorst, Deputy Managing Director for Europe and Central Asia / Director of Western Europe, Western Balkans, and Turkey at the European External Action Service, joins Hugh and Olga this week to discuss how the EU and its eastern neighbors can navigate periods of more strained relations and why continued engagement and dialogue is crucial for long-term stability and prosperity. 
    “We must shape our interests together, not by sitting at different tables”. 

    • 25 min.

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