Horns of a Dilemma
Brought to you by the Texas National Security Review, this podcast features lectures, interviews, and panel discussions at the University of Texas.
info_outline Living in the House Designed by Greeks and Romans 06/11/2021
Living in the House Designed by Greeks and Romans In this episode of Horns of a Dilemma, Thomas Ricks, journalist and historian, talks about his new book, “.” Ricks outlines the degree to which the founding fathers were influenced by the ancients and how this influence helped to shape the structure and the principles of the emerging republic.
info_outline A Country That Matters All Day, Every Day 06/04/2021
A Country That Matters All Day, Every Day In this episode of Horns of a Dilemma, Martha Bárcena, former Mexican ambassador to the United States, and Kimberly Breier, senior advisor at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, discuss U.S.-Mexican relations. The talk covers topics such as immigration and trade, but also highlights the degree to which the U.S. and Mexico are each indispensable to each other.
info_outline The Politics of Who You Know 05/28/2021
The Politics of Who You Know In this episode of Horns of a Dilemma, Henry Hale, professor of political science and international relations at George Washington University, gives a talk about the evolution of power structures in post-Soviet Eurasia. Hale focuses on the concept of “patronalism,” the idea that political power is distributed and wielded by networks that are connected by personal acquaintances and lead by a single powerful patron.
info_outline A League of Like-Minded Nations 05/21/2021
A League of Like-Minded Nations In this episode of Horns of a Dilemma, Will Inboden, executive director of the Clements Center, and Jim Golby, senior fellow at the Clements Center, sit down with Amb. Kay Bailey Hutchison, a former U.S. senator and most recently U.S. ambassador to NATO. They discuss NATO’s future, the challenges that confront NATO now, as well as the development of a new strategic concept, likely to be developed and unveiled as part of the upcoming NATO summit in June.
info_outline Reporting on Radicals 05/14/2021
Reporting on Radicals In this episode of Horns of a Dilemma, Tess Owen, senior reporter at VICE News covering extremism, hate crimes, and gun control, sits down with Brianna Kablack, a Master of Global Policy Studies candidate at the LBJ School of Public Affairs, to discuss domestic extremism. Their talk examines the evolution and developments that Owen has seen in the course of reporting on domestic extremism. These findings include the evolution of what she refers to as “suit and tie extremists,” as well as the mainstreaming of increasingly extremist views. This talk was sponsored by the Strauss Center and was part of the Brumley Speaker Series.
info_outline Trump Versus Xi 05/07/2021
Trump Versus Xi In this episode of Horns of a Dilemma, Josh Rogin, journalist for the Washington Post and CNN, joins the podcast to discuss his new book, . Rogin details the response of the Trump administration to China, and describes the groups that had influence within the White House in helping to shape policy. This talk took place at the University of Texas at Austin and was sponsored by the Clements Center and the Strauss Center.
info_outline The Unconventional Future of Conventional War 04/30/2021
The Unconventional Future of Conventional War In this episode of Horns of a Dilemma, Sean McFate, senior fellow at the Atlantic Council and professor of strategy at Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service, discusses his book . McFate argues that the lack of strategic success achieved by the U.S. military over the last 30 to 40 years stems not from a lack of investment nor a lack of technology, but from the fact that the United States suffers from what he terms “victors curse.” This talk took place at the University of Texas at Austin and was sponsored by the Clements Center.
info_outline Is Forever War Really Forever? The Case Against the New Non-Interventionism 04/23/2021
Is Forever War Really Forever? The Case Against the New Non-Interventionism In this episode of Horns of a Dilemma we listen to a talk from Eli Lake, a national security journalism fellow at the Clements Center and a syndicated columnist on foreign affairs for Bloomberg. Lake shares his thoughts on what he describes as the “new non-interventionism,” comprised of those thinkers, scholars, and policy makers who oppose continued U.S. presence around the world in pursuit of a war on terror.
info_outline Gender and Security 04/16/2021
Gender and Security In this episode of Horns of a Dilemma, Doyle Hodges, executive editor of the Texas National Security Review, sits down with Hilary Matfess (a Ph.D. candidate at Yale University and a Peace Scholar Fellow at the United States Institute for Peace), and Robert Nagel (a postdoctoral research fellow at the Georgetown Institute for Women, Peace, and Security), to discuss gender in conflict and the issues surrounding women in the field of security.
