Policy, Guns and Money: QAnon primer, protests in Russia and geopolitics

In the first episode of ASPI’s Policy, Guns and Money podcast for 2021, Jacob Wallis and Ariel Bogle of ASPI’s International Policy Centre provide a primer on QAnon. They discuss the conspiracy theory’s origins, its translation from an online phenomenon into violence and the ensuing real-world consequences that encompass everything from the US Capitol riots to Australian policy responses.

Next, The Strategist’s national security editor Anastasia Kapetas speaks with Russia expert and ANU visiting fellow Kyle Wilson about the unfolding situation in Russia, including the arrest of opposition leader Alexei Navalny and the widespread protests across the country. They discuss the similarities between China’s and Russia’s media censorship, Putin’s strategy when it comes to Navalny, how resilient this protest movement will be and whether it poses a real threat to Putin’s power.

Finally, ASPI’s Peter Jennings and Michael Shoebridge talk about some of the big developments that happened in the world while the podcast was on hiatus—the storming of the US Capitol, Joe Biden’s inauguration, a military coup in Myanmar, the persistent challenge of Covid-19 and growing tensions around Taiwan—and what they will be watching closely in the year ahead.