33 episodes

Untangling history’s greatest controversies. Every month, we take a hard look at the historical conflicts that raise difficult questions, stoke controversy, and send our moral compasses spinning.

Conflicted: A History Podcast Evergreen Podcasts

    • History
    • 4.9 • 110 Ratings

Untangling history’s greatest controversies. Every month, we take a hard look at the historical conflicts that raise difficult questions, stoke controversy, and send our moral compasses spinning.

    The Stock Market Crash of 1929 – Part 1: To The Moon!

    The Stock Market Crash of 1929 – Part 1: To The Moon!

    One of the worst financial disasters in history unfolded on Wall Street in late October of 1929. Within a week, 30 billion dollars had disappeared into thin air, leaving the global economy in tatters and heralding the beginning of a worldwide Depression. But what exactly happened? And why? In Part 1 of this 3-Part series on the Wall Street Crash of 1929, we discover how the American public became fatally infatuated with the stock market during the “Roaring 20’s”; and how one debauched day trader – Jesse Livermore – saw the whole thing coming. 

    SOURCES:
    Ahamed, Liaquat. Lords of Finance: The Bankers Who Broke the World. 2009.
    Blumenthal, Karen. Six Days in October. 2002. 
    Charles Rivers Editors. Jesse Livermore. 2021.
    Charles Rivers Editors. Wall Street. 2020.
    Galbraith, John Kenneth. The Great Crash 1929. 1955.
    Galbraith, John Kenneth. A Short History of Financial Euphoria. 1990.
    Geisst, Charles R. Wall Street: A History. 1997.
    Klein, Maury. Rainbow’s End. 2001. 
    Morris, Charles R. A Rabble of Dead Money. 2017.
    Nations, Scott. A History of the United States in Five Crashes. 2017.
    Parker, Selwyn. The Great Crash. 2008.
    Perino, Michael. The Hellhound of Wall Street. 2010.
    Rubython, Tom. Jesse Livermore: Boy Plunger. 2016.
    Thomas, Gordon. Morgan-Witts, Max. The Day the Bubble Burst. 1979.
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    • 1 hr 18 min
    Gore: The Brutal History of Bullfighting

    Gore: The Brutal History of Bullfighting

    Some revere it as an art form, others revile it as a blood sport, but no matter where you stand, few traditions stir up strong emotions quite like the centuries-old ritual of bullfighting. Born in the villages of rural Spain, refined in the crowded arenas of Seville, and fetishized by wandering aficionados like Ernest Hemingway, the “corrida de toros” holds a special place not only in Spanish cultural life but in human history. Beneath the pomp and pageantry, will we find senseless animal cruelty? Or a transcendent reflection on the human condition? 

    SOURCES:
    Bailey, C. (2007). “Africa Begins at the Pyrenees”: Moral Outrage, Hypocrisy, and the Spanish Bullfight. Ethics and the Environment.
    Bentley, Logan. (1962). “What The Horns Couldn’t Do”. Sports Illustrated.
    Colenutt, Mark. Spanish Bull: A Provocative Guide to Bullfighting. 2014.
    Conrad, Barnaby. The Death of Manolete. 1958.
    Dozier, Thomas. (1955) “The One Who Lived”. Sports Illustrated.
    Gamado, Ignacio. Discovering the World of Bullfighting. 2021.
    Hardouin-Fugier, Elisabeth. Bullfighting: A Troubled History. 2010.
    Hemingway, Ernest. Death in the Afternoon. 1932
    Kennedy, A.L.: On Bullfighting. 1999.
    McCormick, John. Bullfighting: Art, Technique & Spanish Society. 1998
    Mitchell, Timothy. Blood Sport: A Social History of Spanish Bullfighting. 1991.
    Ribezzo, Viviana. Adresi, Marta. The Corrida: The History of Bullfighting from its Origins to Present Day. 2018.
    Tauromaquia. Jaime Alekos. 2017.
    Tynan, Kenneth. (1955) “The Death of Manolete”. The Paris Review 
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    • 2 hr 8 min
    Ghosts in the Mountains: The Mujahideen Civil War (Part 4)