info_outline The Greatest Unknown Tragedy of World War I 04/09/2021
The Greatest Unknown Tragedy of World War I In this episode of Horns of a Dilemma, Frank Gavin, chair of the editorial board of the Texas National Security Review, sits down with Philip Zelikow to discuss his new book, . Gavin and Zelikow explore the story of the peace talks and what might have happened had they succeeded. Moreover, Zelikow explores why this story has never been told. It is an interesting look into how history is shaped and how we understand the past.
info_outline A Conversation with Gen. (ret.) David Petraeus 04/02/2021
A Conversation with Gen. (ret.) David Petraeus In this episode of Horns of a Dilemma, Paul Edgar, associate director of the Clements Center at the University of Texas at Austin, sits down with Gen. (ret.) David Petraeus, currently serving as the director of the KKR Global Institute. During the conversation, Petraeus discusses China and other challenges facing U.S. national security after the Trump administration.
info_outline Why the Soviet Union Lost the Cold War 03/26/2021
Why the Soviet Union Lost the Cold War In this episode of Horns of a Dilemma, Prof. Sarah Paine of the U.S. Naval War College examines a variety of explanations for why the Cold War ended, when it did, and how it did. Paine does not arrive at a single answer but paints a much richer portrait of the fascinating events that led to a substantial shift in world order.
info_outline How to Lose the Information War 03/19/2021
How to Lose the Information War In this episode of Horns, Nina Jankowicz, , discusses her book, . Jankowicz’s book covers Russian disinformation efforts in Estonia, Georgia, the Czech Republic, Poland, Ukraine, and the United States. She argues that disinformation shouldn’t be viewed strictly from a technical perspective, since successful disinformation takes advantage of preexisting fissures and issues within society and exacerbates divisions and emotions surrounding them. An effective response to disinformation should have a strong human component, and it is impossible to mount an effect campaign against foreign disinformation when some portions of society engage in those same tactics.
info_outline Thank Me for My Service: Military Exceptionalism and the Civ-Mil Gap 03/12/2021
Thank Me for My Service: Military Exceptionalism and the Civ-Mil Gap The military is one of the most trusted institutions in American society. But the question of how the military views itself is different than that and one that has significant implications. Recently, the Texas National Security Review published an article titled, “,” that looks at the implications of military exceptionalism. The authors, Heidi Urben, Susan Bryant, and Brett Swaney sit down with Doyle Hodges, executive editor of the Texas National Security Review, to discuss their findings of servicemembers’ perception of themselves.
info_outline The Speech That Shaped the Cold War World Order 03/05/2021
The Speech That Shaped the Cold War World Order On March 5, 1946, Winston Churchill delivered a speech at Westminster College in Fulton, Missouri. This speech, known as “The Sinews of Peace” speech, became famous for the phrase that Churchill coined about the fall of the “Iron Curtain” across Europe. To mark its 75th anniversary, the Clements Center assembled a panel to discuss the speech itself, the context in which it was given, and its enduring impact. The conversation is hosted by Will Inboden, executive director of the Clements Center, and features David Reynolds, professor of international history at Cambridge University, Kori Schake, director of foreign and defense policy studies at the American Enterprise Institute, and Tim Riley, director of the National Churchill Museum. You can listen to the speech at the .
info_outline The Last Shah 02/26/2021
The Last Shah In this episode of Horns of a Dilemma, Paul Edgar, associate director of the Clements Center, sits down with Ray Takeyh to discuss his book, . Takeyh argues that, contrary to popular belief, the 1953 coup against Prime Minister Mohammad Mossadeq was not the most pivotal event in shaping Iran’s destiny. He argues that Mossadeq’s expulsion was the result, at least in large part, of disapproval of fellow Iranian elites rather than a strictly successful CIA coup. Instead, Takeyh states that understanding the rise of the revolution and the downfall of the Shah should focus more on the period in the early 1960s when Pahlavi became increasingly autocratic and separated from his advisers.
info_outline Henry Kissinger and American Power 02/19/2021
Henry Kissinger and American Power In this episode of Horns of a Dilemma, Thomas Schwartz of Vanderbilt University, discusses his book, . Few figures in American history are as controversial or divisive as Henry Kissinger. Schwartz argues that Kissinger, while mostly associated with international diplomacy and international affairs, is best understood by understanding him as a domestic political figure whose moves were calculated based on his approval ratings and how he played within the domestic political audience. Schwartz also makes the case that Kissinger’s relationship with President Richard Nixon involved rivalry as well as partnership, and was carefully calculated on Kissinger’s part to present an image that put him in the best and most favorable light to the American public.
