The Lawfare Podcast: Putin and Biden Meet in Geneva

Jen Patja, Benjamin Wittes, Fiona Hill, Alexander Vindman, Alina Polyakova, Toomas Ilves
Friday, June 18, 2021, 12:00 PM

Published by The Lawfare Institute
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President Biden met with President Putin in Geneva on Wednesday. There was a lot of press and dueling press conferences, with both presidents having testy moments with them, and the whole thing was pretty different from the last time Putin met with a U.S. president.

To talk through the Putin-Biden summit, Benjamin Wittes sat down on Lawfare Live with Fiona Hill and Alex Vindman, both formerly of the National Security Council, Alina Polyakova of the Center for European Policy Analysis, and former Estonian President Toomas Ilves. They discussed whether this was a win for Putin, a win for Biden, an overblown icebreaker or something else, and what it all says about where U.S.-Russia relations are headed.

Jen Patja is the editor and producer of The Lawfare Podcast and Rational Security. She currently serves as the Co-Executive Director of Virginia Civics, a nonprofit organization that empowers the next generation of leaders in Virginia by promoting constitutional literacy, critical thinking, and civic engagement. She is the former Deputy Director of the Robert H. Smith Center for the Constitution at James Madison's Montpelier and has been a freelance editor for over 20 years.
Benjamin Wittes is editor in chief of Lawfare and a Senior Fellow in Governance Studies at the Brookings Institution. He is the author of several books.
Dr. Fiona Hill is the Robert Bosch senior fellow in the Center on the United States and Europe in the Foreign Policy program at Brookings and the author of the new book, “There Is Nothing for You Here: Finding Opportunity in the Twenty-First Century.”
Lieutenant Colonel Alexander S. Vindman (Retired), a Pritzker Military Fellow at Lawfare, was most recently the director for Eastern Europe, the Caucasus, and Russia on the White House’s National Security Council. Prior to retiring from the U.S. Army, he served as a Foreign Area Officer with assignments in Moscow, Russia and for the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff as a Political-Military Affairs Officer. While on the Joint Staff, he co-authored the National Military Strategy Russia Annex and was the principal author for the Global Campaign for Russia. He is currently a doctoral student at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies and a Visiting Fellow at Perry World House.
Alina Polyakova is the David M. Rubenstein Fellow in the Foreign Policy program's Center on the United States and Europe and adjunct professor of European studies at the Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies at Johns Hopkins University.
Toomas Ilves is an Estonian politician who served as the fourth president of Estonia from 2006 until 2016. Ilves worked as a diplomat and journalist and he was the leader of the Social Democratic Party in the 1990s.

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