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Independent Thinking

English, News, 2 seasons, 68 episodes, 1 day, 10 hours, 25 minutes
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Chatham House director Bronwen Maddox hosts conversations with leading policymakers, journalists and Chatham House experts to provide insight into the latest international political issues.Independent Thinking gives listeners the opportunity to engage with the high level conversations hosted by Chatham House.
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Has the world forgotten Sudan?

Bronwen Maddox is joined this week by Mohammed al-Ta’ishi, a civilian member of Sudan’s Sovereignty Council - where he served as the chief negotiator and main architect of the Juba Peace Agreement. Joining them both are BBC journalist James Copnall and Rosalind Marsden, an Associate Fellow with our Africa programme and the former UK ambassador to Sudan. Read our latest: Sudan’s forgotten war: A new diplomatic push is needed The ‘conflict economy’ of sesame in Ethiopia and Sudan How Sudan’s forgotten war is being fought Presented by Bronwen Maddox. Produced by John Pollock. Listen to The Climate Briefing podcast 🎧  Listen to Africa Aware podcast 🎧 Subscribe to Independent Thinking wherever you find your podcasts - please listen, review and subscribe.
4/12/202434 minutes, 51 seconds
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Has Turkey turned against Recep Tayyip Erdoğan?

Bronwen Maddox is joined by Soli Özel, a Professor of International Relations at Istanbul Kadir Has University, and Hürcan Aslı Aksoy, the Head of the Centre for Applied Turkey Studies at the German Institute for International and Security Affairs. With them is Galip Dalay, a Senior Consulting Fellow with our Middle East and North Africa programme. Read our latest: Has David Cameron’s return revitalised UK policy in the Middle East? Maduro is flouting his commitment to hold free elections in Venezuela. The US must respond – carefully Securitizing the Ethiopia–Sudan border: How cross-border conflict is shaping trade and the control of land  Presented by Bronwen Maddox. Produced by John Pollock. Listen to The Climate Briefing podcast 🎧  Listen to Africa Aware podcast 🎧 Subscribe to Independent Thinking wherever you find your podcasts - please listen, review and subscribe.
4/4/202433 minutes, 33 seconds
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Can Germany lead in a divided Europe?

Bronwen Maddox is joined this week by Mujtaba Rahman, the Managing Director Europe of the Eurasia Group and Georgina Wright, a Senior Fellow with Institut Montaigne. Joining them all is journalist John Kampfner, the former head of Chatham House's UK in the World Programme. Read our latest: Is Moldova a new battleground in Russia’s war? Has David Cameron’s return revitalised UK policy in the Middle East? Britain must rearm to strengthen NATO and meet threats beyond Russia and terrorism Presented by Bronwen Maddox. Produced by John Pollock. Listen to The Climate Briefing podcast 🎧  Listen to Africa Aware podcast 🎧 Subscribe to Independent Thinking wherever you find your podcasts - please listen, review and subscribe.
3/27/202434 minutes, 21 seconds
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Senegal, Nigeria and the Sahel: can democracy deliver in West Africa?

Bronwen Maddox is joined from Dakar, Senegal by Gilles Yabi, the founder and CEO of WATHI, the West Africa Citizen Think Tank and Idayat Hassan, a Senior Associate with CSIS. Joining them in the Chatham House studio is Paul Melly, a Consulting Fellow with our Africa Programme. Read our latest: Democracy in West Africa: Why Senegal’s election crisis matters Sudan’s forgotten war: A new diplomatic push is needed The UK should help coordinate support for Ukraine by backing EU defence initiatives Presented by Bronwen Maddox. Produced by John Pollock. Listen to The Climate Briefing podcast 🎧  Listen to Africa Aware podcast 🎧 Subscribe to Independent Thinking wherever you find your podcasts - please listen, review and subscribe.
3/21/202438 minutes, 39 seconds
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China's National People's Congress: the view from Japan

