A weekly discussion of national security and foreign policy matters hosted by Shane Harris of the Washington Post and featuring Brookings scholars Tamara Cofman Wittes, Benjamin Wittes, and Susan Hennessey.
The "Domestic in the Extreme" Edition
The storming of the Capitol on January 6 has exposed the long-simmering threat of domestic extremism in the United States. How will the Biden administration combat it? Protests break out across Russia as a prominent dissident returns home. And can we just skip impeachment and get to the 14th Amendment?
The "Let’s Never Do That Again" Edition
Joe Biden takes the oath of office to become the 46th President of the United States. We’ll look at how Donald Trump spent his last day in office and how Biden is spending his first.
The "So Not-Nice They Impeached Him Twice" Edition
The House impeaches President Trump—again—for his role in stoking an attack on the Capitol. President-elect Biden announces more national security appointments, including his nominee to lead the CIA. And Mike Pompeo breaks some diplomatic furniture on the way out the door.
"The Peaceless Transition of Power" Edition
A normally procedural session of Congress dissolves as protestors descend on Washington and occupy the Capitol. A new crackdown on pro-democracy forces in Hong Kong will complicate the incoming Biden administration’s approach to China. And how will a (barely) Democrat-controlled Senate affect Biden’s national security agenda?
The "F--- This Year" Edition
President Trump issues another round of pardons, raising expectations that his family members and maybe Trump himself will be next. As 2020 comes to a merciful close, we’ll take a look back at the big national security stories that didn’t get enough attention. And we’ll talk about what we’ve got our eyes on for 2021, besides a triumphant return to the actual Jungle Studio.
The "Disbarred" Edition
Attorney General Bill Barr exits the stage. Did he leave before Trump could fire him? A massive computer hack attributed to Russian intelligence may have exposed dozens of companies and government agencies. And in the face of that and other Russian threats, how is a Biden administration likely to change U.S. policy towards Moscow?
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Best podcast ever
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My Favorite Podcast
A few years ago, my friend sent me an episode of “Rational Security,” and I thought it was fun, but didn’t make a note of it. But it stuck with me, and I found myself telling people about it. So, of course, when the Covid lockdowns hit and I needed something to keep my brain from becoming total mush, I went back and looked up the show, and immediately became obsessed. With incredibly knowledgable and funny hosts, fascinating takes on important topics, and the perfect amount of delightful weirdness (I need more updates on Ben’s friendship with corvids and a list of the show’s bands), this podcast quickly went from being one I vaguely heard in passing to my absolute favorite.
Love your work
Longtime listener of this great podcast. The team is so enjoyable to listen to weekly. I need this podcast to help keep me grounded and aware of the political issues of the day.