Press the Button

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A new episode of Press the Button is available every Tuesday.

An engaging podcast on nuclear policy and national security, Press the Button is co-hosted by defense experts Joe Cirincione and Michelle Dover of Ploughshares Fund, a global security foundation. This weekly podcast features top officials and experts discussing the latest developments on Iran, North Korea, nuclear weapons, military budgets and foreign policy. Press the Button offers diverse views on one of the most important issues of our time: preventing nuclear war.

Read articles about episodes of Press the Button and subscribe today!

  • Dodging Death: America's Mission to Find and Destroy Syria's Chemical Weapons

    The Syrian regime attacked the town of Ghouta in southwestern Syria with sarin, a nerve agent, that killed hundreds of civilians on August 21, 2013. With that, Syrian president Bashar al-Assad crossed a red line set by President Barack Obama, accelerating an effort to eliminate Assad’s stockpile...

    May 12, 2021 - By Ploughshares Fund
  • Fear and Unknowing in the Indo-Pacific Region

    In this week’s episode of Press the Button, author, professor and expert David Kang discussed the widespread, bipartisan call in U.S. foreign policy and defense planning to move from the ‘war on terror,’ to increased confrontation—especially with China. The idea of a return to great-power...

    May 10, 2021 - By Will Lowry
  • Bearing Witness To Crisis In Yemen

    Skye Fitzgerald is no stranger to human suffering. In some ways, he seeks it out: as a documentary filmmaker, his work has taken him to some of the world’s worst conflict zones, where his films bear witness to humanitarian crises as they unfold. His latest, Hunger Ward, follows...

    April 13, 2021 - By Ploughshares Fund
  • Do We Need New ICBMs (Or Any at All)?

    President Joe Biden is expected to submit his fiscal 2022 defense budget request to Congress in May. The ongoing efforts to keep building costly weapons like the F-35 Lightening fighter jets and Gerald R. Ford-class aircraft carriers have been particularly controversial. But another program in...

    April 2, 2021 - By Ploughshares Fund
  • What the Muslim Ban, Atlanta Shootings, and Gen Z’ers Can Teach Us

    Mana Kharrazi sees a stark connection between the shootings in Atlanta last week and scapegoating the pandemic on China. “I think what we need to recognize…something I think communities of color in diaspora communities, in particular, have always felt…Whenever there's some sort of statement or...

    April 1, 2021 - By Ploughshares Fund
  • It's Our 100th Episode

    Press the Button's 100th episode dropped Tuesday March 9, 2021. To celebrate 100 weeks of nuclear policy and national security analysis, Ploughshares Fund President Dr. Emma Belcher spoke with Joe Cirincione on the history behind the podcast. Joe Cirincione is a distinguished...

    March 15, 2021 - By Ploughshares Fund
  • Terrell Jermaine Starr on Press the Button

    This week Press the Button features Terrell Jermaine Starr, nonresident senior fellow at the Atlantic Council's Eurasia Center, senior reporter at The Root, and host of the podcast Black Diplomats. Starr joins co-host Michelle Dover in discussing violence and racism's influence on US domestic...

    January 20, 2021 - By Ploughshares Fund
  • The Capitol Attacks Exposed America's Flawed Exceptionalism

    This month’s attacks on the Capitol confronted us with the dark forces of glorified violence and white supremacy that have—like it or not—always been at the center of the American experience. As we process what happened, we must grapple with the reality that these attacks stem from much deeper...

    January 20, 2021 - By Ploughshares Fund
  • 19th US Sec. Def. William J. Perry on Press the Button

    This week Press the Button features a bonus episode with 19th US Secretary of Defense William J. Perry, who joins co-host Tom Collina in discussing control over the US nuclear arsenal during President Donald Trump's final days in office. An engaging podcast on nuclear policy and...

    January 15, 2021 - By Ploughshares Fund
  • Will Joe Biden Transform U.S. National Security for the Better?

    Less than twenty-four hours before major news organizations called the presidential election for the former vice president, national security expert Heather Hurlburt was already envisioning the consequences of a Joe Biden win. “There are going to be some huge changes right off the bat,” she said...

    November 24, 2020 - By Zack Brown