Sportswashing is the next frontier of foreign influence in the United States. Authoritarian regimes are investing billions of dollars in the sports that Americans love — from the NBA to WWE, UFC, and, the PGA Tour.
In many cases these investments come with strings attached. Foreign powers aren’t just trying to make money, they’re hoping to launder their reputations and censor their would-be critics in the U.S. This can have potentially dire consequences for Washington foreign policy, given that many of these regimes seek to pull the agenda in a decidedly unrestrained direction via U.S. military entanglements.(Video production by Khody Akhavi)