On Shifting Ground

With the ten warmest years since 1880 all having occurred since 1998 it is clear that climate change is very real. A warming planet doesn't just mean melting ice caps, rising waters and other environmental problems, according to Professor Guzman. It also means the potential for never-before-seen migration, famine, war and disease. This is not a phenomenon that we have to wait for as it is already happening.

Prolonged droughts, massive flooding and food shortages have already become the norm in certain parts of the developing world. Join the Council for a discussion on the social and political implications of climate change.

Speaker: Andrew Guzman, Professor of Law and Associate Dean for International and Executive Education, University of California, Berkeley
Professor of Law and Associate Dean for International and Executive Education, University of California, Berkeley

Moderator: Maureen Blanc, Trustee, World Affairs Council of Northern California

Direct download: 2_25_13_Andrew_Guzman.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 9:00pm PST

As the head of United States Cyber Command (USCYBERCOM) and the National Security Agency/Central Security Service, General Keith Alexander is at the front lines of many aspects of American national security. While online life has improved many aspects of public life, it has also opened up a entirely new realm of possibilities for those wishing to do the US harm.

Drawing on his prestigious education and military career, General Alexander will discuss cybersecurity challenges facing the US in the modern era.

Speaker: Keith Alexander, Commander, US Cyber Command 


Moderator: Anja Manuel, Principal, The RiceHadley Group, LLC


Direct download: 2_19_13_Keith_Alexander.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 12:00am PST

Former Secretary of Labor, professor, author and one of Time Magazine’s ten most effective cabinet secretaries of the last century will sit down for a discussion on the issues at the forefront of the political debate in the US: the state of the economy, inequality in the US and expectations for Obama’s second term.

Speaker: Robert Reich, Chancellor's Professor of Public Policy, Richard and Rhoda Goldman School of Public Policy, University of California, Berkeley 


Moderator: Peter Robertson, Chairman, Board of Trustees, World Affairs Council of Northern California


Direct download: 2_13_13_Robert_Reich.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 11:00pm PST

Access to energy plays a critical role in the development of every country from the least developed to the most industrialized. The rapid development of one country in particular, China - the world's largest energy user - is predicted to have the greatest impact on global energy markets as hundreds of millions of Chinese are elevated to the middle class and China's domestic markets evolve. China is building domestic capacity and developing clean energy technologies while simultaneously looking outside its borders to invest in and secure energy sources around the world. From oil fields in Sudan, to hydroelectric power in Burma, to natural gas fields in south Texas, Canada and Australia, China is going abroad to invest in energy and bolster their reserve capacity. 

In its quest for energy, China is increasingly engaging in public-private partnerships between its state-owned companies and energy producers worldwide, creating opportunities for international cooperation and coordination. However, China's going abroad strategy has not been without problems due to political and social instability in regions of investment, or backlash due to resource nationalism or other concerns regarding resource exploitation. China is also looking to attract private investment and technological assistance in unlocking its unconventional gas and oil supplies which could be a move toward reducing China's energy dependence.

Please join us for an in-depth conversation about the opportunities and challenges ahead for China in meeting their growing energy needs and the implications for global energy markets.

This series is presented by Chevron.

Speakers: Mikkal Herberg, Research Director on Asian Energy Security, The National Bureau of Asian Research


Seth Kleinman, Head of Energy Strategy, Citigroup Global Markets, Ltd.


Direct download: 2_12_13_Energy_Series_Herberg_Kleinman.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 11:30pm PST

In an era of increased security threats, the US faces difficult and complex challenges. Senator Feingold, who became well versed in these challenges during his time on the Foreign Relations and Intelligence Committees, believes that due to institutional failures the US has not responded to them properly. Feingold argues that a variety of factors contributed to this failure, from the oversimplification of complex problems to the way the war on terror has been portrayed in public; from our understanding of the nature of Islam to views of American exceptionalism. More than ten years after the greatest 'wake-up call' in US history, he suggests the nation needs to move from complacency to a renewed commitment to engage with the rest of the world in a more thoughtful way.

Senator Feingold will draw from his distinguished career in public service to address what steps must be taken to address the threats America faces.

Speaker: Russell Feingold, Former US Senator for Wisconsin


Direct download: 2_5_13_Russell_Feingold.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 1:30pm PST

For three decades, the United States and Iran have engaged in a secret war. It began with the Iranian revolution in 1979 and simmers today in Iraq and the Persian Gulf. The fighting takes place in the shadows, between the CIA and its network of spies and Iran's intelligence agency, and at sea, with Iranians in small speedboats attacking Western oil tankers. This conflict has frustrated five American presidents, divided administrations and repeatedly threatened to bring the two nations into open warfare.

A senior historian for the federal government, David Crist spent more than ten years researching and writing The Twilight War. He will discuss a number of important stories of military and intelligence operations by both sides, successes and failures and their unexpected consequences.

This event is co-organized with Marines' Memorial.

Speaker: David Crist, US Government Historian and Adviser to the United States Central Command


Direct download: 12_10_12_David_Crist.mp3
Category:News & Politics -- posted at: 9:00am PST