info_outline Border Dilemmas 02/12/2021
Border Dilemmas In this episode of Horns of a Dilemma, Dulce Garcia, executive director of Border Angels, an organization that provides outreach to asylum seekers and border crossers, joins the podcast to discuss the challenges faced with immigration policy and the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Garcia talks about the security implications of immigration and asylum policy, and the human implications of the choices that are made regarding these topics. This talk was sponsored by the Strauss Center and was part of their Brumley Speaker Series.
info_outline The ‘China Nightmare’ 02/05/2021
The ‘China Nightmare’ In this episode of Horns of a Dilemma, Will Inboden, executive director of the Clements Center at the University of Texas at Austin, sits down with Dan Blumenthal of the American Enterprise Institute to discuss his book, . Blumenthal’s thesis is that China is a rising power with extraordinary strategic capabilities that make it a strong competitor for the United States. Where his thesis may diverge from conventional wisdom is that he argues China is also beset by significant vulnerabilities including questions of how to deal with dissent and pluralism within their own population, demographic effects of the “one child” policy, and risks posed by a stagnating economy. Blumenthal adds that the most dangerous time in the competition between great powers does not come when one is rising and one is declining, but when a state like China sees the risk that their status may go away and feels the need to lock in gains.
info_outline What’s the Point of DHS? 01/29/2021
What’s the Point of DHS? In this episode of Horns of a Dilemma, Ben Rohrbaugh, author of , stops by to discuss the role of the Department of Homeland Security. Rohrbaugh points out that the department has been something of an unloved stepchild within the government structure, lacking both a consistent and coherent organizational culture, as well as at times the perception that it intrudes on the turf of other more established agencies. Although Rohrbaugh acknowledges the case against the Department of Homeland Security, he comes to the conclusion that the department is an important organization in dealing with the threats the United States faces in the 21st century, like infectious diseases, terrorism, right-wing extremism, organized crime, natural disasters, and border security. This talk was sponsored by the Strauss Center at the University of Texas at Austin and was part of the Central America/Mexico Policy Initiative.
info_outline Guns, Government, and Grievance: Right-Wing Extremism and the Oath Keepers 01/22/2021
Guns, Government, and Grievance: Right-Wing Extremism and the Oath Keepers In this episode of Horns of a Dilemma, Doyle Hodges, executive editor of the Texas National Security Review, sits down with Sam Jackson, assistant professor in the College of Emergency Preparedness, Homeland Security, and Cybersecurity at the University of Albany, to discuss far right-wing, antigovernment groups in the United States. In particular, Hodges and Jackson focus on the group, the Oath Keepers. Who are the Oath Keepers? Why were they founded and when? Jackson’s book, , sheds light on these questions and more.
info_outline Donald Trump’s Foreign Policy Legacy 01/15/2021
Donald Trump’s Foreign Policy Legacy In this episode of Horns of a Dilemma, Will Inboden, executive director at the Clements Center at the University of Texas at Austin, sits down with David Adesnik and John Hannah from the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, to discuss their recent work, “.” Inboden and the authors identify the successes and failures of Donald Trump’s foreign policy. The discussion serves to shine a light on areas where there are opportunities for a bipartisan consensus in foreign policy going forward.
info_outline The Regime: How Arms Control Treaties Keep Us Safe 01/08/2021
The Regime: How Arms Control Treaties Keep Us Safe In this episode of Horns of a Dilemma, Amb. (ret.) Bonnie Jenkins discusses the array of treaty obligations, international law, and other agreements that make up the arms control and nuclear non-proliferation regime. Paul Pope, senior fellow at the Intelligence Studies Project, introduces Marigny Kirschke-Schwartz, a Brumley fellow at the LBJ School of Public Affairs, to moderate the talk with Amb. Jenkins.
info_outline Civil-Military Relations from Trump to Biden 12/18/2020
Civil-Military Relations from Trump to Biden This episode of Horns of a Dilemma features a panel discussion on prospects for civil-military relations in the Joe Biden administration. The discussion brings a wealth of knowledge on civil-military issues, as well as a wealth of experience in administering defense programs. The conversation covers a broad range of topics ranging from the challenges that stemmed from the Donald Trump administration, challenges associated with the presidential transition, as well as what the enduring impacts of the current administration will be on civil-military ties. The discussion is moderated by Jim Golby, senior fellow at the Clements Center at the University of Texas at Austin, and features Peter Feaver, professor of political science and public policy at Duke University, Lt. Gen (ret.) Dave Barno, professor at Johns Hopkins School for Advanced International Studies , and Kori Schake, director of foreign and defense policy studies at the American Enterprise Institute.