    Ghosts in the Mountains: The Mujahideen Civil War (Part 4)

    It’s 1992. The 40th Army is long gone and the Soviet Union has collapsed, but war still rages across Afghanistan. As the Afghan communist regime crumbles, Ahmed Shah Massoud and Gulbuddin Hekmatyar’s forces clash in Kabul. While America turns its back and the Mujahideen turn on each other, new threats arise and threaten to sweep the old generation of freedom fighters away – The Taliban and Osama bin Laden. (Part 4 of Ghosts in the Mountains)

    SOURCES:
    Ahmadi-Miller, Enjeela. The Broken Circle: A Memoir of Escaping Afghanistan. 2019.
    Alexievich, Svetlana. Zinky Boys. 1989.
    Ansari, Mir Tamim. Games Without Rules: The Often-Interrupted History of Afghanistan. 2012.
    Barfield, Thomas. Afghanistan: A Cultural and Political History. 2010.
    Borovik, Artyom. The Hidden War. 1990.
    Braithewaite, Rodric. Afgantsy: The Russians in Afghanistan, 1979-1989. 2011.
    Coll, Steve. Ghost Wars: The Secret History of the CIA, Afghanistan and Bin Laden from the Soviet Invasion to 2001. 2004. 
    Dobbs, Michael. Down with Big Brother: The Fall of the Soviet Empire. 1997.
    Feifer, Gregory. The Great Gamble: The Soviet War in Afghanistan. 2009. 
    Fremont-Barnes, Gregory. The Soviet-Afghan War, 1979-89. 2012.
    Galeotti, Mark. Storm-333: KGB and Spetsnaz Seize Kabul. 2021.
    Gall, Sandy. Afghan Napoleon: The Life of Ahmed Shah Massoud. 2021.
    Grad, Marcela. Massoud: An Intimate Portrait of the Legendary Afghan Leader. 2009.
    Goodwin, Jan. Caught in the Crossfire. 1987. 
    Grau, Lester W. The Bear Went Over the Mountain: Soviet Combat Tactics In Afghanistan. 1996.
    Hosdon, Peregrine. Under a Sickle Moon: A Journey Through Afghanistan. 1986.
    Kalinovsky, Artemy. A Long Goodbye: The Soviet Withdrawal from Afghanistan. 2011.
    Kaplan, Robert D. Soldiers of God: With Islamic Warriors in Afghanistan and Pakistan. 2001.
    Rosen, Ethan. The Bear, The Dragon, & the AK-47. 2017.
    Tanner, Stephen. Afghanistan: A Military History of Afghanistan from Alexander the Great to the War Against the Taliban. 2009. 
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    • 2 hr 1 min
    Ghosts in the Mountains: The Soviet-Afghan War – Part 3

    Ghosts in the Mountains: The Soviet-Afghan War – Part 3

    As the CIA wages a covert proxy war against the Soviet 40th Army, the Mujahideen are showered with billions of dollars and cutting-edge weaponry. An old animosity between two prominent Mujahideen commanders – Ahmed Shah Massoud and Gulbuddin Hekmatyar - turns into a bitter, deadly rivalry. Meanwhile, Soviet reformers led by Mikhail Gorbachev attempt to extricate the USSR from Afghanistan with a shred of dignity intact. After the Soviet withdrawal, the world turns it back on Afghanistan as a civil war rages between the Mujahideen factions – and the Taliban emerges. 

