CNN Audio

5 PM ET: Ilhan Omar’s removal, arctic blast, Brady proposition & more
5 Things
Listen to
CNN 5 Things
Thu, Feb 2
New Episodes
How To Listen
On your computer On your mobile device Smart speakers
Explore CNN
US World Politics Business

The Axe Files with David Axelrod

David Axelrod, the founder and director of the University of Chicago Institute of Politics, and CNN bring you The Axe Files, a series of revealing interviews with key figures in the political world. Go beyond the soundbites and get to know some of the most interesting players in politics.

Back to episodes list

Ep. 487 — Amb. Michael McFaul
The Axe Files with David Axelrod
Apr 28, 2022

As a high school student in Montana, Ambassador Michael McFaul became interested in Russian affairs while working on a debate team assignment concerning trade sanctions on the Soviet Union. He first visited the Soviet Union in college and went on to serve as US Ambassador to Russia from 2012 to 2014. Ambassador McFaul joined David to talk about Russian President Vladimir Putin’s paranoia over the expansion of democracy around the world, the rise of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, what he sees as potential outcomes for the war in Ukraine, and how Putin’s attempts to tighten his grip on power may actually accelerate the unraveling of his leadership.