Bronwen Maddox is in Japan this week, and is joined from Taipei by journalist Bethany Allen to discuss China's National People's Congress and the political calculations of Beijing's neighbours. Joining them are Robert Ward from The International Institute for Strategic Studies and Dr Yu Jie – a Senior Fellow with our Asia-Pacific programme. Read our latest: Why Egypt’s improved economic outlook is mostly down to luck, not skill This time Haiti really is on the brink. The US and UN must act to restore order The EU’s new AI Act could have global impact Presented by Bronwen Maddox. Produced by John Pollock. Listen to The Climate Briefing podcast 🎧  Listen to Africa Aware podcast 🎧 Subscribe to Independent Thinking wherever you find your podcasts - please listen, review and subscribe.
3/13/202430 minutes, 48 seconds
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Has Donald Trump changed US foreign policy forever?

Guest host Leslie Vinjamuri is joined on the podcast this week by Ben Smith, the Editor-in-Chief of Semafor News and Professor Jennifer M Lind – an Associate Fellow with our US and Americas programme. Read our latest: How foreign policy might impact the outcome of the US election This time Haiti really is on the brink. The US and UN must act to restore order How geopolitical competition in the Black Sea is redefining regional order Presented by Leslie Vinjamuri. Produced by John Pollock. Follow Chatham House on Bluesky 🦋  Subscribe to Independent Thinking wherever you find your podcasts - please listen, review and subscribe.
3/8/202432 minutes, 44 seconds
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Iran’s elections: What’s at stake for the Middle East?

Bronwen Maddox is joined on the podcast this week by Gregg Carlstrom, the Middle East correspondent for The Economist, Siavash Ardalan from BBC Persia and Dr Sanam Vakil – the Director of our Middle East and North Africa programme. Read our latest: The Gaza war is testing Hezbollah’s strategic capability Sweden brings benefits for NATO but accession delay raises difficult questions Watch the keynote address by Chief of the Defence Staff Admiral Sir Tony Radakin Presented by Bronwen Maddox. Produced by John Pollock. Follow Chatham House on Bluesky 🦋  Subscribe to Independent Thinking wherever you find your podcasts - please listen, review and subscribe.
2/29/202435 minutes, 3 seconds
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Is Alexei Navalny's death a watershed moment for Russia?

Bronwen Maddox is joined this week by Bill Browder – who for years has worked as a human rights and anti-corruption campaigner against the Putin regime. Alongside him is Nikolai Petrov, a Consulting Fellow with our Russia and Eurasia programme and Yulia Mineeva, an Academy Fellow with Chatham House, who was previously Head of News for Novaya Gazeta, the main independent newspaper in Russia. Read our latest: Alexei Navalny’s most powerful legacy is urging Russians to imagine their country without Putin China’s ‘renminbi trap’: The economy needs a weaker currency, but Beijing is unable to act Ukraine means enlargement is again the EU’s priority – but not for the reasons it claims Presented by Bronwen Maddox. Produced by John Pollock. Follow Chatham House on Bluesky 🦋  Subscribe to Independent Thinking wherever you find your podcasts - please listen, review and subscribe.
2/23/202434 minutes, 7 seconds
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What does Prabowo Subianto's election mean for Indonesia?

Bronwen Maddox is joined this week from Jakarta by Professor Burhanuddin Muhtadi, executive director of the Indonesian polling organization Indikator Politik Indonesia, and Dewi Fortuna Anwar, a former advisor to Indonesia’s Vice President and chair of Indonesian think tank, The Habibie Center. Joining them all is Ben Bland, the director of our Asia-Pacific program at Chatham House. Read our latest: ‘Continuity’ Prabowo means change for Indonesia Indonesia’s Democracy Is Stronger Than a Strongman (Foreign Affairs) Indonesia’s elections: new president, new parliament, same old politics? Presented by Bronwen Maddox. Produced by John Pollock. Follow Chatham House on Bluesky 🦋  Subscribe to Independent Thinking wherever you find your podcasts - please listen, review and subscribe.
2/16/202428 minutes, 14 seconds
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Can the UN's first cybercrime treaty protect us?

