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Satellite composite of the United States of America.
original by NASA; crop by Ryan Kaldari / Public domain
Satellite composite of the United States of America.

Stream now or tune in Thursday, July 16, 2020 at 11:30 p.m. on KPBS TV

In a democracy, foreign policy and diplomacy must be directed by the people, but survey after survey reveals dire statistics about Americans' knowledge of the world. Few Americans can name the president of France. Just one in four can find Iran on an unmarked map.

GREAT DECISIONS investigates the roots of this knowledge deficit and asks what can be done to reverse it in today's increasingly global economy.

Narrated by David Strathair.

Americans and the World - Narrated by David Strathairn - Full Episode


  • David Allen, Fellow, MIT Security Studies Program
  • James Baker, U.S. Secretary of State (1989–1992)
  • Bill Clifford, President, World Affairs Councils of America
  • Vishakha Desai, Senior Adviser for Global Affairs, Columbia University
  • Michael Doyle, Professor, Columbia University
  • Ronan Farrow, Contributing Writer, The New Yorker
  • Beverly Gage, Professor of History and American Studies, Yale University
  • Mary Kane, Director, National Museum of American Diplomacy
  • Amb. Kristie Kenney, Former U.S. Ambassador to Ecuador, Thailand, and the Philippines
  • Amb. Deborah McCarthy, Former U.S. Ambassador to Lithuania
  • Eliza McClelland, Director, Great Decisions Teacher Training Institute
  • David Miliband, Former Foreign Secretary of the United Kingdom
  • Sen. Chris Murphy (D-CT)
  • Amb. Ronald Neumann, President, American Academy of Diplomacy
  • Ben Rhodes, Dep. U.S. National Security Advisor (2009–2017)
  • Mark Ritchie, President, Global Minnesota
  • Amb. Eric Rubin, President, American Foreign Service Association
  • Amb. Harry Thomas, Former U.S. Ambassador to Bangladesh, the Philippines, and Zimbabwe
  • A. Trevor Thrall, Senior Fellow, Cato Institute
  • Stephen Wertheim, Deputy Director of Research and Policy, Quincy Institute
  • Amb. Frank Wisner, Former U.S. Ambassador to India, Egypt, the Philippines, and Zambia
  • Amb. Susan Ziadeh, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Near Eastern Affairs (2016)

Watch On Your Schedule:

While schools are closed during the COVID-19 public health crisis, Foreign Policy Association will make the digital edition of the GREAT DECISIONS television series available to students and the public on YouTube.

About The Series:

GREAT DECISIONS is America's largest discussion program on world affairs. The program model involves reading the GREAT DECISIONS Briefing Book, watching the DVD and meeting in a discussion group to discuss the most critical global issues facing America today. Here are some resources for bringing your discussion groups online.

Foreign Policy Association is on Facebook.

GREAT DECISIONS: America’s Global Affairs Discussion Program