Coming Sept. 23: And Now the Hard Part

Foreign Policy and the Brookings Institution are teaming up for a new podcast focused on practical solutions to the biggest challenges facing the world today.

and now the hard part podcast artwork

From Russian bots to North Korean nukes, trade wars to climate emergencies, the international system faces a host of daunting challenges. In the new podcast And Now the Hard Part, launching on Sept. 23, Foreign Policy and the Brookings Institution tackle some of the biggest international affairs questions of our time and suggest paths forward.

Jonathan Tepperman, editor in chief of Foreign Policy, hosts the podcast. The guests are some of the smartest and most experienced analysts around—all experts from the Brookings Institution, including former government and intelligence officials. On each episode of this eight-part series, Tepperman and a guest from Brookings will discuss one of the world’s most vexing problems and trace its origins. And then, the hard part: Tepperman asks the guest to focus on plausible, actionable ways forward.

Guests will include retired Gen. John R. Allen, a Marine Corps four-star general who led the Global Coalition to Counter the Islamic State under U.S. President Barack Obama, former Ambassador Victoria Nuland, who served as an advisor to the Clinton, George W. Bush, and Obama administrations, and Bruce Riedel, a former CIA officer and presidential advisor on the Middle East and South Asia.

“The brilliant scholars you’ll hear on And Now the Hard Part have been on the front lines of the most complex foreign-policy and security challenges of the last 30 years,” said Emily Horne, Brookings vice president of communications. “Brookings is proud to partner with FP on answering the key questions we need to understand to make smart policy: How did we get here, and where do we go from here?”

And Now the Hard Part goes beyond the typically wonky analysis of foreign affairs conversations to present global issues in an approachable way—all in under 30 minutes each week. Topics will include the fraying of the Atlantic alliance and NATO, Russian intervention in countries’ domestic politics around the world, a brazen Saudi Arabia under Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, and North Korea’s nuclear program in Kim Jong Un’s regime.

“I’m hoping listeners will come away with a better understanding of the problems we all face—but also the constructive things we can actually do to address them,” Tepperman said.

After tuning in to the podcast, listeners will better understand the root causes of some of the most pressing issues in foreign affairs and take away smart ideas from experts on the way forward. And Now the Hard Part will appeal to people who follow global events but also to a broader circle of listeners looking for new ways to think about the world.

Listen, subscribe and review And Now the Hard Part on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, or wherever you get your podcasts beginning Sept. 23.

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