Bronwen Maddox is joined this week by Ciaran Martin, the former Chief Executive of the National Cyber Security Centre; Nnenna Ifeanyi-Ajufo, Vice Chair of the African Union’s Cyber Security Experts Group; Amy Hogan-Burney, General Manager of Cyber Security Policy at Microsoft and Joyce Hakmeh, the Deputy Director of our International Security Programme. Read our latest: Yes, China pressured Iran on Red Sea attacks – but only to protect its own ships A long war works against Ukraine – and the West’s own security Pakistan must ensure free and fair elections to avert a meltdown Presented by Bronwen Maddox. Produced by John Pollock. Sound by Alex Moyler. Follow Chatham House on Bluesky 🦋  Subscribe to Independent Thinking wherever you find your podcasts - please listen, review and subscribe.
2/8/202426 minutes, 55 seconds
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Is Pakistan's democracy on the brink?

Bronwen Maddox is joined this week by Madiha Afzal, an author and Research Fellow at Brookings in Washington DC. Joining them are Dr Farzana Shaikh, an Associate Fellow with our Asia-Pacific Programme and Dr Chietigj Bajpaee, our Senior Research Fellow for South Asia. Read our latest: Pakistan must ensure free and fair elections to avert a meltdown February/March issue of The World Today Russia’s withdrawal from its border agreement with Finland is an expansion of its hybrid warfare on the EU The world is already in Trump-induced chaos. Prepare for things to get worse Presented by Bronwen Maddox. Produced by John Pollock. Sound by Alex Moyler. Subscribe to Independent Thinking wherever you find your podcasts - please listen, review and subscribe.
2/2/202426 minutes, 40 seconds
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Why is Orbán blocking EU aid for Ukraine?

Bronwen Maddox is joined this week by journalist Olga Tokariuk, an Academy Fellow in our Ukraine Forum, and Natalie Sabanadze, a Senior Research Fellow in our Russia and Eurasia Programme to discuss Viktor Orbán and Ukraine. Don't miss our expertise: The Director’s Annual Lecture 2024 Orban’s Ukraine gamble is a blow to the EU’s geopolitical ambitions Are we heading for World War Three – and is Britain’s military ready? Presented by Bronwen Maddox. Produced by John Pollock. Sound by Matthew Docherty.
1/25/202425 minutes, 19 seconds
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Can Western airstrikes stop the Houthis?

Roxanne Escobales, Editor of The World Today, is joined this week by Tom Sharpe, a former commander in the Royal Navy and defence columnist with The Telegraph. Joining them are Dr Sanam Vakil, the Director of our Middle East and North Africa programme, and Farea Al-Muslimi, a Research Fellow with Chatham House and Yemen specialist. Don't miss our expertise: The Director’s Annual Lecture 2024 The Houthis won’t back down after strikes on Yemen When Netanyahu falls, Israel’s democracy will need new political realignments Read the latest edition of The World Today here. Presented by Roxanne Escobales. Produced by John Pollock. Sound by Alex Moyler.
1/18/202431 minutes, 33 seconds
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What are the stakes in Taiwan's election?

Bronwen Maddox is joined this week by journalist Jojje Olsson and Dr Chun-Yi Lee from the University of Nottingham's Taiwan Research Hub to discuss Taiwan's presidential election. Joining them in the studio is Ben Bland, Director of our Asia-Pacific programme. Don't miss our expertise: Taiwan elections offer no clear answers to China challenge The horrors of Ecuador are not just Ecuador’s The Director’s Annual Lecture 2024 Presented by Bronwen Maddox. Produced by John Pollock. Sound by Matthew Docherty.
1/12/202436 minutes, 52 seconds
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What can we expect from 2024?

