On 7 June, the former German chancellor Angela Merkel appeared at a speaking event at a Berlin theatre, to discuss how she has spent the past six months since leaving office and reflect on present politics. Jeremy Cliffe in Berlin joins Emily Tamkin and Katie Stallard in Washington DC to assess Merkel’s defiant stance on her policies towards Moscow and ask whether we should reappraise her international legacy. Could she have done more to prepare Germany, Ukraine and the rest of Europe for Russia’s invasion?
Meanwhile, in a speech in Moscow on 9 June, Vladimir Putin compared himself to Peter the Great and his leadership during Russia’s Great Northern War against Sweden. He claimed that the imperialist, who ruled tsarist Russia from 1682 to 1725, was “returning and reinforcing” Russian land, and “it fell to us to return and reinforce as well”. The team discuss this troubling historical comparison and why so many commentators appear reluctant to believe that Putin does not envisage a future for Ukraine as a sovereign state.
Then, in You Ask Us, a listener notes that unlike other networks Fox News did not air the first public hearing on the Capitol riot that shocked America and the world on 6 January 2021. The listener asked how concerned we should be that a major news network is helping to create an alternative reality for a significant portion of the US.
If you have a You Ask Us question for the international team, email firstname.lastname@example.org
Podcast listeners can subscribe to the New Statesman for just £1 a week for 12 weeks using our special offer. Just visit newstatesman.com/podcastoffer.
Jeremy Cliffe writes that Angela Merkel’s self-justification over Russia does not add up
Katie Stallard on Vladimir the Great
How to listen to the World Review podcast
1. In your browser
You can use the player above to listen in your browser right now. The World Review podcast publishes on Monday and Thursdays. All episodes are published to newstatesman.com/podcasts on the day of release.
2. In a podcast app
World Review is available on all major podcast apps including Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Acast, Google Podcasts, and more. Search “World Review” in your favourite podcast app, and subscribe or follow to make sure you receive episodes as soon as they publish. While you’re there, please leave a review for the podcast – it helps others find the show, which in turn makes it possible for us to keep making it.
3. On your smart speaker
If you have an Amazon Echo, Google Home or Apple HomePod smart speaker, ask it to “play the latest episode of World Review”. The same command also works with virtual assistants on mobile devices.
[See also: Can Ukraine win the war with Russia?]