WorldAffairs

Are our current international institutions effectively equipped to address today’s most pressing global security challenges, ranging from climate change and nuclear proliferation to civil strife and terrorism? How can President Obama and key allies revitalize international cooperation and rejuvenate international institutions not only to protect their own citizens, but also to cooperate across borders to safeguard common resources and tackle common threats? Stephen Stedman joins the Council to present ideas for the new US administration and other global powers to promote what they cannot produce apart—peace and stability. A leading expert on civil wars and conflict management, Stedman was formerly the research director of the United Nations High- Level Panel on Threats, Challenges and Change from 2003-2004, and Assistant Secretary General and Special Advisor to the Secretary General of the United Nations, in 2005.

Direct download: 05-29-09_Stephen_Stedman.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 10:00am PST

Charles Duelfer was one of the most senior intelligence officers with on-the-ground experience to have worked in Iraq before, during, and after the Gulf War. While serving as the leader of the CIA’s Iraq Survey Group, his 2004 report is widely renowned as the most authoritative account on the relationship of the Saddam regime to weapons of mass destruction, as well as how the world was led to believe that Iraq possessed WMDs. But until now, Duelfer has never publicly shared his expertise on just how the US-Iraq relationship spiraled into a second war, and the lessons that can be applied to the challenges ahead in Iran and North Korea.

Direct download: 06-02-09_Charles_Duelfer.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 10:03am PST

When should the United States go to war? It is arguably the most important foreign policy question facing any president. The Council is pleased to welcome Richard Haass for an examination of the US policy decisions that led to the two Iraq wars. Haass, who served as senior Middle East advisor on the National Security Council staff for the first President Bush and director of policy planning in the State Department for the second, is in a unique position to discuss the 1991 and 2003 conflicts. At first glance, these conflicts appear similar. Both involved a President George Bush and the United States in conflicts with Saddam Hussein and Kuwait. But there, Haass argues, the resemblance ends. The first Iraq war, following Saddam’s invasion of neighboring Kuwait, was a war of necessity. By contrast, the second Iraq war, launched in 2003, was a war of choice, one that Haass asserts was unwarranted. Join Richard Haass for an inside account of both wars and a discussion of lessons for today’s foreign policy challenges.

Direct download: 05-20-09_Richard_Haass.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 9:57am PST

Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad’s record in one of the most turbulent periods in US foreign policy has earned him broad respect throughout the world. Serving as the 26th United States Ambassador to the United Nations, he dealt with global issues during one of the most challenging periods in our history, including the recent Russia-Georgia conflict and the Mumbai terror attacks. The highest-ranking Muslim to serve in the US government, he has been the US Ambassador to both Afghanistan and Iraq, where he played a significant role in facilitating both countries’ constitutions, elections and formation of government. With first-hand knowledge and experience from these diplomatic positions, Ambassador Khalilzad provides an insider perspective on Afghanistan and Pakistan as the United States becomes more engaged in this region, as well as what must be done to reach peace in the entire Middle East.

Direct download: 5-12-2009-Ambassador_Zalmay_Khalilzad.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 9:53am PST

Reza Aslan joins the Council for an in-depth discussion on the ideology that fuels al-Qaeda, the Taliban, and like-minded militants throughout the Muslim world. With a look at the United States’ approach to the War on Terror, he examines the polarizing rhetoric that has further entangled politics with religion. From Israel to Iraq and from the Netherlands to New York, Aslan argues that religion is a stronger force today than it has been in a century. He asserts that the only way to win an ideological war is to refuse to fight one: we must strip away the current ideological conflict of its religious connotations and address the actual grievances that fuel the Jihadist movement. Reza Aslan is the award-winning author of lt;igt;No god but Godlt;/igt; and lt;igt;How to Win a Cosmic Warlt;/igt;, and a Middle East Analyst for CBS News.

Direct download: 05-11-09_Reza_Aslan.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 9:49am PST

Valentino Achak Deng fled his native Sudan in the late 1980’s during civil war, when his village was destroyed by the murahaleen— the same type of militia which currently terrorize Darfur. After nine years in Ethiopian and Kenyan refugee camps, where he worked for the UNHCR as a social advocate and reproductive health educator, he resettled in Atlanta. Since then, Deng has toured the country speaking about Sudan, his experience as a refugee, and his collaboration with author Dave Eggers on lt;igt;What Is the Whatlt;/igt;, the novelized version of Deng’s life story. A leader in the Sudanese Diaspora, he has also worked relentlessly to expose the realities of what is happening in Sudan, its effect on the people, and how we can rebuild Sudanese communities.

Direct download: 04-27-09_Valentino_Achak_Deng.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 9:45am PST

From the killing fields of Cambodia to the ongoing nightmare in Darfur, why has the world traditionally stood by as governments fail to protect their own people from genocide, ethnic cleansing, or other crimes against humanity? Gareth Evans explains why mass atrocities continue to go unchecked and how the emergence of new international norms, such as the Responsibility to Protect, can guard citizens from falling victim to mass crimes. A former Australian Foreign Minister and leading international advocate in conflict prevention and resolution, Evans co-chaired the international commission that initiated the Responsibility to Protect idea in 2001.

Direct download: 04-13-09_Gareth_Evans.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 9:33am PST

The economic, military and political challenges for the new administration and for each of us as citizens are enormous. Explore the discussions and debates from the 2009 Annual Conference that reveal the key global issues to be addressed at this historical moment.


The economic, military and political challenges for the new administration and for each of us as citizens are enormous. Explore the discussions and debates from the 2009 Annual Conference that reveal the key global issues to be addressed at this historical moment.


The economic, military and political challenges for the new administration and for each of us as citizens are enormous. Explore the discussions and debates from the 2009 Annual Conference that reveal the key global issues to be addressed at this historical moment.