    SOURCES:
    Ahmadi-Miller, Enjeela. The Broken Circle: A Memoir of Escaping Afghanistan. 2019.
    Alexievich, Svetlana. Zinky Boys. 1989.
    Ansari, Mir Tamim. Games Without Rules: The Often-Interrupted History of Afghanistan. 2012.
    Barfield, Thomas. Afghanistan: A Cultural and Political History. 2010.
    Borovik, Artyom. The Hidden War. 1990.
    Braithewaite, Rodric. Afgantsy: The Russians in Afghanistan, 1979-1989. 2011.
    Coll, Steve. Ghost Wars: The Secret History of the CIA, Afghanistan and Bin Laden from the Soviet Invasion to 2001. 2004. 
    Dobbs, Michael. Down with Big Brother: The Fall of the Soviet Empire. 1997.
    Feifer, Gregory. The Great Gamble: The Soviet War in Afghanistan. 2009. 
    Fremont-Barnes, Gregory. The Soviet-Afghan War, 1979-89. 2012.
    Galeotti, Mark. Storm-333: KGB and Spetsnaz Seize Kabul. 2021.
    Gall, Sandy. Afghan Napoleon: The Life of Ahmed Shah Massoud. 2021.
    Grad, Marcela. Massoud: An Intimate Portrait of the Legendary Afghan Leader. 2009.
    Goodwin, Jan. Caught in the Crossfire. 1987. 
    Grau, Lester W. The Bear Went Over the Mountain: Soviet Combat Tactics In Afghanistan. 1996.
    Hosdon, Peregrine. Under a Sickle Moon: A Journey Through Afghanistan. 1986.
    Kalinovsky, Artemy. A Long Goodbye: The Soviet Withdrawal from Afghanistan. 2011.
    Kaplan, Robert D. Soldiers of God: With Islamic Warriors in Afghanistan and Pakistan. 2001.
    Rosen, Ethan. The Bear, The Dragon, & the AK-47. 2017.
    Tanner, Stephen. Afghanistan: A Military History of Afghanistan from Alexander the Great to the War Against the Taliban. 2009. 
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    • 2 hr 2 min
    Ghosts in the Mountains: The Soviet-Afghan War – Part 2

    Ghosts in the Mountains: The Soviet-Afghan War – Part 2

    The Soviet 40th Army invaded Afghanistan in the closing days of 1979. They would not leave for another nine years. Exhausted and frustrated by their inability to decisively crush the elusive freedom fighters in the mountains – the Mujahideen – the Soviets turn to atrocity and criminal violence to achieve their objectives. Meanwhile, adrenaline-seeking journalists and idealistic Western reporters illegally sneak into the war zone to uncover the truth behind the war. 

    SOURCES:
    Ahmadi-Miller, Enjeela. The Broken Circle: A Memoir of Escaping Afghanistan. 2019.
    Ansari, Mir Tamim. Games Without Rules: The Often-Interrupted History of Afghanistan. 2012.
    Barfield, Thomas. Afghanistan: A Cultural and Political History. 2010.
    Borovik, Artyom. The Hidden War. 1990.
    Braithewaite, Rodric. Afgantsy: The Russians in Afghanistan, 1979-1989. 2011.
    Coll, Steve. Ghost Wars: The Secret History of the CIA, Afghanistan and Bin Laden from the Soviet Invasion to 2001. 2004. 
    Dobbs, Michael. Down with Big Brother: The Fall of the Soviet Empire. 1997.
    Feifer, Gregory. The Great Gamble: The Soviet War in Afghanistan. 2009. 
    Fremont-Barnes, Gregory. The Soviet-Afghan War, 1979-89. 2012.
    Galeotti, Mark. Storm-333: KGB and Spetsnaz Seize Kabul. 2021.
    Goodwin, Jan. Caught in the Crossfire. 1987. 
    Grau, Lester W. The Bear Went Over the Mountain: Soviet Combat Tactics In Afghanistan. 1996.
    Hosdon, Peregrine. Under a Sickle Moon: A Journey Through Afghanistan. 1986.
    Kalinovsky, Artemy. A Long Goodbye: The Soviet Withdrawal from Afghanistan. 2011.
    Kaplan, Robert D. Soldiers of God: With Islamic Warriors in Afghanistan and Pakistan. 2001.
    Rosen, Ethan. The Bear, The Dragon, & the AK-47. 2017.
    Tanner, Stephen. Afghanistan: A Military History of Afghanistan from Alexander the Great to the War Against the Taliban. 2009. 
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    • 1 hr 46 min
    Ghosts in the Mountains: The Soviet-Afghan War – Part 1