Bronwen Maddox is joined this week by Gideon Rachman, chief foreign affairs commentator for the Financial Times to discuss the elections and geopolitical flashpoints in 2024. Joining them in the studio are Leslie Vinjamuri, Ben Bland and Armida van Rij. Don't miss our expertise: The Director’s Annual Lecture 2024 Collapsing foreign direct investment might not be all bad for China’s economy The hidden scale of laboratory accidents: The need for transparency and engagement COP28: What was achieved, and what needs to happen now Presented by Bronwen Maddox. Produced by John Pollock. Sound by Matthew Docherty.
12/15/202328 minutes, 19 seconds
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Bonus episode: How will the Hamas-Israel war end?

At the Doha Conference, Bronwen Maddox speaks with Dr Majed Al Ansari, the official spokesperson for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Dr Al Ansari shares the Qatari perspective on the war between Hamas and Israel and the role the country has played as a key interlocutor. Don't miss our expertise: What does Turkey’s policy on the Gaza war mean for the region? Why the time is now for a Palestinian national unity government The UK’s Safety of Rwanda Bill is a reminder that democracies are not immune from attacks on the rule of law Presented by Bronwen Maddox. Produced by John Pollock. Sound by Matthew Docherty.
12/13/202320 minutes, 34 seconds
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What do India's state elections mean for Narendra Modi?

Bronwen Maddox is joined this week by writer and academic Nishtha Gautam to discuss what India's state elections mean ahead of the 2024 general election. Joining them in the studio are Professor Louise Tillin  from Kings College London and Senior Research Fellow Chietigj Bajpaee from our Asia-Pacific programme. Don't miss our expertise: Reducing nuclear weapons risk Maduro hoped to mobilize Venezuelans around an old grievance in Guyana. He seems to have failed Why the time is now for a Palestinian national unity government Presented by Bronwen Maddox. Produced by John Pollock. Sound by Matthew Docherty.
12/8/202326 minutes, 41 seconds
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What do India's state elections mean for Narendra Modi?

Bronwen Maddox is joined this week by writer and academic Nishtha Gautam to discuss what India's state elections mean ahead of the 2024 general election. Joining them in the studio are Professor Louise Tillin  from Kings College London and Senior Research Fellow Chietigj Bajpaee from our Asia-Pacific programme. Don't miss our expertise: Reducing nuclear weapons risk Maduro hoped to mobilize Venezuelans around an old grievance in Guyana. He seems to have failed Why the time is now for a Palestinian national unity government Presented by Bronwen Maddox. Produced by John Pollock. Sound by Matthew Docherty.
12/8/20230
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What can the world expect from COP28?

Bronwen Maddox is joined this week by Ana Yang, Bernice Lee and Ruth Townend from our Environment and Society Centre to discuss the COP28 summit in the United Arab Emirates. Don't miss our expertise: What is COP28 and why is it important? What COP28 needs to address to avoid climate disaster The emerging global crisis of land use Presented by Bronwen Maddox. Produced by John Pollock. Sound by Matthew Docherty.
12/1/202331 minutes, 10 seconds
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Does a slowing economy mean a more assertive China?

Bronwen Maddox is joined this week by Professor Kerry Brown and journalist Latika Bourke to discuss China's economic slowdown, amid signs of a more assertive foreign policy in Asia. Joining them is economist David Lubin, an Associate Fellow with our Global Economy and Finance program. Don't miss our expertise: China's new scientists Is China building a military base in Cambodia? China–US talks offer optimism at bleak time for arms control Presented by Bronwen Maddox. Produced by John Pollock. Sound by Matthew Docherty.
11/23/202328 minutes, 59 seconds
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What will US foreign policy look like in 2024?

Bronwen Maddox is joined this week by journalist Jon Sopel, the host of the News Agents podcast, to discuss the 2024 US presidential election. Joining them are Dr Leslie Vinjamuri, Director of our US and Americas programme and Laura Rozen, a journalist formerly with Politico and Foreign Policy magazine. Don't miss our expertise: US foreign policy in a critical year ahead Biden–Xi meeting: A must-win in high stakes diplomacy The Supreme Court’s decision requires fresh thinking – not emergency legislation Presented by Bronwen Maddox. Produced by John Pollock. Sound by Matthew Docherty.
11/17/202331 minutes, 13 seconds
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Will Iran escalate the Hamas-Israel war?

