I began my obsession with podcasts with Dan Carlin’s Hardcore History show. Lately though, I’ve been more interested in other podcasts, but today Carlin reminded me why he’s still worth listening to.

Vladimir Putin, Carlin tell us, is Russia’s Ronald Reagan. After two decades as an international punchline, after two decades of EU and NATO expansion up to Russia’s boarders, Putin is reminding his people that it’s morning again in Russia, that she will “stand tall” once more.

Of course America has reenacted the Melian dialogue so many times, she has forgotten how to deal with a true rival.

Great Powers crush Meloses constantly. But if a Great Power tries to deal with a fellow Great Power like it would a Melos, then that power will remind her adversary, as Carlin says, that she is closer to a Sparta than a Melos.

Seriously, go listen to Dan Carlin’s latest Common Sense episode.