    Ghosts in the Mountains: The Soviet-Afghan War – Part 1

    When Soviet Russia invaded Afghanistan in December of 1979, few could have imagined what a seismic impact it would have on the modern world. In an attempt to prop up a wobbly client regime, the Soviets sparked a transnational jihad, inflamed Cold War tensions, and hastened the downfall of their own empire. Often referred to as “Russia’s Vietnam”, the Soviet-Afghan War is an overlooked, deeply misunderstood, and immensely important conflict. In this first installment of a multi-part series, we will explore how the Soviets found themselves ensnared in the “graveyard of empires”, through the eyes of the everyday people who experienced it firsthand. 

    SOURCES:
    Ahmadi-Miller, Enjeela. The Broken Circle: A Memoir of Escaping Afghanistan. 2019.
    Ansari, Mir Tamim. Games Without Rules: The Often-Interrupted History of Afghanistan. 2012.
    Barfield, Thomas. Afghanistan: A Cultural and Political History. 2010.
    Borovik, Artyom. The Hidden War. 1990.
    Braithewaite, Rodric. Afgantsy: The Russians in Afghanistan, 1979-1989. 2011.
    Coll, Steve. Ghost Wars: The Secret History of the CIA, Afghanistan and Bin Laden from the Soviet Invasion to 2001. 2004. 
    Dobbs, Michael. Down with Big Brother: The Fall of the Soviet Empire. 1997.
    Feifer, Gregory. The Great Gamble: The Soviet War in Afghanistan. 2009. 
    Fremont-Barnes, Gregory. The Soviet-Afghan War, 1979-89. 2012.
    Galeotti, Mark. Storm-333: KGB and Spetsnaz Seize Kabul. 2021.
    Grau, Lester W. The Bear Went Over the Mountain: Soviet Combat Tactics In Afghanistan. 1996.
    Hosdon, Peregrine. Under a Sickle Moon: A Journey Through Afghanistan. 1986.
    Kalinovsky, Artemy. A Long Goodbye: The Soviet Withdrawal from Afghanistan. 2011.
    Kaplan, Robert D. Soldiers of God: With Islamic Warriors in Afghanistan and Pakistan. 2001.
    Rosen, Ethan. The Bear, The Dragon, & the AK-47. 2017.
    Tanner, Stephen. Afghanistan: A Military History of Afghanistan from Alexander the Great to the War Against the Taliban. 2009. 
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    • 1 hr 3 min

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5
110 Ratings

110 Ratings

Broken_Jarrr ,

A gem of a podcast

Discovered the podcast through the Kill Yamamoto episodes.
Honestly have to say it’s one of the most intriguing podcasts I follow and even manages to draw my interest for subjects I’d otherwise say I have no interest at all in.
Key is the superb writing, the clear, thorough but enjoyable explanations and also a neutrality that is not utterly devoid of a personal point of view, but one that always aims to paint both sides as fairly as possible.

tag1219 ,

Amazing bingeworthy podcast

Happened to come across "The good guys" podcast and enjoyed it so much I binged the rest of the series in a week! Even with topics that I thought I wouldn't be very interested in, I found myself completely immersed. Zach does an incredible job researching and narrating each story and has honestly made an impact on my life. I eagerly await new episodes and can't wait to see what topics come next!

Grifman1 ,

Great hidden gem

I just started listening but I’ve heard enough to say that this is a real hidden gem. It covers a wide variety of historical events, figures and topics, all of which are very interesting, told in an absorbing fashion. I highly recommend this to those with an interest in history.

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