America Abroad

48 EpisodesProduced by PRIWebsite

America Abroad is an award-winning documentary radio program distributed by Public Radio International (PRI) and broadcast on public radio stations nationwide. Each month, we take an in-depth look at one critical issue in international affairs and U.S. foreign policy.

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Stories From The Backchannel: Negotiating with US adversaries Iran and North Korea

December 17th, 2018


Ambassador Wendy Sherman discusses her unlikely career, which began as an advocate for women's issues before going into politics and eventually …

Outer strife, inner peace: Lessons from the Dalai Lama

December 17th, 2018


The United States Institute of Peace brought 27 global youth leaders to Dharamsala, India, this fall so they could attend leadership workshops, …

Stories From The Backchannel: How should the world prepare for a future with autonomous weapons?

December 11th, 2018


Since 1984 there have been five Terminator movies. Another is slated to come out next year. Over that time, what was once pure science fiction has become more and more plausible.

Stories From The Backchannel: When Middle East peace almost happened

December 4th, 2018


When Bill Clinton took over as president in 1992, his then-Middle East adviser Martin Indyk told him he had a chance to partner with Israeli Prime …

Combating Extremist Ideology Since 9/11

September 4th, 2018


It's been 17 years since 9/11, and 14 years since the 9/11 Commission released its recommendations on how to prevent future attacks. While much of …

Stories from The Backchannel: Unavoidable Russia

July 11th, 2018


Stories from the Backchannel is a new podcast that examines the stories behind some of America's most important national security moments.

Backlash: Europe’s far right and muslim migration

June 29th, 2018


"[Populist leaders who] are willing to vilify other people based on their religion and ethnicity are probably not particularly respectful of …

Iraq's next steps

June 5th, 2018


In May, Iraqis voted in the first parliamentary elections since ISIS was defeated in their country. The winner? An anti-American Shiite cleric's …

Sowing Chaos: Russia's Disinformation Wars

May 1st, 2018


During the Cold War, the Soviet Union used the media to undermine foreign powers. Now, Russia is at it again. And while the goals are the same, the …

Syria and fragile states

April 4th, 2018


"We feel terrible about what is going on in Syria, but we don't want to get really deeply engaged. So we do just enough to make the situation worse without doing enough to make it better.”

Islam and the cosmos

March 6th, 2018


While Europe was in the Dark Ages, scientific discovery was blooming in the Islamic world. Now, centuries later, some Muslim countries are making new investments in space exploration.

Document Leaks: The consequences of revealing secrets

February 6th, 2018


Massive document leaks have led to the fall of world leaders and to new anti-corruption laws. But some leaks have put lives in danger. So what's the limit to the public’s right to know?

Brinkmanship: US-North Korea relations

December 7th, 2017


North Korean missiles can now reach major US cities. The Trump administration promises to "utterly destroy" the Kim regime if there's a war. So, what will it take to ease tensions between the two nuclear powers? This …

Made in America: Trade policy in the Trump era

November 6th, 2017


"You could make an argument that trade was the biggest issue that put Donald Trump in the Oval Office. I mean the states that he won the election in …

Bioethics in Islam

October 4th, 2017


Abortion. Right to die. Stem cell research. Modern bioethical issues confront an ancient religion.

After Paris: Global approaches to climate change [UPDATED]

September 5th, 2017


Superstorms like Harvey and Irma are increasingly common — a result of global warming, say climate scientists. Yet President Donald Trump intends to …

Trump, Duterte, and the future of US-Philippine relations

August 1st, 2017


Filipino President Duterte’s war on drugs has killed over 7,000 people. But not only has the White House failed to condemn Duterte's tactics; President Trump has praised them. This hour: stories about the drug war, the …

Warrior diplomats: A look into US special operations

July 3rd, 2017


"We don't crave the combat so much as we crave hard things to conquer," said one Green Beret.

Beyond the Border: The future of US-Mexico relations

June 5th, 2017


Much of President Donald Trump’s populist support comes from people who are deeply worried about globalization and immigration. But Trump’s …

After Paris: Global approaches to climate change

May 2nd, 2017


It’s been a year and a half since 195 countries signed a historic climate change agreement in Paris. Now, cleaner energy policies are being …

Trump's approach to the Middle East

April 4th, 2017


As the Trump administration begins ironing out its strategy in the Middle East, America Abroad examines what may lie ahead regarding Israel, Syria, Iran, and the fight against ISIS.

