What Next

The Ugly Truth About America’s Longest War

The Afghanistan Papers offer a damning account of an unwinnable war.

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Episode Notes

On Monday, the Washington Post published a damning account of America’s war in Afghanistan. Titled “The Afghanistan Papers,” the report features dozens of interviews with people directly involved in the war, detailing the lies, deception, and misleading of the public that kept the war going. At once shocking and completely unsurprising, the papers are a secret history of America’s longest war.

Guest: Fred Kaplan writes for Slate and is the author of the forthcoming book The Bomb: Presidents, Generals, and the Secret History of Nuclear War, due out in January 2020.

Podcast production by Mary Wilson, Jayson De Leon, Danielle Hewitt, and Mara Silvers.

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About the Show

The problem with the news right now? It’s everywhere. And each day, it can feel like we’re all just mindlessly scrolling. It’s why we created What Next. This short daily show is here to help you make sense of things. When the news feels overwhelming, we’re here to help you answer: What next? Look for new episodes every weekday morning.

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  • Mary Harris is the host and managing editor of What Next, Slate's new daily news podcast. She has reported throughout the public radio system, for NPR, Marketplace, and WNYC.

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