167 | Jared Diamond

We talk to the author of Guns, Germs and Steel about his new book on nations in crisis.  Jared Diamond argues that personal crises are a good way of thinking about national ones.  He tells us about one of his own personal crises and we see whether the lessons really apply to politics.  Plus we discuss what's gone wrong with political leadership in the US and we explore what it would take to tackle the global environmental crisis.

140 | Trump and the Shutdown

With the US government still shut, we compare this standoff to shutdowns of the past and try to work out what happens next.  What is Trump's game?  Can the two parties hold together?  And why aren't the workers taking to the streets?  Plus we weigh up where things stand with the Mueller investigation, the race for the democratic nomination and Trump's shifting policy on Syria.  It's all connected!  With Helen Thompson and Gary Gerstle.

86 | Bridget Kendall on Russia

As the world wonders what Vladimir Putin is up to, we ask Bridget Kendall, former BBC correspondent in Moscow.  We talk about what really happened in Salisbury, what the masterplan is and whether Putin is succeeding in his goal of splitting the West.  Plus we catch up on the latest comings and goings in Washington and ask whether Corbyn's stance on Putin is doing the Labour Party lasting harm.  With Aaron Rapport and Helen Thompson.