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Defending democracy at home and abroad

43 minutes

Robert Kagan is a foreign policy expert who turned his focus to the United States last fall in a Washington Post column titled "Our Constitutional Crisis Is Already Here" that became one of the Post's most-read pieces of 2021. We're lucky to have Kagan with us this week to discuss the ongoing crises of democracy at home and abroad as Russia's war on Ukraine continues to unfold.

Kagan has argued that there was nothing inevitable about the relatively peaceful liberal democratic order that followed World War II, and that there is nothing inevitable about the perseverance of American democracy. In fact, he says that because so many reject the 2020 presidential election, we are already in a constitutional crisis, and it will take deliberate actions by the public and members of both political parties to get us out. For too many politicians, a recognition of our condition, let alone a commitment to those actions, appears to be a long way off.

Kagan is the Stephen and Barbara Friedman Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institute and a member of the Foreign Affairs Policy Board in the U.S. State Department. He is the author of The Jungle Grows Back: America and Our Imperiled World and The New York Times bestseller, The World America Made.

Additional Information

Kagan's piece on constitutional crisis

Kagan's piece on Ukraine

Kagan's lecture at Penn State

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