When it comes to the future of sports and entertainment, Jon Patricof is always trying to innovate and disrupt. He’s had the added challenge of launching a business from scratch on the eve of the pandemic.

Jon is the CEO and Co-Founder of Athletes Unlimited, a network of professional sports leagues. Launched in March 2020, Athletes Unlimited now operates leagues in pro women’s softball, volleyball, lacrosse, and basketball. By the end of this year, if current estimates hold, Athletes Unlimited will have conducted over 120 games that will be broadcast in over 150 countries.

What are his objectives at this point in his war against Ukraine? And what are Ukraine’s objectives? What are US objectives? After all, the goals of different leaders in wartime often evolve based on battlefield developments.

Are objectives shifting right now before our eyes…for Putin, Zelensky, and the US and NATO? And has the likelihood that Putin would use a limited nuclear strike changed as his objectives have evolved?

In Israel we sit down with an entrepreneur and former Naval officer, who has built a company that has had to navigate the twin crises of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the maritime implications of cracks in global supply chains.

Ami Daniel comes to these crises as the co-founder and CEO of Windward, a maritime data, analytics and artificial intelligence company bringing transparency to what is among the largest but most opaque part of the global economy. Ami also brings his perspective as a former Naval officer serving in the Middle East.

Should we be surprised that there seems to be a renewed by bi-partisan consensus in response to Putin’s war? Are we back in a Cold War posture, both in policy terms and in our politics?
Speaking of today’s politics, what can the past few decades of Republican politics and conservative ideas tell us about 2022 and 2024? According to Matthew Continetti, quite a lot.
Matt Continentti is a senior fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, founding editor of The Washington Free Beacon, and a columnist for Commentary Magazine. He’s also the author of several books. He has a new book just out called “The Right: The Hundred-Year War for American Conservatism”.

Order the book here:

Is Putin crossing almost every line the West did not anticipate he would cross? What does this tell us about where he might might ultimately escalate to?

Richard Fontaine returns to the podcast to answer these questions and others. Richard is CEO of the Center for New American Security. He was recently appointed to the Defense Policy Board by the Biden Administration’s Pentagon leadership. Prior to working at CNAS, Richard was foreign policy advisor to Senator John McCain and worked on the Senate Armed Services Committee, at the State Department, at the National Security Council, and on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

The 1970s were a tragedy – inflation, rising crime and crumbling cities, American humiliation abroad from the Iranian hostage crisis and the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, to Moscow’s geopolitical advances right in our backyard in Latin America. But here we are again, in the 2020s – with inflation surging to a four-decade high, a new crime wave and new decay in our cities, American humiliation in Afghanistan, ongoing Iran deal negotiations, and a new war launched by Russia.

Are we living through another version of the 1970s right now? What can we learn from that era? John Podhoretz returns guest to the podcast. John is a writer, public intellectual and culture critic, He is editor in chief of Commentary Magazine and host of Commentary’s critically acclaimed daily podcast, he’s a columnist for the New York Post, and author of several books. He is also a film critic – formerly for The Weekly Standard and now for The Washington Free Beacon.

The security situation continues to deteriorate in Israel — tragic developments, including right in the heart of Tel Aviv. We continue to monitor developments and stay in close touch with Israeli family and friends. While Israel is a major focus of today’s conversation, the security crisis is not. We focus on the political impasse in Israel, which may be connected to the security crisis.

Today we sit down with Ambassador Ron Dermer, who served as Israel’s chief envoy to the United States from 2013 to 2021 – working closely with the Obama, Trump, and Biden administrations. During that time, he was widely regarded as one of the most consequential ambassadors from any country.

Regardless of how or when the Russia-Ukraine war ends, is it possible to see the very early signs of a new geopolitical order taking shape? There are certainly some surprises, especially as it relates to Germany’s response to the crisis and – more broadly – the unity of Europe, and the overall scale of the economic response. Are there other new trends or global power centers we should be keeping an eye on? It’s a question we will be asking a number of our guests going forward.

This week we sit down with Thomas Friedman, the Pulitzer Prize winning foreign affairs columnist for The New York Times, and a bestselling author of many books, including “From Beirut to Jerusalem”, “The World is Flat”, and “Thank You For Being Late”.

While we are all following the minute to minute developments in Russia-Ukraine, a new international deal with Iran on its nuclear program may be on the cusp of finalization. While there are still key details to be worked out, the broad contours are out there, and the implications are massive. So we wanted to have a conversation with an expert and policy practitioner that could walk us through the history of how we got here, and where it’s going.

Ambassador Eric Edelman is Counselor at the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments. He’s also on board of the Vandenberg Coalition. He has served in senior positions at the Departments of State and Defense as well as the White House. As undersecretary of defense for policy he oversaw the Pentagon’s bilateral defense relations, war plans, special operations forces, homeland defense, missile defense, nuclear weapons and arms control policies, counterproliferation, counterterrorism, arms sales, and defense trade controls.

How could Russia-Ukraine escalate? How could it deescalate? Does Zelensky survive? Does Putin survive? Does China try to bail out Russia?

On this episode, we explore five scenarios with Richard Fontaine, who returns to the podcast. Richard Richard Fontaine is the CEO of the Center for a New American Security (CNAS), a bi-partisan foriegn policy think tank in Washington, DC. Prior to joining CNAS, Richard was foreign policy advisor to Senator John McCain and worked at the State Department, the National Security Council, and on the staff of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

As Russia has become isolated globally, a senior Russian Foreign Ministry official was asked if Moscow has anyone left in its corner, anywhere in the world. Her response: “Of course, we have them. Look at the reaction of world giants. Those who do not pretend to be giants, but are real giants. For example, it is China. You can see this reaction, can’t you?”