Bronwen Maddox is joined this week by Shashank Joshi, the Defence Editor at The Economist, to discuss Iran's role in the Hamas-Israel War. Joining them are our experts, Dr Sanam Vakil, Director of our Middle East and North Africa programme and Dr Renad Mansour, a Senior Research Fellow with the MENA programme. Don't miss our expertise: The war in Gaza is aligning Russia against Israel Netanyahu’s premiership will not outlast the war with Hamas Iraq shows a political settlement without accountability cannot deliver peace Presented by Bronwen Maddox. Produced by John Pollock. Sound by Matthew Docherty.
11/10/202333 minutes, 4 seconds
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Can world leaders regulate AI before it’s too late?

Roxanne Escobales is joined by Lucy Fisher, the FT's Whitehall Editor and host of the Political Fix podcast, to discuss Rishi Sunak's AI summit. Joining them are our experts Olivia O’Sullivan and Alex Krasodomski from our UK in the World and Digital Society initiatives. Don't miss our expertise: Keir Starmer's speech at Chatham House The UK AI summit can succeed by generating momentum for effective governance Balancing China’s role in the UK’s AI agenda Presented by Roxanne Escobales. Produced by John Pollock. Sound by Matthew Docherty.
11/3/202324 minutes, 33 seconds
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Is Gaza on the brink of disaster?

Bronwen Maddox speaks with New York Times journalist Steven Erlanger about President Biden's trip to Israel and the prospects of an Israeli ground invasion of Gaza. Joining them are Sam Rose from UNRWA and  Dr Elham Fakhor from our Middle East and North Africa programme. Don't miss our expertise: President Biden’s Middle East visit reveals the challenges for US diplomacy Israel has the capacity to significantly damage Hamas with a ground offensive  MENA countries should lead the way de-escalating the Israel–Hamas war Presented by Bronwen Maddox. Produced by John Pollock. Sound by Matthew Docherty.
10/20/202332 minutes, 35 seconds
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Will the war between Israel and Hamas escalate?

Bronwen Maddox speaks with Reuters journalist Steve Farrell about the attacks by Hamas on Israel and the Israeli military response now underway in Gaza. Joining them also are Professor Yossi Mekelberg and Dr Elham Fakhor from our Middle East and North Africa programme. Don't miss our expertise: Why has Hamas taken hostages? MENA countries should lead the way de-escalating the Israel–Hamas war The Israel–Hamas war and its fallout Presented by Bronwen Maddox. Produced by John Pollock. Sound by Matthew Docherty.
10/13/202325 minutes, 30 seconds
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Is Rory Stewart right about Britain?

Bronwen Maddox speaks with Rory Stewart about the state of British politics in a world of populist leaders. Journalist Robert Peston meanwhile joins us from the Conservative Party Conference in Manchester. Later in the show, Roxanne Escobales and Olivia O'Sullivan discuss whether Rory Stewart is right about the state of Britain, and whether his time in government was a success or failure. Don't miss our expertise: In conversation with The Rt Hon Rory Stewart President Biden should not rush a deal on Israel–Saudi normalization The future of the Republican Party Presented by Bronwen Maddox. Produced by John Pollock. Sound by Matthew Docherty.
10/5/202337 minutes, 7 seconds
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Should we talk to the Taliban?

Bronwen Maddox speaks with Ambassador Roya Rahmani, Shaharzad Akbar and Tobias Ellwood MP about the humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan, and whether the West should engage with the Taliban. Read our expertise: Seizing MENA’s moment Presented by Bronwen Maddox. Produced by John Pollock. Sound by Alex Moyler.
9/29/202330 minutes, 5 seconds
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Is the United Nations now irrelevant?

