Around the Institute

Listen Longer 5/23: Memorial Day

May 26, 2015  • Institute Contributor

This past week Aspen Institute Radio celebrated Memorial Day, featuring stories about the challenges and opportunities for the 21st century veteran, and what it means for America to be a military superpower.

Aspen Institute Radio, our two-hour radio show, airs every Saturday and Sunday on SiriusXM Insight (channel 121). Each episode dives into the topics that inform the world around us. Here in our weekly Listen Longer posts, we’ll recap each episode and show where you can read, watch, and listen to more. Don’t have SiriusXM? Try it free for a month here.

How is the 21st Century Veteran Doing?


“About 2.4 million have served overall. We’ve seen a spike in unemployment, suicide, and family issues. But we still have decades to go. It’s our responsibility to expand the conversation.” – Paul Rieckhoff, executive director and founder of Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA), spoke about the challenges our country will face over the coming years as veterans come home. Rieckhoff joined a panel of experts to talk about the issues and coping mechanisms for veterans in the 21st century.

How does Rieckhoff envision we can better serve US veterans? Check out his big idea.

The Military’s New Role


President Barack Obama famously said at last summer’s West Point commencement that “US military action cannot be the only or even primary component of our leadership in every instance. Just because we have the best hammer does not mean that every problem is a nail.” With a war-weary public and a declining military budget, but no end of security threats from one end of the globe to the other, what should be the military’s role in countering these threats? That was the topic for “60 Minutes” correspondent Lesley Stahl and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Martin Dempsey at the 2014 Aspen Security Forum.

Interested in the CliffsNotes version? Here are some highlights of Dempsey’s conversation:

Coming Home: The Challenges and Opportunities


Wes Moore, army combat veteran, businessman, and youth advocate, spoke about the challenges and opportunities for returning US veterans.

More with Moore:

What does it mean to be a military superpower?


At the 2012 Aspen Ideas Festival, Admiral Mike Mullen (ret.), former chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, spoke with NPR’s Steve Inskeep about the United States’ military role in the world.

Can’t get enough on global security? Check out the Aspen Security Forum video library, which features highlights from the annual convening about key security issues of the day.

You can also watch our YouTube playlist for all of this episode’s conversations.