So what exactly is going on between Xi Xingping and Vladamir Putin as tensions escalate between Russia and the West over Russia’s invasion of Ukraine?

Is Putin winning or losing? It looks like his war effort is not going according to plan, and that he underestimated Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, the resistance of the Ukrainian military, and the unity of the international response. But could Putin quickly turn things around? What would that look like?

Congressman Mike Gallagher brings his perspective. Gallagher served for seven years on active duty in the United States Marine Corps, including two deployments to Iraq. He was a national security aide on Capitol HIll – having served as a top staffer on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. Back in Wisconsin, he worked for an energy and supply chain company. He’s also a warrior scholar, having earned a bachelor’s degree from Princeton University, a master’s degree in Security Studies from Georgetown University, a second in Strategic Intelligence from National Intelligence University, and a PhD in International Relations from Georgetown.

Vladimir Putin may be unpredictable, but his direction seems to be clear. That’s the view of our guest today, Fred Kagan, who is a return guest.

As of what we know now, February 25th, there are at least 1,100 Russian casualties in Ukraine, and Russian forces are entering Kiev. President Biden has announced new sanctions, but oil and natural gas are still exempt from sanctions, and Russia is still part of the SWIFT BANKING SYSTEM. So it’s not clear how tight the economic noose is tightening around Moscow.

“Shadow Strike: Inside Israel’s Secret Mission to Eliminate Syrian Nuclear Power”:https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/shadow-strike-yaakov-katz/1129520355

“Weapon Wizards – How Israel Became a High-Tech Military Superpower”:

You can order Micah’s books here:

Catch-67: The Left, the Right, and the Legacy of the Six-Day War:  https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/catch-67-micah-goodman/1128089735

On this podcast, we spend a lot of time discussing the rising threat from China and Cold War 2. We’ve hosted Matt Pottinger (episode #28), Josh Rogin (episode #17), and Admiral Stravidis (episode #44). We’ve also done an episode on the future of the movie industry, with John Podhoretz (episode #16).

But what do China – and specifically Cold War II – and Hollywood have to do with one another? You may not have realized it, but when you watch movies like Skyfall, Mission Impossible III and World War Z, to name a few, you are watching a strange relationship at work between the Chinese Communist Party and one of America’s most influential exporters.

Is it too late to deter Russia from invading Ukraine? It certainly seems that way. And while it should be obvious that it does matter, at least as far as US interests are concerned, we are struck by how many pundits and political actors are questioning the stakes. We have received these questions in response to our recent episodes on the Russia-Ukraine crisis – the conversations with Walter Russell Mead and Richard Fontaine. On this episode, we attempt to answer them by calling on two experts, who come at global affairs from somewhat different perspectives. Dr. Evelyn Farkas had a direct role in the US response to the Russia-Ukraine crisis of 2014. She was Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Russia/Ukraine/Eurasia, Balkans, Caucasus and conventional arms control. Prior to that, she was Senior Advisor to the Supreme Allied Commander Europe and Special Advisor to the Secretary of Defense for the NATO Summit. Earlier, Dr. Farkas was Executive Director of the Commission on the Prevention of Weapons of Mass Destruction Proliferation and Terrorism. She was also a professor of international relations at the U.S. Marine Corps Command and Staff College and is now president of Farkas Global Strategies.

After Dr. Farkas, we’ll be joined by Bret Stephens of The New York Times. This is part II of our conversation with Stephens. In this episode, we talk to Stephens about the Biden administration’s handling of the Russia-Ukraine crisis, pivoting off President Biden’s troubling press conference.

Anti-semitism was tragically back in the news in recent days with the hostage-taking at the Beth Israel synagogue in Colleyville, Texas. But was this event covered the way it should have been? Barely.

And this tells us a lot about anti-Semitism during these times. Is this period different? Have we entered a ‘new normal’ for anti-Semitism? Is it just the extremes or are there now more enablers?

In these conversations, we’ve talked a lot about tensions on the Russia-Ukraine border. But what we haven’t talked about is whether Putin is actually trying to re-assemble the former Soviet Union, whether the US and NATO are prepared to arrest his march, and whether Putin has successfully driven a wedge between the US and Europe.

What are the stakes for us?

On this podcast series, and in many other discussions and debates in think tanks and in the media, we often speculate about the likelihood of a kinetic conflict with China – is it inevitable? Or is it highly unlikely? But today we want to consider how a war would actually start, however grim this topic may be. It’s often hard to visualize what the trip wires would be. Admiral James Stavridis co-authored an entire book with Elliot Ackerman on the subject. It’s called “2034: A Novel of the Next World War”.

Admiral James Stavridis is a retired four-star U.S. naval officer. He is currently Vice Chair, Global Affairs and Managing Director of The Carlyle Group, a global investment firm. He is also 12th Chair of Rockefeller Foundation board. Previously he served for five years as the 12th Dean of The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University. He led the NATO Alliance in global operations from 2009 to 2013 as 16th Supreme Allied Commander with responsibility for Afghanistan, Libya, the Balkans, Syria, counter piracy, and cyber security. He also served as Commander of U.S. Southern Command, with responsibility for all military operations in Latin America from 2006-2009. He earned more than 50 medals, including 28 from foreign nations in his 37-year military career.