US Asia policy under Trump: A Honolulu-Tokyo town hall

February 8th, 2017


President Trump's declarations on Asia have caused much uncertainty in the region. To better understand the hopes, fears, and concerns on both sides of the Pacific, America Abroad convened a bi-national town hall …

US-Russia Relations in the Trump Era

December 14th, 2016

In this hour of America Abroad, we look at the state of the US relationship with Russia. We explore Russia's use of cyberspace and propaganda, …

Fighting Zika and Future Epidemics

November 1st, 2016

"I think the US has to do a lot of thinking about what type of assets it's willing to put forward not on an ad hoc basis but something that the entire global community can rely upon on a continuous basis in terms of …

America’s bond with Israel — its history and its current challenges

October 6th, 2016

"Public Opinion about Israel in America is similar to what physicists say about the universe, it’s expanding and contracting at the same time." (Michael Oren, Israel's former ambassador to the US)

US foreign policy and the next president: Through the eyes of the world

September 7th, 2016

America Abroad collaborates with The Takeaway for an international town hall in front of live audiences in New York, Berlin and Cairo. A New …

Espionage in the Age of Terror

July 7th, 2016

“What was unreasonable at 8 o'clock in the morning on September 11 may have been quite reasonable by 2 o'clock in the afternoon given the changed circumstances in which the country found itself.” (Michael Hayden, former …

Africa's fight against Islamic extremism

June 7th, 2016

“This message of extremism is alien. It's alien to their culture, it's alien to their communities, it's alien for their future," said ambassador …

Civil Resistance: The Power of the People

May 2nd, 2016

You get this feeling of sweeping non-violent movements today, in part because the knowledge is sweeping of how to fight without violence, and the …


April 5th, 2016

The Dalai Lama’s 80th birthday has been a cause for celebration, but also consternation for Tibetans at home and in the diaspora. Now, as he grows …

Online Data, Information, & Privacy

March 1st, 2016

The fight between Apple and the FBI over whether an iPhone should be unlocked to better solve the San Bernardino shooting, underscores a larger …

Fighting ISIS At Home & Abroad

February 3rd, 2016

The latest attacks in the Middle East, Paris and San Bernardino have proven the fight against ISIS is not limited to a country or even a region — …

How Drones Are Reshaping the World

December 1st, 2015

In this hour-long program, we look at how drones are revolutionizing the skies, and how this technology has so quickly moved from science fiction to …

Understanding Europe's Refugee Crisis: An International Town Hall

November 3rd, 2015

The ongoing war in Syria has led to the worst refugee crisis since World War II. And now, many of those refugees are heading for Europe. 700,000 have made the treacherous journey across the Mediterranean so far and …

Searching for Religious Common Ground

October 6th, 2015

As conflict intensifies throughout the Middle East and around the world, it's more important than ever to foster greater understanding between religions. Europe's refugee crisis and globalization more generally has lead …

Examining the Nuclear Deal With Iran

September 1st, 2015

Soon, Congress will vote on one of the most important and hotly contested foreign policy agreements in decades. The Iran Nuclear Deal will have a …

Poaching and Terrorism: The Race to Protect Wildlife and National Security

July 6th, 2015

The illicit wildlife trade is now worth up to $20 billion a year. That's double what it was just a few years ago — worth far more than the weapons trade and approaching the rate of human smuggling. This has attracted …

Burma at the Crossroads

April 4th, 2015

This fall, Burma is scheduled to hold an historic presidential election. But with ongoing persecution of ethnic minorities and many other human …

Saving Innocence: The Global Fight to End Child Marriage

March 2nd, 2015

Each year, 15 million girls are forced into marriage, many of them before they turn 15. How can the practice be stopped?

America and Cuba: After the Thaw

February 4th, 2015

President Obama's announcement to begin normalizing relations with Cuba marks the most significant change in US policy toward the island nation in a …

Global Girls' Education: Breaking Down Barriers

November 3rd, 2014

The numbers are staggering. Worldwide, 58 million primary school-age children are not in school. More than half of these children are girls, and 75 …

The Keystone XL Pipeline: An International Town Hall

October 7th, 2014

The Keystone XL pipeline has been a controversial project in both the United States and Canada. On this edition of America Abroad, audiences in …

When water scarcity leads to conflict

August 8th, 2014

AK-47s, grenades, water? Earth's most precious resource doesn't fire bullets or explode but it is guarded, hoarded, and stolen in a way that ignites …

The Power of Art in a Changing Middle East

June 6th, 2014

Film, music and art are often the best ways to capture the will and the mood of the people in times of turmoil. Art sometimes has the power to move …

The Consequences of Shrinking America's Military

May 19th, 2014

As America draws down troops from Afghanistan, cuts back on military spending and the size of its military, many worry that America’s leadership in the world and ability to protect its allies is eroding. On this …

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