Monocle 24: The Foreign Desk

Monocle 24: The Foreign Desk


Presented by Steve Bloomfield, this is Monocle 24’s flagship global-affairs show featuring interviews with political leaders and in-depth analysis of the big issues of the day.


Explainer 53: Nato’s Trump card?  

Could Donald Trump’s presidency end up leaving Nato better armed and better defended?

North Korea in the age of Donald Trump  

Kim Jong-un now finds himself facing a foe who also understands the awesome and disorienting power of unpredictability. How will North Korea negotiate the age of Donald Trump?

Explainer 52: What will Brexit mean for the UK’s border with Ireland?  

With the triggering of Article 50, Brexit will mean that the UK will have a physical border with the EU. But how would that work?

Who is Martin Schulz?  

As Germany gears up for the federal election in September, we profile SPD’s candidate for chancellor, Martin Schulz. After a successful stint as European Parliament president, his popularity at home is growing. But is it enough to beat Angela Merkel?

Explainer 51: The Southern Cameroons crisis  

Southern Cameroons is predominantly English-speaking, whereas the rest of Cameroon speaks French. While this might not seem like a big deal it has been at the centre of a conflict between both region and in recent weeks, the squabble has flared up again.

How to defeat Trump  

In just two weeks Donald Trump has come up against an almost uncountable number of objections, lawsuits and protests criticising his actions and policies. But what is his main opposition and is there anything that might stop him serving his full four-year term?

Explainer 50: Trump’s migration ban  

President Trump’s controversial ‘Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry into the United States’ executive order, known by some as the ‘Muslim ban’, has led to criticism from foreign leaders, anger from human rights groups and disgust from protesters all over the world.

From democracy to autocracy  

There are signs that the US is being ruled by an autocratic leader but part of the reason that many Americans will baulk at that description is that life in an autocracy is not always that different from life in a proper democracy. At least not at first.

Explainer 49: Democracy takes hold in west Africa  

West Africa has had a troubled recent relationship with democracy – but times are changing. Yahya Jammeh’s departure from Gambia means that every nation in west Africa is now, technically, a democracy.

Rouhani’s Record  

With presidential elections in May, Iranians have a rare chance to show either their support or their discontent for Hassan Rouhani. Steve Bloomfield sits down with Mehrad Vaezinejad and Maryam Namazie to discuss what really matters to Iranians at home and what chance, if any, there is of real reform.

Explainer 48: Russia as the world’s policeman  

As Trump enters the Oval Office promising to put America First, who will fill the role of the world police? As the US steps back, Russia, it would appear, is stepping forward. But is the world ready?

China and Trump  

What will Donald Trump's presidency mean for China? He's tested the water with tough rhetoric – and that phone call to Taiwan – and Beijing has reacted accordingly, albeit with caution. But which of the two greatest powers will come out on top? Steve Bloomfield sits down with ambassador Chas Freeman and NYU professor Ann Lee.

Explainer 47: Will Europe soften its line on Russia?  

Recent European-Russian relations have been as strained as ever, with strong rhetoric, hard sanctions and equally punchy responses from the Kremlin. But is Europe starting to go soft on the former Soviet state? And are leaders starting to realise that they need Putin more than they’d like to admit?

Obama’s legacy  

As Barack Obama’s eight years as president draw to an end and the unpredictable era of Trump looms, Steve Bloomfield discusses his legacy. From wars in the Middle East to Obamacare, social justice and the environment – what could his administration have done better and how many policies will survive after 20 January?

Explainer 46: The EU’s surprising popularity  

Do Europeans really hate Europe? Not as much as you might think, as Steve Bloomfield explains.

Looking ahead to 2017  

Steve Bloomfield is joined by Quentin Peel, Oscar Guardiola Rivera and Rosemary Hollis for a look ahead to 2017 and some of the reasons to be hopeful in the year to come.

Looking back at 2016  

Steve Bloomfield is joined by Quentin Peel, Oscar Guardiola Rivera and Rosemary Hollis for a look back at the year in affairs, politics and diplomacy.

The fall of Aleppo  

The United Nations described it as “a complete meltdown of humanity”. It wasn’t just the level of destruction and the loss of civilian lives, it was the fact that we knew this was going to happen and still nothing was done. Will anyone ever be held responsible?

Portugal: a lesson for Europe’s left?  

One of the overarching political stories of the past decade has been the steady decline in Europe of the centre-left. But an exception can be found in Portugal. Four parties – the centre left Socialists, the Communist party, the Left Bloc and the Greens – have formed an alliance. And it’s working.

Explainer 45: Does Canada have the best immigration system?  

Since the election of Justin Trudeau in 2015, the world has been reminded of Canada’s liberalism and compassion. And this is not limited to refugees: it’s reflected in their broader immigration policy too.

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