• Summary

  • Join Crisis Group's Executive Vice President Richard Atwood and Board Member and Harvard Law School Professor Naz Modirzadeh as they dive deep into the conflicts that rage around the globe with Crisis Group analysts and special guests. These experts bring a unique, on-the-ground perspective to understanding both why those conflicts persist — and what could bring them to an end.

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    International Crisis Group
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Episodes
  • Jul 11 2022

    In a special Hold Your Fire! episode to mark the end of Season Two, Richard Atwood speaks first to Olga Oliker, Crisis Group’s Europe and Central Asia director, for an update on the war in Ukraine, and then to Comfort Ero, its president and CEO, to reflect back on a rocky six months. Olga talks about the latest from the front lines in eastern and southern Ukraine. She and Richard discuss what is happening in Russian-occupied territories, whether Moscow’s goals in Ukraine have evolved, and potential scenarios for the months ahead. They look at the impact of Western sanctions on Russia and prospects for getting Ukrainian grain out of Black Sea ports. They also zoom out, and reflect on European security and relations with Russia more broadly.


    Richard and Comfort then look back at an unsettling few months in global affairs. They reflect on the West’s Ukraine policy and the dilemmas Russia’s invasion poses for an organisation like Crisis Group in trying to find a sustainable end to the war. They talk about the global fallout, particularly reactions from around the world and why many non-Western leaders have distanced themselves from efforts to isolate Russia, and feel Western capitals should be investing more into addressing a perfect storm of other challenges – price hikes in food and fuel, poor countries’ debt burdens and the climate emergency. They also survey some of the world’s other wars and crises, many in danger of being neglected as attention focuses on Ukraine.


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    1 hr and 20 mins
  • Jul 5 2022

    Since late February, when Russian forces crossed the Ukrainian border en masse, India has steered what it portrays as a neutral course on the war. It has abstained on UN votes condemning Russia’s invasion. New Delhi refuses to publicly blame Moscow for the crisis, even while emphasising India’s traditional respect for sovereignty and territorial integrity. It has maintained India’s historically close ties to Moscow, increasing Russian oil imports and receiving Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov on a diplomatic visit in April. Last week, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi attended, along with his Argentinian, Indonesian, Senegalese and South African counterparts, the summit of the G7 — or Group of Seven — which brought together leaders from seven industrialised countries, mostly NATO member states. On the agenda were the Ukraine war, its wider ramifications and ways to tackle rising commodity prices, as well as other global challenges.


    This week on Hold Your Fire! Richard Atwood talks with Crisis Group trustee and former Indian Foreign Secretary and National Security Adviser Shivshankar Menon about India’s foreign policy and its response to Russia’s war in Ukraine. They discuss Modi’s participation in the G7 summit and look back at what has motivated New Delhi’s response to the war, particularly its relations with Russia. They talk about the key priorities driving India’s foreign policy and its security dilemmas in Asia, notably its border dispute with China in the Himalayas and its long rivalry with Pakistan. They discuss India’s participation in the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue with Australia, Japan and the U.S. and what role the Quad might play in Asian security in the years ahead. They also talk about the contrast between the way New Delhi and other non-Western capitals view the Ukraine war, especially Western sanctions against Russia, and the views among NATO leaders.


    For more on the war in Ukraine, check out Crisis Group’s extensive analysis on our Ukraine country page.


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    53 mins
  • Jun 24 2022

    NATO leaders meeting next week in Madrid have a lot on their agendas. Russia’s war in Ukraine has entered its fifth month, with fierce fighting continuing along front lines in Ukraine’s east and south. Media coverage increasingly suggests differences of opinion are hurting the unity NATO powers have displayed thus far during the crisis. The war’s global fallout is becoming ever starker, as a commodities crisis and cost of living hikes start to bite in different parts of the world. NATO leaders will also discuss Finnish and Swedish applications to join the alliance, a reversal of both countries' decades-long position outside NATO. Russia’s February 2022 invasion of Ukraine rapidly swayed publics in both countries toward membership. Hurdles remain, however: Türkiye has so far blocked the application, criticising, amongst other things, what it believes is too lax a policy within the Scandinavian countries toward the Kurdish Workers’ Party (PKK), a Turkish insurgent group that Türkiye, along with other countries, lists as a terrorist organisation. 


    This week on Hold Your Fire! Richard Atwood talks with former Finnish Prime Minister and Crisis Group trustee Alexander Stubb about the Finnish decision to join NATO, the war in Ukraine more broadly and its global ramifications. They break down the reasons behind the dramatic shifts in Swedish and Finnish public opinion, what a successful application would mean for the balance of force between NATO and Russia, and the likelihood of Turkish opposition scuppering their chances of membership. They talk more widely about NATO policy toward Ukraine, looking at how Western powers should respond to different scenarios. They also ask whether cracks are showing in NATO’s unity. They discuss global perceptions of the war and of Western policy, as an economic crisis partly fuelled by the war looms. They also look at why some leaders in the Global South have distanced themselves from the West’s efforts to isolate Russia and even blame Western sanctions as much as Russia’s aggression for fuel and food price hikes. 


    For more on the war in Ukraine, check out Crisis Group’s extensive analysis on our Ukraine country page and read our latest commentary, 'Why Türkiye's Hindrance of NATO's Nordic Expansion Will Likely Drag On'.


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    39 mins

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