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The World in 2019


Thomas Friedman




The world in 2019 is looking increasingly chaotic and unpredictable. Trump has declared a ‘national emergency’ over immigration at America’s southern border. A humanitarian catastrophe is unfolding in Venezuela, forcing the US to consider the option of military intervention. Britain is on the brink of a chaotic no-deal Brexit. Tensions between China and the West have skyrocketed after Trump’s trade war and the Huawei dispute. So who better to make sense of these unsettling and fast-changing times than Thomas Friedman, a writer described as ‘the most influential columnist in America’? A three-time Pulitzer Prize-winner and columnist on The New York Times, Friedman has been at the forefront of geopolitical and economic upheaval for nearly 40 years, from the first Lebanon War to the collapse of Lehman Brothers. He has written a series of bestselling books laying out the implications of globalisation, climate change and technological advance.


Thank you very much indeed, Hannah, and thank you to everyone here this evening. It's a great pleasure to host this event on behalf of Intelligence Squared, and it's a huge pleasure to introduce Thomas l Friedman, possibly the world's most famous journalist, although Clark Kent might take issue with that.

He's the, uh, lead for an affairs columnist for the New York Times, and he's won the Pulitzer Prize three times. He's the author of several books, the most recent, those being Thank you for Being Late, an Optimist Guide to Thriving in the Age of Accelerations, which was published just a couple of years ago.

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