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Is America safer since 9/11?

20 years have passed since 9/11, but is the US any safer? As the Taliban regains control in Afghanistan, was the War on Terror a failure or has it kept America safe from harm? And how did US allies feel as the last American planes left Kabul? On GZERO World, Ian Bremmer speaks to two people who have had a hand in crafting global policy since the towers fell: Michael Chertoff, who served as Secretary of the US Department of Homeland Security under President George Bush; and Rory Stewart, who worked extensively in Afghanistan in his role as UK Secretary of State for International Development and beyond.

António Guterres: Let's deal with reality by engaging the Taliban

Ahead of Monday's UN conference on aid to Afghanistan, UN Secretary-General António Guterres knows he can't turn Taliban-run Afghanistan into Sweden — but still hopes to ensure basic rights for all Afghans, including women and ethnic minorities, as well as prevent civil war and terrorism. For Guterres, it's time for "all the elements of the international community to come together and to engage with the Taliban positively." If we show them we can keep humanitarian aid flowing, Guterres says, perhaps we'll gain leverage and sell the Taliban on "the idea that they can become part of a normal world." Watch this clip from Ian Bremmer's exclusive interview with Guterres on GZERO World, which will air on US public television during the week of the 76th UN General Assembly.

Does alcohol help bring the world together?

On GZERO World, Ian Bremmer takes a look at the yin and the yang of alcohol's role in high-level diplomacy and society at large. Alcohol can bring people together just as easily as it can tear them apart. From a 1995 Clinton/Yeltsin Summit where a drunk Yeltsin almost derailed Bosnian peace talks, to Obama's Beer Summit and the recent G7 Summit, booze plays a part in how world leaders interact. Globally, alcohol consumption has been steadily increasing, by over 70 percent between 1990 and 2017, according to one report. . Low and middle-income nations like Vietnam, India, and China are a driving force behind that trend, with drinking in Southeast Asia rising by over 34 percent between 2010 and 2017. And yet, amidst this global booze boom, the world has only grown more and more divided.

Watch the episode: The (political) power of alcohol

Does alcohol help or harm society?

University of British Colombia professor Edward Slingerland says drinking makes us feel good and has historically encouraged socializing. But there are negative implications, as well. We now have the problem of "distillation and isolation": getting as much booze as you want and drinking alone, especially during the pandemic. There's a gender issue too: the "bro culture" associated with alcohol can exclude and even be dangerous for women. Not all regions have the same problems, though, as drinking habits vary widely. Watch Slingerland's interview with Ian Bremmer on GZERO World.

Watch the episode: The (political) power of alcohol

The (political) power of alcohol

Alcohol. It's a dangerous drug that has ruined countless lives and derailed many a global summit. But it's also humanity's oldest social lubricant, a magical elixir that can fuel diplomatic breakthroughs, well into the wee hours of the night. As Winston Churchill once quipped, "I've taken more out of alcohol than alcohol has taken out of me." On GZERO World, we take a deep dive down the bottle and examine the role alcohol has played in society, politics, and global summitry—from the earliest hunter-gatherer days to that memorable Obama Beer Summit in 2009. Joining Ian Bremmer is philosopher Edward Slingerland, whose new book Drunk: How We Sipped, Danced, and Stumbled Our Way Into Civilization makes a compelling, if nuanced, case for alcohol's place in the world.

Also: since alcohol isn't the only social drug, a look at the state of marijuana legalization across the US and around the world.

The 2020 pandemic was hardly “unprecedented,” says historian Niall Ferguson

"We've been dealing with pandemics from the earliest recorded history. Thucydides writes about a pandemic in the history of the Peloponnesian War. So the last thing 2020 was, was unprecedented," Stanford historian Niall Ferguson told Ian Bremmer on GZERO World. Ferguson, whose new book, "Doom: The Politics of Catastrophe," believes that the world should have been better prepared for the COVID-19 pandemic based on the numerous health crises of the 20th century, from the 1918 Spanish flu to influenza and HIV/AIDS. He provides perspective on how the COVID crisis stacks up compared to other pandemics throughout history.

Watch the episode: Predictable disaster and the surprising history of shocks

Season 4 of GZERO World with Ian Bremmer launches July 9 on US public television

Season 4 of GZERO World with Ian Bremmer, GZERO's award-winning weekly global affairs series, launches on US public television nationwide beginning Friday, July 9 (check local listings). The new season begins with an interview with Adam Grant, acclaimed organizational psychologist and bestselling author, who will discuss how the workplace – and life in general – has been irrevocably changed by the coronavirus pandemic. Other notable guests in the first weeks of the new season include Michèle Flournoy, former U.S. Defense Department official, Ben Rhodes, former Deputy National Security Advisor, and Singapore's Foreign Minister Vivian Balakrishnan.

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Welcome to the GZERO

Introducing: GZERO World, a new weekly show by your friendly neighborhood political scientist: Ian Bremmer.

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