Phillip Smyth is a researcher at the University of Maryland who focuses on Iran-backed Shiite proxy groups. He is also widely known for his Hizballah Cavalcade project on Jihadology.

Phillip joined me, with very short notice, to push out this look at the complexities surrounding the Kurdish drive for independence and how that looks to play out given this recent setback.

This episode includes another short recollection from Fred Burton. Fred is the former deputy chief of counterterrorism at the Diplomatic Security Service and the author of the best-selling memoir GHOST: Confessions of a Counterterrorism Agent. His other works include Chasing Shadows: A Special Agent's Lifelong Hunt to Bring a Cold War Assassin to Justice and Under Fire: The Untold Story of the Attack in Benghazi.