World leaders met in New York this week for the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA). All the P5 leaders bar America's Joe Biden stayed away however. Is the UN losing its relevance in international affairs? Joining Bronwen Maddox on the show this week are Mark Malloch-Brown, former Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations, Roger Boyes, Diplomatic Editor for The Times, and Leslie Vinjamuri, the Director of the US and Americas programme. Read our expertise: Rishi Sunak’s speech will make the UK harder to take seriously at COP28 If the SDGs are to survive, multilateral development banks must embrace reform Western policy towards Iran lacks both goals and goalposts Subscribe to Independent Thinking wherever you get your podcasts. Please listen, rate, review and subscribe. Presented by Bronwen Maddox. Produced by John Pollock. Sound by Alex Moyler.
9/22/202329 minutes, 18 seconds
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Was the G20 India's 'coming out' party?

G20 leaders met in New Delhi this week to discuss economic cooperation. Underlying the summit however were wider international tensions and a sense of India on the rise.  Joining Bronwen Maddox on the show this week are Samir Puri, a visiting lecturer in War Studies at King’s College London, Chietigj Bajpaee, the new South Asia fellow at Chatham House, and Leslie Vinjamuri, the director of the US and Americas programme. Read our expertise: US–India ties deepened at the G20. But domestic politics could pull the countries in different directions The G20 lives on, but mistrust between the West and China hampers progress The G20 showcases India’s growing power. It could also expose the limits of its foreign policy Subscribe to Independent Thinking wherever you get your podcasts. Please listen, rate, review and subscribe. Presented by Bronwen Maddox. Produced by John Pollock. Sound by Alex Moyler.
9/15/202330 minutes, 9 seconds
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How has Iran changed after Mahsa Amini’s death?

This week on the show we turn our eyes to Iran and the year long protests by young Iranians against the Islamic regime. September 16 marks the one-year anniversary of the death of Mahsa Amini, the 22-year-old woman killed in police custody. Since her death Iran has been rocked by a year of protests in which over 500 people, many of them women, have been killed. We look at how Iran has changed, where the protest movement is now and how the regime is cracking down on it. The panel also discuss more broadly Iran’s role in the Middle East, and Tehran's difficult relations with Israel, Saudi Arabia, the United States, as well as the growing role of China in the region.  Joining Bronwen Maddox in the studio this week are former BBC journalist Rana Rahimpour, Dr Sanam Vakil, the Director of our Middle East and North Africa programme and journalist Michael Goldfarb. Read our expertise: Making climate an election issue risks undermining the UK’s international role The G20 showcases India’s growing power Whether 1.5°C is ‘alive’ or ‘dead’, a new climate plan will be required Subscribe to Independent Thinking wherever you get your podcasts. Please listen, rate, review and subscribe. Presented by Bronwen Maddox. Produced by John Pollock. Sound by Alex Moyler.
9/8/202331 minutes, 27 seconds
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Has Ukraine's counter-offensive failed?

Independent Thinking is back after a short summer break for the start of Season 2 of the podcast. This week, for our first episode, we’re returning to the much-discussed topic of Ukraine’s counter-offensive. Since June, the Ukrainian armed forces have been fighting hard to breach the defensive lines established by the Russian army in the east and south, the so-called ‘Surovkin Line’. Two months on the pace has been slow and the fighting intense. We discuss the current state of the offensive, what this means for Western support for Ukraine and what may happen next if the frontlines remain in their current shape. Joining Bronwen Maddox on the show this week are Christopher Miller, the Ukraine correspondent for the FT and the author of the book ‘The War Came to Us: Life and Death in Ukraine’ and Ulrike Franke, a Senior Fellow with the European Council on Foreign Relations. Joining them in the studio here in London are James Nixey and Orysia Lutsevych, the director and deputy director respectively of our Russia and Eurasia programme. Read our expertise: US allies need to wake up to the Trump question Pushing Ukraine to negotiate now would be disastrous How to end Russia’s war on Ukraine Subscribe to Independent Thinking wherever you get your podcasts. Please listen, rate, review and subscribe. Presented by Bronwen Maddox. Produced by John Pollock. Sound by Alex Moyler and Abdul Boudaif.
8/31/202334 minutes, 44 seconds