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What We're Watching: Angela Merkel's punk rock farewell, Iran nuclear talks resume

Angela Merkel's punk rock farewell. Although she doesn't officially step down as German Chancellor until next week, Angela Merkel's sendoff took place on Thursday night in Berlin, with the traditional Grosser Zapfenstreich — a musical aufweidersehen, replete with torches and a military band. By custom, the honoree gets to choose three songs for the band to play. Among Merkel's otherwise staid choices was a total curveball: You Forgot the Colour Film, a 1974 rock hit by fellow East German Nina Hagen, a renowned punk rocker. The song, a parody bit about a man who takes the singer on vacation but has only black-and-white film in his camera, was understood as a dig at the drabness of life in the East. We're listening to the tune, and... digging it, kind of — but we still prefer Merkel's own Kraftwerk-inspired farewell song from Puppet Regime. Eins, zwei, drei, it's time to say goodbye...

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Do cryptocurrencies undermine US sanctions?

Marietje Schaake, International Policy Director at Stanford's Cyber Policy Center, Eurasia Group senior advisor and former MEP, discusses trends in big tech, privacy protection and cyberspace:

Do cryptocurrencies make it harder to enforce foreign policy sanctions?

Well, that is exactly what the Biden administration worries about. As part of growing concerns of whether unregulated currencies undermine a whole host of policies, sanctions and foreign or trade policy should be a priority area. And just like others who wish to evade tracing of their wealth or transactions, the very states or their sanctioned entities should be assumed to resort to all options to evade restrictions while continuing to do business. So having cryptocurrencies undermining the ability to enforce strategic goals logically raises eyebrows in Washington.

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The Graphic Truth: US kids don't want wars

Today, young Americans' views on US foreign policy are often at odds with the Silent Generation and the Baby Boomers, who vividly remember the great power rivalry of the Cold War. As a result, many of them tend to believe that the US has a responsibility to project power around the world. Of course, what America's youth think matters a great deal, because they'll make up the bulk of the future voting electorate — and thus could determine the direction of US foreign policy for years to come. We take a look at how different age groups feel about US responsibilities on a range of foreign policy issues based on a recent survey from the Eurasia Group Foundation.

Is the Iran nuclear deal dead – again?

When then-candidate Joe Biden was vying to move into the Oval Office, he remained wishy-washy on several policy issues. But one thing was abundantly clear: rain, hail or shine, Biden planned to return to the Iran nuclear agreement negotiated in 2015 by his boss Barack Obama and nixed by anti-Iran hawk DJT.

But it takes two to tango, or in this case to tank a key diplomatic pursuit. The Iranians, who in the spring seemed gung-ho about the idea, are now slow-walking it, making a return to the nuclear deal in the near term seem very remote.

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On foreign policy, Biden's heart in the right place but "clumsy", says journalist Robin Wright

Joe Biden came into office with enormous foreign policy experience, a sharp contrast from his predecessor. So far, however, The New Yorker's Robin Wright says "there has been a lot of clumsy behavior" on Afghanistan and more recently alienating allies with AUKUS, and Biden's people are good thinkers but neither brave nor bold. "It's a weak administration [whose] heart's in the right place," she explains, but it needs to come up with more and move faster. Watch her interview with Ian Bremmer on the latest episode of GZERO World.

Watch this episode of GZERO World with Ian Bremmer: Biden's rocky start on foreign policy

US foreign policy has an identity crisis — journalist Robin Wright

US foreign policy used to be all about defending America and promoting democracy everywhere — sort of. But now, The New Yorker's Robin Wright says "we are not quite so sure about what it is we want." The priority is clearly China, but for Wright US allies are still looking for some direction on what exactly America wants to do to counter the Chinese. Watch her interview with Ian Bremmer on the latest episode of GZERO World.

Watch this episode of GZERO World with Ian Bremmer: Biden's rocky start on foreign policy

Biden’s rocky start on foreign policy

Can President Biden tamp down growing global skepticism and persuade his allies that the US is really "back"? Or is America's credibility irreparably damaged no matter what Biden, or any future president, says or does? Ian Bremmer is joined on GZERO World by global affairs journalist and Middle East expert Robin Wright of The New Yorker to discuss why Biden, the most geopolitically experienced US president in decades, is already looking to hit the reset button on America's foreign policy. After four long years of the Trump administration's bull-in-a-china-shop approach to foreign policy, Joe Biden's assurances that America was "back" had been like Xanax to the diplomatic community. But some major foreign policy snafus in the past eight months have thrown America's renewed global standing into question. At the very least, it seems the honeymoon is over.

Podcast: Grading Biden on foreign policy with journalist Robin Wright

Listen: Can President Biden tamp down growing global skepticism and persuade his allies that the US is really "back"? Or is America's credibility irreparably damaged no matter what Biden, or any future president, says or does? Ian Bremmer is joined on the GZERO World podcast by global affairs journalist and Middle East expert Robin Wright of The New Yorker to discuss why Biden, the most geopolitically experienced US president in decades, is already looking to hit the reset button on America's foreign policy.

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