info_outline Engaging the Evil Empire 12/11/2020
Engaging the Evil Empire In this episode of Horns of a Dilemma, Will Inboden, executive director of the Clements Center at the University of Texas at Austin, sits down with Simon Miles, assistant professor at the Sanford School of Public Policy at Duke University, to discuss his book, . In his book, Miles asserts that the beginning of the thawing of relations between the United States and the Soviet Union, usually attributed to the relationship between President Ronald Reagan and General Secretary Mikhail Gorbachev, actually had its roots in the period of 1980 to 1985 under previous Soviet leaders, such as Yuri Andropov and Leonid Brezhnev. Miles talks about the effort on the part of both the Soviet Union and the United States to find opportunities for meaningful diplomatic interaction that laid the groundwork for thawing, even at a time when the Cold War was at its height.
info_outline H.R. McMaster on Hubris, Empathy, and National Security 12/04/2020
H.R. McMaster on Hubris, Empathy, and National Security In this episode of Horns of a Dilemma, Lt. Gen. (Ret.) H.R. McMaster, author of the new book , discusses his theories of strategic empathy and the security processes that he implemented in the Trump administration, and examines the threats posed by Russia, China, and a myriad of other actors around the world. This wide-ranging discussion is moderated by Jim Golby, senior fellow at the Clements Center at the University of Texas at Austin.
info_outline Reflections on a Lifetime in Intelligence 11/27/2020
Reflections on a Lifetime in Intelligence This episode of Horns of a Dilemma is a powerhouse of intelligence knowledge. Adm. (Ret.) William McRaven, former chancellor of the University of Texas at Austin and retired U.S. Navy four-star admiral, sits down with John Brennan, former director of the Central Intelligence Agency, to discuss Brennan’s new book, . This is a wide-ranging discussion that covers the history of the CIA, the decision-making styles of the presidents Brennan worked for, the events of 9/11, and some of the more controversial projects with which the CIA was involved. McRaven and Brennan were introduced by Stephen Slick, director of the Intelligence Studies Project at the University of Texas at Austin.
info_outline A Study in Power: The Life of James A. Baker III 11/20/2020
A Study in Power: The Life of James A. Baker III In this episode of Horns of a Dilemma, Bobby Chesney, director of the Strauss Center for International Security and Law, and Will Inboden, executive director of the Clements Center at the University of Texas at Austin, sit down with Peter Baker and Susan Glasser to discuss their new book, . James Baker was the secretary of state for George H.W. Bush at the end of the Cold War and the man who helped orchestrate the remarkably broad coalition that prosecuted the first Gulf War. While those are substantial diplomatic achievements, Glasser and Baker point out that James Baker’s accomplishments were much broader than that and included substantial involvement with political campaigns including running the re-election campaign of Gerald Ford and others.
info_outline The Impact of “the West” on American Foreign Policy 11/13/2020
The Impact of “the West” on American Foreign Policy In this episode of Horns of a Dilemma, Michael Kimmage, professor and department chair at the Department of History at Catholic University in Washington D.C., discusses his book, . Kimmage asserts that the idea of the “West” — a set of shared values that he argues revolve around liberty and self-determination — can be traced both to Wilsonian idealism, as well as to profound developments at the end of World War II. He traces the influence that this concept that there is a group of like-minded transatlantic nations had on Cold War foreign policy. Kimmage’s discussion is wide ranging, encompassing issues as diverse as the influence of race and questions about “America first.” Kimmage was introduced in this episode by Jeremi Suri of the LBJ School and professor at the Department of History at the University of Texas at Austin.
info_outline It’s Not Just Over There: The American Commitment to the Korean Peninsula 11/06/2020
It’s Not Just Over There: The American Commitment to the Korean Peninsula In this episode of Horns of a Dilemma, Clint Work of the Stimson Center hosts a discussion between Gen. Vincent Brooks, senior fellow at the Clements Center at the University of Texas at Austin, and Sheena Greitens, professor at the University of Texas at Austin, about the Korean Peninsula. This group of experts assesses the security situation on the peninsula and how it affects U.S. security.