EP 503: H.R. McMaster Looks at America's Greatest Challenges to Come
Lieutenant General H.R. McMaster served in the US Army for 34 years and then as National Security Advisor to President Donald Trump. He discusses what it was like to take over that job in the chaotic period following the firing of his predecessor Michael Flynn, how studying LBJ's mistakes during the War in Vietnam made him even more determined to provide the current Commander-in-Chief with straight-forward, unvarnished policy advice, and why he believes that some others in the White House might not have had the same lofty motivations. He talks about the value of empathy in national security and some of the biggest challenges America faces from an emboldened China that is taking advantage of the Covid crisis to advance it’s own agenda to a Russia that he says is determined to drag America down with it. He he explains why the war in Afghanistan is really a one year war fought over and over 20 times, why he believes that his departure from the Trump Administration was partly the result of a social media smear campaign by Russian cyber-trolls, how the National Security Council put a strategy in place for a global pandemic (and what went wrong).
Order his new book Battlegrounds: The Fight to Defend the Free World. Today's episode was sponsored by Freeform's new series Kal Penn Approves This Message, now streaming new episodes on Wednesdays on Hulu.