Departures Podcast with Michela Wrong

Near the end of this episode, host of the Departures podcast Robert Amsterdam tells his guest, “This is perhaps the best book I’ve ever read on Africa, and I’ve read a lot of books.” Such is the esteem we hold for Michela Wrong, a British journalist who has covered Africa for decades for outlets such […]

Departures Podcast with Drew Hinshaw

In April 2013, in a distant corner of Nigeria, a terrorist group kidnapped some 300 schoolgirls, eventually igniting a global advocacy campaign that brought an unprecedented level of international attention to the country. This global attention, which involved interventions by Western intelligence agencies, military advisors, and a plethora of aid NGOs, has not necessarily always […]

Departures Podcast with Luke Patey

In recent years, China has gradually transitioned from a “quiet rise” strategy under Hu Jintao to the “wolf warrior” mode of diplomacy, as the government seeks to take more aggressive actions to defend its interests and expand its influence in the international environment. While this has in many cases produced successful outcomes, there is also […]

Departures Interview with Selçuk Colakoğlu

Since the end of the Cold War, Turkey’s geostrategic relevance as a NATO ally bridging the West with Asia has been highlighted repeatedly – but there’s often been less attention on how Ankara’s role has been managed in terms of its relations with Beijing. This week Selçuk Çolakoğlu of the Turkish Center for Asia Pacific […]

Departures Podcast with Peter Cardwell

From the earliest days of representative government, special advisers have served an essential background role in politics, never more so than in the last 50 years in Great Britain. They have performed tasks both administrative and policy-oriented, mundane and extraordinary, and have affected domestic and even foreign policy matters, in both seen and unforeseen ways. […]

Departures Podcast with Simon Kuper

There are few turncoat spies more infamous than George Blake, an MI6 agent who spied for the Soviet Union in the 1950s, was later caught, convicted and sentenced to 42 years in prison. There are even fewer to manage to escape prison and flee to the East to live a life of relative happiness and […]

Departures Podcast with Ryan Gingeras

Generally in the scholarship on Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, Turkey’s most famous transformative leader, there are only a handful of books which delve into the making of the politics and the culture in the lead-up to him becoming president in 1923. In his new book, “Eternal Dawn: Turkey in the Age of Atatürk,” Prof. Ryan Gingeras […]

Departures Podcast with Eliot Higgins

What a nightmare for Vladimir Putin. When Russian-backed militants shot down Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 in Ukraine in 2014, killing almost 300 innocent people, the Kremlin defaulted to its usual muscular disinformation tactics and media operations to confuse and cloud the issue. But who stepped forward to bring accountability and facts, they didn’t see it […]

Departures Podcast with Arash Azizi

When former President Donald Trump ordered the drone strike which claimed the life of General Qassem Soleimani, the leader of Iran’s elite Quds Force, it irrecoverably changed the future path of the country and region at large. This week we are proud to have a special guest, the Iranian historian and NYU professor Arash Azizi […]

Departures Podcast with Edward Schatz

Often overlooked, the nations of Central Asia represent a highly important geostrategic region of the world with abundant mineral and energy wealth – and yet, US diplomatic efforts in these countries are way behind the larger neighbors of Russia and China. Part of this lack of engagement has to do with how America – at […]