In an earlier episode, Jay talked with Charles Hill. Now he talks with another Grand Strategist at Yale, Professor John Lewis Gaddis, who is best known for Cold War history. His biography of George F. Kennan won the Pulitzer Prize. Jay talks with him about Kennan, of course — and about Paul Nitze and many another Cold War figure. They also talk about figures more recent, including George W. Bush. In addition to politics and history, they talk about campus life — and about Professor Gaddis’s upbringing in small-town Texas. You don’t have to pay tuition at Yale to sit with JLG. Click on this ’cast.

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Jay’s guest is a legendary teacher at Yale University: Charles Hill, a retired Foreign Service officer and a diplomat-in-residence, among other things, at Yale. He is especially known for Grand Strategy. In previous times, he was an aide to Kissinger, Shultz, and, at the United Nations, Boutros-Ghali. With Jay, he talks about his upbringing in New Jersey, his life in the arena, his career in the academy, and the fate of the world.

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Jay does a sportscast — but with a twist at the end: a discussion of Star Wars, Star Trek, etc., with two experts on the subject: David French and Sopan Deb. David is one of Jay’s regular sports gurus, and so is Vivek Dave. They are both present. Sopan is a ringer, a guest guru: a writer for the New York Times, a stand-up comedian, a musician, and more. The gang talks about the NBA, including the Boston Celtics (Sopan’s team), recent trade action, the All-Star game (worth watching?), and Charles Barkley (a classic American). Then there is talk about the Super Bowl: Is Tom Brady the GOAT? How about Coach Belichick? Furthermore, what about the Super Bowl ad that relates directly to Vivek? Finally, there is the sci-fi flight. Come along for the ride.

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Eric Edelman is one of our top diplomats (retired though he may be) and one of our top foreign-policy thinkers. In a long career, he was ambassador to Finland and ambassador to Turkey. Before that, he was an assistant to George P. Shultz. Some years before that, he was a doctoral student at Yale, writing about post-war Italy. Jay reviews some pressing concerns with him, past and present, though mostly present – and future. Edelman is a cool thinker in a hot world.

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Megha Rajagopalan is a foreign correspondent for BuzzFeed News. She is one of Jay’s favorite reporters. She grew up in Maryland, and for years reported from China. She is now in the Middle East. She and Jay talk mainly about China: the pleasures and perils of reporting from there; the mass round-up of the Uyghurs; the ability of ordinary Chinese to find out the truth about their country; and so on. At the end, Jay asks Megha why she wanted to be a journalist in the first place. You will enjoy getting to know this young woman.

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Peter Wood is the president of the National Association of Scholars. He is also an anthropologist. Jay is an old anthro major. So, they talk anthro major to anthro major, so to speak. What happened to this once-proud field? They also talk about higher education. And lower education. And online education, for college students. Is that a bright prospect? A dim one? Toward the end, Jay asks Mr. Wood what he likes to read, in his off hours. In all, an absorbing conversation with this scholar and gentleman.

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In a sportscast, Jay asks David French and Vivek Dave about last night’s championship game – Alabama vs. Clemson. Or should that be Clemson vs. Alabama? They also debate the college-football playoff system: Should more teams be involved? Later, there is talk of the NFL – including the dreaded double doink (a field-goal attempt that doinks once, doinks again, and then fails). Finally, the NBA, and the eye-rubbing wonder of James Harden. By the way, does he travel? (Big-time.) Also, is Steph Curry the greatest shooter of all time, hands down? A lively, interesting podcast here.

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Michael Rubin is a wide-ranging authority on the Middle East, a resident scholar at the American Enterprise Institute. In this “Q&A,” Jay simply picks his brain: about Syria, Saudi Arabia, Iran, Afghanistan, and elsewhere. Rubin has a lot to say, and he says it very, very clearly. At the beginning, Jay asks him about his background: Rubin grew up in a family of veterinarians. He was allergic to dogs and cats, however. The black sheep in the family, he became a historian of the Middle East.

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How goes college football? What about the playoffs? What about the latest retirement of Urban Meyer? How goes the NFL? What about Tom Brady, Aaron Rodgers, and Colin Kaepernick? How goes college basketball? Is the season too long? Or just right? How goes the NBA? Is there trouble in the paradise of the Golden State dynasty? How’s LeBron working out in L.A.? Jay has with him two gurus, and two great guys: David French and Vivek Dave. Enjoy.

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On last week’s National Review cruise, Jay sat down with Kevin D. Williamson and asked him to talk – about conservatism, cities, Bush 41, Twitter, “elites,” social-media mobs, restaurants … Every word is interesting. And if one happens not to be – well, that is interesting in itself.

