Background Briefing: March 6, 2022


Putin’s Strategy to Weaponize Refugees

We begin with Putin pounding and starving Ukrainian civilians with major cities under siege and brutal bombardment and explore his strategy of weaponizing refugees by creating a so-called humanitarian corridor to depopulate Ukraine to thus make it easier to police while dumping millions of refugees on NATO front line states. Putin employed that strategy when he entered the Syrian war, driving millions of refugees into Europe which furthered his aims as the backlash fueled the growth of right wing parties in western Europe and Brexit in the UK which Putin also financed. Joining us to discuss Putin’s strategic aims is Nicholas Heras deputy director of the Human Security Unit at the New Lines Institute and the former Middle East Security Program Manager at the Institute for the Study of War where he was Director of Government Relations responsible for Russia and Eurasia. From 2016-2017, Nicholas served as the tenth 1st LT Andrew J. Bacevich, Jr., USA Fellow at the Center for New American Security.


The Fascist Autocrat and Leader of the Global Far-right is Trying to Restore Soviet Power in a Fascist Form

Then with Putin a fascist autocrat and the leader of the global far-right who is trying to restore Soviet power in a fascist form, we speak with Jason Stanley, the Jacob Urowsky Professor of Philosophy at Yale University and the author of How Propaganda Works. His latest book is How Fascism Works: The Politics of Us and Them and we discuss his article at The Guardian, “The antisemitism animating Putin’s claim to ‘denazify’ Ukraine.”


As Ukrainians Suffer the GOP Blames it all on Biden’s Alleged “Weakness”

Then finally we examine how the hideous suffering inflicted on the Ukrainian people by Putin might affect domestic politics in the U.S. as we watch helplessly unable to intervene militarily while the Republicans blame it all on Biden’s alleged “weakness.” Joining us is Michael Kazin, a professor of history at Georgetown University and editor emeritus of Dissent Magazine. His books include American Dreamers: How the Left Changed a Nation, The Populist Persuasion, War Against War: The American Fight for Peace 1914-1918 and A Godly Hero: The Life of William Jennings Bryan. He is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and editor of The Princeton Encyclopedia of American Political History, and we discuss his latest book, just out, What It Took to Win: A History of the Democratic Party.