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There are few things Jay likes to do more in life than talk with Rob Long, and he got to do it on last week’s National Review cruise. Sitting in a lounge, Jay asks Rob about books, music, TV, standup, food … They talk about Groucho, the Stooges, Gleason, Pryor, Johnny, Letterman, “Cheers,” “The Simpsons,” “All in the Family” … Pork chops, ham, pig’s feet … Jay could not have had a better time, and you might agree with him. Enjoy an hour with this unique American – a Ricochet eminence – Rob Long.

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Returning to “Q&A” is Richard Brookhiser, the historian and journalist – Jay’s colleague at National Review. Brookhiser’s latest book is “John Marshall: The Man Who Made the Supreme Court.” Jay talks with Brookhiser about the man and the Court. What was Marshall like? What about his education? (Any, of a formal nature?) What about his slaveholding? What about his relationship with Jefferson? Further questions are, Is the Supreme Court a “co-equal branch”? A “political” branch? What’s a conservative justice, and what’s a liberal justice? Who are your favorite justices? Has the Supreme Court become all too important? Aren’t these battles over nominations crazy-nuts?

Rick Brookhiser is as about as informed, judicious, and articulate as you can find.

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With good reason, people are wanting to know about Mohammed bin Salman, the crown prince in Saudi Arabia. Jay’s guest today is Rami Khouri, a veteran journalist and teacher, associated with the American University of Beirut and the Kennedy School at Harvard. He talks about the murder of Jamal Khashoggi, whom he knew. And about U.S.-Saudi relations. And about the Arab world more broadly. He has a lot of experience, and a lot to impart.

Khouri is from an old family in Nazareth (yes, that one). He is also a proud Orangeman: a graduate of Syracuse University. As Khouri points out at the beginning of the podcast, it was a rough weekend for the school, in both football and basketball. But things will look up.

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Robert Kagan is one of America’s best scholars of foreign policy. He has now written a book with a remarkable title: “The Jungle Grows Back” (here). In other words, if you leave liberal democracy untended, the jungle will grow back – as it seems to be doing now. Kagan talks with Jay about this and many other issues: personal, national, and international. A compelling conversation.

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Bret Stephens is a columnist for the New York Times and a winner of the Pulitzer Prize. For many years, he was a columnist and editor at the Wall Street Journal. Before that, he was editor of the Jerusalem Post. He grew up in Mexico City. With Jay, he talks about Mexico, and Latin America in general, and the Middle East, and China, and Russia, and many other subjects. Often, when Stephens writes a killer of a column, Jay says, “I wish I could give him another Pulitzer Prize.” At the end of the podcast, discussion turns to America and its future. Stephens is a deep-dyed patriot. And he hails the regenerative powers of these United States.

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Andrew Roberts is a major historian and biographer: of World War II, Napoleon, etc. He has now written a life of Churchill, his subject of subjects. This is the one he has been waiting for, preparing for, says Roberts. Jay talks to him about all matters Churchill, or many matters: his intelligence, his literary skill, his American side, his moods, his marriage, his personal habits, his religion (or lack of one), his politics, his views on race, and so on. There is also the question, What do individuals matter in history? This “Q&A” is a superb little tour of Churchill, by one who knows him intimately.

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Pardon the plagiaristic title, but it describes this podcast with David French and Vivek Dave, two of Jay’s regular gurus on sports. They do the Major League Baseball playoffs, the NFL, college football, the NBA (happy new season), and a dollop of Tiger Woods. There are many issues discussed in this episode, including the rather philosophical or elevated: Why sports? A freewheeling joy of a podcast, live-and-in-the-flesh from Chicago. 

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Stephen Harper was prime minister of Canada from 2006 to 2015. Jay routinely referred to him as “the Leader of the West.” Harper has just published a new book, “Right Here, Right Now: Politics and Leadership in the Age of Disruption.” Its themes are populism, conservatism, and current passions. Harper came of age with Reagan and Thatcher (and so did Jay). This is a different moment, though, and Harper has thought deeply about it. Jay talks with him about all this, plus some other issues—including U.S. perceptions of Canada, the nature of Pierre Trudeau, and Harper’s remarkable encounter with Putin. Stephen Harper is not to be missed: not only a superb practitioner of politics (witness his decade-long premiership) but also a superb analyst of politics.

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Togo is a little country in West Africa, wedged between Ghana and Benin. For more than 50 years, it has been ruled by two dictators, father and son, one after the other — as in Syria and elsewhere, as Jay points out. This regime is opposed by a remarkable young woman named Farida Nabourema, who is Jay’s guest. Wait’ll you hear her story, her thoughts, and her spirit. You could almost feel sorry for the dictatorship.

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